first_img Source:https://labblog.uofmhealth.org/lab-report/how-signals-get-inside-cancer-cells-and-spur-aggressive-growth May 14 2018The outside of a cancer cell is bombarded by signals. They come from the immune system, supporting tissues and other structures. But how do those signals impact cancer?A new study provides a surprising model of the process by which those signals enter and influence the cell. The finding could open up a potential new avenue to pursue new therapies against cancer.”How those signals enter the inside of the cell influences major aspects of what makes a cell a cancer cell: its responses and its ability to respond by proliferating and moving. We have found a connection between the cancer cell ‘swallowing’ certain molecules and its ability to activate tumor suppressor genes,” says study author Sofia Merajver, M.D., Ph.D., professor of internal medicine and epidemiology at the University of Michigan.Merajver’s lab at the Rogel Cancer Center worked with a Michigan Engineering team led by Allen Liu, Ph.D., and postdoctoral researcher Luciana Rosselli-Murai, Ph.D. They focused on a protein called clathrin, which impacts how metabolites, hormones and other proteins enter into a cell. Clathrin-coated pits form little indentations inwards on the surface of cells that fold in on themselves and internalize these molecules.In this study, published in the Journal of Cell Science, researchers looked at breast cancer cells that did not express PTEN, a protein known to be mutated or deleted in about a third of breast cancers. They found PTEN played a role in the dynamics of clathrin-coated pits. Changing these dynamics by deleting PTEN resulted in shorter-lived pits.”The clathrin-coated pits that don’t live longer than 20 seconds have historically been thought to be non-important. But we found that those are the ones important for bringing signals from outside the cell into the cell,” says study author Joel Yates, Ph.D., a research scientist in Merajver’s lab.Related StoriesNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerSugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyAdding immunotherapy after initial treatment improves survival in metastatic NSCLC patientsMany cancers develop because of cell signaling problems. Signals must get from outside the cell into its nucleus to produce proteins. If the signal is altered, it alters what the cell makes, which then alters how the cell grows. This study finds that the short-lived clathrin-coated pits are used to help control the signals that enter the cell. Additionally, PTEN alters the signaling of the clathrin-coated pits that make cancer more aggressive.”Our work provides evidence that challenges the current paradigm that short-lived clathrin-coated pits are abortive structures, finding that instead they can be capable of driving signaling,” says Liu, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and biomedical engineering at U-M.PTEN and other tumor suppressor genes are desirable targets for cancer therapy, but they have proven elusive: no drugs have yet been found to restore function of these mutated or deleted genes. The researchers hope that by understanding the role of PTEN at a mechanistic level – what are the steps that cause PTEN to modulate how cancer cells communicate with the outside – it could provide a new approach to targeting the consequences of decreased function of this critical tumor suppressor.”This finding opens a new view to the potential role of PTEN on how cancers modulate the outside world and how aggressive they get. It potentially opens new lines of thinking about how to attack the cancer and prevent it from becoming more aggressive,” Merajver says.The researchers plan to look at the signaling in other types of cancer where PTEN plays a role to gain a better understanding of the signaling impact.last_img read more

A loblolly pine tree on the 17th hole of the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia blocked so many of former President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s shots that in 1956 he tried to get the tree chopped down. Now, loblolly pines (Pinus taeda) are making a different kind of history: Their genome is the largest of any organism yet sequenced. The tree’s extensive use for research and lumber in the southeastern United States made it an early candidate for genetic sequencing. However, its large genome was too cumbersome for conventional whole-genome shotgun sequencing, which sequences short fragments of the genome and then stitches the results together. In a new study, reported today in Genome Biology and Genetics, researchers bolstered the shotgun approach by preprocessing the individual fragments using genetic cloning, allowing them to more easily assemble the complete genome. Using a single pollinated pine seed, the team assembled the largest genome ever sequenced: 22.18 billion base pairs, more than seven times longer than the human genome. The team found that 82% of the genome was made up of duplicated segments, compared with just 25% in humans. The researchers also identified genes responsible for important traits such as disease resistance, wood formation, and stress response; they did not, however, find any genes for ruining presidential golf games.See more ScienceShots.*Update, 21 March, 11:30 a.m.: This item has been updated. We have added a link to the journal Genetics. read more

first_imgEinstein’s general theory of relativity turns 100 this year! Find out more in a special issue from Science.After decades of effort, physicists say they are on the verge of detecting ripples in spacetime called gravitational waves, whose existence Albert Einstein himself predicted nearly a century ago. Researchers working on the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) will use enormous instruments in Livingston, Louisiana, and Hanford, Washington, to look for the gravitational waves set off when two neutron stars spiral into each other. LIGO ran from 2002 to 2010 and saw nothing, but those Initial LIGO instruments aimed only to prove that the experiment was technologically feasible, physicists say. Now, they’re finishing a $205 million rebuild of the detectors, known as Advanced LIGO, which should make them 10 times more sensitive and, they say, virtually ensure a detection. Such an observation would open up a whole new type of astronomy—and likely bag a Nobel Prize.To read the full story, see the 6 March 2015 issue of Science.last_img read more

first_imgThe 88-page document includes numerous quantitative goals, such as:* a doubling of private investment in public R&D to €48 million per year;* 40,000 research personnel working in business, a 60% increase; and  * 2250 masters and Ph.D. enrollments per year, up 30%, to be targeted “in disciplines aligned to enterprise and other national needs.”The plan calls for creating a competitive fund for “frontier research” by 2017, although it does not specify the amount of funding. “We certainly hope that the scheme will be given a substantial budget to balance out the very strong focus on industry-facing research across the rest of the strategy,” Mitchell says. He was one of more 1069 scientists who signed an open letter to the government in March urging a renewed focus on basic research.The government also announced it will explore joining CERN, the European laboratory for particle physics near Geneva, Switzerland, and the European Southern Observatory.The document is more aspirational than prescriptive, calling on governmental agencies to review tax credits and other incentives for private investment in R&D, for example.The new strategy was welcomed by the Irish business council Ibec and the Irish Universities Association (IUA). “These initiatives will support a wider spectrum of research and better equip Ireland to find solutions to the complex challenges facing us,” said Ned Costello, chief executive of IUA. The Irish government today released an ambitious 5-year vision for stimulating innovation. Developed by several agencies, the plan calls for increasing total investment in R&D by about a third to 2.0% of gross domestic product. In cash terms, that would mean a rise in public and private spending from last year’s €2.9 billion to about €5 billion per year in 2020.“It is fantastic to see the Irish government’s commitment to increasing the overall spending on research,” neuroscientist Kevin Mitchell of Trinity College in Dublin told ScienceInsider. “After many years of crisis management, it is great to see a longer-term strategy and vision take shape.”  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 Emailcenter_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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first_img Many observers hoped Senate budgetmakers would oppose cuts to the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) basic and applied research programs proposed by the White House in May. But they may not have expected them to be quite so blunt about it. The detailed report that accompanies the Senate version of the so-called energy and water bill, which funds DOE, contains several passages in which Senate appropriators express their objections to cuts in unusually frank language.For example, in its budget request for fiscal year 2018, which begins 1 October, the White House seeks to eliminate the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), the 8-year-old agency that aims to quickly transform the best ideas from basic research into budding energy technologies. House of Representatives appropriators have voted to go along with that elimination, but Senate appropriators are having none of it. “The Committee definitively rejects this short-sighted proposal,” the report says. Instead, Senate appropriators would increase ARPA-E’s budget by 8% to $330 million. Their report expressly forbids DOE from using money to shut down ARPA-E.Similarly, within DOE’s Office of Science, the White House has called for cutting spending on biological and environmental research (BER) by 43% to $349 million. But the Senate appropriations committee “rejects the short-sighted reductions proposed in the budget request.” Instead, Senate budgetmakers would boost BER research by 3% to $630 million. Senate appropriators also would give DOE’s applied research in its Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy $1.937 billion, a 7% cut from last year, but far above the $636 million proposed by the White House. OGphoto/iStockphoto In all, the report contains the phrase “short-sighted” three times. That’s as many times as it appeared in the previous 10 such reports—and in those instances the term was applied to decisions made by the Army Corps of Engineers, which is also funded through the energy and water bill. The word “rejects” or variants of it appear more often. It showed up four times in last year’s report, but no more than once in the reports for fiscal years 2010 through 2016. The last time Senate appropriators used “reject” or a variant more often in report for the energy and water bill was fiscal year 2009, when it showed up eight times. Back then Democrats controlled the Senate and Republicans controlled the White House.The Senate bill and report are hardly the last word on the 2018 DOE budget. Both the House and Senate have to pass their respective versions of the bill. Then any discrepancies would have to be resolved before the bill would go to President Donald Trump for signing. Given differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill, expectations that this process will go smoothly may be short-sighted. With unusual candor, Senate appropriators ‘reject’ cuts to energy research Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Senate appropriations committee, in a report accompanying a bill that funds the Department of Energy Members of the Senate appropriations subcommittee on energy and water development, which is led by chair Lamar Alexander (R–TN) and ranking member Dianne Feinstein (D–CA), would make cuts of their own. They would slash spending on fusion energy science by 39% to $232 million. They would also terminate the United States’s participation in the international fusion project, ITER, under construction in France.center_img By Adrian ChoJul. 24, 2017 , 3:45 PM Email The Committee definitively rejects this short-sighted proposal, and instead increases investment in this transformational program and directs the Department to continue to spend funds provided on research and development and program direction. 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

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) His bid for a seat in the U.S. Congress had just gone down in flames. But instead of rehashing his election night defeat, Randy Wadkins says he spent the next morning describing “oxidative phosphorylation electron transport in mitochondria” to a class of chemistry majors at The University of Mississippi in Oxford.Wadkins’s lecture on the molecular cycle creating adenosine triphosphate highlighted his unique status among the 49 candidates with training in a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) or medical field who ran this year for the U.S. House of Representatives. Not only was Wadkins the only academic researcher in the bunch, but he also kept working as a tenured professor of biochemistry during his 18-month campaign.Wadkins, a progressive Democrat, lost to the conservative Republican incumbent, Representative Trent Kelly, by more than a two-to-one margin. (Only seven of the STEM candidates won seats.) A heavy underdog from the start, Wadkins couldn’t raise nearly enough money to get his message out to the conservative voters that dominate his rural district in northeastern Mississippi. But having to wear two hats certainly didn’t help. A U.S. biochemistry professor takes his political shot—and misses by a lot Randy Wadkins on election night Sam DeLuca Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrycenter_img By Jeffrey MervisNov. 16, 2018 , 4:15 PM Email “On the Sunday before the election, my campaign staff was angry at me because I wasn’t out canvassing or phone banking. Instead, I was home preparing for my next lecture,” Wadkins says a few days after the 6 November elections. “I was like, ‘This is what I’m paid to do. It has to take priority.’” Carrying out his regular academic duties—teaching, doing research, and attending faculty meetings—“helped keep me sane and grounded,” he says. But it was also stressful. “My attention was always divided,” he admits, “worrying about getting a paper published at the same time I should be out canvassing in Horn Lake.”A big dollar deficitWhy wasn’t able to raise more money? Wadkins thinks it was a combination of geography, party affiliation, and occupation.“First of all, it’s Mississippi, which is the poorest state in the nation,” he says about the place where he grew up and earned his doctoral degree, and then returned a dozen years later after establishing his academic career as an independent investigator. “And right off the bat, there is no money for a Democrat here.”His campaign brought in about $160,000. That’s less than half of the $400,000 he estimates he would have needed to run TV and radio ads and hire enough staff to have a visible presence in the district, which spans 22 counties. In contrast, Kelly raised and spent nearly $900,000.Wadkins confesses that he didn’t devote as much time to fundraising as campaign professionals, including elected officials with scientific backgrounds, told him was necessary to run a viable campaign. “Representative Bill Foster [D–IL] called us early on and said, ‘The part that you’re going to hate is the fundraising,’” Wadkins recalls about a conversation with the only research physicist in Congress. “He told me everybody hates that, but he said that’s part of the job, and you have to do it whether you like it or not.”Wadkins also learned that raising money attracts more money. Groups otherwise sympathetic to a candidate tend to withhold their financial support unless that candidate has already proved to be a successful fundraiser. “So, we weren’t able to attract any [political action committee] or national attention, financially,” he says.His campaign had an arms-length relationship with 314 Action, a group formed to help STEM professionals run for office. “They said, ‘Go get ‘em,’” he says about a conversation with the group before his June primary, “but that they had limited resources and were looking at races that they expected to be more competitive.”(The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania–based organization endorsed 16 House candidates—all Democrats—during the primary season, six of whom won their party’s nomination. 314 Action had a better record in the general election, with seven of its 11 endorsed House candidates winning seats.)The national Democratic party took a similarly hard-headed approach, declining to offer any help. Wadkins says he understands its reasons, but thinks it further penalized long shots like him. “Those of us who were running in red seats were left out in the cold, crying in the wilderness.”Some candidates who can’t tap into outside contributions can self-fund their campaign. But that was never an option for Wadkins. “I’m a college professor, and we’re not exactly rolling in the dough,” he says. His economic situation was also the reason he retained his tenured position. “If I had taken a leave, it would have been without pay,” he says. “And I couldn’t afford that.”An indifferent audienceApart from being starved for money, Wadkins says his campaign was hindered by the lack of voter interest in the race. “There were never any debates,” he says with frustration. “Town hall meetings were filled with Democrats who were already going to vote for me. It was preaching to the choir.”“We never had any public forums in which you might be able to sway voters,” he continues. “When people heard the message, they were convinced. But we weren’t able to get enough people to hear the message.”Voters showed Kelly a similar indifference, Wadkins says. But that didn’t pose a problem for the incumbent, who was defending a seat he first won in a special election in 2015, after the death of Republican Alan Nunnelee.“[Kelly] had no yard signs, no rallies, nothing,” Wadkins says. “His assumption was that he would win, and he was right.“I’d bet that if you asked voters, 90% wouldn’t know who their member of Congress is,” he asserts. “But in this part of the world, the default mode is Republican. So, when folks in rural districts show up at the polls, they just vote Republican.”Although young voters were a mainstay for many insurgent Democratic candidates, and Wadkins teaches at a school with 20,000 students, he says he had to tread carefully because he is a state employee. He made sure his academic duties didn’t overlap in any way with his political activities, to the point that he turned down a request from a major newspaper doing a story on his candidacy to send a photographer to his lab. “I didn’t want to violate a policy that, essentially, says the university can’t be a resource for my campaign.”Keeping a barrier between himself and his students turned out to be surprisingly easy. The morning after his election defeat, nobody in his upper-level chemistry class asked him about the results, he says. “To be honest, it wouldn’t surprise me if they were all oblivious to the election.”Their disregard could be tied to federal rules on student aid that might penalize them if they registered to vote in Oxford, he says. In addition, he says, roughly half the students hail from outside of Mississippi and thus, have only tenuous ties to local politics.A dream deferredWadkins spent the 2015–16 academic year in Washington. D.C., as a science policy fellow for Representative Steve Cohen (D–TN), and in idle moments during the campaign he saw himself returning to the nation’s capital along with David Baria, a Democratic state senator who was challenging incumbent Senator Roger Wicker (R).“I had this vision of, man, if David would win the Senate seat and I could win the House, we could do so much for the state. But ‘twas not to be.” Baria lost by margin of 59% to 39%. “We both knew that this would be a Don Quixote thing, in which you just shut out that part of your brain that’s saying you’re going to lose and try to win.”Despite his resounding defeat, Wadkins says people have urged him to run again. Although he has not ruled out the possibility, he sees a formidable hurdle in his path.“We need to solve the [campaign financing] problem first,” he says. “And I don’t see it fixing itself. So, for me—and for any readers of Science thinking of running for Congress—the question is: ‘Can you raise at least $1 million, and probably a lot more?’ If the answer is no, it’s going to be very hard to be elected.”In the meantime, Wadkins has already reallocated the time he spent on the campaign trail. It was a smooth transition because he never stopped being an academic scientist.“After lunch, I’m going to review a [Journal of the American Chemical Society] paper that I got at the end of the campaign and that is almost overdue,” he said. “The only reason I agreed to review it is because it’s actually a very interesting paper in my field. It’s pretty good, although there are some things that need to be fixed.” 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

first_img THE FLORIDA KEYS REEF TRACT—Earlier this month, outfitted in scuba gear and bobbing above lumpy brown coral 6 kilometers off Key Largo, Lauren Toth, a coral geologist at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in St. Petersburg, Florida, set out to learn just how much time Florida’s coral reef has left.Around the world, warming oceans are killing coral. In Florida, Toth and others have found, heat-induced bleaching is just the latest in a millennialong series of insults, which have brought the reef ‘s growth to a standstill and left it vulnerable to erosion and rising seas. As a result, the barrier reef—the third longest in the world—is not simply dying. It appears to be vanishing.At stake is a 320-kilometer-long bulwark that protects the Keys from waves while providing habitat for fish and a lure for tourists. Recent measurements by Toth and her colleagues have confirmed that the coral is eroding, in some places by several millimeters per year. Now, she and others are surveying the entire reef to learn how fast, and where, it is being lost. DOMINIQUE GALLERY/USGS Scientists track Florida’s vanishing barrier reef 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 Diving to ailing coral, researchers test a tool for measuring how fast the reef is eroding.center_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 By Paul VoosenApr. 24, 2019 , 1:20 PM Email The recent toll of warming, disease, and pollution on Florida’s reef has been even heavier than on some other iconic reefs, such as Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. “We’ve lost 90% of our coral cover in recent decades,” says Erinn Muller, a coral biologist at the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Florida. Some species, such as the fast-growing elkhorn coral with its distinctive wide branches, have nearly vanished. A host of others have died as a disease called stony coral tissue loss has marched down the Keys. “The last corals alive are getting hammered,” says Derek Manzello, an oceanographer at a Miami, Florida, lab of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.Yet Toth and her peers have shown that Florida’s corals haven’t been healthy for millennia. Core samples from the reef record that it stopped growing 3000 years ago. Florida’s reef lies near the northern temperature limit for corals, and Toth and her colleagues reported in a study last year that a cooling trend around that time likely made the waters more prone to cold snaps that would periodically kill off corals, leaving the reefs at a delicate tipping point.Now, although cold snaps still occur, global warming is bringing hotter summers, causing bleaching and mass die-offs. It is also raising sea level. Healthy corals readily cope with sea level rise, growing with the rising ocean. But Florida’s ailing reefs probably can’t keep pace. Anecdotes abound of patches of reef eroded flat to sand.Data, however, are rare, with one exception: In 1998, USGS scientists drilled rods into 12 dead coral colonies at one site here, hoping to gauge erosion. Recently, a USGS team led by Ilsa Kuffner and Toth revisited the rods and used the cement that holds the rods in place as a reference point. In work close to publication, they found that the dead corals are eroding by 5.5 millimeters a year—almost double the rate of global sea level rise—as they are chewed apart by parrotfish and other species.Toth is now trying to get a broader view by taking advantage of rods that Florida state scientists embedded at 46 sites up and down the Keys as reference points for an annual photographic survey. At many of these sites, the epoxy that cements each rod in place, once flush with the coral, is now sticking out because of erosion. To get more precise measurements, Toth and her co-workers developed a portable tool that can sit on top of the stakes.On this April morning, she and a colleague were testing the device, floating above boulder and mountainous star coral and massive starlet coral, with a fleeting sighting of one staghorn. Silvery chubs, red grouper, and snappers seemed to watch the scientists work. Each rod presented its own challenge. Some were covered with small fire corals, which the divers dislodged with taps of a hammer. Others had been coopted by sponges, or in one case had fused with the spine of a fanlike soft coral. When a coral might be damaged or a sponge squished, the scientists skipped measuring it.”The prototype works,” Toth said as she climbed back into the boat. In this case, the rods recorded little erosion—perhaps because the reef was already squat. “Once it’s flat, it probably doesn’t get targeted [by fish] anymore,” she said. This summer, the divers who conduct Florida’s photographic survey will use the USGS tool to measure about half the rods at each site, giving a more complete picture of the reef’s decline.For coral biologist Alina Szmant at the University of North Carolina in Wilmington, Toth’s work confirms the reef is doomed, as the assaults overwhelm a fragile ecosystem. “I don’t want to give up, but you have to be honest with yourself,” she says.A patchwork of restoration efforts, largely from nonprofit groups, continues on the reef, often aiming to replace dead coral with heat-resistant transplants. Backers should temper their expectations, Toth says: “If these reefs haven’t been growing for 3000 years, it’s going to be really tough to get reefs like exist elsewhere in the Caribbean.”Toth still hopes some living coral can be saved. But she says biologists need to introduce not just corals that can resist heat or disease, but also species that can build structure, like staghorn or elkhorn. It’s also time, she adds, to think about saving the reef structure and the services it provides, even if its coral dies. “How do we keep from losing what was built over the last 8000 years?” she says. “Because we don’t have another 8000 years to rebuild it.”last_img read more

first_imgTo most people, the name Samuel J. Seymour will sound unfamiliar. Seymour, born in Easton, Maryland, in 1860, was the last surviving person who was witness to President Lincoln’s assassination. He was present at Ford’s Theater on the eve of April 14, 1865, when John Wilkes Booth fired a deadly shot at the President. Some nine decades had passed since the event anchored itself in American history when Samuel J. Seymour, at the age of 96, took the hot seat on I’ve Got a Secret.I’ve Got a Secret was a TV game show which originally aired from 1952 until 1967. The format was similar to What’s my Line? — a panel of four famous people were challenged to guess a contestant’s unusual or entertaining secret.Photo from the television program I’ve Got a Secret. From left: Garry Moore, Lindsay Crosby, Betsy Palmer, Phillip Crosby, Dennis Crosby.The secret was shown to the studio audience, as well as everyone watching on television, then each panelist was left with 30 seconds ask the contestant questions. When Seymour appeared in the studio on February 9, 1956, he whispered his secret to host Garry Moore: “I saw John Wilkes Booth shoot Abraham Lincoln.”The four panelists for the day were: Bill Cullen, Jayne Meadows, Henry Morgan, and Lucille Ball.Shown in the presidential booth of Ford’s Theatre, from left to right, are assassin John Wilkes Booth, Abraham Lincoln, Mary Todd Lincoln, Clara Harris, and Henry Rathbone.Cullen was first to try and crack the secret of the elderly man. He would ask him if his secret held a historical and political significance. Cullen eased the job for Meadows, who was next, that this concerned a famous person who held a political office.“You witnessed something to do with Abraham Lincoln,” correctly guessed Meadows, quickly proceeding to ask if the memory was pleasant. “Not very pleasant I don’t think. I was scared to death,” replied Seymour. See the rest in the video below.Seymour was five-years-old when he accompanied his father on a working visit to Washington, D.C. As his father was absent due to his work, the young boy stayed with his nurse, Sarah Cook, and his godmother, Mrs. Goldsboro. The three of them attended the play “Our American Cousin” at Ford’s Theater.Samuel James Seymour was the last surviving person who had been in Ford’s Theatre the night of the assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865.Seymour remembered the theater and the balcony, adorned with the American flag, reserved for President Lincoln. The President showed up and waved at the crowd. This was apparently the more pleasant memory of the evening.The unpleasant one was made as the play reached its third act, and, as shared by Seymour, “all of a sudden, a shot rang out–a shot that always will be remembered–and someone in the President’s box screamed.”Painting depicting President Lincoln’s assassination.Before appearing on I’ve Got a Secret, Seymour’s account of the assassination night featured in the February 7, 1954, edition of the Milwaukee Sentinel. A clip of the newspaper was shown by host Garry Moore as the episode concluded.“I saw Lincoln slumped forward in his seat. People started milling around and I thought there’d been another accident when one man seemed to tumble over the balcony rail and land on the stage. ‘Hurry, hurry, let’s go help the poor man who fell down,’ I begged. But by that time John Wilkes Booth, the assassin, had picked himself up and was running for dear life,” recalled Seymour.Samuel J. Seymour on I’ve got Secret.John Wilkes Booth was on the run for 12 days after the assassination until he was found hiding in a barn.Read another story from us: The misfortune that haunted the couple by Abraham Lincoln’s side on the fateful nightSamuel J. Seymour passed away shortly after his television appearance in 1956 and a few days ahead of the 91st commemoration of President Lincoln’s death. He was laid to rest at Loudon Park Cemetery in Baltimore, Maryland.Stefan A. is a freelance writer and a regular contributor to The Vintage News. He is a graduate in Literature. He also runs the blog This City Knows.last_img read more

first_imgThe FBI always gets their man — or, in this case, their slippers, a pair of red ruby slippers. Thirteen years after Dorothy’s sequined red shoes from The Wizard of Oz were stolen from the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, the FBI has recovered them, proving there is no place like home.It’s unclear if anyone will be charged, reported CNN on September 4, 2018.One of the pairs used in The Wizard of Oz (1939), on display at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of American History. Photo by RadioFan CC BY-SA 3.0A 2017 tip to Detective Brian Mattson led to “connections outside of Minnesota,” the Grand Rapids Police Department said, explaining why the FBI took the lead in the probe.The shoes were recovered in Minneapolis earlier this summer, Sgt. Robert Stein said in a statement. An individual had approached the company that insured the slippers, saying he had information about the shoes and how they could be returned, and “it became apparent that those involved were in reality attempting to extort the owners of the slippers,” Special Agent Christopher Dudley, who led the investigation from the FBI’s Minneapolis Division, said in a statement reported by CNN.The red slippers possess magical powers in The Wizard of Oz, with Dorothy learning that she must tap the heels three times and say, “There’s no place like home,” in order to be transported from Oz back to Kansas, and her aunt and uncle’s hardscrabble farm.Publicity photo/Wizard of Oz. Judy Garland is seen wearing the ruby slippers.These slippers are one of four known pairs that Garland wore as Dorothy in the 1939 film. They are often said to be one of the most valued props in movie history.At the time of the 2005 theft, the slippers were on loan to the museum from a collector in North Hollywood, California.The curled-toe “Arabian” ruby slippers on display at the auction of the collection of Debbie Reynolds in Beverly Hills on June 18, 2011. Photo by Relaxatiallc CC BY SA 3.0Judy Garland was born in Grand Rapids, Minnesota on June 10, 1922, to Frances Ethel Gumm at the Itasca Hospital. According to the museum’s website, Judy “joined her sisters in a first song-and-dance routine performed at the Itasca Mercantile, located at the corner of Hwys 169 & 2, ‘When My Sugar Walks Down the Street.’ ”“Her first solo was ‘Jingle Bells’ performed in a white net dress created by her mother at her father’s Grand Theater located on South Pokegama avenue next to the old Rialto Theater. Judy performed throughout North East and North Central Minnesota from 1924-1926.”Stars Judy Garland as Dorothy Gale and Terry the Dog, as Toto.In 1938, at the age of 16, she was cast as Dorothy Gale in The Wizard of Oz, one of the most iconic characters in movie history.The slippers in question belonged to collector Michael Shaw, who bought them for $2,000 in 1970 from Kent Warner, a costumer who found them on an MGM lot. Shaw’s collection also included Dorothy’s dress, the witch’s hat, and a Munchkin outfit.Garland won the role of Dorothy despite substantial competition.“For years, Shaw lent the shoes to museums for several thousand dollars, often donating the proceeds to children’s charities,” reported The New York Times.Shaw told Newsweek in 2015, “I felt like I was hit in the stomach when I got the call. My knees buckled, and I went right down on the floor. I had taken care of those shoes for 35 years.”Judy Garland “Dorothy Gale” Arabian-pattern test “Ruby Slippers” and dress with blouse from The Wizard of Oz (1939) at the Debbie Reynolds Auction. All were early concept designs that were not used in the final film. Photo by Doug Kline CC BY 2.0Valued at up to $3 million, the stolen slippers would be hard to sell on the black market, experts said after the theft. “Whoever has them, illicitly, has their hands full with them,” journalist Rhys Thomas said in the 2016 documentary, The Slippers.“Sometime between 5:45 pm on August 27th and 9:45 am on August 28th, a burglar broke a window in the museum’s back door and entered,” the Grand Rapids Police Department said in a news release. “The thief smashed a Plexiglas case resting on a wooden podium in the museum’s gallery and made off with the slippers that were insured for $1 million. The alarm did not sound to a central dispatch station. No fingerprints were left behind.”An original pair on display at the Smithsonian Institution. Photo by Dbking CC BY-SA 3.0There were rumors of an inside job, which the museum officials always denied.Museum co-founder Jon Miner told a CNN affiliate in 2015 that the theft was “the biggest thing that ever happened to our museum….We were literally crying.”An anonymous donor offered a $1 million reward for their return, but the offer expired after 10 years.Read another story from us:Abandoned but pack your ruby slippers and head to 1970s OZ theme parkIn 2012, Leonardo DiCaprio was named as the force behind a group of movie lovers who bought another of the pairs. The slippers will be displayed at the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences in Los Angeles next year.Nancy Bilyeau, a former staff editor at Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, and InStyle, has written a trilogy of historical thrillers for Touchstone Books. For more information, go to www.nancybilyeau.comlast_img read more

first_imgTickets now on sale for ‘9-5, The Musical’ November 10, 2017 Northland Pioneer College’s Performing Arts Department will be presenting a hilarious story of friendship and revenge in the Rolodex era with five November performances of 9 to 5 The Musical on the main stage ofSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Adlast_img

first_imgJuly 3, 2018 Cable One casts a shadow on broadband services By Toni Gibbons The filing of an appeal by Cable One for denial of a bid protest with regard to bringing broadband service into the area caused the Navajo County Board of Supervisors to authorizeSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Adlast_img

first_img By Erik StokstadDec. 6, 2018 , 5:25 PM Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Email Livestock operations can be a major source of ammonia emissions. Ammonia is a significant ingredient in smog and a growing problem, but scientists have struggled to track emissions in detail from sources such as animal feedlots and fertilizer factories. Now, satellite data described in a new paper can help them pinpoint and measure ammonia hot spots, potentially providing an independent way of tracking progress toward national pollution targets.“It’s a real historic moment,” says Mark Sutton, an environmental physicist with the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology in Edinburgh. “This paper presents a landmark, an incredible level of detail.”Compared with soot, ozone, and other air pollutants, ammonia is a neglected stepchild, Sutton says, both in research and air quality regulations. Part of the difficulty is simply measuring it. The chemical typically stays in the atmosphere for less than a day, before it reacts with other molecules and turns into particulate matter. So it’s not easy to measure concentrations, even when studying it with ground-based instruments. In the Netherlands, for example, “We still can’t get a good picture of ammonia” despite a large number of monitoring stations, says Jan Willem Erisman, a nitrogen expert at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. “This tells you the importance of satellite measurements.” 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 Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Remote sensing experts, however, were long skeptical of the chances of measuring ammonia with satellites, partly because of its low concentrations. “It’s one of the pollutants that we never thought we could measure from space,” says Cathy Clerbaux, a physicist with the French national research agency CNRS in Paris. Clerbaux oversees a satellite-based instrument called the infrared atmospheric sounding interferometer (IASI) that can easily measure the concentration of molecules such methane and ozone. But within a few years of the launch of the first IASI in 2007, Clerbaux and colleagues had teased out an initial map of major sources of ammonia, such as smoke from large fires. “It was very crude,” she recalls.Now, they have refined the maps considerably, thanks to a clever way of processing 9 years of data, resolving emissions within square kilometers. With a near-global map of ammonia emissions, Martin van Damme of the Free University of Brussels set about identifying the sources of the most intense emissions. By checking images from Google Earth and other sources, Van Damme identified 83 places with agricultural sources, mostly large concentrations of cows, pigs, or chickens, where ammonia escaped from ponds or heaps of animal waste. Another 130 hot spots were factories that make fertilizer from ammonia, they report this week in Nature. The maps also include large areas where ammonia is released from manure or fertilizer applied to fields, such as the Indo-Gangetic Plain of India and Pakistan. (Vehicles emit ammonia from catalytic converters, contributing to poor air quality in cities, but those emissions don’t show up in the maps.)The new data could help fill in gaps in the most comprehensive collection of air pollution records, called the Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research (EDGAR), which is run by the European Union’s Joint Research Centre in Ispra, Italy. The data in EDGAR are used in a variety of computer models for evaluating the environmental effects of ammonia and long-distance transport of pollution. Most of the ammonia hot spots were missing from EDGAR, which relies on countries to supply data. In addition, the hot spots that were present in the database tended to list much lower emissions than those found in the satellite data. Part of the reason for the discrepancies could be the difficulty of measuring ammonia from the ground, Clerbaux says. And some countries may not have regulations that require reporting of ammonia emissions, Sutton adds.Satellites have limitations. IASI can’t see through clouds, for example, and it requires a temperature difference between the ground and atmosphere, which makes it hard to gather data from some places. Sutton says that, at the moment, the data are better for assessing relative changes rather than absolute amounts of ammonia. Still, the ability to compare overall emissions from countries will stimulate progress in reducing ammonia emissions, Sutton says.The European Union, where ammonia is responsible for about 60% of particulate air pollution, has a target of reducing ammonia emissions by 6% by 2020, relative to 2005 levels. But ammonia levels are increasing, because of increased use of fertilizer and meat production. “The ambition is low, but the embarrassment of not being able to comply raises attention,” Sutton says. The capability to monitor progress by satellite “will shine a spotlight on ammonia and the need to take action.” In advance, satellites reveal hidden hot spots of ammonia pollution Melanie Blanding/Alamy Stock Photo last_img read more

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 3 2018Researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have discovered a new way in which nerve cells can control movement. In a study on zebrafish published in the journal PNAS they show that the contact between neurons and muscles is more dynamic than previously thought. The results can open up new avenues to treating spinal cord injury and certain neurological diseases.The ability to move deliberately is essential to the survival of all animal life, and is based on an interaction between the muscles and the brain. The site where motor neurons and muscle cells communicate with each other is called the neuromuscular junction. This is where the neurons transfer signal substances that can be taken up by the muscle cells to make them contract.This point of contact – the synapse – has long been described as a relatively simple system in adult vertebrates, with the molecule acetylcholine as the most important neurotransmitter. Despite this, knowledge is lacking on how the communication is actually effected and how adult motor neurons can respond to damage or environmental change.Related StoriesChronic inflammation removes motivation by reducing dopamine in the brainNew gene-editing protocol allows perfect mutation-effect matchingDysfunctional neurons repaired in dementia mouse modelResearchers at Karolinska Institutet have now generated new knowledge about how the neuromuscular junction works. Their results show that it is a more dynamic system than previously believed.”Our study shows that the function of the neuromuscular synapses can change under certain conditions and in certain diseases in order to fine-tune movements, which was a completely unexpected finding,” says assistant professor Konstantinos Ampatzis at the Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, who led the study.The study was conducted on zebrafish, which is a common model system in neurobiological research. The researchers show that changes in the form of an increase in physical activity and spinal damage can cause certain adult motor neurons to switch from producing acetylcholine to producing another neurotransmitter – glutamate. The researchers believe that this is to control movements better.The results indicate that more detailed studies of the neuromuscular junction are needed, not least in humans. Such knowledge is important because impaired communication between neurons and muscles can cause serious diseases, such as the neuromuscular disease myasthenia gravis.”Our study can open new doors to the treatment of diseases involving reduced neuromuscular transmission,” says Dr Ampatzis. “More detailed knowledge on which neurons express specific neurotransmitters can enable the development of better treatments that restore function to the nervous system.”There is also growing evidence that the neuromuscular junction is involved in the early stages of such diseases as spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), which have previously been regarded as diseases of the motor neurons.The study was financed by the Swedish Research Council, the Strategic Research Area Neuroscience, the Swedish Brain Foundation, the Längman Cultural Foundation and Erik and Edith Fernstro?m Foundation.Source: https://ki.se/en/news/new-knowledge-on-how-neurons-talk-to-muscleslast_img read more

first_imgAdding context to items on a page is another way Google tries to counter disinformation.For example, knowledge or information panels appear near search results to provide facts about the search subject.In search and news, Google clearly labels content originating with fact-checkers.In addition, it has “Breaking News” and “Top News” shelves, and “Developing News” information panels on YouTube, to expose users to authoritative sources when looking for information about ongoing news events.YouTube also has information panels providing “Topical Context” and “Publisher Context,” so users can see contextual information from trusted sources and make better-informed choices about what they see on the platform.A recent context move was added during the 2018 mid-term elections, when Google required additional verification for anyone purchasing an election ad in the United States.It also required advertisers to confirm they were U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents. Further, every ad creative had to incorporate a clear disclosure of who was paying for the ad.”Giving users more context to make their own decisions is a great step,” observed CSIS’s Lewis. “Compared to Facebook, Google looks good.” Hiding Behind Algorithms Like other communication channels, the open Internet is vulnerable to the organized propagation of false or misleading information, Google explained in its white paper.”Over the past several years, concerns that we have entered a ‘post-truth’ era have become a controversial subject of political and academic debate,” the paper states. “These concerns directly affect Google and our mission — to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. When our services are used to propagate deceptive or misleading information, our mission is undermined.”Google outlined three general strategies for attacking disinformation on its platforms: making quality count, counteracting malicious actors, and giving users context about what they’re seeing on a Web page. With the release of the white paper, “Google wants to demonstrate that they’re taking the problem of fake news seriously and they’re actively combating the issue,” noted Vincent Raynauld, an assistant professor in the department of Communication Studies at Emerson College in Boston.That’s important as high-tech companies like Facebook and Google come under increased government scrutiny, he explained.”The first battle for these companies is to make sure people understand what false information is,” Raynauld told TechNewsWorld. “It’s not about combating organizations or political parties,” he said. “It’s about combating online manifestations of misinformation and false information.”That may not be easy for Google.”Google’s business model incentivizes deceitful behavior to some degree,” said Comparitech’s Bischoff.”Ads and search results that incite emotions regardless of truthfulness can be ranked as high or higher than more level-headed, informative, and unbiased links, due to how Google’s algorithms work,” he pointed out.If a bad article has more links to it than a good article, the bad article could well be ranked higher, Bischoff explained.”Google is stuck in a situation where its business model encourages disinformation, but its content moderation must do the exact opposite,” he said. “As a result, I think Google’s response to disinformation will always be somewhat limited.” 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. Google makes quality count through algorithms whose usefulness is determined by user testing, not by the ideological bent of the people who build or audit the software, according to the paper.”One big strength of Google is that they admit to the problem — not everybody does — and are looking to fix their ranking algorithms to deal with it,” James A. Lewis, director of the technology and public policy program at the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Strategic and International Studies, told TechNewsWorld.While algorithms can be a blessing, they can be a curse, too.”Google made it clear in its white paper that they aren’t going to introduce humans into the mix. Everything is going to be based on algorithms,” said Dan Kennedy, an associate professor in the school of journalism at Northeastern University in Boston.”That’s key to their business plan,” he told TechNewsWorld. “The reason they’re so profitable is they employ very few people, but that guarantees there will be continued problems with disinformation.” Google may depend too much on its software, suggested Paul Bischoff, a privacy advocate at Comparitech, a reviews, advice and information website for consumer security products.”I think Google leans perhaps a bit too heavily on its algorithms in some situations when common sense could tell you that a certain page contains false information,” he told TechNewsWorld.”Google hides behind its algorithms to shrug off responsibility in those cases,” Bischoff added.Algorithms can’t solve all problems, Google acknowledged in its paper. They can’t determine whether a piece of content on current events is true or false; nor can they assess the intent of its creator just by scanning the text on a page.That’s where Google’s experience fighting spam and rank manipulators has come in handy. To counter those deceivers, Google has developed a set of policies to regulate certain behaviors on its platforms.”This is relevant to tackling disinformation since many of those who engage in the creation or propagation of content for the purpose to deceive often deploy similar tactics in an effort to achieve more visibility,” the paper notes. “Over the course of the past two decades, we have invested in systems that can reduce ‘spammy’ behaviors at scale, and we complement those with human reviews.”center_img Post-Truth Era More Context Serious About Fake News Making Quality Count Google unveiled its game plan for fighting disinformation on its properties at a security conference in Munich, Germany, over the weekend.The 30-page document details Google’s current efforts to combat bad dope on its search, news, YouTube and advertising platforms.”Providing useful and trusted information at the scale that the Internet has reached is enormously complex and an important responsibility,” noted Google Vice President for Trust and Safety Kristie Canegallo.”Adding to that complexity, over the last several years we’ve seen organized campaigns use online platforms to deliberately spread false or misleading information,” she continued.”We have twenty years of experience in these information challenges, and it’s what we strive to do better than anyone else,” added Canegallo. “So while we have more work to do, we’ve been working hard to combat this challenge for many years.”last_img read more

first_img Source:https://www.kaptest.com/ Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Oct 17 2018Kaplan Nursing, which partners with nursing schools nationwide to prepare thousands of aspiring nurses to pass the NCLEX-RN® and NCLEX-PN® licensing exams and be ready for their career, has launched a new interactive virtual simulation program for nursing schools to help educate their students make clinical judgments. Acquired earlier this year by Kaplan, i-Human Patients is a high performance, healthcare case authoring and playback system which can simulate a complete patient encounter, from performing a nursing assessment, to recognizing, analyzing, and prioritizing data, to evaluating patient outcomes.The new Kaplan Nursing virtual simulation program offers several benefits: it allows students to practice the complete nursing process in a “safe space” before they see live patients; it provides expert feedback and clinical judgment guidance, regardless of the time of day or faculty staffing considerations; it offers assessment analytics with objective user data by student or cohort; and it can be used to complement or partially substitute for existing clinical instruction.Related StoriesA work schedule patching approach for improved nursing home careUAMS receives $24.2 million federal funding to accelerate researchHow to find and use new federal ratings for rehab services at nursing homesThe National League for Nursing, a leading organization for nurse faculty and leaders in nursing education, has endorsed a National Council of State Boards of Nursing study which concluded that simulation can be substituted for up to 50 percent of traditional clinical experiences.”Simulation in healthcare has emerged as an important tool for education, assessment and medical error reduction, and we see it playing a critical and exponentially growing role in the future of high-quality, cost-effective care, including in nursing,” said Steven Marietti, president of Kaplan Test Prep’s Licensure group. “This new suite of programs for nursing schools will go a long way in making sure their students are ready for the workforce because the real-life experiences they’ll encounter in the doctor’s office or ER will be similar to the simulations they learned from in the classroom.”Both nursing schools and nursing students can rely on IHP for free support throughout their subscription, with product training, free consultations, student orientation, and “ask the professor” live sessions.IHP is a key part of Kaplan’s Licensure operation, expanding current offerings in preparation for professional licensure exams, specifically for its healthcare portfolio, which serves doctors, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists, emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics.last_img read more

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Dec 10 2018Osaka University researchers have developed a system using artificial intelligence that can automatically differentiate between different types of cancer cell, potentially paving the way for the rapid, automated determination of appropriate individualized cancer treatments In cancer patients, there can be tremendous variation in the types of cancer cells from one patient to another, even within the same disease. Identification of the particular cell types present can be very useful when choosing the treatment that would be most effective, but the methods of doing this are time-consuming and often hampered by human error and the limits of human sight.In a major advance that could signal a new era in cancer diagnosis and treatment, a team at Osaka University and colleagues have shown how these problems can be overcome through an artificial intelligence-based system that can identify different types of cancer cells simply by scanning microscopic images, achieving higher accuracy than human judgment. This approach could have major benefits in the field of oncology.Related StoriesUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerBacteria in the birth canal linked to lower risk of ovarian cancerArtificial intelligence can help accurately predict acute kidney injury in burn patientsThe system is based on a convolutional neural network, a form of artificial intelligence modeled on the human visual system. In this study, reported in the journal Cancer Research, this system was applied to distinguish cancer cells from mice and humans, as well as equivalent cells that had also been selected for resistance to radiation.”We first trained our system on 8,000 images of cells obtained from a phase-contrast microscope,” corresponding author Hideshi Ishii says. “We then tested its accuracy on another 2,000 images, to see whether it had learned the features that distinguish mouse cancer cells from human ones, and radioresistant cancer cells from radiosensitive ones.”Upon creating a two-dimensional plot of the findings obtained by the system, the results for each cell type clustered together, while being clearly separated from the other cells. This showed that, after training, the system could correctly identify cells based on the microscopic images of them alone.”The automation and high accuracy with which this system can identify cells should be very useful for determining exactly which cells are present in a tumor or circulating in the body of cancer patients,” lead author Masayasu Toratani says. “For example, knowing whether or not radioresistant cells are present is vital when deciding whether radiotherapy would be effective, and the same approach can then be applied after treatment to see whether it has had the desired effect.”In the future, the team hopes to train the system on more cancer cell types, with the eventual goal of establishing a universal system that can automatically identify and distinguish all such cells. Source:https://resou.osaka-u.ac.jp/en/research/2018/20181206_1last_img read more

first_img Source:https://silentspring.org/research-update/dental-flossing-and-other-behaviors-linked-higher-levels-toxic-chemicals-body Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Jan 8 2019A new study suggests certain types of consumer behaviors, including flossing with Oral-B Glide dental floss, contribute to elevated levels in the body of toxic PFAS chemicals. PFAS are water- and grease-proof substances that have been linked with numerous health problems. The findings provide new insight into how these chemicals end up in people’s bodies and how consumers can limit their exposures by modifying their behavior.The study, led by Silent Spring Institute in collaboration with the Public Health Institute in Berkeley, CA, appears online January 8 in the Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology (JESEE), and is part of a special issue dedicated to PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances).PFAS are used in a range of consumer products, including fast food packaging, non-stick pans, waterproof clothing, and stain-resistant carpets. People can be exposed to the substances directly through the products they use and the food they eat. They can also be exposed through indoor air and dust and contaminated drinking water.Scientists are concerned about widespread exposure to PFAS in the population because the chemicals have been linked with health effects including kidney and testicular cancer, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, low birth weight, decreased fertility, and effects on the immune system.In the new study, researchers measured 11 different PFAS chemicals in blood samples taken from 178 middle-aged women enrolled in the Public Health Institute’s Child Health and Development Studies, a multigenerational study of the impact of environmental chemicals and other factors on disease.To understand how people’s behavior influences their exposure to PFAS, the researchers then compared the blood measurements with results from interviews in which they asked the women about nine behaviors that could lead to higher exposures. Half of the women in the analysis were non-Hispanic white and half were African American.Women who flossed with Oral-B Glide tended to have higher levels of a type of PFAS called PFHxS (perfluorohexanesulfonic acid) in their body compared with those who didn’t. To further understand the connection, the researchers tested 18 dental flosses (including 3 Glide products) for the presence of fluorine–a marker of PFAS–using a technique called particle-induced gamma-ray emission (PIGE) spectroscopy. All three Glide products tested positive for fluorine, consistent with previous reports that Glide is manufactured using Teflon-like compounds. In addition, two store brand flosses with “compare to Oral-B Glide” labelling and one floss describing itself as a “single strand Teflon fiber” tested positive for fluorine.Related StoriesStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskLiving with advanced breast cancerSpecial blood test may predict relapse risk for breast cancer patients”This is the first study to show that using dental floss containing PFAS is associated with a higher body burden of these toxic chemicals,” says lead author Katie Boronow, a staff scientist at Silent Spring. “The good news is, based on our findings, consumers can choose flosses that don’t contain PFAS.”Other behaviors that were associated with higher PFAS levels included having stain-resistant carpet or furniture and living in a city served by a PFAS-contaminated drinking water supply. Additionally, among African American women, those who frequently ate prepared food in coated cardboard containers, such as French fries or takeout, had elevated blood levels of four PFAS chemicals compared to women who rarely ate such food. The researchers did not see the same relationship with prepared food among non-Hispanic whites.Overall, non-Hispanic whites tended to have higher levels of two PFAS chemicals, PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid) and PFHxS, compared with African Americans. The researchers could not explain the differences, suggesting that there are other behaviors they didn’t measure that contribute to PFAS exposure.”Overall, this study strengthens the evidence that consumer products are an important source of PFAS exposure,” says Boronow. “Restricting these chemicals from products should be a priority to reduce levels in people’s bodies.”last_img read more

first_imgReviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Feb 1 2019Eating disorders — anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa or hyperphagia — usually appear in adolescence and often leave young patients and their families helpless. These disorders, whose prevalence is increasing, raise the question of early detection. Today, researchers from the University of Geneva (UNIGE) and the University Hospitals of Geneva (HUG), Switzerland, with colleagues from the University of North Carolina in the United States, provide new elements that would allow to identify, long before the critical period of adolescence, children who are more likely to be affected by these serious disorders. Indeed, their findings reveal that an abnormally high or low weight from the age of two significantly increases the risk of eating disorders. These results, which can be read in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, should alert paediatricians to this important public health issue.What are commonly referred to as eating disorders include all pathologies related to eating: food denied in the case of anorexia nervosa or food that young people absorb in very large quantities, very quickly and without control in bulimia nervosa or binge eating. While these disorders are initially classified as psychiatric conditions, more and more studies tend to show that multiple biological and environmental factors are also at stake. “Whatever the origin of these disorders, it is essential to strengthen their prevention and early detection, and therefore to identify risk factors that are visible from an early age,” warns Nadia Micali, Professor at the UNIGE Faculty of Medicine and Head of the HUG Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, who directed this reserach.Warning signs from an early age?To identify possible common causes of eating disorders, the researchers analysed data from 1,502 participants in a large British longitudinal study that followed parents and their children over more than twenty years: their weight was measured regularly from birth to 12 years of age; at 14, 16 and 18 years of age they were then assessed for eating disorders. “Our results show that a significant difference in weight in very young children indicates an increased risk of eating disorders,” says Professor Zeynep Yilmaz of the University of North Carolina, the first author of this study. “Thus, a low body mass index (BMI) — about 0.5 points BMI compared to the average — as early as age 2 for boys and 4 for girls – is a risk factor for the development of anorexia nervosa in adolescents, just as excessive BMI from mid childhood would be a risk factor for the further development of other eating disorders such as bulimia nervosa.”Related StoriesStudy: Causes of anorexia are likely metabolic and psychologicalAnorexia may be as much a metabolic disorder as it is a psychiatric one, say scientistsNew therapeutic food boosts key growth-promoting gut microbes in malnourished children”Until now, we have had very little guidance on how to identify children who might be at increased risk for developing eating disorders later in adolescence,” explains Professor Cynthia Bulik, an expert on eating disorders at the University of North Carolina. “By looking at growth records of thousands of children across time, we saw early warning profiles that could signal children at risk. Clinically, this means that paediatricians should be alert for children who fall off and stay below the growth curve throughout childhood. This could be an early warning sign of risk for anorexia nervosa. The same holds for children who exceed and remain above the growth curve—only their risk is increased for the other eating disorders such as bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder.”Metabolic dysregulation at work?Although eating disorders are essentially psychiatric in nature, the study highlights the need to also examine metabolic risk factors in addition to psychological, sociocultural and environmental components.”The differences in childhood body weight of adolescents who later developed eating disorders started to emerge at a very early age —way too early to be caused by social pressures to be thin or dieting. A more likely explanation is that underlying metabolic factors that are driven by genetics, could predispose these individuals to weight dysregulation. This aligns with our other genetic work that has highlighted a metabolic component to anorexia nervosa.” says Professor Micali, who concludes: “Our results also highlight the multi-factorial composition of eating disorders, as well as the need to develop early detection tools that could be used as part of routine checks by all paediatricians.” Indeed, the earlier the problem is identified, the better it can be managed, especially if support is provided to the family as a whole, rather than just the individual.Source: https://www.unige.ch/last_img read more

first_imgReviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Feb 19 2019Results bear one clear key message: good treatment is important! Patients in whom the acidosis had been properly controlled by adequate treatment had better growth and better kidney function than those with inadequate treatmentIn addition to regulating the body’s fluid balance, by excreting greater or smaller amounts of urine, the kidneys also maintain the proper balance of electrolytes (salts) and the pH (an acid-base equilibrium) within our body. Excess acid is secreted into the urine by healthy kidneys. This process takes place in a specific part of the kidney (‘distal tubules’). When this excretion of acid is disturbed, the concentration of acid in the body increases, a disorder called distal renal tubular acidosis (dRTA). “Too much acid in our bodies has a lot of negative effects”, explains Prof. Dr. Detlef Bockenhauer, London. ‘In the first instance, the acid dissolves the bones, leading to complications, such as rickets. And the calcium released from the bone ends up in the urine, where it can cause kidney stones.’Distal renal tubular acidosis is a rare disease (it affects only about 1:100.000 people) and is congenital in most cases (also called familial or primary dRTA). Mutations in six genes have been identified, which can cause the disorder. Symptoms may include large volumes of urine, thirst, fatigue, growth disorders and failure to thrive, bone damage (similar to rickets or osteoporosis) or kidney stones. Recurrent kidney stones or severe calcification of kidney tissue (nephrocalcinosis) may lead to progressive chronic kidney disease. A marked deficiency of serum potassium can be another complication, which can lead to paralysis, cardiac arrhythmia and, ultimately, death. Some inherited forms also lead to progressive deafness. Symptoms may vary considerably for the various gene mutations, with some patients remaining asymptomatic and the diagnosis is made only incidentally.Treatment involves patients having to take alkali supplements (acid binders such as bicarbonate or citrate) on a daily basis for the rest of their lives.”Because the disease is so rare, there are no major long-term studies of its progression and prognosis, which makes it more difficult to manage it medically and to properly inform parents and patients”, explains Prof. Bockenhauer. For these reasons, the aim of a multinational initiative launched as part of ERKNet (the European Reference Network for Rare Kidney Diseases), in cooperation with the Working Group on Inherited Kidney Disorders (WGIKD) of the European Renal Association – European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA) and the Inherited Renal Disorders Working Group of the European Society for Paediatric Nephrology (ESPN), was to clarify a number of unresolved questions in order to improve the diagnosis, therapy and handling of the disease for physicians, patients and parents. Pediatric and adult nephrologists were contacted for the study [1], and all available data (demographic, biochemical, genetic and clinical) were collected using online forms.Related StoriesBordeaux University Hospital uses 3D printing to improve kidney tumor removal surgeryRevolutionary gene replacement surgery restores vision in patients with retinal degenerationNew imaging probe allows earlier detection of acute kidney failureThe results of the study have now been released. Data on 340 patients from 29 countries were collected (52% female). The median age of patients was 11 years (0-70), 83 patients (24%) were adults (?18 years). The median presentation age was 0.5 years (range 0-54) and 11 years at last follow-up (0-70). Mutation analyses were performed in 206 of the patients (61%); gene mutations were identified in 170 of that group (83%). The adult patients had reached heights slightly below average (with a standard deviation score (SDS) of -0.57). The prevalence of stage 2 chronic kidney disease (CKD) was 35% among children and 82% among adults. Calcification of kidney tissue (nephrocalcinosis) was reported in 88% of patients. Kidney stones (nephrolithiasis) were most common in cases with SLC4A1 mutations (42% vs. 21%). 36% had hearing loss (most frequently in cases with ATP6V1B1 mutations). Adequate therapy with a normal acid-base balance and without excess urinary calcium loss was achieved in only 158 patients (51%) -predominantly in countries with a high gross domestic product. Importantly, when analyzing the data from adult patients, the researchers noted that those with adequate treatment had a better final height and better kidney function, compared to those, in whom adequate buffering of acid was not achieved. “This is an important message to all clinicians taking care of these patients: we really must make sure to control the disease as effectively as possible so that our patients can reach their full growth potential and maintain overall kidney function!””All in all, the progression and outcome of distal renal tubular acidosis in this large cohort of patients can be considered favorable”, Prof. Bockenhauer summarises. “Most patients reach an adult height in the normal range, and no patient had severe chronic kidney disease (stage 5 CKD) or needed dialysis. Nevertheless – 82% of the patients reached stage 2-4 CKD; this is likely attributable to the fact that optimal management of acid-base balance was achieved in only about half the patients. Future efforts must now concentrate on establishing the best possible management of treatment for all patients in all countries.” Source:http://web.era-edta.org/last_img read more

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 18 2019Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) reconstruction patients often face bone and muscle loss immediately following the procedure. Researchers presenting their work today at the AOSSM/AANA Specialty Day note that combining blood flow restriction (BFR) therapy with traditional rehabilitation efforts may slow bone loss and reduce return to function time.”Providing BFR as part of the rehabilitation efforts following ACL surgery, appears to help preserve the bone, recover muscle loss and improve function quicker, according to our research,” said lead author, Bradley Lambert, PhD – Orthopedic Biomechanics Research Laboratory, Department of Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, Houston Methodist Hospital)Dr. Lambert and his colleagues are presenting new results of a randomized prospective study initiated and directed by Dr. Patrick McCulloch, MD (PI & Chair of Research for the Department) whereby 23 active young patients (Mean age 23) were studied following ACL reconstruction. Participants were divided into two groups. Both groups received the same rehab protocol, however during select exercises the BFR group exercised with an 80% arterial limb occlusion using an automated tourniquet. Bone mineral density, bone mass, and lean muscle mass were measured using DEXA. The addition of BFR therapy to standard rehab exercises was found to prevent muscle mass loss in the whole leg and thigh in the post-operative limb compared to rehab alone. Intriguingly, the addition of BFR was also observed to minimize losses in bone mineral content and preserve bone density in the limb compared to standard rehab alone. These findings coincided with improved functional outcomes observed by Dr. Corbin Hedt, DPT who oversaw the therapy sessions.”BFR is a suitable additive therapy to ACL rehabilitation for the purposes of minimizing the loss, and enhancing the recovery of muscle, bone, and physical function. While further research is needed to fully illuminate the physiologic mechanisms responsible for our results, these findings likely have wide ranging implications for fields outside of ACL rehab alone such as injury prevention, age-related muscle and bone loss, military rehabilitation, and potentially space flight,” said Lambert.Source: https://www.sportsmed.org/aossmimis/Members/About/Press_Releases/2019-Specialty-Day/Blood-Flow-Restriction-Therapy-Slows-Bone-Loss.aspxlast_img read more