AUSTIN, Texas — On Tuesday, the Texas Senate passed six anti-abortion bills that could completely upend abortion practices within the state. The following day, they passed a seventh. Currently, Texas law states that those who want to receive an abortion can get the procedure up to 20 weeks of gestation, unless there are severe complications or the fetus has a severe abnormality. Candidates for the procedure must meet with their abortion provider twice, and minors need consent from their parents. Should these bills be passed by the Texas House of Representatives and signed into law by Gov. Greg...
A team of Japanese scientists has shown it is possible for mammals to absorb oxygen via the anus.
Intrigued by how certain sea creatures breathe through their intestines in emergencies, researchers at Tokyo Medical and Dental University were able to prove the same was true under experimental circumstances for mice, rats and pigs, publishing their findings in the journal Med on Friday.
They say the finding might also apply to humans who are in respiratory distress when ventilators are not available or inadequate.
For higher order animals, respiration involves breathing in oxygen and excreting carbon dioxide using lungs or gills.
Some species however have evolved alternate ventilatory mechanisms. Loaches, catfish, sea cucumbers and orb-weaving spiders can also use their hindgut to oxygenate to survive in emergencies.
This is called enteral ventilation via anus, or EVA.
"The rectum has a mesh of fine blood vessels just beneath the surface of its lining, which means that drugs administered through the anus are readily absorbed into the bloodstream," lead author Ryo Okabe said.
This made the team wonder whether oxygen could be delivered into the bloodstream in the same way.
To answer the question, they decided to carry out experiments on oxygen-deprived mice, pigs and rats using two methods: delivering the oxygen into the rectum in gas form, and infusing an oxygen-rich enema via the same route.
The researchers prepared the lining of the rectum by rubbing it to cause inflammation and increase blood flow, which improved the effectiveness of oxygen delivery.
However, since such a preparation would likely be unacceptable for humans, they also tried using oxygenated perfluorodecalin, a liquid that has already been shown to be safe and is in selective clinical use.
Delivery of oxygen both as gas and in liquid form increased oxygenation, normalized the animals' behavior and prolonged their survival.
The team also confirmed the improvement in oxygenation at the cellular level, by a technique called immunochemical staining.
They added that the small amount of liquid that was absorbed along with the oxygen caused no harm and did not disrupt the gut bacteria, indicating the method was safe.
"Patients in respiratory distress can have their oxygen supply supported by this method to reduce the negative effects of oxygen deprivation while the underlying condition is being treated," added co-author Takanori Takebe.
Eventually the team hopes to establish the technique's effectiveness in humans in a clinical setting.
Writing an accompanying commentary, Caleb Kelly of the Yale School of Medicine, said EVA should be taken seriously.
"This is a provocative idea and those first encountering it will express astonishment," he said.
"Yet, as the potential clinical role is considered and the data presented by Okabe et al is examined, EVA emerges as a promising therapy deserving of scientific and medical interest."
The technique could play a role when there is a shortage of ventilators, as seen in the current coronavirus pandemic, he added.
© 2021 AFP
House announces bipartisan agreement on January 6 commission – until Kevin McCarthy says he hasn’t read it yet
House Democrats and Republicans Friday morning announced an agreement has been reached "to introduce legislation to form a bipartisan, independent commission to investigate the January 6 domestic terrorism attack on the United States Capitol." Many have doubted the commission would be formed after Republicans worked to derail progress. Now, House Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy may do just that.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi praised the Committee on Homeland Security's agreement, saying, “It is imperative that we seek the truth of what happened on January 6 with an independent, bipartisan 9/11-type Commission to examine and report upon the terrorist mob attack."
But as CNN's Annie Grayer reports, "Kevin McCarthy tells reporters he has not read through the deal that John Katko made with Dems on 1/6 commission and said that the scope should not just be focused on 1/6 even though that's what the deal says."
Republicans have been trying to include the Black Lives Matter protests in the investigation, even though they have nothing to do with the attempted coup and attack on the Capitol.
When asked about McCarthy's roadblocking, Speaker Pelosi told Grayer, "You know what, why don't you ask him?"
"His ranking member is a cosponsor of the legislation," Pelosi noted. "We're very pleased that it is bipartisan, and the scope was very important in the legislation."
Bloomberg adds that McCarthy "was noncommittal when asked if he supports the commission legislation."
“I have to go through it," he said, pointing to “rhetoric" in the bill about the scope of the investigation “that I want to look through."
Some claim McCarthy's attempts to block the Commission stem from what GOP Rep. Adam Kinzinger revealed earleir this week, that on Jan. 3 he warned McCarthy Republicans' rhetoric and actions were going to lead to violence, but McCarthy dismissed him.
The House of Representatives on Friday announced a deal to form a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6th MAGA riots at the United States Capitol building -- and it looks like it will be impervious to sabotage from Trump-loving congressmen.
The announcement detailing the formation of the commission explicitly states that "current government officers or employees are prohibited from appointment," which means that House minority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) won't be able to appoint someone like Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH) or Matt Gaetz (R-FL), both of whom relished disrupting House proceedings during Trump's first impeachment.
Additionally, the agreement states that "commissioners must have significant expertise in the areas of law enforcement, civil rights, civil liberties, privacy, intelligence and cybersecurity," which would seemingly prohibit McCarthy from appointing someone such as "QAnon shaman" Jacob Chansley to be on the commission.
The commission's mission will be to learn "the facts and circumstances of the January 6th attack on the Capitol as well as the influencing factors that may have provoked the attack on our democracy."
The commission's final report will be due by the end of the year.
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