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Licensing deal to boost HIV drug access

US pharmaceutical giant Gilead Sciences and an NGO called the Medicines Patent Pool announced a deal on Tuesday aimed at boosting access to HIV drugs in poorer countries through generic manufacturing. The HIV medicines tenofovir and emtricitabine, as well as two drugs that are still in clinical development, cobicistat and…

Spanish surgeons perform first double leg transplant

Spanish surgeons on Monday carried out the world’s first-ever double leg transplant, authorities in the eastern city of Valencia said. The operation lasted all night and was completed on Monday morning in the city’s La Fe hospital, the regional health authority said in a statement. “It is the first time…

U.S. astronauts set for last spacewalk of shuttle era

Two US astronauts were to step out on the last spacewalk of the shuttle era Tuesday at the International Space Station where Atlantis is docked on the final mission of the 30-year US program. Americans Ron Garan and Mike Fossum were chosen for the six and a half hour spacewalk,…

16-pound baby born in Texas breaks hospital’s weight record

WASHINGTON — A newborn who tipped the scales at more than 16 pounds (7.3 kilograms) broke the local hospital’s weight records in Longview, Texas, press reported Monday. The baby boy, named JaMichael, delivered by Cesarean section to parents Janet Johnson and Michael Brown early Friday, exceeded doctors’ weight predictions by…

Spanish surgeons perform first double leg transplant

MADRID — Spanish surgeons Monday performed the world’s first double-leg transplant on a man whose legs were amputated above the knee after an accident, officials said. Surgeons operated through the night on the man, who had faced life in a wheelchair because prosthetic limbs were unsuitable, said the health authority…

Does too little sleep lead to weight gain?

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) – Want to avoid weight gain? Maybe some more sleep would help. People who got very little sleep ate more but didn’t burn any extra calories, according to a U.S. study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that adds to evidence supporting a link between…

Japan idled reactors could restart after stress test

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s idled nuclear reactors could restart work if they pass the first stage of two-step post-Fukushima safety checks, the government said on Monday. Still, without a timeframe for the tests, concerns remain about summer power shortages that could hurt the economy. Last week’s surprise announcement that the…

Sympathy for Japan, but no to whaling: Australia

Tsunami-hit Japan may find sympathy from other nations at this year’s global whaling meeting, but this should not cloud opposition to killing whales, Australian minister Tony Burke said Monday. As the chronically deadlocked International Whaling Commission (IWC) is set to begin a four-day meet in Jersey, many Japanese coastal communities…

Taiwan to tighten laws banning shark fin hunting

Taiwan, one of the world’s major shark catchers, announced plans on Sunday to tighten measures against hunting the ocean predator for its fin, the island’s top fisheries official said Sunday. Taiwan fishermen are already barred from tossing sharks back into the water to die after slicing off the fin —…

First drug-resistant gonorrhea strain emerges

For the first time, international researchers have identified a strain of gonorrhea that is resistant to treatment with antibiotics, scientists announced at a sex disease research conference Monday. The common bacterial infection, often called the “clap,” has until now been easily treatable with antibiotics but if left alone can cause…

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