Today's news

April 13, 2005

Cambridge 'abuse' of monkeys prompts legal review
Anti-vivisection campaigners have won the right to challenge the legality of animal experiments at Cambridge University after evidence emerged that scientists ignored safeguards that protected laboratory monkeys. The High Court ruling came after an undercover operation by an animal rights group managed to infiltrate a laboratory where experiments were being done to help develop treatments for Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases. During the investigation, a campaigner working as a technician discovered monkeys that had had the tops of their heads sawn off to help induce strokes in their brains.
The Independent, The Financial Times, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Scotsman

Girlfriend of Euan Blair quits NUS in racism row
Euan Blair's girlfriend has resigned her post in national student politics after claims that the National Union of Students "is turning a blind eye" to anti-Semitism on university campuses. The Chief Rabbi,  Jonathan Sacks, entered the row yesterday by expressing his "distress" that three of the union's leading Jewish officials, including growing hostility towards Jewish students, had led to the resignation of Luciana Berger, 23, who has been romantically linked with Tony Blair's eldest son.
The Independent, The Guardian

Soft drink, hard task
Students campaigning to ban Coca-Cola products from student union outlets are finding it more difficult than expected: the company disputes any wrongdoing and even if the ban goes ahead there may be few ethical alternatives.
The Guardian

Greens to ‘scrap fees’
The Green Party's election manifesto launched yesterday includes plans to boost education funding, scrap standard assessment tests and abolish university tuition fees.
The Daily Telegraph

Manchester aims high
Manchester's secret weapon in its fight to re-establish itself as a top European city is its three universities, with 88,000 students and an annual budget of £700 million. It is one of the biggest university clusters in Europe. But over the past 30 years it has slipped. Alan Gilbert, the new vice-chancellor of the merged Manchester University, wants it to become one of the world's top 25 universities by 2015, with at least five Nobel laureates.
The Financial Times

CJD researchers team up with drugs giants
Britain's leading research group working on variant CJD is joining forces with drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline to develop a cure for the disease, it was announced today. The Medical Research Council's Prion Unit, based at University College London, and GSK scientists will search for a drug that can halt the infection during its long incubation period. Variant CJD is the human form of BSE.
The Guardian, The Daily Mail, The Scotsman

Nobel scientist warns on bird flu
Avian flu, which is caught directly from birds and is fatal in seven cases out of 10 - could suddenly sweep through the human population and kill 70 million people, according to World Health Organisation estimates, a Nobel laureate warned yesterday. Peter Doherty, of the University of Melbourne, who shared the 1996 Nobel prize for medicine, was speaking at an assembly of laureates in Lyon, France, 50 years to the day after the first announcement of an effective vaccine against polio.
The Guardian

Egypt's students protest against emergency laws
Thousands of students across Egypt demonstrated on campuses yesterday, to call for political reform and an end to the country's emergency laws. About 2,000 students staged an angry protest at Assiut in southern Egypt to mark what the organisers called "the day of freedom in Egypt's universities".
The Guardian

New contact lenses 'could halt myopia'
Scientists who have designed special contact lenses intended to correct problems with focusing hope to make short-sightedness a thing of the past. A team at Anglia Polytechnic University will test whether the lenses can prevent people's myopia getting worse. Scientists hopes to be able to give myopia-prone children the lenses to wear from the age of five.
The Evening Standard

Tennessee Williams poem found on exam pad
As he sat in an exam hall in 1937, Tom Williams was a troubled young man who believed people thought him talentless. The man who would soon change his name to Tennessee poured out his heart in a 17-line poem that he scribbled on the back of his exam paper. The previously unknown work was discovered by chance in a bookstore by an academic from Washington University, St Louis, where Tennessee Williams, failed his exam.
The Independent

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