tv Satellite News From Taiwan PBS November 2, 2010 6:00pm-6:30pm PST
welcome to "newsline." i'm shery ahn. voting continues across the united states in the country's midterm elections. abc news says that among the senate seats seven democrats and 16 republicans are expected to win. five of the republicans have been supported by the conservative tea party. the midterms are held halfway between presidential elections.
37 senate seats, which account for about a third of the chamber, and all 435 house seats are at stake. the focus of tuesday's elections is how many congressional seats president barack obama's democratic party can keep. the democrats currently hold a majority in both chambers. >> i hope he does a better job than he has. and i hope he listens to the people. >> i think he's doing the best job he can. he came in with a lot of problems. it's not going to be fixed overnight. got to give the guy a chance. >> abc news says the democrats are expected to win 117 seats in the house of representatives. opposition republicans are expected to win 151 seats. obama and his democratic party are struggling due to the slow economic recovery and high unemployment. the tea party, a conservative grassroots movement, has been energizing the republicans throughout the campaign. polls indicate that the democrats are likely to lose
their majority in the house. the question is whether the democrats can retain control of the senate. with the vote counting beginning in other states as soon as polling stations close, the outcome is expected in a few hours. a series of car bombings have killed at least 57 people in baghdad. the blasts apparently targeted iraq's shia muslims. the bombs went off almost simultaneously at 11 separate locations in the center of the iraqi capital on tuesday. the cars were parked near places like a restaurant and an auto dealership. police say at least 240 people were wounded in the bombings that hit crowded places in mostly shia neighborhoods. police have tightened security to prevent shia extremists from retaliating against sunnis. now, this is just in. abc news says the republicans will likely win more seats in the u.s. midterm elections and recapture control of the house of representatives for the first time in four years. vote counting is still under
way. and as we have said earlier, midterm elections are held halfway between presidential elections. 37 seats, or a third of the senate, and all of 435 house seats are at stake. abc news says that republicans are at least 218 seats to regain the majority in the house. the u.s. federal reserve board began a two-day meeting on tuesday. the fed is widely expected to announce additional monetary easing measures to prop up the economy. the u.s. economy is growing at a modest rate with gdp growth in the july to september period at an annualized 2% over the same period last year. fed chairman ben bernanke said the inflation rate and the growth rate are below what the central bank regards as desirable levels. bernanke repeatedly said that the central bank is ready to replenish the market with more funds to support the fragile recovery. the minutes from the previous meeting revealed that policymakers discussed specific
monetary easing measures. all eyes are on the scale and methods of the quantitative easing which the fed is set to announce on wednesday. in foreign exchange markets the dollar is already falling against the yen on expectations of the easing. heavy rain has caused massive flooding in thailand. the thai government says more than 100 people have died and 6 million have been affected. the record rainfall since mid-october has caused floods and landslides in many parts of the country. a tropical depression has hit ten southern provinces. the city of hat yai has been hardest hit with many of its roads and public buildings under water. on the southern resort island of koh samui torrential rain has forced the airport to shut down and stranded many tourists. weather forecasters say the heavy rain will continue through wednesday. china says it will continue to cut its rare earth export quotas for 2011 but stopped short of giving concrete
figures. the chinese government slashed export quotas by around 40% this year from 2009 levels, saying it needs to protect reserves from reckless exploitation. high-tech makers in japan, europe and the united states are having a hard time securing necessary amounts of the material. the chinese plan to cut the export quotas is raising concerns about the increased negative impact it would have on japanese high-tech products. russia has announced that president dmitry medvedev plans to visit more of the four disputed russian-held islands off hokkaido that japan claims. on monday he visited kunashiri island. foreign minister sergei lavrov made the remark to reporters in norway on tuesday. the foreign minister said he talked with medvedev and that
the president was satisfied with his visit to kunashiri. he said the president is considering a budget increase to help boost development on those islands. the other russian-held islands medvedev plans to visit include habomai and shikotan. a joint declaration signed 54 years ago by japan and the soviet union says that two of the four disputed islands, habomai and shikotan, would be returned to japan after signing a peace treaty. observers say that president medvedev's planned visit to the islands is a move to confirm russia's policy that all the islands are its territory. it is also to keep in check japan's position. conductor seiji ozawa has become the first japanese to be named an honorary member of the vienna philharmonic orchestra. ozawa, who underwent surgery for cancer of the esophagus, resumed musical activity in september. the honorary membership was awarded on tuesday at a concert
hall in tokyo. orchestra president clemens hellsberg says the title is not just a show of honor or appreciation, but it also reflects the orchestra's love for the maestro. hellsberg expressed hope that the honor will strengthen ozawa as he recovers. >> happiest thing last, what, eight years i learned is that i was with you and i learned from you. i really like you very much and i -- until i die, i like to be with you as a friend. thank you very much. thank you. ♪ >> ozawa has conducted a number of major performances by the orchestra since 1966. he joins leonard bernstein, richard straugs, and other
and before we go, here's a recap of the headlines. abc news says the republicans will likely win more seats in the u.s. midterm elections and recapture control of the house of representatives for the first time in four years. vote counting is still under way. midterm elections are held halfway between presidential elections. 37 seats, or a third of the senate, and all 435 house seats are at stake. abc news says the republicans are likely to capture at least 218 seats to regain the majority in the house. and we reiterate, abc news has just said the republicans will likely win more seats in the u.s. midterm elections and recapture control of the house of representatives for the first time in four years. vote counting is still under way. the midterm elections are held halfway between presidential elections. 37 seats, or a third of the senate, and all 435 house seats are at stake.
mpndwerees by one cardiomyocytes. then the analed these st results are from different concentrations of one the black wavelength is the unaltered bas lse. the deviation from the baseline toxicity a compound might have. this machine that eltric pulse uses 60 electrodes in order to be able to test the cells. that's because the cell moves as it beats. ne of the electrodes to be measured.
>> translator:yo has to beat freely but at the same time it can't fall off the electrode. these requirements are contradictory. this is ablvery rearcher has had to deal with. >> asai moved forward with mpheroor a system that would performing an accurate toxicity test. doing business with ips cells is a new direction in commerce. it follows a tried and true method of success, though. bring products to market that people need. asai was born into a family of doctors. he also was a frequent patient because of asthma. his time in the hospital led him to a career in pharmacology. the image of professionals in the hospital measuring medicine stayed with him. >> translator: there's a limit to how many lives a doctor can ve bumeci iiven to people
worldwide. saving many lives. evyony family is a doctor. i was the only one who chose to go into pharmacology. >> reporter: after studying arcogyn lle,asai went to work for a drug manufacturer. during that time he also studied in the u.oea me about medical frontiers. he came across cells similar to ips cells andecedo u them to conduct research into how to accurately test for toxicity. back in japan these similar cells were being generated to great acclaim. the scientist involved was norio nakataji, a professor at kyoto universitynoor h expertise in stem cell research. in 2003 nakatsuji founded rep
roh-cell to help his research benefit society. asai decided it was the place where he could pursue the projects he had vion. asai joined rep roh-cell in 2006 and began working on an assay st tt ul allow for easy and accurate testing. until now each compound's toxicity had to be tested one by one. esrcr uld peer through the microscope and place the cells on electrodes using a needle. th pce w tend lor intensive. asai wanted to find a way to shorten t ocur he devoted himself to designing a new ttiplate. he narrowed his designs down to a well that allowed designs to be placed easily and quickly on the electrodes.
>> translator: after looking through lots of data, w fnd that the testing was impeded by not being able to place the cell on the electrode. it was obvious. if the cell could be placed easily on the electrode, anyone could test it. we worked toward a way to pce the 100-micron cell on the electrode without a microscope 100% of the time. >> asai kept coming back to one particular shape. it was that of a plate he'd used at his old pharmactical mpany job. he added a funnel to the plate and tried it out with the cardiomyocytes. he worked out a way to accurately position a cell over the 20-micron electrode.
asai began testing to see if an accurate ekgeang of the faint electric pulse could be tak taken. changing the width and shape of the electrodes eliminated the surrounding interference. in 2008 the plate project was completed. as a result, highly specialized training was no longer necessary to place the cell over the electrode. better still, up to 96 types of compounds could now be tested on such cells at once.
reprocell's kit includes the cardiomyocytes, the cultural medium for maintaining the cells, along with a testing plate. it went on sale as the world's first toxicity testing kit for cardiomyocytes. asai, the researcher, had come a long way from the boy who had watched pharmacists in the hospital. >> translator: i love to climb mountains. everyone knows that a straight route is the fastest way up the mountain. but it's the roundabout route that's more complicated. and no one usually takes. that makes me want to climb. when i'm told to achieve specific objectives in a fixed period of time, i say bring them
on. >> asai makes a little mountain of his commute to work every day, relying on a homemade bicycle rather than taking the train or driving a car. and he's often looking ahead to other peaks he might scale, mountains of medical importance. ips cells have expanded the possibilities for pharmaceutical development. and they're pointing the way toward the treatment of serious illnesses. kyoto is the city where professor nakatsuji conducts his research into cells. asai and reprocell's president sometimes go to see him at kyoto university.
nakatsuji has been studying nerve cells for over ten years. his research team has now created a cell that exhibits the same state as the nerve cells of a patient with alzheimer's, the degenerative disease that has proved so difficult to treat. about 36 million people worldwide are said to be affected by it in some way. a loss of nerve cell function in the brain is believed to be the cause. as of now there is no cure. nakatsuji's research team has successfully measured the electric impulses from nerve cells. they hope the process will eventually lead them to an effective treatment. this is the measuring of the electrical impulses. on the left is a normal nerve
cell. on the right an artificial cell affected by alzheimer's. it's the first time anywhere for this sort of data to be obtained from a manmade nerve cell. >> translator: using this, we can find revolutionary ways to treat alzheimer's while vastly improving the speed and efficiency of testing these methods. >> a meeting took place on commercializing the nerve cell project. asai talked with a partner university and corporations about how to create new treatments for degenerative nerve diseases.
>> translator: creating and distributing new medicines using these pluripotent cells will be a boon to mankind. assisting in the production of these medicines is the same as helping the entire human race. the research's role as a part of that process is a very important responsibili responsibility. i definitely want to see it succeed. >> translator: i have complete confidence in our ability to achieve our goals. the next stage is where we put this to practical use. we'll take all this information back to reprocell and do everything we can with it. >> ips cells are making the transition from the lab to on the job applications. and reprocell continues to look
for new places that biotechnology might lead. so finally, we'd like to ask mr. asai to write the model that keeps him moving ahead. heading into new frontiers in the search for better medicine. here are the words that motivate mr. asai's challenge. >> dream is mountain high. thinking is sea deep. >> translator: i was born near the bottom of mount fuji.