Volume 407 Issue 6805, 12 October 2000


  • Opinion |

    The use of animals in laboratory research needs championing more than ever. Those defending it need to reflect discussions within the research community and engage positively with issues of public concern.


  • News |

    The Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine has been awarded to Arvid Carlsson of the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, Paul Greengard at Rockefeller University, New York and Eric Kandel of Columbia University, New York, for their pioneering discoveries of how signals are transmitted between nerve cells.

    • Alison Abbott
  • News |

    The Nobel Prize in Physics honours three scientists whose work laid the foundations for modern information and communications technology. Half the prize goes to Zhores Alferov of the Ioffe Physico-Technical Institute in St Petersburg, Russia and Herbert Kroemer at the University of California, Santa Barbara; the other half recognises Jack Kilby from Texas Instruments in Dallas.

    • Liesbeth Venema
  • News |

    The Nobel Prize for Chemistry has been awarded to Alan Heeger, a physicist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and two chemists, Alan MacDiarmid of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and Hideki Shirakawa of the University of Tsukuba, for their roles in the development of electrically conductive polymers.

    • David Adam
  • News |


    Both of the main US presidential candidates are promising to boost research funding and maintain the existing research agencies structure, according to statements from their campaign staff.

    • Macilwain Colin
  • News |

    Philadelphia & Munich

    Researchers will get a free version of the mouse genome about two years earlier than planned, thanks to a public-private collaboration announced last week.

    • Paul Smaglik
    •  &  Alison Abbott
  • News |


    Spanish scientists are expressing anger that the government is exaggerating its generosity towards research by including a number of military projects in the national research and development budget.

    • Xavier Bosch
  • News |


    The German Space Agency last week selected DIVA (German Interferometry for Multichannel Photometry and Astrometry), an astrometry mission, as Germany's next small space science mission.

    • Alison Abbott

News in Brief


  • News Feature |

    In several labs around Boston, the techniques of genetic and tissue engineering are being used in the name of art. Steve Nadis asks the artists and scientists involved what they gain from this fusion of high culture and cell culture.

    • Steve Nadis


Book Reviews

Millennium Essay

  • Millennium Essay |

    Vitalism was an attempt to reconcile rationality with a sense of wonder.

    • Sunetra Gupta


  • Futures |

    Wealth, chicks, guys, the secrets of the Universe — they can all be yours.

    • Vernor Vinge

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    To reduce our use of fossil fuels we will need cheap and safe batteries to run electric vehicles and store energy — magnesium batteries may be the answer.

    • George E. Blomgren
  • News & Views |

    Controlling movement involves complex computations in the brain, which probably reduces the problem to a combination of neural building blocks. These have now been seen in action.

    • Zoubin Ghahramani
  • News & Views |

    Seeds of a wild-flower species growing in one place are sometimes used to bolster a population of the species under threat elsewhere. The approach could have adverse genetic effects.

    • Peter D. Moore
  • News & Views |

    Spreading iron on the sea boosts phytoplankton's use of CO2 in the Southern Ocean. But the idea that fertilizing the oceans could be a way to manipulate the climate is flawed.

    • Sallie W. Chisholm
  • News & Views |

    Mistakes happen, and DNA replication is no exception to that rule. The crystal structure of a key protein involved in fixing errors in DNA offers insights into the first step of the repair process.

    • Richard D. Kolodner
  • News & Views |

    How does an organism specialize in a particular ecological niche? Clues to the mechanisms involved come from a study using bacteria.

    • Robert D. Holt
  • News & Views |

    • David Jones

Brief Communications




New on the Market

  • New on the Market |

    Separating the blood, stirring the pot, using magnets.



  • Insight |


    Programmed cell death, or apoptosis, is an essential part of life for any multicellular organism. But it must be tightly regulated as too little or too much cell death may lead to pathology. The hunt is on to understand which cells die when, why and how, and leading researchers here review the latest developments in this rapidly moving field.

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