September 29, 2015 10:14AM

The Drip, Drip, Drip of Human Progress

Checking out the news this morning, the following five stories caught my attention. First, NASA has confirmed that there is water on Mars, thus raising the enticing possibility of extra‐​terrestrial life as well as colonization of the red planet. Second, surgeons have developed a cure for age‐​related macular degeneration, which is the most common form of blindness.Third, a British scientist has developed a new liquid crystal material that can be printed onto any product, including pill bottles and banknotes. This invention could help to eliminate the counterfeit goods industry worth up to $1.5 trillion per year.

Fourth, a clinical trial at St George’s University of London confirmed the cancer‐​fighting potential of the anti‐​malarial drug called artesunate. This breakthrough could cut the price of colon cancer treatment from $45 to $1 per day. Fifth, an analysis of a huge amount of health and genetic data from British volunteers has yielded some fascinating clues on the genetic makeup and DNA mutations of smokers who do not develop cancer. Down the line, these findings could help develop gene‐​based therapies for lung cancer.

I am sure there are plenty of other inventions, breakthroughs and discoveries that took place in the last 24 hours that I have not yet read about. Not bad, fellow earthlings, not bad at all!