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Jan 23, 2019

The Gut Microbiome of Healthy, Long-Lived People

Posted by in category: life extension

A new study has outlined the age-related changes of the gut microbiome, showing a correlation between the microbiome’s composition and overall health.

The gut microbiome

The microbiome describes a varied community of bacteria, archaea, eukarya, and viruses that inhabit our gut. The four bacterial phyla of Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria, and Actinobacteria comprise 98% of the intestinal microbiome.

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Jan 23, 2019

We’ll Likely See a Rise in Internet Blackouts in 2019

Posted by in categories: government, internet

We’ll likely see a rise in internet blackouts in 2019, for two reasons: countries deliberately “turning off” the internet within their borders, and hackers disrupting segments of the internet with distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. Above all, both will force policymakers everywhere to reckon with the fact that the internet itself is increasingly becoming centralized — and therefore increasingly vulnerable to manipulation, making everyone less safe.

From a report: The first method — states deliberately severing internet connections within their country — has an important history. In 2004, the Maldivian government caused an internet blackout when citizens protested the president; Nepal similarly caused a blackout shortly thereafter. In 2007, the Burmese government apparently damaged an underwater internet cable in order to “staunch the flow of pictures and messages from protesters reaching the outside world.” In 2011, Egypt cut most internet and cell services within its borders as the government attempted to quell protests against then-President Hosni Mubarak; Libya then did the same after its own unrest.

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Jan 23, 2019

This Japanese Fashion Model Isn’t a Human, She’s a Computer Generated Person

Posted by in categories: computing, futurism

Could this be the future of the modeling industry?

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Jan 23, 2019

Trump reportedly offered NASA ‘all the money you could ever need’ to land on Mars during his presidency

Posted by in categories: economics, space travel

Some people on his communications staff at the time were not pleased.

Sims writes that he was “getting antsy” in the room due to Trump’s abrupt question shortly before a televised phone call with the Space Station. NASA officials were believed to have gone to great lengths to coordinate with the Space Station, which could only be reached during a certain time due to “orbital mechanics.”

“All I could think about was that we had to be on camera in three minutes … And yet we’re in here casually chatting about shaving a full decade off NASA’s timetable for sending a manned flight to Mars,” Sims reportedly wrote. “And seemingly out of nowhere.”

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Jan 23, 2019

Yet another blood pressure medication has been recalled over cancer-causing impurity

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Last year, the FDA announced a whole bunch of recalls related to blood pressure medication over fears that an impurity created during the manufacturing process could lead to cancer. The compound in question was found in dozens of prescription medications that contained the active ingredient valsartan, prompting several distributors and manufacturers to issue voluntary recalls affecting countless heart patients.

Now, additional medications containing a similar blood pressure drug, irbesartan, have been found to contain the same impurity, and a new round of recalls is upon us. Solco Healthcare LLC is now asking anyone with potentially contaminated medication to stop taking the drug.

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Jan 23, 2019

Large meta-study reveals aspirin bleeding risks outweigh heart benefits

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

A large meta-study from a team of UK researchers has examined data from over a dozen different clinical trials to conclude that the dangers of daily aspirin use may outweigh any potential benefits for individuals that are generally healthy.

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Jan 23, 2019

This high-tech LED lighting could grow veggies in space

Posted by in categories: food, space

OSRAM, a high-tech global lighting company, is developing better ways to grow vegetables both on Earth and in outer space. Here’s a peek at their CES offerings.

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Jan 23, 2019

The Scientific Guide to a Healthy Body and Brain

Posted by in category: neuroscience

This BBC Focus Special Edition reveals the science behind how to stay fit, live well and keep your brain sharp.

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Jan 23, 2019

World’s 26 richest people own as much as poorest 50%, says Oxfam

Posted by in category: policy

Oxfam’s director of campaigns and policy, Matthew Spencer, said: The massive fall in the number of people living in extreme poverty is one of the greatest achievements of the past quarter of a century but rising inequality is jeopardising further progress.

It said the widening gap was hindering the fight against poverty, adding that a wealth tax on the 1% would raise an estimated $418bn (£325bn) a year – enough to educate every child not in school and provide healthcare that would prevent 3 million deaths.

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Jan 22, 2019

Chinese scientist who gene-edited babies fired

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, ethics, genetics

A Chinese scientist who created what he said were the world’s first “gene-edited” babies evaded oversight and broke ethical boundaries in a quest for fame and fortune, state media said on Monday, as his former university said he had been fired.

He Jiankui said in November that he used a gene-editing technology known as CRISPR-Cas9 to alter the embryonic genes of twin girls born that month, sparking an international outcry about the ethics and safety of such research.

Hundreds of Chinese and international scientists condemned He and said any application of gene editing on human embryos for reproductive purposes was unethical.

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