Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Simple Regression

For my econometrics class. Here is a nice example of a simple regression and an excellent graph.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Kidney Donation

Looks like the fear that donating a kidney reduces life expectancy is unfounded. Maybe this will clear the way for selling kidneys and saving lives?

People who donate a kidney live just as long and are just as healthy as those with two kidneys, according to a new study by University of Minnesota researchers that is the largest ever done on the long-term health consequences of donation.

The study provides a reassurance that experts hope will encourage more organ donations at a time when the need for such life-saving transplants is on the rise. Today there are 78,000 people on the kidney transplant list, and most will not survive the five- to seven-year wait for a kidney from a deceased donor.

Researchers tracked down nearly all of the 3,700 people who had donated kidneys at the university’s transplant center between 1963 and 2007.

The findings will be published today in the New England Journal of Medicine with an editorial that described the results as surprising and quite reassuring.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Autism and Vaccination

This appears to be another blow for those that think there is a causal link between the two.
THE doctor who sparked the scare over the safety of the MMR vaccine for children changed and misreported results in his research, creating the appearance of a possible link with autism, a Sunday Times investigation has found.

Confidential medical documents and interviews with witnesses have established that Andrew Wakefield manipulated patients’ data, which triggered fears that the MMR triple vaccine to protect against measles, mumps and rubella was linked to the condition.

The research was published in February 1998 in an article in The Lancet medical journal. It claimed that the families of eight out of 12 children attending a routine clinic at the hospital had blamed MMR for their autism, and said that problems came on within days of the jab. The team also claimed to have discovered a new inflammatory bowel disease underlying the children’s conditions.

However, our investigation, confirmed by evidence presented to the General Medical Council (GMC), reveals that: In most of the 12 cases, the children’s ailments as described in The Lancet were different from their hospital and GP records. Although the research paper claimed that problems came on within days of the jab, in only one case did medical records suggest this was true, and in many of the cases medical concerns had been raised before the children were vaccinated. Hospital pathologists, looking for inflammatory bowel disease, reported in the majority of cases that the gut was normal. This was then reviewed and the Lancet paper showed them as abnormal.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month, I turn the mic over to Morgan Freeman. The great actor with a simple idea.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Visualizing Store Openings

A dynamic map, plotting the openings of Target and another of Walmart openings. Both chains clearly have very different geographic strategies.