Can Cancer Be Cured With Just One Injection?

Can Cancer Be Cured With Just One Injection?

South Korean researchers have developed a phototherapy technology that can increase the efficiency of reducing the pain of chemotherapy and minimizing side effects after treatment. Let’s see how they have succeeded in achieving this medical feat and see if cancer can be cured with just one injection.

Crux of the Matter

What Is Chemotherapy?
It is a medical treatment that uses one or more anti-cancer drugs as part of a standardized regimen of making the patients cancer-free or prolonging their life by reducing symptoms.

What New Method Have Researchers Found Now?
A research team from South Korea’s KU-KIST have developed a cancer-targeted phototherapeutic agent that promises complete elimination of cancer cells without side effects.

How Is This Possible?
It involves only one injection and repeated phototherapy, which involves exposure to fluorescent light bulbs or other sources of light like halogen lights, sunlight, and LEDs.

What Have They Used?
Peptides, that selectively target cancer tissues and assemble themselves in a specific order only for tumour removal. On being injected into a living body, it is activated by the body temperature. Thus, eradicates cancer cells without affecting surrounding normal cells.

Have They Tested This?
Yes. The agent was injected into a mouse model implanted with a tumor, and the photosensitizer was stored around the tumor and was continuously released for 2 to 4 weeks.

No toxicity was found to destroy the surrounding tissues and major organs, even with repeated exposure to light, making it safe for human usage.

Other Conditions Treatable By Phototherapy

  • Skin disorders
  • Some cancers and precancers
  • Sleep disorders
  • Hyperbilirubinemia Jaundice or jaundice in babies
  • Skin-related cancer symptoms

Curiopedia
  • The 62nd element on the periodic table is Samarium, which is used to treat a range of cancers, including lung cancer. And hence the famous show, Breaking Bad, has a total of 62 episodes over 5 seasons.
  • Radiation therapy or radiotherapy is a therapy using ionizing radiation, generally as part of cancer treatment to control or kill malignant cells and normally delivered by a linear accelerator. Radiation therapy may be curative in a number of types of cancer if they are localized to one area of the body.
  • The word chemotherapy was coined in the early 1900s by Paul Ehrlich as meaning any use of chemicals to treat any disease, such as the use of antibiotics (antibacterial chemotherapy). Ehrlich was not optimistic that effective chemotherapy drugs would be found for the treatment of cancer.

What Is The Key Ingredient Of Warren Buffett’s Success?

What Is The Key Ingredient Of Warren Buffett's Success?

Warren Buffett is an American investor, business tycoon, philanthropist, and the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway. He popularized one of the most favoured market indicators, the Buffett Indicator (BI). But what exactly it is and how does it work? At a time when experts are cautioning investors of a stock market bubble, let’s find out what the indicator says.

Crux of the Matter

What Is Buffett Indicator?
The indicator is called the Buffett indicator (BI) due to its popularization by Warren Buffett. BI is one of the most favoured market indicators. It can indicate whether a particular market is overvalued or undervalued, and can help in forecasting the market

Buffett indicator = Stock Market Capitalization/Gross Domestic Product

Understanding The Terms
GDP
Gross Domestic Product is the final value of the goods and services produced within the geographic boundaries of a country during a specified period of time, normally a year.

Stock Market Capitalization
It is the value of all the publicly traded companies calculated by multiplying the total number of shares (of each company) by the current share price (of each company).

How It Came Into Prominence?
The use of the stock market capitalization-to-GDP ratio increased in prominence after Warren Buffett once commented that it was “probably the best single measure of where valuations stand at any given moment.”

Inferring Buffett Indicator
Through the Buffett indicator, if investors find a stock market in an economy undervalued, they should ideally buy stocks in that market by selling stocks owned in an overvalued economy. That way, the valuation will be set right and the investor is likely to profit.

BI Of India
However, determining the valuation of the market depends on the historical average of the Buffet Indicator.

  • For instance, Indian markets have had a BI Ratio of 75% on average and have rarely crossed 100%.
  • The low ratio is attributed to India’s unorganized sector that is unlisted.

Rise In India’s BI Ratio
Because India’s historical average has been between 70 – 80%, a 98% BI Ratio is cautioning investors that the market is overvalued.

The market cap-to-GDP ratio has been volatile as it moved from 79% in FY19 to 56% of FY20 GDP in March 2020 and now stands at 98% of FY21 GDP.

Motilal Oswal Securities

Markets Are High
Recently, the Indian benchmark index SENSEX touched the 50,000 mark for the first time. But the market has been spiralling downwards since then.

Summachar brings you this story in collaboration with Finmedium that can be found on Instagram at @finmedium and on the web here.

Curiopedia
  • Buffet founded The Giving Pledge in 2009 with Bill Gates, whereby billionaires pledge to give away at least half of their fortunes. As of August 2020, the pledge has 211 signatories from 23 countries with over $600 Billion in pledges.
  • Value investing is an investment paradigm that involves buying securities that appear underpriced by some form of fundamental analysis. High-profile proponents of value investing, including Warren Buffett, have argued that the essence of value investing is buying stocks at less than their intrinsic value.
  • According to the Forbes Global 2000 list and formula, Berkshire Hathaway is the eighth largest public company in the world, the tenth-largest conglomerate by revenue and the largest financial services company by revenue in the world.

Quirky Budget Traditions Around The World

Quirky Traditions Around Budget

Spurring the countdown for Budget 2021, Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman on 23rd January 2021, hosted the Halwa Ceremony in the Finance Ministry. In this story, we talk about some unconventional budget traditions followed by the countries during the presentation of the Union Budget.

Crux of the Matter

The Halwa Ceremony

  • The 70-year-old customary Halwa Ceremony is performed at the North Block of Finance Ministry marking the final process of Budget Preparation.
  • It commences the budget lock-in period and its printing process.
  • Although this year it would be delivered paperless owing to Covid 19 restrictions.

Significance
The halwa is prepared in a large vessel and served to everyone directly associated with the Budget making process, thus recognising their contribution

What Is So Peculiar About The North Block?
Post the ceremony, in order to prevent the information leak, all the officials and support staff would move to the basement of North Block and remain cut off from their families until the budget is presented.

Quirky Traditions
The ritual of Union Budget presented by the Finance Minister is brought to India by the United Kingdom and is still followed by most of the Commonwealth Nations.

Reciting Poems
In India, for the past 25 years, FMs have followed the unsaid custom of reciting couplets or poems during the Budget presentation with a hope of giving some life to the dry budget numbers.

The Budget Day Shoes

  • In Canada, FMs wear a pair of new shoes while presenting the Budget. 
  • In 2015, a particularly fiscally conservative FM rather detailed the point by wearing New Balance shoes to show how he had balanced the Budget.
  • Other Canadian instances include wearing green shoes for portraying one’s environmental credentials.
  • Children’s shoes to show child-friendly fiscal policies.

Britain’s Bizarre Rituals

  • The financial year (tax year) of UK begins from April 6, unlike all major economies that begin from January 1.
  • The British Chancellor while delivering the Budget may drink alcohol of his own choice – only time when anyone from the House of Commons can do so. 

The Red Suitcase

  • The UK Treasury Chief carries a Red Box/Suitcase containing Budget contents & speech delivered to the Parliament.
  • A lot of  UK ruled colonies continue to follow this tradition to date.

Read about the expectations of different sectors from the budget of 2021 here.

Curiopedia
  • Union Budget Mobile app was recently launched by Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The mobile application will allow users — members of the parliament and general public — to access budget documents easily.
  • The military budget or defence budget of India is the portion of the overall budget of the Union budget of India that is allocated for the funding of the Indian Armed Forces. The Indian Army accounts for more than half of the total defence budget of India.
  • Until 2018, as a part of the tradition, Finance ministers carried the budget in a leather briefcase. The tradition was established by the first Finance minister of India, Mr RK Shanmukham Chetty. Nirmala Sitharaman broke this tradition by carrying the budget in a Bahi-Khata.

Russia Found Guilty Of Human Rights Violation In Georgia War

Russia Found Guilty Of Human Rights Violation In Georgia War

In a landmark verdict, the European Court of Human Rights has found Russia guilty of Human Rights violation in Georgia in 2008. In that light, let’s look at what happened there as well as several wars Russia has been engaged in with former Soviet territories.

Crux of the Matter

Recent Claim
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) recently found Russia guilty of human rights violations during its 2008 war with Georgia. It was found guilty of civilian killings, property destruction, torturing prisoners of war, etc.

2008 Russia-Georgia War
All regions involved are former parts of the Soviet Union. Also, South Ossetia and Abkhazia are officially part of Georgia but consider themselves autonomous.

  • 2006: Georgia publicly accused Russia of supporting the two regions’ separatism.
  • August 2008: Georgia launched an attack on South Ossetian to “neutralize separatist positions”. The attack came after months of clashes between the two.
  • Russia immediately launched an attack on Georgia – reached within 30km of Tbilisi (Georgian capital).

The war, lasting 5 days, saw more than being 228 Georgian civilians killed. In its report, the European Union (EU) also found Russia guilty of ‘long history of provocation‘ and ‘disproportionate reaction’.

Russia has been involved in conflicts with several nations previously being part of the Soviet Union. The major such wars are as follows.

First Chechnya War
Chechnya is a Muslim majority region, which declared independence from Russia after the Soviet breakdown.

  • 1994: Chechens under Akhmad Kadyrov declared jihad (holy war) on Russia after it invaded Chechnya against separatist forces.
  • 1996: Russia retreated, making Chechnya practically independent.

Second Chechnya War

  • Islamic extremism increased in the region – Akhmad Kadyrov switched to the Russian side.
  • 1999: Russia launched an attack after Chechen rebels allegedly killed 300+ people in bombing attacks inside Russia.
  • Such guerilla attacks continued, but Russia eventually won in 2009 and gained control of Chechnya.

Ukraine Crisis

  • February 2014: Pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych was overthrown after pro-West protests broke in the nation.
  • Russia soon annexed Crimea (belonging to Ukraine) – part of re-establishing authority and partly due to its expansionism.
  • 13,000 people were killed, out of which 3,300 were civilians as per 2019 UN report.

Read about Russia’s relationship with Germany here.

Curiopedia
  • The Russo-Georgian War was regarded as the first European war of the 21st century. Since the war, Russia has occupied Abkhazia and South Ossetia in violation of the ceasefire agreement of August 2008.
  • The Rose Revolution was a change of power in Georgia in November 2003. The revolution was brought about by widespread protests over the disputed parliamentary elections and culminated in the ousting of President Eduard Shevardnadze, which marked the end of the Soviet era of leadership in the country.
  • The Battle of Tskhinvali was a battle for the city of Tskhinvali, capital of the breakaway state of South Ossetia. It was the only major battle in the Russo-Georgian War.

This Battery Can Charge Your EV in 5 Minutes

This Battery Can Charge Your EV in 5 Minutes

Thought only mobile phones can be charged in this much time? Well, Israeli company StoreDot has plans of delivering 100 miles of charge to an EV battery in 5 minutes in 2025. Let’s see how this battery works and what it means for EV users in times ahead.

Crux of the Matter

Who Has Made The Tech?
Israeli company StoreDot Ltd. will manufacture this battery, while the lithium-ion samples have been produced by their Chinese strategic partner, Eve Energy Co.

Where Was It Demonstrated?
Earlier demonstrated in their drones and phones, this time a two-wheeled scooter used their battery. It is slated for a 2025 mass rollout, as per CEO Doron Myersdorf.

How Far Can The EV Travel Then?
With the available charging infrastructure, 100 miles of charge can be provided to an EV by charging the battery for 5 minutes.

Saves Users From Range Anxiety
If the experience of charging an EV is similar to fuelling a petrol/diesel car, the anxiety of ‘running out of charge in the middle of nowhere or sitting in the charging station for a long time’ goes away.

Isn’t This Possible With Existing Batteries?
Well, existing Li-ion batteries use graphite as an electrode, into which the lithium ions are pushed for storing charge. But on being rapidly charged, the ions can get congested, converts into metal and then short circuits the battery.

Then What Does StoreDot Battery Use?
It replaces graphite with semiconductor nanoparticles, into which ions can pass more quickly. These particles are currently based on Germanium, which is easier to handle but would be based on silicon later, which is cheaper.

I think technologies [like StoreDot’s] could start entering the market. But, since they will be more difficult to manufacture, we’re likely to initially only see them in niche markets that are highly performance-driven and not as price-sensitive.

Anna Tomaszewska, At Imperial College, London, UK

Bengaluru-based Pravaig Dynamics has conceptualised its first indigenous electric car that claims to run 504 km on a single charge like Tesla’s cars. Read about it in detail: Pravaig MK-1: The Longest Range EV In India

Curiopedia
  • Giga Nevada or Gigafactory 1 is a lithium-ion battery and electric vehicle component factory in Storey County, Nevada. The facility is owned and operated by Tesla, Inc., and supplies the battery packs for the company’s electric vehicles.
  • Akira Yoshino is a Japanese chemist who created the first safe, production-viable lithium-ion battery. Yoshino was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2019.
  • The jelly roll or Swiss roll design is the design used in the majority of cylindrical rechargeable batteries. The design gets its name because the cross-section of the battery looks like a Swiss roll cake. Occasionally the design is also used for primary (non-rechargeable) batteries