September 1, 2010 in Nation/World

In brief: Justice appeals stem cell ruling


Washington – The Obama administration on Tuesday asked a federal judge to lift a restraining order that it says could undercut federally funded embryonic stem cell research.

The Justice Department filed its request with U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth only days after he blocked government funding of embryonic stem cell research.

Medical researchers value stem cells because they are master cells that can turn into any tissue of the body. They expect the research to lead to cures for spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s disease and other ailments.

It was not immediately known when Lamberth would make a decision on the government’s petition.

Washington – Federal agents have descended for a second time on Wright County Egg and Hillandale Farms, the two Iowa farms at the center of a salmonella outbreak and egg recall.

Spokeswomen for the farms said the agents who arrived Tuesday worked for the Food and Drug Administration. Bob Teig, an assistant U.S. attorney for Iowa, and spokeswoman Pat El-Hinnawy of the Food and Drug Administration both confirmed the presence of the agents.

It is unclear whether this new investigation is the first step in a criminal probe. The FDA has jurisdiction to investigate crimes involving adulterated food.

The FDA concluded its investigation into the conditions of the farms Monday, issuing a report that showed rodents, seeping manure and even maggots there. Eggs from Wright County Egg and Hillandale have been linked to as many as 1,500 cases of salmonella poisoning, and the companies have together recalled more than half a billion eggs.

Bears euthanized after break-in

Colorado Springs, Colo. – Colorado wildlife officers have killed a mother bear and her two cubs after the cubs broke into a home.

The bears got into the house Tuesday after pushing down on the door handle. Retired state District Judge Richard Hall said the bears rummaged through his trash and opened a drawer. The cubs fled through a window when he yelled at them.

The three bears ran to a nearby house and eventually up a pine tree. State wildlife officers tranquilized and euthanized them.

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