U of M Alzheimer’s researcher finds way to reverse memory loss in mice

Mayo Memorial Building, University of MinnesotaCreative Commons/A Gude

Promising. Maura Lerner of the Strib says, “A top medical researcher at the University of Minnesota has found a new way to reverse memory loss in lab mice, a discovery that could set the stage for a potential human treatment. Dr. Karen Ashe, a world-renowned expert on Alzheimer’s disease, said the research shows that it may be possible for the brain to repair itself, even after the signs of memory loss have appeared.”

So classy. The Forum News Service writes about a political sign in Thief River Falls: “It’s a sign of the times and it’s upsetting some local people, but it comes as no surprise to others. … A political expert checked out the sign and says it likely didn’t come from the official Trump Campaign, and might not even be in compliance with the law.” What did it say? “Trump That Bitch.”

First The Donald, now this. The WCCO TV story says, “A North St. Paul man has been arrested after a bullet he allegedly intended to take out a zombie ended up nearly striking a man asleep in his home. According to the criminal complaint, the incident happened near the intersection of Memory Lane and Cowern Place East. … Just outside the residence, police noted 24-year-old Ryan Mathew Stanislaw walking with an AR-15 rifle slung over his neck. ‘I’m out here making sure my neighborhood is safe,’ he told officers, allegedly smelling of alcohol. ‘I didn’t see the cops, so I figured I’d do something.’ Stanislaw told police that he was shooting at ‘a zombie’ up the road.”

Better genes for Minnesota bison. An AP story says, “Researchers have transplanted embryos originating from the bison herd at Yellowstone National Park into female bison in Minnesota in hopes of increasing the genetic diversity of herds in the state and helping to restore America’s official mammal to the landscape.While Yellowstone bison are prized because they’re free of domestic cattle genes, experts say using them in breeding programs is difficult because they carry a contagious disease called brucellosis, which causes spontaneous abortions in pregnant cattle.”

In a similar vein, Mary Divine of the PiPress says, “A new drug used to treat people with the rare brain-eating amoeba that killed two Washington County children … is prompting the state health department to change the rules about which communicable diseases need to be reported. The drug, called miltefosine, has saved the lives of people exposed to Naegleria fowleri, but it is not readily available at most hospitals, said Trisha Robinson, an epidemiologist and supervisor of the health department’s waterborne diseases unit. The potentially lifesaving drug means immediate notification by medical professionals to health department officials is key, Robinson said.”

In another AP story, Amy Forliti reports, “The leader of an isolated religious sect in Minnesota pleaded guilty Tuesday to sexually assaulting two teenage girls who were members of his community. As part of the plea deal, Victor Barnard, 55, agreed to serve 30 years in prison. Barnard was the longtime leader of the River Road Fellowship near Finlayson, about 90 miles north of Minneapolis.”

Why prolong this? Christopher Magan of the PiPress says, “Fallout from a court ruling that Globe University and the Minnesota School of Business defrauded students continues to get worse and is increasing the threat the Woodbury-based chain of for-profit schools will be forced to close. The U.S. Department of Education told the schools Oct. 3 to stop enrolling new students and moved to increase oversight and restrict the institutions’ access to federally backed student loans. In addition, the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, or ACICS, has asked school officials to make a case for keeping the institutions open.” 

Today in financial scandals. Jackie Wattles with CNN Money says, “Comcast is being forced to pay the largest fine the FCC has ever levied against a cable operator. Its offense: Charging customers for services and equipment they didn’t ask for. The company agreed to pay a $2.3 million civil penalty and to submit to a ‘compliance plan,’ in which regulators will monitor Comcast for the next five years to ensure it cleans up its act. … The FCC said it received over 1,000 complaints from customers, who said Comcast charged them for premium channels, cable boxes, DVRs or other products that they never ordered.” 

And, of course, at Wells Fargo, Emily Glazer at The Wall Street Journal reports, “Wells Fargo & Co.’s top brass laid out the bank’s strategy to move past its sales-tactics scandal on an hour-long call Monday with around 500 senior executives, according to a recording of the call reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. The executives said growth in new retail banking business likely would be down due to the scandal. But they added that efforts by some states to penalize the bank by suspending parts of their business weren’t having much effect. … The executives said the situation would get harder for the San Francisco-based bank before it gets better.” 

Adam Belz of the Strib says, “The Federal Reserve system’s top crusader against banks that are too big to fail doesn’t think the latest Wells Fargo scandal is a case of a company that’s too large to manage. ‘This is just bad management, all the way up to the top, making the wrong decisions when they had this in front of them,’ Neel Kashkari, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, said in a town hall discussion at Bethel University. … .”

Also, while we’re at it. John Myers for The Duluth News Tribune writes, “Activists protesting the movement of tar-sands oil from Canada into the U.S. took action early Tuesday against five different pipelines, including two Enbridge Energy lines in northern Minnesota. Shannon Gustafson, a spokeswoman for Enbridge, said two pipeline valves near Clearbrook in northwestern Minnesota had been tampered with. … The lines, which bring Canadian crude into northwestern Minnesota and on to Enbridge’s terminal in Superior, were later shut down by the company as a precaution ‘to protect communities, first responders and the protestors.’”

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Comments (5)

  1. Submitted by Pat Berg on 10/12/2016 - 07:06 am.

    Wrong link for Trump lawn sign story

    The correct link is:


  2. Submitted by Pat Berg on 10/12/2016 - 07:19 am.

    Bison vs wolves

    So philosophically, why has the DNR deemed it acceptable to artificially intervene to strengthen genetic diversity with its presumed improvement to the vitality (and long term survival?) for bison but the same approach was not deemed acceptable for the wolves of Isle Royale?

    • Submitted by Max Millon on 10/12/2016 - 09:51 am.

      Bison vs wolves

      Wolves naturally migrated to Isle Royale. Bison were functionally eliminated from Minnesota and then artificially re-introduced in captivity. The wolves on Isle Royale are a wonderful opportunity to study population, genetics, and predator prey-dynamics in an environment largely free of humans. The same cannot be said for bison.

  3. Submitted by Mike Chrun on 10/12/2016 - 12:26 pm.

    Bison/Wolves Like Apples/Oranges

    First, the DNR has no say on what happens on Isle Royale. It is a national park and is managed by the National Park Service. Second, the wolves are living in a designated wilderness area where the philosophy is to intrude as little as possible and to let nature take its course. You might argue humans impact the island in all sorts of ways with regular ferry service, camping areas, trails, etc. but the intent is to minimize this intrusion. Shipping wolves over to the island and introducing a new pack or packs has been debated as wolves have diminished and the moose population has increased. Spoke with a National Park Service employee not that long ago and it sounds like there is still a debate going on as to what to do. The man is working in the St. Croix River Park unit but has spent time on Isle Royale working. He did bring up the point of how long a time period the wolves/moose dynamic has been going there and how many times one species or the other has declined. In an ideal world, the lake would freeze allowing wolves to migrate over and re-populate naturally. I’d like to see the wolves come back, but part of me says it would again show our arrogance by stepping in and trying to manage nature because we don’t like the way nature is managing itself.

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