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Walter Bianco, an Arizona man denied access to new drugs to cure his hepatitis C infection, will get the costly medications after all.
After NPR and Kaiser Health News reported his plight on Monday, federal Medicare officials said they would investigate. Bianco's appeal of an earlier denial had been rejected by WellCare, a private insurer that contracts with the federal program to provide drug coverage.
Saira Blair has been busy this week. She's president of the Key Club at Hedgesville High School in West Virginia, and she's been participating in a variety of activities as her class prepares to graduate next week.
Oh — and on Tuesday, she won a primary election for the state House.
Blair, who is 17, unseated two-term GOP incumbent Larry Kump. The district is heavily Republican, so she'll be favored to win the seat in the fall.
She may be a teenager, but she sounds like a concerned parent when she talks about why she ran.
A second day of violence in Vietnam has seen mobs singling out Chinese workers for attack, killing at least one and injuring dozens, as hundreds of Chinese nationals fled the country by land and air. A major foreign-owned steel operation was set ablaze in the country's north.
The unrest has been sparked by China's efforts to deploy an oil platform in disputed waters in the South China Sea, putting tensions on boil and spreading fear of a possible conflict between the neighboring countries that fought a brief border war in 1979.
Many potential new drugs look like they could be big winners — at least when judged by how well they work in mice or other lab animals. Over the years, there have been a number of promising cancer "cures," possible Alzheimer's treatments, and candidate drugs for holding back the ravages of various degenerative diseases.
But, time after time, these great promises fade away once the potential treatments are tried in people. There are lots of reasons for that. Humans aren't rodents, for starters.
As 92-year-old Betty Reid Soskin helped hash out plans for a new national park 13 years ago, this is what stuck in her mind: "What gets remembered is a function of who's in the room doing the remembering."
Office visits are the bread and butter of many physicians' practices. Medicare pays for more than 200 million of them a year, often to deal with routine problems like colds or high blood pressure. Most require relatively modest amounts of a doctor's time or medical know-how.
Octopus arms keep from getting all tangled up in part because some kind of chemical in octopus skin prevents the tentacles' suckers from grabbing on.
That was the surprise discovery of scientists who were trying to understand how octopuses manage to move all their weird appendages without getting tied in knots.
Unlike humans, octopuses don't have a constant awareness of their arms' locations. It's kind of like the eight arms have minds of their own. And as an octopus arm travels through the water, its neighboring arms are constantly in reach.
For a cake the Germans call "the king of cakes" and the Japanese call "the ultimate wedding cake," the baumkuchen doesn't really look like a cake or behave like one. But it more than makes up for its oddities with rich flavor, history and symbolism.
It resembles a hollowed cross-section of a craggy tree trunk, or a planet's rings, depending on how you make it. It can have up to 21 delicate, sugary stratums, which give it a light yet chewy texture.