Saturday, April 20, 2024

NASA to reexamine space-based solar power

Well maybe.  this is one of those easy to grasp big ideas that makes space engineering look promising.  some of those ideas are simply absurd, not least space mining.

A lot of these things sort of can be done provided you do not address your ignorance.

The first problem of course is that collected broadband radiation will need to be converted to narrow band radiation invisible to our etmosphere.  otherwise we will create a massive tornado centered on the receiver and possibly towering up into the stratosphere. neat, but hardly productive.

That is just the beginning.  Like space mining, it is way easier to crush rock on earth and find neat ways to separate the goodies.

NASA to reexamine space-based solar power

May 28, 2022

NASA plans to reexamine the feasibility of space-based solar power, an approach that is finding new support based on lower launch costs, technological advances and interest in clean energy sources. Credit: ESA

WASHINGTON — NASA is starting a study to reexamine the viability of space-based solar power, a long-touted solution to providing power from space that may be getting new interest thanks to technological advances and pushes for clean energy.

In a presentation at the National Space Society’s International Space Development Conference May 27, Nikolai Joseph of NASA’s Office of Technology, Policy and Strategy said the agency was beginning a short-term study evaluating the prospects of space-based solar power, or SBSP, the first by the agency in about two decades.

“As the technology has evolved, the feasibility of the system has changed over time,” he said. “This study is going to assess the degree to which NASA should support space-based solar power.”

The study will not attempt to come up with a new architecture for SBSP, but instead reexamine past concepts for collecting solar energy in space and transmitting it to the ground for conversion to electricity. Those updated systems will be compared to terrestrial power systems and assess policy and implementation challenges they face.

It will also look at the costs of such systems, which traditionally has been a major stumbling block in previous studies dating back to the 1970s. “It’s going to be a lot of money, but money is not the only driver here,” he said. “If the number is huge and staggering, that might be OK.”

Advanced in several technical areas, Joseph said, give the agency reason to at least reexamine the feasibility of SBSP. “The elephant in the room is launch costs, and launch has become significantly more accessible. That completely changes the way we look at this,” he said. Other areas that have seen advances include thermal systems, electronics, materials and solar panels.

NASA has had discussions with the U.S. Space Force and other “technical agencies” on the study, he said. There are no plans currently to seek public input through a formal request for information or other process, but he did not rule out doing so later on. The goal is to finish the study and present it at the International Astronautical Congress in Paris in September.

There has been a revival of interest in SBSP in recent years, including a workshop last December by the European Space Agency that Joseph said NASA attended and which led the agency to consider its own study. The British government included SBSP as a technology it was exploring alongside nuclear, wind and other energy systems last year.

Much of that interest is driven by the desire for energy sources that can achieve goals of “net zero” carbon emissions to mitigate climate change. “I think it’s one of the more promising things that we can do from a space perspective to help save the planet. We’ve got to get to 2050 net-zero,” said Karen Jones of The Aerospace Corporation’s Center for Space Policy and Strategy during a later panel on SBSP at the conference.

“It just doesn’t make any sense for the United States to not be looking at this,” said Peter Garretson, a former U.S. Air Force officer who led a study on SBSP by the now-defunct National Security Space Office in 2007. He cited both climate change as well as international competition, including reported Chinese interest in SBSP.

“Even if you were to assume that space solar power would not end up being economical, the fact that we are losing the narrative by not trying for something on a global agenda just makes us look silly,” he argued.

John Mankins, a longtime advocate for SBSP who led earlier NASA studies on the topic, said “super cheap” space access promised by vehicles like SpaceX’s Starship changed the economics of such system. “Transportation is no longer part of the cost equation,” he said. “That makes space solar power potentially affordable, depending on how you do it.”

In his speech, Joseph said the study, besides looking at costs and policy issues, will also examine public perception of space-based solar power. “Public perception is something we don’t talk much about,” he said, noting that when he explains how such systems would beam power back to Earth, people ask what that would mean for birds flying through those beams. “I don’t think it’s going to be a problem, but I don’t fully know and I need to understand that.”

He said the study could provide benefits even if it concludes SBSP isn’t feasible. “It’s a wonderful strawman for understanding how we attack big problems like this,” he said. “It’s also a great way to look at how you build policy around big projects.”

“I feel there’s something of an obligation within NASA to look at this,” he added, “because it’s been around for so long and this idea hasn’t been destroyed yet. It’s persisted.”

How Ivermectin Trials Were Designed to Fail

Again we see ignorant people abusing stats to push their agenda.  The p value is an indicator in a perfect distribution which never exists.  It become really troublesome is other factors are at play.

Again, scientists are not trained statisticians either and are often working to overcome their technical weaknesses as well.  all this is why we like many reps and other researchers in on it.

In fact the body of science fully said the same thing and that invermectin was effective.  We are dealing with a population of thousands.  Yet a handful of clearly messed up studies are then used to counter the empirical consensus.  Not good and it killed millions.

How Ivermectin Trials Were Designed to Fail

Despite the proven efficacy of ivermectin in treating COVID-19, some studies in top-tier journals have concluded otherwise. Which data should we trust?

By Yuhong Dong, M.D., Ph.D.


Health Viewpoints

The use of ivermectin to treat COVID-19 is an ongoing debate. The central conflict is that while many doctors have reported success in using ivermectin, some studies published in major journals suggest it is in fact ineffective.

Even as the FDA recently has been removing misinformation it posted about ivermectin, the agency has maintained its original position regarding its effectiveness, namely that there isn’t evidence.

People who trust ivermectin claim the studies showing ineffectiveness are fraudulent, while people who are skeptical of its use for treating COVID-19 view it as an anti-science conspiracy theory.

As a professional with decades of research experience conducting dozens of clinical trials on antiviral drugs, I decided to dive deep into the studies purporting ivermectin’s ineffectiveness. What I found shocked me.

Legacy Media Report IneffectivenessNumerous preclinical studies have found that ivermectin has a broad range of effects on COVID-19, spanning from its initial impact on viral infection to the pathological changes the virus causes in our bodies.

Ivermectin inhibits the entire life cycle of SARS-CoV-2 in our cells from attachment, spreading, and replication (1, 2, 3).

Moreover, ivermectin is anti-inflammatory and organ-protective, which can potentially protect against severe COVID-related lung damage and acute respiratory distress syndrome, heart-related complications, and blood clots.

Ivermectin exceeds the approved antiviral effects of other medications, including Paxlovid, molnupiravir and remdesivir, which only target the virus and lack anti-inflammatory and organ-protective effects. Monoclonal antibodies have to be constructed specific to each variant and are very expensive.

In the pharmaceutical industry, clinical trials are commonly used to evaluate the efficacy and safety of drugs once their mechanism is demonstrated. There are two types of clinical trials: observational and interventional.

Observational studies are often conducted by doctors in clinical, hospital, or community settings to analyze the effects of drugs. The data is collected as observed in clinical practice with minimal interference.

Many doctors have observed the positive effects of ivermectin on their patients. An observational study conducted in Brazil with over 88,000 patients showed that ivermectin reduced the rates of infection, mortality, and hospitalization by 49 percent, 92 percent, and 100 percent, respectively, compared to nonusers.

Pharmaceutical companies are required to conduct interventional studies that meet the approval standards set by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Randomized clinical trials (RCTs) are frequently utilized to fulfill these requirements. This type of study is considered the gold standard and involves randomly assigning one group of patients to receive a specific drug while the other group does not receive it, then comparing the outcomes.

Legally and medically, ivermectin can be prescribed off-label to treat COVID-19 since it has already been approved by the FDA for other diseases.

Although many doctors have observed the positive effects of ivermectin in treating their patients, the media has specifically highlighted data from a few selected RCTs that have concluded it is ineffective in treating COVID-19.

However, some critical aspects were overlooked in those RCTs.

Improper DosingA drug’s therapeutic effects can only be observed when it reaches the appropriate concentration in the body and remains there for a few days, allowing sufficient time to work.

Improper dosing was a major issue in the RCTs that found ivermectin ineffective.

Recommended DosageAccording to Merck’s package insert for ivermectin (brand name Stromectol), a single oral dose of 0.2 mg/kg was officially recommended for treating parasitic diseases. There is no official dose for COVID-19.

The recommended dosage of ivermectin for treating COVID-19 is based on the clinical experiences of physicians worldwide.

The Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC) guidelines recommend taking 0.4 mg/kg of ivermectin daily, immediately after exposure. Once a cumulative dose in excess of 200 mg is reached, the risk of acquiring COVID-19 has been shown to be nearly zero.

It is common for a drug with multiple indications to have different doses for different diseases.

Moreover, ivermectin should be given with food, as it has a 2.6-fold higher bioavailability when taken with food rather than on an empty stomach. The Merck package insert (revised May 2022) also supports this and states: “Administration of 30 mg ivermectin following a high-fat meal resulted in an approximate 2.5-fold increase in bioavailability relative to administration of 30 mg ivermectin in the fasted state.”

FLCCC guidelines also recommend taking ivermectin “with or just following a meal for greater absorption.”

Yet this important dosing information is not reflected in the commonly used drug prescribing resource known as the Prescribers’ Digital Reference or PDR which states: “Take the number of tablets your doctor has prescribed all at the same time with water on an empty stomach. Do not eat any food within two hours before or after taking the tablets.”

So if a person takes the dose while fasting, they are getting only 40 percent of the recommended dose. For patients with a higher body weight, the effects of underdosing could be even more significant.

RCT Studies Used Inappropriate DosingIn the most recent PRINCIPLE trial published in March, ivermectin was used at 0.3 mg/kg for only three days. Moreover, it was designed to dose the ivermectin without food: “Participants were advised not to eat two hours before or after taking ivermectin.”

In another RCT ACTIV-6 published in JAMA in October 2022, ivermectin was dosed in a fasting status, as the protocol stated: “Ivermectin should be taken on an empty stomach with water (30 minutes before a meal or 2 hours after a meal).”

Ivermectin was reported as dosed at 0.4 mg/kg for three days—a much shorter time period than it should be. However, in the protocol Table 4 in Appendix 16.3.3, the precise dosing was as low as 0.269 mg/kg, and 0.4 mg/kg is actually only the upper dose limit—not the real dose.

According to the worldwide recognized study guideline ICH Good Clinical Practice, clinical trials must adhere to ethical principles. Failure to do so would be considered study misconduct or fraud and would violate the principle of integrity.

Another JAMA study published in March 2021 repeated the same mistake in mild COVID-19 patients by suggesting they take 0.3 mg/kg for five days on an empty stomach.

An RCT study known as TOGETHER, published in March 2022 in the New England Journal of Medicine, underdosed ivermectin with 0.4 mg/kg for only three days and did not mention dosing with food.

Nevertheless, even at this low dose, the ivermectin still reduced hospitalization rates, death, and the need for mechanical ventilation compared to a placebo.

Clinical Improvement Despite UnderdosingIt is inappropriate to conclude that ivermectin was ineffective based on these RCT studies with major design flaws.

Despite the poor study design, ivermectin showed clinical benefits and saved lives.

In the PRINCIPLE study, self-reported recovery was shorter in the ivermectin group than usual care, with a median decrease of 2.06 days. The statistical analysis showed that it met the predefined superiority criteria.

Furthermore, the analysis showed that ivermectin effectively reduced COVID-19-related hospitalizations and deaths. Only 1.6 percent of 2,157 patients in the ivermectin group experienced hospitalizations or deaths, compared to 4.4 percent of 3,256 patients in the usual care group.

Even a low dose of ivermectin has demonstrated the potential to save lives. However, the authors concluded, “Ivermectin for COVID-19 is unlikely to provide clinically meaningful improvement in recovery, hospital admissions, or longer-term outcomes.”

Meanwhile, the report’s appendix includes dozens of recorded clinical benefits in patients treated with ivermectin, such as the time it took to alleviate all symptoms, general unwellness, muscle aches, and headaches. The improvement of symptoms was also sustained, and the severity was reduced. Surprisingly, the source PDF was removed from the website during the writing of this article.

There are additional examples. Although the previously mentioned 2021 JAMA study underdosed patients, treatment with ivermectin reduced recovery time by two days. In the ACTIV-6 study, only one venous blood clot event was reported in 817 ivermectin-treated patients, compared to five events in 774 placebo-treated patients.

Statistical FailuresIt is important to note that the definition of treatment effects in an RCT can differ from those discussed in real-life observational studies.

Sometimes, even if the results of a clinical trial demonstrate a clear effect, the conclusion may still be interpreted as ineffective due to the statistical definition of effectiveness.

Interpreting statistics can be challenging as they usually involve complicated mathematical models and numerical data that can be manipulated to support a specific agenda. Nevertheless, for the purpose of this discussion, let’s presume that all research is carried out conscientiously and without manipulative intent.

In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial with mild to moderate COVID-19 patients, none of the 55 patients in the ivermectin group died, whereas four of 57 in the placebo group died. This resulted in a comparison of zero percent versus 7 percent. Moreover, only 1.8 percent of ivermectin-treated patients needed invasive ventilation compared to 8.8 percent in the placebo group.

In other words, ivermectin reduced the risk of death by 100 percent and the need for ventilators by 80 percent.

However, the article did not provide the p-value (probability value) for the death rate comparison or the invasive ventilation of 0.102 (Table 2), which is higher than the 0.05 threshold considered to be a significant statistical difference.

P-values are commonly used to test and measure a “null hypothesis,” which states that no differences exist in the effects being studied between two groups. A finding is considered statistically significant and warrants publication when the p-value is 0.05 or less.

The p-values in this study were deemed insignificant because they were more than 0.05. Accordingly, the authors wrote that this difference was statistically insignificant and concluded that ivermectin “had shown only marginal benefit.”

How could a 100 percent reduction in death or an 80 percent reduction in ventilation be interpreted as “marginal” effects?

In the I-TECH study published in JAMA Internal Medicine in 2022, the patients treated with ivermectin had a lower mortality rate of 1.2 percent compared to 4 percent in the comparator group.

The same conclusion was made as the previous study because the p-value was 0.09 and higher than 0.05.

If the 7 million patients reported to have died from COVID-19 had been treated with ivermectin, an estimated 4.9 million lives could potentially have been saved based on the 70 percent reduced mortality rate from the I-TECH study; or 4.5 million lives could have been saved based on the 64 percent reduction of mortality in the PRINCIPLE study.

The life-saving potential of ivermectin has been hindered by the unnecessary statistical threshold. The problem of statistical significance is widespread and frequently causes confusion among scientists.

A 2016 Nature article raised concerns about the misuse of p-values. A 2019 comment in the same journal stated that “The misuse of statistical significance has done much harm to the scientific community and those who rely on scientific advice.”

The authors called for abandoning the use of statistical significance to draw conclusions regarding the effectiveness of drugs, such as stating that “drug Y does not work,” and cautioned that such conclusions may result in the dismissal of potentially life-saving drugs.

The authors also wrote: “Let’s be clear about what must stop; we should never conclude there is ‘no difference’ or ‘no association’ just because a P value is larger than a threshold such as 0.05.”

Selection BiasMany people, including physicians, may not be aware that interventional studies, particularly RCTs, are prone to numerous biases, with selection bias being one of the most significant. Excluding potentially eligible individuals due to their anticipated group allocation can lead to selection bias.

It’s common knowledge that early treatment of COVID-19 is crucial for effective results. The earlier the treatment starts, the more effective it is. These approved antivirals for COVID-19 are used shortly after COVID-19 infection and usually within a few days after symptom onset.

For example, Paxlovid and molnupiravir registration trials treated patients within only three to five days of symptom onset.

Early treatment is critical for COVID-19. Efficacy declines rapidly with treatment delay. (

However, in the PRINCIPLE trial, ivermectin was used for patients within 14 days of symptom onset, while ACTIV-6 treated patients an average of six days after infection.

Patients with severe kidney disease are normally excluded from phase 3 studies, as they are less likely to respond to antiviral treatment. This approach has been taken by remdesivir (protocol), molnupiravir (protocol), and Paxlovid (protocol). However, such standard exclusion criteria were not taken by the ACTIV-6 or PRINCIPLE study protocols.

Why was ivermectin treated so unfairly in these clinical trials?

It is well known that when an RCT is sponsored by Big Pharma, there is often a financial conflict of interest, as the research institutions are usually hired or funded by the pharmaceutical company. In a world where wealth often competes with ethics, how many can resist financial temptation and stay true to moral principles?

“Hidden agenda bias” occurs when a trial is conducted to demonstrate a desired outcome, rather than to answer a question. In other words, “Don’t do a trial if it won’t show you what you want to find.”

Proven Without a Profit MotiveConducting an RCT to get a drug approved by the FDA requires money. Every drug must be managed by a professional team composed of doctors, database managers, and assistants. Professionals must secure funding, recruit a lead investigator, and find hospitals to conduct the study. An operational team must perform the study, analyze the data, and gain FDA approval.

Since ivermectin is a generic drug that lacks profitable marketing and a pharmaceutical sponsor, it’s challenging to organize and systematically manage its new application with health authorities, data, and customers.

Nevertheless, doctors worldwide have been using ivermectin to help patients and have collected valuable data.

The website has compiled data on 102 clinical trials proving ivermectin’s consistent effectiveness in treating COVID-19. Studies with negative conclusions about ivermectin are also included, such as the the four RCTs with recognized design flaws.

Since the beginning of the analysis, ivermectin has consistently shown efficacy. This meta-analysis provides a thorough and transparent real-time analysis of all eligible ivermectin studies.

The trials were conducted by 1,139 doctors or scientists from 29 countries with 142,307 patients. Out of the total studies, 86 have been peer-reviewed with 128,787 patients, and 49 were randomized controlled trials with 16,847 patients.

In the studies with comparative groups, ivermectin was shown to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection by 81 percent, mortality by 49 percent, ICU admission by 35 percent, ventilation usage by 29 percent, and hospitalization by 34 percent.

In comparison to the control groups, the use of ivermectin as a preventive measure before infection reduced the most severe clinical outcomes of COVID-19 by 85 percent. When used in the early stage of COVID-19, ivermectin decreased the severity of the disease by 62 percent, and when used in late stages, it reduced the clinical severity by 39 percent. Clinical severity is measured by death, ventilation, disease progression, or hospitalization.

Ivermectin treatment effects in COVID-19 patients, based on a meta-analysis of 102 clinical trials. (

Considering the Entire PictureIt’s difficult to believe that the designers of these studies were unaware of the dosing of ivermectin. Despite all of the above analyses, the reasoning behind the ivermectin underdosing or unfavorable study design may be linked to factors beyond science.

A new drug or vaccine cannot achieve an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) status if there is an existing viable therapeutic available. This fact alone may have impacted many decisions.

The NIH website lists only those RCTs that I found to have design flaws (or potential fraud) to justify its recommendation against the use of ivermectin in the treatment of COVID-19.

Peer-reviewed studies showing the efficacy of ivermectin in treating COVID-19 have been retracted without explanation, and doctors have been demonized, censored, and doxxed for speaking the truth.

Legacy media, including The New York Times and CNN, reported incomplete and improperly interpreted trials that failed to present an accurate representation of ivermectin’s effects.

It’s important to keep an open mind and consider the entire picture when examining the ivermectin issue, rather than dismissing it as conspiracy or misinformation. This can lead to more informed decisions that could ultimately save lives.

Vaccinated People Show Long COVID-Like Symptoms With Detectable Spike Proteins

more of the science is coming out and the actve agency has AIDS like behavior but does not replicate which is good news.

My take is that sooner or later, the nasties do age out and the body disposes of it all.  Yet in many cases the window is over a year.  Again, by now the intrinsic death rate should be in sharp decline back to the original levels or below.

This is actually good news and it appears operation warp speed prevented a vastly more effective biological agent from been created and instead they threw in all sorts of known nasties which the body mostly fended off.

Vaccinated People Show Long COVID-Like Symptoms With Detectable Spike Proteins: 

The findings indicate that the persistence of spike proteins was likely the driver for symptoms of long COVID and post-vaccine syndrome.


Spike protein could remain in immune cells for more than 245 days following vaccination, according to a recent preprint. The study evaluated 50 patients who developed long COVID-like symptoms after the COVID-19 vaccine; none had been infected with the virus.

The authors extracted immune cells from 14 post-vaccine patients and found that 13 had spike protein in their immune cells. Asymptomatic vaccinated people had no spike present.

Researchers from InCellDx, a research company that produces panels and protocols that test for and treat long COVID and post-vaccine syndrome, authored the paper.
Their previous study published in 2022 showed that unvaccinated long-COVID patients could have spike protein persist in their immune cells for 15 months.

In both papers, the spike proteins were detected in monocytes, immune cells that circulate the body.

These findings indicate that the persistence of these spike proteins was likely the driver for the symptoms of long COVID and post-vaccine syndrome, InCellDx founder and lead study author Dr. Bruce Patterson told The Epoch Times.

“These cells bind to the blood vessels. They cause endotheliitis (inflammation of endothelium) and vascular inflammation, which I think now has been corroborated by many as being probably one of the most important pathogenic mechanisms in long COVID,” Dr. Patterson said.

Spike Protein Reservoirs“Monocytes are scavenger cells of the immune system,” Dr. Patterson said. Monocytes function similarly to how the video game character Pac-Man does: They roam the body and gobble up proteins they come across in their way.

In long COVID, monocytes gobble up spike protein, the virus’ viral debris. In post-vaccine syndrome, the monocytes engulf spike proteins, which the body makes from the COVID-19 vaccine.

These spike proteins are then stored inside the monocytes, which causes the cells to live longer than they should. The prolonged longevity can cause inflammation, leading to various long-lasting symptoms.

In the study, Dr. Patterson and his team observed that post-vaccine patients had significantly higher monocyte levels than those without post-vaccine symptoms. The symptomatic post-vaccine patients also had a clear elevation in inflammatory biomarkers, whereas the asymptomatic patients did not.

Dr. Patterson believes that at the time of the study, viral replication or spike protein production from vaccinations was no longer occurring. Instead, the spike proteins persisted for months because they were being stored.

He reasoned that once the monocytes engulfed the spike proteins, the spike hijacked the cells’ cell death program, turning off cell death “so they become long-lived cells.”

A similar phenomenon occurs with the HIV and hepatitis C viruses.

Monocyte cells can cause inflammation. Particularly, nonclassical monocytes, which traverse the blood vessels, can lead to blood vasculature inflammation and damage.

Several studies have identified inflamed and damaged vasculature as central features of long-COVID symptoms. These patients have a high level of inflammatory chemicals, which can promote fatigue, blood clotting, immune and nervous system dysregulation, and more.

Long COVID vs. ‘Long Vax’The recent preprint also shows how long COVID and post-vaccine syndrome may be differentiated.

While the same thing—spike protein persistence—likely causes both conditions, the conditions have slightly differing chemical profiles, especially regarding the level of interleukin-8, or IL-8.

IL-8 is a type of cytokine that aids in attracting immune cells to areas of inflammation, Dr. Patterson explained.

He said that medication that blocks these different cytokines should resolve symptoms. For example, his team found that tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) is a cytokine that, when elevated, induces fatigue. Therefore, reducing that cytokine can help diminish fatigue.

Other cytokines shared between long COVID and the condition dubbed “long vax” include sCD40L and CCR5, which drive vascular inflammation. Another cytokine, IL-6, signals systemic inflammation.
Dr. Patterson explained that the two conditions’ distinct chemical profiles may be due to their different delivery mechanisms: Viral infection causes long COVID, while inoculation causes post-vaccine syndrome.
Treatment ProtocolDr. Patterson uses the same protocol for treating long COVID and post-vaccine syndrome. Both treatments entail curbing inflammation in the blood vessels and throughout the body.

His protocol includes using maraviroc, an HIV drug, and atorvastatin, a type of statin, to target vasculature inflammation.

Maraviroc blocks CCR5, a type of inflammatory cytokine that causes blood vessel inflammation, while statins can bind to the receptors inside the blood vessels, blocking them from binding to inflammatory monocytes.

Many doctors have found successes with ivermectin, N-acetylcysteine (NAC), and nattokinase, all of which are drugs and nutraceuticals that help break down outside spike protein. However, Dr. Patterson reported the opposite in his practice. He explained that the drugs cannot target the spike protein stored inside cells.

In February, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Dr. Patterson’s clinical trial to test a maraviroc and statin combination for treating long COVID.

Long Vax Masked as Long COVIDThe study findings imply that some people diagnosed with long COVID may actually be suffering from post-vaccination symptoms.

“Evidence they blame vaccine injury on ‘long covid’?,” Dr. Lynn Flynn, a virology and infectious disease expert, wrote on X, citing the preprint.

Dr. Patterson said that the symptoms being reported in these post-vaccine patients “were almost identical to the symptoms in long COVID,” with the predominant symptoms being fatigue, neuropathy, brain fog, and headache. Long-COVID patients in another cohort also reported these symptoms.

“[Long vax] has a very low prevalence, but because billions of [people] are vaccinated, there’s a great number of individuals who have long vax,” he added.

Apart from post-vaccine syndrome, Dr. Patterson said that patients with an exacerbation of Lyme disease and myalgic encephalomyelitis (chronic fatigue syndrome) have also been labeled as long-COVID patients due to a symptoms-based diagnosis.

When Are You Too Old to Get a Colonoscopy?

This pretty well tells us that once around fifty or so is good enough.  and do not worry about benign polyps.  In short, it took fifty years to have a problem and another fifty years with no problem is otherwise indicated.

You cetainly should have a colonoscopy around age fifty.  It a problem is discovered you have a good prognosis for surgery and you certainly do not wish to wait for a more dramatic presentation..

however, once done, it is done and any more is not risk free and that is likely way more than a sudden onset of cancer then.

When Are You Too Old to Get a Colonoscopy?

Results of a recent cross-sectional study suggest that surveillance colonoscopy may be riskier than it’s worth for adults aged 70 and older.



Can you be too old to get a colonoscopy?

Perhaps, according to results from a cross-sectional conducted at Kaiser Permanente Northern California in Oakland, California. The study was published on April 2 in JAMA Network Open.

The results indicated that colonoscopies rarely detect colorectal cancer in older adults—even if they have a history of benign tumors called adenoma. Adenomas typically begin in the tissue covering organs and glands. These mushroom-shaped tumors can grow in the colon, and while they aren’t cancerous, health care professionals usually consider them to be precancerous.

Adenomas are found in 4o percent of screening colonoscopies in the United States. If they are discovered during colonoscopies, physicians usually recommend removing them. After removal, current guidelines recommend that patients undergo future surveillance colonoscopies. However, guidelines do not provide much direction as to how long a person should undergo this surveillance.

“Given the increasing aging population of in the US and that nearly 5.6 million adults older than 75 will undergo surveillance annually by 2024, estimating the yield of surveillance colonoscopy is important for understanding the balance between potential benefits and known risks of colonoscopy with advancing age,” researchers wrote.

Known risks of colonoscopies include bleeding, perforation of the colon, sedation-related effects, infection, heart attack, severe abdominal pain, and stroke. Bleeding, which occurs in 15 of every 10,000 procedures, and perforation are the most common complications. Most cases of bleeding and perforation occur in older individuals or those who have had adenomas or other polyps removed, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

Less Than 1 Percent of Colonoscopies Found Cancer in Older AdultsIn the cross-sectional study of 9,601 patients between the ages of 70 and 85 with a history of adenoma, only 0.3 percent of surveillance colonoscopies detected cancer. About 12 percent found advanced adenoma and advanced neoplasia (abnormal growth). Researchers noted that results did not differ significantly by age.

Patients with a history of advanced adenoma were more likely to have colorectal cancer detected by surveillance than patients with non-advanced adenoma. Additionally, patients with advanced adenoma were also more likely to have advanced neoplasia, which is a growth of more than 10 millimeters in diameter.

Other factors associated with advanced neoplasia were a body mass index (BMI) of more than 30 and a history of smoking tobacco. Individuals of Asian or Pacific Islander descent were less likely to have advanced neoplasia.

Findings Emphasize Importance of Individualized CareThe research team suggested their findings could inform older patients and clinicians when individualizing care, as surveillance colonoscopies may do more harm than good at a certain age.

“The low rate of [colorectal cancer] detection at surveillance may not justify the potential harms and burdens of colonoscopy that may increase with age,” they wrote.

However, they did note that colonoscopies could continue to save the lives of those with histories of adenomas.

“For some older adults with a predicted life expectancy of 10 or more years and without significant competing comorbidities, especially for those with a prior advanced adenoma, detection of early-stage [colorectal cancer] or advanced adenomas at surveillance could lead to earlier treatment and improved outcomes,” the team wrote.

The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 106,000 Americans will be diagnosed with colon cancer in 2024, and more than 46,000 will be diagnosed with rectal cancer. While its rates in older adults have dropped since the 1980s, colorectal cancer is still the third leading cause of cancer-related death in men and the fourth in women. When combined for both sexes, it’s the second most common cause of cancer death. It is expected to take the lives of more than 53,000 Americans in 2024.

Friday, April 19, 2024

Arctic permafrost is now a net source of major greenhouse gases

what this means is that we improved our measuring and broadly discovered it has always been a source of such gas which is unsurprising because so far we do not see permafrost growing anywhere.

Question?  Is it possible that our permafrost goes back to the Ice Age?

this is not unreasonable because remnant Ice Age conditions existed here until only several thousands of years ago.  Ocassional warm spells such as we are now experiencing would produce craters that would simply become lakes.  We know them as kettle lakes and those craters are their beginning.

so yes, virginia, the perma frost is still thawing out and will ultimately resolve itself into northern meadows.

Arctic permafrost is now a net source of major greenhouse gases

An Arctic-wide survey has found that the permafrost region is emitting more carbon into the atmosphere than it absorbs, causing the planet to heat even further

12 April 2024

A crater formed by thawing permafrost in Russia

Areas of permanently frozen ground in northern regions are now emitting more carbon into the atmosphere than they absorb, causing the planet to heat even further, according to the first Arctic-wide estimate of all three major greenhouse gases.

Frozen ground, or permafrost, which underlies 15 per cent of the northern hemisphere and contains twice as much carbon as the atmosphere, has shrunk in area by an estimated 7 per cent in 50 years as it thaws. Recent research suggests the thaw will slow but not stop if we successfully limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.

Scientists, however, haven’t been sure whether the permafrost region has become a net emitter of greenhouse gases. Even as the thaw releases more carbon compounds from the once-frozen biological matter in the ground, increased summertime plant growth is absorbing more CO2 from the atmosphere.

A 2019 study found that the Arctic was emitting more CO2 than it was absorbing, but research in 2021 and 2023 suggested that it was still a net sink for CO2.

Now, Justine Ramage at the Nordregio research institute in Stockholm and her colleagues have found the permafrost region has tipped from sink to source, emitting 144 million tonnes of carbon per year between 2000 and 2020. That is largely because methane emissions were included in the measurement in addition to CO2. Permafrost also emitted 3 million tonnes of nitrogen per year, partly in the form of nitrous oxide, an even more powerful greenhouse gas.

“You put some frozen food in a freezer, it’s OK. As soon as you take it out, it starts rotting very fast,” says Ramage. “The [microbial] activity starts increasing, and when it’s not positive for climate, it will have a strong impact.”

While previous research often relied on satellite data or machine learning, Ramage and her colleagues compiled ground-level emissions observations from 200 sites across Scandinavia, Russia, Alaska and Canada and extrapolated them to areas with similar plants and moisture.

Vegetated areas were mostly carbon sinks, but these were offset by emissions from rapidly expanding lakes, as well as wildfires, which weren’t taken into account by earlier studies.

The estimates have large uncertainty ranges because greenhouse gas monitoring, while improving, is still patchy in remote Arctic areas. “Abrupt thaw”, which includes collapses and landslides, is especially difficult to quantify, says EugĂ©nie Euskirchen at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, who published observations in January showing that emissions from permafrost bogs and forests are increasing.

“Abrupt thaw is kind of a wild card,” she says. “It’s really hard to constrain and really hard to make measurements because you have to be right on top of it.”

Ramage’s study found that abrupt thaw released 31 million tonnes of CO2 and 31 million tonnes of methane per year, but didn’t include these figures in the total carbon estimate for fear of double counting. If anything, the total probably underestimates abrupt thaw, as well as wintertime emissions, says Euskirchen.

Susan Natali at the Woodwell Climate Research Center in Massachusetts, who led the 2019 permafrost emissions study and was a co-author of the “more complete story” in Ramage’s paper, says permafrost’s shift from sink to source will make climate change even worse than expected.

“This is a new source of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere that are not fully accounted for in global climate models,” she says.

Your Thyroid Is the Regulator of Your Entire Existence

There is so much that we do not track at all and this is unwise as we age.  I have posted a lot just about vitimin C just because we almost cannot get enough in our diet without lots of ascorbic acid added.

Thyroid variation is a common problem and care has often meant partial destruction which comes back to bite you as you age. just saying and none of that sounds like a modern protocol.

Thyroid function testing is something that we all need likely, yet today we still check blood pressure and perhaps listen to the heart as we did decades ago.

A lot of our systems deserve way better than that and underlines our low expectations with doctors.

Your Thyroid Is the Regulator of Your Entire Existence

April 15, 2024

The word “hormone” derives from the Greek word “hormon,” which means “to excite” or “set in motion.” They have shaped your life ever since you were an embryo. More than 80 human hormones have been identified, all with distinctly different roles.

Each hormone acts as a chemical messenger and is aimed at a specific target cell and has no effect on any other cells as it washes past them. When a hormone acts on its specific target cell, it can change the way it behaves to make it perform a specific task.

Hormones exert their influence in very small concentrations; every molecule packs a punch. This is also why endocrine-disrupting chemicals are so dangerous even in tiny amounts.

Your Thyroid Is a Master Regulator

Of the many hormones in your body, thyroid hormones are perhaps the most important, as they regulate your metabolism and are required for nearly every physiological process in your body. When your thyroid levels are unbalanced, it can spell serious trouble.

An imbalance can lead to significant health issues, including fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, eczema, gum disease and autoimmune disorders, just to name a few. This is because the thyroid impacts various parts of the body, making the symptoms of dysfunction diverse.

Fortunately, thyroid hormone imbalances are often treatable, and can potentially reverse symptoms of related health conditions. As explained by Nate Lawrence, a bioenergetic medicine coach, in the featured video:

“The thyroid gland regulates metabolism, which can really be seen as systemic energy production. If you aren’t producing energy efficiently, this is where we find all of the problems of life.

When your hormones are properly balanced and you have enough thyroid [hormone], this is when life comes natural, action comes from second nature and the flow of energy is not only maintained but expanded upon with adequate stimulation.

Thyroid is synthesized to increase the metabolic rate. In deprivation stress, hormones rise to oppose the thyroid and lower the metabolic rate. This is an adaptive mechanism, but if upregulated chronically will lead to decay. Essentially, low thyroid function can be seen as an impaired flow of energy at all levels of life.

The main role of thyroid is to allow your cells to convert glucose into ATP, CO2, heat and water in the presence of oxygen. Thyroid also helps to convert cholesterol into the downstream steroid hormones, most notably pregnanolone, progesterone and DHEA, which are three youth hormones that reinforce energy.”

How Your Thyroid Works

Your thyroid gland is shaped like a butterfly on your neck just under your voice box and secretes four hormones: T1, T2, T3 and T4. The number indicates the number of molecules of iodide attached to the hormone. These hormones interact with other hormones, such as insulin, cortisol and sex hormones.

Your hypothalamus secretes thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) that triggers the pituitary gland to release thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) that then causes your thyroid to release T4.

Nearly 90% of your thyroid hormone is released in an inactive form of T4. Your liver then converts T4 to T3 with the help of an enzyme. T2 is currently the least understood form of thyroid hormone and is the subject of ongoing studies.

When everything is working properly, your body makes enough T4 that is converted to T3 to control the metabolism of every cell in your body. T3 is critical in the communication of messages to your DNA to increase your metabolism by burning fat. In this way, it helps keep you lean.

Nutritional imbalances, toxic exposures, allergens, infections and stress can disrupt this hormonal balance, leading to a series of health complications including hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism and thyroid cancer.

As noted by Lawrence, hypothyroidism (low thyroid function) is a downstream effect of inefficient oxidation of glucose that leads to inflammation, insulin resistance, cholesterol buildup, soft tissue calcification and “an overall inability to oppose stress.”

The most common symptoms of hypothyroidism are fatigue (low energy), feeling cold regardless of the ambient temperature, dry skin, hair loss, constipation and/or diarrhea, edema (water retention), brain fog, anxiety, depression and weight gain.

Simple Way to Assess Your Thyroid Function

One simple way to evaluate the health of your thyroid is to measure your body temperature first thing in the morning, upon waking. The reason this works is because when your tissue level of T3 is high, you’ll have a higher metabolic rate, and hence, higher body temperature and pulse rate.1

Having a body temperature right around 98 degrees Fahrenheit upon waking is a sign of healthy thyroid. Around midday, you want a temperature of about 98.6 degrees F. Your pulse should also rise between morning and midday and be between 60 to 100 beats per minute.

If your temperature and pulse rate are consistently low, then you have low metabolism. If your temperature and pulse fall after eating breakfast, that’s another bad sign, as this indicates you’re running on stress hormones, which is anything but healthy.

Oftentimes, people with subclinical hypothyroidism will have normal lab work, but if your body temp and pulse rate are off, that’s a tipoff that your thyroid is not functioning properly. Also, even if your TSH is low (which is what you want), it could be suppressed by cortisol and adrenaline. Checking your temperature and pulse after eating is one way to double-check that.

A cholesterol test can also be helpful. High cholesterol (mid- to high-200s) is often a sign that your thyroid is not converting cholesterol to steroid hormones. Conversely, low cholesterol can be a sign of infection.

Top Contributors to Low Thyroid Function

Several lifestyle factors can contribute to low thyroid function, including stress, inadequate light exposure and exposures to endocrine-disrupting chemicals. In terms of diet, high polyunsaturated fat (PUFA) intake is a major culprit, as PUFAs interfere with your cell’s ability to use active thyroid hormone. To maintain or increase energy production, your cells must be able to access T3. As explained in a 1990 paper in the Journal of Nutrition:2

“Safflower oil (high in omega-6 PUFA) was more effective than tallow as a repressor of T3 action … polyunsaturated fats uniquely suppress the gene expression of lipogenic enzymes by functioning as competitive inhibitors of T3 action, possibly at the nuclear receptor level.”

Similarly, a 1992 study in the journal Metabolism3 that analyzed the effects of linoleic, oleic and palmitic acid on T3-receptor binding found that linoleic acid was the most potent inhibitor of T3. As noted by Lawrence, indigestible foods and low-carb diets can also wreak havoc with your thyroid.

Tips to Protect Your Thyroid

For healthy thyroid function, you need to make sure T4 can be efficiently converted into T3. The primary inhibitors of T4 to T3 conversion are:

Impaired liver function

So, to encourage the conversion of T4 to T3, consider the following suggestions:

Eat a diet of whole, unprocessed or minimally processed foods and make sure you include enough protein and healthy, easily digested carbs that won’t cause intestinal irritation or endotoxin production, such as whole fruit.

Also incorporate more collagen and gelatin in your diet (think homemade bone broth) and avoid all PUFAs (this includes seed oils for cooking, processed foods, junk foods, fast food and most restaurant food, as well as conventionally raised chicken and pork).

Optimize your intake of magnesium, potassium, calcium, vitamins A,4 B,5 C, D, E and K, selenium and zinc.

Avoid fluoride,6 perchlorate and flame-retardant chemicals,7 as these chemicals have a very deleterious effect on thyroid hormone. Keep in mind that polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are commonly found in household dust, so clean often to keep dust to a minimum.

Perchlorate is a chemical frequently found in tap water (along with fluoride), so a water purification system is a good health investment. Perchlorate prevents iodide uptake at the thyroid gland, and your thyroid requires iodide to produce thyroid hormone.8 Thus if the perchlorate prevents iodide uptake, it reduces the amount of thyroid hormones in your body.

Avoid things that raise cortisol and estrogen, as both inhibit the conversion of T4 to T3.

Address endotoxin production in your gut by avoiding refined sugar.

Optimize bile acid synthesis, as bile acids upregulate the conversion of T4 to T3. Taurine, pregnenolone and progesterone are all known to facilitate bile acid synthesis.

Progesterone and Carbs Support Thyroid Health

To counterbalance elevated estrogen, you can use mucosal progesterone (not oral or transdermal), as it is a potent estrogen blocker. As a general recommendation, I recommend taking 25 to 50 mg of bioidentical progesterone per day, taken in the evening one hour before bed, as it can also promote sleep by increasing GABA levels.

For optimal bioavailability, progesterone needs to be mixed into natural vitamin E. The difference in bioavailability between taking progesterone orally without vitamin E and taking it with vitamin E is 45 minutes versus 48 hours.

Simply Progesterone by Health Natura is premixed with vitamin E and MCT oil. You can also make your own by dissolving pure USP progesterone powder into one capsule of a high-quality vitamin E, and then rub the mixture on your gums. Fifty milligrams of powdered progesterone is about 1/32 teaspoon.

Do not use synthetic vitamin E (alpha tocopherol acetate — the acetate indicates that it’s synthetic). Natural vitamin E will be labeled “d alpha tocopherol.” This is the pure D isomer, which is what your body can use. There are also other vitamin E isomers, and you want the complete spectrum of tocopherols and tocotrienols, specifically the beta, gamma, and delta types, in the effective D isomer.

Progesterone, while being a precursor in cortisol synthesis, can also indirectly help suppress cortisol by competing for glucocorticoid receptors and influencing the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which regulates cortisol production.

Perhaps the best strategy to keep cortisol in check though is to make sure you’re eating enough carbs. Your body needs glucose and if you don’t supply it through your diet, your body will make glucose by elevating cortisol. As a result, your metabolism will be downregulated, catabolism (breakdown of muscle tissue) will be upregulated, and your thyroid health will suffer.

Desiccated Thyroid

In addition to the fundamentals above, taking a bioidentical thyroid supplement can in many cases resolve any lingering problems. Natural desiccated thyroid (NDT) is a prescription medication that may be referred to as “natural thyroid” or “thyroid extract” as it’s made from the thyroid gland of pigs or cows.

Lawrence suggests staring with half a grain of an NDT, which supplies 5 mcg of T3 and 20 mcg of T4. Increase by half a grain every two weeks until your morning temperature is stabilized at 98 degrees F. If the 1 to 4 ratio of T3 to T4 doesn’t provide the results you seek, you may need a higher ratio of T3. As noted by Lawrence in an accompanying Substack article:9

“When liver function is poor, which can be very common in hypothyroid individuals, supplementing with high amount of the inactive hormone T4 in relation to T3 can actually impair the thyroid further, since a burdened liver can’t as easily convert T4 into the active T3.

The standard ratio of T3 to T4 is 1:4, but Ray Peat postulated that using a combination of T3 and T4 in a ratio of 1:3, 1:2 or even 1:1 may be more optimal or necessary to see improvement.

Supplementing thyroid is extremely dependent on a person’s context, and this is why it’s important to be very rational evaluating your current circumstance and history. Some individuals may thrive with half a grain in a warm stimulating environment but might need closer to one or two grains in a colder more stressful place especially with a deeper history of issues.

According to Dr. Peat, most individuals won’t need much more than 2 grains of thyroid, but in words of William Blake, ‘The true method of knowledge is experiment.’”

Other Helpful Supplements

Other supplements that can help support your thyroid function include:

• Ashwagandha — Ashwagandha is an adaptogen, meaning it helps your body adapt to challenges by balancing your immune system, metabolism and hormonal systems.10 Studies have shown it helps normalize thyroid hormone levels and may be an effective treatment for subclinical hypothyroidism. In one,11 ashwagandha was found to significantly improve serum thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels, T3 and T4 levels, compared to placebo.

The root contains the highest concentration of the active ingredients in the plant and helps modulate hormone balances, including your thyroid hormone. It has also demonstrated positive effects on estrogen and progesterone balance as women move toward menopause.

The root reduces cortisol levels, restores insulin sensitivity and helps to stabilize your mood, even if depression isn’t part of your thyroid condition.12 Other research indicates it may protect your brain from oxidative stress and improve your energy level.13

• Iodine — Iodine is required for normal thyroid hormone function, and many are deficient in this nutrient.

• Tyrosine — The amino acid tyrosine has demonstrated beneficial effects in people with suboptimal thyroid function.14

• Guggul — This is an extract of the sap from an Indian myrrh tree, which enhances the conversion of T4 to T3 in your body.15,16 Traditionally, the supplement was used to treat low metabolism, a symptom of suboptimal thyroid function. Guggul may be unsafe during pregnancy, however, so evaluate the interactions with your physician before using it.17

• Korean ginseng — This is an adaptogen like ashwagandha and contains properties that block production of excessive amounts of reverse T3 (rT3).

Asian practitioners have developed a fermented ginseng preparation that is absorbed better, faster and stays in your body longer.18 A human study looked at the impact of this preparation on thyroid hormone levels and found that treatment by injection resulted in better clinical outcomes, healthy increase of T3 and T4 levels and a reduction in rT3.19

Sources and References1 NIH How does the thyroid gland work?