Warung Bebas

Monday, 13 August 2012

Epitope mapping of gp350/220 conserved domain of epstein barr virus to develop nasopharyngeal carcinoma (npc) vaccine.

Epitope mapping of gp350/220 conserved domain of epstein barr virus to develop nasopharyngeal carcinoma (npc) vaccine.Abstract

Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a malignant tumor in the nasopharyngeal epithelial cells that caused by many factors, one of which is the viral infection of EBV (Epstein Barr Virus). The standard treatments to cure NPC still have not been encouraging. The prevention through vaccination is an effective way to stop the disease. However, EBV vaccine being able to cover all variants of virus is still not available yet. Therefore, we identified the conserved region of glycoprotein 350/220 of EBV which has immunogenic and antigenic properties. The glycoprotein 350/220 is viral surface protein responsible to bind CR2 receptor, mediated EBV to enter the host cell. The conserved domain is crucial for EBV in infecting host cells. Further, by blocking CR2 binding domain of gp350/220 using antibody will inhibit EBV's spreading, and provoke an immune system to eliminate the virus in a patient. Glycoprotein 350/220 from all variants of Epstein-Barr virus was retrieved from NCBI. The conserved domain of gp350/220 was identified by aligning the protein sequences and structures. The polymorphic structure was used as a template for docking analysis to identify the resemblance of amino acid from polymorphic variants of gp350/220 that binds CR2. The epitope mapping of gp350/220 was done by Discotope BepiPred method. The result revealed that the conserved region of gp350/220 was predicted to have an epitope, QNPVYLIPETVPYIKWDNC residue, and it does not have any similarities to the human's cell surface protein. Therefore, it can be used as a reference to develop vaccine to prevent NPC.


Sunday, 12 August 2012

Identifications small molecules inhibitor of p53-mortalin complex for cancer drug using virtual screening.

Identifications small molecules inhibitor of p53-mortalin complex for cancer drug using virtual screening.

Biology Department, Faculty of Sciences, Brawijaya University, Malang, Indonesia.


Mortalin was over expressed in tumor cells and bind to p53 protein. This interaction was suggested to promote sequestration of p53 in the cytoplasm, thereby inhibiting its nuclear activity. The p53 is a tumor suppressor that is essential for the prevention of cancer development and loss of p53 function is one of the early events in immortalization of human cells. Therefore, abrogation p53-mortalin interaction using small molecule is guaranteed stop cancer cell grow. However study interaction of p53-mortalin, and its inhibition using small molecule is still challenging because specific site of mortalin that bind to p53, vice versa, is still debatable. This study has aims to analyze the p53-binding site of mortalin using molecular docking and to screen drug-like compounds that have potential as inhibitors of p53-mortalin interaction using virtual screening. The result showed that the lowest energy binding of p53-mortalin complex is -31.89 kcal/mol, and p53 protein bind to substrate binding domain of mortalin (THR433; VAL435; LEU436; LEU437; PRO442; ILE558; LYS555). Furthermore, the p53-binding domain of mortalin was used as receptor to screen 9000 drug-like compounds from ZINC database using molecular docking program Auto Dock Vina in PyRx 0.8 (Virtual Screening Tools). Here, we have identified three drug-like compounds that are ZINC01019934, ZINC00624418 and ZINC00664532 adequate to interrupt stability of p53-mortalin complex that warrant for anticancer agent.

by: didik purnomo

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Saturday, 11 August 2012

Real and Permanent Cure For Social Phobia

Real and Permanent Cure For Social PhobiaI'm sure you've heard the news already: it's all over the blogosphere since BCC Health first broke the news. Yeah, this is about that nasal spray you sniff - and your social phobia is gone!

If you haven't heard about this "latest and greatest" social anxiety cure yet, let me regurgitate the news in brief. It all started when scientists from Zurich University found that people who inhaled the hormone called oxytocin continued to trust strangers even after they were cheated on. That discovery, they say, could lead to future treatments for social phobia. It didn't take long for a long-sales-letter type websites to appear selling the new wonder drug:


It has been called "the love hormone", "the cuddle chemical", "the mind reading hormone" and "the trust drug".

And for a reason.

It's the chemical that makes you feel what you're feeling during an orgasm. It is also produced during labor and it's responsible for the unique and unbreakable mother-child bond. When your brain is releasing oxytocin, you feel loved, relaxed and more open to trust - not only friends and lovers, but also strangers.

The Zurich University's study has found that oxytocin has a very specific effect in social situations: it seems to diminish fears. Lead researcher Dr Thomas Baumgartner thinks that a lack of oxytocin is at least one of the causes for the fear experienced by social phobics.

Brain scans show that oxytocin can lower activity in the amygdala - a region of brain that is responsible for feelings of fear and apprehension - and which is overactive in social phobics. So, yes - it's true: a sniff of oxytocin could improve readiness to engage in social interactions for people who suffer from social anxiety disorder by simply making them less fearful.

Then again, there are other things you can sniff to increase your confidence in social situations... Lots and lots of people who don't have social phobia consume alcohol for the same reason.

Friday, 10 August 2012

5 Best Tips for Relieving Your Menopause Symptoms

5 Best Tips for Relieving Your Menopause SymptomsSo you've hit menopause and now you're wondering what to do next. Or maybe you just SUSPECT that your sliding into menopause (peri-menopause) because you're starting to experience any of the myriad of symptoms, like hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, fatigue, decreased sex drive, mood swings, and relentless weight gain.

The good news is that we now live in a time when menopause is no longer a taboo subject. We feel more comfortable discussing it with our friends, significant others, spouses and doctors. There are more avenues than ever to help support us in our transition. The bad news is that there are a lot of traditional "old" Western medical approaches to menopause relief that are certainly dangerous and sure to be avoided whenever possible.

The beauty of menopause, however, is that it is the time when most women are flowering into the fullness of their personal identity - in what they want out of life, in what dreams and talents they want to give birth to, and what desires they want to fulfill. They spent their earlier years defining themselves as wife, mother, best friend, and trusty employee, but menopause ushers them into a new age - the Age of Wisdom - and here are our 5 little bits of wisdom for you to get you through this transition of menopause in style:

Tip 1: Exercise!

Even a gentle walk every day for 20 minutes (outdoors preferably) will go a long way towards preserving your muscle tone and bone density. Walking can help you lower your bad cholesterol and raise the good, lower your blood pressure, help manage your weight and even improve your mood. What's more is that if you do it outdoors, you also get the benefit of natural Vitamin D which is essential to your immune system and also helps to prevent cancer. (info from "The Mayo Clinic" and "Medical News Today"). Walking also may lead you to be more enthusiastic about starting a more rigorous exercise routine... after all "a body in motion STAYS in motion."

Tip 2: Eat a Healthy Diet

There is a LOT of misinformation out there about what's healthy. If your main source of nutritional knowledge comes from the News at 10 or the government's latest food pyramid, it's important to start doing a little research on your own. Some trusty sources are Dr. Mercola's site or our own "Sugar Control Diet" which is not only excellent for weight loss, but also for balancing hormones (which is so important for menopause symptom relief!) Our Sugar Control Diet guidelines also help in reducing inflammation and even identifying foods that may be causing digestive distress (scroll down to our resource box at the end of this article and you can contact us to request our Sugar Control Diet... it's free).

So many people think that baked potatoes, pastas, rice and breads are good for them - but those all metabolize as sugars in the body, and in doing so, they trigger an insulin release... too much of which not only causes your body to gain more fat but throws all your other hormones out of whack as well (a DISASTER for women seeking menopausal symptom relief!) So educate yourself and start making truly healthy changes in your diet asap - this will help with ALL your menopause symptoms.

Tip 3: Indulge in Some "Me" Time

Menopause often gets a bad rap because we're so inundated with information about the bad parts. But let's try to find its "good" aspects. For example, as we mentioned before, this is a time when women are coming into their own. They know themselves better. They usually have more free time because their children need less supervision - and so they can write that book they never wrote, or attend that class they never had time for in the past. They can build that new meaningful career or find their real purpose and passion that fuels their soul.

Part of birthing this new "you" is learning how to take care of yourself and your needs better. So start laying down the law with some "100% ME" time. Put in some earplugs, declare it a no-kid-zone, and go take a luxurious bubble bath by candlelight. Go to your local gym and indulge in some sauna time. Get a Thai massage - or better yet, some reflexology! As Tony Robbins puts it, schedule your own "Hour of Power" or "Thirty Minutes to Thrive"....if you can't do that, at least schedule "Fifteen Minutes for Fulfillment"! Everyone can find 15 minutes in their schedule somewhere. But put it on the calendar in ink and make it a "must" for yourself. It will calm your nerves, rejuvenate your body, and revitalize your soul.

Tip 4: Avoid Caffeine, Alcohol & Nicotine

If you have excessive consumption of caffeine or alcohol or any intake at all of cigarette smoke (first or second hand), you should know that these substances worsen menopause symptoms. Caffeine & Alcohol serve to exacerbate hot flashes, anxiety, insomnia and bone loss during the critical menopause & perimenopausal years. Caffeine especially disrupts mineral absorption and increases stress. Alcohol ruthlessly dehydrates you (never a good thing!) and is a "magnifier" - so if you're already feeling depressed, alcohol will "magnify" that depression and make it worse. It will take your menopausal anxiety and magnify that too. And you may think it helps you sleep, but when the sugar spike in your blood system finally crashes (remember alcohol = sugar), you will awaken in the middle of the night and find it difficult to go back to sleep.

And did you know that smoking is the main factor in causing early menopause (before age 45) in women?!? Plus it increases the risk of osteoporosis and heart disease, among other things we don't even need to mention. But in regards to menopause itself, according to the British Journal "The Lancet" researchers suggest that nicotine's effect on the nervous system possibly results in changes of the secretion of the hormones involved in menopause, and the smoke itself may affect certain enzymes that influence how the body handles sex hormones. So get help now if you're addicted... hypnotherapy is often a good route for quitting cigarettes and other addictions.

Tip 5: Get Yourself Some 100% SAFE, All-Natural Support for Menopause Symptom Relief

Now this is the MAIN TIP for you: The Big Enchilada. The topic every menopausal woman must educate herself about. It used to be that we all just went to our doctor and he or she prescribed the typical HRT (hormone replacement therapy) for us... you know: Premarin, Prempro, Provera and others. Those synthetic hormone pharmaceuticals that most often are made from the urine of pregnant horses. Yes... GROSS, we know. But it's the truth.

However that all changed when a recent study done as a part of the Women's Health Initiative discovered that long-term use of these synthetic hormone replacement drugs may increase the risk of strokes, heart attacks, blood clots and breast cancer. Even as far back as 1975, they knew these types of drugs substantially increased the risk of endometrial cancer as well. Despite all the findings in this study, doctors continue to prescribe it.

There is no doubt that we do need some source of significant relief for the symptoms of menopause - so we can feel like ourselves, not suffer the mood swings, the insomnia and HOT FLASHES all the time (not to mention the lowered libido), but it's important not to potentially harm yourself by taking traditional HRT.

There are a great many viable and effective, natural herbal remedies for menopause symptoms on the market today... they do work, but some work better than others. We highly recommend getting a full-spectrum product made with trustworthy, quality herbs... not pesticide-laden, and not in capsules that are difficult for your body to digest and assimilate.

For example, most supplements DO contain Black Cohosh for hot flash relief, but make sure your supplement also addresses your other symptoms. Like Sage for excessive sweating, and Damiana with Soy Isoflavones for low-libido and depression. Adrenal support is good as well (the Licorice herb helps with that) - because you need adrenal support during this time... and don't forget Valerian to relax. Full spectrum SAFE support!

Educate yourself also about bio-identical hormones, which are much safer alternatives to traditional HRT. A great source of information for those is found in the book "Ageless" by Suzanne Somers. She even has a directory of physicians in the back so you can find one near you to get help.
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In conclusion, we hope these 5 Tips can help you to have a happier, healthier menopause and guide you toward a smooth transition into the New You. If you'd like to learn more, read our other articles and visit our website where we have a free report on menopause relief - we truly seek to help you live your best life NOW.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Baby Boomer Exodus

Baby Boomer ExodusWhat Happened to the Baby Boomers Anyway?

The 'free love generation' broke taboos, explored, experimented, came of age and changed the world, all while inhaling.

For all our good intentions we haven't done as well as we had hoped. Wiping out diseases, hunger, and war were all high on the agenda, as were most of us.

Now? Well, we are older and some are looking for other adventures. But many of us still have those intentions and hope to be useful towards forwarding those original goals. Let's face it though, we'd still like to have some of our favorite comforts with us, right?

So what DO we do about that pesky retirement question? Finances in most of the world are a major worry. If you have a job your are likely to hang onto it and worry some more. If you've lost yours and you are at an age where it is unlikely that anyone will want you anymore the story is completely different. People with Phd's and a pension are being let go, and when the rehiring takes place it is cheaper to take on someone younger with less education than you, and who can also be paid less. Individuals already retired are seeing their current circumstances becoming more difficult by the day.

On the flip side many born in the 50's are also tired of doing the same old thing, and watching their country slide into what they feel is a decline.

These are just a few of the issues pushing many people to overseas destinations. Confronting distasteful realities certainly did that for us. And quite frankly I would recommend it to a great number of you. New adventures and challenges keep your mind sharp the neurologists insist.

If you haven't read it elsewhere here are some ideas to consider as you investigate what some friends and family will insist is a death defying leap into the thinnest of air. What about family connections? Health care? Safety issues? You can't speak Greek/Croatian/Spanish,whatever! These and other 'reasonable' dissuasions will shower down on your ears from well meaning sources.

But while you take in all the well meaning, but usually uninformed advice, do some research. According to latest statistics almost 6 million Americans are now ex-patriots living out of the country, and this doe not include any military personnel.

Careful searching on good, well rounded websites will show you that contrary to the horror stories shown you on the news every night there are fabulous places to live that don't have the same problems as the ones you are dealing with. That doesn't mean that there are NO problems, Of course, there are. This is planet earth and there is nowhere that is an untouched spot of perfection.

But are the problems in areas where you have skill or passion that could help make them better? Do you paint? Plan highways? Garden well? Love golf or bridge? Take your pension, find a place you like, and go do the things you enjoy there for yourself and the benefit of the people or children of your new home.

In America particularly people have a feeling that they are living in a world that is a very threatening place. Let me assure you that from our years of recent travel and our current home in Chile South America that this perception is blown completely out of proportion.

Here is just one example; Did you know there is a larger middle class in Chile than exists in the US at the moment? And I mean fast internet, cell phones, washer/dryers, lovely tree shaded, safe streets, and lower prices on everything. On the flip side there is some industrial pollution, and yes, people get robbed, threatened and stabbed here occasionally. But the key is, not very often. It is still news here when these things happen instead of the norm. So after weighing our options we are prepared to plow in and do our best to deal with life here.

So start exploring your possibilities online. There are many websites and vibrant expat communities are found in some surprising plabes. Get some ideas, gather data and then put on your boots and go do some overseas explorations from the point of view of 'what is life like here?' It is vastly different than being a tourist off the cruise ship but we've found it tremendously rewarding. And we hope you do to.

There is still so much positive action that we 'boomers' have to offer the world. Let's get on with it.

At last! a complete system that will help you figure out what YOU want. Lists, tables, questions and thoughtful articles and chapters to help you figure out which way to head in life. Is moving overseas a good idea for you? How about the other side of town? Make your next chapter the best.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Best Women's Interest Sites to Peruse With Wireless Internet

Best Women's Interest Sites to Peruse With Wireless InternetWhen you make the decision to invest in wireless Internet, you are probably doing so because you look forward to the amount of your free time that you will be able to spend surfing the net for fun. One of the most enjoyable 'corners' of the Internet is the bevy of websites and blogs that are dedicated to so-called "women's interest." Unlike the standard lady magazines that you will find lining the shelves of the checkout aisle at your local grocery store or super market, these wireless Internet sites offer a fresh new perspective on everything from relationship advice to contemporary politics to body image to film and literature. You can read these blogs to catch sharp commentary on the news of the day, or to simply get a good laugh from a link to a newly viral YouTube video. So without further ado, here are some of the best women's interest sites on wireless Internet. Read them during your downtime at work today!

1. Salon's Broadsheet

Salon is one of the earliest, most innovative websites to emerge in the age of wireless Internet. It is a magazine that has the distinction of only ever having been online: there was never a print version sold at your local bookstore. Broadsheet is one of the official blogs that Salon hosts, and is written by a handful of commentators who discuss politics and popular culture through the lens of women's point of view. If you want to hear a takedown of Hillary Clinton's latest speech about the Middle East next to an analysis of Lady Gaga's place in popular culture, this is the place for you to go.

2. Jezebel

Jezebel is part of the network of websites that are controlled by the Gawker Media empire, headed by the wireless Internet entrepreneur Nick Denton. One of the company's strongest performers, Jezebel is dedicated to women's issues, everything from body image to sexual health to reality TV to that is being discussed in the mainstream media, including women's magazines. The websites has a sillier side, too: one of its longest-running and most popular features is called "Pot Psychology", in which one of the founding editors, Tracie Egan Morrissey, and her friend Rick answer reader's advice questions while under the influence of a certain herbal remedy. Recently taken over by a new editor, Jessica Coen, the website has now rolled out a lot of new content in recent times, including a feature called "Dress Code" in which readers are advised on how to dress appropriately for different situations, such as the job interview, the first date+ and the office holiday party.

3. Feministing

Founded by Long Island native Jessica Valenti less than a decade ago, Feministing has grown into one of the most serious and widely respected feminist websites in the blogosphere. It features a diverse cast of writers all hailing from different backgrounds who analyze the news of the day. Courtney E. Martin, one of the site's longest-running writers, regularly reviews literature and feminist monographs, as well.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Two Reasons to Stay Invested (And One Reason You Should Be - If You're Not)

Two Reasons to Stay Invested (And One Reason You Should Be - If You're Not)Anyone who knows me or works with me knows that I do not believe it is possible to time the market - that is, to decide the right time to get in or get out of the market with any degree of success. We have access to a great deal of information these days, much of it coming from the consumer targeted financial media that each and every day endeavors to point out all the bad news that's out there and suggestions for what we should do about it. It is crisis based and almost never gives us real information upon which to build a long term investment strategy.

With so much negative news about the world's economy, it's easy to forget the basic investing truths that have withstood the test of time. One of those is that staying invested in a diversified portfolio of predominately quality equities (stocks) over time has proven to be a very reasonable strategy to achieve real growth.

Reason to Stay Invested #1 - the High Cost of Market Timing:

To state it more accurately, perhaps I should say the high cost of not timing the market correctly. You cannot invest directly in the S & P 500 Index as it is merely an index comprised of an unmanaged group of securities, but it is considered generally to be representative of U.S. Stocks, specifically, Large Cap U.S. Stocks. The total return of the S & P 500 for the 20 year period ending 12/31/2011 was 7.8% per year. Remove the 10 best days of the year and that average return drops to 4.1% per year. Remove the 30 best days of the year and the average return drops to -.4% per year, in other words no return at all.1

Now I suppose one could argue that had they missed the 10 worst days, the return would have been better than the average. But this misses the point, which is, how can anyone know in advance which will be the good days or which will be the bad? Each correct guess to get out requires another correct guess to get back in. And the process must be repeated correctly each time. Since no one can do this, the next best strategy is to stay invested... which allows you the best opportunity to experience equities' historically superior long term returns.

Reason to Stay Invested #2 - The High Cost of Market Timing II: (in case you weren't convinced)

Let's stick with our theme using the S & P 500 Index as a proxy for U.S. Stocks. We already know this produced a 7.8% per year average annual return for the 20 year time period ending 12/31/2011. What we also know is that the average equity investor's return for the same time period was a mere 3.5%, or less than half of the return achieved by an unmanaged index.2 DALBAR (the group that develops this study each year) attributes this difference to investor behavior, or stated more accurately, bad investor behavior. In other words, the average investor won't stay invested. They will instead panic and sell at the bottom, and then re-commit when the market has already recovered much of any decline. They are forever trying to time market exits and entries - and doing it badly. The better plan is to hang in there, rebalance if warranted and be there for 100% of the recovery when it occurs.

One reason you should be invested now... assuming you're not...

According to the Investment Company Institute, we are in the middle of the sixth straight year of net liquidation from equity based investments. In other words, if the trend continues, by the end of this year, more money will have left equity or stock based investments than has come in - for the sixth straight year - in spite of the fact that U.S. Corporations are actually in pretty good financial health as group. This typifies the frustration of the average investor, I think, and may be a bottoming out of confidence. Another view on this might be that it's an opportunity. Things will get better eventually as history has demonstrated and often when we are able to look back on these time periods, things started to look better just when it seemed they couldn't look worse. We just didn't know it at the time. In terms of this being an investment opportunity, you can be a little early and be patient, or you can be too late. I know which one I want to be. Now, I don't want this to sound like a timing recommendation (and I don't think it really is) but, if you are not currently invested, I think this could prove to be a great long term buying signal.

One more thing to consider...

A number of years ago, 1979 to be exact, there was a cover story in Business Week called "The Death of Equities"3. It went into great detail about how stocks were a bad investment in "these times" and outlined a number of reasons why they probably wouldn't be a good investment anymore. Things had changed - "this time was different."

I thought of that article while reading another one last May in USA Today, the title of which was "Invest in Stocks? Forget About It."4 This is just one of a number of similarly themed articles that seem to be surfacing more recently, additional evidence in my opinion of a bottoming out of confidence and the popular media's desire to take advantage of it. Fear sells more papers than optimism.

That article in 1979 couldn't have been more wrong - as we know now - and I am confident that this latest example will eventually suffer the same fate. To me, it just makes the opportunities look better.
2011 Andex Chart, Columbia Management Investment Advisors, LLC, U.S. Large Stock Annualized Total Returns, 1992-2011.
DALBAR uses data from the Investment Company Institute, Standard and Poors and Barclays Capital index products to compare mutual fund investor bdhavior with an appropriated set of benchmarks. These behaviors are then used to simulate the "average investor."
Business Week, August 13, 1979
USA Today, 5/8/2012

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Social Media Is More Problematic Than Cigarettes or Alcohol

Social Media Is More Problematic Than Cigarettes or AlcoholCan you resist the urge to check your emails, to look at your Facebook Wall or to have a peek at Twitter? It's tough isn't it? Once you start using such online media it seems the urge to resist it is difficult. There has been plenty written about the addiction to social media, but little has been said about the simple desires to keep in touch with friends, or to check the latest news online, for instance. A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Chicago shows that the urge to engage with media of all kinds is more significant than the desire created by cigarettes or alcohol.

The study used Blackberry mobile phones which were only capable of receiving "Blackberry Messages" (BBM) - importantly the devices were stripped of any other functionality. Then, every couple of hours the participants in the research received a BBM message asking them about their current desires. Interestingly, the study was conducted across a wide age range - 18 to 85 - and it involved a large number of people - 200. So the results make fascinating reading.

What the researchers found was a consistent "giving in" to the desire to Tweet or to post on Facebook, but that the desire to smoke or drink was resisted more easily. In other words, we find we are much more tempted to use social media than other potentially addictive behaviours such as using cigarettes or drinking alcohol. With much research now suggesting that social media addiction is a real threat, why is it we are so easily taken in by it?

The researchers from Chicago suggest that it is the apparent "low cost" element of social media. Cigarettes and alcohol cost us real money, whereas social media does not. Similarly, smoking and drinking has a health cost, which social media does not appear to have. In addition there is the widespread availability of social media. If you want to use Twitter or Facebook you can pretty much do it anywhere, any time. But if you have a desire for a drink or a cigarette it might not be so easy; you may not have those items to hand when the desire strikes, so you put the urge to the back of your mind. Because Facebook and Twitter are largely omnipresent we do not reject the desires it seems, but give in to them quickly.

For employers this is a real issue that needs grappling with. Companies go to great efforts to restrict the availability of alcohol and cigarettes in the workplace, thereby helping to reduce temptation. But the widespread availability of social media in the office means employees can easily be distracted by the temptation. The problem is that for most businesses those distractions have a real benefit in terms of promoting the company, enabling greater customer service and so on. Getting the balance right is going to be the real challenge for companies in the coming year or two.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Wellness Blogging to Inspire Healthy Behavior

Wellness Blogging to Inspire Healthy BehaviorThe competition for your participants' time and attention has never been greater. You've done the table tents, the lunch 'n learns, and maybe even an online wellness campaign. Are you ready to take your message to the masses in a way that can capture even more eyeballs?

Start a blog -- and join the millions of people and businesses who have entered the blogosphere. What began as a way to maintain an online personal journal has become a wildly popular way for the like-minded to gather, families to connect, and businesses to reach a wider audience. According to the Pew Internet Study, data from July 2008 showed that 33% of US adults read blogs regularly, while 11% read blogs daily.

What could a health promotion blog do for your population? As long as your content is crisp, fresh, and engaging -- and updated regularly -- readers will come back for more. Your wellness campaigns will stay in front of them, and you can drive home behavior change messages disguised as entertaining blog posts. Here's how:
Know your audience. Design your blog with the user in mind. What topics would be most interesting and compelling for your target population based on your workplace culture and demographics? What are your top healthcare cost drivers, and how can you approach blog posts that address related behaviors?

Plan your blog presence. Some blogs are more formal and news oriented; others are more personal and chatty, while still others include a variety of posting styles. Because they're self-published, blogs have a more direct tone to them than most print articles. Position yourself as an authoritative voice on the topics you write about, but bring the message close to home -- something your readers can relate to. Make your blog the go-to place for:

Details about upcoming events
Commentary on breaking news and research findings
Success stories
Perspectives and insights on healthy living
Latest wellness team standings.

Identify key bloggers. Decide whether one person will do all the writing, or if team members will take turns. Invite others to serve as guest bloggers.

Read other blogs. Head to Technorati, Bloglines, or other blog indexes to search health-oriented blogs, and take notes. What engages you? What annoys you? What distracts you? What do you like best? The insights you gain as a blog reader will be extremely valuable as you develop your own.

Keep it brief. A blog isn't a place to post a 3-page article. Readers want snippets of useful, entertaining, or thought-provoking content -- they don't have the time or patience for much more. Link to a news item and add your own commentary to help your readers make sense of headlines related to their health and well-being.

Focus on specifics. The Huffington Post is the most-read blog today, with millions of hits every day. In their how-to book on blogging, Huffington Post editors recommend focusing on 1 nugget from a research finding, a quote, or news item. Because the nature of blogging is so immediate, you don't need to bore your readers with the whole context or background of an issue each time you post, the way traditional media do.

Relax. The thought of putting your opinions and musings out there for the world -- or at least your coworkers -- may feel intimidating. But many health promoters have a wealth of wisdom to share, from personal and professional experience. Modern participants don't want to only hear about what they should do, they need support in actually doing it. Your point of view on making sensible choices in a Thai restaurant or cultivating a more active family life may be just what they need to take the next step. Write conversationally, clearly, and concisely -- as if talking with friends or family; you'll get better with every post.

Cultivate community. Some bloggers allow readers to comment on posts and engage in conversation on a given topic -- but depending on the volume of feedback, you may not have time to address each question personally. Instead, post on a hot topic you see frequently in reader questions and comments. Invite reader input (on how they've overcome barriers to staying active, for example) and share it in a post to inspire others to do the same.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Information Products Are The Most Profitable Of All Products - Learn To Create Your Own

Information Products Are The Most Profitable Of All Products - Learn To Create Your OwnMillions and millions of full-sized books and small booklets are sold each year. Most are produced by the large publishing houses. However, there are also several million books sold every year by small, unassuming, one-person publishing companies. Many of these one-person publishers operate from a home-based office. And, surprisingly, some home-based publishers earn excellent incomes. What is more, some are even becoming very rich.

In this report you will learn how to succeed as a home-based publisher, producing books, booklets, reports and manuals on nearly every subject imaginable. And, if you have no desire to write your own material, you will learn how to get authors to write for you. Many authors have chosen to by-pass the usual publishing routes and instead, self-publish their own books. Admittedly, this requires more work, but it could also mean more profits. There are many reasons authors decide to self-publish, including:

1. It is very difficult to get a manuscript accepted by the giant publishing houses, unless you are a personality in some field or are already a successful author.

2. Often, the large publishing companies will want to edit a manuscript in such a manner that is unacceptable to the author.

3. Often, the author can market his own book more effectively than a large publisher will. This is especially true if the material is of a non- fiction or of "how-to" nature.

4. Self publishing allows the author to keep all of the profits.

5. There is plenty of opportunity for the author/self- publisher to set up other profit center products that are related to the topic of the book.

So, as you can see, there are many compelling reasons why thousands of authors have chosen to self-publish. Also, the availability of low-cost micro-computers have made self-publishing much easier than in past years. This report will give you a step-by-step approach to self-publishing your own book.

Note: this report is not about writing. It is assumed that you will write your own booklets or hire a ghostwriter to do the job for you. So the following information will focus only on the steps you need to take to succeed (make money) as a self-publisher.

1) Generate book ideas and proposals, either your own or by hiring authors/ghostwriters.

2) Evaluate these ideas and proposals as to the feasibility of producing a valued book and reaching a large group of prospective customers.

3) Evaluate the size of the market and determine how you will reach that market. Also, research any competitive books.

4) Consider various related products that you could sell to the people who buy your book.

5) Write and edit the book, pay royalties to an author or hire a ghostwriter to do it for you.

6) Produce a camera-ready copy for the printer.

7) Begin your marketing effort by designing ads and brochures. (Often, this step comes before or during writing the book. Your sales material can give you something to "live up to.")

8) Launch a full scale marketing and publicity campaign. (A "full-scale" roll-out should follow a test marketing campaign. You want to make certain you have a truly salable product and should spend little money to test the waters.)

9) Get printing quotes and have the final version of the book ready to print and bind as soon as you are sure there will be sufficient sales to warrant these costs.

10) Sell follow-up products to your customers. All of these steps can be carried out quickly. You could easily have a fast-selling book on the market within 6 months or less.

The best, and easiest, subjects for self-publishers to produce are of the "how to" genre. Books, reports and manuals that tell readers how to do something are among the liveliest sellers. It is very difficult for a small publisher to be successful with novels or poetry books. So this report will focus on "how to" books.

However, you can apply many of the techniques discussed here to market other kinds of books as well. To begin, you should publish material on topics which you are most familiar. You should also have a market targeted and a plan for reaching that market. Example: you may have in mind to produce a book about how to make money with crafts to be sold in small craft shops, craft fairs, craft magazines and through direct mail to people who make craft items.

It is not necessary for you to be an expert on a topic if you are not writing the book yourself. But you do need to be knowledgeable enough to evaluate the book proposals that are submitted to you. Otherwise, you will have to hire an expert to evaluate the manuscript for you.

Most small publishers specialize in one general topic. For example: crafts, income opportunities, computers, a particular hobby, gardening, health and others. A home-based publisher, like you, will then produce several books on the same subject. Thus, greatly increasing sales because you will have related books to offer to the same customer. Once you have a few potential topics, these ideas must be evaluated. The most crucial question is, "can I sell a book like this and if so, how will I sell it?"

First, you need to evaluate the size of the market. If there are only a few thousand people who would be interested in your book, you may want to reconsider. Many small publishers recommend that you have a potential market of at least 50,000 people who would be interested in your topic.

Next, you need to determine if these people are easy to reach. Are there magazines, trade associations or mailing lists that you can use? (Example: Book "HOW TO USE LOTUS 1-2-3 SOFTWARE" - Market 2 million owners of Lotus 1-2-3). How to reach mailing list of Lotus owners, special magazines for Lotus users and computer bookstores!

You will find that most self-publishers suggest that you find a market niche that is not being adequately covered. Here is a sampling of marketing - model railroading, self-publishers, writers, Apple computer owners, computer programmers, gardeners, health enthusiasts and hundreds of other narrowly defined interests. Each of these topics may only have a potential market of 50,000 to 200,000. But this is often enough for you to be successful. It is especially true if you have a good way to reach these people and if you publish several books about the topic.

Most publishers are recommending that you stick to special subject books rather than broad coverage books. It seems as if the day of the high page count, broad topic books are about over. There are also many groups of people who are interested in all kinds of narrow, specialized topics.

Other factors to evaluate include: are there any similar books already on the market, how is your book different (more valuable), are there people who really want your book, is your information up-to-date and can you produce exciting promotional material to sell your book? It's important to consider your book's selling points. If it is easy, write an ad for the book, that is, your material has many selling points, the book will be easier to market. More about book marketing later!

The title of your book can have a big effect on sales. A good title will often result in increased interest as well as higher profits. Example: HOW TO GET RICH IN MAIL ORDER is much better than HOW TO GET STARTED IN MAIL ORDER.

Here are a few more good examples of lively book titles: Homemade Cash, Cash From Your Computer, Is There a Book Inside You, Quick Cash - (129 Ways Anyone, Anywhere Can Make $200 Right After Dinner), How to Write a Million-Dollar Opportunity Book, Why s.o.b.'s Succeed and Nice Guys Fail in Small Business, Cash Copy, I'll Buy That!, How to Make Pvc Furniture for Fun and Profit, Cash in by Cleaning Up, $200 a Day With Your Pickup, Ads That Sell, How to Make Your Advertising Make Money, How I Made $1,000,000 in Mail Order, How to Make Maximum Money in Minimum Time, Secrets of How to Become a Successful Mailing List Broker, How to Write a Hit Song...and Sell It!, How to Advertise for Less Than the Cost of a Postage Stamp! And so on and so on...

A good book title should: grab the attention of the customer, clearly reveal the book's subject, arouse interest, define the area covered by the book and promise benefits to the buyer/reader. Many books also have a subtitle. The subtitle is usually about 6 to 15 words long and should reveal even more about the book. For example: QUICK CASH! How Anyone, At Any Time, Anywhere Can Make At Least $200 Right After Dinner.

One more thing about book titles: If you are planning to produce ads or direct mail pieces to promote your book, you should consider a snappy, upbeat title which can be also used as your headline. The above book title, along with its sub-title, in national full-page advertisements has sold thousands of copies of the book, Quick Cash. It is attention-getting, informative, captures the imagination of the proper prospect and offers a benefit.

There are several basic decisions you must make concerning the layout of your book. These decisions will influence the cost you pay for printing. For example:

1) Stick with standard sizes such as 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches or 8 1/2 x 11 inches. (Some printers may have slightly different book dimensions). But just make sure that you request a standard size that your printer can easily produce. Odd sizes will increase the overall cost of printing.

2) Number of pages. All book printers have optimum number of pages that they can produce. These are usually increments of 4, 8, 16 or 32 pages. You will want to make sure your book falls on these increments or you will pay extra for blank pages. The page count does not include the cover. Example: It may cost 10% more for a 161 page book than it does for a 160 page book. Therefore, you will want to reduce your manuscript by one page.

3) Typeface. This is the style and size of the letters that make up the text. The most used typeface for books is Times Roman at 10 point size. If you use 12 point size, more pages are required and 8 pohnt size will require less pages but will be harder to read. Do not use some off beat, out of the ordinary typeface. Make your book easy to read.

4) Type of cover. You can decide to use a plain, one color cover or a glossy, 4-color cover. If you are planning to sell through bookstores, you will need to design a fancier, eye-catching cover. For mail-order sales, customers are buying information, not a pretty cover; so you can put less emphasis on cover design.

5) Other factors that you may need to consider are: pictures, photos, an index, size of chapter headings and subheadings. You can explore various book layouts simply by examining different books. Pick one that you like and discuss it with your printer.

Once the book or booklet is written and edited your first concern is to prepare a "camera ready" copy for the printer. The printer must have a good master copy of your book in order to prepare plates for the printing press. The pages of this master copy must appear exactly as you want the final copy of the book to look. In other words, it should contain: headlines, subheads, margins, justified text, any graphics or pictures and, ideally, proportionally spaced letters (typesetting).

The only way to get all of the above features is by having your book typeset. Unfortunately, typesetting can be expensive. You may pay $20, or more, per page if you hire a commercial typesetter. However, micro-computers can reduce the cost of typesetting. Here is what I mean:

1) Produce the book on computer and deliver a floppy disk to a type-setter who can typeset from your disk. This saves the cost of having the typesetter key in your book's text, word by word.

2) Send the disk to a computer owner who has a laser printer and desktop publishing software and have him/her typeset the book for you. They will often do this for a reasonable fee of $1 to $3 per page.

3) Use a modem to transfer the text of your book via a telephone to a typesetter who can handle modem transmissions.

4) Buy your own laser printer and desktop publishing software and type-set the book yourself.

If you already own a computer and are going to publish several books, then option #4 is the best way to go. This gives you complete control over the type-setting. It also allows you to perform editing changes quickly. There are two other options for type-setting your book. The first is to use a high quality type-writer to produce the text. You can also use the rub-on headline type that can be purchased from any office supply store. Unfortunately, this will not produce a very good looking book. And, with today's competition and readily available desktop publishing systems, this approach will leave you a step behind other publishers.

A slightly better option is a computer system together with a high quality (24 pin) multi-mode dot matrix printer. This will produce near letter quality text, justified margins, columns and proportionally spaced text. These are features you cannot get with a typewriter. So you will end up with a fair quality book, but not near as good as that produced with a laser printer.

My advice is to get or rent a full desktop publishing system to produce several books. However, if you just want to self-publish just one book, then consider using the services of a commercial type-setter. Or hire someone who owns a desktop publishing system. This will allow you to produce the best master copy for your printer. And will result in a professional looking book. At a minimum, you will want the book's cover to be professionally type-set.

There are two phases of book editing. The first step is to edit the book before type-setting, and before a printing master is produced. This step is designed to eliminate the majority of errors.

The second phase is to complete a final editing of the book after a master copy has been type-set. The purpose of the second phase is to eliminate any remaining errors. A second purpose of this step is to cut out or add material and to adjust the length of the book, if necessary.

You may also wish to adjust the length of a chapter so that each chapter will begin on a right hand page. You may wish to adjust the length of the book to save printing costs. For example: as I mentioned earlier, most book printers operate in set increments of pages. Many offer 16 page signatures. Therefore, a 160 page book would take 10 signatures. A 164 page book would take 11 signatures and cost extra because of those additional pages. So if you can eliminate 4 pages, you will save printing costs.

Editing a book takes a considerable amount of time. There are many things to check for, including: spelling errors, sentences that are too long, misuse of words, punctuation errors, capital letters, non-sense sentences, factual errors, omissions of vital material and so forth. Eliminating spelling errors is usually the easy part. If you have a computer, you can use a spell checker program to catch most mistakes.

I usually make about three passes through the entire book looking for errors. When an error is found, I will mark it with a red pen so it is easy to find. When the entire book has been edited I return to the computer and make the necessary changes. Then I will print the book one final time and again check for errors.

Finally, I will have another person make a last check for me. Having another person make a final check of the book can be beneficial. They will look at the book with a fresh view and catch errors that you may have overlooked.

One of the most important parts of editing is to check the book's facts and its completeness. You must make certain that the book contains no factual errors and that it adequately covers the topic. If your book falls short in these two areas, it will most likely be a failure and a waste of your time and money, as well as a waste of your reader's time and money. So always double check each fact and make certain that all of the important facets of the topic are discussed.

In other words, make sure that your book has something informative to say...and that it is said correctly. After the book has been type-set, you can make one final check to look for small errors. It is almost impossible to catch all errors, but you will want to remove as many as possible. (Note: there are minor errors in this report. See if you can find them. It will be good exercise.)

Costs to print a book can vary widely, depending upon many factors and upon the printing company that you choose. Examples:

1) The type of paper used in the book and on the cover. There are many different grades of paper from which to choose. 50-pound off-set paper is commonly used for the interior of most books.

2) The book's dimensions and number of pages.

3) The number of books printed. You will pay a much higher cost-per-book if you have, say, 1,000 copies printed rather than 5,000 or 10,000 copies printed. But the number of books that you produce should also depend upon how many you think you can sell within the first year of marketing.

You can always order an additional printing, if your book proves to be a fast seller. The price-per-copy usually decreases at about 2,500 to 3,000 copies. You will want a sufficient number of pages in your book to adequately cover the topic. Do not write in a "too wordy" routine just to add extra pages. Make sure that you have something worth saying... then say it succinctly. "How-to" readers dislike rambling prose. So leave all "fluff" out of your book and get to the point.

At the same time, you will want enough pages in your book to suitably impress the reader that it contains an adequate coverage of the topic. You can not completely cover a wide ranging subject in less than 100 pages. You may need 200 or 300 pages. However, some narrow topics can be nicely covered in 10 to 50 pages. (This article is an example.)

It is often acknowledged by self-publishers that "page count" determines the price you charge for your book. But, in general, I disagree. To me, it is the value of the information you provide that should determine price. For example, if you have discovered a unique, fast, easy, low-cost way to make fuel for automobiles at home and can relate that information in 6 just pages you can most likely sell your report for a very high price. Who cares how many pages it takes? It is the how-to information that is important.

Once you have the complete specifications of the book, it is time to get printing quotes. You should contact at least 4 or 6 printers for these quotes. Too many printers will give you samples of their work.

Here is a typical request for a book printing quote: "Please quote prices for the following book, Cash From Your Computer. 120 pages, trim size 8 x 10 inches, 2 color glossy cover, perfect bound, printed on 50-pound off-set paper. Quote prices for 1,000, 3,000 and 5,000 copies, including delivery price. This book is to be finished within 30 days of receipt of camera ready copy."

Before you choose a printer, be certain to check on reliability, quality and length of time to produce your book. Ask for a few customer references and do not be bashful about checking with them about the printer's reliability and qualifications. You don't always want to go with the cheapest price. For example, you may find a nearby printing company that will print your book at a slightly higher price than a far away competitor. But you can pick up the books yourself, thus saving the cost of shipping which may lower the overall cost. The most important thing you can do is to find a printer with whom you can easily work. A printer who will readily work with you can provide a lot of help getting your book ready for printing, thereby saving you time and money. While price is an important factor, I look for reliability, honesty, speed and service first.

Book marketing efforts really begin before the book is even printed. You must define and identify your most likely customers, determine why they would want your book, design benefit-laden ads and brochures and direct your ads toward the most likely place your prospect will see it. It can also consist of developing a wholesale program to dealers, wholesalers and bookstores.

Other marketing methods include: sending publicity releases, mailing review book copies to editors of appropriate publications and perhaps appearing on radio or TV talk shows.

There are literally hundreds of different ways to sell your books. One self-publisher sells 30 to 40 books every day by hawking them on the street! Imagine... no ad costs, no direct mail costs, no discounts, no postage... just pure profit.

Some publishers go so far as to design an ad or direct-mail piece for their book before they even write it. If they have trouble writing a hard-hitting ad, they would probably have trouble selling the book. Too, a pre-publication ad can give you something to "live up to" as you prepare your book.

All book ads, direct-mail pieces and brochures should focus on the benefits that the book will give the customer. These benefits include: more money, a better job, health, happiness, knowledge, love, luck, personal improvement and so on. Your ads need to convince your prospects that they will enjoy these benefits by buying your book.

Therefore, your ads must be eye-catching, descriptive and inspirational. If you do not want to tackle writing your own ads, hire a direct-response copywriter to do it for you. The really goods ones can often bring you more business than you can handle. Look in direct-response trade journals such as Direct Marketing magazine and DM News for copywriter listings.

Another important factor to consider is the overall appearance of your ads and brochures. Simply put they should look appealing and be easy to read. Make sure that you follow the rules of type-setting, proper graphic techniques and most importantly, employ a stop-the-readers-in-their-tracks headline and use well written, compelling ad copy.

Many self-publishers who sell by mail-order offer some form of money back guarantee. Most offer a 30 to 90 day refund for returned books. Owen Publishing always gives a full-year. A good, reliable guarantee will definitely improve sales of your book.

Mail order book sales can also be increased by adding incentives such as: 10% discount when buying before a certain date; free report with each purchase; buy four books get the fifth one free; or some other low-cost freebie. A bonus for promptness almost always increases book sales. But remember when you are mentioning your bonus relate the benefits derived from that bonus... not just the bonus itself. If you intend to sell your book via mail-order observe the ads used by other book-sellers and take time to read several books about mail-order techniques.

One of the lowest cost ways to sell your book by mail is called the two-step method. Using this strategy, you place low-cost classified ads to obtain inquiries for your book. You then send to each inquiry a packet of information, including an effective sales letter. Most often, you will want to send a follow-up mailing to those who did not buy. And offer an additional incentive.

This two-step method is the lowest cost way to start. It is used by some very successful companies and has led many self-publishers to success and as time goes on and your experience increases - expand into display ads and direct-mail campaigns.

One way to promote your book is by making personal appearances at book stores. You can arrange a book signing party with the book store owner or manager. The book store orders 50 or 100 of your book and advertises the party. The author personally auto-graphs each book as it is sold. Some authors go on national tours that encompasses auto-graphing parties, talk show appearances, speeches, seminars and trade shows.

It should be mentioned that this way to sell your book is, in reality, difficult. Getting book store owners or managers to agree to "book signing" events takes some doing. Your topic must be very, very interesting and you must be convincing enough to get your foot in the door. It takes work, but it can be a lucrative way to sell books.

The dealership selling method works well for many self-publishers. There are many mail-order book sellers who may be interested in selling your books for you on a drop-ship basis. The mail-order book dealer advertises your book(s) in his catalog and when an order arrives sends you 50% (or whatever) of the retail price along with a shipping label addressed to the customer. You then ship the book directly to the buyer. This method works very well if you have camera-ready advertising brochures for the dealer to insert with his catalog or other mailings. The dealer will put his name and address on the brochure and have several thousand copies printed. He then distributes these brochures along with his other sales literature or, perhaps, even runs ads for your book.

Dealers can be found by placing small inexpensive ads in the opportunity-type magazines and by adding the tag-line - "Dealer Inquiries Invited" to the bottom of your own sales materials. There are many self-publishing groups that work together in co-op marketing, either through book shows or by direct- mail. You may want to take advantage of these co-op efforts. Also, there are many book shows going on all the time throughout the country where you can exhibit and sell books directly or make contact with wholesalers.

Here are a few other ways your book can produce money for you: selling through book clubs, selling subsidiary rights, movie rights (was not there a movie called, "How To Make Love To A Married Woman" or something like that based on a "how-to" book?) or by selling foreign rights. Anyway, all of these methods can produce some excellent profits with little extra work on your part. It is suggested that you get involved with a local self-publishers or writer's group where you can develop different ways to make money with your book.

One of the best ways to produce additional income from your book is by selling products that are related to the book's topic. If you are selling a book about making money with computers, for example, you should include a catalog of other computer books or share-ware software. When you get an order for your main product (your book) you ship the order along with a catalog of your other products.

Since the customer has already expressed an interest in your topic by buying your book, a certain percentage of those buyers will also be interested in your other related products. That is, of course, assuming that your customer was satisfied. You can get these other products by developing them yourself or by acting as a dealer for other companies. Some self-publishers make more money from these "bounce-back" catalog sales than they did from the original book sale.

As your sales increase you will need to keep a customer mailing-list. You can then mail catalogs or information on your latest book throughout the year to your buyers. Whenever possible, you will want to include discount coupons or other sales material in the book itself. Why? To capture many of the names of people who buy your book through bookstores or from dealers. You will notice that many smart publishers include sales literature or catalogs on the last few pages of the book in order to generate additional sales.

Another important aspect of marketing is the manner in which you operate your business. You should always bend over backwards to treat the customer respectfully. Answer all complaints and ship all refunds promptly. Process all orders fast and reply to every inquiry the same day, if possible. You want to develop a good reputation for your company, if you ever expect to harvest repeat orders.

Many self-publishing authors have become millionaires. Most make an above average living. Writing and marketing your work, the essence of self-publishing, takes learning, practice, perseverance and determination. The work is "easy." It is not like mining 16 tons of coal. But your brain must be engaged at all times and you must constantly seek ways to better market your book. About 5% of your efforts will be tied up in producing your book... the other 95% will be marketing.

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