Round up for the week: Optimisms and Upbeats

some stories which we hope will be important in the long term

Closing in on Cancer The more research we do, the closer we get to dealing with the threat of cancer. Serena Nik Zainal and her team at Cambridge University in the UK are now looking incredible detail at genomes for early warning signs of cancer. It’s a big step forward, as reported by the PA via the Guardian.

Muddy waters It’s a media cliche that England’s rivers have morphed into lifeless sewers since 2010. Maybe so; but it doesn’t have to be like that everywhere, as this optimistic report on the Thames shows. Veronica Edmonds Brown for the Conversation

Womens’ Football-Equality is the goal We’ve been reading Simon Kuper‘s excellent book about Barcelona FC. [1] For understandable historical and cultural reasons, the ladies’ section there is still a bit of a Cinderella. But, worldwide, the womens’ game is coming out of the tunnel and if the author of the next piece is to be believed, one day a ladies Barca eleven will take its proud first step onto the hallowed turf of the Camp Nou. Keith Parry for the Conversation

Could Brain Implants help the disabled? This is one we have dreamed of for a long time: artificial implants which will let apparently hopeless cases walk and talk again. We’ll pass you over at once to Nature Briefings, that most excellent of publications The Big Promise of Brain Reading Implants

Interest is surging in brain–computer interfaces (BCIs): implants that have shown promise for helping paralysed people to move, talk and touch. “I am always stunned at what we are able to do,” says trial participant James Johnson of his ability to control a computer, drive a simulated car, operate a robotic arm and play video games using his BCI. “It’s frigging awesome.” Bringing a BCI to market will, however, entail transforming a bespoke technology, road-tested in only a small number of people, into a product that can be manufactured, implanted and used at scale. Large trials need to show that BCIs can work in non-research settings and demonstrably improve the everyday lives of users — at prices that the market can support.Nature | 15 min read

These thing are what we can achieve to make life better when we put our minds to it. How much more might be possible if we did not waste all our time and money fighting stupid senseless wars over lines on maps,

[1] Barca: the Inside Story of the World’s Greatest Football Club by Simon Cooper Octopus 2022

#pollution #river thames #brain implants #football #womens rights #cancer #genes #dna #rna

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