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Cancer Research Takes Big Strides with New Pharmaceutical Treatment

By Kalyan Mukherjee

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego recently announced the discovery of a new drug therapy that has enabled the destruction of highly proliferative tumors. Many of the therapies currently available to treat such cancers have a number of discouraging side effects without a high rate of success. The alternative method proves more effective and ultimately safer for the patient. The new drug technique works by preventing division in tumor cells, binding to an enzyme called RAF to permanently alter its structure and preclude its role in division. While previous studies have focused on RAF, they failed to recognize the centrality of the enzyme in the growth of tumors and cell multiplication. Under the direction of Dr. David A. Cheresh, the team of researchers engineered an entirely new class of drugs that target RAF. Only after creating the drug did researchers understand the enzyme’s relation to cell division.

In the past, scientists have engineered classes of drugs that target RAF, concentrating primarily on ones that interact with the enzyme’s active site. Unfortunately, this mechanism results in a lack of drug specificity, meaning that the substances had a wide range of effects on other structures. Consequently, patients who took these drugs often reported a number of negative effects. Furthermore, the danger of toxicity limited the doses that physicians could administer, in turn curbing the effectiveness of such drugs. Tumor cells have also developed resistances to these classes in the past, rendering them completely ineffective.

The new RAF inhibitors that Dr. Cheresh and his team engineered do not bind to the enzyme’s active site and therefore avoid most of the problems that arose with other experimental classes. The new class changes the fundamental shape of RAF in proliferating cells while ignoring the enzyme in normal or resting cells. With this degree of specificity, the new drug, known as KG5, will not have the wide range of side effects associated with previous RAF inhibitors. With an altered shape, RAF in proliferating cells cannot assist in the division process. KG5 also halts the proliferation of blood vessels, making it even more promising as a future treatment option.

About the Author

Understanding the importance of supporting medical research, Kalyan Mukherjee contributes to the American Institute of Cancer Research, as well as the Alzheimer’s Association. He enjoys following the latest developments in medical research. Residing in Greenwich, Connecticut, Kalyan Mukherjee acts as Lead Manager of Portfolio Generation for a hedge fund management firm, where he employs lean sigma principles and expert managerial skills to deliver the highest quality services to clients.


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Six Reasons to Buy American Cars

By Kalyan Mukherjee

Only a few years ago, a number of American-made automobiles had a difficult time competing with Hondas, Nissans, Acuras, BMWs, Audis, and other foreign cars. Then, in 2008, the Chevrolet Malibu earned North American Car of the Year honors, beating the Honda Accord. Now, the Malibu and the Ford Fusion remain on the top of U.S. News & World Report’s Midsize Car Rankings. Here are six more reasons to buy American cars:

1. Buying any American-made product keeps the money in the United States to recirculate and bolster the economy.

2. Deals on wheels: While offers change and expire and new sales features take their place, recently GMC, Buick, Chevrolet, and Cadillac have provided cash back on certain models and low-interest financing. Ford and Lincoln also have offered cash back on particular models, with 0 to 1.9 percent financing on several models in some regions.

3. Muscle cars have made a comeback. The Dodge Challenger, Ford Mustang, and Chevrolet Camaro all returned to more classic forms, reigniting the passion of the bygone muscle-car era.

4. Domestic automakers produce several good green cars, such as the Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid and the Ford Fusion Hybrid. Other popular American hybrid vehicles include the Chevrolet Tahoe, the Cadillac Escalade, and the GMC Yukon.

5. American cars have become much more reliable. Once the victim of disparaging acronyms relating to the quality of its vehicles, Ford now produces the Fusion, which garners reliability ratings equal to those of the Toyota Camry and the Honda Accord.

6. While new American cars typically start to depreciate as soon as their back wheels leave the car lot, this fact means dealerships can offer great deals on late-model used cars.

About the Author:

Kalyan Mukherjee of Greenwich, a Lean-Sigma improvement expert, owns a Cadillac Escalade Hybrid that seats 8 and still gets 20 miles per gallon.

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The Career of Rafael Nadal

By Kalyan Mukherjee

About the Author: Former engineer Kalyan Mukherjee counts himself an avid tennis and cricket enthusiast. Mr. Mukherjee currently resides in Greenwich, Connecticut.

Currently ranked as the No. 2 player in the world by the Association of Tennis Professionals, Rafael Nadal has been widely recognized as one of the greatest players of all time. Particularly known for his success on clay courts, Nadal has been referred to as “The King of Clay.”

Born in Manacor, Majorca, Spain, Rafael Nadal comes from a long line of athleticism. His uncle Miguel Angel Nadal played professional soccer, while another uncle, Toni Nadal, played professional tennis. Recognizing his nephew’s skill at an early age, Toni Nadal introduced Rafael Nadal to the game when he was only four years old. By the age of eight, Rafael Nadal was already winning tennis championships, while also excelling in other sports. After moving to Barcelona at age 14 to pursue his tennis training, Rafael Nadal began playing professionally at 15. Within two years, he had beaten Roger Federer, becoming the youngest man to reach the third round at Wimbledon since Boris Becker. In 2003, the Association of Tennis Professionals recognized his exceptional skill with the ATP Newcomer of the Year Award.

A former world No. 1, Rafael Nadal has won 10 Grand Slam singles titles, including the 2008 Olympic gold medal in singles, 6 French Open titles, and the 2010 U.S. Open, which completed the career Grand Slam. Rafael Nadal held the world No. 1 ranking from June 7, 2010, until he was replaced by Novak Djokovic on July 3, 2011.

Nadal’s rivalry with Roger Federer has been a strong force in the careers of both men, and dates back to 2004, when they played their first match. Many tennis critics have recognized the 2008 Wimbledon final in which the two faced off as the greatest match in tennis history.

Rafael Nadal has been involved in many philanthropic efforts, including participating in Thailand’s “A Million Trees for the King” project and creating the Rafa Nadal Foundation to support the well-being of children and youth. The foundation has supported a number of academies throughout India as part of this mission.

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