Things You Find Interesting That Other People Wouldn't

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Jojobobo, Dec 11, 2011.

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  1. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    A mouthful of a title, I know, but I couldn't find a better way to articulate what I was aiming for. What workplace/hobby related interests do you have but you don't think your average person would give a crap about? Also why, to you personally, do you find these things interesting?

    For me, I do medicinal chemistry at university which I've mentioned before, but when I try to talk about it normally results in people's eyes glassing over and them looking at me as if they're trying to say "Oh my God why won't he stop?!" Personally I always try and keep superfluous detail out of my conversations with other people to keep them interested, but still the mention of a science subject seems to engender an almost automatic response of disinterest which is frustrating. As to me an example of what I specifically find interesting, currently I have a module which makes guest lecturers who are people employed in industry itself give me a talk for the day. Here's one example which I thought I'd share:

    So the company which did this research and are developing these drugs are called Vertex, I don't know if this information which I'm posting is readily available or not so I guess you'll have to take my word that it's the truth. First of all I'll start with some basic facts:
    • Enzymes are catalysts that make chemical reactions go faster.
    • Sometimes enzymes make a reaction occur which is normally vastly too slow to occur naturally.
    • Kinase enzymes catalyse the phosphorylation, or transfer of a phosphate group, from one molecule to another as a means to transfer energy.
    From here on in the science is mostly done. So why may a kinase inhibition drug be important to treating cancer? Well as most people know cancer is an umbrella term for a variety of diseases all involving a single main theme: cancerous cells mutate out of control. So if you can stop cells from phosphorylating, or transferring energy to, targets responsible for activating this process by selectively inhibiting certain kinases then you can help to combat cancer.

    Why is this interesting? Well Vertex developed a drug to inhibit Aurora kinases, a kinase that took a vital role in mitosis - or cell division, of cancer cells. For the specific type of cancer they were treating the drug proved effective. However by pure serendipity the drug also happened to treat Philadelphia positive leukemia, a certain form of leukemia of which whose genes had begun to mutate against all current effective drugs to treat the disease. People who had Philadelphia positive leukemia were told categorically after sampling the few available drugs which often didn't prove effective that they were going to die. Because their drug had been designed for a different purpose, it was acting on the enzymes responsible for this leukemia much better than any other drugs currently on the market, as well as treating the form of cancer it had been designed for.

    I find this interesting because I find it unbelievable by pure chance that a drugs company had managed to give people hope when before there was none, but many people don't so it may just be me! Anyway post up similar examples of what you find interesting and yet few other people ever seem to.
     
  2. magikot

    magikot Well-Known Member

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  3. Zanza

    Zanza Well-Known Member

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  4. Grossenschwamm

    Grossenschwamm Well-Known Member

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  5. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    I'll take that as a resounding no that people don't find it interesting then. Still, anyone else got something unusual they find interesting yet they don't think the majority of people would?
     
  6. Arthgon

    Arthgon Well-Known Member

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    Wow. That they find it by chance is incredible, indeed. But. Do you know if this medicine Vertex has any side-effects that people should know of?
     
  7. Muro

    Muro Well-Known Member

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    I found what you wrote in the first post quite interesting. The question that popped in my head was that if, from what I understand, Aurora kinases are important for correct mitosis of both cancerous and non-cancerous cells, would not inhibitors aimed at them affect the proliferation of healthy cells just like they do with cancerous ones?

    The "I'm the only person to like this" feeling is a good friend of mine, yet I can't think of any good examples at the moment. That may be so because the Internet often proves that there are people out there interested in the same things you are, even though no such people seem to be around in offline life. A quick example of such a thing would be Arcanum. Or furry shemales.
     
  8. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    To answer both of your questions, yes it affects both types of cells as a side effect, the fact is though the mitosis of cancerous cells is so out of control they are hit by far the hardest. The challenge of the researchers is to find a way to minimise the damage to other cells by finding a way to directly administer the drug to where it's needed, but this usually just means injecting the affected area from what I gathered. This side effect is common for cancer treating drugs, and it's one of the reasons why treatments like this can cause people's hair to fall out amongst other things.

    Well who can resist the odd furry shemale?
     
  9. Muro

    Muro Well-Known Member

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    While we're on the topic of humanity's war with cancer, an interesting method of potential treatment is related with tenascin-C. It's an important protein during early stages of development which is pretty much absent in mature tissues of adults. It has been, however, observed that high concentrations of tenascin-C are produced by (and are important for the proliferation of) at least some types of tumours, with the concentration being proportional to the tumour's malignancy. Such a relation has been observed in brain, breast, ovary, uterus, lung, liver, kidney and bladder cancer.

    Now, the idea is to inhibit the activity of tenascin-C in cancerous cells. The treatment is based on RNA interference. The inhibition is achieved by injecting ~200 nucleotide long fragments of RNA homologous to that coding tenascin-C (called anti-tenascin RNA or ATN-RNA) into the cavity created by the resection of the tumour. Those RNA fragments are recognised by the natural machinery of the patient's cells, chopped into small (~20nt) pieces and used as templates by proteins responsible for recognising and destroying mRNA coding alien and/or harmful genetic information. Thus, the expression of tenascin-C is inhibited in those cells, which is a way to prevent or at least slow down tumour regeneration and/or metastasis.

    The first clinical results are for brain tumours, with the average length of a patient's life after grade III brain tumour resection being elongated from 48 weeks to 106 weeks, up to 120 weeks if complete resection is achieved. It may not seem like much, it is not a cure, but it is a whole additional year for a patient to live and a big fuck you aimed specifically at the tumour, seeing how this methods does not appear to have any negative side effects.

    I had the pleasure to work on testing this method on cell cultures of ovary and breast tumours with the author of this treatment during my summer practice. Will be doing my master's degree under her supervision if I don't screw anything on my way up to that point.
     
  10. Jojobobo

    Jojobobo Well-Known Member

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    Well thanks for sharing, that does sound very interesting! And clearly you know your stuff better than I do as that was quite techinal - my info was only from a two hour lecture not any lengthy research. If I get the time I'll give some journal articles for it a look.

    I think any treatment that manages to extend a patient's life is pretty phenomenal, in the example I gave someone who trialed the drug who had Philadelphia positive leukemia and had been given weeks to live ended up living for another 2 years and subsequently died not from cancer but from some other disease as he was going on 80.
     
  11. Grossenschwamm

    Grossenschwamm Well-Known Member

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    I find it interesting, but with the recent censorship I wasn't sure if it was exacerbation, heresy, or heretical exacerbation (herecerbation {sounds kinky}?).
    As for me, things I find interesting can sometimes cross wires in people with conflicting educations, especially in eclipsing backgrounds. So, my dad's married to a licensed gemologist, and apparently that means she can delineate directly valuable or practical stones, as well as knows several tests to determine mineral content and can rule out whether something is man-made or naturally occuring. She works in a jewelry store, naturally. I brought up my white-gold hookah body, but I call it electrum. She's never heard of "electrum."
    I go on for about 15 minutes about how it was used to mint coins in ancient times and even capped the pyramids in Giza (as well as the obelisks), and is a naturally occuring alloy of gold and silver. She thinks I'm confusing electrum with "electroplating" which is something entirely different, and goes on to say gold and silver can't be found in the same place because they're two completely different metals...she got a degree and did no independent research in metallurgy. What. The. Fuck. I go on to say that an alloy is a physical mixture of two metals that can occur pretty much anywhere conditions are met, and by no means would gold and silver atoms form a molecule together, because no two metals can form molecules with one another. Of course she's familiar with white gold, but has no idea what electrum is. I can even give her what the ratio is of gold and silver in electrum and she'd say it's white gold, when it's the same damn thing.
     
  12. wobbler

    wobbler Well-Known Member

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  13. Frigo

    Frigo New Member

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    Furry shemales and futas are quite interesting.
     
  14. Grakelin

    Grakelin New Member

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