3:04pm

Thu April 25, 2013
Shots - Health News

Researchers Find Hormone That Grows Insulin-Producing Cells

A microscopy image of a rat pancreas shows the insulin-making cells in green.
Masur Wikimedia.org

The work is only in mice so far, but it sure is intriguing.

A newly found hormone revs up production of cells that make insulin — the very kind that people with advanced diabetes lack.

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2:59pm

Thu April 25, 2013
It's All Politics

Max Baucus Says He Was Montana's 'Hired Hand' On Gun Vote

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 6:16 pm

Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., is trailed by reporters Monday on Capitol Hill after announcing that he'll retire in 2014.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Longtime Democratic Sen. Max Baucus of Montana announced this week that he would not seek re-election next year, ending four decades in Congress and leaving as chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee.

NPR's Robert Siegel spoke with Baucus Thursday about his recent vote against expanded gun background checks, his role in negotiations over President Obama's health care legislation, efforts to remake tax policy, and the legions of his former staffers now populating lobbying shops.

Background Checks

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2:59pm

Thu April 25, 2013
Around the Nation

Mississippi River's Many 'Parents' Look To Unify

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 6:16 pm

Mississippi River floodwaters in Vicksburg, Miss., in 2011.
Dave Martin AP

Life on the Mississippi River is a roller coaster of highs and lows: record high floodwaters one year, a drought and near-record low water levels the next. And those are just two of the many problems faced by river stakeholders like barge operators, farmers and conservation groups.

Those stakeholders met recently in Chicago to discuss the Mississippi's most pressing needs, any common ground, and how to speak with a unified voice in advocating for the nation's largest river system.

So far, that hasn't been easy.

Critical, Crumbling Lifeline

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2:59pm

Thu April 25, 2013
Around the Nation

Making Room: Can Smaller Apartments Help New York City Grow?

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 6:16 pm

Some housing experts say New York's zoning code has discouraged the building of affordable housing by requiring that all apartments be at least 400 square feet. The city is interested in finding ways to rewrite the rules.
iStockphoto.com

New York City is notoriously crowded, and it's only getting more so. The city estimates it will have 1 million more people by the year 2030, many of them single. Where to place all these newcomers is a major challenge.

Mayor Mike Bloomberg has announced plans to put up an experimental building of micro-apartments that could be replicated throughout the city. And the Museum of the City of New York is looking at ways to make better use of the city's housing stock.

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2:59pm

Thu April 25, 2013
Around the Nation

Controversy Brews Over Church's Hallucinogenic Tea Ritual

Originally published on Thu April 25, 2013 6:17 pm

Ayahuasca brew used in South and Central America.
Nha Flickr

A small church in Santa Fe, N.M., has grown up around a unique sacrament. Twice a month, the congregation meets in a ritualized setting to drink Brazilian huasca tea, which has psychoactive properties said to produce a trance-like state.

The Supreme Court confirmed the UDV church's right to exist in 2006. The church doesn't seek new members and prefers to keep a low profile. It did, however, agree for the first time to open up to a journalist.

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