"It is true, and thus the question of whether it is sad or happy has no meaning whatever."
Bernhard Schlink

Science is best when discussed: leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Can Sweet Wormwood and Shitake Save the Day? 

Researchers are working on a way to use shitake mushroom's digestive enzyme, Xyn11A, work for the rest of us as a potential source of biofuel. If it means that more shitakes have to be grown and prices for the delicious little monsters go down, I'll be thrilled. Oh, yeah, that whole renewable energy bit is nice too.

More research has found that artemisinin, the extract of another Asian plant, sweet wormwood, seems to selectively kill cancer cells. It works by reacting with iron, which is more concentrated in fast-growing cancer cells, and causing a free-radical cascade that kills them. Amazingly, the substance does not seem to have any side effects - it's been in use for centuries as an anti-malarial agent.

I think that's pretty cool, and I like the name.

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