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To what extent is death in venice a tragic version of a flawed artist

By David Robson 19 January 2016 Silvano was on a cruise ship when the family curse struck. An elegant 53-year-old with striking red hair who enjoyed wearing a tuxedo at every possible occasion, he tried to present himself with the poise of the film stars he admired.

The tragic fate of the people who stop sleeping

Concerned, he examined himself in a mirror, only to find that his pupils had shrunk to two tiny black pinpricks. It was the same glassy-eyed stare that had afflicted his father and two sisters at the beginning of their mysterious illnesses.

He knew this was just the beginning. Tremors, impotence and constipation could follow. But the most terrifying symptom would be the disappearance of sleep — almost total insomnia for months; a kind of waking coma that ultimately would end in death. As Silvano had predicted, he died less than a couple of years later, but he left his brain to science in the hope that it might shed some light on the strange disorder that had plagued his family.

View image of Credit: Despite this chain of losses, the family tried not to talk about the illness for fear of tempting fate, but that changed in the 1980s when Silvano started developing his symptoms. Although their efforts could do nothing to save Silvano or two other family members who would succumb shortly afterwards, extensive testing eventually found the culprit: For some reason it is only at middle age that the prions begin to proliferate wildly, collecting in pockets that poison the neurons.

After years of further research, the scientists can now explain why damage to this small nub of neural tissue unleashes such a puzzling constellation of symptoms. When it breaks down, it is as if your central heating is going haywire, your water pipes have sprung a leak, your windows are wide open and your loudspeakers are blaring at full volume — everything is in chaos.

Hence the profuse sweating and shrunken pupils, the impotence and the constipation. Where blood pressure typically drops before sleep, theirs would be abnormally high, for instance, giving the sensation that their body is still on high alert. During this stage, low-frequency oscillations of electrical to what extent is death in venice a tragic version of a flawed artist ripple across the cortex — the gnarled, bark-like tissue on the surface of the brain.

And what nub of neural tissue deep in the brain orchestrates those delicate rhythms? Lacking this dimmer switch, the FFI patients are always switched on and can never descend into deep, restorative sleep, says Angelo Gemignani at the University of Pisa, who has demonstrated that people with FFI are missing this important pattern of brain activity.

Cortelli thinks this is a pale remnant of the REM stage that punctuates the deeper stages of sleep; in some ways, it looks like they are acting out dreams. Slowed decline One remarkable patient, however, has hinted that there may be some unusual ways to alleviate the misery.

A psychologist at Touro College in New York, Joyce Schenkein first came across Daniel not through her work, but through a radio chat line a precursor to internet forums in the 1990s. Medical tests revealed he was carrying the FFI mutation. Worse still, it was the form that should progress most rapidly. Rather than crumbling into despair, his response was to buy a motorhome and travel across the US.

As the symptoms became more extreme, he employed a driver, and then a nurse, to take over the steering wheel when he was too unwell, she says. He even bought a sensory deprivation tank, having found that even under an anaesthetic, his fragile slumbers could be interrupted by the slightest sound or movement. Once he awoke, however, he had to face terrifying hallucinations — including a strange uncertainty as to whether he was alive or dead.

He even tried electroconvulsive therapy to see if the sharp electric shock could knock him out Despite these relative successes, Daniel still faced regular relapses that became more intense as the disease progressed.

After a few years of this struggle, he too finally passed away.

An analysis of the tragic vision of a flawed artist in death in venice

Clearing the debris Although none of the treatments provided long-term relief, Daniel lived years longer than his diagnosis might have predicted. Together with the Italian neurologist Pasquale Montagna who had worked on those other cases of fatal familial insomniaSchenkein wrote up the case study for a medical journal in the hope it may inspire others to look for measures to extend the life of patients with FFI.

Lugaresi passed away at the end of December last year after decades of working with people with FFI, but Roiter and his colleagues at Milan and Treviso believe they may finally be close to the cure they had all dreamed of. Last year, they announced a clinical trial of a new drugwhich, they hope, may prevent or at least decelerate the formation of the poisonous prions. Indeed, in a small clinical trial on people showing early signs of the disease, the 21 people taking the drug lived about twice as long an average of 13 months to what extent is death in venice a tragic version of a flawed artist the 78 control subjects.

The problem was that many family members did not want to know the results of the test: Roiter and his colleagues wonder if by that point, it might simply be too late to be of use.

For this reason, they want to see if doxycycline may still function as a preventative treatment in people at risk of FFI, before the prions have started to amass.

First, the scientists had to genetically test each member to see who was carrying the mutation, and so should be given the active drug. From these, they selected 10 members aged 42 to 52 who might be expected to decline within the next decade. Fear of knowledge The problem was that many of the family members did not want to know the results of the test: For this reason, a further 15 members who are not at risk of the disease will also receive a sham treatment.

This means that each member should have no way of figuring out the results of their test: So if the team find that more than six have escaped the disease by the end of that period, they will consider the trial a success — perhaps justifying more widespread use. Despite the glimmer of hope it offers, the trial remains controversial among some of the doctors who have been following this family closely. Cortelli, for one, has decided not to be involved in the project because he is concerned about its ethics.

  • Upon reflection, he retains his resolve to travel, but;
  • Hamlet's death could have been avoided and especially too proud to allow himself to be led back to venice in chains a tragic hero must not back down from;
  • The confrontation with "the other;
  • He even bought a sensory deprivation tank, having found that even under an anaesthetic, his fragile slumbers could be interrupted by the slightest sound or movement;
  • Why does dostoevsky offer us a vision of a christ that is representation relates the death of christ in a and even necessary task for an artist,.

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