«Берлинский пациент» умер от рака

История первого в мире человека, победившего ВИЧ

Reading time 2 minutes

Тимоти Рэй Браун, известный как «Берлинский пациент», умер 29 сентября после продолжительной борьбы с лейкозом. Ему было 54. Об этом сообщил его партнер на странице в Фейсбуке.

Тимоти Браун учился в университете Берлина, когда врачи поставили мужчине диагноз ВИЧ. Отсюда и пошло прозвище «Берлинский пациент». Затем у Брауна обнаружили лейкоз — заболевание кроветворной системы. Геро Хюттер, лечащий врач Тимоти, предложил пересадить пациенту костный мозг донора с иммунитетом к ВИЧ-инфекции. Иммунитет возникает, когда у человека отсутствует поверхностный лимфоцитарный белок CCR5.

Геро Хюттер и Тимоти Браун
Геро Хюттер и Тимоти Браун

При попадании в организм вирус старается проникнуть в лимфоциты — иммунные кровяные клетки. Для этого белок вируса должен связаться с двумя белковыми рецепторами лимфоцитов, один из которых — CCR5. Некоторые люди обладают с рождения генной мутацией. Она останавливает синтез CCR5.

В 2007 врачи первый раз провели пациенту трансплантацию костного мозга. Она не была полностью успешной: ВИЧ не определялся в организме, но рак продолжал развиваться. Вскоре процедуру повторили, и на этот раз наступила ремиссия. Оба раза биологический материал брали у одного донора.

Браун со своей собакой по имени Джек
Браун со своей собакой по имени Джек

В 2008 на Международной конференции по борьбе со СПИДом о выздоровлении Тимоти узнали все. История Брауна вызвала скептицизм в научном сообществе. Некоторые исследователи хотели самостоятельно протестировать кровь на наличие инфекции, так как не доверяли результатам. Были и те, кто считал полное выздоровление невозможным: у пациента мог случиться рецидив. Несмотря на громкие заявления прессы о лекарстве от ВИЧ, трансплантация стволовых клеток не используется для борьбы с вирусом. Операции сложные и рискованные: доноры с иммунитетом встречаются очень редко, а сама процедура опасна из-за возможных осложнений и летального исхода.

Незадолго до смерти в интервью изданию Associated Press Браун рассказал, что лейкоз вернулся. Он лечился при помощи химиотерапии, но рак победил. До конца жизни у Тимоти сохранился иммунитет к инфекции.

Тимоти никогда не жалел, что решился на операцию
Тимоти никогда не жалел, что решился на операцию

На данный момент лекарства от вируса иммунодефицита не существует. Ученые много лет работают над вакциной, но результатов нет: вирус встраивается в геном клетки, поэтому его сложно изучить. ВИЧ-положительные люди принимают специальные антиретровирусные препараты, которые задерживают развитие СПИДа и сопутствующих заболеваний. Инфицированные при успешном лечении могут дожить до старости.

Заведующая центра по профилактике СПИДа Наталья Сизова отмечает, что после случая «Берлинского пациента» исследователи не исключают факт разработки мутации рецепторов CCR5. Это значит, что появится возможность искусственно создавать иммунитет к ВИЧ у заболевших.

Coronavirus is a new trend of the year

How the disease has incluenced on the fashion industry

Reading time 5 minutes

When you enter the subway, citizens with masks on their faces surround you. When you scroll through social networks, you notice numerous memes about the coronavirus and the end of the world. We follow the covenant of Joan Rowling: “Fear of a name only enhances the fear of one who wears it.” Masked people went outside, but they won’t save your lives.

Coronavirus is a serious disease, a cure from which will be found in the near future. We hope. In the meantime, it not only affects the body, but also influences on various areas of life. For example, coronavirus is ruthless to the fashion industry. Shanghai Fashion Week has been postponed due to concern of the organizers. It was supposed to start on March, 26th. New dates have not yet been announced, but it is already mid-February. We remind you that Fashion Week is a large-scale event and it takes time to prepare for one: you need to book locations, arrange with coordinators and look for venues for an after-party. A month before the start, a lot of people have already been involved and the  designers take care of their health.

Marine Serre show 19/20

The economic component is an equally important indicator for the organizers. According to Kommersant, a relatively small number of Chinese buyers were recognized at London Fashion Week. This fact worries brand founders a lot. Ralph Lauren, Burberry, Nike, Capri fashion house, which owns brands Michael Kors, Versace, Jimmy Choo and others, have closed many of their outlets in China, as well as they reduced the opening hours of the remaining ones. The ProFashion portal claims that Ralph Lauren sales will fall to $ 55-70 million because of the epidemic during the fourth quarter of 2020. While looking for a way to survive possible losses, two large conglomerates LVMH and Kering, as well as other fashion companies donated over $ 2.88 billion for the vaccine’s research.

Marine Serre Ready To Wear Fall Winter 18/19

Despite the financial torubles, coronavirus made another problem visible – the popularity of various things that hide faces. Robbers have never been so in vogue. Lots of magazines, for example, Fashion United, call medical masks a new trend of the season. A curious fact is that fashionistas or sincerely frightened individuals buy rolls of masks from Aliexpress, a web-site which supplies goods from China. The Blueprint mentions that the virus cannot exist outside of biological objects. So, you can safely purchase cheap goods from Chinese retailers. But it can be doubted that they will be delivered quickly, as the work process is intermittent. The workers might get sick because the factories are located near the outbreak.

Balaclava IknitHandmade 19/20

Many clothing brands, in obedience to protests, demonstrated masked models, balaclavas and respirators (Gucci, Rick Owens, Moncler and even Calvin Klein) on the catwalk in past seasons. They seemed to foresee that at the beginning of 2020, these accessories would become the most popular. Fashionistas buy specific medical accessories or knitted balaclavas, not only because of the fear of infection, but because of the atmosphere of general concern. While others are afraid of going out, they show their awareness, firstly, in terms of news, and secondly, in terms of fashion trends.

 

Nazarbayev has left. What will be with the Kazakh Internet?

Kazakhstan was blocking up to nine thousand sites per year

Reading time 4 minutes

The first and the only president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, announced his resignation. Over 28 years of his reign many sites were blocked in the country. Among them are «Medusa», Ozon, «Pikabu», Reddit, Giphy.

Nursultan Nazarbayev in the office of IT-company Chocofamily

Terrorism, extremism, propaganda of suicide and violence – this are reasons why the authorities banned sites. The history of blocking sites began in the mid-2000s. Opposition editions which criticized the government were immediately blocked. However, the problem could easily be solved with a VPN.

In July 2009, the law was passed in Kazakhstan, according to which all Internet resources are equal to the media. After that, courts could prohibit any sites if they contained information inconvenient to the authorities.

In the following years, the largest social networks and instant messengers were disconnected periodically in the country. Among them were YouTube and Facebook. In June 2016, there was a terrorist attack in the city of Aktobe. Then the Internet and mobile communications stopped working at the same time. A panic arose in the city: Aktobe residents could not contact their relatives to find out about their condition.

Information about the permanent blocking of YouTube on the ping-admin site

Popular Russian Internet resources also came under the distribution. The first banned platform in Kazakhstan was LiveJournal. In 2011, the site was accused of propaganda of terrorism and religious extremism. In 2014, due to the material about local separatists, the online edition «Medusa» which was just launched, was also blocked.

2017 was the most memorable year in the history of the kaznet. Then Pikabu, Ozon. Book24 and Labirint were blocked. Resources posted books which were banned in Kazakhstan. Among them are the «Strike of the Russian Gods», «Islamic Akida», «Al-Fawaid».

In the same year about nine thousand sites were banned. Resources, according to the authorities, engaged in the propaganda of terrorism, extremism, violence and suicide. There is no official list of blocked sites in Kazakhstan, but the Kazbt project is existing. On this platform, you can check whether the site is available in the country.

In the United States found amazing concrete fortifications

Concrete under the prison yard in Alcatraz was found when cement in America was not created

Reading time 4 minutes

Researchers have discovered tunnels and buildings from the time of the American Civil War, buried under the famous prison of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco, California.

под тюремным двором Алькатраса ученые обнаружили крепость, которая долго считалась разрушенной
Under the prison court of Alcatraz, scientists discovered a fortress that was long considered ruined.

Historians have long suspected that a federal prison was erected on the site of military fortifications built in the 1800s. The publication of the journal Near Surface Geophysics, describes the complex, found under the prison yard.

 

The study of the territory of the national park was conducted using ground penetrating radar and ground scanning. Under the recreation yard of the prison, researchers found traces of completely buried buildings, ammunition depots and tunnels. “These ruins are well preserved and are located close to the surface,” said Timothy de Smet, an archaeologist at Binghamton University. He added that these artifacts are right under their feet. Armed with new evidence, researchers plan to continue to study the remnants of old structures.

Учёные записывают подземные показания на Алькатрасе
Scientists are recording underground testimony on Alcatraz

Archaeologists began exploring most of the 19th century fortress buried under existing prison buildings in 2014. During work on the territory of Alcatraz, scientists were surprised by the concrete reinforcement of some earthen tunnels, despite the fact that concrete was not used in construction at that time.

“It is interesting that at that time they did not even produce cement in the United States,” said Tanya Vattenburg Comas from California State University Chico. “It was probably cement brought in barrels from Europe. Finding it on a mid-19th century battery was a big surprise.”

1868 году
Fort Alcatraz (1868)

During the American Civil War, Alcatraz Island served as a military base that backed supporters of the West Coast Confederation. The defenses were built in the mid-1850s and included barracks and gun batteries. While most of the country was drawn into a bloody battle, Alcatraz’s fortress remained calm.

In addition, Fort Alcatraz was used as the official military prison of the west coast. The first prisoners from the federal penitentiary system began arriving in the 1930s, and the last were evicted in 1963. On an island with a high level of security, famous prisoners were serving sentences: Al Capone, George “machine gunner” Kelly, Whitey Bulger.

The world’s largest coral reef can turn into a trash

Australia approved dumping of sludge near the Great Barrier Reef

Reading time 4 minutes

Australia plans to dump a million tons of sludge on the Great Barrier Reef. Despite strict waste disposal laws, the administration of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park (GBRMPA) approved this. It was found a loophole: the ban does not apply to materials obtained during port works. Industrial waste raises from the seabed near the port of Hay Point, one of the country’s main sources of income and the world’s largest exporter of coal.

Угольный терминал Хэй-Пойнт к югу от Маккая
Coal Terminal Hay Point South of Mackay

Due to environmental concerns, in 2015, the federal government banned waste disposal near the reef. But the ban concerned only dredging. Maintenance work in ports intended to clear shipping lanes is not prohibited.

Larisa Waters, a Queensland senator and deputy leader of the Green Party, called on the marine park administration to revoke the license to work. “The last thing the reef needs is more sludge dumped on it, after being slammed by the floods recently,” said The Guardian. The senator added that dumping one million tons of sludge into the waters of a World Heritage site will turn the reef into a garbage dump.

Грязная вода угрожает Большому Барьерному рифу
Dirty water threatens Great Barrier Reef

According to Dr. Simon Boksoll from the National Oceanographic Center of Southampton, this is “another nail in the coffin” for the Great Barrier Reef listed as a World Heritage Site. Climate change affects this reef. The doctor thinks: “If they are dumping it over the coral reef itself, it will have quite a devastating effect.”

The sediment is dangerous because it envelops the corals. Coral lives in symbiosis with algae. Thanks to algae, the corals normally feed and retain their color. Without this symbiosis, coral can die.

The North Queensland Bulk Harbor Corporation said the release of sludge would have a negligible impact on the environment. In a statement published on the Internet, the corporation claims that a catastrophe will not happen. The company’s reports show that risks will be predominantly low with some temporary short-term consequences.

Риф уже потерял 30% кораллов из-за глобального потепления
Reef has already lost 30% of corals due to global warming

Dr. Boxall explains that exposure can be reduced by throwing sludge far from shore. But despite this, the sediment will still contain a large amount of harmful substances. “If it is thrown into shallow water, the sludge will strangle marine life,” he said. According to Boxall, it is important that the procedure is correct. “It will cost more money, but this is not an environmental problem, it is a problem of the port authorities.”

Last year, Australia pledged $ 500 million to protect the Great Barrier Reef, which has already lost 30% of its coral. Corals began to discolor. One of the reasons is the global rise in ocean temperature.

British scientists sound the alarm: coffee can disappear

Arabica and other popular sorts are at risk

Reading time 4 minutes

Mankind faces a caffeine deficiency, as 60% of coffee plantations are at risk and may disappear forever. Scientists at the Royal Botanic Garden in Kew have shown that more than a half of the coffee types can be destroyed if deforestation and global warming are continuing. The problem of diseases of coffee trees will also exacerbate.

Coffee Plantation in Ethiopia

One of the most disturbing news for coffee lovers is the threat of the Arabica disappearance. Grown in Ethiopia, this species currently provides more than a half of the world’s coffee supply.

Coffee plants are demanding to the environment, and only a certain combination of temperature and precipitation allows the beans to mature, maintaining their taste and aroma. Yet farmers are increasingly complaining that changing weather conditions, as well as new types of pests and diseases, are affecting their crops.

«Given the importance of Arabica to the world community, we have to put a lot of effort into determining the amount of risk on which the further existence of coffee in the wild depends on,»- said Dr. Theddeus Woldemariam Gol, a representative of the environment and coffee forests in Addis Ababa.

The farmer checks the quality of the coffee tree

The problem of the coffee disappearance makes professionals look for ways to minimize risks. Scientists from the «World Coffee Research»organization have created several projects that, in their opinion, can save coffee trees from extinction. For example, there is a project to create a gene bank for conservation the genetic diversity of coffee. Another strategy is to create a database with information on the resistance, yield and coffee beans resistance of various varieties to pests and diseases while growing in different conditions. The third is the creation of a «tastes catalog» in which new coffees, developed by manufacturers, are being evaluated. But even on the organization’s website, experts admit that «there are serious gaps in our knowledge of how to aid coffee growers to adapt to changes».

Ethiopian children are sorting through the coffee beans on the coffee plantation

Molly Harriss Olson, an executive director of the Fair Trade Association of Australia and New Zealand, said that she was particularly concerned about the situation of producers of coffee and the effect of warming temperatures and unpredictable weather conditions on the crop.

 

«Coffee supports the activity of 125 million people around the world, including the poor in developing countries», – she said, referring to the report of the International Coffee Organization. «If we don’t do anything about this in the near future, the consequences for people will be absolutely destructive».

Rescue of a rare giraffe species in Africa

Eight West African giraffes have been transferred to the Gadabedja protected area in Niger

Reading time 4 minutes

Until now, there were no giraffes from West Africa in the Gadabedji biosphere reserve in Niger. These animals still need protection. Illegal hunting, climate change and habitat loss all contributed to the decline in population size. According to the Nigerian publication, eight giraffes were moved to the reserve, this is the first such case for the West African subspecies.  

Биосферный заповедник Гадабеджи (Нигер)
Биосферный заповедник Гадабеджи (Нигер)

In accordance with the initiative of the Nigerian authorities, eight giraffes were caught approximately 60 km south-east of the city of Niamey. There, these animals share their habitat with local communities and compete with humans for natural resources. Often, giraffes come into conflict with people who manage their pastures. Because of this, some individuals go to restless areas on the border with Mali. 

Жирафов перевозили в специальных контейнерах
Жирафов перевозили в специальных контейнерах

The animals were placed in enclosures for three weeks to prepare for the upcoming journey in special trailers. Then they were transported to a new place of residence in the central part of Niger. 

According to the Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF), over the past 30 years, the number of giraffes has declined throughout the African continent. The West African giraffe subspecies was once common in many countries, including Nigeria, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal, but is now only preserved in Niger. In the nineties of the twentieth century, only 49 individuals remained in the wild, and in 2008 the subspecies was listed in the Red Book of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) as endangered.    

Западноафриканские жирафы - самый малочисленный подвид
Западноафриканские жирафы – самый малочисленный подвид

The efforts of the Niger Government in collaboration with local and international partners have led to the revival of the West African giraffe. Since 2005, conservation efforts in Niger have also intensified thanks to the Giraffe Conservation Fund (GCF) and the Sahara Foundation for Nature Conservation.   

Currently, the population size has increased to 600 individuals, and last month this subspecies was reduced by the IUCN to the category of “vulnerable”. Environmentalists believe that the relocation of eight giraffes is a key step in the development of Gadabedzhi as the leading reserve in Niger. They hope that this will help revive the population of the West African giraffe.

Elephants transmit information through the ground

Researchers found out that animals use signals similar to seismic

Reading time 4 minutes

While using instruments intended to detection of earthquakes, Oxford scientists Bet Mortimer and Tarje Nissen-Meyer discovered that various kinds of elephants activities – walking, running, sniffing, grunting – сreate different seismic signals in the ground. According to the research published in Current biology magazine, in several cases these vibrations are distributing through the ground much longer than through the air enabling animals to feel each other even over long distances.

Study’s author Dr.Mortimer

Earlier studies demonstrated that elephants capture ground fluctuations by their body. For instance, elephants were noticed running away to the uplands in the moments preceding tsunami emergence. The elephant feeling a threat began to stomp in order to avert others. The study expands the understanding of how animals can communicate. Beside, it provides new possibilities for researchers and ecologists who would like to observe animals remotely. This method can be fruitful for the save the species. «This information can be used as a strategy of remote monitoring», – Dr.Mortimer said.

An African battalion struggling with poachers

Despite the international affords to prohibit trade of elephant bones tens of thousands of african elephants are proceeding to die because of their tusks every year.

In order to hold the study scientists established devices known as geophones near the place of living of Kenia wild elephants. Like seismographs geophones convert soil fluctuations into measurable electronic signals, yet they are better to use in field work. With the help of these instruments researchers will presumably be able to pursue and defend animals.

Elephants are able to recognize hooves and fluctuations of the herd over several kilometres distance

Due to the fact that elephants live in complicated and spatially divided communities, animals use long-range communication in order to survive. The ground vibrations can be used for warning each other of danger and for partners seeking during very short period of mating. Supposing that elephants not only bring on distinct vibrations in various activities but also are able to perceive these signals from huge distances, scientists are intending to learn how to use these signals.

Vibrations created by elephants can be found and recognized on almost four miles in optimal conditions. However, any noise impact, even automobile noise, sharply decreases the ability to find and recognize these vibrations.

Plastic is not fantastic

Plastic will replace fish in 35 years

Reading time 5 minutes
Circular economy

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation is a charitable organization created to make people think about the future of the planet and move to a circular economy: restore natural resources, process and reuse waste. 

Today there are more than 170 million tons of plastic in the world ocean. Every minute the contents of one garbage truck falls out into the ocean. 

A study published by the foundation showed that by 2025 the ratio of plastic and fish would be this: for every three tons of fish there will be one ton of plastic. And by 2050, there will be more plastic garbage in the ocean than fish, unless decisive action is taken to recycle garbage. 

Seahorse clings to a cotton swab, considering that it is an alga

The fund report states that 14% of plastic is utilized, and only 5% is recycled repeatedily. Plastics recycling is much lower than paper (58%), iron and steel (90%). 

Today, to imagine a world without plastic is almost impossible. In economics, plastic is a key raw material for sectors such as packaging, construction, transport, health care and electronics. Plastic brings these sectors benefits from a combination of low cost, versatility and durability. 

Growth in global plastics production

Plastic packaging accounts for about 30% of total plastic production. The main types of this package include bottles for water, alcohol, milk and juice, bottles for coolers, food containers, plastic cutlery and glasses, cosmetics containers, shampoos.  

The main use of plastic in the package
Albatross, swallowed plastic

A large garbage patch in the Pacific consists of garbage thrown into the ocean. According to oceanographer Charles Moore, eighty percent of garbage enters the ocean from land, and twenty percent is thrown from ships.  

In the ocean, plastic breaks into millions of small pieces that are difficult to see. In his study, marine biologist Richard Thompson called these pieces «microplastic.”  

According to Greenpeace, marine litter harms at least 300 species of animals. For example, jellyfish and fish confuse bunches of plastic particles with zooplankton and take them for food. Bottle caps and rings fall into the stomachs of seabirds and animals, especially turtles and albatrosses.  

Fur seal stuck in a plastic can

Only one bottle, just one juice tube, just one single-dose bottle, just one pack, but there are more than seven billion of us!

 

 

Покрас Лампас в Новом Манеже

Что показала выставка одного из самых востребованных художников

Reading time 3 minutes

В четверг 27 сентября в «Новом Манеже» закончилась выставка одного из самых востребованных художников современности – Покраса Лампаса. Основатель движения Calligrafuturism на 3 недели превратил выставочное пространство в постоянно меняющийся перформанс, в ходе которого мастер творил, работал с холстами и инсталляциями, сотрудничал с моделями, блогерами и фотографами.

Покрас Лампас в Opera Gallery в Дубае
Покрас Лампас в Opera Gallery в Дубае

Художник был замечен среди других стрит-артистов благодаря применению собственного алфавита и техник каллиграфии. В работах он использует цитаты Маяковского, Малевича, Кандинского, отдавая дань русскому авангарду 20 столетия, который и повлиял на становление граффити-райтера.

В 2015 году он декорировал крышу завода «Красный октябрь», площадью 1625 метров, создав самую большую каллиграфию в мире. Ее можно даже наблюдать из космоса, а для работы над этим арт-объектом, который по размерам сопоставим с двадцатидвухэтажным домом, мастеру пришлось сконструировать многометровую кисть.

В 2016 году работы Покраса Лампаса оказались в центре внимания в Opera Gallery в Дубае. Художник стал одним из самых молодых участников, творения которого когда-либо были представлены в этой престижной международной арт-галерее. В 2017 году стрит-райтер работал над росписью крыши Дворца Итальянской Цивилизации в Риме и пешеходного тоннеля ТРК «Атриум» в Москве. Но художник не ограничивается граффити, его можно назвать и дизайнером одежды. На выставке были представлены единственные в своем роде пальто, футболки, свитшоты, расписанные художником по просьбе друзей.

Роспись крыши завода "Красный Октябрь"
Роспись крыши завода “Красный Октябрь” в Москве

Покрасу сейчас 27 лет, и он успел поработать с такими известными мировыми брендами как Lamborghini, Fendi, Dries Van Noten, Nike и др. В «Новом Манеже» представлена расписанная им Ferrari. В этом году модный дом Yves Saint Laurent пригласил молодого художника на вечеринку в честь запуска мужского парфюма Y, где Покрас Лампас устроил перформанс.

Художник родился в 1991 году в городе Королев. Его настоящее имя – Арсений Пыженков. Прозвище стрит-артиста происходит от глагола «покрась», а «лампас» – абсурдная рифма, которую он подобрал. Арсений начал свой творческий путь в роли тату-мастера, но недолго задержался на этом поприще, так как считал, что тату – нечто личное, а он хотел публичности.

Одна из работ художника Покраса Лампаса
Одна из работ художника Покраса Лампаса, которая была представлена в Opera Gallery в Дубае. CØNTRÃST BETWĒEÑ, 2015

На выставке в «Новом Манеже» Покраса можно было узнать по рукам, покрытым не татуировками, а краской. Он постоянно работает, а в гардеробе посетитель мог обратить внимание на спальный мешок, предназначенный для художника. Возможно, эту манеру он перенял у Такаси Мураками, для которого музей современного искусства «Гараж» на 4 месяца также послужил и мастерской, и выставочным пространством, и ночлегом.