Mark Roth Has Key to Suspended Animation, Closer To Immortality

As anyone who reads science fiction will tell you, suspended animation is where your body is put into a state of preservation, not really living, but not dead either. It’s like a chemically induced version of hibernation, and it could help you stay alive on the way to a hospital after getting seriously hurt. Mark Roth was part of a larger DARPA initiative to extend soldier survivability after injury on the battlefield. From that research, Roth discovered that hydrogen sulfide (H2S), in small quantities, would put mammals in what was essentially a state of suspended animation. Hydrogen sulfide is toxic (it was used in chemical warfare in WWI) but in the right doses it can actively bond to oxygen receptors in your body. Replacing the need for oxygen allows mammals to lower their metabolic rates to absurdly low levels, but once the H2S is removed animals recover without any nasty side effects. Roth has found then what seems to be the perfect formula for keeping people alive after trauma. His newly formed company, Ikaria, is currently in phase II clinical trials for a liquid hydrogen sulfide product. In just a few years, suspended animation may be a common tool in hospitals and trauma centers all over the world. It almost sounds too incredible to believe. Watch Roth give an enthusiastic and really enjoyable talk at TED 2010 in the video below that explains his work and its amazing potential.

via Mark Roth Has Key to Suspended Animation, Closer To Immortality | Singularity Hub.

The Recent Future / March 24, 2010 / Health, SciFi / 0 Comments

This Is the Future of the Fight Against Cancer

Look close. You may be staring at the end of cancer. Those tiny black dots are nanobots delivering a lethal blow to a cancerous cell, effectively killing it. The first trial on humans have been a success, with no side-effects:

It sneaks in, evades the immune system, delivers the siRNA, and the disassembled components exit out.

Those are the words of Mark Davis, head of the research team that created the nanobot anti-cancer army at the California Institute of Technology. According to a study to be published in Nature, Davis’ team has discovered a clean, safe way to deliver RNAi sequences to cancerous cells. RNAi (Ribonucleic acid interference) is a technique that attacks specific genes in malign cells, disabling functions inside and killing them.

via This Is the Future of the Fight Against Cancer – Nanobots – Gizmodo.

The Recent Future / March 24, 2010 / Health, SciFi / 0 Comments

Exclusive: Colorado Doctors Skirt FDA Jurisdiction to Provide Stem Cell Therapies

The FDA has yet to approve stem cell therapies for general use in medicine, but that hasn’t stopped doctors in Colorado from providing them anyway. Chris Centeno and John Schultz have boldly formed Regenerative Sciences Inc. in Broomfield, Colorado. RSI provides its patients with the Regenexx procedure, an adult stem cell transplant that uses your own cells (autologous) to treat joint injuries and bone damage. There’s no surgery needed. A needle extracts bone marrow, RSI isolates the stem cells and cultures them in your own blood, and then these cells are injected into the area where they are needed. They’ve treated 348+ patients with 800+ injections and show no signs of slowing down. According to RSI’s own surveys, 89% of their knee patients showed marked improvement, as did 75% of their hip patients! Within months some patients can walk or run in ways they haven’t been able to in years. We’ve seen these kinds of results from stem cell treatments before, but only in horses and dogs. That’s because human stem cell therapies like this one aren’t approved by the FDA. How can Centeno and Schultz flaunt the lack of federal approval? They claim that Regenexx is solely used as a part of their medical practice, only within the state of Colorado, and as such is no more regulated by the FDA than it would be by the FAA or the Department of Motor Vehicles. I had a chance to talk with Dr. Centeno over the phone and learn more about Regenexx and RSI. For hundreds of patients, he and his team are providing a remarkable hope. They’ve brought lab-cultured medical stem cell therapies to the US. Finally.

via Exclusive: Colorado Doctors Skirt FDA Jurisdiction to Provide Stem Cell Therapies | Singularity Hub.

The Recent Future / March 9, 2010 / Health / 0 Comments

Stem Cell Transplant Defeats HIV? Patient Still HIV Free After 2 Years

Add one more name to the ever growing list of diseases that have been defeated by stem cell treatments: HIV. That’s right, according to a recent report in the New England Journal of Medicine, a stem cell transplant performed in Germany has unexpectedly removed all signs of HIV from a 42 year old American patient. The unnamed white male was treated two years ago for Leukemia with a dose of donor stem cells and his HIV RNA count has dropped to zero and remained there since. While the treatment was for Leukemia, Dr. Gero Hutter and colleagues at the Charite Universitatsmedizen in Berlin had selected the stem cell donor for his HIV resistant genes. While there are still many questions unanswered, this is the first such case of stem cells treating HIV that has been reported in a NEJM-caliber publication. Ladies and gentlemen, this is not a “cure” for HIV/AIDS, but it is certainly a remarkable and promising find. There’s more you need to know about the situation, so read on.

Like so many instances of “miraculous medicine”, this case has its complexities. First, the patient was being treated for Leukemia, not HIV. The patient had been HIV positive for ten years before the first stem cell treatment. His HIV medication was actually treating his condition fairly well, and it wasn’t until a round of chemotherapy (for the Leukemia) raised his HIV count that it looked to be troublesome. The original transplant from two years ago may have dropped his HIV count, but his Leukemia returned a year later. Another dose of stem cells was given and this seems to have treated the cancer as well as maintain its effect on the HIV.

Secondly, their’s the DNA of the donor to consider. Due to a genetic mutation (CCR5), the donor has a resistance to the HIV virus. Such resistance occurs in 1-3% of white males of European descent. Furthermore, while a single copy of this CCR5 gene can grant some resistance to HIV, the donor had two copies, which often leads to a good chance of full resistance to the virus. Dr. Hutter and colleagues were fully aware of the CCR5 in the donor when selecting him.

Stem Cell Transplant Defeats HIV? Patient Still HIV Free After 2 Years | Singularity Hub.

The Recent Future / February 27, 2010 / Health / 0 Comments

Diagnosis: Broken-Heart Syndrome

Dorothy Lee and her husband of 40 years were driving home from a Bible study group one wintry night when their car suddenly hit the curb. Mrs. Lee looked at her husband, who was driving, and saw his head bob a couple of times and fall on his chest.

In the ensuing minutes, Mrs. Lee recalls, she managed to avoid a crash while stopping the car, called 911 on her cellphone and tried to revive her husband before an ambulance arrived. But at the hospital, soon after learning her husband had died of a heart attack, Mrs. Lee’s heart appeared to give out as well. She experienced sudden sharp pains in her chest, felt faint and went unconscious.

When doctors performed an X-ray angiogram expecting to find and treat a blood clot that had caused Mrs. Lee’s symptoms, they were surprised: There wasn’t any evidence of a heart attack. Her coronary arteries were completely clear.

Doctors eventually determined that Mrs. Lee had suffered from broken-heart syndrome, a name given by doctors who observed that it seemed to especially affect patients who had recently lost a spouse or other family member. The mysterious malady mimics heart attacks, but appears to have little connection with coronary artery disease. Instead, it is typically triggered by acute emotion or physical trauma that releases a surge of adrenaline that overwhelms the heart. The effect is to freeze much of the left ventricle, the heart’s main pumping chamber, disrupting its ability to contract and effectively pump blood.

The phenomenon is a “concussion” of the heart, says Scott Sharkey, a cardiologist at Minneapolis Heart Institute. “It’s really a heart attack which is triggered by stress rather than by a blocked artery,” he says.

Diagnosis: Broken-Heart Syndrome –

The Recent Future / February 10, 2010 / Health / 0 Comments

Pizza Hut cheese is not just cheese, its silicone!

Pizza Hut cheese is not just cheese, its silicone!

In this issue, writer John Bunting details how Pizza Huts cheese supplier Leprino Foods uses a silicone-based industrial chemical in the patented manufacturing of Pizza Cheese

That chemical Polymethylsiloxane has no FDA approval for use as a food ingredient.

Polymethylsiloxane is sold by Dow-Corning as Antifoam FG 10 .

In its patented manufacturing process, Leprino Foods liberally sprays Polydimethylsiloxane on cheese granules . Leprinos Pizza Cheese supplied to Pizza Huts contains about 900 parts per million of Polymethylsiloxane: 90 times higher residue concentration than FDA allows when Polymethylsiloxane is used as a boiler water anti- foaming agent.

Repeat: Polydimethylsiloxane has no FDA approval as a safe food ingredient. It is a violation of FDA rules to use an unapproved ingredient in human foods. Silicone is amazing stuff.

In its various forms, silicone may enhance the female anatomy (ala amply-endowed actress Pamela Anderson). Silicone products can caulk seams around the bathtub to seal out water. Silicone compounds are used for lubricants. However, using silicone products in human foods is a novel, if extra-legal, application.

Leprino Foods, the worlds largest Italian cheese manufacturer, is the nearly exclusive supplier of Pizza Cheese to the 6000+ Pizza Hut restaurants in the U.S. Leprino is based in Denver, Colorado. To control costs (and boost profits), Leprino Foods uses patented manufacturing processes that add large volumes of water, salt and food starch to so-called granules of Pizza Cheese prior to flash-freezing.

Clearly, Leprino Foods use of Dow-Corning Antifoam FG 10 as an agent contained in an aqueous solution sprayed directly on cheese granules does not conform with FDAs rules governing ingredients used in human foods.

Science & Technology | Silicone Based Chemical in Pizza Huts Cheese is Polymethylsiloxane | Science news and scientific advances

The Recent Future / December 23, 2009 / Health / 0 Comments

Scientific Link to Autism Identified

During its research into the application of neuroscience in business, a New Jersey based think tank, The Center for Modeling Optimal Outcomes®, LLC (The Center) made an inadvertent and amazing discovery.

According to The Center’s founder, William McFaul, a retired business person and not a member of the scientific community, “Because of its universal applicability, our Life Sciences group has already used the model as a tool to identify highly probable causal paths for several illnesses and disease entities. Autism was one of most difficult illnesses The Center had attempted to analyze.

If it hadn’t been for so many parents insisting that vaccines were responsible for the condition, we might never have found the fact that the stabilizer in MMR and a few other vaccines is hydrolyzed gelatin; a substance that is approximately 21% glycine. It appears that, based on readily verifiable science, the use of that form of glycine triggers an imbalance between the amino acid neurotransmitters responsible for the absorption rate of certain classes of cells throughout the body. It is that wide-spread disruption that apparently results in the systemic problems that encompass the mind and the body characterized in today’s ‘classic’ autism.” He also added, “The use of our model indicates each of the disorders within Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is attributable to different disruptions in homeostasis. We look forward

Scientific Link to Autism Identified JACKSON N.J. Nov. 18 /- During i….

The Recent Future / December 7, 2009 / Health / 0 Comments

Scientists give grubby children a clean bill of health

For parents too stretched to make sure their offspring are perfectly turned out at all times, it may just be the scientific cover they’ve been waiting for.

They will now be able to answer the disapproving tuts of their more fastidious friends by pointing to research which gives biological backing to the old adage that the more germs a child is exposed to during early childhood, the better their immune system in later life

Researchers from the School of Medicine at the University of California found that being too clean could impair the skin’s ability to heal. The San Diego-based team discovered that normal bacteria that live on the skin trigger a pathway that helps prevent inflammation when we get hurt.

These bugs dampen down overactive immune responses which can cause cuts and grazes to swell, or lead to rashes, according to research published in the online edition of Nature Medicine.

“These germs are actually good for us,” said Professor Richard Gallo, who led the research. Common bacterial species, known as staphylococci, which can cause inflammation when under the skin, are “good bacteria” when on the surface, where they can reduce inflammation.

More via Scientists give grubby children a clean bill of health | Life and style | The Guardian.

The Recent Future / November 25, 2009 / Health / 0 Comments

Why boys are turning into girls

Here’s something rather rotten from the State of Denmark. Its government yesterday unveiled official research showing that two-year-old children are at risk from a bewildering array of gender-bending chemicals in such everyday items as waterproof clothes, rubber boots, bed linen, food, nappies, sunscreen lotion and moisturising cream.

The 326-page report, published by the environment protection agency, is the latest piece in an increasingly alarming jigsaw. A picture is emerging of ubiquitous chemical contamination driving down sperm counts and feminising male children all over the developed world. And anti-pollution measures and regulations are falling far short of getting to grips with it.

Sperm counts are falling so fast that young men are less fertile than their fathers and produce only a third as much, proportionately, as hamsters. And gender-bending chemicals are increasingly being blamed for the mystery of the “lost boys”: babies who should normally be male who have been born as girls instead.

The Danish government set out to find out how much contamination from gender-bending chemicals a two-year-old child was exposed to every day. It concluded that a child could be “at critical risk” from just a few exposures to high levels of the substances, such as from rubber clogs, and imperilled by the amount it absorbed from sources ranging from food to sunscreens.

More via Why boys are turning into girls – Telegraph.

The Recent Future / November 24, 2009 / Health, Nature / 0 Comments

New Cancer Detector Chip Works in About 30 Minutes

So there’s this period of time during a visit to the doctor’s when you’re left alone in the office. You just saw the nurse or PA, and the doctor is playing golf somewhere, so you have to wait in your little paper dress. I was once stranded in that limbo for an hour. Wouldn’t it be nice if that time could be put to good use? Researchers at the University of Toronto have developed a microchip that works with nano-materials to detect biomarkers associated with cancer. Bottom line, in about 30 minutes the new biosensor can determine if you’ve got the ‘Big C’. Having already been proven to work with prostate cancer, the device could one day even be adapted to detect HIV, or H1N1 swine flu. Now that’s a good use of my time.

Development of the cancer biosensor was published in ACS, and more recently in Nature Nanotechnology. Shana Kelley, team leader for the project, says that the cancer detection microchip is the size of a fingertip. It and related electronics could fit into a hand held device the size of a Blackberry™. That means the detection of cancer would not only be much quicker (30 minutes vs. days of lab work) but it could be portable and relatively cheap as well. Hand held detection of major diseases and illnesses would revolutionize medicine, making it more accessible and more informative.

The biosensor works by pairing three components: biological detectors, nanowires, and standard silicon chip technology. The biological detectors are attached to the end of nanowires (typically made of gold) and will bond to the biomarkers that indicate the presence of cancer. These biomarkers are strands of micro RNA or messenger RNA produced by the mutated genetics of cancer cells and so the biodetectors are called nucleic acid probes. When the RNA interacts with the nucleic acid probes, electric currents are induced along the gold nanowire. These currents are detected and decoded by the silicon chip technology to determine if cancer is present in a sample.

via New Cancer Detector Chip Works in About 30 Minutes | Singularity Hub.

The Recent Future / November 23, 2009 / Health, Tech / 0 Comments