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Apr 15, 2005 (Vol. 25, No. 8)

Insect Research Collection, University of Wisconsin, Madison

  • Breadth of Collection
  • Uninspired Organization
A quick scan through the resources available at the University of Wisconsin Insect Research Collection is humbling in two respects. First, one is reminded of the diversity of biology out there that is represented by the insects, which dwarf the numbers of any other species on Earth. Second, a reading of the Introduction to the collection reminds us that lifetimes of work went into providing collections like these (for example, a worldwide collection of over 16,000 flies) for everyone to learn from. The site itself is rather “plain Jane,” with a boring gray background and virtually no pictures (that I was able to find). Still, I can’t help but marvel at the amount of effort it took to collect, catalog, and organize all of these species.
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*The opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s) and should not be construed as reflecting the viewpoints of the publisher, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., the publishing house, or employees and affiliates thereof.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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