- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 16, 2004

BRITAIN

SCIENTISTS DEVELOP MENOPAUSE TEST

LONDON — SCIENTISTS HAVE DEVELOPED A METHOD THAT AIMS TO PREDICT HOW FAST A WOMAN’S BIOLOGICAL CLOCK IS TICKING AND WHEN SHE IS LIKELY TO GO THROUGH MENOPAUSE.

BY MEASURING THE VOLUME OF OVARIES WITH ULTRASOUND, RESEARCHERS IN SCOTLAND SAID YESTERDAY THAT THEY CAN PREDICT THE REPRODUCTIVE AGE OF A WOMAN 25 TO 51 YEARS OLD, OR HOW MANY EGGS SHE MIGHT HAVE LEFT, WHICH COULD CHANGE FERTILITY TREATMENTS DRAMATICALLY.

“WHAT WE HAVE DONE IS TO COME UP WITH A METHOD THAT MAY ALLOW US TO PREDICT FOR A WOMAN WHAT OVARIAN RESERVES SHE HAS AND AT WHAT AGE SHE IS LIKELY TO EXPERIENCE THE MENOPAUSE,” SAID DR. HAMISH WALLACE, A PEDIATRIC ONCOLOGIST AND LECTURER AT THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH.

WOMEN ARE BORN WITH ABOUT 800,000 EGGS, BUT THE NUMBER DWINDLES WITH AGE. AT ABOUT AGE 37, WHEN THERE ARE ABOUT 25,000 EGGS LEFT, THE DECLINE SPEEDS UP AND THE OVARIES SHRINK UNTIL MOST OF THE EGGS ARE DEPLETED AND MENOPAUSE OCCURS.

THE AGE OF MENOPAUSE IS GENERALLY ABOUT 50, PLUS OR MINUS SEVEN OR EIGHT YEARS.

CANADA

CONSERVATIVES SEEK MAJORITY MANDATE

NIAGARA FALLS — CANADIAN OPPOSITION LEADER STEPHEN HARPER SAID YESTERDAY THAT THE GOVERNING LIBERAL PARTY HAD NO CHANCE OF WINNING A MAJORITY IN THE JUNE 28 ELECTION AND URGED VOTERS TO BACK HIS CONSERVATIVES TO ENSURE A STABLE GOVERNMENT.

BUOYED BY POLLS AND PROJECTIONS THAT SHOW LIBERALS WINNING LESS THAN 100 OF PARLIAMENT’S 308 SEATS, MR. HARPER SAID HE WAS MOVING STEADILY TOWARD A MAJORITY VICTORY.

“IT WAS ONLY TWO OR THREE WEEKS AGO PEOPLE WERE TALKING ABOUT A LIBERAL MAJORITY GOVERNMENT. NOW, HARDLY ANYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT THE LIBERALS WINNING THE ELECTION,” MR. HARPER SAID AS HE ENTERED THE FINAL STRETCH OF THE CAMPAIGN.

POLLS SHOW THAT THE TWO PARTIES ARE NECK AND NECK WITH LESS THAN TWO WEEKS TO GO, BUT BECAUSE OF THE DISTRIBUTION OF SUPPORT, THE CONSERVATIVES STAND TO WIN MORE SEATS.

NEITHER PARTY IS IN A POSITION THAT ENSURES A MAJORITY. HISTORICALLY, MINORITY GOVERNMENTS HAVE LASTED ABOUT 18 MONTHS.

IRAN

Tehran threatens to resume enrichment

TEHRAN — Iran yesterday threatened to resume uranium enrichment, a process that could be used to make atomic bombs, if the U.N. nuclear agency passes a tough resolution rebuking Tehran for poor cooperation.

The United States accused Iran of trying to bully the board of the International Atomic Energy Agency meeting in Vienna, Austria, and said such tactics increased suspicions that Tehran was making weapons secretly.

“The basic message that Iran is sending is that they have something to hide and they’re going to use any means they have, including intimidation, to keep things from coming to light,” said Kenneth Brill, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations office in Vienna.

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