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30
SEP
2010

San Francisco Spine Injury Lawyers | Sodium May Regrow Nerves, Tissue

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A regenerating Xenopus laevis tail showing spinal and peripheral axons (red). A brief pulse of sodium influx can induce regeneration of the entire appendage, including rebuilding the spinal cord and peripheral innervation.
A regenerating Xenopus laevis tail showing spinal and peripheral axons (red). A brief pulse of sodium influx can induce regeneration of the entire appendage, including rebuilding the spinal cord and peripheral innervation. (Journal of Neuroscience)

Sodium may be the key to regrowth of nerves of tissue for people with spinal cord injuries, severed limbs and other catastrophic injuries, according to a study published Wednesday in the Journal of Neuroscience.

Biologists at Tufts University conducted the study with tadpoles who had lost the ability to regenerate their tails. Tadpole tails contain spinal cord, muscle and other tissue.

The researchers infused the tadpoles with a combination of drugs that prompted a flood of sodium ions into the injured nerve cells. Within an hour, the tadpoles began growing new tails.

Lead researcher Michael Levin, who is director of the Center for Regenerative and Developmental Biology at Tufts, told MSNBC that a tadpole/frog tail is a good model for human regeneration because it repairs injury in the same way: Each tissue makes more of itself.

“We certainly feel this will be relevant for human medicine,” Levin said. “The name of the game is to control the ionic content of the wound, which is able to kick-start the whole process of regeneration. You can initiate the whole cascade of repair.”

In addition to regenerating spinal nerve tissue, Levin said, this type of biomedicine could one day be used to regrow lost  fingers, toes or limbs by immersing the injured area in specific fluids and bioelectronics.

Levin noted that this type of regrowth method could be simpler and more effective than others, such as using stem cells.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving spinal cord injury.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

29
SEP
2010

Fresno Motorcycle Accident Lawyers | CHP Officer’s Leg Severed in Hit-and-Run

An off-duty California Highway Patrol officer’s leg apparently was severed Tuesday night in what police believe was a hit-and-run motorcycle accident involving an aggressive tailgater in Northwest Fresno.

The accident occurred at around 5:15 p.m., according to ABC Channel 30 News. Police said the CHP officer, whose name wasn’t released, was riding his motorcycle in the eastbound lanes of West Herndon Avenue, just east of North Palm Avenue at the time of the accident.

Fresno police spokesman Jeff Cardinale told the Fresno Bee that both the officer and a silver Toyota Tundra pickup truck, which had been tailgating another vehicle, stopped at a red light at Palm Avenue. The officer legally shared a lane with other vehicles to move his motorcycle to the front of the intersection, Cardinale said. As he did so, the Tundra driver honked his horn at the officer.

When the light turned green, the officer continued in the middle lane at a legal speed and the Tundra driver hit the motorcycle, forcing it over into the right lane, investigators told the Bee. The Tundra then veered over into the slow lane and forced the motorcycle to crash into the curb. The Tundra drove on without stopping, investigators said.

A witness who was at the scene of the accident told ABC News the officer’s lower leg appeared to be severed. Fresno Police Department Lt. John Papaleo confirmed that the off-duty CHP officer sustained a “severe injury to the lower leg.”

“It wasn’t described as life-threatening,” Papaleo said. “The officers that were out there said the individual was up and talking to officers at the scene.”

ABC News reported that the injured officer was able to give police details about the crash for their investigation. The injured officer was then transported to a Bay Area hospital, where he was scheduled to undergo surgery Wednesday morning.

Fresno police are looking for the driver of the full-sized, silver, four-door Toyota Tundra pickup truck. Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at (559) 498-STOP. A cash reward is offered for any information leading to an arrest or conviction.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving hit-and-run accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

28
SEP
2010

Sacramento Accident Lawyers | Californians Oppose Cities’ Crash Taxes

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crash-taxA new poll shows that Californians are strongly opposed to cities filling their coffers by charging out-of-towners involved in car accidents big fees for emergency services that already are covered by local taxes.

The poll, commissioned by the Insurance Information Network of California, found that only 21 percent of respondents were in favor of municipal cost recovery programs; 50 percent were against them and 26 percent were undecided.

Respondents rejected the idea of cities attempting to make these fees something that would have to be covered by insurance, because it would almost certainly raise rates across the board.

Almost all of the cost recovery programs are not even run by the city governments. They are set up and operated by private, for-profit companies that skim a percentage of the fees off the top. These third-party collection agencies typically bill the drivers’ insurance companies, but the fees often are not covered by insurance policies.

Typical fees include $2000 to be removed from a car by the jaws of life, $400 an hour for every fire truck, and another $700 if firefighters actually attempt to put out a vehicle fire.

The programs are so unpopular and have caused so much backlash that some cities have had to stop using them. City officials in Huntington Beach, for example, instituted a cost recovery program in mid-August and got so much bad publicity that they rescinded the program in September, according to the Insurance Information Network.

[Read more about crash taxes: Huntington Beach Accident Lawyers | Another City To Charge Crash Tax]

“It’s clear that the public does not believe that budget shortfalls should be filled by charging motorists for emergency services,” said IINC Executive Director Candysse Miller. “The prospect of insurance costs rising to routinely cover these fees only increases their opposition.”

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving motor vehicle accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

27
SEP
2010

Anaheim Injury Lawyers | Drunk Driver Convicted of Murder in Adenhart Death

Andrew Gallo (inset) was convicted of second degree murder in the drunk driving death of Angels rookie pitcher Nick Adenhart (and two others).
Andrew Gallo (inset) was convicted of second-degree murder in the drunk driving death of Angels rookie pitcher Nick Adenhart.

The man accused of killing Los Angeles Angels rookie pitcher Nick Adenhart and two others in a 2009 drunk driving crash was convicted on Monday of second-degree murder.

A jury found 23-year-old Andrew Thomas Gallo guilty of three counts of second-degree murder, felony DUI and felony hit-and-run, according to the Los Angeles Times. Gallo could face as much as 55 years to life in prison.

While Adenhart was making his first start of the season for the Angels on April 9 — pitching six scoreless innings — Gallo was drinking tequila. Officials said his blood alcohol level was probably three times the legal limit when he got behind the wheel, despite having a suspended license and still being on probation for another DUI arrest. He crashed into a car and killed not just Adenhart but also Cal State Fullerton student Courtney Stewart and law student Henry Pearson. A fourth person, Jon Wilhite, survived the crash but sustained major injuries from which he has not yet fully recovered. All of the victims were in their 20s.

Gallo fled the scene.

Attorney Jacqueline Goodman defended Gallo, first by saying his brother-in-law may could have been the one behind the wheel (it was his van) and then by saying he may have been at fault but he wasn’t a murderer.

The prosecution showed video of Gallo drinking heavily in a bikini bar right before the crash and argued that he knew he could kill someone if he got behind the wheel because he had been warned about it during classes for his prior DUI offense.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving drunk driving injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.

27
SEP
2010

San Diego Plane Crash Lawyers | Officials Searching for Survivors in Cabo Crash

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beechcraftbaronA small plane believed to be carrying four Americans crashed Saturday near Cabo San Lucas in Baja California.

The plane crash involved a 1968 twin-engine Beechcraft Baron (similar to the one shown in the photo at left). It apparently departed from San Diego and crashed in the mountains near the resort area, according to reports in USA TODAY and NBC News. The plane was believed to be en route to Argentina with a scheduled stop in Cabo.

Cabo San Lucas civil defense director Francisco Cota Marquez said Mexican authorities had spotted the wreckage but that crews would have to try to reach the crash site on foot because of the steep and rugged terrain. Marquez said that no survivors had yet been seen.

The cause of the plane crash is not yet known, according to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) spokesman Ian Gregor. Gregor told the Los Angeles Times there had been reports that the small plane broke apart but did not catch fire after hitting the mountain. He also said that neither the FAA nor the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) would get involved in the investigation unless the Mexican government asked them to.

The 1968 Beechcraft Baron was registered to a Douglas Baker of Ukiah, CA, according to the FAA website. Baker may have just sold the aircraft, said FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford.
Source: Plane in Cabo Crash Orginated in San Diego | NBC San Diego

NBC News reported that FAA records indicated the aircraft was registered to Douglas Baker of Ukiah, California.  FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford said Baker may have just sold the aircraft.

Mexican military personnel and other emergency workers are trying to reach the wreckage. Further details will be released as soon as they are known.

The trial attorneys at Blackman Legal Group, a California-based law firm founded by renowned trial attorney Clifford Blackman, have been representing injury victims since 1976, and have special expertise in cases involving aviation accident injuries and fatalities.  The nationwide toll-free number to call for a free consultation is 1866-692-8126.