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WASHINGTON — Former first lady Nancy Reagan was teased about her belief in astrology, but she also had faith in science.

Reagan, who died Sunday at age 94, had a greater impact on public health than most Americans might recall.


Despite opposition from many Republican Party leaders, Reagan pushed for stem-cell research, established an Alzheimer’s research institute, and, like first lady Betty Ford before her, talked publicly about her breast cancer treatment when the subject was still considered taboo in polite society.

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