Archive for August 2006
Just read it. Don’t you suspect that the real reason the guy’s fighting it is because it sends a correct message?
This is a big advance, it seems to me: Scientists have genetically modified the patient’s own immune cells so that they were able to eradicate melanoma:
Scientists for the first time have genetically modified tumor-fighting immune cells, allowing patients to rid themselves of an aggressive form of cancer, according to a study released Thursday.
The technique, used to cure two patients with advanced melanoma, paves the way for a new approach to fighting cancer by harnessing — and boosting — the body’s own immune system instead of relying on toxic chemotherapy and radiation treatments to kill out-of-control tumors.
The researchers from the National Cancer Institute, whose findings were published online by the journal Science, say the strategy could be adapted to treat breast, prostate, lung, colorectal, and other common cancers.
“It’s obviously very exciting,” said Dr. Len Lichtenfeld, deputy chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society, who was not involved in the research. “It’s a proof of concept of being able to develop a technique where they can use a patient’s own blood cells to fight cancer.” Read the rest of this entry »
I’m sure I’ve blogged about it before, but grassfed beef is the best in terms of healthfulness. “Organic” beef is still normally grainfed, which is hard on cattle (whose digestive systems don’t deal well with grain) and on people (because of the low levels of omega-3 fats). An article in the NY Times gives good information. Also included below is a list of sources for grassfed beef.
Ranchers of grass-fed beef say they have made great strides in the last few years by relearning what came naturally before the era of the feedlot, then building on it. They use heritage breeds that thrive on grass rather than on grain, as well as crossbreeds developed with advanced genetics.
They have relearned the science of rotating pastures and determined which grasses provide better nutrition in a region like the Northeast, where pastures are not endless, as they are in the West.
Humane, nonstressful slaughter is considered even more important than in the conventional cattle industry, where the practice is being slowly adopted.
And, finally, they are aging the beef longer to tenderize it more. Read the rest of this entry »
Via ThinkProgress, this press release:
President George W. Bush today announced his intention to recess appoint Paul DeCamp as head of the U.S. Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division. The Wage and Hour Division is responsible for enforcing the nation’s wage and hour laws, including overtime laws, workplace discrimination laws, and child labor laws. Rep. George Miller (D-CA), the senior Democrat on the House Education and the Workforce Committee, issued the following statement today on the recess appointment:
“Enforcing the nation’s wage and hours laws is a critical task that ensures that employees are not cheated out of a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. The person in charge of enforcing wage and hour laws must be objective and willing to take on powerful employers if they are abusing the wage laws.
“As a lawyer, Paul DeCamp has never represented American workers in a single case. He has worked on behalf of Wal-Mart – a company with an abhorrent record of labor relations – and other companies against the interests of American workers and consumers in numerous cases. Yet he is the man that President Bush has chosen as one of the nation’s top enforcers of workplace rights. It’s no surprise that President Bush would appoint a corporate lawyer to a position intended to safeguard workers against corporate abuses. This recess appointment is one more reminder that the President does not care about making sure that workers are treated fairly on the job or enforcing laws that he doesn’t happen to like.”
I blogged earlier about feeding the kitties Hill’s Science Diet t/d. Then I came across this note today:
For healthy pets, Science Diet® Oral Care® is available through veterinarians and pet specialty retailers carrying the Science Diet product line. It is an appropriate choice to maintain a clean, healthy mouth in adult pets with no current health issues. If a pet suffers from gingivitis or is at risk of more serious dental disease, Prescription Diet® t/d®, which is available only through your veterinarian, may be a better choice.
So we’ll talk to our vet about the best choice for our cats. (The same foods are also available in canine formulas. And, BTW, I didn’t know that garlic was a deadly poison for dogs. Did you?)
Below I posted (here and here and here) about the hold on the bipartisan bill to create a public, searchable database of Federal grants and contracts. All of those were to slam Sen Stevens (R-Alaska) for placing the hold. But it looks as though he were joined in this by Sen Byrd (D-WV), who is also notorious for having his snout deep into the public trough. Bad news, and the Democratic leaders ought to pressure Byrd to lift the damn hold.
UPDATE: Byrd has confirmed—and dropped—his hold.