Separate brain circuits for taste and calories helps explain the power of sugar

first_imgShare on Facebook Sugar’s sweetness and calorie content combine to give it lethal power to destroy diets, many scientists have assumed. However, new study by Yale University researchers says the brain responds to taste and calorie counts in fundamentally different ways. And only one of these responses explains why most New Years’ resolutions have already disappeared under a deluge of Boston Crème Pies.It’s the brain’s desire for calories — not sweetness — that dominates our desire for sugars, according to the study appearing Jan. 25, 2016 in the journal Nature Neuroscience.“It turns out the brain actually has two segregated sets of neurons to process sweetness and energy signals,” said Ivan de Araujo of the John B. Pierce Laboratory and senior author of the study. “If the brain is given the choice between pleasant taste and no energy, or unpleasant taste and energy, the brain picks energy.” Share on Twitter Pinterest LinkedIncenter_img Share Email Both sweet taste and nutrient value register in the striatum, an ancient region of the brain involved in processing rewards. Humans have a sweet tooth as one way to ensure we eat enough to give our large brains enough calories to operate at peak efficiency. However, the Yale team studying the brains of mice showed that signals for taste and nutrients are processed in two separate areas of the striatum, the ventral and dorsal, respectively. Signals about the value of taste are processed in the ventral striatum while nutritional value was processed in the dorsal striatum. The dorsal striatum remained responsive to energy even when calories fed to mice were paired with a very aversive taste.The researchers then asked which signal had more control over eating behavior. Mice fed both sugar with sweet taste but no calories or sugar that contained calories but was altered to taste horribly preferred the sugar with energy. When neurons in dorsal striatum were activated by light a technique called optogenetics, mice also ate copious amounts of bad-tasting sugar.“The sugar-responsive circuitry in the brain is therefore hardwired to prioritize calorie seeking over taste quality,” de Iraujo said.The authors hope findings help spur new strategies aiming at curbing excess sugar intake.last_img read more

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NEWS SCAN: Cholera in Haiti, Listeria kills two, MRSA variant

first_imgJun 3, 2011Cholera cases spike in Haiti’s capitalHaiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, is experience a surge of new cholera infections, according to aid groups working in the area. An official from Oxfam, an international confederation of 14 organizations, said yesterday that the impact of the disease on the city’s Carrefour area is currently worse than during the height of the country’s outbreak in November 2010. Mimy Muisa Kambere said in a statement that the area is registering 300 new cases a day, compared with 900 per week earlier in the outbreak. However, she added that the death rate is lower than before, because people are getting treatment faster.Jun 2 Oxfam statementIn a related development, the American Red Cross said today that it is reopening a treatment center in Carrefour to handle the spike in cholera cases in and around Port-au-Prince. In a statement, the group said it was stepping up other outbreak response efforts as Haiti enters its rainy season. It is deploying teams of health educators to cholera hot spots and is sending text messages to people in high-risk areas to notify them about treatment center locations and share cholera prevention tips.Two die of Listeria in DenverThree Listeria infections, two of them fatal, are being investigated in Denver, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) announced yesterday. Those who died were a man in his 30s and a woman in her 60s. All three cases involve people of Hispanic heritage, the CDPHE said. The source of the cases was unknown and under investigation. Alicia Cronquist, a CDPHE epidemiologist, urged the public to take precautions to avoid Listeria, including avoiding soft cheeses unless they are made with pasteurized milk, hot dogs and deli meats unless reheated to 165ºF, refrigerated pate or meat spreads, and refrigerated seafood. Those at high risk include people with weakened immune systems, pregnant women, and those older than 60, she noted. Colorado has only about 10 cases of listeriosis per year on average, the statement said.Research groups detail new MRSA variantTwo research groups have identified a new variant of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), according to two studies that appeared yesterday and today in different medical journals. One group reported finding the new type in patients in Irish hospitals, and their study appeared yesterday in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, published by the American Society for Microbiology (ASM). Another group detected the strain’s emergence in human and cow populations in the United Kingdom and Denmark and detailed its results in Lancet Infectious Diseases. The new strain isn’t identified as MRSA by current lab tests, which has implications for clinical diagnosis and treatment. Irish and German researchers used high-throughput DNA microarray screening to identify the new strain, which belongs to a genetic lineage clonal complex seen only previously in cows and other animals, according to an ASM press release. While preparing their study for press, the researchers learned that a UK group had identified a bovine MRSA strain with a nearly identical genetic pattern that had emerged in both bovine and human populations in the United Kingdom and Denmark. They identified the MRSA strain in bulk milk, and they also found it when they looked for the strain in veterinary and human MRSA reference lab collections. They say the findings suggest that cows may be reservoirs for human MRSA.Jun 2 Antimicrob Agents Chemother abstractJun 3 Lancet Infect Dis abstractlast_img read more

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Topper Girls Golf 2020 Season Gets Underway

first_imgThe Mower sisters, Muira and Gabriela go head-to-head on the putting practice green. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com Coach Susan Hammock helps new players select a set of clubs, which are sized to fit each player.  Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com Returning players wait their turn to the practice putting green. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com Coach Tim Hammock works with new players at the chipping and putting green, demonstrating the proper technique for holding a club and how to chip the ball onto the green. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.comcenter_img Coach Susan Hammock works with Nathalia Licon on grip and alignment for chipping the ball. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com Finally, the Los Alamos High School sports season is ‘kinda’ getting underway. Volleyball, boys golf, girls golf and cross country have the go-a-head to start practice with competition beginning in October, the preset plan. Girls Coach Tim Hammock checks his team into practice Friday afternoon at the Los Alamos County Golf Course, following social distancing guidelines. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.comlast_img read more

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How To Dine And Prosper At HIFF

first_imgIf you are here for the Hamptons International Film Festival, chances are you are staying in or near East Hampton Village.It is, to be sure, one of the most quaint, historic villages around. But it can be quirky, especially to a stranger. Know this: You’ll be looking for places to get some grub between movies, and that means in and out in a hurry, and portable.Luckily, some of these places have been around as long as HIFF. They know what you need.The unquestioned epicenter of all things HIFF related is John Papas Café (631-324-5400). It’s also where the biggest stars and the hottest names attending the film festival will almost surely go. Papas is also cool because breakfast can be had all day. Alec, Jerry (Seinfeld, that is), Sarah Jessica Parker, and many more stars are in there all year long.Our faves? Challah bread French toast, chicken souvlaki (all the Greek dishes are good), and the early dinner specials — try the prime rib, a steal at around $23.You can’t miss Citarella (631-283-6600), it is virtually next door to the United Artists multiplex on Main Street. Citarella used to be primarily for take-out, but the café inside (breakfast and lunch only) is attracting crowds nowadays, possibly because there is a good selection of sushi and maybe, just maybe, because they make the best omelets in town.Some HIFF attendees don’t realize we have a real pizzeria right in East Hampton Village that is as good as any Brooklyn has to offer. It’s Fierro’s (631-324-5751), right across the alley from Waldbaum’s on Newtown Lane. They are pros — they’ll get you in and out quickly, yet everything is made fresh. Hint: You can also buy candy for the movie there and save a bundle, especially if the kids are with you.There is a terrific variety of slices or whole pies, hot and cold heroes, and a lot of stuff you wouldn’t expect, like salads and wraps, and even paninis. There are tables inside, or get it to go. They also have those neat little bottles of Chianti you can smuggle into the theater.Across the street, hidden down the alley next to the Middle School, is an authentic Chinese take-out place, oddly enough named Chinatown (631-324-1999). We love the pupu platter for two and the sweet and sour chicken. There is no place to eat inside but the park is right across the street. They also deliver.Mary’s Marvelous (631-324-1055) on Newtown Lane has all the favorites from the Amagansett store, including delicious home-baked treats and hearty sandwiches and soups for lunch. Eat all the sugary stuff you want, just make sure you put some kale in your smoothie and wear your gym clothes and you’ll convince everyone at the theater you are still diligently working out.Villa Italian Specialties, around the corner from Mary’s, by the train station, makes its signature Italian hero to go, so you can smuggle it into the theater if need be.Parking And LodgingThere is very limited motel space within walking distance of East Hampton village, and you can be quite certain all the rooms are booked. If you are staying anywhere else, like Montauk or Hampton Bays, for example, you’ll need a car.The trick is knowing where to park it. The only sure way to dump your wheels and zone out in the theaters for 14 hours is to locate the long-term parking lot in the village. It’s just north of the train station, just east of the YMCA, and behind Herrick Park to the north. Set your GPS to Maidstone Lane or Pleasant Lane.There is a fee for overnight parking and an automated machine, but it’s reasonable, safe, and secure. HINT: There is a walking path going right through the park and into the Park Place parking lot behind Main Street.Public BathroomsIf you are in the village all day, be advised merchants frown upon freeloaders looking to use the facilities. So, unless you are willing to buy an $850 puce mohair V-neck, hear me now and believe me later: There is exactly one public bathroom, and it is in the Reutershan parking lot behind Main Street, west of Newtown Lane, on the north side near the tennis courts.The movie theater itself is the next best bet. Tip: Use the facility and then buy the popcorn. Just sayin’. Sharelast_img read more

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LSB’s £20m is a drop in the ocean, says Kenny

first_imgThe £20m set-up costs of the Legal Services Board and Office for Legal Complaints to be paid for by the sector ‘is a not a real issue’, according to LSB chief executive Chris Kenny. Speaking to the Gazette, Kenny (pictured) said that, against the 2006 Office for National Statistics estimate that the legal sector generates £23bn to the economy, £20m demanded from the eight approved regulators is ‘not enormous’. An initial £15.1m, of the £19.9 m, is due by 28 February 2010, with an LSB consultation document recommending that the Law Society, as an approved regulator, pay 90%. A consultation on these proposals ends on 2 July. Kenny said: ‘We worked out the cost of the LSB and it worked out as £33 per [authorised] person. It is not the kind of cost that will put a firm into bankruptcy. ‘We are in a position of setting a levy and we will send eight bills each year. The individual regulator can decide how to proportionate it. We are a multiplicity of mechanisms. It will be for the approved regulators to decide for themselves.’ The new levy comes at time when the Law Society is struggling to keep future compensation fund and practising certificate fees down. At a meeting of the Law Society council last week, Society chief executive Des Hudson said ‘major issues’ will surround the introduction of the OLC, which will take over from the Legal Services Complaints next year, as there is likely to be some overlap that will add cost. He warned members: ‘How do we deliver cost effectiveness? It is a critical issue.’last_img read more

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Schenker reorganises

first_imgThe most important changes will include consolidating the Air and Ocean Freight and Land Transport Board Divisions to create a new division named Freight (COO), which will be headed by Ewald Kaiser, currently a member of the Management Board For Land Transport.The company says that the aim is to tie these three product areas closer together to quickly improve integrated transport products and services and make better use of growth potential.A new organisational unit named Global Land Transport will also be created within this board division and will standardise and promote the development of land transport outside Europe.A new division called Commercial DB Schenker (CCO) and Contract Logistics, headed by Tom Schmitt, will be created. For the first time, Key Account Management/Sales and Marketing will be interconnected at the Management Board level.A personnel change has also been made at Schenker AG’s largest business region. On 1 December 2016, Reiner Heiken (54) assumed the role of ceo of Region Europe, replacing Ewald Kaiser in this function. Heiken served most recently as chairman of the Management Board at Kühne & Nagel in Hamburg.www.dbschenker.comlast_img read more

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BSB refuses to back down on October exams

first_imgThe Bar Standards Board has refused to reverse its decision to hold resits next month, despite the fact that students will have to retake the assessments before knowing their results.In a letter to bar school students, the BSB it ‘must retain the academic rigour of these examinations – even in these difficult and extraordinary times and even when that means extra work for students, for course providers, and for the BSB’.It added that a waiver is ‘not an option now or in the future’ and that exams cannot be conducted orally, as suggested by some members of the profession. Students had until yesterday to register to take the centralised Bar Professional Training Course exams in professional ethics and civil and criminal litigations, which will be traditional pen and paper assessments, as opposed to online ones. They have to decide whether to resit the exams before knowing the results of their August assessments which were plagued with technical faults. The BSB told the Gazette that the August exam results could not be released sooner for quality assurance reasons.As the government threatens to introduce more coronavirus restrictions, students have also warned that it may be impossible to sit pen and paper exams next month due to social distancing rules.last_img read more

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Ferrocarril Central PPP contract winner confirmed

first_imgURUGUAY: The national court of auditors has given the go-ahead for the government to formally award the Ferrocarril Central public-private partnership contract to the Via Central consortium. The contract covers the design, financing, construction works and maintenance for 22 years of the 273 km main line running north from Montevideo to Paso de los Toros. This will include double tracking, work to raise axleloads to 22·5 tonnes and the maximum speed for freight trains to 80 km/h, grade separation and the construction of sections of new alignment. It also includes the construction of branches to Montevideo docks and a planned UPM pulp mill on the south bank of the Rio Negro. Work is scheduled to get underway in 2019.The Ministry of Transport & Public Works had received three bids for the contract:Via Central consortium: Saceem, Berkes, Sacyr, NGE;Via Libre consortium led by Acciona Construcciones;C-Mec and SDHS of China.The Chinese consortium dropped out in 2017 after the government decided it had not met the tendering conditions. Via Central was named preferred bidder in September, but Via Libre appealed against the decision.· The Ferrocarril Central project was described in detail in the November 2018 issue of Railway Gazette International magazine, which subscribers can access in the digital archive.last_img read more

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South Sudan’s army renamed ‘South Sudan Defense Force ‘

first_imgSudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) soldiers march during the Independence Day ceremony in Juba July 9, 2011. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) soldiers march during the Independence Day ceremony in Juba July 9, 2011. REUTERS/Goran TomasevicSouth Sudan President Salva Kiir on Monday issued several decrees reinstructing the army, renaming the Sudan’s People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) to ‘South Sudan Defense Force (SSDF).’ country’s local media, Radio Tamazuj reports.The army has also been restructured into three institutions namely; ground force, air force and air defence and navy units. Each institution will be headed by commanders, the report says.According to the presidential decree, the new structure complies with the resolutions of the fifth SPLA Command Council Conference in June 2016, which resolved to structure the army and rename the SPLA.last_img read more

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