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Why Meningitis That Hit Princeton Is Hard To Beat With Vaccines

It turns out that the bacteria that are responsible meningitis B have a sugar coating that makes them look a lot like human cells. That similarity makes development of a vaccine against the germs especially tricky.
NPR

Newtown Parents Seek A Clearer Window Into Violent Behavior

When Jeremy Richman and Jennifer Hensel lost their daughter in the Connecticut shooting, they couldn't understand why someone would do such a thing. In seeking an answer, they're funding research into the forces that increase a person's risk of aggression — and have also found a path to healing.
NPR

NASA: Trouble With Space Station Cooling System Is No Emergency

One of two systems used to dissipate heat from the station's onboard system is acting up, but the space agency says it's not a dangerous situation for the moment.
NPR

Drug Companies Accept FDA Plan To Phase Out Some Animal Antibiotic Uses

The Food and Drug Administration Wednesday advised companies to change the labels on their drugs to make it illegal for livestock producers to use drugs for "growth promotion" or "feed efficiency." The announcement is the latest step in a long-running effort by the FDA to reduce the use of antibiotics in agriculture.
NPR

Big Batteries Needed To Make Fickle Wind And Solar Power Work

California plans to get 33 percent of its electricity from wind and solar power by 2020. But that will only work if the state can economically store some of the energy for release on cloudy, windless days.
NPR

Staph Germs Hide Out In The Hidden Recesses Of Your Nose

People who have surgery or are hospitalized for serious illnesses sometimes develop dangerous staph infections. The culprits can be bacteria that were living on people all along. Scientists say the germs thrive in remote parts of the nose that aren't typically tested. Other benign microbes might help keep the bad ones at bay.
NPR

Chowing Down On Meat, Dairy Alters Gut Bacteria A Lot, And Quickly

Shifting to a diet that's packed with pork, cheese and eggs has a big influence on the trillion of bacteria living in our guts, even after just a few days, new research shows. And some of these changes probably aren't so good. One type of microbe that flourishes under the meat-based diet has been linked to diseases in mice.
NPR

Megatons To Megawatts: Russian Warheads Fuel U.S. Power Plants

Once the Cold War ended, much of Russia's surplus uranium from thousands of decommissioned weapons wound up in crumbling military facilities. In 1993, the U.S. Department of Energy made a deal to have the material converted to fuel for U.S. power plants. The last shipment arrives today.
NPR

To Get Olympic Snow, Machines Give Nature A Nudge

The 2014 Winter Olympics will unfold in a resort town on the relatively warm Black Sea — a testament to how far man-made snow has come in recent years. The strategy to supply snow includes a massive system of more than 550 machines — plus insulated blankets to protect piles of already-made white stuff.
NPR

To Fight Meningitis Outbreak, Princeton Tries European Vaccine

The vaccine made by Novartis isn't approved for general use in the United States. But the Food and Drug Administration is allowing it on the Princeton campus. The university is offering the vaccine to students and some other people on campus through Thursday.

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