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Don't shoot the scientists

Any hyperbole about swine flu was created by the media, not by virologists, says Tom SheldonSimon Jenkins is right to say that obsessive media coverage of swine flu, ever thirsty for hyperbole and impatient for new developments, can be misleading (Sophie's sniffle mocks the peddlers of swine flu panic, 6 May). And advice issued by government should rightly be debated.But the suggestion that...

Study: Bad boy doesn't always get the girl (AP)

AP - Apparently the bad boy doesn't always get the girl. At least in a South American tribe with the highest known murder rate, it turns out that the most aggressive guys end up with fewer wives and children than milder men, according to a report in Tuesday's edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

MONDAY 11. MAY 2009

Acupuncture eases chronic low back pain in SPINE trial

Acupuncture can help people with chronic low back pain feel less bothered by their symptoms and function better in their daily activities, according to the largest randomized trial of its kind, published in the May 11, 2009 Archives of Internal Medicine. But the SPINE (Stimulating Points to Investigate Needling Efficacy) trial raises questions about how the ancient practice actually works.

Islands top a global list of places to protect

Rare and unique ecological communities will be lost if oceanic islands aren't adequately considered in a global conservation plan, a new study has found. Although islands tend to harbor fewer species than continental lands of similar size, plants and animals found on islands often live only there, making protection of their isolated habitats our sole chance to preserve them.

Mexican genomes show wide diversity

(AP) -- The detailed new look yet at the genetics of Mexicans is showing significant diversity, a finding that could help point the way to customized drugs and identification of people prone to certain diseases.