New Alzheimer’s Drug Gantenerumab Promises Treatment

Gantenerumab, a new drug developed by Roche Holding AG, promises treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, according to the study published in the Archives of Neurology on October 10, 2011.

Researchers suspect the build-up of amyloid plaques in the brain causes Alzheimer’s disease. The new Alzheimer’s drug may help lower levels of such plaque. It is said that Gantenerumab binds itself to amyloid plaques in the brain and remove them. It is being targeted at the early stages of Alzheimer’s with the hope that it can slow progression of the disease.

The Phase I study of 16 Alzheimer’s patients tested Gantenerumabat two doses against a placebo over six months of treatment. The new Alzheimer’s drug led to a dose-dependent reduction of brain amyloid, while amyloid load increased in patients receiving a placebo, Roche Holding AG stated.

“These results and especially the rapidity of the effects observed on amyloid removal are very encouraging and pave the way for the development of a novel treatment for Alzheimer’s disease,” Luca Santarelli, head of Roche’s global neuroscience disease division, said in a statement.

While the new Alzheimer’s drug promises treatment, experts caution more research is needed before this drug can be deemed safe or effective.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia affecting 25 million people worldwide. Symptoms of the disease include serious memory loss, confusion and mood changes develop gradually and worsen with time. Recently, many strides have been made in diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease earlier, but doctors have been stymied by a lack of effective treatments to stop or slow the course of the disease.

Jessica Simpson Breast Reduction Rumor Spread in Web

Jessica Simpson’s breast reduction rumor has been the talk of the town ever since it went out and spread like fire on web on September 5, 2011.

Accordingly, Jessica Simpson is considering breast reduction before her wedding with NFL player Eric Johnson. A source told In Touch Weekly magazine: “She thinks if she downsizes her breasts, she will look smaller. She’s never loved having a huge chest.”

Jessica Simpson was reportedly saying: “I was well-endowed when I was in sixth grade. There’s no way to hide them, as much as you want to bandage your boobs down. I was the first girl in my class to wear a bra. I remember crying in the bathtub. All my friends were super-skinny.”

Jessica Simpson’s representatives declined to comment about her alleged plan of breast reduction. But a source familiar with the singer’s plans told ABC News that Simpson had no plans of getting a breast reduction and hasn’t even set a wedding date.

This isn’t the first time Jessica Simpson’s breasts have been in the news. Her father, former Baptist minister Joe Simpson, raised eyebrows when he discussed his daughter’s assets to the New York Post in 2004.

“Jessica never tries to be sexy. She just is sexy. If you put her in a T-shirt or you put her in a bustier, she’s sexy in both. She’s got double Ds! You can’t cover those suckers up!, ” her father said.

Justin Bieber Dominates Billboard Music Awards 2011

Last Sunday, May 22, 2011, the Billboard Music Awards were held and Justin Bieber dominated the event after winning six awards.

Justin Bieber won the Top New Artist, Top Social Artist, Top Streaming Artist, Top Digital Media Artist, Top Pop Album and Top Streaming Song. The 17-year-old pop star did a bit of stuttering as he received these awards on stage. His fans, parents, and girlfriend – Selena Gomez, were all very proud for him.

Bieber tied with Eminem, who also won 6 awards, and there were many other awards given to stars like Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift and outstanding performances from Britney Spears, Rihanna, Taio Cruz, Lil Wayne, Beyonce and Nicki Minaj.

The Billboard Millenium Award went to Beyonce while the Icon Award went to Neil Diamond. The event was an amazing night with many performances, awards and fashionable, talented celebrities. Congratulations to all winners of the 2011 Billboard Music Awards!

Photo Credit: Pak Geo News

Colleges in State of Washington Now Have Tuition Control

In-state public university students in Washington may have to shoulder more of the costs of their education than ever before.

This followed after a bill was passed by the Legislature last Tuesday that gives colleges and universities in Washington four years of control over their tuition fees.

This means that the state can enjoy a deregulated tuition system and even double-digit increases in their tuition fees. Sen. Rodney Tom, D-Medina.

“In a perfect world, we might not want to do this, but we find ourselves not in a perfect world. We find ourselves in a budget crisis like we’ve never faced before. What we’re trying to do with this measure is really maintain the quality of the institutions that we’ve been blessed with here in Washington state.”

The governor says she’ll sign the bill into law. In effect, state four-year schools can start setting their own tuition fee rates this coming school year. They can also raise their tuition fees above a certain threshold but will have to put some of the money to financial aid if they do so. This is what tuition control allows the universities to do.

The primary sponsor of the bill, Rep. Reuven Carlyle, D-Seattle, along with the supporters of the proposal for tuition control, believes that the bill carefully balances quality, affordability, and accessibility.

The tuition control is part of the state’s move to close a $5.3 billion budget shortfall. Furthermore, House and Senate Budget proposals are cutting state funding for higher education over the next biennium by over $600 million.

Opponents, however, of the proposal argue that the bill makes college education inaccessible to Washington families.

“We have now in essence answered that big question: are these public institutions? I think we’re answering no longer are they public institutions,” said Sen. Jim Kastama who is a Puyallup Democrat who joined 12 republicans in voting against the bill.

Photo Credit: Campus Explorer

George Michael Officially Discloses Orchestral Tour

A symphony orchestra is what will accompany singer George Michael in his 47-day Europe tour as he returns to performing live.

In an interview with reporters at the Royal Opera House in Central London, Michael said that it has always been what he wants to do as an artist. “I am really not interested or excited by repeating former successes,” he said. By this he means the use of the symphony orchestra.

The concert tour, dubbed as Symphonica: The Orchestral Tour, is scheduled to begin on August 22 in Prague in the Czech Republic and include 12 dates at the end of October in the UK.

The show will return to the UK in the run-up to Christmas. After that, a further date has been set for Paris in April the next year.

The AIDS Foundation of the late Dame Elizabeth Taylor will also benefit from a charity performance from Michael at the Royal Opera House on Novermber 6th. This was announced in a press launch on Wednesday by the 47-year-old performer.

This orchestral tour announcement followed after the singer served his short jail term last year. It can be noted that Michael crashed his Range Rover while driving under the influence of Cannabis.

After he claimed that his 2008 concerts would be his last live performances, he now says that “”I felt very re-energised after my recent troubles.”

He also adds by saying that “I think musically this tour and album will be surprising because I’m being far more true to myself.”

The organizers, themselves, say that the tour will see a set of Michael’s carefully selected songs and some of his all-time favorite songs.

Photo Credit: UPI

Delicious Bought by Founders of Youtube From Yahoo

Another acquisition in social media has just happened. Social bookmarking site Delicious was bought from Yahoo! by the founders of YouTube namely, Chad Hurley and Steve Chen, and will now be a part of their internet company named AVOS. This was published as a press release at Delicious’ official blog on Wednesday, April 27, 2011. However, no amount has been declared.

Apparently, Yahoo will operate Delicious until about July 2011 while the transition is going on, in which all users’ information will be transferred to its new owner afterward. As noted by Delicious, they have chosen AVOS to be their new home because they believe Delicious can receive more love and attention, and can move forward as well.

“We’re excited to work with this fantastic community and take Delicious to the next level. We see a tremendous opportunity to simplify the way users save and share content they discover anywhere on the web.” AVOS CEO Chad Hurley said on a blog post.

With that, Delicious users will be asked to allow the site to transfer all the bookmarks, personal account and all associated data, in which a dedicated page was created for it.

By agreeing on the Terms of Service (TOS), Delicious will do the transferring of data which include Delicious username, Delicious password, Email address, full name, bookmarks, among others. For more information, Delicious is inviting all users to visit their Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page.

Photo Credit: Delicious.com

Leprosy Linked to Armadillos According to Study

A new study published by the New England Journal of Medicine points to Armadillo as the likely culprit behind the sudden increase of the number of leprosy cases in South America.

Leprosy, caused by Mycobacterium leprae, is characterized by disfiguring skin lesions and peripheral nerve damage. The disease has been around since Biblical times, and was likely brought to North America by European settlers. People with leprosy were once shunned, and often forced to live in “leper colonies.”

According to the study conducted, Richard Truman, a microbiologist at the Na­tional Hansen’s Dis­ease Pro­gram and Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, and his colleagues compared bacterial samples from 50 patients in Louisiana and from 33 infected wild armadillos from five southern states. A highly specific strain of the bacterium showed up in 28 of the 33 animals and in 22 of 29 patients who had never lived outside the United States and Mexico. Interviews with 15 of the leprosy patients further revealed that eight had had direct contact with armadillos.

Truman says there was no leprosy in the New World until European settlers arrived. Somehow armadillos contracted the disease, and now about 15 percent of armadillos carry it. They are ideal hosts, because M. leprae likes their low, 89-degree body temperature. It can’t thrive at a human’s core temperature, which is why it only attacks our cooler extremities.

Truman continues that the more likely path to infection of leprosy is by noshing on armadillo. “People become infected because of direct contact with raw armadillo flesh that has been butchered in some way or another,” he says.

Photo Credit: MSNBC

UFC 119 Results: Frank Mir vs. Micro Cro Cop Results and Play by Play Highlights

UFC 119 Results: Frank Mir vs. Micro Cro Cop Results and Play by Play Highlights – Another Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has just finished. UFC 119 featured Frank Mir and Mirco Cro Cop in the Main Card and was held at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana, United States. The event was the first that UFC was hosted in Indiana.

Frank Mir Vs Mirko Cro Cop bout started with in a slow pace that the audience got bored. The crowd showered them with disapproval since their matchup was hampered by lack of aggression. At the beginning of third round, in the final minute, Mir caught Cro Cop leaning in with a left hand and pulled his head into the fight-ending knee strike. The crowd became restless and even referee Herb Dean was seen asking the fighters to get combative. A pair of follow-up punches finished off Micro Cro Cop on the ground. For the rest of the UFC 119 results, you can find them below:

Here are the complete UFC 119 Results: Frank Mir vs Mirco Cro Cop Fight Card Results:

UFC 119 Preliminary Card Results:

Heavyweight bout: New Zealand Mark Hunt vs. United States Sean McCorkle – McCorkle defeated Hunt via submission (kimura) at 1:03 of round 1. This bout aired on the Spike broadcast following the Dollaway vs. Doerksen fight.

Welterweight bout: Canada TJ Grant vs. United States Julio Paulino – Grant defeated Paulino via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27).

Lightweight bout: United States Steve Lopez vs. United States Waylon Lowe – Lowe defeated Lopez via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).

Lightweight bout: Brazil Thiago Tavares vs. United States Pat Audinwood – Tavares defeated Audinwood via submission (guillotine choke) at 3:47 of round 1. This bout aired on the Spike broadcast following the Hunt vs. McCorkle fight.

UFC 119 Preliminary Card (Spike TV) Results:

Heavyweight bout: United States Matt Mitrione vs. United States Joey Beltran – Mitrione defeated Beltran via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).

Middleweight bout: United States C.B. Dollaway vs. Canada Joe Doerksen – Dollaway defeated Doerksen via submission (modified guillotine choke) at 2:47 of round 1.

UFC 119 Main Fight Card Results:

Lightweight bout: United States Melvin Guillard vs. United States Jeremy Stephens – Guillard defeated Stephens via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 30-27).

Lightweight bout: United States Sean Sherk vs. United States Evan Dunham – Sherk defeated Dunham via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).

Welterweight bout: United States Matt Serra vs. United States Chris Lytle – Lytle defeated Serra via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27).

Light Heavyweight bout: Brazil Antônio Rogério Nogueira vs. United States Ryan Bader – Bader defeated Nogueria via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27).

Heavyweight bout: United States Frank Mir vs. Croatia Mirko Filipovi -Mir defeated Filipovi via KO (knee) at 4:02 of the third round.

Hoax About Two Moons on August 27: Moon and Mars Close This August 2010?

Hoax About Two Moons on August 27: Moon and Mars Close This August 2010?- The email about the “two moons” or a “double moon” has began circulating once again through the internet. The original email dates back in August 27, 2003 when two moons indeed appeared in the sky. Aside from the actual natural moon that we usually see in the sky at night, the red planet Mars served as the other moon that time as it had its closest encounter with our planet Earth.

Mars appeared to be the second moon in the sky that time as it came within 34,649,589 miles of Earth. There were several versions of the email which circulated during that time. One example can be found here. Accordingly, Mars will have a magnitude of -2.9 and will appear 25.11 arc seconds wide. By using a telescope, Mars will look as large as the full moon through the naked eye in its 75 power magnification. Below is a sample of the picture of the two moons which appeared in the sky on August 27, 2003

If you ever received such an email again referring to the occurrence of two moons today, August 27, 2010, just delete it as there will never be a second moon that will appear in the sky tonight. In fact, NASA stated that today, August 27, 2010, Mars will be 314 million kilometers from Earth, about as far away as it can get. That distance was very far compared to that of the distance between Earth and Mars which happened seven years ago. Mars will shine in the western sky after sunset like a tiny red star of ordinary brightness. If you didn’t know it was there, you probably wouldn’t notice.

What is fact is that the possible occurrence of such “two moons” in the sky will be in the year 2287 of which definitely, all of us living today will be dead by that time. If you still persists and want to see Mars today, August 27, 2010, NASA advises to go outside of your home and face west. You will see a bright light shining. That is not yet Mars. That is the planet Venus. Get a telescope and look for nearby celestial bodies around Venus. A few degrees to the right, you will see a little orange star-like object and that is Mars.

Apple Announcement on November 16: About iTunes, iOS 4.2 Release?

There’s a lot of buzz in Apple’s website as of now. If you visited Apple.com, there’s a message that says: “Tomorrow is just another day. That you’ll never forget. Check back here tomorrow for an exciting announcement from iTunes” with four different time zones from California, New York, London, and Tokyo as shown below:

What could be this announcement? Apparently, Apple users have been waiting for the release of iOS 4.2 for quite some time right now including its version on iPad. The same goes with their iPhone on Verizon announcement. If you can remember, the release of iOS 4.2 was already expected last week but unfortunately, it was postponed because of  a ‘bug’ found related to the Wi-Fi connection  in the iPad.

Steve Jobs will take the center stage later as he make another Apple announcement. Aside from the iOS 4.2 release, speculations are ongoing about a cloud service that will be implemented over iTunes. This is in relation to Apple’s acquisition of streaming music service Lala last year. Since there have been no announcements made yet ever since their acquisition of Lala, perhaps this November 16 announcement has something to do with a streaming content at iTunes.

These are just some of the speculations. We will know later if these topics will be included. Synchronize your time as we wait for Steve Jobs’ announcement later.