science

Three advocacy organizations — across ideological lines — are telling congressional investigators to back off in a probe of EPA ties to a leading environmental group, the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Republican Rep. Darrell Issa of California and Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana are leading the investigation. They contend that NRDC lobbyists have exerted too much influence over EPA on the issues of carbon reduction and the proposed Pebble Mine at Bristol Bay, Alaska.

Arkansas and Louisiana are ill-prepared to detect, diagnose and respond to threats like Ebola and outbreaks of infectious diseases, according to a report released Thursday by the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The report, “Outbreaks: Protecting Americans from Infectious Diseases,” found that Arkansas scored the lowest of all, two out of 10 on key indicators related to preventing and responding to antibiotic-resistant “superbugs.”

A coalition of national environmental groups says the billions of dollars expected from the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill penalties should go toward rapidly rebuilding Louisiana’s coastline.

During a teleconference Tuesday, the conservation groups outlined 19 priority projects detailed in their two new reports. David Muth, Gulf Program director for the National Wildlife Federation, says these projects are critical.

Xavier university is looking to triple the number of their minority alumni who go on to receive PhDs in the life sciences in the next decade, with help from an NIH grant. The first obstacle is getting undergraduates to stick with those fields.


Xavier University has received a $19.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.

The money is from an NIH initiative called Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity.

It will be used to expand biomedical programs at the historically black university.

Xavier says the award is part of a $240 million NIH investment involving more than 10 institutions. It’s aimed at developing new approaches to engage student researchers, including those from underrepresented backgrounds.

S Vivek / Flickr

Amateur astronomers and sky-watchers are in for a treat Wednesday morning.

A rare total lunar eclipse will happen at 5:27 a.m.

Louisiana Tech astronomer Lee Sawyer tells WWL that viewers in New Orleans will have a prime viewing experience.

Sawyer says the moon will glow blood red during the early morning event.

He also says this eclipse is unique because the sun will be rising in the east at the same time, giving viewers between 2-9 minutes to simultaneously see the sun rising in the east, and the eclipsed moon setting in the west.

WEFTEC

The Water Environment Federation’s Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference kicked off this past Saturday in New Orleans, and continues through Wednesday, October 1. On Monday afternoon, a new report called "Navigating to New Shores: Seizing the Future for Sustainable and Resilient U.S. Freshwater Resources" was released at the Morial Convention Center.

New Orleans from the International Space Station.
G. Reid Wiseman / NASA

G. Reid Wiseman, a NASA astronaut currently serving aboard the International Space Station as the mission's flight engineer, is known for his frequent Twitter photo posts of the Earth below.

Researchers at LSU Health Shreveport and Louisiana Tech University in Ruston are in the early stages of developing a new way to deliver antibiotics and other medicine via customized, implantable devices created using a 3-D printer. 

LSU Medical School student Jeffery Weisman is also pursuing his doctorate in biomedical engineering from Louisiana Tech. He presented his research in collaboration with LSU Health Shreveport. It intensified over the past three months when he experimented with making plastic medical prototypes from a consumer-grade 3-D printer.

Sergey Uryadnikov / Shutterstock.com

A Tulane expert in viral epidemics raging in West Africa says it’s time to expand experimental treatments. Some are showing promise.

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