mRNA Vaccine Used to Fight Brain Tumour

Brain tumours are scary and very difficult to deal with, current treatments include invasive surgery and/or radiation. The advent of mRNA based vaccines is making a difference in how we can treat various brain cancers and the early results are looking promising. A team just found a way to get the body’s immune system to start to find and address cancer within the brain. While the results are not yet usable the outlook is very promising.

“The demonstration that making an mRNA cancer vaccine in this fashion generates similar and strong responses across mice, pet dogs that have developed cancer spontaneously and human patients with brain cancer is a really important finding, because oftentimes we don’t know how well the preclinical studies in animals are going to translate into similar responses in patients,” said Duane Mitchell, M.D., Ph.D., director of the UF Clinical and Translational Science Institute and the UF Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program and a co-author of the paper. “And while mRNA vaccines and therapeutics are certainly a hot topic since the COVID pandemic, this is a novel and unique way of delivering the mRNA to generate these really significant and rapid immune responses that we’re seeing across animals and humans.”

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Cancer Causing Roundup Maker Monsanto Must Pay $2.25 Billion in Damages

Bayer, the corporate owner of Monsanto, must pay $2.25 billion in damages due to Monsanto’s product called Roundup. The chemical spray kills insects very quickly (which is really bad for the planet) and due to it being permitted to use on residential properties the harm it has caused seems pretty great. One regular user of the chemical soup got cancer due to it and sued the company, thus leading the court ordering the payment. The lesson here: don’t use pesticides on residential properties. It’s good to see a massive corporation being held to account for its damaging actions.

“The jury’s punitive damages award sends a clear message that this multi-national corporation needs top to bottom change,” they said, calling the verdict “a condemnation of 50 years of misconduct by Monsanto.”

The claims rest on the ingredient glyphosate, introduced as a herbicide by Monsanto in 1974, which inhibits a certain enzyme in most plants, preventing them from growing. Monsanto also introduced genetically modified crops that are resistant to glyphosate.

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Engineered Stone Banned Down Under

AI generated image of energy efficient home

If you don’t work in one of the building trades then you might not know about engineered stone, but you have definitely seen it and probably touched it. It’s a type of stone made of crushed silica that is pressed together to make a new, and equally durable, stone (it’s like plywood made of stone). Many new builds use this type of modern manufactured stone for countertops and decorative surfaces. Australia has found that people working on this type of stone tend to develop health issues that can be life-ending, so the country has decided to ban the stone to protect those in the industry. This is a good thing to see and hopefully other countries will copy Australia’s new policy.

Trade unions, health organisations and personal injury law firms have all welcomed the ban, saying it will save lives.

“Engineered stone is a fashion product that is killing the workers who make it,” Australian Council of Trade Unions assistant secretary Liam O’Brien said.

“With alternatives readily available, why are we risking the lives of tradies for a fashionable finish in our kitchens?”

Dr Hoy said broader change was needed to make sure a similar crisis did not happen again.

“We can’t be waiting until people develop disease and they die from conditions related to work before we start acting,” he said.

“We really need to change the ways to identify problems at work, and act before people become sick.”

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Memes Saved the Lives of Anti-Vaxxers

Covid-19 Transmission graphic

COVID brought forth more than just a disease of the body, it also raised the profile of anti vaxxers so much so that they shut down Canada’s capital for weeks on end. How can we get this group of people who are opposed to critically thinking to actually, well, think? We can use memes. Memes literally saved lives by convincing anti vaxxers to get the jab; in particular humours memes were the most effective. For the next pandemic maybe we should put more effort into meme production so we can stop the spread before it becomes endemic.

“Little is known about the extent to which memes can shift beliefs or intentions,” Geniole told PsyPost. “Our studies provided some preliminary evidence that memes about vaccination — specifically, memes that were supportive of vaccination or unsupportive of antivaxxers — may increase the viewer’s intentions to be vaccinated. In other words, our studies suggest that exposure to memes, under certain circumstances, may actually shift beliefs or intentions.”

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Working Out Helps You Work it Out

run

Going for a walk can help you settle down your overactive brain and help you see things positively, and best of all it’s free! Anxiety and depression rates are increasing in North America for a variety of legitimate reasons; however, we a little working out can bring those rates down. A very effective treatment for anxiety and depression is to use your body and workout. There’s no a growing movement in the english speaking world to get medical professionals prescribe exercise as part of a treatment plan.

“Physical activity can be an effective treatment for mental health problems,” says Ben Singh, lead author and research fellow at the University of South Australia. He thinks it works in several ways: by releasing endorphins and boosting our mood, improving sleep, reducing stress, supporting self-esteem and confidence, and making us feel accomplished and purposeful.

The findings suggest that exercise is particularly helpful in certain situations. While the type of exercise didn’t matter, people got more mental health benefits out of higher-intensity exercise. If you’re doing something that makes you breathe hard, in other words, that’s a good sign.

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