Friday, March 23, 2007

Health Canada and the FDA have to regulate chicken soup!

Chicken soup....YUM. Especially my wifes chicken soup...sublime and soothing after a day of ski. Some of you were told by your grandmothers...."chicken soup is good when you have a cold". This amazing meal has health virtues that have been published in very serious journals...CHEST for instance. A quick search on Pubmed with the keywords "chicken" and "soup" gave me 77 hits...hey...not bad at all!!! Some of those studies use qui sophisticated instruments, jusst look at this one:

Measurement of the radical scavenging activity of chicken jelly soup, a part of the medicated diet, 'Yakuzen', made from gelatin gel food 'Nikogori', using chemiluminescence and electron spin resonance methods.International journal of molecular medicine. 2006 18(1): 107-111

Another publication offers a list of conditiions treated with chicken soup or soup made with other fowl. As an example here is a table from an article published in CHEST: Fred Rosner, MD (1980)Therapeutic efficacy of chicken soup. Chest, 78(4): 672-674.

Furthermore, it seems that using certain parts of chicken or fowl can have adverse effects:

Now...what do you (as a serious scientist) think of this abstract???

"A case is reported in which a previously healthy individual, having received an inadequate course of chicken soup in treatment of mild pneumococcal pneumonia, experienced a severe relapse, refractory to all medical treatment and eventually requiring thoracotomy. The pharmacology of chicken soup is reviewed and the dangers of abrupt termination of therapy are stressed"

Caroline, NL et Schwartz, H. 1975. Chicken soup rebound and relapse of pneumonia: report of a case. Chest, 67 (2) 215-216.

Finally, for your own pleasure here is a study of "sipping soup through a straw" and its effects on nasal mucus velocity...that's a gem!

Saketkhoo et al. 1978. Effects of drinking hot water, cold water, and chicken soup on nasal mucus velocity and nasal airflow resistance. Chest, 74(4) 408-410

Here is my very last am I suppose to pronounce the first authors name? Is it...SAK-ATCHOO???

Thursday, March 08, 2007

What are the odds?

Some people are sooo lucky! Just try to calculate the odds of this considering

1) Windspeed
2) Air moisture
3) Rotation of the Earth
4) Geographical position of the house
5) What happened a few million years back...
6) Angle of entry in atmosphere...etc...

I think you can sleep tight tonight...the odds are slim that you are going to get killed by a meteorite in your sleep...but it's still plausible...
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Look hands!

I just hope that people using the games with this GADGET have enough brain cells left!

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Can math and PCR save the elephants?

Ivory trade from elephant tusks is still going on despite its ban in 1989. Last year it is estimated that 3,000 elephants were killed. Between August 2005 and August 2006, 23,461 kg of ivory has been seized but the identification of poachers is difficult, partly because there is no way of telling where the ivory is coming from in Africa...until now!

In order to adress this issue and provide a better monitoring, Samuel Wasser and its team have demonstrated that DNA extracted from elephant tusks allows to determine if the elephant is from the savannah or the forest. These studies are based on microsatellite and mitochondrial DNA (Wasser et al., 2004, PNAS, 101: 14847-14852). In order to further identify the region where the elephants were killed, this same team designed a genetic and probalistic approach based Voronoi tesselation (Wasser et al. 2007, PNAS, 104: 4228-4233). These analysis allowed to identify a common region in Africa: most likely Zambia. Now, let's hope that Zambia will be monitored more closely and that the poachers, that decimated between 50 and 90% of the elephant population will be caught...

Another way to put a stop to elephant killing does not involve genetics or statistics knowledge...STOP BUYING IVORY!!!!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Traffic on the bridge...

Attention: Virus crossing ahead! Found this on Nature Cell Biology site. Absolutely amazing! Never heard of anything like that. Click here for a video of this remarquable finding!

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Saturday, March 03, 2007

Paris Hilton's phenotype

Brain researchers have identified an enzyme apparently responsible for neuronal connections. It seems that glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3) prevents memory loss. This finding could lead to interesting research leads in neuroscience and Alzheimer's disease. It could also explains Paris Hilton's peculiar phenotype, a lack of GSK3? She recently forgot to renew her drivers license...and
Associated Press decided to ban the publication of this amazingly important news.

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

Isectomycology ?

Absolutely beautiful. Never heard of this before....silly of me not to know this existed! Natures is just perfect...unless you are the victim!