News Daily: Prostate cancer warning and US school shooting

By Justin Parkinson
BBC News


Hello. Here's your morning briefing:

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Prostate cancer deaths overtake those from breast cancer

The UK's population is ageing, and one of the outcomes of this is that more men are developing prostate cancer. In fact the number of deaths it causes among men has overtaken the number of deaths caused among women by breast cancer. And the latest available figures, from 2015, show that, overall, it killed 11,819 people - almost 400 more than breast cancer. However, the mortality rates for both diseases have fallen.

But Angela Culhane, chief executive of the charity Prostate Cancer UK, says research on prostate cancer gets half the funding of that for breast cancer. At present, there's no single, reliable test for it - the PSA test, biopsies and physical examinations are all used. Gary Pettit, 43, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer five years ago, says it's still a "taboo subject".

The biggest cancer killers in the UK remain lung and bowel cancer, with prostate now in third place. Here's the NHS's advice on whether people should take a PSA test for prostate cancer.

Two shot after girl, 12, opens fire at Los Angeles school

A 12-year-old girl is in custody in Los Angeles after opening fire on classmates at her middle school. Two teenage students were shot - one, who was hit in the head, is described as "critical but stable". Salvador Castro Middle School, in the Westlake District, was quickly evacuated after gunfire broke out. An 11-year-old boy, a 12-year-old girl and a 30-year-old woman reportedly sustained minor injuries, but were not shot. Here's a look at America's gun culture in 10 charts.

Apple's profits up, but iPhone sales down

Apple is the world's biggest company and its profits are up. The latest quarterly figures show it made $20bn (£14bn), driven by strong growth in Japan and Europe. But it sold fewer iPhones during the last three months of 2017 than it had during the equivalent period in 2016 - despite the successful launch of the more expensive iPhone X. "With the average selling price going up by around $100 (£70), to $796 (558), it means Apple may be selling fewer iPhones," says BBC technology reporter Dave Lee, "but it is making more from each one."

May returns from China to Brexit tensions

Theresa May's trade trip to China is over and the prime minister says deals reached will bring jobs to the UK. But questions over Brexit are dominating the political agenda once more. Mrs May said of talks in Brussels: "We will be out there ensuring the deal we get delivers on what the British people want." But BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg, who is travelling with Mrs May, writes that the PM's comments "will do little to dispel the tension at home, where there are growing calls for her to be more specific about her ambition".

How to control a machine using your mind

By Emma Woollacott, technology of business reporter

Bill Kochevar's life was changed, seemingly irrevocably, when he was paralysed from the shoulders down following a cycling accident nearly a decade ago. But last year he was fitted with a brain-computer interface that enabled him to move his arm and hand for the first time in eight years. Sensors were implanted in his brain, then over a four-month period Mr Kochevar trained the system by thinking about specific movements, such as turning his wrist or gripping something. The sensors effectively learned which bits of the brain fired up and in what sequence for each movement. Then, when 36 muscle-stimulating electrodes were implanted into his arm and hand, he was able to control its movements simply by thinking about what he wanted to do. Within weeks, he could feed himself again.

What the papers say

Image source, Metro, Daily Telegraph

There's much coverage of the murder conviction of Darren Osborne, who drove into a crowd of Muslims near a mosque in Finsbury Park, north London, last year. Metro quotes the police's view of Osborne as "devious, vile and hate-filled", while the i reports that he became "radicalised in just a few weeks". Elsewhere, the Daily Telegraph says the NHS was once charged £1,579 for a single pot of moisturising cream.

Daily digest

NHS funding Negligence payouts "harming services"

Cuba Son of ex-leader Fidel Castro has taken his own life, state media says

Natalie Wood death Husband Robert Wagner a "person of interest", say police

Seven days quiz Who are Formula 1 removing from the track this season?

If you see one thing today

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If you listen to one thing today

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If you read one thing today

Image source, Clare Kines


Today The House of Commons will debate Conservative MP Tim Loughton's private member's bill to end the ban on opposite-sex civil partnerships.

12:20 It's Groundhog Day. Spectators gather at Gobbler's Knob in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, as Phil the groundhog makes his prediction on how long winter will last.

On this day

1943 The Soviet Union announces the final defeat of the German 6th Army at Stalingrad, in southern Russia, following five months of fighting.

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