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Things I Tell My Mom

Things I Tell My Mom: The Cancer Genome Atlas Project (TCGA): Understanding Glioblastoma

In 2003, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) and researchers around the world celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the discovery of the structure of DNA by Jim Watson and Francis Crick.  I was a graduate student in the Watson School of Biological Science at CSHL, named after James Watson who was the chancellor of the CSHL, and in 2003, I participated in (and planned!) some of the 50th anniversary events. Coinciding with this celebration was a meeting about DNA that brought world-renowned scientists and Nobel Prize winners from around the world to CSHL to celebrate how much had been accomplished in 50 years (including sequencing the human genome) and to look to the future for what could be done next. That meeting was the first time I had heard about the Cancer Genome Atlas Project. At this point, the TCGA (as the project was affectionately called) was just a pipe dream - a proposal by the National Cancer Institute and the National Human Genome Research Institute (two institutes in the National Institutes of Health - the NIH).  The idea was to use DNA sequencing and other techniques to understand different types of cancer at the genome level. The goal was to see what changes are happening in these cancer cells that might be exploited to detect or treat these cancers.  I remember that there was a heated debate about whether or not this idea would work. I was actually firmly against it, but now with the luxury of hindsight, the scientific advances of the TCGA seem to be clearly worth the time and cost.

There really is an app for most things in life

Last evening my wife and I attended the Bruce Munro Sonoran Light show exhibit at the Desert Botanical Garden and if you have not been, I highly suggest you try to make it there this week as the show ends Mother’s Day, May 8. We arrived when it was still light so we could walk around the garden and see all the plants in bloom. As we were walking, I overhead a woman asking her companion what the name of a certain plant was. They were unable to name the plant so I offered to help with an app on my phone called Garden Answers which works by taking a picture of the plant, analyzing it for a few seconds and then sending the name and information of the plant back to my phone. The gentleman with her was amazed and even said, “I thought I had seen it all! I cannot believe there is an app for naming a plant.” It got me thinking about all the incredible applications or apps that are created to help people in their everyday lives and how we can all benefit from these.

Dog scents and sensibilities

We play a lot of nose work games at our dog school, Edu-Care for Dogs, and the dogs love it. While almost everyone realizes that a dog’s ability to smell is far superior to ours, what many people may not be aware of is that using their nose to pinpoint the location of different objects requires a great deal of mental focus. After an hour of tracking games, the dog “students” are exhausted — both physically and mentally.

Mom, Interrupted

Mom Interrupted: In the end, this might be the smartest thing I’ll do this year

When I turned 50, I knew all the things I was supposed to do: drive slow in the fast lane on the Maricopa, start pestering my kids for grandchildren, and add a colonoscopy to my roster of regular tests, because when you’re 50 years old you catapult into The Era of Doctors Rooting Around Looking for Something Wrong, and a colonoscopy is, appropriately enough, the be-all-end-all of rooting around.

Living on a mat and a sheet: Phoenix overflow shelters to close in October

Dorothy Martinez ended up in jail for about three weeks for stealing a Dr. Pepper and sushi from a grocery store deli. She was hungry. She cou…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 2:50 am @ http://azcapitoltimes.com/news/2016/06/24/living-o…

Take care when hiking in Arizona heat

By Jiahui Jia | Cronkite News PHOENIX — It was 9 a.m. and the temperature had already reached 100 degrees. Instead of enjoying his cool, air-c…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 2:51 am @ http://cronkitenews.azpbs.org/2016/06/24/hiking-du…

BikeMaps.org uses “citizen science” to improve the urban cycling experience

It was a (relatively benign) altercation with an aggressive motorist while pedaling to work in early 2014 that motivated Dr. Trisalyn Nelson t…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 2:20 am @ http://dailyhive.com/vancouver/bikemaps-org-uses-c…

Man falls from SR 51 pedestrian bridge onto freeway after fleeing crash scene

PHOENIX - Phoenix police say a passenger who ran from a crash scene later fell off a pedestrian bridge near Union Hills Road onto the SR 51 la…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 2:18 am @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/nor…

Arizona says it has no more drugs left to carry out death penalty executions

Get short URL The US state of Arizona says it doesn’t have any more lethal drugs left to carry out executions after a lawsuit was filed by sev…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 1:51 am @ https://www.rt.com/usa/348339-drugs-death-penalty-arizona/

Mesa neighbors fed up over dog left in heat

MESA, AZ - Neighbors in an east Mesa neighborhood staged a protest Friday night, angry with a homeowner who keeps a dog outside on a chain, wi…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 1:30 am @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-southeast-valley/…

Brexit: Indian diaspora fears for jobs

Driving in Canada Canada - a home away from home Canada, it's time to change! Living with a disability in Indo-Canadian society The empire str…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 1:19 am @ http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Brexit…

Chandler feral cats update: Groups promise to help trap, spay and neuter animals in neighborhood

CHANDLER, AZ - A Chandler neighborhood overrun with stray cats, near Kyrene and Chandler Boulevard, is about to get some help thanks to severa…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 1:00 am @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-southeast-valley/…


Uncertainty Over Britain’s Future Felt In Arizona

Published: Friday, June 24, 2016 - 5:24pmUpdated: Friday, June 24, 2016 - 6:27pm downloadThe United Kingdom is Arizona’s 4th largest trading p…

Published: June 26, 2016 - 12:49 am @ http://kjzz.org/content/325457/uncertainty-over-br…

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