Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2023

May 08, 2023

Current Affair 1:
New Non-Invasive Technique to Extract DNA From Palaeolithic Remains


Analysis of artifacts made of teeth or bones is promising because their porosity allows body fluids such as saliva, sweat, or blood to penetrate the artifacts, and the hydroxyapatite in teeth and bones absorbs DNA and protects it from nuclease activity and hydrolysis to a certain extent.

However, the process of DNA extraction has involved destructive sampling and the risk of altering the specimens.

Scientists obtained the genomes of both deer and ancient humans by using a new non-invasive method to extract DNA from a Palaeolithic deer tooth pendant discovered in Denisova Cave, Siberia.

This non-destructive DNA extraction method makes it possible to use teeth or bone artifacts as an untapped source of DNA from ancient humans who might have made, handled, or worn these artifacts.

This method also allows inferences to be drawn about the biological sex and ancestry of the humans who handled these artifacts, providing more insight into the behaviours and cultures of ancient humans.

The stepwise release of DNA in this method also allows the ancient DNA found deep within the artifact to be distinguished from present-day DNA that could have contaminated the artifact or DNA found in the surrounding sediments.

Current Affair 2:
Supreme Court: Cannot be oblivious to the fact that Ayurveda and Allopathy doctors perform different duties, hence not entitled to equal pay.


The apex court, in the State of Gujarat and Ors held that allopathy and ayurvedic doctors do not perform equal work and therefore are not entitled to the same pay and benefits. The court was referriA2. ng to appeals arising out of the judgement by the division bench of the Gujarat High Court holding that ayurvedic and allopathic doctors are entitled to the same benefits recommended by the Tikku Pay Commission.

The factual background of the case is as follows.

On 03 May 1990, a High-Power Committee was established with R.K. Tikku as its chairman with the goal of enhancing the opportunities and working circumstances for doctors employed by the government. The committee’s recommendations were only for service doctors with MBBS degrees, post-graduate medical degrees, degrees in super-specialties, and those on the teaching and non-teaching sides when they were submitted in October 1990. By a different order, a new committee was established with the same chairman to consider the career advancement and cadre reorganisation of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy practitioners. The committee’s report was submitted in February 1991.

The Governments at both state and central levels accepted the recommendations of the Tikku Committee regarding allopathic doctors. However, when clarification was sought on whether the same benefits are available to non-MBBS degree holders, the Gujarat government responded in the affirmative. This was later withdrawn by a notification. The Division bench of the High Court held that no discrimination is permitted as both MBBS and non-MBBS degree holders form part of the same cadre, and both are entitled to equal pay and benefits. The appeal is against this order.

SC order:

Current Affair 3:
Commission for Scientific and Technical Terminology (CSTT) creating technical and scientific terminology in 10 Indian languages



The Commission for Scientific and Technical Terminology (CSTT), which works under the aegis of the Union Ministry of Education, is rushing to create technical and scientific terminology in 10 Indian languages underrepresented in the learning landscape.

Bodo, Santhali, Dogri, Kashmiri, Konkani, Nepali, Manipuri, Sindhi, Maithili, and Sanskrit are a part of the list of 22 official languages of India’s Eighth Schedule.

The immediate focus is to cover 15 disciplines: journalism, public administration, chemistry, botany, zoology, psychology, physics, economics, Ayurveda, mathematics, computer science, political science, agriculture, civil and electrical engineering. These will enable textbook formulation at the middle- and senior-school as well as university levels.

About Commission for Scientific and Technical Terminology (CSTT)

Commission for Scientific and Technical Terminology was established on October 01, 1961 in pursuance of a Presidential Order dated April 27, 1960 with the objective to evolve technical terminology in all Indian Languages.

The Commission was established under clause (4) of Article 344 of the Constitution of India as a follow up of recommendations of a committee in this regard. The main function of the Commission is to evolve standard terminology, propagate its use and distribute it widely.

Presently, CSTT is functioning under Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education, Government of India with its headquarters at New Delhi.



Current Affair 4:
What is mutualism?


When members of two species have a relationship that is beneficial to both, the interaction is called mutualism. The term was first used by zoologist and paleontologist Pierre Joseph van Beneden to mean ‘mutual aid among species’ in his book Animal Parasites and Messmates, published in 1876.

Why are mutualisms important?

Mutualisms are some of the most common interactions found in nature and occur in both terrestrial and aquatic habitats.

Some of the most widespread mutualisms are those between plants and their pollinators. Plants rely on pollinators to ferry pollen between flowers for reproduction. Pollinators receive food (either as nectar or the pollen itself) as a reward for this service.

Other commonly occurring mutualisms are those between plants and nitrogen-fixing bacteria (where plants provide food and shelter to bacteria that convert atmospheric nitrogen into minerals that plants can absorb) and plants and fungi called mycorrhizae (where plants provide food and shelter to fungi that help the plants to absorb micronutrients like phosphorous and iron from soil).

Humans and some gut bacteria such as specific strains of Escherichia coli or E. coli have mutualistic relationships where the human provides food and shelter to the bacteria, which provide their human hosts with vitamin K and some essential nutrients.

Another well-known mutualistic association is that of some ants and termites with fungi, where the ants/termites literally cultivate fungi by providing specific fungi with food (usually cellulose from plant material like wood and leaves) to grow on and protect the fungi by weeding out or killing off competing fungi. The fungi, in turn, digest the cellulose and convert it into a form that the ants can eat.

Another mutualism involving ants is that between ants and aphids, where ants protect aphids from predators and the aphids reward the ants with drops of sweet sugary liquid called honeydew.

In aquatic systems, some of the most well-known mutualisms are those between corals and photosynthetic organisms called zooxanthellae. The corals provide zooxanthellae with shelter and minerals, while the zooxanthellae provide the corals with oxygen, glucose, glycerol, and amino acids, which are products of photosynthesis.

These examples prove that mutualism is not just a widespread phenomenon that helps organisms survive, but also a major driver of evolution in the natural world.


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