August 15, 2014

Bioengineers are working on a new way for women to protect themselves from HIV, using electrically spun fabric and microbicides.

Close to 84 percent of women diagnosed with HIV are infected via heterosexual sex, NPR reports. Right now, the only contraception that works and is controlled by the woman is a female condom, which can be difficult to use and not too easy to find. Knowing this, Cameron Ball and Kim Woodrow of the University of Washington in Seattle decided to try something new.

Researchers have long been trying to perfect creams using microbicides, or anti-HIV drugs. They can be messy and absorb very slowly, meaning they need to be used at least 20 minutes before intercourse. But a new fabric that is electrically spun could deliver high concentrations of microbicides to vaginal tissue faster, in just 6 minutes.

The fabric is made from a polymer using nanotechnology, and has been approved by the FDA. It’s also flexible and could go into a tampon applicator — but the designers want to hear from their customer base on how they would like to use it. "It's a matter of giving women enough choices and options of what products are available and how they are used," Ball tells NPR. "So you meet the needs of as many women as possible."

The fabric will soon be tested using rabbits and monkeys, and then human testing will start. Ball expects to see the product ready for mass use in 10 years. Catherine Garcia

2:35 a.m. ET

Rep. Dana Rohrbacher (R-Calif.) believes the whole Russian election-meddling story is a farce, recently met with WikiLeaks' Julian Assange in London then reportedly tried to trade an Assange pardon for purported evidence exculpating Russia, and is so notably pro-Russia that his House GOP colleagues "joked" last year that he was probably on the take from Russian President Vladimir Putin. So, "who the hell is Dana Rohrabacher?" Seth Meyers asked on Wednesday's Late Night.

In his "check-in" on Rohrbacher, Meyers explained how "Putin's favorite congressman" came to admire the Russians, how he met and cavorted with Putin in the early '90s, and why Rohrbacher seems to turn up at meetings with many of the same Kremlin-linked figures tied to the Trump-Russia investigation. Oh, and he admitted to smoking marijuana. "So he's a weed-loving, pro-Russia guitar player," Meyers said. "He's basically the guy who ruined every party I went to in college." For the fuller picture, watch below. Peter Weber

1:53 a.m. ET

Senate Republicans plan to vote next week on the Graham-Cassidy health-care bill, despite opposition from every major medical and patient health association, the insurance trade group AHIP, Blue Cross Blue Shield, every Democrat, Jimmy Kimmel, President Trump's ally Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) and a handful of other Republican governors, and no Congressional Budget Office analysis of its affects on consumers and coverage. The legislation is believed to have the support of at least 48 Republican senators, with Sens. Susan Collins (Maine) and Rand Paul (Ky.) voicing opposition — though Paul also opposed earlier versions of similar bills and voted for them anyway — and Sens. John McCain (Ariz.) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) noncommittal. It needs 50 votes to pass. With so much at stake, CNN dabbled in a little bit of body-language analysis from video of the Senate floor on Wednesday evening. You can watch below. Peter Weber

1:13 a.m. ET
Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images

When President Trump announced that he would withdraw the U.S. from the Paris global climate agreement, there were only two other countries who had not signed on to the pact, designed to slow or reverse the effects of climate change: Syria and Nicaragua. On Wednesday, Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega said his country will sign the agreement "soon." Nicaragua did not sign in 2015 on the grounds that it did not require deep enough emission cuts from wealthy nations, but Ortega said on state TV Wednesday that the country has decided to sign the accord now out of solidarity with "this large amount of countries that are the first victims, that are already victims, and that are going to continue suffering the affect of these disasters," namely countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Peter Weber

12:36 a.m. ET

Jimmy Kimmel read Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) the riot act on Tuesday's Jimmy Kimmel Live, explaining how Cassidy lied to him when he promised to support a bill that protects people with pre-existing conditions. On Wednesday, Cassidy sadly shook his head and said Kimmel just doesn't understand the bill, prompting a Politico analysis with the headline: "Kimmel, not Cassidy, is right on health care, analysts say." Kimmel tweeted that story out, but did not mention it Wednesday night's show. He did, however, push back against some high-profile personalities who dismissed his critique of the Graham-Cassidy bill as uninformed.

Cassidy "either doesn't understand his own bill or he lied to me, it's as simple as that," Kimmel said, giving a short but pretty cogent rundown of some problems with the legislation. On CNN, Cassidy "played the all-comedians-are-dummies card," Kimmel said, but "could it be, Sen. Cassidy, that the problem is that I do understand and you got caught with your GOPenis out?"

"I don't want to turn this into a Kanye-and-Taylor Swift type situation," he said, but Cassidy came on his show, promised he would oppose any bill that didn't meet his "Jimmy Kimmel Test," then sponsored what is, "by many accounts, the worst health-care bill yet," a point Kimmel illustrated by showing an MLB pitch to the nuts. He got a little personal with Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade, Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.), and — in a backhanded-complimentary way — Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who does bear some resemblance to Kimmel's Grandma Jane.

President Trump is all-in on the bill, but Kimmel said Trump only cares about defeating ObamaCare. "Can you imagine Donald Trump actually sitting down to read a health-care bill?" he asked. "It's like trying to imagine a dog doing your taxes — it just doesn't compute, you know? But I don't necessarily blame him. I did more homework this week than all my years of college combined. This health-care bill, it's confusing, especially for people who aren't experts in the field." So he tried to make it easier to understand by imagining himself as a customer at a coffee shop where the GOP Senate was a terrible barista. He ended by noting that while people "liked" his monologue from yesterday, they didn't flood phone lines, so he put up the numbers for five key GOP senators. Watch below. Peter Weber

September 20, 2017

While walking along the water in Laguna Beach, California, Alex Noble stepped on something hard. Thinking it was a rock, he bent over to take a closer look — and discovered it was a camera, caked in sand.

Noble brought it to his girlfriend's brother, who was able to recover 172 pictures from the battered device. The photos were of a wedding, and hoping to find the couple, they uploaded the pictures to Facebook. Soon, they heard good news from a friend of a friend: the couple in the pictures were newlyweds Heather and Kole, high school sweethearts who married in Laguna Beach two months earlier.

After their ceremony, Heather, Kole, and their guests placed all of their belongings on a sea wall. A big wave came in and pulled everything into the sea; Heather and Kole jumped into the ocean, trying to get the camera with their wedding pictures, but couldn't find it. Heather and Kole were shocked when they heard the camera had been found, and thankful. "There are not enough words to say how grateful we are," Heather told Inside Edition. Catherine Garcia

September 20, 2017
Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Football star turned actor Bernie Casey died Tuesday in Los Angeles, following a brief illness, his representative told The Hollywood Reporter Wednesday. He was 78.

Known for roles in Boxcar Bertha, Never Say Never Again, Revenge of the Nerds, and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, Casey was also a poet, writer, director, and painter whose work appeared in art galleries around the world. Born in 1939 in West Virginia, Casey was raised in Ohio and went to Bowling Green on a football scholarship; later in life, he returned to the school and earned a master's in fine arts. He excelled on the football team, and went on to spend nearly 10 seasons with the NFL, starting with the San Francisco 49ers, then unexpectedly retiring as a member of the L.A. Rams while he was still in his prime. Casey said he retired in order to devote more time to acting, painting, and poetry.

In addition to his film roles, Casey also appeared in several television programs and made-for-TV movies. A champion of the arts, he received an honorary doctorate from the Savannah College of Art and Design, where he served as chairman of the board for many years, and fans of his painting included Maya Angelou. In 2003, the famed poet said Casey "has the heart and the art to put his insight on canvas, and I am heartened by his action. For then I can comprehend his vision and some of my own. His art makes my road less rocky, and my path less crooked." Catherine Garcia

September 20, 2017

An Oklahoma City police officer shot and killed a deaf man carrying a metal pipe on Tuesday night, despite neighbors screaming that he couldn't hear commands to drop the pipe.

Police Capt. Bo Mathews said Magdiel Sanchez, 35, was Tasered and then shot after he approached officers while holding the pipe; a neighbor told The Associated Press that Sanchez would take the pipe with him while going on walks at night to scare away stray dogs. Officers were at Sanchez's home investigating a hit-and-run that allegedly involved his father. Sanchez was not in the vehicle when the hit-and-run took place, Mathews said, and he had no criminal record.

The 2-foot-long pipe was "wrapped in some type of material" and had a leather loop at the end, Mathews said. Lt. Matthew Lindsey considered the pipe a weapon, and called for backup, Matthews said. After Sgt. Chris Barnes arrived, they both ordered Sanchez to drop the pipe and get to the ground, but Sanchez, not hearing their commands, kept walking forward. Neighbors screamed that Sanchez was deaf and yelled "He can't hear you," Mathews said, but he wasn't sure if officers heard them. "When you have a weapon out, you can get what they call tunnel vision," Mathews said. "Or you can lock into just the person who has the weapon, the threat against you."

Barnes shot Sanchez when he was 15 feet away, and he was pronounced dead at the scene. Sanchez's father, whose name has not been released, confirmed to police that his son was deaf. The case is being investigated as a homicide, and Barnes has been placed on paid administrative leave, Mathews said. The officers were not wearing body cameras during the incident. Catherine Garcia

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