Government to create 10,000 vacancies for certified yoga teachers

The number of yoga trainers in the country has increased 30% in the past two years, according to estimates by the AYUSH ministry. Photo: HT

The number of yoga trainers in the country has increased 30% in the past two years, according to estimates by the AYUSH ministry. Photo: HT

New Delhi: The government plans to create 10,000 vacancies of certified yoga trainers as more people take to the traditional practice, an official in the central government’s AYUSH ministry said.

The number of yoga trainers in the country has increased 30% in the past two years, according to ministry estimates.

Yoga has gradually become popular among Indians. More and more private companies are hiring yoga instructors in their offices realizing its holistic benefits– Ishwara N. Acharya, joint adviser (yoga), AYUSH ministry

“Yoga has gradually become popular among Indians. More and more private companies are hiring yoga instructors in their offices realizing its holistic benefits. The government is also planning to create around 10,000 vacancies for yoga trainers in coming years,” said Ishwara N. Acharya, joint adviser (yoga) in the AYUSH ministry said.

“Recently, Haryana government has announced 1,000 vacancies in the state. We have written to all other states to identify the institutions where there is a need of certified yoga trainers. Before 2015, there was no certification for yoga trainers but we now provide them accreditation through Quality Council of India (QCI) to ensure quality of the traditional practice,” said Acharya.

QCI has designed a scheme for voluntary certification of yoga professionals by adopting principles and requirements laid down in international standards. QCI also enables the government to hire certified yoga trainers in its institutions.

“More and more people are willing to take up the traditional practice as a profession. We have recently facilitated the hiring of yoga trainers in the Haryana government. We are also certifying yoga schools in the country. We have over 30 applications from yoga schools for certification on the parameters of infrastructure and quality. Government yoga schools are also improving gradually,” said Manish Pande, joint director, QCI.

AYUSH ministry’s wing Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy (CCRYN) is actively engaged in research activities regarding yoga and its efficacy on various diseases. An AYUSH ministry yoga protocol document claims that a small sampling of research shows that yoga is beneficial for physical fitness, musculo-skeletal functioning and cardio-vascular health. It claims yoga is beneficial in the management of diabetes, respiratory disorders, hypertension, hypotension and many lifestyle-related disorders. Also, yoga helps reduce depression, fatigue, anxiety disorders and stress and it also regulates menopausal symptoms.

“Popularity of yoga can be seen with an overwhelming response on International Yoga Day on Wednesday. Over 51,000 people took part in yoga celebrations in Lucknow. There are many youth who want to adopt the practice as profession but they don’t have jobs. Youth will be attracted towards the profession if they see job opportunities in the area,” Acharya said.

Recently, Shripad Naik, minister of state in the AYUSH ministry, claimed that CCRYN is conducting a mega multi-centric research study on efficacy of yoga on diabetes in which around 250,000 people have been screened and the preliminary results of this research study are very encouraging. The minister also said treatments in modern medical hospitals are becoming expensive; so, yoga is making new inroads.


New drug can create ‘good’ fat to combat obesity

<p>New drug can create 'good' fat to combat obesity<br></p>New drug can create ‘good’ fat to combat obesity

Scientists have identified a new drug that can create beneficial “brown” or “good” fat to boost metabolism, combat obesityand Type II diabetes.

Researchers from Gladstone Institutes San Francisco in the US treated mice with a drug called bexarotene (Bex) and found they had more “brown fat, faster metabolisms and less body weight gain, even after being fed a high-calorie diet”.

“All current weight loss drugs control appetite and there is nothing on the market that targets energy expenditure. Introducing brown fat is an exciting new approach to treating obesity and associated metabolic diseases, such as diabetes,” said Baoming Nie from the Gladstone Institutes.

Scientists used cellular reprogramming to convert muscle precursor cells and white fat cells into “brown” fat cells and said it could be a new way to combat obesity and type II diabetes.

“Bex acts on a protein called retinoid X receptor (RXR), which controls a network of other cellular proteins. Specifically, when RXR was stimulated by Bex, it turned on genes needed to produce “brown” fat and turned off genes linked to white fat or muscle,” the study explained.

Brown fat, unlike white fat, helps the body burn energy through heat.

“However, while Bex is very effective at creating brown fat cells, it is not a very specific drug, and there are several potential side effects that may arise from taking it,” said Sheng Ding from Gladstone.

Researchers noted that infants are born with small amounts of brown fat, but as they age, most of it disappears.

“In adults, people with higher amounts of brown fat have lower body mass, and increasing brown fat by as little as 50 grams could lead up to a 10 to 20 pound weight loss in one year,” noted the study published in the journal Cell Reports



eprom microchip supermacro

Computer scientists in Singapore and Germany have collaborated to create a resistive RAM chip that not only stores data but can act as a computer processor.

The breakthrough uses state-of-the-art memory chips known as Redox-based, resistive switching random access memory (ReRAM) and could lead to much faster and thinner mobile devices. Today’s computers must transfer data from the memory storage to the processor unit for computation, which along with slowing performance also requires more power.

“This is like having a long conversation with someone through a tiny translator, which is a time-consuming and effort-intensive process,” said Anupam Chattopadhyay, an assistant professor at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore. “We are now able to increase the capacity of the translator, so it can process data more efficiently.”

While the new circuit saves time and energy by eliminating data transfers between disparate storage and processors, it can also boost the speed of  processors found in laptops and mobile devices by at least two times or more, the researchers said.

By making the memory chip perform computing tasks, space can be saved by eliminating the processor, leading to thinner, smaller and lighter electronics. The discovery could also lead to new design possibilities for consumer electronics and wearable technology, the researcher said.

NTU researchers worked with others from Germany’s RWTH Aachen University and Forschungszentrum Juelich to create the new memory chips. Their research was published in the peer reviewed journal Scientific Reports.

Also known as memristor, the ReRAM came from global chipmakers such as SanDisk and Panasonic. ReRAM chips are one of the fastest memories on the market and are already commercially available for IoT applications. In 2015, Hewlett-Packard and SanDisk also announced an agreement to jointly develop “Storage Class Memory” (SCM) ReRAM that could replace DRAM and would be 1,000 times faster than NAND flash.

Until memristor, researchers knew of only three basic circuit elements—the resistor, the capacitor and the inductor. Memristor added a fourth, which consumed far less energy than previous technologies.

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An artist’s rendition of ReRAM memory. Tiny conductive filaments crisscross and connect silicon layers to represent a bit of data.

While ReRAM has been under development for many years as a storage technology, NTU’s Chattopadhyay, in collaboration with Professor Rainer Waser from RWTH Aachen University and Vikas Rana from Forschungszentrum Juelich, demonstrated for the first time how it could also process data.

“The quest for faster processing is one of the most pressing needs for industries worldwide, as computer software is getting increasingly complex while data centers have to deal with more information than ever,” the researchers stated in a news release.

How the ReRAM works

Computer processors today use the binary system where bits of data are represented as either a 0 or a 1. For example, the letter A will be processed and stored as 01000001, an 8-bit character.

However, the prototype ReRAM circuit built by Chattopadhyay and the other researchers processes data in three states instead of two. For example, it can store and process data as 0, 1 or 2, known as the Ternary number system.

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A microscopic sideview photo of a Resistive RAM circuit where tiny conductive filaments crisscross and connect silicon layers to represent a bit of data.

“Because ReRAM uses different electrical resistance to store information, it could be possible to store the data in an even higher number of states, hence speeding up computing tasks beyond current limitations,” the researchers stated.

The researchers plan to develop the ReRAM to process more than its current three states, which will lead to even greater improvements of computing speeds.

Using ReRAM for computing will be more cost-effective than other bleeding-edge computing technologies on the horizon, since ReRAMs will be available in the market soon.

“Using them not only for data storage but also for computation could open a completely new route towards an effective use of energy in the information technology,” Waser stated.

This story, “Researchers create wild ReRAM memory chips that store data and act like a processor” was originally published by Computerworld.

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“Please do not create obstacles for education”: Manish Sisodia to PM

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia urged the Prime Minister to refrain from creating obstacles for the Delhi government

A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi emphasised on the need for a “Garib Kalyan” agenda, Aam Admi Party enquired if BJP-ruled states would allot the maximum share of funds on education, health and employment generation in their budgets.

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia urged the Prime Minister to refrain from “creating obstacles” for the Delhi government and told him to “land on the ground for few days”.

His tweet came after Modi asked BJP chief ministers to work in “mission mode” to make their states a model for execution of his government’s schemes, mostly aimed at assisting the poor, with the party forming a committee to finalise a “garib kalyan agenda”.


Manish Sisodia


दो दिन पहले ‘पढ़ाई-दवाई’ को प्राथमिकता बताने वाले मोदीजी दिल्ली में ‘पढ़ाई-दवाई’ की सुधरती व्यवस्था को क्यों ठप करना चाहते हैं?



Know what Deputy CM of Delhi has to say?

  • “Even Modiji has admitted that governance means ensuring education, health and employment. If padhai-likhai-dabai (sic) is not another rhetoric then will BJP-ruled states spend the maximum share of budgets in education and health?
  • “Will mohalla clinics and polyclinics come up in BJP-ruled states too? Will people get free treatment? I hope the PM does not create obstacles on issues related to education, health and employment in the capital,” Mr Sisodia said in a series of tweets
  • Mr. Sisodia who also holds the Education portfolio enquired whether government schools will be made better than private schools in BJP-ruled states
  • “Will there be a leash on private schools there?,” he questioned.
  • source”gsmarena”

Researchers create ‘mini-brains’ in lab to study neurological diseases

Neurons (stock illustration).
Credit: © ktsdesign / Fotolia

Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health say they have developed tiny “mini-brains” made up of many of the neurons and cells of the human brain — and even some of its functionality — and which can be replicated on a large scale.

The researchers say that the creation of these “mini-brains,” which will be discussed at the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference in Washington, DC on Feb. 12 at a press briefing and in a session on Feb. 13, could dramatically change how new drugs are tested for effectiveness and safety, taking the place of the hundreds of thousands of animals used for neurological scientific research in the United States. Performing research using these three-dimensional “mini-brains” — balls of brain cells that grow and form brain-like structures on their own over the course of eight weeks — should be superior to studying mice and rats because they are derived from human cells instead of rodents, they say.

“Ninety-five percent of drugs that look promising when tested in animal models fail once they are tested in humans at great expense of time and money,” says study leader Thomas Hartung, MD, PhD, the Doerenkamp-Zbinden Professor and Chair for Evidence-based Toxicology at the Bloomberg School. “While rodent models have been useful, we are not 150-pound rats. And even though we are not balls of cells either, you can often get much better information from these balls of cells than from rodents.

“We believe that the future of brain research will include less reliance on animals, more reliance on human, cell-based models.”

Hartung and his colleagues created the brains using what are known as induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). These are adult cells that have been genetically reprogrammed to an embryonic stem cell-like state and then are stimulated to grow into brain cells. Cells from the skin of several healthy adults were used to create the mini-brains, but Hartung says that cells from people with certain genetic traits or certain diseases can be used to create brains to study various types of pharmaceuticals. He says the brains can be used to study Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and even autism. Projects to study viral infections, trauma and stroke have been started.

Hartung’s mini-brains are very small — at 350 micrometers in diameter, or about the size of the eye of a housefly, they are just visible to the human eye — and hundreds to thousands of exact copies can be produced in each batch. One hundred of them can grow easily in the same petri dish in the lab. After cultivating the mini-brains for about two months, the brains developed four types of neurons and two types of support cells: astrocytes and oligodendrocytes, the latter of which go on to create myelin, which insulates the neuron’s axons and allows them to communicate faster.

The researchers could watch the myelin developing and could see it begin to sheath the axons. The brains even showed spontaneous electrophysiological activity, which could be recorded with electrodes, similar to an electroencephalogram, also known as EEG. To test them, the researchers placed a mini-brain on an array of electrodes and listened to the spontaneous electrical communication of the neurons as test drugs were added.

“We don’t have the first brain model nor are we claiming to have the best one,” says Hartung, who also directs the School’s Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing.

“But this is the most standardized one. And when testing drugs, it is imperative that the cells being studied are as similar as possible to ensure the most comparable and accurate results.”

Hartung is applying for a patent for the mini-brains and is also developing a commercial entity called ORGANOME to produce them. He hopes production can begin in 2016. He says they are easily reproducible and hopes to see them used by scientists in as many labs as possible. “Only when we can have brain models like this in any lab at any time will we be able to replace animal testing on a large scale,” he says.

The work was supported by the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (U18TR000547), the Alternatives Research & Development Foundation and the Bart McLean Fund for Neuroimmunology Research/Project Restore.

Other researchers involved in the project include David Pamies; Paula Barreras, Katharina Block; Georgia Makri; Anupama Kumar; Daphne Wiersma; Lena Smirnova; Che Zang; Joseph Bressler; Kimberly M. Christian; Georgina Harris; Guo-li Ming; Cindy J. Berlincke; Kelly Kyro; Hongjun Song; Carlos Pardo; Thomas Hartung and Helena T. Hogberg.

[“source -cncb”]