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Preview: Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Science

seattlepi.com: Health & Science News From the Associated Press





 



Oregon marijuana: Lots of data, few to analyze and check it

Thu, 26 Apr 2018 07:00:39 UT

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — To the beat of electronic dance music, men and women inside a slate-gray building harvested marijuana plants festooned with radio-frequency identification tags. In another room, an employee entered the tag numbers into a government database. The cannabis tracking system used by Avitas, a marijuana company with a production facility in Salem, is the backbone of Oregon's regulatory system to ensure businesses with marijuana licenses obey the rules and don't divert their product into the black market. A huge amount of data is entered into the system by Oregon's 1,800 licensees every day, a reality that means the state has a tremendous amount of information at its fingertips.



Genetic sleuthing bolsters food poisoning searches

Thu, 26 Apr 2018 05:27:40 UT

ATLANTA (AP) — Disease hunters are using genetic sequencing in their investigation of the ongoing food poisoning outbreak linked to romaine lettuce, a technique that is revolutionizing the detection of germs in food. The genetic analysis is being used to bolster investigations and — in some cases — connect the dots between what were once seemingly unrelated illnesses. It also is uncovering previously unfathomed sources of food poisoning, including one outbreak from apples dipped in caramel. So far, most of the work has largely focused on one germ, listeria. But it is expanding.



Geologists say North Korea's nuclear test site has collapsed

Thu, 26 Apr 2018 04:52:35 UT

BEIJING (AP) — Research by Chinese geologists shows the mountain above North Korea's main nuclear test site has collapsed, rendering it unsafe for further testing and requiring that it be monitored for any leaking radiation. The findings by the scientists at the University of Science and Technology of China may shed new light on North Korean President Kim Jong Un's announcement that his country was ceasing its testing program ahead of planned summit meetings with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and U.S. President Donald Trump. Nuclear explosions release enormous amounts of heat and energy, and the North's largest test in September was believed early on to have rendered the site in northeastern North Korea unstable.



Prosecutor on Justice's opioid crackdown favors tough tact

Thu, 26 Apr 2018 04:36:16 UT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Mary Daly has heard the criticism: That the tough-on-drugs approach favored by the Trump administration is cruel, ineffective and a return to the failed policies of the 1980s. She's not buying it. "We need to use tough prosecutions if we are going to get our way out of this epidemic," said Daly, a longtime federal drug prosecutor recently tapped to oversee the Justice Department's ambitious efforts to attack America's opioid abuse crisis. "We don't ignore the need for prevention and treatment efforts, but the notion that tough enforcement is the wrong approach is wrong.



The state that wants to spend more, not less, on prison food

Thu, 26 Apr 2018 04:20:18 UT

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Dropped onto Connecticut inmates' food trays in recent days was a concoction called chilitos, consisting of a cup of meatless chili mix, one slice of cheese, brown rice, refried beans and two tortillas, along with a half-cup of pudding and an 8-ounce drink. Not bad for a jailhouse lunch, maybe. But lean ground beef, whole pieces of chicken and extra fresh fruit and vegetables could soon be on the menu under a budget proposal from Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy that bucks a national trend toward spending less, not more, on inmate nutrition.



Samsung's profit exceeds expectations thanks to memory chips

Thu, 26 Apr 2018 03:56:06 UT

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Samsung Electronics Co. reported better-than-expected financial results Thursday as robust demand from global data centers for its mainstay memory chips earned it another record-high quarterly profit. The company also forecast the brisk earnings streak from its chip sector will continue through the second quarter as expansion of global data centers in the U.S. and China will keep demand for chips strong. Despite being one of the most profitable tech companies in history, neither Samsung nor South Koreans are in a celebratory mood.