Kenya adopts GM crops after decade of controversy

by jeeg 19. June 2010 00:30
After years of debate, Kenya will implement legislation this month green lighting genetically modified organisms Kenya's long-awaited biosafety law is likely to become operational this month — well over a year after its president approved the legislation. President Mwai Kibaki signed off parliament's approval of the biosafety legislation in February 2009, after a decade of controversy about the advisability of allowing the commercialisation of genetically modified organisms. Last ... [More]

Bulgaria Moves to Protect Children from GMO's

by jeeg 19. June 2010 00:19
A ban of all genetically modified products and ingredients for preparation of children foods in Bulgaria has been proposed Wednesday in an amendment in the Bulgarian Food Act. The amendment, proposed by Desislava Taneva, chair of the Parliament Committee on Agriculture and Forests, from the ruling party GERB and two other MPs from the right-wing “Blue Coalition”, stipulates a full ban on the distribution and sale of food products containing genetically modified organisms (GMO)... [More]

Economics and Biotechnology

by jeeg 19. June 2010 00:11
Mike Mandel, from the Mandel on Innovation and Growth blog, has a lot to say about the economic repercussions from the failure of genomics to translate into clinical applications. He says: My nomination for the most significant economic event of the past decade:  The failure of the Human Genome Project to  thus far deliver medically significant results. Let me explain my thinking, and why there may be reason to be guardedly optimistic about the future. Rig... [More]

Myriad Appeals Gene Patent Decision

by jeeg 18. June 2010 00:39
Just over two months ago, in a widely publicized decision we characterized as “a nearly complete victory for the plaintiffs and their supporters,” a district court judge in New York invalidated a number of Myriad Genetics’ patent claims, including the company’s patents on isolated DNA sequences in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes (i.e., “gene patents”). Yesterday, to absolutely nobody’s surprise, the defendants in the case, including Myriad, fil... [More]

Human Genome Project at Ten Years- Questions Grow as to Value of Genomic Medicine Research

by jeeg 17. June 2010 18:52
Andrew Pollack joins Nicholas Wade ( "Awaiting the Genome Payoff" in the New York Times) in questioning the wholesale focus of biological research in the promise of genetics as personalized medicine without much to show for it. He writes:  "Ten years after President Bill Clinton announced completion of the first draft of the Human Genome Project, in June 2000, its application to drug development is still, at best, a work in progress. But while many genetics scientists ... [More]

DNA Dating Service???

by jeeg 16. June 2010 00:41
It was only a matter of time before someone launched a dating site that looks for potential matches based on DNA compatibility. That time is apparently today now that we have GenePartner. The Switzerland-based company says they can use a $199 DNA test to help you find your perfect match, statistically speaking. They’ve analyzed “hundreds of couples” and have determined the genetic patterns found in successful relationships. Based on their algorithm and your DNA... [More]

How Women are Treated in the Sciences

by jeeg 16. June 2010 00:36
Two blogs have launched criticims at recent claims that women are less capable than men in the sciences.     Blue Lab Coats states: At least 3 people have asked me in the last two days if I intend to post something on that seriously underwhelming NYT article by John Tierney that was published a couple of days ago.  In it, Tierney postulates, YET AGAIN that there is a gender disparity in science because there are more men at the very upper end of the IQ sca... [More]

Berkeley Accused of Ethical Lapses in its Genetic Testing Program

by jeeg 15. June 2010 23:02
I’ve been teaching an early summer graduate course in Corporate and Professional Ethics. As in all my courses, one of its goals is to help students make the link between theory and practice -- particularly important in this case because ethics is by definition “applied.” So I draw heavily on real cases and situations. They give students practice in identifying ethical issues and ethics failure; examining the underlying reasoning and justifications for action and the ass... [More]

Ozzy Osbourne's Genome is Sequenced

by jeeg 15. June 2010 21:35
THE mystery of why Ozzy Osbourne is still alive after decades of drug and alcohol abuse may finally be solved. The 61-year-old former Black Sabbath lead singer — who this week begins his health advice column in The Sunday Times Magazine — is to become one of only a few people in the world to have his full genome sequenced. In addition to giving Osbourne information that could help prevent diseases, it is hoped the results will provide insights into the way drugs are absorbed ... [More]

New York on Verge of Massive Expansion of State DNA Database

by jeeg 15. June 2010 01:39
As of April, New York state's DNA databank contained the genetic profiles of 356,054 people, most of them criminals. A decision later this month could, in effect, add millions more, whose only "offense" is being related to a convict.   No, their DNA won't actually be in the system. But the mere fact that it resembles genetic material that is in the databank would be enough to put them on law enforcement's radar.   This decision to use DNA in an entirely new way won't be made ... [More]
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