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morganism

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morganisms
« on: May 29, 2021, 11:00:41 PM »
Prenatal exposure to paracetamol associated with ADHD and autism symptoms in childhood

"In total, the researchers analysed 73,881 children for whom data were available on prenatal or postnatal exposure to paracetamol, at least one symptom of ASC or ADHD, and main covariates. Depending on the cohort, 14% to 56% of the mothers reported taking paracetamol while pregnant.

The study found that children exposed to paracetamol before birth were 19% more likely to develop ASC symptoms and 21% more likely to develop ADHD symptoms than children who were not exposed.

"Our findings are consistent with previous research," explained ISGlobal researcher Sílvia Alemany, lead author of the study. "We also found that prenatal exposure to paracetamol affects boys and girls in a similar way, as we observed practically no differences."

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2021-05/bifg-pet052521.php

"The sample is large," she added, "and it includes cohorts from multiple European countries: the United Kingdom, Denmark, the Netherlands, Italy, Greece and Spain. We also used the same criteria for all of the cohorts, thereby reducing the heterogeneity of criteria that has hampered previous studies."

morganism

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morganisms
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2021, 09:07:17 PM »

"Conclusions: In a large and diverse international sample of older adults, the current study found that abstinence from alcohol is associated with an increased risk for all-cause dementia. Among current drinkers, there was no consistent evidence to suggest that the amount of alcohol consumed in later life was significantly associated with dementia risk. "

The relationship between alcohol use and dementia:

https://psyarxiv.com/7835k/

word doc availible on-site
« Last Edit: October 04, 2021, 04:32:16 PM by be cause »

morganism

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Paracetamol use during pregnancy — a call for precautionary action

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41574-021-00553-7

"In this Consensus Statement, we summarize the epidemiological research and animal studies that have examined neurological, urogenital and reproductive outcomes that have been associated with maternal and perinatal use of APAP (Figs 1,2). Based on this research, we believe we know enough to be concerned about the potential developmental risks associated with prenatal APAP exposure and therefore call for precautionary action

APAP is an endocrine disruptor

Chemicals that disrupt the endocrine system are concerning because they can interfere with the activity of endogenous hormones that are essential for healthy neurological, urogenital and reproductive development2,47,48. APAP is known to readily cross the placenta and blood–brain barrier49,50. During pregnancy, changes occur in APAP metabolism, which might make pregnant women and their fetus more vulnerable to toxic effects. For instance, the molar dose fraction of APAP that is converted to the oxidative metabolite N-acetyl-p-benzoquinone imine might be increased during pregnancy51,52.

The analgesic and antipyretic properties of APAP are still not fully understood. However, several lines of evidence suggest that APAP acts both in the periphery and centrally through several mechanisms. For example, one of the ways APAP is believed to relieve pain is through inhibition of prostaglandin signalling53. Furthermore, APAP inhibits serotonergic mechanisms in clinical studies54. APAP also acts as a prodrug for analgesic metabolites55; in experimental studies, these metabolites activate serotonergic, opioidergic, vanilloid and cannabinoid receptors, as well as transient receptor potential channels53,56. Prostaglandins are lipid compounds with physiologically important roles in the development of the gonads in both sexes and the development of the brain57,58,59; therefore, some of the disrupting effects of APAP are probably mediated through this pathway. Moreover, increasing clinical evidence suggests that the action of APAP in inhibiting prostaglandin signalling in the third trimester can lead to ductus arteriosus constriction, a condition that might result in fetal loss or life-threatening cardiac failure in the newborn60.

In vivo, in vitro and ex vivo studies have shown that APAP directly perturbs hormone-dependent processes, including inhibition of androgen production and increased oestrogen production, disruption of steroidogenesis, depletion of sulfated sex hormones, perturbation of immune function, induction of oxidative stress and indirect activation of the endocannabinoid system1,2,61,62,63,64,65. Independently of APAP, these processes have been implicated as mechanisms related to the development of neurodevelopmental66,67,68,69,70,71,72,73,74,75,76 and reproductive disorders2. In addition to potential effects on neuronal and reproductive development, a combination of clinical studies together with experimental work in animal models and cell lines has also suggested that APAP exposure during pregnancy might decrease fetal haematopoietic stem cell numbers alter steroidogenesis in the placenta and induce placental damage"


Acetaminophen use during pregnancy and offspring attention deficit hyperactivity disorder – a longitudinal sibling control study

https://acamh.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jcv2.12020

"Both the exposed and the unexposed children of mothers with long-term use of acetaminophen in one of the pregnancies had increased risk of receiving an ADHD diagnosis. This indicates that the observed association between long-term acetaminophen use during pregnancy and ADHD in the child may at least partly be confounded by unobserved family factors."

"All children (both exposed and unexposed) born to a mother with long-term use of acetaminophen in one pregnancy, had increased risk of receiving an ADHD diagnosis compared to children of mothers who did not use acetaminophen in any pregnancy (aHR = 2.77, 95% bootstrap C.I. = 1.48–5.05) (rightmost column in Table 2). The two leftmost columns in Figure 3 show the unadjusted and adjusted dose-response associations between number of days of acetaminophen exposure and risk of ADHD. The third column shows that the association between long-term exposure and ADHD was no longer present in the sibling control model. The rightmost column shows the family effect in the sibling control model."

"Children prenatally exposed to acetaminophen for 28 days or less, did not have increased risk of receiving an ADHD diagnosis, compared to unexposed children. Long-term exposure (29 days or more) was associated with a two-fold increase in risk. A substantial family effect in the sibling control model suggested that unmeasured familial confounding factors may explain at least part of the observed association between maternal long-term acetaminophen use and ADHD in the child.

morganism

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« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2021, 12:32:15 AM »
Urban mining by flash Joule heating

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-26038-9

The sample temperature ramps to ~3400 K in milliseconds by the ultrafast electrical thermal process. Such a high temperature enables the evaporative separation of precious metals from the supporting matrices, with the recovery yields >80% for Rh, Pd, Ag, and >60% for Au. The heavy metals in electronic waste, some of which are highly toxic including Cr, As, Cd, Hg, and Pb, are also removed, leaving a final waste with minimal metal content, acceptable even for agriculture soil levels. Urban mining by flash Joule heating would be 80× to 500× less energy consumptive than using traditional smelting furnaces for metal-component recovery and more environmentally friendly."

https://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Urban_mining_for_metals_flashes_forward_999.html

"    
TECH SPACE
Urban mining for metals flashes forward
by Staff Writers
Houston TX (SPX) Oct 05, 2021

The flash Joule heating process developed at Rice University has been adapted to recover valuable and toxic metals from electronic waste. The process allows for "urban mining" of resources that could be a win for the environment as well as for manufacturers. Video: Flash Joule heating by Rice lab recovers precious metals from electronic waste in seconds

In what should be a win-win-win for the environment, a process developed at Rice University to extract valuable metals from electronic waste would also use up to 500 times less energy than current lab methods and produce a byproduct clean enough for agricultural land.

The flash Joule heating method introduced last year to produce graphene from carbon sources like waste food and plastic has been adapted to recover rhodium, palladium, gold and silver for reuse.

A report in Nature Communications by the Rice lab of chemist James Tour also shows highly toxic heavy metals including chromium, arsenic, cadmium, mercury and lead are removed from the flashed materials, leaving a byproduct with minimal metal content.

Instantly heating the waste to 3,400 Kelvin (5,660 degrees Fahrenheit) with a jolt of electricity vaporizes the precious metals, and the gases are vented away for separation, storage or disposal. Tour said that with more than 40 million tons of e-waste produced globally every year, there is plenty of potential for "urban mining."

"Here, the largest growing source of waste becomes a treasure," Tour said. "This will curtail the need to go all over the world to mine from ores in remote and dangerous places, stripping the Earth's surface and using gobs of water resources. The treasure is in our dumpsters."

He noted an increasingly rapid turnover of personal devices like cell phones has driven the worldwide rise of electronic waste, with only about 20% of landfill waste currently being recycled.

"We found a way to get the precious metals back and turn e-waste into a sustainable resource," he said. "The toxic metals can be removed to spare the environment."

The lab found flashing e-waste requires some preparation. Guided by lead author and Rice postdoctoral research associate Bing Deng, the researchers powdered circuit boards they used to test the process and added halides, like Teflon or table salt, and a dash of carbon black to improve the recovery yield.

Once flashed, the process relies on "evaporative separation" of the metal vapors. The vapors are transported from the flash chamber under vacuum to another vessel, a cold trap, where they condense into their constituent metals. "The reclaimed metal mixtures in the trap can be further purified to individual metals by well-established refining methods," Deng said.

The researchers reported that one flash Joule reaction reduced the concentration of lead in the remaining char to below 0.05 parts per million, the level deemed safe for agricultural soils. Levels of arsenic, mercury and chromium were all further reduced by increasing the number of flashes.

"Since each flash takes less than a second, this is easy to do," Tour said.

The scalable Rice process consumes about 939 kilowatt-hours per ton of material processed, 80 times less energy than commercial smelting furnaces and 500 times less than laboratory tube furnaces, according to the researchers. It also eliminates the lengthy purification required by smelting and leaching processes."

morganism

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« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2021, 07:46:44 PM »
Severe pain control without opiods using brain wire implants

3D microelectrode cluster and stimulation paradigm yield powerful analgesia without noticeable adverse effects

" Stimulation of brainstem pain control systems can trigger powerful analgesia, but their complex network organization frequently prevents separation of analgesia from side effects. To overcome this long-standing challenge, we developed a biocompatible gelatin-embedded cluster of ultrathin microelectrodes that enables fine-tuned, high-definition three-dimensional stimulation in periaqueductal gray/dorsal raphe nucleus in awake rats. Analgesia was assessed from both motor reactions and intracortical signals, corresponding to pain-related signals in humans. We could select an individual-specific subset of microelectrodes in each animal that reliably provided strong pain inhibition during normal and hyperalgesia conditions, without noticeable behavioral side effects. Gait, spontaneous cortical activity at rest, and cortical tactile responses were minimally affected, indicating a highly selective action. In conclusion, our developed biocompatible microelectrode cluster and stimulation paradigm reliably enabled powerful, fine-tuned, and selective analgesia without noticeable side effects."

By embedding the microelectrodes in needle-shaped, hard gelatin that expands and then dissolves during implantation, highly flexible microelectrodes could be implanted and spread out as a cluster in deep brain targets.

Stimulation of different neuron types in the PAG/DRN induces different circuit effects. For example, dopamine neurons in this region have been shown to produce analgesia without anxiety (19). In addition, different microcircuits of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and glutamate neurons with divergent end targets can produce competing behaviors (20). One function of this powerful control may be to prevent pain-related reactions from interfering with other, more urgent, and behaviorally appropriate actions.

We compared the effects of PAG/DRN stimulation with the analgesia induced by morphine (1 mg/kg, subcutaneously) in the same animals (n = 8) during weeks 4 to 5 PS to benchmark the analgesic efficacy of PAG/DRN cluster stimulation. The analgesia induced by morphine was less powerful than PAG/DRN stimulation (Fig. 4, A and B). Moreover, morphine caused obvious signs of behavioral sedation. For example, the rats usually appeared to fall asleep with slower breathing and closed eyes."


https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/sciadv.abj2847

morganism

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« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2021, 07:46:05 AM »
Hardened wood as a renewable alternative to steel and plastic

"Cellulose itself is a remarkably strong material, whose strength relative to its density is "higher than almost all the metals and alloys in the world," said Li.

But cellulose comprises only 40 to 50 per cent of wood. So the first step in developing a higher-density wood-based material was to reduce the components that weren't cellulose. In particular they targeted lignin, which acts like a kind of glue in normal wood, binding fibres together.

"We use chemicals to partially remove lignin. And after the first step the wood becomes soft, flexible and somewhat squishy," said Li.

"So the second step is that we apply pressure. We also increase the temperature. The purpose of that is to really densify the natural wood and also remove the water, reducing its thickness to around 20 per cent of the original natural wood."


https://www.cbc.ca/radio/quirks/oct-23-vikings-in-newfoundland-new-rocks-from-the-moon-making-wood-better-and-more-1.6219865/scientists-have-found-a-way-to-harden-wood-to-make-a-knife-that-rivals-steel-1.6219874

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2590238521004653


morganism

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« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2021, 11:08:27 PM »
The fluoride wars rage on

"Den Besten has spent her career trying to work out the systemic effects of swallowing this anion. The fact that fluoride can affect ameloblasts, the cells that produce and deposit tooth enamel, suggests that it could affect other cells of the body. In fact, she notes, studies in animals and humans show that, in addition to fluorosis, cellular effects of fluoride also include inflammation and altered neurodevelopment. That, in turn, suggests that it could make its way into the brain. Den Besten says that means researchers should be looking into whether fluoride has potential effects on the central nervous system. “It should be a high priority to answer these questions. And yet, it’s not.” These potential effects of fluoride are important for individuals at all ages, she says.

The possibility of neurological effects is part of what Connett is trying to draw attention to in his lawsuit against the EPA. The finding that has garnered the most attention is a 2019 study in JAMA Pediatrics6, in which researchers compared the IQ of children who were born to women living in fluoridated areas and non-fluoridated areas. The data, which came from 512 mother–child pairs in 6 cities in Canada, indicated that, depending on how fluoride intake was assessed, exposure during fetal development was associated with as much as a five-point drop in IQ. A second study, led by public-health physician and epidemiologist Howard Hu at the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, found a correlation between increased maternal urinary fluoride and decreased IQ in children born in Mexico City7.

“It’s not disputed that fluoride is toxic at high levels,” says Christine Till, a neuropsychologist at York University in Toronto, Canada, and lead researcher of the JAMA Pediatrics study. But what happens at lower levels, such as the 0.7 milligrams of fluoride per litre recommended in US fluoridation, is contested. That’s what Till and her colleagues have been working to tease out. “You have some weaker studies saying there’s no effect. And then you have our study, and the Mexico study, that are high quality, saying there is an effect,” she says.

On the basis of these two studies, Philippe Grandjean, a physician and environmental medicine researcher at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense, put together a benchmark-dose study on fluoride to document concentrations at which fluoride begins to have detectable adverse effects on IQ. According to the report, published in June8, that level is 0.2 milligrams per litre. That’s less than one-third of the recommended level for US water supplementation and one-twentieth of the US maximum allowable level of 4 mg l−1 (a level originally intended to prevent skeletal fluorosis). These numbers are just the beginning. More cohort studies are under way, and toxicologists and epidemiologists hope they’ll help to bring clarity to the fraught debate."

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-02924-6

morganism

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« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2021, 11:22:00 AM »
Elements may have been forged on Earth, as well as in space

" But he claims that the presence of subatomic particles known as neutral pions can increase the nuclear attraction to the point where fusion occurs. Those pions, he says, would be generated by electrons excited by the rapid fracturing and sliding of carbonate crystals – caused by volcanic eruptions. Alongside the excited electrons would be neutrinos, captured as they stream through the Earth in large numbers from the Sun or other stars, or alternatively from nuclear reactions in the Earth’s core.

The latest work builds on this research by showing how such catalyzed fusion reactions could explain the production not only of nitrogen, oxygen and water, but all of the 25 lightest elements. To demonstrate the plausibility of this mechanism, the researchers calculated the minimum energy required to initiate the reaction in each case and then analyzed the crystal structure of a mineral found in the mantle that contains the reacting elements.

https://physicsworld.com/a/elements-may-have-been-forged-on-earth-as-well-as-in-space/

https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/2399-6528/abb2e6

morganism

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« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2021, 07:58:22 PM »
the history of microbiology, a personal interpetation

https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/pdf/10.1146/annurev-micro-033020-020648

"Microbiology began as a unified science using the principles of chemistry tounderstand living systems. The unified view quickly split into the subdisci-plines of medical microbiology, molecular biology, and environmental mi-crobiology. The advent of a universal phylogeny and culture-independentapproaches has helped tear down the boundaries separating the subdisci-plines. The vision for the future is that the study of the fundamental rolesof microbes in ecology and evolution will lead to an integrated biology withno boundary between microbiology and macrobiology."

morganism

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« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2021, 07:17:00 AM »
Penn Researchers Show ‘Encrypted’ Peptides Could be Wellspring of Natural Antibiotics


The algorithm searched the proteome, the complete set of proteins in the body, and returned 43,000 peptides of 8 to 50 amino acids in length, many of which were found in a new region of the proteome all together. This wide scope of potential antimicrobials was then filtered to 2,603 peptides based on their fitness function inclusive of all the parameters.

To validate the antimicrobial properties of these algorithm-derived peptides, 55 were synthesized and exposed to eight different pathogens including E. coli and bacteria that cause staph infection and pneumonia.

“We found that 63.6% of these 55 encrypted peptides displayed antimicrobial activity,” says de la Fuente. “Interestingly, these peptides not only fought off infection by some of the most harmful bacteria in the world, they also targeted gut and skin commensal organisms that are beneficial to us. We speculate that this could be indicative of a microbiota modulating role that these peptides may possess as well.”

The team also tested the ability of the peptides to act synergistically and found that cocktails of peptides derived from the same biogeographic area within the body were able to potentiate their individual ability to fight off infection by 100-fold.

“This synergistic effect is likely already happening in our bodies,” says de la Fuente. “Some of the peptides discovered by our algorithm exhibited antimicrobial activity at levels that are physiologically relevant. These molecules are found throughout the body, including the immune system. A surprising finding was that these peptides were not only encoded in the immune system but were also found in the digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems, for example, indicating that fighting off infections caused by invading organisms may be a more holistic approach than previously thought.”

https://blog.seas.upenn.edu/penn-researchers-show-encrypted-peptides-could-be-wellspring-of-natural-antibiotics/

Mining for encrypted peptide antibiotics in the human proteome

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41551-021-00801-1

morganism

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« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2021, 11:04:17 PM »
Planetary Biosecurity: Applying Invasion Science to Prevent Biological Contamination from Space Trave

"To address the science and management of invasive alien species, a highly productive interdisciplinary field has emerged over the past few decades: invasion science (also known as invasion biology but embracing nonbiological disciplines)—the study of the causes and consequences of the introduction of organisms beyond their natural evolutionary ranges, with emphasis on the role of humans in these introductions. Research in invasion science has produced novel insights for epidemiology, rapid evolution, the relationship between biodiversity and community stability, and the dynamics of predator–prey and parasite–host interactions, among many other concepts (Hui and Richardson 2017). These insights are being increasingly integrated into biosecurity frameworks "

https://academic.oup.com/bioscience/advance-article/doi/10.1093/biosci/biab115/6413826

morganism

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« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2021, 12:18:17 AM »
‘Dancing molecules’ successfully repair severe spinal cord injuries
After single injection, paralyzed animals regained ability to walk within four weeks

"By sending bioactive signals to trigger cells to repair and regenerate, the breakthrough therapy dramatically improved severely injured spinal cords in five key ways: (1) The severed extensions of neurons, called axons, regenerated; (2) scar tissue, which can create a physical barrier to regeneration and repair, significantly diminished; (3) myelin, the insulating layer of axons that is important in transmitting electrical signals efficiently, reformed around cells; (4) functional blood vessels formed to deliver nutrients to cells at the injury site; and (5) more motor neurons survived.
After the therapy performs its function, the materials biodegrade into nutrients for the cells within 12 weeks and then completely disappear from the body without noticeable side effects. This is the first study in which researchers controlled the collective motion of molecules through changes in chemical structure to increase a therapeutic’s efficacy."

The secret behind Stupp’s new breakthrough therapeutic is tuning the motion of molecules, so they can find and properly engage constantly moving cellular receptors. Injected as a liquid, the therapy immediately gels into a complex network of nanofibers that mimic the extracellular matrix of the spinal cord. By matching the matrix’s structure, mimicking the motion of biological molecules and incorporating signals for receptors, the synthetic materials are able to communicate with cells.

“Receptors in neurons and other cells constantly move around,” Stupp said. “The key innovation in our research, which has never been done before, is to control the collective motion of more than 100,000 molecules within our nanofibers. By making the molecules move, ‘dance’ or even leap temporarily out of these structures, known as supramolecular polymers, they are able to connect more effectively with receptors.”

Once connected to the receptors, the moving molecules trigger two cascading signals, both of which are critical to spinal cord repair. One signal prompts the long tails of neurons in the spinal cord, called axons, to regenerate. Similar to electrical cables, axons send signals between the brain and the rest of the body. Severing or damaging axons can result in the loss of feeling in the body or even paralysis. Repairing axons, on the other hand, increases communication between the body and brain.

Alvarez spinal cord injuries
Zaida Álvarez

The second signal helps neurons survive after injury because it causes other cell types to proliferate, promoting the regrowth of lost blood vessels that feed neurons and critical cells for tissue repair. The therapy also induces myelin to rebuild around axons and reduces glial scarring, which acts as a physical barrier that prevents the spinal cord from healing.

“The signals used in the study mimic the natural proteins that are needed to induce the desired biological responses. However, proteins have extremely short half-lives and are expensive to produce,” said Zaida Álvarez, the study’s first author. “Our synthetic signals are short, modified peptides that — when bonded together by the thousands — will survive for weeks to deliver bioactivity. The end result is a therapy that is less expensive to produce and lasts much longer.”

Stupp believes the underlying discovery — that “supramolecular motion” is a key factor in bioactivity — can be applied to other therapies and targets.

“The central nervous system tissues we have successfully regenerated in the injured spinal cord are similar to those in the brain affected by stroke and neurodegenerative diseases, such as ALS, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease,” Stupp said. “Beyond that, our fundamental discovery about controlling the motion of molecular assemblies to enhance cell signaling could be applied universally across biomedical targets.”

https://news.northwestern.edu/stories/2021/11/dancing-molecules-successfully-repair-severe-spinal-cord-injuries/

Bioactive scaffolds with enhanced supramolecular motion promote recovery from spinal cord injury

https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.abh3602