Cloning – by Rosa Beddington
Myths surrounding the cloning of organisms abound but there is little that is actually new about cloning – the process has been in use for centuries. It is the tools that have changed and the results are undoubtedly more spectacular.
The recent excitement over genetically modified foods – by Derek Burke
Derek Burke used to be the vice-Chancellor of the University of East Anglia. He was previously involved at the highest level with establishing the processes for approval of genetically modified foods before they are sold in our shops and supermarkets. He describes these processes, the thinking behind them, and the way in which public reaction has influenced them.
Alzheimer’s disease and the hope of a therapy – by Nigel Birdsall
The extremely distressing mental illness first described by Alois Alzheimer usually affects the elderly and is an increasing concern as longevity increases. Research into the disease is ongoing and efforts are being made to find a cure.
Xenotransplantation: panacea or poisoned chalice? – by Jonathan Stoye
New organs, especially from pigs, which can be exchanged for your old worn out models may be a transplant surgeon’s dream. This essay describes the promise of transplantation from other species as well as the many problems and pitfalls still to be overcome.
Seasonal depression and light therapy – by Michael Ferenczi
Everyone feels miserable in the dark days of winter. Even reading these essays may provide only temporary relief. This essay describes how bright lights can bring lasting relief to those who suffer most from the winter gloom.
Hitch-hiking DNA – a guide – by Iain Wilson
As knowledge of the genetic make-up of numerous organisms increases, the inter-relationships between the different branches of the evolutionary tree appear not to be as simple as was once thought. Recent research on malaria brings together the disparate disciplines of parasitology and botany.

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