unknown providence

Jekyll and Hyde cells: their role in brain injury and disease revealed

New research has shown how normally helpful brain cells can turn rogue and kill off other brain cells following injury or disease.

(Image caption: Astrocytes are shedding light on neurodegeneration caused by a range of diseases)

Astrocytes have long been implicated in the pathology of a range of human neurodegenerative diseases or injuries including Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s Parkinson’s disease, brain trauma and spinal cord injury.

But how they are produced and what their roles in disease may be, has been as yet unknown. This paper provides an understanding of the mechanism involved and for the first time provides hope that a lot of these diseases may in fact be treatable.

The study, published recently in Nature and led by researchers at The University of Melbourne and Stanford University, provides deeper understanding of the functions of injured or diseased astrocytes found in the Central Nervous System (CNS) following acute injury and chronic neurodegenerative disease.

In a healthy brain, astrocytes are vital for the normal functioning of the brain - providing nutrients to support neuron viability, releasing factors that aid formation of connections between nerve cells known as synapses, as well as many other important functions.

One puzzle has been that in some circumstances the astrocytes appear to have a toxic effect on neurons, whereas in others they support neuronal viability and connectivity.

Researcher Dr Shane Liddelow from the University of Melbourne’s Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, and the Department of Neurobiology at Stanford University, said astrocytes are often characterised as ‘helper’ cells but they can also contribute to damage caused by brain injury and disease by turning toxic and kill other types of brain cells.

“These apparently opposing effects have been a puzzle for some time. By characterising two types of astrocytes this paper provides some answers to the puzzle,” he said.

“Following nerve damage, astrocytes form scar tissue that can help in the regeneration of severed fibres. But we have also discovered that under certain conditions, they can turn and become negatively reactive, causing cell death,” Dr Liddelow said

For many decades, the trauma and neurodegeneration research focus has been on neurons. Researchers are excited by the discovery of these neurotoxic reactive astrocytes, because for the first time, these findings imply that acute injuries of the retina, brain and spinal cord and chronic neurodegenerative diseases, may all be much more treatable and even reversible than first thought.

By providing new insights into the process of neurodegeneration, researchers can look at new pathways for dealing with neurological diseases and injuries, by targetting these toxic astrocytes, in addition to neurones in neuropsychiatric diseases or oligodendrocytes as for instance in multiple sclerosis.

Ultimately, there is still hope that one day it may be possible to switch back astrocytes from the “toxic” to the “helper” state, a long term target for Dr. Liddelow and colleagues.

The Port Arthur Massacre occurred from April 28-29 in 1996. The massacre was perpetrated by Martin Bryant, a 28 year old who killed 35 people and wounder 24 more. The motive for his attack on the former prison colony is unknown as he has provided many different explanations for why he did. He has been wuoted in telling his former neighbor “ I’ll do something that will make everyone remember me”. This massacre has gone down as one of the most notable in Australian history and deadliest in the world. 

Rosemary Scrimmage

race: Yyfer | gender: cis woman (she/her) | sexuality: lesbian | age: 29? | warwitch

Rosemary is the antagonist of the series; she was a former member of the High Council an unspecified number of years ago, but was removed for unknown reasons.  Early and Providence know her as they were on the council at the same time, but both seem hesitant to speak about her, especially Early.

Rosemary is a very refined sort of woman, but it’s a mere facade for her growing instability.  She claims that her goal is to make the universe safe for witches by eliminating the non-witches, by fanning the flames of an old witch-war from thousands of years ago.  However, it may be that she has other ulterior intentions for re-creating the old war.


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Etienne Clairemont - detailed profile


  • Gender: Transfeminine Nonbinary (They/Them pronouns)
  • Race: Elezen - (probably) Ishgardian
  • Height: 6′4′’ (short for an elezen)
  • Eye Color: Very pale lavender-pink
  • Hair Color: Silvery-lavender

The Facts:

  • Name Day: Celebrates on 2/14 (unknown)
  • Occupation: Advisor, hospitality provider, and counselor
  • Allegiance: Ashen Clinic, Order of Nald’thal, members of the now-dissolved Aethertide Ventures
  • Sexual identification: Demisexual
  • Romantic identification: Panromantic
  • Alignment: Neutral Good
  • Criminal History: *blank stare* “I’m sorry, do I seem like the sort of person to do something untoward?”
  • Relationship Status: Happily Married to Sizha’to Clairemont


  • Favorite food: Fried tomato and cheese sandwiches.
  • Favorite drink: Orange juice (but they will tell you it’s tea)
  • Favorite artist: Fashion designer Q’sehk Tia, who is sadly no longer active.
  • Favorite scents: Dried oldrose. Bergamont.
  • Favorite person: Sizha’to. Her Majesty Velvet Anchovy the IIIrd (a cat).


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Happy Birthday Nekomura Iroha! Released 5 years ago today by AH-Software Co. Ltd. and Sanrio for the VOCALOID2 engine, her character is a “Kittyler” - a super fan of Hello Kitty. Her voice provider was unknown at initial release, but was revealed this June to be male utaite Kyounosuke Yoshitate, making her the first and only female VOCALOID with a male voice provider.

The Rise of Prince

The Rise of Prince: 1958-1988 will serve as the definitive account of the iconic artist’s first 30 years. More so than any previous book, this 400-page volume provides a dramatic, page-turning narrative of Prince’s rise to fame.

This book’s gripping, 50-page prologue provides a nearly day-to-day account of the events that unfolded between November 2015 and April 21, 2016, when Prince tragically died at Paisley Park. The great distance traveled by Prince during his final months – tours of Australia and New Zealand, a funeral in the Bay Area for former muse and lover Denise Matthews, a tour of Canada, and a final return home – in some ways mirrored on a grand scale Prince’s nomadic childhood, to which the book returns after detailing the events of 2016.

Hahn, writing in collaboration with veteran author Tiebert, brings his extraordinary experience to this book, which includes fully updated and expanded elements of his controversial 2003 biography Possessed, a sought-after collector’s item that remains a classic of Prince literature.

The Rise of Prince provides a complete reordering of what is known about Prince’s formative years based on previously unavailable documents and persons never before interviewed. It provides unknown information about early relationships and collaborations; a detailed account of the no-holds-barred competition with Rick James on the 1981 tour that set the course for Prince’s meteoric rise; a vivid depiction of the recording of Prince’s album at Sunset Sound, including a little-known encounter with Sly Stone; and much more.

Ultimately, the Rise of Prince tells the very human story of how Prince survived great adversity to achieve one of the greatest runs of creativity in pop history, creating an unparalleled universe of side projects, alter-egos and lovers along the way.

The book includes exclusive photos by Paul Natkin, one of the most renowned photographers of Prince.

Pre-order the new book for $8.99! Due out Feb 28!

HEY KIDS. Have you ever said any of the following?

-Gee, I’m sick of all these straight people.

-Wow, it would be great if all these white people would go away.

-I wish I had a levitating orb of unknown alignment providing ME with motivational advice.

If you answered yes to the first two, you should be reading Bitch Planet! BUT IF YOU ANSWERED YES TO ALL THREE, YOU SHOULD BE READING KAPTARA! It’s 9am, I just got to work, and the first thing I did was crack this baby open. It’s SO GOOD. It’s FUN and it’s DIVERSE without being forced*.

The art is beyond stunning, the story is intriguing and clever without taking itself too seriously, and the best part is whenever my traitorous brain would wistfully say ‘Hah, wouldn’t it be great if this character….’ IT DID. THE COMIC WENT THERE. EVERY TIME. It’s such a tragically unexpected thing to be confronted with such great, effortless diversity that it literally knocked me on my ass**.

Pick up this comic today. And then add it to your pull list/digital subscription. BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN COMICS. SUPPORT BOOKS THAT ARE ACTIVELY CONTRIBUTING TO THAT!

*for those wondering, this is what forced diversity feels like:

**I fall on my ass a lot so that doesn’t really count but if I didn’t have the balance of a baby elephant, Kaptara still would have laid me out.

NASA’s Hubble Spots Possible Water Plumes Erupting on Jupiter's Moon Europa

Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have imaged what may be water vapor plumes erupting off the surface of Jupiter’s moon Europa. This finding bolsters other Hubble observations suggesting the icy moon erupts with high altitude water vapor plumes.

The observation increases the possibility that missions to Europa may be able to sample Europa’s ocean without having to drill through miles of ice.

“Europa’s ocean is considered to be one of the most promising places that could potentially harbor life in the solar system,” said Geoff Yoder, acting associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. “These plumes, if they do indeed exist, may provide another way to sample Europa’s subsurface.”

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slickster46  asked:

Ah it seems my last question was a bit of a mood killer sorry if it brought it up bad feelings how about this did you two go on some fun mask hunting adventures together? what's a funny story from your travels?

Hoho, there’s a funny story about this, indeed!

I mentioned that this gerudo girl was very lonely. And you must understand, loneliness rarely happens without a cause.
 In her particular case, well…

She was somewhat frightened of the world outside her door. Of course—a healthy fear of the unknown never hurt anyone. But in Munoora’s case, it extended well beyond that, oh ho ho ho! You see, she would have much rather wasted away inside the perceived safety of her little shop house than risk a walk outside. 

 For me, this was somewhat unbearable. It’s very against my nature to stay cooped up in one place for long. Very against my nature! And so, I cooked up a scheme…

 I challenged the little mask maker to make a mask for me—with a stony face that could serve as a ward and fend off the dangerous terrors of unknown spaces. I provided no other context, and she—not knowing what I was up to—accepted the challenge! Hee hee hee!
 She produced a rather beautiful and striking piece—yes, it fit the bill very nicely! Later, while she busied herself with other affairs, I had a very hushed conversation with the mask. I begged it to take it’s purpose seriously—to grant it’s wearer the feeling of security. Call me crazy, but I felt the mask respond to me—and in that instance, I knew my lofty plan would work.

 I returned the mask to her, and explained that wearing it would make the outside world—tolerable! Alright, yes, ho ho ho, she was dubious, very!! But—I’ve never doubted her craftsmanship, I begged her not to doubt mine!

 And so—veeeery r e l u c tantly, she opened her door, and with great hesitation, she planted a single foot onto the grass.

 And then the other.

 She stood there for a moment, not saying anything—until finally,

At which point, she proceeded to enjoy the splendor of fresh air, green foliage, and warm sunlight, uninhibited by emotionally corrosive fears.

She climbed trees, rolled in the grass, jumped in the mud, ho ho ho! I’d never seen her so happy! Why, she even suggested that we swim in the lake, or sillier yet, climb the mountain! 
 Indeed, the mask served its purpose admirably! Finally, she could venture out on her own, fearlessly.

 I couldn’t imagine her setting out to find Majora’s Mask without it.