Brain Aging May Depend on Childhood Intelligence

The research found that more than two-thirds of the association between cognitive ability in the elderly and cortical thickness was accounted for by differences in IQ decades earlier in childhood.

Health & Family

Older people who stay sharp tend to have a thicker cortex, which is the outermost region of the brain that includes the areas responsible for judgment and complex thought. But while preserving the cortex is important for successful aging, a new study suggests that childhood intelligence — not anything specific done in old age — largely accounts for why some elderly people have more cortical tissue and better cognition.

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Thoughts on healthcare with minimal bureaucracy and maximum effectiveness

Been thinking about how to create an healthcare system with minimal bureaucracy that would help everyone involved at least a little bit. Whether that would be necessarily better than other systems isn’t the point this is a thought experiment:-)

Give everyone a medical credit card loaded with a grand each year that rolls over and gains interest. Require catastrophic healthcare to be purchased. Eliminate employer based healthcare and make sure that individuals have the same right to use pretax dollars to pay for insurance. Basically treat it like car insurance. The thousand dollars would allow working poor and lower middle class folks a chance at preventative medicine and if they are sick they can actually go to the doctor and get medicine. Often people don’t go because the deductible is too high even when they have insurance. By giving everyone the same thing you get rid of the bureaucracy and red tape (sometimes it costs more to decide who to help then it does to help which is a major problem for charities which often provide less than ten percent of the donations to the target of the aid) and free people from the trap of not being able to quit their job because of healthcare and pure existing conditions. It also frees employers by letting them provide compensation in another way.

For certain life events you could have a fund for things like childbirth and continued support for the disabled or end of life care to provide some help to the poor.

A major issue now is that medical providers have to hire experts to make sure that every t is crossed and every I is dotted making some unwilling to provide service to those on assistance. This costs money and more importantly time. People with critical skills could be out helping people instead of doing paperwork while people wait two weeks to get an appointment. Instant payment from the medical card and no bureaucracy beyond minimal quality of service requirements means business runs smoother and powers operational costs for the business which can often mean lowered costs to the customer.

By gutting medicare for all but the most needy the huge crony capitalism of big pharma goes out the window with the tens of billions of wasted taxpayer money since the government can’t negotiate drug prices.

A low income government insurance could be provided that would operate at a loss but would help with drug prices for the elderly like medicare but without the paperwork and complexity. If health insurance was as easy as car insurance and cleanly explained what was covered and how much with forums discussing any points of contention or confusion the insurance companies would save money on labor and with people spending a little bit on preventative medicine then less sick people and more early intervention which saves lives and fortunes.

Also things like glasses would find their prices plummet. You can buy online at ten percent the cost at a store because young poor people buy online while those with insurance by retail and since part or all the cost is paid by the insurance company they don’t care that the glasses cost the insurance company 500 for sixty dollar glasses.

What do you think?

I wonder what all those democrats and republicans who run this country and don’t believe in evolution would have to say about this? Probably the same derp they said when a biologist tried to explain the e. coli vitamin c example of evolution in a lab.

Biosingularity

There’s a wobbly new biochemical structure in Burckhard Seelig’s lab at the University of Minnesota that may resemble what enzymes looked like billions of years ago, when life on earth began to evolve – long before they became ingredients for new and improved products, from detergents to foods and fuels.

Seelig created the fledgling enzyme by using directed evolution in the laboratory. Working with colleague Gianluigi Veglia, graduate student Fa-An Chao, and other team members, he subsequently determined its structure, which made its debut December 9 as an advance online publication in Nature Chemical Biology. Lab tests show that the enzyme (a type of RNA ligase, which connects two RNA molecules) functions like natural enzymes although its structure looks very different and it is flexible rather than rigid. Seelig speculates the new protein resembles primordial enzymes, before their current structures evolved.

MnDRIVE - New Enzymes - 300x225 - A

3-D structure of the evolved enzyme (an RNA ligase)…

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