NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Sitting in the waiting room at Cedars-Sinai's cancer institute in West Hollywood for his first breast check up, Alan Blassberg found it hard to answer some of the questions on the medical history questionnaire. He was a 42-year-old man holding a clipboard full of questions about periods and pregnancies. "Everything was pink," recalled Blassberg. The literature, flowers, paperwork, signs, and nearly the whole waiting room was pink. It was October, breast cancer awareness month, so everyone got pink balloons.

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 Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who chairs the Senate health committee, will be retiring at the end of his term, Stat News reports.

UCSF researchers find that having two X chromosomes may contribute to women's longer lifespans, according to Discover's D-brief blog.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's use of genetic approaches to study foodborne illnesses.

In PNAS this week: immune cell profiling of wild baboons by social status, metabolomics profiling of esophageal tumors, and more.

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