TV & Radio
Web posted at: 14:24 JST
［パフォス ３０日 ロイター］ 地中海のキプロス共和国で３０日、女性たちが、乳がんの認知度を高めるキャンペーンの一環として、１１万５０００枚近くのブラジャーをつなげて長さ１１１キロメートルのブラの鎖を作り、ギネス記録を更新した。主催者らが明らかにした。
114,000 bras strapped up to fight cancer
Monday, May 1, 2006 Posted: 0228 GMT (1028 HKT)
PAPHOS, Cyprus (AP) -- Campaigners in Cyprus on Sunday said they had created the world's longest chain of bras to raise awareness of breast cancer and win a place in the Guinness Book of Records.
The activists said they managed to string together 114,000 bras, beating the record of 79,000 bras held in Singapore since 2003.
"We know how many bras we have and we have beaten the record," said Gina Ghillyer, an activist with the local cancer patients support group that organized the event.
Hundreds of people assembled at this seaside city's small harbor early Sunday to help form a colorful chain of bras donated from around the world.
There are 300 new cases of breast cancer in Cyprus every year and doctors believe early detection is vital for chances of survival.
"Cancer does not necessarily kill, negligence will," said activist Louisa van Rooij.
Many in the crowd cried when Rooij read a message in support of the cause from a woman dying from breast cancer.
She had written the message on two bras linked together -- one belonging to her and the other to her mother, who had already died from breast cancer.
Women break bra world record
Sun Apr 30, 2006 2:45 PM BST
PAPHOS, Cyprus (Reuters) - Women on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus created the world's longest chain of bras of Sunday, linking together nearly 115,000 of the garments covering 111 km (70 miles), organisers said.
The group of Dutch, British and Cypriot organisers took nearly nine hours to create the chain at the harbour in the resort of Paphos, following a year of painstaking planning.
Their success will shove Singapore, which had held the record since 2003 with 79,000 bras, off the top spot in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Women from as far afield as Alaska, Brazil, Martinique and Iran contributed bras to the record attempt, aimed at raising awareness of breast cancer.
Even the British solders based in Cyprus took part helping organisers move the bags of bras and lay the chain.
"I can't believe we really did it," said Louise van Rooij, a Dutch resident of Cyprus, one of the two women whose idea it was to attempt to break the record.
A logistics company carried out the official count to certify the record attempt on Saturday. The final count was 114,782, van Rooij said.
The bras will be stored in Cyprus and organisers will contact the Red Cross to find them a good home, van Rooij said.
Organisers are also building up a database which will send out SMS text alerts to women in high-risk groups and schedule online screenings. They have collected 4,000 names so far.
Breast cancer kills about 400,000 women worldwide each year. Doctors say regular screening, particularly for women over 50, is vital for early detection crucial to survival rates.
Gender and the brain
New evidence shows how hormones wire the minds of men and women to see the world differently
By Ronald Kotulak Chicago Tribune science reporter
April 30, 2006
Scientists are still a long way from figuring out what women and men really want, but they are getting a lot closer to understanding what makes their brains so different.
That women and men think differently has little to do with whether they are handed dolls or trucks to play with as infants. After all, when infant monkeys are given a choice of human toys, females prefer dolls and males go after cars and trucks.
The differences, researchers are beginning to discover, appear to have a lot more to do with how powerful hormones wire the female and male brain during early development and later in life.
Among the newest findings: A previously unknown hormone appears to launch puberty's sexual and mental transformation; growth hormone is made in the brain's memory center at rates up to twice as high in females as in males; and the brain's hot button for emotions, the amygdala, is wired to different parts of the brain in women and men.
Scientists hope the findings may help explain such mysteries as why females are often more verbal, more socially empathetic, more nurturing and more susceptible to depression, while males tend to be more aggressive, more outdoorsy, more focused on things than people and more vulnerable to alcohol and drug addiction.
"Males and females look different, we act different, so of course our brains are different," said Rutgers University psychologist Tracey Shors, who is studying the effects of growth hormone on the brain. "Sex hormones along with stress and growth hormones change the brain's anatomy, and in that way you change behavior, your ability to think and learn."
Sex differences begin with the X and Y sex chromosomes a person is born with. But scientists now believe that whether the brain and nervous system are wired as female or male depends a lot on the early influence of estrogen, the so-called female hormone, or testosterone, the male hormone.
The brain's sexual identity is first established when those hormones are briefly released before and shortly after birth, which may influence a child's preference for dolls or trucks.
"There's a peak of testosterone in males at birth that's very important for future sexual behavior," said Dr. Sophie Messager of Paradigm Therapeutics in Cambridge, England. "If you block that, the male rats behave like females for the rest of their life."
The sex hormones then lie dormant until they get turned on again in puberty to make the body ready for reproduction.
That is where a recently discovered hormone called kisspeptin comes in. Created in the brain, it unleashes a cascade of hormones that race down to the gonads--ovaries in females and testes in males.
There they stimulate the production of estrogen or testosterone, starting the physical transformations of puberty. Messager proved in animals that blocking kisspeptin prevented those changes from happening.
But there is another target for this activity: the brain. The hormonal downrush kicked off by kisspeptin comes full circle when estrogen and testosterone travel back to the brain, imprinting neural circuits with female and male characteristics, Messager said.
Animal studies show that genetic females will behave like males if their estrogen is blocked and replaced by testosterone. Genetic males, in turn, act like females if their testosterone is knocked out.
Until kisspeptin was discovered, scientists had generally accepted the idea that sex differences were centered in the hypothalamus, a small organ on the underside of the brain. It was thought that the hypothalamus originated the flow of hormones that start puberty, determine male and female physical characteristics and orchestrate mating behavior.
"The bias of mainstream neuroscience for the last 25 years has been, `OK, sure there's some sex differences way down deep in the brain in this little structure called the hypothalamus, but otherwise the brains of men and women were pretty much the same,'" said Larry Cahill, a neurobiologist at the University of California, Irvine.
"That was wrong, as wrong as could be," said Cahill, who is using imaging technology to show how male and female brains are wired for emotions. "Sex matters a lot in how the brain works and we neuroscientists have to change our tune."
One example lies in the amygdala, the organ that interprets the emotional content of an experience, affecting what people remember.
Located deep in the brain on both sides, the amygdala amplifies memories that are pleasant or frightening. It tells the hippocampus, where memories are put together to be stored, which memories need to be most tightly locked in place. It will never let you forget what you were doing when you won the lottery or where you were on Sept. 11.
Cahill and his colleagues found that the amygdala works differently in men and women, which may help explain why women are more likely to develop mood disorders such as depression and men are more prone to alcoholism and drug abuse.
In one experiment, Cahill showed that when men and women watched the same emotional movie, the right side of the amygdala was more active in men, and the left amygdala was more active in women. "They're using very different brain processes to create enhanced memories," he said.
The right amygdala is more in tune to the outside environment, communicating with the visual cortex, which controls vision, and the striatum, which coordinates motor actions. These processes are thought to be key to spatial orientation--knowing how to negotiate your surroundings, as in hunting.
The left amygdala is concentrated more on the inner environment of the body, connecting with the insular cortex, which produces emotionally relevant content from sensory experiences, and the hypothalamus' regulation of the body's metabolic and autonomic activities. Scientists speculate that this is important for the female capacity for nurturing.
A second study by Cahill involved the beta blocker propranolol, a drug used to treat high blood pressure that also has been found to greatly reduce the activity of the amygdala. Because it subdues emotional arousal propranolol is being studied as a way to reduce the impact of post-traumatic stress disorder.
In Cahill's experiment, normal subjects were given propranolol before seeing an emotionally disturbing movie about a boy run over by a car. Cahill found that women on the drug were able to remember the central idea of the story, such as that the boy was with his mother, but fewer of the details. Men, on the other hand, remembered more details, like the soccer ball the boy was holding, but less of the essence of the story.
"The drug impaired memory for the details of the emotional story in women but not men, and it impaired memory for the gist of the story in men but not women," Cahill said.
One possible explanation for why women tend to be less aggressive than men is that they may be better able to filter out overly arousing feelings. The front part of the brain, which controls emotions, is bigger in women than in men when compared with the size of the amygdala, where experiences get their emotional charge.
That difference may be why women are less prone than men to fly off the handle, Cahill said.
Scientists also have made new discoveries about growth hormone, whose chief job was thought to be to build the body. But researchers have found the hormone is produced not only in the pituitary gland but also in the brain, in the hippocampus.
That suggests the hormone plays a previously unsuspected role in learning and emotions.
Said Shors: "Sex hormones, like estrogen, have a tremendous effect on the growth and architecture of the brain."
Copyright © 2006, Chicago Tribune
Harvey Milk, Brandon, Matthew Shepard, Gwen Araujo...志半ばで暴力の前に命を落としたLGBTの人たちのことを思えば、LGBTの人権獲得の闘いに暴力を用いることなど、絶対にあってはなりません。
Posted on Sun, Apr. 30, 2006
Bill would require textbooks to mention gays' contributions
SACRAMENTO - State Sen. Sheila Kuehl says a key aspect of history is missing from school textbooks - the contributions that homosexuals have made to California and the nation.
Kuehl, D-Santa Monica, has introduced a bill that would fill that void by requiring textbooks and other social science materials to discuss contributions that gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people have made to the state and nation's economy, politics and society.
The bill also would prohibit textbooks from criticizing people because of their sexual orientation. Current law sets that standard for discussions of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, gender and disabilities.
It's scheduled to be considered Wednesday by the Senate Education Committee.
Assemblyman Dennis Mountjoy, R-Monrovia, has a rival bill that would ban schools from promoting socialism, humanism or homosexuality. It also is up Wednesday, in the Assembly Education Committee.
Discussions of gays and lesbians are almost nonexistent in current textbooks, supporters of Kuehl's legislation say.
That leads "to the conclusion that they're worthless, that they never contributed anything, when the truth is there are quite a few people who were gay and did contribute," Kuehl said. "I think it helps both straight and gay students appreciate that talent is really scattered through our diverse population."
Benjamin Lopez, a lobbyist for the Traditional Values Coalition, an Anaheim-based group that views homosexuality as an abomination, doesn't dispute the fact that gays have been discriminated against and have made contributions to American society.
But he contends Kuehl's bill amounts to "social engineering and social indoctrination."
"You're talking about elevating a practice, a lifestyle, and putting it on par with the struggles of blacks, women and (other) minorities," he said. "As a minority myself, that's tremendously offensive."
Mountjoy said schools should be focusing on improving reading, writing and math scores, not doing "diversity training."
But Kuehl said that if schools are "silent about the diversity of talented people who were important in California, the impression is that only white, straight men did anything important. That leaves virtually everyone else in school believing their talents may not be sufficient."
The bill would require schools to implement its requirements as they normally replace textbooks and other instructional materials.
Here are some of the other bills that are up for votes this week at the Capitol:
STUDENT NEWSPAPERS - Assemblyman Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, has a bill that would prohibit University of California, California State University and community college officials from censoring student newspapers. It's scheduled to be taken up Tuesday by the Assembly Higher Education Committee.
Yee says the bill is in response to several instances in which administrators asked student journalists to modify, slant or withhold stories.
"This is all about sunshine, all about good government, all about accountability," he said.
INDOOR POLLUTION - Assembly members Sally Lieber, D-Santa Clara, and John Laird, D-Santa Cruz, want the state Air Resources Board to take its efforts to clean up the air indoors. Their bill, up Wednesday in the Assembly Appropriations Committee, would require the air board to develop a program to combat pollutants emitted by building products, consumer goods, appliances - even cockroaches.
SEX DISCRIMINATION - Assemblywoman Jenny Oropeza, D-Long Beach, is making her third attempt to boost penalties for employers who pay women less than men for essentially the same work. Two earlier bills were vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. The latest version is before the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Wednesday.
COMPUTER RECYCLING - A bill by Assemblywoman Fran Pavley, D-Agoura Hills, would require the recycling of personal computers. It's also on the Assembly Appropriations Committee's agenda Wednesday.
HIGH SCHOOL DAYS - Sen. Richard Alarcon, D-Van Nuys, has a bill that could make him unpopular with high school students. It would require them to go to school at least five hours a day instead of the current minimum requirement of four hours. The Legislation, which would exempt night and continuation schools, is before the Senate Education Committee on Wednesday.
ON THE NET
http://www.assembly.ca.gov and http://www.senate.ca.gov