Posts Tagged ‘nobel’

Do These People Fly UC Berkeley Flags all the Time, Or Only On Days When Cal Wins a Nobel Prize?

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

I don’t have enough data to make this determination.

As seen yesterday, October 4th, 2011, in the Western Addition – it’s the mansion of patriotic San Franciscans:

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Congratulations, Dr. Saul Perlmutter! You now have “worldwide fame and campus parking.”*

All the deets after the jump.

*Don’t let the Streetsblog people find out about the free on-campus parking perk. I’m seriously.

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A Large Amnesty International Rally at City Hall for Dissident Aung San Suu Kyi Kicked Off Conference at UC Hastings

Monday, November 8th, 2010

What with all the other things going on in the bay area the past week, the long-planned Amnesty International USA 2010 West Regional Conference at UC Hastings Law School didn’t get much attention. But you couldn’t miss this large march and rally in support of dissident Aung San Suu Kyi that started off at Hastings and ended up at City Hall on Friday.

This is what it looked like. All the deets are below.

SAN FRANCISCO – November 2 – Approximately 200 Amnesty International activists march and rally in solidarity with Aung San Suu Kyi and the people of Myanmar this Friday, November 5, starting at 5:30 p.m. Held on the eve of the historic November 7 elections in Myanmar, activists holding illuminated posters of Aung San Suu Kyi will call on the Myanmar authorities to release her and the 2,000-plus prisoners imprisoned for peaceful activism.   The march will begin at the corner of McAllister and Hyde Streets at 5:30 p.m. and will end with a rally at the steps of San Francisco City Hall, with projected images of Aung San Suu Kyi as the backdrop.

The demonstration kicks off Amnesty International USA’s (AIUSA’s) annual regional human rights conference, which will continue on November 6 and 7 at UC Hastings College of Law.  Speakers include several prominent Burmese human rights defenders , including: Toe Lwin, a youth leader for the National League for Democracy and a member of Aung San Suu Kyi’s Security Team; Nyunt Than  of the Burmese American Democratic Alliance; Yasmin Vanya of the Burmese American Women’s Alliance; and Maung Maung Latt, an exiled Minister of Parliament.   AIUSA Field Organizer Kalaya’an Mendoza will emcee.  A Burmese drum troupe will perform traditional music at the event.

The military rulers of Myanmar have jailed thousands of people in their continuing efforts to crush all dissenting views. Most prominent of those detained is Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate who has been the beacon of hope and change for nearly two decades in Myanmar. November 7, 2010, marks the first time the Myanmar government has held elections since 1990.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 2.8 million supporters, activists and volunteers who campaign for universal human rights from more than 150 countries. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

What:  Solidarity March and Rally for Aung San Suu Kyi and the People of Myanmar
Who:
Amnesty International USA and Burmese human rights defenders
Where: U.C. Hastings (at the corner of Hyde and McAllister); march ends at the steps of San Francisco City Hall (1 Doctor Carlton B. Goodlett Place)
When: Friday, November 5, 2010, 5:30 p.m.  Rally and program begin at 6:00 p.m. at City Hall.”

Another Nobel Prize for UC San Francisco – Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn Brings Home the Gold

Monday, October 5th, 2009

Here she is, America’s newest Nobel Prize winner: UCSF‘s Elizabeth H. Blackburn, Ph.D:

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They’ll be partying hard today down at the Mission Bay campus. The celebration in Genentech Hall starts in just a few minutes and they’ll have a full-blown news conference this afternoon.

Wow! First Oprah and now this.  

Of course Elizabeth wouldn’t want to leave out her co-winners, so let’s give a shout out to Carol W. Greider of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Jack W. Szostak of Harvard Medical School.

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It’s going to be on!

Congratulations to Elizabeth and everybody at the University of California, San Francisco

Fiat Lux, baby!

THE DISCOVERY OF THE TELOMERASE ENZYME

The scientists discovered an enzyme that plays a key role in normal cell function, as well as in cell aging and most cancers.  The enzyme is called telomerase and it produces tiny units of DNA that seal off the ends of chromosomes, which contain the body’s genes. These DNA units – named telomeres—protect the integrity of the genes and maintain chromosomal stability and accurate cell division.  They also determine the number of times a cell divides—and thus determine the lifespan of cells.

Telomerase is pronounced (tel-AH-mer-AZE). Telomere is pronounced (TEEL-oh-mere).

The research sparked a whole field of inquiry into the possibility that telomerase could be activated to treat such age-related diseases as blindness, cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative diseases, and deactivated to treat cancer, in which the enzyme generally is overactive.

In recent years, Blackburn and colleagues have explored the possibility that life stress, the perception of life stress and lifestyle behaviors could take a toll on telomerase and telomeres. They have reported several studies with human participants, suggesting a correlation. The findings may offer insight, at the cellular level, into the impact of stress on early onset of age-related diseases.

The scientists were named to receive the prize “for the discovery of how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the telomerase enzyme,” according to the Nobel committee in Stockholm, Sweden.

Evolution of discovery

Blackburn’s road to discovery traces back to 1975 to 1977, when she was a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University. There, working with Joseph Gall, she discovered the unusual nature of telomeres, with their simple, repeated DNA sequences comprising chromosome ends. The work was published in 1978.

With Szostak, she established that these DNA repeats stabilize chromosomes inside cells. They also predicted the existence of an enzyme that would add the sequences to the ends of chromosomes.

In 1985, while a professor at University of California, Berkeley, Blackburn and her then-graduate student Greider reported the discovery of such an enzyme, which they named telomerase. Their research showed that in some organisms, such as the single-celled pond dweller Tetrahymena, telomerase continuously replenishes the chromosome’s telomeric tips. In humans, however, researchers, including Blackburn and her group, showed that telomerase is damped down at certain times in the lives of many types of cells, limiting their ability to self-replenish.

With this discovery, scientists saw the possibility of exploring whether, in humans, the enzyme could be reactivated to prolong cell life to treat age-related diseases, and deactivated to interrupt cancers.

Blackburn joined the UCSF faculty in 1990 and is the Morris Herzstein Endowed Chair in Biology and Physiology in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics.

She is the fourth UCSF scientist to win the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
A native of Australia, Blackburn has lived in the United States since 1975, and is a naturalized citizen of the United States as of September 2003.

She lives in San Francisco with her husband, John Sedat, PhD, a professor of biochemistry and biophysics at UCSF. They have one son, Benjamin.

UCSF is a leading university dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care.

Al Gore to be Encased in Carbonite Upon Death – The Future of Carbon Sequestration

Monday, May 19th, 2008

Full-service public relations and public affairs consultancy Hill and Knowltonannounced today that former vice president Al Gore, upon his death, will be encased in carbonite and then buried. This type of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) was only made possible this year through the use of nanotechnology.

Until recently this was our understanding of carbonite, made famous in Star Wars V – The Empire Strikes Back:

“By the rules of chemical nomenclature, the formula for a “carbonite anion” would be CO22-, which is thought to be an impossible formation (methanoate being preferentially formed instead).”

Impossible no longer.

Artist’s conception of the former vice president encased in the densest form of carbon known to man:

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Just one treatment of this double carbon material will take the equivalent of 1200 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. The only downside will be the expense of a slightly oversized coffin. The upside is that Al Gore, Jr. will be the most severely carbon negative person in recorded history.

A relieved Hill & Knowlton spokesperson confided to one reporter that this announcement will lay to rest the controversy over the greenhouse emissions of Al Gore’s house, for some reason an issue of almost daily concern to the D.C.-based House of Flack.

If only Han Solo were alive to see this day…