US Current Affairs

Mirabai Chanu wins gold at World Weightlifting Championships

India’s Saikhom Mirabai Chanu won gold medal at World Weightlifting Championships held in Anaheim, United States. She achieved this feat by lifting new world record of 194kg – 85kg snatch and 109kg clean-and-jerk in the 48 kg weight category. Thailand’s Sukcharoen Thunya won silver medal with total lift of 193, while Segura Ana Iris won bronze medal with 182kg lift.

With this victory, Mirabai Chanu became first Indian in over two decades to win the medal at the Championships. She is only second Indian weightlifter after Karnam Malleswari to achieve this feat. Olympic bronze medallist Karnam Malleshwari had won the top prize in worlds twice in 1994 and 1995.

Saikhom Mirabai Chanu

She is Indian female weightlifter born on 8 August 1994. She hails from Manipur and currently is employed with the Indian Railways. She had won medals in Commonwealth games and silver medal in women’s 48 kg weight class at 2014 Commonwealth Games at Glasgow. She had qualified for 2016 Rio Olympics in women’s 48 kg category. However, she failed to finish the event as she failed to lift the weight in any of her three attempts in clean & jerk section.

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Scientists create world’s smallest data recorder from bacteria

Researchers from Columbia University Medical Centre (CUMC) in US have converted natural bacterial immune system into the world’s smallest data recorder.

The researchers modified an ordinary laboratory strain of ubiquitous human gut microbe (bacteria) Escherichia coli (E Coli) which enabled it to record their interactions with environment and also time-stamp events.

Key Facts

The microscopic data recorder was created by taking advantage of CRISPR-Cas, an immune system in many species of bacteria. CRISPR-Cas copies snippets of DNA from invading viruses so that subsequent generations of bacteria can repel these pathogens more effectively. To build this microscopic recorder, researchers had modified piece of DNA called plasmid, giving it ability to create more copies of itself in the bacterial cell in response to an external signal.

Potential Applications

This research lays groundwork for new class of technologies that use bacterial cells for everything from disease diagnosis to environmental monitoring. It may help to record biological changes taking placing in digestive tract which can yield an unprecedented view of previously inaccessible phenomena. It can be also used in environmental sensing and basic studies in ecology and microbiology, where bacteria could monitor otherwise invisible changes without disrupting their surroundings.

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