AfricanAmerican men with prostate cancer show stronger response to hormone therapy

first_img Source:http://dukehealthnews.org/ Jun 4 2018African-American men with advanced prostate cancer might be more responsive than white men to an anti-androgen drug and steroids, according to a study led by Duke Cancer Institute researchers.While median survival was similar for both black and white participants in the study, the findings suggests that racial determinants may factor into the degree of response in patients. This difference could help drive strategies to improve outcomes in those who respond better to the drugs.”African-Americans have a 2.5 times greater chance of dying from prostate cancer compared to whites,” said Daniel George, M.D., director of Duke’s Prostate & Urologic Cancer program, who presented the findings at the 2018 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago.Related StoriesUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerEmbrace your natural skin tone to prevent skin cancer, say experts”Our study provides prospective evidence that there might be inherited genes that could affect treatment response and track with African ancestry in prostate cancer patients,” George said. “We need to look closely at the underlining genetic differences that associate with treatment response and build on that to improve survival for these patients.”George and colleagues enrolled 50 black men and 50 white men in a prospective, multi-center study. All participants had metastatic, recurrent prostate cancer and were treated with the anti-hormone therapy abiraterone and the steroid prednisone.Responses to therapy, measured by a decline in prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, differed by race. For the African-American men, PSA levels declined at higher rates than they did for white patients and remained stable for a median 16.6 months, compared to 11.5 months for the white participants.The changes in disease progression were less striking; both groups had a median time to radiographic progression of 16.8 months. Still, the authors said the study suggests a potential strategy for new therapies and hormonal treatment regimens that could narrow the prostate cancer survival disparity between blacks and whites.”This is the first prospective multicenter study by race of an anti-androgen hormonal therapy in advanced prostate cancer,” George said. “Further prospective studies in African-American patients are possible and needed to understand the impact of racial determinants on outcome of new hormonal regimens in earlier disease settings.”last_img read more

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Researchers explore targeted secondline treatment for colorectal cancer

first_img Source:https://www.cinj.org/exploring-targeted-second-line-therapy-advanced-colorectal-cancer Jun 5 2018Targeted therapy with anti-VEGF and anti-EGFR antibodies both improve outcomes when added to chemotherapy in the treatment of colorectal cancer. However, some previous studies suggested the combination of the two antibodies may have a negative interaction. Those studies were done without selecting patients for KRAS mutations. Investigators from the ECOG-ACRIN Cancer Research Group led by Howard S. Hochster, MD, FACP, associate director for clinical research and director of gastrointestinal oncology at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, wanted to explore the anti-VEGFR antibody ramucirumab in second-line treatment.They examined whether ramucirumab improved activity of the combination of the chemotherapy drug irinotecan with the anti-EGFR antibody cetuximab for those patients previously treated with FOLFOX or CAPOX and bevacizumab whose disease began to progress. The work focuses on a form of colorectal cancer that has normal KRAS genes (about 60 percent of metastatic colorectal cancer). Previous research has shown that the antibodies that block the EGFR antibody have activity against this type of colorectal cancer, but not when the tumor harbors KRAS mutations. Another question explored was the effect of a second anti-VEGF antibody (ramucirumab) if patients had previously received bevacizumab.The research is being presented as part of an oral abstract presentation at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting taking place this week in Chicago. Dr. Hochster, who is also a distinguished professor of medicine at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, director of oncology research at RWJBarnabas Health, and lead author of the work, shares more:Q: Why is this topic important to explore?Related StoriesSugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskA: Some previous studies of anti-EGF combined with anti-VEGF drugs produced negative outcomes, but these were performed in unselected patient populations. This was the first second-line colon cancer study to select patients based on their KRAS status. It is an important observation as it will inform future studies that combine these kinds of antibodies to improve treatment outcomes.Q: How was the study structured and what did you find?A: The study allowed patients who had received first-line standard combination chemotherapy with bevacizumab to go on to receive second-line chemotherapy plus cetuximab with or without the novel anti-VEGF anti-body ramucirumab. Between June 2014 and July 2017, 102 evaluable patients (65 percent male; median age 60 years) were randomized and received treatment every two weeks. We demonstrated that adding ramucirumab improved the time for tumor growth and progression (hazard ratio 0.65, which corresponds with an overall 35 percent improvement in time to progression) for the patients receiving both antibodies. Adverse events included diarrhea, rash and neutropenia, but were only seen in a small percentage of participants (<15 percent).Q: What are the implications of these findings?A: We used a flexible, real-world design for eligibility after first-line chemotherapy. Our results are similar to the reported improvement in progression-free survival in other second-line anti-VEGF trials and supports the fact that antibodies against these two targets can be combined for additional benefit in the appropriate patient population.last_img read more

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Researchers develop machine learning algorithm to deliver better care for seriously ill

first_imgJul 6 2018The level of communication between patient and physician can make a monumental difference, specifically in the case of seriously ill hospitalized patients. Researchers at the University of Minnesota have found a way to better identify these patients with the hopes of better facilitating “end-of-life” or specialized conversations and care.Studies have shown that seriously ill and frail hospitalized patients are frequently subjected to unnecessary, invasive procedures that do not enhance the quality of life. Surveys amongst seriously ill hospitalized patients have identified better end of life planning as an area of potential improvement for hospitals.”The idea was to come up with an algorithm that would identify those patients from among 100,000 seriously ill patients who might die within a year,” explained Nishant Sahni, MD, MS, Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine, University of Minnesota Medical School. “The hope is when a patient is leaving the hospital, the physician will get a notification that the patient is high risk and needs those specific conversations and care, which would empower patients to make more informed decisions regarding their medical care.”Related StoriesComputer-generated flu vaccine enters clinical trials in the USIt is okay for women with lupus to get pregnant with proper care, says new studyScientists discover rare autoimmune disease triggered by testicular cancer”Development and Validation of Machine Learning Models for Prediction of 1-Year Mortality Utilizing Electronic Medical Record Data Available at the End of Hospitalization in Multicondition Patients: a Proof-of-Concept Study” of which Sahni was the main author, was recently published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.The data was gathered from nearly 60,000 hospitalizations from six hospitals over four years. It can be used to accurately estimate the risk of 1-year mortality within a cohort of multi-condition hospitalized patients.In addition to empowering seriously ill patients to make more informed health care choices, this model could help clinicians reduce unnecessary invasive procedures on patients who are not likely to benefit from them. This is an important consideration as the number of Americans ages 65 and older is expected to reach more than 98 million by 2060 – putting an increased strain on increasingly limited Medicare and Medicaid funding.”We want to make sure that as a health care system –we are providing our patients with appropriate and cost effective care” said Sahni.This could be a big step for health care systems, although Sahni acknowledges there is still work to be done. While the applications for the algorithms are endless, the next step is determining how best to use and learn from them.Source: https://www.med.umn.edu/news-events/umn-medical-school-researchers-develop-algorithm-improve-care-delivery-seriously-ill-patientslast_img read more

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Researchers find STAT3 as therapeutic target for chronic active EBV infection

first_img Source:http://www.tmd.ac.jp/english/press-release/20180816_1/index.html Aug 20 2018Tokyo Medical and Dental University(TMDU) study shows that ruxolitinib-induced inhibition of STAT3 activity blocks survival and reduces pro-inflammatory cytokine production in Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-infected clonally proliferating T- or NK-cells in Chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection.Chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection (CAEBV) is an EBV-positive T- or NK-cell neoplasm accompanied by sustained systemic inflammation. Many studies have attempted to understand the case of CAEBV; none have provided a clear explanation, until now.A research team, led by experts from Tokyo Medical and Dental University(TMDU), investigated the activity of STAT3, a factor that helps to control cell proliferation and survival, in EBV-infected T- or NK-cells in CAEBV. They found that STAT3 was constitutively activated in those cells, reported in Oncotarget, “STAT3 is constitutively activated in chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection and can be a therapeutic target.”Related StoriesSlug serves as ‘command central’ for determining breast stem cell healthNanoparticles used to deliver CRISPR gene editing tools into the cellExciting study shows how centrioles center the process of cell divisionCAEBV is a disorder which has 2 aspects: an inflammatory disorder and a lymphoid neoplasm. During the course, it may progress to chemotherapy-resistant lymphoma or leukemia, or to a life-threatening disorder known as hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis. Despite a variety of efforts to control or cure CAEBV, the sole effective treatment has been stem cell transplantation from a HLA-matched donor. Unfortunately, some patients cannot be candidates for this therapy, and there are many side effects.”Constitutively activated STAT3 has been observed in a variety of primary tumor cells, including other tumors associated with Epstein-Barr virus infection,” says Ayoko Arai, corresponding author on the study. “We suspected that STAT3 may be similarly activated in cells from patients with CAEBV.”In the study, increased phosphorylation, an important modification of cellular proteins, was observed on STAT3 in EBV-infected T- or NK-cells from patients with CAEBV. In those same cells from health individuals, the phosphorylation was absent, suggesting that it may provide a useful drug target.”Our analyses revealed no mutations in STAT3, so we tested whether inhibitors of STAT3 phosphorylation might modify its activity in laboratory-grown,” says Erika Onozawa, lead author on the study. “We found that ruxolitinib, a drug that is currently used for treatment of myelofibrosis and polycythemia vera, could suppress the survival of the EBV-infected cells in a dose-dependent manner.”In addition to the ability of ruxolitinib to induce the death of virus-infected T- or NK-cells from patients with CAEBV, the researchers showed that it could block the production of several important inflammatory cytokines that play a role in the progression of CAEBV.CAEBV is a neoplastic and inflammatory disease that can become extremely destructive for some patients. This study showed that STAT3 could be an important new target for treatment of this disorder, and that ruxolitinib may provide a readily available therapy that may be effectively used in clinical treatment.last_img read more

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Clay may help fight diseasecausing bacteria in wounds

first_imgAug 21 2018The use of mud or wet clay as a topical skin treatment or a poultice is a common practice in some cultures and the concept of using mud as medicine goes back to earliest times. Now Mayo Clinic researchers and their collaborators at Arizona State University have found that at least one type of clay may help fight disease-causing bacteria in wounds, including some treatment-resistant bacteria. The findings appear in the International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents.”We showed that this reduced iron-bearing clay can kill some strains of bacteria under the laboratory conditions used, including bacteria grown as biofilms, which can be particularly challenging to treat,” says Robin Patel, M.D., a clinical microbiologist and infectious diseases specialist at Mayo Clinic and senior author of the study. Biofilms occur when bacteria attach to surfaces and develop a film or protective coating making them relatively resistant to antibiotics. They appear in two-thirds of the infections seen by physicians.Related StoriesRaw meat can act as reservoir for bacteria associated with hospital infectionsGetting rid of chronic infections by waking up sleeping bacteriaStructure of bacteria responsible for traveler’s diarrhea deciphered”This study is an important advance in understanding how clays, specifically blue clay from Oregon, have shown medicinal properties by attaching to pathogenic bacteria,” says Enriqueta Barrera, program director in the National Science Foundation’s Division of Earth Sciences, which funded the research.In laboratory tests the researchers found the clay has antibacterial effects against bacteria such as Escherichia coli, and Staphylococcus aureus, including resistant strains such as CRE and MRSA. The clay suspension was effective against a number of bacteria both in their planktonic and biofilm states.The research is preliminary and the authors caution that only one concentration of the clay suspension was tested, based on preliminary results. The lab tests are a first step in simulating the complex environment found in an actual infected wound. They also caution that not all types of clay are beneficial. Some may actually help bacteria grow. More research is needed to identify and reproduce the properties of clays that are antibacterial, with the goal of possibly synthesizing a consistent compound of the key minerals under quality control.Source: https://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/clay-to-fight-bacteria-in-wounds-an-old-practice-may-be-a-new-solution/last_img read more

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Scientists develop first nonantibiotic drug to treat tuberculosis in animals

first_img Source:http://www.manchester.ac.uk/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Sep 11 2018Scientists at The University of Manchester have developed the first non-antibiotic drug to successfully treat tuberculosis in animals.The team hope the compound -developed after 10 years of painstaking research will be trialed on humans within three to four years.The drug- which works by targeting Mycobacterium tuberculosis’ defenses rather than the bacteria itself – can also take out its increasingly commonly antibiotic-resistant strains.The research funded by the Medical Research Council – is published today in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.Although a vaccine for TB was developed 100 years ago, one in three people across the world are thought to be infected with the infectious disease.About 1.7 million die from the bug each year worldwide and 7.3 million people were diagnosed and treated in 2018, up from the 6.3 million in 2016.It is most common in Africa, India and China, but on the rise in the UK with London often described as the TB capital of Europe.Patients are forced to take a cocktail of strong antibiotics over 6 to 8 months, often enduring unpleasant side effects with a 20% risk that the disease will return.But now The University of Manchester team’s discovery has been proven effective in guinea pigs at Rutgers University in the United States.The animals with acute and chronic TB infection were treated with the compound, which was discovered after investigating dozens of other derivatives and compounds thought to have similar properties.Professor Lydia Tabernero is the project leader. She said: “The fact that the animal studies showed our compound, which doesn’t kill the bacteria directly, resulted in a significant reduction in the bacterial burden is remarkable.Related StoriesMultifaceted intervention for acute respiratory infection improves antibiotic-prescribingResearch sheds light on sun-induced DNA damage and repairStudy: Surveillance for antibiotic-resistant bacteria continues to be core focus for healthcare facilities”For more than 60 years, the only weapon doctors have been able to use against TB is antibiotics. But resistance is becoming an increasingly worrying problem and the prolonged treatment is difficult and distressing for patients.”And with current treatments, there’s no guarantee the disease will be eliminated: antibiotics do not clear the infection and the risk of being infected with drug-resistant bacteria is very high.”But by disabling this clandestine bacteria’s defences we’re thrilled to find a way that enhances the chances of the body’s immune system to do its job, and thus eliminate the pathogen.”Mycobacterium Tuberculosis secretes molecules called Virulence Factors – the cell’s secret weapon -which block out the immune response to the infection, making it difficult to treat.The team identified one Virulence Factor called MptpB as a suitable target, which when blocked allows white blood cells to kill Mycobacterium Tuberculosis in a more efficient wayProfessor Tabernero added: “The great thing about MptpB is that there’s nothing similar in humans – so our compound which blocks it is not toxic to the human cells.”Because the bacteria hasn’t been threatened directly, it is less likely to develop resistance against this new agent, and this will be a major advantage over current antibiotics, for which bacteria had already become resistant.”TB is an amazingly difficult disease to treat so we feel this is a significant breakthrough.”The next stage of our research is to optimize further the chemical compound, but we hope Clinical trials are up to four years away.”last_img read more

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Belgiums federal research agency under threat

first_img Email Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country In a petition launched last week, scientists urged the government to reverse the decision, saying it would push the country “below the threshold of scientific … poverty.” (The plea now has about 9000 signatures—and counting.) “The government is planning to destroy the existing structures, but we don’t really know what will replace them,” says marine biogeochemist Frank Dehairs, from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel—one of the scientists who launched the petition.BELSPO President Philippe Mettens says other small, federal states such as Switzerland maintain a strong central oversight of the science system. “On the international science scene, Wallonia, Flanders, or Brussels alone don’t mean much,” Mettens says.BELSPO provides the only funding tools available to link up researchers from the Dutch, French, and German-speaking parts of the country working on joint projects, Dehairs says. “BELSPO projects have largely helped bring us to the forefront internationally,” and enabled collaborations with colleagues in other parts of the world, he adds. For instance, Dehairs secured BELSPO funding for a marine biochemistry project in the Southern Ocean called BIGSOUTH, which brings together five Belgian research teams with a budget of €1.2 million over 4 years—plus logistics support for costly missions in the Antarctic.Belgian researchers worry in particular about losing a funding program called Interuniversity Attraction Poles (IAP), which funds the “crème de la crème” of the nation’s science, as Mettens puts it. (This summer, researchers already raised the alarm about the possible end of the IAP after 2017; François Englert, the Belgian physicist who shared the 2013 Nobel Prize in physics with Peter Higgs, called on the government to maintain the program.)Speaking to the federal parliament’s lower house last week, Elke Sleurs, the state secretary in charge of science, announced plans to set up an “Interfederal space agency,” with more involvement from the regional authorities. The federal museums and institutes will become autonomous and should seek more external funding from private sponsors or crowdfunding, she said. Sleurs, a member of the separatist New Flemish Alliance party, will explain how these political intentions will translate into “concrete measures” on 9 December, says her representative.center_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) BRUSSELS—Pretty much everything in this tiny country of 11 million is divided along the language border between Dutch-speaking Flanders in the north and Wallonia, the predominantly French-speaking southern part—including science policy. Now, the Belgian government wants to ax one of the few agencies that still straddle the divide, the Belgian Science Policy Office (BELSPO). The plan has triggered protests from Belgian researchers who worry that the move will harm collaboration across the language frontier and endanger internationally renowned research projects.In the past decades, science responsibilities have already been devolved from Belgium’s federal government to authorities in Flanders, Wallonia, and Brussels, the bilingual capital. Together, regional and community governments now manage about three-quarters of the nation’s science funds. BELSPO is in charge of 10 federal museums and science institutes, including the Royal Observatory of Belgium and the Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium; it also manages Belgium’s contribution to the European Space Agency, worth about €200 million per year.Last month, the coalition government pledged to scrap BELSPO and integrate its functions “elsewhere,” and to carry out an audit of science funding channels. “In mid-2015, the government will rationalize current funding channels in a bid to make net savings,” says the government plan, issued on 10 October.last_img read more

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Human language may be shaped by climate and terrain

first_imgWhy does the Hawaiian language flow melodically from vowel to vowel, whereas Georgian is peppered with consonants? It may have something to do with the climate and terrain where those languages developed, a new study of more than 600 languages from around the world suggests.Previous research has shown that some other species’ vocalizations are shaped by their environment. Birds such as the song sparrow, for example, sing at higher pitches in cities, where lower frequency notes would be drowned out by urban noise. And birds living in forested areas tend to sing at lower frequencies than birds living in open spaces, suggesting different species and populations may optimize their vocalizations to travel through branches and other obstacles that deflect high-frequency sounds. The phenomenon—called “acoustic adaptation”—“is seen in species after species,” of birds, bats, and other animals, says Caleb Everett, an anthropological linguist at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, who was not involved in the new work.How much, if any, acoustic adaptation occurs in human languages is unclear, says Ian Maddieson, a linguist at the University of California, Berkeley. To explore that question, Maddieson and colleague Christophe Coupé, of the French National Center for Scientific Research’s Laboratoire Dynamique du Langage, combined data on 633 languages worldwide with ecological and climatic information on the regions where those languages developed, excluding internationally spoken languages—such as English, Mandarin Chinese, and Spanish—that are no longer restricted to the geographic regions where they emerged. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Email A subtle, but clear pattern emerged: Languages in hotter, more forested regions such as the tropics tended to be “sonorous,” employing lower frequency sounds and using fewer distinct consonants, whereas languages in colder, drier, more mountainous places were consonant-heavy, the team reported today at the 170th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA) in Jacksonville, Florida. Taken together, these ecological variables accounted for about one-fourth of the variation in how “consonant-heavy” a language is, Maddieson says. One possible explanation for why vowel-rich languages appear more frequently in the tropics is that they travel farther than languages dominated by rapid-fire, high-frequency consonants, which lose their fidelity in humid, forested environments, he says. Heat and humidity interrupt sound, as do solid tree branches and leaves, he adds.In the study, Maddieson and Coupé simply looked at the number of vowels, consonants, and consonants per syllable for each language. Next, they plan to use data taken directly from spoken recordings to examine “how these elements are actually put together in a continuous flow of speech,” Maddieson says.The data lend credence to an older, much smaller study of 70 languages, which found a similar pattern, and are “very much in line” with studies of acoustic adaptation in other species, Everett says. Although the findings remain purely correlational, and not based on any experimental evidence, he notes, the notion that ecological factors such as tree cover could affect the sounds a language develops is “a totally reasonable idea.” *Correction, 6 November, 2:35 p.m.: A previous version of this article referred to Hungarian as a particularly consonant-heavy language. At the request of the study author this has been amended to Georgian.center_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwelast_img read more

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China unveils plans for xray satellite to probe most violent corners of

first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe The eXTP mission would fill a unique niche in x-ray astronomy. Two pioneering x-ray telescopes launched in 1999, NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and Europe’s XMM-Newton, capture x-rays from the distant universe, gleaning clues to the formation and evolution of stars and galaxies. eXTP will probe neutron stars and black holes closer to home and monitor how they and their environments change on short timescales. “The goal is to study fundamental physics in the most extreme conditions in terms of density of matter, magnetic fields and gravity that you cannot reproduce in labs,” Santangelo says.eXTP would be able to collect more photons at a wider range of energies than previous telescopes. Three of its instruments would simultaneously measure energy spectra and polarization of x-rays from cosmic sources, and track how emissions change over microseconds to milliseconds as objects pulsate or rotate. “This powerful payload is absolutely unique,” Santangelo says. Paul Ray of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C., principal investigator of a similar proposed mission called STROBE-X, says: “Recent advances in solid-state x-ray detector technologies have been incorporated into several mission concepts including … STROBE-X and eXTP. … These new instruments will be critical in the era of time domain astronomy.”Such data would provide clues to how matter behaves when compressed to the extreme densities thought to exist in the cores of neutron stars, and could reveal whether the stars really are made of neutrons or whether the particles have disintegrated into their constituent quarks or other exotic states. eXTP could also measure how matter behaves in the strong gravity close to black holes. Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity, which describes gravity, makes predictions, but these have never been tested under such extreme conditions. And eXTP’s suite of instruments would look for evidence to support predictions about how light and matter interact in the powerful magnetic fields associated with certain neutron stars.The eXTP Wide Field Monitor, in the meantime, would observe a large swath of sky for flashes of x-rays from transient events, for example from merging black holes and neutron stars. Other eXTP instruments, as well as visible light and gravitational wave observatories on the ground, could then train their sights on the object of interest.Europe and China had each contemplated going it alone on a next-generation x-ray satellite before opting to team up. A European consortium has pledged to build two of the satellite’s four scientific instruments. And European and Chinese scientists will provide electronics and detectors for each other’s instruments. Europe could ante up further hardware or even funding if the European Space Agency (ESA) comes in on the project, which Santangelo calls “desirable and probable.”eXTP will be “a flagship mission for astrophysics” until other observatories come online, Santangelo says. These include ESA’s Advanced Telescope for High-Energy Astrophysics, which, if given a final go-ahead, could be launched around 2028.Ray and his colleagues are working on a science case and design for STROBE-X which will then be assessed by the decadal survey for astrophysics in 2020. It has similar aims as eXTP, but could have up to twice the budget. “eXTP will get good estimates of the radii of a few neutron stars, but really mapping out the parameter space nature provides will require STROBE-X,” says team member Thomas Maccarone of Texas Tech University in Lubbock. A handful of U.S.-based scientists are helping define eXTP’s science objectives and will likely analyze data, which Lu expects to share openly.With reporting by Daniel Clery. China is raising the stakes in its bid to become a major player in space science. At a kick-off meeting in Beijing last week, China’s National Space Science Center, part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), began detailed design studies for a satellite that would round out an array of orbiting platforms for probing x-rays from the most violent corners of the cosmos.The enhanced X-Ray Timing and Polarimetry (eXTP) mission would be China’s most ambitious space science satellite yet—and its most expensive, with an estimated price tag of $473 million. To pull it off, China is assembling a collaboration involving more than 200 scientists so far from dozens of institutions in 20 countries. If the eXTP mission passes a final review next year, it would launch around 2025.Chinese scientists “are becoming leaders in the field of x-ray astrophysics,” says Andrea Santangelo, an astrophysicist at the University of Tübingen in Germany and eXTP’s international coordinator. Last year, the National Space Science Center launched the Hard X-ray Modulation Telescope, which is observing high-energy objects such as black holes and neutron stars. As early as 2021 it will be joined by the Einstein Probe, a wide-field x-ray sentinel for transient phenomena such as gamma ray bursts and the titanic collisions of neutron stars or black holes that generate gravitational waves. “For years we have used data from U.S. and European missions,” says eXTP Project Manager Lu Fangjun, an astrophysicist at the CAS Institute of High Energy Physics in Beijing. Now, he says, “We want to contribute [observational data] to the international community.” China unveils plans for x-ray satellite to probe most violent corners of the universe By Dennis NormileMar. 7, 2018 , 3:00 PM Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrycenter_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Email The enhanced X-Ray Timing and Polarimetry mission, planned for launch around 2025, would probe x-rays from violent, fast-changing cosmic events. INSTITUTE OF HIGH ENERGY PHYSICS last_img read more

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Terminated Emory researcher disputes universitys allegations about China ties

first_img Email Emory has said its action came after an internal investigation prompted by a letter from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. For at least the past 8 months, NIH has been contacting U.S. universities with concerns about whether specific grantees have adhered to agency rules regarding the disclosure of foreign funding and affiliations. Earlier this year, NIH told Congress that it had identified at least 190 NIH grantees with potentially problematic foreign relationships and that at least 55 institutions have begun investigations as a result of its inquiries.Li Xiao-Jiang disputed Emory’s claim, made in a university statement yesterday, that the two researchers “had failed to fully disclose foreign sources of research funding and the extent of their work for research institutions and universities in China.” (Papers they have published in many high-profile journals, as well as biographical information posted online, have disclosed funding and affiliations with Chinese institutions.) Terminated Emory researcher disputes university’s allegations about China ties A researcher terminated by Emory University in Atlanta for allegedly not disclosing funding and ties to institutions in China is forcefully disputing the charges. And neuroscientist Li Xiao-Jiang says the university dismissed him and neuroscientist Li Shihua, his wife and lab co-leader, “simultaneously without any notice or opportunity for us to respond to unverified accusations.”The two researchers, known for their studies of Huntington disease in mouse and pig models, are both U.S. citizens and have worked at Emory for 23 years. Li Xiao-Jiang says he was traveling in China on 16 May when both researchers were informed they had been terminated. The university has also closed their joint laboratory, which is part of the medical school, and their websites are no longer accessible. Four postdoctoral students working in the lab, who are Chinese nationals, have been told to leave the United States within 30 days, he told ScienceInsider today. None, he says, was given reasons for their terminations.“I was shocked that Emory University would terminate a tenured professor in such an unusual and abrupt fashion and close our combined lab consisting of a number of graduates and postdoctoral trainees without giving me specific details for the reasons behind my termination,” he said in a statement. Li Xiao-Jiang (left) and Li Shihua (right) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Emory ousts two Chinese American researchers after investigation into foreign ties Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) By Jon CohenMay. 24, 2019 , 1:55 PM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Related news Li Xiao-Jiang An Emory spokesperson told ScienceInsider today that it would not provide any more information other than what is in its statement.“I have disclosed my Chinese research activity to Emory University each year since 2012,” Li Xiao-Jiang said. “I have provided documents requested by Emory University during the investigation of my research activity in China since early November 2018.” He also stated that he has not received “any copy of investigation that was sent to NIH by Emory, though I have requested Emory to give it to me.”Li Xiao-Jiang declined to provide more specific information about the charges against him and his wife. But he said the termination came after Emory officials recently inspected material in his university email account. “I do not know what triggered Emory University’s examination of my emails in May 2019, which led to terminating my wife Dr. Shihua Li and me simultaneously without any notice or opportunity for us to respond to unverified accusations,” he stated. But he believes Emory’s action is related to “unverified information” in those emails, including unsigned or incomplete contracts, grant proposals, draft patents, and discussions about establishing biotechnology companies.Li Xiao-Jiang said he is concerned about his lab workers, especially one who is pregnant and due to give birth in the next few weeks. He is also worried about the fate of his lab’s 500 cages of research mice, which include many unique models that his group created with NIH funding. The Lis currently have six NIH grants.On 17 March, the Lis and seven other Emory faculty members of Chinese origin wrote a letter to Emory President Claire Sterk applauding “the courage and commitment” of the president of the University of California, Berkeley, and the provost of Stanford University for publicly reaffirming their support “for all faculty regardless of country of origin, and international collaborations despite the current polarized political climate.”The researchers noted that “disturbing views and activities” at those schools “also exist on the Emory campus, which negatively derides Emory faculty members and international visitors, especially those of Chinese origin.” They asked Sterk to similarly support them. “[W]e feel that a statement is urgently needed to recognize the contributions of Emory’s diverse global community, and the enumerable benefit to science, research and education locally and globally.”Sterk’s chief of staff, Daniel Gordon, replied 2 days later, saying that “a statement is already in the works,” which the university planned to issue “in the near future.” (No statement has yet been issued.) Gordon concluded: “Thank you for your thoughtful email, and for being such an important part of the Emory Family.”*Correction, 24 May, 8 p.m.: This story initially reported that eight Chinese nationals in the Lis lab were asked to leave, but one of the fired has a green card and several others have not yet officially been terminated.last_img read more

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Joe Biden Lied About Civil Rights Past Report

first_img“Folks, let’s get something straight,” Biden, also in New Hampshire, said last month. “This idea that the crime bill generated mass incarceration, it did not generate mass incarceration.”Rival Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris, a former federal attorney with a checkered prosecutorial past, poked a few holes in Biden’s assertion.“That 1994 crime bill, it did contribute to mass incarceration in our country,” the California senator said the very next day in reference to Biden’s comments. “It encouraged and was the first time that we had a federal three strikes law. It funded the building of more prisons in the states. So, I disagree, sadly.”Still, political pundits have been gravitating toward the notion that Biden is the presumptive Democratic nominee in the 2020 election. But that presumption also disregards the fact that there are a record number of women running for president. A common refrain heard among progressive voices is that the Democratic ticket must have some semblance of diversity. But there have also been questions about how effective Capitol Hill lifers (read: old white men in Washington) can be as the country inches closer to white people becoming a minority.If recent history was any indication, it was doubtful that the Times’ report would hurt Biden’s campaign, which has thrived despite a few similar stumbles that include his oft-criticized touchy-feely, hands-on moments with women and girls alike. However, it could also serve as further evidence that Biden, who would turn 77 shortly after becoming president if he is elected, may not be the best candidate to beat Donald Trump, the only objective of the Democrats. SEE ALSO:Trans Woman Wins NCAA Title 2 Years After Transitioning From Being A MaleJustin Fairfax And Ralph Northam Put Differences Aside After Virginia Beach Shooting Here’s video of Joe Biden lying about marching in the Civil Rights movement, a lie he told repeatedly. Why does he continue to get a free pass for his bottomless pit of mistakes while other 2020 Democrats are being held to a much higher standard? pic.twitter.com/WBiLpAqGOG— Adam Best (@adamcbest) June 4, 2019The Times reported that Biden first made the claim back in 1987.“When I marched in the civil rights movement, I did not march with a 12-point program,” Biden thundered said in New Hampshire. “I marched with tens of thousands of others to change attitudes. And we changed attitudes.”One problem, though, according to Flegenheimer:  Biden “had not actually marched during the civil rights movement.”The revelation could prove to be a setback with the coveted Black vote that he and every other presidential candidate have been working to secure. Biden has had a few recent stumbles while courting the Black vote, including but definitely not limited to his recent refusal to formally apologize to Anita Hill for his treatment toward her when he was the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman presiding over Clarence Thomas’ Supreme Court hearing, which took place just a few years after Biden’s first reported lie about his involvement in the civil rights movement.The new report came as Biden was also coming under fire for his role in the same 1994 crime bill that Hillary Clinton’s opponents called her out for referencing “super predators” in what many people have said was a nod to the Black people who were disproportionately affected by the law. Reparations presidential candidates SUBSCRIBE Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders might have elicited groans from one audience when he recently repeated his often cited line that he marched with the rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. But at least he was telling the truth.A new report claims that former Vice President Joe Biden, who has been holding a big lead atop the Democratic presidential polls since he announced his candidacy in April, has repeatedly and knowingly lied about his involvement in the civil rights movement. Despite advisers reminding him of the truth, Biden has “kept telling the story anyway,” according to a damning report from the New York Times’ Matt Flegenheimer. Entertainment, News and Lifestyle for Black America. News told by us for us. Black America’s #1 News Source: Our News. Our Voice. Everything We Know About Sadie Roberts-Joseph’s Murder Investigationcenter_img More By Bruce C.T. Wright 2020 Election , 2020 Presidential Candidates , Civil Rights Movement , Joe Biden The Evolving Relevance Of ‘The Talk’ Unpacking Mayor Pete’s ‘Douglass Plan’ For Black America Thanks for signing up! Get ready for Exclusive content, Interviews,and Breaking news delivered direct to your inbox. Get ready for Exclusive content, Interviews,and Breaking news delivered direct to your inbox. Where All The Presidential Candidates Stand On Reparations, In Their Own Wordslast_img read more

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SUSD celebrates students success

first_img By Toni Gibbons         From SkillsUSA and FFA to a track team state championship, the Snowflake Unified School District Governing Board took a moment to hear about the accomplishments of a number of students atSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Ad SUSD celebrates students’ success May 14, 2019last_img

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Thousands pour into Colombia as Venezuela reopens border

first_img Advertising On Saturday, the UNHCR’s special envoy Angelina Jolie was visiting another part of the Colombia-Venezuela border to learn more about the conditions faced by migrants and refugees and raise awareness about their needs. The Hollywood actress met with aid workers and Venezuelans and toured a tent village built by UNHCR for vulnerable migrants.Following her visit, Jolie gave a brief statement in which she praised Colombia for receiving more than 1.3 million Venezuelan migrants and refugees, and urged the leaders of developed countries to do more to help displaced people around the world.“Looking across the word it seems that those who have the least, are those that often give the most” Jolie said. “Instead of focusing on how to address the gap in diplomacy and security and peace that is causing growing numbers of people to move, we hear increasing talk of what individual governments are not prepared to do.”Jolie said that UNHCR is struggling to fund services for Venezuelan migrants and refugees. In December, the agency launched a $738 million plan to assist displaced Venezuelans across the hemisphere, but it has only been able to raise a fifth of that money so far. By AP |Colombia | Published: June 9, 2019 7:25:46 am Earlier on Saturday, Jolie met with Colombia President Ivan Duque, who has pledged to keep his country’s border with Venezuela open despite the large influx of migrants.Duque said that during the meeting with Jolie and UNHCR officials, both sides discussed steps that could be taken to facilitate the integration of Venezuelans in Colombia, including legislation to grant Colombian nationality to thousands of children of Venezuelan migrants who have been born in Colombia and are currently stateless.Duque said that granting these children citizenship would be a “humanitarian way to give them the opportunities and benefits” that will enable them to emerge out of poverty. Taking stock of monsoon rain Thousands pour into Colombia as Venezuela reopens border People cross the Colombian-Venezuelan border over the partially opened Simon Bolivar international bridge in San Antonio del Tachira, Venezuela June 8, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Eduardo RamirezThousands of people crossed into Colombia on Saturday to buy food and medicine after Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro reopened a border between the countries that had been shut down for the past four months. Ayodhya dispute: Mediation to continue till July 31, SC hearing likely from August 2 In May, the government reopened borders with Aruba and Brazil, but the Simon Bolivar International Bridge and the Francisco de Paula Santander International Bridge with Colombia have remained closed up until now.With the reopening, a flood of people seized on the opportunity to enter into the neighboring country and secure items that are all but unattainable in Venezuela.The once-wealthy oil nation is now facing severe shortages of basic goods and hyperinflation that is expected to surpass 10 million percent this year, according to a recent IMF estimate. The chaos has been further aggravated by U.S. sanctions on Venezuelan oil exports and has forced an estimated 5,000 people to leave the country each day, according to the United Nation’s High Commissioner for Refugees.Thousands pour into Colombia as Venezuela reopens border People cross the Colombian-Venezuelan border over the partially opened Simon Bolivar international bridge in San Antonio del Tachira, Venezuela June 8, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Eduardo RamirezThe U.N. refugee agency said Friday that 4 million Venezuelans, or almost 15% of the population, have left the country. Related News Best Of Express Colombia’s National Civil Registry counts at least 3,290 children born since December 2017 who have been unable to obtain citizenship. Rights groups say the numbers could be as high as 25,000. Venezuela frees musician jailed after blasting government Advertising P Rajagopal, Saravana Bhavan founder sentenced to life for murder, dies More Explained Asylum applications in EU rise as more Venezuelans seek refuge LiveKarnataka floor test: Will Kumaraswamy’s 14-month-old govt survive? Advertising Long lines of Venezuelans stood at two international bridges near the city of Cucuta waiting to have their documents checked by Colombian officials, with some carrying children on their shoulders. Venezuelan border guards dressed in green uniforms helped control the crowd.The South American nation’s socialist government ordered the borders with Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, Brazil and Colombia closed in February as the opposition tried to deliver food and medical supplies into the country.Most of the aid was provided by the United States, a key ally of opposition leader Juan Guaido who declared himself to be Venezuela’s rightful president in January. But Maduro dismissed the aid as an infringement on Venezuela’s sovereignty and prohibited it from entering. 0 Comment(s) Venezuela forces killed thousands, then covered it up, UN says last_img read more

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Nepal floods death toll touches 43

first_img ‘Truth, justice have prevailed’: PM Modi on Kulbhushan Jadhav verdict Best Of Express Nepal floods: Death toll touches 78; over 17,500 displaced Nepal, Nepal floods, Nepal rains, Nepal weather, Nepal floods death toll, Nepal monoon, Nepal landslides A member of the Nepalese army carrying a child walks along the flooded colony in Kathmandu, Nepal (Reuters)At least 43 people, including 18 women, were killed and 20 others injured in floods and landslides triggered by torrential rains in various parts of Nepal, police said. Related News Nepal schools make Mandarin compulsory after China offers to pay teachers’ salaries Twenty four people have been reported missing in the rain-related incidents that displaced settlements and disrupted vehicular traffic, the Himalayan Times reported on Sunday.Heavy rainfall since Thursday hit more than 25 districts in the hills as well as the southern plains of the country, affecting 10,385 households.Police rescued 1,104 people from several places across the country with 185 alone from Kathmandu. Jharkhand court drops ‘donate Quran’ condition for bail to Ranchi woman over offensive post According to Nepal Police, a total of 27,380 police personnel have been deployed across the country for search and rescue operations.The Flood Forecasting Section (FFS) said that monsoon is active and the rainfall will continue for two to three days in most places across the country, the report said.The Meteorological Forecasting Division (MFD) warned the public to remain on high alert and said that air and road traffic could be affected due to low visibility.Nepal, Nepal floods, Nepal rains, Nepal weather, Nepal floods death toll, Nepal monoon, Nepal landslides Police rescued 1,104 people from several places across the country with 185 alone from Kathmandu. (Reuters)Incessant rainfall has led the water level in the rivers to rise.center_img FFS said that water level in Bagmati, Kamala, Saptakoshi and its tributary the Sunkoshi has crossed the danger mark.“People living in these regions should remain alert,” Binod Parajuli, hydrologist at FFS, was quoted as saying in the report.Meanwhile, weather experts have attributed the heavy rainfall in such short duration to climate change.The Kathmadu Post reported that over the last three days, the country has witnessed heavy rainfall in an indication of the changing rainfall pattern. The country is receiving more rainfall in a short duration of time–an abnormal phenomenon that is slowly becoming a new normal.“There has been a change in precipitation in recent years. The intensity of rainfall has gone up,” Madhukar Upadhya, a watershed practitioner and climate change expert, told The Kathmandu Post.“We are experiencing a high intensity of rainfall in short durations,” he said. 17 killed as heavy rains lash Nepal Advertising Salve hails verdict, says ICJ protected Jadhav from being executed Advertising By PTI |Kathmandu | Published: July 14, 2019 10:48:26 am Post Comment(s)last_img read more

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Personalized program of physical exercise effective in reversing functional decline in the

first_img Source:http://www.unavarra.es/actualidad/noticias?contentId=239158&languageId=100000 Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Nov 19 2018A program of personalized physical exercise implemented over a three-year period and involving 370 people over the age of 75 admitted to the Geriatric Service of the Hospital Complex of Navarre (CHN) has turned out to be “safe and effective” in reversing the functional deterioration associated with hospitalization to which patients in this age group are subjected. Other aspects such as cognitive status and life quality also benefited.This is the conclusion of a research project coordinated by Nicolás Martínez-Velilla and Mikel Izquierdo-Redín, researchers at Navarrabiomed, the biomedical research centre of the Government of Navarre and the Public University of Navarre (NUP/UPNA); its results have just been published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA Internal Medicine).These findings open up the possibility of medical hospitalization units changing their traditional paradigm, which focuses mainly on disease, to another that recognizes the person’s functional status as a clinical sign that may be negatively affected by this traditional hospitalization (classically based on bed rest).Program of physical exercise involving strength, balance and walkingThe people participating in this research participated in a controlled, personalized program of strength, balance and walking exercises adapted to their possibilities, even during the acute phase of their diseases. Depending on the status of each patient, training intensity ranging between 30% and 60% of their muscular capacity was specified, so they did leg and arm exercises. These sessions lasted twenty minutes twice a day (morning and afternoon), over between five and seven consecutive days (including weekends and public holidays) under the individual supervision of experts in the field of physical exercise for the elderly.The program of physical activity adapted from the VIVIfrail training program (already successfully tried out on nearly a thousand people with problems of frailty and residing in seven European countries) was adapted at all times to the clinical circumstances of each patient; far from leading to complications in their initial state of health, it was found to be “a significant support in preventing frailty, a factor in eliminating complications linked to passive stay in hospital and a means of motivation for overcoming disease”, as Nicolás Martínez-Velilla and Mikel Izquierdo pointed out.”Our study shows that intervention involving, innovative, personalized multicomponent physical exercise that includes moderate intensity endurance training over a very short period of time, five days on average, has a significant benefit on routine care and may help to reverse the functional and cognitive deterioration associated with the hospitalization of the elderly,” said the NUP/UPNA professor.Related StoriesExercise during pregnancy can promote bone health of both mother and childIt’s never too late to take up exercise, advise researchersCombining aerobic exercise and resistance training helps obese older adults preserve muscle massThe results of the study show that when discharged from hospital, the group that had participated in the prescribed program of exercise achieved, in comparison with those who had not done it, a total of 2.2 points above the average on a maximum score of 12 in the SPPB (Short Physical Performance Battery) functional assessment tool, which measures balance, walking speed and leg strength, and 6.9 points above the average score in the Barthel Functional Index for Activities of Daily Living, which has a maximum score of 100 points. These results are particularly important, as there is scientific consensus that regards a one-point increase on the SPPB scale and five on the Barthel scale as clinically significant.In comparison with the interventions carried out so far with patients that fit this profile, this is new and constitutes significant progress in dealing with functional aspects when abandoning hospitalization models that encourage the bed rest and sendentarism of the patient. “Until now, no one had suggested that patients of this type (elderly people with a range of diseases) could benefit in just five days from a personalized exercise program far removed from the usual message of ‘get up and walk along the corridor a little’ or ‘rest in bed or in an armchair´,” explained the head of the Geriatric Service at the CHN.Significant benefits of the intervention from the cognitive and life quality perspective were also found. The above-mentioned improvements were achieved without any side effects or increase in hospital stay, as the researchers point out in their article.”Nevertheless, this intervention did not change the rate of re-admittance or mortality three months later. In such an elderly population as those in the study and with a theoretically short life expectancy following hospitalization, the aim of our intervention was not to increase the quantity but the quality of life,” said Nicolás Martínez-Velilla.”Sometimes we believe that improvements in technologies or the latest innovative treatment can provide all the solutions for our problems, but we are not aware that disability generated by hospitalization may exert a greater impact than the very disease that prompted admittance in the first place. In this respect the hugely positive effect that physical exercise can have on disease prevention and treatment is reiterated,” added Mikel Izquierdo.last_img read more

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Study highlights need for reliable therapeutic targets for prevention treatment of cardiovascular

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jan 21 2019CVD (cardiovascular diseases) are proven to be the leading cause of deaths throughout the world. If statistics are reviewed, almost four out of five deaths are due to myocardial infarction or stroke. Regardless of many new treatments and measures took and still are taken place; in order to prevent cardiovascular diseases the number does not cease to decrease (the number of deaths). Therefore, new and even better therapies and treatments should be brought in the light for the betterment of those who are suffering from CVD. Metabolomics has offered a good solution for these diseases. Metabolomic-based biomarkers indicate the disease, as they are keen enough to detect it. At the same time, they are able enough to detect the risk of development of that disease and detect the disease before it comes to the surface.Related StoriesTAU’s new Translational Medical Research Center acquires MILabs’ VECTor PET/SPECT/CTNew method improves detection of atrial fibrillation in stroke survivorsStudy explores role of iron in over 900 diseasesIn this study, analytical techniques are discussed along with the workflow that used in untargeted metabolomics. While case studies are also identified that were highlighting the use of untargeted metabolomics in CVD research. Out of all those, five of the case studies show approaches to identify the approach taken by untargeted metabolomics. These were taken for cardiovascular diseases and risks, myocardial ischemia, transient ischemic attack, incident coronary heart disease, and myocardial infarction risk. Prediction of all these were described. If we talk about cardiovascular research, the use of the untargeted metabolomics is still relatively new. Although, there is still a need for future advancements in metabolomics technologies.Early diagnosis of CVD is a good sign for patient’s recovery and also for their health. Therefore, there is a need to establish sensitive and at the same time non-invasive biomarkers and also reliable therapeutic targets for prevention and treatment of CVD. Source:https://benthamscience.com/last_img read more

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Smiling is the secret to happiness according to experts

first_imgWe don’t think that people can smile their way to happiness. But these findings provide a clue about how the mind and the body interact to shape our conscious experience of emotion. This meta-analysis put us a little closer to understanding how emotions work.”Nicholas Coles, Lead Researcher By Dr. Liji Thomas, MDApr 12 2019Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)The phrase ‘fake it ‘til you make it’ could even apply to your mood, according to scientists from the University of Tennessee and Texas A&M University. In other words, scowling or smiling when you don’t feel like it could actually make you feel upset or happier.The study “Effects of facial feedback on emotional experience are small and variable”, was published in the journal Psychological Bulletin on 11th April 2019.Rido | ShutterstockThe validity of this bit of traditional advice, coming from famous naturalists like Charles Darwin no less than from old grandmothers, has repeatedly been questioned by psychologists.Darwin’s book, The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals, contains this observation, also called the ‘facial feedback hypothesis’.This has been tested by many experiments designed to examine the effect of expressing a pretended emotion in order to change one’s mood.Typically, an emotion is registered before it is physically expressed. The facial feedback hypothesis turns this order around, encouraging individuals to express an emotion so that the mood actually changes to fit the expressed emotion.For instance, a mirthless grin was found, in one famous study, to make the person feel more like laughing while watching a humorous show. This triggered a wave of advice on how to improve one’s life by faking laughter in order to elevate one’s mood.However, the original study, which was based on forcing a grin-like grimace by holding a pen lengthways in one’s mouth while watching funny cartoons, failed to evoke similar results when repeated by the same scientists, on a much larger scale, after three decades.This should not be a surprise since psychology experiments are known to produce extremely variable results due to a range of factors which influence the results.To add to the difficulty, there are numerous facial feedback hypotheses, not just one, creating widespread controversy over the effects of forcing an emotion. The current study involved a meta-analysis of 138 experimental studies, including over 11,000 people over the last 50 years. The aim was to eliminate as many potential sources of error and bias as possible, by examining the methods used in different studies.The conclusion was clear: a smile can stimulate a  positive emotional change, while a scowl triggers a feeling of mild disgust. However, this correlation was lacking when it came to expressions of fear or surprise.The researchers also found that the final effect varied with the stimulus for the forced emotion. For example, a subtly funny cartoon did not trigger amusement simply because the viewer forced a smile whilst watching it. On the other hand, a slapstick comedy could alter the mood of the viewer if they were physically prepared to experience a mood change.Overall, some stimuli like emotional sentences were found to cause greater feedback effects compared to others, such as pictures.The take-home conclusion is that the facial feedback hypothesis is correct, to some degree. However, the complex link between the emotions and physical reactions means that the observed effect changes with the situation and its size is small, though not insignificant.What does this mean?A smile may help you feel a bit better – but that doesn’t mean forcing emotions by means of physical actions is a reliable way to improve one’s mood. The current study helps to put this cause-effect relationship into a little better perspective:last_img read more

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NewsGuard new venture to combat fake news

‘NewsGuard’ is a new venture to provide ‘reliability ratings’ about media outlets Two prominent American journalists announced plans Monday to launch a venture called NewsGuard which will provide online users with “reliability ratings” for media outlets. NewsGuard’s founders said they will hire dozens of experienced journalists to analyse the 7,500 news and information websites which are the “most accessed and shared” in the United States.NewsGuard will launch ahead of the November mid-term elections in the United States, founders Steven Brill, who started Court TV among other ventures, and Gordon Crovitz, former publisher of The Wall Street Journal, said in a statement.NewsGuard will provide green, yellow and red “reliability ratings” for news sources, they said, with green being for trusted sources, yellow for those requiring caution, and red for “deliberate purveyors” of “fake news.”Brill and Crovitz said NewsGuard will provide “nutrition labels” for each of the 7,500 news sources it will review. These will be a more detailed analysis of each outlet and will explain why a publisher receives a green, yellow or red rating.”In addition to alerting people to fake news,” Crovitz said, “one of our key goals is to help consumers, including young people, know when to take news from certain sites with a grain of salt.”NewsGuard said it will license its ratings to social media and search engines and other news aggregators so they can add them to their feeds.”Our goal is to help solve this problem now by using human beings—trained, experienced journalists—who will operate under a transparent, accountable process to apply basic common sense to a growing scourge that clearly cannot be solved by algorithms,” Brill said.”We are not going to make granular judgments about political leanings, or which of two legitimate news sites—Buzzfeed News or the Boston Globe, for example—produces more reliable journalism,” Crovitz said.”But we will tell readers the Denver Post is a real newspaper and that the Denver Guardian exists only as a purveyor of fake news.”Brill and Crovitz said they had raised $6 million for NewsGuard from 18 investors. The lead investor is the Publicis Groupe ad agency holding company.”Advertisers care about the quality and credibility of the brands they support, and we are delighted to be the lead investor in NewsGuard as a key part of the solution to the crisis of fake news,” Publicis Groupe chairman Maurice Levy said.NewsGuard’s founders said they hope to eventually expand beyond the United States. Explore further Citation: NewsGuard, new venture to combat ‘fake news’ (2018, March 5) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-03-newsguard-venture-combat-fake-news.html EU tasks experts to find ways to fight fake news © 2018 AFP 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

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Businesses balance Facebook privacy concerns ad needs

In this undated photo provided by Mike Seper shows Seper on a zipline at Eco Adventure Ziplines in New Florence, Mo. “While I considered deleting Facebook, I understand the importance and reach Facebook has to keep an open channel of communication with our customers,” says Mike Seper, owner of Eco Adventure Ziplines. Seper is concerned that Facebook users, seeing his ads and then viewing other users’ political posts or ads, might mistakenly assume they’re connected. “We just don’t want that association,” says Seper, who had been doing most of his advertising on Facebook. (Shannon Seper/Eco Adventure Ziplines via AP) Explore further Facebook CEO defends advertising-supported business model The revelations that Cambridge Analytica gathered personal information from 87 million Facebook users made some people and small businesses jittery. Small business owners don’t want customers to draw any connection between their ads and Cambridge Analytica, or to be unnerved by how their data is used.But even wary owners, especially those trying to reach a wide audience on a small advertising budget, say they need to go where their customers are—and for many, that’s Facebook.”While I considered deleting Facebook, I understand the importance and reach Facebook has to keep an open channel of communication with our customers,” says Mike Seper, owner of Eco Adventure Ziplines. The company, based in New Florence, Missouri, operates adventure rides for people to glide along cables suspended 50 or 250 feet above the ground.Seper is concerned that Facebook users, seeing his ads and then viewing other users’ political posts or ads, might mistakenly assume they’re connected. “We just don’t want that association,” says Seper, who had been doing most of his advertising on Facebook. He’ll still post videos on his company’s Facebook page, but will advertise instead on Google and use more traditional methods like postcards, brochures and print ads.Small business owners also need to keep in mind that many people are newly aware of data issues or more cautious about their online behavior.Breakout, which operates 44 “escape room” game locations, is reducing its use of reminders that Facebook sends to people who start but don’t complete a booking. The strategy does persuade many people to book another time slot—but it might also make them feel like they’re being tracked, says digital marketing director Drew Roberts.”People who aren’t familiar with how it works may be a little turned off,” Roberts says.Breakout has also cut its Facebook advertising budget by 50 percent in response to the Cambridge Analytica scandal, but it’s not going to abandon an effective method of reaching out to customers.”It excels for us when we’re opening new locations,” Drew says. Like other advertisers, Breakout can take advantage of the data Facebook has available to target specific demographic groups and geographic areas, ensuring that it will reach people most likely to be interested in what they’re selling. Some small businesses that use Facebook ads to promote themselves and attract new customers are wrestling with whether they need to change strategy after the company’s data-misuse scandal. Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne acknowledges the concerns of some owners, including those that target ads to specific groups, but said Facebook doesn’t share their information or that of their customers with anyone.”Protecting people’s information is a top priority,” Osborne said Wednesday. “We’ve said before that if we can’t, then we don’t deserve the right to their information.”Elisa Vazquez, who helps companies run their social media marketing and ad campaigns, doesn’t want to put her clients’ customers and potential customers at any risk of being misused. She’s placing fewer ads and aiming at broader audiences, which means targeting fewer Facebook users based on demographic data.”For how many years did they say, no one’s data has been leaked?” says Vazquez, social media director for Elevate My Brand, an online marketing company based in Los Angeles. “I want to be cautious.”Facebook’s explanation of what it’s done to protect users’ data has reassured Ekiria Collins, owner of Yorkies of Houston. The breeder of Yorkshire terriers does about three-quarters of her advertising on Facebook and Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, and estimates that about 80 percent of her customers find and contact her business through Facebook.Collins says she’s concerned about her customers’ privacy, but “I am confident that Facebook is researching the privacy matter and has implemented programs to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”Others aren’t convinced. Oliver Coen, a watch company based in London, gets more than 80 percent of its sales in the U.S., and puts half its advertising dollars into Facebook. Founder David Murphy has cut the company’s Facebook budget by 5 percent because he’s still concerned about users’ personal information being passed on to third parties.”I’d be surprised if it was one-off,” he says of the Cambridge Analytica situation.Murphy considered leaving Facebook, but also doesn’t see an advertising alternative that would have the same reach.But the company that runs the Alameda County Fair, not far from California’s Silicon Valley, doesn’t see data privacy as an issue. And it says the number of followers on its Facebook page is up 5 percent from a year ago.”We’re not worried about it—maybe because we live in a place that’s so data-driven here, in the Silicon Valley,” says Angel Moore, vice president for business development of the Alameda County Fair Association. “No matter what we do, data is being collected.” Facebook has apologized to those whose data was misused, and says it’s restricting app developers’ access to people’s information. The company has 10 million small businesses with Facebook pages in the U.S. and 6 million advertisers, most of them small companies; CEO Mark Zuckerberg was quoted earlier this month as saying he doesn’t believe the company has seen a meaningful impact on ad spending from the scandal. Citation: Businesses balance Facebook privacy concerns, ad needs (2018, April 25) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-businesses-facebook-privacy-ad.html © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. In this undated photo provided by Mike Seper shows Seper and his son Connor at Eco Adventure Ziplines in New Florence, Mo. “While I considered deleting Facebook, I understand the importance and reach Facebook has to keep an open channel of communication with our customers,” says Mike Seper, owner of Eco Adventure Ziplines. Seper is concerned that Facebook users, seeing his ads and then viewing other users’ political posts or ads, might mistakenly assume they’re connected. “We just don’t want that association,” says Seper, who had been doing most of his advertising on Facebook. (Shannon Seper/Eco Adventure Ziplines via AP) read more

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How drones could improve crop damage estimates

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. Using drones to estimate crop damage by wild boar Explore further A UAlberta researcher is testing drone technology during the 2018 growing season to find out whether it can help farmers and insurance adjusters get better estimates of crop damage caused by weather. Credit: University of Alberta Post-doctoral fellow Virginia Garcia Millan is testing whether algorithms used in drones for existing applications, such as hydrology and forestry, will also work for crop damage estimates. The idea is to better quantify crop damages and improve an online app called SkyClaim, developed by Skymatics, a startup offering remote sensing solutions and drone services, co-founded by U of A science alumnus Cassidy Rankine.The results so far are encouraging.”(The agricultural and insurance sectors are) telling us they find it very useful for their daily work,” she said. “Particularly, we’ve had high interest from agronomists and adjusters who would like to use this tool.”It’s a project that reflects where modern farming is headed,” she added.The algorithms use drone data collected in the skies over 20,000 acres of wheat, canola, barley, corn, potatoes and hemp crops stretching between Edmonton and Lethbridge, along with data from nearly 100,000 acres worldwide, recorded through a crowdsourcing campaign for drone users online.The high-tech, bird’s-eye approach offered by drones can be tailored to different crop loss situations while largely automating the estimation process, reducing human subjectivity.Traditionally, adjusters visually estimate crop damage from the edges of the fields or by walking them in an M-shaped pattern, but drone data gives a wider-ranging perspective to show the true extent of yield losses over much larger areas of farmland, said Garcia Millan, who is on a team in the Faculty of Science exploring new uses for unmanned aerial vehicles. “Sometimes there are disagreements between what adjusters declare and what farmers consider they lost. A good estimation of crop damage is fair for both. Having an objective and accurate estimation of crop damages measured in acres for the entire field, rather than just a few sample locations, can save thousands of dollars to insurance companies or ensure farmers get fair compensation,” she explained.Insurance companies can also be overwhelmed with claims in a massive weather event, meaning delays in viewing damaged cropland, which in turn can result in less accurate estimates. But drones collect an aerial overview almost immediately after a destructive event, using advanced image analysis techniques and machine learning algorithms.”We then have an objective and accurate quantification of the damage,” she noted.The algorithms Garcia Millan is testing generate an ultra-high-resolution digital map of the field, a 3-D model of the crop surface and a table with damage estimates broken down into hectares, percentages of loss and monetary values, all delivered on the user’s mobile device by Skymatics in a report that’s quick and easy to interpret.”Crop damage can differ, depending on several factors,” Garcia Millan said. “This level of detail is tailored to the type of damage—hail, wind, wildlife, fire or frost—the intensity of the damage, the type of crop and its growth stage,” she said.The next step is to integrate Garcia Millan’s 3-D crop loss algorithms into the Skyclaim web app in beta form for the 2018 growing season, Rankine said.”We’ll get user feedback, then go into widespread commercial use by the end of the year,” he added. “It’s an app we feel is going to really show how drones can serve industries like the insurance and agricultural sectors.” Provided by University of Alberta Farmers and insurance companies may soon get more accurate estimates of weather-related crop damage thanks to a University of Alberta researcher working with existing drone technology. Citation: How drones could improve crop damage estimates (2018, April 27) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-drones-crop.html read more

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