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Science worth remembering

August 24, 2007

Re "Chasing Memory," a four-part series, Aug. 19-22

Kudos to reporter Terry McDermott for his four-part report on memory research. His writing was so skilled that he took me (no scientific knowledge whatsoever) into UC Irvine neuroscientist Gary Lynch's lab and completely enfolded me into the lab group.

I was captivated as he explained the complexity of those experiments. His understanding of the Lynch process was so complete that it allowed me to actually think I had a pretty good handle on what was really happening in that lab. Lynch's tenacious quest to prove his "story" reads with all the melodrama of fiction. What a terrific report.

Jean Hayes

Upland

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The caption under your front-page photograph, "Eniko Kramas, a neurophysiologist, comforts one of the rats used in her research before it goes through trials and eventual death," should shock the conscience of any normal individual.

It is a scientific reality that animal-experiment results do not always replicate in human beings. Only a depraved mind can continue concocting these cruel experiments when there are other methods to achieve positive results.

I suggest that the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals rescue these animals and that all those involved in these cruel experiments be prosecuted. Animal cruelty is animal cruelty regardless of the setting in which it takes place.

Esmeralda Fucci

Culver City

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The statement that nitric oxide is now dead is not true. Nitric oxide is still a major player in the regulation of blood pressure, the immune system and may even have a role in memory. Indeed, it now seems clear that nitric oxide selectively binds to the cysteine residues of many proteins, markedly changing their function, including that of the dilation of blood vessels.

Arthur Yuwiler

Woodland Hills

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What is the world coming to? Using the front page of The Times to headline a series on biology and medical science research and discovery? There is hope for the world! Please continue with intelligent and truly newsworthy articles like these on the front page, not just relegated to the Science File. Such articles do sell newspapers.

Susan Black-Feinstein

Mar Vista

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All that anguish and effort and time and money -- for another pill? And for what end? Wouldn't it be better to live simple, orderly, healthful lives in harmony with the laws of nature rather than to make aging and dying the complicated, undignified and costly business they have become?

John Leland

Altadena

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