ERA Chemistry Network; Dow Chemical Company; Science Advisory Council; Teapot Dome; SEAFOODplus; Morphochem.

  • A new European chemistry initiative called the ERA Chemistry Network has been granted EU funding. It marks the first step towards building the chemical science section of a possible future European research council. Research organisations in The Netherlands, Germany and France are founding members of the network, which will run from a virtual office. The EU has awarded  €1.4m (?0.95m) for network costs.

  • Dow Chemical Company has signed a four-year, $5.7m (?3m) collaborative research agreement with the US National Institutes of Health to apply new technology to developing vaccines. Dow will subcontract part of the work to the Fraunhofer Center for Molecular Biotechnology in Newark, Delaware, US.

  • A new UK body has been set up to give expert and independent advice on science policy and strategy to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. The Science Advisory Council will be headed by Roy Anderson, head of infectious disease epidemiology at Imperial College London.

  • In an effort to slow down global warming, the US Department of Energy is planning to bury large amounts of liquid carbon dioxide in depleted oil reservoirs. The Teapot Dome project is based in Wyoming and storage is scheduled to start by 2006 and to last for 7-10 years. The reservoirs should hold at least 1.6m t of CO2 pa .

  • Given the recent furore over Scottish farmed salmon, it is interesting to note that the largest seafood research project ever sponsored by the EU has been launched in Brussels. With a budget of €26m ( ca ?17.6m). the project, called SEAFOODplus, involves 70 partners from 17 countries.

  • Morphochem, a German pharma company, has entered into a research collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim, a German pharmaceutical and animal health company. Morphochem will discover and develop small molecule drugs with activity against novel human targets.