Rupert Goodwins' Diary

Wednesday 6/6/2001Sometimes, the Web justifies itself in the sweetest ways. I was investigating genetic medicine online, when I came across the following excerpt comes from a biotechnology magazine.

Wednesday
6/6/2001 Sometimes, the Web justifies itself in the sweetest ways. I was investigating genetic medicine online, when I came across the following excerpt comes from a biotechnology magazine. It's about the rare but troublesome problem of narcolepsy, where people fall asleep at random (or Microsoft Press Conference Syndrome, to give it its full scientific name). "A short time later, researchers at the Stanford Center for Narcolepsy started seeing dogs with narcolepsy. Initially, they reviewed only sporadic cases, such as occur in poodles and dachshunds. But, after acquiring a number of narcoleptic dogs, they tried to breed them; a difficult task considering that excitation often brings about cataplectic attacks. Still, the sleep specialists persevered and after a few years established a colony of hundreds of narcoleptic dogs, including Prancer, a narcoleptic Doberman who recently appeared on the cover of the journal Cell." I just loved this -- first, the idea of trying to breed narcoleptic dogs who fall over as soon as they get excited, and second of calling a dog liable to spend most of its time as a loose poodle on the floor, 'Prancer'. Those daffy scientists...