Weekend Wonderings: Happy New Year!

Written January 5th, 2014 by Ken
thinking golfer

Wondering when I’ll see a golf course

Welcome to the New Year’s edition of Weekend Wonderings. I hope that everyone brought in the New Year in a safe and enjoyable manner. And, didn’t overindulge. Too much.

Mali, Eric and Joe spent last week going up and down the hallway here at tBBC World Headquarters reminding us to empty out our Inboxes to get ready for the new year.  Let me dust things off to see what I can find..

Here we go; something from The James, something from Cleveland Clinic and a miscellaneous brain-dump in the Commentary. We wrap it up with some help from Bob Seger.

The James/Wexner, Cleveland Clinic

Here is some research news from The James.

A new study led by researchers at the (OSUCCC – James) helps confirm that a molecule targeted by the experimental drug DoubleHelixibrutinib is critical for the development of chronic lymphocytic leukemia, the most common form of adult leukemia.
In clinical trials, ibrutinib has often shown exceptional activity in people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). The agent targets a molecule called Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK). It permanently incapacitates the molecule, and this stops the transmission of an important signal that promotes cell growth and proliferation.
But ibrutinib also inhibits other molecules in CLL cells. Like BTK, these molecules are proteins called kinases, and they might be important for CLL-cell survival, the researchers say.”

This is a pretty big deal. Now the research is targeting specific, and related molecules in cancer treatment. This type of success will lead to “peeling the onion” with further research, and provide some guidance to development and use of this type of treatment.

Meanwhile, from further north on I-71 there is some news about sleep and Alzheimer’s disease.

Getting a good night’s sleep is even better for you than you think.

A new study involving older adults suggests not getting enough sleep, or having poor, interrupted sleep, may be linked to the buildup in the brain of abnormal protein called beta-amyloid plaque, which is associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

This study is consistent with the findings of research on mice that was released recently. Both studies showed that sleep can help “wash out” waste products in the brain, including beta-amyloid plaque.

You heard it here; get your sleep.

Commentary

I’ve got an olio of topics today, so here we go..

  • We don’t need no education:  Recent Pew Study responses indicated that 33% of Americans reject the idea of evolution, 60% accept the notion, and the remaining 7% are, well, I don’t know what they are. The demographics were pretty much what you’d expect, even though we’re in the 21st century. Since I’m taking an online course in “Introduction to Genetics and Evolution”, I’m safely in the 60% group.
  • Flashing lights: I noticed, while driving in my ve-hicle (midwestern pronunciation), that in winter conditions, when the drive wheels are spinning in snow/ice, a dashboard light begins to flash to let me know that I’m in “skid condition”. Note to Toyota engineers; I’m well aware of situation before the light flashed, please don’t distract me with a flashing light. On the other hand, their tire pressure monitor is equally useless. On the display are icons of four tires, with their respective air pressures. However, the locations (driver front, passenger rear, etc) are not identified, so thanks for nothing, guys.
  • TV Viewing: Watching the New Year’s Day television programming is probably my favorite time of year. A lot of TV watching gets done. College football bowl games you say? No, not at all. I’m talking about SyFy’s “Twilight Zone” Marathon that was aired New Year’s Eve and all New Year’s Day. That is one great way to roll from one year to he next. This series is 50-55 years old (156 episodes over 5 years), yet the story lines stand as relevant now as they did in the early 60′s. Rod Serling, indeed, was a master story-teller.

Sunday’s Song
As we’re transitioning from yet one year to another. Bob Seger will help us Turn the Page.

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