Today's Headlines

Today's Headlines - 20 September 2023

Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam

GS Paper - 1 (Social Empowerment) 

In the first big move after shifting to the new Parliament building, the government on 19 September 2023 tabled the women's reservation bill in the Lok Sabha to provide one-third reservation to women in the lower house of Parliamentstate assemblies and the Delhi legislative assembly.

More about the bill

  • The 'Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam' is the first bill to be tabled in the new Parliament building. It aims to provide 33 per cent reservation to women in Parliament and assemblies.
  • Notably, the women's reservation bill can only come into effect after the delimitation exercise is undertaken in India.
  • This means that the bill cannot be implemented before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
  • As per existing law, the next delimitation exercise can only be conducted after the first census to be taken post 2026. This effectively means that the bill cannot become a law until at least 2027.
  • Some reports have suggested that the women's quota may get implemented by the 2029 Lok Sabha elections.
  • Under the women's quotaone-third of the seats shall be reserved for women belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
  • Once it becomes an Act, the law will be in force for 15 years. Its term can be extended.
  • The number of women members in Lok Sabha will rise to 181 from 82 currently once the women's reservation bill comes into force.
  • Seats reserved for women will be rotated after each delimitation exercise.
  • The bill wasfirst passed by Rajya Sabha in 2010. However, it was not taken up in Lok Sabha and lapsed in the lower house.

New approach to combat brain cancer cells

GS Paper - 3 (Health and Diseases)

A groundbreaking development in cancer treatment offers newfound hope for millions, as scientists harness electrically charged nanoparticles to combat aggressive brain cancer cells. This promising advancement in medical science could revolutionize cancer therapy, bringing optimism to countless individuals.

A Novel Approach to Cancer Treatment

  • Leading experts have pioneered nanoparticles capable of inducing self-destruction, or apoptosis, in glioblastoma cells. Remarkably, this revolutionary technique spares healthy cells within cancer patients.
  • Termed "quantum biology," this innovative approach is in its infancy, but researchers in Nottingham are optimistic about its potential to reshape cancer treatment.
  • In a report published in Nature Nanotechnology, scientists stated, "We are entering an era where it has been realized that bioelectricity, defined as the electrical language of cells, programs cell function.
  • The cell is increasingly viewed as a mass of bioelectrical interconnected circuits that use an endogenous current generated by electron transfer processes to communicate with each other to maintain homeostasis."
  • Their research demonstrates that remote electrical input can regulate electron transport among redox molecules, resulting in quantum biological tunneling for electron transfer, thus triggering apoptosis in patient-derived cancer cells in a highly selective manner.
  • Transcriptomics data further confirm that this electric-field-induced bio-nanoantenna targets cancer cells uniquely, offering electrically induced control over molecular signaling.

What does a quantum biologist do?

  • Quantum biology is the scientific discipline dedicated to examining phenomena within living organisms that cannot be precisely explained using classical physics principles.
  • To comprehend these occurrences, quantum theory is employed. It's important to note that all forms of matter, including living matter, are governed by the fundamental laws of physics.

What is Quantum healing therapy?

  • Quantum healing, sometimes referred to as quantum therapy, can be somewhat challenging to elucidate.
  • It melds concepts from mind-body medicinequantum physicsmeditation, and Eastern medicine to propose that you can rejuvenate your body, mind, and spirit by effecting energy changes at the quantum or subatomic level.

Chandrayaan-1 data indicates Earth’s electrons

GS Paper - 3 (Space Technology)

Scientists used data from the Chandrayaan-1 mission to explain the origin of water ice previously discovered in the permanently shaded regions on the Moon. The study published in the journal Nature Astronomy suggests that high energy electrons in our planet’s plasma sheet are contributing to weathering processes on the lunar surface and may have even aided the formation of water there.

More about the News

  • The plasma sheet is an area of trapped charged particles within the magnetosphere, part of the space around Earth controlled by its magnetic field.
  • The magnetospehre plays an important role in protecting Earth from space weather and radiation from the Sun.
  • The solar wind pushes this magnetosphere and reshapes it, making a long tail on the night side similar to what happens with comets.
  • The plasma sheet in this tail region of the magnetosphere contains high-energy electrons and ions from the Earth and from solar wind.
  • The researchers built on previous work which showed that oxygen in the Earth’s “magnetotail” is rusting iron in the lunar polar region and decided to investigate changes in surface weathering as the Moon passed through the Earth’s magnetotail.
  • This provides a natural laboratory for studying the formation processes of lunar surface water. When the Moon is outside of the magnetotail, the lunar surface is bombarded with solar wind.
  • Inside the magnetotail, there are almost no solar wind protons and water formation was expected to drop to nearly zero.
  • The researchers analysed remote sensing data that was collected by the Moon Mineralogy Mapper on the Chandrayaan-1 mission between 2008 and 2009.
  • They mainly looked at the changes in water formation as the Moon passed through the Earth’s magnetotail.
  • Interestingly,water formation in the magnetotail seemed to be identical whether the Moon was in it or not. This could indicate that there are formation processes or sources of water that is not directly associated with solar wind protons.

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