France Refuses any Negotiation on BREXIT Demands to Punish Britain

first_imgParis is adamant that the EU should not renegotiate the Brexit deal. The French want to punish the British at all costs, and that means at the expense of their own employment and markets. Amélie de Montchalin, France’s minister for European affairs, said, “If the UK wants to leave the EU, and in an orderly way, the withdrawal agreement is the deal on the table, which has been negotiated for over two years. We’ve also said that the political declaration on the future relationship is open to discussion if the prime minister had a majority.”France’s position is to end trade by blocking trucks from Britain through the ports of Calais and Dover. They are more interested in punishing Britain than anything else. They refuse any negotiation whatsoever. British trucks will not be able to board ships in Dover in a no-deal BREXIT scenario if they do not have the correct customs paperwork, following a deal between the Port of Calais and Channel shipping lines. Any excuse will prevent trucks from delivering anything to Europe. « Paris Riots Take Over the Champs-Elysees Categories: France Tags: Brexit, Britain, France last_img read more

New case report reveals negative clinical impact of using biotin supplement

first_imgMay 21 2018A new case report in the Journal of the Endocrine Society documents how a patient’s use of a common biotin supplement, also known as vitamin B7, caused her to have clinically misleading test results, which prompted numerous consultations and unnecessary radiographic and laboratory testing.The patient in the case report took a 5000 mcg dose of biotin daily. Biotin supplements in that dosage are commonly sold over-the-counter, without a prescription, in many grocery and drug stores for about $8-$20 a bottle. They are marketed as being good for healthy hair, skin and nails, but there is no scientific evidence to support this claim.Related StoriesDoing more harm than good: Scientists uncover harmful effects of dietary supplementsGlucosamine supplements could benefit the heartNew laboratory test has potential to accurately predict spread of breast cancerIn this patient’s case, “The negative clinical impact included weeks of psychological distress concerning the possibilities of hypercortisolemia or a testosterone-producing tumor. Most significantly, these abnormal test results nearly resulted in an unnecessary invasive procedure for a complex patient with a hypercoagulable state,” the case report says. Hypercortisolemia is a condition involving a prolonged excess of cortisol — a steroid hormone — in blood.Maya Styner, MD, associate professor of endocrinology and metabolism in the department of medicine, is the case report’s corresponding author.”The literature is lacking with regard to biotin interference with serum cortisol and testosterone immunoassays, as in our case-report,” Styner said. “Patients are ingesting supplements in a higher frequency, and higher doses, and therefore this case is timely and relevant from both a clinical and basic-science perspective.”She added, “Our manuscript is a product of a collaboration between endocrinology, reproductive endocrinology/gynecology and clinical chemistry at UNC and at the Mayo Clinic. This collaboration enabled us to ascertain the underlying diagnosis and perform relevant research-based biotin quantification in our patient’s sample.” Source:https://www.endocrine.org/last_img read more

Study Consuming sugary soft drinks can make you fat

first_img Source:https://www.meduniwien.ac.at/web/en/about-us/news/detailsite/2018/news-im-juni-2018/fifa-world-cup-sugary-soft-drinks-make-you-fat/ Jun 12 2018The 2018 World Cup will kick off this coming Thursday with the game between the host, Russia, and Saudi Arabia. Just a little over four weeks to watch football with friends or visit public viewings. Exciting games that give you a thirst. But be careful when consuming sugary soft drinks: the well-known drinks from adverts have been scientifically proven to make you fat. This is the result of a study conducted at MedUni Vienna’s Center for Public Health. At the same time, a further study showed between 2010 and 2017, the industry reduced the sugar content and the use of artificial sweeteners in drinks for the Austrian market. “Water is and always will be the healthiest thing to drink,” emphasizes Maria Wakolbinger, nutritional scientist from the Center for Public Health at MedUni Vienna. However, if you can’t do without flavor in your drinks, then, from a health point of view, you can add water to soft drinks and fruit juices in the ratio of at least 1:3 (1 part soft drink, 3 parts water). The same applies to shandies made from mineral water and beer, which are becoming increasingly popular.Three games will be played on some days of the World Cup. And so you can save a huge number of calories by drinking “spritzers” instead of lemonade or pure fruit juice while watching television. Says Wakolbinger: “Half a liter of lemonade contains on average more than 200 calories or the equivalent of 18 sugar cubes but, if you mix that in a ratio of 1:3, then it is only 50 calories or 5 sugar cubes for the same quantity.” Wakolbinger also points out that, if you get used to drinking “spritzers”, your taste will gradually adapt and that will have a beneficial effect upon your health.Related StoriesSedentary behavior costly to both public health and the public purseCommon antibacterial agent may be bad news for bone healthUK Sugar Tax may ‘not be most effective tactic’ for childhood obesityAccording to the SIPCAN beverage list, the drinks industry reduced the average sugar content in beverages by 13.3% between 2010 and 2017. A step in the right direction, according to Wakolbinger: “Our supermarkets already carry alternatives to highly sugared drinks, namely a huge assortment of sparkling lemonades and fruit juices, so we are well ahead of many countries in that respect.” The MedUni Vienna expert believes that a sugar tax on drinks, such as has been introduced in the UK, does not go far enough: “In order to be really effective, the tax should also cover sweeteners.” Political measures should be taken to help reduce the sugar, fat and salt content of food and to encourage people to eat healthy foods.And, of course, it is not just of matter of what football fans drink during the World Cup but also what they eat – and their standard fare is quite heavy: a liter of beer contains 210 calories, a whole pizza up to 900 calories, and a hamburger around 700 calories per portion. If this is followed by a bag of crisps, that adds a further 500 calories or more – and any amount of fat. However, MedUni Vienna nutritional scientist Karin Schindler stresses that there are delicious alternatives to help you retain your “bikini figure” even after the World Cup Final on 15 July. Her tips include: “Vegetable sticks with yogurt dips, lean meat with vegetables or salad – and unsalted nuts instead of fat-laden crisps.”last_img read more

Research sheds light on pathways involved in transmitting itch sensations from skin

first_img Source:https://news.ncsu.edu/2018/06/mishra-itch-eczema/ Jun 14 2018Researchers from North Carolina State University have pinpointed a particular neuropeptide associated with transmitting itch signals in mice with atopic dermatitis. The work sheds further light on the pathways involved in transmitting itch sensations from the peripheral (skin) to the central (spinal cord) nervous system.”You can think of itch being transmitted from the skin to the brain as a series of switches that get flipped,” says Santosh Mishra, assistant professor of neuroscience at NC State. “The signal goes from neuronal projections in the skin through the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) – which are clusters of sensory cells located at the root of the spinal nerves – then to the spinal cord. We’re interested in finding out how the portion of this pathway from DRG to spinal cord works in terms of signaling itchiness in chronic skin disease.”Related StoriesEmbrace your natural skin tone to prevent skin cancer, say expertsDon’t Miss the Blood-Brain Barrier Drug Delivery (B3DD) Summit this AugustStudy provides new insight into longitudinal decline in brain network integrity associated with agingAtopic dermatitis, sometimes referred to as eczema, is a chronic skin condition that causes persistent itching. Mishra and his team looked at a protein, or cytokine, called interleukin-31 (IL-31), which is overproduced in patients with atopic dermatitis and is involved in triggering itch response.”We know that when IL-31 binds to the receptor present on neuronal projections in the skin, those neurons signal a subset of neurons in the DRG called the TRPV-1, which then signal the spinal cord,” Mishra says. “We wanted to figure out which neuropeptide was involved in the ‘switch’ between the DRG and the spinal cord.”The team looked at the neuropeptide Natriuretic polypeptide B (NPPB), which is released by TRPV-1 neurons in the DRG when IL-31 binds to receptors in the skin. To test whether NPPB was involved in itch signaling to the spinal cord, Mishra and his team used IL-31 to trigger itchiness in mice. They compared wild-type mice to mice without NPPB receptors and mice that could not produce NPPB. They found that itching decreased by 70 to 80 percent in mice without the neuropeptide NPPB or its receptor, indicating that NPPB did play a role in the itch-signaling pathway.”Our work shows that NPBB does act on the neurons in the spinal cord, and that it plays an important role in this signaling pathway,” Mishra says. “Our next steps will be to build on this work, because the neurons that express NPBB can express more than one neuropeptide. Perhaps we will be able to identify another receptor involved in the link between the peripheral and central nervous system for chronic itch associated with eczema.”last_img read more

Maple leaf extract could prevent wrinkles

first_imgImage Credit: Anna Molcharenko / Shutterstock Related StoriesPsoriasis patients frequently use complementary or alternative therapies to treat their symptomsLoose double-stranded RNA molecules spur skin rejuvenationHarnessing the power of skin microbiome to develop new therapeuticsThe team of researchers extracted the phenolic compounds in the leaves known as glucitol-core-containing gallotannins (GCGs) from red maple leaves (Acer rubrum). They looked at each of these compounds individually to see if it could inhibit elastase within a test tube. GCGs which contained multiple galloyl groups were found to be more effective in stopping elastase action than those with a single galloyl group. Sreeram has shown in earlier studies that these GCGs do not just prevent wrinkles but also protect the skin from inflammation and remove dark spots, freckles and age spots. Seeram and Ma continued their testing after their initial findings and Sreeram calls this “a plant-based Botox” that could be applied over the skin and does not have to be injected like Botox. He added that consumers who wish to use plant based natural ingredients in their skin care products would appreciate this finding.As of now they have extracted the phenolic compounds from the summer and fall maple leaves. The formulation is a proprietary product and is awaiting a patent. It is to be called MaplifaTM. It has been licensed to botanical extracts supplier Verdure Sciences based in Indiana. It could soon end up in the cosmetics shelves or in the shelves for dietary supplements say the researchers. Seeram added, “Many botanical ingredients traditionally come from China, India and the Mediterranean, but the sugar maple and the red maple only grow in eastern North America.” He said that the local farmers who tap the syrup would now be able to add to their source of income from collecting leaves during normal pruning or during fall. This time for collection makes the system sustainable and profitable he explained.Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1-AivvkWG0 By Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDAug 20 2018Maple trees are associated with the maple syrup that they provide. Researchers have now found that the trees could provide us with more. The extract from maple leaves can actually prevent wrinkles, they found.center_img Extracts from summer or fall red maple leaves are formulated into a powder that could be incorporated in skincare products to prevent wrinkles. Image Credit: Hang Ma The team of scientists from University of Rhode Island presenting their work at the 256th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in Boston have found the benefits offered by the maple leaves. Their study is titled, “Inhibitory Effects of Glucitol-core Containing Gallotannins from a Proprietary Red Maple (Acer rubrum) Leaves Extract on Elastase Enzyme”. There have been historical records of the medicinal uses of maple leaves as used by the Native Americans explained Navindra P. Seeram, Ph.D., the project’s principal investigator. He said that Native Americans used the red maple leaves in their traditional systems of medicine.The team explains that the elasticity of the skin is maintained by special proteins called elastin. When the skin ages wrinkles are formed because an enzyme called elastase breaks down the elastin. Hang Ma, Ph.D. research associate in Seeram’s lab, who is presenting the work at the meeting explained that they tried to find if the maple leaf extracts could stop the enzyme elastase.last_img read more

Biologic environmental factors may be possible culprits for racial disparities in CKD

first_img Source:https://www.pennmedicine.org/news/news-releases/2018/august/access-ensure-better-outcomes-for-black-and-hispanic-kidney-disease-patients Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Aug 24 2018Penn Findings Point to Genetic or Environmental Characteristics as Possible Culprits for Racial Disparities in Kidney Disease Although black and Hispanic veterans with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are more likely than white patients to see a kidney specialist-;a nephrologist- they are more likely to suffer disease progression from early stage to advanced kidney disease, reports a study published this month in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Although previous studies have indicated that access to nephrology care before kidney disease progresses to end stage is associated with better clinical outcomes, these results suggest that biologic and/or environmental factors may actually be central to racial disparities in CKD progression. Previous research has found that while black and white patients experience similar rates of CKD, black patients were more likely to suffer from end stage renal disease. This led the authors to investigate whether limited access to a nephrologist could explain this rapid progression among black and Hispanic patients in a veteran patient population.”Access to care is a major driver of disparities in many illnesses, but surprisingly, our findings show that may not be the case among veterans with CKD,” said senior author Peter P. Reese, MD, MSCE, an associate professor of Medicine, Epidemiology in Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Informatics, and Medical Ethics and Health Policy. “Our study could help researchers target efforts to prevent individuals with CKD from progressing to end stage kidney disease.”The study looked at a nationwide population of 56,767 patients in the Veterans Affairs healthcare system, most of whom were male (39,767 whites, 12,747 blacks, and 4,017 Hispanics) with stage 4 CKD, which is characterized by advanced kidney damage and a likely need for dialysis or a kidney transplant. Half of the non-Hispanic white patients visited a nephrologist, compared to 72 percent of blacks and 64 percent of Hispanics. Although fewer whites saw a nephrologist, only 14 percent of whites in the study progressed to stage 5 CKD, compared to 34 percent of blacks and 27 percent of Hispanics. These differences in risk of progression to stage 5 CKD persisted after accounting for important factors such as age, other illnesses, socioeconomic status, smoking history, and distance to the closest Veterans Affairs Medical Center. “Now that we have evidence that limited access to care does not seem to influence disease progression in a population of veterans, researchers must delve into other potential contributing factors. Closer evaluation of other environmental exposures, like poor access to healthy fruits and vegetables, may help to pinpoint important catalysts for this disparity,” said co-first author Jordana Cohen, MD, MSCE, an assistant professor of Epidemiology in Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Informatics. “Our findings suggest that the main reason(s) for progression to end stage kidney disease is/are not something that nephrologists are treating.” The authors did not set out to evaluate the value of consulting with a nephrologist, and note that such appointments can help if a patient needs quicker referral for a kidney transplant or needs surgery in an arm to connect an artery to a vein in preparation for dialysis. Other suspected causes of this disparity include genetic risks, such as APOL1 mutations, found almost exclusively among those of African ancestry. APOL1 mutations are known to increase the risk of many types of CKD, and have no known treatment options.last_img read more

Researchers report challenges in reducing tetanus mortality

first_imgAug 31 2018The overall mortality in patients suffering non-neonatal tetanus is high. Efforts to reduce mortality in one sub-Saharan African intensive care unit (ICU) by implementing a standard tetanus protocol did little to change mortality rates, although they shifted causes of deaths, researchers have now reported in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. Related StoriesIt is okay for women with lupus to get pregnant with proper care, says new studyUltra-Processed foods delay satiety, increase food intake and weight gainCancer mortality at an all time low finds reportTetanus is a vaccine-preventable neglected disease that mostly occurs in regions where vaccination coverage is incomplete. The World Health Organization recommends treating tetanus with patient monitoring, antibody injections, sedation, pain relief, and general supportive care.In the new work, Jennifer Downs of Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, and colleagues looked at a tetanus patient care protocol implemented in the ICU of Bugando Medical Centre in Tanzania in 2006. The stepwise protocol, which was modified in 2012, emphasized airway control, early administration of medications, and wound care. Patient care and outcomes were analyzed for tetanus patients in three groups—those admitted pre-protocol in 2001 to 2006, those in an Early group, admitted in 2006 to 2011, and a Late group admitted after the protocol was modified, in 2012 to 2016.The researchers saw a significant increase in utilized care between the Early and Late groups, with more mechanical ventilation, surgical wound care, and tracheostomies used in the Late group. Despite this increase in care, there was no significant change to overall mortality or 7-day mortality between the pre-protocol and post-protocol groups or Early and Late groups, with mortality rates ranging from 40.3% to 60.7% in all groups. There was, however, a decrease in deaths related to airway compromise and increase in deaths due to sepsis in the post-protocol groups.“Implementation of protocolized care in resource-limited settings is highly complex and requires in-depth monitoring and assessment of patients, staff, and procedures,” the researchers say. “We strongly call from an increase in vaccination coverage for at-risk men in sub-Saharan Africa… with the aim of eliminating this preventable, lethal disease,” they add. “This micrograph depicts a group of Clostridium tetani bacteria, responsible for causing tetanus in humans. Tetanus is an acute, often fatal, disease caused by an exotoxin produced by C. tetani. It is characterized by generalized rigidity and convulsive spasms of skeletal muscles, usually involving the jaw (lockjaw) and neck, then becoming generalized.” Credit: CDC Public Health Image Library (Public Domain, 1994)center_img Source:https://www.plos.orglast_img read more

Homebased video game exercises can reduce chronic low back pain in older

first_img Source:https://sydney.edu.au/ Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Sep 19 2018New research from University of Sydney has found home-based video-game exercises can reduce chronic low back pain in older people by 27 percent, which is comparable to benefits gained under programs supervised by a physiotherapist.Published today in Physical Therapy journal, this first-of-its-kind study investigated the effectiveness of self-managed home-based video game exercises in people over 55 years using a Nintendo Wii-Fit-U.Low back pain (LBP) is the most disabling and costly musculoskeletal condition worldwide with most of this burden among older people who develop chronic symptoms. Chronic LBP becomes more severe and disabling with age, and can have a significant impact on physical functioning such as balance, strength and walking speed.”Our study found that home-based video game exercises are a valuable treatment option for older people suffering from chronic low back pain as participants experienced a 27 percent reduction in pain and a 23 percent increase in function from the exercises,” said Dr Joshua Zadro, a physiotherapist and postdoctoral research fellow from the University of Sydney School of Public Health.”Participants practiced flexibility, strengthening and aerobic exercises for 60 minutes, three times per week at home without therapist supervision, and the effect of the 8-week video-game program was comparable to exercise programs completed under the supervision of a physiotherapist.”Structured exercise programs are recommended for the management of chronic LBP, but there is poor compliance to unsupervised home-exercises. Our study however had high compliance to video-game exercises, with participants completing on average 85 per cent of recommended sessions.”Video-game exercises are interactive, have video and audio instructions, provide feedback on a patient’s technique and scores them on the basis of their performance. These features are extremely motivating and likely explain why compliance to this program was much higher than other trials that have instructed patients to exercise without supervision.”These exercise programs could be a unique solution to increase older people’s motivation to self-manage their chronic LBP through home-exercise and improve their ability to continue with their daily activities despite having pain.Related StoriesHow a simple MRI scan can help patients with anginaOpioid overdose deaths on the decline says CDC but the real picture may still be grimCreating a physical and genetic map of Cannabis sativa”This home-based program has great potential as supervised physiotherapy visits can be costly and people who live in remote or rural areas can face barriers accessing these services.”Older people with poor physical functioning also prefer home-based exercises as travelling to treatment facilities can be difficult.”Senior author Associate Professor Paulo Ferreira, from the University’s Faculty of Health Sciences said the recent Lancet series on low back pain highlighted the need for low cost and accessible treatments for low back pain.”Given the enormous global cost of chronic low back pain, increasing an individual’s capacity to self-manage their pain, while reducing the need for therapist supervision, should be a priority,” he said.”Home-based video-game exercises could be a solution to this problem as they reduce reliance on a healthcare system with scare resources. Units are low cost at around $200 and patients wouldn’t need to travel to treatment clinics.”These programs could be implemented under the current Medical Benefit Scheme (MBS) chronic pain care pathway in Australia, with only one session needed to set up the program and teach patients how to use it. Traditional exercise programs require many more sessions than are funded by MBS.”This study highlights the potential cost-effectiveness of this new approach to the management of low back pain, particularly since it can be implemented on a large-scale and to people in remote communities with limited access to treatment providers.”Dr Zadro added: “This study shows a promising new direction in the treatment of older people suffering from low back pain, which is particularly important given the majority of treatment options for low back pain have not been tested in older people.”The global population of people over 60 years old is expected to triple by 2050, so more research on this population is extremely important.”Study details: The study was a randomised control trial of 60 participants aged 55 year and over, with the average age being 67 years. The trial received no funding from Nintendo Wii and no conflict of interest was declared.last_img read more

Top stories A new human species a potential treatment for MS and

first_imgNew human species discoveredScientists have identified a strange new kind of hominin named Homo naledi. Although the new fossils are still undated, making it hard to know where they fit into human evolution, they already reveal a very different way to be part of the human family tree.Unusual ‘relic language’ comes from small group of farmers isolated for thousands of years Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Emailcenter_img Scientists may have identified the origins of Basque, a mysterious and musical language that has no known relationship to any other tongue. A new study suggests that the Basques come from a group of early farmers that kept to itself as waves of migration swept through Europe thousands of years ago.Is the Alzheimer’s protein contagious?Could Alzheimer’s be contagious? Controversial new research suggests that it may be possible to spread the Alzheimer’s protein through surgery or other procedures. But don’t panic yet—scientists say more research is needed before they can offer up any definitive conclusions.Polio resurfaces in Mali and UkrainePolio is so contagious that a single case is considered an outbreak. Now, polio outbreaks have been confirmed in Mali and Ukraine, with emergency campaigns scheduled to start as soon as possible.Melatonin could help treat multiple sclerosisA new study finds that melatonin, the “sleep hormone,” could potentially help give relief to patients with multiple sclerosis. Preliminary results are promising, but scientists warn that they’re still filling in the gaps on important details. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwelast_img read more

Podcast Scientists on the night shift sucking up greenhouse gases with cement

first_imgThis week, we chat about cement’s shrinking carbon footprint, commuting hazards for ancient Egyptian artisans, and a new bipartisan group opposed to government-funded animal research in the United States with Online News Editor David Grimm. Plus, Science’s Alexa Billow talks to news writer Sam Kean about the kinds of data that can only be gathered at night as part of the special issue on circadian biology.  Listen to previous podcasts.  [Image: roomauction/iStockphoto; Music: Jeffrey Cook]last_img

Facing doomsday scenario scientists consider fleeing Brazil

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Two years ago, Fernanda De Felice was at the top of her game. The biochemist at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, was developing a nonhuman primate model for Alzheimer’s disease and publishing in top journals. But since then, a state budget crisis has cut off all public funding for her work. In March, De Felice will decamp to Canada for a 2-year stint at Queen’s University in Kingston, leaving her husband and main collaborator, UFRJ professor Sergio Ferreira, to shuttle between Rio and Kingston. “It’s not what I wanted, but it’s what I had to do,” De Felice says. “Staying in Brazil would mean the end of my career.”Thousands of other scientists in the state of Rio de Janeiro, which includes Rio, Brazil’s second biggest city, and many key research institutions, face a similar struggle. Declining federal support for science in cash-strapped Brazil had sapped funds for scholarships and lab infrastructure. Now, Rio de Janeiro’s funding agency, FAPERJ, is bankrupt. It has fallen $150 million behind on grant payments—and over 2 years has cut off funds to 3670 research projects. Last year, it devoted most of its spending—$30 million—to graduate scholarships. Science funding faces similar threats in other Brazilian states.A massive brain drain is a real risk, scientists warn. “I know a lot of people who want to leave,” says Stevens Rehen, a stem cell researcher at UFRJ and the D’Or Institute for Research and Education. Compounding the poverty, he says, is a despair that permeates the scientific community. “This is affecting an entire generation of scientists.” Rehen has kept his lab running on cash accumulated before 2015, and his team has published several papers in recent months. However, he says, “We’ve burned all the fat that we had left.” FAPERJ owes him more than $475,000, and last year he lost three postdocs: one to Poland, one to the United States, and another to the private sector. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Emailcenter_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe The federal government still pays salaries at UFRJ, but at state universities, employees—including some 3000 researchers–just received their November 2016 salaries. Professor resignations are on the rise at Rio de Janeiro State University in Rio, which FAPERJ owes $20 million in research funds, says Vice Chancellor Egberto Moura. “We never thought it would go this far,” adds Carlos Rezende, a senior environmental scientist at the State University of Northern Rio de Janeiro in Campos dos Goytacazes. Phone services were disconnected on campus most of last year, he says, because of unpaid bills. “I have invitations to move to other institutions. If this situation persists, I might not have another choice,” Rezende says. “I am 56 years old. I can’t live with this level of uncertainty anymore.”There is little FAPERJ can do but watch the trainwreck unfold. The agency by law had been entitled to 2% of state tax revenues until last month, when Rio de Janeiro Governor Luiz Fernando de Souza signed a decree slashing FAPERJ’s revenue allotment by 30%, to 1.36% of projected revenues. But over the past couple years, the government has awarded the agency far less—about 40% of the planned budget in 2015 and 2016. The agency continued to issue calls for proposals and award grants that it now can’t fund. “We hope this will be a temporary situation,” explains FAPERJ Scientific Director Jerson Silva in Rio.Red flags are also up in neighboring São Paulo state, where the legislature last month for the first time signaled it won’t fulfill the lawful budget allotment of its state science agency, FAPESP. Entitled to 1% of state tax revenues, FAPESP will get 0.89% of projected revenues in 2017—a reduction of $35 million. FAPESP is attempting to negotiate a reprieve.The plight of Brazilian scientists “is exactly as bad as it sounds,” says Suzana Herculano-Houzel, a neuroscientist who left UFRJ for Vanderbilt University in Nashville last May, and urged others to follow. Some colleagues, she says, resented her doomsday attitude and labeled her a deserter. But she stands by her exhortation: “We have to be honest, and tell people they should leave if they can.”last_img read more

Boston University fires geologist found to have harassed women in Antarctica

first_imgAfter a lengthy process, Boston University fired geologist David Marchant in the wake of a prominent sexual harassment case. Henry Zbyszynski/Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe “I often say no one ‘wins’ a sexual harassment case, but I’m wrong: Science, academia, and BU are better today because of this announcement,” says Jane Willenbring, the associate professor at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, part of the University of California, San Diego, whose 2016 complaint to BU’s Title IX office about Marchant’s behavior toward her in Antarctica at the turn of the century launched the investigation of Marchant. She added: “I’m grateful to the many women and men who told the truth about his behavior.” Boston University fires geologist found to have harassed women in Antarctica Email Related content Disturbing allegations of sexual harassment in Antarctica leveled at noted scientist Boston University (BU) today fired David Marchant, the geologist whose alleged harassment of women at remote Antarctic field camps Science first described 18 months ago.A faculty hearing committee that handled Marchant’s appeal of BU’s November 2017 decision to terminate him had instead recommended that he be suspended for 3 years without pay and prohibited from leading university Antarctic expeditions, according to a letter sent today by BU Provost Jean Morrison to faculty in the Department of Earth & Environment. (Marchant had chaired that department.) However, BU’s president, Robert Brown, overruled the Hearing Committee, deciding that termination was appropriate. In a final, required step under the university’s faculty handbook procedures, BU’s Board of Trustees today accepted Brown’s recommendation. “The decision of the Board of Trustees is final,” Morrison wrote. Marchant, in a statement issued through his lawyer, Jeffrey Sankey of Braintree, Massachusetts, vowed to fight his termination in court. In the statement, Marchant maintains that he has “never” engaged in any form of sexual harassment, “not in 1998 or 1999 in Antarctica or at any time since.”He calls the investigation conducted by BU’s Title IX office “a travesty, operated by an administration who has capitulated at every turn to the fear of adverse publicity at the expense of providing due process to an esteemed professor who has worked for nearly 20 years since these false allegations supposedly occurred without a single complaint.”Sean Mackay, a visiting researcher at BU, completed his Ph.D. and did postdoctoral work with Marchant. He says the accusations “are inconsistent with” the actions of a man he has known and worked with for 11 years. And he says Brown’s “unilateral” decision to override the faculty hearing committee showed “a lack of respect for the committee’s hard work, courage, and due process in making a decision that was based on the facts presented, rather than the pressure of public opinion.”But others welcomed the move. It “sends a clear message that harassment of any kind will not be tolerated. It also affirms the experiences of survivors,” says Erika Marin-Spiotta, a biogeochemist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison who is lead principal investigator of ADVANCEGeo, a National Science Foundation (NSF)–funded project to improve workplace climate in the geosciences. “Tenure should protect intellectual freedom but not abusers and harassers.”Hillary Tulley, a Skokie, Illinois, high school tutor who reported that Marchant taunted her and made degrading, profane comments about her body when she was at a field site in Antarctica with him in the late 1990s, began to cry when told the news. “It’s just an overwhelming sense of relief,” she said. “Boston University delivered justice today.”The Marchant case focused national attention on sexual harassment in the sciences, especially during fieldwork, even landing on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee. It sparked an investigation by the U.S. House of Representatives, prompted the renaming of a glacier once named after Marchant, and helped drive new reporting requirements recently imposed by NSF, which had supported Marchant’s expeditions.*Update, 12 April, 6:15 p.m.: This story has been updated to include comments from Erika Marin-Spiotta and Hilary Tulley.*Update, 12 April, 8:50 p.m.: This story has been updated to include comments from Sean Mackay. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) By Meredith WadmanApr. 12, 2019 , 4:55 PMlast_img read more

Holbrook Council discusses the proposed reintroduction of jail tax

first_img By Linda Kor       During the Jan. 22 Holbrook City Council meeting, the council approved a letter of support from the city to the Navajo County Board of Supervisors in support of holding a specialSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Ad Holbrook Council discusses the proposed re-introduction of jail tax February 1, 2019last_img

Afghan official Suicide bombing kills 6 near Kabul academy

first_img Despite Afghan-Taliban peace talks, war on civilians continue Related News Advertising Post Comment(s) By AP |Kabul | Published: May 30, 2019 3:38:35 pm kabul attack, attack in kabul, kabul terrorist attack, afghan attack, afghan capital, mashal fahim academy attack, kabul bombing, kabul suicide bombing, world news An Afghan security forces member stands guard at the site of a blast in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Source: REUTERS)Afghan authorities say a suicide bomber targeting a military academy in the capital of Kabul has killed at least six people. The Interior Ministry says six others were wounded in the bombing on Thursday. A ministry statement says a soldier noticed a suspicious person and approached him, causing the attacker to detonate his explosives near the Mashal Fahim academy.Ferdus Faramarz, the spokesman for the Kabul police chief, says police are trying to get more details about the bombing in western Kabul.No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but insurgents have targeted this academy in the past. Both the Taliban and the Islamic State group are active in Kabul and have staged large-scale attacks in the Afghan capital. Child suicide bomber kills five at wedding in Afghanistan Afghan radio station closes down following Taliban threats last_img read more

A rape case and a wedding strain ties between Arab and Jewish

first_imgBy New York Times | Updated: June 26, 2019 7:54:42 am Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach “I didn’t do anything to the girl,” he told reporters, adding: “Someone who would do such a thing should not be put in prison — he should be killed.” A gift for Mahmoud Qattousa, a suspect in a rape case, prepared by his youngest daughter Rafif while she waited for his release, in Deir Qaddis, West Bank (Samar Hazboun/The New York Times)The back-to-back furors in Deir Qaddis and Modiin Illit made for a roller coaster of suspicion and shame that have left people in both communities reeling.These towns, joined at the economic hip but separated only by a checkpoint and a steel fence, have coexisted, mostly peacefully, for nearly a quarter-century, since Modiin Illit was carved out of land confiscated from Deir Qaddis and four other Palestinian villages.The SuspectAfter 11 years as a schoolteacher, supporting his wife and four children in a two-room apartment on $1,100 a month, Mahmoud Qattousa nearly quadrupled his salary, his relatives said, by going to work for an Israeli man who ran a building-maintenance company in Modiin Illit. Qattousa oversaw about 80 Palestinian workers.He did not just supervise. He also cleaned one school himself every morning, “both to earn more and to set an example,” said his brother Abed, 51.At work by 8, home by 7, he spent hours each night assigning jobs for the next day.On May 1, the police showed up at the school where Mahmoud Qattousa was working and arrested him.Qattousa has three daughters. The youngest, Rafif, is 7. Her father was allowed to call home to speak to her from jail.“She couldn’t handle it,” her mother said. “She just said, ‘Yes, yes, yes,’ then threw the phone down and ran to her bed and cried.”But the allegations made no sense, his family said. The day the rape was said to have occurred, in April, Qattousa was working a side job renovating a schoolteacher’s home, and she corroborated this. So police revised the charges to reflect an uncertain date.Then there was the matter of the march down the street in broad daylight.Palestinian workers are not allowed to roam freely in Jewish settlements. They are shuttled to their workplaces in the morning and back to the gates in the evening. Any unescorted worker can have his work permit torn up on the spot.“If they see you on the street, they’ll call the police,” said Abed Qattousa. An Israeli man parks his car outside a garage in Deir Qaddis, where Jewish settlers regularly bring cars for service, in West Bank (Samar Hazboun/The New York Times)The WeddingAt Asaad Nasser’s wedding the night of June 12, hundreds of Deir Qaddis residents crowded a plaza near the summit of the village’s main hill. The party began at 8 p.m. and was going strong past midnight.Nasser, 25, fixes engines, and most of his customers are Jews from Modiin Illit.His father, Radi Nasser, the village council leader and an activist in Fatah, the Palestinian faction that controls the West Bank, had warned Asaad that his settler friends could get them into trouble if they attended, said Asaad’s brother Issa, 32.But around 12:30 a.m., as hummus and pita were being served to the die-hard celebrants before sending them on their way, four settlers arrived at the party.As a traditional goodbye song blared over loudspeakers, the Jews and Palestinians danced, some Arabs lifted the groom on their shoulders, and others carried the ultra-Orthodox men. A string of Palestinian-flag pennants fluttered overhead.In a brief interview by phone during his honeymoon, Asaad Nasser said he had posted the date and place of his wedding on Facebook but had invited no one from Modiin Illit. “Those four who showed up, I do not know them at all,” he said.His brother Issa said he suspects the settlers were part of a setup by political rivals who hoped to embarrass the groom’s father. Or perhaps it was just an instance of intimidation.“Settlers know Arab culture,” he said. “They can defame someone just by coming.”The GuestsNachshon Schutz begs to differ.He was one of the four ultra-Orthodox Jews, or Haredim, at the wedding. Asaad Nasser personally invited him, he said. And the video gives every indication that the men were friends. One of the Jews can be seen planting a kiss on the groom’s cheek.“I’ve known him for six years,” Schutz said in an interview. “He fixes cars. I take cars there to be fixed.”The Haredim of Modiin Illit are not ideological settlers like the religious Zionists living deeper in the West Bank, who want to annex all of what they call “greater Israel.” Modiin Illit’s first residents, who now number more than 70,000, moved there seeking a better life after their old neighborhoods in Jerusalem and Bnei Brak became overcrowded. Relying on welfare to support their large families, they are among the poorest Jews in Israel.“I feel bad that they’re trying to make trouble from good stuff,” Schutz said. “The top people over there are causing all the problems. Because the people that want to live together are fine.” From left, Mahmoud Qattousa’s son, Qusai Qattousa, and his brothers, Abed and Anwar, at the family’s small grocery store, in the town of Deir Qaddis, in West Bank (Samar Hazboun/The New York Times)AftermathThe two episodes seem to have stopped the two towns in their tracks.In Modiin Illit, Haredi parents now warn their children of the dangers of sexual predators. “God should safeguard us,” said Yisrael Goldberg, “but I think most parents are going to be more careful now.”Others worry that the allegation against Qattousa may have been a deliberate misdirection and that the real culprit may be one of their own.“The Arab workers come here to work,” said Miriam, a Polish-born Haredi woman who did not give her surname. “They have to. Why would they take such a risk?”In Deir Qaddis, Shahar Teram, a Haredi man, was doing business as usual with Hamouda Ayash, a garage owner, as he had for years.Ayash was talking about Qattousa. “Ninety-nine percent, we believe he’s innocent,” he said. “But if he’s guilty, let him be punished, because we reject this behavior.”Teram was pondering the fallout from the Nasser wedding.“This will distance the relationship between the towns,” he said. “Now, if someone invites me for a wedding, I won’t go. After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Best Of Express Advertising In short order, the groom’s father was asked to resign as village council leader, threatened with dismissal from his job in the education ministry and placed under investigation. Fearing for his life, he has gone into hiding, one of his sons said.Four days later, an even more shocking incident drove another wedge between the two villages.Israeli police announced June 16 that a Palestinian man had been charged with raping a 7-year-old ultra-Orthodox girl, a student at the religious elementary school in Modiin Illit where he worked as a janitor.The case drew national attention, and this time it was the Jews who jumped to conclusions. Right-wing politicians denounced the attack as anti-Israel. “This isn’t pedophilia but pure terrorism,” said Avigdor Lieberman, who demanded the death penalty. Advertising Post Comment(s) More Explained Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach Top News As a young Palestinian couple’s wedding wound down in a hilly West Bank village two weeks ago, Arab men danced with ultra-Orthodox Jews from the sprawling Israeli settlement next door. Some even hoisted the skullcap- and sidecurl-wearing settlers on their shoulders.Had their taboo-breaking bonhomie not been recorded, had the video not been posted online, it might well have receded into local memory as merely another of the countless friendly intimacies quietly shared by the Arabs of Deir Qaddis and the Jews of Modiin Illit.But publicity took care of that.Other Palestinians pounced on social media: How dare you celebrate with settlers, the Jews who are illegally occupying our land. Taking stock of monsoon rain A rape case and a wedding strain ties between Arab and Jewish villages The family of Mahmoud Qattousa, who was accused of rape, at their home in Deir Qaddis, in West Bank (Samar Hazboun/The New York Times)Written by David M. HalbfingerThe video was striking. After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Advertising “The courts must apply the full force of the law to everyone responsible for this terrible deed,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted.The girl was said to have been dragged half a mile from her school, in broad daylight, kicking and screaming, to an unfinished apartment building half a mile away, where two confederates held her down and laughed as the man assaulted her.But doubts quickly arose about the case against the suspect, Mahmoud Qattousa, 46, a janitorial services manager. The rape was said to have happened several months ago but was not reported immediately, and no forensics tests were done. And there were no previous reports of the girl having been missing from school.Within days, police were disavowing their own investigation and saying they needed to pursue other leads. On Tuesday, Qattousa was released, though he remained a suspect. “If we could put the politics aside,” he added, “we’d live in paradise.” Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield last_img read more

Rajasthan constable beaten to death CM Ashok Gehlot orders probe

first_imgWritten by Hamza Khan | Jaipur | Published: July 15, 2019 1:44:52 am Gehlot: Will bring law against mob lynching, honour killing Related News Rajasthan police constable attacked, police head constable beaten to death, Rajasthan cop attack, Rajasthan cop beaten to death, Rajasthan police constable dead, Ashokm gehlot, India news, Indian express The head constable who was identified as Abdul Gani, was posted at Bhim Police station. (Source: ANI/Twitter)The Rajasthan police on Sunday arrested four people for fatally assaulting a police head constable in Rajsamand district on Saturday evening. Ram said a passer-by spotted Gani and informed them. “He was attacked by an iron pipe,” said the SHO, adding Gani soon succumbed. On Sunday, a Medical Board conducted a post mortem and handed over his body to his family.Police have since arrested Naina Devi, Nageshwar, Laxman and Mukesh, while the other two are absconding. As per the SP, the FIR for Gani’s death has been filed under IPC sections 302 (murder), 395 (dacoity), 396 (dacoity with murder), 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly), 333 (voluntarily causes grievous hurt to a public servant in the discharge of his duty) and 352 (punishment for assault or criminal force otherwise than on grave provocation).Tweeting on the incident, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said, “It is very sad to learn of death of Head Constable, Abdul Ghani. My heart goes out to his family members and I want to assure them that justice will be done. Have given directions to the officials for thorough and impartial inquiry.”Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot too expressed grief and condemned the incident. —(With PTI inputs) According to Rajsamand Superintendent of Police Bhuvan Bhushan, Head Constable Abdul Gani, in his early 40s, was attacked by one the two groups he was investigating with regard to a fight between two women. Following a dispute with her neighbour Naina Devi, one Kamla Devi had filed a police complaint at the Bhim Police station, which falls under the district’s Bhim block.The police was also quoted by PTI saying the incident was not a lynching and that the killing was a conspiracy.“It was a very simple case where two neighbouring women in Padmela village had indulged in a verbal spat. There was no assault and no one was injured…” said Bhim SHO Labhu Ram. Gani reached the village on Saturday afternoon. “Around 5:30 pm, Gani was returning on his motorcycle after speaking to Kamla Devi, However, Naina Devi, her son Nageshwar Singh, and friends Laxman Singh, Mukesh Singh, Mithu Singh and Raju waylaid his motorcycle, about a kilometre and half from the highway. The confrontation soon escalated and Ghani was assaulted by the six,” the SP said. Explained: What is Rajasthan’s free medicine scheme Advertising Rajasthan: Congress MLA says rape case on cops ‘false’, BJP corners Ashok Gehlot govt Post Comment(s) Advertisinglast_img read more

Researchers may have an antidote for the deadliest jellyfish sting on Earth

first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Chironex fleckeri is one of 51 known species of box jellyfish, whose venom is among the world’s deadliest. By Bethany AugliereApr. 30, 2019 , 11:00 AM Email The sting of a box jellyfish can kill a person in minutes. But scientists have long been at pains to figure out the secret of its fast-acting venom, which can also cause severe agony, inflammation, and heart attacks. A new study may have the answer—and a potential antidote.The finding is “tour de force,” says Angel Yanagihara, a biochemist who studies jellyfish venom at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu, but who wasn’t involved with the work.Up to 40 people die each year from box jellies, according to available figures. But that number is vastly underreported, Yanagihara says. “People die and there is no trace in the public records.” In the Philippines alone, she estimates some 500 people die from box jelly stings each year. And as the ocean warms—and as the range and number of box jellyfish rises—problematic encounters will likely increase. Kelvin Aitken/VWPics via AP Images center_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country But to date, no one knows how the box jelly’s venom targets and enters human cells. Previous work on their venom has shown that pore-forming proteins, called porins, destroy red blood cells and damage cell membranes, potentially resulting in pain and death. Yet, more components could be responsible.In the new study, geneticist Greg Neely of the University of Sydney in Australia and colleagues collected live Chironex fleckeri, the species of box jellyfish responsible for most human deaths, from coastal waters off of the Northern Territory of Australia. They soaked the tentacles in seawater, recovered the capsules that contain the stinging cells, and then broke them with tiny glass beads to release the venom, which they freeze-dried.Next, the scientists generated a pool of millions of myeloid cells, each of which was missing one of 19,050 genes. (Because the cells, derived from a leukemia patient, have just one set of chromosomes, they are often used for genetic screening tests.) Then, the scientists added the freeze-dried venom and looked for cells that didn’t die. If a cell survived, they sequenced its DNA to identify which gene was missing—and thus, which made proteins that were likely targeted by the venom.The screen suggested four genes involved in cholesterol production were the venom’s targets, they report today in Nature Communications. So, Neely’s team tested the ability of existing cholesterol-targeting drugs to see whether they could also block the venom. Two drugs, MbCD and HPbCD, prevented the venom from killing the human myeloid cells and rupturing mouse red blood cells in a well-plate for up to 15 minutes after exposure, Neely says. The team then gave HPbCD, considered safe for humans, to mice that had been injected with C. fleckeri venom. For 15 minutes, the drug blocked pain, tissue death, and scarring.Neely says he was surprised that he and his colleagues could block the venom’s action with a single drug, given that the venom itself is composed of more than 250 proteins. “It’s kind of lucky that it worked out.” The researchers hypothesize that because HPbCD works by pulling cholesterol out of the cell membrane, jellyfish venom may rely on cholesterol to gain an entryway into the cell. However, Neely says, MbCD may also act directly on the venom to neutralize it.Yanagihara, who has developed a topical cream to help treat box jellyfish stings, says she’s skeptical that the cholesterol drug treatment will be sufficient by itself, because it has so far only been used against processed venom—not stings from live animals, thought to be more potent. “The next step would be to ground truth these findings by live tentacle sting tests on live animals.”Neely says that because their venom caused all the symptoms of a typical sting in the mice, he believes the results will translate to the real world. And he’s already looking forward to the next step: testing whether the cholesterol drugs protect the heart in live animals. Eventually, he hopes to bring the potential antidote to human clinical trials.If those should work, the antidote has much promise, says Cheryl Ames, a marine biologist from the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., who was not involved in the study. “It’s very cool stuff, [and] I’m pumped.” Researchers may have an antidote for the deadliest jellyfish sting on Earthlast_img read more

Anticipating the Smart World of 2027 A Billion Cameras and AI Oh

first_imgNvidia went to China last week and made a series of interesting announcements having to do with smart cities and autonomous cars. (The video is worth watching.)IBM made an announcement on advancements in tying the Weather Channel to its Watson artificial intelligence engine and targeted marketing.We also found out about Oculus’ Fall in Love VR project which is kind of like The Bachelor or The Bachelorette, but the significant other is a hot computerized avatar.Intel announced Loihi, a new AI processor that emulates the human brain.All of these things have broad implications for how we will perceive the world in a decade — and strangely enough, for how the world will perceive us. Our reality, or at least our perception of it, will be massively changed.I’ll offer some predictions about the world we can expect in 2027 and close with my product of the week: an amazing new cellphone-sized camera that can outperform DLSRs.last_img read more

New Kindle Oasis EReader Can Take a Dunking

first_imgThe addition of more ways to customize Oasis may help address a nagging problem with e-books.”Every book looks like every other book on a Kindle,” said USC’s Kuhn.”Part of why you remember the things you read is they’re designed in a certain way. The form helps you remember the content,” she told TechNewsWorld.”When you strip all that away in this e-reader environment, you’re taking the uniqueness of the book away from it. As a result, I have a difficult time with recall with books I read on Kindle.”The blandness of e-books could be a factor contributing to e-book sales declines and a revival of interest in print books. In the United Kingdom, for instance, sales of consumer e-books dropped 17 percent in 2016, while sales of print books and journals rose 7 percent, according to the Publishers Association.Meanwhile, in the United States, there was an 18.7 percent decline in e-book sales during the fist nine months of 2016, while paperback sales rose 7.5 percent and hardcover sales increased 4.1 percent, according to the Association of American Publishers.E-reader ownership and sales have been in decline for a while.E-reader ownership by U.S. adults plummeted from 32 percent to 19 percent, according to the Pew Research Center; Euromonitor International found that sales of the devices fell by 40 percent between 2011 and 2016. Better Build The larger screen accommodates 30 percent more text than previous Paperwhite readers. That means fewer presses of the unit’s page turn button. When you do press that button, you’ll find the pages turning faster — the fastest of any Kindle reader, according to Amazon — and automatically aligning themselves when you change the reader’s orientation.The improved resolution — aided by uniform display lighting and a glare-free screen, even in bright sunlight — makes reading text on the screen more like reading paper, Amazon said.Amazon has introduced some design changes with Oasis. It has changed the reader’s center of gravity, so that the Oasis rests in a reader’s hand like the spine of a book.Its thin profile — it tapers to just 3.4mm — allowed Amazon to use more durable materials, including aluminum on the back and stronger glass on the front, without adding weight to the reader. It weighs 10 grams less than the 6-inch Paperwhite.”One of the things that’s always plagued the Kindle e-reader devices has been the plastic nature of them,” said Jeff Orr, a senior practice director at ABI Research.”If you dropped one, or if it got smashed in a bag during transit, a corner of the bezel would get cracks,” he told TechNewsWorld. “It might not require replacement, but it left a user with the impression that these things weren’t that durable.” Declining E-Reader Sales Amazon on Wednesday pulled the wraps off a new premium e-reader that’s waterproof and has a sharp 300 pixels-per-inch display.The Kindle Oasis has a 7-inch Paperwhite display and sports an aluminum back and ergonomic shape that makes it easier to read for prolonged periods. It has a battery life measured in weeks, and it can charge from zero to full power in two hours.Audible, Amazon’s audiobooks service, is built into Oasis.Its base price is US$250, and it will begin shipping on Oct. 31.”Ten years ago, we introduced our first Kindle with the mission of delivering any book ever written in 60 seconds or less,” said Dave Limp, senior vice president for Amazon devices and services.”With a larger 7-inch, 300 ppi display, waterproof design and Audible built right in, the all-new Kindle Oasis is our most advanced Kindle ever,” he added.center_img Waterproofing also adds to the Oasis’s durability. It can be submerged in two meters of fresh water for up to 60 minutes, according to Amazon.”This is the first Kindle to pass the litmus test of ‘can I read my e-book in the bath tub?'” said Virginia Kuhn, an associate professor at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts.The Oasis can be customized in a number of ways. There are more font sizes and bold settings. There’s an OpenDyslexic font, and objects on the screen can be enlarged, too — like text on the home screen and library. In addition, text can be displayed with only the left margin justified.The e-reader has built-in ambient light sensors that automatically adjust the display to surrounding light conditions. Ambient light settings can be customized to suit a user’s taste. What’s more, there’s an invert black and white feature for people with light-sensitive eyes.Book listeners will like the addition of Audible. Users can switch between print and voice, and it supports Bluetooth technology.Oasis comes in two configurations: The 8-GB model is priced at $249.99, and the 32-GB version sells for $279.99. Take It to the Tub John P. Mello Jr. has been an ECT News Network reportersince 2003. His areas of focus include cybersecurity, IT issues, privacy, e-commerce, social media, artificial intelligence, big data and consumer electronics. He has written and edited for numerous publications, including the Boston Business Journal, theBoston Phoenix, Megapixel.Net and GovernmentSecurity News. Email John.last_img read more

AI Meets VR in New Nvidia Tech

first_imgCompetition for Hollywood The research currently is on display at the NeurIPS conference in Montreal, Canada, a show for artificial intelligence researchers.Nvidia’s team created a simple driving game for the conference that allows attendees to interactively navigate an AI-generated environment. Rendering 3D graphics is a labor-intensive process right now. Nvidia’s technology could change that in the future.”This is cool because it’s using deep learning to cut down on what has traditionally been a very manual and resource-intensive activity,” said Tuong Nguyen, an analyst with Gartner, a research and advisory company based in Stamford, Connecticut.”This has applications wherever 3D graphics are used — video games, augmented reality, virtual reality, TV and movies,” he told TechNewsWorld.”It frees up the graphic professionals’ time so they can do other things, such as improve on a scene’s quality with additional details,” Nguyen added. “The idea is to lay the foundation, or at least do a lot of the heavy lifting, so you can spend more time and energy on making a project stand out in many other different ways.””Developers and users of virtual environments will especially benefit from the new technology,” noted Tamar Shinar, an assistant professor in the department of computer science and engineering at the University of California, Riverside.”It potentially replaces the laborious process of designing the appearance of a virtual world, and expensive methods to render it photorealistically, with a process based on video input and computation at interactive rates,” she told TechNewsWorld.”It enables the rendering of virtual environments from video data,” Shinar continued. “This novel approach to interactive rendering of virtual environments opens many possibilities for interactive applications such as games, telecommunication and training simulators.” The virtual urban environment rendered by a neural network was trained on videos of real-life urban environments. The network learned to model the appearance of the world, including lighting, materials and their dynamics.Since the output is synthetically generated, a scene easily can be edited to remove, modify or add objects. The Nvidia technology also may find a home in the automotive industry.”A computer’s ability to quickly read and understand real-life environments is a critical piece of the self-driving future,” said Eric Yaverbaum, CEO of Ericho Communications, a public relations firm in New York City.”These deep-learning tools could make it easier for cars to make sense of the world around them and navigate their surroundings with less chance for error,” he told TechNewsWorld.”As much as this technology can be used to create rich 3D worlds for gaming technologies,” he added, “its application in automobiles seems more profound. It could give AI-driven cars a more accurate computer model that would dramatically improve passenger safety.”A problem currently faced by self-driving car developers is simulating real-life driving environments.”Traffic models now are too simplistic,” said Richard Wallace, transportation systems analysis director for the Center for Automotive Research, a nonprofit automotive research organization in Ann Arbor, Michigan.”Simulation drivers are too well-behaved. We need more realism,” he told TechNewsWorld.”The industry is beginning to realize that these AI systems can never drive enough real-world miles to get all the learning they need to drive a vehicle, so simulation is starting to become prevalent everywhere,” Wallace added. “Nvidia’s technology could be very useful for that.” Simulating Bad Behavior Reducing Labor Overhead Nvidia on Monday announced a breakthrough in 3D rendering research that may have far-reaching ramifications for future virtual worlds.A team led by Nvidia Vice President Bryan Catanzaro discovered a way to use a neural network to render synthetic 3D environments in real time, using a model trained on real-world videos.Now, each object in a virtual world has to be modeled individually. With Nvidia’s technology, worlds can be populated with objects “learned” from video input.Nvidia’s technology offers the potential to quickly create virtual worlds for gaming, automotive, architecture, robotics or virtual reality. The network can, for example, generate interactive scenes based on real-world locations or show consumers dancing like their favorite pop stars.”Nvidia has been inventing new ways to generate interactive graphics for 25 years, and this is the first time we can do so with a neural network,” Catanzaro said.”Neural networks — specifically generative models — will change how graphics are created,” he added. “This will enable developers to create new scenes at a fraction of the traditional cost.” By taking the drudgery out of 3D rendering, Nvidia’s technology also could bring into the market players that previously had been priced out of it.”Currently, the creation of 3D content and scenes has been very labor-intensive and limited to companies with big budgets — primarily games companies,” said Bill Orner, a senior member of IEEE, a technical professional organization with corporate headquarters in New York City.”This deep learning model will enable other industries that don’t have ‘Hollywood’ budgets to create 3D interactive tools,” he told TechNewsWorld.”One thing that artificial intelligence and machine learning does is take the human out of some of the process,” explained Michael Goodman, director for digital media in the Newton, Massachusetts, office of Strategy Analytics, a research, advisory and analytics firm.”That allows a lot of money to be saved,” he told TechNewsWorld.That could be good news for content producers for virtual reality headsets.”Currently, VR content creation is prohibitively costly, and it is difficult to create the kinds of experiences consumers are looking for,” explained Kristen Hanich, a research analyst with Dallas, Texas-based Parks Assocates, a market research and consulting company specializing in consumer technology products.”Lowering the barrier to entry should help with the VR industry’s content problem — there’s a lack of it,” she told TechNewsWorld.Nevertheless, Nvidia has some work to do before the promise of its deep learning technology can be fulfilled.”While interesting, the technology is in its early stages,” observed Parks Associates analyst Craig Leslie Sr.”The graphics aren’t photorealistic, showing the fuzziness encountered with many AI-generated images,” he told TechNewsWorld. “It will require significant improvement before it will be considered market ready.” Learning From Video John P. Mello Jr. has been an ECT News Network reportersince 2003. His areas of focus include cybersecurity, IT issues, privacy, e-commerce, social media, artificial intelligence, big data and consumer electronics. He has written and edited for numerous publications, including the Boston Business Journal, theBoston Phoenix, Megapixel.Net and GovernmentSecurity News. Email John.last_img read more