Watch Germanys Merkel seen shaking for second time this month but heads

first_img Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) takes part in the presentation of the appointment and dismissal certificate as Federal Minister of Justice to Katarina Barley (SPD) and the new Federal Minister of Justice Christine Lambrecht (SPD) by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Bellevue Castle in Berlin, Germany, Thursday, June 27, 2019. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)German Chancellor Angela Merkel was seen shaking as she met President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Thursday, her second such bout within two weeks, but her spokesman said she was fine and she headed off to Japan for this weekend’s G20 summit. Merkel has loomed large on the European stage since 2005, helping guide the EU through the euro zone crisis and opening Germany’s doors to migrants fleeing war in the Middle East in 2015 – a move that still divides the bloc and her country.The chancellor faces a gruelling schedule in the coming days.After the G20, she heads to Brussels for an EU summit on Sunday at which she will play a key role in trying to seal a deal on the distribution of the bloc’s top jobs for the next five years.Asked about Merkel’s latest shaking episode, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer told reporters: “I won’t comment on this. I have never taken part in remote diagnoses because for years I was too often the subject of remote diagnoses.”Appeals to her right for privacy were not enough for some newspapers. “On her health rides the effectiveness of her government and the stability of her country,” wrote the conservative Die Welt in a commentary. Her health, it said, is “not purely a private matter.”Merkel began a stage-managed gradual exit from politics in October, when she said her fourth term as chancellor would be her last and that she would not seek re-election in 2021, when the next federal election is due.In December, she handed over the chair of her Christian Democratic Union to her protege Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, though the latter’s unconvincing start in the role has set back the CDU’s plans for a smooth leadership transition. After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan More Explained Merkel was seen shaking when she met visiting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on June 18 but later said she felt better after drinking some water.Were Merkel to be incapacitated, Steinmeier would appoint a cabinet minister as acting chancellor until parliament elects a new chancellor. This need not be Scholz, a member of the Social Democrats, junior partner in Merkel’s ruling grand coalition.WORK ETHICMerkel, in power for 14 years, is renowned for her work ethic and has a reputation for outlasting other leaders at European Union summits with her ability to focus on the details of complex discussions deep into the night.In the past, she has joked that she is a “sleep camel” who can go days with just a few hours of sleep as long as she gets a full night of shut-eye at the weekend. She is due to go on holiday later in the summer. Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Advertising Advertising After the ceremony with Steinmeier, Merkel went on to the Bundestag (lower house of parliament) for the swearing-in of the new justice minister. She showed no signs of shaking and looked relaxed, chatting and laughing with Vice Chancellor Olaf Scholz.Asked if the chancellor would take part in this weekend’s G20 meeting in Japan, the spokesman said: “Everything is taking place as planned. The chancellor is well.” Merkel later left on a flight to Osaka for the G20 meeting.Another government official told Reuters that while Merkel attributed the tremors on June 18 to drinking too little water and too much coffee on a hot day, Thursday’s episode was more a psychological issue as she tried desperately to avoid a repeat.“The memory of the incident last week led to the situation today – so (it was) a psychologically driven process,” the official said. “There is nothing to worry about.” Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach Merkel, 64, has no history of serious health issues. She was attending a farewell ceremony for Justice Minister Katarina Barley, who is leaving to become a lawmaker in the European Parliament, when the incident occurred.Standing next to Steinmeier as he addressed the gathering, Merkel started shaking visibly in her upper body, then crossed her arms as if to brace herself. She was offered a glass of water but declined to drink it while Steinmeier spoke.Berlin is in the throes of a heatwave. Virat Kohli won’t have a say in choosing new coach After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan Top News Taking stock of monsoon rain Best Of Express 1 Comment(s) Advertising When Merkel came into office in 2005, George W. Bush was U.S. president, Jacques Chirac was in the Elysee Palace in Paris and Tony Blair was British prime minister. By Reuters |Berlin | Updated: June 28, 2019 7:11:34 pmlast_img read more

Excessive use of erectiledysfunction medication could lead to longterm vision problems

first_img Source: Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Oct 1 2018In a first-of-its-kind study, Mount Sinai researchers have shown that color vision problems caused by retinal damage on a cellular level can result from a high dose of sildenafil citrate, the popular erectile-dysfunction medication sold under the brand name Viagra. The results demonstrate that excessive use of the drug could lead to long-term vision problems, including possible irreversible damage. The findings have been published in the fall issue of Retinal Cases.”People live by the philosophy that if a little bit is good, a lot is better. This study shows how dangerous a large dose of a commonly used medication can be,” said lead investigator Richard Rosen, MD, Director of Retina Services at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE). “People who depend on colored vision for their livelihood need to realize there could be a long-lasting impact of overindulging on this drug.”Related Stories’Traffic light’ food labels associated with reduction in calories purchased by hospital employeesNANOLIVE‘s novel CX-A defines a new standard for live cell imaging in 96 well plates for continuous organelle monitoring in cell populationsBordeaux University Hospital uses 3D printing to improve kidney tumor removal surgeryRosen and a team of investigators from NYEE based their study on a 31-year-old patient who arrived at an urgent care clinic complaining of red-tinted vision in both eyes that hadn’t gone away in two days. He reported that his symptoms began shortly after taking a dose of liquid sildenafil citrate that he purchased over the internet (sildenafil citrate can cause visual disturbances with normal dosage, but symptoms typically resolve within 24 hours). The patient told doctors he had consumed much more than the recommended 50mg dose, and that symptoms began shortly after ingestion. The patient was then diagnosed with persistent retinal toxicity linked to the high dose of medication damaging the outer retina. His tinted vision has not improved more than a year after his initial diagnosis, despite various treatments.Mount Sinai researchers used state-of-the-art technology, including adaptive optics (AO) and optimal coherence tomography (OCT), to examine his retina for evidence of structural damage at the cellular level, something that had never been done before. AO is a sophisticated technology that allows clinicians to examine microscopic structures of the eye in living patients with extreme detail in real time. OCT is an advanced imaging system that reveals the cross-sectional details of the retina layer by layer.The high-tech imaging allowed investigators to see microscopic injury to the cones of the retina, the cells which are responsible for color vision. The damage was similar to that seen in animal models of hereditary retinal disease such as retinitis pigmentosa or cone-rod dystrophy.”To actually see these types of structural changes was unexpected, but it explained the symptoms that the patient suffered from. While we know colored vision disturbance is a well-described side effect of this medication, we have never been able to visualize the structural effect of the drug on the retina until now,” said Dr. Rosen. “Our findings should help doctors become aware of potential cellular changes in patients who might use the drug excessively, so they can better educate patients about the risks of using too much.”last_img read more

Previous Endologix AFX Safety Notice classified by FDA as Class I recall

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 8 2018Endologix® Inc. (Nasdaq: ELGX), a developer and marketer of innovative treatments for aortic disorders, announced today that it has received notice that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified a voluntary recall action that Endologix took in July of this year as a Class I recall. The July recall involved Endologix’s issuance of a Safety Notice to healthcare professionals (HCPs) using the AFX® Endovascular AAA System.The Safety Notice, dated 20 July 2018, provided updated information on comparative AFX Type III endoleak rates, patient-tailored surveillance recommendations, and recommendations for intervening through an AFX device or re-intervening on an AFX device. No product was removed from the field as part of this recall.Related StoriesAlmost 74% of Americans show concern about burnout among healthcare professionalsSmart phone health monitoring devices will revolutionize healthcareHealthcare solutions of the future: Boehringer Ingelheim relies on digitalizationThe July 2018 Safety Notice followed several earlier communications. Safety Notices from Endologix issued in late 2016 and early 2017 requested that all remaining AFX Strata devices be returned from the field and emphasized that Endologix had not manufactured AFX Strata grafts since 2014. On September 28, 2017, the FDA issued a letter to HCPs to raise awareness of an increased occurrence of Type III endoleaks after endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR). On June 19, 2018, the FDA issued an updated letter to HCPs indicating the increased risk for Type III endoleak appears to be specific to one device at this time, the AFX with Strata device. (”As outlined at our Investor Day on October 2, 2018, the AFX Strata product was removed from global inventory in the first half of 2017. Our current commercially available versions of the AFX system, the AFX DuraplyTM and AFX2TM products, are manufactured using a different ePTFE processing methodology and include additional product improvements,” noted John Onopchenko, Chief Executive Officer of Endologix. “These AFX Duraply and AFX2 products, while part of the July 2018 Safety Notice providing updated recommendations to HCPs on how to re-intervene on or through these products, were not the subject of the voluntary product removal actions in December 2016/January 2017. Furthermore, AFX Duraply and AFX2 products were not the subject of the June 19, 2018 FDA letter to HCPs. Through our comprehensive system of post-market surveillance, anonymized registry data, and the only randomized trial to compare EVAR systems (the LEOPARD trial), we have a strong and growing evidence base that supports the use of the AFX Duraply and AFX2 systems for patients with AAA. We are proud of, and committed to, advancing our collaborative work with the FDA on behalf of our patients, customers, and the broader clinical community.” Source: read more

Researchers identify potential therapeutic target for blocking early atherosclerosis in progeria

first_img Source: Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Mar 12 2019Researchers at the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares (CNIC) and the Universidad de Oviedo have discovered a new molecular mechanism involved in the premature development of atherosclerosis in mice with Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS). Moreover, the results, published in EMBO Molecular Medicine, identify a potential therapeutic target for this severe genetic disease, which is characterized by the premature onset of cardiovascular disease and early death, usually from a heart attack or stroke, between the ages of 6 and 20 years.Progeria is very rare genetic disease caused by a mutation in the LMNA gene. The disease affects an estimated 400 people worldwide. HGPS patients show accelerated aging linked to a high risk of cardiovascular disease. In the words of study leader Vicente Andrés, studying this disease “brings us closer to a possible treatment for disease victims and can provide important information about normal physiological aging and the factors that regulate it.”Atherosclerosis is a degenerative disease in which cholesterol and immune cells accumulate in the blood vessel walls, forming plaques or plugs that obstruct blood flow. Rupture of atherosclerotic plaques can trigger a life threatening myocardial infarction or stroke. Many of the factors that increase the risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease can be controlled by changes to lifestyle, including a healthy diet, physical activity, and stopping smoking, as well as medical treatment. However, the main risk factor is aging, which cannot be modified. This situation is aggravated in progeria patients, whose arteries have multiple defects, including loss of smooth muscle cells and the formation of atherosclerotic plaques.Molecular mechanismThe new study was co-directed by Vicente Andrés of the CNIC and the Centro de Investigación en Red en Enfermedades Cardiovasculares (CIBERCV) and Carlos López Otín of the Universidad de Oviedo. The study identifies a molecular mechanism involved in the accelerated development of atherosclerosis in progeria. In addition, the results suggest a possible pharmacological treatment that slows the progression of atherosclerosis and extends the lifespan of progeroid mice.Related StoriesRemission of rheumatoid arthritis linked with reduction in cardiovascular complicationsResearch aims to use orange peels for improving heart healthHigher coronary artery calcium levels in middle-age linked to increased risk for future heart problemsLittle is known about the mechanisms underlying early vascular disease in progeria because there are so few patients and because animal models of this disease have not developed atherosclerosis. Vicente Andrés’ group recently generated the first mouse model that recapitulates the accelerated atherosclerosis in HGPS induced by the protein progerin. The results of the analysis of these mice, published in 2018 in Circulation, identified vascular smooth muscle cells as a possible target for the treatment of premature atherosclerosis in progeria.Tauroursodeoxycholic acid The EMBO Molecular Medicine study, featured in an editorial in the journal, shows for the first time that “stress in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER stress) and the associated unfolded protein response (UPR) are involved in the death of vascular smooth muscle cells in progeroid mice,” explains first author Magda Hamczyk. “We therefore think that treatments targeting these cellular stress pathways could be effective against vascular disease in progeria.”The research team used the compound tauroursodeoxycholic acid (TUDCA), which reduces the negative consequences of the activation of the ER stress and UPR pathways. According to Vicente Andrés, “treatment of progeroid mice with TUDCA inhibits the progression of vascular disease, including vascular smooth cell loss and atherosclerosis. TUDCA also prolonged the lifespan of progeroid mice, which die from the complications of atherosclerosis”.The authors conclude that “these findings open a new research avenue in progeria and suggest that TUDCA could be used to treat vascular disease in HGPS patients and extend their life expectancy.”last_img read more

Mass casualty field trial demonstrates capabilities of new lifesaving technologies

first_imgReviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)May 24 2019Four years ago academics, emergency responders and industry partners from across Europe came together with a common goal – to create new technologies and systems that would save lives during a chemical, biological, radioactive or nuclear (CBRN) incident.On Wednesday (22 May 2019) the true capabilities of these life-saving technologies, developed as part of the Loughborough University-led TOXI-Triage project, were demonstrated at a mass casualty field trial in Finland.During the project’s Exercise DISPERSE the emergency services of Mikkeli, Finland, diagnosed and decontaminated more than 100 people affected by a simulated chlorine gas escape using the ground-breaking TOXI-Triage devices and systems.The field trial was the largest ever undertaken by the project team and took years of planning. Technologies and systems put to the test during the three-hour exercise included: Speaking about the field trial Loughborough University’s Professor Paul Thomas, who is leading the TOXI-Triage project, said: Drones containing radiological and poison cloud monitoring instrumentation to collect data directly from the incident ‘hot zone’ A Tag and Trace system for casualties that provides real-time data on their status and location to aid the management of decontamination activity BreathSpec – a new system to rapidly determine the level of casualty exposure to poisons by analyzing the skin, salvia and breath TOXI-Motive – a way to utilize social media to track a crisis situation as it develops, aiding the deployment of the emergency services and tackling the spread of fake news An integrator system that pulls together all the data from the diagnostic technologies to give command control the most comprehensive information on an incident and its casualties in real-time Exercise DISPERSE has demonstrated just what is achievable when the expertise of academics, emergency services and industry leaders from across Europe come together with a common goal.Four years ago we set out on a journey to ultimately save lives. What we have shown through this exercise is that we now have technologies capable of achieving this goal. We can rapidly assess a CBRN incident hot zone via deployable sensors; track in real time casualties and their status; instantly diagnose if a casualty has been contaminated via an onsite breath test; assess the skin of casualties to ensure they have been successfully decontaminated; use social media to aid and react to an emergency response; and vitally pull all this information together via an integrator to give emergency commanders the most comprehensive information of what is occurring during an incident.I am beyond proud of what the team has collectively achieved and demonstrated here in Finland. Our ambition for these technologies to be taken to the next level of development, and ultimately become standard practice for an emergency response, is stronger than ever.”center_img Source:Loughborough University TOXI-Triage is funded by the European Commission. The project consists of 18 teams spanning the emergency and health services, defense, industry, and university academics.last_img read more

Virus employs powerful strategy to inhibit natural killer cell function

first_imgPolyfunctional analysis of VZV cultured NK cells.PBMCs were mock cultured, exposed to VZV, or VZV infected for 2 days and stimulated as specified for flow cytometry analysis of NK cells (viable CD3–CD56+ cells).Credit: Campbell, et al. (2019) We now have a clearer understanding as to how herpesviruses are able to manipulate the host immune response.” Jun 14 2019The virus responsible for chickenpox and shingles employs a powerful strategy of immune evasion, inhibiting the ability of natural killer cells to destroy infected cells and produce molecules that help control viral infection, according to a new study. The research which was conducted by Allison Abendroth of the Discipline of Infectious Diseases and Immunology in the Charles Perkins Centre at the University of Sydney, and colleagues, was published on June 13 in the open-access journal PLOS Pathogens.As the authors noted, future studies that elucidate the underlying molecular mechanisms may allow exploitation of this knowledge in therapeutic settings in which aberrant natural killer cell activation can cause immunopathology, such as in certain autoimmune diseases, graft-versus-host-disease, and transplant rejection. Source:PLOSJournal reference:Campbell, T.M. et al. (2019) Functional paralysis of human natural killer cells by alphaherpesviruses. PLOS Pathogens. Related StoriesHouse mouse shapes Toxoplasma gondii populations around the worldStudy: Nearly one-third of Cambodians are infected with threadwormStudy finds increase in cigarette smoking among minority teens after college affirmative action bansNatural killer cells are white blood cells that help control viral infection by killing infected cells and secreting molecules called pro-inflammatory cytokines to activate and direct the immune response. In retaliation, viruses such as varicella zoster virus (VZV), which causes chickenpox and shingles, dampen the immune system to establish infection in humans.VZV can infect human natural killer cells, but it was not known how, or if, VZV could directly affect natural killer cell function. To address this gap in knowledge, Abendroth and her colleagues cultured human peripheral blood mononuclear cells with VZV-infected cells, and then assessed the functional capacity of natural killer cells.The researchers identified a previously unreported strategy employed by VZV to powerfully inhibit natural killer cell function, hindering the ability of natural killer cells to destroy infected cells and produce cytokines. This powerful impairment of function is dependent on direct contact between natural killer cells and VZV-infected cells.In this way, VZV paralyzes natural killer cells from functionally responding to target cells. The closely related virus, herpes simplex virus type 1, is also capable of efficiently infecting natural killer cells and rendering natural killer cells unresponsive to target cell stimulation.According to the authors, these findings indicate for the first time that two human alphaherpesviruses directly target multiple anti-viral functions of natural killer cells for immune evasion.last_img read more

Blastocyst transfer linked to higher risk of preterm birth largeforgestationalage rates

first_imgReviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Jun 24 2019The transfer of embryos cultured for five or six days (instead of two or three) after fertilization in IVF and ICSI has become routine in many fertility clinics. Many (but not all) studies show that transferring these longer and better-developed embryos – known as blastocysts – will increase the chance of pregnancy and live birth.However, concerns have been raised that this extended culture to the blastocyst stage may increase obstetric complications and increase perinatal risks. Some large studies have already shown slightly higher risks of preterm birth and large-for-gestational-age rates among infants born after blastocyst transfer than after transfer of traditional three-day embryos (or after natural conceptions).Now, a study based on the large cohort of the Committee of Nordic ART and Safety (CoNARTaS) has confirmed these concerns and found that blastocyst transfer is indeed associated with a higher risk of preterm birth (before 37 weeks), and large-for-gestational-age rates. ‘These results are important,’ say the investigators, ‘since an increasing number of all ART treatments are performed with blastocyst transfer.’The results of this large CoNARTaS study are presented today at the 35th Annual Meeting of ESHRE in Vienna by Dr Anne Laerke Spangmose from Copenhagen University Hospital in Denmark.The study itself was an analysis of almost 90,000 assisted reproduction (ART) babies born in the Nordic countries (Denmark, Norway, Sweden) up to 2015 of which 69,751 were singletons and 18,154 twins. The singleton cohort comprised 8368 born after blastocyst transfer and 61,383 born after traditional (three day) embryo transfer; the twin cohort included 1167 children born after blastocyst transfer and 16,987 after three-day embryo transfer (at the ‘cleavage stage’).The analysis showed that the singletons born after fresh blastocyst transfer had a 23% higher risk of being large for gestational age than after cleavage stage transfer. In everyday terms the higher risk would mean an overall increase in incidence from 3.7% following cleavage-stage transfers to 4.3% following blastocysts; Dr Spangmose described this increase as ‘small’. While another small increase in the risk of preterm birth was found following the transfer of frozen blastocysts, none was found after the transfer of fresh.With a further objective, the study considered the chance of having twins following cleavage-stage or blastocyst transfer. Incidence was increased from 2.3% following the fresh day-three transfers to 4.0% following blastocyst, and at similar rates for frozen. ‘I would say that this a large increase,’ said Dr Spangmose, ‘considering the risks of perinatal and obstetric outcomes in twin births.’Related StoriesMaternal prepregnancy surgery linked to increased risk of opioid withdrawal in newbornsNew research examines whether effects of alcohol/pregnancy policies vary by raceData collected by ESHRE show rise in use of IVF in infertility treatmentThe results suggest that blastocyst transfer does indeed carry a small but higher risk of obstetric complications than day-three transfers. The increased risk of large-for-gestational-age offspring has been reported in both human and veterinary studies.Explaining the higher rate of large-for-gestational-age following blastocyst transfers Dr Spangmose said: ‘Extended embryo culture implies more time in vitro for the embryo, leaving it more exposed to external potential stressors like temperature or oxygen concentration. Furthermore, the type of culture media used for cleavage and blastocyst stage embryos are different. Studies have suggested that the media itself may influence specific gene expressions and impact perinatal outcomes.'(1)However, despite these higher obstetric and twin risks, other meta-analyses have found that blastocyst transfer is associated with a higher delivery rate than cleavage-stage transfers – which no doubt explains its increasingly greater use in recent years. The latest Cochrane review (2016) of blastocyst vs cleavage stage transfer found the former associated with a 48% higher chance of live birth in an initial ‘fresh’ transfer cycle. The Cochrane results mean – as the reviewers explained – that if 29% of women achieved live birth after fresh cleavage stage transfer, between 32% and 42% would do so after fresh blastocyst transfer. Regulatory authorities have recognized this in their encouragement of single embryo transfer to reduce multiple pregnancy rate, still the greatest ‘complication’ of ART. Embryos which reach the blastocyst stage have been said to be more ‘physiological’ and thus better able to select themselves for viability.(2)’Today,’ said Dr Spangmose, ‘blastocyst culture plays a crucial role in ART treatment. It increases survival rates of frozen-thawed embryos and so supports the use of single embryo transfer to reduce twin births. From our results the greater use of frozen blastocyst transfer could offset the adverse effects of extended embryo culture. Nevertheless, we still believe that blastocyst culture should be used with caution – as a tool for embryo selection and for enhancing success rates in frozen ART cycles. But we still need to consider whether blastocyst culture should be the gold standard in fresh ART cycles given the adverse risks found in our study.’ Source:European Society of Human Reproduction and EmbryologyJournal reference:Glujovsky, D. et al. (2019) Cleavage stage versus blastocyst stage embryo transfer in assisted reproductive technology. Cochrane Library. read more

Facebook to deliver more local news to US users

Facebook has faced criticism that it failed to prevent the spread of false news, especially ahead of the 2016 US presidential election Citation: Facebook to deliver more local news to US users (2018, January 30) retrieved 18 July 2019 from Earlier this month, Facebook announced it will ask its two billion users to rank their trust in news sources as part of an effort to combat the spread of misinformation.The changes come as the online giant seeks to address charges that it has failed—along with Google and Twitter—to prevent the spread of false news, especially ahead of the 2016 US presidential election.”Local news helps build community—both on and offline,” Facebook co-founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said in a post on the social network.”It’s an important part of making sure the time we all spend on Facebook is valuable.”Zuckerberg traveled around the US last year, visiting with Facebook users.”One theme people kept telling me is how much we all have in common if we can get past some of the most divisive national issues,” Zuckerberg said in the post.”Many people told me they thought that if we could turn down the temperature on the more divisive issues and instead focus on concrete local issues, then we’d all make more progress together.”He also cited research suggesting that reading local news prompted people to be more engaged in their communities.Facebook is showing US members more stories from news sources in their cities or towns, and plans to begin doing the same in more countries later this year.’Lowering the bar’Recent changes at Facebook include a new “trusted sources” ranking intended to “make sure the news you see is high quality” and to foster “a sense of common ground” rather than sow division, Zuckerberg said in a previous post.Facebook decided to rely on member surveys to rank trust in news sources.A freshly-introduced update highlights what friends and family share on the network, over advertisements, celebrity and media posts.The company cast the changes as part of a refocus on “community”—prioritizing social interactions and relationships, even if it means people spend less time on the platform.Known for annual personal goals ranging from killing his own food to learning Chinese, Zuckerberg’s stated mission for this year is to “fix” the social network.He plans to target abuse and hate, as well as interference by nation states.Facebook is a powerful platform for distributing news stories, and the changes have raised concerns among media organizations that had adapted to the social network’s existing formula for displaying content to users.The announcement by Zuckerberg also drew criticism that Facebook could be “lowering the bar” for what constitutes news.Assistant professor Jennifer Grygiel of the S.I. Newhouse School of public communications at Syracuse University in New York said that serving up statements from public agencies as news on Facebook could give government more power when it comes to what the public knows.”What you are going to see is a rise in state-run media if this applies to every official page in your neighborhood,” Grygiel told AFP.”We are potentially getting more misinformation because we have lost the gatekeepers and fact-checkers in journalism. Journalists have a role in our society, and I don’t think Mark Zuckerberg has figured out what that is yet.”The professor noted that an early sampling of what is being presented as local “news” featured posts from state or city entities in an offering more akin to a bulletin board than the work of journalists.”I think (Facebook) has watered down the idea of news,” Grygiel said.”They should stop using the word ‘news’ unless they are actually talking about journalistic institutions. They are redefining what is news, and they are lowering the bar.” This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Facebook said Monday it has decided to deliver more local news to US users, in its latest effort to manage the flow of information on the enormously-influential social network. © 2018 AFP Facebook to let users rank ‘trust’ in news sources Explore further read more

Pinkhaired whistleblower at heart of Facebook scandal

Carole Cadwalladr, the Guardian journalist who worked with Wylie for a year on the story, described him as “clever, funny, bitchy, profound, intellectually ravenous, compelling. A master storyteller. A politicker. A data science nerd.”The bespectacled 28-year-old describes himself as “the gay Canadian vegan who somehow ended up creating Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare tool,” referring to Trump’s former adviser, whom the report said had deep links with Cambridge Analytica (CA).With Wylie’s help, Cadwalladr revealed how CA scooped up data from millions of Facebook users in the US.They then used the information to build political and psychological profiles, in order to create targeted messages for voters.Facebook insists it did not know the data taken from its site were being used, but the revelations have raised urgent questions over how data of 50 million users ended up in CA’s hands.Shares of the tech giant have since tumbled, with $70 billion (56 billion euros) wiped off in 10 days.’Walter Mitty’Wylie studied law and then fashion, before entering the British political sphere when he landed a job working for the Liberal Democrats.Former Lib Dem colleague Ben Rathe had a less complementary description of Wylie, tweeting that he “thinks he’s Edward Snowden, when he’s actually Walter Mitty”—a reference to a fictional character with a vivid fantasy life.Wylie became a research director for Strategic Communication Laboratories (SCL), the parent company of CA, in 2014. “I helped create that company,” he said of CA in an interview with several European newspapers. “I got caught up in my own curiosity, in the work I was doing. It’s not an excuse, but I found myself doing the research work I wanted to do, with a budget of several million, it was really very tempting,” he told French daily Liberation. Citation: Pink-haired whistleblower at heart of Facebook scandal (2018, March 27) retrieved 18 July 2019 from Explore further Instantly recognisable with his pink hair and nose ring, Christopher Wylie claims to have helped create data analysis company Cambridge Analytica before turning whistleblower and becoming “the face” of the crisis engulfing Facebook. “People suspected poisoning,” he told a British parliamentary committee investigating “fake news” on Tuesday. ‘Repair Facebook!’His appearance before MPs saw him swap his usual loud T-shirts for a sober suit and tie, producing hours of testimony against the firm that he left in 2014. He said he eventually decided to speak out after US President Donald Trump’s shock election victory, which he partly attributed to the misuse of personal data for political purposes. Cambridge Analytica vigorously denies the charges levelled against it, saying that Wylie was merely “a part-time employee who left his position in July 2014″ and had no direct knowledge of how the firm had operated since.Wylie urged British MPs to dig deeper into the story, insisting that his concern was not political and was focussed on abuses in the democratic process—including during the Brexit referendum campaign.”I supported Leave, despite having pink hair and my nose ring,” he said.He claimed that various pro-Brexit organisations worked together to get around campaign finance rules, using the services of Aggregate IQ, a Canadian company linked to the SCL group. Wylie believes that it is “very reasonable” to say that CA’s activities may have swung the Brexit vote, although he stressed he was not anti-Facebook, anti-social media or anti-data.”I don’t say ‘delete Facebook’, but ‘repair Facebook’,” he told the European newspapers.However, he admitted to MPs that he had “become the face” of the scandal. Initially, he enjoyed the globetrotting lifestyle, meeting with ministers from around the world. But the job took a dark turn when he discovered that his predecessor had died in a Kenyan hotel. He believes the victim paid the price when a “deal went sour”. © 2018 AFP Expert says Brexit campaign used data mined from Facebook ACanadian data analytics expert Christopher Wylie appearing as a witness before the British parliamentary committee Christopher Wylie: ‘I got caught up in my own curiosity’ This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. read more

Autonomous drones can help search and rescue after disasters

first_img Provided by The Conversation In a rainy environment, human brains use a brilliant strategy to see clearly. By noticing the parts of a scene that don’t change – and the ones that do, as the raindrops fall – people can see reasonably well despite rain. Our technology uses the same strategy, continuously investigating the contents of each location in a sequence of images to get clear information about the objects in that location. We also have developed technology that can make images from a drone-borne camera larger, brighter and clearer. By expanding the size of the image, both algorithms and people can see key features more clearly.Confirming objects of interestOur system can identify people in various positions, such as lying prone or curled in the fetal position, even from different viewing angles and in varying lighting conditions. The human brain can look at one view of an object and envision how it would look from other angles. When police issue an alert asking the public to look for someone, they often include a still photo – knowing that viewers’ minds will imagine three-dimensional views of how that person might look, and recognize them on the street, even if they don’t get the exact same view as the photo offered. We employ this strategy by computing three-dimensional models of people – either general human shapes or more detailed projections of specific people. Those models are used to match similarities when a person appears in a scene. Our system can spot people amid busy surroundings. Credit: University of Dayton Vision Lab, CC BY-ND When disasters happen – whether a natural disaster like a flood or earthquake, or a human-caused one like a mass shooting or bombing – it can be extremely dangerous to send first responders in, even though there are people who badly need help. Are there people down there who need help? Credit: Roschetzky Photography/ First, our system processes the images to improve their clarity. Just as humans squint their eyes to adjust their focus, our technologies take detailed estimates of darker regions in a scene and computationally lighten the images. When images are too hazy or foggy, the system recognizes they’re too bright and reduces the whiteness of the image to see the actual scene more clearly. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.center_img We have also developed a way to detect parts of an object, without seeing the whole thing. Our system can be trained to detect and locate a leg sticking out from under rubble, a hand waving at a distance, or a head popping up above a pile of wooden blocks. It can tell a person or animal apart from a tree, bush or vehicle.Putting the pieces togetherDuring its initial scan of the landscape, our system mimics the approach of an airborne spotter, examining the ground to find possible objects of interest or regions worth further examination, and then looking more closely. For example, an aircraft pilot who is looking for a truck on the ground would typically pay less attention to lakes, ponds, farm fields and playgrounds – because trucks are less likely to be in those areas. Our autonomous technology employs the same strategy to focus the search area to the most significant regions in the scene.Then our system investigates each selected region to obtain information about the shape, structure and texture of objects there. When it detects a set of features that matches a human being or part of a human, it flags that as a location of a victim. The drone also collects GPS data about its location, and senses how far it is from other objects it’s photographing. That information lets the system calculate exactly the location of each person needing assistance, and alert rescuers.All of this process – capturing an image, processing it for maximum visibility and analyzing it to identify people who might be trapped or concealed – takes about one-fifth of a second on the normal laptop computer that the drone carries, along with its high-resolution camera.The U.S. military is interested in this technology. We have worked with the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command to find wounded individuals in a battlefield who need rescue. We have adapted this work to serve utility companies searching for intrusions on pipeline paths by construction equipment or vehicles that may damage the pipelines. Utility companies are also interested in detecting any new constructions of buildings near the pipeline pathways. All of these groups – and many more – are interested in technology that can see as humans can see, especially in places humans can’t be. Confusing and dim lighting can make it hard to identify people. Credit: University of Dayton Vision Lab, CC BY-ND Drones are useful, and are helping in the recovery after the deadly Alabama tornadoes, but most require individual pilots, who fly the unmanned aircraft by remote control. That limits how quickly rescuers can view an entire affected area, and can delay actual aid from reaching victims.Autonomous drones could cover more ground more quickly, but would only be more effective if they were able on their own to help rescuers identify people in need. At the University of Dayton Vision Lab, we are working on developing systems that can help spot people or animals – especially ones who might be trapped by fallen debris. Our technology mimics the behavior of a human rescuer, looking briefly at wide areas and quickly choosing specific regions to focus in on, to examine more closely. Looking for an object in a chaotic sceneDisaster areas are often cluttered with downed trees, collapsed buildings, torn-up roads and other disarray that can make spotting victims in need of rescue very difficult.My research team has developed an artificial neural network system that can run in a computer onboard a drone. This system can emulate some of the excellent ways human vision works. It analyzes images captured by the drone’s camera and communicates notable findings to human supervisors. Explore further Autonomous drones that can ‘see’ and fly intelligently Citation: Autonomous drones can help search and rescue after disasters (2019, March 5) retrieved 17 July 2019 from read more

As cashless stores grow so does the backlash

first_img Explore further In this Jan. 22, 2018, file photo a shopper scans an Amazon Go app on a cellphone while entering an Amazon Go store in Seattle. A small number of restaurants and stores are going cash-free in the U.S., looking to cater to customers who increasingly pay with a card or smartphone. But a backlash is growing against the practice that some say discriminates against those who lack back accounts or rely on cash for most of their daily transactions. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File) Stadiums in Tampa Bay, Florida, and Atlanta have started to go cashless, or nearly cashless, and the Barclays Center, where the Brooklyn Nets play, is now effectively cashless as well.”I wanted to stop this before it became an everyday thing,” said William Greenlee, a Philadelphia councilman who introduced that city’s bill.Advocates for cashless bans worry technology is moving too fast for the 6.5% of American households—8.4 million—that do not have a bank account, according to figures from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.Figueroa is among the much larger group considered “underbanked,” meaning they have a primary bank account but regularly rely on alternative financial services like check cashers. More than 24 million U.S. households are underbanked, according to the FDIC.The issue disproportionately affects African-American and Hispanic communities. About 17% of African-American and 14% of Hispanic households have no bank accounts, compared to just 3% of white households, according to the FDIC.Figueroa, an immigrant from the Dominican Republic, only opened a credit union account two years ago. It took another year to build up enough funds to use his debit card regularly.He still occasionally relies on a check casher if he needs money quickly, and much of his income comes in cash from his weekend job as a busboy. He has no credit card and no apps on his phone and has only shopped online three times. In this Jan. 22, 2018, file photo, a customer looks overhead in an Amazon Go store, where sensors and cameras are part of a system used to tell what people have purchased and charge their Amazon account in Seattle. A small number of restaurants and stores are going cash-free in the U.S., looking to cater to customers who increasingly pay with a card or smartphone. But a backlash is growing against the practice that some say discriminates against those who lack back accounts or rely on cash for most of their daily transactions. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File) © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. Amazon Go stores to accept cash under growing pressure to serve low-income shoppers This Nov. 14, 2018, file photo shows the Standard Cognition cashier-less store on Market Street in San Francisco. A small number of restaurants and stores are going cash-free in the U.S., looking to cater to customers who increasingly pay with a card or smartphone. But a backlash is growing against the practice that some say discriminates against those who lack back accounts or rely on cash for most of their daily transactions. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File) Business owners who go cashless say they are following the lead of the majority of customers who are abandoning cash payments. Retailers are under pressure to cater to customers with heightened expectations for fast and seamless service, driven by companies like Amazon, Uber and Grubhub.Leo Kremer, co-owner of Dos Toros, the taqueria where Figueroa tried to use cash, said the volume of cash transactions at his stores fell from about 50% a decade ago to 15% last year. That made the cost and logistics of handling cash especially onerous. Before going cashless, Dos Toros locations were robbed twice.Still, Kremer said the company would adjust if legally required to accept cash.”There are no bad guys on this issue. Everyone is trying to do the right thing and make sure there are no unintended consequences,” he said.Critics say banning cash-free stores is an over-reaction.There are no overall estimates of how many stores in the U.S. have gone cashless, but it remains a rarity. In New York City, the trend appears to be gaining traction mostly with “fast casual” dining establishments like Dos Toros. Far more common are stores that require a minimum purchase for non-cash payments.”To call this a trend is a bit of an exaggeration. There are a handful of retailers trying this in certain situations here and there, but it’s not something the average customer would expect to see at every store at the mall any time soon,” said J. Craig Shearman, a spokesman for the National Retail Federation in Washington.Even among the wider U.S. population, cash is still used in roughly 30 percent of all transactions, according to a 2018 Federal Reserve study. The study found that most consumers prefer cash for transactions under $10.Indeed, Shake Shack abandoned plans to open cashier-less locations after its first such store in Manhattan triggered a customer backlash. The burger chain is instead keeping cashiers while installing order-taking kiosks at more stores. Hembert Figueroa just wanted a taco. In testimony to a New York City Council committee, Kremer argued that businesses that “consistently serve the unbanked and underbanked population aren’t going to go cashless. It wouldn’t make sense for them.”But financial experts who work with low-income people caution against making assumptions about the shopping preferences or buying power of those who rely on cash.”I’m uncomfortable with the idea that certain people don’t shop here so it’s fine to exclude them,” said Justine Zinkin, CEO of Neighborhood Trust Financial Partners, a financial counseling nonprofit affiliated with the credit union where Figueroa banks.Like many New Yorkers, Figueroa regularly spends $10 to $15 a day on lunch. He says he would return to Dos Toros with his debit card now that he knows about the cashless policy.”It was a good taco,” he said.Around him, commerce is quickly moving online and cash-free. Card-only Uber is eviscerating the yellow cabs he hails once or twice a month. He does most of his shopping at corner shops and drugstores, and has never availed himself of the home-delivery services that chains like Walgreens and CVS are introducing to keep Amazon at bay.Even services like Citi Bike, the bicycle-sharing company, require a debit or credit card. The service, which is affordable and even offers a $5 monthly program for low-income New York City residents, directs those with no debit or credit card to open an account at a credit union.Beyond targeting cashless stores, Zinkin said the greater urgency in the digital era is finding ways to better include low-income people in the banking system, such as compelling banks to offer no-fee starter accounts and encouraging banks to open branches in underserved areas. In the Bronx, where Figueroa lives, the borough has the lowest concentration of bank branches per household of anywhere in the nation , according to a 2015 report by the New York City Comptroller’s office, while check cashers are common. Nearly one-fifth of households in the Bronx have no bank accounts, and one-third are underbanked, according to 2013 figures cited in an Urban Institute study.”We hope the spotlight shifts from punishing small businesses to the financial services market,” Zinkin said. “We don’t want to be scared of technology, and hoping that technology goes away.” Citation: As cashless stores grow, so does the backlash (2019, April 12) retrieved 17 July 2019 from In this April 10, 2018, file photo, a customers uses a credit card machine to pay for food at Peli Peli Kitchen in Houston. Owner Thomas Nguyen had a change of heart after transitioning one of his three Peli Peli South African fine dining restaurants and his Peli Peli Kitchen fast casual location to a no-cash policy. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File) Policymakers argue that while cashless stores and restaurants aren’t widespread now, the practice could expand to more services, including some that cater to lower-income customers.Walmart-owned Sam’s Club opened its first cashier-less store in Dallas last year, using technology that allows customers to scan and pay for items with their smartphones. Kroger has installed similar technology in about 400 stores nationwide. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. So he was surprised to learn the dollar bills in his pocket were no good at Dos Toros Taqueria in Manhattan, one of a small but growing number of establishments across the U.S. where customers can only pay by card or smartphone.Cash-free stores are generating a backlash among some activists and liberal-leaning policymakers who say the practice discriminates against people like Figueroa, who either lack bank accounts or rely on cash for many transactions.Figueroa, an ironworker, had to stand to the side, holding his taco, until a sympathetic cashier helped him find another customer willing to pay for his meal with a card in exchange for cash.”I had money and I couldn’t pay,” he said.The issue got some high-profile attention this week when retail giant Amazon bowed to pressure from activists and agreed to accept cash at more than 30 cashless stores, including its Amazon Go convenience stores, which have no cashiers, and its book shops. Amazon declined to say when the change would happen.There is no federal law that requires stores to accept cash, so lawmakers are working on the issue at the state and city level.Earlier this year, Philadelphia became the first city to ban cashless stores, despite efforts by Amazon to dissuade it. New Jersey passed a statewide ban soon after, and a similar ban is working its way through the New York City Council. Before this year there was only one jurisdiction that required businesses to accept cash: Massachusetts, which passed a law nearly 40 years ago.”The potential societal cost of a cashless economy I think outweighs the potential benefits for businesses,” said Ritchie Torres, a New York City councilman for the South Bronx who introduced the bill.last_img read more

Study Tesla Autopilot misleading overestimated more than similar technology

first_img ©2019 The Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. More than any other driver-assist system out there today, people overestimate what Tesla’s Autopilot can do, according to a new study. Explore further “The name ‘Autopilot’ was associated with the highest likelihood that drivers believed a behavior was safe while in operation, for every behavior measured, compared with other system names,” said the study released recently by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.The IIHS, a nonprofit funded by auto insurance companies, surveyed 2,005 drivers from October to November 2018. Survey participants were asked questions including whether they thought it was safe to take their hands off the steering wheel, not have their feet near the pedals, look at scenery, talk on a mobile phone and more.Of the drivers surveyed, 48% thought it would be safe to take their hands off the wheel while using Autopilot. As for the four other systems the survey’s participants were asked about, 33% felt that way about ProPilot Assist (Nissan), 27% about both Driving Assistant Plus (BMW) and Super Cruise (Cadillac), and 21% about Traffic Jam Assist (Audi, Acura).”Tesla provides owners with clear guidance on how to properly use Autopilot, as well as in-car instructions before they use the system and while the feature is in use,” a Tesla spokeswoman said recently. “If a Tesla vehicle detects that a driver is not engaged while Autopilot is in use, the driver is prohibited from using it for that drive.”Tesla also pointed out: “This survey is not representative of the perceptions of Tesla owners or people who have experience using Autopilot, and it would be inaccurate to suggest as much. If IIHS is opposed to the name ‘Autopilot,’ presumably they are equally opposed to the name ‘Automobile.’ “The study acknowledged that only 9% to 20% of survey respondents said they had at least one crash-avoidance technology, and “fewer of these reported driving a vehicle in which Level 2 systems were available.” (Level 2 automation, according to the Society of Automotive Engineers, can assist drivers with multiple driving tasks but still require them to be actively engaged. All systems the survey addressed were Level 2. Only Level 1 and 2 systems are available on vehicles that people can buy now.)”The purpose of the study was to learn how the general public perceives the connotations of the system names,” an IIHS spokesman said Friday.The IIHS also cited studies in 2016 and 2018 that found similar results: “The current study adds to the growing body of evidence … that ‘Autopilot’ is a misleading name for a Level 2 driving automation system.” While the study pointed out that perception doesn’t predict drivers’ behavior, it said “it is important that names be developed so as not to mislead drivers about the systems’ correct use.”Tesla has long faced pushback about the Autopilot name. It has seen at least three fatal accidents in which the technology was engaged. After the first fatality in 2016—in which federal agencies eventually cleared the company—Consumer Reports called on Tesla to rename Autopilot, saying the name gave drivers a false sense of security. (The family of the driver who died later released a statement saying he was aware that his Model S was not autonomous.) The other two fatalities are still under federal investigation. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Study: Tesla Autopilot misleading, overestimated more than similar technology (2019, June 27) retrieved 17 July 2019 from Tesla: Removal of ‘Autopilot’ from Chinese site a mistakelast_img read more

Distracted Kindergartners May Earn Less As Adults

first_imgIf you’re wondering why your salary is so low, it bears asking: Were you inattentive as a kindergartner? According to a 30-year study, children who were distracted kindergartners earned less money, on average, in their early 30s than their more attentive classmates did. While these findings may seem discouraging (after all, aren’t kindergartners known for being rambunctious?), the researchers see it another way. “Early behaviors are modifiable,” they wrote in the study, “making them key targets for early intervention.” [11 Facts Every Parent Should Know About Their Baby’s Brain]Headbutting Tiny Worms Are Really, Really LoudThis rapid strike produces a loud ‘pop’ comparable to those made by snapping shrimps, one of the most intense biological sounds measured at sea.Your Recommended PlaylistVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9接下来播放Why Is It ‘Snowing’ Salt in the Dead Sea?01:53 facebook twitter 发邮件 reddit 链接已复制直播00:0000:3500:35  In other words, if this behavior is caught early enough, perhaps children can learn to become more attentive over time, which could help them later in life, the researchers said. Even so, these results are correlational, meaning it’s not clear if one feature actually causes another. And, according to an expert not involved in the study, it’s unclear why the link between inattention and lower salary exists. Distracted kids In the study, researchers pulled data from the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Kindergarten Children to see what behavioral ratings teachers gave 2,850 kindergarteners living in Canada. Nearly all of the children (96%) were white and ages 5 or 6 when the ratings were taken in 1985. Children were rated as inattentive if they met the following criteria: They lacked concentration, were easily distracted, had their head in the clouds and lacked persistence. Then, about 30 years later, the researchers took the average of these children’s tax returns filed from 2013 to 2015. After adjusting for participant IQ and family background (which included factors such as the parent’s education levels, ages, employment status and whether the family structure was intact or not), the researchers found a significant pay gap between the inattentive and attentive students. At the time of follow up, the average salary for men was $27,500 and $15,200 for women (in U.S. dollars). The teachers had rated the children on a sliding scale; for each 1-unit increase in inattention the children received, the men earned about $1,271 less a year, while the women were paid $924 less annually. Moreover, kindergarten ratings of physical aggression (fighting, bullying, kicking and biting) and opposition (disobeying, refusing to share materials, blaming others, being inconsiderate and acting irritable) were associated with lower earnings (about $700 less annually), but only for the boys. On the flip side, kindergarten boys who were more prosocial (behaviors that included stopping quarrels, inviting bystanders to join in a game and helping people who were hurt) earned an average of $476 more a year as adults than less prosocial boys, the researchers found. “The association between childhood behaviors and future earnings is not surprising,” the researchers wrote in the study. “Children who fight with their peers, are careless in their work, do not attend to instructions and do not complete assignments are likely to underperform in school and subsequently in the workplace as adults, which may be associated with lower earnings.” [5 Ways to Talk to Your Kids About Bullying] An outside take Don’t banish rule-breaking Johnny to the low-wage bin just yet, though. This study has several strengths and a few weaknesses, said Jessica Agnew-Blais, a medical research council postdoctoral research fellow at the Social, Genetic & Developmental Psychiatry (SGDP) Centre at King’s College London, who wasn’t involved with the research. It’s important to know that “this association between childhood behavior and adult earnings can be identified quite early in schooling — already by kindergarten,” especially because “this could allow for better early intervention,” Agnew-Blais told Live Science in an email. However, the study leaves many questions unanswered. For instance, “What level of inattention symptoms mean a child should screen positive, i.e., receive an intervention?” Agnew-Blais asked. “Would there be any negative effects of being identified as needing additional support, for example stigma? … These questions go beyond the scope of the current study, but would be important to consider if children were to be screened for these problems.” It would also be helpful to know the exact cause of this link between inattention and lower earnings later in life, she said. For example, “Is it through peer relationships? Educational problems? Poor social support? Poorer mental health in adulthood?” Agnew-Blais asked. “This is not really a weakness of this study, per se, but an area for future research.” She added that while some support programs — such as Sure Start in the United Kingdom and Head Start in the United States — indicate that early intervention can help children later in life, these types of programs aren’t always available. “Sadly, funding is being cut for exactly these types of programs in many countries,” Agnew-Blais said. The study was published online yesterday (June 19) in the journal JAMA Psychiatry. Top 10 Stigmatized Health Disorders 9 Weird Ways Kids Can Get Hurt 25 Scientific Tips For Raising Happy & Healthy Kids Originally published on Live Science.last_img read more

HC gives split verdict in AIADMK MLAs disqualification case

first_imgCOMMENTS government Case has now been referred to third judge Justice Huluvadi G Ramesh Tamil Nadu COMMENT the first Bench of the Madras High Court has given a split judgment in the disqualification of 18 AIADMK MLAs supporting the sidelined party leader, TTV Dhinakaran. June 14, 2018 SHARE In a major relief to the Tamil Nadu Government, the first Bench of the Madras High Court has given a split judgment in the disqualification of 18 AIADMK MLAs supporting the sidelined party leader, TTV Dhinakaran.The Bench comprised Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar. While Justice Sundar allowed the petition filed by the 18 MLAs against their disqualification, Chief Justice Banerjee dismissed it. The case has now been referred to third judge Justice Huluvadi G Ramesh.The 18 MLAs were disqualified after they had called on Tamil Nadu Governor on August 22, 2017 expressing lack of confidence in the leadership of Palaniswami, and wanted him to be replaced. The opposing MLAs were immediately disqualified by the Speaker under Anti-Defection Law.On January 23, the Bench had reserved its orders on the petitions filed by the 18 MLAs. Published on SHARE SHARE EMAILlast_img read more

BJD leaders demand increase in MSP for paddy

first_imgOdisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik during a sit-in dharna, demanding the Centre to increase Minimum Support Price (MSP) of paddy, in New Delhi, Tuesday, Jan 8, 2019.   –  PTI January 08, 2019 BJP has forgotten its poll promises: Naveen Patnaik The BJD President and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday attended a sit-in of his party here, demanding increase in the minimum support price for paddy and slamming the Modi government for not keeping its promises.Patnaik said that despite repeated requests to the Centre to raise the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of paddy to 2,930 per quintal, they were ignored. “The BJP came to power with assurance of increasing the Minimum Support Price of food grain as per the Swaminathan formula. I have gone to the Centre many times with this demand, but it has been ignored. It was promised by the BJP in 2014, but they have forgotten their promise after coming to power,” he said.Patanaik said his government has announced a progressive agricultural programme called ‘KALIA’ that will cost Rs 10,000 crore over three years, further irrigation of 10 lakh hectares of farmland is also nearing completion.“We make the promises and keep them,” he asserted.Patnaik is scheduled to meet the President of India to seek his immediate intervention on the issue of MSP for paddy.The sit-in was attended by the Biju Janta Dal (BJD) MPs, MLAs and other leaders and workers from the state at Talkatora Stadium here. ‘Unacceptable’The Odisha State Assembly in a unanimous resolution has requested the Union government to fix the MSP of paddy at Rs 2,930 per quintal.The Odisha Chief Minister said the demand to increase paddy MSP was raised by party MPs and MLAs at various platforms but it has been ignored. Speaking on the occasion, he slammed the Modi government saying it only offered “jumlas” to people instead of taking concrete steps for their welfare.They said the MSP of paddy fixed by the central government at Rs 1,750 per quintal for the current Kharif marketing season was “unacceptable” to the farmers of Odisha.The price has been fixed without giving due consideration to the request from the Odisha government as it was not commensurate with the rising cost of inputs like seeds, fertilizers, manure, micro-nutrients, irrigation charges and hiring cost for farm machines, they said.Odisha is an agricultural state and paddy is the major crop of the state which is cultivated over an area of 40 lakh hectares in a year. SHARE Published oncenter_img COMMENTS SHARE SHARE EMAIL COMMENTlast_img read more

Syrian government denies the army to make chemically weapon criticises the west

first_imgAgency electric Syria Ministry of Foreign Affairs made a statement 24 days on May 24, deny concerned government army the argument that uses chemical weapon in appraise northwest ministry, pointing out this is the west browbeating and threaten Syria. Statement says, extreme organization distributes through the network appraise government army the false information that omits Kabani to press down use chemistry weapon in Ladajiya, syrian armed f爱上海同城 orces and Ministry of Foreign Affairs give to this deny completely. Statement points out, a few US-ledder western country again concoctive appraise government army the deceit that uses chemica上海夜网论坛 l weapon, try to ease the pressure that terrorist faces in Syrian Yi De Libo, pull slow government army be in this one area advance step. Statement emphasizes, this one crammer won’t prevent Syrian army to continue to hit terroristic. Syrian opposition media said in gregarious media falling-rising tone a few days ago, appraise government army in appraise northwest ministry Ladajiya saves calorie of Barney the rocket that contains chlorine was used when the town carries out assault, immediately of this one view is denied by appraise army. American the State Council says 21 days, syrian government may use chemical weapon again, any act that use chemical weapon will bring about the United States and its ally response. Kenashenkefu of spokesman of Russia department of defense expresses 24 days, american the State Council concerns Syria governmental army is likely the version that implements chemical weapon assault in appraise n上海同城对对碰交友社区 orthwest ministry, it is the disloyal accusation t爱上海龙凤419桑拿 hat chest thinks out, the purpose is the conspire t爱上海同城 hat masks terrorist to destroy local situation. (participate in a reporter: Liu Yang) Original title: Syrian government denies the army to make chemically weapon responsibility edits: Zheng Lililast_img read more

Mexican president says he sees no threat of recession

first_img Related News World 10 Jul 2019 Mexico’s new finance minister does not see impending recession MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Friday that he sees no threat of a recession in the country, striking back amid mounting concerns about the health of the economy. –– ADVERTISEMENT ––Speaking during his regular morning news conference, Lopez Obrador brushed aside economic concerns, saying the critics were speaking out “because it bothers them a lot that we have decided to end corruption.” (Reporting by Julia Love and Lizbeth Diaz; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama) World 10 Jul 2019 Mexico’s new finance minister, believer in stability, takes charge of choppy economy World 11 Jul 2019 ‘Best day ever!’ Internet pokes fun at Mexico’s finance minister grim-faced job acceptance {{category}} {{time}} {{title}} Related Newslast_img read more