Archive for the ‘evolution’ category: Page 2

Aug 28, 2021

COVID-19: What you need to know about SARS-CoV-2 variants

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, evolution, genetics, health

Mutations are a part of life. Every time a virus replicates, there is a chance that its genetic code won’t be copied accurately. These typos travel inside new virus particles as they leave one body and move on to infect the next. Some of these mutations die out; others survive and circulate widely. Some mutations are harmless; others increase infectivity or allow a virus to better escape the immune system—that’s when public health bodies might deem that strain a variant of concern.

Swaps or deletions of single amino acids can change the shapes of different proteins. Mutations can happen in any of the proteins of SARS-CoV-2, and these may change the virus’s properties. Many of the worrisome mutations are found on the spike protein, as it is the target of antibody treatments and is mimicked by the currently authorized COVID-19 vaccines. Researchers are especially troubled when typos occur in two parts of the spike protein—the N-terminal domain, which is at the beginning of the protein and which some antibodies target, and the receptor-binding domain (RBD), which grabs hold of ACE2 receptors on human cells and starts the process of infection.

To understand how specific mutations affect the structure and function of the spike protein and what those changes mean for treatments and vaccines, C&EN talked to Priyamvada Acharya, Rory Henderson, and Sophie Gobeil at Duke University. With colleagues, these researchers have combined biochemical assays, cryo-electron microscopy, and modeling to show how the mutations seen in the variants of concern work together to change the stability of the spike protein. The spike is a trimer of three identical protein strands folded and interwoven together. Before the virus has infected a cell, the spike takes on two conformations: a down state, in which the RBD is hidden, and an up state, in which the RBD faces out, ready to bind to ACE2. The team found that different mutations can increase binding in different ways. This process, in which similar features are arrived at independently, is called convergent evolution.

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Aug 24, 2021

The Rise of Man: What Was Our Ultimate Success Formula As a Species?

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, evolution, food, genetics, internet

What we’ll soon see is the ultimate self-directed evolution fueled forward by gene editing, genetic engineering, reproduction assisted technology, neuro-engineering, mind uploading and creation of artificial life. Our success as a technological species essentially created what might be called our species-specific “success formula.” We devised tools and instruments, created new methodologies and processes, and readjusted ecological niches to suit our needs. And our technology shaped us back by shaping our minds. In a very real sense, we have co-evolved with our technology. As an animal species among many other species competing for survival, this was our unique passage to success.

#TECHNOCULTURE : #TheRiseofMan #CyberneticTheoryofMind

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Aug 23, 2021

The evolution of commercial drug delivery technologies

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, evolution, health

Drug delivery technologies have enabled the development of many pharmaceutical products that improve patient health by enhancing the delivery of a therapeutic to its target site, minimizing off-target accumulation and facilitating patient compliance. As therapeutic modalities expanded beyond small molecules to include nucleic acids, peptides, proteins and antibodies, drug delivery technologies were adapted to address the challenges that emerged. In this Review Article, we discuss seminal approaches that led to the development of successful therapeutic products involving small molecules and macromolecules, identify three drug delivery paradigms that form the basis of contemporary drug delivery and discuss how they have aided the initial clinical successes of each class of therapeutic. We also outline how the paradigms will contribute to the delivery of live-cell therapies.

This Review Article discusses how delivery challenges associated with small molecules, nucleic acids, peptides, proteins and cells led to the development of commercial products and are now informing the delivery of live-cell therapeutics.

Aug 22, 2021

Aaron Schacht — EVP, Innovation, Regulatory + BD, Elanco — Well-Being Of Animals, People And Planet

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, chemistry, evolution

Advancing the well-being of animals, people and the planet — aaron schacht — executive vice president, innovation, regulatory & business development, elanco.

Aaron Schacht is Executive Vice President: Innovation, Regulatory + Business Development at Elanco (, an American pharmaceutical company which produces medicines and vaccinations for pets and livestock, and which until 2,019 was a subsidiary of Eli Lilly and Company.

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Aug 21, 2021

Evolving threat

Posted by in categories: asteroid/comet impacts, biological, biotech/medical, cyborgs, evolution, existential risks, military, nanotechnology, quantum physics

This #COVID19 is quite weird it just keeps evolving. In a weird way it is pushing evolution through our immune system. The only thing I know that is similar is like the flu or a bigger organism like cancer. Based on this information the virus just keeps evolving not dying off. Among the weird stuff it doesn’t effect cats or most animals or plants. Basically we either need a universal vaccine which is still being developed or we may need quantum radar to kill off the virus in our bodies when it comes out either that or foglet armor to not breathe it in like Ironman. I find it is just an odd virus as essentially it evolves so fast past even human beings abilities to fend it off even with suits it seems to spread so fast that it cannot be completely contained. From dogs that sniff it out it seems sorta everywhere. I know minor things like high dosages of vitamin c work with zinc and probiotics which was the first way to battle it when it didn’t become this whole pandemic because oddly enough it wasn’t a big deal in previous years because the 19th version of the virus. I know some things that kill it off are ultra violet and lysol as well as bleach. So it makes me think it is more a bioweapon where the universal vaccine would work. But oddly enough I am uncertain if it really dies off especially if it is airborne. If we can destroy the virus by reprogramming it to be sterile or innert or even for it to just kill itself off with crispr like we have done with mosquitoes to stop malaria. We can easily make new vaccines which is good but nearly every year or so there is an entirely new version. This isn’t new but it sorta is like the flu. But there are some theories that I sorta have where it seems to be near heat sources where it grows. Like my uncle who had the virus which we had him turn off electricity and also do vitamin c probiotics and zinc which did work. He ended up getting an antibody naturally this way. I personally got the vaccine and found that it does work but when the new delta version came out it did the same as the last one it sorta just randomly evolves for some reason even smells similar but oddly enough it still remains even after all the lysol. So to me it seems like a bioweapon that is self evolving which is we could use the mechanism to essentially evolve ourselves taking the components of it. If this was a nanobot swarm I would say it spreads from radio waves or something but this virus keeps spreading in odd ways like even from the sky. Which sorta makes me believe that it is sorta being manipulated maybe by a signal perhaps or it has its own program inside it. It reminds me of a Grey goo nanobot swarm that keeps evolving but the biological virus version. I mean it could actually be an exterrestial virus there was a meteorite that came around then and odd things that followed from the meteorite like dogs attacking people and cats attacking people even huge mountain lions. Which makes me think of a sorta an invasion of something. We need to maybe get the viruses input and output to find what it is going to do next. All and all seems odd because even other viruses don’t evolve or like fly or spread that fast. Ideally we should have cyborg nanobots running through Ironman in avengers endgame but so far our best better is treating it like the flu pumping out a new vaccine each year till we know a universal vaccine like using henreitta lacks immortal unlimited cell division cells like they did with polio. But till then we need to keep watching the virus as seems sorta more than it appears based on its original version.

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Aug 20, 2021

New clue to human evolution’s biggest mystery emerges in Philippines

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, evolution, genetics, sex

Denisovan DNA lives on in some humans today because, once our Homo sapien ancestors encountered the Denisovans, they had sex with them and gave birth to babies — something geneticists call admixture. By analyzing current-day genetic data, we can look back into human history.

Geneticists have found that a Philippine ethnic group known as the Ayta Magbukon has the highest level of Denisovan ancestry in the world.

Aug 17, 2021

Cracking a mystery of massive black holes and quasars with supercomputer simulations

Posted by in categories: cosmology, evolution, physics, supercomputing

At the center of galaxies, like our own Milky Way, lie massive black holes surrounded by spinning gas. Some shine brightly, with a continuous supply of fuel, while others go dormant for millions of years, only to reawaken with a serendipitous influx of gas. It remains largely a mystery how gas flows across the universe to feed these massive black holes.

UConn Assistant Professor of Physics Daniel Anglés-Alcázar, lead author on a paper published today in The Astrophysical Journal, addresses some of the questions surrounding these massive and enigmatic features of the universe by using new, high-powered simulations.

“Supermassive black holes play a key role in and we are trying to understand how they grow at the centers of galaxies,” says Anglés-Alcázar. “This is very important not just because black holes are very interesting objects on their own, as sources of gravitational waves and all sorts of interesting stuff, but also because we need to understand what the central black holes are doing if we want to understand how galaxies evolve.”

Aug 15, 2021

Oldest Fossilized Land Plant Spores Have Scientists Rethinking How Plants Evolved

Posted by in categories: biological, evolution

When plants first ventured onto the land, evolving from freshwater-dwelling algae, more than 500 million years ago, they transformed the planet. By drawing carbon dioxide from the air, they cooled Earth, and by eroding rock surfaces they helped build the soil that now covers so much land.

These changes to the planet’s atmosphere and land surface paved the way for the evolution of the biosphere we know. Land plants make up around 80 percent of Earth’s biomass.

The pioneering plants were small and moss-like, and they had to overcome two big challenges to survive on land: avoiding drying out, and surviving the Sun’s harsh ultraviolet light.

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Aug 13, 2021

SARS-CoV-2 exposure in wild white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus)

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, evolution

Widespread human SARS-CoV-2 infections combined with human-wildlife interactions create the potential for reverse zoonosis from humans to wildlife. We targeted white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) for serosurveillance based on evidence these deer have ACE2 receptors with high affinity for SARS-CoV-2, are permissive to infection, exhibit sustained viral shedding, can transmit to conspecifics, and can be abundant near urban centers. We evaluated 624 pre-and post-pandemic serum samples from wild deer from four U.S. states for SARS-CoV-2 exposure. Antibodies were detected in 152 samples (40%) from 2,021 using a surrogate virus neutralization test. A subset of samples was tested using a SARS-CoV-2 virus neutralization test with high concordance between tests. These data suggest white-tailed deer in the populations assessed have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2.

One-Sentence Summary Antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 were detected in 40% of wild white-tailed deer sampled from four U.S. states in 2021.

SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 in humans, can infect multiple domestic and wild animal species (1 7). Thus, the possibility exists for the emergence of new animal reservoirs of SARS-CoV-2, each with unique potential to maintain, disseminate, and drive novel evolution of this virus. Of particular concern are wildlife species that are both abundant and live in close association with human populations (5).

Aug 7, 2021

Innovation is a risk!

Posted by in categories: big data, computing, disruptive technology, evolution, homo sapiens, information science, innovation, internet, moore's law, robotics/AI, singularity, supercomputing

No, it’s not forbidden to innovate, quite the opposite, but it’s always risky to do something different from what people are used to. Risk is the middle name of the bold, the builders of the future. Those who constantly face resistance from skeptics. Those who fail eight times and get up nine.

(Credit: Adobe Stock)

Fernando Pessoa’s “First you find it strange. Then you can’t get enough of it.” contained intolerable toxicity levels for Salazar’s Estado Novo (Portugal). When the level of difference increases, censorship follows. You can’t censor censorship (or can you?) when, deep down, it’s a matter of fear of difference. Yes, it’s fear! Fear of accepting/facing the unknown. Fear of change.

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