Takuo Aoyagi, an Inventor of the Pulse Oximeter, Dies at 84

Takuo Aoyagi, a Japanese engineer whose pioneering work in the 1970s led to the modern pulse oximeter, a lifesaving device that clips on a finger and shows the level of oxygen in the blood and that has become a critical tool in the fight against the novel coronavirus, died on April 18 in Tokyo. He…

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How Remdesivir, New Hope for Covid-19 Patients, Was Resurrected

Remdesivir, an antiviral drug designed to treat both hepatitis and a common respiratory virus, seemed fated to join thousands of other failed medications after proving useless against those diseases. The drug was consigned to the pharmaceutical scrap heap, all but forgotten by the scientists who once championed it. But on Friday, the Food and Drug…

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Blue Bell Pleads Guilty in 2015 Ice Cream Listeria Outbreak

The former chief executive of Blue Bell Creameries was charged with conspiracy in connection with his repeated efforts to cover up what became a deadly outbreak of listeria in some of the company’s products in 2015, federal prosecutors said on Friday. In addition, the company pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of distributing adulterated ice…

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Your Chicken Is No Longer Pink. That Doesn’t Mean It’s Safe to Eat.

Chicken is America’s most popular meat. But undercooked chicken, when contaminated, is also a leading source of food-borne illness. So how do you avoid giving yourself and your isolation-mates food poisoning? Many people, including Solveig Langsrud, a scientist at the Norwegian Institute of Food, Fisheries and Aquaculture Research, assume chicken follows a simple rule-of-thumb: Pink…

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Is It Safe to Come Out of Lockdown? Check the Sewer

The world is eager to come out of lockdown. But if countries simply return to business as usual, new outbreaks of Covid-19 will follow. The only solution that public health experts see is to keep careful track of the coronavirus and clamp down on new flare-ups. The trouble is that the most obvious way to…

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Kitchen Confidential: Three Culinary Memoirs

Image EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL A Memoir With Recipes By Phyllis Grant 256 pp. Farrar, Straus & Giroux. $25. Culinary memoirs tend to follow templates — the life-altering bite; the singed forearms at the hands of a tyrannical kitchen overlord — so to find one with a truly distinct perspective is thrilling. In epigrammatic, nearly…

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Drive-Throughs Are Now a Lifeline for Fast-Food Chains

For decades, the fast-food drive-through has been a greasy symbol of Americana, a roadside ritual for millions of travelers with a hankering for burgers and fries. Now, the drive-through, with its brightly-colored signage and ketchup-stained paper bags, has taken on a new importance in the age of social distancing. Over the last month and a…

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The Coronavirus Still Is a Global Health Emergency, W.H.O. Warns

The World Health Organization extended its declaration of a global health emergency on Friday amid increasing criticism from the Trump Administration about its handling of the coronavirus pandemic. The move comes exactly three months after the organization’s original decision to announce a “public health emergency of international concern” on Jan. 30. At the time, only…

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How to Be a Good Neighbor Now

We walk the dogs across the meadow in the rain. We don’t talk much. We say the same things over and over, and yet somehow there’s comfort in the repetition. Yesterday someone wrote on the town listserv that certain dog owners had been spotted in the meadow less than six feet away from each other.…

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The Best Part of the Campaign Trail (the Food!) Comes Home

It started on my birthday. I received, on the same blessed day in April, a package of ribs from the Memphis restaurant Central BBQ, courtesy of my brother and sister-in-law, and a box of Eastern North Carolina barbecue and hush puppies from Kings BBQ Restaurant, by way of my parents. That’s when I figured out…

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