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Biomedical Research Using Chimps Curtailed

Following an expert panel's recommendations, The National Institutes of Health announced it will not issue new awards for experiments using chimps until a new set of strict criteria is in place. The panel also recommended setting up an independent oversight committee that includes members of the public.
NPR

Purrfection: $13 Million Will Buy A Lot Of Catnip

Tommaso began life as a stray cat on the streets of Rome until he was rescued by a wealthy widow. The 94 year old had no children, according to ABC News. So when she died last month, she left her entire fortune to the cat. That's $13 million.
NPR

Rats Show Empathy, By Freeing Trapped Companions

Reporting in Science, researchers write of an experiment in which rats worked to open the cages of trapped rats, but not empty or dummy-filled cages. Author Peggy Mason discusses empathy in non-primates, and the value rats place on freeing a companion--about equal to that of a stash of chocolate chips.
NPR

Python Could Help Treat Heart Disease

Adult Burmese pythons can swallow prey as large as deer. Now, researchers from the University of Colorado, Boulder say the way the python's heart balloons after it eats could help treat human heart disease. Molecular biologist Leslie Leinwand discusses her team's python experiments.
NPR

Debating Genetically Modified Salmon

Biotech company AquaBounty has not yet received FDA approval for its fast-growing, genetically-modified salmon. Biotechnologist Alison Van Eenennaam and environmental scientist Anne Kapuscinski discuss the food safety and environmental concerns associated with transgenic fish.
NPR

Inbreeding To Blame For Bedbug Renaissance

Presenting at a meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, researchers said bedbugs can survive many generations of inbreeding, allowing one pregnant female to cause a building-wide infestation. Biologist Rajeev Vaidyanathan discusses that study, and another on pesticide resistance.
NPR

Cagebreak! Rats Will Work To Free A Trapped Pal

Calling someone a "rat" is no compliment, but a new study shows that rats actually are empathetic and will altruistically lend a helping paw to a cage mate who is stuck in a trap.

NPR

Bedbug Infestations Are A Family Affair

Bedbugs' eagerness to mate with their kin is one reason their populations have taken off so dramatically, new research suggests. Inbreeding comes naturally to them, and it doesn't seem to hurt their offspring much, as is the case with most other creatures.

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