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Everything posted by corybroo

  1. Researchers identify mechanism by which exercise strengthens bones and immunity [There is a] specialized environment, known as a niche, in the bone marrow where new bone and immune cells are produced. movement-induced stimulation is required for the maintenance of this niche, as well as the bone and immune-forming cells that it contains. forces created from walking or running are transmitted from bone surfaces along arteriolar blood vessels into the marrow inside bones. Bone-forming cells that line the outside of the arterioles sense these forces and are induced to proliferate. This not only allows the formation of new bone cells, which helps to thicken bones, but the bone-forming cells also secrete a growth factor that increases the frequency of cells that form lymphocytes around the arterioles. When the ability of the bone-forming cells to sense pressure caused by movement, also known as mechanical forces, was inactivated, it reduced the formation of new bone cells and lymphocytes, causing bones to become thinner and reducing the ability of mice to clear a bacterial infection. The Morrison lab also found that a subset of LepR+ cells synthesize a previously undiscovered bone-forming growth factor called Osteolectin. Osteolectin promotes the maintenance of the adult skeleton by causing LepR+ to form new bone cells. discovered that these cells [the subset of LepR+ cells that make Osteolectin] reside exclusively around arteriolar blood vessels in the bone marrow and that they maintain nearby lymphoid progenitors by synthesizing stem cell factor (SCF)—a growth factor on which those cells depend. Deleting SCF from Osteolectin-positive cells depleted lymphoid progenitors and undermined the ability of mice to mount an immune response to bacterial infection. Shen found that the number of Osteolectin-positive cells and lymphoid progenitors decreased with age. Curious if he could reverse this trend, Shen put running wheels in the cages so that the mice could exercise. He found the bones of these mice became stronger with exercise, while the number of Osteolectin-positive cells and lymphoid progenitors around the arterioles increased. This was the first indication that mechanical stimulation regulates a niche in the bone marrow.
  2. The news reports seemed to be focused on three or four variants. This chart of variant lineages shows there are far more than four.
  3. Possible way to mitigate until vaccination Vitamin B6 may help keep COVID-19's cytokine storms at bay In their paper, she and her fellow researchers pointed out growing evidence showing that vitamin B6 exerts a protective effect against chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular diseases and diabetes by suppressing inflammation, inflammasomes, oxidative stress and carbonyl stress. Kumrungsee explained that thrombosis (blood clotting) and cytokine storm (hyper inflammation) might be closely linked to the severity of COVID-19. Vitamin B6 is a known anti-thrombosis and anti-inflammation nutrient. Vitamin B6 … levels always drop in people under chronic inflammation such as obesity, diabetes and heart diseases.
  4. From MedicalXpress, Not all 'good' cholesterol is healthy HDL cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein cholesterol), or "good cholesterol," is associated with a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease as it transports cholesterol deposited in the arteries to the liver to be eliminated. Although drugs that lower LDL cholesterol reduce cardiovascular risk, those that raise good cholesterol have not proven effective in reducing the risk of heart disease. The conclusion is that genetic characteristics linked to the generation of large good cholesterol particles are directly associated with a higher risk of heart attack, while features linked to small good cholesterol particles are related to a lower risk of heart attack. There is a positive causal relationship between the size of HDL cholesterol particles and the risk of heart attack, so although we have to increase the levels of good cholesterol in the blood, they must always be small particles If we need to do something in relation to HDL, it is to increase the number of small particles, which are those that adequately perform the function of eliminating cholesterol, those that really move it to the liver for removal, and do not allow it to accumulate in the arteries and cause cardiovascular disease
  5. This article reports benefits to mild CR. They compared healthy vs obese skin. Initially mice were tested but then 54 humans were treated in a double-blind, placebo controlled trial. Research identifies obesity and infection link, as well as treatment found on healthy human skin [The researchers] found that when mice are fed a high fat diet and become obese, skin adipocytes (or fat cells) become enlarged and lose the ability to fight against bacterial invasion during an skin infection. The findings revealed that an increased number of mature adipocytes (fat cells) increases TGFβ signaling, which in turn decreases the number dermal adipocyte progenitors that produce an antimicrobial peptide called cathelicidin. This absence leaves the epidermis vulnerable to infection from common culprits like Staphylococcus aureus. In lean subjects (both mice and human in this study), the skin microbiome was successful in preventing Staph infections, as the number of mature fat cells was insufficient to disrupt the normal dermal fat functions that keep such infections at bay. Normally, skin fat cells can rapidly respond to invading bacteria, and produce a molecule called antimicrobial peptide, which is the antibiotics produced by our own cells, to kill bacteria. However, upon obesity, the enlarged skin fat cells lose the ability to produce antimicrobial peptides, and this is mediated by a cell signaling protein transforming growth factor beta or TGFβ, which is produced by the enlarged fat cells and negatively impacts antimicrobial peptides during obesity
  6. corybroo

    The Ultimate Purpose of Life

    If there is an interventioniist, doesn't that lead to the question of who or what intervenes *and* how did that interventionist come to be? Asking that seems to lead to an infinite sequence of interventionists. The only escape I've heard is to declare a specific (usually the first) interventionist special and outside the question of where did (s)he/it come from.
  7. I appreciate the availability of different points of view, especially when each side presents its reasons. Johns Hopkins expert says COVID-19 pandemic could end by April And Americans may still be wearing face masks in 2022, Fauci says
  8. corybroo

    whole genome sequencing

    Thanks Ron. I used LivingDNA nearly two years ago and recieved some speculations on the paths my ancestors took from Africa to Northern Europe. My daughter used 23&me and found it to be as helpful as an astology column. Definitely we're in the early stages of understanding the impact of specific genes (and how other genes affect each other).
  9. > the fact is that if it wasn't for "Operation Warp Speed" we would not have a vaccine ready today I thought Pfizer’s vaccine was not developed in Operation Warp Speed. Try googling “was the pfizer vaccine developed by warp speed” and see if there’s any confirmation. Among the results Leading Covid-19 vaccine makers Pfizer and Moderna decline invitations to White House ‘Vaccine Summit’ The Trump administration has openly feuded with Pfizer in recent weeks over its involvement in Operation Warp Speed and the timing of a data release showing its vaccine to be highly effective In an interview with the New York Times, she [Kathrin Jansen, a Pfizer executive] claimed Pfizer was “never part” of Operation Warp Speed, and that the company had “never taken any money from the U.S. government.” While the company never accepted Operation Warp Speed funding to help develop the vaccine, it did agree to a $1.95 billion purchase order with the federal government, providing the company a massive guaranteed market if the vaccine proved to be safe and effective. Bourla [Pfizer CEO] later defended the decision to decline federal research and development funding, citing a desire to “liberate our scientists from any bureaucracy” and “keep Pfizer out of politics.” It seems Pfizer accepted a challenge similar to the government incentives for the cross country railroad – paying for results like connected miles of rail. Not a new idea but a very effective one for get quick results. You’ve spoken before of censorship of conservatives. However I see news like RFK Jr. sues Facebook for censoring anti-vaccine information and think that it is misinformation from any source that is being limited. The unvaccinated provide a breeding ground for new variants; their personal decision affects other, either sickening or killing others. There is a large public benefit to labeling misinformation as such. Given the different views on how best to practice CR and its likely efficacy, I don’t think any of us has a problem with “the scientists” not being a uniform block. Indeed, if you polled a large group of physicians about the wisdom of even trying CR, what do you think they’d recommend?
  10. corybroo

    Sci Fi Movie and Book Recommendations

    Short video on the Adams Event
  11. Does the following chart show a problem with all opinions having the same megaphone? There are only two countries where willingness to be vaccinated has increased. The situation in Britain has appeared to overcome vaccination hesitancy. I've heard it said that the pro-vaccination side has statistics and the anti side has stories. Guess which moves people emotionally.
  12. corybroo

    whole genome sequencing

    Does anyone have familiarity with Genomelink? They claim to go beyond GEDMatch and provide HIPAA security. https://genomelink.io/product/go-beyond-gedmatch?ref=gs-gedmatch&gclid=CjwKCAiAmrOBBhA0EiwArn3mfNZ5qsmCjcjonZuym6MJI03MRrhQlXpZb9MI-g5JYhmUNxZGNQCgvxoC4qUQAvD_BwE
  13. Also from MedicalXpress: New insight into antibody-induced protective immunity to COVID-19 Basically, having antibodies from an asymptomatic or mild case *may* not be sufficient. Antibody testing can tell who has been previously exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, a metric that is essential for tracking spread across a population. this study found that while antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 may be a good way to measure exposure to the virus, their presence alone wasn't enough to determine if a person had long-lasting protection. Instead, antibody effector functions associated with long-lasting protection, like virus neutralization and T cell responses, were only seen if the immune response included high levels of antibodies against a part of the virus called the receptor binding domain. This data came from a cohort of adults who had mild or asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 120 of their study participants had experienced mild or asymptomatic COVID-19 which had resulted in the development of COVID-19 antibodies. individuals who had developed a larger number of antibodies, associated with stronger symptoms in case of mild COVID-19, had also developed immune functions associated with natural immune protection. Once you hit a certain threshold of these antibodies, it's like a switch turns on and we can observe antibody effector functions These functions were not observed in individuals with lower antibody binding titers, and the level of protection from reinfections is uncertain in these individuals.
  14. MedicalXpress has an update on Sweden’s approach. Sweden readying to close gyms, restaurants, hair salons preparing to use new legislation to close gyms, restaurants and hair salons ahead of a feared third wave of virus infections, the government said Wednesday. It has however gradually tightened measures since November, including a ban on alcohol sales after 8:00 pm and on public gatherings of more than eight people. Sweden has also introduced limits on the number of people allowed in sports centres, swimming pools and shopping centres and a recommendation to wear face masks on public transport during rush hour. expanding … to include all commercial and service centres, such as gyms, pools, sports centres, hair salons, cafes and restaurants. The country of 10.3 million people has been hit much harder than its Nordic neighbours, and on Tuesday reported a total of 617,869 cases of COVID-19 and 12,487 related deaths. Cases have been in decline since mid-December, but the fall has tapered off lately and health officials are concerned that a third wave could be just around the corner. Also, The Economist looked at Ca and Tx noting how different their approaches were and how similar the results were. America’s two largest states are fighting covid-19 differently “People in California are frustrated because they feel like they are experiencing the worst of both worlds,” in Texas, the economic benefits of a more libertarian approach are hard to discern. The unemployment rate in both states is higher than the national average.
  15. I saw this article yesterday that seems to say that the opposite (oxygen deficit in *LIMITED* exposures) has beneficial effects. Perhaps there are hormetic effects for both extremes. Oxygen deficit makes nerve cells grow to a certain extent, hypoxia can also be an important signal for growth researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen have shown in mice that mentally and physically demanding activity triggers not only a local but also a brain-wide "functional hypoxia." The shortage of oxygen activates, among other things, the growth factor erythropoietin (Epo), which stimulates the formation of new synapses and nerve cells. mentally and physically demanding activities trigger a slight oxygen deficit in certain brain regions This ultimately leads to the formation of new nerve cells. They observed that hypoxia activates the growth factor erythropoietin (Epo) in the brain. The mice had to concentrate while running on these wheels to avoid stumbling in addition to being physically exerted. Mice that had no access to a running wheel and mice exposed to oxygen-depleted air served as comparator groups. running wheel training had effects similar to reducing the oxygen content in the air we breathe nerve cells were particularly affected, whereas the glial cells (auxiliary cells of the neurons) were only slightly affected. In addition, the Epo gene in the brain, together with a number of other genes, is particularly stimulated during both mental and physical activity. We still don't know whether mild hypoxia as a result of activity also leads to stronger networking of nerve cells—and even to their formation—in humans.
  16. Although we may disagree on numbers and how to interpret them, at least we’re not like Russia where the BMJ reports Covid-19: Russia admits to understating deaths by more than two thirds "Three doctors who raised concerns about the country’s response mysteriously fell from windows in the early months of the pandemic."
  17. The Lancet has published a report finding that 40% of the covid deaths were unnecessary. Public policy and health in the Trump era Summary here 40% of US Covid Deaths Could Have Been Avoided The U.S. has the world’s highest tallies of both Covid-19 cases and deaths, which according to a new study can be blamed in large part on the chaotic response to the pandemic by the Trump administration. The authors say that the U.S. would have avoided about 40% of its 470,000 deaths so far if it had simply achieved results similar to other wealthy, industrialized nations. [The authors fault more than] Trump’s “disdain for science and cuts to global health programmes and public health agencies,” the “elimination of the National Security Council’s global health security team,” and “a 2017 hiring freeze that left almost 700 positions at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) unfilled” While the Trump administration may have performed poorly, the U.S. has experienced worsening health conditions for decades, the authors say, with life expectancy actually falling starting in 2014. The authors charge that 40 years of neoliberal policies have created a two-tier society that fails to deliver social goods to large swaths of the population, making it harder to respond to a global pandemic.
  18. Years ago in my scuba class, we were warned about oxygen toxicity. https://www.liveabout.com/oxygen-toxicity-and-scuba-diving-2962843 As the diver descends, the ambient pressure increases as does the partial pressure of oxygen, even with compressed air much less an oxygen enhanced mixture. I wonder what is different about the hyperbaric chamber and the diving environment (other than dry/wet 😉) that leads to a beneficial result. Could it be a hormetic effect?
  19. The prediction I liked was based on the experience a century ago. There was a flu pandemic followed by the Roaring 20s.
  20. Thanks Mike. This was very informative.
  21. It would be interesting to see what affect, if any, CR has on cortical thinning. Does it slow down thinning in general? Does it slow down the loss of asymmetry? Left and right-brain age differently, linked to Alzheimer's disease The left and right side of the cortex are not equally thick in younger brains—a phenomenon called "cortical asymmetry." this study shows that the side of the brain that was thicker at age 20 deteriorates faster. The researchers found cortical asymmetry is lost as we age, proving that the two sides of the brain deteriorate at different rates. It's too early to conclude, but cortical asymmetry could possibly be used as a marker to detect early brain changes in Alzheimer's Disease. The asymmetry-loss emerged at a similar age in most people (around early 30's) and continued across the adult lifespan, with accelerated decline around age 60. [The researchers were] able to measure the thickness of every region of the cortex in over 2600 healthy participants from five countries, up to six times in the same person over time.
  22. While the precise benefits are not known at this time, there appear to be some ancillary benefits (https://www.axios.com/flu-season-coronavirus-deaths-945216ac-6b26-4c94-a61b-614897562520.html): By the numbers: According to the CDC, the U.S. recorded just five flu deaths in the 52nd week of 2020, a period that usually represents the height of the influenza season. That is 40-fold fewer deaths than the same week in 2019, and more than 130-fold fewer deaths than during the bad flu season of 2017. According to data from BioFire Diagnostics, levels of nearly every common respiratory and gastrointestinal virus are currently all but undetectable. How it works: It turns out if you drastically reduce global travel, close public workplaces and schools, and promote mask-wearing and handwashing, you'll cut off opportunities for common pathogens to spread. Personal speculation: Wearing masks in flu season will become more common outside the Asian countries that already do so. It protects both the wearer and friends and neighbors.
  23. A sign that vaccination is starting to give Israeli hospitals some breathing space emerged a fortnight after January 2nd, the day when the proportion of those over 60 who had been vaccinated reached 40%. The number critically ill with covid-19 in that age group grew by about 30% in the week before January 2nd, and also in the following week—but by just 7% in the week after that (see chart 2). By contrast, among those aged between 40 and 55 (who were vaccinated at a much lower rate at the time) the weekly change in the number of critically ill remained constant, with a 20-30% increase in each of those three weeks.
  24. Excess mortality for selected countries. https://ourworldindata.org/excess-mortality-covid Italy and US by age: US 2015-2020