Portland’s gay mayor sworn in
The Advocate reports gay mayor Sam Adams was finally sworn in at 12:01 a. m. on New Year’s Day, even though he was elected to replace outgoing mayor Tom Potter back in May.
About 40 people were there to witness the ceremony, including his partner, Peter Zuckerman.
Though Adams’ sexuality never became a factor in the race, before it officially began, he was the subject of a smear campaign from a would-be rival, gay real-estate developer Bob Ball, who unsuccessfully attempted to link Adams to an encounter with an underage intern.
“This is a testament to how fair-minded Portlanders are that it wasn’t an issue,” Adams said.
Portland is now the largest city in the United States with an openly gay mayor.
FDA approves new HIV test
365gay.com reports federal regulators have approved a new HIV test that screens for two less common forms of the virus.
The Food and Drug Administration said the TaqScreen MPX test is the first to simultaneously detect HIV-2 and HIV-1 Group O strains. Both types of HIV are mainly found among patients in Africa, but the FDA said they have recently been detected in the U.S.
The MPX test, made by a division of Swiss drug maker Roche, also screens for the most common forms of HIV and hepatitis.
“Blood-donor testing laboratories will be able to use nucleic-acid technology to screen for additional HIV strains, further assuring that donated blood and tissue are free from infection,” said FDA division chief Jesse Goodman in a statement.
Students launch UT’s first gay fraternity
The Austin American-Statesman reports a group of students have started the first gay and bisexual fraternity chapter at University of Texas, one of only two in the state.
Russell van Kraayenburg, a senior majoring in radio, television and film, helped launch the fraternity, Delta Lambda Phi, after researching the national organization online and talking about it with his two closest friends. The three worked over the summer to become a “colony” of Delta Lambda Phi, the nation’s largest and oldest fraternity organization for gay and bisexual men.
They will become an official fraternity chapter after initiating three pledge classes. They inducted their first class in November.