Currents

    Ex-UCSD Doctor Jailed for Child Porn

    A former pediatrician at UCSD Medical Center has been sentenced to over a year in prison after pleading guilty to child porn charges.

    Jacques Lemire was caught in 2004 after he tried to have his computer serviced and the repair technician discovered sexual images of children.

    Lemire, who also practiced at Children’s Hospital, is a Canadian citizen. He will be deported after serving jail time and will have to register as a sex offender.

    Scripps Identifies Blue Whale ‘Dialects’

    Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography are shedding light on how the largest mammals on Earth communicate.

    Though the function of whale songs remains largely unknown, scientists were able to link the calls of North Pacific blue whales to specific behavior and gender classifications. During the study, researchers observed the environmental conditions and social interactions of the whales while listening to their recorded calls.

    “”This is the first study that has been able to study the calls by directly observing the animal while it is calling and gathering key information such as depth and body orientation – getting a sense of what the animal is doing underwater,”” study director and Scripps postdoctoral researcher Erin Oleson said in a press release.

    In their second study, researchers analyzed acoustic recordings from around the world in order to determine the characteristics of multiple blue whale populations. Using data collected from the deployments of various instruments, including recordings from the U.S. Navy, researchers were able to create a new map that geographically categorizes blue whale populations into nine regional categories based on song “”dialects.””

    Scripps colleagues hope that the new call information will eventually be used for better calculating whale numbers and habitats.

    Liver Sugars Clear Fats from Blood

    It comes as no surprise that eating fat, scientifically known as triglycerides, can be dangerously unhealthy.

    For one in 10 individuals, though, elevated levels of fat could mean the development of arthrosclerosis – the buildup of plaque in the arteries often leading to stroke.

    Researchers at UCSD School of Medicine discovered that a new factor of the condition, apart from diabetes and diet, is a complex sugar produced by all cells called heparan sulfate. The sugar helps clear fats from the blood, along with cholesterol-removing LDL receptors.

    The study suggests that liver mutations involving the production of heparan sulfate can result in high blood-fat levels, and potentially, atherosclerosis.

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