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BP is burning rare sea turtles alive, blocking efforts to save them

Posted: June 26, 2010 at 8:15 am

By now, almost everyone is aware of the out-of-control oil spill down in the Gulf of Mexico that seems to be getting exponentially worse with each passing day. But what people may not know is that BP’s efforts to control the oil by burning it are actually burning alive a certain rare and endangered species of sea turtle.

For several weeks now, rescue crews have been feverishly trying to save Kemp’s Ridleys sea turtles, as well as four other endangered varieties, from being caught in the oil corral areas that are being intentionally burned by BP, but according to Mike Ellis, one of the boat captains involved in the project, BP has now blocked all such rescue efforts from taking place.

“They ran us out of there and then they shut us down, they would not let us get back in there,” he explained in an interview with Catherine Craig, a conservation biologist.

According to Dr. Brian Stacy, a veterinarian with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, there are five different endangered sea turtles living in the Gulf that are all at risk, but the type being found “dead or covered in oil” the most is the Kemp’s Ridleys variety, which is the rarest species of them all. Read more…
Kama Raja Old Formula for Penis Enhancement!

Recommendation and review posted by Guinevere Smith

Reaction Attempts Explorer

Posted: June 25, 2010 at 11:26 pm

Two months ago I reported on the Reaction Attempts project and the availability of the summary as a physical or electronic (PDF) book. The basic idea behind the project is to collect organic chemistry reaction attempts reported in Open Notebooks. This would include not only successful experiments but also those which could be categorized as failed, ambiguous, in progress, etc.

The book was organized with reactants listed alphabetically. In this way one could browse through summaries of the types of reactions being attempted by different researchers on a reactant of interest. There might be information there (what to do or what to avoid) of some use for a planned reaction. At the very least one could contact the researcher to initiate a discussion about work that had not yet been published in the traditional system.

Andrew Lang has just created a web-based tool to explore the Reaction Attempts database in much more sophisticated ways.

Here are some scenarios of how one could use it. On the left hand side of the page is a dropdown menu containing an alphabetically sorted list of all the reactants and products in the database. Lets select furfurylamine.


This immediately informs us that there are 230 reactions involving furfurylamine and it lists the schemes for all these reactions upon scrolling down. That’s still a bit hard to process so a second dropdown menu appears populated with a list of other reactants or products involved with furfurylamine.

We now select boc-glycine and that narrows our search to 145 reactions.

Selecting benzaldehyde from the third dropdown menu narrows the search further to 61 reactions.

The final dropdown menu contains a short list of only isocyanides and thus all represent attempted Ugi reactions. Selecting t-butyl isocyanide gives us 56 reactions.

That means that these same 4 components were reacted together 56 times. Looking at the various reaction summaries will show that some of these are duplicates for reproducibility and others vary concentration and solvent and the effect on yield is included. This particular reaction was in fact the subject of a paper on the optimization of a Ugi reaction using an automated liquid handler.

Now here is where the design of the Explorer comes in handy. We might want to ask if the reaction proceeds as well with the other isocyanides. All we have to do is switch the final dropdown menu to ask what happens when we go from t-butyl to n-butyl isonitrile. There is a single attempt of this reaction and it is “failed” in the sense that no precipitate was obtained from the reaction mixture. This doesn’t mean that the reaction didn’t take place – it might be that the Ugi product was too soluble. We can quickly inspect that the concentration and solvent are in line with conditions that allowed precipitation of the t-butyl derivative.

OK lets see what happens with n-pentyl isocyanide.

It looks like it behaves just like n-butyl isocyanide: another single non-precipitation event. What about benzyl isocyanide?

This time we do get the Ugi product from a single attempt. Note the lower yield compared to the t-butyl isocyanide under similar conditions.

What about with cyclohexyl isocyanide?

This time we hit an experiment in progress. A precipitate was obtained but it was not characterized. We can click on the link to the lab notebook page (EXP232) to learn more about how long it took for the precipitate to appear but there are not enough data to draw a definite conclusion about the successs of the reaction. However, based on the results from the other precipitates in this series it is probably encouraging enough to repeat and characterize the product.

There are other sources of information here. Clicking on the image of the Ugi product takes us to its ChemSpider entry. In this case the only associated data relates to this reaction attempt.

Lets look at another scenario: reactions involving aminoacetaldehyde dimethyl acetal.

In this case we find the intersection of two Open Notebooks. The first reaction comes from Michael Wolfle from the Todd group.

The second comes from Khalid Mirza from the Bradley group.

In order to learn more about the nature of the overlap we can use the substructure search capabilities of the Reaction Explorer. Simply click on the image of the acetal and the ChemSpider entry pops up. Now click on the copy button next to the SMILES for the compound.

Paste the SMILES into the SMARTS box of the Reaction Explorer.

We get 13 reaction attempts for this query – the two we found earlier and the rest corresponding to attempts by Michael Wolfle to synthesize praziquanamine.

We learn that one connection between these two notebooks involves different attempts at synthesizing praziquantel.

Hopefully this demonstrates the value of abstracting organic chemistry reaction attempts from Open Notebooks into a machine readable format. Contributions to the database require only the ChemSpider IDs of the reactants and product and a link to the relevant lab notebook page. Reaction schemes are automatically generated by the system. More on the Reaction Attempts project here.

Recommendation and review posted by Guinevere Smith

Ethosuximide and valproic acid are more effective than lamotrigine in childhood absence epilepsy

Posted: June 25, 2010 at 8:58 pm

Childhood absence epilepsy, the most common pediatric epilepsy syndrome, is usually treated with ethosuximide, valproic acid, or lamotrigine.

Ethosuximide and valproic acid are more effective than lamotrigine in the treatment of childhood absence epilepsy. Ethosuximide is associated with fewer adverse attentional effects.

References:
Ethosuximide, Valproic Acid, and Lamotrigine in Childhood Absence Epilepsy. NEJM, 2010.

Posted at Clinical Cases and Images. Stay updated and subscribe, follow us on Twitter and connect on Facebook.


Recommendation and review posted by Guinevere Smith

International Stem Cell Corporation (ISCO.OB) Announces New Patent Issuance Under License Agreement

Posted: June 25, 2010 at 8:15 am

International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB:ISCO), http://www.intlstemcell.com, a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products, congratulates Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (ACT) on the issuance of its recent patent, U.S. Patent Number 7,736,896, covering a method for producing retinal pigment epithelial cells.

As licensee of the retinal cell technology covered by this ACT patent, ISCO looks forward to building on this discovery, either independently or in collaboration with ACT, with the goal of advancing the search for treatment of such diseases as Macular Degeneration and Retinitis Pigmentosa, leading causes of blindness in adults, both in the US and the World.

In addition to its licensed interest in the ACT patent, ISCO is developing its own proprietary technology for creating and implanting retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells that may be usable either in conjunction with its licensed technology from ACT or independently.

‘This is just one more example of the remarkable advancement in science toward the treatment of life’s more dreaded diseases, and we are proud to be one of the leading pioneers in that effort,’ said Kenneth Aldrich, Chairman of ISCO.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB):

International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells (hpSCs) from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). hpSCs avoid ethical issues associated with the use or destruction of viable human embryos. ISCO scientists have created the first parthenogenic, homozygous stem cell line that can be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal immune rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals of differing sexes, ages and racial groups. This offers the potential to create the first true stem cell bank, UniStemCell(TM), while avoiding the ethical issue of using fertilized eggs. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary Lifeline Cell Technology. More information is available at ISCO’s website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.

To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements pertaining to anticipated technological developments and therapeutic applications, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiary, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Key Words: Stem Cells, Biotechnology, Parthenogenesis

International Stem Cell Corporation
Kenneth C. Aldrich, Chairman
760-940-6383
[email protected]
or
Brian Lundstrom, President
760-640-6383
[email protected]

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko

How to Destroy Angels

Posted: June 25, 2010 at 8:14 am

How to Destroy Angels EP cover

One of my favorite graphic designers, Mark Weaver, supplied his fabulous talents to the cover of How to Destroy Angels latest EP.  Mark infuses anatomical elements into his designs from time to time, and when he does, it works so perfectly.  See more of his work here!

[spotted by fellow medical illustrator, Katie Hovany]

Recommendation and review posted by Guinevere Smith

International Stem Cell Corporation (ISCO.OB) Announces New Patent Issuance Under License Agreement

Posted: June 25, 2010 at 8:14 am

International Stem Cell Corporation (OTCBB:ISCO), http://www.intlstemcell.com, a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products, congratulates Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (ACT) on the issuance of its recent patent, U.S. Patent Number 7,736,896, covering a method for producing retinal pigment epithelial cells.

As licensee of the retinal cell technology covered by this ACT patent, ISCO looks forward to building on this discovery, either independently or in collaboration with ACT, with the goal of advancing the search for treatment of such diseases as Macular Degeneration and Retinitis Pigmentosa, leading causes of blindness in adults, both in the US and the World.

In addition to its licensed interest in the ACT patent, ISCO is developing its own proprietary technology for creating and implanting retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells that may be usable either in conjunction with its licensed technology from ACT or independently.

‘This is just one more example of the remarkable advancement in science toward the treatment of life’s more dreaded diseases, and we are proud to be one of the leading pioneers in that effort,’ said Kenneth Aldrich, Chairman of ISCO.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL STEM CELL CORPORATION (ISCO.OB):

International Stem Cell Corporation is a California-based biotechnology company focused on therapeutic and research products. ISCO’s core technology, parthenogenesis, results in creation of pluripotent human stem cells (hpSCs) from unfertilized oocytes (eggs). hpSCs avoid ethical issues associated with the use or destruction of viable human embryos. ISCO scientists have created the first parthenogenic, homozygous stem cell line that can be a source of therapeutic cells with minimal immune rejection after transplantation into hundreds of millions of individuals of differing sexes, ages and racial groups. This offers the potential to create the first true stem cell bank, UniStemCell(TM), while avoiding the ethical issue of using fertilized eggs. ISCO also produces and markets specialized cells and growth media for therapeutic research worldwide through its subsidiary Lifeline Cell Technology. More information is available at ISCO’s website, http://www.internationalstemcell.com.

To subscribe to receive ongoing corporate communications please click on the following link: http://www.b2i.us/irpass.asp?BzID=1468&to=ea&s=0.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Statements pertaining to anticipated technological developments and therapeutic applications, and other opportunities for the company and its subsidiary, along with other statements about the future expectations, beliefs, goals, plans, or prospects expressed by management constitute forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not historical fact (including, but not limited to statements that contain words such as “will,” “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,”) should also be considered to be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in the development and/or commercialization of potential products, uncertainty in the results of clinical trials or regulatory approvals, need and ability to obtain future capital, application of capital resources among competing uses, and maintenance of intellectual property rights. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements and as such should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect the company’s business, particularly those mentioned in the cautionary statements found in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Key Words: Stem Cells, Biotechnology, Parthenogenesis

International Stem Cell Corporation
Kenneth C. Aldrich, Chairman
760-940-6383
[email protected]
or
Brian Lundstrom, President
760-640-6383
[email protected]

Recommendation and review posted by Guinevere Smith


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