Sing Arbeit macht frei (Work liberates) in Auschwitz II Birkenau concentration camp located in the west of Krakow, Poland. Picture: ISTOCK
Sing Arbeit macht frei (Work liberates) in Auschwitz II Birkenau concentration camp located in the west of Krakow, Poland. Picture: ISTOCK

1. Lower your standards

US lobbyists for agriculture and pharmaceutical firms are threatening not to back a post-Brexit US-UK trade deal unless Britain drops EU standards to match those of the US. They want the sale of growth hormone-fed beef, which is banned in the UK and EU, to be allowed in the UK, as well as lower agricultural tariffs. Also on lobbyists’ wishlists submitted to the Office of the US Trade Representative are changes to the NHS drugs approval process to allow the UK to buy a wider range of US drugs.

2. Holocaust ignorance

One in five young people in Canada either hasn’t heard of the Holocaust or isn’t sure what it is, according to a survey released ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27. Six-million Jews in Europe were systematically murdered in the Holocaust between 1941 and the end of World War 2 in 1945. A new British survey found 67% of respondents either did not know how many Jews were murdered or thought the number was far lower. Among Canadians, 23% believe substantially fewer Jews were killed. However, 85% said it was crucial to keep teaching about the Holocaust so it doesn’t happen again.

3. Alzheimer’s breakthrough?

Scientists have found more evidence of a link between bacteria in a common type of gum disease and people with dementia. Their study, published in the journal Science Advances, found bacteria associated with chronic gum disease, Porphyromonas gingivalis, in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s. Tests on mice confirmed the bacteria could travel from the mouth to the brain and showed the toxic protein they secrete destroyed neurons. The team has developed a new drug it hopes could form the basis of a human treatment. A clinical trial is planned for later this year.