Monday, 27 March 2017

Fruit Shaped Sensor can Improve Freshness of Fruits

Fruit Shaped Sensor
The main issues cargo companies face while shipping fresh fruits is the degradation of the cargo contents. Various factors can be responsible for fruits losing their freshness, contamination by bacteria and temperature being the primary causes. Fruits have to travel a long way before they reach shops and eventually to our homes. Not every cargo does reach safely; most of them perish on their way resulting in heavy losses to both suppliers as well as customers. To deal with this problem, researchers from Swiss federal laboratories for material Science and Technology have come up with a sensor device that looks exactly like a fruit!

The basic idea behind this sensor is to inform the transport firm about the conditions inside the cargo and if there is proper cooling. If any irregularities are found, the sensor alerts the firm to take immediate action. The device is identical to different types of fruits which include apples, oranges, bananas and mangoes at the moment. These are to be kept in with the real fruits inside the cargo container which in turn monitors the temperature.

Causes of spoilage

Temperature and external factors play a major role is spoiling the freshness of fruits. Cargos containing the fruits are often kept outside during layovers or change of transport. This can cause the contents to be exposed to external environmental factors such as heat and also different airborne microorganisms. Another cause can be attributed to power cut offs in transport or storage units which can affect the quality of the fruits being delivered. Exporters often use sensors to keep informed about the cargo temperatures but it can only give a generalized temperature reading. this is new sensor which is still in its trial days is more capable than its other counterparts as it can effectively simulate different characteristics of individual fruit types and give a detailed reading.

The making of the sensor

To prepare the device, researchers, first did a full x-ray of real fruits- apples, oranges, bananas and mangoes. The sensor devices were modeled exactly based on the texture and shape of the fruits.

The teams then went on to find out the composition of the fruits and were able to recreate each of the different fruit’s flesh by using a mix of carbohydrates, water and polystyrene.

Fruit shaped molds were then created using 3D printers and the mixture were poured and allowed to take the shape of the fruit. Sensors were fitted in the middle of the fruit molds.

The sensors would control the temperature data and readings for the whole transport process. If something goes wrong during the journey, suppliers can work out a solution from the temperature readings. Researchers are performing successful field tests and it won’t be long that these fruit sensors are commercialized, to be used by both big and small transit firms. The team hopes to reduce the cost and time of the logistics operation and help companies make amendments to sanitary protocols.

Premature Babies’ Brains Respond Differently To Gentle Touching

Premature Baby
The greatest pleasure and happiness in this world that a woman gets is when she gives birth to a baby. Well, that bliss can be understood and felt by the mother only. But often the woman has to undergo many pains and sufferings for giving birth to a baby. Well, the report states that premature babies’ brain respond differently to gently touching. This has been revealed after a lot of study and experiments. The babies that are born before the normal gestation period that is almost close to 40 weeks show different responses ranging from the sensory movements to emotions.

THE DIFFERENCE

Well, the babies which are within 36 weeks and do not stay for 40 weeks in the uterus of the mother show different signs of response. However this gets reduced with the regular skin contact with the mother and also the amount of time it spends in the hospital where the staffs take the utmost care of the baby. They have to bear the brunt of getting pre delivered. Often they have to put under ventilation and also some undergo operations which are pretty painful. They experience some greater force of gravity on their tissues and muscles. Well, it has been found that such painful experiences in the early age can affect in the development phase. This would create a difference between a normal baby and pre matured babies’ brain.

THE STUDY

The pre matured babies’ brain would have some long term alterations. A light touch is quite different than that the baby suffers due to a pain. A recent test was conducted with the two types of babies by putting electrodes on their body and it was found that pre matured babies’ brain have a different response with that to the babies who were born after the normal gestation period. It takes time for the receptors to get activated in the pre matured babies. Normally the touch and hearing sense organs get activated in the babies. The processing of the brain is a bit slow in the pre matured babies.

THE COMMUNICATION

The babies who have spent more time with the mothers responded differently to the ones who have to spend time in the ICU. Well, it is still unclear whether the pattern of responses in pre matured or the normal babies are become same in the later stages of life. If the touch and hearing response develop some problem, then it is a matter of great concern. It is the exposure to the gentle touch that ultimately matters in the response of the brain of the pre matured babies. Nothing has been confirmed yet of what causes these unusual responses. However, the experiments are going on. It is normally recommended that the mothers should be aware that the skin –to-skin touch with the babies will have a great impact in the positive manner. So, the more frequent touch is with the baby, the better the pre matured babies’ brain would respond to the environment and other feelings.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Pink Noise Can Improve Sleep and Memory in Seniors

sleep

Sound Essential in Assisting to Get Good Sleep

The sounds of rushing water of a waterfall, the regular beating of a heart or the sound of rain are usually found in white noise machines which have been designed to assist babies to fall asleep. According to a new Northwestern University research, sound is said to be an essential element in assisting us to eventually get into a good night’s sleep.

Moreover, it also tends to develop memories. As per a study published recently in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, a simple non-invasive, non-medical safe and economical means of getting a much improved sleep at night is to play some pink noise. Pink noise is said to have lesser octaves when compared to typical white noise and is not much soothing. For instance, it could be one-second pulses of the sound of rushing waterfall.

The small parts of quiet, quick sounds would tend to be disturbing should one decide to fall asleep.. However, the pink sound is not attempting to get one to fall asleep but would attempt to put you into a deep slumber wherein one would have slow brainwaves. This is said to be one of our deepest means of sleep which tends to weaken in the case of aging adults.

Sound Therapy – Quality over Quantity

According to Nelly Papalambros, a PhD student at Northwestern University as well as the first author on the work, states that when one plays the pulses at specific times at the stage of deep sleep, it tends to lead to an enhancement of the electrical signal, leading to essentially more of a synchronization of the neurons.

The pulses are said to be timed to correspond with the entry into slow wave sleep. They tend to sound to similar beat as the brainwaves and are inclined to increase the efficiency of your valued as well as elusive deep sleep. The relaxed wave sleep is dangerous for retention associated or essentially, your capability in incorporating new material studied during the day with old material as well as memories.

The sound therapy is not about actually sleeping deeply for longer period but about quality over quantity. One may not be quite rested yet would be remembering more. The researchers observed only the older adults in the age group of 60 plus and had 13 volunteers and did a memory test at night.

Word Association Recall Test

The procedure seemed to be quite simple wherein they attempted to memorize associated words such as oil and energy, or marriage and altar. They were then tested to check how much of it they had recalled before they had dropped off to sleep. The next day the participants were once again tested to see how well they had recalled their training from the previous night.

The word association recall test scores seemed to be thrice better if the participants had the pulses while sleeping than if they had a fake treatment. The team that had obtained the fake treatment seemed to have the same sleep routine and did not get the faint pulses of sound when they had been in the stage of slow wave deep.

The reason to consider older adults was because as one tends to age, sleep seems to become more broken. One does not seem to have much slow wave sleep which then leads to memory loss.

Monday, 20 March 2017

LSD Could Actually Heal the Brain

LSD
Mental Illness Treated as Binary Condition

As per World Health Organisation, over 300 million people from all age tend to suffer from depression. The UK Charity Combat Stress, an organisation that tends to render support for British military personnel, lists alcohol misuse, panic attacks and PTSD are the common mental problems envisaged in returning soldiers. Unlike physical illness, mental illness has been treated as a binary condition wherein the person is well or not. Diagnosis of mental illness seems to be extensive and affects several people and as it tends to grow so does the cost of treatment for the same.

According to public health specialist and mental health advocate, Khaliya, for several years, mental health has been spoken about partly since the tool available seemed hard to scale and partly since some of the most powerful tools with regards to health of the brain were stigmatised and turned into scheduled drugs, effectively halting any progress that could be made to prove its efficacy.

 The drug he has been referring to seem to be psychedelic compounds such as Psyciliciban, LSD MDMA, Ayahausca and 5-MeO-DMT. He further added that in the past few years, the research in these drugs though mostly small scale studies, seemed to have remarkable achievement.

Psychedelic Drugs – Treating/Healing Brain

Researchers are of the belief that a single dose of psychedelic drugs could be beneficial inimproving the symptoms of some of the common illness of the brain. They are hopeful that they would eventually be capable of not only treating but actually heal the brain.

Khaliya, while talking at WIRED Health in London had spoken about her own mental health problem stating that she is literally healed today and is grateful for every day and for having a second opportunity at life and is one of the lucky ones.

 The people who tend to need this the most do not have enough money to wait for decades. Brain problem have been presently the main issue of suffering all across the globe. Between 2011 to 2050 the collective output loss of global economic related to mental health disorders is said to be about $16.3 trillion thus making the economic output loss equivalent to the complete GDP of the United States.

Dementia/Stroke on the Rise

Besides this, dementia and stroke is also on the rise and these figures seem to be shocking and distressing considering the various probable effective treatments. These are not being implemented and are not being effectively researched due to cultural and not medical reasons. The most annoying thing with regards to health care industry is that it does not tend to connect to most of the powerful weapons which is the human body.

With respect to the brain this is psychedelic compounds and relating to the body, connecting the power of stems cells.Most of the organisation do not tend to work sincerely and often resort in earning extra money without rendering the appropriate treatment, resulting thus in prolonged illness of the patient. Treating the disorder with the much needed treatment could help the patient both financially as well as mentally bringing about much relief to those who have been the victims of this depressing disorder.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

5 Essential Tips for Expectant Indian Women

Expectant Women

What You Must Know Before Baby's Birth?

Expecting a baby is the most wonderful feeling in this world. You will experience a mix of emotions during this phase. Sometimes you feel happy while sometimes you feel scared because of the future challenges.

Sarah Walker, an artist, once explained her feeling that

“Becoming a mother is like discovering the existence of a strange new room in the house where you already live.” 

When the baby arrives, you want to give every comfort of this world to make sure he/ she is safe. With a different level of responsibilities, you start planning your schedule and make yourself prepare for coming responsibility. But, in the hustle-bustle, you may forget many essential things. Hence, it is a must to start making a to-do list a month or two before the delivery to eliminate the last minute rush.

Here, we have shared a short list of important tasks that an expectant mom must consider before the childbirth.

  1. Shortlist Few Baby Names 

    When a baby arrives, people give several random and irritating names.

    Obviously, you won’t like to call your little one with some crazy name, right? So, make a shortlist of cute Indian Baby Names before the childbirth. Select the most appropriate one after the birth.

  2. Workout/ Exercises for Natural Baby Birth

  3. If you want to avoid a C-section and your pregnancy is normal then exercises are beneficial to avoid complications at the time of delivery. But that doesn’t mean heavy and long exercise sessions. There are some special exercises for increasing chances of normal delivery, for that do consult with your doctor. Yoga postures are effective and safe also they help in reducing the aches and preparing body for easier childbirth.
    Expectant Women


  4. Prepare Hospital Bag One Month Prior

  5. The delivery timing is always uncertain. Hence, start making a hospital bag of essentials a month before, is always helpful. You can take help from a doctor or an experienced mom to make a list of essentials and "Buy newborn essentials online in India."

    Make sure you won’t skip any important item.

  6. Read the Breast Feeding Guide

  7. Nowadays, the majority of couples live away from their families. Hence, it is become more crucial to stay updated with all the information related to before and after the childbirth. You can easily get the details online as the Internet is the pool of information.

    Breastfeeding has many advantages. Alongside, moms and babies may face issues if not supervised correctly. Hence, mom should know what’s necessary and what’s not during breastfeeding.

  8. Find A Pediatrician

  9. Babies are fragile and easily prone to infections. They need a lot of care and precautions at every stage.
    Finding a pediatrician may seem a premature decision, but it is for the benefit of you and your baby. Right after the childbirth, you will require a pediatrician to know what the perfect diet for a newborn is and how much you should feed. What’s good and what’s bad for a baby can only be figured out with the help of a pediatrician.
Hence, it is necessary to stay in touch with a good pediatrician near your home.

While choosing a pediatrician, consider a few things such what are their hours? What is their philosophy on vaccinations?You can ask for suggestions from friends and family members who have children. Make an appointment and visit their clinic to know more about them. It is always a good decision to explore a bit about the pediatrician and the staff.

Conclusion- An expectant mom should consider a few things for hassle-free childbirth. They can either consult with a doctor or an experienced mom to avoid all mistreatments. Read the article thoroughly to have a healthy and happy baby.


Author Bio: Sapana is mother of 2 and a WAHM IT Professional. She writes about pregnancy health, breastfeeding and baby health on her blog: www.gomama247.com

Saturday, 11 March 2017

This AI Doctor Knows What's Wrong With You By Checking Your Genome

Genome

Sequencing of Genome – Decoding DNA

A Swiss based Sophia Genetics, Camblong has been attempting the possibility to democratise data driven medicine by standardising the data analytics all across the globe. Initiated in 2011 it has been trying to do the same with the help of artificial intelligence together with machine learning. Speaking at the conference of Wired Health, in London, Jurgi Camblong had announced that within the following few weeks the firm would be analysing the genomic profiles of 100,000 people.

The sequencing of genome is said to be the practice of decoding the DNA of a person which is a procedure that tends to generate massive extent of data. Each person’s genome comprises of 3.2 billion letters of DNA containing around 20,000 separate genes. The genomic program at NHS has been focusing to sequence 100,000 genomes all over England, wherein beginning of March, it had completed 20,000. On completion, it stated that the data would come in at 31 petabytes.

 In order to get an understanding of the scale, one petabyte of music would be taking about 2,000 years to play. In his firm’s SOPHiA artificial intelligence, which tend to learn from the genomic profiles of patients, Camblong had mentioned that it had already been utilised in supporting the diagnosis of 100,000 people.

AI – Hospitals Receives Actionable Insight

By utilising the AI, hospitals have been capable of receiving `actionable insight regarding patients which enables doctors in comprehending the cause regarding the diseases. It has been mentioned by Sophia Genetics that it has been operating on five areas namely oncology, hereditary cancer, cardiology, metabolism and paediatric conditions.

Camblong had informed that the more data SOPHiA tends to process, it learns more, since information is constantly shared secretly on the platform in order to assist clinicians to enhance individually thus making improved decisions. The scheme tends to function by observing the genomic profiles of each individual, combing it with the information of doctors as well as clinicians.

With the help of machine learning, the more date system is fed, the better is the decision it tends to make. The business model tends to work by charging the hospital every time it utilises the tool. Camblong debates it is so because his firm is capable of computing data better than the hospitals it sells to.

Future - Chronic Disorder

Presently the software of the company is being utilised in around 250 hospitals in 45 countries all over the world which comprises of 10 NHS hospitals in the UK. This is said to be twice the number of hospitals which had been utilising the software beginning of 2016 according to Camblong’s information to WIRED. Neither the firm nor the NHS is the only one interested in processing genomic sequencing.

 Google in the earlier years had been approaching hospitals as well as universities, proposing them its cloud services in order to store genome data in the cloud. The cost presently is around £1,000 in order to sequence the genome of a complete person. However, when it had first sequenced in 2000 the cost was about $100 million.
According to Camblong, the downward trend would continue as the amount of data and knowledge will increase and in time that cost would drop to $100.Camblong is of the belief that in the near future, cancer would be considered as a `chronic disorder and hopes that it would be possible to look at this disease and say that it looks like the cancer of 10,000 other patients’, providing advice to doctors for the treatment of the same.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

A New Drug Injection Could Reverse Hearing Loss

hair cell
Credit: Will Mac Lean
Our every sense organ is very, very sensitive. It requires utmost care and protection to prevent them from any sorts of damage, but these sense organs tend to retard with aging. The sense of hearing too follows the same rule and science have revealed that the hair present in our ears also adds to our ability to hear.

It has been scientifically proven that every human born on this planet has almost around 15,000 hair cells in each ear and these hairs are not similar to those hairs present on our head and all other parts of the body that they will grow again when they are lost in due course of time. These hair cells if they gets lost, they are a lost forever.

The story does not end hear, many consequences are connected with this loss of hair inside our ears. If any kind of damage is incurred on these utterly sensitive hair cells it will affect your ability to hear and more gruesome effects will eventually result in complete inability to hear. A survey that was recently done reported that this problem is mostly felt in Americans these days. Almost 45 million Americans are suffering due the loss of their hair cells present inside their ears. Several esteemed doctors from all parts of the world are trying to find out a remedy to this problem. Many researches have been undertaken in this regard but no ultimate remedy was discovered.

One of the senior author, from the David H. Kich Institute professor at MIT declared that unable to hear due to aging is a serious problem and there are many who are reeling under this illness. A sound remedy to this problem is a real need and many new approaches are being carried in this regard. So, people can be saved from the terrible consequences of inability to hear.

An entirely separate team is working to resolve this problem as soon as possible. They have actually taken the task of growing new cells of the hair and they came to a conclusion that they can actually create huge quantity of intestinal cells and will then differentiate them.

They tried this same experiment in developing cells from the cochlea of a mouse and they discovered that they can also create a large juncture of progenitor cells that will remain immature and now they are actually proceeding on a happy note in their experiment where they have founded the solid ground on which they can rest their discovery i.e. they have evolved a foundation of cells that are solid and then they infused a different set of molecules that completed their research by provoking these molecules to turn into hair cells.

They further added that they only promoted the growing up of these cells that would support the entire process and then will naturally signal those cells to grow up into hair cells.

This process was accepted by many medical organizations and this has lead to the formation of a company known as Frequency Therapeutics which has given license to this technology.