Essential Facts (Prelims) – April 13 , 2019

NASA’s ‘twins study

Category: Sc & tech

  • A NASA study of a U.S. astronaut who spent a year in space while his twin brother remained on the earth is providing insights into the effects of spaceflight on the human body.
  • S. astronaut Scott Kelly spent a year on the International Space Station while his identical twin Mark Kelly stayed on the ground.
  • It was found in the “NASA Twins Study” that most of the changes to Mr. Scott’s body during his time in space returned to normal within months of his return to the earth — although not all of them.
  • The findings were encouraging for interplanetary travel such as a trip to Mars.

Human Brain Genes into Monkeys

Category: Sc & tech                                                                            

  • Chinese scientists have implanted human brain genes into monkeys, in a study on evolution of human intelligence.
  • Researchers inserted human versions of MCPH1, a gene that scientists believe plays a role in the development of the human brain, into 11 rhesus monkeys.
  • They found the monkeys’ brains — like those of humans — took longer to develop, and the animals performed better in tests of short-term memory as well as reaction time compared to wild monkeys.

Steel Imports

Category: Economy

  • India was a net importer of steel during the 2018-19 fiscal year, the first time in three years.
  • It occurred because India had lost market share among its traditional steel buyers and imports jumped on demand for higher quality steel domestically.

Belt and Road Initiative

Category: International

  • China enlarges its circle in Europe.
  • Italy and Greece have joined Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).