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Thu, 20 Jul 2017
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Brain

Experimental drug reverses memory loss from brain damage in mice

© Getty Images
An experimental drug could have major implications for patients suffering from memory disabilities caused by traumatic brain injury (TBI). In tests, the drug known as ISRIB completely restored the ability to learn and remember in brain-injured mice -- even on those that were treated up to a month after injury. The findings are contrary to most research on brain trauma, which claims treatments must be carried out urgently to preserve normal function.

Although scientists have had some recent breakthroughs countering memory loss, TBI has been tougher to crack. Dozens of promising treatments have failed clinical trials, and no approved therapies are available. Currently, TBI (commonly caused by accidents, collisions, falls, and violent assaults) affects close to 2 million people every year in the US -- that boils down to one person every 21 seconds. Additionally, sports injuries (such as concussions) and military combat are other leading causes of TBI. Concerns over brain trauma have even led the army to start working on blast amor that can detect whether an explosion has hurt your brain.

Snowflake Cold

New study blows global warming 'greenhouse theory out of the water'

'All observed climatic changes have natural causes completely outside of human control'

A new scientific paper contends the entire foundation of the man-made global-warming theory - the assumption that greenhouse gases warm the atmosphere by trapping heat - is wrong. If confirmed, the study's findings would crush the entire "climate change" movement to restrict CO2 emissions, the authors assert. Some experts contacted by WND criticized the paper, while others advised caution.

Still others suggested that the claimed discovery represents a massive leap forward in human understanding - a "new paradigm."

The paper argues that concentrations of CO2 and other supposed "greenhouse gases" in the atmosphere have virtually no effect on the earth's temperature. They conclude the entire greenhouse gas theory is incorrect.

Instead, the earth's "greenhouse" effect is a function of the sun and atmospheric pressure, which results from gravity and the mass of the atmosphere, rather than the amount of greenhouse gases such as CO2 and water vapor in the atmosphere.

The same is true for other planets and moons with a hard surface, the authors contend, pointing to the temperature and atmospheric data of various celestial bodies collected by NASA.

So precise is the formula, the authors of the paper told WND, that, by using it, they were able to correctly predict the temperature of other celestial bodies not included in their original analysis.

Info

A map that fills in a 500-million year gap in Earth's history

© Alan Collins, Author provided
Fieldwork in central Madagascar, an area that records a continental collision at about 550 million years ago.
Earth is estimated to be around 4.5 billion years old, with life first appearing around 3 billion years ago.

To unravel this incredible history, scientists use a range of different techniques to determine when and where continents moved, how life evolved, how climate changed over time, when our oceans rose and fell, and how land was shaped. Tectonic plates—the huge, constantly moving slabs of rock that make up the outermost layer of the Earth, the crust—are central to all these studies.

Along with our colleagues, we have published the first whole-Earth plate tectonic map of half a billion years of Earth history, from 1,000 million years ago to 520 million years ago. The colors on the map in the YouTube video below refer to where the continents lie today. Light blue is India, Madagascar, and Arabia, magenta is Australia and Antarctica, white is Siberia, red is North America, orange is Africa, dark blue is South America, yellow is China, and green is northeast Europe.

The time range is crucial. It's a period when the Earth went through the most extreme climate swings known, from "Snowball Earth" icy extremes to super-hot greenhouse conditions, when the atmosphere got a major injection of oxygen and when multicellular life appeared and exploded in diversity.

Now with this first global map of plate tectonics through this period, we (and others) can start to assess the role of plate tectonic processes on other Earth systems and even address how movement of structures deep in our Earth may have varied over a billion year cycle.

Info

New study: Meditation and yoga can 'reverse' the negative effects of stress on our DNA


Mind-body interventions (MBIs) such as meditation, yoga and Tai Chi don't simply relax us; they can 'reverse' the molecular reactions in our DNA which cause ill-health and depression, according to a study by the universities of Coventry and Radboud.

The research, published in the journal Frontiers in Immunology, reviews over a decade of studies analysing how the behaviour of our genes is affected by different MBIs including mindfulness and yoga.

Experts from the universities conclude that, when examined together, the 18 studies -- featuring 846 participants over 11 years -- reveal a pattern in the molecular changes which happen to the body as a result of MBIs, and how those changes benefit our mental and physical health.

The researchers focus on how gene expression is affected; in other words the way that genes activate to produce proteins which influence the biological make-up of the body, the brain and the immune system.

Comment: One very beneficial way to relieve stress and increase a state of well being is to practice Éiriú Eolas.




Brain

Is Stephen Hawking scientifically illiterate?

Five days ago, Stephen Hawking - or someone who has hacked his computerized speech generator - has told us that Donald Trump is a supervillain who will transform the Earth to another Venus with temperatures at 250 °C and sulfuric acid rains.

Wow. Now, every intelligent 10-year-old kid must know why this possibility is non-existent, why the statement is nonsense. Some scientists including Roy Spencer have pointed out how absurd these Hawking's statements were from a scientific viewpoint.

But lots of the scientists who have paid lip service to the lies about the so-called global warming or climate change in the past have remained silent and confirmed that their scientific dishonesty has no limits. I despise all the climate alarmists who know that statements like that are absurd but who hide this fact because a lie like that could be helpful for their profits or political causes. You know, what these jerks and the people who tolerate these jerks' existence haven't quite appreciated is that it is only lies that may be helpful for them.

Comment: It looks like Hawking is losing it... See also: Not even wrong: Stephen Hawking says Trump's Paris Agreement stance could 'push the Earth over the brink'


Info

Praying mantises feast on birds they killed & mate at the same time - study

© Mike Hutchings / Reuters
In what researchers are hailing a "spectacular discovery," a new study has revealed that praying mantises all over the world are feasting on birds they catch and kill.

The carnivorous creatures usually eat insects, spiders and sometimes frogs and snakes to feed their voracious appetites. However, research published in The Wilson Journal of Ornithology now shows the prolific killers also have a taste for birds.


Rainbow

Dying may not be as awful an experience as you think

Does the very idea of death worry and frighten you? There may be reassurance from a new study that finds those fears might be exaggerated.

© Universal Studios
In fact, the research shows, death is often described as a peaceful, "unexpectedly positive" experience by those who approach it.

Death is one of life's guarantees, yet it's something people often avoid talking about, according to study author Kurt Gray. He's an assistant professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
"There's almost an unspoken assumption that death is something to be avoided at all costs," Gray said.
But his team found that the abstract concept of death may be scarier than the reality.

Comment:


Nebula

'New frontier' in physics: CERN discovers subatomic particle with double dose of 'charm'

© Daniel Dominguez / CERN
A long sought subatomic particle has finally been found, according to physicists at the Large Hadron Collider. Scientists hope the discovery will help to further explain a key force that binds matter together.

High-speed collisions in the Large Hadron Collider - the world's biggest atom smasher - helped to discover a baryon particle called Xi cc, according to a report issued by the University of Glasgow on Thursday.

"LHCb data collected last year contains more than 300 of the new Xi-cc++ particles," the report says.

"This is the first time that a baryon has been conclusively observed containing two heavy charm quarks and is a new frontier in understanding the strong force that binds quarks together," Professor of Experimental Particle Physics at the University of Glasgow Paul Soler said of the breakthrough discovery.

Galaxy

Physicist wants to find out if the entire universe is conscious

You don't have to look far to find outlandish theories on the nature of the cosmos and human consciousness. These days, notions once relegated to science fiction are finding their way into esoteric academic journals, and from there, into mainstream discourse. One example of this is the Simulation Argument, recently championed by Elon Musk; another is 'time crystals,' a tantalizing non-linear phase of matter. The newest symphony of mind jazz being broadcast across the Internet posits new ideas about the embattled theory of "panpsychism," or the belief that mind is a fundamental property of the physical universe and is imbued into all states of matter.

A new paper, published by physicist Gregory Matloff, has brought the idea back into scientific discussions, promising experimental tests that could "validate or falsify" the concept of a ubiquitous "proto-consciousness field." Matloff also pushes the controversial idea of volitional stars, suggesting there is actually evidence that stars control their own galactic paths.

As absurd as the theory sounds, it has several prominent adherents, including British theoretical physicist Sir Roger Penrose, who introduced panpsychism three decades ago. Penrose believed consciousness arises from the properties of quantum entanglement. He and anesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff authored the Orchestrated Objective Reduction (Orch-OR) hypothesis, which asserts, among other things, that consciousness results from quantum vibrations inside microtubules.

Comment: See also:


Fireball 5

88 pound meteor strikes the moon causing a massive explosion

© Getty
The moon was struck by a meteor creating an explosion visible with the naked eye.
A METEOR with the explosive power of TEN cruise missiles has struck the Moon - sparking a massive explosion visible with the naked eye.

And terrifyingly the 56,000 mph collision - captured by NASA scientists highlighting the catastrophic danger planet earth faces from similar meteors - was caused by a space rock weighing no more than 88 lbs (40 kilos).

Despite the meteor's tiny proportions - about the size of a small boulder and the weight of an average 10-year-old boy - the impact damage was colossal and the explosion shone with the brightness of a magnitude 4 star.