Scientists discover role of skin in spreading leishmaniasis

Image result for Scientists discover role of skin in spreading leishmaniasisScientists at the University of York have discovered that parasites responsible for leishmaniasis – a globally occurring neglected tropical disease spread by sand flies – are mainly acquired from the skin rather than a person’s blood.

Visceral leishmaniasis is a parasitic infection that kills 20-40 thousand people each year across 56 countries, mainly in the developing world. There is no vaccine and drugs are prohibitively expensive or toxic.

Previously it was assumed that sand flies acquired the disease parasite directly from a host’s blood, through biting an infected person before spreading the disease to uninfected people in subsequent bites.

However, the number of parasites found in blood has often been puzzlingly low, leading some to question whether there is another source of parasites for transmission.

Now, mathematicians, experimental biologists, and immunologists have revealed a ‘patchy landscape of parasites’ found on carriers’ skin that determines how many parasites are picked up by sand flies.

Using mathematical modeling, they showed that some areas of skin can contain particularly high numbers of the parasite, while other areas may not.

This means that whether a sand fly becomes infected or not depends on where they bite a person.

This breakthrough is significant as it suggests current methods of treating leishmaniasis are too simple, as disease detection and treatment often focuses on levels of the parasite in blood samples.

The research also stresses that more attention should be focused on developing treatments that affect parasites in the skin, if the cycle of transmission is to be interrupted.

Johannes Doehl, Post-Doctoral Research Associate in York’s Centre for Immunology and Infection and lead author of the study, said: “Currently, to assess treatment success in visceral leishmaniasis, clinicians focus on monitoring parasite levels in a host’s blood.

“However, we now have conclusive proof that measuring parasites in the skin, not just the blood, is critical when assessing possible treatments. Clinical studies and elimination campaigns need to take this into account, and in particular measure how treatments affect the patchy landscape of parasites in the skin.”

Dr. Jon Pitchford, Reader in York’s Departments of Biology and Mathematics, said: “To effectively control leishmaniasis, we don’t just need to cure the disease in patients, we must also understand and try and break the transmission cycle. This research is the first step towards improving the treatment process and demonstrates how the application of mathematics can help solve important problems in medicine.”

[“Source-news-medical”]

Scientists discover way to turn carbon dioxide into useful fuel

<p>Scientists discover way to turn carbon dioxide into use<br></p>Scientists discover way to turn carbon dioxide into use

In a new twist to waste-to-fuel technology, scientists at the US Department of Energys Oak Ridge National Laboratory have accidentally discovered a process to turn carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas, into ethanol, a renewable fuel.

The researchers used tiny spikes of carbon and copper to turn CO2 into ethanol.

“We discovered somewhat by accident that this material worked,” said lead author of the study Adam Rondinone.

“We were trying to study the first step of a proposed reaction when we realised that the catalyst was doing the entire reaction on its own,” Rondinone noted.

The team used a catalyst made of carbon, copper and nitrogen and applied voltage to trigger a complicated chemical reaction that essentially reverses the combustion process.

With the help of the nanotechnology-based catalyst which contains multiple reaction sites, the solution of carbon dioxide dissolved in water turned into ethanol with a yield of 63 per cent, showed the study published in the journal ChemistrySelect.

Typically, this type of electrochemical reaction results in a mix of several different products in small amounts.

“We’re taking carbon dioxide, a waste product of combustion, and we’re pushing that combustion reaction backwards with very high selectivity to a useful fuel,” Rondinone said.

“Ethanol was a surprise — it’s extremely difficult to go straight from carbon dioxide to ethanol with a single catalyst,” Rondinone noted.

The catalyst’s novelty lies in its nanoscale structure, consisting of copper nanoparticles embedded in carbon spikes. This nano-texturing approach avoids the use of expensive or rare metals such as platinum that limit the economic viability of many catalysts.

Given the technique’s reliance on low-cost materials and an ability to operate at room temperature in water, the researchers believe the approach could be scaled up for industrially relevant applications.

“A process like this would allow you to consume extra electricity when it’s available to make and store as ethanol,” Rondinone said.

“This could help to balance a grid supplied by intermittent renewable sources,” Rondinone pointed out.

source”cnbc”

whilst you tweet an emoji, advertisers can now discover you

Emoji characters

Emoji characters
Miguel Medina | AFP | Getty photos
Emoji characters
Twitter is making it less difficult for manufacturers to hook up with people who say it nice with emojis.

The social media agency introduced on Thursday that it might allow emoji key-word focused on for Twitteradvertisements.

as an instance, whilst customers tweet a pizza or bird drumstick, marketers of similar products—say a person like Pizza Hut or KFC — can ensure that the ones humans see their ads.

Or, if a person tweets the emoji for crying with laughter (which, curiously sufficient, become Oxford college‘s 2015 phrase of the 12 months) manufacturers can share of their happiness with equally ecstatic messaging.

according to the 2015 Emoji record from marketing platform Emogi, 92 percent of humans on line use the characters. The number one motive for sending a tremendous emoji? Survey takers statedbecause itbecame applicable to them.”

extra than one hundred ten billion emojis have been tweeted for the reason that 2014, Twitter stated.

Emojis have already proved to be powerful advertising. Taco Bell famously ran a a hit campaign to get Apple to include a taco emoji in its keyboard. Chevy launched a polarizing emoji-most effective press launch for the 2016 Cruze. And, Domino’s enabled emoji ordering by way of tweeting on the organization with the emoji for pizza.

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