January 8, 2011 |
A controversial plan to resume biomedical testing on semiretired, government-owned research chimpanzees living in Alamogordo, N.M., has been put on hold after the intervention of New Mexico politicians and a trio of U.S. senators. The National Institutes of Health announced this week that it would keep the 186 chimpanzees at the Alamogordo Primate Facility instead of transferring them to a San Antonio research center while the National Academy of Sciences determines whether chimps are still needed in biomedical research.
September 7, 2010 |
Sara Gruen has carved out a nice little niche for herself novelizing the nexus of humans and the rest of the animal world. She did it most effectively with her 2006 bestseller "Water for Elephants," which used a Depression-era traveling circus as the vehicle to explore a cast of engaging eccentrics — a tale being filmed for the big screen for next year. The strength of that novel grew from Gruen's imaginative blending of human impulses, good and bad, and her re-creation of a specific point in time.
August 23, 2010 |
Synthetic nucleotides injected into monkeys can block the replication of Ebola and Marburg viruses, suggesting it eventually may be possible to protect humans against these deadly bioterrorism agents, researchers said Sunday. The monkeys get very sick, but most of them survive. The agents, called morpholino oligomers, are the first drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration to go into clinical trials against the viruses — although those trials will, at least initially, be conducted in primates, not humans.
November 18, 2009 |
The villages of Botswana are full of music. Gospel music. Choral music. The singsong repetitive music of rote classroom learning. But not opera, until now. As a small girl in the village of Ramotswa, Tshenolo Segokgo learned to sing in a church choir. She grew up and moved to the capital, Gabarone, for vocal lessons. Then one day in 2004, her music teacher put on an opera CD. "It felt like it was angels singing," she recalls. :: Five years later, on a purple African night, operatic strains rise from a white, corrugated-iron shed in the bush.
September 27, 2009 |
Man and beast, the connection was made physical by Charles Darwin in his theory of evolution in the mid-19th century. Since then zoologists and wildlife documentaries have further drawn our relationship to animals, and a slew of artists have been pondering the same; an exhibition at UC Riverside's Sweeney Art Gallery, "Intelligent Design: Interspecies Art" (through Nov. 28), has gathered provocative projects. "In the past, art dealing with animals usually addressed issues of representation," says Tyler Stallings, gallery director.
September 20, 2009 |
The Age of Empathy Nature's Lessons for a Kinder Society Frans de Waal Harmony Books: 304 pp., $25.99 "Greed is out, empathy is in." So writes optimistic Dutch psychologist and primatologist Frans de Waal in the preface to his latest meditation on the similarities between apes and people. "The Age of Empathy" might not strike you as the most accurate representation of a period in human history that will be remembered -- if we survive it -- for the War on Terror, nuclear wannabes, various genocides and looming Armageddon in the Middle East.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 21, 2009 |
Between 80 and 100 animal rights activists Monday protested ongoing primate research at UCLA. Members of Stop Animal Exploitation Now marched to Chancellor Gene Block's office in Murphy Hall, asking him to halt researcher Joaquin Fuster's primate experiments with rhesus monkeys. UCLA spokesman Phil Hampton said research projects undergo a strict vetting process to ensure they are warranted. He said Fuster's research has made major contributions to the understanding of how memory works.
May 28, 2009 |
Scientists have created the first genetically modified monkeys that can pass their new genetic attributes to their offspring, a development designed to give researchers new tools for studying human disease, but one that raises a host of thorny ethical questions. In this case, the Japanese researchers added genes that caused the animals to glow green under a fluorescent light and beget offspring with the same spooky ability.
May 20, 2009 |
A 47-million-year-old primate fossil that is so complete scientists can even tell what the animal's last meal was promises to shed new light on the earliest stages of evolution of the lineage that eventually led to humans, researchers said Tuesday. The unprecedented fossil of a lemur-like creature that probably weighed no more than 2 pounds when it was fully grown is remarkable because it is the most complete primate specimen ever obtained.