Connect with us

affilate software business

Tech

Air Pollution, Evolution, and the Fate of Billions of Humans

Published

on


The threat of air pollution grabs our attention when we see it — for example, the tendrils of smoke of Australian brush fires, now visible from space, or the poisonous soup of smog that descends on cities like New Delhi in the winter.

But polluted air also harms billions of people on a continuing basis. Outdoors, we breathe in toxins delivered by car traffic, coal-fired plants and oil refineries. Indoor fires for heat and cooking taint the air for billions of people in poor countries. Over a billion people add toxins to their lungs by smoking cigarettes — and more recently, by vaping.

Ninety-two percent of the world’s people live in places where fine particulate matter — the very small particles most dangerous to human tissues — exceeds the World Health Organization’s guideline for healthy air. Air pollution and tobacco together are responsible for up to 20 million premature deaths each year.

Airborne toxins damage us in a staggering number of ways. Along with well-established links to lung cancer and heart disease, researchers are now finding new connections to disorders such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.

Scientists are still figuring out how air pollution causes these ailments. They are also puzzling over the apparent resilience that some people have to this modern onslaught.

Some researchers now argue that the answers to these questions lie in our distant evolutionary past, millions of years before the first cigarette was lit and the first car hit the road.

Our ancestors were bedeviled by airborne toxins even as bipedal apes walking the African savanna, argued Benjamin Trumble, a biologist at Arizona State University, and Caleb Finch of the University of Southern California, in the December issue of the Quarterly Review of Biology.

Our forebears evolved defenses against these pollutants, the scientists propose. Today, those adaptations may provide protection, albeit limited, against tobacco smoke and other airborne threats.

The dense foliage of tropical forests gave chimpanzees and gorillas a refuge from dust. But the earliest humans, wandering the open grasslands, had nowhere to hide.

Dust was not the only hazard. The lungs of early humans also may have been irritated by the high levels of pollen and particles of fecal matter produced by the savanna’s vast herds of grazing animals.

Dr. Finch and Dr. Trumble maintain that scientists should consider whether these new challenges altered our biology through natural selection. Is it possible, for instance, that people who are resilient to cigarette smoke have inherited genetic variants that protected their distant ancestors from cave fires?

One way to answer these questions is to look at genes that have evolved significantly since our ancestors moved out of the forests.

One of them is MARCO, which provides the blueprint for production of a molecular hook used by immune cells in our lungs. The cells use this hook to clear away both bacteria and particles, including silica dust.

Later, our ancestors added to airborne threats by mastering fire. As they lingered near hearths to cook food, stay warm or keep away from insects, they breathed in smoke. Once early humans began building shelters, the environment became more harmful to their lungs.

“Most traditional people live in a highly smoky environment,” Dr. Finch said. “I think it has been a fact of human living for us even before our species.”

Smoke created a new evolutionary pressure, he and Dr. Trumble believe. Humans evolved powerful liver enzymes, for example, to break down toxins passing into the bloodstream from the lungs.

Gary Perdew, a molecular toxicologist at Penn State University, and his colleagues have found evidence of smoke-driven evolution in another gene, AHR.

This gene makes a protein found on cells in the gut, lungs and skin. When toxins get snagged on the protein, cells release enzymes that break down the poisons.

Other mammals use AHR to detoxify their food. But the protein is also effective against some of the compounds in wood smoke.

Compared to other species, the human version produces a weaker response to toxins, perhaps because AHR protein is not the perfect protector — the fragments it leaves behind can cause tissue damage.

Our species arrived at the Industrial Revolution two centuries ago with bodies that had been shaped for millions of years by this highly imperfect process.

Clean water, improved medicines and other innovations drastically reduced deaths from infectious diseases. The average life expectancy shot up. But our exposure to airborne toxins also increased.

“If we compressed the last five million years into a single year, it wouldn’t be until Dec. 31, 11:40 p.m., that the Industrial Revolution begins,” Dr. Trumble said. “We are living in just the tiniest little blip of human existence, yet we think everything around us is what’s normal.”

The Industrial Revolution was powered largely by coal, and people began breathing the fumes. Cars became ubiquitous; power plants and oil refineries spread. Tobacco companies made cigarettes on an industrial scale. Today, they sell 6.5 trillion cigarettes every year.

Our bodies responded with defenses honed over hundreds of thousands of years. One of their most potent responses was inflammation. But instead of brief bursts of inflammation, many people began to experience it constantly.

Many studies now suggest that chronic inflammation represents an important link between airborne toxins and disease. In the brain, for example, chronic inflammation may impair our ability to clear up defective proteins. As those proteins accumulate, they may lead to dementia.

Pathogens can hitch a ride on particles of pollutants. When they get in our noses, they can make contact with nerve endings. There, they can trigger even more inflammation.

“They provide this highway that’s a direct route to the brain,” Dr. Fox, of the University of California, Los Angeles, said. “I think that’s what makes this a particularly scary story.”



Source

Continue Reading
Partners
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Tech

Trimethylindium (TMI) Industry Size 2019, Market Opportunities, Share Analysis up to 2025

Published

on

By



Trimethylindium (TMI) Industry Size 2019, Market Opportunities, Share Analysis up to 2025

New 2019 Report on “Trimethylindium (TMI) Market size | Industry Segment by Applications (Laser Diodes, Sensors (VCSEL), Light Emitting Diodes (LED), Concentrated Photovoltaic Cells (CPV) and Others), by Type (99.9995%, 99.9998%, 99.9999% and Others), Regional Outlook, Market Demand, Latest Trends, Trimethylindium (TMI) Industry Share & Revenue by Manufacturers, Company Profiles, Growth Forecasts – 2025.” Analyzes current market size and upcoming 5 years growth of this industry.

The report on Trimethylindium (TMI) market strive to provide business professionals with an updated information on Trimethylindium (TMI) market, high growth markets, emerging business environments and latest business-centric applications. The Trimethylindium (TMI) market Analysis report provides a detailed analysis of sales channel and regional analysis of the Trimethylindium (TMI) market.

Likewise, Trimethylindium (TMI) Market report also assesses the key opportunities in the Trimethylindium (TMI) market and outlines the factors that are and will be driving the growth of the Trimethylindium (TMI) market share in current industry. The Trimethylindium (TMI) report is analyzed and forecasted for the previous and next five years of industry.

Request Sample Copy of this Report @ https://www.aeresearch.net/request-sample/92814

The key Trimethylindium (TMI) market players are weighed on a variety of factors such as company overview, product portfolios and recent development of the global Trimethylindium (TMI) market.

Top key players of industry are covered in Trimethylindium (TMI) Market Research Report:

  • LANXESS
  • Merck KGaA
  • SAFC Hitech
  • Dow Chemical Co
  • Jiangsu Nata Opto
  • Nouryon (Akzo Nobel)
  • ARGOSUN

Split by product type, with production, revenue, price, market share and growth rate of each type, can be divided into:

  • 99.9995%
  • 99.9998%
  • 99.9999%
  • Others

Split by application, this report focuses on consumption, market share and growth rate of Trimethylindium (TMI) market in each application and can be divided into:

  • Laser Diodes
  • Sensors (VCSEL)
  • Light Emitting Diodes (LED)
  • Concentrated Photovoltaic Cells (CPV)
  • Others

The predictions highlighted in the Trimethylindium (TMI) market share report have been derived using verified research procedures and assumptions. By doing so, the research report serves as a repository of analysis and information for every component of the Trimethylindium (TMI) market. Across the past few years, the Trimethylindium (TMI) have seen the rise of influential market leaders in the space. The competition in the global Trimethylindium (TMI) market is dominated by the big players: LANXESS, Merck KGaA, SAFC Hitech, Dow Chemical Co, Jiangsu Nata Opto, Nouryon (Akzo Nobel) and ARGOSUN

The Trimethylindium (TMI) market has shown growing trends over the years and anticipations are made that the Trimethylindium (TMI) market size would grow at a speedy pace in the upcoming years. Growth in the Trimethylindium (TMI) market would be primarily driven by application areas such as Laser Diodes, Sensors (VCSEL), Light Emitting Diodes (LED), Concentrated Photovoltaic Cells (CPV) and Others and product types segment like 99.9995%, 99.9998%, 99.9999% and Others.

Outline of Trimethylindium (TMI) Market report covers:

  • Trimethylindium (TMI) market report provides a comprehensive analysis of the market with the help of up-to-date market opportunities, overview, outlook, challenges, trends, market dynamics, size and growth, major competitors analysis.
  • The Trimethylindium (TMI) Market report recognizes the key factors of growth and challenges of the key industry players. Also, evaluates the future impact of the propellants and limits on the Trimethylindium (TMI) market.
  • Trimethylindium (TMI) market report provides in-depth analysis for changing competitive dynamics.
  • Contains information on the historical and current market size and the future potential of the market.
  • Trimethylindium (TMI) Market share assessments for the regional and country level segments
  • Trimethylindium (TMI) Market share analysis of the top industry players
  • Strategic recommendations for the new entrants in Trimethylindium (TMI)
  • Trimethylindium (TMI) Market forecasts for a minimum of 5 years of all the mentioned segments, sub segments and the regional Trimethylindium (TMI) markets
  • Trimethylindium (TMI) Market Trends (Drivers, Constraints, Opportunities, Threats, Challenges, Investment Opportunities, and recommendations)
  • Strategic recommendations in key business segments based on the market estimations
  • Competitive landscaping mapping the key common trends
  • Company profiling with detailed strategies, financials, and recent developments Supply chain trends mapping the latest technological advancements

Request Customization on This Report @ https://www.aeresearch.net/request-for-customization/92814



Source

Continue Reading

Tech

Send your kids to Wizarding World of Science Spring Break Camp

Published

on

By


Send your kids to Wizarding World of Science Spring Break Camp

Posted: 8:16 PM, Feb 23, 2020

Updated: 2020-02-23 21:28:14-05

The Wizarding World of Science Spring Break Camp.png

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A local museum has some magical fun planned over Spring Break.

The Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History is hosting the Wizarding World of Science Spring Break Camp.

“Your young wizard or witch will participate in a multitude of educational, scientific experiments that are sure to delight including potions, charms, wand making and many more,” their event page says.

The camp runs from March 9 to March 13 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with before and after care options.

Here is a breakdown of the pricing for members and non-members.

Camp Pricing

  • Non-Members (Full Week) – $200 for One Child & $180 Each Additional Sibling
  • Members (Full Week) – $180 per Child
  • Drop-In (Daily Rate) – $55 per Child / per Day

Child Care Pricing:

  • Full Week – $10 per Day
  • Drop-In (Daily Rate) – $15 per Day

You can sign up your children here. First 100 registrations get a free camp t-shirt.

The Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History is open today from Noon to 5pm!

Just a reminder, we are now enrolling for our Spring Break Camp!

www.ccmuseum.com

Posted by Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History on Sunday, February 23, 2020

Copyright 2020 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.





Source

Continue Reading

Tech

Smart Polymer Lights Up Under Stress | Asian Scientist Magazine

Published

on

By


AsianScientist (Feb. 24, 2020) – A research group in Japan has created a stress-detecting ‘smart’ polymer that shines brighter when stretched. Their findings, published in Chemical Communications, could be used to track the wear and tear on materials used in engineering and construction industries.

By the time cracks or other visible defects appear in construction materials, the structural integrity of a building may already be compromised. In the present study, researchers led by Dr. Ayumu Karimata at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST), Japan, have created a copper-containing polymer that lights up proportionately to the amount of mechanical force exerted on it, paving the way for early detection of mechanical strain.

The scientists created their polymer by incorporating copper complexes—structures formed by linking copper atoms to carbon-containing molecules—with polybutylacrylate. The copper complexes, which hold the polybutylacrylate chains together, naturally glow when exposed to ultraviolet light, a property known as photoluminescence.

When the polymer is stretched, the copper complexes emit light at a greater intensity, leading to a brighter glow. The copper complexes therefore act as mechanophores—compounds which undergo a change when triggered by a mechanical force.

Most mechanophores are made from organic compounds which change color or emit light when mechanical stress breaks a weak chemical bond. However, Karimata noted that a relatively large force is required to break the chemical bond, so the mechanophore is not sensitive to small amounts of stress.

“Also, the process of breaking the bond is often irreversible, so these stress sensors can only be used once,” he said.

In contrast, the new copper mechanophores are sensitive to much smaller stresses and can respond quickly and reversibly. The scientists reported that their polymer film immediately brightened and dimmed in response to being stretched and released.

Karimata proposes that the acrylic polymer could eventually be adapted to create a stress-sensing acrylic paint for coating different structures, such as bridges or the frames of cars and aircraft.

“As we can see even from the direct visualization of the polymer, stress is applied across a material in a non-uniform way,” said Karimata. “A stress-sensing paint would allow hotspots of stress on a material to be detected and could help prevent a structure from failing.”

The article can be found at: Karimata et al. (2020) Highly Sensitive Mechano-controlled Luminescence in Polymer Films Modified by Dynamic Cui-based Cross-linkers.

———

Source: Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University.
Disclaimer: This article does not necessarily reflect the views of AsianScientist or its staff.





Source

Continue Reading

Trending

//onemboaran.com/afu.php?zoneid=2954224
We use cookies to best represent our site. By continuing to use this site, you agree to the use of cookies.
Yes