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Friday, September 23, 2011

Sharks' Virus Killer Could Cure Humans

To read about some  fascinating new scientific research involving sharks which also relates to Human illness please click on the following link. This link takes you to a part of the National Geographic website:

Sharks' Virus Killer Could Cure Humans, Study Suggests

The above image represents the Chemical nomenclature for the chemical which is the focus of discussion in the National Geographic article. It is the organic chemistry representation for  the compound squalamine. "Squalamine, a compound found in sharks, has great potential for treating human viruses and is known to be safe for humans to use, scientists from Georgetown University Medical Center wrote in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Squalamine has been used in clinical trials for eye disorders and the treatment of cancer. Its safety profile is well established, meaning it could rapidly be tested as a new class of medications for the treatment of various viruses, such as hepatitis, dengue or yellow fever."

To see a video about this discovery in which Dr. Michael Zasloff, a professor at Georgetown University Medical Center, talks about how he first discoved squalamine in dogfish sharks, how it can be made in lab (to avoid having to harm sharks to get squalamine), and how its chemical properties could aid the fight against viruses like Hepatitis B, please click on the start button below:

Source of video:

Of course the best part of this besides the fact that this compound could help end  or help reduce the severity of several types of diseases in humans, is that Dr. Zasloff said the shark did not have to be harmed in this research! It is nice to hear a scientist use these words to describe scientific research!

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Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed

Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia

A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed

Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein

The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi

The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller

Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns

Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama

Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -

Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.