first_imgFarmers plant rice in a flooded field. ‘Slow-release’ fertilizer boosts crop yields, reduces environmental damage 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 For billions of people around the world, rice is a primary source of calories and protein. But growing the crop requires a lot of fertilizer, which can rapidly break down in the environment before plants are able to absorb the nutrients. Researchers have now developed a new time-released fertilizer that slowly discharges its cargo. When applied to rice fields in Sri Lanka, crop yields increased, even when only half the typical amount of nutrients was added.It’s a “true win-win,” says Randy Jackson, an ecologist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, who was not involved in the study.A popular fertilizer is urea, a nitrogen-rich organic compound found in human urine. Urea is water soluble and volatile, which means that irrigation or a rain squall often sweeps it away in surface run-off or it escapes as a gas before it can be absorbed by plants. “Up to 70% of urea is lost to the environment,” says Nilwala Kottegoda, a materials scientist at the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology in Homagama and lead author of the study. That’s bad news for farmers—whose budgets are already stretched thin—and the environment: Fertilizer run-off into rivers, lakes, and deltas is a primary cause of algal blooms that are toxic to aquatic life. Now, Kottegoda and her team have developed a new formulation of urea that works like a time-released drug capsule. The researchers attached urea molecules to hydroxyapatite—a constituent of human bones and teeth—in a six-to-one ratio by weight. The chemical bonds between the urea and hydroxyapatite molecules prevent the urea from decomposing too quickly. Yet, they do break down over time, which results in a controlled release of nitrogen at a rate that plants can absorb. Hydroxyapatite, which also slowly degrades, has the added benefit of being rich in phosphorus and calcium, elements that plants also need to thrive.The researchers created roughly 90 kilograms of the fertilizer, which they shaped into 1-millimeter pellets. In the laboratory, Kottegoda and her colleagues ran water over pure urea and the urea-hydroxyapatite hybrid and compared how quickly the samples released nitrogen. They found that pure urea expelled 99% of its nitrogen within 5 minutes, unlike the hybrid, which took nearly a week.The researchers then tested their fertilizer on a rice field in eastern Sri Lanka. They measured rice yields in three sections of a field: one that received no fertilizer, one fertilized with 100 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare of pure urea, and one fertilized with 50 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare from the urea-hydroxyapatite combo. The rows fertilized with the urea-hydroxyapatite duo yielded roughly 10% more rice than those fertilized with only pure urea, the team reports in ACS Nano.This new fertilizer is made in a one-step process with inexpensive chemicals, unlike other controlled-release fertilizers on the market, such as polymer-coated urea.  It’s approximately 20% more expensive than pure urea, the researchers estimate. But it still may wind up saving farmers money, the authors contend, because it also delivers phosphorus and calcium, nutrients that normally have to be delivered by yet another set of fertilizers. “We believe that this novel formulation will be economically viable,” Kottegoda says.Kottegoda and her colleagues are looking forward to testing their fertilizer on a perennial crop like tea. But no one yet knows how well the fertilizer works on other crops that aren’t constantly exposed to water. “The results might differ in wheat and maize,” Jackson cautions. Emailcenter_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) By Katherine KorneiFeb. 3, 2017 , 2:30 PM Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country MsLightBox/iStockphoto last_img read more

first_img The skull of one of the Tsavo man-eating lions Why did these lions eat 35 men? Bad teeth To find out, she and a colleague analyzed the lions’ jaws and teeth, as well as those of a third human eater from Zambia—all stored at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois. They used a technique that can determine whether an animal is eating mostly flesh, bones, or some combination of the two. They then compared the patterns on the human eaters’ teeth with those of 53 wild lion specimens from across Africa, two from India, and five captive lions. Next, the scientists examined the patterns on the teeth of cheetahs, which dine solely on flesh, and hyenas, which typically consume entire carcasses—including the bones. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) In 1898, two male African lions killed 35 people in the Tsavo region of Kenya. Their 9-month reign of terror ended when Colonel John Patterson of the British Army shot them dead. Scientists have long debated why the lions began eating people. Now, two researchers have a new answer: They blame tooth decay for the big cats’ taste for human flesh. The finding might also explain why other lions sometimes turn into human eaters.Lions normally consume a diverse variety of animals, including buffalo, wildebeest, giraffe, zebra, and antelope. Humans figure into their diets only rarely. In the 3 months before their deaths, however, the Tsavo human eaters got nearly 30% of their food from people, according to one recent study. Did the lions focus on humans because they were desperate? Many scientists think so. Apparently suffering from starvation—likely because drought or disease had ravaged their usual prey—they turned to another toothsome delicacy.But other researchers have turned up conflicting evidence. Larisa DeSantis, a paleontologist at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, wanted a look at the lion’s preserved teeth after reading a frightful passage from Patterson’s 1907 account, The Man-Eaters of Tsavo: “I have a very vivid recollection of one particular night when the brutes seized a man from the railway camp and brought him close to my camp to devour. I could plainly hear them crunching the bones, and the sound … rang in my ears for days afterwards.” If the lions were that hungry, DeSantis reasoned, they must have also scavenged carcasses, a process that involves heavy bone crunching and wears down the teeth in predictable patterns. Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Bruce Patterson and JP Brown © The Field Museum Tooth decay turned this lion in Kenya that Colonel John Patterson killed in 1898 into a man-eater. © The Field Museum 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 By Virginia MorellApr. 19, 2017 , 5:00 AM The Tsavo lions’ teeth did not look like those of hyenas, DeSantis says. Instead, the wear patterns were “strikingly similar” to those of the zoo lions, which eat soft foods such as beef and horsemeat. She thinks Patterson was actually hearing the sounds of hyenas that dreadful night.Other research points out why the lions’ dining preference shifted. One lion—the one that ate the most flesh—was known from a previous study to suffer from dental disease. A painful abscess at the root of one of his canines would have made normal hunting—grabbing and suffocating large prey—impossible, DeSantis says. His partner also had dental and jaw injuries, but these were less serious. The Zambian human eater, which did not consume bone, was also suffering from severe damage to its jaws. Together, this means that dental injuries and disease likely led these lions to softer foods, the researchers write today in Scientific Reports.“[This] provides first-hand information straight from the lions’ teeth that there is little evidence to support bone eating by the Tsavo lions,” says Jack Tseng, a vertebrate paleontologist at the State University of New York in Buffalo who was not involved in the study. “Any human bone consumption at the time was much more likely the work of the usual suspects—hyenas—than meat-specializing felines.”But the scientists emphasize that bad teeth alone do not make lions into human eaters. “[They] probably targeted humans because they were easy and had soft flesh,” says DeSantis, noting that the cats didn’t consume entire carcasses. They were also doing what lions do best: hunting opportunistically from a menu that has, since the emergence of early humans, occasionally included people.last_img read more

first_img By Dalmeet Singh ChawlaOct. 6, 2017 , 5:47 PM The underlying behavioral issue of ResearchGate is that it scrapes copyrighted material off the web, invites researchers to upload it to their portfolio, and modifies articles. “The underlying behavioral issue of ResearchGate is that it scrapes copyrighted material off the web, invites researchers to upload it to their portfolio, and modifies articles,” he says. Milne says the group believes publishers should receive monetary damages, but are not seeking a fixed amount from ResearchGate. (On 10 October, the coalition noted that ResearchGate had “removed from public view a significant number of copyrighted articles” but that “not all violations have been addressed.”)Jon Tennant, communications director of professional research network ScienceOpen (also an STM member) in Berlin, believes ResearchGate will lose the court battle. “The consequences of this could be variable, from losing some of its data corpus—the infringing articles—to being asked to pay for damages,” he says. Guido Westkamp, an intellectual property professor at Queen Mary University of London, agrees, but notes that “the effect of such decision would usually be limited to Germany and would not [be] enforceable in the U.S.”A ResearchGate spokesperson declined to comment but pointed to a statement the firm jointly released with the publisher Springer Nature, an STM member, on 9 October. It says both companies are “cautiously optimistic” that a solution can be found and “invite other publishers and societies to join the talks.”It’s not the first time publishers are issuing takedown notices for papers: In 2013, Elsevier sent Academia.edu—another academic social network platform—2800 notices, but did not take the site to court.Elsevier and ACS have also filed lawsuits against Sci-Hub, a pirate site illegally hosting millions of paywalled papers. In June, Elsevier was awarded $15 million in damages and ACS is seeking $4.8 million. *Update, 10 October, 12:45 p.m.: The revised story now includes a reaction from ResearchGate, an update by the publishing coalition, and a comment from a U.K. lawyer. Scholarly publishing giants Elsevier and the American Chemical Society (ACS) have filed a lawsuit in Germany against ResearchGate, a popular academic networking site, alleging copyright infringement on a mass scale. The move comes after a larger group of publishers became dissatisfied with ResearchGate’s response to a request to alter its article-sharing practices.ResearchGate, a for-profit firm based in Berlin that was founded in 2008, is one of the largest social networking sites aimed at the academic community. It claims more than 13 million users, who can use their personal pages to upload and share a wide range of material, including published papers, book chapters, and meeting presentations. Science funders and investors have put substantial funds into the firm; it has raised more than $87 million from the Wellcome Trust charity, Goldman Sachs, and Bill Gates personally.In recent years, journal publishers have become increasingly concerned about the millions of copyrighted papers—usually accessible only behind subscription paywalls—that are being shared by ResearchGate users. And on 15 September, the International Association of Scientific, Technical, and Medical Publishers wrote to ResearchGate on behalf of more than 140 publishers, expressing concerns about its article-sharing policies. Specifically, the organization proposed that ResearchGate implement a “seamless and easy” automated system that would help the site’s users determine whether an article was protected by copyright and could be legally shared publicly or privately. The association asked for a response by 22 September, noting that its members could follow-up individually or collectively if ResearchGate failed to agree to its proposal. (AAAS, which publishes ScienceInsider, is a member of the association.)  Joe Gratz/Flickr (CC0 1.0) Publishers take ResearchGate to court, alleging massive copyright infringement Emailcenter_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Yesterday, a group of five publishers—ACS, Elsevier, Brill, Wiley, and Wolters Kluwer—announced that ResearchGate had rejected the association’s proposal. Instead, the group, which calls itself the Coalition for Responsible Sharing, said in a 5 October statement that ResearchGate suggested publishers should send the company formal notices, called “takedown notices,” asking it to remove content that breaches copyright.The five publishers will be sending takedown notices, according to the group. But the coalition also alleges that ResearchGate is illicitly making as many as 7 million copyrighted articles freely available and that the company’s “business model depends on the distribution of these in-copyright articles to generate traffic to its site, which is then commercialised through the sale of targeted advertising.”The coalition also states that sending millions of takedown notices “is not a viable long-term solution, given the current and future scale of infringement. … Sending large numbers of takedown notices on an ongoing basis will prove highly disruptive to the research community.”As a result, two coalition members—ACS and Elsevier—have opted to go to court to try to force ResearchGate’s hand. The lawsuit, filed in a German regional court, asks for “clarity and judgement” on the legality of posting such content, says James Milne, spokesperson for the Coalition for Responsible Sharing and senior vice president of ACS’s journals publishing group in Oxford, U.K. 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 James Milne, Coalition for Responsible Sharing Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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first_img Email 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 Related content Cornell nutrition scientist resigns after retractions and research misconduct finding Wikimedia Commons But Wansink drew criticism for a 2016 blog post in which he seemed to praise a grad student for massaging negative results into positive ones. Several of his findings were questioned in online analyses published by research integrity watchdogs Nick Brown of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands and James Heathers of Northeastern University in Boston. Thirteen of his papers have now been retracted, and at least 15 more have been formally corrected, according to Retraction Watch.Wansink has been removed from research and teaching, according to Cornell, but he’ll “be obligated to spend his time cooperating with the university in its ongoing review of his prior research.” Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Brian Wansink, the Cornell University nutrition researcher known for probing the psychology behind human eating habits, has resigned after a university misconduct investigation, and following the retraction this week of six of his papers.In a statement issued yesterday, Cornell’s provost, Michael Kotlikoff, said the investigation had revealed “misreporting of research data, problematic statistical techniques, failure to properly document and preserve research results, and inappropriate authorship.”Wansink contested the university’s conclusion in a statement shared with Science, saying, “The interpretation of these four acts of misconduct can be debated, and I did so for a year without the success I expected.” He admitted to mistaken reporting, poor documentation, and “some statistical mistakes,” but maintains that there was “no fraud, no intentional misreporting, no plagiarism, or no misappropriation” in his work. “I believe all of my findings will be either supported, extended, or modified by other research groups,” he added. Brian Wansink Wansink, who directed Cornell’s Food and Brand Lab, won public attention for headline-friendly findings suggesting that it’s relatively easy to manipulate what people choose to eat—and in what quantities—by tweaking features of their environments. Among the papers retracted by The Journal of the American Medical Association on 19 September are one finding that people ate more calories while watching a stimulating action movie than a tame interview show and another concluding that people given bigger bowls at a Super Bowl party served themselves more calories. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Meet the ‘data thugs’ out to expose shoddy and questionable research By Kelly ServickSep. 21, 2018 , 11:25 AMlast_img read more

first_imgIn 2004 and again in 2010, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) expanded the blood sugar range it considers a sign of prediabetes, creating tens of millions of potential patients in the United States overnight. Now, the pharmaceutical industry is developing at least 10 classes of drugs targeted at the disease. But prediabetes does little or no harm on its own, and fewer than 2% of prediabetics in the ADA range progress to diabetes each year. That—along with evidence of large payoffs to some doctors in the field—has some wondering whether the entire classification is a dubious diagnosis.Genetically engineered immune cells wipe out lupus in miceLupus can be a stubborn disease to treat. Although many struck by the autoimmune condition live relatively normal lives, some suffer from kidney failure, blood clots, and other complications that can be deadly. Now, scientists have found that a novel treatment that wipes out the immune system’s B cells cures mice of the condition. Though the work is preliminary, it has excited researchers because it uses a therapy already approved for people with blood cancer.Has a second person with HIV been cured?Timothy Ray Brown, the only person to be cured of HIV, may finally have company. A decade after Brown became famous as the “Berlin patient,” thanks to a stem cell transplant that eliminated his HIV infection, a similar transplant from a donor who has HIV-resistant cells appears to have cured another man, dubbed the “London patient.”The Black Death may have transformed medieval societies in sub-Saharan AfricaIn the 14th century, the Black Death swept across Europe, Asia, and North Africa, killing up to 50% of the population in some cities. But archaeologists and historians have assumed that the plague bacterium Yersinia pestis, carried by fleas infesting rodents, didn’t make it across the Sahara Desert. Now, some researchers point to new evidence from archaeology, history, and genetics to argue that the Black Death likely did sow devastation in medieval sub-Saharan Africa. Email 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 By Alex FoxMar. 8, 2019 , 1:30 PM Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country (left to right): JOHN BAZEMORE/AP PHOTO; STEPHAN SCHMITZ; 3D4MEDICAL/SCIENCE SOURCE Vaccine opponents attack U.S. science panelThe U.S. antivaccine movement has found a new front for its attacks on scientists and their work: gatherings of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which recommends which vaccines Americans should receive. Since last summer, increasing numbers of vaccine opponents have come to ACIP meetings, held three times a year at the campus of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, to vent their anger at the 15 experts on the panel during the public comments section—and to lambaste vaccination in general.The war on ‘prediabetes’ could be a boon for pharma—but is it good medicine? Top stories: antivax protests, the war on prediabetes, and a possible cure for lupus Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

first_img By Jon CohenDec. 10, 2018 , 4:45 PM Ebola vaccine is having ‘major impact’ but worries about Congo outbreak grow A health care worker in Butembo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, carries a 4-day-old baby suspected of having Ebola. Children have been especially hard hit in this outbreak. As an Ebola outbreak in a conflict-plagued region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continues to spread after 4 months, there’s a glimmer of hope: An experimental Ebola vaccine appears to be helping the communities it reaches. More than 40,000 people have received the vaccine, by far the largest use of it since a trial in 2015 showed it worked well. The vaccine’s effectiveness in this outbreak has not been formally assessed. But Peter Salama, who heads the Ebola response for the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, Switzerland, says, “I think it’s having a major impact.”WHO, which works in concert with the DRC’s Ministry of Public Health, can’t distribute the vaccine as widely as it would like, however, because of limited supplies, Salama notes. And the obvious targets for vaccination—people who have had contact with cases—have been difficult to identify and reach because of the ongoing conflict; a small number of front-line health care workers have even been caught in the crossfire.So far the outbreak has tallied some 500 cases, about half of whom have died, according to the DRC’s Ministry of Public Health. It spans a region of the DRC’s northeast that abuts four other countries, and Salama and many others worry about the deadly virus jumping a border, which would require separate response teams and boost the potential for wider spread by infecting people with increased transportation options. Without more financial and personnel support from wealthy countries, the situation could explode into a long-running calamity similar to the Ebola epidemic that devastated three West African countries from 2014 to 2016, warns an editorial published last month in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). A consensus statement from 25 public health and policy experts published the same week in The Journal of the American Medical Association calls the outbreak “exceptionally” dangerous.The editorials urge the U.S. government to change a policy that prevents its Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from sending staff to the region because of security concerns. And many are calling for a WHO-established review committee to designate the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, which could drive more countries to contribute to the response; in October, the panel said the designation wasn’t yet necessary.Although the toll so far is much smaller than the West African epidemic’s 28,000 cases and 11,000 deaths, it’s now the second largest Ebola outbreak ever documented, and one of the longest running. The outbreak has hit mothers and their young children especially hard, because many sought care for malaria at health centers that unknowingly have Ebola cases. Women have made up 62% of all cases, and 24% were children under age 15. Only about 50% of new infections are in people previously identified as having been in contact with a case, which underscores how the violence has interfered with contact tracing.Salama says funding for the response in the DRC has been ample so far, but will run out in January 2019. Programs to support readiness and preparedness efforts in nine neighboring countries need another $45 million, he says. He’s particularly worried about Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda, and South Sudan, all bordering the DRC. “If there is a case, as is very likely in surrounding countries, we want to pick up that first one so we can have a very robust response,” Salama says.He adds that the front-line responders from the DRC, WHO’s 300 staffers on the ground, and personnel from nongovernmental organizations such as Doctors Without Borders and ALIMA are “frankly exhausted” from working long days in a conflict zone. “Where can we keep finding these brave people who are expert in viral hemorrhagic fever and know how to operate in a conflict-affected area?” he asks.CDC has perhaps more people with this twin skill set than any other institution in the world, and it’s working closely with WHO and others—but not in the hot zone. Salama says the complexities of this outbreak, such as the surprising role of malaria cases, require a nimble response, which would make CDC’s seasoned staff invaluable. “A senior leadership cadre has long-term experience and can help drive teams in the right direction,” he says.Epidemiologist Jennifer Nuzzo, who co-authored the NEJM editorial and also co-signed the consensus statement, hopes the pressure will lead the U.S. government to rethink the policy of keeping CDC out of the region. “The situation is serious enough that we’re pulling all the levers we can,” says Nuzzo, who works at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland. Salama, however, is skeptical the editorials will change the U.S. government’s position.Salama says if malaria cases drop, fewer people will visit health clinics, which could help slow Ebola’s spread. To that end, Ebola responders are distributing insecticide-treated malaria bed nets. They’re also beginning to offer the Ebola vaccine to people who come to clinics seeking malaria care. But fewer than 260,000 doses of the vaccine are left, and there are competing demands, including a push to vaccinate health care workers in the bordering countries. (Uganda has already started to use it, and South Sudan plans to begin to vaccinate on 19 December.)Salama estimates that even in a best-case scenario the outbreak will run another 6 months. And it could be far worse. “This is the kind of massive, massive priority that the whole world should be very much focused on and willing to contribute to solving.” JOHN WESSELS/AFP/Getty Images last_img read more

first_imgNovember 20, 2018 By Toni Gibbons       With the failure of Proposition 419 to pass on the Nov. 6 ballot by 156 votes, Navajo County Manager Glenn Kephart updated the Board of Supervisors at the meeting on Nov.Subscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Ad Failure of Proposition 419 concerns county officialslast_img

first_imgBy Reuters |Tokyo | Published: May 31, 2019 7:50:19 am The yen was up 0.25% at 109.335 per dollar and also made gains against the euro and Australian dollar.“The news on Mexican tariffs came just as the United States is imposing tariffs on China, and the timing is stirring up the markets,” said Daisuke Karakama, chief market economist at Mizuho Bank.“Headlines related to trade issues come in short, unpredictable bursts. Currency market reaction is therefore quite intense, but also tends to be short-lived.”The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies was flat at 98.147 after inching down the previous day, when it snapped two straight sessions of gains amid a continuing decline in U.S. yields. Trump secures billion dollar deal to eradicate AIDS from US in a decade The safe-haven yen advanced as the Trump administration’s move to escalate its trade war with other countries further shook already fragile risk sentiment in global financial markets.The Mexican peso tumbled 1.85% to 19.4942 per dollar after US President Donald Trump said on Thursday the United States will impose a 5% tariff on all goods coming from Mexico starting on June 10 until illegal immigration is stopped.At one point the peso weakened to 19.5950 per dollar, its lowest since March 8. The index was still headed for a 0.5% gain this week, supported by weakness in peers such as the euro and sterling, and the U.S. currency’s own status as a safe-haven in times of market and economic troubles.The euro was steady at $1.1133. The single currency was down 0.65% this week.The pound was effectively flat at $1.2613. Sterling has lost nearly 0.8% this week, as the imminent departure of Theresa May as prime minister deepened fears about a chaotic exit for Britain from the European Union. Post Comment(s) Mexican peso tumbles as Trump jolts markets with new tariffs, yen gains At one point the peso weakened to 19.5950 per dollar, its lowest since March 8.The Mexican peso sank to three-month lows against the dollar early on Friday after Washington unexpectedly said it will slap tariffs on all goods coming from its southern neighbour. Chandrayaan-2 gets new launch date days after being called off Related News center_img Advertising Best Of Express P Rajagopal, Saravana Bhavan founder sentenced to life for murder, dies Hold the applause until Hafiz Saeed is convicted: US committee to Donald Trump Ayodhya dispute: Mediation to continue till July 31, SC hearing likely from August 2 Advertising US House rejects Saudi weapons sales; Trump to veto last_img read more

first_imgBy Reuters |Dublin | Published: June 15, 2019 6:19:44 pm Related News brexit, ireland, brexit ireland, northern ireland backstop clause, backstop clause, brexit ireland backstop clause, brexit irish pm, irish pm, leo varadkar, irish pm leo varadkar, brexit leo varadkar, brexit varadkar, world news, indian express “To me no backstop is effectively the same as no-deal because what the backstop is is … a legally operable guarantee that we will never see a hard border emerge again,” Varadkar told RTE radio. (Reuters)A Brexit deal without the Northern Ireland “backstop” clause is as much a threat to Ireland as a no-deal Brexit, Ireland’s prime minister said on Saturday, adding that the European Union would not allow the clause to be dropped. Advertising UK’s Boris Johnson declines to comment on plan to facilitate a no-deal Brexit Aegean lessons UK economy probably shrank for first time in seven years Leading contenders in the race to become Britain’s next prime minister have called for the controversial clause, designed to avoid a border checks between Ireland and Northern Ireland, to be changed or scrapped.“To me no backstop is effectively the same as no-deal because what the backstop is is … a legally operable guarantee that we will never see a hard border emerge again,” Varadkar told RTE radio. “If we don’t have that, that is no deal.” Post Comment(s)last_img read more

first_img Greeks vote in 1st parliamentary election since bailout end The foreign ministry announcement Friday reverses the previous government’s position, which had aligned itself with embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. Around 50 countries have recognized Guaido as interim president, asserting Maduro’s re-election last year was illegitimate.Greece’s foreign ministry announced it had “decided to recognize the president of the democratically elected national assembly, Juan Guaido, as the interim president of Venezuela in order for him to call free, fair and democratic presidential elections.”The country’s conservative party, led by Kyriakos Mitsotakis, comfortably won Sunday’s election, defeating the previous left-wing government of Alexis Tsipras. Advertising By AP |Athens, Greece | Published: July 12, 2019 5:18:02 pm Post Comment(s) Greece, Juan Guaido, Greece interim president, Venezuelan opposition  Juan Guaido,  Greece government, European Union, Greece politics, World news, Indian Express news Greece’s foreign ministry announced it had “decided to recognize the president of the democratically elected national assembly, Juan Guaido, as the interim president of Venezuela…”. (Reuters)Greece’s new government says it is recognizing Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as the country’s interim president, saying this would align Athens with the European Union’s joint position Related News Greece’s experiment with populism holds lessons for Europe Greek police fire tear gas at migrants as border convoy grows last_img read more

first_img Karnataka: Supreme Court to rule today, says Speaker’s powers need relook According to the MHA notification, the committee may also suggest any other measures as may be necessary to protect, preserve and promote cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.Notably, All-Assam Students Union, among signatories of the accord, is also demanding rights over land and natural resources for the Assamese people.Members of the committee include Assam’s A-G Ramesh Borpatragohain, Arunachal Pradesh’s A-G Niloy Dutta, retired IAS officer Subhash Das, retired IPS Pallav Bhattacharya, academics Srishtidhar Dutta and Jaikanta Sharma, author Sumanta Chaliha, and journalist Wasbir Hussain. Citizenship (Amendment) Bill: North-East heat makes Centre warm up to state consent NRC deadline approaching, families stranded in Assam floods stay home Chairman M P Bezbaruah becomes 5th to drop out, says Assam panel virtually defunct Related News Assam accord, what is Assam accord, Amit Shah, Assam accord and NRC, Assam, immigration in Assam, foreigners in Assam, assam tribe, assam people, Assam news, Indian Express Intended as part of Clause 6 of Assam Accord, the committee was notified by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Tuesday.The Government has notified a high-level committee that is expected to look into the implementation of a clause of Assam Accord that seeks to provide safeguards to preserve and promote social, cultural and linguistic identity of Assamese people. Best Of Express Amid citizenship bill protests, MP Bezbaruah refuses to head panel on Assam Accord center_img Written by Deeptiman Tiwary | New Delhi | Published: July 17, 2019 4:11:57 am The committee, headed by retired Gauhati High Court judge Biplab Kumar Sarma, will also make recommendations on reservation for Assamese people in the Assembly, and other local bodies.It will also look into the need for reservation in government jobs for Assamese people, besides recommending measures required to preserve culture and identity of the local people.Intended as part of Clause 6 of Assam Accord, the committee was notified by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Tuesday. The committee was first notified in January, but its members did not join in protest against the citizenship amendment Bill. Advertising Retired IAS officer M P Bezbaruah was to head the panel.Clause 6 of the Accord states: “Constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards, as may be appropriate, shall be provided to protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.”The MHA’s notification, signed by Joint Secretary Satyendra Garg, has given six months to the committee to come up with its recommendations. It would be supported by the Northeast division of the MHA and the Assam government, the ministry stated.Some other terms of reference of the committee, according to the notification, are to examine effectiveness of actions taken since 1985 to implement Clause 6; to hold discussions with various stakeholders, including social organisations, legal and constitutional experts, eminent persons from the field of art, culture and literature, conservationists, economists, linguists and sociologists; to suggest measures to be taken to protect Assamese and other indigenous languages of Assam. Advertising Explained: The Hague rules on Kulbhushan Jadhav today Post Comment(s)last_img read more

first_img Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield The Chinese government has taken a increasingly firm line against both perceived meddling and the more radical protesters. The foreign ministry and the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office have denounced the protesters who stormed the legislature as “extremists.”On Tuesday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang described Western criticisms as “an ugly act of hypocrisy” while warning countries to choose their words and actions carefully. From the outset of the protests, Beijing has obliquely hinted at the role of “foreign interference” in instigating unrest.In the long run, “it is hard to see a happy ending to this impasse,” Simon Pritchard, global research director at Gavekal, wrote in a note. “On the Hong Kong side, the student holidays will end and the pragmatism that characterizes most of the population may persuade all but a hard core of protesters to back away,” Pritchard said. “If something like this does play out, it will be a fragile truce until the next big challenge to Hong Kong’s way of life comes around.” Taking stock of monsoon rain Hong Kong protesters, police clash as demonstrations target Chinese traders Chinese state media blames 'Western ideologues' for Hong Kong protests Thousands of people demonstrate peacefully outside City Hall in Hong Kong (Lam Yik Fei/The New York Times)After a week of turbulence in Hong Kong, Beijing appears to have settled on its message to the city: continued protests risk throwing away everything that makes it special. Advertising A front-page editorial in the Communist Party’s flagship newspaper, the People’s Daily, blasted the protesters who stormed the city’s Legislative Council on Monday as “extremists” whose actions threaten to hinder economic and social development and “ruin Hong Kong’s reputation as an international business metropolis.”The comments play into a widespread anxiety among Hong Kong residents: that the former British colony risks irrelevance as it is swallowed up by an increasingly wealthy and powerful China. Beijing is using this week’s unrest to put its own spin on events, sending protesters the message that their actions are more likely to speed up than slow down that trend.State media has presented Hong Kong as a city on the brink. “As the global economic landscape undergoes profound adjustments and international competition becomes increasingly fierce, Hong Kong faces great challenges and cannot afford flux or internal attrition,” the People’s Daily said. Hong Kong tourism, hotel occupancy falls as protests drag on Historic protests erupted in recent months over Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s decision to push ahead with a controversial bill that would allow extraditions to the mainland, alarming locals and spooking the local business community. The ransacking of the legislature came on the anniversary of the 1997 handover, as tens of thousands of people marched peacefully in a separate annual protest that passed near the complex.On Wednesday, Hong Kong-based broadcaster TVB said police arrested at least 13 people in relation to the occupation of the complex. Dozens more suspects had been identified and a wave of further arrests was expected in “the near future,” The South China Morning Post newspaper reported Thursday, citing unidentified people in law enforcement.“The protesters now risk losing the moral high ground. This could be a turning point,” said Wang Huiyao, an adviser to China’s cabinet and founder of the Center for China and Globalization. “The violence could destroy their credibility, and it will be hard for anyone in the West to defend. They will also alienate people who supported the movement.” Demonstrators march past the U.S. Consulate in Hong Kong (Lam Yik Fei/The New York Times)Party Narrative Advertising Advertising Related News State broadcaster China Central Television aired footage Tuesday of Lam denouncing the demonstrators and video of police riding in to secure the building. A website run by the Communist Party’s nationalist Global Times said the chaos “disrupted public order and challenges the rule of law.”It’s a narrative that challenges some of China’s external critics, leading to an usually public war of words with the U.K., which has usually prioritized smooth relations with Beijing since returning Hong Kong. Prime Minister Theresa May told Parliament she was “shocked” by the scenes of violence and, after Chinese Ambassador to London Liu Xiaoming accused the British government of meddling, summoned him to the Foreign Office to explain.U.K. Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to “let it be” and not apply new pressure to Hong Kong, while his rival to succeed May as Conservative Party leader, former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, told Reuters that he stood with the city’s residents “every inch of the way.”“The U.K. government chose to stand on the wrong side, it has made inappropriate remarks, not only to interfere in the internal affairs of Hong Kong but also to back up the violent lawbreakers,” Liu said in a televised statement Wednesday. He also said Britain has tried to “obstruct” Hong Kong authorities from “bringing the criminals to justice, which is utter interference in Hong Kong’s rule of law.” Cabinet asks finance panel to consider securing funds for defence Post Comment(s) By Bloomberg | Published: July 4, 2019 10:08:02 am After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Clashes break out as Hong Kong protesters escalate fight in suburbs More Explained Best Of Express last_img read more

first_img What’s changing in NIA: Wider jurisdiction, more offences, faster trial Related News Govt will identify and deport each illegal immigrant: Amit Shah On this, Shah got up from his seat and said treasury members did not disturb opposition members during their speeches so they should also do the same.Pointing out at Owaisi, Shah said opposition members should have the patience to listen to others point of view. Owaisi got agitated and asked Shah to not point a finger at him and said he cannot be frightened.In response, Shah said he is not trying to frighten him and just saying that opposition members should have the patience to listen to the counter view. “When you have fear in your mind, then what can I do,” he hit back. 20 Comment(s) Centre will identify illegal immigrants and deport them: Amit Shah in Rajya Sabha Advertising The verbal duel between the two leaders started during a discussion on the National Investigation Agency (Amendment) Bill when opposition members including Owaisi started interrupting BJP’s Satyapal Singh.Singh alleged that the then Hyderabad Police commissioner was asked by a political leader of the state to change the course of investigation in a particular case else he could be transferred out, adding that he is aware of the development as at that time he was Mumbai police commissioner.Objecting to his claim, Owaisi, an MP from Hyderabad, demanded that Singh should place on the table of the House all records related to his claim. amit shah, home minister amit shah, asaduddin owaisi, aimim, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, amit shah owaisi, owaisi amit shah, parliament monsoon session, parliament session, nia bill, nia amendment bill, india news, Indian Express Pointing out at Owaisi, Shah said opposition members should have the patience to listen to others point of view. (PTI))Lok Sabha Monday witnessed a spat between Home Minister Amit Shah and AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi, after the BJP chief pointed out to the Hyderabad MP, asking him to “learn to listen” and asserting that he is not frightening anyone but cannot help when someone has fear in their minds. Advertising By PTI |New Delhi | Published: July 15, 2019 9:05:31 pmlast_img read more

first_imgWritten by Sailee Dhayalkar | Mumbai | Updated: July 16, 2019 11:32:06 am Advertising Last week, while granting bail to Gaus, the Bombay High Court observed: “Prima facie, at this stage, we are of the opinion that perusal of material made available to us does not show that there are reasonable grounds for believing that accusations against the appellant/accused no.4 (Gaus) are true.”The Maharashtra ATS filed a chargesheet against the five, including Gaus, for offences punishable under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, IPC and the Arms Act. In October 2013, the case was transferred to the NIA.READ | Suspected ‘LeT operative’ gets bailGaus (32) told The Indian Express, “The NIA told us that a few accused in a similar case have pleaded guilty before a special court in Bengaluru and sentenced to five years of imprisonment. NIA suggested that we consider pleading guilty. We decided to plead guilty and requested NIA to tell the court to grant us five years of imprisonment as we had already spent that time in jail,” he said. “We were left with no choice but to plead guilty, not because we were guilty, but we had no idea when our case was going to be concluded. We had families to look after. The situation was getting bad.” Best Of Express Advertising mohammad gaus gets bail, suspected LeT gets bail, Bombay High court, Mohammad Gaus, Bombay High court, grants bail to suspected LeT operative, Lashkar-e-Toiba, Mumbai news, Indian Express news Mohammad Gaus was arrested on August 31, 2012.Two years ago, five men arrested on charges of being Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operatives pleaded guilty before a special court in Mumbai. After seven years of incarceration, Mohammad Irfan Gaus was the first among them to be granted bail this month. After his release from Taloja prison, he has claimed that he was innocent but pleaded guilty to avoid a prolonged trial and worsening of his family’s situation. While rejecting the bail plea of Gaus at the time, the HC observed that “the trial of the case be taken up as expeditiously as possible and in any event, within eight months”. However, Gaus said, only three witnesses were examined in eight months, and the case is still at the stage of the last witness, the investigating officer, being examined.Gaus said he was working at his inverter battery shop before he was arrested in 2012. While he was in jail, his father and brother took care of his wife and his son. The NIA did not respond to calls and text messages from The Indian Express seeking comment. Appearing for the NIA in court, Advocate A M Chimalkar opposed Gaus’s bail plea by contending that there is voluminous documentary evidence against him.According to the prosecution, Gaus and another accused Muzzammil made 214 calls to each other between October 10, 2011, and August 9, 2012. Gaus allegedly also travelled with Muzzammil from Mumbai to Nanded by bus.The prosecution claimed that one of the men had received money from Saudi Arabia, sent by another accused. It was alleged that the accused were found with a revolver and live cartridges, and that they planned to instigate young Muslims to take to violence.In November 2017, the five sought to plead guilty before the trial court. The court, however, rejected their request. US: Lawmaker introduces resolution seeking probe into NGO’s links with Lashkar-e-Taiba center_img After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan After Pulwama Related News Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield 2 LeT men held while trying to buy rifle in Ramban Cabinet asks finance panel to consider securing funds for defence 15 Comment(s)last_img read more

first_img Source:http://www.allelebiotech.com/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 15 2018The National Institute of General Medical Sciences of NIH has awarded a Small Business Innovative Research grant to Allele Biotechnology and Pharmaceuticals to develop new single-domain nanoantibody (nAb) therapies for the treatment of sepsis. Sepsis and septic shock are among the leading causes of death in intensive care units (ICUs). The global incidence of sepsis has increased over the years, while the mortality rate, which can reach over 60% for septic shock, has been virtually unchanged for the past three decades due to lack of a cure or effective treatments.Scientists at Allele have focused on how to intervene with so-called “cytokine storm,” an intense inflammatory response that occurs early in the pathogenesis of sepsis and causes vascular endothelial barrier dysfunction. Other companies have attempted to develop sepsis therapeutics using conventional monoclonal antibodies targeting similar upstream cytokines. However, monoclonal antibody drugs failed to meaningfully improve the mortality rate of sepsis in clinical trials, because the antibodies did not produce significant enough benefits to patients within the relevant time window.Related StoriesNew research defines the chain of molecular events that goes awry in sepsisFirst state-mandated sepsis regulation in the U.S. linked to lower mortality ratesKAIST research team finds cause of sepsis-induced lung injuryAllele has engineered novel multi-valent and multi-specific nAbs, originally identified from an immunized llama, to combat cytokine storms. These nAbs have superior therapeutic efficacy over conventional antibody drugs in animal models of sepsis because of their unique structural and functional properties. nAbs, also known as VHH domains, are small fragments of antibodies (12-15 Kd) that are very stable and easy to produce. Allele’s research team has found that this class of antibodies possess an outstanding capacity to penetrate to tissues and tumors. Moreover, nAbs can bind epitopes that are difficult for conventional antibodies to access. The first ever approval of a nAb-based drug—caplacizumab, a von Willebrand factor (vWF) target— has been issued to a Belgian company, Ablynx, which has worked almost exclusively on nAbs for 17 years. Ablynx was recently acquired by Sanofi for $4.8 billion.Allele’s involvement in the nAb field began in 2008. The biotech company has received continued NIH funding since 2011 and private investments since 2013. These funds strengthened Allele’s platform, allowing Allele to drastically enhance its capacity of internal research and outside collaboration. Allele now generates high quality nAbs targeting the most devastating diseases including cancers, inflammation, neurological and ophthalmological diseases, and possesses dozens of exciting nAb drug candidates in its pipeline. With the new funding support from NIH, Allele will aggressively move towards clinical stage in finding a much-needed medicine that reduces death from sepsis.last_img read more

first_imgThe department’s faculty perform research in a host of areas, including electrical power systems, microgrids, power conversion and control, energy storage, sensors and robotics, unmanned vehicle systems, photonics, implantable sensors and systems, radar and wireless sensor networks, human performance and signal processing and machine learning. Source:University of Texas at Arlington Weidong Zhou works with quantum sensors for detecting disease and harmful gases in the air, as well as on-chip systems for use in health care applications. Michael Vasilyev works with quantum optic communications for secure data transmissions and more efficient internet connections. Alice Sun uses lasers to build sensors that detect harmful gases in the air, as well as portable sensors that can be used in a doctor’s office to non-invasively detect cancer and other diseases. We have made many advances in the development of photonic devices over the years, and our methodology can be really useful in this application. There is a need to develop this technology because there is a shortage of optical components in longwave infrared bands. Changing frequency or wavelength to this region requires that we completely change our fabrication methods, and we have already successfully made devices under this new funding.”Robert Magnusson, Electrical Engineering Professor, University of Texas Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jun 24 2019A research team from The University of Texas at Arlington is working with the Army Research Laboratory to develop nanophotonic devices that could have applications in thermal imaging and resonant filtering.Robert Magnusson, an electrical engineering professor and the Texas Instruments Distinguished University Chair in Nanoelectronics, is the principal investigator for a $1.2 million collaborative agreement with the Army Research Laboratory.Nanophotonic devices are used to shape the spectrum of light via photonic lattices and resonance, but their application generally has been limited to short wavelengths. The research team is trying to develop devices that will work in the longwave infrared spectral region, which is the range in which thermal radiation is emitted. In addition to thermal imaging technology, these devices could be used in sensors for medical diagnostics, chemical analyses and environmental monitoring, among other applications. Photonic lattices are structures–such as nanopatterned silicon films on glass substrates or arrays of nanowires–with differing refractive qualities that are arranged so they can capture, store and release light. For the new, longer wavelength devices, Magnusson will create lattices out of germanium, a metalloid element that has the properties of a semiconductor.Daniel Carney, a recent UTA doctoral graduate, successfully developed longer wavelength devices in the University’s Shimadzu Institute Nanotechnology Research Center while a student in Magnusson’s lab. Magnusson said he plans to adapt these devices to make them tunable to specific wavelengths. By mechanically or electrically altering the device’s structure, selected wavelengths are rejected while useful imaging data passes to detection equipment.”The Shimadzu Institute Nanotechnology Research Center was very important in the development of Daniel’s research and what we’re trying to do with the Army Research Lab,” Magnusson said. “The facility is behind experimental realization of many of the key discoveries we make.”Magnusson, Neelam Gupta of the Army Research Laboratory and Mark Mirotznik of the University of Delaware are collaborating on the research. Their project is an example of data-driven discovery, one of the themes of UTA’s Strategic Plan 2020, said Peter Crouch, dean of the College of Engineering.Related StoriesAMSBIO offers new, best-in-class CAR-T cell range for research and immunotherapyComplement system shown to remove dead cells in retinitis pigmentosa, contradicting previous researchSchwann cells capable of generating protective myelin over nerves finds research”As engineers, we always want to have an impact on society,” Crouch said. “Dr. Magnusson’s research has been at the leading edge of his field for many years, and his findings have contributed a great deal to our knowledge of photonics. This agreement with the Army Research Lab is an excellent opportunity to create devices that will make an impact for years to come.”Magnusson has worked in photonics throughout his career and pioneered a host of device technologies, many of which are patented. He leads UTA’s Nanophotonics Device Group, which pursues theoretical and experimental research in periodic nanostructures, nanolithography, nanophotonics, nanoelectronics, nanoplasmonics and optical bio- and chemical sensors. His research established new transformative biosensor platform technology that is in commercial use by Resonant Sensors Inc., a company he co-founded.Magnusson has garnered more than $12 million in research funding and endowments for UTA since becoming the Texas Instruments Distinguished University Chair in Nanoelectronics in 2008, published more than 450 journal and conference papers and secured 35 issued patents and pending patents.He is a charter fellow of the National Academy of Inventors–one of 15 NAI fellows among the UTA faculty–and a Life Fellow of the prestigious Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. The IEEE has singled out Magnusson for his contributions to the invention of a new class of nanophotonic devices that employ light at a nanometer scale. His devices are used as biosensors, lasers, tunable filters and optical components.UTA’s Department of Electrical Engineering boasts several leading researchers in the field of photonics in addition to Magnusson:last_img read more

first_imgThe study was led in collaboration with Nicholas Arpaia, assistant professor of microbiology & immunology at CUIMC, and co-senior author on the publication. The team combined their expertise in synthetic biology and immunology to engineer a strain of bacteria able to grow and multiply in the necrotic core of tumors. When bacteria numbers reach a critical threshold, the non-pathogenic E. coli are then programmed to self-destruct, allowing for effective release of therapeutics and preventing them from wreaking havoc elsewhere in the body. Subsequently, a small fraction of bacteria survive lysis and reseed the population, allowing for repeated rounds of drug delivery inside treated tumors. The proof of concept in programming the bacteria in this way was originally developed a few years ago (Din & Danino et al. Nature 2016). In the current study, the authors chose to release a nanobody that targets a protein called CD47.Related StoriesUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskCD47, a “don’t-eat-me” signal, protects cancer cells from being eaten by innate immune cells such as macrophages and dendritic cells. It is found in abundance on a majority of human solid tumors and has recently become a popular therapeutic target.”But CD47 is present elsewhere in the body, and systemic targeting of CD47 results in significant toxicity as evidenced by recent clinical trials. To solve this issue, we engineered bacteria to target CD47 exclusively within the tumor and avoid systemic side-effects of treatment,” adds Sreyan Chowdhury, the paper’s lead author and a PhD student co-mentored by Arpaia and Danino.The combined effect of bacterially induced local inflammation within the tumor and the blockade of CD47 leads to increased ingestion, or phagocytosis of tumor cells and subsequently to enhanced activation and proliferation of T cells within the treated tumors. The team found that treatment with their engineered bacteria not only cleared the treated tumors but also reduced the incidence of tumor metastasis in multiple models.”Treatment with engineered bacteria led to priming of tumor-specific T cells in the tumor that then migrated systemically to also treat distant tumors,” Arpaia says. “Without both live bugs lysing in the tumor and the CD47 nanobody payload, we were not able to observe the therapeutic or abscopal effects.”The team is now performing further proof-of-concept tests, as well as safety and toxicology studies, of their engineered immunotherapeutic bacteria in a range of advanced solid tumor settings in mouse models. Positive results from those tests may lead to a clinical trial in patients. They are also collaborating with Gary Schwartz, CUIMC’s chief of hematology/oncology and deputy director of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, on clinical translation aspects of their work, and have started a company to translate their promising technology to patients. Source:Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jul 4 2019The emerging field of synthetic biology- designing new biological components and systems- is revolutionizing medicine. Through the genetic programming of living cells, researchers are creating engineered systems that intelligently sense and respond to diverse environments, leading to more specific and effective solutions in comparison to current molecular-based therapeutics.At the same time, cancer immunotherapy- using the body’s immune defenses to fight cancer- has transformed cancer treatment over the past decade, but only a handful of solid tumors have responded, and systemic therapy often results in significant side effects. Designing therapies that can induce a potent, anti-tumor immune response within a solid tumor without triggering systemic toxicity has posed a significant challenge.Researchers at Columbia Engineering and Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC) announced today that they are addressing this challenge by engineering a strain of non-pathogenic bacteria that can colonize solid tumors in mice and safely deliver potent immunotherapies, acting as a Trojan Horse that treats tumors from within. The therapy led not only to complete tumor regression in a mouse model of lymphoma, but also significant control of distant, uninjected tumor lesions. Their findings are published today in Nature Medicine. Seeing untreated tumors respond alongside treatment of primary lesions was an unexpected discovery. It is the first demonstration following a bacterial cancer therapy of what is termed an ‘abscopal’ effect. This means that we’ll be able to engineer bacteria to prime tumors locally, and then stimulate the immune system to seek out tumors and metastases that are too small to be detected with imaging or other approaches.”Tal Danino, assistant professor of biomedical engineeringlast_img read more

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further An artist’s view of the PrandtlPlane shows what future commercial aircrafts could look like. Credit: Vittorio C/ University of Pisa, Italy, licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 “The theoretical results can be used to define a new configuration, our configuration,” he said.Instead of two separate wings extending either side of the fuselage, our familiar concept of an airplane, the Prandtl-inspired aircraft has one wing which loops and closes back on itself in a closed-wing design with no wingtips. This reduces the amount of drag acting on the aircraft, meaning that less fuel is burned. This is especially important for take-off and landing, as these are the phases of airplane flight that usually guzzle the most fuel and expel most emissions.”These aircraft will be much more convenient from the point of view of fuel consumption, noise pollution and emissions,” said Prof. Frediani.The team has developed a small model of their plane but the idea is to focus on medium-sized aircraft, with the goal of increasing the number of passengers being transported per flight from around 180 to 310. The researchers estimate that the plane could be in the air in 10-15 years’ time, depending on safety checks and the interest of aircraft manufacturers. Their next steps are to refine the aerodynamics, engine position and controls, while the University of Pisa’s economics department is working with PARSIFAL to determine the projected economic performance of the aircraft. “This solution could completely change the air transport of the future,” said Prof. Frediani.Meanwhile, other engineers are taking inspiration from nature to develop 3-D printed aircraft components that could reduce weight by up to 30%. The less a plane weighs, the less fuel is required, resulting in a significant reduction of CO2 emissions.Honeycomb structureMelanie Gralow is a biomimetic design engineer for the Bionic Aircraft project, which is taking the lessons of nature to improve parts for making aeroplanes. “Thin surfaces or rods tend to deform very easily throughout the manufacturing process,” she explained. “You can stiffen them by applying a certain surface structure. The honeycomb structure is one of those bio-inspired structures that can be utilised to stiffen the wall without adding too much weight.” The project also takes inspiration from grass stalks, which are subject to bending loads by the wind in the same way as struts in aircraft components. Bending loads are forces that act upon a structure laterally and hence can result in it bending.”The stalk is hollow inside and it has a double wall system,” said Gralow. “It needs to resist wind forces in nature, but struts in the technical world also have to resist bending. By applying the double-walled system to the struts, we can make them more lightweight, but at the same time just as stiff as they need to be.”To make these intricate, highly-detailed, lightweight parts, the team uses 3-D printers with laser beam technology. Although ideal for small precision work, the researchers say that printing an entire aircraft in this way is still a long way off.”For now, the goal is really to focus on smaller parts because the build spaces of the current printers are restricted. The biggest commercial printers are about 40—50 centimetres in width, so that sets the maximum size limit for current 3-D-printed metal parts,” said Gralow. Provided by Horizon: The EU Research & Innovation Magazine Citation: Radical closed-wing aircraft design could see greener skies take flight (2018, May 16) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-radical-closed-wing-aircraft-greener-flight.html Aviation is one of the most environmentally harmful forms of transportation, accounting for 3% of all EU greenhouse gas emissions. But new aircraft designs inspired by the work of an early 20th-century aviation engineer and natural substances such as honeycomb and grass could help to cut the environmental footprint of flying. Research examines wing shapes to reduce vortex and wake With nearly 1 billion passengers taking to European skies in 2016 and the numbers still increasing, the growth in European aviation has been staggering. The effect is that even as many other industries are reducing greenhouse gas emissions through efficiency and new technology, aviation’s are on the increase.One person flying from London to New York and back generates roughly the same level of emissions as one year’s home heating for the average European. At the recent Transport Research Arena conference in Vienna, Austria, a high-level event covering all modes of European transport, Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, said avoiding air travel completely was the best option for protecting the environment.But as Sergio Barbarino, chairman of the Alliance for Logistics Innovation through Collaboration in Europe (ALICE) responded, that’s an unlikely scenario. “We can’t just tell people they can’t take their holidays in the Canary Islands anymore,” he said.Air travel may be here to stay, but there’s no doubt that engineers need to find new ways to make it cleaner and greener. One idea is to radically redesign an aircraft’s wing so that it requires significantly less operational fuel, an approach that’s currently under development by a project called PARSIFAL.Father of aerodynamicsFor their design, the team sought inspiration from the renowned German aviation engineer Ludwig Prandtl, often considered the father of aerodynamics. In 1924, Prandtl had an idea for a plane with an unusual wing that reduced the drag coefficient and improved the aerodynamic efficiency but the idea was largely ignored at the time.In the late 1990s, Professor Aldo Frediani of the University of Pisa, Italy, and coordinator of the PARSIFAL project, used mathematics to prove that Prandtl’s wing theory was plausible. Prof. Frediani and his team began to work on the design of a new closed-wing airplane based on Prandtl’s original concept.last_img read more

first_img Provided by University of East Anglia Proposals to extend the role played by politicians in scrutinising mergers and investments in the UK could discourage foreign investment, according to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA). This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Canada blocks China purchase of construction firm Aecon As part of preparations for life after Brexit, the UK government has introduced wide-ranging plans for strengthening its scope to scrutinise mergers, acquisitions and investments that raise national security concerns in specific sectors.The proposals, the result of the government’s review of the Enterprise Act 2002, seek to extend the powers that the government currently has to intervene in transactions in order to safeguard the national security of the UK, while simultaneously attempting to minimise any adverse effect these reforms may have on predictability and procedural transparency.However, while the Green Paper on National Security and Infrastructure Investment (NSII) makes “all the right noises” with regard to investor certainty, researcher Dr. David Reader argues that the “resurrection” of ministerial decision-making could yet deter foreign investment by creating perceptions of an assessment process based on furthering the UK’s new Industrial Strategy, rather than protecting national security.The reforms, which have been consulted on and will be set out in a White Paper later this year, follow a traditionally ‘open for business’ stance adopted by successive governments in order to aid the UK’s recovery in the wake of the 2007-08 global financial crisis. They also come in the wake of controversial foreign bids for so-called ‘crown jewel’ firms such as Cadbury, AstraZeneca and ARM Holdings, as well as the all-British tie-up between Melrose and Armed Forces supplier GKN earlier this year.Published in the journal Competition Law International, Dr. Reader’s evaluation of the proposals argues for restraining the role of ministerial decision-making under the new regime.”At a glance, the Green Paper’s repeated emphasis of the need to maintain a regime that promotes business certainty and procedural transparency would seem to be music to the ears of potential investors,” said Dr. Reader, of UEA’s Centre for Competition Policy.”However, the proposals are also set to resurrect a central role for ministerial decision-making in the UK investment landscape. In the light of a new industrial strategy and the shadow of impending Brexit, this carries the risk of creating a suspicion that politicians will base their decisions on industrial policy grounds under the guise of national security.center_img Citation: Government reforms could deter foreign investment (2018, June 25) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-06-reforms-deter-foreign-investment.html “With the implementation of these reforms likely to coincide with the UK’s departure from the EU, the true impact of the reforms on the level of foreign investment may not be discernible. But, as attracting foreign investment will play a key role in the government’s industrial strategy, understanding the long-term impact of these proposals is paramount.”The government is already pressing ahead with the Green Paper’s short-term proposals to amend the turnover threshold and share of supply tests for mergers within the Enterprise Act 2002. This allows the government to examine and potentially intervene in mergers that currently fall outside the thresholds in two areas, namely the dual use (items used for both civil and military applications) and military use sector, and parts of the advanced technology sector.The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) currently has powers to intervene in merger assessments on national security grounds, but will seek formal advice from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), often in consultation with either the Ministry of Defence or the Home Office, before deciding whether to refer the transaction for further in-depth assessment.Under the proposed ‘national security intervention’ procedure, however, the Green Paper suggests that—where non-merger specific transactions (such as greenfield investment) raise concerns—the Secretary of State will undertake their evaluation without receiving advice from the CMA or any other independent body.Dr. Reader said there are doubts as to whether a foreign investment review regime based solely on the assessments and decision-making of politicians or government departments would create an environment that instils confidence in prospective investors.He also highlights a potential conflict of interest, given that the BEIS Secretary has also been tasked with heading up the government’s industrial strategy, a key component of which is to target specific companies to invest in the UK as part of individual sector deals and to ensure that the regulatory process is easier for these companies to navigate.”This raises the potential for a scenario where the BEIS Secretary is having to rule on the national security implications of a foreign takeover or investment in the advanced technology sector, while also negotiating to attract a separate foreign company to invest in the same sector,” said Dr. Reader.”The allocation of extensive decision-making powers to politicians and, specifically, the BEIS Secretary, risks undermining the certainty and transparency that the Green Paper’s other proposals strive to deliver. It is imperative that the forthcoming White Paper outlines specific safeguards that would remove the risk of industrial policy considerations entering into the decision-making process.”One option for negating perceptions of political bias during a ‘national security intervention’ process would be to establish an independent national security review body, which would—in effect—assume the role that the CMA plays in the context of public interest mergers.”‘Extending ‘National Security’ in Merger Control and Investment: A Good Deal for the UK?’, David Reader, is published in Competition Law International, volume 14, number 1, June 2018. Explore furtherlast_img read more

first_imgYouth unemployment, particularly among university graduates, is a central problem across the Arab world, in part because of a demographic “youth bulge.” Last year, unemployment among Palestinian college graduates under the age of 30 reached 56 percent, including 41 percent in the West Bank and 73 percent in the Gaza Strip, according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. In this Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018 photo, Wassan al-Sayyed,17, right and Massa Halawa, 16 run the team’s virtual reality game “Be a Fire Fighter” in the West Bank city of Nablus. Four Palestinian high school friends are heading to California this week to pitch their mobile app about fire prevention to Silicon Valley’s tech leaders. They made it to the finals of a worldwide app competition among more than 19,000 teens. For the 11th graders from the Israeli-occupied West Bank, the ticket of admission to the World Pitch Summit signals a particularly dramatic leap because of the limited opportunities at home. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser) In this Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018 photo, Wassan al-Sayyed,17, uses a 3D glasses headset that is running the team’s virtual reality game “Be a Fire Fighter” in the West Bank city of Nablus. Four Palestinian high school friends are heading to California this week to pitch their mobile app about fire prevention to Silicon Valley’s tech leaders. They made it to the finals of a worldwide app competition among more than 19,000 teens. For the 11th graders from the Israeli-occupied West Bank, the ticket of admission to the World Pitch Summit signals a particularly dramatic leap because of the limited opportunities at home. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser) Citation: Palestinian teens reach finals of Silicon Valley app pitch (2018, August 5) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-08-palestinian-teens-silicon-valley-app.html Unemployment is particularly high among female university graduates, in part because young women are expected to marry and raise children, while young men are considered the main breadwinners. However, employers also complain that graduates studying outdated or irrelevant courses often lack the needed skills for employment.Saidam said Palestinian schools have received 15,000 computers in the last couple of years. His ministry has also established 54 bookless “smart schools” for grades one to six where students use laptops and learn by doing, including educational trips and involvement with their society.Meanwhile, the Technovation Challenge has already been a life-changing experience for al-Sayed and her teammates, Zubaida al-Sadder, Masa Halawa and Tamara Awaisa.They are now determined to pursue careers in technology.”Before this program, we had a vague idea about the future,” said al-Sayed, speaking at a computer lab at An Najah University in her native Nablus, the West Bank’s second largest city. “Now we have a clear idea. It helped us pick our path in life.”The teens first heard about the competition a few months ago from an IT teacher at their school in a middle-class neighborhood in Nablus, where IT classes are a modest affair, held twice a week, with two students to a computer. Four Palestinian high school friends are heading to California this week to pitch their mobile app about fire prevention to Silicon Valley’s tech leaders, after winning a slot in the finals of a worldwide competition among more than 19,000 teenage girls. In this Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018 photo, Tamara Awaysa, 17, left, Wassan al-Sayyed,17, center and Massa Halawa,16, right, pose for a photo with their mentor Yamama Shakaa in the West Bank city of Nablus. The four Palestinian high school friends are heading to California this week to pitch their mobile app about fire prevention to Silicon Valley’s tech leaders. They made it to the finals of a worldwide app competition among more than 19,000 teens. For the 11th graders from the Israeli-occupied West Bank, the ticket of admission to the World Pitch Summit signals a particularly dramatic leap because of the limited opportunities at home. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser) The girls, friends since 10th grade, each had a laptop at home though, and worked with Yamama Shakaa, a local mentor provided by the competition organizers. The teens “did everything by themselves, with very few resources,” said Shakaa.The team produced a virtual reality game, “Be a firefighter,” to teach fire prevention skills.The subject is particularly relevant in some parts of the Palestinian territories, such as the Gaza Strip, where a border blockade by Israel and Egypt—imposed after the takeover of the Islamic militant group Hamas in 2007—has led to hours-long daily power cuts and the widespread use of candles and other potential fire hazards.The teens now hope to expand their app to include wildfire prevention. They will also present a business and marketing plan at the California pitching session.After the competition, they will give the app to the Palestinian Education Ministry for use in schools.”This prize has changed our lives,” said al-Sayed. Explore further Israel grants Palestinian mobile carriers 3G frequency For the 11th graders from the Israeli-occupied West Bank, the ticket of admission to the World Pitch Summit signals a particularly dramatic leap.They come from middle class families that value education, but opportunities have been limited because of the omnipresent Israeli-Palestinian conflict, prevailing norms of patriarchy in their traditional society and typically underequipped schools with outdated teaching methods.”We are excited to travel in a plane for the first time in our lives, meet new people and see a new world,” said team member Wasan al-Sayed, 17. “We are excited to be in the most prestigious IT community in the world, Silicon Valley, where we can meet interesting people and see how the new world works.”Twelve teams made it to the finals of the “Technovation Challenge” in San Jose, California, presenting apps that tackle problems in their communities. The Palestinian teens compete in the senior division against teams from Egypt, the United States, Mexico, India and Spain, for scholarships of up to $15,000.The competition, now in its ninth year, is run by Iridescent, a global nonprofit offering opportunities to young people, especially girls, through technology. The group said 60 percent of the U.S. participants enroll in additional computer science courses after the competition, with 30 percent majoring in that field in college, well above the national rate among female U.S. college students. Two-thirds of international participants show an interest in technology-related courses, the group said.Palestinian Education Minister Sabri Saidam counts on technology—along with a new emphasis on vocational training—to overhaul Palestinian schools, where many students still learn by rote in crowded classrooms. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more