Tag Archives | Science

An enzyme behind cancer spread found

This is interesting. If blocking this single enzyme does stop cancer metastasis then it’ll be a real breakthrough. AS long as the cancer is found early before it can spread of course. Which is why you need to get anything suspicious checked out as early as possible. False alarms and wasted trips to the doctor are better than the alternative.

Institute of Cancer Research scientists have found that an enzyme called LOX is crucial in promoting metastasis, Cancer Cell journal reports.
Drugs to block this enzyme’s action could keep cancer at bay, they hope.

More info at: BBC NEWS | Health | Enzyme behind cancer spread found

Happy 2009

Just want to wish everyone who stumbles upon this blog a Happy 2009. If you want to be where the action is online in 2009 joint Twitter.

I think 2009 is going to be very historic for several reasons. Number 1 being the inauguration of Barack Obama. The fact that he is African American is an incidental in my opinion. The best thing about Barack Obama is that he is an intellectual. He gets that it is okay to listen to experts in various fields and that empirical evidence isn’t a taboo.

Other highlights in 2009 will be the 200 year anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth and the 150 year anniversary of the publication of his seminal work On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection.

The world has been on a path to a a better place after the work of Darwin, and Wallace it should be said.

It’s like finding water after years in the desert

Barack Obama talked about science and introduced his science team in his weekly address. See video below. Could we be about to witness a new mini enlightenment after the regression of the Bush years. I think so. It is incumbent on all of us who value rationality, both in the USA and also the wider world, to step up to the plate and advance rational evidenced based thinking and policy.

I wonder how much complaining we’ll hear from the war on Christmas crowd for the Happy Holiday’s closing remark!

The Audacity of Hope – Barack Obama

Just finished reading Barack Obama’s The Audacity of Hope. It is a very good book indeed. I read it in print form (on the Sony Reader) and as an Audio book. Skipping between the formats depending on what I was doing. The audio book version is read by Obama. He could have a good career as a voice actor in 8 years after his Presidency 🙂

The book itself is a very good manifesto for a fair and tolerant society. Parts of it moved me close to tears, whilst other parts made me laugh out loud. Not at the ideas but rather at the prose and the turn of phrase used. The only part of the book I disagree with is the chapter on Faith. Obama is a Christian and he outlines why he took this path after a wide ranging exposure to many religious, spiritual and secular ideas in his youth. Whist I can understand at the intellectual level his decision to be baptised as a Christian, I find myself disappointed that he did. I’m perfectly willing to admit that this is my bias and prejudice showing through. With that bias fully acknowledged, It has to be said that Obama presents a good case for why secularists should not expect people of faith to park their beliefs at the door. He also points out however that the religious cannot base their argument on recourse to God’s Will or scripture and expect to carry the argument. Arguments in a democracy have to be open and acceptable to all members of the society, whether religious or not. UPDATE: See video below in which Obama talks about this subject. This is much like the text in the book. This book is highly recommended. Either in print or audio book form.

The world will be a shinier place on 5th November 2008 if Barack Obama is the President Elect of the USA.

Eight-month delay for LHC

Botheration. It’s going to take at least 8 months to fix the Large Hadron Collider.

Officials at CERN, Europe’s particle-physics laboratory near Geneva, Switzerland, say that the time is needed to overhaul a sector of the 27-kilometre-long machine, after an electrical failure on 19 September caused some 6 tonnes of ultra-cold liquid helium to leak into its tunnel. A preliminary report issued on 16 October says that as many as 29 of the nearly 10,000 magnets used to guide the accelerator’s proton beam will need to be replaced. Further magnets may need to be removed and inspected, and modifications must also be made to prevent future accidents. “It’s a serious incident,” says James Gillies, a spokesman for the laboratory.

From: Eight-month delay for LHC : Nature News

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