(PhysOrg.com) — A Canadian filmmaker whose childhood hero was Lee Majors as a bionic man is making the most out of what he has done to compensate for having lost one eye by becoming Eyeborg Man. Rob Spence, who lost an eye in a childhood shooting accident, calls himself Eyeborg Man because he wears a prosthetic eye that behaves as a miniature video camera, transmitting footage wirelessly to a recording device. What he looks at realtime is filmed realtime. He sees it as a kind of window on his soul. Those in medical science see it as a step toward stirring interest in the future of bionics. Spence’s bionic eye consists of a wireless video camera that sits between two layers of a prosthetic eye. The design comes from his collaboration with a former engineer for the rocket firm SpaceX, Kosta Grammatis. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Spence talks about the features of his camera in action as part of a documentary that he has made, commissioned by makers of the new video game, Deus Ex: Human Revolution. The game imagines a world when people with mechanical augmentations roam the earth. His documentary accompanies the game’s launch. The game makers asked him to look at whether this fictional world was actually so far away. Spence pops the camera into his eye and turns it on by waving a magnet in front of it. The video is transmitted to his hand-held LCD viewer. In his film, Spence further demonstrates where body enhancements are today. In addition to showing advances in prosthetic limbs, the film shows a blind man from Finland who, with a chip implanted under his retina, can see the shape of a banana on a black table. Then there is the head of Tanagram Partners who has been working with Augmented Reality. He shows off a firefighting mask and glove, under development, where the firefighter can access information off the mask’s screen and can view a menu off a computerized glove when squeezing the gloved hand. He says he expects the mask and glove to be in production within the next two years.While Spence’s bionic eye is really no big deal as a prosthetic eye–after all, the in-socket camera does not restore his vision and is not connected to his brain–Spence has demonstrated an effort to shrink wearable technologies and embed them as part of the human body. That effort was the reason that OmniVision was keen to help. Success with the device could possibly accelerate vision-restoring research.But to answer his assigned question: How far along are we in bionic body parts? He is told that researchers are just beginning to experiment with neuroprosthetics but the day will come. He is also reminded that technology moves more quickly than we can imagine. © 2011 PhysOrg.com More information: eyeborgproject.com/ and www.vimeo.com/eyeborg Citation: ‘Eyeborg’ man films vision of future (w/ video) (2011, August 30) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-08-eyeborg-vision-future-video.html Also, an ocularist made a mold of the eye to see how much space they had to work with for the camera. A tiny 3.2mm 328 x 258 video camera was provided by OmniVision. That company has developed some of the world’s smallest imaging solutions. A battery from PowerStream, which measured 5x9x10mm, was used along with the wireless transmitter. The components were connected via printed circuit board. One-eyed filmmaker conceals camera in prosthetic Explore further
Citation: Study suggests bigger brains in birds translates to less stress (2013, September 12) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-09-bigger-brains-birds-stress.html Explore further In humans, when something causes stress, hormones known as glucocorticoids flood our system. Their purpose is to trigger the famous fight-or-flight response. Other animals have the same hormones in their systems, and thus, researchers can test the level of stress in them by noting their hormone levels. In this new effort, the researchers wondered if birds with proportionally bigger brains, experienced less stress due to being smarter than their cousins with proportionally smaller brains. They found data in 189 previous studies with birds that also included hormone level data. Using this information, the researchers compiled a database that allowed them to compare birds by relative brain size. They found that on average, the larger the brain relative to body size, the less the amount of stress hormone produced during similar circumstances, e.g. stress inducing situations.The researchers looked for changes in hormone levels due to a wide variety of stress inducing situations, as well as during different parts of the birds’ life cycle, e.g. during migration, brooding, etc. The results came back the same: birds with bigger brains relative to their body size, such as owls and crows, had lower amounts of stress hormones in their blood during stressful events than birds with smaller brains relative to body size. They noted that it wasn’t just a matter of big birds versus small birds—it was the relationship between the size of their brains and the size of their bodies that mattered.The researchers suggest that differences between birds have come about as an adaption to dealing with stress hormones—if any animal, including humans, lives with heightened levels of stress hormones in their bodies over extended periods of time, they tend to suffer for it and die younger. (Phys.org) —A team of researchers with members from the U.S. Hungary, France and Spain has found that birds that have proportionally bigger brains tend to experience less stress than those with proportionally smaller brains. In their paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the team describes how they studied data obtained from prior research efforts that captured stress hormone levels for 119 different species and found those birds with the largest brains relative to their body size, had the lowest levels of stress hormones in their blood during stressful events. Flock of birds. Credit: Wikipedia. © 2013 Phys.org For young birds, getting stressed out can be a good thing More information: Do smart birds stress less? An interspecific relationship between brain size and corticosterone levels, Published 11 September 2013 DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2013.1734AbstractVertebrates respond to unpredictable noxious environmental stimuli by increasing secretion of glucocorticoids (CORT). Although this hormonal stress response is adaptive, high levels of CORT may induce significant costs if stressful situations are frequent. Thus, alternative coping mechanisms that help buffer individuals against environmental stressors may be selected for when the costs of CORT levels are elevated. By allowing individuals to identify, anticipate and cope with the stressful circumstances, cognition may enable stress-specific behavioural coping. Although there is evidence that behavioural responses allow animals to cope with stressful situations, it is unclear whether or not cognition reduces investment in the neuroendocrine stress response. Here, we report that in birds, species with larger brains relative to their body size show lower baseline and peak CORT levels than species with smaller brains. This relationship is consistent across life-history stages, and cannot be accounted for by differences in life history and geographical latitude. Because a large brain is a major feature of birds that base their lifetime in learning new things, our results support the hypothesis that enhanced cognition represents a general alternative to the neuroendocrine stress response. Journal information: Proceedings of the Royal Society B This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
Researchers invent smart window that tints and powers itself Many types of smart-glass have been created, some that display a tint when it gets sunny out, others that change to prevent heat from coming in, etc. In this new effort, the researchers sought to add something new—production of electricity. Realizing that many types of glass are subjected to rain and wind, they sought to find a way to coat a window that would take advantage of triboelectrics—capturing the energy in static electricity that occurs when two materials meet.They came up with a two layer solution, one layer to capture the energy in raindrops, the other to do the same for wind. In the first layer, the researchers developed nano-sized generators that would take advantage of the positive charge in raindrops that develops as it rubs against air on its way down from clouds and then as it crashes into a car’s windshield. The second layer consisted of a sandwich of two charged sheets of plastic with tiny springs between them. As wind pressure develops on an accelerating vehicle, the plastic sheets are pushed closer together, creating an electric current.Together the two layers result in a glass that is initially clear, but then develops a blue tint—they also generated as much as 130 milliwatts of electricity per square meter of glass, which the researchers point out, is enough to charge a sleeping smartphone. Moving forward, the team suggests that such types of glass could be used with wireless networks because it is not based on a separate power source. But, before that can happen, the team is looking into ways to store the power that is generated. They think it might be possible to embed see-through super-capacitors in the glass as well. At this time, it is not clear how much glass with all that embedded technology would cost. Credit: ACS Nano, DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.5b00706 Citation: New kind of smart-glass changes color and produces electricity (2015, April 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-04-kind-smart-glass-electricity.html © 2015 Phys.org Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Journal information: ACS Nano (Phys.org)—A team of researchers working at the Georgia Institute of Technology has developed a type of smart-glass that not only changes color, but creates electricity. They have published a description of their work and the glass they have produced and some ideas on what the new kind of glass might be used for in their paper published in ACS Nano. More information: Motion-Driven Electrochromic Reactions for Self-Powered Smart Window System, ACS Nano, Article ASAP. DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.5b00706AbstractThe self-powered system is a promising concept for wireless networks due to its independent and sustainable operations without an external power source. To realize this idea, the triboelectric nanogenerator (TENG) was recently invented, which can effectively convert ambient mechanical energy into electricity to power up portable electronics. In this work, a self-powered smart window system was realized through integrating an electrochromic device (ECD) with a transparent TENG driven by blowing wind and raindrops. Driven by the sustainable output of the TENG, the optical properties, especially the transmittance of the ECD, display reversible variations due to electrochemical redox reactions. The maximum transmittance change at 695 nm can be reached up to 32.4%, which is comparable to that operated by a conventional electrochemical potentiostat (32.6%). This research is a substantial advancement toward the practical application of nanogenerators and self-powered systems.
New framework sheds light on how, not if, climate change affects cold-blooded animals Explore further To find out if the lizards were somehow sequestering heat from sunlight during the day, the researchers withheld both food and sun from several of the lizards, but they remained warmer than their surroundings nonetheless—it might be, the research group suggests, because warmer bodies help both genders more successfully reproduce. They note that the rise in temperature became more pronounced as the lizards emerged from their burrows in the morning, prime mating time. Tegu lizards in a burrow. Credit: Glenn Tattersall One of the main differences between birds and mammals, and amphibians, reptiles and fish, is the ability to self-heat. Those that cannot are known as ectotherms, creatures that get their heat from the environment. Lizards fall into that category, but one species, the black and white tegu appears to be breaking the rules—the research team found that they cause their bodies to be from 4 to 10 C° warmer than the environment in which they are situated from approximately September to December—the mating season.As the researchers note, tegus tend to spend a lot of time in the sun during the day, warming their bodies. At night, they go into burrows where it is warmer than outside, but still, as the temperature in the burrow drops, so too does the body temperature of the lizards—but not so much during mating season. In addition to an increase in heat, the lizards also had an increased heart and breathing rate, which may offer a clue regarding how the supposedly cold-blooded creature is able to make itself warmer—a faster metabolism could explain the increase in heat, the team suggests, but so could a secreted hormone that forces tissue to work harder than normal, or organs that have a heat producing element. The researchers readily acknowledge that they do not know how the lizard heats itself, but plan to keep looking—finding the answer might help to better understand how warm-bloodedness developed in other organisms. A thermal image of a tegu lizard taken at 6 a.m. inside its burrow. Credit: Glenn J. Tattersall (Phys.org)—A species of lizard, the Argentinean black and white tegu (Salvator merianae), has been discovered by a combined team of researchers from Brazil and Canada, to cause its internal body temperature to rise over the course of several months, during mating season. In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, the team describes their study of captive tegu, what they found regarding body temperature and offer some ideas on how the cold blooded reptile manages to heat itself. More information: G. J. Tattersall et al. Seasonal reproductive endothermy in tegu lizards, Science Advances (2016). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500951AbstractWith some notable exceptions, small ectothermic vertebrates are incapable of endogenously sustaining a body temperature substantially above ambient temperature. This view was challenged by our observations of nighttime body temperatures sustained well above ambient (up to 10°C) during the reproductive season in tegu lizards (~2 kg). This led us to hypothesize that tegus have an enhanced capacity to augment heat production and heat conservation. Increased metabolic rates and decreased thermal conductance are the same mechanisms involved in body temperature regulation in those vertebrates traditionally acknowledged as “true endotherms”: the birds and mammals. The appreciation that a modern ectotherm the size of the earliest mammals can sustain an elevated body temperature through metabolic rates approaching that of endotherms enlightens the debate over endothermy origins, providing support for the parental care model of endothermy, but not for the assimilation capacity model of endothermy. It also indicates that, contrary to prevailing notions, ectotherms can engage in facultative endothermy, providing a physiological analog in the evolutionary transition to true endothermy. Journal information: Science Advances © 2016 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Lizard found to heat itself during mating season (2016, January 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-01-lizard-season.html A basking tegu lizard. Credit: Glenn Tattersall
ASASSN’s creed—a surprising ultraviolet rebrightening observed in a superluminous supernova (Phys.org)—A team of astronomers has found a hydrogen-poor superluminous supernova with exceptional properties. According to a research paper published online on May 17, on the arXiv pre-print server, the cosmic explosion, designated PS1-14bj, shows an exceptionally slow rise to maximum light and a very leisurely fade-out. It the longest rise time measured in a superluminous supernova to date. Citation: Astronomers discover an unusual, slowly evolving superluminous supernova (2016, May 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-05-astronomers-unusual-slowly-evolving-superluminous.html Explore further PS1-14bj was first detected in November 2013 by an international team of researchers led by Ragnhild Lunnan of the California Institute of Technology. The astronomers used the Pan-STARRS telescope (PS1) on Mount Haleakala in Hawaii to find this supernova and employed a set of other telescopes worldwide to conduct follow-up observations of the object.PS1 is excellent at finding supernovae and other objects that change or move in the sky. PS1-14bj was found as part of a project carried out by PS1, called the Medium Deep Survey, that imaged the same fields of the sky every night to search for transient objects like supernovae.What drew the attention of the astronomers was that the newly discovered supernova was rising in brightness to maximum light much more slowly than usual.”PS1-14bj stood out in the PS1 data by rising in brightness much slower than a common supernova does, which is what initially prompted us to follow it up further,” Lunnan told Phys.org.Follow-up observations allowed the team to obtain spectra and additional optical images of PS1-14bj. It turned out that this supernova evolves very slowly as its rise time to maximum takes more than 120 days, and it also fades away very slowly (about 250 days). To put that in perspective, ordinary supernovae usually take a few weeks to rise to maximum light, while a typical superluminous supernova rise time might be 30 to 50 days.According to Lunnan, this slow evolution is similar to what is expected for a special kind of explosion mechanism called a pair-instability supernova, and PS1-14bj fits some of the theoretical expectations of what such an explosion would look like.However, it also has some properties that are very hard to explain in a pair-instability model. What puzzles the scientists is its unusual color evolution, with the color temperature rising prior to peak, and staying constant within uncertainties around 8,000-10,000 K through the peak and decline. The team speculates about how the color stays blue, indicating high temperatures, as the supernova fades away, rather than cooling.”This means that there is some energy source heating the supernova ejecta at very late times, and it’s unclear what that energy source is. One possibility is that there is material around the star, a shell of gas that got ejected from the star before it exploded, and as the supernova explosion runs into this the gas is heated by the collision,” Lunnan said.Other possible explanation offered by the scientists is that the supernova could be powered by a magnetar. It is a rapidly spinning neutron star with a strong magnetic field that was formed from the core of the star as the star went supernova, which could then also be heating the supernova ejecta to very late times.”Every time we discover something we haven’t seen before, it adds to our understanding. For example, PS1-14bj shows us that there exist superluminous supernovae that have the kind of broad, slow light curves that are predicted by pair-instability supernova models. Of course, discovering new things also tends to add to the list of things we don’t yet understand, but that is part of the fun of doing science,” Lunnan concluded.Since PS1-14bj has faded away, the team will now focus on the study of the host galaxy to determine what kind of star exploded. They hope to find out whether the star came from a very low metallicity galaxy or not. More information: PS1-14bj: A Hydrogen-Poor Superluminous Supernova With a Long Rise and Slow Decay, arxiv.org/abs/1605.05235AbstractWe present photometry and spectroscopy of PS1-14bj, a hydrogen-poor superluminous supernova (SLSN) at redshift z=0.5215 discovered in the last months of the Pan-STARRS1 Medium Deep Survey. PS1-14bj stands out by its extremely slow evolution, with an observed rise to maximum light ≳125 days in the rest frame, and exponential decline out to ∼250 days past peak at a measured rate of 9.75×10−3 mag day−1, consistent with fully-trapped 56Co decay. This is the longest rise time measured in a SLSN to date, and the first SLSN to show a rise time consistent with pair-instability supernova (PISN) models. Compared to other slowly-evolving SLSNe, it is spectroscopically similar to the prototype SN 2007bi at maximum light, though somewhat lower in luminosity (Lpeak≃4.4×1043 erg s−1) and with a flatter peak than previous events. In addition to its slow evolution, PS1-14bj shows a number of peculiar properties, including a near-constant color temperature for >200 days past peak, and strong emission lines from [O III] λ5007 and [O III] λ4363 with a velocity width of ∼3400 km s−1, in its late-time spectra. These both suggest there is a sustained source of heating over very long timescales, and are incompatible with a simple 56Ni-powered/PISN interpretation, or any model that predicts a monotonically decreasing temperature (such as the simple magnetar spin-down model). A modified magnetar model including emission leakage at late times can reproduce the light curve, in which case the blue continuum and [O III] features would be interpreted as material heated and ionized by the inner pulsar wind nebula becoming visible at late times. Alternatively, the late-time heating could be due to interaction with a shell of H-poor circumstellar material. Stacked iP1 PS1/MDS pre-explosion image of the ﬁeld around PS1-14bj (left), compared to an i-band image from GMOS taken near peak (right). A faint host galaxy is clearly seen at the supernova position. In the GMOS image, which has signiﬁcantly better seeing (0.4′′ FWHM, compared to 1.3′′ in the template), it appears that the host galaxy may have some structure or multiple components. Credit: Lunnan et al., 2016. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2016 Phys.org
© 2019 Science X Network Controlling neurons with light—but without wires or batteries , Science For this, the team coupled a microscale light-emitting diode (LED) with two millimeter-scale coils to create an inductive charging system, which delivered instantaneous power at biologically safe frequencies in an experimental rodent (rat) model. The wireless setup stimulated neurons in the visual cortex, while maintaining the temperature increase below 10C as a critical safety threshold for biomedical implants. The results are now published on Microsystems and Nanoengineering. Khan et al. introduced a single channel neurostimulator containing a reflector-coupled, microscale light-emitting diode (µLED) with an integrated millimeter sized wireless receiver (RX) coil. The experimental setup allowed for free-floating, battery-free, untethered optogenetics neuromodulation. They used a two-coil inductive link in the system to deliver instantaneous power at a low operating frequency (<100 MHz) for continuous optical stimulation. The process posed minimal invasiveness and tissue exposure to electromagnetic radiation. When they coupled a microscale reflector to the µLED, the optical-reflector displayed significantly enhanced light intensity compared to bare µLED. The scientists controlled the operational temperature of the setup for implant biocompatibility and conducted in vivo experiments in rats, followed by histological studies to verify the efficacy of wireless optical stimulation in the primary visual cortex of the animal model. They visualized the process using c-Fos biomarker, which appeared green on immunostaining, as a reporter of light-evoked neuronal activity. TOP: Simulation model for the inductive coupling at cross-section planes. Plane 3 refers to the bottom plane of the Tx coil (z axis displacement, z = 0), plane 1, 2, 4 refers to z = 2.5 mm, z = 1 mm, and z = −1 mm, respectively. (a) The simulation model in HFSS. Magnetic flux distributions for (b) plane 1, (c) plane 2, (d) plane 3, and (e) plane 4. Induced magnetic flux by the Rx coil at plane 2, while the Rx is positioned at f Tx center and g Tx periphery. Units of flux distributions provided in the color map legend. BOTTOM: Optical and thermal characteristics. (a) Light penetration through tissue sections with a coupled reflector (n = 5), (b) intensity improvement of reflector coupled stimulator compared with a bare μ-LED, and (c) change in temperature for devices stimulating through a 500 μm cortical tissue slice (n = 3). Credit: Microsystems & Nanoengineering, doi: 10.1038/s41378-019-0061-6 System validation using Immuno-histology. (a) In vivo stimulation using a wirelessly-powered neurostimulator on the V1 of an anaesthetized rat. (b) quantitative representation of c-Fos expressed cells using cell sorting. Fluorecent images of mCherry (c, e) as well as c-Fos (d, f) expressions of the control and stimulated cortices, respectively, obtained from the same cortical areas of the same transfected animal. (g, h) c-Fos expressions of the control and stimulated cortices, respectively, obtained from a non-transfected animal. Credit: Microsystems & Nanoengineering, doi: 10.1038/s41378-019-0061-6 Discoveries and inventions in neuroscience have recently progressed rapidly due to advances in semiconductor implants in neurobiological systems, for successful clinical translation. For example, scientists can use implantable "electroceuticals" in a new medical approach to target the central and peripheral nervous system during therapeutic intervention. As a result, optogenetics is finding new applications in neuroscience to deliver light to neural tissues of interest while collecting readouts from cells using targeted control tools. The ability to implant miniature optical sources, recording electrodes, sensors and other components in to designated areas of the brain has renewed the optimism for long-term diagnostics and therapeutics. Using such developments, scientists can study the transmission of primary sensory information to specific domains of the brain, including the olfactory, visual and auditory regions in depth. They can also use the technique to understand cells that drive or inhibit fundamental bioactivities such as hunger, thirst, energy balance and respiration via activity patterns. , Nature Methods Conceptual diagram of the wirelessly-powered opto neuro-stimulator and its placement over the cortex of the animal (rodent) brain. Credit: Microsystems & Nanoengineering, doi: 10.1038/s41378-019-0061-6 Explore further "" The scientists then conducted in vivo experiments in transfected rats (foreign DNA introduced into cells) to then implement the proposed surgical procedures. They followed the experiments with immunohistochemical assays to validate the efficacy of the cell transfection procedure and the subsequent optical stimulation procedure in the rats. During transfection, they induced the expression of channelrhodopsin-2 in the animal models with a viral solution and then placed the coiled stimulator on the primary visual cortex (V1 lobe) of the animal for subsequent optical stimulation. The scientists coupled the coiled stimulator to a Tx coil and used the other V1 lobe of the same animal as a control sample. After completing the in vivo experiments, the scientists analyzed the expression of c-Fos (green dye) in the stimulated vs. non-stimulated lobe to identify neural activity. For this, Khan et al. used immunobiological assays in the work and observed elevated c-Fos expression (green) within the virus-transfected cortex (red) induced by LED stimulation of the experimental neurostimulator. In this way, Khan et al. designed, fabricated and characterized a reflector-coupled, wireless single-channel optical neurostimulator with a mm-sized receiver coil for optogenetic neuromodulation. The reflector-coupled stimulator allowed higher performance compared to bare µLED in the present work. The scientists studied the performance of the two-coil telemetry link using analytical circuit models, FEM stimulations and experimental approaches. They verified the proposed potential of the neurostimulator in a rat model with upregulated cellular activity observed via optical stimulation. Khan et al. will aim to conduct further investigations in the future to miniaturize the devices for neurobiological applications. The scientists tested the surface morphology of the prototype using scanning electron microscopy to observe the cavity array after isotropic silicon etching and surface aluminum coating. They then tested the surface roughness using atomic force microscopy to detect surfaces that created negligible light scattering for optimally enhanced light intensity and activated the neurostimulator on a benchtop setup via inductive powering. The scientists also incorporated Parylene-c to engineer the constructs due to inherent biocompatibility of the material, although they observed potential cracking as before as a result of high temperatures in the engineering process. Khan et al. simulated electromagnetic properties of the inductive link between the Rx and Tx coils using the finite element method (FEM) and high frequency structure stimulator (HFSS) software; to show similarities between the simulated Tx coil and those engineered in the work. The scientists investigated the optical properties and showed that the neurostimulator could reach deep brain cells less invasively compared to a waveguide or penetrating probes. While the data showed superior optical performance of the reflector-coupled stimulator, the intensity reduced heavily with thicker tissue sections. The intensity of the reflector-coupled stimulator was significantly higher in the present work compared with a bare stimulator for effective deep brain stimulation without deep-brain tissue invasion. Khan et al. similarly tested and optimized the thermal properties, electromagnetic properties and the power transfer efficacy of the neurostimulator prototype. To conduct translational studies in an animal model, the scientists proposed implanting the resonator coil between the skull and skin without wire connections to the Tx or Rx coil. Optogenetics must target the neural population without altering the natural behavior of animal models for accurate applications in medicine. Pioneering work by researchers in the field have led to the development of several optimized neuro-stimulators with mid-field radiofrequency (RF) and far-field power transfer. However, scientists are yet to report on a fully implantable and miniaturized high voltage (HV) stimulator that provides precise stimulation control of the parameters of interest. An ideal wireless optical implant must therefore:Be miniature in the millimeter scale (mm) to prevent invasive surgical infection, inflammation and post-surgical trauma.Allow highly efficient power transfer and long-distance communication to deep region target neurons with aims for human applications.A significant challenge with engineering such implants is the energy required to optically activate optogenetic opsins, which typically include a few mWs, although greater than the values for conventional electrical stimulation or data communication. To solve this challenge, Khan and co-workers proposed a fully implantable, mini wireless optical stimulator to deliver sufficient power for µLED operations—without surpassing the operational temperature. In the proposed system, they included a solenoid transmitter (TX) coil and receiver (RX) unit. In a proof-of-concept of the proposed prototype, Khan et al. used a blue µLED (465 nm wavelength) of 270 µm x 220 µm surface area to optically excite neurons expressing channelrhodopsin. To validate the functionality of the device in an animal model, the scientists placed the Tx coil outside the brain and inductively coupled it to the Rx coil, which was integrated to the µLED neurostimulator placed within a craniotomy cavity. The scientists used the free-floating method for epidural optical neuromodulation in the craniotomy cavity located on top of the dura mater. Citation: Biotechnology: Using wireless power to light up tiny neural stimulators (2019, June 10) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-06-biotechnology-wireless-power-tiny-neural.html More information: Wasif Khan et al. Inductively coupled, mm-sized, single channel optical neuro-stimulator with intensity enhancer, Microsystems & Nanoengineering (2019). DOI: 10.1038/s41378-019-0061-6 Kristoffer Famm et al. A jump-start for electroceuticals, Nature (2013). DOI: 10.1038/496159a Karl Deisseroth. Optogenetics, Nature Methods (2010). DOI: 10.1038/nmeth.f.324T.-i. Kim et al. Injectable, Cellular-Scale Optoelectronics with Applications for Wireless Optogenetics, Science (2013). DOI: 10.1126/science.1232437 Conceptual diagram of the inductively coupled neuro stimulator system. (a) An overview of the inductive link system. (b) Conceptual diagram of the wirelessly-powered opto neuro-stimulator and its placement over the cortex of the animal brain. Credit: Microsystems & Nanoengineering, doi: 10.1038/s41378-019-0061-6 Characterization results and images of an operating prototype. (a, b) SEM images of the etched Si cavity. (c, d) Post and prior Al coating of the cavity, respectively. (e, f) AFM images for quantitative analysis of cavity surface roughness (x axis units in μm, y axis in nm). (g) Fabricated single-channel opto neurostimulator. h Rx-coil coupled single-channel opto neurostimulators. (i, j) An opto stimulator powered wirelessly by a Tx coil. Credit: Microsystems & Nanoengineering, doi: 10.1038/s41378-019-0061-6 Journal information: Nature This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Implantable optical devices that target neurons can be improved using miniature coils smaller than a grain of rice using optogenetic technology. Scientists can propagate pulses of light using the method to turn protein expression on or off in genetically modified neurons. Neuroscientists have used bulky cables and batteries to control and collect data from such experimental setups so far. In a recent study, Wasif Khan and a team of researchers in the interdisciplinary departments of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Physiology in the U.S. developed a completely wireless prototype to replace the bulky hardware.
“If you have more than what I have, I may be inspired by what you have,” she says. Of course, like all human emotions, envy has a purpose. It’s a tool for social comparison, one that can alert us to imbalances in the social hierarchy. Sometimes, these feelings of envy can prompt us to improve our lives, says Harvard social psychologist Mina Cikara. Envy: it’s an unflattering, miserable emotion. And it’s universal. All of us, at some time or another, will experience that feeling of wanting what someone else has, and resenting them for having it. But envy can also turn malicious, causing us to feel resentment, rage, and a desire for revenge. University of Kentucky social psychologist Richard Smith says malicious envy is often intertwined with another dark emotion, schadenfreude — the pleasure we feel at the suffering of others. Read the whole story: NPR
Kolkata: In a bid to cater to the huge demand of Haringhata Meat in North Bengal, the West Bengal Livestock Development Corporation (WBLDC) has come up with a cold storage facility in Siliguri which will act as a central store for storing frozen meat.”We have as many as 35 franchises ready to sell Haringhata Meat in North Bengal. However, due to lack of cold processing unit in North Bengal, we were facing difficulty to supply to these franchises from our unit in Haringhata, Nadia. This 10 metric tonne facility will help us to provide quality meat to the people of North Bengal in a more organised way,” Gouri Shankar Koner, managing director of WBLDC said. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe same building with the storage facility also has an animal hospital with facilities for investigation of diseases and guest house facilities. The whole project has entailed an investment of around Rs 2.16 crore. Koner said WBLDC, which comes under the aegis of the state Animal Resource Development department, has also set up a pig breeding farm at Mohitnagar in Jalpaiguri. Around 1,800 animals will be produced annually there.”Haringhata Meat procures pig from farmers and in some cases, there have been concerns over quality. Now, we will have our own infrastructure for pig breeding and these animals will be slaughtered in our pig processing plant at Haringhata,” Koner said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedIt may be mentioned that pork products like salami, bacon and sausages of Haringhata Meat are in huge demand in the state. The pig breeding farm has had an investment of Rs 2.29 crore. WBLDC has a 3.5 metric tonne capacity processing unit of chicken and pork at Haringhata in Nadia. Frozen meat and a plethora of value-added products made from meat are sold in 230-odd outlets in the state, under the brand name Haringhata Meat. WBLDC is setting up a chicken and pork processing plant at Phansidewa in Darjeeling district which is expected to be operational by the middle of 2018.”All these projects will help us to cater to the gap of demand and supply in North Bengal and most importantly open up an avenue for export to North-Eastern states and Bhutan where there is a huge demand for quality meat,” Koner said.
Kolkata: A couple died in a road accident while their 4-year-old son sustained serious injuries in the same. Four others have also been injured in two separate accidents in the city.The first accident took place in Nadia’s Ranaghat where the bike, which the victims were riding, was hit by a truck on Sunday morning. Police said one Rajesh Mondal, a resident of Begopara area of Nadia was going with his wife and his 4-year-old son to Ranaghat along the National Highway 34. When they were passing Doyabari area, a speeding truck coming from the opposite direction hit them. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe truck driver and the helper fled the spot immediately after the accident leaving the vehicle at the spot. According to the locals, the truck was running at a high speed as a result of which the driver failed to control the vehicle. The locals rushed the injured victims to a nearby hospital where the couple declared brought dead while the boy has been fighting for his life in the hospital.Police have seized the vehicle and are conducting raids to nab the truck driver who has been absconding since the incident took place. The accident caused traffic congestion on the National Highway 34 after the accident. Normalcy was restored after an hour following the intervention of the district police officers. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedIn another incident, a speeding car lost control and overturned on Mahim Haldar Street in Kalighat injuring the driver. The locals rescued the driver and sent him to MR Bangur Hospital at around 12.30 am on Saturday midnight. According to the hospital sources, the victim’s condition is serious. Police later reached the spot and seized the vehicle. Police suspect that the victim might have been driving the vehicle in a drunken state. CCTV footages are being looked into. They have started a probe in this regard.The third accident took place in Bidhannagar where two persons travelling in a car received injuries after the vehicle dashed against the road divider. The accident took place near Baguiati in the wee hours of Sunday. The victims have been identified as Md Tarif (27) , Kaushar Ali (24) and Md Samsul (26). They were taken to RG Kar Medical College and Hospital.
Kolkata: As the carcass meat case came to light, corporate tourists from abroad are avoiding consuming meat during their stay in the city.According to Prabir Singha Roy, general secretary of the Travel Agents Association of Bengal, said majority of foreign tourists in the city are corporate ones.”The corporate tourists from abroad are now preferring to vegetables or fish at the most as the carcass meat row have come to light. They are avoiding meat,” said Roy. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsHe further said that in many cases attempts were taken to convince the tourists by making them feel that the quality of food is not the same everywhere. However, some are getting convinced and having meat while some are not.It may be recalled that the case of carcass meat sale came to light for the first time with the arrest of two youth who were caught chopping off meat from dead animals found at a dump yard at Budge Budge in South 24-Parganas. Subsequently, Police have arrested more than 10 people in this connection and the case has been finally taken up by the state’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID). Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedChief Minister Mamata Banerjee also set up a nine member committee headed by Chief Secretary Malay De to completely uproot the menace.The developments have resulted in a considerable drop in the sale of meat and chicken at eateries. Preliminary investigation revealed that the carcass meat was supplied to a section of eateries and some departmental stores as well.The matter related to the sale of dead chicken also came to light with police recovering a huge quantity of fungal-infected chicken at a farm in Rajarhat. In a bid to gain faith of the people, hotels and restaurants are taking all necessary steps.In such a situation, the Hilsa festival is going to take place in Sunderbans in August and the tour operators are expecting more footfall in the festival this time compared to that of the last year. However, according to the operators, the increase in number of turn out in Sunderbans doesn’t have any connection with the carcass meat case.
Seven states have proposed to come up with their own model to roll out broadband network proposed under Rs 72,000 crore BharatNet
Kolkata: One person was arrested for the cold-blooded murder of a bank employee whose chopped body parts were recovered from West Bengal’s Howrah district, police said on Saturday. “One Sheikh Shamsuddin who had taken a loan amounting to more than one lakh has been arrested,” a police officer said. The police zeroed in on small time businessman Shamsuddin after getting a lead from the sack which contained the chopped torso of the victim. Bank employee Partha Chakraborty, 26, who was tasked with recovering the loan amount had approached Shamsuddin. The latter said he could not repay and there was a small altercation. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life Chakraborty was then invited inside Shamsuddin’s workshop. He was killed there and his body was chopped into smaller pieces and put inside sacks to be disposed off. “The arrested person has confessed to his crime. The amount of Rs 3 lakh that Chakraborty had collected from borrowers of the private bank has also been recovered. “We are trying to find out whether there were others involved and were there any other motives,” he added. Chakraborty was reported missing on August 30. The sack containing the body parts surfaced later and Chakraborty was identified by his shirt, the police had said earlier. The victim was a resident of Chakdaha in Nadia district and was stationed in Domjur for work. Chakroborty’s relatives have appealed that his killer should not be spared.
As the world gets prepared to build smart cities, new research led by an Indian-origin scientist has highlighted the dangerous effects of indoor pollution on human health and has called for policies to ensure closer monitoring of air quality.According to Prashant Kumar from the University of Surrey, the research offers insight into “Sick Building Syndrome” and how new smart cities could help combat air quality issues.“When we think of the term “air pollution”, we tend to think of car exhausts or factory fumes expelling grey smoke. However, there are actually various sources of pollution that have a negative effect on air quality, many of which are found inside our homes and offices. From cooking residue to paints, varnishes and fungal spores the air we breathe indoors is often more polluted than that outside,” explained Kumar. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’In 2012, indoor air pollution was linked to 4.3 million deaths globally, compared with 3.7 million for outdoor air pollution. Urban dwellers typically spend 90 per cent of their time indoors and this has been linked to ‘Sick Building Syndrome’ where people exhibit a range of ill-health effects related to breathing indoor air.“It is essential that we are able to effectively monitor indoor air pollution so that we can better understand when and where levels are worst, and in turn offer solutions to make our air healthier,” added Kumar in the journal Science of the Total Environment. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix“Our work looks at the use of small, low-energy monitoring sensors that would be able to gather real-time data and tell families or workers when levels of pollutants are too high,” he continued.With this research, we are calling for greater importance to be placed on ensuring buildings are built with indoor pollution monitoring in mind. As we enter the age of smart cities this is one way in which technology will actively benefit health, the authors noted. A collaborative effort of European, Australian and British researchers led by the University of Surrey, the study assesses the harmful effects of indoor pollution in order to make recommendations on how best to monitor and negate these outcomes.In another paper published earlier in the journal Environmental Pollution, Kumar and PhD student Anju Goel also found that outdoor air pollution was at a high where buildings were located at traffic intersections.Even where there was low traffic volume, traffic intersections with densely built up surroundings showed twice the concentration than at open junctions.Exposure to these concentrations showed that ground floor dwellings in these areas were exposed to twice as many harmful particles. “This has important implications for town planning and we should consider whether we really want schools, offices or hospitals to be built within these environments,” Kumar noted.
Purulia: Criticising the malfunctioning of some Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) during the ongoing Madhya Pradesh assembly elections, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday claimed that providing faulty EVMs was a ploy to manipulate people’s votes. Taking a swipe at the Election Commission, Banerjee said it is the responsibility of the constitutional body to ensure that none of the EVM or VVPAT machines used during polling are faulty. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life “I am hearing since morning that several EVM machines used in Madhya Pradesh polls are faulty. We all understand these plans. These are attempts to manipulate people’s vote for own advantage,” Banerjee said in a veiled reference to the Bharatiya Janata Party, who is in power in the state as well as at the Centre. “I have heard that only two per cent votes cast through an EVM machine can be traced. What is the significance of two per cent? If two per cent votes are fair and 80 per cent of it is rigged, who would take the responsibility? If EVM and VVPAT are used in elections, the EC must ensure that not a single EVM machine malfunctions during polling,” she said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed The Trinamool supremo said she would raise the issue of faulty EVMs during the opposition parties’ meeting to be held in Delhi in December. “We have already raised the issue. I will again raise the issue during our opposition party meeting in Delhi. I will also circulate the document to show what exactly is going on in Madhya Pradesh,” she added. Polling is underway for the 230-member Madhya Pradesh Assembly on Wednesday, where several faulty EVMs and VVPAT machines had to be replaced within the first hour.
Researchers have found that Facebook’s nearly two billion monthly users can be categorised into four types ranging from people who use the social media network to build on real-world relationships, to those focussed on “likes” and attention. On an average, 1.28 billion people check Facebook daily, and according to a recent estimate, an average Facebook user spends 35 minutes a day on the platform. “What is it about this social-media platform that has taken over the world,” lead author Tom Robinson, Professor at the Brigham Young University, said in a statement. To answer this, the team compiled a list of 48 statements to identify potential reasons as to why people use Facebook.They found four categories of Facebook users: relationship builders, town criers, selfies and window shoppers. Relationship builders post, respond to others” posts and use additional Facebook features primarily in an attempt to fortify relationships that exist beyond their virtual world.”They use it as an extension of their real life, with their family and real-life friends,” Robinson said. Town criers, on the other hand, are unconcerned with sharing photos, stories or other information about themselves, they instead “want to inform everybody about what”s going on”. “They push out information,” Robinson noted.People in the selfies category use Facebook to promote themselves. They too post pictures, videos and text updates, but are focussed on getting attention, likes and comments. The more “likes” they receive, the more they feel approved by their peers. Window shoppers, like town criers, feel a sense of social obligation to be on Facebook but rarely post personal information.These users “want to see what other people are doing. It”s the social-media equivalent of people watching”, said Clark Callahan, a professor from the Brigham Young University.”Social media is so ingrained in everything we do right now. And most people don”t think about why they do it, but if people can recognise their habits, that at least creates awareness,” said Kris Boyle, a professor from the Brigham Young University.
A captivating evening of dance and music was hosted in the loving memory of the brave soldiers, who have sacrificed their lives for their motherland. The evening titled ‘Ek Shaam Shaheedon Ke Naam’ at the India Islamic Cultural Centre in the capital was organised by Arts Vintaage (a project by NGO Sparsh) hosted in collaboration with the famous Naad Foundation, to celebrate India’s 71st Independence Day. The star-studded evening was a brainchild of Nishi Singh (Director – Arts Vintaage). “This evening is a tribute to the martyrs who gave their lives so that the coming generations can breathe in independent India. The motive of the evening is to bring the hidden talent out of these young kids who are the future of our country,” said Nishi. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe glorious event was graced by several luminaries including Sudha Gupta (Chairperson – Mother’s Pride & Presidium), Udit Raj (Parliament Member – BJP), Master Rahul Jain (Popular Child Artist), Mohsin Khan (MD – Prime News) and Sandip Marwah (Renowned International Media Personality).As an experienced educationist, Sudha Gupta addressed expressed the importance of patriotic values in laying a sound foundation for strong character. “Art is freedom. It can only spring from a heart that is free and a soul that is liberated. Therefore, it is very appropriate that we are celebrating 71st Independence Day with an evening of music and dance. What’s even more heart-warming is that the evening is dedicated to the brave souls to whom we owe our freedom,” she said. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveSpecial performances by Shankar Sahney and Divyanshi were some delightful attractions of this magnificent event, which inspired all to come forth and join hands in remembering our martyrs, without whom breathing in a free India wouldn’t have been possible.Senior Member of Parliament and Dalit leader Udit Raj also graced the evening. “It’s a good initiative by Naad Foundation and their contribution to the society is commendable. This sort of events should be continued in future”, said Udit Raj.The evening saw a full house attendance of Delhi’s social fraternity that was spotted enjoying the dance and music performances by the talented artists.
Mumbai might be called the city of dreams but Delhi has never been behind in giving the best of the artists to the country. Sunday evening experienced all-time favourite Sufi singer Kailash Kher and his band Kailasa in the jam-packed Sirifort auditorium. The evening was celebrating ‘Eyecare day’ as ‘Hope for light’, dedicated to the noble cause of providing quality medical services to the needy and poor by Mahavir International, New Delhi.As a tradition, every year the event is graced by the company of a singer who performs and entertains the audience by spreading the message and importance of donating eyes to someone who needs it. As a part of the big day, 26 families who supported the cause by donating the eyes of their deceased dear ones were honoured at the event. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfAs Kailash Kher gave a sensational performance on his songs ‘Teri deewani’ and ‘Allah ke bande’, he also appealed to the audience to pledge their eyes. More than 1500 people initiated the movement and joined hands with the organization.Since the last 38 years, the organization is committed to providing quality eye care services with six hospitals spread across the capital which has as good infrastructure as any private hospital along with the best facilities of MRI, CT Scan, Path Labs, Mobile Medicare Unit to the needy and poor living in far-flung areas of Delhi. Addressing the audience, Ranjan Jain, Chairman Mahavir International, Delhi proudly announced the inauguration of two newly donated mobile units and retina set up at one of the six hospitals.
In the heart of Delhi, you can buy a ticket that, apart from giving you some pleasure, can give you a chestful of pride. For a mere Rs 20, you can buy a colourful Khadi mala at the Heritage Charkha Museum in Connaught place and can view charkhas that spun the earth fabric nearly a hundred years ago and helped determine the path of self reliance, which the father of the nation tread along with thousands, to secure us as an independent country and a free civilization. Over a dozen heritage charkhas are exhibited and a glimpse of the history of over a hundred years is showcased at this museum situated at Palika Bazar Park, just opposite Khadi India outlet. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfIf you take a deep look down this veneer of pleasure, you will realize that the ticket you bought is a building block of someone’s well-deserved livelihood. The ‘Khadi soot mala’ is made of wasted material drawn from Khadi and Village Industries Commission’ s (KVIC) Central Silver Plant. It may be noted that in a land from where Mahatma Gandhi kicked off his Satyagraha, i.e., in the silver plant at Hazipur in Patna, as many as 30 women are making these ‘soot malas’. Back in the heart of the national Capital, as many as 10 women are engaged in making these ‘soot malas’, better known as ‘Khadi Gundi’ as an entry ticket for the Museum at Gangaben Kuttir. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveKVIC Chairman, V K Saxena has some socio-economic perspective behind this act of making ‘soot malas’, he says, “With a simple effort to bring out positive changes in the lives of artisans, we are providing direct employment to altogether 45 women, i.e., 10 in Gangaben Kutir, 30 at Hazipur and five in the dying work for the ‘soots malas’.”Every time you buy this ticket, you have a memento that provides momentous support to an artisanal family. Besides, even the women inmates of Tihar Jail, under its reformation programme, also get benefited from your purchase. Between May 2017 and January 2018, these ticket sales have fetched over Rs 20 lakhs. Nearly a lakh people have bought these tickets already. In a nutshell, a ticket at the heart of the Capital – besides giving satisfaction to the visitors of Charkha Museum, also builds some people’s lives elsewhere. And KVIC plans to turn the corpus secured from the sale of these tickets into a trust for the welfare of poor Khadi artisanal families, as this is a unique ticket of pride, sympathy and an invisible purpose of national support. There was never a ticket that so directly sustained livelihoods of most deserving people.
Kolkata: The state Finance department has declared holidays on the Lok Sabha election days in Bengal. The state goes to polls in seven phases. The holidays will be effective for the respective LS constituencies on the days they are going for polls. In the first phase, Cooch Behar and Alipurduar goes to polls on Thursday, April 11. Hence, there will be holiday in all the Assembly constituencies that come under these two LS constituencies. There will be holiday on April 18, Thursday at Jalpaiguri, Darjeeling and Raiganj Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataLS constituencies. Five constituencies, namely Balurghat, Malda Uttar, Malda Dakshin, Jangipur and Murshidabad will have holiday on Tuesday, April 23. Baharampur, Krishnanagar, Ranaghat, Burdwan Purba, Burdwan- Durgapur, Asansol, Bolpur and Birbhum constituencies will have holiday on Monday, April 29. The bypoll for Krishnanagar Assembly constituency will also be held on April 29. Bongaon, Barrackpur, Howrah, Uluberia, Sreerampur, Hooghly and Arambagh will have holiday on Monday, May 6. Uluberia Purba Assembly constituency is also going for by-elections on the same day.
Offering an opportunity to art enthusiasts and critics to connect with works of renowned Indian artists, Dr Meenu Kumar, Founder Cosmo Arts India Gallery, is coming up with an artistic evening titled ‘Cosmic Voyage – A journey through Galaxy of Indian Art’. The art show which will be held at Indian Habitat Centre, aims to foster meaningful contemporary art and traditional Indian art forms.Artists showcasing their artwork are A Balasubramaniam, Alka Raghuvanshi, Dr Meenu Kumar, Satish Gujaral, Seema Kohli,JeramPatel, Jogen Choudhary, Justin Ponmany, T Vaikuntam,T V Santosh, MF Husain, to name a few. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfCommenting on the exhibition, Dr Meenu says, “In our manifested world where we are digitising and pacing with ever faster technology, an artist makes us pause with his creativity, dwells deeper, in the extremity of un manifested, where they are no more potent to visualise and comprehend the premise. The timeless ingenuity of the great art captures the richness of the soul.” “The great piece of art stands eternal in this cosmos with each stroke of creativity and curated with the life force as though imitating the authentic design of being by the Divine Forces. It is eventually amalgamated with spirit of the creator and observer both and is ecstatic,” she adds.