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Saturday, May 7, 2011

MY TWEET OF THE DAY






Aren't they the cutest little fluff bundles you ever did see?  A whole flock of these came through here today, likely on their way to their breeding grounds, they are the subspecies 'Myrtle' of the Yellow Rumped Warbler (Dendroica coronatata).  The western version which we see in the west, has a yellow throat but 'Myrtle' has white.  The birds look smaller than what the field guide lists them as at 5 1/2".

From the Field Guide to the Birds of North America:
 yellow rump, yellow patch on side, yellow crown patch, and white tail patches.  In northern and eastern birds ("Myrtle Warbler"), note white eyebrow, white throat and sides of neck, and contrasting cheek patch.  Western birds ("Audubon's Warbler") have yellow throat.  The "Audubon's" that breeds in the interior is blacker above and below.  All females and fall Males are duller than breeding males but show same basic patern.  Abundant in coniferous or mixed woodlands.  Variable song, a slow warble, usually rising or falling at the end in "Audubon's," a musical trill in "Myrtle."  "Myrtle" is fairly common in winter in the west; "Audubon's" is casual in the east.  2nd Edition

Friday, May 6, 2011

BIG PHARMA'S GUINEA PIGS


This article brings out some very thought-provoking questions as to the safety and quality of the data collected in Europe and then applied to peoples with different lifestyles, diet and genetic profiles.

The Polish port city of Gdansk is famous for its shipyards. Hungary's fifth largest city, Pecs, is known for its ancient architecture and brewery. Neither is particularly renowned for medicine. Yet when AstraZeneca Plc tested its big new drug hope Brilinta on heart attack patients in a major clinical study, it was hospitals in these places that enrolled some of the highest number of patients anywhere in the world.
In fact, Poland and Hungary together accounted for 21 percent of all subjects studied in the pivotal 18,000-patient trial -- more than double the United States and Canada combined.
A few years ago that would have been unthinkable. Major drug companies, with an eye on the commercial promise of the world's largest and most profitable market, would have run half their tests on a major cardiovascular medicine like this in U.S. hospitals under the supervision of U.S. doctors.
Today, the clinical trials business has gone global as drugmakers seek cheaper venues for studies and cast their net further afield for big pools of "treatment-naive" patients who are not already taking other drugs that could make them unsuitable subjects for testing new ones. And it is not only the practicalities of running big clinical trials as efficiently and cheaply as possible that is driving the change. The drug industry is also paying a lot more attention these days to the promise of emerging markets, whose healthcare authorities, just like those in the United States and Western Europe, are keen to see cutting-edge science conducted in their backyards.
"The motivation to involve lots of patients is very high in Eastern European countries and also in Asia," says Dr. Ivan Horvath, head of interventional cardiology at the University of Pecs. "There are three factors driving this. Our patients get access to a new drug, which is free during the trial. It is also very important for scientific reasons. And we get paid."
The increasing reliance on clinical trials in Eastern Europe, Asia and Latin America raises serious questions. Is the quality of the data as reliable as that from a top U.S. medical center? Is it safe to extrapolate common clinical effects from studying patients with different lifestyles and genetic profiles? And are ethical standards in testing new drugs properly upheld in poorer countries? After all, there is an unhappy history of exploitation of the disadvantaged in trials, as highlighted by a shocking U.S. study in the 1940s which saw prisoners and the mentally ill deliberately infected with syphilis in Guatemala.
Given the sea change, it's perhaps no surprise that the rush to globalize clinical studies is starting to cause some headaches.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Tuesday Dose of Cute: Sisterhood of the Traveling Hens

Tuesday Dose of Cute: Sisterhood of the Traveling Hens

http://www.farmgirlfare.com/ is my all time daily fun favorite site and today was no exception. 

If you choose to read it click on the link in the blog after the pictures of the wonderful chickens running around  called 'cozy little chicken tractor'   and find the 'this fabulous two minute dance video' for more smiles.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

MULTITASKERS ARE FOOLING ONLY THEMSELVES-STUDY




 Pediatrics / Children's Health Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking-
Multitaskers who think they can successfully divide their attention between the program on their television set and the information on their computer screen proved to be driven to distraction by the two devices, according to a new study of media multitasking by Boston College researchers.

Placed in a room containing a television and a computer and given a half hour to use either device, people on average switched their eyes back and forth between TV and computer a staggering 120 times in 27.5 minutes - or nearly once every 14 seconds, Carroll School of Management professors S. Adam Brasel and James Gips report in a forthcoming edition of the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking.

While researchers - and the parents of millions of teenagers - have long suspected media multitasking was distracting, Brasel and Gips used advanced cameras to track where research subjects were looking to understand the physical demands and likely disruption caused by switching between the television and computer.

"We thought it was going to be high, but the frequency of switching and amount of distraction going on was really shocking," said Brasel, an associate professor of marketing.

What's more, the subjects were not even aware of their own actions. On average, participants in the study thought they might have looked back and forth between the two devices about 15 times per half hour. In reality, they were looking nearly 10 times as often. And even if quick "glances" less than 1.5 seconds are removed from the equation, people were still switching over 70 times per half hour.

"What we found is that when people try to pay attention to multiple media simultaneously they are switching back and forth at an astounding rate," said Brasel. "We're not even aware of what we are doing when in multi-media environments."

Study participants who thought they were only looking at the computer during TV commercials, or said they thought they were watching TV while web pages were loading, were actually behaving much differently.

The findings have sweeping implications for millions of people as well as companies that use television advertisements, web ads and web content to connect with consumers. Prior surveys have shown 59 percent of Americans say they now use their computer and television at the same time. In addition, youths under 18 report this type of media multitasking is now the dominant mode in which they use both devices.

Brasel and Gips determined that when it comes to the dominant medium in this side-by-side challenge, the computer comes out the winner, drawing the attention of the study participants 68.4 percent of the time. But neither device proved capable of holding the attention of study participants for very long, regardless of their age. The median length of gaze lasted less than two seconds for television and less than six seconds for the computer, the researchers found. It's not just younger people who are rapid-fire switching between media; men and women over 40 who participated in the study still switched an average of nearly 100 times in 27.5 minutes. It was rare that a person looked at either screen for more than a minute. Just 7.5 percent of all computer gazes and 2.9 percent of all glances at the television lasted longer than 60 seconds, the study found.

Understanding the physical behavior of multi-media multitaskers raises questions about the level of comprehension among people who switch their eyes between the devices, specifically the impact on productivity or on children doing their homework. For companies that rely on TV or the Internet to communicate with consumers, the findings raise questions about the effectiveness of the two channels as means to garner the attention of potential customers.

For both parents and marketers, a new media age has arrived with profound effects. The researchers note the study did not take into account the impact of another ubiquitous device that's now a staple of the media mix: the mobile phone.

"Clearly, the rules we developed for the mono-media culture no longer apply," said Brasel. "Our assumptions about how people are using media need to be updated. The era of the mono-media environment is over."

Monday, May 2, 2011

THE CUTEST OF CUTE


Now if this isn't the cutest little squirrel you ever did see!~!
My cousin in Ontario sent this and compared to the oneS we have in the west it wins the beauty contest that's for sure.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Morning Heart Attacks Cause More Damage



 

If it is morning and you think you are having a heart attack don't delay phone 911

WEDNESDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- If you suffer a heart attack in the morning, it is likely to be more severe than having one at any other time of day, a Spanish research team reports.
In fact, if the heart attack happens between 6 a.m. and noon, it is likely to damage about 20 percent more heart muscle than a heart attack occurring in the afternoon or evening, the researchers added.
"It is well-known for several decades that the incidence of heart attack is variable across the time of the day, with higher incidence in the early morning hours," said lead researcher Dr. Borja Ibanez, from the National Center for Cardiovascular Research in Madrid.
It has been speculated, though not proven, that the body's circadian clock triggers the release of substances into the bloodstream that make the heart more prone to a heart attack at certain times of the day, he added.
"What was completely unexplored was the effect of the time of the day of onset of the heart attack on the extent of heart muscle death," Ibanez said. "This is the very first examination showing that the human heart has a variable tolerance to ischemia according to the time of the day."
The report was published in the April 27 online edition of Heart.
For the study, Ibanez's group collected data on 811 patients who had heart attacks between 2003 and 2009. Specifically, they looked at the amount of heart muscle damage in relation to the time the heart attack occurred.
The researchers found the most damage happened when the heart attack occurred between 6 a.m. and noon, compared with those whose attack occurred between 6 p.m. and midnight.
Ibanez's team determined the amount of damage done to the heart muscle by looking at the amount of two enzymes released during the attack -- creatine kinase and troponin-l. Pehose heart attack occurred in the morning had 21 percent higher levels of these enzymes compared to those whose attack happened later in the day, they noted.
Among the patients studied, 269 had morning heart attacks, 240 had their attack in the afternoon, 161 had heart attacks between 6 p.m. and midnight and 141 had an attack between midnight and 6 a.m.
In addition, attacks that occurred to the back wall of the heart caused more damage than heart attacks in other locations in the heart, they found.
The findings have important implications, Ibanez said. "From a treatment point of view, when heart attacks happen in the early morning hours a more aggressive management of the case could result in better outcomes," he said.