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jyl jyl is offline
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I don't work with biotech companies any more, but am still interested in new drug discovery.

Immune therapy is the hottest area in cancer research today. The drugs are derived from an improving understanding of how cancer cells evade detection and destruction by our immune system. Our immune systems are powerful, so much so that they can kill us if they are too active or attack things that they should not attack. We have various mechanisms to turn off the immune response. Cancer cells can mimic those mechanisms. Immune therapy involves suppressing those mechanisms or engineering immune cells that attack particular forms of cancer even when they are using those mechanisms. A few immune treatments have been approved by the FDA in the past two years. They work really well in some patients and not at all in others. As scientists try to understand what makes one patient respond to a treatment so he lives, and another not respond and die, they have been discovering a relationship with the gut biome.

The gut biome is all the microbes that live in your intestinal organs. We support huge numbers of microbes, and are starting to learn that, far from being dirty parasite to be eliminated, they are essential to our bodies' function. This will be one of the most exciting areas of research in coming decades, in part because it is easy to test hypotheses by transplanting microbes from one patient to another, or initially from one rat to another. The linked article illustrates one recent finding.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2017/11/gut-bacteria-may-make-or-break-your-chances-of-cancer-treatment-working/

I'm interested in seeing how the drug companies approach gut biome research. They need to be able to develop a patented drug. Simply learning how to cure patients won't bring profits, if anyone can do it. For example, there is a microbe called C. Difficile which is a major killer of hospitalized patients. It grows rampant in patients whose gut biome (aka gut flora) has been decimated by antibiotics, leaving C. Difficile with little competition. The conventional treatment for C. Diff is more antibiotics designed to kill C. Diff. These can suppress an outbreak, but leave the gut biome decimated and the patient at risk of re-infection, which often happens since C. Diff is very hard to eradicate from surfaces. Another way to treat C. Diff is to take fecal matter from a healthy person and introduce it into the gut of the patient, prompting his gut biome to rebuild. Since there is no way to patent this treatment or make it into a pharmaceutical, fecal transplants haven't gotten the attention, research, and marketing necessary to make the treatment widely available. If it isn't a drug, there isn't money in it.
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Old 11-05-2017, 08:48 PM
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Not quite to the "cool science" point yet, but we lifted our shiny new 70,000 lbs Inner Reflector Plug (beryllium reflector/liquid hydrogen moderators/heavy water cooling) into a test vessel this morning (for vacuum leak testing). There is only about .375" of clearance all the way down.



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Old 11-10-2017, 09:25 AM
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I hate vacuum leak checking. Better you than me.
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Old 11-10-2017, 12:26 PM
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Authored by a co-worker, we didn't 'date' but I often took her out to dinner because she was fascinating to talk to... and she was so smart the rest of the guys were afraid to date her.

https://www.ligo.caltech.edu/news/ligo20171016

More from her facebook page:

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Old 11-10-2017, 01:24 PM
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Cool video, gave me something to watch while I charge car battery. Darn cold snap.
Old 11-10-2017, 01:35 PM
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Was reading this article tonight: Nasa forecast: Which cities will flood as ice melts? - BBC News

It struck me: Why would different cities be affected by differently melting ice masses? It had to be because "sea level" is not constant.

Digging further, I found this: Sea Level not the same everywhere; up to 300 foot variation. - John Englander - Sea Level Rise Expert

Sea level varies by up to 300' globally! That is amazing.

I was in Thailand last week during the full moon and saw the extreme low tide. It was awesome to explore the ocean floor hundreds of meters out from the normal tide line. Lots of marine life that you don't normally get to see.
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Old 11-15-2017, 08:49 PM
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Now Available for Ordering:   101 Projects For Your BMW 3 Series 1982-2000  [more info]
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I thought this was pretty interesting. Not so much science as engineering.

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Old 11-27-2017, 09:27 PM
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That was soooo interesting I couldn't stop watching! Very well done.
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Old 11-27-2017, 09:44 PM
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So much science and know how goes into the making, yet the contents of the beverage can are not typically what an intelligent knowledgeable person would consume.

I hope the epoxy coating on the inside doesn't one day turn out to be poisonous, otherwise we are all done for.
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Old 11-28-2017, 05:56 AM
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Life Goes Deeper
https://aeon.co/essays/deep-beneath-the-earths-surface-life-is-weird-and-wonderful

Quote:
The amount of water in the subsurface is considerable. Globally, the freshwater reservoir in the subsurface is estimated to be up to 100 times as great as all the available fresh water in the rivers, lakes and swamps combined.

This water, ranging in ages from seven years to 2 billion years, is being intensely studied by researchers because it defines the location and scope of deep life.

We know now that the deep terrestrial subsurface is home to one quintillion simple (prokaryotic) cells. That is two to 20 times as many cells as live in all the open ocean.

By some estimates, the deep biosphere could contain up to one third of Earthís entire biomass....................
Things that I've read in the past if I recall correctly is that ground water is only 4-percent of all fresh water, and 90 percent of Earth's bio-mass is in the soil including the seabed. I'm not sure how accurate my memory is, nor how accurate this article above is. Thing is, we are still learning and discovering, and that is pretty cool.
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Old 11-29-2017, 05:58 AM
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The Remarkable "Curvature Blindness" Illusion - Neuroskeptic

This is cool. Another optical illusion. Even looking at the image close, it looks like sharp lines at first.

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Old 12-12-2017, 01:17 PM
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99-million-year-old ticks sucked the blood of dinosaurs | Science | AAAS
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Old 12-14-2017, 08:58 AM
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Interstellar object may hold 'alien' water - BBC News

Just a bizarre looking asteroid.
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Glen
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Old 12-19-2017, 07:50 AM
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Posted by Tim De Chant on Fri, 17 Mar 2017
Super-Safe Glass Battery Charges in Minutes, Not Hours
Super-Safe Glass Battery Charges in Minutes, Not Hours ‚€” NOVA Next | PBS
Quote:
Who says that only young scientists make breakthroughs?

For John Goodenough, the 94-year-old co-inventor of the lithium-ion battery, lightning appears to have struck twice. He recently published his latest battery design, the lithium-glass battery, an entirely solid cell that has a strikingly long list of admirable characteristics.
Will a New Glass Battery Accelerate the End of Oil?
By Mark Anderson
Posted 3 Mar 2017
https://spectrum.ieee.org/energywise/energy/renewables/does-new-glass-battery-accelerate-the-end-of-oil

Quote:
John Goodenough, coinventor of the lithium-ion battery, heads a team of researchers developing the technology that could one day supplant it.
Quote:
But the development is going to be with the battery manufacturers. I don’t want to do development. I don’t want to be going into business. I’m 94. I don’t need the money.”
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Last edited by kach22i; 12-29-2017 at 06:58 AM..
Old 12-29-2017, 06:55 AM
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