Nobel Fever Grips Research Community As Prize Swells To $190 Million

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Vol 37 Issue 23

Robbie Krieger Goes 51 Minutes Without Mentioning Jim Morrison

LOS ANGELES–In his longest-such stretch since 1982, Doors guitarist Robbie Krieger went 51 minutes Monday without mentioning former bandmate Jim Morrison. "When Jim was around, anything could happen. Anything," Krieger told friend Bob Gale before unexpectedly detouring into a Morrison-free conversation about his car, a restaurant his cousin manages, and the recent L.A. mayoral election. The streak ended when, without prompting, Krieger said: "You know, despite his reputation, Jim was a genuinely friendly, approachable guy." Krieger then told the story of the time Morrison was arrested for indecent exposure in Miami for the 8,194th time.

Nepotism Passed Off As Synergy

WHITEHOUSE STATION, NJ–The hiring of Adam Dwyer by Merck Pharmaceutical was described Monday by CEO James Dwyer as "tremendously synergistic." "With his impressive range of experiences, including one and a half years of bartending and four years of heavy pharmaceutical use at the University of Delaware, Adam brings a lot to the table," Dwyer said of his nephew. "We, in turn, can help Adam earn $220,000 a year as vice-president of corporate communications for the Mid-Atlantic region."

Resident Of Three Years Decries Neighborhood's Recent Gentrification

CHICAGO–Bruce Smales, a three-year resident of Chicago's Wicker Park neighborhood, lashed out Monday against encroaching gentrification. "See that big Barnes & Noble on the corner? You better believe that wasn't there back in '98," said Smales, 34, a finance manager with Accenture. "This whole place is turning into Yuppieville. You can't throw a rock without hitting a couple in matching Ralph Lauren baseball caps walking a black lab." Smales then took his golden lab for a walk.

Sony Brings Shame To My Profession!

The Japanese do a lot of things better than us Americans, like making cars and preparing sushi. Well, now you can add to that list fabricating bogus movie reviews! It would seem that Sony Pictures couldn't find a real reviewer to say that Tales Of The Knights star Heath Ledger is a red-hot hunk, so they made one up! Why would they do that when I would have been more than happy to go on record saying that Ledger scorches the screen? (He does!) And, as for the movie itself, it's a whale of a tale, not to mention a non-stop thrill ride! There certainly was no need for Sony to resort to deception. It's things like this that hurt the credibility of all the honest entertainment journalists out there.

The World War II Memorial

The planned WWII Memorial on the National Mall has sparked controversy, its critics questioning its necessity, location, and design. What do you think?

Bush Trying To Decide How To Spend His Tax Refund

WASHINGTON, DC–Four days after signing a $1.35 trillion tax-cut bill, George W. Bush spent Monday trying to decide how he will spend his $300 refund check. "Maybe I'll buy some new wireless speakers," said the excited president, flipping through a Sharper Image catalog. "Or maybe I could get this massage chair." After noting the massage chair's $720 price tag, Bush said he "wouldn't rule out" passing an additional $1.9 trillion cut to get the extra $420.
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Nobel Fever Grips Research Community As Prize Swells To $190 Million

STOCKHOLM–The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, unclaimed in 2000, has climbed to a staggering $190 million, setting off a frenzy of research and publication among scientists.

King Carl XVI Gustaf keeps an eye on the Nobel jackpot.

"This is very exciting," said Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, who will announce the winner of the Nobel Prize at a gala July 20 ceremony in Stockholm. "One lucky scientist will never have to do another research project for the rest of his life."

Scientists around the globe are submitting their studies to the Nobel committee in the hopes of striking it rich.

"I think I've got a real shot at the grand prize with my genomewide scan of 200 families with hereditary prostate cancer that can be used to identify regions of putative prostate-cancer-susceptibility loci," said Dr. Henry Chu, a Duke University geneticist. "Man, if that comes through, I'm hanging the 'Gone Fishin'' sign on my laboratory door and never looking back."

Medical and scientific journals have been deluged with submissions from researchers clamoring to be published before the Nobel drawing.

"We've received so many articles, our review board can barely keep up," said Cathy Gapstur, editor of The New England Journal Of Medicine. "Yesterday alone, the mailman dropped off 27 papers on the effects of leukocyte adhesion on blood flow in microvessels."

Researchers are employing numerous strategies to increase their odds of winning the prize. Among the more popular is to submit multiple papers for publication. Another is for researchers to band together in "Nobel pools," with each participant contributing a small amount of research to a large number of studies.

"I'm working on a study of the efficacy of prescription medications in smoking cessation and whether said medications can be utilized for other chemical addictions," said Dr. Laurie Colangelo, a medical researcher at Northwestern University. "Also in my pool are doctors working on lymphatic cancer, organ cloning, and spinal-cord regeneration. We're steering clear of doing any AIDS research, because that's what won last time. What are the odds of the same subject winning twice in a row?"

With the money for the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine at an all-time high, Nobel candidates from other disciplines are crossing over into medical research.

"My fight to restore the indigenous rights of Australia's aboriginal peoples was very important to me," said former Nobel Peace Prize candidate Ian Woolsey-Ganser, who recently gave up the oppressed group's cause to study genes in mice that have been shown to affect physiological rates. "But, I mean, $190 million? That's like, 'Wow.' The aborigines can wait."

The $190 million figure represents the highest cash prize in Nobel history. The previous largest was awarded in 1987, when Nobel Prize in Economics winner Trygve Haavelmo took home $57 million for his clarification of the probability theory foundations of econometrics and analyses of simultaneous economic structures.

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