Breast cancer spread connected to amino acid in asparagus

February 16, 2018 by  
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Scientists have linked the spread of the disease breast cancer in mice to a compound that’s in asparagus and several other foods, The Guardian reported . Studies with mice revealed asparagine drives the advance of the cancer , and when researchers reduced asparagine, the amount of “secondary tumors in other tissues” dropped. Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute director Greg Hannon told The Guardian, “This is a very promising lead and one of the very few instances where there is a scientific rationale for a dietary modification influencing cancer.” Research with mice showed the amino acid asparagine is important for breast cancer to spread, and scientists think the process could be similar in humans. Researchers found that blocking the amino acid hampered the spread of the cancer. Hannon said in a statement , “It could be that manipulating levels of asparagine in the body might be used as a way to boost a patients’ cancer treatment.” Related: Many anti-aging products contain ingredients that can cause breast cancer The researchers blocked asparagine in mice tested, which had an aggressive type of breast cancer, to reduce the cancer’s ability to spread with the drug L-asparaginase. Giving the mice a low-asparagine diet worked to a lesser extent, according to The Guardian. There’s still a lot work to be done. The Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute cautioned research is in the early stages and “doesn’t form the basis for DIY diets at home.” This work also doesn’t seem to offer a cure for cancer; per the press release, “So far the story suggests that lowering asparagine levels blunts the ability of cancer cells to spread in mice, but doesn’t affect the original tumor.” Lowering asparagine didn’t prevent breast tumors from forming, the researchers found. Hannon said, “The difficulty is finding ways to study this in the lab that are relevant to patients. It’s a challenge, but I think it’s worth pursuing.” The journal Nature published the research online this week . 21 scientists at institutions in the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States contributed. + Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute + Nature Via The Guardian Images via Stephanie Studer on Unsplash and Tambako The Jaguar on Flickr

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Breast cancer spread connected to amino acid in asparagus

Pepsi launches new drink option with reusable bottle

February 16, 2018 by  
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Soda is struggling, with sales of non-diet soda dropping by over 25 percent during the last 20 years, according to Co.Design . In response, PepsiCo is trying something new: a product they’re calling Drinkfinity with reusable, BPA-free bottles . Users mix the contents of ingredient Pods into water to create beverages that Drinkfinity’s website boasts are “unapologetically less sweet.” PepsiCo piloted Drinkfinity in 2014 in Brazil, and now they’re launching the product in the United States. Users choose flavors like Mango Chia Flow or Elderflower Chill in Pods they place over the top of the reusable bottle, which they call a Vessel, and press down to release the flavor inside and mix it with water inside the bottle. The company says they don’t use artificial flavors or sweeteners. Related: New study finds PET bottles of five huge soda brands contain harmful heavy metals Vice President of Global Business Innovation Hernan Marina said in a statement , “Drinkfinity was made to do more than just hydrate — it was created with a simple vision to make a beverage that connects the dots between wellness and versatility, while trying to balance the needs of both people and the planet.” What about the waste from the Pods? PepsiCo’s press release says the Pods use up around 65 percent less plastic than a 20 ounce bottle. But Co.Design pointed out the Pods themselves can’t be recycled easily. When checking out from Drinkfinity, a consumer can obtain a postage-paid envelope to send 30 Pods to a company for recycling. An average recycling facility won’t be able to process them, according to Co.Design, because they contain materials that aren’t generally recycled together. Marina hopes in a few years they can offer Pods that are more easily recyclable, according to Co.Design. The Drinkfinity reusable bottle, which is dishwasher-safe, costs $20. Pods come in packs of four and cost between $5 and $6.50. As of now, the products are available only online, according to the press release. Drinkfinity plans to donate $1 for every purchase in the United States in 2018 to Water.org , up to $100,000, to provide clean water for people in developing countries . + Drinkfinity + Drinkfinity press release Via Co.Design Images via Drinkfinity/PepsiCo

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Pepsi launches new drink option with reusable bottle

The Netherlands plans 26,910-square-foot floating solar farm at sea

February 16, 2018 by  
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Around 26,910 square feet of floating solar panels could provide clean energy for the Netherlands . Six Dutch companies and institutions are developing the offshore solar plant, Project Solar-at-Sea, devised by Oceans of Energy . The pilot will have $1.48 million in government funding, Reuters reported. Utrecht University will conduct research – as the solar modules are expected to offer a power yield 15 percent greater than they would on land. Could an offshore solar farm provide renewable energy the Netherlands needs? Six Dutch organizations plan to find out. A pilot project of around 323 square feet of solar panels could be in place this summer, around nine miles from The Hague in the North Sea Farm, a testing zone, to scrutinize equipment, energy output, weather conditions, and the impact on the environment . Related: Dutch engineers unveil ‘floating island’ to combat rising sea levels There are significant challenges in an offshore solar project. Utrecht University solar power expert Wilfried van Sark said in the university’s press release that sometimes the solar panels will be underwater – “when the waves reach heights of ten meters, this is unavoidable. The panels will wobble a bit, too. The impact of those dynamic shifts in tilt angle hasn’t yet been studied, either.” Floating solar farms can be found on lakes around the world, but ones at sea are much rarer. But there are also benefits to operating a solar farm on the waves. Van Sark said seawater offers a cooling effect, so the yield of the solar panels is anticipated to be higher than on the ground. Oceans of Energy pointed out in their press release a solar farm at sea doesn’t use up valuable land space. Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN), Energy Research Center of the Netherlands (ECN), Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), and TAQA Energy are also part of the consortium. The team hopes to operate 26,910-square-feet of solar panels by 2021. Inhabitat reached out to Oceans of Energy for project images but they are still confidential; we hope to see them when the pilot project kicks off. + Oceans of Energy + Oceans of Energy press release + Utrecht University Via Reuters Images via Depositphotos ( 1 , 2 )

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The Netherlands plans 26,910-square-foot floating solar farm at sea

One of the last remaining communities still farming like the Aztecs

February 16, 2018 by  
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The village of San Gregorio Atlapulco is one of the only remaining communities that farms in the Aztec agricultural tradition. Located in Mexico City ’s Xochimilco municipality, San Gregorio Atlapulco is home to vast fields known as  chinampas , small islands which are connected by canals used for irrigation and transportation. Farmers cruise on boats through canals between fields to plant, cultivate, and harvest. Tenochtitlan, the Aztec island capital located in the middle of the Lake of Texcoco, was once fed by an integrated, complex system of chinampas. Though the Lake of Texcoco was drained and Tenochtitlan became Mexico City, echoes of Mexico ‘s agricultural past still exist, though they remain under threat. The region’s altitude, consistent sunlight, and abundant water makes for an ideal all-year growing environment. “We basically keep the fields producing all year. How [much we] harvest depends on what crops we put in,” José Alfredo Camacho, a farmer from San Gregorio, told CityLab . “Spinach will take a month and half, radishes one month. It depends on the crop rotation we decide on.” Chinampas are created with help from the huejote tree . “The huejote is the only tree which can resist this much moisture,” Gustavo Camacho told CityLab . “The roots keep the banks of the canals firm. To make a chinampa you first have to make an enclosure of branches and plant willow trees in the water. Then you fill the enclosure with mud and water lilies.” Related: Tired of red tape, indigenous leaders are creating their own climate fund While chinampas are fertile and bountiful, they are not especially profitable. “Nobody makes chinampas anymore,” said Camacho. As the ground beneath Mexico City has warped under the exploitation of underlying aquifers , low-laying chinampas have flooded while highland chinampas have dried out. Though the situation is not hopeless, change would require compromise. “We could solve the subsistence problem ourselves without asking anything of the government by making a system of cascading dikes like the rice paddies of China , but that would require a communal effort which is difficult to organize,” said Camacho. “Such a system of would cut some people off from their fields, which is why they disagree. But if things continue like this the chinampa economy will have disappeared completely in 20 years.” Via CityLab Images via  Serge Saint/Flickr (1) (2)

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One of the last remaining communities still farming like the Aztecs

HOW TO: Extend the Shelf Life of Root Vegetables by Storing Them in Sand

September 24, 2013 by  
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A startling amount of food gets wasted by households every year; more than restaurants, grocery stores , and farms combined. Many people are doing their best to be more diligent about their own household waste, and that includes finding new, smart ways to store groceries so they don’t spoil. Using sand to preserve food isn’t a new method by any means, but it’s certainly effective, and can be used a few different ways to extend the shelf life of root veggies and certain firm-fleshed fruit . Read the rest of HOW TO: Extend the Shelf Life of Root Vegetables by Storing Them in Sand Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: apples , artichokes , asparagus , beets , carrots , cold cellar , fridge , parsnips , refrigerator , root cellar , root vegetables , root veggies , roots , sand , sand drawers , sand storage , turnips        

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HOW TO: Extend the Shelf Life of Root Vegetables by Storing Them in Sand

ZA Architects Propose an Underground Colony on Mars

September 5, 2013 by  
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Read the rest of ZA Architects Propose an Underground Colony on Mars Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 3d printer , asparagus , astronaut , basalt bedrock , basalt wool , caverns , earth , germany , mars , mars colony , mars one projects , martain soil , red planet , robots , space exploration , za architects        

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ZA Architects Propose an Underground Colony on Mars

Get Seasonal: Spring Recipes You’ll Love

May 8, 2013 by  
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To celebrate the season, we’re getting creative with the three As of spring: Asparagus, artichokes and arugula. Each of these tasty seasonal veggies has something different to offer in the kitchen, and we can’t wait to explore every one…

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Get Seasonal: Spring Recipes You’ll Love

Weekday Vegetarian: Fiddlehead, Wild Leek and Asparagus Ragout

May 4, 2010 by  
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Photo: Kelly Rossiter My refrigerator was brimming with spring vegetables I got at the market and I was making lunch for one. I thought the sensible thing to do was put them all together and make a spring vegetable ragout. …

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Weekday Vegetarian: Fiddlehead, Wild Leek and Asparagus Ragout

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