Newsletter: Essential California: Mosquitoes take a bite out of malaria

Good morning. It’s Nov. 28, 2015, and here’s what’s going on in California.


Officials in Poland have rejected an effort by L.A. prosecutors to send fugitive director Roman Polanski back to California to face sexual assault charges from the 1970s. With the decision, it’s looking increasingly likely that Polanski, 82, will stay in Europe and that the so-called case that never ends might fade away. Los Angeles Times

American colleges and universities are increasingly channeling students' foodie passions into classrooms, labs and campus gardens. An estimated 30 U.S. colleges and universities have formal interdisciplinary food studies programs that offer degrees or minors. New ones opened this fall at UC Berkeley. Los Angeles Times

Some California researchers have developed a highly unusual malaria fighter: They’ve altered the DNA in mosquitoes so they can fight and kill the parasites that cause malaria inside their own bodies. That way, the insects can’t transmit the deadly parasites to humans. Los Angeles Times

The University of California plans to accept 5,000 extra new students. That is sparking hopes for high school seniors across the state that they might get one of those coveted spots. Los Angeles Times

The new way to gain that extra edge in the Silicon Valley gold rush? According to Rolling Stone, it involves taking “micro-doses” of psychedelics such as LSD. Rolling Stone


1. The official Disneyland photographer offers a different view of the theme park. Orange County Register

2. How the CHP officer ended a pursuit of a donkey in the Malibu Hills. LAist

3. El Niño should bring needed rain to California, but it could be an epic disaster elsewhere in the world. Los Angeles Times

4. The fact and fiction of the man said to have saved San Diego from a disastrous drought. San Diego Union-Tribune

5. Fewer law school students in California are taking the bar exam. Some see this as a symptom of a larger problem. Los Angeles Times


Those with no one have a label in the literature of medical ethics: "The unbefriended." But "Miss Kay," 4 feet 10 and shy of 100 pounds, with a big heart and a foul mouth, was anything but. Los Angeles Times

For more than 100 years, celebrations have been held on both sides of the border each fall in honor of the Mexican city of Ocotlan. But today a shadow hangs over the city, and the people in Southern California who love it. Los Angeles Times

Persian rug sellers have found their carpets caught up in a clash of diplomats, geopolitics and nuclear brinkmanship between the United States and Iran. But the historic nuclear accords could bring big changes to the Persian rug business. Los Angeles Times

Falling from the upper middle class to the lower middle class can happen with breathtaking speed. Los Angeles Times

Looking Ahead

Sunday: The 84th annual Hollywood Christmas Parade along Hollywood  Boulevard.

Monday: Funeral scheduled for slain Downey police Officer Ricardo Galvez.

Monday: A new desalination plant dedicated on Catalina Island.

Wednesday: Media get tour of the new Petersen Auto Museum.

Saturday: Gov. Jerry Brown and L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti set to attend the UN conference on climate change.

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments, complaints and ideas to Alice Walton or Shelby Grad.

Get our Essential California newsletter