Thursday, October 30, 2008

I explored a rather grim topic for the LA Times Health section -- whether suicide might increase as the economy falls. Two recent deaths in Los Angeles were seemingly triggered by large financial losses (in one case) and home foreclosure (in the other). In fact, people rarely, if ever, commit suicide over one bad event. Studies have shown that some 90% of suicides occur in people with mental disorders (which makes them preventable by treating mental illness).

I told a scientist's story on the Nature (subscription only). While studying a factor involved in immunity, Peter Creswell discovered one pathogen -- food-borne Listeria -- that turns the factor into a traitor, benefitting bug over host.

For Skidmore's alumni magazine, I found out why seven alums work in the same office at NYU Langone Medical Center. One of them, boss Andrew Rubin, has found Skidmore grads to be his best source of motivated, ambitious employees. By recruiting at Skidmore, Rubin has also found a way to give back to his alma mater.

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