Thursday, January 28, 2016

Special Clay Used by First Nations People Proven to REALLY Work

Interesting news today -- see the press release below.

If only so-called "modern" people paid more attention to what their ancestors and "less civilized" inhabitants of this Earth co-existing with us did and do today to treat infections and various illnesses and diseases  -- if only.  Sadly, there is already a FOR PROFIT corporation involved in developing potential "drugs" from this miracle clay given freely to us by Mother Nature. I believe it will just be a matter of time before the Heiltsuk First Nation People who entered into this compact with the Devil are swindled fully out of whatever they think they have retained of their rights by the people behind this corporation.  We, who think we are so damn smart, continue to ignore Culpeper, author of English Physician and Complete Herbal in the mid-17th century:  Culpeper believed medicine was a public asset rather than a commercial secret, and the prices physicians charged were far too expensive compared to the cheap and universal availability of nature's medicine.  Wikipedia.  So what if people die?  It's all about the filthy lucre, darlings.

Press Release issued by the University of British Columbia

First Nations’ ancient medicinal clay shows promise against today’s worst bacterial infections

Naturally occurring clay from Kisameet Bay, B.C. — long used by the Heiltsuk First Nation for its healing potential — exhibits potent antibacterial activity against multidrug-resistant pathogens, according to new research from the University of British Columbia.
The researchers recommend the rare mineral clay be studied as a clinical treatment for serious infections caused by ESKAPE strains of bacteria.
The so-called ESKAPE pathogens — Enterococcus faeciumStaphylococcus aureusKlebsiella pneumoniae,Acinetobacter baumanniiPseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter species — cause the majority of U.S. hospital infections and effectively ‘escape’ the effects of antibacterial drugs.
“Infections caused by ESKAPE bacteria are essentially untreatable and contribute to increasing mortality in hospitals,” said UBC microbiologist Julian Davies, co-author of the paper published today in the American Society for Microbiology’s mBio journal.
“After 50 years of over-using and misusing antibiotics, ancient medicinals and other natural mineral-based agents may provide new weapons in the battle against multidrug-resistant pathogens.”
The clay deposit is situated on Heiltsuk First Nation’s traditional territory, 400 kilometres north of Vancouver, Canada, in a shallow five-acre granite basin. The 400-million kilogram (400,000 tonne) deposit was formed near the end of the last Ice Age, approximately 10,000 years ago.
Local First Nations people have used the clay for centuries for its therapeutic properties—anecdotal reports cite its effectiveness for ulcerative colitis, duodenal ulcer, arthritis, neuritis, phlebitis, skin irritation, and burns.
“We’re fortunate to be able to partner with UBC on this significant research program” said Lawrence Lund, president of Kisameet Glacial Clay, a business formed to market cosmetic and medicinal products derived from the clay. “We hope it will lead to the development of a novel and safe antimicrobial that can be added to the diminished arsenal for the fight against the ESKAPE pathogens and other infection-related health issues plaguing the planet.”
In the in vitro testing conducted by Davies and UBC researcher Shekooh Behroozian, clay suspended in water killed 16 strains of ESKAPE bacteria samples from sources including Vancouver General Hospital, St. Paul’s Hospital, and the University of British Columbia’s wastewater treatment pilot plant.
No toxic side effects have been reported in the human use of the clay, and the next stage in clinical evaluation would involve detailed clinical studies and toxicity testing. Loretta Li, with UBC’s Department of Civil Engineering, is conducting mineralogical and chemical analyses of the clay as well. MITACS, Kisameet Glacial Clay Inc. and the Tally Fund supported the work.
Kisameet Clay Exhibits Potent Antibacterial Activity against the ESKAPE PathogensmBio American Society for Microbiology
January/February 2016 Volume 7 Issue 1 e01842-15

Those Clever Babylonians and Astronomical Geometry

Hola darlings!

Saw this on my round of online newspaper reading, article at The Washington Post:

Clay Tablets Reveal Babylonians Discovered Astronomical Geometry 1,400 Years Before Europeans

By Joel Achenbach
January 28, 2016

The medieval mathematicians of Oxford, toiling in torchlight in a land ravaged by plague, managed to invent a simple form of calculus that could be used to track the motion of heavenly bodies. But now a scholar studying ancient clay tablets suggests that the Babylonians got there first, and by at least 1,400 years.
The astronomers of Babylonia, scratching tiny marks in soft clay, used surprisingly sophisticated geometry to calculate the orbit of what they called the White Star — the planet Jupiter.
These tablets are quite incomprehensible to the untrained eye. Thousands of clay tablets — many unearthed in the 19th century by adventurers hoping to build museum collections in Europe, the United States and elsewhere — remain undeciphered.

But they are fertile ground for Mathieu Ossendrijver of Humboldt University in Berlin, whose remarkable findings were published Thursday in the journal Science. Ossendrijver is an astrophysicist who became an expert in the history of ancient science.

For a number of years he has puzzled over four particular Babylonian tablets housed in the British Museum in London.
“I couldn’t understand what they were about. I couldn't understand anything about them, neither did anyone else. I could only see that they dealt with geometrical stuff," he said this week in a phone interview from Germany.
Then one day in late 2014, a retired archaeologist gave him some black-and-white photographs of tablets stored at the museum. Ossendrijver took notice of one of them, just two inches across and two inches high. This rounded object, which he scrutinized in person in September 2015, proved to be a kind of Rosetta Stone.
Text A. (Trustees of the British Museum/Mathieu Ossendrijver)
Officially named BH40054 by the museum, and dubbed Text A by Ossendrijver, the little tablet had markings that served as a kind of abbreviation of a longer calculation that looked familiar to him. By comparing Text A to the four previously mysterious tablets, he was able to decode what was going on: This was all about Jupiter. The five tablets computed the predictable motion of Jupiter relative to the other planets and the distant stars.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Latest Research Shows Simultaneous Domestication of Cats

Hola darlings!

Oh yeah - simultaneous inventions, simultaneous developments of animal domestication, simultaneous invention of agricultural practices that led to the establishment of permanent settlements and a new way of life, not to mention the simultaneous invention of CHESSLIKE games in different areas of the world, etc. etc.  The old argument -- was it diffusion or was it simultaneous inventions and developments by cultures and peoples separated by thousands of miles from each other?  The wise answer is:  It was both.

This latest research demonstrates that when it comes to the domestication of cats, it was simultaneous in different parts of the world, and diffusion of certain breeds that became dominate only took place with the introduction of cross-cultural trade routes thousands of years later.

Paris, 22 January 2016

Cats domesticated in China earlier than 3000 BC

Were domestic cats brought to China over 5 000 years ago? Or were small cats domesticated in China at that time? There was no way of deciding between these two hypotheses until a team from the 'Archéozoologie, Archéobotanique: Sociétés, Pratiques et Environnements' laboratory (CNRS/MNHN), in collaboration with colleagues from the UK and China1, succeeded in determining the species corresponding to cat remains found in agricultural settlements in China, dating from around 3500 BC. All the bones belong to the leopard cat, a distant relation of the western wildcat, from which all modern domestic cats are descended. The scientists have thus provided evidence that cats began to be domesticated in China earlier than 3 000 BC. This scenario is comparable to that which took place in the Near East and Egypt, where a relationship between humans and cats developed following the birth of agriculture. Their findings2 are published on 22 January 2016 in the journal PLOS ONE.

The cat is the most common domestic animal in the world today, with over 500 million individuals. All of today's domestic cats descend from the African and Near Eastern form of the wildcat (Felis silvestris lybica). According to work published in 2004, humans and cats first started to form a close relationship in the Near East from 9000 to 7000 BC, following the birth of agriculture.  
In 2001, researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing discovered cat bones in agricultural settlements in northern China (Shaanxi province) dating from around 3500 BC. Was this evidence of a relationship between small Chinese cats and humans in the fourth millennium BC in China? Or was it the result of the arrival in China of the first domestic cats from the Near East? There was no way of deciding between these two hypotheses without identifying the species to which the bones belonged. Although there are no less than four different forms of small cat in China, the subspecies from which modern cats are descended (Felis silvestris lybica) has never been recorded there. 
To try to settle the question, a collaboration of scientists principally from CNRS, the French Natural History Museum (MNHN), the University of Aberdeen, the Chinese Academy of Social Science and the Shaanxi Provincial Institute of Archaeology undertook a geometric morphometric analysis3, which, in the absence of ancient DNA, is the only way of differentiating the bones of such small cats, which have very similar morphologies whose differences are often imperceptible using conventional techniques. The scientists analyzed the mandibles of five cats from Shaanxi and Henan dating from 3500 to 2900 BC. Their work clearly determined that the bones all belonged to the leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis). Still very widespread in Eastern Asia today, this wildcat, which is a distant relation of the western wildcat (Felis silvestris lybica), is well-known for its propensity to frequent areas with a strong human presence. Just as in the Near East and Egypt, leopard cats were probably attracted into Chinese settlements by the proliferation of rodents who took advantage of grain stores. 
These conclusions show that a process comparable to the one that took place in the Near East and in Egypt developed independently in China following the birth of agriculture in the eighth millennium BC. In China it was the leopard cat (P. bengalensis) and not the western wildcat (F. silvestris) that started to form a relationship with humans. Cat domestication was, at least in three regions of the world, therefore closely connected to the beginnings of agriculture. 
Nevertheless, domestic cats in China today are not descended from the leopard cat4 but rather from its relation F. silvestris lybica. The latter therefore replaced the leopard cat in Chinese settlements after the end of the Neolithic. Did it arrive in China with the opening of the Silk Road, when the Roman and Han empires began to establish tenuous links between East and West? This is the next question that needs to be answered. 


1 Principally from the University of Aberdeen, the Chinese Academy of Social Science and the Shaanxi Provincial Institute of Archaeology.
2 This work was supported in particular by Labex Bcdiv.
3 Geometric morphometrics is used to study and analyze the shape of a structure (for instance, it enables skulls of different species with very similar morphologies to be compared).
4 The leopard cat was again domesticated in the nineteen sixties, producing, by hybridization with domestic cats from the silvestris species, a cat breed known as the Bengal breed.


Earliest “domestic” cats in China identified as Leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis). Vigne J.-D., Evin A., Cucchi T., Dai L., Yu C., Hu S., Soulages N., Wang W., Sun Z., Gao J., Dobney K., Yuan J. PLOS ONE. 22 January 2016.
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