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Winter 2009


A Mighty Worm

C. elegans, a 959-celled Nobel magnet, explained cell suicide, helped launch genomics and could now revolutionize drug development.

The Rare Few

Of every 300 people infected with HIV, one doesn’t get AIDS. Under-standing this uncanny protection might help science imitate nature.

The Sociable Robot

Prototypes play well with humans, helping patients with autism and Alzheimer’s. But don’t expect an army of such aides just yet.

Practicing Small

They work without employees, fancy offices or big incomes. But back-to-basics doctors cite one elusive perk: satisfaction. 

Fertile Ground

The brain, it turns out, can heal itself, and adding stem cells could unleash that power to treat Parkinson’s, stroke and even depression.

Message from the MGH

How science can play a leading role in reversing the nation’s economic meltdown, by Peter L. Slavin and David F. Torchiana.

Second Opinion

Readers suggest ER improvements and challenge Proto’s take on case-control studies.

Banishing Mosquitoes

A simple technology nets a decline in malaria incidence and deaths.

Should I Be Worried?

Risk expert David Ropeik argues that despite constant headlines, Americans' health worries are largely misplaced.

Legal Leaves

In 13 states, a doctor's note will get you a "prescription" to puff.

What's in a Name?

Drug naming is serious business for the pharmaceutical industry, and names must be catchy enough to stick in an ever-expanding market.

Lady Doctor

In 1849 Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman to graduate from medical school.

Your Genes Have Been Scanned. Now What?

New studies aim to determine what consumers do—or don't do—after they've had a mail-order genome test.

Flexing Senior Muscles

Surfing the Web, restoring vision and calling on the Bee Gees to save lives.

Accordions for Heart Repair

A unique shape could hold the key to repairing heart tissue.

A Fine Specimen

A rare tumor places the author in an uncomfortable spotlight.

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