When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

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SARS-Like Virus Found In Jordan, Hunt Is On For Other Cases

Nov 30, 2012
Originally published on December 1, 2012 9:46 am

The World Health Organization says a new coronavirus has killed two people in Jordan — the third country where the novel microbe has been traced.

That brings lab-confirmed cases to nine, with five fatalities.

The latest cases are actually the oldest known so far. They push the SARS-like virus's timeline three months back from the first reported case involving a 60-year-old man who died in Jedda, Saudi Arabia, last June.

Jordan's cases were found through new testing of blood and tissue samples from patients in a cluster of pneumonias of unknown origin that occurred last April at a hospital in Zarqa, near Jordan's capital of Amman.

Until now known cases have occurred further south in Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

The Jordan cases are also significant because they're part of an 11-person cluster of pneumonia that involved seven nurses and a doctor.

It's unclear whether either of the two new SARS-like cases involved health care workers, or whether the new coronavirus has been ruled out yet as the cause of the other pneumonias in that outbreak.

But whenever disease-trackers see clusters of infection involving caregivers, that raises their suspicion that a microbe has spread from person to person — most likely from patient to caregiver.

It doesn't have to mean that. Health care workers and patients could have acquired the infection from a shared environmental source.

But if the new virus is able to spread from person to person, even if inefficiently, that raises the possibility it can become more mobile, moving through human populations.

"Even if the cases in Jordan were human-to-human spread — and we don't know that — it wasn't sustained," WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl told the Canadian Press.

The possibility of person-to-person spread is also suggested by a cluster of coronavirus pneumonias reported on November 23 involving members of the same household in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Four men in that family fell ill with respiratory symptoms and two tested positive for the new coronavirus. The two others, one of whom died, are considered probable cases.

No one thinks that the new coronavirus is as big a threat as its notorious cousin, the one that precipitated the SARS epidemic in 2003 that quickly spread around the world and killed 916 people.

For one thing, health officials haven't found any cases of the new coronavirus among the millions of pilgrims who attended this fall's annual Hajj in Mecca, near the place where the Saudi man died in June.

On the other hand, nobody knows how big a problem the Arabian coronavirus may be — or even whether it is likely to be restricted to Arabia.

The WHO is urging medical and public health workers around the world to investigate clusters of unexplained pneumonia for a possible link to the new virus. It isn't calling for individual cases to be tested.

The agency "is convinced that whatever the source of the virus is, it is probably not unique to those countries," science journalist Helen Branswell writes in Scientific American.

Genetic testing suggests that the new virus is most closely related to one in bats. But that doesn't necessarily mean all human cases had direct contact with bats. There may be an intermediate carrier, and victims might have eaten food contaminated with dust, urine or feces from an infected animal.

At this point, it appears that researchers will find more human cases of the new virus. Each case, or cluster of cases, increases the chance that the source and mode of transmission will be found.

That effort will be accelerated by the development of a blood test for the virus, which Branswell reports may come in the next month or so. Right now diagnosis relies on a gene-amplification test, called PCR, which is cumbersome and sometimes hard to interpret. And it can't tell if someone had been exposed to the virus in the past but recovered.

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