After President George W.
Bush proposed funding a program to land humans on Mars, Hopkins Magazine met with Shoukas to discuss some of the potential physiological problems, especially cardiovascular, encountered by astronauts who must spend months in space. Illustration by Brian Hubble. Johns Hopkins Magazine: What are among the principal risks of long-term space flight?
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Artin Shoukas: The first and most major risk is cardiac dysrhythmias, when the heart just beats very rapidly or in an erratic way, to the point where it's almost not pumping. There's a higher incidence, on the Russian Mir missions and on the International Space Station, of both reported events and also anecdotal information that we get from the astronauts. A significant number have experienced it in orbit. JHM: They feel their hearts just take off? AS: Yes. Either a pounding effect or slight flutter, that can range from a nuisance to the more debilitating effect of astronauts not being able to perform their function in space.
JHM: What's next on your list? AS: The next risk we have to look at is orthostatic hypotension or orthostatic intolerance. When you stand up, there's an automatic reaction to constrict your veins in your legs, which pushes the blood back toward the heart and maintains your blood pressure [so you don't faint]. That normal occurrence is not needed in space because there's no gravity and blood doesn't pool in your legs. So in space the reflex is diminished almost to the point where it's non-existent. Is it a problem in space?
It's a problem when you return to a gravity field. So if a person goes to Mars, and then has to move fast, say make an emergency egress, that may be a problem. That's a long time to be up there.
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JHM: But astronauts do reacquire the ability to stand without difficulties. AS: Yes, but it may take anywhere from three days to a week. We do know that females suffer more from this. JHM: Why? AS: We don't know. It could be estrogen. It could be other things, and we're looking at them one at a time.
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The third of the more critical risks is a degradation of the ability of the heart to pump blood when it is needed. This could be caused by two problems. It could be cardiac muscle atrophy. Or it could be diminished effect of the central nervous system on the myocardium itself-the brain's function on the heart is diminished. JHM: Why would the brain's regulation of the heart be altered? AS: The exact mechanism-why it is occurring-is not known.
What we're trying to find out at the molecular, cellular, and organ level is what is mechanistically happening. Why is this degradation going on? Once you know that, you can develop a countermeasure. That's what my business is about. JHM: What about radiation?
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AS: We know the immune system is degraded by radiation. What effect does the immune system have on the cardiovascular system?
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It has a drastic effect on it. What effect does radiation have on muscle atrophy? We have very little data. All of these things interplay with one another. It's not just the microgravity environment. It's everything you expose a person to on a long-term mission. JHM: Are any of these effects permanent?
AS: In what we've seen so far, in all of the studies, anything in terms of the vasculature-cardiac dysrhythmias, cardiac atrophy, and the possible diminishment of the heart's ability to pump-does come back to normal function after the astronauts return, in three days to a week. The husband and wife, both Johns Hopkins physicians, were killed on Tuesday, January 20, when their SUV crashed on Interstate 83 as they were returning from a vacation in upstate New York.
Although their children, Adrianna, 8, and James Jr. He was a true gentleman and was universally loved by his patients, colleagues, and friends. He was also interested in the care of fractures in geriatric patients. Lidia Wenz, 44, a child psychiatrist, was an instructor in psychiatry at the School of Medicine. She had been a full-time member of the faculty before cutting back on her teaching in to spend more time with her children.
https://tidinefoot.tk Raymond DePaulo Jr. We all were planning her return to the full-time faculty when her children were older. She as well as her husband will be sorely missed. Reuven Pasternak, vice dean for the Bayview Campus. He did so with intelligence, wit, and most important, compassion. As curator of special collections at Hopkins' Eisenhower Library , part of her domain is the Lester S.
Levy Collection of Sheet Music, an archive of more than 29, popular American songs from to People sing to her hoping to find a song when they don't know or don't remember its title or composer. What they do remember, perhaps, is a lyric or two, or a snatch of melody. One of the center's current projects is developing optical music recognition software-code that will enable a computer to examine a digital scan of sheet music, recognize and extract the notation and lyrics, and create computer files compiled in a database. An ideal database could be searched for lyrics, or the occurrence of specific words, or for melodies.
People wouldn't have to sing to a librarian anymore. Droettboom studied computer music at Peabody, earning a master's degree in He's building on work begun more than 20 years ago by Ichiro Fujinaga, Peabody's associate director of information technology. The software has been long in development-and Droettboom has no idea when he'll be finished-because optical music recognition is complex.
To produce an accurate scan of text, for example, commercial optical character recognition software must recognize about 62 characters: small and capital letters, plus punctuation. Accurate scanning of music requires the software to recognize about symbols, Droettboom says, plus understand how those symbols interrelate to create musical meaning-pitch, volume, duration, etc.
Lyrics present another challenge. On sheet music, the words to a song commonly are divided into syllables to indicate their correspondence with the notes of the melody. To create a useful database of lyrics, recognition software has to understand how to recombine all the syllables into the correct words.
And it has to know that tempo marks like andante are not part of the lyrics. Sheet music in the Levy collection often contains errors, Droettboom says, mistakes in transcription like wrong notes or missing measures. A trained musician recognizes errors and corrects them on the fly when playing a song. A computer doesn't know to do this, so another of Droettboom's challenges is to teach the computer to think like a musician, to recognize and correct errors. He'd like for the code to create data files that can play the music back on a computer, so the software has to be musical in the same way a musician is musical.
One challenge was beyond Droettboom. He describes a piece from the Levy archive that has little soldiers for notes. He says, "We're not even going to try that one. Says Gibson , the university's new vice president and general counsel, "I've always felt that my calling in life was to improve the lives of others. It's been clear to me that being the general counsel at a university like this one is a way of doing that.
Kumiki Gibson Photo by Will Kirk. Gibson was an attorney with the Justice Department in and and in the White House during the Clinton administration's first term, which is when she was counsel to the vice president. Gibson, who is succeeding year veteran Estelle A. Fishbein, and a staff of seven lawyers serve all of Hopkins except the hospital; their responsibilities include not only providing legal advice for all the departments and divisions, but also handling legal matters involving employees, resolving contract disputes, and ensuring Hopkins' compliance with outside agencies.