Today's news

July 29, 2002

Long life is all in the mind
Older people can literally think themselves into the grave by feeling bad about getting old, according to researchers. A positive attitude will add more years to your life than not smoking or regular exercise, the Yale University team found. The findings are to be published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology .
( The Daily Telegraph, The Times, Daily Mail )

Caress goes straight to the head
Scientists have discovered that gentle stroking and brushing activates a set of nerve fibres in the skin that connects to emotional centres in the brain linked to romantic love. The purpose of the nerves, called C tactile fibres, was discovered by scientists at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden. Their findings are noted in the journal Nature Neuroscience .
( The Independent, The Times, Daily Mail )

Dining, not wining, is healthy
Researchers say that the way wine lovers live, rather than the drink itself, is responsible for the reported health benefits of regular moderate drinking. A study by researchers at Duke University, North Carolina, and the Institute of Preventative Medicine found that wine drinkers followed a diet richer in fruit and vegetables and higher in fibre than that of teetotallers. The findings are to be published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition .
( The Daily Telegraph )

Reservists rebel over student exemption
Dozens of Israel Defence Force reservists are refusing to do military service in protest at an exemption from duty for religious students.
( The Daily Telegraph )

Dhaka University closed
Dhaka University has been closed indefinitely and Bangladeshi police and troops deployed because of student unrest. The Awami League, the main opposition party, has called for a national strike tomorrow.
( The Times )

Education may be key to extremist actions
A report from the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts, says that there is a positive link between taking part in terrorism and educational attainment. An examination of the jobs, education level and family circumstances of 129 Hizbullah militants showed them often to be highly educated.
( The Guardian )

Fred awards mistreated weirdos
Fred, the eccentric wife of Charles Webb, who wrote The Graduate , has set up a £10,000 prize for artists who are forced by society to behave like "erratic weirdos" to live up to social stereotypes.
( The Guardian )

Amersham speeds gene analysis
Healthcare group Amersham has linked up with the memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York to test a microscope that can analyse the human genome in a day.
( Financial Times )

Psychiatrists protest against bill
The Royal College of Psychiatrists is to join with mental health user groups in a march on Whitehall to protest against a draft bill that it says will lead to the forced detention of people who are no harm to anybody except, possibly, themselves.
( The Guardian )

Nature’s clock goes awry
Winters in Britain are moving into Spring earlier sparking a range of early activity, including insects emerging, trees, plants and shrubs coming into leaf and flowering, and birds nesting, according to the Woodland Trust’s UK Phenology Network.
( The Independent )

Titanic iceberg shot goes on show
The only known photograph of the iceberg that sank the Titanic is to go on display in Britain for the first time at Dundee City Quay from August 10 to 18.
( The Independent, The Times )

Forgotten painting is £700,000 Stubbs
A portrait by the 18th-century painter George Stubbs has been discovered languishing on the wall of a civic backroom in Hull. The picture of George Fothergill, a wealthy bachelor from York, could be worth more than £700,000.
( The Times )

Plath film expected to stir memories
The BBC is being asked to help to maintain the grave of poet Sylvia Plath because of fears that a forthcoming film could lead to vandalism. The £7 million film, starring Gwyneth Paltrow, is expected to inspire fans of Plath to flock to her West Yorks grave.
( The Daily Telegraph )

Crossing the divide
Interview with Tom Campbell, who is to become dean of the Haas School of Business at Berkeley.
( Financial Times )   

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