Several recent findings describe how living organisms keep accurate time in surprising ways.Your UV clock: Stem cells in the skin keep time to protect us from damaging ultraviolet radiation. “Circadian Rhythms in Skin Stem Cells Protect Us Against UV Rays,” Science Daily announced. A researcher explained, “Our study shows that human skin stem cells posses an internal clock that allows them to very accurately know the time of day and helps them know when it is best to perform the correct function.” The stem cells “turn on” the UV protection genes. See also Nature News.Your birthday clock: Our genes also keep time in mysterious ways involved in aging, Medical Xpress reported with the headline, “Biological clock able to measure age of most human tissues.” The timekeeping is apparently an epigenetic phenomenon. This biological clock does not tick at a constant rate, but changes up to about age 20, when it stabilizes. A UCLA researcher wants to understand it so that diseases associated with aging can be treated.RNA regulator: Current Biology reported a “novel layer of regulation for the clock” in mammals, in the form of micro-RNAs. Researchers from Florida State described the biological clock thus: “As in other organisms, the timekeeping mechanism in mammals depends on a self-sustaining transcriptional negative feedback loop with a built-in time delay in feedback inhibition.” The miRNA molecules are responsible for the built-in time delay.The sugar clock in plants: According to Science Daily, “Plants use sugars to tell the time of day.” The sugars are produced in photosynthesis. The “sugar levels within a plant play a vital role in synchronizing circadian rhythms with its surrounding environment.” The accumulation of sugar is “a bit like the resetting of a stopwatch,” a researcher at the University of York explained. Expanding on circadian rhythms generally, the article states,Plants, like animals, have a 24 hour ‘body-clock’ known as the circadian rhythm. This biological timer gives plants an innate ability to measure time, even when there is no light — they don’t simply respond to sunrise, for example, they know it is coming and adjust their biology accordingly. This ability to keep time provides an important competitive advantage and is vital in biological processes such as flowering, fragrance emission and leaf movement.Multiple independent clocks: European researchers were surprised to find additional timekeeping mechanisms in some marine animals that work independently. The bristle worm, for instance, in addition to the diurnal clock, has a separate clock that tracks the lunar phases (see similar finding about a crustacean in Current Biology). Nature News described the finding: “Some marine invertebrates have at least two internal clocks, which follow different times and have different mechanisms, according to two new studies,” adding, “Multiple timepieces might prove common among animals.” National Geographic provided more examples: mice with a 12-hour clock, and marine organisms that watch the tides. There’s also, of course, the monthly menstrual cycle in women. The uncanny ability of some crabs, fish, and worms to time their spawning to the moon has fascinated biologists for many years. Now, researchers are just beginning to understand the mechanisms at the cellular level.Wasn’t there a story long ago about finding a watch, and considering what it implied?(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
25 June 2008Indian multinational Tata Communications has announced its intention to acquire a further 30% interest in South Africa’s second landline operator Neotel, from the state-owned enterprises Eskom and Transnet.Upon completion of the transaction, Tata Communications and Tata Africa, both controlled by the Tata Group, will become the major shareholder in Neotel, with an effective 56% stake.“This agreement is subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions precedent, some of which have a period of up to 180 days to be fulfilled,” Tata communications says in a statement this week.The other shareholders of Neotel are Nexus, Communitel and Two Telecom Consortium.Neotel introduced its first consumer offering in April this year, with their NeoConnect bundle which includes 1 000 Neotel to Neotel voice minutes, 50 Neotel to Neotel SMS’s, an email account and free internet access up to 10 gigabytes of data for a monthly charge of R599.The company is also providing the optical fibre backbone for the newly established South African National Research Network (Sanren), and will also operate the local landing station of the majority African-owned Seacom cable that will link southern and eastern Africa with India and Europe.Tata Africa Holdings, situated in Johannesburg, is the company which holds the Tata Group’s interests in 10 countries across the continent, with collective investments of over US$100-million.SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Numerous agricultural organizations, after reviewing the text of the recently concluded Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, expressed strong support for the TPP deal and called on the U.S. Congress to expeditiously pass the agreement.Initiated in late 2008, TPP is a regional trade deal that includes the United States, Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam, which account for nearly 40% of global GDP.“Past U.S. free trade agreements (FTAs) have demonstrated the importance to our industry of opening international markets,” said Dr. Ron Prestage, a veterinarian and president of the National Pork Producers Council. “TPP will provide benefits to our producers that dramatically exceed those of prior trade agreements. I assure you that pork producers across this great nation will do whatever it takes to get TPP passed by Congress and implemented.”Previous agreements have increased U.S. pork exports by 1,550% in value and almost 1,300% in volume since 1989 — the year the United States began using bilateral and regional trade agreements to open foreign markets — and now are valued at nearly $6.7 billion.“The United States now exports more pork to its 20 FTA partners than to the rest of the world combined,” Prestage said. “Free trade agreements work,” he stressed, “not just for pork producers and U.S. agriculture but for the entire U.S. economy. As a nation, we export almost as much to our FTA partners as we do to the rest of the world combined.”More than a quarter of total U.S. pork production now is exported, and those exports add more than $62 to the price pork producers receive for each hog marketed. Pork exports help generate an estimated 110,000 pork-related U.S. jobs.Iowa State University economist Dermot Hayes, who said a final TPP agreement would be “the most important commercial opportunity ever for U.S. pork producers,” estimates the TPP will exponentially increase U.S. pork exports and help create more than 10,000 U.S. jobs tied to those exports.“Without the TPP agreement, U.S. pork exports to the Pacific Rim region would be at a serious competitive disadvantage,” Prestage said. “Competitors such as the European Union, which are negotiating FTAs with countries in the region, will leap at the opportunity to fill the void that congressional delay would create. It is important that Congress act swiftly so that we don’t fall behind.”The TPP has the potential to provide even greater trade benefits if and when it is opened to additional countries, such as Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand, all of which have expressed interest in joining the trade bloc.“NPPC deeply appreciates the efforts of U.S. trade officials in achieving an outcome from the TPP negotiations that will provide enormous new market opportunities for high-quality U.S. pork products,” Prestage said.Not everyone in agriculture, however, is as pleased with the TPP.“This agreement has been peddled to farmers and ranchers as a potential goldmine for farm exports. But as with other trade deals, these benefits are likely to be overshadowed by increased competition from abroad, paired with an uneven playing field that will not only reduce revenues for farmers and ranchers but will also speed the loss of U.S. jobs,” said Roger Johnson, president of the National Farmers Union. “This agreement looks to be particularly bad for the nation’s ranchers. The beef export opportunities are very modest. Japan included a snapback provision that will allow them to fully reinstate the current high levels of tariffs if it deems that beef imports are hurting its domestic farmers. Japan’s protection, coupled with the very generous access the U.S. gave the rest of the world, will likely push down domestic prices.“While NFU will continue to analyze the text of the agreement, we already know TPP includes no enforceable language to address currency manipulation, an effective maneuver used by our competitors to immediately tilt the playing field in their favor, even after signing an agreement of this scope and magnitude, having the potential to completely wipe out any gains.”
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Greg Beebe, Beebe Seed Farms, North Bend, NE The group included Greg Hartschuh, Rose Hartschuh, Ashley Weaver, Bill Jordan, Brandie Finney, Caleb Rausch, Candace Lease, Chad Gebhardt, Derek Looker, Emily Rudd, Ethan Hall, Fred Durant, Jason Hartschuh, Jerry Holman, Joel Griffin, Kayle Roe, Kelsie Williams, Kurt Weaver, Luke Dull, Matt Dauch, Matt Reese, Matt Rudd, Nadine Miller, Ron Hurst, Sam Kline, Sara Tallmadge, Tom Miller, Tyler Miller, and Zolton Feldman. We kept finding dead fish that had been left behind from the high flood waters. The hospitality in North Bend was amazing. Wynford FFA members on the trip Digging out fence buried in debris The fence posts were not this short three weeks ago More dead fish Luke Dull from Montgomery County helped cut up trees dropped in fields by the flood so they could be removed. The silt was a couple of feet deep in some places from the flood. We spend a fair amount of time removing dead trees dropped in fields from flood waters. This was taken during the flood. We were working out in the middle of that sea. This the gate after it was cleaned up. The crews stacked up debris to be burnt. The silt from the flood piled up around and then flood water washed out the dirt around the wheels of the pivot irrigation, sinking them a couple of feet below the field’s surface. The silt from the flood piled up around and then flood water washed out the dirt around the wheels of the pivot irrigation, sinking them a couple of feet below the field’s surface. Before the fence was cleaned up The silt from the flood piled up around and then flood water washed out the dirt around the wheels of the pivot irrigation, sinking them a couple of feet below the field’s surface. The water flowed over the streets of North Bend a couple of feet high and swamped basements. unloading supplies Unloading supplies There was up to 10 feet of water in the lower elevations of this photo after 18 inches of snow melted, rains fell and the Platte River flooded. Luke Dull is cleaning debris off fence on the Hines farm. Alex Hines shows how high the water got near his farm. This gravel road washed out completely and has had sand applied to make it functional. Fred Durant, Matt Dauch, and Derek Looker The water flooded into the bottom of this bin causing the beans inside to expand and burst the bin. Photo by Ashley Weaver. One farm lost a significant number of they cattle and they kept track of the survivors with these notes on a feed wagon. Photo by Ashley Weaver. The flowing water twisted these pivots and broke them. Photo by Ashley Weaver. The loss of cattle is an unfortunate reality on many farms in Nebraska as high flood waters tore through pastures and barns. Photo by Nadine Miller.
The Indian equestrian team has not made it to Guangzhou for the Asian Games and nobody in the Equestrian Federation of India (EFI) is willing to comment as to who is responsible for this mess.As Mail Today has been reporting since last month, the EFI never followed proper quarantine protocol, as a result of which two horses were removed. The first belonged to Lieutenant Colonel Rajesh Pattu and the second to Sunil Kumar.The EFI’s version was that Pattu’s horse was sick and Sunil’s horse tested positive for dope. After that, it was all chaos as the whole selection process came under scrutiny. However, with the EFI sticking to their claim that they had a transparent selection process and all the remaining horses were safe in quarantine, they managed to get the clearance from the Indian Olympic Association and the sports ministry for the Asian Games.On Friday, it came to light that the dressage and three-day eventing teams were still stuck in India. On Wednesday, the horses were taken to the Bangalore airport from the quarantine stable. However, the Chinese authorities informed the EFI that as it was “too late” for the dressage horses to enter Guangzhou, they leave the horses behind. Apparently, the message was that only eventing horses would be allowed to fly to Guangzhou. Given the heartburn and jealousy among the riders, an unofficial decision was taken not to send any team to the Asian Games.While the EFI can now blame the Chinese authorities for this mess, the truth is the Chinese veterinary doctors who had come to India were never going to clear the horses that easily. As Mail Today had written time and again, the quarantine and blood testing procedures on the horses were under the Chinese scanner. Apparently, the Chinese vets were not willing to go by results of blood tests ostensibly conducted at a lab in Hissar. The latest one hears is that the riders in India have been told not to talk to the media.advertisementIt is now up to the sports ministry to investigate how this mess happened. As the EFI had made statements that “all is well” why were horses not allowed to fly out of Bangalore on three occasions within a week? People in the equestrian fraternity in India say that the EFI is solely responsible for the situation. In the past, riders and horses would reach the host city almost a fortnight in advance.It is learnt that Kapilesh Bhate, a show jumping rider, will be the sole Indian representative in Guangzhou. Sources say he will be allowed to compete as his horse was in quarantine in Germany. One should not be surprised if EFI secretary SS Ahlawat makes it to Guangzhou as the manager, even if only one rider ends up representing India at the Asian Games! For the record, in the last edition of the Asian Games, India won a team bronze in the threeday event.
Sir Steve Redgrave and Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff MBE are set to go head to head in a Clash of the Titans for Sport Relief.Redgrave vs Flintoff in Clash of the TitansFive-time Olympic champion rower Sir Steve and cricket legend and broadcaster Freddie will each captain a team of celebrities as they go head to head in a number of Olympic sporting challenges as part of the Sport Relief Night of TV on Friday 18th March.Sir Steve says “Winning gold medals at the Olympic Games was one thing, leading my team to victory in Clash of the Titans is another matter altogether,” he said. “Freddie Flintoff, bring it on.”England all-rounder Freddie played a major role in the 2005 home Ashes victory over Australia and is no stranger to captaincy having led the England team during his international career. Freddie also captains a team on the sports-based comedy panel show A League Of Their Own.“I took part in Clash of the Titans last time but we were robbed under John Bishop’s leadership,” he said. “This time I’m back and I’m not leaving without that trophy.”The teams will be made up of famous faces from the worlds of entertainment and sport. With the Clash of the Titans trophy up for grabs, the celebrities will be put through their paces as they compete in a number of Olympic sporting challenges: Track Cycling, Rhythmic Gymnastics, Synchronised Swimming and, for the first time, Wrestling, plus a Triathlon race.Clash of the Titans became a Sport Relief fixture in 2014 when Lord Sebastian Coe and his team of celebrities narrowly beat a team led by comedian John Bishop.On the night, sports TV presenters Ore Oduba and Dan Walker will host all the action live from the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London.It promises to be a night filled with tension, entertainment and sporting rivalry and the public has the opportunity to buy tickets to watch all the action from the two venues; the Velodrome at Lee Valley VeloPark and the London Aquatics Centre.Money raised this Sport Relief will be used to make a difference to people living incredibly tough lives, here at home in the UK and across the world’s poorest communities.To buy tickets for Clash of the Titans go to www.seetickets.com/tour/sport-relief-2016/. Tickets cost £16, plus booking fees and £2.50 from the sale of each ticket will go directly to Sport Relief.
Ohio Stadium and other university athletic facilities could see multi-million dollar renovations. Credit: Lantern File PhotoOn Friday, Ohio State announced its plan for construction on several athletic venues across campus, including Ohio Stadium and the Schottenstein Center.OSU is seeking approval from the Board of Trustees for several multi-million dollar construction and renovation plans. The board is set to meet next week.The university proposed a $39 million dollar facelift to Ohio Stadium. The construction plan includes the laying of new concrete on the C-deck, plus the addition of new suites and boxes for fan seating. The estimated time of completion is set for before the beginning of the 2020 football season.A university spokesman could not comment on whether renovations would add seats to the already 104,944-seat stadium.“Ohio Stadium is the crown jewel of our athletic operations,” said Gene Smith, senior vice president and Wolfe Foundation-endowed athletics director, in the press release. “These renovations will improve the fan experience and continue to make it one of the best facilities in the nation.”Another project awaiting approval from the Board of Trustees is a $31.5 million renovation to the Schottenstein Center. The project would expand the concourse, improve the team store and athletic ticket office, as well as add natural lighting to the venue. Construction is estimated to take a full year and be completed in Feb. 2018. The Covelli Multi-Sport Arena, originally announced last fall to be located on the corner of Ackerman Road and Fred Taylor Drive, is being moved north of Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, and will be combined with the Jennings Family Wrestling Practice Facility. The Covelli Multi-Sport Arena, originally reported as a $30 million investment, costs north of $49 million with the addition of the Jennings Family Wrestling Practice Facility.OSU women’s and men’s volleyball, wrestling, men’s and women’s gymnastics, and men’s and women’s fencing teams will compete at the 3,700-seat venue, scheduled to be completed in 2019.“Innovation and creative planning helped find a new opportunity for the Covelli Multi-Sport/Jennings Family Wrestling Facility,” said Alex Fischer, Trustee and head of the Master Planning and Facilities Committee, in a press release. “Combining the arena and the practice facility will ultimately realize a cost savings on both projects.”The Biggs Facility that is attached to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center will be replaced with the Schumaker Student-Athlete Development Center. The new facility will include around new athletic offices and a “state-of-the-art” athletic training facility. The project’s cost is estimated at $43 million. There was no date given in the press release for completion of the project.All athletic construction projects are self-funded by the Athletic Department through revenue and fundraising.