Tue, 28/04/2009 - 21:10 by Inderjit Singh
Washington -- Federal officials say they have started a program designed to ensure the safe use of methadone, a prescription drug used to treat heroin addiction.
The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said the campaign responds to concerns about escalating numbers of poisoning deaths linked with improper use of the medication.
The program -- Follow Directions: How to Use Methadone Safely -- is designed to inform consumers, health care professionals and treatment clinics about the safe use and misuse of the drug for both pain relief and drug addiction treatment, officials said.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 21:08 by Inderjit Singh
Washington -- Retail sales in the United States dropped last week, the International Council of Shopping Centers-USB reported Tuesday.
Sales fell 0.7 percent and have dropped 1.7 percent from a year ago, the report said.
Store traffic slowed, dragging down sales in grocery, drug, department and discount stores, the ICSC said.
Hot weather typically spurs demand for seasonal goods, but "it appears consumers chose instead to enjoy the hot weather, rather than shop," the report said.
Temperatures during the week peaked above 100 degrees in parts of California with 90-degree days spreading across the country late in the week, Weather Trends International said.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 21:06 by Inderjit Singh
Louisville -- Former World Boxing Council heavyweight champion Greg Page has died at his Louisville, Ky., home after falling from bed, officials say.
Page, 50, whose final bout at age 42 in 2001 left him with permanent brain injuries, choked to death Monday morning after sliding out of his hospital-style bed and getting his head caught in its railings, Jefferson County Deputy Coroner Jim Wesley told the Louisville Courier-Journal.
Page knocked out Gerrie Coetzee in the eighth round to capture the WBA title on Dec. 1, 1984, in Sun City, South Africa, but lost it in his first defense of the title the next year in a unanimous 15-round decision to Tony Tubbs in a match attended by Muhammed Ali, to whom Page was frequently compared.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 21:01 by Inderjit Singh
Burbank -- Jay Leno mined his recent hospitalization for jokes to use when he returned to "The Tonight Show" in Burbank, Calif., Monday night.
Leno's publicist said the 58-year-old comedian and chat show host spent two days in the hospital last week due to apparent dehydration, but People.com said Leno didn't talk much about the exact nature of his illness during Monday's edition of the show.
"What happened was -- and I think this was a mistake -- I ate a raw pig a friend brought back from Mexico," Leno quipped, referring to the recent swine flu outbreak there.
He went on to say he discovered during his recent experience that he has a "really bad HMO."
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:46 by Inderjit Singh
Washington -- The home prices index for 20 U.S. metropolitan regions dropped in February, but the decline showed a small improvement over January.
Prices fell a record 19 percent in January in the S&P/Case-Shiller home price index. In February, the index fell 18.6 percent, a report released Tuesday said.
"Finally, we're seeing a touch of moderation," David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee told The New York Times.
"This is the kind of thing one might see if we're beginning to see a bottom," he said.
"I would not run out and celebrate, but I would not dig the bunker any deeper," he said.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:37 by Inderjit Singh
West Lafayette -- A U.S. nutrition specialist says shoppers should not refrain from buying pork products because of the current swine flu outbreak.
Purdue University extension specialist Melissa Maulding says the flu virus is not a food-borne pathogen, and there is no risk to the food supply.
"The flu is a virus that is transmitted through interaction with people," she said. "The biggest defense against catching the flu is to wash your hands."
Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Department of Agriculture have indicated influenza is not passed through food.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:35 by Inderjit Singh
New York -- Crude oil prices dropped on the New York Mercantile Exchange Tuesday, as stock markets turned lower in Europe, Asia and the United States.
Struggling economies are holding back gains in commodities. Crude oil prices, above $55 per barrel in March, fell 66 cents overnight to $49.48 per barrel.
Heating oil prices fell 0.0029 cents to $1.32 per gallon. Reformulated blendstock gasoline dropped 0.0186 cents to $1.3846 per gallon. Natural gas prices rose 0.018 cents to $3.271 per million British thermal units.
At the pump, the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline was $2.048 Tuesday, down from Monday's $2.05 a gallon, AAA said.
Copyright 2009 by United Press International.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:31 by Inderjit Singh
West Lafayette -- A Purdue University veterinarian says flu viruses are named for the first animal in which they are found; the current swine flu was discovered in pigs in 1930.
That discovery is the only reason the current outbreak is called swine flu, said Purdue swine medicine expert Sandy Amass. "We don't even know if the virus found in humans will infect pigs."
No U.S. pigs have been found with swine flu (H1N1) in the current outbreak -- only humans -- but Amass says pork producers should take precautionary measures to protect their herds from being infected with any flu virus:
-- Do not permit people, including employees that have the flu or flu-like symptoms, in or around barns.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:29 by Inderjit Singh
London, April 28 Three British Muslims were Tuesday cleared of charges of helping the terror bombers whose suicide mission four years ago left 52 people dead and nearly 1,000 wounded in the heart of London.
A jury at Kingston Crown Court in London unanimously acquitted Waheed Ali, Sadeer Saleem and Mohammed Shakil - the only people to be charged in the July 2005 bombings - of the charge of helping the four suicide bombers cause explosions.
The three men had all previously attended terror training camps in Pakistan - two of them with Mohammad Sidique Khan, the ringleader of the July 7, 2005, suicide bombings that targeted London's buses and underground trains.
Bangladeshi-born Ali and Pakistani-born Shakil were arrested in 2007 as they were about to board a flight to Pakistan.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:27 by Inderjit Singh
London, April 28-- Singer-songwriter and actress Avril Lavigne has been selected to represent her native Canada as its ambassador at China's first world expo to be held next year.
The 24-year-old, who is also a fashion designer, was born in Ontario and is wildly popular in Asia.
She had previously recorded portions of her hit songs in Mandarin and is now expected to help bridge the gap between eastern and western cultures by travelling to Shanghai to represent her home country, reports contactmusic.com.
"I was in Vancouver and honoured as the Canadian Ambassador for 2010 World Expo, in Shanghai, China. It's really exciting as it's the first time China has ever hosted World Expo and the theme is Better City, Better Life," she posted on her MySpace.com blog.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:26 by Inderjit Singh
Luxembourg, April 28 Russia would like to believe European Union assurances that the bloc is not trying to create a sphere of influence in the former USSR, but the EU has not yet been convincing enough, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday.
"We would like very much to believe" that the EU's planned Eastern Partnership with six former-Soviet states is not aimed at encircling Russia, Lavrov said after talks with EU diplomats in Luxembourg.
"Nonetheless, some comments I have heard do worry us," he said.
The EU is set to launch its so-called "Eastern Partnership" with Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine at a summit in Prague May 7.
Tue, 28/04/2009 - 20:24 by Inderjit Singh
Los Angeles, April 28 Troubled actress-singer Lindsay Lohan is looking for a lover who does not mind her alleged alcoholism or other repelling habits, she revealed in a mock Internet dating profile.
Lohan, whose recent breakup with her lesbian partner Samantha Ronson has been covered by the media, stars in a dating profile posted online Monday on FunnyOrDie.com that parodies similar videos created for matchmaking company eHarmony, reports the China Daily online.
"I would define my personality as creative, a bit of a night owl... I'm a workaholic, a shopaholic and according to the state of California, an alcoholic as well as a threat to all security guards if they work at hotels," she said.