News An image of a mouse embryo with beating heart generated totally from STAP cells

Experts say the ground-breaking discovery could pave way for routine use of stem cells in medicine

Prisons chief Nick Hardwick warns over resources

Prisoners are spending too much time stuck in their cells watching daytime television because of a lack of resources, the Chief Inspector of Prisons has said.

Simon Timson is the new director of performance for UK Sport

Cricket guru Simon Timson given Rio role

Simon Timson, one of the men behind England's rise to No 1 in cricket's Test rankings, has been given the task of overseeing Britain's attempt to improve on their London medal haul at the Rio Olympics.

Employees of Sanofi protest against job cuts

Exclusive: MS drug 'rebranded' – at up to 20 times the price

Pharmaceutical giant withdraws existing treatment to boost profits

Federal and state health officials are scrambling to contact patients who might be affected by the widening outbreak

13,000 patients may have been exposed to fungus

As many as 13,000 patients across the US had steroid injections that may have been contaminated by a fungus linked to a rare form of meningitis that has killed eight people, federal officials said yesterday.

AstraZeneca new boss's debut buy

AstraZeneca's new boss yesterday agreed his first major deal at the pharmaceuticals giant, spending up to $272m (£169m) on the rights to an experimental kidney drug. This month, on his first day in the job, Pascal Soriot suspended Astra's share buybacks for the rest of the year.

Britain's Sir John Gurdon wins Nobel prize in medicine for his pioneering work in cloning and stem cells

The 79-year-old was the first person to clone an animal from a single cell

Medicine implicated in rare meningitis cases went to 23 US states

More than 17,000 vials of an injectable steroid that has been linked to 35 cases of meningitis, five of them fatal, were sent to doctors' offices and clinics in 23 states over the summer, health officials said yesterday.

18,000 websites selling illegal medicines closed down

More than 18,000 websites selling illegal medicines have been shut down during a global crackdown on illicit internet trade in pharmaceuticals.

Damned By Chuck Palahniuk

"Are you there, Satan? It's me, Madison" – so the preppy heroine of Palahniuk's novel kicks off each new chapter, cutely pardoying Judy Blume's Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret.

Inside Obama's war on weed

Does anybody still think criminalising drugs works? Alas, most people do, including Barack Obama. He was a dope user in his younger days, and when asked if he inhaled (Bill Clinton having said he didn't), responded: "I inhaled frequently. That was kind of the point." In America today, seventeen states say cannabis can be distributed for medical purposes. The Daily Beast has a fine report on what that means in practice.

Market Report: Shire gets a boost from legal hopes

The wider market may have been feeling rather poorly yesterday, but Shire was one stock looking somewhat healthier. The drugs manufacturer found itself among the top blue-chip risers amid optimistic comments over its upcoming legal battles.

Leading article: Drugs companies, heal thyselves

Research suggesting that the vast majority of the new drugs launched by pharmaceutical companies are only tweaked versions of old ones, with little – if any – improvement in therapeutic effect, cannot but be alarming. The good news, however, is that there is a solution, or at least the start of one, if regulators are prepared to be brave.

AstraZeneca forced to swallow more dire sales

AstraZeneca, the struggling drug maker which is without a permanent boss after its chief executive quit under shareholder pressure, yesterday had another ailment to deal with as second-quarter sales fell by a fifth.

More trouble for leaderless AstraZeneca as sales dive

Pre-tax profit was down by 36 per cent at £3.8bn in the first half of 2012

GlaxoSmithKline return to sales growth is held back by austerity-led price pressure

Sharp declines in drug revenues in Europe and the US as austerity-struck governments demand price cuts saw Britain's biggest pharmaceuticals group, GlaxoSmithKline, yesterday warn of flat sales this year.

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Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
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Elton John and David Furnish will marry on 21 December 2014
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick