Friday, July 30, 2010


Calcium supplements, which many people consume hoping to ward off osteoporosis, may increase the risk of heart attack by as much as 30 percent, researchers reported Friday.

These tiny tablets which carry concentrated doses of calcium were also associated with higher incidences of stroke and death, but they were not statistically significant.

The researchers advised people consuming calcium supplements to seek advice from their doctors, take more calcium-rich foods and try other interventions like exercise, not smoking and keeping a healthy weight to prevent osteoporosis.

"People regard calcium supplements as natural but they are really not natural at all," Ian Reid, professor of medicine at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, said in a telephone interview.

Reid and colleagues in Britain and the United States conducted a meta-analysis encompassing 11 studies that tracked nearly 12,000 elderly people over four years.

Half of them were given calcium supplements and the other half placebo or dummy pills with no therapeutic content. The results were published in the British Medical Journal.

"What we found was a 30 percent increase in heart attacks in the people who were randomized to take calcium," Reid said.

"If you have 1,000 people taking calcium for five years, we will expect to find 14 more heart attacks, 10 more strokes and 13 more deaths in the people given calcium than they would have had if they hadn't been treated with calcium," Reid said.

"That is 37 more adverse events and we expect 26 fractures being prevented. So calcium is associated with more bad things happening than with bad things prevented."

While experts are not certain about the biological mechanism by which calcium supplements may damage the body, studies in the past have linked high levels of blood calcium to more heart attacks and damage to blood vessels, Reid said.
"When you take calcium supplements, your blood calcium level goes up over the following four to six hours and goes up to the top end of the normal range," he said.
"That doesn't happen when you have calcium to eat in your diet because the calcium from food is very slowly absorbed and so the blood calcium level hardly changes at all."
Higher blood calcium may lead to the formation of plaques in blood vessels, which can lead to heart attack, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases, Reid explained.

"People have always focused on fat levels in the blood as driving that process (plaque formation) but there is increasing evidence now that calcium levels in the blood might drive that as well," he added.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Im not sure of the facts of this article but it sure makes a very interesting read!!!!!

Doctors insist tiny Nmachi is not an albino and neither of the parents has any mixed-race family history.

Dad Ben Ihegboro, 44, a railway customer services adviser, said: "We both just sat there after the birth staring at her for ages - not saying anything.

"The first thing I said was 'What the flip?'."

Nmachi, whose name means Beauty of God in the Nigerian homeland of parents Angela and Ben, was born at Queen Mary's Hospital in Sidcup, Kent.

Doctors there told them she is not an albino.

"She doesn't look like an albino child anyway - not like the ones I've seen back in Nigeria or in books," Ben told The Sun. "She just looks like a healthy white baby."

Ben added: "Of course, she's mine. My wife is true to me. Even if she hadn't been, the baby still wouldn't look like that.

"We don't know of any white ancestry. We wondered if it was a genetic twist. But even then, what's with the long curly blonde hair?"
Professor Bryan Sykes, head of Human Genetics at Oxford University, said: "In mixed race humans, the lighter variant of skin tone may come out in a child - and this can sometimes be startlingly different to the skin of the parents.

"This might be the case where there is a lot of genetic mixing, as in Afro-Caribbean populations. But in Nigeria there is little mixing."

He said that both parents would have needed some form of white ancestry for a pale version of their genes to be passed on.

"The hair is extremely unusual," Prof Sykes said. "Even many blonde children don't have blonde hair like this at birth."

Some form of unknown mutation was the most likely explanation, he added.
The couple, of Woolwich, south London, have two other children, four-year-old Chisom and sister Dumebi, two.
Mum Angela, 35, told the paper: "Nmachi's colour doesn't matter. She's a miracle baby. But still, what on earth happened here?"
Skin colour is believed to be determined by up to seven different genes working together.

If a woman is of mixed race, her eggs will usually contain a mixture of genes coding for both black and white skin. Similarly, a man of mixed race will have a variety of different genes in his sperm.

When these eggs and sperm come together, they will create a baby of mixed race.

But, very occasionally, the egg or sperm might contain genes coding for one skin colour. If both the egg and sperm contain all white genes, the baby will be white. And if both contain just the versions necessary for black skin, the baby will be black.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Two old men were arguing the merits of their doctors. The first one said, "I don't trust your fancy doctor. He treated old Jake Waxman for a kidney ailment for nearly a year, and then Jake died of a liver ailment."

"So what makes you think your doctor is any better?" asked his friend.
"Because when my doctor treats you for a kidney ailment, you can be sure you'll die of a kidney ailment."





Current research suggests that a diet high in omega-3 fatty acids may help prevent one of the leading causes of legal blindness among the elderly. The related report by Tuo et al, "A high omega-3 fatty acid diet reduces retinal lesions in a murine model of macular degeneration," appears in the August 2009 issue of the American Journal of Pathology.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), loss of vision in the center of the visual field (macula) due to retinal damage, is one of the leading causes of legal blindness among the elderly. Approximately 10% of people from 66 to 74 years of age will develop some level of macular degeneration, making it difficult for them to read or even recognize faces.
A diet high in omega-3 fatty acids has been found to protect against a variety of diseases including atherosclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Retrospective studies have suggested that diets high in fish oil or omega-3 fatty acids may also contribute to protection against AMD. A group led by Dr. Chi-Chao Chan at the National Eye Institute in Bethesda, MD examined the direct effect of omega-3 fatty acids on a mouse model of AMD. A diet with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids resulted in slower lesion progression, with improvement in some lesions. These mice had lower levels of inflammatory molecules and higher levels of anti-inflammatory molecules, which may explain this protective effect.
Tuo et al suggest that "a diet enriched in EPA and DHA can ameliorate the progression of retinal lesions in their mouse model of AMD" and that "the results in these mice are in line with the epidemiological studies of AMD risk reduction by long chain n-3 fatty acids." The results "further provide the scientific basis for the application of omega-3 fatty acids and their biologically active derivatives in the prevention and treatment of AMD." In future studies, Dr. Chan and colleagues plan to use this murine model "to evaluate [other] therapies that might delay the development of AMD." Their ongoing projects include the "testing of systematic delivered pharmacochaperones and antioxidative molecules, as well as intraocularly delivered gene therapies."

Friday, July 23, 2010


My family physician told me of an incident that actually happened to him back in the early days of his practice. He said a woman brought her baby to see him, and he determined right away that the baby had an earache. He wrote a prescription for ear drops. In the directions he wrote, "Put two drops in right ear every four hours" and he abbreviated "right" as an R with a circle around it. Several days passed, and the woman returned with her baby, complaining that the baby still had an earache, and his little behind was getting really greasy with all those drops of oil. The doctor looked at the bottle of ear drops and sure enough, the pharmacist had typed the following instructions on the label: "Put two drops in R ear every four hours."


Brain tumor researchers have found that brain tumors arise from cancer stem cells living within tiny protective areas formed by blood vessels in the brain. Killing those cells is a promising strategy to eliminate tumors and prevents them from re-growing. The researchers have found that drugs that block new blood vessel formation can destroy the protected areas and stop cancer from developing.

For years, researchers thought all cells inside a tumor were the same. But recently, they've discovered something different -- a small group of cancer stem cells.

"They give rise to all the cells that make up the cancer," Dr. Gilbertson explains.

Dr. Gilbertson's research shows those cancer stem cells live close to blood vessels, which fuel them. In lab experiments, he's proven drugs that target the blood vessels also destroy the cancer stem cells and can ultimately wipe out the tumor.

"So, if you can target those cells, you can have a devastating effect on the disease," Dr. Gilbertson says. Drugs like Avastin and Tarceva are now being tested in humans to see if they can target the cancer stem cells. "It's this tangible way of actually getting at the heart of the disease," Dr. Gilbertson says.

The new findings from St. Jude indicates that it is possible to kill the cancer by disrupting the shielded compartments in the small capillaries of the brain where CSCs reside. Anti-angiogenic drugs, such as Avastin, block the formation of new blood vessels. In tests with mice, those same drugs cause a significant drop in cancer stem cells and slow tumor growth. Human clinical trials are currently in progress at St. Jude to determine the effectiveness of Avastin and another anti-angiogenic drug in eliminating tumors and preventing their recurrence in children with brain cancers.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Helen Adams Keller (June 27, 1880 – June 1, 1968) was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deafblind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree.A prolific author, Keller was well traveled, and was outspoken in her opposition to war. A member of the Socialist Party USA and the Wobblies, she campaigned for women's suffrage, workers' rights, and socialism, as well as many other leftist causes.

Helen Keller was not born blind and deaf; it was not until she was 19 months old that she contracted an illness described by doctors as "an acute congestion of the stomach and the brain", which might have been scarlet fever or meningitis. The illness did not last for a particularly long time, but it left her deaf and blind. She felt lost. She would hang on to her mother's skirt to get around. She would feel of people's hands to try to find out what they were doing. She learned to do many things this way. She learned to milk a cow and knead the bread dough.She could recognize people by feeling of their faces or their clothes.

At that time, she was able to communicate somewhat with Martha Washington,the six-year-old daughter of the family cook, who understood her signs; by the age of seven, she had over 60 home signs to communicate with her family.She made up signs with her hands so she could "talk" to her family. If she wanted bread, she pretended to be cutting a loaf. If she wanted ice cream, she would hug her shoulders and shiver According to Soviet psychologist A. Meshcheryakov, Martha's friendship and teaching was crucial for Helen's later development.
In 1886, her mother, inspired by an account in Charles Dickens' American Notes of the successful education of another deaf and blind child, Laura Bridgman, dispatched young Helen, accompanied by her father, to seek out Dr. J. Julian Chisolm, an eye, ear, nose, and throat specialist in Baltimore, for advice.He subsequently put them in touch with Alexander Graham Bell, who was working with deaf children at the time. Bell advised the couple to contact the Perkins Institute for the Blind, the school where Bridgman had been educated, which was then located in South Boston. Michael Anaganos, the school's director, asked former student Anne Sullivan, herself visually impaired and only 20 years old, to become Keller's instructor. It was the beginning of a 49-year-long relationship, evolving into governess and then eventual companion.


It is uncertain as to what can be considered the first wheelchair, or who invented it. The first known dedicated wheelchair (invented in 1595 and called an invalids chair) was made for Phillip II of Spain by an unknown inventor. In 1655, Stephen Farfler, a paraplegic watchmaker, built a self-propelling chair on a three wheel chassis.

Bath Wheelchair
In 1783, John Dawson of Bath, England, invented a wheelchair named after the town of Bath. Dawson designed a chair with two large wheels and one small one. The Bath wheelchair outsold all other wheelchairs throughout the early part of the 19th century. However, the Bath wheelchair was not that comfortable and during the last half of the 19th century many improvements were made to wheelchairs. An 1869 patent for a wheelchair showed  the  first model with rear push wheels and small front casters.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Painless Vaccine delivery Patch with microneedles - Say no to sharp needles !! A New study from Emory University ,USA

A new vaccine-delivery patch based on hundreds of microscopic needles that dissolve into the skin could allow persons without medical training to painlessly administer vaccines -- while providing improved immunization against diseases such as influenza.

Patches containing micron-scale needles that carry vaccine with them as they dissolve into the skin could simplify immunization programs by eliminating the use of hypodermic needles -- and their "sharps" disposal and re-use concerns. Applied easily to the skin, the microneedle patches could allow self-administration of vaccine during pandemics and simplify large-scale immunization programs in developing nations.
Details of the dissolving microneedle patches and immunization benefits observed in experimental mice were reported July 18th in the advance online publication of the journal Nature Medicine. Conducted by researchers from Emory University and the Georgia Institute of Technology, the study is believed to be the first to evaluate the immunization benefits of dissolving microneedles. The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Saturday, July 17, 2010

A Harvard medical school study !! Movies and TV Influence Tobacco Use in India

Survey results from 123,768 women and 74,068 men in India found that monthly movie-going was associated with increased smoking among both sexes and increased tobacco chewing among men. Daily television and radio users were more likely to chew tobacco, while women who read a daily newspaper were less likely to chew tobacco. HSPH Associate Professor K "Vish" Viswanath  was first author of the paper, published online June 29, 2010, in PLOS One. HSPH Prof Glorian Sorensen. was a co-author.

A Harvard Medical school study !! Stroke Risk Increases Temporarily for an Hour After Drinking Alcohol

Call it the not-so-happy hour. The risk of stroke appears to double in the hour after consuming just one drink -- be it wine, beer or hard liquor -- according to a small multi-center study reported in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association."The impact of alcohol on your risk of ischemic stroke appears to depend on how much and how often you drink," said Murray A. Mittleman, M.D., Dr.P.H., senior author of the Stroke Onset Study (SOS) and director of the Cardiovascular Epidemiology Research Unit at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in the Harvard Medical School in Boston, Mass.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


Tom Cruise was born Thomas Cruise Mapother IV, on July 3, 1962 in Syracuse, New York. He was the third of four children, and the only son of Mary Lee and Thomas Mapother.  fighting. He grew up poor, and his family moved around a lot while his father looked for work. Tom never spent a lot of time any one school because the family moved around a lot. Tom, like his mother, suffered from dyslexia and was put into the remedial classes at school.
Dyslexia is a learning disability that impairs a person's ability to read,and which can manifest itself as a difficulty with phonological awareness, phonological decoding, orthographic coding, auditory short-term memory, and/or rapid naming. Dyslexia is separate and distinct from reading difficulties resulting from other causes, such as a non-neurological deficiency with vision or hearing, or from poor or inadequate reading instruction. It is estimated that dyslexia affects between 5 and 17 percent of the population

Tom is right handed when writing, but does most things left handed. While Tom was not an academic success, he focused on athletics and competed in many sports. A knee injury derailed his hopes of a promising athletic career.

Tom Cruise then spent a year in a Franciscan monastery, but the priesthood was not for him. While in high school, he appeared in a number of plays, and with his mother’s encouragement and support, pursued a career in acting. Tom focused all his energy on developing his acting career, once again revealing his drive and dogged determination. He never let his learning disability stand in the way of his success.


An old lady fell down the stairs and broke her leg. The doctor put it in a cast and warned her not to walk up and down the stairs. The leg was slow in meding. Finally, after six months, the doctor announced it was all right to remove the cast.
"Can I climb the stairs now?" asked the old lady.

"Yes" answered the doctor.

"Oh, I'm so glad," she smiled. "I'm sick of climbing up and down the drainpipe all the time.


Eating a Mediterranean-style diet — one characterized by low saturated fats and high in fish, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, olive oil, cereals and moderate alcohol consumption — reduces a person's heart disease risk. But until now, the way the diet helps reduce the risk of coronary disease remains unknown.

Using data from the Emory Twins Heart Study, researchers found that men eating a Mediterranean-style diet had greater heart rate variability (HRV) than those eating a Western-type diet.

Heart rate variability refers to variation in the time interval between heart beats during everyday life — reduced HRV is a risk factor for coronary artery disease and sudden death.
The research is reported in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, an American Heart Association journal.

“This means that the autonomic system controlling someone's heart rate works better in people who eat a diet similar to a Mediterranean diet,” said Jun Dai, study author and assistant professor of nutrition and epidemiology at Indiana University in Bloomington.

Dai and her colleagues analyzed dietary data obtained from a food frequency questionnaire and cardiac data results from 276 identical and fraternal male twins.

They scored each participant on how closely his food intake correlated with the Mediterranean diet; the higher the score, the greater the similarity to a Mediterranean-style diet, according to an Indiana University press release. To measure HRV, participants had their heart's electrical activity continuously measured and recorded with a Holter Monitor, a portable, battery operated electrocardiogram device.

The study cannot be generalized to women or other ethnic groups because 94 per cent of the study's participants were non-Hispanic white males.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Honey Bee Venom - New Treatment to Alleviate Muscular Dystrophy, Depression and Dementia???

Apamin, a natural peptide toxin found in bee venom, is known for its ability to block a type of ion channel that enables a high-speed and selective flow of potassium ions out of nerves. The blocking of these channels in brain causes nerves to become hyperexcitable, producing improved learning that has implications for the treatment of dementia and depression. In addition, injection of apamin improves the symptoms experienced by sufferers of myotonic muscular dystrophy (MD).
Until now, the exact mechanism by which apamin acts was poorly understood. In a study published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, two teams from the University of Bristol and the University of Liege in Belgium describe the results of their joint work on these KCa2 potassium ion channels, also called SK channels.
Using computer models and a genetic approach, the researchers were able to pinpoint exactly where apamin binds to block the channel. To block ion channels, most molecules act as a plug at their external mouth. Perhaps surprisingly, the researchers have discovered that apamin binds away from the channel pore, and causes the shape of the channel to change through an 'allosteric' mechanism, resulting in block
This discovery could accelerate research into the design of new SK channel blockers which could imitate the action of apamin, to target SK channels in neural and muscular conditions such as dementia, depression or MD.
Professor Neil Marrion, from the University of Bristol's Physiology & Pharmacology department, said: "Drug design depends on knowing the target. Our findings have provided a new approach to designing a therapeutic agent that could help with the treatment of a number of conditions."


Julie Fernandez (born April 20, 1974) is a British actress, best known as Brenda, her award-winning role on the BBC comedy The Office. She is also a model.

Fernandez was born with osteogenesis imperfecta and requires the use of a wheelchair.

Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI and sometimes known as Brittle Bone Disease) is a genetic bone disorder. People with OI are born without the proper protein (collagen), or the ability to make it, usually because of a deficiency of Type-I collagen. People with OI either have less collagen than normal or the quality is poorer than normal. As collagen is an important protein in bone structure, this impairment causes those with the condition to have weak or fragile bones.

I once broke my ankle simply from putting on a sock. I was born 10 weeks early with osteogenesis imperfecta – brittle bone disease – and my parents were told I wouldn't live longer than two years and that they would have to carry me around on a pillow. I've had about 70 operations and broken 100 bones. Life has improved since I have been taking this fantastic drug, pamidronate, which increases your bone density.


A patient complained to his doctor, "I've been to three other doctors
 and none of them agreed with your diagnosis."
 The doctor calmly replied, "Just wait until the autopsy, then they'll see that I was right."

Friday, July 9, 2010

Marijuana Derivative Can Be Used in Medicine for Pain Treatment ! - New study

A new compound similar to the active component of marijuana (cannabis) might provide effective pain relief without the mental and physical side effects of cannabis, according to a study in the July issue of Anesthesia & Analgesia, official journal of the International Anesthesia Research Society (IARS).

Brain chip for paralysed patients

Scientists have developed a brain chip that will help paralysed patients operate their bionic limbs.
The technology employs tiny microchips to sense nerve messages, decode the signals, and turn thought into movement.

The scientists hope that within five years they will be able to offer patients with damaged spinal cords robotic devices that will enable them to move their arms or legs at will.

Rodrigo Quian Quiroga, heading a University of Leicester team working on the project, said such patients retain the ability to “think” commands from the brain.

“The guy can see the object he wants to reach, the guy can have the intention to reach to the object, the brain can send a command to the arm — ‘reach for this cup of tea' — but the signal gets broken at the level of the spinal cord,” he said.

“If we can get the signals from these neurons and interpret them with what is called decoding algorithms, then we can move a robot device placed on the paralysed arm,” he added.

The more ambitious idea is not to use robotic devices but to replace the broken connection to the limb with an artificial link.

The brain chip would then send signals to an implanted stimulator in the spinal cord. This would generate electrical impulses that would make muscles contract and move paralysed limbs.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Obesity leads to lack of erercise or vice-versa??

New research from the UK suggests that physical inactivity in children is the result of obesity and not the other way around, challenging the popular view that getting overweight children to exercise more is the key to preventing the childhood obesity; the researchers maintain the path to childhood obesity is set very early in life, long before children go to school and is linked to early feeding habits.

These are some of the findings of the EarlyBird Diabetes Study, which is based at the Peninsula Medical School in Plymouth and has been following a cohort of city school children for 11 years.

While we all know that overweight children tend to do less exercise, this does not necessarily mean, as many of us might assume, that it is inactivity that leads to obesity, it could be the other way around, and Wilkin and colleagues set out to find some evidence for this and ask the "chicken and egg" question: What came first? Does lack of physical activity precede the changes that lead to fatness in children, or does increasing fatness in children precede changes in physical activity?

By examining the data they had collected over 11 years on over 200 children recruited from 40 Plymouth primary schools, they concluded unequivocally that physical activity had no effect on weight change, but weight change led to less physical activity.

For the study, they examined data on 202 children (25 per cent were overweight or obese, and 53 per cent were boys). The main outcome measures were physical activity and percentage body fat, measured every year.

To measure physical activity, the researchers fitted each child with an Actigraph accelerometer, which they wore for 7 consecutive days once a year. This yielded two measures for analysis: volume and intensity. Thus the researchers could see the total volume of physical activity, and the time the wearer spent doing moderate and vigorous activity.

For the body fat measure the children underwent annual x rays (the method used was dual energy x ray absorptiometry).

When the researchers analysed the results, they found that:

Percentage body fat was predictive of changes in physical activity over the following three years.
Physical activity was not predictive of subsequent changes in percentage body fat over the same follow-up period.
A 10 per cent higher body fat percentage at age 7 predicted a relative decrease in daily moderate and vigorous intensities of physical activity (4 min from 7 to 10 years of age).

But more physical activity at age 7 did not predict a relative decrease in percentage body fat between 7 and 10 years of age.
The researchers suggested that children who become overweight may lack confidence and feel embarassed about how they look and this stops them taking part in sporting activity and exercise.

Monday, July 5, 2010




Patient: Doctor, what does the X-ray of my head show?

Doctor: Absolutely nothing!

Treatment of Septic Patients With Hypothermia

Inducing mild hypothermia is easy to implement in clinical practice and may be a valuable tool in the treatment of human sepsis patients, say researchers at the University of Brest, France.

Sepsis is an inflammatory response to infection and will often result in septic shock, which is the biggest cause of death in intensive care units.

New research shows that the development of sepsis in rats living under hypothermic conditions was slower than in normal conditions and they survived much longer.

The new research showed that rats with sepsis living under normal conditions (38 ºC) showed a decreased ability to carry oxygen via the blood from the lungs to vital organs around the body, compared to those living under mildly hypothermic conditions (34 ºC).

Hypothermia could have a beneficial effect in septic patients whose uptake of oxygen has been affected by the condition, by increasing the ability of the pigment in red-blood cells (haemoglobin, Hb) to carry oxygen, thus balancing the harmful effects of sepsis, say the researchers.

Building on these results, the research team are carrying out a pilot clinical study into the efficiency, safety and practicality of using mild hypothermia as a treatment for septic shock in humans.

The pilot study is being carried out Professor Erwan L'Her from Brest hospital and colleagues from the ORPHY laboratory in the University of Brest.

"The preliminary results suggest that mild hypothermia is safe and easily induced in septic shock patients and no serious adverse effects were observed," explained Karelle Leon, who is carrying out the research.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Nancy Hogshead -Olympic swimmer

Nancy Hogshead-Makar (born April 17, 1962) is an American retired swimmer who competed for the United States at the 1984 Summer Olympics. She won three gold and one silver medals in medley and freestyle swimming. After retiring from competitive swimming she became a lawyer, writer.
At the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, California she swam the finals in the women's 100m freestyle. In the first dead heat in Olympic swimming history, Hogshead and US-teammate Carrie Steinseifer had identical times and both were awarded the gold medal (no silver medal was awarded). Hogshead won two other golds, in the 4x100m freestyle and the 4x100m medley teams. She also won a silver in the 200m individual medley.

 During one race, wherein she missed a bronze medal by 7/100th of a second, she suffered a bronchial spasm that led to a diagnosis of ASTHMA. After the initial disbelief, she accepted her condition and learned to monitor and control it.

She retired from competitive swimming, and with her Olympic fame, began to lecture around the world about asthma management. Pharmaceutical companies sponsored her and for a while, she spoke to over 100 groups each year across the US. In addition, Hogshead earned the title of National Spokesperson for the American Lung Association. Between speaking engagements, she managed to graduate from Duke with honors in 1986. Hogshead authored the 1990 book, Asthma and Exercise, the first comprehensive book on the topic of asthma and sports. The book tells inspirational stories of athletes who learned to manage their condition.


Colour perception drifts away from neutrality during wakefulness and is restored during sleep, suggests a research abstract  presentedin San Antonio, Texas, at SLEEP 2010, the 24th annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies LLC.
Results indicate that prior wakefulness caused the colour grey to be classified as having a slightly but significantly greenish tint. Overnight sleep restored perception to achromatic equilibrium so that grey was perceived as grey.

According to the authors, scientists had not previously investigated how sleep might affect the way we view the world around us.

“This is among the first studies to investigate the effects of sleep on perception,” said principal investigator and lead author Bhavin Sheth, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Houston in Texas.

“Our findings suggest that wakefulness causes colour classification to drift away from neutrality, and sleep restores colour classification to neutral.”

The study involved five people who viewed a full-field, homogenous stimulus of either slightly reddish or greenish hue.

The observers had to judge whether the stimulus was greener or redder than their internal perception of neutral grey. Across trials the hue was varied.

One pair of monocular tests was performed just before participants went to sleep, and testing was repeated after participants slept for an average of 7.7 hours, according to a University of Houston press release.

Further testing found that overnight, full-field monocular stimulation with a flickering red “ganzfeld” failed to nullify the resetting, sleep-induced effect.

An achromatic stimulus was still less likely to be classified as greenish following sleep, with no statistical difference in the magnitude of the resetting in each eye. According to the authors, this suggests that colour resetting is an internal process that is largely unaffected by external monochromatic visual stimulation.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


A man was just coming out of anesthesia after a series of tests in the hospital, and his wife was sitting at his bedside. His eyes fluttered open, and he murmured, "You're beautiful." Flattered, the wife continued her vigil while he drifted back to sleep. Later, her husband woke up and said, "You're cute." Startled, she asked him, "What happened to 'beautiful?'" He replied, "The drugs are wearing off."





Despite their blase demeanours, young men are more affected by the ups and downs of romantic relationships than their girlfriends are, a new study suggests.

While young women are more affected by their relationship status—that is, whether they are in one or not—young men are more sensitive to a relationship’s quality, such as how supportive or straining it is, LiveScience reported.

“Simply being in a relationship may be more important for a woman’s identity,” said lead researcher Robin Simon of Wake Forest University in North Carolina. Having a relationship “is something that is emphasized constantly for women. Just pick up any woman’s magazine.”

But once in a relationship, the romance’s strengths are particularly helpful to men, and its difficult periods are particularly hard on them, Simon told LiveScience.

In the study, 1,611 men and women between the ages of 18 and 23 answered questions about their relationships and their own emotional states, including rating symptoms of depression and substance abuse. The questions were asked twice, two years apart, helping researchers deduce that emotional states were largely influenced by a relationship, not the other way around.

Rocky relationships were associated with equal amounts of depression in young men and women, and significantly greater problems with substance abuse and dependence among men. The correlative findings were published in the June issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior.
Why relationships affect young women and men differently is not yet clear. But the finding contradicts the conventional view of women as the more emotionally involved romantic partner.

No matter their game face, men are not stoically impervious to a relationship’s ebbs and flows, Simon said.


A Tutorial from the National Library of Medicine, From Medline Plus



The Will That Established the Nobel Prizes!!!

The life of Alfred Nobel and start of the nobel prize, which is considered as probably the biggest honor that one can recieve in today's world, makes a very interesting read.....

Alfred Nobel was born on October 21, 1833 in Stockholm, Sweden. His father Immanuel Nobel, an architect, builder, and inventor, opened a machineshop in St. Petersburg and was soon very successful with contracts from the Russian government to build defense weapons.

Because of his father's success, Alfred was tutored at home until the age of 16. Besides being a trained chemist, Alfred was an avid reader of literature and was fluent in English, German, French, Swedish, and Russian. He spent much of this time working in a laboratory in Paris, but also traveled to the United States. Upon his return, Alfred worked in his father's factory. He worked there until his father went bankrupt in 1859.

Alfred soon began experimenting with nitroglycerine, creating his first explosions in early summer 1862. In only a year (October 1863), Alfred received a Swedish patent for his percussion detonator - the "Nobel lighter."

Though he recognized the destructive power of dynamite, Alfred believed it was a harbinger of peace. Alfred told Bertha von Suttner, an advocate for world peace,

My factories may make an end of war sooner than your congresses. The day when two army corps can annihilate each other in one second, all civilized nations, it is to be hoped, will recoil from war and discharge their troops.* 
In 1888, when Alfred's brother Ludvig died, a French newspaper mistakenly ran an obituary for Alfred.
The obituary stated Le marchand de la mort est mort ("The merchant of death is dead")and went on to say, "Dr. Alfred Nobel, who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before, died yesterday."
This made a big impact on the thought process of Alfred Nobel , which subsequently let to the initiation of what is now called the most prestigious honour " The Nobel prize " .

Alfred Nobel, chemist and inventor, died alone on December 10, 1896 after suffering a cerebral hemorrhage.

After several funeral services were held and Alfred Nobel's body was cremated, the will was opened. Everyone was shocked.

The following is a portion of Alfred Nobel's will, dated November 27, 1895 and signed by Alfred Bernhard Nobel.