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Shots - Health Blog
3:31 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Will Low-Cost Genome Sequencing Open 'Pandora's Box'?

The Proton Semiconductor Sequencer from Ion Torrent Systems Inc. is a new DNA sequencing machine designed to sequence the entire human genome in about eight hours for $1,000.
Ethan Miller Getty Images

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 10:54 am

Beau Gunderson's fascinated by what he might learn from his DNA.

"I'm curious about what makes me tick, essentially," says Gunderson, 29, who writes code for a Silicon Valley startup.

So Gunderson has signed up for every genetic test he's been able to afford. And he can't wait for the price of getting his entire genetic code — his genome — to drop to about $1,000, as many are predicting is imminent.

"Yeah, if the price does drop — to a thousand bucks for example — I might pay that. That's a good personal price point for me," Gunderson said.

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The Two-Way
7:38 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

New York Sues JPMorgan Over Mortgage-Backed Securities

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 8:42 am

  • From 'Morning Edition': NPR's Jim Zarroli reports

New York's attorney general has sued JPMorgan Chase, alleging that a unit now owned by the banking giant fraudulently sold mortgage-backed securities in the run-up to the 2008 financial crisis.

The civil lawsuit filed Monday by state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is the first to be brought by the RMBS Working Group – the task force formed by President Obama in January to pursue alleged wrongdoing at the time of the financial crisis.

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The Two-Way
7:22 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Mandolinist Chris Thile, Novelist Junot Díaz Among 2012 MacArthur 'Geniuses'

Junot Diaz won a Pulitzer Prize in 2008 for his novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.
Nina Subin Penguin Group

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 6:14 pm

The mandolinist Chris Thile, better known for his work with the bluegrass band Nickel Creek, and the novelist Junot Díaz, who won a Pulitzer for his novel The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, are among those awarded 2012 "genius" grants from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

The 23 MacArthur fellows will receive $500,000 over the next five years. They are allowed to do whatever they wish with the money, whether that's continue their work or change fields.

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Around the Nation
5:56 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Ole Miss Students Look Back At Integration

James Meredith at the University of Mississippi in 2006, as the school dedicated a bronze statue in his likeness on campus.
Robert Jordan AP

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 8:22 pm

Fifty years ago, James Meredith, the first black student at the University of Mississippi, had to be escorted by federal marshals to his mostly empty classes. His enrollment came after a standoff between state segregationists and the federal government that led to a deadly riot on the Oxford campus.

Today, black and white juniors and seniors at Ole Miss sit together around a table in an Honors College class on the school's turbulent history. The course is called "Opening the Closed Society," and is an in-depth look at the integration of Ole Miss.

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Middle East
5:56 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Turkey Pushes Syrians Into Limbo Across Border

Syrian refugees gather amid olive trees in an area controlled by the rebel Free Syrian Army, in northern Syria near the Turkish border, on Sept. 25. The area has become a way station for Syrian refugees pushed out of neighboring Turkey.
Michel Moutot AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 2, 2012 5:34 am

Long before the Syrian uprising, Antakya, Turkey, was a storied place. Once known as Antioch, the city was home to Greeks, some of the earliest Christians, Jews and Armenians. It once was a major stop on the Silk Road.

Most recently, the Turkish city became a hub for the Syrian rebellion. For many months, Turkish authorities tolerated Antakya's status, and even encouraged it. Turkey built refugee camps for tens of thousands of Syrians, and even one for officers who defected from the Syrian army to join the rebel cause.

That support, however, is starting to fade.

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Asia
5:56 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Cambodian Court Case Stokes Fear Of Crackdown

Supporters of Cambodian journalist Mam Sonando protest outside a Phnom Penh courthouse on Monday, when judges sentenced him to 20 years in jail for leading an alleged secession movement. Critics say the pro-democracy activist's case was politically motivated.
Anthony Kuhn NPR

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 6:20 pm

A court in Cambodia has convicted a prominent journalist and pro-democracy activist on charges of convincing villagers in eastern Cambodia to rise up and declare independence from the country. Civic groups say the case is part of a worrying trend of government efforts to stifle freedom of expression, and attempts to take land away from farmers.

Hundreds of supporters vented their fury outside the courthouse Monday as judges sentenced Mam Sonando to 20 years in jail. Speaking before the verdict, his wife, Dinn Phanara, says the case was politically motivated.

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Shots - Health Blog
5:51 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Researchers Say Kids Are Exposed To 'Startling' Amounts Of Background TV

It might be time to pull the plug, even if she doesn't seem to be watching.
iStockphoto.com

Parents, if nobody is watching the TV, please turn it off.

Researchers who conducted a national survey of kids' exposure to TVs droning on in the background say, "The amount of exposure for the average child is startling."

How much is it, exactly? Try just under four hours a day for the typical kid.

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World Cafe
5:42 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Next: The Lighthouse And The Whaler

The Lighthouse and the Whaler.
Ming Wu Courtesy of the artist
  • Hear two new tracks from The Lighthouse and the Whaler

The Lighthouse and the Whaler is a band based in Cleveland, Ohio, though its name actually references the waters off the coast of Massachusetts. Originally, Michael LoPresti and Aaron Smith were its only members, and the very first song they wrote together, "The Field Song," ended up picked for a Paste sampler CD.

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It's All Politics
5:34 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Montana Democrat Faces An Uphill Battle To Keep His Senate Seat

Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., (center) campaigns at a parade Saturday in Belgrade, Mont.
Martin Kaste NPR

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 6:23 pm

Republicans are still within reach of a big political goal this year: retaking control of the Senate. They lost the majority in 2006, in part because of the razor-close victory of Democratic challenger Jon Tester in Montana.

Now, Tester is the incumbent facing a tough challenge of his own. And if he's going to win re-election, he has to turn out a lot of younger voters, the way he did in 2006. And on that front, he does have some allies.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
5:27 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Random Clinical Trials Are Not The Only Answer To Identifying Effective Therapies

Medicine in the United States is, in part, safeguarded by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA serves admirably as a protection against charlatans and ineffective treatments through the use of clinical trials that filter out dangerous drugs and identify safe, effective therapies.

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Author Interviews
5:11 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Housekeeping Tips From One Mercurial 'Mommy'

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 6:20 pm

The cursing mommy likes her scotch. She also likes a martini — or four — and a full bottle of Kahlua consumed in the afternoon while soaking in a steaming bathtub and ignoring the knocks of her children locked outside. Along with her dubious parenting skills, the cursing mommy has no shame, and she swears an extremely blue streak.

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Latin America
5:03 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

No More 'Lying': Law Bolsters Transgender Argentines

Transsexuals Maiamar Abrodos (right) and Maria Laura Aleman arrive at the civil registry to begin the legal process to change their genders in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in June.
Natacha Pisarenko AP

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 6:20 pm

Mateo Solares came to Argentina from Bolivia a few years ago. The 25-year-old was born, and grew up as, Moyra Veronica. Biologically female, Solares says he always felt like a guy.

The main reason Solares moved to Argentina is because it seemed like an easier place to transition into a life as a young man. He says having an ID card that reflects how he sees himself is huge.

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Around the Nation
5:01 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

Plague Of Crickets Brings Nuisance, Stink To Waco

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 7:47 pm

Audie Cornish speaks with Scott Halvorson, manager of Drug Emporium, about the cricket problems he's having at his business in Waco, Texas, this year. Moist, mild conditions last winter have resulted in something resembling a cricket plague. Member station KWBU assisted with the sound for this story.

Around the Nation
5:01 pm
Mon October 1, 2012

California Bans 'Gay-To-Straight' Therapy For Minors

Originally published on Mon October 1, 2012 6:20 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And now to California where Governor Jerry Brown has signed a first-in-the nation law. It bans mental health professionals from trying to change the sexual orientation of those under the age of 18. NPR's Karen Grigsby Bates has details.

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