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Saturday, October 14, 2006

Complex organisms, new drugs and Peace Prize Nobel.

Fossils embryos, "The other path" and Muhammad Yunus.


Transition of organisms unicellulars to, pluricellulars.

According to Philip Donoghue, in the formation of Doushantuo, China, it could be solved the problem of transitional chronology of unicellular organisms to other but complex (pluricellulars). The discovered fossils, suggested that the first unicellulars organisms (archaeobacterias), appeared in the Earth, 3 500 000 million years ago, as long as, the pluricellulars would have emerged 550 million years ago (although they could be but old). In the county of Guizhou, China has been discovered 162 fossil embryos. Many of them seem to correspond to primitive algae. Each one contains among 4-1000 cells. The other novelty, apart from that mentioned, consists in that the embryos have not been opened, they have been examined from outside. A technique of advanced X.Ray, known as microcT-scan, has allowed to obtain virtual (traverse and vertical) cuts, being determined the form, structural external disposition and internal composition of each cell.

More medications, in less time

Another novelty - and from already - candidate to scientific breakthrough of the year is the use of human cultivated cells, instead of whole alive animals, to determine if a new medication is carcinogenic or, not. According to the specialists - at the moment - the technique has great sensibility, but little specificity. For such reason, the technique would be providing some false positive (attributing carcinogenic properties to certain experimentation drugs, when in fact they are not). As all drugs are metabolized in the liver, it is hoped to overcome this difficulty using human hepatic cells. At the moment, so that a medication is expended in the market, it is necessary to give a series of steps that on the average take 5 years. With this new technique, the medications could be expended in 1 year.

Lending microcredits to the poor.

The Royal Sweden Science Academy, have just granted the Nobel Prize of the Peace, to the bangladeshi: Muhammad Yunus (65 years), for the creation of a Bank (Grameen), that from 1976, grants microcredits (2-200 dollars), to people without or, almost without guarantees. The small ones lend, mostly are good to buy chickens and to sell eggs, to rent phone cells where there are not conventional phone lines, to buy cows for sale of milk, sale of products of commom use, etc. The repays, are carried out by means of an ingenious refund system. The Bank gathers 5 applicants of microcredits, granting lends at 2, being the 3, remaining of witness. When the 2 first cancel the loan, the loan begins at the 3 remaining. There is few doubtful and they also offer them consultantship. The system has benefitted until now, to 7 million bagladeshis. It is a complementary idea to the proposal for Hernando of Soto, in their book "The other path", in the one which he proposed the massive grant of holding of property (to their miserable lands), to people of very low income with the purpose of that serve as guarantee, to lending of money, to small scale.

Transición de organismos unicelulares a, pluricelulares.

En la formación de Doushantuo, China, se podria resolver el problema de la cronología transicional de organismos unicelulares a otros mas complejos (pluricelulares). Los distintos fosiles descubiertos hasta la fecha, indican que los primeros organismos unicelulares (arqueobacterias), aparecieron en la Tierra hace 3 500 000 millones de años, en tanto, los pluricelulares habrian emergido hace 550 millones de años (aunque podrian ser mas antiguos). En la provincia de Guizhou, China se han descubierto 162 embriones fósiles. Muchos de ellos parecen corresponder a algas primitivas. Cada una contiene entre 4-1000 celulas. La otra novedad, aparte de lo mencionado, consiste en que los embriones no han sido abiertos, han sido examinados desde afuera. Una tecnica de rayos-X avanzada, conocida como microCt, ha permitido obtener cortes virtuales (transversales y verticales), determinandose la forma, disposición estructural externa y composición interna de cada celula.

Mas medicamentos, en menos tiempo.


Otra novedad -y desde ya- candidata a evento cientifico del año es la utilización de celulas humanas cultivadas, en lugar de animales enteros vivos, para determinar si un nuevo medicamento es carcinogenico o, no. Según los especialistas -de momento- la tecnica dispone de gran sensibilidad, pero poca especificidad. Por tal razon, la tecnica estaria proporcionando algunos falsos positivos (atribuyendo propiedades carcinogenicas a ciertas drogas de experimentación, cuando en realidad no lo son). Como las drogas se metabolizan en el higado, se espera superar esta dificultad empleando celulas humanas hepaticas. Actualmente, para que un medicamento se expenda en el mercado, es necesario dar una serie de pasos, que en promedio tardan 5 años. Con esta nueva tecnica, los medicamentos podrian ser expendidos en 1 año.

Microcréditos, para los pobres.

Le acaban de otorgar el Premio Nobel de la Paz, al bangladeshi : Muhammad Yunus (65 años), por crear un Banco (Grameen Bank), que desde 1976, concede microcreditos (2-200 dolares), a personas sin o, casi sin garantias. Los pequeños prestamos, mayormente sirven para comprar gallinas y vender huevos, alquilar celulares donde no los hay, comprar vacas para venta de leche, venta de productos de pan llevar, etc. El repago, se lleva a cabo mediante un ingenioso sistema de devolucion. El Banco reune a 5 solicitantes de creditos, concediendo prestamos a 2, quedando los 3, restantes de testigos. Cuando los 2 primeros cancelan el prestamo, se inicia el prestamo a los 3 restantes. Hay pocos morosos y ademas les brindan asesoria. El sistema ha beneficiado hasta el momento a 7 millones de bagladeshis. Es una idea complementaria a la propuesta por Hernando de Soto, en su libro “El otro sendero”, en el cual propugna el otorgamiento masivo de titulos de propiedad (a sus miseras tierras), a personas de muy bajos ingresos, con el fin de que sirvan de aval, a prestamos de dinero, a pequeña escala.

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