Health, Science, Environment | St. Louis Public Radio

Health, Science, Environment

Health, science, and environmental news

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Studies presented at a recent meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology and published online April 27 in the New England Journal of Medicine are supporting further research into gene therapy to treat a rare genetic eye disorder.

The disorder, called Leber's congenital amaurosis (LCA), attacks the retina and can lead to severe vision loss and blindness. LCA is a rare genetic condition affecting 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 100,000 of babies born each year. Eyesight begins to fail in early childhood, progressing to total blindness by the time the patient reaches his or her late 20s or 30s.

On Science : No easy way to lose weight

Apr 29, 2008

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: In my mind, I will always weigh 165 pounds, as I did the day I married. The bathroom scale tells a different story, somehow finding another 30 pounds. I did not ask for that weight, do not want it, and am constantly looking for a way to get rid of it. I have not found this to be a lonely search — it seems like everyone I know past the flush of youth is trying to lose weight, too. And, like many, I have been seduced by fad diets, investing hope only to harvest frustration.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: The Missouri House Education Committee is considering this session an outrageous bill that attacks Missouri education while claiming to improve it. Submitted by Republican Rep. Wayne Cooper of Camdenton as the "Missouri Science Education Act," HB 2554 purports to improve science teaching in Missouri by helping students develop critical thinking skills. Teachers would have to clearly identify what is "verified empirical data" and distinguish it from what is "theory, hypothesis, conjecture, speculation" and the like.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Plenty of concern for God's creation comes from folks in the pews."

Used to be that when a young family considered joining the church, they'd ask about its nursery and check the bathrooms," the Rev. David Mason, pastor of Green Valley Baptist Church in St. Joseph, Mo., said. "Now they ask if we have gone green. People care."

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Green choices often begin at home. When David A. Mollerus, a Southern Baptist, completes his commute from work, he tosses aside his car keys and runs, or walks, to do his errands. His home in New Town of St. Charles is a short walk to a dry cleaner, a grocery, a gym, a farmer's market and a beautiful lake. He bought a home in the densely planned "New Urbanism" community two years ago, in part, to lessen his carbon footprint. 

Is Earth Day still needed?

Apr 16, 2008

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Twenty million Americans celebrated the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970. That massive outpouring of activism forced politicians to pay attention to the environment and resulted in the founding of the Environmental Protection Agency and the passing or strengthening of laws regulating clean air, clean water and endangered species. In just a few years, this grassroots, democratic action made the United States a world leader in environmental protection.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: The Fisher House Foundation plans to break ground in late summer or fall for a 21-bedroom facility at Jefferson Barracks that will provide free lodging for veterans who must travel great distances for medical treatment at the St. Louis VA Medical Center, said foundation spokesman Jim Weiskopf.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Across the country, evangelical Christians are going green. To be sure, many are still leery about jumping onto a bandwagon already filled with — in their view — ultraliberal, even "unwashed," activists. Yet, in recent months, several national evangelical leaders have urged their fellow believers to protect the environment.

Copyright George Johnson | St. Louis Beacon archives

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: 50 million Americans smoke cigarettes. Although smoking has decreased in recent years, 24 percent of Missourians still light up.

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