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timothy from the wurzelbacher-wurzelbacher-french-is-it? dept.
After Joe Wurzelbacher of Ohio gained fame as "Joe the Plumber" in the course of the current presidential campaign, it seems that he's drawn more than idle curiosity from people with access to what should probably be confidential information. An anonymous reader writes with a story from The Columbus Dispatch that "government insiders accessed Joe the Plumber's records soon after the McCain-Obama debate. 'Public records requested by The Dispatch disclose that information on Wurzelbacher's driver's license or his sport-utility vehicle was pulled from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles database three times shortly after the debate. Information on Wurzelbacher was accessed by accounts assigned to the office of Ohio Attorney General Nancy H. Rogers, the Cuyahoga County Child Support Enforcement Agency and the Toledo Police Department.' Welcome to 1984."
urban_warrior writes "Hi I'm your typical nerdy computer loving engineering student, I am sick of working for the "man" and would like to open up my own computer repair and sales shop. How does one get the start up resources for such an endeavour?(I don't make much money!) How the hell does a nerd like me advertise his services?
ANY help or suggestions would be appreciated
Researchers may have discovered a second molecular 'switch' that turns off the immune system's response against HIV. Last year the same team identified a molecule that suppresses the activity of HIV-specific CD8 T cells that should destroy virus-infected cells. Now they describe how a regulatory protein called CTLA-4 inhibits the action of HIV-specific CD4 T cells that control the overall response against the virus. Link to Original Source
Tiny pieces of genetic material called microRNA could be key to HIV's ability to evade detection in the immune system. Researchers have shown that when an HIV-infected individual receives a powerful cocktail of antiviral agents called HAART, the virus uses miRNAs to help it hide and remain practically undetectable, temporarily shutting down its ability to replicate. Learning to manipulate miRNA's inhibitory effects might have implications for new strategies against the virus. Link to Original Source
As policymakers debate what levels of ozone in the air are safe for humans to breathe, studies in mice are revealing that the inhaled pollutant impairs the body's first line of defense, making it more susceptible to subsequent foreign invaders, such as bacteria. Link to Original Source
How do we choose our mates? For quite some time now, scientists suspect that it is not for looks or fashion, neither for love or sympathy. It may be the genes that determine our preference for certain males or females. A new study provides support for this idea by looking at lemurs in Madagascar. Female fat-tailed dwarf lemurs live in life-long pairs, yet notoriously cheat on their partners to improve the genetic fitness of their offspring. Link to Original Source
Contrary to arguments by critics, a new study found that legalizing physician-assisted suicide in Oregon and the Netherlands did not result in a disproportionate number of deaths among the elderly, poor, women, minorities, uninsured, minors, chronically ill, less educated or psychiatric patients. Of 10 "vulnerable groups" examined in the study, only AIDS patients used doctor-assisted suicide at elevated rates. Link to Original Source
It's a long-standing question: Can just the act of observing an experiment affect the results? According to a new study, if the experiment uses a fluorescent dye called acridine orange, the answer is a resounding "yes." A fluorescent marker, long used in imaging to help researchers watch membrane-bound vesicles as they exit a cell, can actually cause the vesicles to break open as soon as they're hit with light from a microscope. New research describes how to differentiate a microscopy side effect from the cell's true process. Link to Original Source
A study of families in the Netherlands indicates that children raised by lesbian couples "do not differ in well being or child adjustment compared with their counterparts in heterosexual-parent families." Among the most interesting findings, lesbian biological mothers were significantly more satisfied with their partners as a co-parent than were heterosexual mothers. Link to Original Source