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Archive for July 19, 2013

WhatsApp will Cost 99-Cents Per Year





Like we mentioned just yesterday, the messaging category of the App Store never slows down. As more proof, today brought its own big news for WhatsApp–a messaging service that already boasts an enormous user base. Until now, WhatsApp was available as a one-time, 99-cent purchase, but starting now the app is free to download and use for 12 months, after which users are moved to a subscription plan that will cost 99-cents per year.

It’s fair to call WhatsApp’s new model affordable, but you should still count yourself fortunate if you spent a dollar on the app sometime in the past, as previous customers are being granted a lifetime subscription. As always, WhatsApp can be used for unlimited messaging over a Wi-Fi or cellular connection. That includes video, images, voice, and text. There’s also group chats and zero international charges.

All of the above features have combined to keep WhatsApp at the forefront of the messaging options available in the App Store. Now, the question is whether even more users will jump on board when faced with a recurring charge (small as it may be)… With iOS users only growing comfortable with spending a little money on apps in the past few years, you have to think that agreeing to recurring charges will be avoided by many.

Whether your new to WhatsApp or a long-time user, does this change how you feel about the service?

via Starting Now, WhatsApp will Cost 99-Cents Per Year… Hopefully You Already Own it! | App Chronicles.

Branzino with Herbs and Tomato Jam



Tomato Jam

1/4 cup vegetable oil

3 tablespoons yellow mustard seeds

1 tablespoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

2 medium shallots, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, chopped

2 tablespoons chopped peeled ginger

1/4 cup fish sauce (such as nam pla or nuoc nam)

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

4 beefsteak tomatoes (about 2 pounds), coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper


4 1-pound whole branzino, cleaned

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

1 cup (packed) fresh tender herbs (such as basil, dill, cilantro, and/or flat-leaf parsley)


Tomato Jam

Heat oil in a large sauce- pan over medium heat; add mustard seeds, coriander, and cardamom and cook, stirring often, until mustard seeds begin to pop, about 1 minute. Add shallots, garlic, and ginger and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add fish sauce, sugar, turmeric, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved, about 1 minute.

Add tomatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring often, until tomatoes are falling apart and mixture thickens, 35–45 minutes. Mix in lime juice; season with salt and pepper. Let cool (you should have about 3 cups).

DO AHEAD: Tomato jam can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.


Preheat oven to 350°. Season fish lightly with salt and pepper. Lay 4 large rectangular pieces of parchment paper on a work surface. Spoon 1/4 cup reserved tomato jam in the center of 1 side of each sheet; top with fish, then another 1/2 cup tomato jam. Fold parchment paper over fish and crimp edges tightly to form a sealed packet. Place packets on 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Bake fish, rotating halfway through, 30 minutes.

Open packets and top fish with herbs.

via Branzino with Herbs and Tomato Jam Recipe: Bon Appétit.

Genetic advance in Down’s syndrome

Down’s syndrome is caused by an extra chromosome


US scientists say they have moved a step closer to being able to treat disorders caused by an extra chromosome.

They have “switched off” the chromosome that causes the symptoms of Down’s syndrome in human cells in the lab.

The research, published in Nature, could one day lead to new medical treatments for the condition.

Future work may be of real benefit to people with Down’s syndrome, said the UK Down’s Syndrome Association.

Humans are born with 23 pairs of chromosomes, including two sex chromosomes, making a total of 46 in each cell.

People with Down’s syndrome have three – rather than two – copies of chromosome 21.

This causes symptoms such as learning disabilities and early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, as well as a greater risk of blood disorders and heart defects.

Gene therapy, which uses genes to treat illnesses, has been attempted for problems caused by a single defective gene. But until now, the idea of being able to silence the effects of a whole chromosome had appeared beyond the realms of possibility, even in the lab.

Now scientists at the University of Massachusetts Medical School have shown that, in theory, this might be possible but would take decades of research.

A team led by Dr Jeanne Lawrence inserted a gene called XIST into the stem cells of a person with Down’s syndrome grown in the lab.

‘Exciting research’

The gene plays a role in normal cell development by switching off one of the two X chromosomes present in female embryos, ensuring daughters avoid a double dose of X chromosome genes.

The experiments showed that the gene was able to silence the extra copy of chromosome 21, helping correct unusual patterns of growth in the cells.

Dr Lawrence told BBC News: “The research means that we have a new way – right away – to study the cellular basis for Down’s syndrome, that could help identify drugs for Down’s syndrome.

“At the same time we have made it conceivable – not necessarily possible or effective, that still needs to be proven – but conceivable that you could use just a single gene to correct the over-expression of the whole chromosome. So it makes genetic therapy for Down’s syndrome more conceivable where it really wasn’t before.”

Commenting on the study, Carol Boys, chief executive of the Down’s Syndrome Association, said it was exciting new research from a very well-respected team.

“The findings could have serious implications for future work that may be of real benefit to people with Down’s syndrome,” she said.

“We are a very long way from understanding how these findings might translate into clinical applications but it could be that they will be of great assistance in the search for conventional treatments for some of the health conditions that affect people with Down’s syndrome.”

Dr Lucy Raymond, from the department of medical genetics at the University of Cambridge, said the group had demonstrated an important proof of concept.

“This is an exciting breakthrough, but this process is still at a very early [cellular] stage and we are nowhere near seeing this procedure being used in the treatment of Down’s syndrome in people.”

This is an exciting breakthrough, but this process is still at a very early [cellular] stage and we are nowhere near seeing this procedure being used in the treatment of Down’s syndrome in people”

Dr Lucy RaymondUniversity of Cambridge

via BBC News – Genetic advance in Down’s syndrome.

Lung cancer ‘secrets’ to be probed

The study, carried out at six research centres, will be one of the largest of its kind


Scientists across Britain are to map the genes of the tumours of 850 lung cancer patients in a bid to understand more about the deadly disease.

The £14m research at six centres aims to find out how lung cancers become resistant to treatment; they are the most common cause of UK cancer death.

The study will trace how lung tumours develop and evolve over nine years.

Some 42,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer in the UK every year, with about 35,000 deaths from the disease.

Scientific progress has lagged behind that made for other cancers – only 9% of patients survive beyond five years.

Researchers in London, Leicester, Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester and Aberdeen, will create a genetic profile of each patient’s tumour to study how the cancer changes and evades treatment.

Patients with non-small-cell lung cancer patients, which make up about 78% of lung cancers diagnosed in England and Wales, will be recruited.

‘Better understanding’

Lead researcher Prof Charlie Swanton, of Cancer Research UK’s London Research Institute and University College London, said success in treating lung cancer had been difficult to achieve, but his team hoped to change that.

He told BBC News: “The main hope will be a much better understanding of how non-small-cell lung cancer changes and adapts over time.

“And by understanding how it changes and adapts over time, I hope we’ll get a better insight into developing better therapeutics to stop those changes and adaptations from happening.”

In one of the largest studies of its kind, scientists will analyse genetic changes inside lung cancers of hundreds of patients from diagnosis and throughout treatment.

This will involve sequencing billions of letters of DNA – the equivalent of more than 65,000 human genomes.

Scientists hope they will be able to identify common genetic mutations that can be targeted by drugs at different stages of the disease.

Dr Harpal Kumar, Cancer Research UK’s chief executive, said research into lung cancer had been underfunded compared with other cancers, which was why the charity was now making it a research priority.

“Typically we’re diagnosing lung cancer patients very, very late,” he said.

“By which time their cancers are already very advanced, they’ve often already spread around the body and often that means that those patients are too ill to go onto a clinical study or for us to get access to a sample of their tumour on which we can then do research.

‘Smoking myth’

“Getting access to that sample is critical for us to be able to understand the disease.”

Dr Kumar said it was a myth that lung cancer was just a smoker’s disease as two out of 10 lung cancers were unrelated to smoking.

“We mustn’t take our eyes off smoking,” he told BBC News. “We know that smoking causes a quarter of all cancer deaths not just lung cancer – of all cancer deaths.

“So it is a problem that still needs to be tackled. But it is wrong to think that all lung cancer is caused by smoking.”

Some 42,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer in the UK every year, with about 35,000 deaths from the disease.

Case study

Joe Suckling was diagnosed with lung cancer at the age of 50.

Following radiotherapy, he has now been clear of cancer for five years.

He said:”I was lucky but it shouldn’t be about luck.

“That’s why this research is so important.

“It’s very vital that we get on top of this so there can be more people like myself.”

via BBC News – Lung cancer ‘secrets’ to be probed.

GlaxoSmithKline finance head banned from leaving China

The BBC’s Martin Patience in Beijing: “Business leaders say foreign companies operating in China have never faced a tougher time”

Chinese authorities looking into alleged bribery by GlaxoSmithKline have banned the UK drugmaker’s British head of finance from leaving China.

The travel ban was imposed on Steve Nechelput at the end of June, said a company spokesperson.

On Monday, police in China said GSK had transferred 3bn yuan ($489m; £321m) to travel agencies and consultancies to facilitate bribes to doctors.

GSK has said it is deeply “concerned and disappointed” by the allegations.

The company said Mr Nechelput had not been questioned, arrested or detained by police.

The BBC understands that the British embassy in Beijing is providing consular assistance.

‘Abide by law’

Chinese authorities have taken into custody four Chinese executives at GSK in connection with the allegations.

They accuse GSK of using travel agencies to bribe government officials, doctors and hospitals in order to boost sales and prices of their drugs. The investigation began at the end of June, police said.

One of the four executives, vice-president and operations manager Liang Hong, appeared on state television on 16 July and said he had funnelled money through travel agencies for arranged conferences, some of which were never held.

Martin Patience, BBC’s correspondent in Beijing, said the reputation of the drugs giant has taken a huge hit in China where it has been widely condemned in the state media

An article on the China Daily website said: “This case should serve as a warning to other Chinese companies and their transnational counterparts that they must abide by the law when promoting their products”.

GSK’s general manager for China, Mark Reilly, is said to have left the country for Britain last month.

On Monday, Gao Feng, head of the economic crimes investigation unit, said similar transfers had been made by other pharmaceutical multinationals. He did not name any other foreign companies.

GSK has said it is taking immediate action, including terminating links with the travel agencies that the Chinese authorities have identified, and conducting a review of its transactions related to the travel agencies.

via BBC News – GlaxoSmithKline finance head banned from leaving China.

India Supreme Court orders curb on sales of acid

Acid attacks leave victims, mostly women, disfigured for life


India’s Supreme Court has ordered federal and state governments to regulate the sale of acid in an attempt to reduce attacks on women.

The court said that acid should be sold only to people who show a valid identity card.

Buyers will also have explain why they need the chemical and sales will have to be reported to the police.

There will also be more compensation for victims. There are an estimated 1,000 acid attacks a year in India.

The victims, who have to live with terrible disfigurements, are mainly women and are often targeted by jealous partners, correspondents say.

In Thursday’s ruling, the Supreme Court ordered that acid should be not be sold to anyone under the age of 18. It also ruled that there should be no bail allowed for the offence.

In addition, victims of acid attacks will be entitled to more financial help from state governments – the court said compensation of at least 300,000 rupees (£3,320; $5,000) must be paid to help rehabilitate them after their ordeal.

New penalties

The Indian government has been accused of being too slow to deal with the issue of acid attacks.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court strongly criticised the government for failing to formulate a policy to reduce such attacks.

It says it wants to see these new measures enforced within the next three months.

Campaigners hope it will lead to a fall in the number of crimes committed, as happened in Bangladesh when it bought in restrictions on acid sales.

Acid attacks are a problem throughout South Asia, with cases also reported in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Campaigners say women who reject boyfriends, husbands or employers are often targeted by men using easily available and cheap chemicals.

Earlier this year, India introduced tough new legislation to counter violence against women.

The legislation contains harsher penalties for rapists, including the death penalty, and up to 10 years in jail for acid attacks.

via BBC News – India Supreme Court orders curb on sales of acid.

4道百卡輕食點心 夏日清爽零負擔














via 4道百卡輕食點心 夏日清爽零負擔 | 20130717 | 華人健康網.

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