Go Back To School At The FCPA Institute – Philadelphia Oct 1819

first_imgLearning a new topic or elevating your knowledge and practical skills in a topic is not just for formal students in formal educational settings. Professionals in the workplace can also benefit from a “back to school” experience.For professionals in the FCPA space – or wishing to join the FCPA space – the FCPA Institute serves this objective and the next FCPA Institute will take place in Philadelphia on Oct. 18-19.At a typical FCPA conference, 40-50 individuals bombard you with information during various panels. Just introducing these countless individuals takes over one hour in the aggregate. Moreover, the 3 p.m. panelists were likely not present for the 10 a.m. panel, thus information is presented in a disjointed and largely repetitive fashion.The FCPA Institute is different than a typical FCPA conference. At the FCPA Institute, information is presented in an integrated and cohesive manner by an expert instructor with FCPA practice and teaching experience.Moreover, the FCPA Institute promotes active learning by participants through issue-spotting video exercises, skills exercises, small-group discussions, and the sharing of real-world practices and experiences. To best facilitate the unique learning experience that the FCPA Institute represents, attendance at each FCPA Institute is capped at 25 participants.In short, the FCPA Institute elevates the FCPA learning experience for a diverse group of professionals and is offered as a refreshing and cost-effective alternative to a typical FCPA conference. The goal of the FCPA Institute is simple: to develop and enhance fundamental skills relevant to the FCPA, FCPA enforcement, and FCPA compliance best practices in a stimulating and professional environment with a focus on learning.The FCPA Institute presents the FCPA not merely as a legal issue, but also as a business, finance, accounting, and auditing issue. The FCPA Institute is thus ideal for a diverse group of professionals such as in-house and outside counsel; compliance professionals; finance, accounting, and auditing professionals; and others seeking sophisticated knowledge and enhanced skills relevant to the FCPA.Set forth below is what prior FCPA Institute “graduates” have said about their experience.“Unlike other FCPA conferences where one leaves with a spinning head and unanswered questions, I left the FCPA Institute with a firm understanding of the nuts and bolts of the FCPA, the ability to spot issues, and knowledge of where resources can be found that offer guidance in resolving an issue. The limited class size of the FCPA Institute ensured that all questions were answered and the interactive discussion among other compliance professionals was fantastic.”  (Rob Foster, In-House Counsel, Oil and Gas Company)“The FCPA Institute was one of the best professional development investments of time and money that I have made since law school. The combination of black letter law and practical insight was invaluable. I would highly recommend the FCPA Institute to any professional who has compliance, ethics, legal or international business responsibilities.” (Norm Keith, Partner, Fasken Martineau, Toronto).“The FCPA Institute is very different than other FCPA conferences I have attended. It was interactive, engaging, thought-provoking and at the completion of the Institute I left feeling like I had really learned something new and useful for my job. The FCPA Institute is a must-attend for all compliance folks (in-house or external).” (Robert Wieck, CPA, CIA, CFE, Forensic Audit Senior Manager, Oracle Corporation)“The FCPA Institute is a top-flight conference that offers an insightful, comprehensive review of the FCPA enforcement landscape. Professor Koehler’s focus on developing practical skills in an intimate setting really sets it apart from other FCPA conferences. One of the best features of the FCPA Institute is its diversity of participants and the ability to learn alongside in-house counsel, company executives and finance professionals. (Blair Albom, Associate, Debevoise & Plimpton)“The FCPA Institute was a professionally enriching experience and substantially increased my understanding of the FCPA and its enforcement. Professor Koehler’s extensive insight and practical experience lends a unique view to analyzing enforcement actions and learning compliance best practices. I highly recommend the FCPA Institute to practitioners from all career stages.” (Sherbir Panag, MZM Legal, Mumbia, India)“The FCPA Institute provided an in-depth look into the various forces that have shaped, and that are shaping, FCPA enforcement. The diverse group of participants provided unique insight into how, at a practical level, various professionals evaluate risk and deal with FCPA issues on a day-to-day basis. The small group setting, the interactive nature of the event, and the skills assessment test all set the FCPA Institute apart from other FCPA conferences or panel-based events.” (John Turlais, Senior Counsel, Foley & Lardner)FCPA Institute participants not only gain knowledge, practical skills and peer insight, but can also elect to have their knowledge assessed to earn a certificate of completion upon passing a written assessment tool. In this way, successful completion of the FCPA Institute represents a value-added credential for professional development. In addition, attorneys who complete the FCPA Institute are eligible to receive Continuing Legal Education (“CLE”) credits and prior FCPA Institute participants have also received continuing education units from the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics.To learn more about the FCPA Institute and to register for the Philadelphia event, click here.last_img read more

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2019-07-21

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For US Expats Income Tax Exclusion Depends on Their Abode

first_img Password Lost your password? Since many Texas companies send employees on international assignment, they should be mindful that federal income tax rules don’t apply to everyone in the same way . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Usernamecenter_img Remember me Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.last_img

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2019-07-21

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Bad bugs inspire White House task force and 20 million prize

first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe In the fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria, the U.S. government is dangling a new incentive: a $20 million prize for a quick diagnostic test to recognize highly resistant infections. The prize is just one in a slew of actions announced by the White House today to signal its greater attention to the threat of antibiotic-resistant microbes.Alongside the prize, the administration announced a national strategy that sets goals to be achieved by 2020, including better surveillance of highly resistant infections, faster development of new antibiotics, and more judicious use of existing drugs. The president also signed an executive order creating both an advisory council of nongovernmental experts and an interagency task force, co-chaired by the secretaries of the Health and Human Services (HHS), Defense, and Agriculture departments. “This represents a major elevation of the issue, a major upgrading of the administration’s effort to help address it,” said John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, during a press conference today. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Emailcenter_img The diagnostics prize, co-sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, will be the subject of an upcoming public meeting, where HHS will ask for feedback to zero in on the kind of test that would be most useful, the White House explained in a fact sheet also released today.Meanwhile, the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) released its ideas on ways to meet some of those broad goals. Their report on combating antibiotic resistance suggests, for example, a national network of laboratories to track highly resistant cases, and the widespread use of genome analysis to trace resistant strains to the origin of an outbreak. They also encourage the Food and Drug Administration to create a new approval pathway for urgently needed antimicrobials. Among their more concrete suggestions: that the administration provide $150 million per year over 7 years for basic research that might lead to new antibiotics or to “non-traditional” ways to overcome infections.The administration, of course, doesn’t have to do any of those things. The newly established task force will address suggestions from the PCAST report, but won’t necessarily accept them, Holdren said. The task force has until 15 February 2015 to offer up its own action plan. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

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2019-07-20

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Top stories A supertree of life the human smell of death and

first_img Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) First comprehensive tree of life shows how related you are to millions of speciesMany people today are trying to track down their own family history and genealogy, but this endeavor has bloomed to a new level with the first comprehensive Open Tree of Life that knits together more than 500 family trees of various groups of organisms, revealing a supertree with 2.3 million species. With some crowdsourcing help from scientists around the globe, the hope is that users can one day zoom in on certain branches to further explore their relationship to millions of other species.Researchers isolate the ‘human smell of death’ After analyzing the tissue samples and organs from corpses in a jar, researchers have found a singular chemical cocktail that separates the smell of death of humans from all other species. This new human decomposition cocktail may help train cadaver dogs to find human victims.Here’s what Ridley Scott has to say about the science in The MartianGet your tickets and popcorn ready for the upcoming newest sci-fi blockbuster film, The Martian, directed by Ridley Scott and starring Matt Damon. Science gets an insider Q&A with Ridley himself; Andy Weir, whose debut novel provided the tale; and Jim Green, NASA’s director of planetary science, on the level of scientific plausibility throughout the movie.Dutch sexism study comes under fireA new study finds that women have a lower chance than men at winning early career grants from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), the country’s main grant distributing agency. The results have garnered controversy, with some scientists claiming that the study’s data fell into a statistical trap known as Simpson’s Paradox. Regardless of the controversy, NWO plans to move forward with its efforts to integrate additional gender awareness training for its grant reviewers.You’re surrounded by your own personal cloud of microbesYou might not want to tell your OCD friends, but scientists have found that physical contact isn’t the only way we spread germs. Last week they revealed that humans are surrounded by their own microbial clouds, which differ from person to person. These germy “fingerprints” hover around our heads in a 90-centimeter (or 3-foot) radius, meaning there’s a high chance our microbes are mingling at the office, in the locker room, and even on the subway. Scientists think that when microbes mix, we may pick up bacterial souvenirs from one another, transforming our own microbiomes in the process.Light-based memory chip is first to permanently store dataToday’s electronic computer chips work at blazing speeds. But an alternate version that stores, manipulates, and moves data with photons of light instead of electrons would make today’s chips look like proverbial horses and buggies. Now, one team of researchers reports that it has created the first permanent optical memory on a chip, a critical step in that direction.How societies learn to count to 10In some traditional cultures, counting is as easy as one, two, three—because it stops there: Their languages have no words for higher numerals, and instead simply use varieties of words like “many.” But over time some societies acquired higher numbers, as the major languages spoken on the planet today must have done long ago. Now, a new study of an Australian language family reveals how languages add, and sometimes lose, higher numbers—and how some languages lasted for thousands of years without them.Now that you’ve got the scoop on this week’s hottest science news, come back on Monday to test your smarts on our new weekly quiz!center_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwelast_img read more

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2019-07-20

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One reason your hair is thinning Some of it turns into skin

first_img Email Aging isn’t kind to our bodies—or our hair. As we get older, the cellular machinery that regenerates our crowning glory slows, causing it to thin and disappear. Now, scientists have uncovered a new mechanism behind hair loss: When stem cells in hair follicles are damaged by age, they turn themselves into skin. Over time, this happens to more and more stem cells, causing hair follicles to shrink and eventually disappear.This is the first time such a switch has been associated with aging in any tissue, says Emi Nishimura, a biologist at Tokyo Medical and Dental University who led the study.Stem cells—precursor cells that can give rise to specialized cells like skin and hair—regenerate throughout the life of an organism and are located all over the body. But unlike stem cells in the blood or intestinal lining, hair follicle stem cells regenerate on a cyclical basis. Their active growth phase is followed by a dormant phase, in which they stop producing hair. These discrete on-off periods make hair follicle stem cells a useful model for studying stem cell regulation—and hair loss. “Previously, people knew that when we age, the hair becomes thinner,” says Cheng-Ming Chuong, a biologist at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles who was not involved in the work. But at the cellular and molecular level, “there’s not enough understanding.”To figure out why hair thins in old age, Nishimura and her colleagues started with mice. They looked at hair follicle stem cell growth cycles in live animals—a daunting task—and found that age-related DNA damage triggers the destruction of a protein called Collagen 17A1. That in turn triggers the transformation of stem cells into epidermal keratinocytes, they report today in Science. In their new state, the damaged stem cells slough off easily from the skin’s surface.“When damaged cells deplete that niche of Collagen 17A1, they alter their own signaling environment,” says Maksim Plikus, a biologist at the University of California, Irvine, who was not involved in the study. He calls it “interesting” that these damaged cells “change their fate” rather than committing suicide through apoptosis (programmed cell death) or stopping cell division through senescence.To see whether their results carried over to people, Nishimura and her team analyzed hair follicles in scalps from women aged 22 to 70. They found that follicles in people over 55 were smaller, with lower levels of Collagen 17A1. “We assume that … aging processes and mechanisms [similar to those in the mice] explain the human age-associated hair thinning and hair loss,” Nishimura says. She adds that Collagen 17A1 could be a target for hair loss treatments—although stem cell depletion is unlikely to be the only factor behind the condition.The new study adds to a growing body of work that examines the cellular and molecular mechanisms of stem cell regulation. Another study published today—also in Science—finds that a transcription factor called Foxc1 could also help regulate the hair growth cycle.Rui Yi, a biologist at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and colleagues found that the transcription factor was expressed in active hair follicle stem cells, but not in inactive ones. When they bred mice without Foxc1 in their skin, the activated stem cells didn’t go back into the dormant, or quiescent, state. After further testing, they concluded that active cells produce Foxc1 to temporarily “deactivate,” thus keeping their regeneration in check.“After the cells start to duplicate, they say, ‘mission accomplished, let’s go back to quiescence. Let’s wait for the next time,’” Yi says. This suggests that stem cells can sense their state and respond appropriately.Together, the two studies highlight that within the past 15 years, hair follicle stem cells have become a tractable model for studying stem cell behavior, Plikus says. Now, scientists are starting to unlock the underlying molecular machinery. Says Chuong: “These two papers sort of represent the beginning of these new efforts.” Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrycenter_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwelast_img read more

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2019-07-20

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US needs Robin Hood approach to saving endangered species researcher argues

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Cost-effective (fully funded, populations increasing); Costly success (overfunded, populations increasing); Injurious neglect (underfunded, populations declining); and Costly failure (overfunded, populations declining). Overall, she calculated that if the agencies took $17 million annually from 50 “costly failures” and moved it to species suffering from “injurious neglect,” they could meet the funding goals for 182 species.Not everyone will agree with her analysis or proposed solution, Gerber concedes, particularly people who oversee well-funded recovery plans. But “we can achieve a lot more by doing something that seems to make a lot of sense,” she says. “Let’s just take that surplus and we could save more than 180 species. That’s low-hanging fruit.”Andrew Dobson, an ecologist at Princeton University who was not involved in the study, says the research highlights the need to discuss how we allocate conservation funding. The results “show there could be significant modifications in the way money is spent,” he says.At the same, he says it highlights the overall shortage of funding to protect biodiversity. “My worry is, because we cut the budget so short, we are essentially spending all our time rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic,” he says. “The bottom line is we really actually need to invest more money in this.” 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 Bunched cory cacti bloom along the Texas border with Mexico, their violet flowers emerging in the summer. The species is listed as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA), which means federal officials are required to come up with a so-called recovery plan for nursing the plant back to health. But the cactus recovery effort is getting just 2% of the funding that officials estimate it needs for success.In contrast, a few flashier listed species—including the steller sea lion and the desert bighorn sheep—are getting bigger recovery budgets than recommended, reports a study published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.That discrepancy is hobbling U.S. efforts to save vulnerable species, says the author, who argues the nation would get a bigger bang from its endangered species spending by shifting money from overfunded to underfunded species.center_img Email “As conservation scientists, the existing paradigm is we should save everything,” says Leah Gerber, an ecologist at Arizona State University, Tempe. But with humans drastically affecting the planet’s biodiversity, she says “we really do have to make choices.”Together, recovery plans for the 1125 species listed under the ESA call for the government to spend $1.21 billion annually. But Congress typically allots just 25% of that total, leaving many recovery plans underfunded. More than 100 plans, for example, get less than 10% of their proposed budgets. Other species, however, get more money than their plan calls for, as a result of factors including political pressure, partnerships with other nonfederal funders, past funding, or lawsuit settlements.  But the extra money hasn’t always meant the plans are successful.To see whether there might be a better way to allocate resources, Gerber decided to examine the return that the government was getting from its investment in conservation. She waded through recovery plans and reports to Congress, determining how species are faring and how much money two U.S. agencies—the Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service—spent on them between 1980 and 2014. She then put the species into four categories: Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more

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2019-07-20

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Top stories Rafting monkeys brainzapping cadavers and the Michael Jordan of computer

first_imgCadaver study casts doubts on how zapping brain may boost mood, relieve painEarlier this month, György Buzsáki of New York University in New York City showed a slide that sent a murmur through an audience in the Grand Ballroom of New York’s Midtown Hilton during the annual meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society. It wasn’t just the grisly image of a human cadaver with more than 200 electrodes inserted into its brain that set people whispering; it was what those electrodes detected—or rather, what they failed to detect.Who’s the Michael Jordan of computer science? New tool ranks researchers’ influence 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 Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)center_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Last fall, the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence in Seattle, Washington, launched a challenge to online scientific search engines by unveiling a service called Semantic Scholar. The program, originally trained on 2 million papers from the field of computer science, was intended to actually understand—using artificial intelligence—the content of published literature. This week, the institute added new capability to Semantic Scholar with an equally ambitious aim: measuring the influence that a scientist or organization has had on subsequent research.Vikings may have first taken to seas to find women, slavesOn 8 June 793 C.E., a band of foreign warriors attacked the Christian monastery of Lindisfarne on the English coast, wrecking the church, killing the monks, and making off with all the treasure their ships could hold. This brutal attack has long been thought to mark the start of Viking aggression. But archaeologist Neil Price of Sweden’s Uppsala University suspects that the roots of the Viking era go back long before this raid.No pressure: NSF test finds eliminating deadlines halves number of grant proposalsIn recent years, the National Science Foundation has struggled with the logistics of evaluating a rising number of grant proposals that has propelled funding rates to historic lows. Annual or semiannual grant deadlines lead to enormous spikes in submissions, causing headaches for the program managers. Now, one piece of the agency has found a potentially powerful new tool to flatten the spikes and cut the number of proposals: It can simply eliminate deadlines.Monkey ancestors rafted across the sea to North AmericaScientists have discovered the earliest known traveler between South and North America: a new species of monkey. It lived in Panama 21 million years ago, long before most scientists believe there was a land bridge connecting the continents. So how did it get there? By floating on rafts across the sea.Now that you’ve got the scoop on this week’s hottest Science news, come back Monday to test your smarts on our weekly quiz!last_img read more

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2019-07-20

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Podcast Quantum dots in consumer electronics and a faceoff with the quiz

first_imgSarah Crespi takes a pop quiz on literal life hacking, spotting poverty from outer space, and the size of the average American vocabulary with Catherine Matacic.   From the magazine You can already buy a quantum dot television, but it’s really just the beginning of the infiltration of quantum dots into our everyday lives. Cherie Kagan is here to talk about her in depth review of the technology published in this week’s issue.   [Image: Public domain; Music: Jeffrey Cook]last_img

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2019-07-20

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Hundreds of years later plants domesticated by ancient civilizations still dominate in

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Hundreds of years later, plants domesticated by ancient civilizations still dominate in the Amazon Domesticated tree species grow on ancient agricultural soils, like this clearing near the Tapajós River in Brazil. After Europeans brought smallpox and other highly infectious diseases to the Amazon in the 15th and 16th centuries, millions of native people died and much of their civilization was wiped out. But it didn’t disappear entirely. Left behind was a verdant, leafy legacy in the untold numbers of palms and other trees that had been cultivated across the Amazon. Now, researchers report that Pre-Columbian peoples had a significant impact on Amazonian forest diversity by making their favorite species much more common.The findings “contribute to an emerging consensus that Pre-Colombians altered most of the Amazon,” says Joe Wright, an ecologist with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama City, who was not involved in the research.Pre-Columbian people began domesticating plants on the edges of the vast Amazonian forests at least 8000 years ago, and their descendants continue to cultivate many species today. Archaeologists have long known that certain domesticated plants—palm trees for example—are often found around ancient sites in the Amazon, such as earthen mounds and the fertile soils known as terra preta, a relic of past agriculture. 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 Zimbabwecenter_img Email By Erik StokstadMar. 2, 2017 , 2:00 PM Carolina Levis To get a better idea of Amazonian forest diversity, ecologist Hans ter Steege of the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden, the Netherlands, and colleagues had previously assembled a massive database of biological surveys done by many researchers. They reported in 2013 that certain tree species were particularly common, or “hyperdominant,” in Amazonian forests; half of all trees across the entire region belong to just 227 species. Many of these tree species are heavily used by local people like the Yanomami of northern Brazil, mainly for food. That raised the question of whether some of these abundant and widespread species might have originally been planted by people.The team made a list of woody species that had evidence of domestication, like larger fruit. Most of these 85 species can also survive in the wild without the care of farmers, unlike modern crops, putting them in a state of “incipient” domestication. The next step was for Ter Steege, Carolina Levis, a Ph.D. student at Brazil’s National Institute for Amazonian Research and Wageningen University in the Netherlands, and colleagues to compare the abundance and richness of these species, relative to other species, in 1091 research plots in the Amazon basin and the neighboring Guiana shield. Twenty of the 85 domesticated species, they found, were hyperdominant.To see whether humans had a hand in this dominance, the team checked the abundance and richness of trees around places with no evidence of past occupation and also near 3348 archaeological sites, such as rock art or earthen mounds. Common domesticated species, such as the Brazil nut tree, were more abundant near places where people once lived, the team reports today in Science. Nearby forests also typically contained more kinds of domesticated species than elsewhere. The richness and abundance was particularly striking in the eastern and southwestern Amazon. In parts of the Amazonian forest within Bolivia, for example, domesticated species accounted for up to 61% of tree diversity. “I was actually a bit stunned,” Ter Steege says. “The effect of Pre-Columbian people is much more pronounced than many of us believed.”Wright says the relationship between domesticated species and archaeological sites is “very convincing.” There is a strong case for the ancient cultivation of forests in the southern and eastern parts of the Amazon, agrees Mark Bush, a biogeographer at the Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne, who specializes in the paleo-ecology of tropical forests. But he’s not convinced by the evidence elsewhere in the region. One problem, he says, is that the new research can’t determine when these domesticated species became common; some of the cultivation could have been more recent. It would be a “huge overreach” to claim that all the Amazon is dominated by domesticated species, he says.last_img read more

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2019-07-20

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This cuckoo catfish tricks other fish into raising its headchomping young

first_img Roberto Nistri/Alamy Stock Photo By Elizabeth PennisiMar. 22, 2019 , 9:00 AM Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) This cuckoo catfish tricks other fish into raising its head-chomping young Like the cuckoo bird it shares a name with, the cuckoo catfish shirks its parental duties. The East African lake swimmer abandons its eggs to the care of other species. Now, researchers have learned how it pulls off this trick, and how its offspring get in on the action.More than 90 species of birds, including cuckoos, are “brood parasites.” They don’t build their own nests; instead, they rely on other birds to care for their young. But the cuckoo catfish (Synodontis multipunctatus) seems to be the only other vertebrate with this strategy. In East Africa’s Lake Tanganyika, the catfish has a very particular target: thick-lipped cichlid fish that use their mouths as nurseries to raise their young. When the cichlid lays her own eggs, which she then scoops into her mouth, riotous catfish couples sneak under her to lay and fertilize their own eggs at the same spot. In the chaos created, the cichlid scoops up both her eggs and theirs.Last year, researchers showed that some cichlid moms are smart enough to avoid picking up the catfish eggs. Now, those same researchers—along with a second team—have shown how the catfish are fighting back. In their laboratory at the University of Colorado in Boulder, evolutionary ecologist Marcus Cohen and his colleagues compared the development of the catfish and the cichlid eggs. Catfish eggs developed faster, hatched sooner, and were bigger than cichlid eggs laid at the same time, which puts the catfish young at an evolutionary advantage, Cohen’s team will report next month in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe The cuckoo catfish is a deadbeat parent, leaving care of its young to others. Email Those differences are bad news for the young cichlids, who start to hatch just about the time the catfish embryos need to start to feed. The catfish intruders use their wide jaws and extra teeth to devour the new hatchings headfirst. If the catfish run out of cichlid hatchlings, they start to chow down on each other.Meanwhile, another team has discovered that bigger eggs and faster development give the young catfish a second advantage. Martin Reichard, a biologist at the Czech Academy of Sciences Institute of Vertebrate Biology in Brno, and his colleagues found that catfish eggs that were rejected or missed by the cichlid parent end up hatching and developing just fine outside the cichlid’s mouth. But when the cichlid mom lets her brood out while she feeds, the young catfish can jump inside when she scoops her fry back up, Reichard’s team reports in the same issue of the journal. This two-stage ability for the fish to invade sets them apart from parasitic birds, says Sheena Cotter, an evolutionary ecologist at the University of Lincoln in the United Kingdom who was not involved in the work. “That definitely doesn’t happen in birds.”This ability of catfish young to survive on their own also suggests the catfish—unlike the cuckoo—has not yet fully evolved a dependence on the cichlid to raise its young, Reichard and his colleagues write. The tendency for the cichlids to take in catfish young may have even encouraged the evolution of this dependency in the first place, they add.These papers should encourage researchers to look for more examples of brood parasitism, Cotter says. “It’s entirely possible you can get this happening in other systems.”last_img read more

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2019-07-20

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Ancient molecules reveal surprising details on origins of bizarre sloths

first_img Ancient molecules reveal surprising details on origins of ‘bizarre’ sloths Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) A sloth at rest iStock.com/sdominick By Gretchen VogelJun. 6, 2019 , 11:00 AM In one of the new studies, paleoprotein expert Samantha Presslee of the University of York in the United Kingdom and her colleagues sampled more than 100 sloth fossils from across North and South America for traces of collagen. This protein is prevalent in bones, and can stick around for more than 1 million years. In 17 samples the researchers analyzed, the collagen was preserved well enough that they were able to piece together the amino acid sequences that form the building blocks of proteins. That allowed them to compare the various collagens—one of which was more than 130,000 years old—and build likely family trees, which they describe today in Nature Ecology & Evolution. Jorge Blanco Working independently, evolutionary biologist Frédéric Delsuc of the University of Montpellier in France and colleagues analyzed nearly full mitochondrial DNA sequences—the genetic material found in a cell’s energy-producing machinery—from 10 sloth fossils, ranging in age from 10,000 to 45,000 years old. They, too, used the data to draw likely sloth family trees, which the group describes today in Current Biology.The two teams came to strikingly similar conclusions: Today’s three-toed sloths don’t form their own branch on the tree as previously thought, but are related to the giant ground sloth, Megalonyx, which lived in North America until about 15,000 years ago. And today’s two-toed sloths are distant cousins of the giant South American Mylodon, believed to be the last ground sloth to go extinct, less than 10,000 years ago.Perhaps most surprising, the wide variety of now-extinct sloths that lived on the islands of the West Indies until about 5000 years ago all seem to have evolved from a common ancestor that lived about 30 million years ago. “Nobody had ever suggested that,” Gaudin says. That means a single population of sloths likely reached the islands just once. That fits with a theory that, instead of swimming or drifting, many animals reached the islands by walking over a land bridge that appeared about 30 million years ago and later was submerged.“The fact that the [two studies] agree with one another is really interesting,” Gaudin says. But, he cautions, the analysis only includes a fraction of the known species. “There are loads of different extinct sloths that we could add to the tree,” Presslee says. “That’s the next step.”Combining data from fossil shapes with the genetic data could produce even better trees, says Gerardo De Iuliis, a paleontologist at the University of Toronto in Canada. That might reveal how certain sloth traits—like the long, powerful forearms that allow today’s sloths to move while hanging from branches—arose independently multiple times. “They are bizarre animals that are bizarre in similar ways,” Gaudin says. Genetic analysis suggests today’s three-toed sloths (top) are related to the giant ground sloths Megatherium (right) and Megalonyx (center), whereas modern two-toed sloths (upper right) are cousins of the South American Mylodon (left). From elephant-size animals that browsed North American grasslands to moose-size swimmers that plied the Pacific coast of South America, sloths have roamed Earth for more than 50 million years. Yet scientists know little about how the dozens of known species are related to each other. Now, two new analyses of ancient sloth DNA and proteins—some of which are more than 100,000 years old—are rewriting the sloth family tree. The studies even suggest a land bridge connected the West Indies with South America 30 million years ago, allowing the slow-moving animals to reach the islands.“It’s a remarkable achievement,” says Timothy Gaudin, a paleontologist at the University of Tennessee in Chattanooga, who was not involved in the work.Of the more than 100 sloth species identified, all but six are extinct. So scientists have had to compare the shapes of fossil bones to piece together how the animals evolved. Such comparisons are not clear-cut, however, and new techniques for isolating DNA and proteins from fossils have made it possible to compare the genetics of long-extinct animals. Ancient DNA allows scientists to compare genes directly, but proteins last longer. So although they provide less precise information, paleontologists are increasingly using them to study even older fossils. 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 Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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2019-07-20

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Durants Injury Blamed On Curse Of The Knicks

first_imgIt’s the curse of the Knicks trading Patrick Ewing to the Seattle Supersonics.. Smile…— Reggie Miller (@ReggieMillerTNT) May 20, 2015Aside from the Durant injury, other noteworthy examples of The Curse of the Knicks include LeBron James tempting and then snubbing the Knicks in free agency in 2010 as well as the tam having the worst record in the league this past season only to miss out on getting the top pick in the NBA Draft later this month.But there are seemingly still some significant rays of sunshine on the horizon for the Knicks. As the only NBA franchise with an all-Black front office and head coach, strategic moves were made last season to put the team in what is still an enviable position. There’s still plenty of “max money” to spend on as many as two star players who are deserved of nine-digit contracts. But KD, who, before his calf injury last month, was arguably playing basketball at the highest level of his career, was supposed to be one of those “max” stars for the Knicks. Not to mention the Knicks recently dumped the disappointing Kristaps Porzingis, a former lottery pick who attained all-star status before injuring himself and sitting out the entire 2018-19 season. But considering Porzingis never helped the team win and his, um, racist rape charge in which he is accused of sexually assaulting a Black woman he allegedly forced to be his slave , the decision to trade him was in retrospect a brilliant move. (Porzingis is now a member of the Dallas Mavericks, which has its own #MeToo scandal going on. In the past, the Knicks would have been on the receiving end of such a deal.) 5 Takeaways From Magic Johnson Airing Out The Lakers’ Laundry The Evolving Relevance Of ‘The Talk’ Quick: Name the pro basketball team whose chances to win another championship were hurt significantly by Kevin Durant‘s injury Monday night in the NBA Finals.If you said the Golden State Warriors, you’d be right — and wrong.The New York Knicks, long the league’s bottom-dwelling laughing stock, were also dealt a similarly devastating blow when it was learned that Durant hurt his Achilles’ during Game 5. The injury will probably keep him from playing for all of next season — when Knicks fans and basketball experts alike expected him to be suiting up for the home team in Madison Square Garden. Golden State Warriors , Kevin Durant , NBA Finals , New York Knicks , The Curse Of The Knicks Instead, Knicks fans plunged back down to reality with a crash landing as explicit, slo-mo video made its way around social media showing something popping in Durant’s leg to hammer home the severity of the injury. And while cynics might refer to all of the above as a first world problem, seeing as the Knicks still have the coveted third pick in the NBA Draft, the truth is that the team’s losing culture has bred a level of impatience among its fanbase not seen since before the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles finally won a Super Bowl last year. And with the Toronto Raptors — an expansion team that joined the NBA in 1995 — poised to win its first championship in about half the time since the Knicks’ last title in the early 1970s, that level of urgency was nearing unrivaled status for many Knicks fans who weren’t even alive the last time the team won a ring.At the end of the day, KD’s health is obviously what’s most important. And, of course, the Knicks could still very well sign him and cross their fingers that he returns to the same all-star form that’s defined his career. But if [recent] history is any indication of what’s to come, conventional wisdom (fueled by The Curse of the Knicks) would suggest that tNew York might continue to stink it up with or without Durant.*EDITOR’S NOTE: Full disclosure — this was written by a Knicks fan.SEE ALSO:Trifling Linda Fairstein Defends Her Racism And Destroying The Lives Of Five Black Children In A Vile Op-EdThe Judge Presiding Over Amber Guyger’s Trial Is A Black Woman Portland Trail Blazers v Los Angeles Lakers I blame the Knicks for this KD injury. Poor guy is just going about his business being one of the best players in the world and the Knicks say he is their number one focus. The curse of the Knicks is something else man. I feel bad for KD.— Sarah (@saharaLdesert) June 11, 2019What’s “The Curse,” you ask? It’s both complicated and very simple at the same time.The multitude of factors that compelled basketball’s karmic gods to frown upon the Knicks are far too many to list here. But one of the two major reasons why no hoops purists with an appreciation for hardwood tradition sheds a tear for the Knicks is because it’s been a clear case of self-sabotage. The most recent blame starts at the top with team owner James Dolan, whose cavalier approach to the Knicks and prioritization of his failed rock band has enabled the same level of uninspired attention from the franchise’s management and coaching ranks. When you couple that with how the franchise disrespected Knicks legend Patrick Ewing at the end of his record-setting career, all any basketball realist can do is shrug out of understanding why the gray cloud of despair has followed the Knicks ever since, even in times of heightened hope — like now. More By Bruce C.T. Wright A closer look at Kevin Durant’s right leg injury: pic.twitter.com/XEHPIn9wnW— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 11, 2019The development, many Knicks fans said on social media, could only be the result of one thing and one thing only: The Curse of the Knicks, a jinx that reared its ugly head after months of apparent slumber only to suddenly sharpen its elbows, clear its throat and say, “Wayment!” while thugging away any scintilla of hope New York faithfuls had of seeing Durant in orange and blue next season*. Everything We Know About Sadie Roberts-Joseph’s Murder Investigation Unpacking Mayor Pete’s ‘Douglass Plan’ For Black Americalast_img read more

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2019-07-20

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Honoring Mothers Of The Movement

first_img Tamir Rice’s mom 2019 National Action Network Convention’s Mothers of the Movement panel moderated by Attorney Ben Crump and Angela Rye. Panelists include Dr. Tiffany Crutcher, Gwen Carr, Sybrina Fulton , Lezley McSpadden, Paula Peebles, and Sequine Thompson. #NANCONV2019 pic.twitter.com/qXE1TPfsyJ— Reverend Al Sharpton (@TheRevAl) April 3, 2019The names of those we have lost still reverberate in conversations having to do with social justice, or the lack thereof: Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, for starters. Sadly, a handful of new names continue to be added to the list as law enforcement appears undaunted in how they treat Black suspects versus their white counterparts. We’ve seen that in just the past year alone everywhere from Pittsburgh to Sacramento to Dallas to most recently in Oklahoma, where a police officer shot Lorenzo Clerkley Jr., a 14-year-old Black child, two times through a fence in less than a second after giving a command. Amazingly, Clerkley survived the barrage of bullets. But many of his predecessors who found themselves similarly targeted by law enforcement were not as lucky to live to tell their stories.Instead, those narratives have been left to be told and retold by their families, including and especially their mothers, many of whom have led tireless plights to create change centered on how this world and country view young Black males.Scroll down to see what some of the Mothers of the Movement have been up to recently to understand what motivates them to keep on keeping on. 2. Sybrina Fulton “I won’t ever give up. I won’t ever stop this fight.” – Sybrina Fulton, co-founder of the @TTMFoundation. #MakeBlackHistory #BlackExcellence pic.twitter.com/EkJALQzRGe— OneUnited Bank (@oneunited) July 27, 2018 Sybrina Fulton’s son, Trayvon Martin, was killed in south Florida in 2012 after a neighborhood watch volunteer mistook the teenager for a criminal, ignored orders from 911 to stay away and shot him to death. In turn, Fulton has dedicated her life to making sure something like that never happens again by bringing attention to Trayvon’s tragic story. 9. Samara Rice 3. Maria Hamilton .@MrsShug Maria A. Hamilton holds up Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett’s proclamation declaring today #DontreDay at Red Arrow Park, where her son Dontre was killed by a police officer in April of 2014.#Justice4Dontre pic.twitter.com/ukTUjGRgAf— Joseph Brusky (@JosephBrusky) May 5, 2018 Maria Hamilton’s son, Dontre Hamilton, was killed in Milwaukee in 2014 after a Starbucks employee called the police on him for sleeping in a public park. Dontrae, who was unarmed, was shot 14 times. 4. Wanda Johnson Oscar Grant’s mother Wanda Johnson stands firm on call for station renaming: Grant Fruitvale Station pic.twitter.com/8cJ8AbwMQN— Rachel Swan (@rachelswan) January 1, 2019 Wanda Johnson is the mother of Oscar Grant, who was killed after being shot while handcuffed by police in Oakland on New Year’s Day in 2009. It was only recently reported that the officer who killed Grant was not trying to de-escalate a situation when he fired those fatal shots, contradicting the cop’s statement. She saw the latest development as vindication, but not justice. Moms around the world were being feted by their children on Sunday to celebrate Mother’s Day. But there were also a growing number of childless mothers who were continuing to mourn the deaths of their sons from senseless violence. They have comprised what has become the Mothers of the Movement, women who were robbed of their motherhood because of killings by figures in law enforcement.Photos: Remembering Black Men And Boys Killed By PoliceWhile those deaths have ranged from the recent to occurring more than a decade ago, the growing influence of the Mothers of the Movement now stretches from the hallowed hallways of Capitol Hill to the grassroots level from which the efforts to effect change in the nation’s gun laws and biased criminal justice system remain.Just in April, the Rev. Al Sharpton hosted Mothers of the Movement at his annual National Action Network convention in New York City. Civil rights lawyer Benjamin Crump explained to the audience how the group of courageous women were leading the charge to make sure every officer in each and all police departments across the country can be equipped with a body camera to bring full transparency to law enforcement-involved shootings that many times result in cover-ups to protect cops. 5. Lucy McBath I don’t want an apology from the NRA. I want their organization to stop putting profits over public safety. ⁰We will keep fighting for common sense laws until our families are safe. Stand with me if you agree it’s time we do something about it. https://t.co/jusIb9YJD6 pic.twitter.com/Pl9vN7xjOz— Lucy McBath (@lucymcbath) May 7, 2019 Lucy McBath — the newly elected congresswomen in Georgia whose son, Jordan Davis, was shot and killed in 2012 because a white man was angry at loud music being played in the car the teenager was in — was recently the target of the NRA’s new president, who said she was only elected because her son was killed.“Hi NRA! It’s time we clear something up,” McBath tweeted at the NRA on May 6. “I won this race because – after my son was senselessly murdered in 2012 – I stood up to do something about it. I knew it was time to fight back.” 1. Gwen Carr “My family has been waiting, suffering for five years while NYPD Officer Pantaleo’s lawyers tried every trick in th book to prevent this disciplinary trial from going forward. I’m happy for today’s decision, but I expect a long fight ahead,” Gwen Carr, #EricGarner’s mother. pic.twitter.com/nY1Oxm9TTQ— CPR Change the NYPD (@changethenypd) May 9, 2019 Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner, has seen justice deferred in the police killing of her son in New York City in 2014. Garner died after police tried to arrest him for the nonviolent misdemeanor of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes in public. On May 10, an NYPD judge finally ruled that proceedings can move forward with disciplining Officer Daniel Pantaleo, nearly five years after he choked Garner to death. 8. Geneva Reed-Veal 6. Lesley McSpadden Lesley McSpadden, the mother of Mike Brown Jr honored me with taking her photos. During the shoot, I asked her if she would feel comfortable taking a photo at the spot where her son laid. She hesitated but said yes. So here she is, through all of that pain, still standing. pic.twitter.com/cBXBUHz2dU— Ohun Ashe (@Ohun_Ashe) March 21, 2019 7. April Pipkins Sybrina Fulton, #TrayvonMartin’s mom, offered words of encouragement and support to April Pipkins, E.J. Bradford’s mom, on the day their family found out the officer who shot and killed Bradford was cleared of any wrongdoing. Today would have been Trayvon’s 24th Birthday. pic.twitter.com/d7tMQBFd6c— Jamiese Price (@ThePriceReport) February 6, 2019 Sandra Bland’s mother.last_img read more

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2019-07-20

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Ayodhya land dispute SC seeks report on status of mediation by July

first_img Thrice Supreme Court said: Don’t disturb land until suits are over Related News The apex court further added that if after going through the report, they find that it does not suggest any amicable solution and the mediation needs to be concluded, then a day-to-day hearing will begin from July 25, on appeals against Allahabad High Court’s September 30, 2010 verdict in the matter.The court was hearing a plea filed by Rajendra Singh, son of Gopal Singh Visharad, one of the plaintiffs in the original civil suit regarding the Ayodhya land. It was listed before a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and Abdul Nazeer.Visharad claimed that there was “not much progress” in the mediation ordered by the court and urged it to declare “that the mediation proceedings…have been concluded” so that the hearing on the appeals can start. Advertising Explained: The 67 acres in Ayodhya After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Advertising Best Of Express The High Court had divided the 2.7-acre disputed land at the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid site equally among the three parties – Ram Lalla, Nirmohi Akhara and Sunni Wakf Board.Visharad, a resident of Ayodhya, had moved the Court of Civil Judge in Faizabad in 1950, claiming that his right to worship was obstructed by the state government that disallowed him from going near the idol. He had sought an injunction against the removal of idols.The Supreme Court, on March 8, had ordered mediation to seek a solution into the dispute and appointed retired Judge Kalifulla to head the panel.center_img Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach BJP’s Ayodhya move aimed at Lok Sabha elections: Mayawati ayodhya land dispute, ayodhya land dispute case, ayodhya case hearing, ayodha case, supreme court, ayodhya mediation committee, ayodhya land dispute mediation, chief justice ranjan gogoi, india news, Indian Express The Supreme Court had ordered mediation to seek a solution into the dispute. (File)The Supreme Court Thursday asked the three-member mediation panel in the Ayodhya land dispute case to submit the status of the proceedings in the matter by July 18. The panel is headed by Justice FM Ibrahim Kalifulla, with spiritual teacher Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu as the other two members. Visharad has sought hearing of the case by the top court instead of mediation. Senior advocate K S Parasaran, appearing for Visharad, sought a judicial decision in the matter.“Dispute of this nature is difficult to settle”, Parasaran told the bench which then said it would call for a report from the Mediation Committee. Counsel for Ram Lalla Viarjman also supported Sigh’s plea to conclude the mediation and start the hearing at the earliest.“We have set up a mediation panel. We will go by the report of the panel. Let the mediators submit a report on this,” the top court said.Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhavan opposed the plea to declare the mediation proceedings as concluded and asked if the application was an attempt to intimidate. Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield By Express Web Desk |New Delhi | Updated: July 11, 2019 11:57:52 am 3 Comment(s)last_img read more

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2019-07-19

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Kerala Lottery Today Results announced first prize is worth Rs 80 lakh

first_imgIf the prize money is less than Rs 5,000, the winners can claim the money from any lottery shop in Kerala. If the amount won is above Rs 5,000, the winners will have to surrender their tickets before a bank or government lottery office with id proofs.Kerala State Pournami Lottery RN-400 Today Results: Check hereThe live results would be announced at 3 pm. Official results will be available from 4 pm onwards on http://www.keralalotteries.com/. The price of a single ticket is Rs 30, while the entire book costs Rs 750.With seven daily and multiple bumper draws, the lottery is one of the biggest cash flows in Kerala. Related News kerala lottery result, kerala lottery result today, kerala lottery results, karunya lottery, karunya lottery result, karunya lottery kr 404 result, kr 404, kr 404 lottery result, kr404, kerala lottery result kr 404, kerala lottery result kr 404 today, kerala lottery result today, kerala lottery result today karunya, kerala lottery result karunya Kerala Karunya Lottery KR-404 Results Today: The first prize is worth Rs 80 lakh, while the second and third are of Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 lakh respectively. The consolation prize is Rs 8,000.Kerala Karunya Lottery KR-404 Results Today: The Kerala state lottery department today will announce the results of Kerala Karunya Lottery KR-404. The first prize is worth Rs 80 lakh, while the second and third are of Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 lakh respectively. The consolation prize is Rs 8,000. Kerala Sthree Sakthi Lottery SS-166 Today Results: first prize is worth Rs 60 lakh! Kerala Lottery Today Results: first prize is worth Rs 60 lakh! Kerala Lottery Today Results: Winners announced, First prize is worth Rs 70 lakh! Advertising Post Comment(s) The state government organises four festival bumper draws — Onam, Vishu, Christmas and Pooja/Dussehra.There are two seasonal jackpots, the monsoon and summer bumper. Advertising By Express Web Desk |New Delhi | Updated: July 14, 2019 4:04:40 pmlast_img read more

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2019-07-19

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Apple May Alter the AR Competition

first_imgApple is stockpiling resources to make a splash in the augmented reality market.The company is not only marshaling internal resources behind its AR efforts, but also hiring talented outsiders and acquiring companies with expertise in AR hardware, 3D gaming and virtual reality software, Bloomberg reported Monday.The new outsiders include a former Dolby labs executive, engineers who worked virtual reality headsets for Google and Microsoft, and some Hollywood digital effects experts, the report notes.”We’ve been waiting for Apple to launch something in AR after its acquisition of a number of AR companies, including Metaio and FlyBy Media,” said David MacQueen, executive director for apps and media at Strategy Analytics.”Right now, there’s no company really taking a strong position in AR, at least from a consumer perspective,” he told TechNewsWorld. “The most advanced product is Microsoft’s HoloLens, but that is squarely aimed at enterprise users and has a price tag to match.” Mainstream Reality Augmented reality makes sense for Apple on another level, too, noted Bob O’Donnell, chief analyst at Technalysis Research.”Things like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift are cool, but they’re clearly not a mainstream Apple-like product,” he told TechNewsWorld.With AR, a user remains present in the real world and there’s an opportunity to interact with people and real-world objects, said Ross Rubin, the principal analyst with Reticle Research.”In VR, the surroundings are completely replaced. That’s great for game play and some simulations, but AR opens up far more possibilities,” he told TechNewsWorld. “Ultimately, the two technologies may merge into a mixed reality that lets in a lot, a little, or none of the real-world surroundings.”Augmented reality also is better suited for a mobile environment.”VR has the user completely immersed in a virtual environment,” noted Strategy Analytics’ MacQueen.”It’s inherently an immobile technology, which most people would prefer to use while in a safe environment,” he pointed out. “AR is much more suited to on-the-go use cases, such as enhanced navigation, so it suits mobile better than VR does.” The Next Big Thing John P. Mello Jr. has been an ECT News Network reportersince 2003. His areas of focus include cybersecurity, IT issues, privacy, e-commerce, social media, artificial intelligence, big data and consumer electronics. He has written and edited for numerous publications, including the Boston Business Journal, theBoston Phoenix, Megapixel.Net and GovernmentSecurity News. Email John.center_img Those higher price tags for AR products could be an attraction for Apple, which is fond of high prices and the high margins that often accompany them.While shipments of virtual reality headsets will outpace their AR counterparts from 2016 to 2021, the market for AR headsets will be larger, growing from $2.1 billion to $18.6 billion, according to a five-year forecast IDC released last week.”With all the technological enhancements, there will be a wide range of products and price points,” said Jitesh Ubrani, a senior research analyst at IDC.”VR setups already range from sub-(US)$100 to more than $1,000, and though it’s too early to tell, the low-cost experiences may prove to be inhibitors rather than promoters of the technology as they can potentially disappoint first time VR users,” he continued.”On the other hand, due to the sophistication of the hardware, most AR headsets are expected to cost well over $1,000,” Ubrani explained. “This makes the technology far less accessible to consumers initially, though that’s probably for the best as the AR ecosystem and wide social acceptance are still a few years away.” Apple Likes Fat Margins Augmented reality also could be the next big thing for smartphones — even though the form factor might be a bit clumsy for AR purposes.”Holding the phone up and scanning the world around you is quite a clunky experience compared to using smartglasses,” MacQueen pointed out.”However, paired with smartglasses — using the iPhone for processing power — could be an interesting proposition,” he suggested.A bold move into AR could deflect a few brickbats thrown Apple’s way for not being innovative enough since the passing of Steve Jobs.”Apple has been regularly criticized for failing to deliver on ‘next big thing’ technologies and products,” observed Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT.”Bringing AR features into the iPhone would allow the company to both leverage its strongest platform and help its products stand apart from its competitors’ robust smartphones,” he told TechNewsWorld.Up to now, VR and AR have generated more hype than consumer interest. Apple could change that for AR.”It is a safe bet that given Tim Cook’s strong position on AR that Apple will play a major role in bringing AR to the masses,” predicted Tim Bajarin, president of Creative Strategies.”It will first be delivered via the iPhone,” he told TechNewsWorld, “and eventually the AR experience will be augmented by some type of glasses in the future.”last_img read more

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2019-07-19

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Former White House CIO Theresa Payton There Are Grave Concerns About Election

first_imgIn this exclusive interview, she also shares her views on social networking, privacy, and the changing playing field for women who aspire to leadership roles in technology.TechNewsWorld: What is the chief cyberthreat to the upcoming midterm elections?Theresa Payton: My biggest worry and concern is that citizens will not trust election results and that the election process will lose legitimacy. We know that the Department of Homeland Security, working with state election officials, have raced against the clock to secure voting systems. Our U.S. intelligence agencies have repeatedly been on the record stating there is no evidence that cybercriminals modified or deleted any votes in 2016.The next area of concern is for the communications, contacts, and digital campaigns of candidates being broken into and doxed. While the news focuses on securing the votes and the voter databases of the midterm elections, there is not a lot of attention on whether or not campaigns take threats targeting their campaigns seriously. Nothing would hit closer to home for a candidate than if their election was hacked and they lost — or won.”Cyber” is certainly a buzzword, but it’s not a word without meaning. With the onslaught of breaches, candidates should be laser-focused on cybersecurity.TNW: What should federal officials do to shore up election security? What should state and local governments do? Where does the buck stop?Payton: It’s crucial that elected officials on the left and right not politicize an issue in the short term that will have grave long-term consequences for national security.Defensively, we need to harden our election infrastructure at the local level. This is the responsibility of the Department of Homeland Security.DHS needs to continue to work at the local level with state election officials, but also to provide much more robust cybersecurity capabilities for protection and detection at the campaign level.We also need to be sure that the intelligence and homeland security community is effectively sharing information and tools, techniques and tactics.TNW: How serious are concerns that election interference might be caused by tampering with back-end election systems? What can federal agencies do to address the problems of outdated voting equipment, inadequate election-verification procedures, and other potential vulnerabilities? Is there an argument to be made for some level of mandatory federal oversight of state and local voter systems?Payton: There are grave concerns about election interference and the race to secure them, globally, is under way. The idea that voter databases could be seeded with falsified data or modified has been around for decades, but the technical know-how and motive has caught up with that idea. Election officials in a race towards automation and efficiency may have helped criminals along, but it’s not too late if we act now.Today, there are entire countries totally relying on electronic voting: Brazil, since 2000, has employed electronic voting machines, and in 2010 had 135 million electronic voters. India had 380 million electronic voters for its Parliament election in 2004.It is easy to see why electronic voting is the wave of the future and how the United States could model its own voting system after these countries. It’s faster, cheaper and more accessible for those with disabilities. Also, would you miss the experience of, or the reporting of, the every-election-day headline of “Long Lines at the Polls Today”? Probably not. That is certainly less painful than a recount though. TNW: How well — or poorly — have Facebook, Twitter, Google and other tech companies addressed the problems that surfaced in 2016?Payton: I was encouraged to hear that with less than three weeks to go for the U.S. mid-terms, that Facebook has stood up a war room to combat social media community manipulation as the world heads into elections this fall and winter.They have also said they have war-gamed a number of scenarios to ensure their team is better prepared for elections around the globe. Much is at stake, so the fact that Facebook also integrated the apps they have acquired — such as WhatsApp and Instagram — into the mix of the war room is a great idea.If I were to give them advice, I would suggest that another great step to take would be to create a way to physically embed representatives from law enforcement, other social media companies — including Twitter, Linkedin and Google — and to allow election officials around the globe to have a “red phone” access to the war room.TNW: What are some of the most pressing cybersecurity problems facing social networks, apart from their use as political tools?Payton: The ability to change their business and moderator models, in real time, to morph quickly to shut down fake personas, fake ads, and fake messaging promoting political espionage, even if it means higher expenses and loss of revenue. Social media companies have made a lot of progress since the 2016 presidential elections and claims of global-wide election meddling, but the criminals have changed tactics and it’s harder to spot them.On the heels of the August 2018 news that Microsoft seized six domains that Russian Internet trolls planned to use for political espionage phishing attacks around the same time that Facebook deactivated 652 fake accounts and pages tied to misinformation campaigns, Alex Stamos, the former Facebook security chief, posted an essay in Lawfare, and stated that it was “too late to protect the 2018 elections.”TNW: What role should the government play in protecting citizens’ privacy online?Payton: As the Internet evolves, laws and regulations must change more rapidly to reflect societal issues and problems created by new types of behavior taking place online. Never before has the world had access to statements, pictures, video and criticism by millions of individuals who are not public figures.The Internet provides us with places to document our lives, thoughts and preferences online, and then holds that material for an indefinite period of time — long after we might have outgrown our own postings.It also provides places where we can criticize our bosses, local building contractors, or polluters.This digital diary of our lives leaves tattered pages of our past that we may forget about because we cannot see them, but they could be collected, collated, and used to judge us or discriminate against us without due process. The government needs to think ahead and determine which laws need to be enacted to protect our right to opt in and out of privacy features and to own our digital lives and footprints.TNW: What is your opinion of Europe’s “right to be forgotten” law? Do you think a similar law would make sense in the United States?Payton: The European Union’s “right to be forgotten” sets an interesting precedent, not just for its member countries but for citizens around the world. It is too early to know what the long-term impacts of the EU’s decision to enforce a “right to be forgotten” with technology companies will be. However, it’s a safe bet the law will evolve and not disappear.There are concerns that giving you or organizations more control of their Internet identity, under a “right to be forgotten” clause, could lead to [censorship] of the Internet. Free-speech advocates around the globe are concerned that the lack of court precedent and the gray areas of the EU law could lead to pressure for all tech companies to remove results across the globe, delinking news stories and other information upon an individual’s request.A quick history lesson of how this law came about: A Spanish citizen filed a complaint with Spain’s Data Protection Agency and indicated that Google Spain and Google Inc. had violated his privacy rights by posting an auction notice that his home was repossessed. The matter was resolved years earlier but since “delete is never really delete” and “the Internet never forgets,” the personal data about his financial matters haunted his reputation online.He requested that Google Spain and Google Inc. be required to remove the old news so it would not show up in search engine results. The Spanish court system reviewed the case and referred it to the European Union’s Court of Justice.Here is an excerpt of what the May 2014 ruling of the EU Court said: “On the ‘Right to be Forgotten’: Individuals have the right — under certain conditions — to ask search engines to remove links with personal information about them. This applies where the information is inaccurate, inadequate, irrelevant or excessive for the purposes of the data processing… . A case-by-case assessment is needed considering the type of information in question, its sensitivity for the individual’s private life and the interest of the public in having access to that information. The role the person requesting the deletion plays in public life might also be relevant.” In the U.S., implementing a federal law might be tempting, but the challenge is that the ability to comply with the law will be complex and expensive. This could mean that the next startup will be crushed under compliance and therefore innovation and startups will die before they can get launched.However, we do need a central place of advocacy and a form of a consumer privacy bill of rights. We have remedies to address issues but it’s a complex web of laws that apply to the Internet. Technology changes society faster than the law can react, so U.S. laws relating to the Internet will always lag behind.We have a Better Business Bureau to help us with bad business experiences. We have the FTC and FCC to assist us with commerce and communications. Individuals need an advocacy group to appeal to, and for assistance in navigating online defamation, reputational risk, and an opportunity to scrub their online persona.TNW: What is your attitude toward social networking? What’s your advice to others regarding the trustworthiness of social networks?Payton: Social networking can offer us amazing ways to stay in touch with colleagues, friends and loved ones. It’s a personal decision as to how involved you are online, how many platforms you interact with, and how much of your life that you digitally record or transact online.If you want to be on social media but don’t want to broadcast everything about you, I tell my clients to turn off location tracking — or geolocation tools — in social media. That way you aren’t “checking in” places. Cybercriminals use these check-ins to develop your pattern of life and to track your circle of trust. If a cybercriminal has these two patterns, it makes it easier for them to hack your accounts.Register for an online service that will give you a phone number, such as Google Voice or Talkatone. Provide that number on social media and forward it to your real cellphone. Avoid personality surveys and other surveys — they are often very fun to do, but the information posted often gives digital clues to what you may use for your password.Always turn on two-factor authentication for your accounts, and tie your social media accounts to an email address dedicated to social media. Turn on alerts to notify you if there is a login that is outside your normal login patterns.The amount of personal information you choose to share is up to you — and everyone has to find that limit of what is too much — but at the very least, never give out personally identifiable information like your address, DOB, financial information, etc.TNW: As the first woman to serve in the role of CIO at the White House, under President George W. Bush, how did you feel about becoming an instant role model for girls and young women interested in tech careers?Payton: It’s an honor to think about the opportunity to give back and to help along anyone that wants to pursue this career path, especially young women. Candidly, we need everyone to fight the good fight. My heart breaks when I see computer and engineering classes with very few women in them.We did not reach out to the women early enough, and when I talk to young women in high school and college about considering cybersecurity as a career, many of then tell me that since they have had no prior exposure they are worried about failing, and that it’s “too late now to experiment.” To which I tell them that it’s always a great time to experiment and learn new things! Russia hacked the Democratic National Committee’s emails with the intention to “interfere with the U.S. election process,” according to the director of national intelligence, James R. Clapper Jr., and the Department of Homeland Security.As far as we know, despite the scans and alarm bells, no outside entity has changed any records in the registration database.Scams such as “text your vote” were more prevalent than ever, and will increase as electronic voting becomes more widespread.The good news is our government took this very seriously. Prior to the midterm elections, the Department of Homeland Security offered state election officials “cyber hygiene scans” to remotely search for vulnerabilities in election systems. They also conducted threat briefings and onsite reviews, as well as released a memo of “best practices” — guidance how best to secure their voter databases.Some have called for more federal oversight and moving towards a more restrictive security model, but the states own the voting process. Providing year-round briefings from DHS, FBI, CIA, and NSA would prove to be very helpful over time.Also, we have to remember elections are decentralized. Sometimes there is security in obscurity. Each state in our country, plus the District of Columbia, run their own election operations, including voter databases. A hostile nation state could not feasibly wipe out each system with one wave of their magic wand.How we vote, though, is just one-way our elections could be compromised. Another concern going forward must be disruption of Internet traffic, as we saw occurred just days before the last presidential election cycle on Oct. 21st, 2016, when the Mirai botnet crippled part of the Internet for hours.A massive Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacked a host server causing major disruptions to some of the most highly visited websites in the United States. The attack was in two waves, first on the East Coast and then on the West Coast.As our country votes on Election Day in different time zones, and polling stations close at different times, the similarity is chilling.However, we need everyone to turn out to vote. The focus on bolstering our election security defenses is reassuring. What we know is the warning signs are there. As we move towards the future, and focus on creating and protecting a new system to collect our votes, we need to protect the one we already have.Two things you can be sure of after this year’s election: Eventually, every vote you cast in a United States election will be electronic, and one of those elections will be hacked. No doubt about it. But the recount in 2016 in Wisconsin reminds us all why we need a backup.TNW: What are some ways candidates and campaigns can shore up their cybersecurity without draining their war chests? What are some of the practices they should implement in the very early days? A campaign that’s very secure ultimately might lose due to lack of visibility. How can campaigns strike the right balance?Payton: Never before have campaigns collected so much essential information that would be lucrative to so many cybercriminals. Credit card numbers, bank account information, addresses, online identities. The assets go on and on, and cybercriminals are just like bank robbers in the old days: They follow the money.That is why in today’s day and age, if you are on a campaign, whether it be state, national or local, you need to be as vigilant about protecting data as any business. Otherwise, you will lose your customers — also known as constituents and voters.Anyone on a tight budget can follow these guidelines to protect their campaign assets: Make it as hard as possible on cybercriminals by separating donor information details onto a completely separate domain name with separate user IDs and passwords from the campaign. For example, your campaign domain might be VoteSallySue.com, but donor details would be stored at MustProtectDetails.com.Using that same practice, run all of your internal communications on a domain name that’s not the campaign name — i.e., email addresses should not be henry@VoteSallySue.com but rather henry@MustProtectDetails.com. Increase the level of protection for internal messages by using encrypted messaging platforms for internal communications, such as Signal or Threema.Also, be sure to encrypt all of your campaign’s donor data. We have yet to hear a report of a campaign’s donor data being hacked and used for identity theft, but we will — of that I am sure. It would be too lucrative not to try. Once it is hacked, it will be hard to restore confidence in your operation. Just ask any major retailer, bank or organization who has recently been hacked, and they will tell you. I don’t even need to use their names, you know the headlines.Train technology and campaign staff to spot spearphishing emails and scams. Oh, sure, you think everyone knows not to “click on that link,” but recent studies illustrate doing just that is the No. 1 cause of breaches among employees.Another safeguard that raises the bar in terms of security is implementing two-factor authentication wherever feasible. When you use a platform that employs two-factor authentication, don’t you feel safer? Possibly annoyed, as well, but certainly reassured that the extra step has been taken to secure your data. Don’t you want the electorate to feel the same way?Finally, post a privacy policy that’s easy to read, easy to find, and you’ll find voters have more confidence in just your agenda. We are headed towards electronic voting as the sole system we use despite these facts:”The U.S. intelligence community developed substantial evidence that state websites or voter registration systems in seven states were compromised by Russian-backed covert operatives prior to the 2016 election — but never told the states involved, according to multiple U.S. officials,” NBC News reported earlier this year. Prior to taking on the role at the White House, I had been very active in women in technology groups and was passionately recruiting young women to consider technology careers. At the time I was offered the role and accepted, I candidly didn’t have an immediate aha moment about being a role model for women because of that specific job. I was most focused on making sure the mission was a success. I see it now and it’s an honor to be able to be a role model and I strive to live up to that expectation.The cybersecurity industry can do more to help women understand the crucial role that cybersecurity professionals play that make a difference in our everyday lives. Unfortunately, hackers, both ethical and unethical, are often depicted as men wearing hoodies over their faces, making it difficult for women to picture themselves in that role as a realistic career choice, because they don’t think they have anything in common with hackers.Studies show that women want to work in professions that help people — where they are making a difference. When you stop a hacker from stealing someone’s identity, you’ve made a difference in someone’s life or business. At the end of the day, the victims of hackers are people, and women can make a tremendous difference in this field. This is something the industry as a whole needs to do a better job of showing women.TNW: You’re now the CEO of a company in the private sector. Can you tell us a little about what Fortalice Solutions does, its mission, and your priorities in guiding it?Payton: Fortalice Solutions is a team of cybercrime fighters. We hunt bad people from behind a keyboard to protect what matters most to nations, business and people. We combine the sharpest minds in cybersecurity with active intelligence operations to secure everything from government and corporate data and intellectual property, to individuals’ privacy and security.At Fortalice, our strengths lie in studying the adversary and outmaneuvering them with our human-first, technology-second approaches.TNW: How have attitudes toward women in powerful positions changed — for better or worse — in recent years?Payton: Although thankfully this is beginning to change, I am typically the only woman in the room — and that was common in banking as well as technology. I had to learn how to stand up for myself and ensure my voice was heard. I’ve had more than my fair share of times when my technical acumen has been discounted because I’m female.I’ve learned that grace and tact go a long way, and I’m very, very proud to say that my company is nearly dead-equal male/female. We even started an organization called “Help A Sister Up” — you can find us on LinkedIn — that’s dedicated to advancing women in technology and serving as a rallying point for them and their male advocates. We post job openings, interesting articles, avenues for discussion. Please join us!TNW: What’s your advice to girls and women entering technological fields about whether to seek employment in the private or the public sector? What are some of the pros and cons, particularly from the standpoint of gender equality?Payton: An April 2013 survey of Women in Technology found that 45 percent of respondents noted a “lack of female role models or [the encouragement to pursue a degree in a technology-related field].”It’s been proven that professional mentorship and development dramatically increase participation in any given field, so the lack of women in cybersecurity is really a compounding problem — we don’t have enough women in cyber because there aren’t enough women role models in cyber.While connecting with other women has had its challenges, there are wonderful women in cyber today. Look at Linda Hudson — currently the chairman and CEO of The Cardea Group and former president and CEO of BAE Systems Inc. — shattering the glass ceiling for women behind her. Also, up-and-comer Keren Elazari, a global speaker on cybersecurity and ethical hacker out of Israel.I’ve been very lucky to work with wonderful, inspiring women in cyber, but I recognize that my exposure might be more than women starting their career. This brings me to my next point: I recommend all cyber practitioners, and especially women, take advantage of all the amazing free tools out there from RSA, TED talks, and even YouTube.You can watch speeches from veteran cybersecurity professionals about their careers, hear their advice on how to succeed, and learn new skills to keep you competitive in the workplace. Consider free online courses in cybersecurity or popular programming languages like Python.Ask your colleagues to show you their favorite geek gadget or ethical hack.There are some excellent security frameworks and guidance available for free online, such as the NIST framework, CIS Critical Security Controls, SSAE 16, and discussions on GDPR. Leverage social media to hear what’s on the minds of security experts. You must be a constant student of your profession in this field. Theresa Payton, CEO of Fortalice Solutions, is one of the most influential experts on cybersecurity and IT strategy in the United States. She is an authority on Internet security, data breaches and fraud mitigation.She served as the first female chief information officer at the White House, overseeing IT operations for President George W. Bush and his staff.With the U.S. midterm elections fast approaching, both Payton’s observations about the current cybersecurity threat level and her advice about shoring up the nation’s defenses carry special weight. Mick Brady is managing editor of ECT News Network.last_img read more

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2019-07-19

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Study uncovers new mechanism of action in a firstline drug for diabetes

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 23 2018For decades, metformin has been the first-line drug in the treatment of type 2 diabetes, lowering blood glucose levels by inhibiting glucose production in the liver. Metformin also improves glucose uptake and use by muscle tissue.The effect of metformin on hepatic glucose production is most likely transmitted through the mitochondrial respiratory chain. However, up to now the mechanism through which the drug increases glucose uptake in muscle tissue has been unknown.A research group led by Professor Sanna Lehtonen at the University of Helsinki has now demonstrated in cell cultures and in an animal model that metformin directly binds to the lipid phosphatase SHIP2, reducing its activity. The reduction in SHIP2 activity increased glucose uptake in muscle cells and decreased cell death in podocytes, or glomerular epithelial cells.The lipid phosphatase SHIP2 suppresses the insulin signalling pathway. Prior studies have demonstrated through animal models that individuals suffering from diabetes have elevated levels of SHIP2 in their kidney, muscle and adipose tissue. This reduces the ability of tissue to react to insulin signalling and reduces its glucose uptake. Elevated SHIP2 concentration also increases programmed cell death in podocytes.In addition to an animal model, Lehtonen’s group utilised patient samples in the study. Their analysis revealed that in patients with type 2 diabetes who were not taking metformin, SHIP2 activity in the kidneys was elevated, in addition to which their podocyte loss was remarkable. In patients taking metformin, SHIP2 activity did not deviate from people without diabetes, while podocyte loss was also lower than in patients using another drug therapy.”Our results indicate that the lipid phosphatase SHIP2 has a significant role in regulating glucose metabolism and cell death in podocytes. So, regulating SHIP2 activity with metformin or another suitable pharmaceutical agent is crucial in managing type 2 diabetes and particularly in preventing related diabetic kidney disease,” Lehtonen says.UNDERSTANDING THE MECHANISM OF ACTION HELPS TARGET DRUG THERAPYMetformin’s mechanism of action is being enthusiastically investigated due to its diverse effects on the body, making it potentially useful in treating diseases other than diabetes in the future. Better understanding of the mechanism also helps target the therapy precisely to those patient groups that will benefit from it.Related StoriesNew biomaterial could encapsulate and protect implanted insulin-producing cellsIntermittent fasting may protect against type 2 diabetesDiet and physical exercise do not reduce risk of gestational diabetes”Combined with the research results published last spring by Professor Leif Groop and Docent Tiinamaija Tuomi, the findings of my group highlight the significance of metformin in treating a certain group of patients with diabetes,” Lehtonen states.Based on the study conducted by Groop and Tuomi (Ahlqvist et al., Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 6: 361-, 2018), a proposal has been made to classify diabetes into five different subgroups, one of which would be severe insulin-resistant diabetes. Patients with this type of diabetes are at an exceptionally high risk of also contracting diabetic kidney disease. The researchers estimate that it would be this group in particular that would benefit from metformin.The results gained by Lehtonen’s group support this view.”Our findings prove that metformin could protect patients from renal damage by suppressing SHIP2 activity. This introduces a new, direct mechanism of action, through which metformin protects the kidneys from damage.According to a recent finding, metformin impacts metabolism also by affecting the gut microbiota,” Lehtonen points out.NEW INDICATIONS – NEW DRUGS?Identifying new mechanisms of action can expand metformin’s indications for use outside diabetes in treating, among other disorders, cancer and cardiovascular diseases – research is already underway in these fields – as well as in regulating aging.”Our new study highlights SHIP2’s significance as a drug target. Prior studies support this notion, but knowing that the most common diabetes drug acts precisely through SHIP2 encourages us to find new SHIP2 inhibitors that are more effective than metformin,” Lehtonen says.Diabetes is one of the diseases that are gaining in prevalence the fastest, both in Finland and globally. Source:https://www.helsinki.fi/en/news/health-news/versatility-in-a-first-line-drug-for-diabetes-researchers-discover-an-interesting-mechanism-of-actionlast_img read more

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2019-07-19

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Researchers uncover new lead for mechanism of action of frontline Type 2

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 24 2018Canadian and British researchers have discovered how the frontline Type 2 diabetes drug metformin may work to help cells better take up and use glucose. Their study, published today in the prestigious journal Cell, may also explain other potential beneficial effects of metformin for prevention of a variety of chronic diseases, including cancers.To show that metformin appeared to make the cells act as if they are starved for the essential mineral iron, biochemists at Université de Montréal used a new method to simultaneously probe how all of a cell’s biochemical processes respond to the presence of a drug. Collaborating with researchers at the Francis Crick Institute in London, the UdeM team showed that metformin has a global effect on iron distribution in cells, resulting in alteration of essential biochemical processes.Related StoriesDiabetes patients experiencing empathy from PCPs have beneficial long-term clinical outcomesDiet and physical exercise do not reduce risk of gestational diabetesUTHealth researchers investigate how to reduce stress-driven alcohol useThe novel technology that made this discovery possible was developed in the lab of lead author Stephen Michnick, a biochemistry professor at UdeM andholder of a Canada Research Chair in cell architecture. “If you want to know what a drug or any other molecule is doing in the body, you need to survey everything going on in it’s cells at once,” said Dr. Michnick. “Today there are several ways to do this, but our method, called hdPCA, has the merit of being extremely simple to perform and interpret, non-invasive and inexpensive; it can be done in almost any lab.” The method can be deployed to rapidly predict and confirm how a drug might affect cells and simultaneously identify any liabilities the drug might have if introduced into humans.”We’d chosen to use metformin, mostly because it was an interesting test case, having no clear mechanism of action,”added the study’s first author, UdeM biochemist Bram Stynen. “The lead to effects of metformin on iron homeostasis was a bonus of this study. A connection between iron metabolism and diabetes was already suspected but no-one had ever showed a specific antidiabetic effect of metformin in living cells connected to iron homeostasis.” Added collaborator Markus Ralser, a biochemist at Francis Crick, “this makes a lot of sense; glucose metabolism most likely emerged evolutionarily from iron-dependent chemical reactions; such chemical relationships don’t disappear in evolution.”Further cell and animal studies will have to be done to pin down how important iron-starvation mimicking effects of metformin are to glucose metabolism and how this mechanism might be better exploited to improve diabetes treatments. Source:https://www.umontreal.ca/en/last_img read more

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2019-07-19

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Family acceptance of LGBT individuals sexuality linked to lower stress

first_img Source:https://www.ohio.edu/ucm/media/news-story.cfm?newsItem=4E553C95-5056-A874-1D0B24EB38C8D251 Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 24 2018Ohio University Associate Professor of Psychology Dr. Peggy Zoccola has determined that those who identify as LGBT and have come out to their family carry less stress hormones than those who have not come out, which may ultimately benefit their health.The recent study by Zoccola and coauthor Andrew Manigault, M.S., published in the October issue of Psychosomatic Medicine, journal of the Psychosomatic Society, discusses how feeling able to comfortably talk about your sexual identity with family members specifically, appears to be most linked to output of the stress hormone cortisol, a hormone that if too much is produced, it can damage an individual’s health.Related StoriesUTHealth researchers investigate how to reduce stress-driven alcohol useStudy explores the effects of near-miss experiences associated with 9/11 terrorist attacksEarly life adversity and high levels of FKBP5 protein amplify anxiety-like behavior”The real stress punch seems to be with the family,” said Zoccola when referencing how greater disclosure of a LGBT individual’s sexuality to their family is strongly linked to lower cortisol.She points out that there has been sparse research on how the aspects of coming out by LGBT adults affect the release of stress hormones, however, some early studies have shown that if people who identify as sexual minorities feel acceptance from their families, they have higher self-esteem, lower depression and substance use rates and are less likely to think about suicide.For the study, Zoccola had 121 sexual minority adults ages 18 to 35 take a survey about their depression and anxiety levels, sociodemographic factors and how much support they felt. They were also asked how out they were to family, friends, acquaintances, coworkers and clergy in religious organizations, as well as provided their age when they came out. Following the survey, 58 individuals from the group were randomly selected to provide a saliva sample to show their cortisol levels.The results of Zoccola’s research showed that the more open people were to disclosing their sexuality with their family, the lower cortisol levels they had.”For these emerging adults, the family provides a foundation of support,” said Zoccola. “If they’re comfortable disclosing to their family, they seem to have a protective stress profile.”last_img read more

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2019-07-19

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