Tag: 南京桑拿

Deadly Effects of Single Mutations

first_imgIs this the raw material for Darwinian evolution? The genetic mutations we observe can be catastrophic.Medical Xpress describes the tragic effects of a neurological mutation on certain afflicted children:The extremely rare disorder is characterized by developmental regression and neurodegeneration. At first the children lead normal lives and seem identical to their age-matched peers. However, beginning at around 3 to 6 years of age, they present with neurological deterioration, gradually losing motor, cognitive and speech functions. Although the condition progresses slowly, most patients are completely dependent on their caretakers by 15-20 years of age.Researchers at Hebrew University and Penn State found that this debilitating disease is caused by a single point mutation that represents one letter out of 3 billion letters in the human genome.The researchers found in all patients the same spontaneously occurring, non-inherited genetic change in a gene (named “UBTF”) responsible for ribosomal RNA formation. Because of this small change, the patients’ cells are flooded with ribosomal RNA and are poisoned by it.Another single-letter mutation is known to cause progeria, another progressive disease that turns children into old people in just 12 to 20 years.When Does a Frog Become Deadly?P. terribilis. Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Micha L. Rieser.The poison dart frogs of Columbia carry a warning in their bright yellow skin: do not touch! There’s enough poison in one frog to kill 10 men at once. The poison acts by “reversing the openings of sodium channels in nerves, which prevents muscles from relaxing.” The heart muscle contracts to push blood through, but then cannot un-contract. A fatal heart attack usually results from those affected. Hunters in the jungle have learned to use this potent toxin to kill prey by dabbing it on the tips of their blow darts. These frogs are known as Phyllobates terribilis.The toxin comes from alkaloids in the environment that the frogs ingest and store in their skin. Some researchers wondered, though, how the frogs protect themselves from their own poison.Prior research has shown that the active ingredient in the toxin is batrachotoxin. To figure out why the dart frogs do not give themselves heart attacks when they produce the chemical, the researchers introduced five naturally occurring amino acid replacements found in the frog’s muscles into rat muscles. Doing so, the researchers report, made the rat muscle immune to the effects of batrachotoxin. The researchers then tested the amino acids individually until they found the one that was responsible for the change—N1584T. This finding overturns prior research results that suggested multiple factors were responsible for frog immunity—it shows that the immunity in the frogs comes from a single genetic mutation.In effect, the mutation broke the effect of the toxin for the frog. This means that all the frogs without the mutation must have died, and only the “broken” frogs survived. The research is published in PNAS. A week later, Science Magazine gave helpful detail on what the single point mutation does. It breaks a working receptor:Poison frogs produce a neurotoxin that protects them from predation. The frogs, however, run the risk of intoxicating themselves. Studying the frog neurotoxin epibatidine, which binds to acetylcholine receptors, Tarvin et al. found a single amino acid substitution. The substitution changes the configuration of the acetylcholine receptor, so that it decreases its sensitivity to the toxin. But acetylcholine signaling is essential for normal life. Expressing frog receptors in human cells revealed that different amino acid substitutions have occurred in different lineages that allow the frog to resist its own toxins while still letting target neurotransmitters function effectively.Update 9/19/2017: Look at the tragic picture in an article on Medical Xpress. A mutation causes some babies to be born without a nose. A rare condition called Bosma arhinia microphthalmia syndrome (BAMS) is caused by mutation. “BAMS is a congenital condition in which patients are born without a nose, and often with eye defects and stunted release of sexual hormones.”The frog story sounds like a case of natural selection, but if so, why didn’t the PNAS authors mention that? Why didn’t Phys.org mention it? Why didn’t they mention natural selection, positive selection, beneficial mutation, or anything else that would make this finding a victory for Darwin? The paper talks about the “evolution of extreme toxicity” in this frog, but the frog did not evolve into a non-frog. It just broke its reaction to the alkaloids. That may have been “beneficial” to the frog—keeping it from dying of a heart attack—but those sodium channels are there for a purpose. You don’t want to tinker with highly-functional molecular machines like that.The Darwinians expect us to believe that random genetic mutations are the seedbed of all the progress, improvement and innovation in the living world. That’s like expecting random bullets to improve functional automobiles and trucks. As Dr Jerry Bergman said recently in a talk, “Evolution works: but in the wrong direction!” Mutations are almost always deleterious, and the “nearly-neutral” mutations that predominate without causing overt problems add up like typos in a book to degrade the genome, leading to mutational meltdown. Doesn’t intelligent design of the working machinery make a lot more sense? (Visited 597 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Your Body Talks to Itself

first_imgProteins form large communications network to keep the body in sync with the biological clock.A biological clock would do no good if the organs and tissues of the body could not sync up with it. How would your day go if your brain was wide awake when your liver or digestive tract were trying to get some sleep? Bad things can happen when the body gets out of sync. But to stay in sync, the organs and tissues need the ability to communicate.Researchers have “identified a system of communication networks that exists among organs and tissues that regulate metabolism,” according to a press release from the University of California, Irvine, where a team is making “a detailed ‘atlas’ illustrating how the body creates and uses energy, and how imbalances in the networks may impact overall health.” They just published their work in the journal Cell.Lead author Paolo Sassone-Corsi, Donald Bren Professor of Biological Chemistry at UCI’s School of Medicine, first showed the circadian rhythm-metabolism link some 10 years ago, identifying the metabolic pathways through which circadian proteins sense energy levels in cells.“The human body is a complex, beautifully integrated system that functions at optimum efficiency when the networks are in balance,” said Sassone-Corsi, director of UCI’s Center for Epigenetics and Metabolism. “When this system is disrupted through misalignment among organs, the body will function at a less-than-optimum level, which may lead to disease. We are presenting a map that illustrates how to achieve the best health possible through proper balance and homeostasis.”We have some responsibility to maintain this balance. High-fat diets, for instance, can “induce misalignment among the network clocks and can trigger inflammation, which has been linked to major diseases and can affect lifespan.” But the body comes equipped with communications networks that take care of background tasks without our conscious knowledge, and do the best they can with what we feed them.The researchers examined a variety of genetic clocks – ranging from those in blood serum, the liver and muscle to those in the brain’s prefrontal cortex and hypothalamus, as well as in brown and white body fat. The resultant atlas maps the connections among various organs and tissues, which together make up the so-called body clock that governs day-night patterns of metabolic activity. The team then tested the connections to see how a high-fat diet in mice scrambled the body’s fine-tuned metabolic patterns and rewired the communication and coordination among clocks.This article illustrates how Darwinian evolution cannot hope to build complex, interactive systems. What’s the chance of getting a rare beneficial mutation (if one could be demonstrated) that would work with an existing system? Most likely, it would disrupt it, and be eliminated if it didn’t kill the host. What good is a new signal arising by mutation if there is no receiver that understands it? It would be like inventing a telephone with only one end. Who ya gonna call?In his book Undeniable: How Biology Confirms Our Intuition that Life Is Designed, Dr. Douglas Axe, a biochemist who worked at Cambridge University, discusses “functional wholes” made up of multiple parts working in a hierarchical structure. Such systems cannot arise piecemeal because they depend on parts at other levels. The whole system needs “functional coherence” to work. Life is filled with functional wholes of amazing complexity, such as the “beautifully integrated system” of “communications networks” described here. Read the book to become convinced that an intelligently Designer (whom Doug Axe does not hesitate to identify as the Creator God) is to be thanked and marveled at for His artistry.(Visited 349 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

CSIR’s ‘excellent’ year

first_imgThe CSIR has successfully developed afingerprint recognition platform that canperform one-to-one verification (where alive fingerprint is matched to a fingerprintstored in some device) and one-to-manyverification (where a live fingerprint isverified against multiple fingerprintsstored in a database). The ‘Digital Doorway in a suitcase’ wasdeveloped for humanitarian organisationUnicef. It will act as a content server andcommunication hub in disaster areas.(Images: CSIR)MEDIA CONTACTSCSIR• General communication [email protected]• Media enquiriesLehlohonolo Mokhema+27 12 [email protected]• General science communication andCSIR publicationsCollette Vosloo+27 12 [email protected] AlexanderA rabies treatment produced in tobacco leaves, bioceramic material for bone replacement, biodiesel made from algae and a robust portable ICT hub for post-disaster situations: these were just some the innovations produced by South Africa’s Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in the past year.According to the CSIR’s annual report, released on Monday, the organisation has successfully managed to exceed all its targets in areas such as patents granted, royalty income, number of PhD degrees and publications.Download the report (PDF, 7.4 MB)In the report, CSIR CEO Sibusiso Sibisi describes it as “a record of excellent achievement”.“Achieving such positive outcomes across all domains is a reflection of the healthy balance that exists between good science and good business at the CSIR.”Established by the government in 1945, the CSIR is one of the largest science and technology research and development bodies in Africa. While its shareholder is South Africa’s Parliament and it still receives government funding, since 2005 the organisation has been restructured along business lines.Today much of the CSIR’s income is derived from research contracts, royalties, licences, and dividends from companies it has set up to produce and market its innovations.Sibisi says highlights of the past year include the CSIR being granted 35 new international patents, more than doubling its target of 15. The number of science and technology staff with PhDs increased to 273, exceeding the target of 240, and the number of permanent staff studying towards PhDs rose from 90 to 201.The CSIR’s research output for the year included 277 journal articles, 621 conference papers and presentations, 14 books and 38 book chapters.Income from royalties rose 130%, from R9.1-million (US$1.2-million) in 2007/8 to R21-million ($2.8-million) in 2008/9.Research highlightsThe CSIR’s work covers a range of science and technology areas, from health to the built environment, natural environment, energy, defence and security and industry. Some of the highlights of the year include:• Tobacco leaves that produce a powerful post-exposure treatment for rabies.• Working with traditional healers, the capture of 250 claims for cures based on medicinal plants. At least 72 were show to be effective against conditions such as asthma, arthritis and malaria.• A bioceramic material for bone replacement that will do away with the need to harvest the bone from elsewhere in the patient’s body.• Investigating the production of biodiesel from indigenous South African algae.• An ultra-thin (5cm) continuously reinforced concrete for roads. With a lifespan of 30 to 40 years, these roads would be particularly suited to rural areas.• An innovative, modular design for low-cost housing, which could be easily extended by its occupants. A number of components in the house are to be patented.• A mobile, robust and portable information and communication technology hub produced for Unicef for use in coordinating relief efforts after disasters.• A fingerprint recognition system that will relieve South Africa’s dependence on imported biometric products.• A barrier technology for packaging that extends the life of foodstuffs up to 125 times.last_img read more

Banking is the Next Personal Assistant

first_imgRelated Posts Hossein Rahnama is the founder and CEO of Flybits, a cloud-based, context-as-a-service solution with offices in Toronto, Redwood City, and London. Tags:#AI#Banking#Blockchain#Contextual Data#Fintech#mobile#personal assistant banking Blockchain – Impending Revolution in Glob… We envision banks as these massive vaults filled with money. While there’s some truth to that assumption, your average bank is so much more. We can expect that banking is the next personal assistant. Banks are massively complicated institutions that operate on a lot of different (often proprietary) systems working seamlessly in conjunction with one another. Anyone working in IT for a bank will tell you every day is a challenge.Daily, banks manage to overcome a litany of internal and external obstacles — all while providing service with a smile. Long before anyone used online data and social media accounts to track people, banks could collect that sort of insight by following the money. Banks have access to a treasure trove of information about our financial preferences, which puts them in the position to act as concierges in our lives.The ubiquity of solutions such as AI, blockchain, and machine learning can only serve to contextualize the future of banking further. Instead of focusing on terms and conditions, it’s time for banks to leverage the wealth of information provided by these solutions to engage people and help improve customers’ financial well-being.Disrupting the Old GuardMost banking decision makers see the role technology and innovation can play in upending the status quo. PayPal’s mobile platform prompted several legacy providers to work on their own mobile offerings, and Bitcoin showed the value blockchain brings to the transaction process.The banking industry’s dated processes and operating systems are so entrenched that implementing widespread innovation is a challenge.In the past, IT was just one part of banking. Now that IT is such an integral part of the banking business model, legacy providers must rethink their customer engagement tactics and reimagine their internal infrastructure. That new vision should start with reframing the purpose that modern banks serve.For years, customers leveraged banks solely for their core financial services. That mindset persists through banking apps — users only see financial service apps for what the services they provide. The user doesn’t consider the banking app as entities that improve their financial decision-making.Banking’s future isn’t in the actual products banks provide but in how they’re serving those products to customers.We don’t need to understand the fine print of a mortgage or insurance policy if we can understand the value it brings to our daily lives. For example, mortgages documents, insurance, CDs, stocks, 401(k)s, and numerous other products come with polished banking terminology and drawn-out contracts that can perplex even the best lawyer.But imagine a banking platform that breaks legalese down into digestible bits. Instead of prompting you to click forward to complete the process, envision using an app that compiles all your past and current financial information and advises you regarding potential next steps.Banking that can genuinely help us live our lives a better way — or any fintech company in this mold are going to be the next big thing. Technology can be the catalyst to kick off this shift, but banking decision makers must reconstruct the roles they play if they want to bring this tech-reality to life. Instead of cold, numbers-driven institutions, consumers wish to have banks that offer friendly, knowledgable and familiar faces. A familiar and friendly help is where banks can start to become our personal assistants.The Next Frontier of BankingPeople like to say money isn’t essential, but it’s the fuel that runs our lives. That makes our banks the engine, and financial institutions that genuinely figure out how to steer us toward better lives will become the Ubers and Teslas of the financial industry. Thankfully, there are already financial companies pushing to provide better personal assistance.Manulife, for example, can tie Fitbit and other fitness tracking data into its Vitality program. Life insurance companies have a vested interest in keeping people healthy, and Manulife uses discounted premiums and other loyalty perks to encourage its members to lead healthier lives.Back in the banking arena, TD Bank’s “TD for Me” feature uses mobile data to send customers real-time, contextual offers while they’re on the go. Using a feature while on the go gives consumers peace of mind to make financial decisions no matter where they are.The Royal Bank of Canada is taking things a step further, integrating an Airbnb-like product into its offerings. The Canadian bank is constantly innovating its tech offerings to ensure the brand stays relevant, creating person-to-person marketplaces and ecosystems that align with current consumer expectations.Consumers still want banks for the same basic needs they’ve had for generations — to finance houses, cars, businesses, vacations, etc. The way we think about those basic needs has evolved, though. The key moving forward is for banks to understand what truly motivates people to spend money.Right now, we have more data available to accomplish that task than ever before. Companies that figure out how to leverage data and bridge the trust gap between consumers and banks will become the next big unicorn companies. What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … AI: How it’s Impacting Surveillance Data Storage A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Hossein Rahnamalast_img read more

India win third Test against NZ, clinch series

first_imgIndia beat New Zealand by an innings and 198 runs in the series-deciding third Test on Tuesday and clinched the Test series. The first two Tests, in Ahmedabad and Hyderabad, were draws.SCORECARDPacer Ishant Sharma and spinner Harbhajan Singh took three wickets apiece. All-rounder Suresh Raina and spinner Pragyan Ojha also contributed with key scalps in the first session of play today.India had declared its first innings at 566-8 in reply to New Zealand’s first innings score of 193.New Zealand, resuming at 24-1, suffered an early setback as last match’s double-centurion Brendon McCullum was trapped lbw by Ojha for 25, adding just 10 runs this morning.After dismissing McCullum with the last delivery of his second over, Ojha struck again with the first one of his third.Martin Guptill was given lbw by umpire Simon Taufel, but replays showed that the ball had pitched well outside leg-stump. New Zealand fell to 38-3 and could not wriggle out of the grip of the spinners as Harbhajan replaced Ojha in the attack.Harbhajan dismissed night-watchman Gareth Hopkins when Gautam Gambhir took a fine bat-pad catch lunging to his right at short-leg. He also got the wicket of Ross Taylor, caught by substitute Cheteshwar Pujara in the same position, but the batsman was not happy with the bat-pad decision.Kane Williamson was clean bowled by Ishant and then Raina came on to bag two wickets in two overs with his innocuous off-spin. Jesse Ryder, batting with a runner due to a calf injury, gave a catch to Sharma at mid-off. Raina then trapped captain Daniel Vettori lbw.advertisementlast_img read more

San Miguel back in PBA Philippine Cup finals anew after ousting Phoenix

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew FIFA bans eight players for life over match-fixing Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte From there on, Wright and RJ Jazul took turns in clipping the lead, but was turned back by a jumper from Terrence Romeo, who has yet to taste his first trip to the Finals.San Miguel now awaits the winner of the Magnolia-Rain or Shine series, that could be decided Friday, 7 p.m. at Ynares Center in Antipolo.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated MANILA, Philippines–Coming off the heels of a masterful victory, it was clear that the reigning champions remain the force to be reckoned with in the prestigious PBA Philippine Cup.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting San Miguel Beer took everything the top-seeded Phoenix Pulse could offer on Thursday night, and still pulled out a 105-94 Game 5 win at Cuneta Astrodome to book its fifth straight Finals appearance—the second most in the league’s storied history.Chris Ross scored 24 points, his most in the semifinals, as the Beermen closed this half of the semifinals and moved closer to preserving their historic four-time reign in the all-Filipino conference.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsAlex Cabagnot joined the scoring fray, unloading 22 points—15 of those coming from the three-point stripe, while five-time Most Valuable Player June Mar tossed in 17 more.LA Revilla, Phoenix’s diminutive guard, figured as the biggest threat for San Miguel. He tallied 15 points—second to Matthew Wright’s 20—to help bring the Fuel Masters pull within eight. PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krausslast_img read more

In The Spotlight – Steve Roberts

first_imgIn the thirty-first edition of In The Spotlight, Australian Men’s Open player, Steve Roberts, speaks about what it means to be representing Australia at the 2011 World Cup and his career highlights so far.  Name: Steve RobertsNickname: Devo or FrankAge: 29Affiliate: BulldogsOccupation: PE TeacherPosition: MiddleDebut for Australia: For the Open’s division – 2003Career highlights so far: Winning Vawdon Cup/State Cup double in 2007                                        2003 and 2007 World Cups                                        2010 Trans Tasman                                        2008 State of OriginHow you got involved in Touch Football: My family played.Favourite player: Louise and Claire Winchester.What does it mean to you to be representing Australia at the 2011 World Cup: An honour and privilege. Something that I cherish.Biggest influence on your Touch Football career: My brothers.Favourite sporting moment: Being at the Olympics to see Cathy Freeman win the 400m!What do you know about Scotland: It gets cold, William Wallace is from there, Haggis is made from sheep stomach lining and they make wonderful Scotch!Any superstitions: Not really.Funniest Australian teammate: Jamie Stowe/Anthony ZiadeFavourite quote/s: ‘First with the head and then with the heart’                              ‘Don’t stop fighting til the fight is done!’Any travel plans for after World Cup: Yes, south of Spain and France and Croatia.Stay tuned to the website for the upcoming editions of In The Spotlight, which will feature every Open’s player travelling to the World Cup.  With less than a month to go until the 2011 Federation of International Touch World Cup, be sure to be regularly visiting the Touch Football Australia website to keep up-to-date with all of the latest news and information. Don’t forget to become a fan of Touch Football Australia on Facebook and Twitter in the lead up to the 2011 World Cup to find out all you need to know about Australia’s World Cup campaign:http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Touch-Football-Australia/384949403384 www.twitter.com/touchfootyauslast_img read more

Video: Here’s Footage Of The Two Llamas Evading Capture Set To Rod Bramblett’s “Kick Six” Audio Call

first_imgRunaway llamas that went viral in 2015.Two llamas, one white and one black, got loose today in Phoenix and set off a chase that lasted a half-hour. Their chase went viral, leading to some fantastic memes and funny content. Both llamas showed impressive elusiveness, and one person decided to pay tribute to their escapability. He did so by dubbing Auburn radio announcer Rod Bramblett’s famous “Kick Six” call from the 2013 Iron Bowl over footage of the llamas evading capture.Take a look, and a listen:Well-done, and it seems like the white llama at least is a higher-rated prospect than Kick-Six hero Chris Davis was.BREAKING: We now have a new no. 1 player in the @247Sports Composite! #llamas #TeamLlama pic.twitter.com/G4YYY2J27u— 247Sports (@247Sports) February 26, 2015last_img

Video: Mike Francesa Says CBS Knows Who Leaked The Bracket

first_imgMike Francesa talks about leaked CBS bracket.mike francesa cbs bracketThis past Sunday night, midway through the CBS NCAA Tournament selection show, the full bracket leaked online, sending the college basketball world into a frenzy. It was the first time in history that any part of the bracket had been revealed early.As you’d imagine, both the NCAA and CBS are taking the issue seriously. And according to WFAN’s Mike Francesa, the network already knows the source of the leak. Francesa told callers Monday that he also knows the source. Mike Francesa knows who leaked the NCAA brackets on Twitter; is not authorized to tell us,@KennyDucey @sportswatch pic.twitter.com/2C9XS3ssaX— I Nevah Said Dat! (@RNs_Funhouse) March 15, 2016Will the rest of us know by the end of the week? Maybe. If it really was one rogue employee doing the damage, you can imagine he/she is going to be in a world of trouble.[The Big Lead]last_img read more

IMOs Emission Reduction Plan Makes Modest Progress

first_imgzoom The International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) tentative step towards a plan to cut shipping’s climate emissions represents only ‘modest’ progress, Transport & Environment cited the Marshall Islands’ transport minister Mike Halferty.Earlier this month, countries meeting at the IMO’s environment committee agreed to ‘headings’ to be included in a strategy, which itself will be the first step of a broader plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions.The details of each section are to be decided at a meeting in October, and a draft strategy agreed by 2018. However, the strategy will not be finalised until 2023.The seven headings, or titles of each chapter of the strategy, cover the level of climate ambition and guiding principles for the shipping industry; possible measures for short, medium and long-term action; barriers to action, supportive measures and technical cooperation; and a plan for a review of the strategy.Shipping is one of the fastest growing sources of transport emissions and is projected to account for 17% of global emissions by 2050. But, despite the IMO being first tasked with addressing ship GHG emissions by the Kyoto Protocol some 20 years ago, shipping is the only industry in the world not subject to climate measures.“Disagreement over how to distribute efforts and the potential costs of measures remain the biggest obstacle to progress. On a positive note there was a strong delegation of Pacific Island nations. These countries, so vulnerable to climate change, are leading calls for an ambitious reduction target and urgent measures. In any case, as long as the IMO does not deliver a robust global deal to reduce shipping GHG, the inclusion of shipping in the EU ETS must remain on the table,” Bill Hemmings, T&E’s shipping director, said.Meanwhile, a proposal to bring forward the target of improving the efficiency of new ships’ designs could be decided on next year. The IMO is being called on to advance the 2025 target date to 2022 following evidence that the current design efficiency standard, known as the EEDI, is too relaxed to drive ship efficiency.“Making new ships more efficient saves both fuel and carbon emissions. It is a no brainer. But the current EEDI requirements are so weak that ships built in 2016 are actually becoming less efficient. If the IMO is serious about reducing shipping emissions the very first thing it should do is tighten the the EEDI requirements,” Faig Abbasov, T&E’s shipping officer, said.last_img read more