Dhaka, Aug 31 (UNB) – A six-day art exhibition titled ‘Symphony’ will begin at La Galerieof Alliance Française de Dhaka on Monday.
Art works by eminent artists from Bangladesh and India will be exhibited featuring folk themes and traditions of two countries, said a press release.
Prof Biman Bihari Das, chairmen, All India Art and Craft Society(AIFACS) will attend the opening ceremony as the chief guest.
Prof Biman Bihari Das, who was awarded the Padma Shri, one of India’s highest civilian honors, will exhibit his bronze and marble sculptures as well as acrylic paintings.
The participating artists from India are Prof Biman Bihari Das, Joydeb Bala, Nishi Sharma, Simran Kawaljit Singh Lamba, and Subrata Ghosh while from Bangladesh are Nurun Nahar Papa, Elham Huq Khuku, and Zebun Nahar Nayeem.
The exhibition will remain open to all until 7 the September.
Visiting hours are as follows: Monday to Thursday from 3 pm to 9 pm, Friday and Saturday from 9 am to 12 noon and 5 pm to 8 pm (closed on Sunday).
Chicago, Aug 30 (UNB/AP) — The largest study of its kind found new evidence that genes contribute to same-sex sexual behavior, but it echoes research that says there are no specific genes that make people gay.
The genome-wide research on DNA from nearly half a million U.S. and U.K. adults identified five genetic variants not previously linked with gay or lesbian sexuality. The variants were more common in people who reported ever having had a same-sex sexual partner. That includes people whose partners were exclusively of the same sex and those who mostly reported heterosexual behavior.
The researchers said thousands more genetic variants likely are involved and interact with factors that aren't inherited, but that none of them cause the behavior nor can predict whether someone will be gay.
The research "provides the clearest glimpse yet into the genetic underpinnings of same-sex sexual behavior," said co-author Benjamin Neale, a psychiatric geneticist at the Broad Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
"We also found that it's effectively impossible to predict an individual's sexual behavior from their genome. Genetics is less than half of this story for sexual behavior but it's still a very important contributing factor," Neale said.
The study was released Thursday by the journal Science. Results are based on genetic testing and survey responses.
Some of the genetic variants found were present in both men and women. Two in men were located near genes involved in male-pattern baldness and sense of smell, raising intriguing questions about how regulation of sex hormones and smell may influence same-sex behavior.
Importantly, most participants were asked about frequency of same-sex sexual behavior but not if they self-identified as gay or lesbian. Fewer than 5% of U.K. participants and about 19% of U.S. participants reported ever having a same-sex sexual experience.
The researchers acknowledged that limitation and emphasized that the study's focus was on behavior, not sexual identity or orientation. They also note that the study only involved people of European ancestry and can't answer whether similar results would be found in other groups.
Origins of same-sex behavior are uncertain. Some of the strongest evidence of a genetic link comes from studies in identical twins. Many scientists believe that social, cultural, family and other biological factors are also involved, while some religious groups and skeptics consider it a choice or behavior that can be changed.
A Science commentary notes that the five identified variants had such a weak effect on behavior that using the results "for prediction, intervention or a supposed 'cure' is wholly and unreservedly impossible."
"Future work should investigate how genetic predispositions are altered by environmental factors," University of Oxford sociologist Melinda Mills said in the commentary.
Other experts not involved in the study had varied reactions.
Dr. Kenneth Kendler a specialist in psychiatric genetics at Virginia Commonwealth University, called it "a very important paper that advances the study of the genetics of human sexual preference substantially. The results are broadly consistent with those obtained from the earlier technologies of twin and family studies suggesting that sexual orientation runs in families and is moderately heritable."
Former National Institutes of Health geneticist Dean Hamer said the study confirms "that sexuality is complex and there are a lot of genes involved," but it isn't really about gay people. "Having just a single same sex experience is completely different than actually being gay or lesbian," Hamer said. His research in the 1990s linked a marker on the X chromosome with male homosexuality. Some subsequent studies had similar results but the new one found no such link.
Doug Vanderlaan, a University of Toronto psychologist who studies sexual orientation, said the absence of information on sexual orientation is a drawback and makes it unclear what the identified genetic links might signify. They "might be links to other traits, like openness to experience," Vanderlaan said.
The study was a collaboration among scientists including psychologists, sociologists and statisticians from the United States, United Kingdom, Europe and Australia. They did entire human genome scanning, using blood samples from the U.K. Biobank and saliva samples from customers of the U.S.-based ancestry and biotech company 23andMe who had agreed to participate in research.
Dhaka, August 28 (UNB) – Drama troupe Chandrakala Theatre’s new production ‘Sheikh Saadi’ began its journey on stage in the capital on Thursday.
The inaugural show was staged it the Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy’s National Theatre Hall in the evening.
The drama was arranged in collaboration with the Cultural Affairs Ministry and Iranian Culture Centre in Dhaka.
State Minister for Cultural Affairs KM Khaled was present at the inaugural ceremony while President of Chandrakotha theatre group Mamunur Rashid presided over the ceremony.
The play, based on the great Persian poet Sheikh Saadi’s grand life, is written by Apurba Kumar Kundu, while H R Anik directed and portrayed the role of the great poet.
Hamidur Rahman Pappu directed the music while Fazle Rabbi Sukarna designed the stage.
The production assistant for this play is the Iranian Cultural Centre in Dhaka.
London, Aug 29 (AP/UNB) — The World Health Organization says there has been a "dramatic resurgence" of measles in Europe, in part fueled by vaccine refusals, with nearly 90,000 people sickened by the virus in the first half of 2019.
In a report issued Thursday, the U.N. health agency said the number of measles cases from January to June this year is double the number reported for the same period in 2018. Measles is among the world's most infectious diseases and is spread mostly by coughing, sneezing and close personal contact.
Although numerous European countries have introduced stronger vaccination policies, stubborn pockets of vaccine refusal have fueled epidemics across the continent. Last month, the German government proposed making measles immunization mandatory for children and employees at kindergartens and schools; there have been more than 400 cases of measles in Germany this year.
With more than 84,000 cases, Ukraine accounted for the vast majority of measles in Europe, followed by Kazakhstan and Georgia. In February, Ukraine's health ministry said eight people had died of measles.
An expert WHO committee said four countries — Albania, the Czech Republic, Greece and the U.K. — have now lost their status as having eliminated measles. Measles is preventable with two doses of the vaccine, but there is no effective treatment once people are infected.
"If high immunization coverage is not achieved and sustained in every community, both children and adults will suffer unnecessarily and some will tragically die," said Dr. Guenter Pfaff, chair of a WHO expert committee on measles in Europe.
In some developed countries, measles vaccination rates dropped sharply following the publication of a flawed study in the late 1990s that linked the combined measles, mumps and rubella vaccine to autism. Health officials have struggled to debunk misperceptions about the vaccine's safety ever since.
"Misinformation about vaccines is as contagious and dangerous as the diseases it helps to spread," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in a statement this week.
In 2017, WHO estimated about 110,000 people died from measles worldwide, mostly children under 5-years-old.
New York, Aug 29 (AP/UNB) — A fossil from Ethiopia is letting scientists look millions of years into our evolutionary history — and they see a face peering back.
The find, from 3.8 million years ago, reveals the face for a presumed ancestor of the species famously represented by Lucy, the celebrated Ethiopian partial skeleton found in 1974.
This ancestral species is the oldest known member of Australopithecus, a grouping of creatures that preceded our own branch of the family tree, called Homo.
Scientists have long known that this species — A. anamensis — existed, and previous fossils of it extend back to 4.2 million years ago. But the discovered facial remains were limited to jaws and teeth. The newly reported fossil includes much of the skull and face.
It was described Wednesday in the journal Nature by Yohannes Haile-Selassie of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History and co-authors.
The face apparently came from a male. Its middle and lower parts jut forward, while Lucy's species shows a flatter mid-face, a step toward humans' flat faces. The fossil also shows the beginning of the massive and robust faces found in Australopithecus, built to withstand strains from chewing tough food, researchers said.
The fossil was found in 2016, in what was once sand deposited in a river delta on the shore of lake. At the time the creature lived, the area was largely dry shrubland with some trees. Other work has shown A. anamensis evidently walked upright, but there's no evidence that it flaked stone to make tools, said study co-author Stephane Melillo of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany.
Experts unconnected to the new study praised the work. Eric Delson of Lehman College in New York called the fossil "beautiful" and said the researchers did an impressive job of reconstructing it digitally to help determine its place in the evolutionary tree.
With a face for A. anamensis, said Zeray Alemseged of the University of Chicago, "now we know how they looked and how they differed from the Lucy species."
William Kimbel, who directs the Institute of Human Origins at Arizona State University, said the discovery helps fill a critical gap in information on the earliest evolution of the Australopithecus group.
The study's authors said the finding indicates A. anamensis hung around for at least 100,000 years after producing Lucy's species, A. afarensis. That contradicts the widely accepted idea that there was no such overlap, they wrote.
Scientists care about overlap because its presence or absence can indicate the process by which one species gave rise to another. The paper's argument for overlap rests on its conclusion that a forehead bone previously found in Ethiopia belongs to Lucy's species.
But several experts, including Kimbel, were not convinced that conclusion is correct. So the question of just how Lucy's species arose from the older one remains open, Kimbel said in an email.