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Botulinum toxin, produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, is one of the most poisonous biological substances known, but in true' the dose makes the poison' fashion,  Botulinum neurotoxin serotype A , commonly known as Botox - took C. botulinum  from being known for the serious paralytic illness Botulism to smoothing out wrinkles due to its paralytic effect.

It's been used for decades with no serious side effects and outside cosmetic surgery is also useful for the treatment of over-active muscles and spasticity, because it promotes local and long-term paralysis, but a new study has found that some of the toxin is transported via our nerves back to the central nervous system.
Since the Cambrian Explosion, ecosystems have suffered repeated mass extinctions, 5 of which wiped out half of all species: The Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction, the Triassic–Jurassic extinction, the Permian–Triassic extinction, the Late Devonian extinction and the Ordovician–Silurian extinction.

20 years ago, a sixth major extinction was put forth in the Middle Permian (262 million years ago) in China. This Capitanian extinction was known only from equatorial settings and it was not recognized as an actual global crisis and was instead considered just one of many lesser mass extinctions. David P.G. Bond and colleagues provide the first evidence for severe Middle Permian losses amongst brachiopods in northern paleolatitudes (Spitsbergen).

Melanoma, an aggressive form of skin cancer, has been increasing in incidence in adults over the past 40 years.

Pediatric melanoma is rare (5 or 6 children per million) but some studies indicate that incidence has been increasing. A new study in The Journal of Pediatrics found that is not so, and the incidence of pediatric melanoma in the United States decreased from 2004-2010.

A newly developed assay may help investigators identify novel drug candidates to protect kidney cells and prevent or treat chronic kidney disease (CKD).

CKD affects more than 13% of adults in the United States, with diabetes, hypertension and atherosclerosis being common risk factors. Most patients rely on antihypertensive medications for treatment, and there are no therapies available that directly and specifically target the kidney.

A team led by Vineet Gupta, PhD and Jochen Reiser, MD, PhD (Rush University Medical Center) has now developed a system that can be used to identify novel drug candidates that protect the function of kidney podocytes, cells that are critical for filtering the blood. Damage to these cells is a hallmark of CKD.

Bournemouth University’s new Institute for Studies in Landscape and Human Evolution (ISLHE) – is exploring how techniques for documenting ancient footprints can help forensic scientists understand modern-day crime scenes.

Professor Matthew Bennett, Head of  the Institute for Studies in Landscape and Human Evolution, explained why the research is needed. “Footwear impressions can provide an important source of evidence from crime scenes. They can help to determine the sequence of events and – if distinctive – can even link a suspect to multiple crime scenes.

In the most famous versions of Richard III, written by William Shakespeare, the last Plantagenet king was physically and mentally deformed. 

But the public probably did not know what, and if they did, they wisely never mentioned it. A king busy fighting the War of the Roses could easily hide a deformity. Dr. Mary Ann Lund, of the University of Leicester's School of English argues that Richard's body image in life was carefully controlled and he probably kept any signs of his scoliosis hidden outside of the royal household - but after his death at the Battle of Bosworth, he was carried to Leicester and exhibited before being buried and it wasn't a secret after that.