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offsite link France and Turkey at Odds as Armenia-Aze... Thu Oct 01, 2020 12:50 | Nvard Hovhannisyan

offsite link More Than 200 E-4s Endorse ‚ÄėWhoever Ge... Thu Oct 01, 2020 12:00 | Paul J. OLeary

offsite link Instead of Fighting the COVID Cult, Airl... Thu Oct 01, 2020 11:00 | Wolf Richter

offsite link Empire Eyeing Expansion of Drone War to ... Thu Oct 01, 2020 10:32 | Daniel Larison

offsite link PODCAST: Trump and Biden’s Weaknesses ... Wed Sep 30, 2020 22:39 | Kyle Anzalone

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The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link If the Burevestnik Cruise Missile Is a Joke, Then Why Are Anglo-Saxons Worrying? (Ruslan Ostashko) Thu Oct 01, 2020 00:13 | Leo V.
Translated by Sasha and subtitled by Leo. The phrase ?filmed at Mosfilm? has become a meme after the Euro-Ukies and the Russian ‘creatives’ squealed for a long time in unison

offsite link Russian options in the Karabakh conflict Wed Sep 30, 2020 23:41 | The Saker
With the eyes of most people locked on the debate between Trump and Biden, the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh (NK) has received relatively little attention in the

offsite link Azerbaijan Claims Destruction Of Armenian S-300 System. Number Of Reported War Casualties Reaches Th... Wed Sep 30, 2020 22:54 | amarynth
South Front On September 30, the Azerbaijani-Armenian war entered its third day with another increase in casualties and victorious communiques from both sides. In the morning, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry

offsite link The Insanity of Sustainability Wed Sep 30, 2020 22:44 | amarynth
by Peter Koenig for the Saker Blog and first published by the New Eastern Outlook ? NEO ?The Saker? ?Only the Dead Have Seen the End of War? ? Plato.

offsite link Mission Impossible? Wed Sep 30, 2020 18:48 | amarynth
By Francis Lee for the Saker Blog The present economic/political crises is not amenable to solutions which might have been effective in the past. We seem to be fighting today?s

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Public Inquiry
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005

offsite link Sarah McInerney and political impartiality

offsite link Did RTE journalists collude against Sinn Fein? Anthony

offsite link Irish Examiner bias Anthony

offsite link RTE: Propaganda ambush of Sinn Fein Anthony

offsite link Hong Kong and democracy Anthony

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Human Rights in Ireland
A Blog About Human Rights

offsite link Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights

offsite link Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights

offsite link Turkish President Calls On Greece To Comply With Human Rights on Syrian Refugee Issues Wed Mar 04, 2020 17:58 | Human Rights

offsite link US Holds China To Account For Human Rights Violations Sun Oct 13, 2019 19:12 | Human Rights

offsite link UN Human Rights Council Should Address Human Rights Crisis in Cambodia Sat Aug 31, 2019 13:41 | Human Rights

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KevinBarret
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media

offsite link Matt Ehret: $4.5 Trillion Bankster Bailout + $1.5 Quadrillion Derivative Bubble = Looming Catastroph... Wed Sep 30, 2020 05:00 | Kevin Barrett
Matthew Ehret writes: ?While the world?s attention is absorbed by tectonic shifts unfolding across America as a perfect storm of civil war, and military coup threatens to undo both the elections and the very foundations of the republic itself, something very ominous has appeared ?off of the radar? of most onlookers. This something is a...

offsite link David Swanson on "Leaving WW2 Behind", by Kevin Barrett Mon Sep 28, 2020 05:00 | Kevin Barrett
Peace activist David Swanson is the author of the new book Leaving World War II Behind. He debunks the standard misconceptions about the mythical ?good war.? WAS IT ABOUT SAVING JEWS? ?In reality, the U.S. and British governments engaged for years in massive propaganda campaigns to build war support but never made any mention of...

offsite link Gordon Duff: the C*A Showed Me Secret UFO Documents?Followed by Close Encounter, by Kevin Barrett Sun Sep 27, 2020 05:00 | Kevin Barrett
Gordon Duff, Senior Editor of Veterans Today, describes how he was shown top secret UFO documents, then was buzzed by a gigantic (space?)craft. All this by way of discussion of Gordon?s article ?

offsite link Tribute to Andre Vltchek: ?West?s Sadistic Personality Disorder?, by Kevin Barrett Wed Sep 23, 2020 05:00 | Kevin Barrett
One of the most vibrantly alive people I met, Andrť Vltchek, just died. Though he barely made it past his mid-fifties he got in a lot more living than a hundred average Americans who live to collect their pensions. Allah yarhamhu. In honor of this great Truth Jihadi we?re replaying this 2018 interview: The West...

offsite link Andre Vltchek Dead?Murdered by NATO/Zionists?, by Kevin Barrett Tue Sep 22, 2020 05:00 | Kevin Barrett
We just lost one of the world?s greatest journalists?and one of my radio show?s most eloquent and informative regular guests. Andre Vltchek, globetrotting scourge of the Western power elite, mysteriously dropped dead while riding in a chauffeured car between Samsun and Istanbul. ABC Newsreports: According to Turkish media, police recorded the case as a ?suspicious...

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Gary takes on the real issues that the mainstream media is afraid to tackle. Tune in to find out the latest about health news, healing, politics, and the economy.

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offsite link The Gary Null Show - 09.30.20 Wed Sep 30, 2020 21:11

Ginkgo extends neuroprotective effects to the neurons located near the retinas

Gyeongsang National University (South Korea), September 29, 2020

In a recent study, South Korean researchers demonstrated the¬†neuroprotective effects of Ginkgo biloba. They reported that an extract obtained from¬†G. biloba¬†leaves successfully protected retinal ganglion cells (RGC) ‚ÄĒ the output neurons of the retina ‚ÄĒ from hypoxic injury both in vivo and in vitro.

The researchers discussed their findings in an article published in the Journal of Medicinal Food.

Ginkgo biloba can prevent glaucoma caused by oxidative stress

The oldest records of G. biloba’s use in TCM suggest that only its seeds were used at first by traditional healers. It took a long time before they discovered the medicinal properties of G. biloba leaves and began using them to treat heart and lung diseases.

When G. biloba reached Western shores, its leaf extracts gained traction for their brain benefits. Standardized extracts of G. biloba leaves have since been used for the treatment of mild to moderate age-related memory impairment, dementia and peripheral vascular diseases.

According to the South Korean researchers, oxidative stress, or excess free radical production, induced by hypoxia ‚ÄĒ a condition in which tissues¬†do not receive an adequate supply of oxygen¬†‚ÄĒ is linked to the pathogenesis of glaucoma. Glaucoma refers to a group of eye conditions that affect the optic nerve and is one of the¬†leading causes of blindness¬†among older adults.

Fortunately, recent findings show that G. biloba leaf extract (GBE) can help reduce oxidative stress as well as treat disturbed vascular circulation. To evaluate the neuroprotective effects of G. biloba, the researchers first induced oxidative stress in rat RGC. They then treated the cells with either a standardized GBE (EGb 761) or a control.

For their in vivo experiment, the researchers induced hypoxic optic nerve injury in rats by using a microserrefine clip with an applicator to clamp the animals’ optic nerves. They then gave the rats various concentrations of EGb 761 via intraperitoneal injection and measured RGC density to estimate cell survival.

The researchers reported that treatment with 1 or 5?mcg/mL EGb 761 significantly increased the survival of RGC after exposure to oxidative stress. In vivo, treatment with 100?mg/kg or 250?mg/kg EGb 761 also significantly improved RGC survival, proving the neuroprotective effects of G. biloba.

Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that G. biloba leaves can be used to protect against hypoxic injury that leads to glaucoma.

 

Dietary folate, magnesium, and dairy products may all help stave off bowel cancer

Service de Gastroenterologie (France), McGill University (Quebec), Erasmus University (Netherlands), September 29, 2020

Folate, magnesium, and dairy products may all help stave off bowel cancer, but there's no evidence that garlic or onions, fish, tea or coffee protect against the disease, finds an overarching analysis of published pooled data analyses in the journal Gut.

In the US alone around 1 in every 20 people is likely to develop bowel cancer at some point during their lifetime. And worldwide, more than 2.2 million new cases and 1.1 million deaths from the disease are predicted every year by 2030.

While deaths from the disease have been falling in most developed countries, the numbers of new cases have been rising in some, including in Canada, the UK, and the Netherlands.

Screening for the disease can pick up the disease at an early treatable stage, but take-up varies considerably from country to country. And as it takes more than 15 years for bowel cancer to develop, a healthy lifestyle likely has a key role in helping to halt or stop its progress altogether, say the researchers.

They therefore trawled relevant research databases for published systematic reviews and meta-analyses (pooled data analyses) of clinical trials and observational studies assessing the impact of dietary and medicinal factors on bowel cancer risk.

The medicinal factors included: aspirin; non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as paracetamol; and statins.

The dietary factors included: vitamins or supplements (magnesium, calcium, folic acid, vitamin A, B, C, E, D, ő≤-carotene and selenium); coffee; tea; fish and omega 3 fatty acids; dairy products; fibre; fruit and vegetables; meat; and alcohol.

They included relevant studies published in French or English between September 1980 and June 2019, but excluded those involving people at high risk of developing bowel cancer. Some 80 articles out of a total of 343 were included in the overarching (umbrella) analysis of pooled data analyses.

The results showed that aspirin is likely protective against bowel cancer, lowering the risk by between 14% and 29% at doses as low as 75 mg/day, with a dose-response effect reported up to 325 mg/day.

NSAID use for up to 5 years was associated with a significant (26% to 43%) fall in the incidence of bowel cancer.

Magnesium intake of at least 255 mg/day was associated with a 23% lower risk compared with the lowest intake, and high intake of folic acid was associated with a 12-15% lower risk, although it wasn't possible to pinpoint a threshold dose from the available data.

Similarly, eating dairy products was associated with 13% to 19% lower risk of the disease. But the small number of available meta-analyses, and the many different research outcomes and variety of dairy products included make it difficult to draw firm conclusions about the quantities required to ward off the disease, caution the researchers.

Fibre intake was associated with a 22%-43% lower risk, while fruit/vegetable intake was associated with up to a 52% lower risk, with added benefit for every additional 100 g/day increase in intake.

Dietary soy intake was associated with a modest, but significant, fall (8-15%) in risk.

But there was no evidence that vitamins E, C, or multivitamins were protective. Similarly, there was no evidence that ő≤-carotene or selenium helped stave off the disease.

The data were weak or equivocal on the impact of tea; garlic or onions; vitamin D either alone or combined with calcium; coffee and caffeine; fish and omega 3; and inconsistent on the protective effect of vitamin A and the B vitamins.

A modest protective effect was found in observational studies for high calcium intake, but a meta-analysis of clinical trial data found no protective effect, and even an increased risk.

Similarly, although meta-analyses of observational studies suggest that statins may lower cancer risk, no positive effect was noted in meta-analyses of clinical trial data.

Most of the available meta-analyses of observational studies reported an increased risk of between 12% and 21% for meat, particularly red and processed meat. Dose-effect studies reported a 10-30% increased risk for each additional 100 g/day of red meat eaten.

Alcohol was associated with a significantly increased risk. The higher the intake, the greater the risk. This was evident even at the lowest level of consumption studied: 1-2 drinks/day.

The researchers caution that the level of evidence is low or very low in most cases, mainly due to wide differences in study design, end points, numbers of participants, etc. And they were unable to define "an optimal dose and duration of exposure/intake for any of the products, even in the case of low dose aspirin and other compounds that have been extensively assessed," they point out.

Nevertheless, they suggest that their findings could help clinicians advise patients on the best diet to lower bowel cancer risk and guide the direction of future research.

Pomegranate improves mitochondria function and counters age-related disorders

Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (Switzerland) September 27, 2020

With their vibrant scarlet color and sweet-but-tart flavor, pomegranate has become an increasingly popular (and delicious) addition to salads, dressings, beverages and desserts. They are also a proven superfood, credited by researchers with the potential to prevent and help resolve many disease conditions.

Now,¬†a¬†new¬†Swiss study¬†shows that urolithin A, a molecule produced when pomegranate is digested, could hold the key to rejuvenating cell mitochondria ‚Äď and even prolonging the quality of your life. Let‚Äôs take a closer look at urolithin A ‚Äď and its amazing restorative potential.

Pomegranate triggers urolithin A to rejuvenates the powerhouse of our cells

Mitochondria are tiny structures inside of cells that have the all-important task of turning fuel into energy. Over time, however, they can degrade and deteriorate.

In young, healthy cells, these aging and damaged mitochondria are swiftly broken down and eliminated. This beneficial process, known as mitophagy, helps to ensure optimal cellular function.

Mitophagy becomes less efficient with age, causing malfunctioning mitochondria to accumulate in cells ‚Äď where they weaken muscle tissues and impair cellular¬†health. Researchers believe that these deposits of mitochondrial debris can trigger degenerative disorders such as¬†Parkinson‚Äôs disease, as well as decreased mobility and frailty in elderly people.

This is where pomegranates come in…

A molecule called urolithin A is produced by the body upon the digestion of two polyphenols ‚Äď punicalagins and ellagitannins ‚Äď that exist naturally in pomegranates. In cell and animal studies, this newly-discovered molecule was shown to induce mitophagy, and¬†prevent the accumulation of dysfunctional mitochondria.

In fact,¬†new¬†research supports the ability of urolithin A to actually rejuvenate cell mitochondria ‚Äď not only increasing muscle function, but extending life.

What did the study show?

In a study published in 2016 in¬†Natural Medicine, researchers found that urolithin A maintained mitochondrial respiratory capacity and extended the lifespan of C. elegans ‚Äď a short-lived worm commonly used in longevity studies ‚Äď by a stunning 45 percent.

And that isn’t all.

In another phase of the study, researchers administered urolithin A to aging mice, and found that it improved muscle function by 57 percent and running endurance by 42 percent.

And it was not only aging mice that benefited from urolithin A. The substance increased the running capacity of young,¬†healthy¬†mice ‚Äď by a dramatic 65 percent.

The research suggests that boosting levels of urolithin A ‚Äď through consuming pomegranate extracts ‚Äď can enhance mitochondrial function, thereby improving muscle quality.

Researchers noted that this finding holds particular significance for elderly people. By helping to enhance muscle function, urolithin A may help ward off the loss of mobility and general decline that can accompany weakened muscle tissue.

Calling urolithin A a ‚Äúpromising approach to improving mitochondrial and muscle function in the aging population,‚ÄĚ the team called for further research.

Pomegranate has a proven ability to combat heart disease and cancer

The¬†new¬†study is not the first to reveal important¬†health¬†benefits from pomegranates ‚Äď these tasty members of the berry family have been impressing researchers with their ability to combat serious degenerative diseases.

In a recent review published in¬†Advanced Biomedical Research, the authors noted that pomegranate can help prevent or treat a veritable laundry list of dangerous conditions known to trigger potentially life-threatening diseases ‚Äď including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, oxidative stress, high blood sugar, atherosclerosis and inflammation.

Interestingly, in some cases pomegranate has been found to work in much the same way as pharmaceutical medications. For instance, pomegranate extracts help to suppress pro-inflammatory COX-2 and tumor necrosis factor-alpha ‚Äď much as anti-inflammatory drugs do. And, when it comes to regulating blood pressure, pomegranate extracts seem to function like ACE inhibitors, a group of pharmaceutical hypotensive medications.

Pomegranates also have been shown in studies to reduce incidence of tumors, reduce the number and size of cancerous stem cells, and induce apoptosis ‚Äď or cancer cell death. Pomegranate extracts are currently used to treat a variety of cancers, including those of the prostate, breast, colon, lung and skin.

Finally, pomegranate extracts have protective effects against neurodegenerative conditions. Research has shown that they help to prevent accumulations of beta-amyloid, a protein associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Pomegranates owe much of their potent disease-fighting powers to their extraordinary antioxidant capabilities.

The juice of a single pomegranate contains more than 40 percent of the RDA of¬†vitamin C¬†‚Äď itself a potent antioxidant and immune system booster. Pomegranates are also rich in beneficial amino acids, polyphenols and anthocyanins ‚Äď natural pigments that give the pulp its intense scarlet color. These colorful flavonoids also contribute to pomegranate‚Äôs ability to scavenge free radicals and prevent oxidative damage in cells and tissues.

And, wait, there‚Äôs more good¬†news¬†about pomegranates:¬†no side effects or adverse changes have been reported¬†‚Äď even in a clinical study in which participants received 1, 420 mgs a day of pomegranate fruit extract.

However, the researchers noted that pomegranate could interact with certain prescription drugs. Before supplementing with pomegranate extracts, consult a trusted, healthcare provider.

You can consume pomegranates in the form of various beverages ‚Äď such as juice or tea ‚Äď or nibble the luscious seeds out of hand as a snack. Pomegranate extracts are also available in the form of capsules and tablets.

By rejuvenating fragile, indispensable cell mitochondria, pomegranate can help combat the muscle weakness and frailty often associated with aging ‚Äď leading to a stronger, longer life.

High-fiber diet, low level inflammation: Sidestepping the effects of radiation

Universities of Gothenberg and Lund (Sweden) and University of South Australia, September 29, 2020

Loved or hated, the humble oat could be the new superfood for cancer patients as international research shows a diet rich in fiber could significantly reduce radiation-induced gut inflammation.

Conducted by the University of Gothenburg, Lund University and the University of South Australia, the preclinical study found that dietary oat bran can offset chronic gastrointestinal damage caused by radiotherapy, contradicting long-held clinical recommendations.

Gastroenterology and oncology researcher UniSA's Dr. Andrea Stringer says the research provides critical new insights for radiology patients.

"Cancer patients are often advised to follow a restricted fiber diet. This is because a diet high in fiber is believed to exacerbate bloating and diarrhea‚ÄĒboth common side effects of radiotherapy," Dr. Stringer says.

"Yet, this advice is not unequivocally evidence-based, with insufficient fiber potentially being counterproductive and exacerbating gastrointestinal toxicity. Our study compared the effects of high-fiber and no-fiber diets, finding that a fiber-free diet is actually worse for subjects undergoing radiotherapy treatment. A diet without fiber generates inflammatory cytokines which are present for a long time following radiation, resulting in increased inflammation of the digestive system. Conversely, a fiber-rich diet decreases the presence of cytokines to reduce radiation-induced inflammation, both in the short and the long term."

Intestinal issues following radiotherapy are problematic for many cancer survivors.

"In Europe, approximately one million pelvic-organ cancer survivors suffer from compromised intestinal health due to radiation-induced gastrointestinal symptoms," Dr. Stringer says.

"This is also commonplace in Australia and around the world with no immediate cure or effective treatment. If we can prevent some of inflammation resulting from radiation simply by adjusting dietary fiber levels, we could improve long-term, and possibly life-long, intestinal health among cancer survivors."

Poor bone quality is linked to poor heart health

Queen Mary University of London and University of Southampton, September 28, 2020

New research by Queen Mary University of London and the University of Southampton's Medical Research Council Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit (MRC LEU) has found associations between lower bone mineral density and worse cardiovascular health in both men and women.

Published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, the study used the internationally unique UK Biobank cohort to investigate links between bone and cardiovascular health. They used a combination of imaging and blood biomarker data to investigate the relationship in the largest sample of people reported to date.

Osteoporosis and heart disease are important public health problems. These conditions share a number of risk factors such as increasing age, smoking, and a sedentary lifestyle. Research shows that there may be links between the two conditions even after accounting for shared risk factors. This suggests that there may be biological pathways linking the two conditions, and investigating these links could reveal targets for novel drug therapies. However, current research studies lack objective measures of bone and heart health and are often limited to studies of small numbers of people for relatively short periods of time.

The researchers found that lower bone density was linked to greater arterial stiffness (indicating poor cardiovascular health) in both men and women. They also found that individuals with poor bone health had an increased risk of dying from ischaemic heart disease. These links were not explained by shared risk factors or traditional cardiovascular risk factors. Interestingly, they found that the mechanisms underlying the bone-heart relationship appeared different in men and women.

Dr. Zahra Raisi-Estabragh, BHF Clinical Research Training Fellow from Queen Mary University of London, led the analysis. She said: "Our study demonstrates clear links between bone disease and cardiovascular health. The underlying pathophysiology of the bone heart axis is complex and multifaceted and likely varies in men and women."

Professor Nick Harvey, Professor of Rheumatology and Clinical Epidemiology at the MRC LEU, University of Southampton, who supervised the work added: "The wealth of information available in the UK Biobank permitted a highly detailed analysis of the complex interactions between musculoskeletal and cardiovascular health, helping to elucidate potential underlying mechanism, and informing novel approaches to clinical risk assessment."

Professor Steffen Petersen, Professor of Cardiology at Queen Mary University of London co-supervised the project. He comments: "Increasing our understanding of novel determinants of heart disease, such as the bone-heart axis, is key to improving disease prevention and treatment strategies and for improving population health."

Professor Cyrus Cooper, Director of the MRC LEU, University of Southampton, added: "This study directly complements our program of research investigating the lifecourse determinants of musculoskeletal health and disease. It illustrates the importance for the University of Southampton and the MRC LEU of our ongoing contribution to the leadership of the large, state-of-the-art, multidisciplinary Imaging Study as part of the unique world-leading UK Biobank resource."

Researchers Say THC From Cannabis May Treat Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Study

University of South Carolina, September 24, 2020

Since Covid-19 first became a dangerous pandemic, many have wondered how cannabis use might factor into risk or healing for the deadly disease. While some immediately assumed cannabis was harmful, like tobacco, and others assumed it could cure or preventthe disease, scientists quickly began to explore the question.

Early research focused on the cannabinoid CBD as a potential treatment for cytokine storms and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) - a symptom in severe cases of Covid-19, which can lead to death. The results suggested that CBD may be an effective treatment, although human studies need to be conducted to confirm.

Now, researchers are exploring whether another popular cannabinoid, THC, might help with treating the novel coronavirus. And they suggest THC may actually be able to prevent Covid-19 from escalating into a fatal condition.

The new¬†research¬†from the University of South Carolina, Columbia investigated whether using THC might be able to prevent Covid-19 deaths. THC is the notorious chemical in cannabis that produces psychoactive effects like feeling ‚Äėhigh‚Äô or having an elevated mood. But it is also a highly medicinal chemical with potent¬†anti-inflammatory¬†and¬†pain relieving¬†traits.

In this case, researchers were looking to see if THC’s anti-inflammatory powers might be able to fight against cytokine storms and ARDS.

Cytokine storms are a dangerous symptom of Covid-19 (and other severe infections) which happens when the immune system goes overboard in its attempt to fight off an infection. Cytokines are normally part of a healthy immune response - triggering inflammation to fight against an infection. But when the infection is severe enough, our bodies can release way too many cytokines, and thus create a dangerous level of inflammation. This leads to ARDS, where breathing becomes difficult or even impossible. And cytokine storms can also lead to death from organ failure. Several studies point to CBD as a potential treatment for ARDS, and the FDA recently greenlighted clinical trials for a synthetic cannabinoid treatment for ARDS.

In the new research, scientists explored whether THC might be able to treat cytokine storms and ARDS, by studying its effects on mice.

In this animal model, researchers exposed two groups of healthy mice to a bacterial infection called Staphylococcus aureus or SEB. SEB is known to cause cytokine storms and ARDS in mice, and it almost always leads to death for those exposed. In this case, however, the researchers gave one group of mice a treatment of THC right after they infected them with SEB, along with doses 24 and and 48 hours afterward.

Amazingly, 100% of the mice who were given THC before being infected survived having SEB. Meanwhile, 100% of the mice who weren’t given THC died from the ARDS that resulted from their infection.

While some researchers suggested early on that cannabis’ anti-inflammatory effects could potentially be dangerous in early phases of an infection - suppressing the immune system when it should be defending against attack. This study suggests that using THC early in the infection drastically improved the prognosis and avoided damage to the lungs. While the results need to be confirmed by human research, it could be good news for cannabis users who fear ongoing cannabis use could increase their risk of infection with Covid-19. For mice with SEB, THC helped even when administered immediately after the infection.

Researchers also found that THC was also able to significantly suppress the inflammatory cytokines that are involved with ARDS. It also was able to elevate regulatory T cells which help suppress inflammation. Interestingly, researchers also noticed a shift in the expression of miRNA in cells in the lungs - which may play an important role in suppressing cytokine storms, reducing lung injury and preventing death from ARDS.

In a follow up study, the same researchers went a step further, exploring whether the results from the first study are relevant to those suffering from ARDS as a result of Covid-19. While both Covid-19 and SEB lead to cytokine storms and ARDS, it’s not clear that this happens in the same way. So, given the way THC acted on RNA in mice, these researchers decided to perform an analysis comparing gene expression in Covid-19 patients with ARDS and mice with ARDS from SEB. They found similarities suggesting THC may work well in both cases.

The researchers explain that ‚ÄúCollectively, this study suggests that the activation of cannabinoid receptors may serve as a therapeutic modality to treat ARDS associated with Covid-19.‚ÄĚ

While this is a very early study, and more studies should be conducted in human populations with Covid-19, the research suggests that cannabis’ active ingredient THC could be able to prevent Covid-19 from escalating to ARDS - or treat it if it does.

Meditation keeps emotional brain in check

Michigan State University, September 29, 2020

 

Meditation can help tame your emotions even if you're not a mindful person, suggests a new study from Michigan State University.

Reporting in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, psychology researchers recorded the brain activity of people looking at disturbing pictures immediately after meditating for the first time. These participants were able to tame their negative emotions just as well as participants who were naturally mindful.

"Our findings not only demonstrate that meditation improves emotional health, but that people can acquire these benefits regardless of their 'natural' ability to be mindful," said Yanli Lin, an MSU graduate student and lead investigator of the study. "It just takes some practice."

Mindfulness, a moment-by-moment awareness of one's thoughts, feelings and sensations, has gained worldwide popularity as a way to promote health and well-being. But what if someone isn't naturally mindful? Can they become so simply by trying to make mindfulness a "state of mind"? Or perhaps through a more focused, deliberate effort like meditation?

The study, conducted in Jason Moser's Clinical Psychophysiology Lab, attempted to find out.

Researchers assessed 68 participants for mindfulness using a scientifically validated survey. The participants were then randomly assigned to engage in an 18-minute audio guided meditation or listen to a control presentation of how to learn a¬†new¬†language, before viewing negative pictures (such as a bloody corpse) while their brain activity was recorded.¬†The participants who meditated ‚Äď they had varying levels of natural mindfulness ‚Äď showed similar levels of "emotion regulatory" brain activity as people with high levels of natural mindfulness. In other words their emotional brains recovered quickly after viewing the troubling photos, essentially keeping their negative emotions in check.

In addition, some of the participants were instructed to look at the gruesome photos "mindfully" (be in a mindful state of mind) while others received no such instruction. Interestingly, the people who viewed the photos "mindfully" showed no better ability to keep their negative emotions in check.

This suggests that for non-meditators, the emotional benefits of mindfulness might be better achieved through meditation, rather than "forcing it" as a state of mind, said Moser, MSU associate professor of clinical psychology and co-author of the study.

"If you're a naturally mindful person, and you're walking around very aware of things, you're good to go. You shed your emotions quickly," Moser said. "If you're not naturally mindful, then meditating can make you look like a person who walks around with a lot of mindfulness. But for people who are not naturally mindful and have never meditated, forcing oneself to be mindful 'in the moment' doesn't work. You'd be better off meditating for 20 minutes."

 

 

Freezing prostate cancer: Study shows notable outcomes with cryoablation

University of California Los Angeles, September 28, 2020 

A less-invasive treatment technique called hemi-gland cryoablation (HGCryo)¬†- destroying the areas of the prostate where cancers are located by freezing them - provides a high rate of effective prostate cancer control, according to a new study published in¬†The Journal of Urology¬ģ, Official Journal of the¬†American Urological Association¬†(AUA). The journal is published in the Lippincott portfolio by¬†Wolters Kluwer.

"Freedom from cancer, as documented by biopsy, was found in 82 percent of men who underwent HGCryo, at their 18 month follow-up," according to the research by Ryan Chuang, MD, and colleagues at the University of California, Los Angeles. The importance of utilizing modern magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-guided prostate biopsy in monitoring the effectiveness of HGCryo is also emphasized as part of this study.

'Hemi-Gland Cryoablation' Eliminates Clinically Significant Cancer in Most Patients

In the HGCryo procedure, using an advanced ultrasound/MRI fusion system, needles are precisely placed in and around the area of the prostate where the cancer is located. Argon gas is then injected to create extremely cold temperatures, destroying the cancer and surrounding area.

According to the study, 61 men with clinically significant prostate cancer (grade 2 or higher) involving one side of the prostate gland, underwent HGCryo. Cryotherapy was performed using general anesthesia; patients were discharged on the same day as the procedure. The results were assessed through follow-up imaging procedures and MRI-guided biopsies.

Biopsies were performed at 6 months in all patients; 27 patients underwent an additional biopsy after reaching 18 months' follow-up. At both times, biopsies showed no evidence of clinically significant prostate cancer in 82 percent of patients. In men who had areas of prostate cancer detected at follow-up, repeated HGCryo or other treatments were effective.

The study assessed three different biopsy approaches for monitoring the outcomes of HGCryo therapy: tracking of prior cancer-positive sites, biopsy targeting of MRI-visible lesions, and systematic biopsy of the entire prostate using a template. "While tracking biopsy was the most sensitive, all three methods were required for maximum cancer detection," Dr. Chuang and coauthors write.

HGCryo provided notable cancer control even in six patients with more advanced prostate cancers (grade 3 or 4). None of the patients died from their cancer, and none developed metastatic prostate cancer.

Postoperative complications of HGCryo were "generally mild and short-lived." There were no serious complications, including urinary incontinence - a common complication after prostate cancer surgery. One patient developed erectile dysfunction , which was successfully treated with medication.

Cryotherapy is an FDA-approved treatment for prostate cancer and is increasingly popular as a less-invasive alternative to surgery. However, there has been limited evidence on its long-term effectiveness in controlling prostate cancer. Most studies of prostate cryoablation were performed before the availability of modern multiparametric MRI scanning of the prostate, which can provide "a targeted path to precise biopsy and focal treatment" in most men with prostate cancer.

As with other types of partial gland ablation (PGA) for treatment of prostate cancer, the findings highlight the importance of follow-up biopsy as "the most important criterion for success" in evaluating the results of HGCryo. Dr. Chuang and colleagues conclude, "As utilization of MRI-guided biopsy increases, with resulting improved accuracy of prostate tissue characterization, numbers of candidates for PGA are expected to rise."

Early introduction of gluten may prevent celiac disease in children

Kings College London, September 28, 2020

Introducing high doses of gluten from four months of age into infants' diets could prevent them from developing coeliac disease, a study has found.

These results from the Enquiring About Tolerance (EAT) Study, published today in JAMA Pediatrics, by researchers from King's College London, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, St George's, University of London, and Benaroya Research Institute, Seattle, suggest the early introduction of high-dose gluten may be an effective prevention strategy for the disease, though researchers say further studies are needed before being applied in practice.

Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease whereby eating gluten causes the body's immune system to attack its own tissues. There are currently no strategies to prevent coeliac disease and treatment involves long-term exclusion of gluten from the diet. Even very small amounts of gluten in the diet of those with coeliac disease can cause damage to the lining of the gut, prevent proper absorption of food and result in symptoms including bloating, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, and tiredness.

Previous studies exploring early introduction of gluten in infants have varied in the amount of gluten consumed and the timing of the introduction. The EAT study investigated the effects of gluten alongside breastfeeding, from the age of four months. The results were compared to children who avoided allergenic foods and consumed only breast milk until age six months as per UK government guidelines.

Infants in the intervention arm of the EAT study were given 4g of wheat protein a week from four months of age. This was in the form of two wheat-based cereal biscuits such as Weetabix, representing an age-appropriate portion of wheat.

1004 children were tested for antitransglutanimase antibodies, an indicator of coeliac disease, at three years of age. Those with raised antibody levels were referred for further testing by a specialist.

The results showed that among children who delayed gluten introduction until after six months of age, the prevalence of coeliac disease at three years of age was higher than expected‚ÄĒ1.4% of this group of 516 children. In contrast, among the 488 children who introduced gluten from four months of age, there were no cases of coeliac disease.

Lead author Professor Gideon Lack, Professor of Paediatric Allergy at King's College London and head of the children's allergy service at Evelina London Children's Hospital said: "This is the first study that provides evidence that early introduction of significant amounts of wheat into a baby's diet before six months of age may prevent the development of coeliac disease. This strategy may also have implications for other autoimmune diseases such as Type 1 diabetes."

Author Dr. Kirsty Logan, Researcher in Paediatric Allergy at King's College London said: "Early introduction of gluten and its role in the prevention of coeliac diseaseshould be explored further, using the results of the EAT Study as the basis for larger clinical trials to definitively answer this question."

offsite link The Gary Null Show - 09.29.20 Tue Sep 29, 2020 19:15

Organic potatoes contain more microelements that are often deficient in soil

University of Warmia and Mazury (Poland), September 23, 2020

Researchers at the University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn investigated the effect of three production systems, namely, conventional, integrated and organic farming, on the micronutrient and trace element content of tubers belonging to very early, early and medium-early maturing potato cultivars.

The researchers found that organic farming allows crops to obtain more essential micronutrients from the soil than either conventional farming or integrated farming systems. These microelements are crucial not only for plant growth and development but also for plant survival. Research also suggests that these nutrients can influence the appearance of plants and, most importantly, their fruit yields.

The researchers discussed their findings in an article published in the¬†journal¬†Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B¬†‚Äď Soil & Plant Science.

Organic farming ensures good plant nutrition

Today, modern farmers have a variety of options when it comes to raising animals and growing crops. Organic farming, conventional farming and integrated farming are three of the most common production systems currently used in agriculture.

In organic farming, farmers use natural fertilizers (e.g., farm manure, organic compost), herbicides and pesticides to support the growth of their crops. They also use natural methods (e.g., clean housing, rotational grazing) to keep their livestock healthy and feed them nothing but organic and chemical-free feed. (Related: Do you know the history of organic farming?)

In conventional farming, farmers rely on chemical fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides to ensure the quality and quantity of their produce. They also use growth hormones and antibiotics to accelerate the growth of their livestock and keep them safe from diseases. Conventionally raised farm animals also have less access (or none at all) to the outdoors than organically raised animals.

Integrated farming is a relatively new approach that combines livestock and crop production to reduce costs and waste and improve income. In this agricultural system, waste from one component (e.g., livestock) is used to sustain the other component (e.g., crops or fish). Besides ensuring that farm waste is eliminated sensibly, integrated farming also promotes ecological diversity by including both plants and animals in the production.

For their study, Polish researchers grew five local potato cultivars using the three above-mentioned production systems under field conditions. They then analyzed samples from each to determine the amounts of select microelements and trace elements they contained.

Microelements that the researchers looked for included boron (B), copper (Cu), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn) and zinc (Zn) that are essential for living organisms. They also tested for trace elements, such as chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni) and lead (Pb), which are all important but are considered non-essential nutrients.

The researchers found that the micronutrient and trace element content of potato tubers were influenced by three factors, namely, the type of production system used to grow them, plant genotype and weather conditions during the growing season. Organic potatoes had higher B and Cu content but lower Fe, Mn and Zn content than potatoes grown in either conventional or integrated systems. Meanwhile, conventionally grown potatoes had the highest Pb content.

Organic cultivation resulted in better alimentation of potato tubers with B and Cu, which are crucial elements for plant growth and survival but are often found to be deficient in soil. In contrast, the researchers noted that conventional farming required the use of fertilizers to ensure adequate plant nutrition.

Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that organic farming is the best cultivation system to use as it ensures that crops receive proper nourishment, especially ample amounts of essential micronutrients.

 

 

 

Common Antioxidant Enzyme Catalase May Provide Potential Treatment for Covid-19

University of Caliornia Los Angeles, September 29, 2020

 

Researchers from UCLA and China have found that catalase, a naturally occurring enzyme, holds potential as a low-cost therapeutic drug to treat COVID-19 symptoms and suppress the replication of coronavirus inside the body. A study detailing the research was published in Advanced Materials.

Catalase is produced naturally and used by humans, animals and plants. Inside cells, the antioxidant enzyme kick starts the breakdown of hydrogen peroxide, which can be toxic, into water and oxygen. The enzyme is also commonly used worldwide in food production and as a dietary supplement.

"There is a lot of focus on vaccines and antiviral drugs, and rightly so," said Yunfeng Lu, a UCLA Samueli School of Engineering professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering and a senior author on the study. "In the meantime, our research suggests this enzyme could offer a very effective therapeutic solution for treatment of hyperinflammation that occurs due to SARS-CoV-2 virus, as well as hyperinflammation generally."

Lu's group developed the drug-delivery technology used in the experiments. Three types of tests were conducted, each addressing a different symptom of COVID-19.

First, they demonstrated the enzyme's anti-inflammatory effects and its ability to regulate the production of cytokines, a protein that is produced in white blood cells. Cytokines are an important part of the human immune system, but they can also signal the immune system to attack the body's own cells if too many are made -- a so-called "cytokine storm" that is reported in some patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

Second, the team showed that catalase can protect alveolar cells, which line the human lungs, from damage due to oxidation.

Finally, the experiments showed that catalase can repress the replication of SARS?CoV?2 virus in rhesus macaques, a type of monkey, without noticeable toxicity.

"This work has far-reaching implications beyond the treatment of COVID-19. Cytokine storm is a lethal condition that can complicate other infections, such as influenza, as well as non-infectious conditions, like autoimmune disease," said Dr. Gregory Fishbein, an author on the study and a pathologist at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine.

 
 

Effects of one month of Common Yoga Protocol practice appear to be mediated by the angiogenic and neurogenic pathway: A pilot study

Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (India),  25 September 2020.

Abstract

Objective

To examine the molecular effects of mindful activities such as yoga and meditation

Design

This was an open label single arm exploratory yoga intervention study.

Study participants

64 healthy individuals within the age of 18-60 years were recruited for this one month yoga intervention study.

Intervention

Common Yoga Protocol (CYP) is a standardized yoga protocol released by Ministry of AYUSH, India for International Yoga Day. It includes all aspects of yoga i.e. asanas, pranayama and meditation. It is designed for adoption by all age groups for the health of community.

Outcome measures

The participants were assessed for biochemical parameters including Fasting Sugar and Lipid profile. The molecular markers of neurogenesis (i.e. Brain derived Neurotropic Factor, BDNF) and Angiogenesis (i.e. Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor, VEGF and Angiogenin) along with Amyloid ő≤ (marker related to neuro-degenerative diseases) were assessed. All the assessments were made at baseline and after one month of the intervention.

Results

After one month of CYP practice High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) levels increased significantly (p

offsite link The Gary Null Show - 09.28.20 Mon Sep 28, 2020 19:36

Michael Kane has worked as a New York City public school teacher for the past 13 years and is a steering committee member for New York Teachers for Choice, a grassroots organization that is 100 percent opposed to forced vaccination of teachers. During his teaching years, he is an active union member for the United Federation of Teachers as a former union delegate working on committees to improve public school conditions, lobby Albany and efforts to erase the Janus Supreme Court decision that threatened to break unions apart.  Michael also works closely with Bobby Kennedy's Childrens Health Defense and John Gilmore's Autism Action Network. His website is NYTeachersForChoice.org

offsite link The Gary Null Show - 09.25.20 Fri Sep 25, 2020 19:19

Prof. Cahill received her degree in Molecular Genetics from Trinity College Dublin (1989) and her PhD in Immunology from Dublin City University in 1994. She was group leader of the Protein Technology Group in the Max-Planck-Institute of Molecular Genetics, Berlin, Germany (1996-2003) She co-founded a biotechnology company, Protagen AG (www.protagen.de) in Dortmund to commercialise this technology. Since 2005, she is Professor of Translational Science at the University College Dublin School of Medicine and Medical Sciences.


Her research, publication and patent record is in high content protein/antibody arrays and their biomedical applications. Application include the characterisation of antibodies specificity (including therapeutic antibodies), biomarker discovery validation, diagnostics, assay development, protein-interaction studies, proteomics, large scale/systems biology research. 


She is a member of a number of Editorial and Science Advisory and Review Boards. For the past 10 years she has been involved in policy development in the areas of science, technology and innovation, including in the EU Health, Innovation and Infrastructure. Since 2003, she is a Member of the Irish Government‚Äôs Advisory Science Council (ASC) (www.sciencecouncil.ie), appointed by the Minister for Industry, Trade and Employment. For the past ten years, she is on a number of Science Advisory & Review Boards, including for BMBF/DLR in Germany; BBSRC in the UK; Vinnova in Sweden. She has received prizes for her research, including the prestigious BMBF ‚ÄėBioFuture‚Äô Award from the German Minister of Science. She was awarded the Federation of European Biochemical Societies (FEBS) 2009 Award for her research & its significance. Other recipients of this award include Prof. J. Craig Venter & Prof. Robert Huber.

offsite link The Gary Null Show - 09.24.20 Thu Sep 24, 2020 18:58

The Gary Null Show is here to inform you on the best news in health, healing, the environment.

 

Racism has been redefined' Bret Weinstein on woke science & how humans succeed - BQ #31

Biologist, evolutionary theorist and member of the 'intellectual dark web' Bret Weinstein talks about the woke movement, how they have impacted the sciences and the US election. Weinstein talks to The Sun's Steven Edginton for 'Burning Questions'.

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From Alpha To Omega

en-ie What is happening to our economy and our politics? Are we stuck forever in this corporate dystopia? What can we learn from the failures of radical politics over the last 100 years? Commandante Alpha talks in depth to experts from the fields of Political Economy, Politics, Science, Philosophy, Complexity, Mathematics, Music, and the Environment.

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offsite link #133 Women in Revolution w/ Anne McShane Sat Sep 26, 2020 13:00 | Tom O'Brien
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We are joined by Anne McShane. Anne is a Human Rights lawyer based in Ireland, who recently completed her PhD on the role of the Zhenotdel, the section of the Russian Communist party devoted to women's affairs in the 1920s, in Soviet Central Asia. We talk about why figures like Alexandra Kollontai and Inessa Armand didn?t consider themselves feminists, and what this implies for our emancipatory politics.

offsite link #132 Marx and Nature w/ GIU Part 2 Sat Sep 19, 2020 13:00 | Tom O'Brien
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Part 2 of our discussion of Paul Burketts ?Marx and Nature - a Red and Green Perspective? with our Emancipation Network comrades Kyle and Shane from General Intellect Unit.

offsite link #012 The 18th Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte Fri Sep 11, 2020 13:10 | Tom O'Brien
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We finish our discussion of Chapter 4 - ?The Rise of Louis Bonaparte?... I also get carried away about the Jesuits and tell tales of drunken symphonies. The artwork for the show was created by the Korean artist, and author of the 2019 Marx/Engels Illustration book. https://www.deviantart.com/rono1... https://twitter.com/RN_fortuna https://www.patreon.com/rono1848 Panelists: Ezri - Swampside Chats Kyle - General Intellect Unit

offsite link #131 Marx and Nature w/ GIU Part 1 Sat Sep 05, 2020 13:00 | Tom O'Brien
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We are joined by our Emancipation Network comrades Kyle and Shane from General Intellect Unit, to discuss Paul Burketts ?Marx and Nature - a Red and Green Perspective?. This is the first of a three parter. You can find the book here: https://www.haymarketbooks.org/b...

offsite link BONUS: #130 Destroying Yemen w/ Isa Blumi Pt 2 Sun Aug 30, 2020 10:48 | Tom O'Brien
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This is part two of our interview with Prof. Isa Blumi, Professor of Turkish and Middle Eastern Studies at Stockholm University about his 2018 book: ?Destroying Yemen: What Chaos in Arabia Tells Us About the World.

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offsite link When the Weird Becomes Harder Wed Sep 30, 2020 18:57 | Alex Smith
Even during the pandemic, 2020 offers more wildfires, strong storms, heat waves, low sea ice and melting glaciers. NCAR Distinguished Scholar Kevin Trenberth and from the UK, Professor Mike Benton, two scientists at the top of their game, explain how we got here  …

offsite link The Arctic Has Entered A New Climate State Wed Sep 23, 2020 20:30 | Alex Smith
Ice is rapidly disappearing from both Poles. Two polar ice experts report latest science. From the U.S. National Center For Atmospheric Research in Colorado, Arctic scientist Laura Landrum: in 2020, the Arctic has reached a new climate state. Thomas Slater from Leeds University  …

offsite link Surviving in the Age of Extreme Heat Sat Sep 12, 2020 20:09 | Alex Smith
Get my new e-book “Surviving in the Age of Extreme Heat” Here is how:† 1. Make a PayPal donation of $7.95 (use the PayPal button on any page) 2. I will see your donation and email you within 24 hours with your copy  …

offsite link SPECIAL: Burning of the West! Sat Sep 12, 2020 19:45 | Alex Smith
Up to a million evacuate as the Western States burned with unbearable heat and fire. David Wallace-Wells, journalist and author of ?The Uninhabitable Earth? is hot on the fires in California and Oregon. From San Francisco climate scientist Zeke Hausfather on his poisoned  …

offsite link Hot News With Alan Weisman Thu Sep 10, 2020 01:57 | Alex Smith
We talk with Alan Weisman author of the global best sellers “The World Without Us” and “Countdown”. But first news you may have missed. During the pandemic, while millions wonder where the rent or mortgage payment will come from – all of it  …

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