News highlights for November 15, 2010

CisionPoint news monitoring provides this small sampling of the university's daily news coverage. Click headline to read full text via Cision or link directly to the online article where available. For questions or comments about this service, or to add or delete a name from the mailing list, please contact Gerry Everding.

Yahoo! Canada
Global leadership: Voters launch a power surge of women

The face of global power is clearly changing, and it is looking far more feminine. To understand this shift, you need to go back to a 1995 United Nations’ Bejing conference report calling for governments to restructure their electoral and political party systems to better enable female representation, says Mona Lena Krook, a political scientist at Washington University in St. Louis. It was this Beijing conference, Krook says, that made the concept palatable to a wider variety of countries. Link to Article

TIME / Healthland

A step toward personalized care of leukemia patients


Researchers from the Genome Center at Washington University School of Medicine have discovered gene mutations in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) that may help doctors determine which treatments will work best for which patients early on. “”This gene has the signature of a tumor suppressor in that the mutations are all over the gene and kill the gene,” says WUSTL oncologist and geneticist Dr. Timothy Ley, the study’s lead author. Link to Article
JNJ’s solid win

Johnson & Johnson’s and Bayer’s new blood thinner rivaroxaban performed solidly in a final-stage trial in patients with atrialfibrillation, setting up a massive marketing battle with rival Boehreinger Ingelheim. None of the new drugs have been directly compared to each other, making it difficult to see how they stack up. “But this much is clear: if these oral anticoagulants…are affordable then they will be used widely in atrialfibrillation population,” says Dr. Brian Gage of Washington University in St. Louis. Link to Article

Discovery News

Neanderthals lived fast, died young

Findings detailed in the latest Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences portray Neanderthals as a live fast and die young species. WUSTL Neanderthal expert Erik Trinkaus believes modern humans came from Africa with no real edge over Neanderthals. At this time in our history, “archaic humans remained across the more northern areas, and even displaced the modern humans in Southwest Asia for an additional 50,000 to 70,000 years,” he said. “It argues for very little adaptive advantage on the part of these modern humans.” Link to Article

West Central Tribune Online (Wilmore MN)
Minneapolis might have lost Dem convention ground; Urdahl reminds GOP of control
11/15/2010 Democrats who will pick the next convention site may opt for Ohio because it is the biggest catch among the states looking to host the convention: North Carolina, Minnesota, Missouri and Ohio. WUSTL political expert Steven Smith said the midterm elections might have helped Cleveland’s bid for the convention over Charlotte, St. Louis and Minneapolis. “Ohio went so strongly Republican at every level that because of the size of Ohio, it’s going to be given priority in … siting decisions, “Smith said. “You don’t want to give up on a state like Ohio.” Link to Article

Washington University gets $1M for research
Washington University in St. Louis said Friday it landed a four-year, $1 million grant from the Amgen Foundation to provide hands-on biomedical laboratory experience to undergraduates. The 10-week, intensive undergraduate summer research program begins in May 2011. Link to Article
Sigma-Aldrich CEO dies of heart attack

Jai P. Nagarkatti, WUSTL Trustee and the chief executive of Sigma-Aldrich Corp., died this weekend of an apparent heart attack. He was 63. Nagarkatti also served on the board of trustees of the Missouri Botanical Garden, and was a board member of the St. Louis Science Center. Link to Article
Fewer getting flu shots
A recent Consumer Reports survey finds that 30 percent of those polled don’t plan to get a flu vaccine this year. Dr. Hilary Babcock, an infectious disease specialist at Washington University School of Medicine, finds the results to be disconcerting. She is concerned that H1N1 publicity last year may have given impression that the vaccine was not safe — a conclusion that’s not based in fact or in science, “The best way to protect everyone is for all of us to be vaccinated,” she said. Link to Article

$1 million grant for Washington University to recruit biomed scientists

Washington University has received a $1 million grant from the Amgen Foundation to help recruit scientists over four years. The school is one of 13 selected to take part in the Amgen Scholars Program, which started in 2006. Washington University’s participation starts next May with a summer research program aimed at U.S. citizens and permanent residents. Participants will conduct independent research with Washington University scientists. Link to Article

St. Louis Beacon

Analysis: Challenging the conventional wisdom on 2010 campaign spending

Some pundits attributed the Republican landslide to a January decision of the U.S. Supreme Court – Citizens United – that opened the floodgate to the huge, secret corporate contributions. But Bruce La Pierre, a Washington University law professor and expert on election law, says that Citizens United “has become the whipping boy for criticism of money in politics.” He says it is impossible to figure out how much unlimited corporate money came into 2010 elections.

Link to Article

News in higher education

New York Times

Some early returns on early admission

With some colleges permitting students to wait until Nov. 15 to file their early applications, it is too soon in this early-admission season to draw broad conclusions on whether such programs continue to grow in popularity over all. And yet, the preliminary estimates of some selective colleges with Nov. 1 deadlines are beginning to trickle in, and they are worth passing along.

Link to Article

Chicago Tribune

The future of reading

University and public libraries are rushing to push as much material as they can onto the Web, so patrons can peruse genealogical records, historical maps or rare volumes without leaving home. Now, these libraries are reinventing themselves as they struggle to remain relevant in the digital age, preparing for a future in which most materials can be checked and read from a home computer, smart phone or electronic reading device. Link to Article

Chronicle of Higher Education

The new 990 tax form: More data, more headaches
Private colleges must now disclose far more about what they pay their chief executives, thanks to the first major changes in federal tax-reporting requirements for nonprofits in three decades. New details are available about a wide range of perks, like university-owned homes, as well as more information about how trustees set pay levels. The souped-up 990 tax form has brought widespread confusion and inconsistencies, and created more than a few headaches across higher education. Link to Article

New York Times
U.S.: More presidents of private colleges earn over $1 million

The Chronicle of Higher Education found in its annual survey, 78 percent of all presidents had total compensation packages of less than $600,000. Link to Article See also Bloomberg News / Columbia’s Bollinger Paid Most of Ivy League Chiefs

For additional higher education news (subscription may be required):
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Inside Higher Ed
University Business

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