Former NIH stem-cell chief joins New York foundation

Stem-cell biologist Mahendra Rao, who resigned last week as director of the US National Institutes of Health’s Center for Regenerative Medicine (CRM), has a new job. On April 9, he was appointed vice-president for regenerative medicine at the New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF), a non-profit organization that funds embryonic stem cell research.  Read more

New cholesterol drugs make strides in clinical trials

The excitement around PCSK9 – a promising new protein target for cholesterol-lowering therapies – appears to be justified. This week, at the American College of Cardiology’s annual meeting in Washington DC, several pharmaceutical companies presented data from advanced clinical trials showing that monoclonal antibodies that target and degrade PCSK9 are effective at treating patients with high cholesterol, especially when combined with statins such as Lipitor.  Read more

FDA institutes voluntary rules on farm antibiotics

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a set of guidelines intended to curb the widespread use of antibiotics for livestock, which contributes to the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria (see Nature‘s feature story “MRSA: Farming up trouble“). But some worry that the voluntary nature of the rules — and their many loopholes — will do little to fix the problem.  Read more