Connect with us

Science & Technology

Doctors Repair Infants’ Damaged Hearts With Experimental Procedure

THE POWERHOUSE OF THE CELL. Doctors at Boston Children’s Hospital have developed a new kind of transplant that is giving infants with damaged hearts a chance to lead a normal, healthy life. These babies aren’t receiving new organs, though. Instead, doctors are transplanting mitochondria from the infant’s own muscle cells right into their failing hearts — and they’re finding the experimental procedure produces remarkable results, according to a new report by The New York Times.

Every cell in our body contains a mitochondrion. These tiny specialized structures provide the cell with the energy it needs to do its thing. If a cell loses its supply of oxygen-rich blood, its mitochondrion can die, and the rest of the cell can follow. This damage to the mitochondrion can sometimes happen to heart cells during cardiac arrest or surgery to fix a heart defect. Even if the cells survive, they may be weak, and the heart can’t beat normally as a result.

A FULL RECOVERY. James McCully is a scientist who studies adult hearts. Through his research, he realized something remarkable about mitochondria: if he extracted the mitochondria from the muscle cells in a pig’s abdomen and injected them into the animal’s damaged (but not dead) heart cells, the pig’s heart recovered.

In 2015, McCully teamed up with Sitaram Emani, a pediatric heart surgeon at Boston Children’s Hospital, to test the mitochondrial transplant in a newborn with a heart damaged during surgery to fix a defect. McCully extracted roughly 1 billion mitochondria from a small piece of muscle from the baby’s abdomen and injected them back into the most damaged part of the baby’s heart. Within two days, the baby’s heart was beating the same way a healthy one would.

SAVING LIVES. In total, the doctors have tested their mitochondrial transplant technique in 11 newborns, and eight of those babies are now doing well, according to The NYT’s report. For infants with the same condition that hadn’t received such a transplant, the death rate was 65 percent. Of the 35 percent that survived, none recovered their heart function, and a third ended up on transplant waiting lists. So the procedure, if it proves to be effective, would help improve the lives of children who had few other options.

Finding enough pediatric patients for a clinical trial of this technique would be difficult, so the researchers plan to conduct a trial in adult patients undergoing bypass or bypass and valve surgery. As Annetine Gelijns, a biostatistician at Mount Sinai Medical Center, told The NYT, that trial will likely begin in 2019. So it might not be long before we know for sure whether mitochondrial transplants are an effective treatment option for damaged hearts.

Source link

Advertisement
Comments

Science & Technology

The human body may have a magnetic sense

Image Credit: NASA / Peter Reid

Humans appear to possess some level of magnetoreception.

Scientists now believe that humans, like birds, may be able to sense the Earth’s magnetic field.

It might sound like something out of a comic book, but according to a team of researchers from the US and Japan, there are indications that humans possess a rudimentary form of magnetoreception.

In a recent experiment, a number of volunteers were sat inside a six-sided cage with walls made from aluminium to shield the setup from electromagnetic interference.

Special coils were built in to the cage that could be used to produce magnetic fields.

Each participant was exposed to various strengths and orientations of
magnetic field while their brain waves were measured using an electroencephalogram (EEG).

The researchers ultimately detected an intriguing drop in alpha brain waves under certain conditions that seemed to indicate that the participants were able to detect the changes in magnetism.

While it is unclear exactly what mechanism might enable a human to perceive a magnetic field, it does appear as though we possess at least some level of magnetic awareness.

“Given that a number of other animals can sense Earth’s magnetic field, it is certainly within the realm of possibility that humans can as well,” said magnetoreception expert Prof Kenneth Lohmann.

Source: The Guardian

Continue Reading

Science & Technology

WhatsApp Cofounder Tells Students to Delete Facebook

Delete Facebook

During a public appearance at Stanford University on Wednesday, WhatsApp cofounder Brian Acton told students to delete Facebook, BuzzFeed News reports.

He also criticized the profit models driving tech giants like  and Google and how ineffective they tend to be at moderating content on their platforms.

“To be brutally honest, the curated networks — the open networks — struggle to decide what’s hate speech and what’s not hate speech. […] Google struggles with what’s a good website and what’s a bad website,” he said, as quoted by BuzzFeed News. “And we give them the power. That’s the bad part. We buy their products. We sign up for these websites. Delete Facebook, right?”

The Silicon Valley entrepreneur’s appearance comes days after Zuckerberg announced on March 6 that his company will shift towards a “privacy-focused” platform.

Acton sold WhatsApp to Facebook for $19 billion in October 2014. He left the company some three years later, following Facebook’s decision to allow for ads on WhatsApp.

“It is Time”

Earlier this month, Marketplace reported that millions of Facebook users left the platform in 2018. And people are finding other ways to stay in touch: during last week’s major Facebook and Instagram outage, three million people joined encrypted-messaging app Telegram.

It’s not the first time Acton publicly encouraged users to delete Facebook. He tweeted “it is time. #deletefacebook” back in March 2018, mere days after the UK’s Channel 4 News published a report about whistleblower Christoper Wylie, who brought light to the Cambridge Analytica data scandal.

Focus on Privacy

Acton criticized Facebook’s motives and its failures to ensure the privacy of their users’ data and wished there was a way out. “The capitalistic profit motive, or answering to Wall Street, is what’s driving the expansion of invasion of data privacy and [..] a lot of negative outcomes that we’re just not happy with,” he said.

Source link

Continue Reading

Science & Technology

Ladies, Ditch the Bra

IN BRIEF

  • The Facts:This article was written by Louise Habakus for Fearless Parent. Published here from Greenmedinfo.com with permission.
  • Reflect On:There is evidence of a relationship between bras and breast cancer may rethink the societal convention of wearing bras.

I realize it may feel some combination of uncomfortable, unprofessional, or unnecessarily provocative. Societal convention has most of us trussing up before going out.

If you are reading this at home, do me a favor and unhook. Then keep reading.

There’s Some Evidence of a Relationship Between Bras and Breast Cancer

Yes, seriously.

Dressed To Kill: The Link Between Breast Cancer and Bras

Sydney Ross Singer and Soma Grismaijer authored a book called Dressed To Kill. They interviewed 4,000+ women in five major U.S. cities over two years. Half the women had been diagnosed with breast cancer. They found:

  • 75% of women who slept in their bras developed breast cancer
  • 1 in 7 who wore their bras 12+ hours per day developed breast cancer
  • 1 in 168 who did not wear a bra developed breast cancer
  • Within one month of ditching their bras, women with cysts, breast pain, or tenderness found their symptoms disappeared.

Breast Size, Handedness, and Breast Cancer Risk

A 1991 article in the European Journal of Cancer found that premenopausal women who do not wear bras had half the risk of breast cancer compared with bra users. The data also suggest that bra cup size (and breast size) may be a risk factor for breast cancer.

Cancer Is Not a Disease

Andreas Moritz revealed that Japanese, Fijians, and women from other cultures were found to have a significantly higher likelihood of developing breast cancer when they began wearing bras. His book explains how cancer is an adaptive healing mechanism, arguing that people would die more quickly if the body did not form cancer cells.

Bras and Girdles Can Reduce Melatonin Levels

Japanese researchers found they can lower melatonin by 60%. Melatonin has anti-cancer properties. And Spanish researchers wrote about the use of melanonin in breast cancer prevention and treatment.

There’s No Downside to Being Cautious.

Am I suggesting this scanty fact base offers definitive proof of a causal relationship? No.

Am I suggesting you should be comforted that the National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, and the New York Times all believe it to be bunk? No.

That’s a longer discussion, but it’s sufficient to say that politics and economics create active bedfellows and the absence of a commercial imperative might have something to do with the dearth of research.

Many of us don’t need to wait in order to do something that intuitively seems to make a lot of sense. Frankly, in view of the alarming rate of breast cancer prevalence in this country (12.3% of women) and the growing trend to remove body parts in an attempt to improve our odds, it seems we might be receptive to a bit of behavior modification.

Things to Consider Doing:

Go braless as much as possible.

It actually gets easier. When these muscles and ligaments are forced to bear the weight of our breasts, muscle tone returns. The more you wear a bra, the more you need to wear a bra. Chest muscles and breast ligaments atrophy, which then makes it feel uncomfortable to go braless.

15 year French study conducted by Besancon CHU professor Jean-Denis Rouillon found that “medically, phyisiologically, and anatomically, breasts gained no benefit from their weight being supported in a bra.” There was some evidence that eliminating bra use helped ease back pain. He described bra wearing as a “false need.”

Remove your bra when you get home. Don’t wear a bra to bed. And if you’re self-conscious when going out, try wearing camisoles, thicker material, or nipple pads. It does make sense to wear a support bra while exercising.

Wear Loose Bras in Softer Materials and Avoid Underwires

Tight bras and underwires restrict lymphatic drainage, promoting congestion and stagnation of toxic waste materials that are supposed to be flowing out for excretion. Further, the closing of lymphatic vessels reduces the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the cells.

Michael Schachter, MD, FACAM wrote that bras and tight clothing can impede lymph flow and contribute to the development of breast cancer.

John MacDougall, MD wrote in The Lancet that repeated inflammation from constricting bras are implicated in painful breast cysts and lumps, scar tissue develops, and milk ducts become plugged, all of which is associated with a higher risk of breast cancer.

The metal in underwire bras can create an “Antenna Effect” according to the father of Applied Kinesiology, George Goodheart, DC. Repeated pressing of metal over an acupuncture point can cause longer-term stimulation of neuro-lymphatic reflex points corresponding to the liver, gallbladder, and stomach. “It will likely make her sick; slowly and quietly,” said John Andre, ND, DC.

Here’s a list of no-underwire bras recommended by Donna Eden, Vicki Mathews, and Titanya Dahlin. Donna adds that plastic underwires have the same negative impact as metal underwires.

Slide the Wires Out!

There’s no need to toss your expensive underwire bras. If you cut a small opening at one end of the wire, you can manually remove it from each cup. You’ll probably find that your bra supports you nearly as well without them. Oh, and don’t be fooled. They make look like plastic, but they’re actually plastic-coated metal. If you find you still need the support, you can buy and insert plastic wires. Andre explains how.

Louise Kuo Habakus is the co-author of Vaccine Epidemic, the Executive Director and co-founder of the Center for Personal Rights, the founder of Fearless Parent, and the Executive Director of Health Freedom Action.

For more info from Greenmedinfo, you can sign up for their Newsletter HERE

Greenmedinfo Article Link

Continue Reading

Trending