DYSPEPSIA GENERATION

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Archive for the 'News You Can Use.' Category

One Drug to Shrink All Tumors

26th March 2014

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When mice with human tumors received doses of anti-CD47, which sets the immune system against tumor cells, the cancers shrank and disappeared.

A single drug can shrink or cure human breast, ovary, colon, bladder, brain, liver, and prostate tumors that have been transplanted into mice, researchers have found. The treatment, an antibody that blocks a “do not eat” signal normally displayed on tumor cells, coaxes the immune system to destroy the cancer cells.

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Dem. Senate Candidate Apologizes for Insulting Chuck Grassley as ‘Farmer From Iowa’ Without Law Degree

26th March 2014

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There’s a first — not that he insulted his Republican opponent, but that he actually apologized, behavior for which Democrats are not famous.

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Venice Votes to Secede From Italy

25th March 2014

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With an 89 percent majority, the voters of Venice have elected to leave Italy. In practice, what this really means is that the Venetians plan to no longer send tax revenues to Rome. Apparently, the Venetians, who inhabit the historical capital of one of humanity’s richest and most successful republics, wish to no longer subsidize the famously-corrupt bureaucrats in Rome. Southern Italy has long been regarded by the richer, cleaner, and more efficient North as a drain on their resources. According to the Daily Mail, at least, there is talk of extending the secession movement to other areas of the North as well.

Naturally, the large nation-states of Europe hate and fear developments like this. But for anyone who can remember history, there’s little “tradition” here that the nation-states can lay claim to. Italy is a made-up country, much like Germany, hammered together in the 19th century by powerful authoritarian politicians like Otto von Bismarck who of course hated classical liberalism and capitalism with every fiber of his being.

It will be interesting to see what Rome does. Will they send an army to take their tax money? Perhaps they’ll just wage some sort of campaign of hate against the Venetians, appealing to Italian patriotism. Given that Obama recently declared all secession movements illegitimate (except those supported by the US Government, of course) it’s unknown how much support Venice can expect from the international community.

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Get Ready to 3D Print Carbon Nanotube-Reinforced Objects

25th March 2014

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Carbon nanotubes are made of rolled-up, atom-thick sheets of carbon (also known as graphene) and can be used as an additive to boost an object’s strength. They are also conductive, which means they could be used to print items that can conduct electricity. Arevo is also offering carbon fiber-reinforced filament, ultra-tough plastic PEEK and other polymers.

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Researchers Create Diamond “Wires” That Could Power Future Computers

25th March 2014

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Physicists at Ohio State University have successfully sent an electron “down” a wire made of diamond, a first that could mean new methods of transferring data inside computer chips. As you can imagine, these aren’t wires in a traditional sense in that they conduct electricity. Instead, the physicists were able to pass a magnetic spin effect down the wire “like a row of sports spectators doing ‘the wave.’” Spin has long been seen as the solution to passing data via quantum computers and the researchers found that diamond transmitted the signals better than metal.

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How to Build a Maze

25th March 2014

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Assuming, of course, that’s what you want to do.

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3D-Printed Splint Used to Help a Baby Breathe Again

23rd March 2014

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The baby was born with a condition known as tracheomalacia that left him with a trachea susceptible to collapsing and cutting off his air supply. University of Michigan doctor Glenn Green used a 3D-printed “splint” to support the trachea in an emergency procedure, and so far the results have been extremely promising.

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New Supergel Has Strange Biological Properties

22nd March 2014

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Using synthetic molecules, scientists have created a gel that behaves similarly to the proteins that form a cell’s internal, shape-controlling scaffold. Eventually, the gel might be able to help heal wounds, build artificial cells, and deliver drugs to targeted areas.

Clear and colorless, the gel becomes stiffer as it’s pulled or pressed on, almost as a rubber band becomes stiffer when stretched. But unlike that rubber band, the gel’s stiffness increases disproportionately with stretching — it rapidly becomes more and more rigid. This super-stiffening behavior mimics the stress response of cytoskeletal proteins, which form a support network inside the cell that helps with locomotion and organizing internal structures.

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USEFUL STUFF SATURDAY

22nd March 2014

Pop-Up House.

Horizontal Shoe Rack.

Microfactory.

Robot Litterbox. We have one of these. They are incredibly convenient.

Bacon Stuff.

The Container Guide.

Cefaly Electric Headband.

Feddz E-Bike.

Hairpin Lockpicking.

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Silver Nanowire-Studded Currency Would Be Almost Impossible to Counterfeit

21st March 2014

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South Korean researchers have discovered a way to make items like credit cards and bills nearly impossible to replicate: Attach a small tag sprinkled with carbon nanotubes that acts as a totally unique fingerprint.

“Compared to other anti-counterfeit methods, the fingerprints are cheap and simple to produce, they are extremely difficult to replicate and can be authenticated very straightforwardly,” lead author Hyotcherl Ihee said in a release. His team, which is composed of scientists from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology and Institute for Basic Science, published their work today in Nanotechnology.

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Datsun Begins Sales of $5,000 Car in India

21st March 2014

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Its initial effort is called the Go, the name a tribute to the first car built in 1914 by what was then known as DAT, before the company adopted the familiar Datsun name in 1933.

The back-to-basics five-door is powered by a 68 hp three-cylinder engine and costs just 312,000 rupees, or about $5,000 dollars.

I’d buy one.

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Genetic Mugshot Recreates Faces From Nothing But DNA

20th March 2014

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Kayser’s study had looked for genes that affected the relative positions of nine facial “landmarks”, including the middle of each eyeball and the tip of the nose. By contrast, Claes and Shriver superimposed a mesh of more than 7000 points onto the scanned 3D images and recorded the precise location of each point. They also developed a statistical model to consider how genes, sex and racial ancestry affect the position of these points and therefore the overall shape of the face.

Next the researchers tested each of the volunteers for 76 genetic variants in genes that were already known to cause facial abnormalities when mutated. They reasoned that normal variation in genes that can cause such problems might have a subtle effect on the shape of the face. After using their model to control for the effects of sex and ancestry, they found 24 variants in 20 different genes that seemed to be useful predictors of facial shape (PLoS Genetics, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1004224).

I still think we’ve got a long way to go before this is anywhere near reliable, but it’s good that they’re working on it.

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World’s Oldest Smart Ring?

20th March 2014

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This is a ring straight out of China’s Qing Dynasty era. It’s 1.2 centimetres (0.47in.) long, 0.7cm (0.28in.) wide, and happens to have a fully functional abacus on it.

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Top 7 Beer Storage Myths

20th March 2014

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Beer is the third-most widely consumed drink in the world, after water and tea. It’s also the oldest and most popular alcoholic beverage. With that kind of demand, it’s not surprising that everyone has an opinion—opinions that breed myths about the best ways to store, age, refrigerate, and drink this tasty malted beverage. But we’re here to clear that all up. Here are seven beer myths exposed to the light of truth.

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Using Ketchup to lean? 10 Unexpected Natural Cleaners

20th March 2014

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You can build a mainframe from the things you find at home.

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Scrap Dealer’s Bargain Turns Out to Be Faberge Egg Worth Millions

20th March 2014

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A London antique dealer says a gold ornament bought by an American scrap-metal dealer a decade ago has turned out to be a rare Faberge egg worth millions.

Kieran McCarthy of Wartski said Wednesday the egg was purchased at a Midwestern antique fair for about $14,000, and likened the discovery to “being Indiana Jones and finding the Lost Ark.”

The egg, containing a Vacheron Constantin watch, was an 1887 Easter gift from Russian Czar Alexander III to his wife, Empress Maria Feodorovna. The egg was last seen in public in 1902 as part of an exhibition of imperial treasures in St. Petersburg, Russia, according to The Telegraph.

The egg was bought a decade ago, but the buyer only began to suspect its value after searching online in 2012 for Vacheron Constantin, whose name was engraved on the watch inside.

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Brighter Inks, Without Pigment

19th March 2014

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Unlike color that we usually think of, which arises from paints and dyes absorbing certain wavelengths of light and reflecting the remainder, structural color is created when an object’s very nanostructure amplifies a specific wavelength. Cells in the cotinga’s feathers have a series of tiny pores spaced just right so that blues (and not much of anything else) are reflected back to our eyes. Because of this, if the feathers were thoroughly pulverized, the formation of pores and therefore the color would be lost. It also means that the same color could be produced from an entirely different material, if one could recreate the same pattern made by the feathers’ pores.

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UK’s New 12-Sided £1 Said to Be the World’s Most Secure Coin

19th March 2014

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Rather startling to see such concern over the security of a coin these days. (Other than a bitcoin, that is.)

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I Give You the Gift of Time

19th March 2014

Scott Adams is late to the party.

I noticed that professional cleaners cleverly leave a few extra bags on the bottom of the can, below the bag in service. The extras can’t be seen until you need them, and they take up no space.

I borrowed that idea and improved on it. Instead of a few extra bags at the bottom of the can, I put an entire roll of bags down there. It takes up some space, but not nearly enough to be an issue. It adds some weight to the trash can, but not enough to matter.

Gee, I learned to do this when I joined the Navy in 1968.

It’s sad how many wheels people have to re-invent by never having served in the military.

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Giant Fish Tank Bursts Open at Downtown Disney Restaurant

19th March 2014

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Let that be a lesson to us all.

Those things always makes me nervous.

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Scientists Hack Plants With Nanotubes to Supercharge Photosynthesis

18th March 2014

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By incorporating nanomaterials into the energy-producing structures inside plants, scientists have managed to turn an ordinary plant into a super plant (no phone booth required). The team used carbon nanotubes to enhance the photosynthetic ability of chloroplasts and triple a plant’s energy-producing potential.

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High-Tech Fixes for Winter’s Potholes

16th March 2014

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This winter’s brutal snowstorms and chilling temperatures have been especially heinous. To fix the freeways, repair crews around the globe are turning to infrared technology, the latest front in the war on potholes. With this technique, a specialized heavy duty truck lowers a massive infrared panel onto the street; it heats the asphalt around the pothole prior to filling it, ensuring that the new stuff bonds strongly to the surrounding road, preventing repeated repairs.

The technology is in high demand in Europe and Asia, where many say it saves money, uses less labor and equipment and is even green. Infrared repair has one-seventh of the carbon footprint of a traditional repair and permanently fixes potholes. Kasi Infrared, based in Manchester, N.H., has been selling the groundbreaking technology across the world. But state and local governments aren’t catching on fast enough, according to Roger Filion, owner of the company.

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USEFUL STUFF SATURDAY

15th March 2014

Worx Hand Cleaner.

Portabe Door Jammer.

Rainmaker.

Microchip Activated Pet Feeder. I am not making this up.

SnapRays Guidelights. Unfortunately, they’re still at the Kickstarter stage.

QuickKey.

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Bill Gates-Backed SOLAR POO RAYGUN COMMODE Unveiled

14th March 2014

The Reg has the skinny.

Birthed by the Bill and Melinda Gates charitable foundation’s “Reinvent the Toilet Challenge”, the Sol-Char eschews the water-guzzling methods employed in the lavatories favoured by wealthy Westerners. It’s meant for users in hot equatorial areas where water is scarce and so, sadly, is proper sanitation in many cases.

Rather than a watery pan, then, a Sol-Char user deposits his or her offerings into a “reaction chamber”. Then, eight mighty parabolic mirrors focus the rays of the tropical sun down onto a “postage stamp” sized collector where the blazing combined beams are fed into fibre optic cables. These then blast the ravening photons into the chamber, achieving power output of 700 watts – comparable to that of a microwave oven – and heating the offerings up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit.

This zapping treatment swiftly converts the chamber’s smelly, unhealthy contents into a wholesome, well-nigh miraculous poo-based charcoal substance known as “biochar”.

Biochar is splendid stuff, it seems.

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Those Bad Old Foods Are Good for You Now

14th March 2014

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What’s old is new again may be the simplest way to avoid whiplash when deciding what’s good to eat. Some foods that doctors were telling us to avoid just a few years ago are now being heartily embraced. Food science is ever evolving, and attitudes toward processed foods and things like saturated fats are changing.  So go ahead . . . indulge in some foods you once thought were forbidden.

Perhaps the Global Warming alarmists ought to reflect on the fact that the ‘scientific consensus’ is subject to change. (Naw….)

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Man Receives 3D-Printed Skull

14th March 2014

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Well, parts, anyway.

Why yes, we can print you a new body part. A motorcycle accident victim in Wales just had his skull surgically reconstructed by a team that used 3-D technology to print custom implants for him.

We have the technology.

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To Keep Teenagers Alert, Schools Let Them Sleep In

13th March 2014

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About fargin’ time. The fact that teen metabolisms start later then adults or kids is not news. And it’s not as if any of them have an after-school job to go to anymore.

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Flat-Pack Prefabs Could Make City Living Much Cheaper

13th March 2014

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Shantytowns by Ikea. I can see the editorials right now.

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Abeer Seikaly Weaves Shelters for Disaster Relief Using Patterned Fabric

12th March 2014

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These look pretty cool.

 

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Michigan Right to Work: 8,000 Teachers Refusing to Pay Union Dues

11th March 2014

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In October of last year, the Michigan Education Association (MEA) made the claim that “99 percent” of its members remained happily unionized despite the state’s ten-month-old worker freedom law.

It is true that the union has allowed some teachers to leave without opposition as long as they had filed their separation papers last year in August, the one month during the year that the union claims teachers are “allowed” to leave. State law does not sanction this. It is only a union policy.

Regardless that it is not an enforceable law, the union threatened to send teachers who stopped paying dues to collection agencies. Letters were also sent to all union members that they must hand over bank and credit card account numbers so that the union can automatically deduct dues from their accounts.

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Police Could Use Radio Waves to Bring Cars to a Halt

10th March 2014

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The new devices work not by frying a car’s electronics as military electromagnetic pulse weapons do, but by temporarily disabling them. “We want to disturb the car’s electronics so we can stop it, but we don’t want to break the car and leave it stuck on the motorway. And we don’t want to harm the occupants, nearby pedestrians or the police with the beam either,” says Macé. Drivers should not feel the beam – but they might hear something. “This is known as the Frey microwave hearing effect and consists of audible clicks… just a pop in the ear,” she says.

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Supreme Court Sides With Landowner in Rails-to-Trails Case

10th March 2014

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The case is a legacy of America’s westward expansion during the late 19th century, when Congress gave public land to private railroads to spur development of a transcontinental transportation network.

Not every project was successful, however. In 1996, one such railroad in Wyoming gave up and tore out the tracks. The U.S. Forest Service then sought to use the rights of way—which crossed through the Medicine Bow National Forest as well as 31 parcels of private property—for public trails. Read the full WSJ story here.

All but one property owner acquiesced to the trails plan: Marvin Brandt, whose 83-acre property was by far the largest and one associated with his family since his father began working at a local sawmill in 1939.

The government argued that when the railroad ended operations, certain property rights reverted to the government, such as using the right of way for a trail.

Mr. Brandt, represented by the conservative Mountain States Legal Foundation, contended that under the 1875 act providing the right of way, the railroad held only an easement, or limited right to use another’s property for a specific purpose, which expired when that use was abandoned. By a vote of 8-1, the Supreme Court agreed.

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The Flying Phantom

10th March 2014

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This gravity-defying US$40k catamaran rises completely out of the water at speed on a pair of hook-shaped hydrofoils. It looks like the work of David Copperfield, but it’s real, and it’s set to start a revolution in the sailing world.

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Thermal Waste May Be the Next Thing Heating Our Cities

9th March 2014

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Cities are polluting the air, ground, and water around them with heat. Roads and rooftops absorb sunlight, and swapping trees for pavement removes shade. Add all these factors together, and you get something called an “urban heat island,” an air temperature increase of up to 22 degrees Fahrenheit as you get closer to a large city. While the average human is more likely to feel this in the air, these changes also create a well of heat below the ground — and that heat, ironically, can be used as renewable energy even as it changes the ecosystem. Now, thanks to a study from Germany’s Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, we know just where most of it’s coming from, and how it could be better harnessed to replace traditional heaters and air conditioners.

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Inside the Ring: China Military on the Rails

9th March 2014

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China’s high-speed rail lines are becoming a major transport force for the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), allowing the rapid movement of military forces throughout the country, a recent state-run news report revealed.

Since few nations are likely to invade China, the recent discussion in a Communist Party news outlet about military uses of the new rail network is raising questions about the PLA’s future role in quelling domestic unrest.

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USEFUL STUFF SATURDAY

8th March 2014

Screw Grabber.

Berry Breeze.

AuctionZip.

Opternative.

Leatherman Skeletool.

Keybrid.

Convertible Pool Table.

Tear by Hand Mailing Tape.

Modular Wall Unit Kitchen.

K5 Security Robot.

Greenlid.

Pet-safe paint. I am not making this up.

Wiring Complete.

Low tire pressure indicator caps.

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A Powerful New Way to Edit DNA

7th March 2014

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In the late 1980s, scientists at Osaka University in Japan noticed unusual repeated DNA sequences next to a gene they were studying in a common bacterium. They mentioned them in the final paragraph of a paper: “The biological significance of these sequences is not known.”

Now their significance is known, and it has set off a scientific frenzy.

The sequences, it turns out, are part of a sophisticated immune system that bacteria use to fight viruses. And that system, whose very existence was unknown until about seven years ago, may provide scientists with unprecedented power to rewrite the code of life.

In the past year or so, researchers have discovered that the bacterial system can be harnessed to make precise changes to the DNA of humans, as well as other animals and plants.

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Survival Friday: What You Need In Your Car

7th March 2014

Bob Mayer.

Most people spend a considerable amount of time in their car.  Whether it’s a road trip or a daily commute.  Yet, I’ve rarely seen information about the car included in survival books.

Wisdom. Attend.

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Survival Friday: Surviving Snakebites

7th March 2014

Bob Mayer, sometime Special Forces Op, explains it all to you.

Say that we never have useful stuff here.

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Your Fat Is Why You’re Not as Bright as You Could Be

7th March 2014

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Damn, I knew it was something

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High Protein Diet Not as Bad for You as Smoking

6th March 2014

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Well, that’s a relief.

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Genetically Engineered White Blood Cells Could Be the Future of HIV Treatment

6th March 2014

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Scientists have successfully modified the white blood cells of 12 patients living with HIV, making their cells resistant to the retrovirus and improving the study participants’ overall ability to fight off infection. The researchers achieved this result through a gene editing technique, described today in The New England Journal of Medicine.

In the study, scientists extracted white blood cells, called CD4 T cells, from the participants’ blood. They then modified these cells by removing the gene responsible for the production of a protein called CCR5. The CCR5 protein is what allows HIV to enter white bloods cells in the first place, so its removal conveyed resistance. After verifying that nothing else had been altered within the cells, the researchers returned them — 10 billion of them — to the patients via blood transfusion. “The modified [white blood] cells survive longer in the presence of HIV, which we proved by stopping [antiretroviral] therapy in some patients,” says Pablo Tebas, an infectious disease physician at the University of Pennsylvania and study co-author.

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Bizarre Organic Quasicrystal Accidentally Created in Lab

6th March 2014

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This odd quasicrystal is flat, made from a single layer of molecules with five-sided rings. The molecules form groups within the layer as weak hydrogen bonds link them together. These molecular groups are assembled in a way that forces other molecules in the layer into shapes including pentagons, stars, boats, and rhombi. If this were a regular old crystal, you’d expect to see these groups and shapes repeated over and over throughout the layer in a predictable way. But in this quasicrystal, you’ll see the same shapes over and over in the layer, but not in any organized pattern.

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Geneticist’s Startup Hopes to Defeat Human Aging With World’s Largest Genome Library

6th March 2014

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Geneticist J. Craig Venter, who has made headlines for his genomic research and helping develop what’s been called the first synthetic life form, is launching a new company with the goal of delaying aging and extending human lives. Human Longevity, Inc. is co-founded by Venter, biotechnologist and entrepreneur Robert Hariri, and Peter Diamandis, who founded the X Prize Foundation and more recently co-founded asteroid mining startup Planetary Resources. Its goal is to create the world’s most comprehensive human genome sequencing project, capturing and cross-referencing genetic information from a cross-section of people both sick and healthy — it hopes to sequence 40,000 human genomes a year, with an eventual goal of 100,000 annually.

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Heart Implants, 3-D-Printed to Order

6th March 2014

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It’s a poetic fact of biology that everyone’s heart is a slightly different size and shape. And yet today’s cardiac implants—medical devices like pacemakers and defibrillators—are basically one size fits all. Among other things, this means these devices, though lifesaving for many patients, are limited in the information they can gather.

Researchers recently demonstrated a new kind of personalized heart sensor as part of an effort to change that. The researchers used images of animals’ hearts to create models of the organ using a 3-D printer. Then they built stretchy electronics on top of those models. The stretchy material can be peeled off the printed model and wrapped around the real heart for a perfect fit.

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Brain Zap Rouses People From Years of Vegetative State

6th March 2014

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Soon after it was applied to their brains, 15 people with severe brain damage showed signs of consciousness, including moving their hands or following instructions using their eyes. Two people were even able to answer questions for 2 hours before drifting back into their previous uncommunicative state.

“I don’t want to give people false hope – these people weren’t getting up and walking around – but it shows there is potential for the brain to recover functionality, even several years after damage,” says Steven Laureys at the University of Liège in Belgium, who led the research.

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The Next Flu Drug Might Already Be in Your Medicine Cabinet

6th March 2014

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The 2009 epidemic and stirrings of a potential H7N9 epidemic have mobilized Fedson and other public health experts to look for new ways to decrease the effects of seasonal and pandemic flu. And according to Fedson, one surprising group of drugs, called statins, might serve just that purpose. Typically used to reduce cholesterol, they might also turn down the body’s immune response to the virus responsible for many flu-related hospitalizations and deaths.

Statins are cheap, safe, and widely available even in developing countries, which gives them a huge advantage over traditional vaccines and antivirals. Preliminary studies have hinted that people who take statins are less likely to die from influenza complications. But not everyone is convinced. Other scientists have pointed out flaws in the studies and say sufficient data doesn’t yet exist.

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MIT Researchers Discover Sapwood Is Inexpensive Water Filtration Method

5th March 2014

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Well, duh.

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The Molecule That Tells You When You’ve Used Too Much Sriracha

4th March 2014

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The fiery sting of a habanero pepper, the scalding heat of a boiling teapot, the excruciating bite of the earth tiger tarantula, and even the heightened sensitivity to touch following a sunburn — all of these painful sensations are made possible by a sophisticated molecular machine operating in nerve fibers in the skin and tongue.

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Scientists Figure Out How Microbes Make Wine Good

4th March 2014

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Just in case you were wondering. I know I was.

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