Rightleft handedness of snails changed in the lab

first_img Snail shell spirals are often used as examples of chirality. The direction of the spiral is important because the sexual organs are twisted, which makes it difficult for snails to mate unless their handedness matches. Chirality is inherited from the mother and is therefore predictable. The study found snails that were genetically programmed to have right-handed spirals could be induced to have left spirals, and vice-versa.The research team, led by Dr Reiko Kuroda of the University of Tokyo, used tiny glass rods to physically invert the direction of four of the eight cells in over 100 embryos of the giant pond snail Lymnaea Stagnalis. When the snails matured to adulthood, around 78% had the opposite handedness, and the shell spiraled in the opposite direction to that expected. The snails were otherwise normal, fertile and healthy.The nodal signaling pathway was also affected, with the expression patterns of the nodal gene that control it being reversed. The nodal signaling pathway is the system that determines handedness and laterality in embryos in many species. The specific gene that determines chirality has not yet been identified.The study found the altered handedness was not inherited by subsequent generations of snails, which shows the genetic programming passed on to offspring takes precedence over the effects of the manual manipulations. Dr Kuroda said the same effects were not found in two or four cell stages. She said that pinpointing the stage of onset of handedness at the eight cell stage may help in studies of chirality in more complex organisms.Stuart Newman of the New York Medical College said the discovery that changes to cells at an early stage can make large changes to the body may have implications in evolutionary studies, since evolution can proceed in large jumps as well as in tiny increments.The report was published in the online edition of Nature on 25 November.More information: Chiral blastomere arrangement dictates zygotic left-right asymmetry pathway in snails, Nature advance online publication 25 November 2009, doi:10.1038/nature08597© 2009 PhysOrg.com Explore further (PhysOrg.com) — Like most animals, snails have either left- or right-handed asymmetry (chirality), both internally and externally, and the handedness is hereditary. A new study has for the first time found that handedness, as seen in the direction of a snail shell spiral, can be reversed by manual manipulation of eight cell stage embryos, which is much earlier than previously thought. Snails and humans use same genes to tell right from left Lymnaea stagnalis. Image: Wikimedia Commons Citation: Right/left handedness of snails changed in the lab (2009, November 30) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-11-rightleft-handedness-snails-lab.html 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

Scientists discover first multicellular life that doesnt need oxygen

first_imgLight microscopy image of the undescribed species of Spinoloricus, stained with Rose Bengal. The scale bar is 50 micrometers. Image credit: Danovaro, et al. “The results reported here support the hypothesis that the loriciferans inhabiting the anoxic sediments of the L’Atalante basin have developed an obligate anaerobic metabolism and specific adaptations to live without oxygen,” the researchers conclude. “Although the evolutionary/adaptative mechanisms leading to the colonization of such extreme environments by these metazoans remain an enigma, this discovery opens new perspectives for the study of metazoan life in habitats lacking molecular oxygen.”The work is financially supported by the EU within the framework of the HERMES (Hot Spot Ecosystem Research on the Margins of European Seas) and HERMIONE (Hotspot Ecosystem Research and Man’s Impact On European Seas) projects. More information: Roberto Danovaro, et al. “The first metazoa living in permanently anoxic conditions.” BMC Biology 2010, 8:30 doi:10.1186/1741-7007-8-30 Because previous studies have reported the presence of cadaverous metazoans that had sunk to anoxic deep-sea sediments in the Black Sea, the researchers here stained the newly collected specimens with Rose Bengal, a protein binding stain that colors living organisms with a much greater intensity than deceased organisms, demonstrating that the new species were indeed alive. In addition, the scientists observed specimens of the undescribed species of both genera Spinoloricus and Rugiloricus that had a large oocyte in their ovary, which showed a nucleus containing a nucleolus, providing evidence of reproduction. The discovery of the new species, which live buried in sediment under the Mediterranean seafloor, is significant in that it marks the first observation of multicellular organisms, or metazoans, that spend their entire lifecycle under permanently anoxic conditions. A few metazoans have been known to tolerate anoxic conditions, but only for limited periods of time.The team of Italian and Danish researchers, Roberto Danovaro, et al., that discovered the new life forms has identified the creatures as belonging to the animal phylum Loricifera, the most recently described animal phylum. Loriciferans, which have a length of less than one millimeter, typically live in sediment. The three new organisms belong to different genera (Spinoloricus, Rugiloricus, and Pliciloricus), although their species have not yet been named. Despite belonging to previously known taxonomic groups, the new species possess some radical differences compared with other metazoans. Most significantly, the new species do not have mitochondria, the cellular organelles that use oxygen and sugar to generate the cell’s energy. Instead, the new loriciferans have organelles that resemble hydrogenosomes, which are used by some single-celled eukaryotes to generate energy without oxygen. However, this is the first time that these organelles have been observed in multicellular organisms. Previous research has indicated that hydrogenosomes may have evolved from mitochondria, while other research suggests they evolved independently.To find the new species, the researchers carried out three oceanographic expeditions from 1998 to 2008 to search for life in the extreme environments located more than 3,000 meters (about two miles) under the Mediterranean Sea. The researchers focused on an area called the L’Atalante basin, which is located off the southern coast of Greece. As the scientists explain, this type of “deep hypersaline anoxic basin” was created by the flooding of mineral sediments from 5.5 million years ago. For the past 50,000 years, the basin has possessed a dense hypersaline brine layer up to 60 meters thick. The brine serves as a physical barrier that prohibits oxygen exchange between the water and sediment, making the basin completely oxygen-free. In addition, the basin is rich in methane and hydrogen sulphide, and is also home to a diverse assembly of prokaryotes that have adapted to these conditions. LM image of the undescribed species of Spinoloricus stained with Rose Bengal showing the presence of an oocyte. Image credit: Roberto Danovaro. Citation: Scientists discover first multicellular life that doesn’t need oxygen (2010, April 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-04-scientists-multicellular-life-doesnt-oxygen.htmlcenter_img Explore further (PhysOrg.com) — Oxygen may not be the staple of modern complex life that scientists once thought. Until now, the only life forms known to live exclusively in anoxic conditions were viruses, bacteria and Archaea. But in a new study, scientists have discovered three new multicellular marine species that appear to have never lived in aerobic conditions, and never metabolized oxygen. © 2010 PhysOrg.com Researchers discover new microbial life in the Mediterranean 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

US Air Force connects 1760 PlayStation 3s to build supercomputer

first_img © 2010 Phys.org More information: via: Gamasutra and The Plain Dealer Explore further (Phys.org)—About the 33rd largest supercomputer in the world right now is the US Air Force Research Laboratory’s (AFRL) newest system, which has a core made of 1,760 Sony PlayStation 3 (PS3) consoles. In addition to its large capacity, the so-called “Condor Cluster” is capable of performing 500 trillion floating point operations per second (TFLOPS), making it the fastest interactive computer in the entire US Defense Department. The Condor Cluster consists of 1,760 Sony PlayStation 3’s, and is the US Department of Defense’s fastest interactive computer. Image credit: US Department of Defense. IBM To Build Supercomputer For U.S. Government Citation: US Air Force connects 1,760 PlayStation 3’s to build supercomputer (2010, December 2) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-12-air-playstation-3s-supercomputer.html The supercomputer, which is located in Rome, New York, was formally presented yesterday at a ribbon-cutting ceremony. It will be used by Air Force centers across the country for tasks such as radar enhancement, pattern recognition, satellite imagery processing, and artificial intelligence research. Its speed allows it to analyze ultra-high-resolution images very quickly – at a rate of billions of pixels per minute – to greatly reduce the amount of time required. Due in part to the video game consoles’ cutting-edge graphics capabilities, the supercomputer also has improved algorithms that can better identify blurred flying objects in space than previous computers could. The Condor Cluster project began four years ago, when PlayStation consoles cost about $400 each. At the same time, comparable technology would have cost about $10,000 per unit. Overall, the PS3s for the supercomputer’s core cost about $2 million. According to AFRL Director of High Power Computing Mark Barnell, that cost is about 5-10% of the cost of an equivalent system built with off-the-shelf computer parts.Another advantage of the PS3-based supercomputer is its energy efficiency: it consumes just 10% of the power of comparable supercomputers. In addition to the PS3s, the supercomputer also includes 168 separate graphical processing units and 84 coordinating servers to direct traffic within the system. The PS3s are the older, larger variety, since the newer slim models don’t allow for the installation of Linux. 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

New fundamental limitation restricts position accuracy of quantum objects

first_img Explore further Copyright 2010 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Quantum no-hiding theorem experimentally confirmed for first time 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. This expectation has been confirmed and made precise by the Wigner-Araki-Yanase (WAY) theorem, which was developed in the early 1960s. In a new study, researchers have extended this theorem by showing that the conservation of the total momentum of a quantum object and measuring apparatus places a fundamental limit on how accurately the object’s position can be measured.Professor Paul Busch and Ph.D. student Leon Loveridge, mathematical physicists at the University of York, UK, have published their study on this previously unknown fundamental limitation in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.The scope of the original WAY theorem was limited in that its proof only applied to a restricted class of physical variables and conserved quantities. Ever since the discovery of the theorem, researchers have wondered whether it might extend to the important case of the position of a quantum particle. In 1991, Japanese physicist Masanao Ozawa, then at Harvard University, developed a model which seemed to suggest that the position can be measured with arbitrary accuracy and repeatability using an interaction that leaves the total momentum of the quantum object and apparatus conserved.In the new study, Busch and Loveridge have analyzed Ozawa’s model and found that, contrary to Ozawa’s conclusion, momentum conservation does in fact limit the accuracy and repeatability of position measurements: they have shown that good accuracy and repeatability of a position measurement can only be achieved by using a sufficiently large apparatus. The researchers also developed an alternative model that identifies a particular condition underlying the WAY theorem: the so-called Yanase condition, which stipulates the compatibility of the indicator variable of the apparatus with the conserved quantity. This alternative model shows that, if it were allowed to disregard and violate the Yanase condition, position measurements could be done with arbitrary accuracy, even with a small apparatus. However, if one tries to exploit this escape route from the WAY theorem, one is only faced by the puzzling prospect of the same limitation reappearing for the apparatus indicator variable.“This is perhaps surprising for a number of reasons,” Loveridge told PhysOrg.com. “Firstly, it is exponentially more accurate than an old model of von Neumann which did not obey the conservation of momentum – one might have thought that by including the conservation law things should get worse. Secondly, in the discrete and bounded case one has to give up repeatability and the Yanase condition for accurate measurements with no size constraint. In this model, we can still have arbitrarily good accuracy and repeatability, without any constraint on the size.”As Busch and Loveridge explain, understanding these kinds of quantum limitations on measurements is important for developing a more complete description of physical reality. In addition to being of theoretical interest, such limitations must also be taken into account in the engineering of single quantum objects.“On a fundamental level, it is important to understand any physical theory as thoroughly as possible, and in turn to understand how nature behaves or at least manifests itself through observation,” Busch said. “Some would say that this is the primary goal of scientific investigation. On a more practical level, as discussed in our paper, there are potential ramifications for the processing of (quantum) information in which the information is encoded in a continuous variable.”center_img (PhysOrg.com) — Although the uncertainty principle is probably the most well-known example of a fundamental limitation of measurement precision in quantum mechanics, it is not the only one. In fact, every physical system is characterized by a number of variables that do not change their values as the system evolves over time; such variables are called conserved quantities and they are said to obey a conservation law. The fact that some quantities cannot change their values suggests that there might be restrictions on the possible ways in which a measurement device can interact with a quantum object and extract information from it. Citation: New fundamental limitation restricts position accuracy of quantum objects (2011, March 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-03-fundamental-limitation-restricts-position-accuracy.html More information: Paul Busch and Leon Loveridge. “Position Measurements Obeying Momentum Conservation.” Physical Review Letters 106, 110406 (2011). DOI:10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.110406last_img read more

Japanese company builds 96inch 4K x 2K LCD panel

first_img Explore further Citation: Japanese company builds 9.6-inch 4K x 2K LCD panel (2012, October 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-10-japanese-company-inch-4k-2k.html © 2012 Phys.org The current high-definition standard for television, known as HDTV, is based on a 2K resolution and has saturated the market to the extent that new higher-resolution standards have been proposed. Currently, the leading contenders are 4K and 8K, both proposed by NHK Science & Technology Research Laboratories as defined by the International Telecommunication Union. Thus far, devices built with such technology are still in the research and development phase. However, the 8K version has been approved by the UN’s communication standards setting agency, which paved the way for NHK to showcase examples of broadcast television based on this technology at the recent summer Olympic Games.More recently, Sony began selling an 84-inch television that adheres to the 4K standard. Larger television sets show the most improvements over HDTV when implementing the new standard, as more pixels result in a sharper image when viewed from a distance. More pixels on a small screen, on the other hand, have been described as unnecessary due to the human eye’s inability to discern the difference in size of the ultra-small pixels. In its announcement describing the new ultra-high-definition panel, Ortus says the focus will be on selling the new screen to developers who require high resolution in a small device, such as those used for video editing, medical equipment, or broadcasting monitors.To build this small panel with such a large number of pixels, Ortus says it used special liquid crystal alignment technology based on the HAST [Hyper Amorphous Silicon TFT (Thin Film Transistor)] standard in its microfabrication process: a technology the company developed itself. In addition to its high resolution, the company says the panel has a 160 horizontal-and-vertical degree viewing angle.The new panel is to be on display at the electronica 2012 trade fair being held in Munich next month. The worlds smallest 3D HD display (Phys.org)—Japanese firm Ortus Technology Co., Ltd. has revealed its development of what the company is calling the world’s smallest LCD display panel that meets the 4K standard. At just 9.6 inches with a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels, the new display will be small enough for use in handheld devices. 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

Japanese mobile provider develops exercise breathalyzer device to test for fat burning

first_img © 2013 Phys.org Credit: Yuki Yamada Citation: Japanese mobile provider develops exercise breathalyzer device to test for fat burning (2013, August 12) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-08-japanese-mobile-breathalyzer-device-fat.html Journal information: Journal of Breath Research Pocket-sized sensor gives instant fat burning updates More information: A prototype portable breath acetone analyzer for monitoring fat loss, Tsuguyoshi Toyooka et al 2013 J. Breath Res. 7 036005 DOI: 10.1088/1752-7155/7/3/036005AbstractAcetone contained in our exhaled breath is a metabolic product of the breakdown of body fat and is expected to be a good indicator of fat-burning. Typically, gas chromatography or mass spectrometry are used to measure low-concentration compounds in breath but such large instruments are not suitable for daily use by diet-conscious people. Here, we prototype a portable breath acetone analyzer that has two types of semiconductor-based gas sensors with different sensitivity characteristics, enabling the acetone concentration to be calculated while taking into account the presence of ethanol, hydrogen, and humidity. To investigate the accuracy of our prototype and its application in diet support, experiments were conducted on healthy adult volunteers. Breath acetone concentrations obtained from our prototype and from gas chromatography showed a strong correlation throughout the experiments. Moreover, body fat in subjects with a controlled caloric intake and taking exercise decreased significantly, whereas breath acetone concentrations in those subjects increased significantly. These results prove that our prototype is practical and useful for self-monitoring of fat-burning at home or outside. Our prototype will help to prevent and alleviate obesity and diabetes.via MIT Tech Reviewcenter_img Research has shown that one of the difficulties people encounter when attempting to lose weight is the lack of real-time feedback. Weight loss effort results don’t typically show up for days, or even weeks, leaving those dieting and/or exercising in limbo, wondering if what they are doing is the right approach. To address such concerns, researchers with Docomo have been studying ways to provide dieters with more immediate feedback. One way they’ve found, is by measuring the amount of acetone in the breath.When fat is burned in the body, one of the end products is acetone—it winds up in the blood which makes its way to the lungs and is expelled when a person breathes out. Up till now, measuring how much acetone is in the breath required expensive and bulky lab equipment. Docomo appears to have solved both problems—its device is roughly the same size as a smartphone. A user places a tube in the mouth and blows—the device measures the amount of acetone in the breath and displays a Fat Burning graphic on a smartphone screen along with an encouraging message.Before announcing the product, Docomo conducted research where overweight volunteers were enlisted to discern how well the device worked. Some volunteers were asked to perform a small amount of exercise over a period of days, another group was asked to both exercise and reduce their caloric intake. A control group that neither reduced calories nor exercised was also included. The researchers found that the breathalyzer performed nearly as accurately as a standard chromatograph at measuring acetone levels. During the course of the research, the volunteers were also monitored for changes in body weight—those that exercised or exercised and ate less lost weight—those in the control group did not, of course.The breathalyzer is one of a growing list of medical devices designed to work with smart phones, indicating a growing trend towards using such devices for serious applications, rather than for entertainment. Explore further (Phys.org) —NTT Docomo, Japan’s largest mobile-phone provider has developed a new smart phone peripheral that lets a person know if they are burning fat by analyzing their breath. To emphasize that the device is not a gimmick, researchers with the company conducted experiments testing how well the device worked compared with high-grade lab equipment. They have had the results of their study published in Journal of Breath Research. 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

Going down South

first_imgCarnatic music is part of an unbroken tradition of classical music in Tamil Nadu.  In order to revive its legacy, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts and Shanmukhananda Sangeetha Sabha are up with Chithirai Music And Dance Festival. The three-day festival aims to showcase a wide range of dance performances and vocals in Tamil by traditional and contemporary composers.S Sowmya, Kunnakkudi Balamurali Krishna and Priya Venkataraman will be dedicating the festival to other Tamil composers.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Sowmya will be dedicating her performance to M M Dandapani Desikar, S Ramanathan Koteeswara Iyer, Arunachala Kavi, Ambujam Krishna, Periasami Thooran, Thevaram and Tiruppavai.Krishna  will be presenting his vocals dedicated to T M Thiagarajan, Madurai T.Srinivasan, Papanasam Sivan, Nilakanta Sivan, Gopalakrishna Bharath, Kulasekara Alwar, Arunagirinathar and Ramalinga Vallalar.Venkataraman, known for her adherence to the classical style of traditional Bharatanatyam will be dedicating her performance to Thirunyana Sambandar, Tanjore Quartette,Subramanya Bharathi, Madurai Kavi, C.Rajagopalachari and Madurai T.Srinivasan.When: 18-20 AprilWhere:  IGNCA Auditorium, CV Mess Janpathlast_img read more

GTA to allot land right papers to forest villagers

first_imgDarjeeling: The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) has initiated the process for allotting land right documents (patta) to forest villagers residing in the GTA area. “In the first phase, we will hand over land documents to 168 forest villagers in Darjeeling and Kalimpong district” stated Binay Tamang, Chairman, Board of Administrators, GTA.Tamang was addressing media persons after a meeting between the GTA and state government officials at Lal Kothi, the GTA Secretariat in Darjeeling on Friday. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe meeting was attended by district administration including the District Magistrates of Darjeeling and Kalimpong, Land and land Reforms officials; Forest Department and GTA officials. “The meeting discussed in depth the process of handing over land right documents to forest villagers,” stated Tamang.Incidentally, Forest Rights Act came into force in the country in 2006. Despite being implemented in different districts of the State, it is yet to be implemented in the GTA area. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killed”This is owing to the fact that the Panchayat system has been nearly defunct since 2005 owing to some constitutional complications. However, the GTA will be implementing the Forest Rights Act and handing over land right documents to forest villagers, which is the first step in this direction,” added Tamang.The district administration will soon hold meetings with forest villagers. “The forest villagers will be sensitised on how to apply for the land documents along with the documents they need to submit with their applications. They have to apply within three months,” stated Tamang.last_img read more

Drones to detect mosquito larvae on roofs of highrises

first_imgKolkata: The state Urban Development and Municipal Affairs department is mulling to use drones for detecting mosquito larvae particularly at roofs of high-rise buildings in the urban local bodies. A preliminary demonstration about the effectiveness of using the technology was undertaken at Ward 82 in South Kolkata on Friday afternoon. State Municipal Affairs minister Firhad Hakim and the department’s Principal Secretary Subrata Gupta was present at the time of the exercise. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe drone was used to capture footages of roofs of some high-rises to find out whether any garbage or water accumulation is there. “We were satisfied with the footage captured by the drone and suggested certain improvement in the software so that it can serve our purpose. The private company that has developed the technology made a note of the same and will accordingly work for the same,” a senior official of the Municipal Affairs department said. It may be mentioned that the state government has a database of all the high-rise buildings in the city and its urban areas in the state in terms of their holding numbers. “Our plan is to capture the footage and then connect it with our Geographic Information System (GIS) which will track the problematic building as per its holding number. As soon as we locate the building, we will slap a notice to it for taking up cleanliness with immediacy. We have made it clear to the agency that their technology should meet our requirements,” the official added.last_img read more

Checking your fridge before shopping can curb food waste

first_imgIf you want to contribute towards curbing food waste, something as simple as checking the fridge prior to shopping can have a large impact, suggests a Danish expert on the food sector.Overall, one third of the world’s food is lost or wasted, and this has serious environmental implications while contributing directly to global warming, Jessica Aschemann-Witzel from Aarhus University in Denmark pointed out in an article published in the journal Science. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’“We know more or less the extent of the problem, and what are the causes of food waste – the next step is action, and here research is needed to help identify what is most effective, so that policy makers know what to focus on,” Aschemann-Witzel said. But food waste has different causes in different parts of the world. In relatively poor countries, it is an upstream problem, and most waste takes place in the production phase mostly due to sup-optimal methods of harvesting and transportation. The solution in these cases includes building better infrastructure through transfer of knowledge and technology. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixIn the developed countries, downstream factors are more relevant, and consumer choices are much more important. Up to 30 per cent of household food ends in the bin, often due to factors such as cultural norms that prescribe offering plenty of food to guests, misperceptions about food safety and exaggerated disgust. At the same time, however, there is a widespread feeling that throwing away food is wrong, giving cause for hope. “The fact that consumers and stakeholders alike perceive food waste as obviously unethical makes it a good starting point for individual consumers to become engaged in sustainability,” Aschemann-Witzel said. There is no single solution to the problem of food waste, but a variety of practically feasible steps at the micro-level can go a long way towards ensuring greater sustainability. For example, something as simple as checking the fridge prior to shopping can have a large impact in the aggregate, she noted.In addition, governments can contribute by changing overly strict food safety laws, while producers can introduce innovative packaging solutions that allow the withdrawal of small amounts of food while the rest remains fresh, Aschemann-Witzel noted.Changes designed for the developed world are likely to have an even bigger impact in future, as countries such as Brazil, India and China become more urbanised and dietary preferences change. In such countries, Aschemann-Witzel argued, food waste volumes are likely to increasingly shift to the consumption stage.last_img read more

Lets hair it for mothers

first_imgWhen was the last time you took time out for yourself? No meetings, no commitments, no to-do lists… just pampering yourself and relaxing your heart out in doing something you enjoy — like no one’s watching! If you haven’t as yet, steal some time and head out for a pampering session at The Imperial Hotel in the Capital. The Imperial Salon, that exemplifies the ambiance of an up-market luxury salon, offers the perfect blend of hair styling and beauty treatments that far exceed mere indulgence. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’On the beautiful occasion of Mother’s day last Friday, some lucky working mothers were invited for a pampering session at the Imperial Salon. The salon treated the mothers to lavish rituals such as Kerastase hair treatments, signature facials and foot massages, melting away their tension and leaving them rejuvenated. The Salon boasts of using high quality products, peaceful ambience and super friendly staff. To complete the experience, a royal lunch was organised at Spice Route, one of the most popular Oriental-cuisine restaurants in Delhi. The mothers chit-chatted their heart out while relishing on the sumptuous meal. The day left these mothers with an experience to cherish for life.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixKerastase instant boosterPRODUCT USED:Kerastase Shampoo as per the scalp and hair, Mono Dose and Fuso Dose as per the hair texture.PROCEDURE:(a) Diagnose the scalp with the Hair and Scalp Diagnostic Camera.(b) Cleanse hair with the shampoo as per the scalp.(c) Mix Fuso Dose in Mono Dose.(d) Spray the mixture Section by section at the hair length and emulsify.(e) Rinse well and blast dry.BENEFITS:A perfect accompaniment by giving instant nourishment to regular services such as hair cuts, blow dry and hair colour. DURATION: 15 MinutesSignature Facial Kriya Specific blends to cleanse, uplift, de-stress and enrich with relaxing massage techniques and lymphatic drainage to restore tone and radiance. DURATION: 60 minutesFoot RitualFoot ritual includes treating the reflex points on the foreleg, feet and toes combined with a soothing foot massage for rejuvenation and total relaxation.Duration: 30 minutesPedicureSpeedy pedicure includes filing of nails, removing dead cells from the sole and finishing the ritual with a relaxing massage.DURATION: 45 minuteslast_img read more

Most of Singur land now cultivable Agriculture minister

first_imgKolkata: The site of the mothballed Tata Nano factory is now an emerald canvas with almost the entire land in Singur being made cultivable, state Agriculture minister Asish Banerjee said in the Assembly on Monday.In reply to a question raised by an MLA of the Opposition, Banerjee said around 955.90 acre of land has been made cultivable by the state Agriculture department so far. The farmers are cultivating various crops in those plots and the Agriculture department has taken a series of initiatives for transforming the land into cultivable ones. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeSome parts of the acquired land have been used for laying sewer lines, constructing roads, irrigation canals and the like. The portions of the land where these constriction works have come up, do not belong to the farmers, the minister maintained. Various crops including mustard, masur, Khesari dal, moong, urad, jute along with paddy cultivation are being done in Singur. Weeds and shrubs that developed in various parts of the plots have been removed by the state government. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedIt may be mentioned here that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had assured that the character of the land would be converted at the earliest so that the farmers can again cultivate various crops there. The state government had deployed various government officials and other personnel on a war footing to convert the plots into cultivable ones. Suggestions were also sought from agriculture scientists in this regard. The sand, concrete and stone chips were removed from the area in order to make the plots cultivable. The minister also added that a huge amount of land has become cultivable in the past seven years. In the financial year 2017-18, around 54,770 hectare lands have been made cultivable. Giving statistical details, the Agricultural minister said since 2010-11, around 21,89,349 hectare lands have been made cultivable. He maintained that the cultivable land has increased in Bengal with the various steps taken by the state government. The minister earlier said the state government has ensured proper irrigation facilities and made other necessary arrangements to increase cultivable land in Bengal.last_img read more

Darjeeling gets new weather observatory

first_imgDarjeeling: Darjeeling town has got a new weather observatory. The part-time observatory has been set up on the campus of St. Joseph’sCollege, North Point, Darjeeling, by the Indian Meteorological Department, Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India. “Climate change is a worldwide phenomenon. Darjeeling Hills being an ecological hotspot, climate change has affected both the flora and fauna. The climate that we used to experience a decade ago is not the same as today. However, we do not have the data to substantiate this. We wanted to set up a weather station Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifefor this,” stated Father Dr. Donatus Kujur, Principal of the College. The college has Botany, Zoology and Geography departments. “The data collected from this weather station will benefit these departments. Collection of data using different instruments is also part of the syllabus. The weather station is looked after by students of these departments. They collect the data,” added Father Donatus. Data including temperature, rainfall and wind speed is collected twice a day and sent to IMD, Kolkata. The data is collected at 7 am and 5 pm daily. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed”The IMD department installed the part time observatory at St. Joseph’s College in Darjeeling on December 1. We mainly need the temperature and rainfall data from this observatory,” stated Dr. G K Das, director, IMD, Kolkata. Darjeeling has dubbed the setting up of the weather station as a very positive and praiseworthy endeavor. “The students are getting hands-on experience in data collection and interpretation. In future it can be taken to the next level by making real time data available in public domains,” stated Wing Commander (Retd) Praful Rao of Save the Hills, an NGO working in disaster management, especially the landslide arena. St. Joseph’s College is a Catholic minority coeducational degree and post-graduate college, managed by the Darjeeling Jesuits of North Bengal through St. Joseph’s North Point College Educational Trust. The college section began as a part of St. Joseph’s School, which started its journey in 1888. In 1927, the college section (offering basically the intermediate course) was affiliated to Calcutta University. Later, with the establishment of the University of North Bengal in 1962, the college was affiliated to it.last_img read more

Why do people quit gym by February end

first_imgGym regulars face a “crowd issue” in January. A new year and a new resolution often lead to a new crowd at the gym, and new equipment greets a lot of the new sign-ups too. But less than 10 per cent convert to regular customers, according to a study.CMS India, a not-for-profit headed by surgeon Ramen Goel, commissioned a three-year-long study to evaluate the dropout rate; and why losing weight is such a challenge for so many people.The organisation spoke to over 1,400 gym dropouts in Mumbai and Delhi. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfAt an aggregate level, only 10 per cent of new year sign-ups stay on as regular customers over a year. Of the remaining, about 16 per cent say that they thought they would have time, but realised they didn’t, while 22.4 per cent of them drop out because they cannot get up early in the morning.About 10 per cent of the people admit that they hate some exercises that their instructors make them do as part of their routine.A small number – about six per cent – feel that they want to try swimming or yoga or something else instead of the gym. However, the biggest group, a massive 35.6 per cent, say that they are not seeing any difference in their weight and, hence, are losing motivation. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveSo is lack of willpower not the only reason for the drop-outs after February? “It’s not just the lack of will power,” Goel said.”Internationally, experts agree that 60 per cent of obesity is due to genetic causes. Those who are attending the gym with the sole objective of losing weight, soon realise that they may need other interventions too, that will take their genetic obesity into account.”Goel added, “Sometimes, obese people also feel that they are being watched constantly in the gym. We need to raise awareness that obesity is a complex condition and not just caused by simply eating too much and moving too little. “It is a metabolic, chronic and progressive disease with a significant genetic predisposition. Obesity is a disease that needs treatment, just like diabetes, and exercise is a good habit.”There are other reasons too for quitting the gym.Kevin Samuel, Head Fitness Trainer at Fitso, said, “The body gets adapted to the same workouts being done at the same intensity, so the growth of muscles gets slower.”A goal also plays a role. “The goal you are working towards is achieved… Say, getting fit for marriage or event or preparing for a marathon. If no new goal is set up, there is nothing to look forward to and thus, no motivation is left to train hard.”So, what can be done to retain them? “Gamifying the training is the best way to retain interest in gymming. Create group workouts and build friendly competition among group members,” said Samuel.He also said that variety is the spice that needs to be added to the “curry of gymming”.”Create some interesting routines and workouts to break the monotony and to work on different sets of muscles for the trainee,” he added.Surender Yadav, owner-trainer, SHAPE Perfect fitness Gym, emphasised that body building is not an overnight show.”One needs to stay focused and regular in order to get the desired results. Now the only way to get them … with the machines is to get them the right amount of motivation through a gymholic partner. Right partners not only push you but they guide you well.”last_img read more

Ray changed Soumitras handwriting style during Charulata

first_imgKolkata: Actors change their weight and look to become a character in a movie, but Soumitra Chatterjee had to alter his hand writing style to suit the profile of his character in Satyajit Ray’s 1964 classic Charulata. Ray also explained to him the evolution of Bengali script before shooting of the award-winning film began, Chatterjee, a Dadasaheb Phalke award winner, said. “When Manikda (as Ray was called by his friends) told me I would have to change my hand writing suiting the profile of the character of ‘Amal’ in the film, I was initially taken aback. He said there will be shots of me scribbling and writing on paper. Those will be close shots and hence there remained very little scope for camera tricks,” the actor said at a programme held here recently. Also Read – 3 injured, flight, train services hit as rains lash Bengal”Under his tutelage, I used to buy reams of papers and practise. After several months, I could change my hand writing style. Perhaps I am the only actor in the world to have gone through such an experience,” he said. Chatterjee, who acted in as many as 14 Ray movies, revealed this, when asked about his fondness for sketching and calligraphy at the programme where his first book on paintings and annotations was launched. “Manikda then taught me the evolution of Bengali script. What it had been and what it was now, how the words changed over the years, what was the role of Rabindranath Tagore and later writers in changing Bengali scripts,” said Chatterjee, also a veteran stage performer. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe legendary actor, who turned 84 on Saturday, said he had done more than 300 films in the over five-decade long career, but barring one or two occasions, he did not have any serious argument with any of his directors. “I often wonder when I read about this actor having major show down with that director in newspapers, or hear about such incidents. I wonder why should this happen,” he said. Describing director as the ‘spearhead’ of a film, he said actor and director are collaborators and not rivals. Recalling that at the beginning of his career, he used to research about the possible background of a character he would portray in a film, Chatterjee said: “I still try to understand the surroundings and social and economic standing of any character I portray. In my earlier days I used to prepare the family tree of my character.” Chatterjee, whose book of paintings Chhobi o Chhaya was released on Tuesday, said: “I am not a professional painter. But I had come in close contact with many painters in my student days and used to see paintings in exhibitions.” Inspired by Rabindranath Tagore, whose paintings had encouraged him, Chatterjee said: “I used to be inspired by his history of doodle, I liked the way he sketched figures.last_img read more

3 killed several injured after bus collides with truck

first_imgKolkata: Three persons were killed and many others injured when a bus had a head-on-collision with a truck.The incident took place in Rejinagar area of Murshidabad on late Sunday night. According to police, the victims were returning home after attending a wedding at Jalalpur village in the same district. The bus was carrying the passengers to Mounpara village when a truck coming from the opposite direction hit the bus at Rejinagar. The truck driver fled the spot leaving his vehicle in the area. Some locals heard a loud thud in the night and rushed to the spot. They took part in the rescue operation before police reached the spot. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe villagers brought the injured victims out of the bus and rushed them to a nearby hospital. Eyewitnesses said injured victims were in a traumatised state when they were rescued. After being informed police reached the spot. The incident triggered traffic congestion in the area. Vehicular movement was restored after senior police officers removed the vehicles. It was said that the frontal portions of both the vehicles were damaged due to the impact of the accident. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseIt was learnt that the three injured victims were declared brought dead by the doctors while many others are still undergoing treatment at the hospital. Four injured victims are stated to be critical. Police have started a detailed probe into the incident and are yet to confirm the exact cause that might have led to the accident. According to the preliminary investigation, police suspect that both the vehicles were at a high speed at the time of the accident. The investigating officers are also examining the affected vehicles to find out the nature of the accident. Raids are being conducted to nab the accused driver.last_img read more

Rain to play spoilsport on Saraswati Puja day

first_imgKolkata: The City of Joy will receive light spells of rain on the day of Saraswati Puja due to western disturbances, predicted the Alipore Meteorological Department on Thursday.”There is a possibility of light rainfall in Kolkata on Saraswati Puja. Due to western disturbances, all the districts of north Bengal will also receive some amount of rainfall which will reduce the temperature in the area,” said Sanjib Bandyopadhyay, deputy director general of Regional Meteorological Centre in Alipore. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseHe further stated that apart from rainfall occurring in certain areas of Sikkim and Darjeeling, there is also a possibility of snowfall in high-altitude areas on February 8 and 9.While some areas in South Bengal will also witness light spells of rain, almost all areas of North Bengal are set to receive light to heavy rainfall.In Purulia, Bankura, West Midnapore, and Birbhum there is also a possibility of hailstorms accompanied by thunder. The temperature will also rise slightly in the state for the next few days from February 8.”The western disturbances are causing a hindrance to northern winds and hence, the temperature in the city will keep on increasing. The minimum temperature will be somewhere close to 16 degrees Celsius,” Bandyopadhyay said.The weather condition is set to get back to normal after Saraswati Puja and it is likely to be dry with no signs of rainfall as predicted by the Alipore Meteorological Department.last_img read more

Magnanimous land of tranquility

first_img“Happy are the painters, for they shall not be lonely. Light and colour, peace and hope, will keep them company to the end of the day” said Winston Churchill, otherwise a stout politician who had a role in the future of this subcontinent. Perhaps this is perfect tranquility in art, as it is in the hands of the artist to withdraw whenever he or she desires and means being able to express oneself without external influences and constraints.Meher Juneja, already well-known in the world of art, has attempted to achieve this synthesis in her fourth solo exhibition, ‘Land of Tranquil’, which she defines as a land free from impurity, loaded with positivity and brimming with fire.The exhibition will commence on October 26, and continue till November, 11 am to 7 pm at AIFACS. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe inauguration will be at 5:30 pm on October 26. It will be inaugurated by media magnate Sandeep Marwah, graced by Guest of Honour Vijender Sharma – a skilled senior artist and the special guest will be Avijit Singh – a filmmaker and actor. Meher’s work is a fusion of mix medium art like poster colours, acrylic, blush pens, markers, fabric, charcoal, craft components among others. This makes the artworks look more versatile, vibrant and creative in a unique way. Her artworks are a blend of pattern design, geometric abstraction, lyrical abstraction, and abstract expressionism. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive”According to me art is that emotion which is expressed visually, the only commodity that is primarily appreciated for its power and strength to connect to someone visually and in the most captivating way,” says Meher. The vibrant and suggestive artwork emphasizes how the arts in India make up an extraordinary, interconnected cultural landscape. In her artworks, she can unite the diverse techniques, viewpoints, experiences and the dynamism of youth and the wisdom of senior generation, which has various meanings of positivity that is left to the admirers to discover.last_img read more

Know your Fruit cake

first_imgMy earliest recollection of a fruitcake is one that we used to see during the Christmas feast at my Missionary School at the small town in western UP where I grew up. Coming from a strictly vegetarian family, the feast with its multiple meat dishes was prohibited for me, even though I always found the various delicacies to be rather inviting, especially the cakes, all of which were prominently earmarked ‘with egg’. Years later when I started studying in Calcutta, I was spectator to a humongous queue of people waiting outside Flurys and just when I thought of joining the queue myself, certain that some freebie is being doled out, I was told that all these people were actually waiting their turn to buy the celebrated Flurys fruit cake, for good reason, I am now sure. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfSo what is the history of the ubiquitous fruitcake, the one speciality that many in various parts of the country, irrespective of their religion (or lack of it) relish devoutly during Christmas and increasingly throughout the year? Let us try and find out a little bit more about the world’s favourite cake, something that is not only a sweetmeat but has inspired various stories, anecdotes and some rather uncharitable jokes as well. In English slang, a ‘fruitcake’ is a person who is eccentric or borderline insane and ‘fruitcake weather’ forms part of various cherished Christmas tales, denoting the chilly weather just around Christmas time. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveFor something as common as a fruitcake, obviously, there is no common ground that has been met on its origins. Some say that the oldest reference to fruit cakes can be found in the Egyptian civilisation where the ancient Cairenes used to place the earlier version of fruitcake on tombs of loved ones as a likely food for the afterlife. In Roman times there is mention of Roman soldiers carrying fruitcakes on their expeditions, a product made out of among other things, pomegranate seeds, barley mash and pine nuts. Later on, with the advent of refined sugar, the fruitcake became a sweet dessert while during the Victorian Era alcohol was added on to fruitcake recipes to improve longevity and to make it richer and for the rich of the time. In fact in the early 18th century Fruit cakes became to be seen as something that was ‘sinfully rich’ and was outlawed in many countries of Europe since it was seen as too indulgent. Based on where you are in the world, your fruitcake will be slightly different. The Germans, for example, swear by the ‘Stollen’– a kind of yeast-raised cake that is made rich with almond paste and dried fruits whereas in Italy the ‘pan forte’ is their version of the fruitcake with a heavy dose of honey. The Portuguese have their ‘bolo rei’ which is a rich fruit cake with a dried fava bean in the centre and whoever finds that bean buys the next year’s Christmas cake, whereas the famous Scottish Dundee cake is decorated with a ring of almonds and the ones from Jamaica have an overload of rum, but obvious. Even in India, we have our own fruitcake known as the ‘Allahabadi cake’ made with ghee, flour, dry fruits, petha and fennel, oftentimes Rum or brandy is also added.last_img read more