Researchers eliminate aggression in birds by inhibiting specific hormone

first_img( — James Goodson and colleagues at Indiana University have found that by altering the secretion of the hormone VIP in certain parts of the brain, treated birds lose their aggressive tendencies. As they write in their paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, by altering the DNA of brain cells in the hypothalamus, the team was able to effectively reduce aggressive behavior in the birds with no other apparent side effects. More information: … b/photogallery2.htmlPaper: Goodson, J. L., Kelly, A. M., Kingsbury, M. A., Thompson, R. R. (2012) An aggression-specific cell type in the anterior hypothalamus of finches. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, in press. DOI:10.1073/pnas.1207995109 Protein shown to rally biological clock Explore further Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP) is a hormone that is produced by many different cells throughout the body in mammals, from the gut to the brain. In this new research by Goodson, et al, the focus was on the impact of the hormone when it is secreted by nerve cells in the hypothalamus, a part of the brain that controls among other things, aggressive tendencies.Building on earlier work that found that sending an electrical charge to the hypothalamus of test mice produced more aggressive mice, the team focused on the anterior hypothalamus (AH), which is the part of the hypothalamus believed to be most responsible for aggression. In an earlier experiment, Goodson and his team found that they could predict how aggressive a species would be based on the amount of VIP in the AH. Moving a step forward, the team this time altered the amount of VIP produced by the neurons of violet-eared waxbills, a notoriously aggressive bird, in the AH by altering their DNA. In so doing, they found that they could control the amount of aggressiveness in the birds by tweaking VIP production up or down.In studying birds that had had their VIP production levels reduced, the team found that rather than physically fighting with other birds, the treated birds instead resorted to arguing, a sign that the part of their brain that didn’t care for anyone other than its mate was still intact. Refraining from physical confrontations on the other hand showed that reducing the level of VIP production clearly reduced aggressive tendencies.Then, to see if their results would hold, the team repeated the experiment with a different species, the zebra finch, which isn’t nearly as aggressive to start with. There they found the birds even more peaceful than they normally are. What’s more, the team couldn’t find any other changes in the birds of either species. They both behaved exactly as they had before, except they were less aggressive, a finding that stirs all manner of thoughts when considering the possible ramifications of altering hormone production in the brains of people.center_img © 2012 Citation: Researchers eliminate aggression in birds by inhibiting specific hormone (2012, August 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Captive Zebra Finch Taeniopygia guttata at Bodelwyddan Castle Aviary, Denbighshire, Wales. Image: Arpingstone/Wikipedia. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Possible new species of spider found that builds fake spider decoys

first_img © 2012 (—While traveling with a group of researchers in the Amazon rain forest this past September, biologist Phil Torres came upon a type of spider he’d never seen before. Upon closer inspection, it turned out the spider wasn’t a spider at all, but a decoy created by a real spider. He documents the find in a blog post for Rainforest Expeditions. Explore further Citation: Possible new species of spider found that builds fake spider decoys (2012, December 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. In consulting with experts in the field, Torres has come to believe that the tiny striped spider is a member of the genus Cyclosa, which are known for adding material to their nests to either attract prey or hide from predators. In this case, it appears the spider has developed a special skill to help it avoid being eating by paper wasps. Not only does it build pseudo-replicas of itself, in larger form, it shakes the decoy to convince passersby that the fake spider is the real McCoy, causing the fake to be attacked instead of its own tiny self.The webs of the spiders stand about face high, Torres reports, and are about the size of a stretched-out hand. The spider itself is about a quarter of an inch in length while its decoy is about a full inch. In surveying the area, Torres and colleagues found 25 of the arachnids in a single square mile in a floodplain in Peru on the western edges of the Amazon. Outside of that area, they found none, though Torres notes that it’s possible that beyond the range where they looked, there could be many more.center_img The actual spider (left) and examples of the constructed, false spiders (right). Credit: Jeff Cremer and Phil Torres. Australian spider named after David Attenborough The decoy spider constructed out of leaves. Credit: Phil Torres In examining the decoys, Torres found them to be made up of compiled masses of dead insects, leaf bits and assorted debris. And while each was somewhat different from all the others, the overriding theme was the image of a spider, with legs and a body that resemble the real thing.Torres isn’t sure yet if the spider he’s found is a new species – a thorough review process will have to be undertaken before that can be established. Once it passes muster, the findings will then have to be published in a science journal for it to become official.last_img read more

A metamaterial that twists to right or the left in response to

first_imgCalculated deformed cell and displacement under uniaxial loading. The arrows aid the discussion of the mechanism: 1. The arms connecting the corners with the rings move downward. 2. This motion leads to a rotation of the rings. 3. This rotation exerts forces onto the corners in the plane normal to the pushing axis, resulting in an overall twist of the unit cell around this axis. Credit: (c) Science (2017). DOI: 10.1126/science.aao4640 More information: Tobias Frenzel et al. Three-dimensional mechanical metamaterials with a twist, Science (2017). DOI: 10.1126/science.aao4640AbstractRationally designed artificial materials enable mechanical properties that are inaccessible with ordinary materials. Pushing on an ordinary linearly elastic bar can cause it to be deformed in many ways. However, a twist, the counterpart of optical activity in the static case, is strictly zero. The unavailability of this degree of freedom hinders applications in terms of mode conversion and the realization of advanced mechanical designs using coordinate transformations. Here, we aim at realizing microstructured three-dimensional elastic chiral mechanical metamaterials that overcome this limitation. On overall millimeter-sized samples, we measure twists per axial strain exceeding 2°/%. Scaling up the number of unit cells for fixed sample dimensions, the twist is robust due to metamaterial stiffening, indicating a characteristic length scale and bringing the aforementioned applications into reach. Play A video of a sample during measurement. The left part exhibits a bottom view onto the plate in between the left- and right-handed part of the samples. The right part is a side view onto the same sample. Upon pushing onto the sample, one can see a rotation around the pushing axis on the left and a compression along the pushing axis on the right-hand. For illustration, the in plane displacement vectors are depicted in blue and red. Credit: T. Frenzel et al., Science (2017) The researchers found that making the cells smaller and using a larger number of them to create a structure of the same size resulted in an increase in stiffness and a smaller amount of twisting. This, they note, lies in sharp contrast to how materials normally behave under classical continuum mechanics—where there would be no twisting and the degree of stiffness would normally be independent of scale. They note further that a metamaterial with twisting properties could lend itself to a wide variety of optical applications, such as in devices that guide force fields or other types of waves around an obstacle. Citation: A metamaterial that twists to right or the left in response to straight, solid push (2017, November 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further With normal materials, whether natural or man-made, applying a linear force typically causes the material to expand at a right angle relative to the applied force. In this new effort, the research trio has created a metamaterial that instead twists either right or left.To create such a material, the researchers used numerical modeling to come up with a cubic form for a cell unit—when such units were configured together, the team found, they would twist when a force was applied. To test their model, the team printed out an actual structure using a 3-D laser. Each cell, the team notes, was made with rings in its faces that led to a rotational effect, with the corners of the cell pulling back around them. Testing showed that the metamaterial could deform at a rate of more than 2 percent per percentage of shortening. ‘Bigger is different’—the unusual physics of mechanical metamaterials exposedcenter_img PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen © 2017 Tech Xplore (—A trio of researchers with Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany and Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté in France has developed a metamaterial that twists either to the right or the left in response to a straight, solid push. In their paper published in the journal Science, Tobias Frenzel, Muamer Kadic, and Martin Wegener describe how they came up with the metamaterial and offer some ideas on the ways it might be put to use. Corentin Coulais with the University of Amsterdam offers a Perspective piece on the work done by the team (and some background on how linear elasticity applies to all materials and the foundation of solid mechanics) in the same journal issue. Journal information: Science This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

And the feeling steps in

first_imgDefine music/singing in your own words.Music gives me everything in life, music becomes a medium wheich helps me understand every emotion deeply, when I sing I feel elevated, in short music is my addiction.Tell us how you guys got together as a band.After being a solo artist for  more than 5 years I realised that I needed a team, where each one would come up with his own unique style and blend everything to create a totally new sound. Secondly I always thought a team is better than an individual and the kind of energy we all can produce on stage is tremendous.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Where did the name Ehsaas come from?We have a title track called Ehsaas hai tumhara essentially it comes from there but it has also got to do with feeling which came to me one fine day – when I could see nothing beyond forming a band.Bands go through quite a lot in the formative years. What has been the saddest/hardest time for Ehsaas?Well luckily I was already established as Suryaveer so we call it Suryaveer with Ehsaas. The band  went through a lot initially; I had already faced a lot of issues when I had started solo, Fortunately we all connect well, the only problem which I faced was to get everyone to gel together right in the beginning. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixYour band is an all-boy band, did it ever strike you to include a girl?Frankly we haven’t thought of a girl maybe cause our songs don’t need a female voice yet but we would definitely be open to the idea in future if required. Tell us about your Bollywood experience as you have sung two songs for Prague.It was quite exciting and amazing. Firstly I was pleasantly surprised when they decided to take my song Aye zindagi which is a remake from 1987 film Sadma, this song was part of my album and it fit the movie perfectly according to them and luckily I also got to feature in the music video.  The second song Ek pal was quite a challenge as I had not sung something like that before, but the music director was  confident so we went ahead and thankfully it came out very well, the movie releases on 6 September, we are looking forward to it.There are times when people hum songs only because of their favorite stars. Do you think somewhere, singers don’t get due credit?See the other side of the coin, a star can make a song into a superhit and eventually everyone knows who the singer is. You have performed with the biggest names in the music industry, when can we see Suryaveer perform with international artists?I would love to collaborate with international artists, waiting for the right song and idea. Could you shed some light on your upcoming project/s?Awaiting releases of  Ooops a desi and Prague. I have sung in both the movies, gearing up for a multi city tour with these releases soon. Where is the Indian music scenario headed, according to you?I see a lot of potential in the music business, with audiences accepting all genres and also maturing in their musical tastes. It seems our music and reach anywhere now and that is good thing. Do you think one needs strong contacts to make a mainstream professional career in music?I feel music is like any other professional career, you need to make your way up, work hard, eliminate your mistakes and hope luck is by your side. You have been singing from the age of 10, what has inspired you for all these years?Good music always gave me goosebumbs, I get inspired by good lyrics. Is there a musical gene in your family?I am the only one, my granddad was inclined towards music only  as a hobby. So it is just me.last_img read more

Odisha govt imposes entry tax of up to 2 on online purchase

first_imgThe Odisha government headed by Naveen Patnaik has imposed entry tax of up to 2 per cent on online purchase of goods to check the malpractices of tax evasion by e-retail majors. As per the tax structure provision, the state will charge entry tax from courier companies, transporters and C&F agents dealing with online goods.‘With this order in place, the online companies will have to fill up Form 40 before physical delivery of any goods in the state. Given the fact that most of online companies are registered either in Karnataka or Haryana’s Gurgaon, the taxes are being paid to the state only where it is registered,’ Praveen Khandelwal, general secretary of Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), told Millennium Post on Thursday. Also Read – I-T issues 17-point checklist to trace unaccounted DeMO cash’But, the states, where the goods are being sold, don’t get any tax, which is a blatant violation of tax rules’, he added.Khandelwal further said, ‘After taking cognisance of commodities delivered in Odisha through purchase from online retail portals operating outside the state, the state government has issued a notification slapping entry tax on each such delivery in its state and respective delivery agents which could be either a courier company, transporter or C&F agent to furnish a statement of all such deliveries and proof of payment of entry tax on such deliveries to the taxation department of Odisha.’ Also Read – Lanka launches ambitious tourism programme to woo Indian touristsIt’s pertinent to mention here that Odisha has become the first state to charge entry tax from e-tail majors, while other states which are in queue to follow the suit are Kerala and Assam.‘Though, the tax slab on online traders is of just two per cent, but it will help in assessing the actual volume of trade in the state. The state government will also be able to evaluate the actual loss of tax, which may help out in devising Goods and Services Tax (GST) module in the years to come’, said Brij Mohan Aggarwal, the national vice-president of Confederation of All India Traders. ‘Despite the fact that offline retailers are being charged taxes upto 15 per cent, but there is no tax slab in place for e-tailers, so they are easily manipulating the prices of goods by selling it at predictory rates, which is against the market ethics,’ alleged Khandelwal, adding that the entry tax will be paid by the online companies before delivery of goods to consumers. Khandelwal, however, said that companies likely to charge the taxed amount from consumers only, which may increase the rates of online goods.last_img read more

EastWest Metro to run between SecV Salt Lake stadium in Oct

first_imgKolkata: If things go as per plans, East-West metro will run between Sector V and Salt Lake stadium in October.The maiden run is likely to be held on October 2, which is the 150th birthday of Mahatma Gandhi.Babul Supriyo, Minister of State for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises visited the spot on Monday and expressed his satisfaction over the progress of work. The East-West Metro Project had received the Centre’s clearance in 2008.A state of the art technology will be in the East-West metro and no driver will be required to operate the train. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe coaches have arrived from Bengaluru on Saturday. The coaches are wider than the usual metro coaches and have better facilities for passengers. The vestibule between two compartments are wider as well. Longer handles have been used to help women. Wheel chair bound people can use the train and special arrangements are made to help them to board the train and get out of the compartments. Every compartment will have CCTV cameras. The compartments have arrived in the city by road. The trial run will be held in the end of April and it will continue for three months. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killed The unique feature of the train is that an underground tunnel has been constructed below river Hooghly for its running. The tunnel is ready and senior officers of the Kolkata Metro rail Corporation (KMRCL) have inspected the site. Kolkata is the first city to have an underground transportation tunnel. It may be mentioned that Kolkata was the first city to have a metro rail which was inaugurated in 1984. The project was taken up in 1971 during the time of Indira Gandhi. The full length of East West metro will cover Howrah M aidan and Sector V, which is around a distance of 16.6 km and is likely to be inaugurated by 2021. Metro from Sector V to Phoolbagan is likely to be opened by 2019.The construction work has been divided into four phases. The first phase is between Sector V and Salt Lake stadium while the second phase is between stadium and Phool bagan and the third phase is between Phoolbagan and sealdah and the fourth phase is between Sealdah and Howrah Maidan. There will six elevated and six underground stations. In the first three phases, there will be six elevated and two underground stations while in phase IV, all the stations will be underground.last_img read more

TMC suspends Diamond Harbour MLA Dipak Halder

first_imgThe Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Wednesday suspended party MLA Dipak Halder, who was arrested on Monday on the orders of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, even as Haldar said it would have been better if the party had sought his version before taking the decision.Haldar, however, said he would not speak a word against the party. “Dipak Haldar has been suspended from the party,” a senior party leader said. Haldar said: “I have been with the party since the very beginning. It would have been better if the party had sought my version before taking a decision. I may not be within the party, but I will still work for the party. Mamata Banerjee is my leader. It is only because of her that I have become what I am today. I am thankful to her,” he said.Haldar is an MLA from Diamond Harbour in 24 South Parganas district.last_img read more

Navy to open doors for increased role of women

first_imgThe Indian Navy is set to open the doors soon for increased role of women on its rolls but has made it clear that there will be no combat positions yet.The move comes on the heels of the government announcing law week its decision to induct women as fighter pilots in the Indian Air Force.The navy will also challenge a recent order of the Delhi High Court which had reprimanded it over the issue of permanent commission for women in the force.“Except where an aircraft is required to be stationed on the ship overnight, like aircraft carrier, rest of flying areas will be open to the women,” Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Monday said after his closed-door address at the ongoing Naval Commanders’ Conference here. Also Read – Punjab on alert after release of excess water from Bhakra damHe said an announcement is likely to be made to this effect in the next few days.The navy has mooted a proposal to the Defence Ministry for induction of women as pilots for its fleet of maritime reconnaissance aircraft.Parrikar stressed that one should not confuse the decision of the navy to open its doors for women with the recent order of the Delhi High Court.In a major relief for women naval officers, the Delhi High Court had on September 4 allowed a batch of petitions seeking permanent commission for them in the force, saying “sexist bias and service bias” would not be allowed to block progress of women. Also Read – Union Min doubts ‘vote count’ in Bareilly, seeks probeThe court, while granting their plea, said the “women are here to stay” and since they “work shoulder-to-shoulder” with their male counterparts, it would “frown upon any endeavour to restrain the progress of women”.Parrikar said that in 2008, the navy had opened its doors in Short Service Commission (SSC) for granting permanent commission to women along with men.He said that permanent commission for SSC was not an option for men also prior to 2008.“There is no gender bias…It was equal to both men and women. In 2008, the navy granted SSC to be changed to permanent commission to women in three streams — education, law and naval constructions. The other areas have some logistics and infrastructure problems as those are executive branches.last_img read more

Literary event at full swing

first_imgLiterary works, especially books, connect in a much better way with people, especially those who apart from looking for facts, like to delve deep into things of their interest. In order to cater to the demands of such people, ‘Colours of Refuge’, an anthology dedicated to the cause of refugees, was launched at Civil Services Officers Institute in the national Capital on January 28.The book launch took place amidst luminaries from the field of photography, poetry and arts. The event was graced by luminaries such as Padma Shri Raghu Rai-the doyen of photography, as chief guest, William Tall, UNHCR Head of Mission in India and Maldives, celebrated Urdu poet and lyricist Farhat Shazad and renowned Hindi poet Dr Sita Sagar as guests of honour. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Artists Unplugged, a diverse and dynamic poetry group on Facebook comprises of poets and artists  from all over the globe, sharing a common penchant and vibe called ‘expression’ through poetry, prose, art and/or photography.‘Colours of Refuge’ was born as a bi-lingual (Hindi and English) international anthology featuring poems, short stories, nano fiction(55ers), art and photographs of budding and established poets, writers, artists  and photographers from all over the world coming together for this noble cause of demanding refuge for all humans irrespective of regional borders, races, genders, faiths and also age. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe ‘Colours of Refuge’ offers a rare kaleidoscope of hope in the form of upholding the basic human dignity of refuge. This anthology bears testimony to the fact that not only has social media opened up new vistas for both budding and seasoned poets and artists, it also offers great reassurance that even in this hectic, selfish modern age of high-tech living, poets, writers, artists, photographers and even the publisher can join hands for an altruist cause. The anthology features works of some celebrated masters such as Jayanta Mahapatra, the Grandfather of Indian English Poetry and Padamshree Raghu Rai, the doyen of photography, Naseer Ahmed Nasir, Pakistan and Farhat Shazad, Pakistan-USA, both acclaimed Urdu poets.last_img read more

Kuchipudi recital by Babita Phukan

first_imgIt was endearing to see an Assamese girl, Babita Phukan Handique, master the techniques of a South Indian dance form Kuchipudi, as she shone brightly during her first solo recital, at the Triveni Kala Sangam, New Delhi. Babita is the senior disciple of Guru Meenu Thakur, who has devoted her life to Kuchipudi dance. Babita brought in immense energy and immaculate expressions into her dance. Beginning her recital with the Ganesh Stuti, which was penned by noted Sanskrit scholar Dr Jeet Ram Bhatt, Babita excelled in the traditional Kuchipudi items like Jatiswaram, Javali and Tarangam.  Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe musical accompaniment was mesmerizing as the Nattuvangam of Guru Meenu Thakur matched the brilliant work on the Mridangam by Tanjavur Kesavan and the Violin melody of Chembai Srinivas.Vocalist T.J. Rupa and Veena player Shyamala Bhaskar were flawless. The programme was graced by Commando Surender Singh, MLA and Member NDMC. He appreciated the efforts of Guru Meenu Thakur and encouraged the young dancer Babita. Dr Subramaniam, former Director General of Police and eminent Gurus Vanashree Rao and Nalini-Kamalini, were Guests of honour.last_img read more