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Friday, February 21, 2020

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November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996

extraterrestrial_allien_abduction

Alien Abduction

"A Galaxy is Composed of Gas and Dust and Stars  - Billions Upon Billions of Stars."  From the "Cosmos" television series and his frequent appearances on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson," Sagan became associated with both, the catchphrase "billions and billions" and the question: "Who Speaks for the Earth?"  

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A year ago, when chemotherapy stopped working against his leukemia, William Ludwig signed up to be the first patient treated in a bold experiment at the University of Pennsylvania's Abramson Cancer Center. Mr. Ludwig, then 65, a retired corrections officer from Bridgeton, N.J., felt his life draining away and thought he had nothing to lose.  He entered into an experimental treatment.  Tiny magnetic beads force the larger T-cells to divide before they are infused into the patient. 

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Doctors removed a billion of his T-cells — a type of white blood cell that fights viruses and tumors — and gave them new genes that would program the cells to attack his cancer. Then the altered cells were dripped back into Mr. Ludwig's veins. 

 

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One of the major problems caused by this historic storm which afected the lives of 80 million people throughout the East Coast of the US is the vast amounts of water that flooded many municipalities across the region, in addition to the high storm surge and heavy winds that affected coastal areas. Irene is already responsible for the loss of more than 47 lives and billions of dollars in property damages. Over five million people lost power, in some areas the electric service has not been fully restored.

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The federal state and local governments continue to work together in the aftermath of Irene in a search and recovery mission from the 100 plus mile winds of a 400 mile wide storm that knocked down trees, ripped off roofs and tore down power lines that have left so many people without electricity. The storm has also been responsible for major flooding, swollen rivers and lakes that have disrupted the infrastructure of many cities and towns.

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You are shopping in a busy supermarket and you're ready to pay up and go home. You perform a quick visual sweep of the checkout options and immediately start ramming your cart through traffic toward an appealingly  line halfway across the store with less people. As you wait in line and start reading nutrition labels, you can't help but calculate that the 529 calories contained in a single slice of your Key lime cheesecake amounts to one-fourth of your recommended daily caloric allowance and will take you 90 minutes on the elliptical to burn off and you'd better just stick the thing behind this stack of Soap Opera Digests and hope a clerk finds it before it melts.

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One shopping spree, two distinct number systems in play. Whenever we choose a shorter grocery line over a longer one, or a bustling restaurant over an unpopular one, we rally our approximate number system, an ancient and intuitive sense that we are born with and that we share with many other animals. Rats, pigeons, monkeys, babies — all can tell more from fewer, abundant from stingy. An approximate number sense is essential to brute survival: how else can a bird find the best patch of berries, or two baboons know better than to pick a fight with a gang of six?

 

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A new cancer treatment called Hipec (Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy) is slowly growing in popularity -- one that involves surgically removing cancerous tumors from the abdominal cavity, then bathing the cavity with hot chemotherapy to kill any cancer cells left in there.

HIPEC_Cancer_Therapy

The idea behind the treatment is that heat at 42 degrees Celsius (107.6 degrees Fahrenheit) is able to kill cancer cells without affecting normal cells in the body, according to the University of San Diego Moores Cancer Center, which offers the treatment to qualifying patients.