Wednesday, December 23, 2009

New Denver teens / Doctor / Cell Phones and Airplanes / Two genes that, when simultaneously activated

New Denver teens say no to cell tower
Tue, 2009-12-22 17:10.
Local News

It's not just adults debating the cell phone issue in New Denver.

There's a group of community teens speaking out about Telus putting in the tower this spring.

Danica Hammond says they're going to give a presentation at the school, and also have a facebook group "Protesters Against Cell Phones in New Denver."

Hammond adds teens have a number of concerns from health issues to democracy being ignored despite a plebescite and losing a part of their community values.

Jayne Garry-KBS News

Submitted by David
This information was recently sent to WEEP news by a reader:
Doctor visit
I visited my eye doctor this week, and as I always do when seeing
someone in the medical establishment who doesn't yet know of
Electromagnetic Hyper Sensitivity, I took a print-out of "Talking To
Your Doctor" ( )
 with me, so I could better explain the probability of that
being the cause of my double vision, neurological difficulties, as well
as the unbearable headaches.

He was very much interested, and during my time with him (after my
explanation), a call came in from his daughter's school that she was
terribly sick and they could not contact her mother.  When he returned
to the exam room, he told me she had been having migraines for three
months.  (That's just about the length of time since school opened for
the year.)  I asked if they were using wi-fi in the school.  With a
startled realization he said they probably were, and that in her class
they were using a white board.  The teacher wrote at her desk, and it
appeared for the class.  He was very grateful for the information, and
hopefully at least one child will be saved from this malady, and he and
his wife will become active in getting the wi-fi out of the classroom.

I told him there was plenty of information available, and to let me
know if he wanted it.  This is such a difficult thing to get out to
people.  They just don't know.


Why Cell Phones and Airplanes Don't Mix

Phone use in planes was banned in 1991

Experts reveal that using your cell phone or wireless device inside the airplane will probably not bring it down, but it will land you in a confrontation with the other passengers and the flight attendants. Since 1991, the use of cell phones was banned in commercial airliners, but scientists reveal that there is little to no proof that the communication devices interact with the airplane's systems. Still, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) errs on the side of caution, as some pilots have complained of some interferences with their navigation systems.
The independent industry standards organization RTCA was asked in 1992 to study the issue of interferences inside aircraft. The body found that there was no direct proof that cell phones influenced command systems on aircraft, but advised that the passengers refrained from using them during the critical landing and take-off phases of the flight. The RTCA also deemed that some electronic devices, such as laptops, gaming consoles, and mp3 players, were safe for use in airplanes.

Cell phones and wireless devices are different from other electronics because they emit active radiation in the electromagnetic spectrum. Although the airplane's systems and the mobile devices use different frequencies to communicate with the ground, and with each other, respectively, there is always a small risk of the two overlapping. The real reason why companies do not allow cell phones is the fact that ground networks may have the ability to interfere with their planes' systems. That is why some of them allow for passengers to use their phones in "airplane mode," which is a special mode that interrupts all transmissions to and from the mobile device, LiveScience reports.

In order to keep customers who can't live without their wireless Internet connection, some airlines decided to provide services inside the plane. This was done by reserving a chunk of the electromagnetic spectrum the airplane used for Internet access. There are several companies providing these services at this point, but there is no chance that the ban on using wireless devices for direct connection will be lifted anytime soon. The FAA commissioned a new RTCA report in 2006 on the same issue, and the industry body recommended that the restrictions were kept in place.
Hi All
In the story below, you may want to think about what may simultaneously activate two genes to cause brain cancer. 
Could it happen when victims place a strong source of microwave radiation (cell phone) next to the head?
That is the most likely circumstance that I can think of!
Martin Weatherall

Columbia scientists discover 2 genes that drive aggressive brain cancers

Discovery made using new systems biology method, which enabled the scientists to pinpoint the genes from a mass of data

NEW YORK – A team of Columbia scientists have discovered two genes that, when simultaneously activated, are responsible for the most aggressive forms of human brain cancer.

This finding was made possible by the assembly of the first comprehensive network of molecular interactions that determine the behavior of these cancer cells, a map so complex and elusive that, until now, it could not be constructed. The discovery may lead to completely novel strategies to diagnose and treat these incurable tumors.

The findings will be published in an advanced online edition of Nature on Dec. 23, 2009, by a team of Columbia scientists led by Antonio Iavarone, M.D., associate professor of neurology in the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Andrea Califano, Ph.D., director of the Columbia Initiative in Systems Biology.

The researchers studied a type of human malignancy, called glioblastoma multiforme, which is among the most lethal because it rapidly invades the normal brain producing inoperable brain tumors. Recently, glioblastoma claimed the life of Senator Edward Kennedy only sixteen months after diagnosis.

Before this study, cancer researchers had little idea why glioblastoma is so aggressive. "We now know that two genes – C/EPB and Stat3 – are the disease's master 'control knobs'," said Dr. Iavarone. "When simultaneously activated, they work together to turn on hundreds of other genes that transform brain cells into highly aggressive, migratory cells."

The two genes are active in about 60 percent of all glioblastoma patients and help identify poor-prognosis patients. All patients in the study whose tumors showed activation of both factors died within 140 weeks after diagnosis, while one half of the patients without these factors were still alive.

"The finding means that suppressing both genes simultaneously, using a combination of drugs, may be a powerful therapeutic approach for these patients, for whom no satisfactory treatment exists," said Dr. Califano.

This approach, called combination therapy, is supported by this study since silencing both genes in human glioblastoma cells completely blocked their ability to form tumors when injected in a mouse. Based on these results, the Columbia scientists received a grant from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to develop drugs specifically aimed at these genes.

Two Genes Uncovered with a Systems Biology Approach

Biomedical researchers today are like city engineers trying to reduce traffic jams without a street map. Armed only with a list of congested roads, engineers would not be able to locate the traffic jams or find the best way to unclog them. But with a city map in hand, clusters of congestion would immediately become apparent along with possible solutions.

"We are fighting very much the same problem in the post-genomic era," said Dr. Califano. "The human genome project has given biologists a wonderfully comprehensive list of street names – the genes inside every human cell. Unfortunately, it provided virtually no understanding of how all those genes may work together, within highly complex control networks, to operate the cell. In short, biologists need a map of the cell."

Thirty years of laboratory experimentation have revealed glimpses of the complete network. Yet, with trillions of potential interactions among our genes and different network structures in different cells, experimentation alone is unlikely to succeed. Best estimates indicate that only 10 percent of all the molecular interactions in a cell are understood and only a very small fraction of them in any specific cell type.

The Columbia team, which includes physicists and biologists, has for the first time assembled and experimentally validated such a cellular network for a glioblastoma cell, a hugely complex challenge that required several novel approaches drawn from the fields of information theory and computational biology.

"Armed with such a blueprint of the cell machinery, we can now ask pointed questions, such as which genes are responsible for the most deadly features of these tumors," said Dr. Iavarone.

From this blueprint, produced in Dr. Califano's lab, the scientists pinpointed the tumor's two master regulator genes. Experiments conducted by Dr. Iavarone in brain cancer cells and mice then confirmed the accuracy of the network and the importance of the two genes.

Discovery Accelerates Search for Better Treatments, Changes How Scientists Investigate Disease

"The identification of C/EPB and Stat3 came as a complete surprise to us, since these genes had never been implicated before in brain cancer," said Dr. Iavarone. Based on traditional approaches, their critical role may have eluded researchers for a long time.

"From a therapeutic perspective, it means we are no longer wasting time developing drugs against minor actors in brain cancer," added Dr. Iavarone. "We can now attack the major players."

Given its generality, the new approach has the potential to change the way researchers think not just about cancer but also about many other diseases.

In the last decade, reams of data have been generated by the human genome project and new high-throughput technologies that measure the activity of each gene inside a cell. Yet, the way cancer biologists evaluate this data seemed very biased to the Columbia scientists. Typically, researchers compare data from cancer cells and normal cells and focus on the genes with the greatest change in activity.

It's like investigating a plane crash and blaming the wing because it has the most damage. The actual alterations that caused the crash – like the causes of cancer – may be far more subtle, like a tiny defective control circuit that shows almost no damage.

Instead of focusing on the "damaged wings" of cancer, the new network approach allows biologists to pinpoint causal genes by tracing their downstream effects back to the source.

Indeed, in the case of glioblastoma, the activity of the two master genes was virtually identical in cancer cells compared to normal cells. Yet, like a tiny control switch causing a plane crash, their combined effect turned out to be massive.

Contact: Elizabeth Streich
Columbia University Medical Center