Knowledge to prevent disease
The Jan. 30 issue of BioQuick News included comments by Chair and Professor of Biology Michael Goldman about President Barack Obama's Precision Medicine Initiative. "One of the most intriguing aspects of personalized or precision medicine is the ability to predict disease before symptoms even begin," Goldman said. "The 'right treatment at the right time, every time, to the right person…' will certainly revolutionize medicine and reduce expenditures on medicines that don't work as well as the cost and loss of life due to adverse drug reactions. But preventive medicine can eliminate the need for those treatments entirely. We cannot afford NOT to have personalized medicine."
The Free Republic and Mother Jones on Feb. 12 reported on conclusions drawn by Assistant Professor of Political Science Jason McDaniel regarding potential Republican presidential candidates that found Scott Walker, governor of Wisconsin, to be more ideologically conservative than the party's last six nominees. "Walker is well to the right end of the conservative spectrum. … It is not a stretch to argue that if nominated, Walker would be the most conservative Republican nominee since Barry Goldwater in 1964," McDaniel argued.
Bees get the job done
Professor of Biology Gretchen LeBuhn commented for a Feb. 12 Phys.org feature about a new SF State study that shows native bees provide adequate pollination service in San Francisco. "What this shows is that just because you're in an urban setting doesn't mean that bees aren't providing important pollinator service, and not just honeybees. Our wild bees here are providing all the service you might need," LeBuhn said. "We were actually surprised. We expected to find that there was not adequate pollinator service in the city, but in fact we actually found bees do quite well. Anybody who grows tomatoes in San Francisco knows it's really hard to grow them here, but our data says it's not because of the pollinators."
Skeptical of conclusions
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Sue V. Rosser commented for a Feb. 18 Inside Higher Ed article about a study that says the so-called pipeline for students seeking doctorates in science and technology fields is not leaking more women than men, suggesting the gender gap had disappeared. "The major finding of the study is the 'leakage' or loss of men. It's not so much that women are leaking less; in fact, it's pretty constant. It's just that the men receiving STEM Ph.D.s decreased," Rosser said.
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