Oscar Pistorius Murder Trial Continues
PRETORIA, South Africa – Olympic and Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius took the stand in his own defense Monday as his murder trial resumed in South African following a week-long break.
An emotional Pistorius began his testimony with an apology to the family of Reeva Steenkamp, the girlfriend the double-amputee runner fatally shot in his home on Valentine's Day 2013.
"There hasn't been a moment since this tragedy happened that I haven't thought about your family," Pistorius said, adding that he had wanted to protect Steenkamp. Pistorius also said he is taking anti-depressant medicine and that he has sometimes woken up in terror, suffering from panic attacks.
In its opening arguments, the defense called a pathologist in an effort to cast doubt on the prosecution's assertion that Steenkamp ate no more than two hours before the double-amputee runner killed her.
The testimony by Prof. Jan Botha was critical to the defense because Pistorius has claimed the couple was in his bedroom by 10 p.m. on Feb. 13, 2013, and any indication that they were awake much later could undermine the Olympian's account of the sequence of events. Pistorius fatally shot Steenkamp after 3 a.m. the next morning, saying he mistook her for an intruder in his home. The prosecution has argued that he intentionally killed her after an argument.
Pfizer Breast Cancer Drug
An experimental drug has shown encouraging results in treating advanced breast cancer in an early clinical trial, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer reported Sunday.
Pfizer, the world's second largest drugmaker, said the drug prevented breast cancer from worsening for 20.2 months in a trial involving 165 patients. Current medications do so for 10.2 months. The drug, known as palbociclib, is among a new class of cancer drugs that target specific proteins to block tumors.
The outcome wasn't as positive as some initial results reported earlier in the tests, said University of Michigan business professor Erik Gordon, who studies the biomedical industry but isn't affiliated with the trial.
But, he added, "there's been a lot of hope surrounding this class of cancer drugs, and this keeps that hope alive."
Wall Street analysts have been closely watching the tests given the potential market for palbociclib. Breast cancer is the most common cancer to strike women.
"It's good news, but some investors are disappointed, because they expected more," Gordon said. In earlier results, the drug had kept the cancer from worsening for 18 additional months, rather than 10.