Health, Science, Environment

Missouri Botanical Garden / China
12:47 pm
Wed November 16, 2011

Mo. Botanical Garden signs exchange agreement with Chinese botanical institutions

Peter Wyse Jackson (far right), and officials from three Chinese botanical institutions pose for a photo following the signing of a memorandum of understanding regarding an exchange agreement between their institutions.
(Photo Courtesy Missouri Botanical Garden)

Joining in with other recent Missouri moves to trade with Chinese entities, the Missouri Botanical Garden has announced that it has established a Missouri-China relationship of its own.

Plant diversity is the focus of the Garden's Memorandum of Understanding with three Chinese botanical institutions: Nanjing Botanical Garden, Lushan Botanical Garden and Guangxi Institute of Botany.

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Industrial Pollution
3:29 pm
Tue November 15, 2011

Carter Carburetor site to get new security fencing

The former Carter Carburetor plant on N. Grand Ave. in St. Louis.
(Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio)

The Environmental Protection Agency is following through on its commitment to fence off the former Carter Carburetor manufacturing plant in north St. Louis.

The 10-acre property is contaminated with asbestos, PCBs, and other industrial pollutants.

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New president at the Science Center
9:54 am
Wed November 9, 2011

New president for the Saint Louis Science Center

Bert Vescolani has been named the new president and CEO of the Saint Louis Science Center, replacing Doug King.
(Business Journal Photo by Johnny Quirin via Saint Louis Science Center Press Release)

A former executive at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago has been named president and CEO of the Saint Louis Science Center.

The St. Louis Business Journal reports that Bert Vescolani will replace Doug King, who left almost a year ago to head the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

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Heart Surgery / Barnes-Jewish
3:53 pm
Thu November 3, 2011

Barnes-Jewish involved in pioneering heart valve replacement procedure

The new procedure – called transcatheter aortic valve replacement – involves replacing the aortic valve which connects the left ventricle (B) to the aorta (A). You can see a video of this in the story below.
(via Wikimedia Commons)

The FDA has approved the first heart valve replacement procedure that does not involve open heart surgery.

Instead of opening the patient's chest, the doctor inserts the new heart valve by threading a catheter through a vein in the patient's leg. Here's a video of how that works :

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E. coli outbreak
2:04 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Mo. Dept. of Health: No confirmed link between Schnucks produce, E. coli outbreak

Low-temperature electron micrograph of a cluster of E. coli bacteria, magnified 10,000 times. Each individual bacterium is oblong shaped.
(Via Wikimedia Commons/Eric Erbe, digital colorization by Christopher Pooley, both of USDA, ARS, EMU)

Updated 4:35 p.m. with new information

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services says there is no confirmed link between produce from Schnucks grocery stores and the current E. coli outbreak in Missouri.

In a written statement, the state health department said that only 17 of the 26 people sickened reported having eaten anything from a Schnucks salad bar. The other nine did not.

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Children's Health Study
4:22 pm
Mon October 31, 2011

Community update Wed. for St. Louis in national children's health study

On Wednesday, St. Louis will get a progress report on local participation in the National Children’s Study.

The study – which is currently in a pilot phase – will examine how environmental factors affect the health and development of more than a 100,000 children nationwide, by tracking them from before birth to age 21.

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Developing: St. Louis-area E. coli outbreak
2:48 pm
Thu October 27, 2011

E. coli outbreak strikes St. Louis area

Low-temperature electron micrograph of a cluster of E. coli bacteria, magnified 10,000 times. Each individual bacterium is oblong shaped.
(Via Wikimedia Commons/Eric Erbe, digital colorization by Christopher Pooley, both of USDA, ARS, EMU)

Updated October 28, 1:50 p.m. to update information related to St. Louis City. Updated October 28, 12:30 p.m. to add information about the U.S. CDC team.

An E. coli outbreak has sickened at least 21 people in the St. Louis area.

Confirmed cases include 16 in St. Louis County, two in St. Charles County, two in Jefferson County, and one in St. Clair County in Illinois. The Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services is investigating three suspected cases in St. Louis City. At least nine people in St. Louis County have been hospitalized.

The director of the Saint Louis County Department of Health, Dr. Delores Gunn, confirms that the toxic strain of E. coli is being spread through contaminated food, but says her department is still investigating its origin.

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Science
3:08 pm
Wed October 26, 2011

UMSL conference explores "Science in the City"

(University of Missouri-Saint Louis)

The University of Missouri-Saint Louis kicks off its 17th annual "What is a City?" conference on tomorrow. This year’s two-day conference is all about the relationship between cities and science.

Topics range from how to develop science-based public policy to how to think about a city as an artificial life form.

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Ameren Coal Ash Landfill Debate
2:38 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Franklin Co. vote opens door for Ameren to build coal ash landfill

Franklin County residents show their opposition to the landfill regulations prior to the Commission vote.
(Véronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated 4:43 p.m.

The Franklin County Board of Commissioners has approved its controversial landfill zoning regulations, opening the door for Ameren to build a coal ash landfill in Labadie, Mo.

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Conservation - Forests
6:30 am
Tue October 25, 2011

Why live indoors? A conversation with naturalist Michael Fay

National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Michael Fay.
(Photo by Mark Christmas courtesy of National Geographic)

Naturalist Michael Fay spent part of his early career in St. Louis, going to graduate school at Washington University and working with the Missouri Botanical Garden’s Peter Raven.

Since then, Fay has worked for the Wildlife Conservation Society and National Geographic.

He’s probably best known for his large-scale surveys of plants and wildlife. In 1997, he set out on the MegaTransect, a survey that would take him more than 2,000 miles on foot across the forests of the Congo Basin in Central Africa.

Fay is back in St. Louis this week for some speaking engagements. St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra talked with him about his African journey, and what it did for international conservation efforts.

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