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Iberian People Received Minor Genetic Input from Steppe Invaders

03 Aug 17

Studies have been conducted on the genome of individuals living on the Iberian Peninsula in the Bronze Age. It has been found that they had minor genetic input from Steppe invaders. It suggested that migrations played little role in the make-up of genes and culture of Iberian people.

The findings were reported by Daniel Bradley and Rui Martiniano of Trinity College Dublin, Ireland and Ana Maria Silva of University of Coimbra, Portugal on 27th July, 2017 in PLOS Genetics. The people from the Steppe regions of Eastern Europe and Asia frequently migrated to Central and Northern Europe between Middle Neolithic (4200-3500 BC) and the Middle Bronze Age (1740-1430 BC). The changes in culture and funeral rituals of this time were studied but no one looked at the genomic impact of such an influx.

Thus, researchers sequenced genomes of 14 individuals residing in Portugal during Neolithic and Bronze Ages. These were then compared with other ancient and modern genomes. The results came up with subtle changes in the genetic make-up of this time.

By: Bhavna Sharma

Content: www.sciencedaily.com

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Cumin: History, Origin and Uses

19 Mar 18

Cumin is an aromatic spice with a strong, warm aroma and distinctive bitter flavor. Cumin is widely used in various cuisines and places such as Middle Eastern, Asian and Mexican cuisines. The spice can be sold whole or ground and is available in 3 colors: black, amber and white. The seeds are harvested from the tiny dehydrated fruit of an yearly plant that is part of aromatic plant family.

Cumin has been used since ancient times. The Egyptians were the first to have used it in culinary purposes. Greeks and Romans used cumin for its medicinal properties. Cumin is also pointed in the Bible in the both the old and the new testament. Today, it is most commonly grown and used in Malta, India, China, Iran, Mexico and Saudi Arabia.

Apart from adding flavor to whatever food it is added to, cumin is also known for its great medicinal properties. Cumin, along with other spices and ghee, holds a very important place in Ayurvedic medicine. The seeds are rich in iron and can help in strengthening your immune system. Studies have also shown that cumin can help in preventing development of stomach cancer, can prevent diabetes and has strong liver detoxification properties. Cumin’s contribution to wellness has really fascinated scientists and those involved in holistic nutrition. It is regularly used in seasonings and curry powders. Cumin seed oil is also used in the perfume industry to add that perfect touch of aroma.


By: Neha Maheshwari

Content: http://www.indianmirror.com/ayurveda/indian-spices/cumin.html

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India Wins Silver At The Asian Games Invitational Tournament

19 Mar 18

The Indian Men's Basketball team ended their campaign at the 18th Asian Games after losing to Indonesia by a score of 68-78. They played a very competitive final game at the end of Asian Games Invitational Tournament 5x5 Basketball Test Event Road to the Asian Games to be held in 2018. The match took place at the Istora Senayan Hall in the Gelora Bung Karno Sports Complex at South Jakarta yesterday. Indians were the first runner up and Thailand basketball team were the third runner up at the game.

The first quarter of the game had both the teams competing at the highest level and the game got really interesting. But, Indonesia suddenly took a single point lead over India and then, it just dragged out from there. They took their initial lead even further and stretched it out in the next two quarters making it a total of 58-45. The Indian Men's Basketball team did try really hard to bounce back in the fourth quarter so that they are able to defend and bounce back to their position for gold. But, sadly the efforts were not enough as Indonesia kept on scoring at regular intervals. Indian team's forward Aravind Annadurai led all the scorers in the game by 25 points while Indian team veterans Joginder Singh and Yadwinder Singh contributed to 15 and 13 points of their own in the game. Andakara Prastawa scored a total of 18 points to make a lead for the Indonesia's team.


By: Neha Maheshwari

Content: http://www.basketballfederationindia.org/index.php/news/latest-news/449-india-wins-silver-at-the-18th-asian-games-invitational-tournament-test-event-road-to-asian-games-2018

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Membership of the International Solar Alliance

16 Mar 18

The International Solar Alliance is an alliance of more than 121 countries, most of them being sunshine countries. The underlying motive is to enhance the scope of harnessing solar energy worldwide. Out of these 121 countries, 60 countries have signed the treaty and about 30 countries have ratified it. These countries lie either completely or partly between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. This alliance was launched based upon the sidelines of COP21 in November 2015 by Prime Minister Shri Narender Modi and the then French President Francois Hollande. Presently, discussions are going on regarding the expansion of membership of ISA to those countries that are situated beyond the tropics. It is speculated that PM Modi may make an official declaration concerning this expansion at the founding conference of ISA. Two more initiatives of ISA i.e., the solar storage and solar e-mobility, will be launched at the founding conference. Until now Korea, Germany, Nepal, Tunisia and Italy have shown great interest in becoming full fledged members of the ISA. It is high time that harnessing of solar energy takes place globally using advanced technology, especially in countries where it is not so easy.


By: Anuja Arora

Source: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/energy/power/international-solar-alliance-may-extend-its-membership/articleshow/63241695.cms?from=mdr

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Azlan Shah Cup-India No More in the Run

16 Mar 18

The Sultan Azlan Shah Cup is an annual international men's field hockey tournament held in Malaysia. It began in 1983 as a biennial contest. The tournament became an annual event after 1998 due to its growth and popularity. In the 2018, Azlan Shah Cup hockey tournament, the Indian team did not play very well in the first three matches. They lost against Olympic champions Argentina by 2-3; world champions Australia by 2-4; and drew against England by 1-1. Despite their not so good performance, the Indian team revived hope of doing well further in the tournament after their first victory against the host country Malaysia by 5-1. The Indian team was all focussed and determined to beat Ireland. India’s fate depended on a lot of factors. For India to be in the finals, it was necessary that Australia beats Argentina in the first match of the day, then India would beat Ireland by a big margin and then hope that the match between Malaysia and England ends in a draw. But all these dreams went in vain on Friday, March 9, 2018, when India lost against World No.10 Ireland. Meanwhile, world champions Australia and England have reached the finals. The final match was held on March 10, 2018 wherein Australia emerged as the ultimate winner by defeating England by 2–1.

By: Anuja Arora



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Walking Down Egypt, Nubia and Meroe

15 Mar 18

It has been observed that early humans migrated out of Africa approximately 60,000 years ago through Egypt, shows a present day study of genomes of north-east Africans.

The archeological site of Sedeinga in Sudan has the ruins of Egyptian temple of Queen Tiye. She was royal wife of Amenhotep III. This archeological site stretches more than 25 hectares and has the remains of hundred of tombs and about eighty brick pyramids. Many sepulchers have been unearthed that date back to the kingdoms of Napata and Meroe. It is through these artifacts that one can see a wonderful amalgamation of African designs with that of Egypt.

Pieces of decorated sandstones, lintels and steles depict the magnificence of Meroitic art associated with funerary. Pigments of blue color were discovered, and a lintel depicting Egyptian goddess of order, equity and peace known as ‘Maat’ was depicted with characteristics of an African woman.

An excavation in the late 2017 unearthed a stele named Lady Maliwarase, who was sister of two grand priest of Amon. Yet another lintel depicted name of Lady Adatalabe, who was of a prestigious lineage and belonged to the reigning family of Meroe.

These artifacts also depict the position the women held in those cultures. The Meroitic society had women who embodied the pride and prestige of their family and passed on the heritage of the family.

These wonderful discoveries enhance our knowledge and understanding of the Meroitic civilization which flourished and was an excellent intermingling of African and Egyptian culture.



By: Madhuchanda  Saxena

Content: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180305093624.htm

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