John Lydon answers a question during a keynote address to participants at the NXNE music conference in Toronto, Friday, June 6. "I can smell your BRAAAAAINS", Mr, Lydon was heard to say. (AP Photo/CP, Kevin Frayer)
news.mc.duke.edu: In 1999, Duke researchers led by Laura Niklason, M.D., reported in the journal Science on experiments in which they grew pig arteries in a novel "bioreactor" system that mimics the fetal environment, and then successfully implanted these bioengineered arteries back into the pig. Unfortunately, researchers found that human artery cells did not possess enough life cycles to be grown into functional arteries.
The key to overcoming this hurdle was found in a cancer research lab. Every time a cell divides, the ends of its chromosomes, or telomeres, erode until they become so short that the cell receives a signal to stop growing. While at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, current Duke researcher Chris Counter, Ph.D., had previously cloned the hTERT (human telomerase reverse transcriptase subunit) component of the enzyme telomerase that stops telomeres from shortening, and had shown that expression of hTERT permitted some human cells to continue to divide indefinitely, in effect making them immortal. [...]
This is the first time arteries have been grown from non-neonatal vascular cells, the researchers said. This achievement is important, they continued, since the goal is to engineer arteries that will resist immunological attack, so they must be grown from cells taken from the actual patients who will ultimately receive the arteries. [...]
"Telomeres are present in all normal dividing cells and act as a built-in check against unwanted cellular proliferation," Counter explained. "In this case, telomere shortening worked against us, preventing the cells from dividing long enough to form an artery in the laboratory. So we stole a trick cancer cells use to keep dividing; namely we turned on hTERT to stop telomerase shortening."
The researchers did not detect any signs of unwanted cellular proliferation in their bioengineered arteries, although Counter did emphasize that before these arteries can be implanted into humans, the researchers must "turn off" hTERT. It is expected that the implanted arteries would then "age" as would native arteries.
``They show up at your house and they request protection money. `You have to pay me 100,000 simolians if you don't want your house torn down.' It's technically harassment.''
[...] ``We weren't playing the games as hoodlums, we were playing the game as protectors of the city,'' said Mathieson.
At least at first. Somewhere along the line, though, the Sims Shadow Government turned from benevolent overseer to a virtual version of La Cosa Nostra. Maybe it was the emergence of a rival family, the Playtime gang. Or maybe it was the Mia impostor, who tarnished the real Mia's reputation by inviting other players to work for her as a prostitute. Perhaps the final straw was when someone hijacked Mathieson's America Online account -- and stole all of his in-game cash and property.
[...] Particularly egregious affronts to the Shadow Government could -- at least until game maker Maxis disabled this feature -- be dealt with by ripping out an opponent's heart. Of course, nobody dies in the ``Sims Online.'' It's just to prove a point.
Dr Neal Barnard, president of the Physicians Committee on Responsible Medicine, says cheese is addictive because it contains small amounts of morphine from cows' liver. [...] "Cheese contains high levels of casein, a protein that breaks apart during digestion to produce morphine-like opiate compounds, called casomorphins. These opiates are believed to be responsible for the mother-infant bond that occurs during nursing. It's no surprise many of us feel bonded to the refrigerator." [ he went on to say "blah blah blah buy my diet book." ]