Weekly Round Up: Is China the next Japan, integrity, blood pressure-and more antibiotic resistance

Interesting stories from the week

Japan on the wane Remember 1985, when Japan was going to take over the world? And the whole tribe of western commentators, journalists and bien-pensants in general were wringing their hands. and gnashing their teeeth and telling us the West was On the Wane? Even Milton Keynes got in the act, advertising itself by implying they were more Japanese than anywhere else. Not anymore, as this piece from Rupert Wingfield-Hayes of the BBC makes clear.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-63830490

China on the wane Remember 2020 when China was going to take over the world, and western commentators, journalists and………..here we go again. At least Milton Keynes hasn’t got in on the act yet. It seems that this once unstoppable Asian giant has its woes too, and maybe world conquest may have to be equally deferred for a bit. Worrying thought: what if everybody, everywhere is in decline…….who’s actually flying this thing? Two for you on this

https://www.reuters.com/world/china/view-chinas-q4-growth-slows-29-yy-beats-expectations-2023-01-17

https://theconversation.com/why-chinas-shrinking-population-is-a-big-deal-counting-the-social-economic-and-political-costs-of-an-aging-smaller-society-198056?ut

thanks to P Seymour

Scientific Integrity on the wane Imagine if you could have approached Watson and Crick and bought yourself an author’s credit on their groundbreaking DNA paper. You could have dined out for life. Nature is worried that something like this might be starting to happen. Imagine if the same practice were extended to celebrity mags, fashion, and the sports press! Then we really would be in decline. Authorship Sale has become big Business

Research-integrity sleuths have discovered hundreds of online adverts selling authorship on papers that are about to be published in reputable journals. This trade is big business: a preprint analysis of more than 1,000 author-position offers from one website valued them at an estimated US$6.5 million. Journals have begun investigating and retracting papers that seem to be linked to adverts. The problem will grow, says economist Anna Abalkina. The market for authorships has developed because, in many countries, researchers are still promoted on the basis of the number of papers they publish.Nature | 5 min read
Reference: arXiv preprint (not peer-reviewed)

Blood Pressure-are you on the wane? Getting your blood pressure wrong is a sure way of doing yourself no good. Now some ingenious doctors have come up with a way of not only measuring, but may be even curing, it. Good news. Is the Mail trying to make up for its performance on MMR?

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/pa/article-11640999/10-minute-scan-detect-cure-common-cause-high-blood-pressure.html

At last! One about not being on the wane! We’re still worried in these offices about the hoary old problem of microbial resistance to antibiotics. Now a technique has come along using genetically modified bacteria which may offer some hope. Hannah Devlin for the Guardian

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2023/jan/19/gm-bacteria-could-combat-antibiotic-resistance-study-suggests

Marrakesh Memories Younger readers will recall their grandparent’s tales of the 1960s and what it was like to be a hippy. So in the week David Crosby died, we’ll pick out the old anthem Marrakesh Express, with this question. Was he related to Bill? Or Bing? Or Crosby in Lancashire. We’d like to know

#blood pressure #antibiotics #china #japan

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