UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS| PRELIMS & MAINS | 30th April 2020

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IASbhai DAILY UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS  (THE HINDU+LIVEMINT+PIB)

Dear Aspirants
IASbhai Daily Current Affairs for UPSC is an initiative to dilute major articles from leading Newspapers in India which are most relevant to UPSC preparation –‘THE HINDU, LIVEMINT , INDIAN EXPRESS’ and help millions of readers who find difficulty in answer writing and making notes everyday. Hence we choose articles on daily basis and analyse them with respect to UPSC PRELIMS2020.

Always wake up with a smile knowing that today you are going to have fun accomplishing what others are too afraid to do.– Mark Cuban

HIGHLIGHT INFO:

ORANGE COLOUR: Important for Prelims.

RED COLOUR: Important for Mains.

BLACK COLOUR: Must Read !

BLUE COLOUR : Important Links/Survey.

PINK COLOUR: Reports/Themes/Summits.

HCARD Robot

      HEADLINES:

HCARD, a robot, to assist frontline COVID-19 healthcare warriors

      WHY IN NEWS:

Healthcare workers at hospitals are risking COVID-19 infection while taking care of those infected by it 24/7.Perhaps the level of risk may get reduced hereafter with the help of a new friend.HCARD.

MINISTRY? :- Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Health:Diseases:Recent Innovations

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS the recent innovations sounds interesting !

Focus on its Usage,Developers and the Technology engraved in it.

For MAINS nothing much here except you should be able to pen such examples down in the real examinations in examples .

      ISSUE: 

The robotic device HCARD, in short for Hospital Care Assistive Robotic Device, can help frontline healthcare workers in maintaining physical distance from those infected by coronavirus.

HCARD FEATURES :

  • HCARD is developed by Durgapur-based CSIR lab, Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute.
  • The device is equipped with various state-of-the-art technologies and works both in automatic as well as manual modes of navigation.

 

This robot can be controlled and monitored by a nursing booth with a control station having such features as navigation, drawer activation for providing medicines and food to patients, sample collection and audio-visual communication.
  • The cost of this device is less than Rs 5 lakh and the weight is less than 80 kilograms.
  • As spelled out by WHO, personal protective equipment (PPE) is very important in preventing transmission of coronavirus in the society, thus the Institute has channelized its resources optimally to develop PPE and community-level safety equipment for helping the public at large and healthcare institutions.
  • Scientists at CMERI have also developed a few other customized technologies, including Disinfection Walkway, Road Sanitizer Unit, Face Mask, Mechanical Ventilator and Hospital Waste Management Facility.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • “This Hospital Care Assistive Robotic Device could be effective for front-line healthcare officials dealing with COVID-19 patients in delivering services while maintaining mandatory physical distancing”.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Alzheimer inhibitor

      HEADLINES:

JNCASR scientists develop a natural product based Alzheimer inhibitor

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB !

MINISTRY? :-Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Science and Technology : Diseases:Recent Innovations

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS dive in into Berberine and its significance in neuro-science.

For MAINS do you think neuro-science has achieved less handful results with respect to this disease ?

      ISSUE: 

Scientists from Jawaharlal Nehru Centre For Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR) an autonomous institute under the Department of Science & Technology (DST), Govt. of India have modified the structure of Berberine, a natural and cheap product similar to curcumin, available commercially, into Ber-D to used as a Alzheimer’s inhibitor.
  • Their research work has been published in the scientific journal iSceince.

ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE :

  • Alzheimer’s disease is the most prevalent neurodegenerative disorder and accounts for more than 70% of all dementia.

SOURCES: GOOGLE FEED RICH SNIPPET

  • The multifactorial nature of the disease attributed to multifaceted toxicity has made it difficult for researchers to develop effective medication.

The quest to discover natural product based therapeutic candidates for Alzheimer’s disease, and selected isoquinoline natural product berberine found in India and China and used in traditional medicine and other applications.

BERBERINE

  • However, berberine is poorly soluble and toxic to cells. So they modified berberine to Ber-D, which is a soluble (aqueous), antioxidant.

Berberine Supplements: How They Help, Dosage, Side Effects ...

  • They found it to be a multifunctional inhibitor of multifaceted amyloid toxicity of Alzheimer’s disease.

Protein aggregation and amyloid toxicity predominantly contribute to multifaceted toxicity observed in neuronal cells, including generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), mitochondrial dysfunction, interfering with synaptic signaling, and activation of premature cell death.

THE RECENT DEVELOPMENTS:

The JNCASR team developed this multifunctional inhibitor to ameliorate in cellulo multifaceted toxicity.
  • Ber-D inhibits aggregations of metal-dependent and -independent Amyloid beta (Aβ) (which are the peptides of amino acids crucially involved in Alzheimer’s disease as the main component of the amyloid plaques found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease).
  • The team developed Ber-D to effectively target multifaceted Aβ toxicity of Alzheimer’s disease.
Berberine has 4 Phenolic hydroxyl groups which are methylated, hence water-insoluble.
  • Natural product berberine was subjected to demethylation to obtain water-soluble polyphenolic derivative Ber-D.
  • Treatment of berberine with demethylation agent BBr3(Boron tribromide) gave Ber-D Because of demethylation of berberine, 4 phenolic groups are free, increase water solubility, antioxidant property, and Cu-coordination to ameliorate multifaced toxicity of Alzheimer’s disease Detailed studies showed that Ber-D modulated Aβ toxicity of Alzheimer’s disease.

RESULT ANALYSIS :

Ber-D treatment averts mitochondrial dysfunction and corresponding neuronal toxicity contributing to premature apoptosis (cell death) making Ber-D a potential therapeutic candidate to ameliorate multifaceted Aβ toxicity in Alzheimer’s disease.
  • The antioxidant Ber-D efficiently quenched both Reactive nitrogen species(RNS) & reactive oxygen species (ROS) and prevent DNA damage, protein oxidation, and lipid peroxidation, which cause numerous adverse biochemical cascade reactions leading to neuronal death.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

These multifunctional attributes make Ber-D a promising candidate for developing effective therapeutics to treat multifaceted toxicity of Alzheimer’s disease.

  • Ber-D inhibits the formation of toxic Aβ fibrillar aggregates and protects mitochondria from dysfunction, one of the major causes of neuronal death.
  • Their design strategy of synthetically transforming berberine to Ber-D, a multifunctional antioxidant and aggregation modulator, effectively ameliorate multiple Aβtoxicity both in vitro and in cellulo conditions.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Electrostatic Disinfection Technology

      HEADLINES:

Electrostatic Disinfection Technology Transferred for Commercialization

      WHY IN NEWS:

Hot from PIB ! This technology has been found very efficient and effective to stop the spread of coronavirus and pathogens, say CSIR-CSIO scientists.

MINISTRY? :- Ministry of Science & Technology
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Health:Diseases : Recent Innovations

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS this is one more new innovation by CSIR-CSIO to fight agaisnt the pandemic . Just go through the features once .

      ISSUE: 

CSIR-Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIR-CSIO), Chandigarh, has designed and developed an innovative technology for effective disinfection and sanitization to fight with corona pandemic.

ELECTROSTATIC DISINFECTION TECHNOLOGY :

  • CSIR-CSIO has transferred this technology to a Nagpur-based company, Rite Water Solutions Pvt. Ltd., for commercialization and large-scale production.

  • Electrostatic Disinfection Machine is developed based on the electrostatic principle.
It produces uniform and fine spray droplets of disinfectants in the size range of 10-20 micrometre to kill microorganisms and viruses.
  • Due to the small size of droplets, the surface area of spray droplets increases thereby enhancing the interaction with harmful microorganisms and coronavirus.
  • The machine uses very less disinfection material as compared to conventional methods, which helps to save natural resources with negligible increase of chemical waste in the environment.
  • Therefore, it kills or inhibits the growth of pathogens very effectively”.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

“Charged droplets emitted from the disinfection machine can cover the directly exposed and obscured surfaces uniformly with increased efficiency and efficacy and the disinfectant reaches to any hidden areas of the target, where there is a maximum possibility to find the viruses.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

JALKARO

      HEADLINES:

Bihar starts geo-mapping exercise to trace, identify thousands of water bodies

      WHY IN NEWS:

Bihar REMOTE SENSING APPLICATION CENTRE is tasked with handling this exercise.

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1:3:Ponds: Bio-diversity Conservation

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS understand the concept . What is Geo-mapping ? How it is done ? What are its local versions ? Lets go through it .

For MAINS do you think lakes have become easy targets of builders,developers and mining industry ?

      ISSUE: 

The Bihar government has begun the exercise of geo-mapping water bodies across the state — known locally as ‘jalkaro’.

A view of the Anupam lake in Bihar's Kaimur district Photo: Wikimedia Commons

A view of the Anupam lake in Bihar’s Kaimur district Photo: Wikimedia Commons

GEO-MAPPING

  • The water bodies that disappeared after widespread encroachment and the ones recorded as missing in official records will be included as well.
Geo-mapping will help trace and identify all water bodies to ensure proper usage, including harvesting water and conserving it.
  • The Bihar Remote Sensing Application Centre (BIRSAC) was tasked with handling the geo-mapping exercise.
  • The exercise will also help the department in utilising the water bodies for commercial purposes .
  • “We will be able to identify the smallest of small water bodies,”.
  • “This step will give us a clear idea about encroached water bodies and the need for their renovation,”.
The objective of the mission is to focus on developing wetlands — locally known as chaur.

PONDS : EASY TARGETS

  • Ponds are an easy target for encroachment by powerful land developers who enjoy the support of politicians and bureaucrats, according to him.
  • “Ponds are either encroached upon forcibly and deliberately filled with waste to finish them,” .
  • Ponds played an important role in natural water harvesting during the monsoon.
The ability of ponds to easily recharge groundwater and prove water security has been accepted by experts throughout the world.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

  • There were 350 ponds in Darbhanga town in 1960, according to the district gazetteer.
  • This number dipped to 250 in the 1990s, with fewer than 100 ponds now, according to data from the Darbhanga district’s municipality.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Ocean plastic

      HEADLINES:

Gullible creatures of the sea

      WHY IN NEWS:

Ocean plastic emits a smell that many marine animals, including sea turtles, associate with food

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Fauna : Conservation of Biodiversity

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS you will get to know the culprit of Ocean plastics Today !

For MAINS note down the pollutants and some note worthy points you want to .

      ISSUE: 

Sea turtles are probably the dumbest and most gullible creatures of the sea.Why? Well, that’s because they are likely to confuse plastic floating in the ocean for food and eat it, according to a Science News report.

Gullible creatures of the sea

 Plastic, once ingested, gets in the turtle’s gut and limits its ability to absorb and digest food.

WHY OCEANIC CREATURES EAT PLASTIC ?

  • However, in the poor creature’s defense, they are not the only ones being fooled into eating plastic trash.
  • Many sea birds and fish get confused and eat plastic.
  • The source of all the confusion is the smell that ocean plastic emits.

Dimethyl sulfide, a chemical gas that the ocean plastic releases is also produced by phytoplankton, a key food source for many marine animals.

  • Once a turtle swallows plastic they are unable to throw it back up.
As a result, most of the ingested plastic gets stuck in the turtle’s gut and limits its ability to absorb and digest food.
  • Research shows that ingesting just over a dozen pieces of plastic can kill turtles.
  • Young turtles are particularly vulnerable because they tend to swim in currents where loads of plastic accumulate.
  • Now, more than 8 million tonnes of plastic are dumped into the oceans every year.

BUT HOW DOES PLASTIC GET INTO THE OCEAN?

  • A lot of it comes from the world’s rivers, which serve as direct conduits of trash from the world’s cities to the marine environment.
  • The Brahmaputra and Ganga rivers of India and the Megna river flowing through Bangladesh empty over 70,000 tonnes of plastic into the oceans, according to United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
  • These three water bodies along with seven other rivers in Asia and Africa account for 90% of the plastic waste entering oceans, adds the UNEP.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

And who is responsible for the plastic in our rivers, lakes and creeks? It’s us, humans.

  • We produce about 300 million tonnes of plastic waste every year.
  • That’s equivalent to the weight of the entire human population! Well if current trends continue, our oceans could contain more plastic than fish by 2050.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

Indian Scops Owl

      HEADLINES:

Ghost of the city

      WHY IN NEWS:

The Indian Scops Owl lives in dense foliage and is better heard than seen

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:IUCN : Fauna

      LEARNING: 

For PRELIMS look out for the features and other significant facts which you cant remember and note them down in Prelims book.

      ISSUE: 

Its scientific name, Otus bakkamoena, has been derived from the Latin word otus, meaning small-eared and bakkamoena from the Sinhala name Bakamuna for various owls.

 

IMPORTANT FEATURES :

  • The Indian Scops Owl is mostly nocturnal, usually sleeping during day and becoming active in the late hours of the evening, when it sits on trees near lampposts and hunts down small rodents and insects.
Medium-sized scops-owl with prominent ear tufts and dark eyes. Coloration variable, ranging from gray to brown, but dark eyes, thin black border around the facial disc, and lightly streaked underparts remain constant.
  • Gives bouncy amphibian-like barks at changing intervals. Inhabits forests, forest edges, parks, and gardens from lowlands up into foothill and montane regions.
  • Unlike the Spotted Owlet and Barn Owl, they are generally found in the more dense trees, close to tree barks or inside dark tree hollows, which helps them camouflage, considering their brown body colour.

IUCN STATUS :

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

It is a widespread resident across forests and well-wooded areas of the Indian Subcontinent south of the Himalayas.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU & PIB/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

 Let us ‘Discuss’

      IASbhai WINDUP: 

Let us know what you think about this in the comment section.

     SOURCES:THE HINDU/DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS for UPSC CSE Prelims & Mains

 

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