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With genome deciphered, experts aim to swat dreaded tsetse fly

By Will Dunham WASHINGTON (Reuters) - An international team of scientists has deciphered the genetic code of the tsetse fly, the bloodsucking insect that spreads deadly African sleeping sickness, with the hope that its biological secrets can be exploited to eradicate this malady. The findings announced on Thursday were the culmination of a multimillion dollar, decade-long effort involving more than 140 scientists from 78 research institutions in 18 countries.

Language commissioner calls for bilingual crews for Ambulance New Brunswick

FREDERICTON - New Brunswick's official languages commissioner is urging the Health Department to order Ambulance New Brunswick to have bilingual ambulance crews. Katherine d'Entremont's recommendation follows her investigation into an incident in September 2013 when she says the two ambulance attendants dispatched to help a Dieppe resident were unable to speak French. D'Entremont says attempting to assist a person without speaking his or her language may have life-threatening consequences.

Genetic code of bloodsucking tsetse fly cracked

Scientists said Thursday they have cracked the genetic code of the tsetse fly, potentially helping to tackle one of sub-Saharan Africa's most devastating livestock diseases as well as human sleeping sickness. "Decoding the tsetse fly's DNA is a major scientific breakthrough," said Kostas Bourtzis from a joint body of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency which sequenced the genome in a 10-year international effort.

Uruguay to allow pot users to buy up to 20 joints a week

MONTEVIDEO (Reuters) - Uruguayans will be able buy up to 10 grams of pot a week, enough to roll 20 joints, under new rules governing the recently legalized marijuana trade in the country, a government source said on Thursday. The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because President Jose Mujica has not yet decreed the new regulations, said the government will auction up to six licenses to produce cannabis legally.

Police seize 345 kilos of cocaine at Spanish port

Police in Spain have seized 345 kilos (760 pounds) of high-grade cocaine found inside gym bags that arrived on a shipping container at the port of Valencia from Chile, they said Thursday. The cocaine was 85 percent pure, police said, and a government official put its street value at about 30 million euros ($40 million). Police found the drugs this month stuffed inside 10 gym bags in the Mediterranean port of Valencia inside a container that arrived from Valparaiso on Chile's Pacific coast, they said in a statement.

Mississippi sets 20-week limit on abortions

(Reuters) - Mississippi will ban abortions after more than 20 weeks of pregnancy from July, joining other conservative U.S. states that have placed restrictions on the procedure. The U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion nationwide in 1973 but the practice still polarizes U.S. society.

Aspirin halves colon cancer risk -- if you have certain gene

Aspirin can reduce the risk of colon cancer by half, but only in people who carry high levels of a specific type of gene, a study released Wednesday found. Researchers previously were aware that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin could reduce colorectal cancer risks, but they did not understand why some saw a benefit and others did not, according to the study in Science Translational Medicine.

Two 10-year-olds caught selling grandparents' pot at Colorado school

By Keith Coffman DENVER (Reuters) - Two 10-year-old boys in Colorado were caught selling and swapping marijuana that they pilfered from their grandparents' supplies of legally purchased pot in separate incidents at the same school, a district official said on Wednesday. John Gates, director of safety and security for Weld County School District 6, said a fourth-grade boy at Monfort Elementary in Greeley brought a small amount of marijuana to school on Monday and sold it to three other classmates.

B.C. family with epileptic child wants law allowing her to use medical marijuana

PENTICTON, B.C. - When a retired police officer from Summerland, B.C., left his job after 25 years, he hardly imagined fighting for his little granddaughter to be given marijuana. Chris Nuessler, along with his wife Elaine, wants Canada to allow two-year-old Kyla Williams to be given a form of medical marijuana known to prevent seizures resulting from epilepsy. The girl's parents, Jared and Courtney Williams, along with the Nuesslers, have been researching medical pot use and speaking with experts to build what they're calling "Kyla's medical team."

California county tries to ban pot farms as medical weed business thrives

By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO, California (Reuters) - Citing marijuana fields springing up next to high schools and in abandoned barns, Sacramento County supervisors are set to declare pot gardens a public nuisance in the latest move by a local government to rein in California's cannabis industry. U.S. states are increasingly moving to drop curbs on marijuana following landmark voter initiatives in Colorado and Washington state in 2012 that legalized the drug for recreational use.
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