Adonis Diaries

Archive for January 7th, 2021

And what are the Brain cells Survival Skills?

Posted on March 4, 2013

Fear beyond the Amygdala
Ranya Bechara posted on Feb. 6, 2013

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For decades now, scientists have thought that fear could not be experienced without the amygdala.

This almond-shaped structure located deep in the brain (pictured on the left). The amygdala has been shown to play an important role in fear-related behaviours, emotions, and memories, and patients with damage to the amygdala on both sides of the brain were thought to be incapable of feeling afraid.

However, a recent study in Nature Neuroscience reports that these ‘fearless’ patients do experience fear if made to inhale carbon dioxide- a procedure that induces feelings of suffocation and panic.

The patients reported being quite surprised at their own fear, and that it was a novel experience for them!

Scientists behind the study have suggested that the way the brain processes fear information depends on the type of stimulus. The results of this study could have important implications for people who suffer from anxiety disorders such as panic attacks and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

More details can be found here

And how the brain can momentarily react to oxygen deficiency from Strokes?

Can scientists use the brain’s inherent survival mechanisms to develop better stroke treatment?

Strokes are a major cause of death and disability worldwide, with 150,000 people affected in the UK every year.

Most strokes happen when a blood vessel that supplies blood to the brain is blocked due to blood clots or fat deposits. Once blood is cut off from an area of the brain, brain cells are starved for oxygen and nutrients and start to die within minutes.

A new study in Nature Medicine, scientists at the University of Oxford reveal a novel way in which the brain protects itself in response to stroke.

Ranya Bechara posted on Feb. 27, 2013 “Stroke Vs Brain: Harnessing the Brain’s Survival Skills”

Current treatments for stroke are focussed on breaking up the clots, improving blood flow to the affected area, and ultimately reducing the brain damage caused by the stroke. However, the so called ‘clot-busters’ are only effective if given within one to two hours of the stroke.

Other ways of protecting the brain against stroke damage are in high demand.

In this study, the research team from Oxford University (in collaboration with other researchers from Greece, Germany, and Canada, and the UK) decided to try a new approach. They investigated a phenomenon that has been known for years: some brain cells have an inherent defence mechanism that allows them to survive when deprived of oxygen.

These cells are located in the part of the brain responsible for forming memories: a pretty sea-horse shaped structure called the hippocampus.

The scientists analysed the proteins produced by these cells and found that the key to their survival is a protein called hamartin. This protein is released by the cells in response to oxygen deprivation, and when its production was suppressed, the cells became more vulnerable to the effects of stroke.

Original article is available here

Photo credit: http://www.vascularinfo.co.uk

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2020 worst for homeless Palestinians in Israel

Tamara Nassar Rights and Accountability 5 January 2021

While people around the world were told to stay home due to the pandemic, Israel made more Palestinians homeless in 2020 than it has in years.

Israel demolished and confiscated more than 850 Palestinian structures throughout the year, displacing 1,000 people. More than half of those displaced were children.

Israel targeted almost any kind of structure Palestinians need for sustainable life, including homes, agricultural buildings, infrastructure and water sanitation facilities.

The number of demolitions last year was also the highest annual total since United Nations monitoring group OCHA began keeping records in 2009 – with the exception of 2016.

These figures do not include some 5,000 Palestinians whose livelihood was affected by demolitions and seizures throughout the year without being displaced.

Heavily armed soldiers watch Hyundai bulldozer demolish a home while two men observe nearby

Israeli forces demolish a Palestinian home east of Yatta, near the West Bank city of Hebron, on 29 December. Mosab Shawer APA images

In 2020, the number of Palestinians who had to demolish their own homes in occupied East Jerusalem under Israeli orders also increased. The irony s that Palestinians are coerced to do this to avoid having to pay for Israeli wrecking crews.

Area C

The vast majority of demolitions and seizures took place in occupied East Jerusalem and Area C, the 60% of the occupied West Bank that remains under complete Israeli military rule.

Most of Area C was supposed to be gradually transferred to Palestinian Authority control following the signing of the Oslo accords in the 1990s. But that never happened.

Israel controls all planning and construction in the area under an openly discriminatory regime.

Palestinians are subjected to Israeli military orders that regulate every aspect of their lives, while Israeli settlers living in Jewish-only colonies built illegally in occupied territory are subject to Israeli civil law.

Israel forbids virtually all Palestinian construction in Area C.

“Palestinians are allowed to build in less than 1% of Area C and in only about 15% of East Jerusalem,” OCHA recently stated.

This forces Palestinians to build on their own land without Israeli permits and live in constant fear that Israeli occupation forces may seize or destroy their property.

“This system works primarily to demolish structures,” Israeli human rights group B’Tselem stated, and is part of Israel’s long-term efforts to change the demographics in the area and ensure a Jewish majority in preparation for annexation.

Palestinians are also denied access to basic infrastructure, such as water and electricity, in those areas. Many rely on donor-funded solar panels for electricity and water storage.

But even donated structures are not safe from Israeli destruction.

In 2020, Israel demolished or confiscated about $350,000 worth of donor-funded structures, many provided by the European Union.

Apart from muted statements and photo opportunities at sites threatened with demolition, the EU has done nothing to hold Israel accountable for destroying tens of millions of dollars of projects funded by European taxpayers over the years.

Largest demolition in years

In November alone, Israeli forces demolished and confiscated more Palestinian structures in a single month on record since 2009, according to OCHA.

November also witnessed the largest single demolition in occupied territory in years, when Israel leveled most of the occupied West Bank community of Khirbet Humsa.

Israeli forces arrived in Khirbet Humsa on 3 November and demolished 76 structures. More than 70 Palestinians were made homeless, including 41 children – totaling 11 families.

Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar called the demolition “a grave crime” at the time and asserted that “the United States of America should not be bankrolling ethnic cleansing.

In the first week of 2021, Israel has already demolished 12 structures and displaced three Palestinians.

Note: The first Palestinian Intifada (civil disobedience/resistance) was done in 1936-39 because the mandated British power refused to hold municipal elections on account that the Jews represented only 20% of the population.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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