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Honeybee venom ‘kills some breast cancer cells’ according to scientists

Some good news!

Alex Watson

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Scientists have found an exciting discovery that the venom from honeybees can destroy aggressive breast cancer cells, under lab conditions.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer that affects women globally, and while there are thousands of chemical compounds that can fight cancer cells in lab settings, few can be produced as actual treatments for humans. 

Similarly, the scientists involved in this experiment have cautioned that further testing is needed, however they have confirmed in lab settings the venom – a compound called melittin – has been used against two cancer types which are usually hard to treat, triple-negative and HER2-enriched. 

Published in a peer-reviewed journal, Nature Precision Oncology, the study took place by the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research in Western Australia.

Krzysztof Niewolny/Unsplash

The testing used the venom from 312 honeybees and bumblebees from Perth Western Australia, Ireland and England to see the effect of the venom on sub-types of breast cancer, including triple-negative breast cancer, which has limited treatment options.

Previous research found that bee venom contains anti-cancer properties for other types of cancer such as melanoma. 

The PhD researcher who led the research, Ciara Duffy, explained that previously the effects on different sub-types of breast cancer and normal cells had not been compared. Duffy added that the venom was ‘extremely potent’. 

The researchers found that the melittin compound on its own was effective in ‘shutting down’ or disrupting cancer cell growth. One concentration of the venom killed the cancer cells within an hour with minimal harm to other cells.

Duffy said: “We found that melittin can completely destroy cancer cell membranes within 60 minutes.”

Other dosage levels were found to be more toxic. 

Melittin naturally occurs in honeybee venom, but could also be synthetically produced. 

Western Australia’s chief scientist described the research as ‘incredibly exciting’.

Prof Peter Klinken said: “Significantly, this study demonstrates how melittin interferes with signalling pathways within breast cancer cells to reduce cell replication.

“It provides another wonderful example of where compounds in nature can be used to treat human diseases.”

Victoria Alexander/Unsplash

Associate Prof Alex Swarbrick, from the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, said regarding the research, ‘it’s very early days’. 

He told the BBC: “Many compounds can kill a breast cancer cell in a dish or in a mouse. But there’s a long way to go from those discoveries to something that can change clinical practice.”

Duffy further added that ‘bumblebee venom was unable to induce cell death even at very high concentrations’ and that the effects of Perth honeybee venom to other honeybee populations in Ireland and England, as well as to the venom of bumblebees, should be compared.

Future studies should assess the optimum method of delivery of melittin, as well as toxicities and maximum tolerated doses.

You can find out more here.

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Supermarkets are reintroducing limits on some products to stop panic buying

Just in…

Alex Watson

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John Cameron & Wesley Tingey/Unsplash

Rationing on essential items in supermarkets has begun again. 

In attempts to avoid a part two of the Lockdown Toilet Roll Fiasco we’re all still mentally scarred from, some supermarkets have reintroduced rationing on a number of products in England. 

Tesco is now limiting purchasing on flour, dried pasta, toilet roll, baby wipes and anti-bacterial wipes to a maximum of three per customer.

There are additional limits on items such as rice and tinned goods online. 

Erik Mclean/Unsplash

A spokesperson for Tesco told Mirror Money: “We have good availability, with plenty of stock to go round, and we would encourage our customers to shop as normal.

“To ensure that everyone can keep buying what they need, we have introduced bulk-buy limits on a small number of products.”

Morrisons became the first of the supermarket chains to reinstate rationing earlier this week, placing a purchase limit of three on essentials.

Toilet roll, hand sanitiser, soap, most cleaning products, kitchen roll and Calpol all currently have purchase limits on them. 

Aldi’s chief executive has also released a statement to customers stating: “There is no need to buy more than you usually would. I would like to reassure you that our stores remain fully stocked and ask that you continue to shop considerately.”

Head of Retail at the law firm Gordons, Andy Brian, told the Guardian: “Hopefully, shoppers will adopt a calmer approach than earlier in the year, and continue to shop as normal.”

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Blackpool Zoo celebrates after endangered species is born there

So cute!

Alex Watson

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Blackpool Zoo

Blackpool Zoo is celebrating the birth of a baby Gibbon – one of Europe’s second-largest group of endangered species. 

Gibbons are usually found in the tropical forests of Southeast Asia, however, a paired-for-life duo living at Blackpool Zoo are keeping the population alive as the only two breeding pairs found at the zoo. Gibbons also only breed every two or three years so this is extra amazing news for the species! 

The clearing of vast amounts of trees for farming or replantation of commercial plants has caused problems for many of Asia’s primates, including Pileated Gibbons. 

Parents Ivy and Chamoa welcomed the new arrival in August making them a happy family of five.

Keepers are hoping for a girl, however, it’s not yet known the sex of the baby Gibbon.

Blackpool Zoo

Charlotte Pennie, Senior Primate Keeper at Blackpool Zoo, said: “Ivy is doing a fantastic job of caring for the youngster, which she will carry on her chest for around six months before it starts to explore its surroundings.

She added: “Ivy is 31 and has been with us for 26 years. We almost lost her ten years ago when she became very ill, so for her to recover and go onto have three healthy babies is just wonderful.”

Gibbons form monogamous breeding pairs and have a diet consisting of sweet fruits, leaves, flowers and insects. At Blackpool Zoo they also get carrots, seeds, fruit and vegetables with rice, boiled eggs and cheese as treats.

Find out more about Gibbons at Blackpool Zoo here

 

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Local chef raises £35,000 after his food truck is burned down in ‘racist attack’

This is disgusting.

Alex Watson

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mostonsuya/Instagram

A huge fundraiser has been launched to help David Kamson get his food truck back following a ‘racist’ arson attack.

Jolus Lutete, who has never met David, set up a GoFundMe account to raise money so David can get a new van following the horrific attack.

David Olalekan Kamson shared the story on Instagram, saying he’d suffered racist attacks from a man in his local neighbourhood in Moston.

According to David, the man originally stole his van – which David operates Moston Suya from – a few weeks ago, causing more than £5,000 in damages before the police located it. 

View this post on Instagram

I am a Descendant of Noble Kings .. I Humble myself and Serve My Community … I worked Hard 3 years 9 months.. I saved money .. no social – bought a catering Trailer for £3000 pounds Spent £438 pounds to bring down from Canterbury Kent to Manchester . So I can serve food in a decent In a decent environment for my community. Some Racist Thief in Moston Named Craig Don’t like the idea of a Black Man Doing Such Business in Moston So he stole the Catering trailer .. sold equipments over £5000 and damage the inside for Fun One Month Later it was found with Him in Blackley Charles town Road Police tried to arrest him , he lied he bought it and couldn’t provide any proof who sold it to him .. He was not charged or disturbed I see him around and I just ignore him I’m a community Lad … known for Huslte and funny vibes 2 days ago on Hartley street this same Craig guy drove pass me and say to me fucking black immigrants come in Moston to do business like they own it.. he went ahead to tell me that trailer should have been his and his boys eyes are on it That was 2 days ago This morning I woke up late at about 10am and I went into the post office where the cashier was telling me oh my God what happened to your trailer , I said nothing is wrong with it it’s fine .. the council loves it and I have just fixed it back and bought back tools in it … He screen nooooo , it’s burnt down to ashes .. I said no , maybe people burn things beside it He said no , I didn’t even mind him because I started laughing So I went to check on £3000 trailer with £2200 worth of equipment Gone in ashes with some things missing … which means it was robbed before burnt This Act of Hate should not be allowed in Moston . This is hateful and sad … All the kids that gets chicken from me , all the street homeless and beggars I give food to Most are not black , I have no colour black or white … I am a community man and should be treated as one , I kept trying to feed myself and shelter my soul .. Someone is hating in Corner I leave this to God , That trailer was God’s gift to me to get out of Hunger . Somebody burn it . #SayNotoRacism

A post shared by Moston Suya (@mostonsuya) on

The police attempted to arrest the man, but said they didn’t have ‘good enough reasons’ to why the van was in his possession so couldn’t.

Unfortunately, that wasn’t the end of it.

Two days ago, on September 21st, ‘the man in question drove past David hurling racial abuse and stating that David and immigrants have no business building businesses in his area’. 

On September 23rd, David found his fan to be subject of an arson attack, leaving him not only heartbroken but his business literally in ashes. 

mostonsuya/Instagram

In the Instagram post, David wrote: “I am a Descendant of Noble Kings .. I Humble myself and Serve My Community … I worked Hard 3 years 9 months.. I saved money .. no social – bought a catering Trailer for £3000 pounds.

“Spent £438 pounds to bring down from Canterbury Kent to Manchester . So I can serve food in a decent In a decent environment for my community.

“Some Racist Thief in Moston Named Craig Don’t like the idea of a Black Man Doing Such Business in Moston.

“So he stole the Catering trailer .. sold equipments over £5000 and damage the inside for Fun.

“One Month Later it was found with Him in Blackley Charles town Road.

“Police tried to arrest him , he lied he bought it and couldn’t provide any proof who sold it to him ..

“He was not charged or disturbed.

“I see him around and I just ignore him.

“I’m a community Lad … known for Hustle and funny vibes.

“2 days ago on Hartley street this same Craig guy drove pass me and say to me fucking black immigrants come in Moston to do business like they own it.. he went ahead to tell me that trailer should have been his and his boys eyes are on it.

“That was 2 days ago.

“This morning I woke up late at about 10am and I went into the post office where the cashier was telling me oh my God what happened to your trailer , I said nothing is wrong with it it’s fine .. the council loves it and I have just fixed it back and bought back tools in it …

“He screen nooooo , it’s burnt down to ashes .. I said no , maybe people burn things beside it

“He said no , I didn’t even mind him because I started laughing.

“So I went to check on £3000 trailer with £2200 worth of equipment Gone in ashes with some things missing … which means it was robbed before burnt.

“This Act of Hate should not be allowed in Moston . This is hateful and sad … All the kids that gets chicken from me , all the street homeless and beggars I give food to Most are not black , I have no colour black or white … I am a community man and should be treated as one , I kept trying to feed myself and shelter my soul .. Someone is hating in Corner.

“I leave this to God , That trailer was God’s gift to me to get out of Hunger . Somebody burn it. #SayNotoRacism

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