11 April, 2018 – Episode 666 – This Week in Science (TWIS) Podcast


Fixing Alzheimer’s, Finger Bone Finding, Birds Of A Feather, Wall Downfall?, Smart Lemurs, Of Bathrooms And Bacteria, Scrubbing Memzymes, Carbon XPrize, Bloodless Monitoring, Viral Rich History, Immunity Migrations, SlaveMakers, And Much More…

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What is a number?
Does it mean more than a count, a measure, a label?
The number of this show tonight
is many things:
It is the largest repdigit triangular number;
It is a Smith number;
It is an apocalyptic number;
It is an evil number,
but then so are pi and the golden ratio.
However, this number is said to be the number of the beast,
referred to in Revelation 13:18,
“”Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast:
for it is the number of a man; and his number is 666.””
Yet, this is an example of a time that a number is not just a number.
In this case, when written it was a code.
The old Hebrew words used to write the number 666
Were in fact pointing to Nero Caesar as the root of all evil at that time.
One man who was beastly in his actions
became a number feared through history.
And, this is just a show
This Week in Science, episode number 666,
Coming up next…

Fixing Alzheimer’s
Using human cells, researchers at the Gladstone Institute in San Francisco confirmed that the presence of a protein called ApoE4 leads to damage that potentially causes Alzheimer’s. Additionally, using a “structure corrector”, they were able to fix the mutant protein and reverse its cellular effects.

Finger Bone Finding
One finger bone is helping tell the story of human migration out of Africa.

Birds Of A Feather
A study of prosocial food sharing in Pinyon jays finds they are more likely to share when dosed with the bird version of oxytocin, mesotocin.

The proposed border wall in Texas
…is ruffling more feathers, this time of animals and plants. The border wall is likely to fragment habitat, threaten species, reduce flood resilience, and decimate the ecotourism industry along the Rio Grande. How is that making America great again, I ask?

For lemurs, it’s the smart who are popular.
Revenge of the nerds, indeed! Lemurs know to stay connected and spend more time with the brainiest members of their group, since they are most likely to lead them to successful foraging strategies!

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This Week in What Has Science Done for me Lately?!?
“TWIS team,
I love your show and I’ve been listening for years. One episode a while back made me laugh when you were talking about trucks, and you said that one-ton trucks weighed one ton. They actually weigh around 2.5 tons.

What has science done for me lately?

This is short but to the point. I’m a Mechanical Engineer in my 50’s, and I have been working in the automobile industry for my entire career. However instead of boring you with all the advances in automotive science and technology, I want to talk about what science has done for me lately in regards to medicine.

I recently had a torn meniscus in BOTH knees, which made it painful to walk. I had arthroscopic surgery done to both knees (done separately because the Doctor told me if he did them both at the same time, I would not have a leg to stand on! Ha Ha.). The science of arthroscopic surgery made the procedure quick, had minimal scarring, and had me walking without crutches within a few days! Pain that I endured for months went away immediately after surgery.

Every week listening to your show I’m impressed hearing about new advances in medical science, and I hope for the sake of mankind that a cure for cancer is just around the corner. I’ve known too many wonderful people that have passed on due to cancer.

Thank you to you, Justin, Blair, and everyone behind the scenes that makes this show possible.
–Roy Loponen”

Of Bathrooms And Bacteria
Use a paper towel instead of a dryer to keep your hands the cleanest.

CO2 scrubbing memzyme – good idea, bad idea?
Is pulling the CO2 out of smoke the answer to our climate woes, or does it just delay the inevitable?

Carbon XPrize
The top 10 competitors have advanced to the final stage of the Carbon XPrize, which will test their technologies to capture and repurpose CO2 from coal plants in real world situations.

Bloodless Monitoring
A new non-invasive patch is being developed to allow diabetics to monitor their gluscose levels without having to use blood.

Toxo Causes Diabetes?
Research suggests that infection of the pancreas with Toxoplasma gondii can lead to persistent Type 1 diabetes.

Viruses may have been around as long as vertebrates have.
That’s a long, rich evolutionary history, that enriches the viruses’ past.

Immunity Migrations
Do birds evolve migration to avoid having to fight more diseases?

Slave Makers
Ants were brood parasites before becoming enslavers.

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I'm the host of this little science show.