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Craig Mello, Andy Fire, Paul McMahon, Ray Iacono, Vin Miles, James Gilbert

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Craig Mello, a researcher at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, and Andy Fire, a researcher at Stanford University School of Medicine, were awarded the Nobel Prize in medicine or physiology this week.
 
Mello and Fire received the prize for their work in discovering the role double-stranded RNA plays in RNA interference. (see feature story, this issue, for further details LINK).
 

 
Benitec has recently appointed Paul McMahon as its CFO and corporate secretary.
 
He replaces Ray Iacono, who is stepping down as secretary.
 
McMahon is a CPA who has worked with AZN Banking Group, Strategic Industry Research Foundation, and the Shedden Engineering Group.
 

 
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals said last week that Vin Miles, the company’s senior vice president of business development, is planning to retire to “pursue his interests in other areas.”
 
He will remain with the company on a full-time basis for the rest of 2006, then work through a transition period as Alnylam identifies a replacement.
 
“Vin feels that this is a good time to leave on a high point and explore new endeavors," Alnylam President and CEO John Maraganore said in a statement. “I want to thank Vin for his leadership and outstanding contributions to this effort. We look forward to his continued work during this period of transition, and to continued friendship with Vin well into the future."
 

 
Archemix said this week that James Gilbert has been named chief medical officer and senior vice president of clinical and regulatory affairs of the aptamer-based drug developer.
 
Before his appointment at Archemix, Gilbert was vice president of clinical development, cardiovascular/inflammation, at Millennium Pharmaceuticals. Prior to this, he held various positions at Boehringer Ingelheim and Bayer.
 
He has a MD from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine and a BS in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.