Important molecule discovered relating to Cerebral malaria

This is a “truly significant advance” made by a team of researchers who have identified an important molecule involved in the development of cerebral malaria. The latter is one of the most deadly forms of malaria.

With experiments carried out on mice, the researchers came to the conclusion that the EphA2 protein is very important for the onset of the disease in the brain. By breaching this protein in mice, the researchers realized that it could be prevented, results that could suggest a functioning therapeutic strategy also for the version in humans.

Tracey Lamb is the study’s senior author and associate professor of pathology at the University of Utah Health. Cerebral malaria affects more than 575,000 people each year and is mainly present in sub-Saharan Africa, particularly three younger children. It causes fluids to escape from the brain into a coma. It kills 20% of infected people but survivors can develop serious symptoms that can last a lifetime such as seizures or mental health disorders.

One of the fundamental processes behind the development of cerebral malaria is the interruption of the blood-brain barrier, something that makes this disease deadly. It is a semipermeable cell wall that prevents the fluids of the brain’s nervous system from mixing with the bloodstream.

The researchers found that the EphA2 molecule breaks the blood-brain barrier causing the junctions between the cells to be less tight.

Smarter airplane design could be inspired from gulls

Scientists say that is could be possible to draw inspriation from birds for design of smarter airplanes.

Scientists have observed that flexing a single elbow joint enables gulls to adapt their wing shape to gusty conditions and that this relatively simple design could inspire improved aircraft design. Researchers at University of British Columbia say that their study shows evidence how wing morphing affects avian stability.

The gull’s wing design points to a novel, and fairly simple, avian-inspired joint that may enable aircraft to adjust dynamically to challenging conditions, scientists say.

As wing speeds and maximum gusts increase, gulls sacrifice stability for maneuverability. By altering the angle of their elbow joint they shift from extended wing configurations to a flexed configuration, pulling the tips of their wings in and back. The flexed shape gives them more control.

To determine the stability of different wing shapes, Altshuler and researcher Christina Harvey prepared gull wings over the anatomical elbow range and measured their performance in a wind tunnel. They also observed gulls in the wild.

To get a fuller picture of how birds maintain their stability while gliding the researchers want to study a wider range of wind perturbations — gulls often encounter unsteady, large-scale turbulence while flying in the wake of buildings or convective air flows over open water. Atmospheric turbulence in these conditions is likely larger than the wind tunnel turbulence the researchers used in the study

Ethereum covers lost ground to garner second spot

Ethereum has finally managed to cover a lot of lost ground to grab itself the second spot from Ripple.

Ripple was ranked second for more than a month and now ethereum has finally retaken its second position with the crypto seemingly turns quite bullish. The bullish trend has led to an increase in prices of ethereum by more than 10% and volumes hitting $2.7 billion mark. The reason is probably because of the Constantinople hardfork which is now in two weeks on January the 16th.

That will provide some efficiency gains in gas usage and for smart contracts, with new issuance to be reduced by 33% from 3 eth per block to 2 eth per block. Ethereum’s hashrate has plunged recently to 165 Terahashes from a high of 300, recovering slightly to 174 currently indicating that the miners are not hoarding ethereum but probably insta selling block rewards.

No miner is publicly traded, so we have to operate on guesswork. From what data is available it appears Bitmain may have sold all their one million BCH or the vast majority of it. That would explain the November crypto crisis.

In these sort of situations you usually get new miners entering the scene as the network effectively punishes the current miners for failing to withdraw new supply while price was falling. Instead miners bring extra new supply – whatever they’ve hoarded – while price is falling. Effectively crashing their own business.

Thus new entrants appear funded through fiat with sufficient fiat runaway. They have seen the inefficiency and the opportunity, or at least they’re betting on it. Their aim would be to hold the new crypto, and so the cycle perhaps repeats.