South Korea begins embryonic stem cell tests; Brazil has some trouble with its efforts;

Stem Cells

> A bioethics panel in South Korea has approved that country's first clinical test using embryonic stem cells. Story

> How a stem cell transplant changed two lives. Story

> Researchers in Brazil are having some difficulty establishing a first line of human embryonic stem cells for transplantation because of the diverse ethnic and genetic population in that country. Release

Cancer Research

> People in minority groups, especially black Americans, are more willing than their white counterparts to exhaust their personal financial resources to prolong life after being diagnosed with lung or colorectal cancer, according to a University of Alabama at Birmingham study. UAB release

> Temsirolimus, a drug commonly used to treat kidney cancer, may increase the effectiveness of chemotherapy for mesothelioma. Temsirolimus is a kinase inhibitor that blocks the action of mammalian target of rapamycin, a protein that regulates cell growth. It's used to treat advanced renal cell carcinoma. But Austrian researchers have found that temsirolimus also may slow the growth of malignant pleural mesothelioma cells. More from the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer

> Researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center say they have concluded the largest study on this topic of aspirin and prostate cancer. They found there is substantial data suggesting aspirin improves outcomes in prostate cancer patients who have received radiotherapy. Fox Chase Cancer Center release

Genetics

> Call it a mystery with a stubby tail. An odd-looking mouse discovered through a U.S. government breeding program in the 1940s had a short, kinky tail and an extra set of ribs in its neck--and nobody knew why. A team of scientists led by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco has now spilled the genetic secrets of this mutant rodent. In doing so, they may have uncovered a new wrinkle in the genetic code--an entirely unrecognized way our bodies regulate how genes are expressed in different tissues throughout life. UCSF release

> Fifteen years ago, the Mayo Clinic identified a new devastating neurological condition called hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy type 1 with dementia and hearing loss. Its symptoms begin to appear in young adults between the ages of 20 and 35, after which their cognitive ability, hearing and ability to sense limbs deteriorate slowly. There is no treatment or cure. However, the Mayo Clinic has now identified two genetic mutations responsible, revealing a new neural pathway that may help understand this and other similar conditions. Mayo Clinic release

> The advantages to using the water flea (Daphnia pulex) in genetic research. Article

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