first_imgViruses have a bad connotation.  We immediately think of the ones that cause disease: “I’ve got a virus,” you say when feeling under the weather.  Actually, you have trillions of them all the time, even in the best of health.  A single gram of stool sample can have 10 billion of them!  What does that mean?  Scientists are only beginning to find out.    One thing it means is that they can’t be all bad.  Elizabeth Pennisi reported in Science this week about work at the University of British Columbia and Washington University to explore the human virome.1  She began her report,In the past decade, scientists have come to appreciate the vast bacterial world inside the human body.  They have learned that it plays a role in regulating the energy we take in from food, primes the immune system, and performs a variety of other functions that help maintain our health.  Now, researchers are gaining similar respect for the viruses we carry around.Bacteria have been easier to count than the tiny viruses.  Many of our internal viruses are bacteriophages that invade and kill bacteria.  This suggests they play a role in keeping the brakes on bacterial infections.  “For every bacterium in our body, there’s probably 100 phages,” Pennisi wrote.  The number of virus species identified in stool samples of healthy adults varied from 52 to 2773.  “The viromes varied significantly from one individual to the next; they were even more diverse than the bacterial communities within the same individuals,” Pennisi reported.  “But each person’s viral community remained stable over the course of the year.”  That is, unless they go on a different diet or eating regimen; then the viromes change.  But people who eat the same foods tend to converge on virus profiles.  Researchers also found that infants with fevers had more viruses than healthy infants.    We are full of viruses, in other words, but we don’t know what they all do.  This is “a true frontier” of research, with much to learn.  “Ultimately, those viruses are incredibly important in driving what’s going on” one scientist from the University of British Columbia said.  It’s not enough to know your bacteria; you have to know the viruses that interact with them. 1.  Elizabeth Pennisi, “Microbiology: Going Viral: Exploring the Role Of Viruses in Our Bodies,” Science, 25 March 2011: Vol. 331 no. 6024 p. 1513, DOI: 10.1126/science.331.6024.1513.It’s always been intriguing that viruses look incredibly well designed.  Some bacteriophages look like lunar landing capsules, legs and all.  Scientists have learned that some viruses have shells like hard plastic (05/07/2004) and pack their DNA into their capsids with motors generating remarkable force, in an orderly manner (03/20/2007, 12/30/2008).  They are also extremely effective in finding their target cells, inserting their DNA, and commandeering the genetic machinery to make copies of themselves.    Evolutionists don’t know what to do with viruses.  They are not considered transitional forms between molecules and life.  Intelligent design would describe their design and predict that they have functions, but would be at a loss to explain harmful viruses.  It takes Biblical creation to explain that they were probably designed for good originally, but some became harmful because of the Fall due to sin.  The analogy might be to a science fiction movie where robotic servants went berserk, or to the broom of the sorcerer’s apprentice that multiplied and could not be stopped.  Sometimes a single mutation can turn a beneficial bacterium into a disease-causing terror; the same could be true with viruses.    Maybe they were intended to be regulators of bacteria.  Maybe they were designed to convey information to the body about new environments, and were equipped to copy themselves to spread the word so that the body could be prepared.  Who knows?  This is, after all, a frontier of research.  For philosophers, it’s noteworthy that we are stumbling onto a reality right around us – right within us – about which we have been largely oblivious, with the potential to dramatically change our understanding of nature.    Given that an athlete running the high hurdles in the peak of health is carrying around trillions of viruses, intuition suggests that most of what they do for us is good.  The scientific research appears poised to find many beneficial functions for our viral passengers.  It happened with bacteria; it took society a long time to change the emotional response from “germs… uggh!” with the householder running to get the antibacterial spray, to an appreciation of the many good things bacteria do for us.  Now we look differently upon our bacterial passengers.  We have learned they outnumber our own cells, and are learning that our viral passengers outnumber the bacteria 100 to one.  Expect amazing things to be discovered about these tiny, mysterious machines.(Visited 8 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

first_imgGlobe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday PLAY LIST 03:12Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday02:25Raptors or Warriors? PBA players take their pick of NBA champ01:43Who are Filipinos rooting for in the NBA Finals?01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH 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 City The Warriors opened the third on a 16-9 burst to lead for the first time all night, then went on to score 100 or more points for a 14th straight game.Draymond Green had 12 points, six assists and five rebounds as the Warriors finished with 40 assists.Curry and Thompson shot a combined 4 for 16 in the first half, including 2 of 10 on 3s, before Curry found his stroke and wound up 9 for 19 overall in his 14th 30-point performance of the season. Thompson struggled to nine points on 4-for-10 shooting, missing all three of his 3-point tries.The Knicks made 11 of their initial 20 shots while the Warriors began 8 of 18 and 1 for 8 from behind the arc to fall behind 29-19 — Curry missed four of his first five field goals.Andre Iguodala, who had dealt with a bruised left calf that kept him out the previous two games, returned to the Warriors rotation and scored five points in 20 minutes off the bench.ALL KINDS OF ALL-STARSGreen and Thompson were named All-Star reserves, joining Curry — a captain — and Durant.The Warriors became the first team in NBA history to have four All-Stars in back-to-back seasons. It will be the ninth time in NBA history that a team has had four All-Stars play in the game.“For us to all go is pretty special,” Thompson said. “First time in NBA history to have four guys go two years in a row is incredible.”Golden State had the same four All-Stars a year ago.“I’m proud of them, amazing to have four All-Stars two years in a row,” Kerr said. “We’re obviously really lucky to have these guys all together at once on the roster. What I love is they’re so unselfish, they play together so well. That’s why they’re all All-Stars. It wouldn’t work if they were selfish and looking for their own shot, looking for their own points.”TIP-INS MOST READ Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry, left, guards New York Knicks’ Jarrett Jack (55) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, Calif. — Kevin Durant mouthed off to official James Williams, got tossed late and might have cost himself another assist during a career night of dishing out the ball.“I told him he was wrong,” Durant said afterward of arguing with Williams in the first half over a carry.ADVERTISEMENT NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Stephen Curry scored 17 of his 32 points in the third quarter to go with seven assists and six rebounds, and the Golden State Warriors used a big second half to beat the New York Knicks 123-112 on Tuesday night.Durant added 14 points, a career-high 14 assists and two blocks before his ejection with 2:50 left for a second technical. Zaza Pachulia added 13 points in Golden State’s seventh straight victory in the series.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“Second half, his whole thing was like he’s trying to get me. … He was searching for me, he’s looking to try to tech me up to get me back because he’s still got his feelings hurt from the first half,” Durant said. “That’s what’s been going on around the league the whole year, a bunch of that.“I gotta keep my head a little bit but I was upset. I’m a human being, too, I get upset,” Durant added. View commentscenter_img Knicks: F Kristaps Porzingis was held out with left knee irritation. … The Knicks dropped to 3-7 on the road vs. the Western Conference. … New York’s 14 turnovers led to 16 Golden State points.Warriors: Durant notched his 16th career double-double of points and assists. … Rookie Jordan Bell missed his second straight game with inflammation in his left ankle. … Golden State’s winning streak vs. the Knicks is its longest since a nine-game unbeaten run against New York from November 1963-November 1964. The Warriors have won 24 of the last 30 in the series.QUOTEABLEThree years after Thompson’s 37-point quarter on Jan. 23, 2015, against the Kings, Kerr recalled the moment.“It was almost surreal, the frenzy. It was the combination of Klay going crazy and licking his chops and his teammates and the joy that they had for him and with him,” Kerr said. “They were just hunting shots for him. It was like a pack of hyenas.”UP NEXTKnicks: At Denver on Thursday night continuing a seven-game road trip.Warriors: Host Timberwolves on Thursday night looking for a fourth straight home win in the series and third overall. Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises Read Next Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Kuzma gets 28, leads Lakers past rival Celtics John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding LATEST STORIES Curry made 8 of 15 from deep while sporting sneakers featuring the faces of his daughters Riley and Ryan and the message “I can do all things.”“I had those in my closet for a while and it’s actually something with (Under Armour) you can obviously design your shoes so I did it a long time ago,” Curry said. “Just walked by ’em today and was like, ‘all right, let me go back and rock the Curry 1s with my daughters on the side to give me a little inspiration.’ It’s nice being home and all that kind of stuff.”The Warriors bounced back from Saturday’s eight-point defeat at Houston to improve to 10-0 following a loss this season.Michael Beasley scored 21 points and Courtney Lee contributed 20 as New York lost for the third time in four games and sixth in eight.“We got lucky a little bit in the first half,” Lee said. “They were missing a lot of opens shots, and then in the second half those shots that they were missing went down and we weren’t able to get stops and get out and convert on those opportunities.”ADVERTISEMENTlast_img read more

first_imgA nurse who preyed on elderly patients in her care told lawyers with an inquiry examining her actions that she wouldn’t have been able to murder eight people if more controls were in place on medication at long-term care homes.Elizabeth Wettlaufer’s musings on what could have prevented her crimes are contained in a transcript of a lengthy interview submitted as evidence in the public inquiry that got underway in St. Thomas, Ont., this week.The 50-year-old injected more than a dozen patients with overdoses of insulin while working in long-term care homes and private residences in Ontario for nearly a decade. Her crimes went undetected until she confessed them to mental health workers and police in 2016.“I’ve given a lot of thought to changes that could have been made where I would not have been able to do this,” Wettlaufer said in an interview conducted Feb. 14 at the prison where she’s serving a life sentence after pleading guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder, four counts of attempted murder and two counts of aggravated assault.“If there was a way that the insulin was counted, I would not have been able to do what I did without getting caught.”Insulin, Wettlaufer said, should be treated like a controlled substance.Wettlaufer said she first began thinking about killing people in 2006 when she was in a Woodstock, Ont., hospital where she had gone to deal with her obsessive and depressive thoughts. She was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder and was prescribed medication, she said.“I just had so much anger I couldn’t concentrate … but if I thought about killing somebody while I was talking to other people I could talk normally to them,” Wettlaufer said. “And that’s where the thoughts of killing somebody started.”Wettlaufer said she began working shortly thereafter at Caressant Care, a long-term care home in Woodstock, and soon became overwhelmed.She said she was often working double shifts from 3 p.m. until 7 a.m. the following day, in charge of 32 patients with little help and dealing with a stressful home life.One night in 2007, she said she noticed Clotilde Adriano, 87, was on insulin.“This thought came into my head, just give her too much insulin and see what happens,” Wettlaufer said. “So I did.”Adriano didn’t die, but it sparked something for Wettlaufer, she said. She did the same thing to Adriano’s sister, Albina Demedeiros, 90, who was in a room across the hall, she said.“I chose them based on the fact they couldn’t self-report because they had dementia,” she said. Wettlaufer pleaded guilty to two charges of aggravated assault in connection with the sisters.She would go on to kill James Silcox in 2007 with an overdose of insulin. He was her first murder.Wettlaufer told lawyers with the inquiry that she picked insulin because it wasn’t tracked in the home and it could be deadly.“There was never a time when it was questioned why were we at some times going through insulin more so than others,” she said.Sometimes another nurse would check the amount of insulin she had prepped to give a patient. But that was easily circumvented, she said.“Even though another nurse checks it you can change the amount at any time,” she said.There were two rooms where she could get insulin and they were behind doors without windows, she added.“If the treatment room and med room were completely made of glass … there’s no way I could have done what I did without somebody seeing me,” Wettlaufer said.Even if there were windows, she explained, she could slip a few insulin pens into her pocket. And the pens themselves had no mechanism to restrict the amount of insulin — doses can be dialled up or down easily, she said.“If there was, say, a stopgap measure on the pen that once you dialled up a certain amount you couldn’t dial any more, or even if pens came preloaded … there wouldn’t be excess insulin,” she said.The public inquiry, which is scheduled to last several months, has said it won’t compel Wettlaufer to testify as her confessions and interview have been submitted as evidence.last_img read more

first_imgAdvertisement Twitter Advertisement Login/Register With: Could the story of the Vegas Golden Knights be coming soon to a theatre near you? (Getty Images/CBC Sports) Advertisementcenter_img The Vegas Golden Knights’ run to the Stanley Cup Final feels like a ready-made sports movie — clichés and all.A scrappy group of literal outcasts defying the odds, sticking it to the establishment and rallying after a tragedy to reach improbable heights? The script practically writes itself.So, might as well cast it and start production, right? LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment The Golden Misfits — working title — has the potential to fuse the sheer lunacy of Slap Shot and emotional stakes of Miracle with the mass appeal of the Mighty Ducks film franchise. The NHL even brought up the subject with the Golden Knights recently, with the players and coaches weighing in on their cinematic counterparts.But in order to achieve peak authenticity, it’s time for an expansion draft (er, casting call) to find the right actors. And should Vegas win the Cup, it’d be a bigger heist than anything Danny Ocean ever schemed up… Facebooklast_img read more

first_imgJalpaiguri (WB): West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today stressed on a permanent solution for the problems plaguing the tea gardens in north Bengal and formed an expert committee to find out a solution. She said that the committee, under Chief Secretary Malay De, would submit its report after going through the problems at the tea gardens, thus help in finding out a solution. “I want a permanent solution for the tea gardens. Nobody has ever thought of any permanent solution regarding the problems, raging at the tea gardens, for ages. Even the Centre has failed to keep up to its promise, made prior to the last Assembly elections, about opening the closed tea gardens,” Banerjee told reporters here at the Uttarkanya. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killed Today, she held a meeting with representatives of the tea gardens. She also held a meeting senior ministers such as state Labour Minister Moloy Ghatak, Arup Biswas and senior officials of her government. The state government also proposed a daily wage of Rs 176 for the tea garden workers pending finalisation of the minimum wages. This year the state government had announced two interim hikes of Rs 17.50 and of Rs nine, taking the daily wage to Rs 159. Meanwhile, the largest tea producing state of Assam, last week, had announced issuing a possible notification on an interim hike of Rs 30, with retrospective effect from March 1 this year, which would take the current daily wage of tea garden workers from Rs 137 to Rs 167. Banerjee also lambasted the culture of strike at the tea gardens and said it finished the work culture there.last_img read more

first_imgFebruary 5, 2018 This story originally appeared on PCMag Register Now » Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global If you haven’t seen it by now, Amazon’s Super Bowl LII commercial is fairly clever. Kudos to the company for coming up with a fun way to mash together celebrities and Alexa without it feeling overly cheesy or trying-too-hard. More importantly, a big thanks to Amazon’s engineers who came up with an ingenious way to broadcast the “A word” without it triggering everyone’s Echos — whatever version of the device you own.The most annoying thing about watching any YouTube video or televised commercial that mentions Alexa is that it typically triggers your Echo device to get ready to respond to a query. Or worse, the person you’re watching who says “Alexa” just keeps on babbling, which then makes your Echo do something you didn’t want it to do — or just apologize for being unable to do whatever commands it tried to interpret.And since Amazon definitely wanted its Super Bowl LII to mention she-who-shall-not-be-named, and refer to her frequently, the company had to come up with a different way to do so in order to avoid hacking off everyone who already owns an Echo device.The solution? Acoustic fingerprinting.”The trick is to suppress the unintentional waking of a device while not incorrectly rejecting the millions of people engaging with Alexa every day,” said Shiv Vitaladevuni, a senior manager on the Alexa Machine Learning team, in an Amazon blog post.Though Amazon isn’t detailing the specific techniques its using to keep your Echo from triggering from its Super Bowl advertising, Bloomberg notes that a Reddit user, Asphyhackr, might have figured out Amazon’s secret.”I did a little research tonight and found that the Echo, while it’s processing the wake word, searches the Audio Spectrum and if is significantly quieter in the area of 4000hz to 5000hz, she will not wake for the word,” Asphyhackr writes.”I found that when I analyzed the spectrum of them saying her name, the spectrums were significantly quieter in the range of 3000hz to 6000hz. In some of those recordings, those frequencies appeared to be non-existent. In others it appeared like the boosted the surrounding frequencies to make the Echo see a gap in the spectrum.”In other words, if your Echo (Best Price at Amazon) notices something strange happening in the audio spectrum, it realizes that it should ignore whatever is being said — like “Alexa.” And while this works well when Amazon has a planned announcement to make, like an advertisement, the company has to get a bit more creative when it can’t anticipate the large-scale broadcast of its digital helper’s name.”When multiple devices start waking up simultaneously from a broadcast event, similar audio is streaming to Alexa’s cloud services. An algorithm within Amazon’s cloud detects matching audio from distinct devices and prevents additional devices from responding. The dynamic fingerprinting isn’t perfect, but as many as 80 to 90 percent of devices won’t respond to these broadcasts thanks to the dynamic creation of the fingerprints,” reads Amazon’s blog. 3 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box.last_img read more

first_imgTags: Alitalia, WTF Alitalia has gone bankrupt but at least they’re getting snazzy new uniforms << Previous PostNext Post >> Source: The Associated Press MILAN — Never underestimate the power of a new pair of shoes, or a brand new wardrobe for that matter.The bankrupt Italian airline, Alitalia, has commissioned the Alberta Ferretii fashion house to design new uniforms, the timing of which has raised a few eyebrows. The crew restyling comes as the Italian government evaluates binding offers for all, or part, of the airline with the intent of completing a sale by spring.Perhaps the airline is putting their best foot forward (in designer pumps, no less) to shake the stigma of bankruptcy?Alitalia has said the uniform update won¹t create any new financial burdens, and that it came at the request of cabin and ground crews for ‘greater comfort’.Ferretti has pledged to design a collection combining elegance with convenience to ensure that all personnel are “comfortable in each working environment and throughout any season.”The airline last updated its uniforms in 2016 with a burgundy-colored retro look for the first new uniforms in two decades.More news:  Venice to ban cruise ships from city centre starting next monthAlitalia said the new uniforms should be ready by summer. Share Thursday, November 30, 2017 last_img read more