Volume 407 Issue 6806, 19 October 2000


  • Opinion |

    The US Congress should stop pushing researchers to invent a medical definition for Gulf War syndrome, the collection of maladies associated with veterans of the 1991 conflict in the Persian Gulf.


  • News |

    Barcelona. The science commission of Spain's opposition Socialist Party announced last week that it will file an ammendment to the government's proposed science budget for 2001 on the grounds that military spending "has been camouflaged as spending on research and development."

    • Xavier Bosch
  • News |

    Cape Town.AIDS researchers in South Africa have cautiously welcomed reports that President Thabo Mbeki has told the national executive committee of the African National Congress (ANC) that he is withdrawing from the debate on the science of the relation between HIV and AIDS.

    • Michael Cherry
  • News |

    London. The future of the Daresbury Laboratory in northwest England, home of the United Kingdom's current synchrotron light source, seems brighter. The centre is one of the biggest winners in a £26 million (US$38 million) government package designed to enhance the region's science base.

    • David Adam
  • News |

    Munich. A Berlin-based group of science historians has found that the ties between the top German scientists whose research was used to justify Nazi policies and the regime itself were much closer than was once thought.

    • Alison Abbott
    •  &  Quirin Schiermeier
  • News |

    San Diego. The state appeals court in San Diego last month upheld a 1998 jury verdict that in 1992 Michelle McTigue and her husband Jay Davies, both of drugs company Agouron, stole key elements of crystallography research from Huguette Pelletier, then a postdoc at UCSD. But the court reduced the jury's $200,000 award to Pelletier to $1.

    • Rex Dalton

News in Brief


  • News Feature |

    Is it possible to produce a complete mathematical description of complex biological systems? Leroy Hood thinks so, as Paul Smaglik discovers.

    • Paul Smaglik
  • News Feature |

    By collaborating with western companies, are India's research institutes consolidating their positions or allowing their young researchers to be exploited as a cheap scientific labour force? K. S. Jayaraman investigates

    • K. S. Jayaraman


Book Reviews

Millennium Essay


News & Views

  • News & Views |

    A fireball that landed in the Canadian Yukon has yielded meteorite fragments that are proving difficult to classify — could they be the most primitive samples to have been found on Earth so far?

    • Harry Y. McSween Jr
  • News & Views |

    In adverse conditions, bacteria can form spores that allow them to survive for long periods of time. But for 250 million years, in salt crystals?

    • R. John Parkes
  • News & Views |

    Calcium ions are versatile messengers, helping to control many body functions including blood pressure. How they do this becomes clearer from a study of their interactions with ion channels in blood vessels.

    • Nick Standen
  • News & Views |

    How the Earth's mantle became enriched in noble metals is difficult to explain - unless they came from meteorites. Although many rocks in the mantle don't resemble meteorites, new evidence says this theory cannot be ruled out.

    • Mark Rehkämper
  • News & Views |

    Just before they were fossilized, two tiny creatures left tracks showing how they may have moved. Results of an analysis of the tracks are taken as support for a particular view of vertebrate evolution.

    • Henry Gee
  • News & Views |

    Around 33.7 million years ago, Earth's climate changed radically and marine organisms suffered mass extinctions. One reason could have been a shift in seasonality towards colder winters.

    • Harry Elderfield
  • News & Views |

    Drugs can have unpredictable effects, especially if several are taken at once. A particular type of genetically engineered, 'humanized', mouse may shed light on the delicate balance between toxicity and therapy.

    • Mitchell A. Lazar
  • News & Views |

    Robert Abeles: a founder of modern enzymology. Abeles' work relied on the confluence of chemistry and biology long before the interface of the two disciplines came into vogue.

    • Lizbeth Hedstrom
    •  & Perry A. Frey

Brief Communications




New on the Market

  • New on the Market |

    Crystal diffraction analysis “can be fun”, on a Mac.



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