Chico Nuts sweep doubleheader over Humboldt Eagles

first_imgChico >> On a typical afternoon in July there isn’t much shade to be had on the baseball diamond at Doryland Field, home to the Chico Nuts. And yet, even with no place to hide from Saturday’s sweltering summer heat, the Nuts kept their cool.Chico, an American Legion baseball team, swept a doubleheader at home against the Humboldt Eagles with an 11-1 victory in five innings in the opener followed by a 5-0 win in the nightcap.There were plenty of hits to be had across both games for the Nuts. …last_img read more

Giants’ bats silenced by Padres

first_imgScoring runs continues to be a struggle for what is left of the Giants.With only four of eight opening day position players still in uniform as the final week of the season began, the Giants lost 5-0 to the Padres on Monday night, falling to 4-17 for the month of September.The Giants have averaged just 2.6 runs in those 21 games, topping five runs just once.The day after the Padres lost 14-0 to the Dodgers, the NL West’s last-place team got a near-complete game from right-hander Bryan …last_img read more

Details of Photosynthesis Coming to Light

first_img1Amuntz, Drory and Nelson, “The structure of a plant photosystem I supercomplex at 3.4-angstrom resolution,” Nature 447, 58-63 (3 May 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature05687.2Skourtis and Beratan, “Photosynthesis from the Protein’s Perspective,” Science, 4 May 2007: Vol. 316. no. 5825, pp. 703-704, doi: 10.1126/science.1142330.3The second paper also spoke of the efficient use of quantum mechanical properties of light: “The experimental data reported by Wang et al. also encourage renewed theoretical attention to the early events in photosynthesis.  Models that include quantized nuclear dynamics seem particularly important, because high-frequency quantum modes influence fast electron transfer, producing nonexponential kinetics and unusual temperature dependence.”4“Wang et al. suggest that the slow protein dynamics discussed above may help to overcome reaction barriers produced by membrane potentials or by environmental factors that perturb the photosynthetic reaction center and potentially slow down the electron-transfer rate.  Thus, protein motion could overcome reaction barriers produced by cellular factors that might otherwise perturb the electron-transfer kinetics.”Those who studied high school biology decades ago can revel in these facts about photosynthesis that are now coming to light (pardon the pun).  At the time, our teachers and professors saw light going in, and sugars coming out, but were nearly clueless about what magic was going on inside.  The black box is now opening, and we’re finding out that highly efficient molecular machines were there all along.  So that’s how it’s done!(Visited 14 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 New tools of science are unveiling the secrets of what was long a “black box” in biology: photosynthesis.  A paper in Nature last week1 described the structure of the plant PhotoSystem I complex (PSI) in near-atomic resolution.  Next day, a paper in Science2 described some of the protein interactions that occur when plants turn light into energy for work.  Both papers praised the exceptional efficiency of “the most efficient nano-photochemical machine in nature.”    As is common in the scientific literature, the paper in Nature used engineering language when discussing photosynthesis.  It referred to the “reaction centre” as a “light-harvesting complex” and to certain parts as “antennas.”  The authors used the root efficient eight times in the paper: for example, “This highly efficient nano-photoelectric machine is expected to interact with other proteins in a regulated and efficient manner” – there are two instances in the same sentence.  The paper ended:The complexity of PSI belies its efficiency: almost every photon absorbed by the PSI complex is used to drive electron transport.  It is remarkable that PSI exhibits a quantum yield of nearly 1 (refs 47, 48), and every captured photon is eventually trapped and results in electron translocation.  The structural information on the proteins, the cofactors and their interactions that is described in this work provides a step towards understanding how the unprecedented high quantum-yield of PSI in light capturing and electron transfer is achieved.The authors only referred to evolution once: “The two principal subunits of the reaction centre, PsaA and PsaB, share similarities in their amino acid sequences and constitute a pseudosymmetric structure that evolved from an ancient homodimeric assembly.”  Yet this was stated dogmatically without any explanation of how that could have occurred.    The paper in Science explored photosynthesis from the protein’s perspective.  The authors of this paper also spoke of the “efficient transfer of electrons across biomembranes” and the “high efficiency of the reaction (an electron is transferred for each photon absorbed)” – i.e., there is no loss or waste of input.    The authors discussed how certain protein parts physically move in response to their inputs.  These movements among the chlorophylls and other parts modulate the speed of the downstream reactions.  Rather than quote their jargon about biomechanics and biomolecular dynamics, let’s attempt an analogy that suggested itself from one of the illustrations: it’s like catching eggs dropping out of the sky into a soft, gentle net, where they can be safely transported to the kitchen.  Those who prefer the original jargon can see the footnote.4last_img read more

Virgin and Singapore named best airlines

first_imgVirgin Australia has won Domestic Airline of the Year at the Roy Morgan 2012 Customer Satisfaction Awards. The announcement was made at a dinner in Melbourne on Wednesday night. The award for International Airline of the Year went to Singapore Airlines, while, for the second time in a row, Crowne Plaza was recognised as Hotel and Resort of the Year. Addressing the audience, Roy Morgan Research CEO Michele Levine said: “We all know the Australian tourism industry is a tough place to be. “With the GFC, the high Australian dollar and Australians’ increasing international outlook, domestic tourism is down and overseas travel is up – only Melbourne is bucking the trend,” she said. “Keeping Australians holidaying at home means that for this sector, satisfaction is crucial.” The awards, which are in their second year, acknowledge Australian businesses who led their industry in customer satisfaction last year. They cover more than 30 categories, recognising sectors such as travel, banking, retail, motoring and hospitality. Roy Morgan Research collected satisfaction ratings through its 2012 Consumer Single Source survey of over 50,000 Australians and its Business Single Source survey of 22,000 decision makers.last_img read more

‘Africa, draw lessons from Mandela’s life’

first_img15 December 2013Speaking at Nelson Mandela’s funeral in Qunu in the Eastern Cape on Sunday, three of Africa’s leaders called on the people of the continent to draw lessons from Mandela’s life in order to take his legacy forward now that he is gone.In a moving tribute, Malawi President and Southern African Development Community (SADC) chairperson Joyce Banda recalled her first meeting with Mandela, saying his courage and love for his people had inspired and prepared her to be her country’s first woman president.“I was inspired by Mandela, who was focused, calm and who had a spirit of forgiveness,” Banda told over 4 000 mourners gathered in a specially constructed dome on Mandela’s farm.Apart from family members and South African dignitaries, Zimbabwe’s Movement for Democratic Change leader Morgan Tsvangirai, Britain’s Prince Charles, US civil rights activist Reverend Jesse Jackson, US media personality Oprah Winfrey and businessman Sir Richard Branson are in attendance.Banda said Africa should take stock of the things Madiba taught, such as serving the people. “Tata believed that all people are created equal. He saw no boundaries. He championed the freedom of all of us Africans.”Banda, who is also a friend of Mandela’s widow, Graca Machel, said the SADC would remember Madiba for his wisdom and his tireless efforts towards peace. “We will strive to emulate Mandela’s stature.”African Union chair and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said Mandela’s life struggle in the face of unparalleled odds was a mirror of the continent.“His life has been a record of all the trials the African countries on the continent had to endure under colonialism,” Hailemariam said, adding that he was humbled to be present at the funeral of one of Africa’s greatest sons and an icon to humanity.Hailemariam said Mandela had gone out of his way to preach a message of endurance, equality, justice and reconciliation. “As we bid farewell to this great man, we should find consolation in the knowledge that his legacy will live on forever.”Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete recalled the ties the African National Congress (ANC) and Tanzania had forged during the struggle against apartheid. “The people of Tanzania have lost a great friend, a great comrade in arms.”He said that Madiba was very much the hero and the father of the continent too, adding that his charisma remained unmatched in modern times. “Madiba lived his life well. You should live his legacy.”Following the funeral service, Mandela will be buried next to his relatives at the family gravesite in a private, more intimate ceremony.Source: read more

Sand mafia beats Sarpanch to death in Rajasthan

first_imgThe ban imposed on ‘bajri’ (riverbed sand) mining in Rajasthan took an ugly turn with the sand mafia allegedly beating a 50-year-old sarpanch to death in Sawai Madhopur district on Thursday. Raghuveer Singh Meena, sarpanch of Hathdoli village, was killed when he went to the Bouli area to check loading of sand illegally dug out of the Banas river.His body was cremated in his native village on Friday. Police registered a case of murder against 21 persons, including nine accused. People involved in illegal sand mining, armed with sticks and stones, attacked Mr. Meena, who was accompanied by a team of Mining Department and a few policemen. The accused hurled stones on the officials when they entered the land in Hindpura village and forced them to retreat. ‘Bled to death’In the melee, Mr. Meena was injured by a stone and fell on the ground. The assailants fled and a profusely bleeding Sarpanch was rushed to a hospital in Sawai Madhopur. He was later referred to Jaipur, but he succumbed to his injuries.last_img read more

Sreesanth replaces injured Praveen Kumar for WC

first_imgS Sreesanth.S. Sreesanth will replace injured medium pacer Praveen Kumar in the squad for ICC World Cup, beginning on February 19. The all-India senior selection committee of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Tuesday picked Sreesanth as Kumar’s replacement. The International Cricket Council (ICC) had allowed Kumar’s replacement in the team. Kumar was ruled out of the World Cup due to an elbow injury that he had sustained before the ODI series in South Africa last month. Though it was expected that he would be fit in time, Kumar was yet to recover fully. The fiery pacer from Kerala was present at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore on Monday when Kumar failed his fitness test. Sreesanth was instrumental in ensuring India shared the honours in the Test series against South Africa. His omission from the World Cup squad last month had surprised many considering his recent performances.”I got an opportunity, I will do my best. I am very excited to play for India,” said Sreesanth.last_img read more