Showing posts with label surface. Show all posts
Showing posts with label surface. Show all posts

Schizophrenia Gene Found

The gene responsible for schizophrenia has been found. Contrary to the popular view the ailment doesn't only cause multiple personality issues. It has three variants: 1) Positive, causing delusions, dysfunctional thoughts, movement irregularities and hallucinations; Negative, unhappiness, not finishing activities, reduced speaking and low bodily expression; and Cognitive, poor decision making, low attention, memory problems.
schizophrenia sufferer
Ten in a thousand people suffer from schizophrenia. It usually begins before the age of 30 years. In 2014 an international program was organized to isolate the causative gene. It has been identified in the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). The C4 gene goes wild in sufferers, binding to more foreign molecules. This reduces the synaptic connections in the brain.

Hopefully, a new more specific medication can be produced from the research data. Currently, drugs are not effective because the target has been unclear.  lifelong treatment is necessary involving medication to smooth-out symptoms.  Ironically, psychological therapy has been practised.  This now seems to be the wrong thing to do if it is cause by a gene.
 Genetics by Ty Buchanan 
 Australian Blog
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Teflon Beats Gecko - Temporarily

Can nature beat science? This is an open question but it will be put to the test. Teflon is a material created by scientists. It does not occur naturally. Will it stand the test and be unique, unfettered by mother nature?

Geckos can run along many surfaces, whether vertical or upside-down. Their toes are covered in in rows of keratin ridges called lamellae. They are like very fine hairs that attach to just about anything.

Students at the University of Akron's Auburn Science Centre tested the ability of geckos to run along vertical teflon sheets. And yes, they could not cross it! By adding water, however, they ran along it quite happily.

Apparently, the presence of moisture is a must for geckos to get around. Any surface that repels water is playground for geckos. An adhesive has been developed that will stick things together underwater based on research done on this interesting little creature.
Science by Ty Buchanan
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Geckos Cannot "Stick" to Wet Surfaces

Geckos are being studied to find out how they can climb across ceilings without falling off. Their toe pads can support weight equivalent to two people.

Like many animals with the capacity to "stick" to things, the main reason they can hold on is the many tiny hairs on their suckers. A hair is further divided into hundreds of gripping setae. The attraction between molecules in the surface and the millions of setae add up to significant sticking power.

Water is their enemy. If a surface is wet they fall off. Even on a dry surface, when gecko's feet are soaked in water they cannot hold on. Water tends to stop the superhydrophobic attracted between molecules. This is why geckos lose their wonderful climbing ability. In the wild they would be open to attack from predators in wet conditions. Furthermore, the hope of creating a new adhesive based on geckos is dashed.
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