Stories about research

Stem cell research and ethical dilemmas: How far have we come?

Stems cells are biological cells that have the potential to differentiate into many types of specialised cells in the developing stages. They are present in multi-cellular organisms. In several tissues, they mimic a type of internal repair system and they keep dividing without any restriction to serve the purpose of replacing other cells to keep the animal or person alive. The division of stem cell through mitosis creates a new cell that has the potential of either remaining a stem cell or becoming another kind of cell possessing a specialised function – like a red blood cell, a muscle cell or even a brain cell. Stem cells ...

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Stop criticising the Ice Bucket Challenge!

My advice, to those criticising the Ice Bucket Challenge for being a waste of water, is stop! Stop criticising long enough to understand the rare disease community and their struggles. The kind of awareness ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), has gotten over the past few weeks is the kind of well-deserved attention, I as someone who saw those closest to me suffer with a disease nobody knew off, could diagnose or had even heard off, wish and hope one day all rare diseases receive. People from all over the world have taken part in the campaign that has spread like wild fire. Celebrities ...

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Today is not August 14th

While conversing with Myra Edwin, she told me a story about a little adventure she went on with her brother. I thought a narration of this story would be very apt for today, August 14. This is what she had to say; My brother, after returning from the UK, wanted to set up his own den where he could continue with his research, explained Edwin, a lecturer in Edwardes College Peshawar. Spending seven years in an alien country has made him a patriot. He is very fond of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Iqbal, and many a times narrates their anecdotes and poetry. He ...

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Life had been drained out of her…

She looked like someone had drained all her strength. I could not stand it anymore, so I closed my browser and made my way towards her. She looked dull and weak. I observed her silently, praying to God to restore her strength. After all, how much longer could she survive with only an ounce of energy left? She had already struggled so much, living in this restricted area and now she was finding it difficult to breathe and communicate any more. She lay there, helpless. I stooped over her and examined her to see if there was any physical mishap but ...

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Forget polio, Pakistan is ‘BIGGER’ than India and size is all that matters!

A few days ago, a leading British newspaper carried a news story that stated: “The World Health Organisation certified the south-east Asian region – which includes India but excludes Afghanistan and Pakistan – polio-free after three years without a single new case being reported. The WHO said this meant 80% of the world’s population lived in polio-free regions, an important step towards global eradication of the crippling disease.” It is a massive coup for the people of India, for the people of those other countries now free of polio and for the world in general, for achieving an 80% eradication of the disease. ...

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Drones; enough said!

While doing some research on drone warfare, I came across a study conducted by the New York University and Stanford Law School that highlighted some controversial results of the CIA-funded drone military campaign in Pakistan. According to these findings, drones in Pakistan, used for the ‘targeted killing’ of extremist militants had a counterproductive role, which goes against the US proclamation that drones are a ‘surgically precise and effective tool’, with minimal downsides or collateral impacts. The US government believes that its drone campaign is a surgical success that does not kill anyone except al Qaeda members and Taliban militants. Since ...

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Budget2013: Research and Development in Pakistan

The initial prognosis of the recent budget by pundits is positive, with the phrase “business-friendly” or some other variant prefacing their every breath. While that’s an italicised development from past years, let’s hope there is a noticeable change in the fields of research, development and technology as well. To say the least, Pakistan has had its share of intestinal economic and political disruptions. Incessant wars, military rule, flogged bureaucracy and corruption represent some of the determinants of Pakistan’s snail-paced economic growth. Recognising these factors, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar during his budget presentation speech invoked the word “development” 26 separate times, but ...

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Handwriting analysis: An adventure into the subconscious human mind

People have been scrutinising their own and other people’s handwriting through the ages. Can so and so be trusted? Does he finish a job even when the going gets rough? Is she as nice as she is pretty? Many people have pondered over these questions and have looked to the subject’s handwriting to try and unravel the secret of their character. Each and every one of us has distinct and unique handwriting; our script may be similar to someone else’s but it is never exactly the same. A few people are totally unaware of the individuality expressed in their writing. Very often they are ...

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11 advantages of drinking water

Despite the fact that water is something that has no taste, we still love it! Who doesn’t relish the feeling of a cool drink of water on a sweltering hot day? Approximately 70% of our body’s mass is made of water and according to a number of doctors, drinking a total of eight glasses of water a day fulfils the necessary requirement of this liquid our body demands. For a long time now, I have been searching regarding the benefits associated with water. Finally, after reviewing countless websites, I  have compiled a list, highlighting the advantages of drinking water that can surely help ...

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The true meaning of love

She was 78 years old; fair, tall, elegant and beautiful. She had been in a relationship with her husband for 60 years, yet their love seemed fresh – an awe-inspiring bond that spoke of young love. I first saw her when her husband brought her to the hospital for a general check-up. What a sight they were; him ever-smiling, with a tinge of pride as he pushed his wife’s wheelchair. A sense of satisfaction and contentment emanated from them. She was suffering from osteoarthritis, and was0 visiting a physician under whose supervision I was doing a research project. A few weeks into ...

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