Former Phillies catcher Darren Daulton, who underwent brain surgery earlier this month to remove two tumors, has been diagnosed with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer.

Here is a statement released by 97.5 FM The Fanatic: On behalf of the Board of the Darren Daulton Foundation, and on behalf of Darren and his family, the following is an update on Darren’s condition and the September 9th golf outing at LuLu Country Club.

Darren has been diagnosed with a Glioblastoma (“GBM”), a form of brain cancer. He has returned to his Clearwater area home to continue recuperating amongst his immediate family and friends. He will eventually begin treatments in Florida. Darren and his family wish to thank everyone for their loving support throughout this difficult time. He is deeply touched.

In typical fashion, he again said, “Right on; Fight on.” Darren and his family request that everyone respect his privacy and that of his family during this period of time. At his urging, I can report that the September 9, 2013 golf tournament that benefits the Foundation will continue as planned.

The statement is unclear on whether or not all cancerous cells have been removed, but according to the American Brain Tumor Association’s website, these tumors “are usually highly malignant (cancerous) because the cells reproduce quickly and they are supported by a large network of blood vessels.”

This is a very difficult form of cancer to treat, according to ABTA: Prognosis is usually reported in years of “median survival.” Median survival is the time at which an equal number of patients do better and an equal number of patients do worse. With standard treatment, median survival for adults with an anaplastic astrocytoma is about two to three years. For adults with more aggressive glioblastoma, treated with concurrent temozolamide and radiation therapy, median survival is about 14.6 months and two-year survival is 30%.

However, a 2009 study reported that almost 10% of patients with glioblastoma may live five years or longer.

 


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On Thursday at Wimbledon, Marion Bartoli advanced to her second ever Wimbledon final with a convincing win over Kristen Flipkens. That semifinal win might have been expected, but something that ESPN brought to our attention during the telecast was a number that had a lot of us doing a double take.

Bartoli is apparently a pretty smart young woman, so smart that her IQ is higher than that of notables like Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking.

The average American IQ is 98, the same average as in France, so Bartoli is well above that number. Her IQ of 175 has her in the top 0.0003 percent of the world, so yeah, that’s a staggering number from a pretty darn good tennis player.

But, we wouldn’t be doing our job if we didn’t give you the best quote ever about Intelligent Quotient, by a man on the list you see above.

“People who boast about their I.Q. are losers,” Stephen Hawking once said. Take that, Bartoli!

 


Transplanting tiny ‘liver buds’ constructed from human stem cells restores liver function in mice, researchers have found. Although preliminary, the results offer a potential path towards developing treatments for the thousands of patients awaiting liver transplants every year.

The liver buds, approximately 4 mm across, staved off death in mice with liver failure, the researchers report this week in Nature1. The transplanted structures also took on a range of liver functions — secreting liver-specific proteins and producing human-specific metabolites. But perhaps most notably, these buds quickly hooked up with nearby blood vessels and continued to grow after transplantation.

The results are preliminary but promising, says Valerie Gouon-Evans, who studies liver development and regeneration at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. “This is a very novel thing,” she says. Because the liver buds are supported by the host’s blood system, transplanted cells can continue to proliferate and perform liver functions.

However, she says, the transplanted animals need to be observed for several more months to see whether the cells begin to degenerate or form tumours.

There is a dire scarcity of human livers for transplant. In 2011, 5,805 adult liver transplants were done in the United States. That same year, 2,938 people died waiting for new livers or became too sick to remain on waiting lists.

However, attempts to create complex organs in the laboratory have been challenging. Takanori Takebe, a stem-cell biologist at Yokohama City University in Japan who co-led the study, believes this is the first time that people have made a solid organ using induced pluripotent stem cells, which are created by reprogramming mature skin cells to an embryo-like state.

Testing whether liver buds could help sick patients is years away, says Takebe. Apart from the need for longer-term experiments in animals, it is not yet possible to make liver buds in quantities sufficient for human transplantation.

In the current work, Takebe transplanted buds surgically at sites in the cranium or the abdomen. In future work, Takebe hopes to create liver buds small enough to be delivered intravenously in mice and, eventually, in humans. He also hopes to transplant the buds to the liver itself, where he hopes they will form bile ducts, which are important for proper digestion and were not observed in the latest study.

Self-organizing structures

The researchers make the liver buds from three types of human cells. First, they coax induced pluripotent stem cells into a cell type that expresses liver genes. Then they add endothelial cells (which line blood vessels) from umbilical cord blood, and mesenchymal stem cells, which can make bone, cartilage and fat. These cell types also come together as the liver begins to form in the developing embryo.

“It’s a great day for developmental biology,” says Kenneth Zaret, who studies regenerative medicine and liver development at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. “By reconstituting cell interactions that we know are important for natural liver progression, they get what appears to be robust, mature tissue.”

The project began with an unexpected phenomenon, says Takebe. Hoping to find ways of to make vascularized liver tissues, he tried culturing multiple cell types together and noticed that they began to self-organize into three-dimensional structures. From there, the process for making liver buds took hundreds of trials to tweak parameters such as the maturity and ratios of cells.

Other organs

This strategy takes a middle path between two common strategies in regenerative medicine. For simple, hollow organs such as the bladder and trachea, researchers seed scaffolds with living cells and then transplant the entire organ into patients. Researchers have also worked to create pure cultures of functional cells in the laboratory, hoping that cells could be infused into patients, where they would establish themselves. But even if the cells work perfectly in the laboratory, says Gouon-Evans, the process of harvesting cells can damage them and destroy their function.

Zaret thinks that the liver buds work might encourage an intermediate approach. “Basically, put the cells in a room together and let them talk to each other and make the organ.”

Self-organizing structures from stem cells have also been observed for other organ systems, such as the optic cup, an early structure in eye development2. And ‘mini-guts’ have been grown in culture from single human stem cells3.

Takebe believes that the self-organizing approach might also be applicable to other organs, such as lung, pancreas and kidney.

 

Pope John Paul II to become a Saint


Pope Francis on Friday cleared Pope John Paul II for sainthood, approving a miracle attributed to his intercession and setting up a remarkable dual canonization along with another beloved pope, John XXIII.

Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, celebrates a Mass in honor of Pope John Paul II in Buenos Aires, April 4, 2005.

In a major demonstration of his papal authority, Francis decided to make John XXIII a saint even though the Vatican hasn’t confirmed a second miracle attributed to his intercession. The Vatican said Francis had the power to “dispense” with the normal saint-making procedures to canonize him on his own merit, without a miracle.

The ceremonies are expected before the end of the year. The date of Dec. 8 has been floated as one possibility, given it’s the feast of the Immaculate Conception, a major feast day for the church. Polish media continued to report that October was likely, to mark the anniversary of John Paul’s election, but Vatican officials have said that’s too soon to organize such a massive event.

The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, confirmed that the miracle that brought John Paul to the ranks of sainthood concerned a Costa Rican woman.

The Spanish Catholic newspaper La Razon has identified her as Floribeth Mora, and said she suffered from a cerebral aneurism that was inexplicably cured on May 1, 2011 – the day of John Paul’s beatification, when 1.5 million people filled St. Peter’s Square to honor the beloved Polish pontiff.

In a series of reports late last month, La Razon reported that Mora awoke with debilitating head pain on April 8 and went to the hospital, where her condition worsened to the point that she was sent home with only a month to live.

Her family prayed to John Paul, and the aneurism disappeared.

La Razon quoted her doctor, Dr. Alejandro Vargas, who said: “It surprised me a lot that the aneurism disappeared, I can’t explain it based on science.”

The Associated Press has traveled to Mora’s home in Costa Rica but has been told that she is bound by secrecy and cannot discuss her case.

Then-Pope Benedict XVI put John Paul, who became pope in 1978, on the fast-track for possible sainthood when he dispensed with the traditional five-year waiting period and allowed the beatification process to begin weeks after his April 2, 2005, death. Benedict was responding to chants of “Santo Subito!” or “Sainthood Immediately” which erupted during John Paul’s funeral.

But there remains some concern that the process has been too quick. Some of the Holy See’s deep-seated problems – clerical sex abuse, dysfunctional governance and more recently the financial scandals at the Vatican bank – essentially date from shortcomings of his pontificate.

As a result, the decision to canonize John Paul along with John XXIII can be seen as trying to balance out those concerns, by beatifying one pope along with another.

Such was the case in 2000, when John Paul beatified John XXIII (1958-1963) , dubbed the “good pope,” alongside Pope Pius IX, who was criticized by Jews for condoning the seizure of a Jewish boy and allegedly referring to Jews as dogs.

By canonizing John Paul II along with John XXIII, the Vatican could be seeking to assuage concerns about John Paul’s fast-track sainthood case by tying it together with the 50-year wait since the death of John XXIII.

 


Want X­ray vision like the man of steel? A technology that lets you see behind walls could soon be built in to your cell phone.

MIT professor Dina Katabi and graduate student Fadel Adib have announced Wi­Vi, a demonstration of a technology that uses Wi­Fi to allow a viewer to “see” a person moving behind a wall. (Wi­Vi stands for “Wi­Fi” and “vision.”)

Previous work demonstrated that the subtle reflections of wireless inter signals bouncing off a human could be used to track that person’s movements, but those previous experiments either required that a wireless router was already in the room of the person being tracked, or “a whole truck just to carry the radio,” said Katabi.

Read the entire article by clicking Here!

 


Some of the oldest art in the United States maps humanity’s place in the cosmos, as aligned with an ancient religion.

A team of scientists has uncovered a series of engravings and drawings strategically placed in open air and within caves by prehistoric groups of Native American settlers that depict their cosmological understanding of the world around them.

To read the entire article with additional links and pictures click Here.

 


When it became clear last fall that the CIA’s now discredited Benghazi talking points were flawed, the White House said repeatedly the documents were put together almost entirely by the intelligence community, but White House documents reviewed by Congress suggest a different story.

ABC News has obtained 12 different versions of the talking points that show they were extensively edited as they evolved from the drafts first written entirely by the CIA to the final version distributed to Congress and to U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice before she appeared on five talk shows the

Sunday after that attack.

White House emails reviewed by ABC News suggest the edits were made with extensive input from the State Department. The edits included requests from the State Department that references to the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Sharia be deleted as well references to CIA warnings about terrorist threats in Benghazi in the months preceding the attack.

That would appear to directly contradict what White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said about the talking points in November.

 


A Twin Falls Animal Shelter board member has compiled a list of 34 dogs that have reportedly gone missing in the Magic Valley area since Feb. 1, some from fenced home yards and locked areas.

Amber Halsell said she began keeping a list after noticing an unusually large number of disappearing pets — and strange circumstances. (See her list of the missing dogs and locations below story).

“It’s been going on at least since December,” said Halsell, who now does daily checks of Craigslist and social media sites where people post missing pet information. Also curious about these cases, she said, is that the dogs haven’t been found by others, alive or dead.

“The dogs have just disappeared without a trace … they’re just gone,” Halsell said.

Shelter staff hope residents will report anything suspicious that might lead to information about where the dogs are going.

It’s unknown if the increase in missing dogs is connected with the recent killing of a German shepherd. The dog’s body was found on March 12 in Devil’s Corral near Twin Falls. The dog’s head had been obliterated, apparently bashed in with a block of concrete nearby. The dog’s body was covered in a purple sheet, and some have speculated that it may have been an occult or ritualistic killing of some sort.

News of the missing dogs and possible ritualistic killing has spread fast, with national and international news outlets carrying stories Thursday, including USA Today, The New York Daily News, and The Toronto Sun.

The Humane Society of the United States has offered a $5,000 reward leading to the conviction of the person who bludgeoned the dog to death. A spokesman for the Jerome County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday afternoon that no one has filed a report about the dog, so it is not currently under investigation.

“This is a very rural area. Most people, when they have a dog missing, the last people they call is the police,” Halsell said. “We’ve been doing our best to encourage people to call. I think they think that it’s trivial to the police, so they’re not going to bother them with that.”

Lisa Kauffman, a Boise-based spokeswoman for the Humane Society of the United States, said there may be several unrelated issues, including dogs abducted for dog fighting. The dogs that have gone missing in the Gooding and Wendell area seem to be primarily boxers, pit bulls, German Shepherds and Rottweiler mixes — dogs that might be used as bait in for dog fighting.

Over the weekend, Halsell said someone pried open a locked gate and took three Golden Retrievers from a Twin Falls home. The dogs were later found on the street, and strangers delivered them to the shelter. One of the dogs died over night. Halsell said the owners indicated that dog had a seizure disorder, but no necropsy was done on the dog to determine why it died.

The Twin Falls Animal Shelter posted a warning on its Facebook page Thursday: “In light of the recent missing dogs we are wanting to remind everyone to keep their dogs contained as much as possible for a loose dog is a dog in danger.”

“They’re not safe in backyards. They’re not safe in chains. And they’re not safe in dog runs,” Halsell said. She encouraged people to keep their pets inside or in a garage.

Reports of missing dogs continued Thursday morning. The owner of a pair of Collies in Twin Falls told a reporter at The Times-News that someone had dog-napped the Collies from a fenced yard.

Later in the day, she said she heard a car leaving the area at the same time the Collies re-appeared.

A spokeswoman for the Twin Falls County Sheriff’s Department said she was unaware of reports of missing dogs within the county — she said they were either in the city of Twin Falls, or in neighboring Jerome County. A phone call to the Twin Falls Police Department Thursday was not returned.

Katy Moeller: 377-6413

Here’s Halsell’s list of the locations, dates and breeds of dog that have gone missing since Feb. 1:

2/1/13 Choc lab puppy, Locust in Twin Falls

2/1/13 Mini schnauzer, Paul

2/2/13 Yellow lab, 3700 S, Twin Falls

2/4/13 Pitbull/boxer cross, Monroe Street near CSI in Twin Falls

2/4/13 Boxer, Heyburn

2/4/13 Min pin/Boston terrier puppy, Gooding

2/7/13 Pitbull puppy, 3900 North in Filer

2/8/13 Boxer, 3060 S, south of Wendell

2/9/13 German shepherd, Heyburn

2/12/13 German wire hair, Twin Falls

2/12/13 St. Bernard, south of Wendell

2/19/13 Schnauzer, Falls and Grandview, Twin Falls

2/26/13 Pitbull puppy, 4th and Date, Jerome

2/26/13 Dachshund, Wirsching and Grandview, Twin Falls

2/27/13 Golden Retriever, Filer

2/28/13 Maltese, Parkwood subdivision, Twin Falls

3/2/13 Pitbull, Victory Ave, Twin Falls

3/2/13 Border Collie Cross, South of Kimberly

3/2/13 Boxer, south of Wendell

3/3/13 Boxer, Hagerman

3/4/13 Jack Russel Terrier, Lacasa, Twin Falls

3/4/13 Terrier cross, Filer Ave, Twin Falls

3/8/13 Chihuahua, Gooding

3/8/13 German Shepherd, south of Twin Falls

3/10/13 Black German Shepherd, Acequia/Rupert

3/10/13 Female German Shep. AND male German Shep/Rottweiler, south of Wendell

3/10/13 Male German Shepherd, Jerome

3/13/13 Schnauzer, 6th Ave, Twin Falls

3/16/13 Lhasa apso, Jerome

3/16/13 Great Dane, Jerome

3/16/13 Pitbull cross, Jackson St, Twin Falls

3/17/13 Pitbull cross, Twin Falls

3/18/13 Pug, Twin Falls

3/18/13 Dachshund, Hansen

 


The Turducken — a duck stuffed inside a chicken stuffed inside a turkey — is a mythical culinary beast and the dream entree of Thanksgiving obsessives everywhere. And now, science is on its way towards making the Turducken a reality — sort of: a duck has successfully fathered a chicken at the Central Veterinary Research Laboratory in Dubai.

Researchers injected a chicken’s germ cells — carrying DNA to produce eggs and sperm — into the reproductive organs of a male duck embryo; once the duck matured, it began to produce the chicken’s sperm. Initially looking to genetically modify chicken to produce more fertile hens (the global poultry industry currently maintains some 50 billion chickens), these scientists are now planning to use this technique to allow hens to lay eggs of other birds, including ducks, songbirds, hawks or eagles.

The ultimate goal is to ”use this system to propagate endangered species or potentially bring back an extinct one,” according to a recent TEDx talk by Mike McGrew, a scientist at the Roslin Institute who collaborates extensively with the Dubai team. Roslin Institute researchers have also created genetically modified chickens that prevent the spread of bird flu and — most notably — Dolly the sheep, the world’s first cloned mammal.

 




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