Leisure, Lifestyle & Wellness
Why antibiotics can also make you more prone to infection!

Antibiotics benefit pathogen growth by disrupting oxygen levels and fibre processing in the gut, the study said

 

Antibiotics are essential for fighting bacterial infection, but, paradoxically, they can also make the body more prone to infection and diarrohea by allowing gut pathogens to “breathe”, says a study.
 
Antibiotics benefit pathogen growth by disrupting oxygen levels and fibre processing in the gut, the study said.
 
The findings, published in the journal Cell Host Microbe, could lead to development of new strategies to prevent the side effects of antibiotic treatment.
 
Exactly how the resident "good" microbes in the gut protect against pathogens, such as Salmonella, and how antibiotic treatments foster growth of disease-causing microbes have been poorly understood.
 
But the new research in a mouse model has identified the chain of events that occur within the gut lumen after antibiotic treatment that allow "bad" bugs to flourish.
 
The process begins with antibiotics depleting "good" bacteria in the gut, including those that breakdown fibre from vegetables to create butyrate, an essential organic acid that cells lining the large intestine need as an energy source to absorb water, said lead researcher Andreas Baumler, professor at University of California Davis Health System in the US.
 
The reduced ability to metabolise fibre prevents these cells from consuming oxygen, increasing oxygen levels in the gut lumen that favour the growth of Salmonella.
 
Most persons infected with Salmonella develop diarrohea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection, according to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
 
"Unlike Clostridia and other beneficial microbes in the gut, which grow anaerobically, or in the complete absence of oxygen, Salmonella flourished in the newly created oxygen-rich micro environment after antibiotic treatment," Baumler said. 
 
"In essence, antibiotics enabled pathogens in the gut to breathe," Baumler noted.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
 

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`Threats of violence, political pressure among challenges to freedom of press in India'

The World Press Freedom Day celebrates the fundamental principles of press freedom, assess the state of press freedom throughout the world, defends the media from attacks on their independence and pays tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the line of duty

 

There are several challenges to the freedom of the press in India, including threats of violence from vested interests and pressure from political parties, experts have said, calling for greater involvement of civil society in cases pertaining to journalists.
 
Talking to IANS on the issues concerning the media in India on the eve of World Press Freedom Day on May 3, the experts, including senior journalists, said that mediapersons also need to adapt to the new challenges by being more bold.
 
The World Press Freedom Day celebrates the fundamental principles of press freedom, assess the state of press freedom throughout the world, defends the media from attacks on their independence and pays tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
 
It is observed on the anniversary of Declaration of Windhoek - a statement of free press principles put together by newspaper journalists in Africa during a Unesco seminar held in the Namibian city in 1991.
 
Sevanti Ninan, Editor, The Hoot, a website which undertakes research pertaining to the media to strengthen its independence, said there has been a decline in press freedom in the last few years.
 
“The greater vulnerability is for journalists in districts and small towns. One reason for this that many of them are now using RTI to investigate local scams and they pose a threat to the powerful in government and in politics,” Ninan told IANS. 
 
She cited instances of death of three journalists covering investigative stories over the last year and said there should be a law guaranteeing press freedom, which is different from free speech.
 
She said committees comprising journalists and civil society members should be kept informed of police action against journalist. 
 
Ninan said the media community in India has been remiss in protecting its counterparts in the regional press. 
 
“There is no pressure group at the national level which maintains pressure on the central and state governments in cases regarding journalists. The Editors Guild and other bodies are not really proactive in this regard. The Press Council publishes reports, but they have no impact,” she said. 
 
Ninan said that it states like Chhattisgarh, where the state is battling Maoists, journalists who try to report on incidents involving the ultras were becoming victims of state oppression. 
 
“There have been four arrests of journalists in Chhattisgarh since july 2015,” Ninan said. 
 
She said the other issue is defamation. “The state government of Tamil Nadu is very active in filing defamation cases against journalists. There have been several already this year,” she said. 
 
Ninan said threats to editorial independence “come from proprietors and advertisers among others” while physical threats come from a variety of sources including the state police.
 
Senior journalist and political commentator S. Nihal Singh said the political atmosphere was not very conducive to freedom of press. 
 
“There are the usual suspects in terms of the bureaucracy being overzealous on occasions. That is one danger and the other is that the whole climate is not really conducive to press freedom. Because, if you narrow down the national ideal to things like 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai' and other things in a similar vein, you are constricting the room for free opinion,” he said.
 
Nihal Singh said "there was greater amount of self-censorship in India today than before the BJP came to power."
 
“In the current instance, it is not so much what you do but what you imply. So in overall terms I think, the outlook is not so bright,” he said.
 
Nihal Singh also said that media was not writing as forthrightly as it normally does or it can do. 
 
“Because if you feel these are vindictive characters in power, you would want to be on the safe side. (There is) that impulse,” he said, adding that journalists themselves have “to pull up their socks because there is no substitute for journalists standing up.” 
 
Senior journalist and political commentator Kuldip Nayar said the terms of employment of journalists have changed and this "does not allow journalists to be free". The "sword of the contract system hangs over the head of journalists," he said.
 
Nayar said there were attempts to politicize the news and evils such as “paid news” had cropped up. 
 
He said journalists should make use of tools of such as RTI and face the challenges boldly.
 
A.S. Narang, who taught political science at IGNOU, said civil society should be more vocal in taking up cases of journalists who face any form of state pressure.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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COMMENTS

manoharlalsharma

1 year ago

I realize in MAHARASHTRA whether it is print or visual media is under Threats of violence, political pressure among challenges to freedom of press in India'be we see news in UP/DELHI or BIHAR/MP covers small incidents like pelting stone or argument

Impact of recent regulatory move on Make in India

In comparison to the services sector, the manufacturing sector has been clearly a laggard

 

Manufacturing in India has not been particularly strong. This is because of a host of reasons emanating from the India's socialist era. Prominent among these include labour laws resulting in trade unionism, licenses for regulating production activity and the like.
 
But the performance of the sector even post that period (initiated in 1980s and culminating into the reforms of 1990s) has been far from stellar. Although manufacturing sector has grown overall, the share of manufacturing in GDP has stayed constant at around 15 percent. The choice for consumers has increased manifold, but the output of manufacturing growth has been steady. 
 
In comparison to the services sector, the manufacturing sector has been clearly a laggard. In spite of this, a large number of sub-sectors have developed and deepened the manufacturing capability like the automotive industry, pharmaceutical industry, etc. Another prominent feature of Indian manufacturing is that still a massive portion is done by the small and medium sector enterprises. 
 
It is in this light of this context and backdrop that the recent move by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) (which awaits final approval of the finance minister) becomes important. The move does away with the 30 percent sourcing requirement for Apple, the Cupertino based technology giant. The sourcing requirement mandates that in single brand retail 30 percent of content is to be sourced locally. The apparent logic being given by the Indian government is that it can grant companies an exception if they are found to make state-of-the-art and cutting-edge products. 
 
Apple till date has not been able to enter India, but most likely sees India as a key market as it has a low smartphone penetration (<20 percent) and shipped roughly 1.9 million devices to India in 2015. Also, in the years ahead, India is slated to be one of the biggest markets for smartphones. Till date, resellers were selling Apple products in India. This could change if the move sees the finance minister's approval. 
 
There are three important issues surrounding the move. First, it tries to rectify a policy problem with a specific move. The question now is how is the decision on cutting edge products being made. Apple is into electronic consumer durables like phones and laptops. It does not appear cutting edge. If a change has to be made the change should happen at the FDI policy level. 
 
Also, it will be very difficult to reject applications by players like Xiaomi, the Chinese smartphone manufacturer, as its products use similar technology. In a competitive market this could very easily spell doom for incumbent Indian companies like Micromax, who had not faced massive international competition till date. This brings us to the related issue of the impact of the move. 
 
Second, the move is slated to impact different stakeholders differently. For the consumers choice and service is going to increase and most likely the prices are going to get streamlined with international prices of Apple products. This may be seen as beneficial impact of Apple's entry for consumers. 
 
However, with regard to key programs like 'Make in India' the move could have a 'no effect to a negative effect' unless Apple also invests in manufacturing. The move does provide Apple with access to Indian market but does not provide Indian industry especially MSME's with much scope for capacity building. It is because the cluster of ancillary firms which could supply parts to Apple by local production and manufacturing will not take place now. In addition if Xiaomi also enters India chances of incumbent firms facing stiffer competition may be bad from 'Make in India' point of view. 
 
Third, the move does not help the cause of making India a hub of ESDM sector. This is because it just makes India a market but not a production destination. Ideally, Apple should make a commitment to invest in India as costs are low with respect to labour (even though Apple's business is not very labour intensive and it outsources most of its production). 
 
The capacity building effort in India can also help Apple immensely as India is a diverse nation and can throw up unique insights into operating in emerging markets. The FM must look into all the details of what went into the move by DIPP before signing the document. Also, it seems like it is time for review of sourcing requirements if they are indeed coming in the way of progress in the present policy context. 
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
 

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