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Groups want action on Asian carp problem
Written by Press Staff Writer   
Thursday, 30 September 2010 15:55

Representatives of Great Lakes environmental groups let President Barack Obama know how they feel about the encroachment of the Asian carp on the lakes.

More than 10,000 post cards were hand delivered in Washington, D.C., urging the president to demand federal regulators implement a solution, including the construction of a permanent barrier to separate the Great Lakes from the Mississippi River system – considered the main route the carp are following to reach the lakes.

“Our message from people around the region couldn’t be clearer: `We cannot wait any longer. We want a permanent solution that will protect our Great Lakes way of life,’ “ said Cheryl Mendoza, associate director of Freshwater Future.

The groups argue a permanent barrier between the two watersheds – which they say was “artificially” connected about 100 years ago to direct Chicago’s wastewater away from Lake Michigan – is the only guaranteed way to keep Asian carp and other destructive species from traveling between the two basins.

In June, a live Asian carp was caught by commercial fishermen in Lake Calumet near Chicago – past an electrical barrier designed to stop it. And earlier DNA sampling has found traces of the carp in the Chicago Area Waterway System, a tributary of the Great Lakes.

Joel Brammeier, president of the Alliance for the Great Lakes, said the Army Corps of Engineers must be directed now to complete a study of how to install a permanent divide between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi basins at Chicago in the next 18 months.

 
Law enables `cord blood’ banking by parents
Written by Larry Limpf   
Thursday, 30 September 2010 15:58

A recently passed bill in the state legislature makes it possible for expectant parents to receive standardized information about umbilical cord blood banking.

The term “cord blood” is used for blood that is drawn from the umbilical cord and the placenta after a baby is born. Unless parents decide otherwise, the blood cells are discarded as medical waste.  Cord blood is collected because it contains stem cells, which have the ability to renew themselves.   The cells offer lifesaving medical benefits and are different from both the embryonic stem cells in a fertilized egg and stem cells obtained from a child or adult person, proponents of the bill say.

“A growing percentage of stem cell transplant patients are receiving cord blood to cure more than 70 diseases,” Dr. Alvin D. Jackson, director of the Ohio Department of Health, said. “Seventy percent of patients who need a transplant of blood-forming stem cells do not have a matching donor in their own family, and their physician must search public registries of donors.”

The law requires the health department to make available to health care professionals printable publications that can be downloaded from the department’s website.  The law also requires the department to encourage health care providers of services directly related to a woman’s pregnancy to provide the publication before her third trimester of pregnancy.

 
Barney, former K-9, faces his biggest challenge
Written by Kelly Kaczala   
Thursday, 30 September 2010 15:54

He nabbed car thieves, intimidated juveniles looking for trouble, and helped secure local sites for presidential candidates

Barney, Northwood’s crime-fighting police dog, dodged a bullet last year when some residents stepped in to donate funds for his continued service after the city cut the K-9 from the budget due to a poor economy.

But in August, not even residents could help Barney avoid his fiercest foe to date: cancer. The city recently announced that Barney, purchased by a Homeland Security Grant six-and-a-half years ago, was retiring for gooddue to health reasons.

Patrolman Fred Genzman, who was Barney’s handler, said he had no clue Barney

k91a
Patrolman Fred Genzman
with Barney. (Press photo
by Ken Grosjean)

was ill when the seven-and-a-half-year old shepherd started having training issues a few months ago. As part of his K-9 certification test taken every two years, Barney is required to detect explosive odors, which he always did with flying colors. This summer, he uncharacteristically missed a few times, said Genzman..

“He’s never had problems like this before,” said Genzman. “We tried to fix it. We went to Cleveland, talked to different handlers and trainers. We just couldn’t pinpoint the problem,” he said.

As a last resort, Genzman took Barney to a veterinarian for a checkup.

 
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