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Daily IU News Update

October 9, 2007

YOUR OPINION: Working together
South Bend Tribune, Oct. 5 -- IU President Michael A. McRobbie writes, "I was pleased to see The Tribune's Sept. 30 editorial calling on the state's institutions of higher education to work together. As president of Indiana University, I can assure you we are wholeheartedly committed to building partnerships that will extend educational, cultural and economic opportunities statewide." Full story.

Genetically Engineered Corn Could Harm Aquatic Ecosystems
Science Daily, Oct. 8 -- Researchers, including Todd V. Royer, an assistant professor in the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs, established that pollen and other plant parts containing toxins from genetically engineered Bt corn are washing into streams near cornfields. Full story.

Expect economic malaise, IU forecaster says
Indianapolis Business Journal, Oct. 8 -- A group of Indiana University economists who forecast the state's economy say they've become more pessimistic than they were in August, when they issued their most recent quarterly forecast. Full story.

New imaging unveils drug winners, losers; Startup INphoton uses multi-photon microscopy, expertise to save clients millions in R&D costs
Indianapolis Star, Oct. 9 -- A local life-sciences company has put a new twist on an old technology -- and developed a way to save pharmaceutical companies millions of dollars and years spent on fruitless research. INphoton was founded in 2005 by Bruce Molitoris, an Indiana University professor of medicine and director of the nephrology section at the School of Medicine and eight other researchers with backgrounds in nephrology and cell microbiology: Simon Atkinson, Robert Bacallao, Pierre Dagher, Ken Dunn, Katrina Kelly, James Marrs, Carrie Phillips and Timothy Sutton. Full story.

Tudor Room tip policy questioned; Employees, experts call new practice 'shady'
Indiana Daily Student, Oct. 9 -- Tim Solon had worked at the Indiana Memorial Union's Tudor Room for more than a year when earlier this month he was told to sign a new tip policy that, according to his calculations, would cost him about $3 an hour in wages. Solon said he questioned his supervisor on the new procedure, who told Solon that he could either sign the policy or quit. Solon quit. Full story.

Bus services look at safety as ridership increases; Operations manager: 'We can't have students mashed up to the front window'
Indiana Daily Student, Oct. 9 -- As Bloomington and campus bus systems continue to break ridership records, the campus bus service is working to maintain safety. Full story.

IU voices in the news

Teaching award lecture series begins
The Baylor Lariat, Oct. 9 -- The 2007 Robert Foster Cherry Award Lecture series begins today. Three professors from Pennsylvania, Indiana and California will speak on campus in the next three weeks with hopes of winning The Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching. Top finalists were selected by a committee of Baylor professors from 12 departments. The finalists are: George E. Andrews, evan pugh professor of mathematics at Penn State University; Rudy Pozzatti, distinguished professor emeritus of fine arts at Indiana University; and Stephen D. Davis, distinguished professor of biology at Pepperdine University. Full story.

Pricing Tactics Of Hedge Funds Under Spotlight
The Wall Street Journal, Oct. 9 -- New academic research suggests that some hedge-fund managers may cherry-pick flattering prices when valuing securities that don't actively trade in an effort to improve the performance of their funds. "Hedge-fund managers purposefully avoid reporting losses by marking up the value of their portfolios," according to the authors of the study, Nicolas P.B. Bollen, an associate finance professor at Vanderbilt University, and Veronika K. Pool, an assistant finance professor at Indiana University. If that is the case, the authors wrote, investors may "underestimate the potential for losses in the future and may overestimate the ability of hedge-fund managers." Full story.

My View: Ora H. Pescovitz, M.D. -- Programs crucial to kids' health
Indianapolis Star, Oct. 9 -- IU's Ora Pescovitz writes, "Despite strong bipartisan congressional collaboration, and the overwhelming support from hundreds of organizations and the public, President Bush vetoed the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) on Oct. 3. This veto jeopardizes health care opportunities for millions of uninsured children around the country. Pescovitz is president and CEO of Riley Hospital for Children and executive dean for research affairs at Indiana University School of Medicine." Full story.

New Insights Into The Evolution Of The Human Genome
Science Daily, Oct. 9 -- Researchers have answered a similarly vexing (and far more relevant) genomic question: Which of the thousands of long stretches of repeated DNA in the human genome came first? And which are the duplicates? The answers provide the first evolutionary history of the duplications in the human genome that are partly responsible for both disease and recent genetic innovations. This work marks a significant step toward a better understanding of what genomic changes paved the way for modern humans, when these duplications occurred and what the associated costs are -- in terms of susceptibility to disease-causing genetic mutations. Pavel Pevzner and his associate Haixu Tang (now professor at University of Indiana) applied their expertise in assembling genomes from millions of small fragments -- a problem that is not unlike the "mosaic decomposition" problem in analyzing duplications that the team faced. Full story.

From the Chronicle

Scholars Who Counsel Candidates Wield Power but Face Risks
In late July, the presidential campaign of Sen. Barack Obama hit a rough patch. Senator Obama, Democrat of Illinois, was attacked for pledging, if elected, to sit down for conversations with Fidel Castro, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and other heads of state who are not usually on Washington's guest list. Full story.

In a Tumultuous Era, Hillary Clinton Emerged as a Voice of Her Generation; The future candidate rejected 60s radicalism but continues to embrace its social ideals
It was the spring of 1968, and the nation's colleges were convulsed in protest. Students were barricading themselves in buildings, and antiwar demonstrations were growing violent. At Wellesley College, a group of students were threatening to go on a hunger strike if the administration did not agree to recruit more black faculty members and students. Full story.

3 Scientists Will Share Nobel Prize for Groundbreaking Technique of Inactivating Mouse Genes
Two Americans and one Briton -- Mario R. Capecchi, Oliver Smithies, and Sir Martin Evans, respectively -- have won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for developing the technology to manipulate individual genes precisely in the mouse. The technique has become a keystone of biomedical research and is used by genetics labs worldwide to produce genetically modified mice that serve as models for heart disease, Alzheimer's, diabetes, and cancer. Full story.

Study-Abroad Survey Challenges the Notion of Widespread Wrongdoing
A survey of 75 colleges revealed that it is "relatively uncommon" for those institutions to receive incentives from study-abroad providers, according to Brian J. Whalen, president of the Forum on Education Abroad. The forum conducted the survey in the wake of the public scrutiny over study-abroad business practices, and released the results on Monday to make those practices more transparent and to use them as a basis for developing a code of ethics for colleges and providers. Full story.