The body of a 10-year-old boy who was attacked by a crocodile was discovered in the Southern African country of Malawi on Saturday, police said.
Owen Sanudi was attacked by the reptile while he was swimming with friends in the Shire River, which passes through Liwonde National Park, police spokesman Davie Sulumba said.
“The deceased was attacked by a hungry crocodile and he drowned in the river,” said Sulumba. “Post-mortem results from Machinga District Hospital proved that the death was due to loss of blood and suffocation.”
The incident was the second death caused by a crocodile in the district within three months, a situation linked to lack of prey for the crocodiles, Sulumba told the German Press Agency (DPA).
Reports have suggested that Malawi’s decision to join the International Convention on Endangered Species (CITES), which limits the culling of crocodiles, has led to a rise in their numbers.
Researchers have determined a genetic mutation in the Amish people, who live in the midwestern United States, that allegedly helps them live 10 years longer than people without it. The study is the newest clue in a search, which has taken more than a decade, for insight on healthy aging within the traditional Christian community that rejects most modern technology. (Related: Anti-aging Tips To Help You Become A Strong, Healthy Adult.)
Dr. Douglas Vaughan, chairman of medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and lead author of the new research, said, “Not only do they live longer, they live healthier… It’s a desirable form of longevity.”
The scientists studied 177 members of the Berne Amish community in Indiana. They found 43 individuals who had one mutant copy of the gene SERPINE1, and these carriers lived an average of 85 years. Those without the gene in the Amish community often lived to 75.
Amish people with this gene mutation had a lower risk of diabetes, 30 percent lower fasting insulin levels, and more efficient metabolisms. The Amish kindred (immediate family and relatives) in Berne, Indiana, were genetically and culturally isolated. Dr. Vaughan explained that they are the only kindred in the world with this mutation, making it a “private mutation.” The key protein connected to cell aging seems to be PAI-1 (plasminogen activator inhibitor), which is influenced by SERPINE1.
Amish people with the mutation had very low levels of PAI-1, which is connected to aging in animals. However, its effect in humans remains unclear. Dr. Vaughan said that the findings were surprising because “of the consistency of the anti-aging benefits across multiple body systems.” He continued, “For the first time we are seeing a molecular marker of aging (telomere length), a metabolic marker of aging (fasting insulin levels) and a cardiovascular marker of aging (blood pressure and blood vessel stiffness) all tracking in the same direction in that these individuals were generally protected from age-related changes.”
However, Amish people with two copies of the mutant gene have a rare bleeding disorder which causes the absence of PAI-1 in the blood. Those with one copy of the mutated gene did not have a bleeding disorder. Northwestern University researchers collaborated with Japan’s Tohoku University to work on an experimental oral drug, called TM5614, that would inhibit the action of PAI-1 in Amish people with the mutant gene. The drug passed basic safety trials and is currently being tested in phase 2 trials in Japan to see if it works on insulin sensitivity in people with type-2 diabetes and obesity.
Dr. Vaughan concluded, “We hope to be able to revisit them regularly and do additional testing to look at the velocity of aging in this kindred and unearth more details about the protective effect of this mutation.”
Form healthy habits – Try something simple like making healthier life choices. Quit smoking and drinking too much alcohol, exercise more, and eat more fruits and vegetables.
Monitor your meals – Refraining from overeating can help you age slower.
Don’t watch too much TV – Being a couch potato is bad for your health, and if you can’t quit it completely, limit your TV time to only two hours or less daily.
Spend more time with family and friends – Some studies say that you increase the risk for heart disease if you don’t have a strong network of loved ones. Loneliness can lead to inflammation, and it might even cause depression in the elderly.
You can learn more about healthy eating, food freedom, and natural cures at FoodFreedom.news.
According to a recent survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, three out of four college-educated Democrats, or 75 percent, believe that internal feelings are what ultimately makes someone a male or a female, not biology, genetics and genitalia. In other words, they think that a man can be a woman simply by saying “I identify as a woman,” and vice versa.
The Pew Research Center’s official write-up reads: “The survey… finds that Democrats with a bachelor’s degree or higher education are more likely than other Democrats to say a person’s gender can be different from the sex they were born with. About three-quarters (77%) of Democrats with a bachelor’s degree or more say this, compared with 60% of Democrats with some college and 57% of those with a high school diploma or less. No such [education] divide exists among Republicans.”
Needless to say, the idea that sex is determined by how one feels on the inside as opposed to science and biology is absolutely ridiculous. By that same warped logic, a white person who “identifies” as a black person is indeed black, a child who “identifies” as 65 years old is in fact 65, and a person who “identifies” as a dog is a dog. There are certain scientific rules that just cannot be broken, regardless of how uncomfortable that may make the average liberal democrat feel. (Related: However you “identify” there are only two types of brains – male and female.)
Furthermore, there is a reason why more college-educated Democrats think this way than Democrats who have received less education. The truth is that most colleges and universities have become social justice boot camps, where young people learn all about diversity, political correctness, feelings, and – you guessed it – that sex is defined by what’s between your ears instead of what’s between your legs.
But schools teaching students that sex is determined by internal feelings isn’t anything new. Back in 2015, The College Fixpublished an article detailing various colleges and universities across the country that teach “gender fluidity” as fact to students. Oberlin College, for instance, defines gender as a spectrum of attributes and behaviors. UCLA has a similar definition.
At George Washington University, students attending orientation were instructed to choose whatever gender pronoun best matched their self-identity. Wesleyan University even offers students a course on Transgender Theory, which assigns books such as Read My Lips: Sexual Subversion and the End of Gender and F2M: The Making of Female Masculinity.
All across the country, students are being indoctrinated with left-wing propaganda and blatantly false information. Based on what schools like Oberlin College, UCLA, George Washington University and Wesleyan University are teaching our children, is it any wonder why 75 percent of college-educated millennials think sex is based on how you feel on the inside instead of genitalia and basic biology?
By Fattima Mahdi,
A mysterious ‘dinosaur’ shark was captured off the Portuguese coast by a fisherman and has been dubbed as a “living fossil” by scientists. The species dates back 80 million years and makes it one of the very few creatures from the dinosaur ages that is still around.
The discovery adds to the list of very few sharks recently found in Australia, New Zealand and Japan. This deep sea creature usually lies at a depth of 390 and 4,200 feet below the surface, which is one one of the main reasons it was not discovered before the 19th century.
The prehistoric fish is 1.5 metres in length and was caught off the resort of Portimao at a depth of 700 metres. With a long and slim body, the shark resembles a snake and bears 300 teeth. Judging by remains which have been previously found, the species has been swimming in the sea for a very long time.
Researchers were in the area working on a project when the beast was found. They are now studying the frilled shark and hope to learn more about the elusive species. This rare find means that there is plenty they can learn about how animals coexist in the depths of the ocean.
Tom Santangelo, a Colorado State University (CSU) researcher and associate professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, thinks of archaea as “ancient mariners” because they can survive in the depths of the ocean. Santangelo studies how these “hardy microbes,” which are one of the three surviving domains of life, express genes, produce energy, and flourish even in hot and lightless environments. The researcher has unearthed proof that humans and archaea are biochemically similar. (Related: Human cells are microscopic in size, yet their jobs are larger than life.)
Along with his team, Santangelo discovered significant parallels between how archaeal cells and more complex cells like human and animal cells “package and store their genetic material.” The breakthrough study was published in Science earlier in 2017 and featured proof that both archaea and eukaryotic cells have a common mechanism that compacts, organizes, and structures their genomes.
Karolin Luger led the study, and she is currently a structural biologist at the University of Colorado Boulder. However, most of the reports published in Science were accomplished when Luger was a faculty member from 1999 to 2015.
To refresh your memory, eukaryotes are cells with a nucleus and membrane-bound organelles. These cells include fungal, plant, and animal cells. Human cells are included in eukaryote animal cells.
Eukaryotes are different from prokaryotes, their less complex counterparts, because the latter do not have a nucleus. Even though archaea and bacteria are prokaryotes, they are only distantly related. It is believed that archaea are the progenitors of eukaryotes since they share many of the same proteins responsible for controlling gene expression.
Every eukaryote, such as microscopic protists, plants, and even humans, is capable of “life’s most fundamental processes,” which includes the methods wherein “DNA bends, folds, and crams itself into a cell nucleus.”
Inside the nucleus of each eukaryotic cell is several feet of genetic material compacted in a particular way. Small DNA segments are wrapped at least two times around eight histones (small proteins), “like thread around a spool.” The resulting DNA-histone complex is called a nucleosome, while a string of compacted nucleosomes is called chromatin. In 1997, Luger et al. first reported the exact structure of eukaryotic nucleosomes through X-ray crystallography.
In the 1900s, John Reeve, a science paper collaborator, discovered that aside from eukaryotes, histone proteins can also be found in nucleus-free archaea cells. Reeves and Luger then worked together to crystallize histone-based archaeal chromatin, which was compared to eukaryotic chromatin.
Following years of a “gnarly crystallographic problem” where the researchers had difficulty growing reliable archaeal histone crystals, they were finally able to discern the structure of archaeal chromatin, which was similar in structure to eukaryotes.
Based on this data, it was revealed that archaeal DNA formed long and curvy repeating superhelices. Because the researchers weren’t sure if the structure was real, or simply an artifact of the experiment, Santangelo’s CSU team stepped in. He commented that his group took it upon themselves to figure out if “the structure resolved in the crystals represented a biologically meaningful structure” or not.
Santangelo’s team created variants of the archaeal histones, which were then tested to see how the cells fared when they disrupted the DNA superhelix. The team then discovered that when the structure was destabilized, the cells got sicker. Thanks to their efforts, the merits of the structure Luger’s group isolated were made clear.
Santangelo added that his work with his team was one of the highlights of his career and that their work helped provide fundamental insight into the origins of human cells. He said, “The major impact of the paper, I think, is that the idea of compacting DNA into those structures is a very ancient idea — probably more than one billion years old.” The researcher continued, “Histone proteins came on the scene, and once they got into and started packaging genomes, they largely made themselves indispensable to those cells that encoded them.”
The researcher will continue studying the “structure, function, and energy transactions of archaea,” microorganisms that are a precursor to human cellular activity.
A man has been given a 14 month prison sentence for selling illegal wildlife trade animal parts on Instagram for a total of £2 million.
Abbas Allawi, 52, was found to have various endangered animal parts stashed in his home in Watford, UK, which included rhino horns, elephant tusks and hippo teeth. Allawi was arrested after the illegal items were found by dogs that are part of the Metropolitan police’s wildlife crime unit and are specially trained to identify the scent of rhino horn.
The total items seized were three rhino horns, two elephant tusks and four hippo teeth which were found by the dogs in the man’s attic. Allawi was reportedly attempting to sell the items on Instagram, advertising them for “cash only” at a prices of £60,000 per kilo, meaning that he would have made a total of £2 million.
Following a court case, he has now been jailed for 14 months with six wildlife offences including purchasing endangered animal parts illegally, keeping the items and attempting to sell them. DC Christopher Jones said, “Some rhinoceros populations are critically endangered. A world without iconic species such as rhinos and elephants would be a sad place. Police are the last line of defence for some of these beautiful creatures. We will seek to prosecute anyone found to be trading illegally.”
This highlights that despite the Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement) Regulations 1997 making it illegal to sell endangered species and their parts in the UK, which includes unworked rhino horns and elephant ivory, it is still a huge problem.
Peter Nugent, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said, “Allawi stood to make significant sums trading in ivory and tusks, despite knowing it was illegal. He tried to claim ignorance of the law, but the prosecution case was able to show through his messages to potential buyers that he knew full well he was trading in what he described as ‘banned things’.”
Despite the conviction, this highlights the huge issue of the illegal wildlife trade operating in the UK, with the help of social media. We need to raise awareness to show how stricter regulation and higher prison sentences are needed to be a deterrent, together with highlighting the rapidly declining populations of endangered species due to this unjustified trade in animal parts.
Image Credit: Metropolitan police/PA
I am Jess Murray, wildlife conservationist, photographer and writer. Follow my Facebook page and Instagram account to be part of the journey. I like to document the natural world and create awareness through my writing so that your future can be sustainable and positive.
Success! Researchers at Chongqing Jiatong University have created a paste that can turn sand into soil. The paste consists of materials found naturally in plant cell walls. When sand is mixed with this paste, it retains water, nutrients and air.
The professors at the University couldn’t be happier. “According to our calculation, there are over 70 kinds of crops growing here. Many are not planted by us but they just grow themselves,” said Associate Professor Zhao Chaohua. “The costs of artificial materials and machines for transforming sand into soil is lower compared with controlled environmental agriculture and reclamation” added Professor Yang Qingguo.
It only took six months to transform 200 hectares of desert into a forest of rich in diverse crops. The sands have been turned into rows of corn, tomatoes, sorghum and sunflowers. China’s breakthrough offers an effective solution to deforestation. A reforestation project is currently underway and aims to reforest 50% of degraded desert land in the next three years. The researchers are keen to expand their project and are confident that they can turn over 13,000 hectares more into arable soil.
A jury found Boynton Beach police officer Mike Brown guilty on Thursday of using excessive force in the beating of an unarmed man who was a passenger in a car that led police on a high-speed chase.
Two ex-cops who took part in the arrest, Justin Harris and Ronald Ryan, were cleared of all charges, including falsifying records to cover up the beating, which was caught on Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office helicopter footage.
Though some might have thought it would be a slam-dunk case because some of the incident was captured on video, the defense emphasized that the video did not tell the whole story.
The video, shot from several hundred feet overhead with an infrared camera shortly after 2 a.m., was fuzzy and grainy and did not capture the whole interaction between Braswell and the officers.
The defense repeatedly hammered on the theme that the overhead video did not show what the officers saw on the ground.
Brown was also convicted of using a police-issued firearm to strike the passenger.
The jury began deliberation Wednesday and came back with the verdict just before 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
Brown faces up to 15 years in prison. The judge let the widower go home after the conviction to make arrangements for his 8-year-old son, who is undergoing psychiatric treatment after Brown’s wife died in October 2016.
Brown’s attorney, Bruce Reinhart, said the father of three also cares for his 72-year-old mother. His eldest son, who serves in the United States Navy, will likely take custody of his younger son while his 22-year-old daughter attends college.
Defense attorneys argued that the three men faced potential dangers on the ground during the chase that were imperceptible on the helicopter video, shot from hundreds of feet in the air. After the officers had a week to calm down and reflect, they made modifications to the reports.
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Not only are they delicious, now researchers find that mushrooms have remarkably high amounts of two potential antiaging antioxidants.
Mushrooms have never gotten much superstar treatment in the trendy wonderfoods department. While kale and blueberries get all the love, mushrooms have just waited patiently in the wings, known to be delicious, but often considered nutritionally ho-hum.
The team of scientists found that mushrooms contain high levels of ergothioneine and glutathione, both important antioxidants, explains Robert Beelman, professor emeritus of food science and director of the Penn State Center for Plant and Mushroom Products for Health.
“There’s a theory – the free radical theory of aging – that’s been around for a long time that says when we oxidize our food to produce energy there’s a number of free radicals that are produced that are side products of that action and many of these are quite toxic,” says Beelman. “The body has mechanisms to control most of them, including ergothioneine and glutathione, but eventually enough accrue to cause damage, which has been associated with many of the diseases of aging, like cancer, coronary heart disease and Alzheimer’s.”
“What we found is that, without a doubt, mushrooms are highest dietary source of these two antioxidants taken together, and that some types are really packed with both of them,” says Beelman.
Among the 13 species tested, porcini were found to have the highest amount of the two compounds.
“We found that the porcini has the highest, by far, of any we tested,” says Beelman. “This species is really popular in Italy where searching for it has become a national pastime.”
Even common mushrooms types, like the humble white button, while having less of the antioxidants than porcini still had higher amounts than most other foods, Beelman notes.
And thankfully, cooking them doesn’t appear to alter the compounds. “Ergothioneine are very heat stable,” he says.
Also heartening to hear is that unlike the nutritional value that comes from some foods, it appears that one need not eat an entire of forest-full of mushrooms to reap the potential benefits.
“It’s preliminary, but you can see that countries that have more ergothioneine in their diets, countries like France and Italy, also have lower incidences of neurodegenerative diseases, while people in countries like the United States, which has low amounts of ergothioneine in the diet, have a higher probability of diseases like Parkinson’s Disease and Alzheimer’s,” says Beelman.
“Now, whether that’s just a correlation or causative, we don’t know. But, it’s something to look into, especially because the difference between the countries with low rates of neurodegenerative diseases is about 3 milligrams per day, which is about five button mushrooms each day.”
While I’m not so sure that “Five mushrooms a day keeps the doctor away” will become a proverb for the modern foodie, it’s nonetheless great to learn that the mighty mushroom is carrying its nutritional weight along with everything else it offers.
The latest search and rescue operation in the stretch of sea separating Libya and Italy highlights some of the brutal treatment that female refugees and migrants are subjected to.
More than 2,560 people were rescued in the Mediterranean Sea over the weekend in one of the roughest missions so far this year, the International Organization for Migration said Tuesday. Thirty-four bodies were recovered from the water, 26 of them suspected to be teenagers from Nigeria. Most died while making the crossing toward Italy in rubber dinghies.
IOM believes the girls may have been “murdered by traffickers in league with European sex merchants.”
Salvatore Malfi, the prefect of the Italian port city of Salerno, was skeptical of this theory but said it’s too early to come to any conclusion about whether the girls were headed for prostitution. The girls traveled with other men in the dinghy, he said, which makes the theory less likely.
“The sex trafficking routes are different,” he said. “Loading women onto a boat is too risky, the traffickers would not do it as they could lose all their ‘goods’ ― as they describe them ― in one fell swoop.”
Italian authorities told CNN that they launched an investigation into the girls’ deaths Tuesday, carrying out autopsies to determine whether they had been victims of sexual abuse or torture. They were all between 14 and 18 years old, said Salerno police chief Lorena Ciccotti.
More than 80 percent of Nigerian women who arrived in Italy by sea during the first six months of 2016 may have later become trafficking victims, a 2016 IOM report found.
About 1,500 Nigerian women and girls made it to Italy in 2014, said Federico Soda, director of IOM’s Coordination Office for the Mediterranean. That number exploded in 2016 to 11,000.
The route used by these women has become a death trap for people escaping their home countries, due to the torture they experience before reaching the water and the high fatality rate once en route to Italy.
Smugglers operate vast networks across the Middle East and Africa, exploiting vulnerable people who pay to escape. Abuse, violence and detention are commonplace.
Three-quarters of the migrant children interviewed in a February UNICEF report said they had experienced violence, harassment or aggression at the hands of adults. Almost half the women interviewed said they’d experienced sexual violence or abuse during their journey.
A total of 154,609 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea this year, about 75 percent of whom used the Libya-Italy route, IOM said. The rest arrived via Greece, Spain or Cyprus. Almost 3,000 have died.