National Institutes of Health

Courtesy: Muhammad Mahdi Karim

ZIKA VIRUS UPDATES:   Health investigators recently  have discovered the first cases of Zika virus being spread within the U.S.  The first cases discovered are in Florida and that means mosquitos in the area could be spreading the virus.  Another case was in Utah where a man contracted the virus while traveling outside the U.S. and later died but not before transmitting the virus to his son who was taking care of him before he died.

Southern Arkansas University

A physicist at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia has received a three-year grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the impact of space radiation on human cells.

Associate professor of physics Abdel Bachri will team up with scientists from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences’ Division of Radiation Health in Little Rock on the $265,000 grant. Bachri says they want to examine what space radiation does to human DNA.

Chimp Haven

The first wave of newly-retired federal research chimpanzees are arriving at the national sanctuary near Shreveport. Seven chimps arrive today. Chimp Haven will eventually take in all 111 chimps from the University of Louisiana Lafayette’s New Iberia Research Center. It no longer has a government contract for chimp research. Chimp Haven vice president Jennifer Whitaker said the chimps will stay in a quarantine area for at least two weeks as they make the transition into their retirement home.

Chimp Haven

A sanctuary for retired research chimpanzees in Keithville, La., is about to nearly double its population when it receives 113 chimps from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette New Iberia Research Center that no longer has a contract with the National Institutes of Health to conduct animal research. Chimp Haven president Linda Brent said her organization launched a $5 million fundraising campaign for the expansion. She said Chimp Haven’s staff is poised for growth.

Chimp Haven

The president of Chimp Haven, the national chimpanzee sanctuary in Keithville, La., says federal initiatives are moving ahead to retire large numbers of chimps from biomedical research. Linda Brent says Chimp Haven is in contact with the National Institutes of Health on news that the agency will transfer 10 research chimps to the Keithville sanctuary. She says many more could follow as the NIH send nearly one-fifth of its research chimps into retirement.