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Huawei HongMeng OS will likely be faster than Android – but itll

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first_img Show More Unlike other sites, we thoroughly review everything we recommend, using industry standard tests to evaluate products. We’ll always tell you what we find. We may get a commission if you buy via our price links.Tell us what you think – email the Editor Sign up for the Mobile NewsletterSign Up Please keep me up to date with special offers and news from Goodtoknow and other brands operated by TI Media Limited via email. You can unsubscribe at any time. We’d also like to send you special offers and news just by email from other carefully selected companies we think you might like. Your personal details will not be shared with those companies – we send the emails and you can unsubscribe at any time. Please tick here if you are happy to receive these messages.By submitting your information, you agree to the Terms & Conditions and Privacy & Cookies Policy. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply. Huawei’s HongMeng OS, will ‘likely’ be faster than Google Android, according to the company’s founder and CEO, Ren Zhengfei.The Chinese tech mogul made the claim during an interview with French publication Le Point on Friday. He didn’t get into specifics about how much faster the Huawei made operating system is, but a previous report in the Global Times reported the OS could be as much as 60% speedier.HongMeng OS is a new operating system Huawei is developing as a potential replacement for Android. The company has reportedly been working on it for quite some time, but was forced to speedline its development after a US executive order forced numerous tech companies to cut ties with it in May.Related: Best Android phone 2019The executive order forced Google to diminish its ties with Huawei, making it unclear if future Huawei phones, such as the Huawei Mate 30, will be able to get an official Android license. Without it the phones will not get official software support from Google and will be cut off from key things, including the Play Store.Outside of this details about HongMeng OS are fairly thin on the ground, though it will apparently work on numerous different technologies outside of smartphones and tablets. These include desktops, cars and even data centres according to Le Point’s report.Zhengfei also reportedly indicated the company may choose to move to use HongMeng even if the US ban was lifted. Trusted Reviews contacted Huawei for comment on Le Point’s report but at the time of publishing hadn’t heard back.Related: Amazon Prime Day Smartphone DealsEven if the company’s OS is as optimised as Zhengfei indicates, it will have one key problem to get round: it needs an app store. In China, where Google has a very small footprint, there are multiple different mobile app stores. But in the West most Android users predominantly use the official Play Store.Unless Huawei can miraculously find an equally well stocked marketplace, or somehow make its own – something Microsoft and BlackBerry  tried and failed to do – HongMeng OS could struggle to get any traction outside of its home territory.last_img read more

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WatchCanadian Tire profit falls but revenue and sales gain ground

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first_img May 9, 20198:36 AM EDT Filed under News Retail & Marketing TORONTO — Canadian Tire Corp. reported its first-quarter profit fell compared with a year ago as revenue moved higher.The retailer says it earned a profit attributable to shareholders of $69.7 million or $1.12 per share for the quarter ended March 30.That compared with a profit of $78 million or $1.18 per share a year earlier.Revenue totalled $2.89 billion, up from $2.81 billion in the first quarter of 2018.The increase in revenue came as retail sales at its Canadian Tire stores increased 7.4 per cent and comparable sales gained 7.1 per cent.Meanwhile, sales at its SportChek stores gained 2.8 per cent, while comparable sales rose 3.4 per cent. Mark’s sales grew 5.5 per cent, while comparable sales at the clothing chain increased 4.9 per cent.Related Stories:Walgreens third-quarter profit falls 23.6%Corona maker Constellation Brands beats quarterly sales estimatesAccenture quarterly profit jumps as digital investments pay off  Twitter Comment Recommended For YouThree reasons Canada outpaces U.S. in office construction boomUPDATE 3-Bayer lifted by new plan to tackle glyphosate lawsuits, Elliott approval’Not a brand change’: New name, same pipeline challenges for TC EnergyUPDATE 2-Canadian firms expect increase in sales growth -Bank of Canada surveyUPDATE 3-Pence puts off China speech sequel ahead of Trump-Xi talks Share this storyCanadian Tire profit falls, but revenue and sales gain ground Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Reddit 0 Commentscenter_img More Email Canadian Tire profit falls, but revenue and sales gain ground Sales at Canadian Tire stores increased 7.4% Facebook The Canadian Press Join the conversation →last_img read more

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120kW Wireless Charging Proves 97 Efficient

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BMW Introduces Factory-Fitted Wireless Charging For 530e iPerformance Martha’s Vineyard Buses Get Wirelessly Charged Up With 200-kW System OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 19, 2018—Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have demonstrated a 120-kilowatt wireless charging system for vehicles—providing six times the power of previous ORNL technology and a big step toward charging times that rival the speed and convenience of a gas station fill-up.The wireless system transfers 120 kilowatts of power with 97 percent efficiency, which is comparable to conventional, wired high-power fast chargers. In the laboratory demonstration, power was transferred across a six-inch air gap between two magnetic coils and charged a battery pack.ORNL researchers created and demonstrated the world’s first 20-kilowatt wireless charging system, which is being modified for applications such as commercial delivery trucks.“It was important to maintain the same or smaller footprint as the previous demonstration to encourage commercial adoption,” said project lead Veda Galigekere of ORNL’s Power Electronics and Electric Machinery Group.“We used finite element and circuit analyses to develop a novel co-optimization methodology, solving the issues of coil design while ensuring the system doesn’t heat up or pose any safety issues, and that any loss of power during the transfer is minimal,” he said.To achieve 120 kilowatts, the ORNL team created a new coil design co-optimized with the latest silicon carbide power electronic devices for a lightweight, compact system.The system’s architecture takes energy from the grid and converts it to high-frequency alternating current, which generates a magnetic field that transfers power across a large air gap. Once the energy is transferred to the secondary coil, it is converted back to direct current and stored in a vehicle’s batteries.The demonstration advances DOE’s extreme fast-charging goal to develop a system that delivers 350 to 400 kilowatts and reduces the charging time for electric vehicles to 15 minutes or less.“This breakthrough significantly advances the technology needed to encourage greater adoption of electric vehicles by increasing their range and the ease of recharging, and in turn supports an energy-efficient mobility system for the nation’s economic success,” said Moe Khaleel, associate laboratory director for Energy and Environmental Sciences at ORNL.ORNL researchers will explore innovations to increase power transfer level to 200 and eventually 350 kilowatts, while refining dynamic wireless charging technology. A dynamic system enables the automatic charging of electric vehicles using wireless charging pads installed under roadways. Higher power charging systems are needed to minimize the cost and complexity of dynamic charging. “The goal is dynamic charging at highway speeds,” Galigekere said.The research was funded by DOE’s Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) and performed at the National Transportation Research Center, a DOE user facility at ORNL. The VTO, part of DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, invests in early-stage research to enable private-sector development and commercialization of affordable, energy efficient transportation technologies that can strengthen energy security, support U.S. economic growth, and offer consumers and businesses additional transportation choices.ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for DOE’s Office of Science, the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States. DOE’s Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit http://science.energy.gov -by Stephanie Seay The next steps of the research will be:200 kWeventually 350 kWrefining dynamic wireless charging technology 5 photos Source: ORNL, Green Car Congress Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on October 21, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Fully Charged Tests Dynamic Electric Vehicle Charging – Video Press releaseORNL demonstrates 120-kilowatt wireless charging for vehicles Source: Electric Vehicle News High power wireless charging efficiency reaches 97%.The Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) upgraded its previous 20 kW wireless charging system to 120 kW, and through a new design and a silicon carbide power electronic device, it was able to achieve 97% efficiency.Demonstration of the new system was done at a 6-inch (15.2 cm) air gap, which means that electric cars could recharge almost as efficiently as in the case of wired charging.Wireless charging news read more

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2019 Chevy Volt Still The PlugIn Hybrid Champion

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first_img Edmunds Drives 2019 Chevy Volt 70 Miles On Single Charge Source: Electric Vehicle News Comparing Heating Effectiveness: Tesla Model 3, Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf Despite newer options from Toyota and Honda, CNET says the Chevy Volt is still the PHEV champEarlier this year, Chevrolet announced several major improvements to the Chevy Volt for its 2019 mid-cycle update. Owners had been clamoring for many of these changes since the Gen 1 Volt launched in 2010. Now that the new model year has started arriving at dealerships, reviews are trickling in. So far the response is quite positive.More About The Chevy Volt CNET’s Jon Wong recently put the updated Volt to the test for Roadshow. Typically, the biggest draw for a buyer looking to get into a plug-in hybrid is the all electric range. The Volt’s 53 miles of range continues to reign supreme as the gold standard compared to the Prius Prime, Kia Niro PHEV and Honda Clarity PHEV. For most drivers, this is more than enough for daily commutes. Strong regenerative braking and the convenient regen paddle is still a much loved feature on both the Chevy Volt and the Bolt EV.One of the biggest notable change to the car are the 7.2 kW charge speed that is standard in the Premier and a $750 option on the LT. The rear-view cameras are drastically improved over previous models. And that clarity really shows on the updated 8-inch touchscreen and new infotainment system. Other changes such as better placement of the wireless phone charger and optional power driver seat are very welcome. The 2019 Volt can also now operate in EV mode at temperatures as low as -25 degrees Celsius (-13 degrees Fahrenheit) without activating engine assisted heating.Wong does have a few issues that he wished Chevy would have addressed this model year. While the Volt is by no means an unattractive car, he feels the styling is on the boring side and would have liked to see an updated exterior. While the suspension adequately smooths out the ride for those up front, the rear seat is not nearly as comfortable. Rear headroom also remains an issue.Despite these minor issues, Roadshow says the Volt is “The plug-in hybrid champ.” Check out Roadshow’s full review and final score below.Source: RoadshowCHEVY VOLTcenter_img Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on November 20, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Five Facts About The 2019 Chevy Volt That You Should Know 15 photoslast_img read more

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See The Worlds First Holographic Chrome Tesla Model 3

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first_img Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on December 31, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Tesla Model 3: The Rebirth Of The American Sedan This Model 3 may be a bit over the top, but it’ll still draw attention anywhere it goesBuilds like these serve only one purpose: to draw attention. While you may actually appreciate what a crazy wrap job and directional wheels like these bring to the table, in reality, you, as the owner, are an attention seeking individual. And this vehicle perfectly fills that need. While it certainly won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, this holographic chrome Tesla Model 3 will undoubtedly steal the spotlight anywhere it goes. And for this owner, that’s probably everything that he hoped for.More about the Tesla Model 3 The vehicle in question features a rather unique, albeit pretty expensive holographic chrome wrap. Covering every nook and cranny of this vehicle, the wrap job adds a rather compelling effect, especially during night time. Every surrounding light reflects over its surface. In turn, this effect gives the car one of the most intricate looks we’ve seen to date. Certainly, not everyone will like it, but, just like a peacock strutting in front of a female, it will have the desired effect.Additionally, this Tesla Model 3 features a set of directional lightweight aluminum wheels. From the look of things, these are 19-inch wheels and fit the vehicle really snug. Add the overall appeal of a Model 3, combine it with all the hype surrounding Tesla lately, add a sprinkle of chrome wrap and this vehicle will be the star of any shopping mall parking lot for a long time to come. Check out the full video showcase of this battery-powered holographic chrome Model 3 right above. Watch Tesla Model 3 Slide Around On Snow In New Zealand Watch How A Tesla Model 3 Gets Made: Time-Lapse Video Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

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Macclesfields own Middle Eastern backers contemplate a Cup run

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first_imgShares00 news Reuse this content A club with a long and proud tradition in the north-west is taken over by rich ­Middle Eastern owners. Sound familiar? With the January transfer window about to open, you’d be forgiven for thinking that this very modern football tale relates to the petrodollar-flush burghers in the blue half of Manchester. But this is the story of the lesser-known takeover at nearby Maccles­field Town.The Silkmen take on Everton this Saturday in the FA Cup third round, having undergone their own Middle Eastern revolution. In 2003 Macclesfield were in deep trouble, 23rd in League Two and sporting the lowest average attendances in league football before help came from an unlikely quarter. In stepped Bashar and Amar al Khadi, two London-based Iraqi Kurd tele­coms entrepreneurs whose family left Iraq and settled in the UK in the late 70s.”We were looking to get into football and my sister-in-law was one of the biggest fans of Macclesfield,” Bashar al Khadi says. “The more we looked into it, the more I wanted to get involved. We were in danger of getting relegated. But then I got hooked, addicted. It really is a labour of love.”Immediately the al Khadi influence was felt. The club’s yo-yoing finances were stabilised, relegation was avoided and plans were mooted for a move to a new home away from Macclesfield Town’s historic but unsuitable Moss Rose stadium.”The main problem we faced was that we’re the smallest club in the league and in our catchment area you have Manchester United and City,” al Khadi admits. “We can’t compete with them, but we would like us to be everyone’s second team. Now we cut our cloth accordingly. Our turnover is less than £2m but the club now knows what is going in, what is going out and where it’s headed.”Although al Khadi will not mention any figures, it is thought that Bashar and his brother have invested up to £4m. Now the club, in al Khadi’s words “don’t owe anything to anyone. We are totally debt-free.” That and a string of high-profile moves – like inviting the Iraq national team to play in Macclesfield and the short-lived signing of the Iraq international Jassim Swadi Fayadh – have made the al Khadi brothers a rare phenomenon: lower-league owners beloved by their fans.Macclesfield lie 14th in League Two, nine points from a play-off place. But as important as promotion is, the FA Cup is a godsend. Income from this weekend’s game, al Khadi explains, could be the difference between bringing in a few fresh faces for their promotion push or sinking back into the relegation mire.They are not problems that Sheikh Mansour, the Emirati owner of Manchester City, is likely to face. For al Khadi the involvement of rich benefactors from the Middle East should be encouraged and not viewed with suspicion. “Dubai’s interest in Liverpool and the Manchester City takeover was no surprise,” he says.”It’s as good a time as any to buy. The [UAE] dirham is pegged to the dollar which has gained 25% on the pound this year. It does depend who invests and what they want to get out of it. We make a loss every year so I guess it pales in significance. But, yes, the more the better. From a selfish reason it comes down to the pyramid – the more that comes into the pot, the more that cascades down.”Now al Khadi wants to push on with his plans for a new stadium, promotion to League One, and his ongoing bugbear of raising an average attendance that stubbornly refuses to move much above 2,000 a game. But first comes Everton. “It’s not live, which is a shame as then we’d have got £160,000, close to 10% of our turnover,” al Khadi laments. “So we’ll just have to beat them and get into the fourth round, won’t we?” James Montague Macclesfield Town’s manager Keith Alexander will be encouraging his team on against Everton in the FA Cup. Photograph: Neal Simpson/EMPICS Sport This article is more than 10 years old InterviewMacclesfield’s own Middle Eastern backers contemplate a Cup run This article is more than 10 years old Macclesfield Share on Messenger Share on Facebook • Bashar and Amar al Khadi took over Macclesfield Town in 2003• New stadium planned as Silkmen push for play-offs Share via Email Share on Facebookcenter_img Wed 31 Dec 2008 20.02 EST FA Cup 2008-09 Share on WhatsApp Topics FA Cup Share via Email Share on Twitter Everton Share on LinkedIn Share on Pinterest First published on Wed 31 Dec 2008 20.02 EST Macclesfield Share on Twitterlast_img read more

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Will There Be An SEC FCPA Trial

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first_imgThe Foreign Corrupt Practices Act is nearing its 40th anniversary.Yet, the SEC is believed to have never prevailed in an FCPA enforcement action when put to its ultimate burden of proof.This post highlights recent developments in the SEC’s long-standing FCPA enforcement action against former Magyar Telekom executives Elek Straub, Andras Balogh, and Tamas Morvai. The case was brought in December 2011 and recently U.S. District Court Judge Richard Sullivan seemed poised to deny competing motions for summary judgment stating during a recent oral argument “I do think we’re going to have a trial here.”Before turning to the development in the Straub et al matter, by way of background and as highlighted in this prior post, it is believed that there have only been three instances in FCPA history in which the SEC was put to its ultimate burden of proof in an FCPA enforcement action.(1)In 2002 the S.D. of Texas dismissed an SEC complaint against Eric Mattson and James Harris.  The enforcement action involved alleged goodwill payments to an Indonesian tax official for a reduction in a tax assessment.  The SEC claimed that the FCPA’s unambiguous language plainly encompassed the goodwill payment and the issue before the Court was whether the plain language of the FCPA prohibited goodwill payments for the purpose of reducing a tax assessment.  When Mattson and Harris was decided, the S.D. of Texas in U.S. v. Kay case had already dismissed that case finding that the plain language of the FCPA does not prohibit goodwill payments to foreign government officials to reduce a tax obligation.  The SEC attempted to distinguish the trial court’s Kay ruling by arguing that in the civil enforcement context, the Court should interpret the FCPA’s language more liberally than in criminal cases.  The Court rejected the SEC’s arguments and followed the trial court’s analysis in Kay that the payments at issue to the Indonesian tax official did not violate the FCPA because it did not help Mattson’s and Harris’s employer (Baker Hughes) “obtain or retain business.”  See here for the court’s Memorandum and Order.(2)As highlighted in this previous post, in 2013 Judge Shira Scheindlin (S.D. of New York) dismissed an SEC complaint against Herbert Steffen.  In dismissing the case against the German national, Judge Scheindlin concluded, as an initial threshold matter, that personal jurisdiction over Steffen exceeded the limits of due process.  Judge Scheindlin stated, in pertinent part, as follows.“If this Court were to hold that Steffen’s support for the bribery scheme satisfied the minimum contacts analysis, even though he neither authorized the bribe, nor directed the cover up, much less played any role in the falsified filings, minimum contacts would be boundless.  […] [U]nder the SEC’s theory, every participant in illegal action taken by a foreign company subject to U.S. securities laws would be subject to the jurisdiction of U.S. courts no matter how attenuated their connection with the falsified financial statements.  This would be akin to a tort-like foreseeability requirement, which has long been held to be insufficient.”(3)As highlighted in this previous post, in December 2012 Judge Keith Ellison (S.D. of Texas) granted – in an SEC FCPA enforcement action involving alleged conduct in connection with temporary importation permits in Nigeria for oil rigs.–  Mark Jackson and James Ruehlen’s motion to dismiss the SEC’s claims that sought monetary damages while denying the motion  to dismiss as to claims seeking injunctive relief. In the decision, Judge Ellison also concluded, in an issue of first impression, that the SEC has the burden of negating the FCPA’s facilitation payments exception.Even though the court granted the motion as to the SEC’s monetary damage claims, the dismissal was without prejudice meaning that the SEC was allowed to file an amended complaint.  As noted in this prior post, that is indeed what happened next, and as noted here a second round of briefing began anew.  As noted in this previous post, in the Defendant’s renewed motion to dismiss they argued that the SEC could not rely on the fraudulent concealment or continuing violations doctrine to extend the limitations period to cover certain claims.  A week later the Supreme Court issued its unanimous decision in SEC v. Gabelli (see here for the prior post) and soon thereafter the Defendants filed a notice of supplemental authority with the court arguing that Gabelli “bolstered” their position.  On the same day the SEC’s opposition brief was due, the parties jointly notified the court “that in lieu of opposing the [motion to dismiss] the SEC intends to file a Second Amended Complaint.”  The filing noted that the then proposed Second Amended Complaint “moots the relief sought in the [the motion to dismiss] because it clarifies that, among the violations alleged, the SEC seeks civil penalties … only to the extent such violations accrued on or before [a certain date].  In short, after being put to its initial burden of proof, the SEC’s case against Jackson and Ruehlen remained a shell of its former self.As highlighted here, in pre-trial proceedings, Judge Ellison expressed concerns regarding the SEC’s position regarding, among other things, the FCPA’s facilitating payments exception. On the eve of trial in July 2014, the SEC approached the defendants about resolving the matter and a settlement was reached. Without admitting or denying the SEC’s allegations Jackson and Ruehlen agreed not to violate the FCPA in the future. Neither defendant was required to pay any monetary penalty and the resolution was widely (and correctly) viewed as an SEC defeat.Back to the Straub et al action.As highlighted in this prior post, in February 2013, Judge Sullivan denied the defendants’ motion to dismiss. To state the obvious, when an SEC complaint is allowed to proceed past the motion to dismiss stage, the SEC has not prevailed when put to its ultimate burden of proof.  Rather the standard at the motion to dismiss stage is whether the complaint pleads enough facts to state a claim that is plausible on its face.The case proceeded through discovery and competing motions for summary judgment were filed. In late August, Judge Sullivan heard oral argument on the motions. The main issues heard regarded:statute of limitations issues;the jurisdictional element of the FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions including whether a key document in the SEC’s complaint was indeed in furtherance of a bribery scheme or merely a legitimate business document;general personal jurisdiction issues; andtwo of the SEC’s claims that do not necessarily involve bribery, but rather falsification of books and records and false statements to auditors.Judge Sullivan has not yet issued a decision on the motions for summary judgment but during the oral argument he appeared poised to deny both motions stating “I do think we’re going to have a trial here.”last_img read more

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This Week On FCPA Professor

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first_imgFCPA Professor has been described as “the Wall Street Journal concerning all things FCPA-related,” and “the most authoritative source for those seeking to understand and apply the FCPA.”Set forth below are the topics discussed this week on FCPA Professor.This post highlights additional issues to consider from the recent enforcement action against Telefonica Brasil.Earth to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross – as highlighted here there have been several FCPA enforcement actions concerning conduct in India.This post highlights the percentage of corporate SEC FCPA enforcement actions that also involve a DOJ component.As highlighted here, briefing in a pending FCPA individual enforcement action highlights the human costs associated with being charged with FCPA offenses.This post rounds up other FCPA or related developments.Elevate your FCPA knowledge and practical skills at the FCPA Institute – Minneapolis on June 20-21. CLE credit is available. Can’t attend the live, in-person FCPA Institute? No problem, the FCPA Institute is also online and is the most comprehensive online FCPA training course available.last_img read more

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HU researchers explore how simulated microgravity affects gene expression muscle cell differentiation

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first_img Source:https://www.hiroshima-u.ac.jp/en May 23 2018Astronauts go through many physiological changes during their time in spaceflight, including lower muscle mass and slower muscle development. Similar symptoms can occur in the muscles of people on Earth’s surface, too. In fact, it could affect everyone to some extent later in life.”Age-related skeletal muscle disorders, such as sarcopenia, are becoming a greater concern in society,” said Hiroshima University (HU) Professor and Space Bio-Laboratories Director Louis Yuge. “It is especially a big concern in Japan, where the number of aging people is increasing.”In a study published in Microgravity, a medical research group at HU led by Yuge shed light on these similarities. They found that the process that affects gene expression of differentiating muscle cells in space also affects cells in the presence of gravity.Related StoriesResearchers identify new sarcoma familial risk geneNew drug provides hope for patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophyPuzzling paralysis affecting healthy children warns CDCThe genetic and molecular basis of impaired muscle development has been unclear. Yuge thinks there is a pressing need to understand it and come up with better treatment outcomes.He and his team investigated how simulated microgravity – that is, gravity in space-like conditions – affects muscle cell differentiation and gene expression.They observed what happened to rat muscle cells over time. Some cells were treated with a drug that stops DNA methylation from happening, while other cells were not. DNA methylation is a process that controls gene expression and muscle cell differentiation.Next, they grew the cells either in normal gravity or inside of Gravite, a machine that simulates gravity at levels that astronauts experience in spaceflight. Cells in microgravity exhibited less cell differentiation after all. However, cells growing without the drug formed muscle fibers at a slower rate and showed less gene expression.One gene, Myod1, was of particular interest. Its expression levels were significantly lower in microgravity conditions and when growing with the drug that stopped DNA methylation.Within gravity, as well as without it, the group concluded that DNA methylation appears to be a key player in regulating muscle cell differentiation. “These findings highlight genes affected by DNA methylation, like Myod1, as potential targets for treating patients with skeletal muscle atrophy,” Yuge said.The team’s results can be utilized in space experiments, where muscle atrophy of astronauts uses myotubes because it is easy to understand morphologically. Additionally, the findings of this epigenetics can be used in many differentiated cells, stem cells, or cancer. The Micro-G Center of the Kennedy Space Center of NASA, where Yuge is an advisory committee member, and NASA have already conducted experiments to cultivate stem cells on the International Space Station, where this paper can also provide insight. Yuge and his team are expected to start a massive space experiment at NASA/Center for Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS).last_img read more

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Blocking viralhost interaction slows down flu virus replication study shows

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first_imgJun 25 2018Influenza A (flu A) hijacks host proteins for viral RNA splicing and blocking these interactions caused replication of the virus to slow, according to new research published in Nature Communications by Kristin W. Lynch, PhD, chair of the department of Biochemistry and Biophysics in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and doctoral student Matthew Thompson. Their results also suggest that infection with flu A may reduce splicing of some host genes, which could point to novel strategies for antiviral therapies.Influenza A virus is a common human pathogen that causes 250,000 to 500,000 deaths per year worldwide. “Although vaccines and some antiviral drugs are available, it is crucial to understand influenza virus-host interactions at a molecular level in order to identify host vulnerabilities targeted by flu viruses, which could lead to developing new therapeutic options,” said Lynch, whose lab focuses on the specific mechanisms and patterns of alternative RNA splicing and how it relates to human disease,Related StoriesWomen’s greater immune response to flu vaccine declines with ageAntibiotics can wipe out early flu resistance, study findsGeorgia State researcher wins $3.26 million federal grant to develop universal flu vaccineThe transcription of DNA into messenger RNA – the process of a single gene encoding a single protein – isn’t as straightforward as once thought. The phenomenon of alternative RNA splicing – where a single gene can encode multiple proteins – was discovered over 30 years ago in viruses.The flu A genome is comprised of eight single-strand segments of RNA. Three of these segments use alternative splicing to produce two essential viral proteins each, which are important in helping the virus gain entry into host cells. Working with cultures of human lung cells, the team’s proposed mechanism of how flu A virus interacts with human RNA splicing machinery suggests that keeping human splicing proteins from binding to the viral genome would help to stop its replication.As a result, the researchers found that mutating sequences of the viral genome to prevent host proteins from binding caused viral RNA to splice incorrectly and eventually halt replication–thus slowing the spread of the virus in the body.A balance between the two viral messenger RNAs must be maintained for the virus to successfully infect host cells and replicate. “Regulating splicing of the two viral proteins is a fundamental step in viral-host interaction and so a potentially new anti-viral remedy,” Lynch said.For now, her team is refining their understanding of the intricacies of viral reproduction in host cells. Their hope is to one day identify a specific molecular target for antiviral medications that can be used in the clinic. Source:https://www.pennmedicine.org/news/news-releases/2018/june/penn-study-reveals-new-therapeutic-target-for-slowing-the-spread-of-flu-viruslast_img read more

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Psychologist suggests few guidelines on how to help children handle scary news

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first_img Have a lemonade stand and send profits to one of the relief funds Send well wishes to the victims Send a letter or picture of support (if the event occurred at a particular establishment like a school or church) Jun 28 2018When tragic or violent events occur, parents may wonder about how to help their kids understand the graphic images and emotional video footage that they may see. Stephanie Marcy, PhD, psychologist at Children’s Hospital Los angeles suggests a few guidelines to keep in mind so parents can be better equipped to help their children handle scary news.Turn off the TV!Parents often fail to recognize that their children are watching and taking in the news in a traumatic way. Adults have the intellectual and emotional capacity to better understand the graphic images and information shown on television when a tragic event or disaster occurs. Young children do not. They may believe that old events are happening right now, or that they are happening if they see footage repeated on the news. It’s best to keep the television off and watch it after the kids are asleep, or read the news online.Be mindful of what you discuss in front of your childrenChildren often listen more keenly than parents recognize. Talking about traumatic or upsetting events in front of your child may have unintended results. Parents should not burden their children with their anxiety. Instead speak with other adults about tragic events away from your young children.Reassure them of their safetyIf children become aware that something bad has happened, the most important thing a parent can do is let them know they are safe and that their parent is in control. If parents remain as calm as possible, children will naturally feel calmer and suffer less anxiety. Use the comfort of routine and familiarity to calm children and establish their sense of security and safety.Less is more in answering questionsHow much a parent should share with their child about a tragic event depends on the child’s age and level of development. Young children will not benefit from being told about tragic events unless they will be directly affected by it. For older children, parents can share basic information with them so that they do not hear about it elsewhere and become frightened. Once this basic information is shared, let the conversation be led by the child-;wait to see what questions that the child has and respond to them in a manner that is appropriate for their age and development. Do not force a child to talk about a traumatic event; let them know that you are always available to answer their questions. It is common for a child to take time to process something and come back later with new questions.Reach out and helpRelated StoriesRevolutionary gene replacement surgery restores vision in patients with retinal degenerationInitiating dialysis at higher level of kidney function linked to lower patient survivalNew therapeutic food boosts key growth-promoting gut microbes in malnourished childrenWhen we feel that we are able to help others during a tragic event, our sense of control and mental health is enhanced. Parents with children who are aware of a tragic event can help them by identifying an activity that will help those impacted by the event. Some ideas include: When to be concernedIt’s important for parents to know what to look for so that they can identify if the event is causing trauma or anxiety for their child. Below is a list of symptoms that, if observed in a child persistently for several weeks, indicate that attention is warranted: Children with prior trauma, recent loss, or a history of anxiety are likely to be more vulnerable when experiencing potentially traumatic events.Ask for HelpAs always, if you are concerned that your child may be experiencing anxiety or trauma, seek help as soon as you can. Being supportive of your child, and getting help early are key factors in recovery. A good place to start is to speak with your child’s pediatrician, who can help you identify the best next step for your child.Source: https://www.chla.org Sleep difficulties, including nightmares Re-enacting events in their play Significant change from typical behavior (e.g., aggressive, hyperactive, impulsive, withdrawn, tearful) Separation anxiety Hypervigilance (child always seems to be on “high alert,” jumpy) Difficulty paying attention or focusing Behavioral regression – reverting back to behaviors from earlier developmental period or losing skills (e.g., toileting accidents, wanting a pacifier or bottle, sucking thumb, talking like a baby) Somatic symptoms (e.g., headache, stomach ache) Irritability, moodiness, or low frustration tolerance New fears that may or may not be related to the event Inappropriate guilt or self-blame Frequent reassurance-seeking Risk taking behaviors (In adolescents; e.g., promiscuity, substance use, stealing, ditching school)last_img read more

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Scientists study effects of eating breakfast versus fasting overnight before exercise

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first_img Source:http://www.bath.ac.uk/ Aug 15 2018Eating breakfast before exercise may “prime” the body to burn carbohydrates during exercise and more rapidly digest food after working out, University of Bath researchers have found.Scientists from the University’s Department for Health, working with colleagues at the universities of Birmingham, Newcastle and Stirling, were studying the effect of eating breakfast versus fasting overnight before an hour’s cycling. In a control test breakfast was followed by three hours’ rest. The volunteers ate a breakfast of porridge made with milk two hours before exercise.Post exercise or rest, the researchers tested the blood glucose levels and muscle glycogen levels of the 12 healthy male volunteers who took part.They discovered that eating breakfast increased the rate at which the body burned carbohydrates during exercise, as well as increasing the rate the body digested and metabolized food eaten after exercise too.Dr Javier Gonzalez, senior lecturer in the Department of Health who co-led the study, said: “This is the first study to examine the ways in which breakfast before exercise influences our responses to meals after exercise. We found that, compared to skipping breakfast, eating breakfast before exercise increases the speed at which we digest, absorb and metabolize carbohydrate that we may eat after exercise.”Rob Edinburgh, PhD student in the Department for Health who co-led the study, said: “We also found that breakfast before exercise increases carbohydrate burning during exercise, and that this carbohydrate wasn’t just coming from the breakfast that was just eaten, but also from carbohydrate stored in our muscles as glycogen. This increase in the use of muscle glycogen may explain why there was more rapid clearance of blood sugar after ‘lunch’ when breakfast had been consumed before exercise.Related StoriesRegular physical activity can be effective in reducing pain from arthritisExercise program improves anxiety, mood in older adults who received chemotherapySupervised fun, exercise both improve psychosocial health of children with obesity”This study suggests that, at least after a single bout of exercise, eating breakfast before exercise may ‘prime’ our body, ready for rapid storage of nutrition when we eat meals after exercise.”The study is published in American Journal of Physiology: Endocrinology and Metabolism.An interesting aspect of this research is that it shows that extrapolating from other studies conducted on people who are fasted, which is common in metabolism experiments, may not be reliable, as being fed alters metabolism.Dr Gonzalez added: “Whilst fasting prior to laboratory trials is common in order to control for baseline metabolic status, these conditions may preclude the application of findings to situations most representative of daily living, because most people are not fasted during the day.”Rob Edinburgh said: “As this study only assessed the short-term responses to breakfast and exercise, the longer-term implications of this work are unclear, and we have ongoing studies looking at whether eating breakfast before or after exercise on a regular basis influences health.”In particular there is a clear need for more research looking at the effect of what we eat before exercise on health outcomes, but with overweight participants who might be at an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. These are some of the questions we will now try to answer.”last_img read more

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Respect long overdue Earths most abundant mineral finally gets an official name

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first_imgThe mineral that makes up more than a third of our planet finally has a name, thanks to tiny samples found, ironically, in a meteorite that fell to Earth in Australia in 1879. Under the rules of the International Mineralogical Association, scientists can name a mineral (a solid material with a distinct chemical composition and crystalline structure) only once they’ve analyzed a natural sample. But because the newly named mineral typically is stable only at pressures found more than 660 kilometers below Earth’s surface, natural versions of the mineral remained stubbornly out of reach. So scientists looked for another source of incredibly high pressures: collisions between asteroids in space, such as the one that created the Australian meteorite hundreds of millions of years ago. Analyzing a slice of the meteorite (see image above), researchers discovered that the crash briefly subjected the rock to hellish temperatures of about 2100°C and pressures about 240,000 times sea-level air pressure, they report online today in Science. In dark veins within the once-shattered sample, the researchers also found tiny 20- to 30-micrometer-wide blobs of the mineral. The frigid cold of space locked the mineral’s atoms in place, and slightly elevated pressures due to stresses inside the meteorite also helped preserve its crystalline structure. The mineral is a silicate in the perovskite family. The mineral’s new name, bridgmanite, honors 1946 Nobel Prize winner Percy Bridgman, a physicist who pioneered the analyses of minerals and other materials under high pressure. Previous estimates suggest that 70% of Earth’s lower mantle—which falls between depths of 660 and 2900 kilometers—is bridgmanite, the researchers say. That means the new mineral accounts for a whopping 38% of Earth’s entire volume.*Correction, 30 November, 6:55 a.m.: The story was changed to include information about the family to which the mineral belongs.last_img read more

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Giant ocean no match for tiny bird

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first_imgA songbird that easily fits in the palm of your hand still piles on enough fat each fall to fly nonstop over the ocean from Canada to the Caribbean islands. Some ornithologists have long suspected that the blackpoll warbler, common in North America’s subarctic evergreen forests, takes a direct route over the Atlantic Ocean to South America, where it spends the winter. But others were not so sure a bird so small—it weighs just 12 grams, slightly more than a U.S. half dollar—could make that journey. Instead, they suggested the bird traveled south over land, perhaps using the same route it takes when traveling north come spring. Two years ago, researchers got a chance to solve the mystery when dime-sized “geolocators”—devices that can simultaneously record daylight and time data, enabling researchers to track an animal’s approximate route—became available. Independently, in 2013, a U.S. team and a Canadian group each outfitted about 20 blackpolls with geolocator backpacks. A year later, the U.S. team recaught three of these birds, and the Canadians found two more. The researchers found that blackpolls do indeed fly between 2270 and 2770 kilometers over the ocean. The birds take 2 to 3 days to reach either Hispaniola or Puerto Rico, a stopping point en route to Venezuela and thereabouts, the two teams report online today in a joint paper in Biology Letters. That’s a remarkable feat for a bird the blackpoll’s weight, the researchers say. But an even smaller bird, the ruby-throated hummingbird, which is one-third the warbler’s size, could ultimately beat the warbler’s record, they add. But even the tiniest geolocators are too big for the hummingbird, so researchers have yet to track the hummingbird’s migration over the Gulf of Mexico.last_img read more

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Vote for your scientific breakthrough of the year winner

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first_img Read More 35% Ebola vaccine The last few weeks of 2015 are upon us—the season of holidays, shopping lists, and end-of-the-year retrospectives. Here at Science, in keeping with tradition, our news writers and editors are getting ready to unveil the 20th “Breakthrough of the Year”: their choice of most momentous scientific discovery, development, or trend of 2015, to be announced when the last issue of the year goes online on 17 December.But there’s no need to wait—you can get in on the action now. Our top 10 finalists are listed below. Pick your favorite and send in your vote. We’ll tally the results and report the top-place finisher as our “People’s Choice” award, along with the editors’ pick. Check back for running totals, and see how your choice stacks up against ours. Vote for Breakthrough of the Year 2015! 00 Hours Read More Thank You for Voting! Thanks for voting! Come back on Monday, 7 December to view the final results Scroll down to see current voting results. Read More 1% CRISPR Read More 00 Minutes Pluto Submit Vote Homo naledi Read More Read More Read More Sort by ranking 3% Read More Voting ends Monday, 7 December Scroll down to see final results. 1% Thank You for Voting! Scroll up to see current voting results. Come back any time to see updated results and return on Monday, 7 December to view final results! 10% Time is running out. Vote Now! 00 Days Voting has not started. Voting begins Monday, 30 November 20% 6% Paleoindian DNA Opiate pathway in yeast Read More 2% Lymphatic system in the central nervous system Mantle plumes 15% Bell’s theorem 00 Seconds 6% Psychology replication Read Morelast_img read more

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Ecologists raise alarm over releases of mosquitokilling guppies

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first_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country 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 The little guppy Poecilia reticulata has developed a big reputation. For decades, the fish has been championed as a mosquito fighter and dumped into ponds and ditches to eat up the insect’s larvae. But among scientists, it has a different reputation—as an invasive species with a remarkable ability to reproduce and spread.Now, as health officials in regions facing mosquito-borne viruses like Zika consider expanding use of these predatory fish, ecologists are urging them to think twice. In a paper published online today in Biology Letters, a group of ecologists argues that the guppies—and other nonnative fish used for mosquito control—haven’t actually proven very effective mosquito fighters, but are known to pose ecological risks.   “It all sounds like it’s magical—you put the guppies in, they eat the mosquitoes, everything is fine,” says Rana El-Sabaawi, an ecologist at the University of Victoria in Canada and lead author on the new paper. “Our concern is that you have a potentially invasive species that is being introduced haphazardly.”center_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Larva-gobbling guppies may have been cutting-edge technology for U.K. colonialists aiming to rid the empire of mosquitoes at the turn of the century. But to El-Sabaawi, the strategy seems so old-fashioned that she was surprised to find out large-scale projects are underway. While “randomly Googling guppies,” she came across news reports from Pakistan that health officials had released thousands of the fish into the ponds and sewers of Karachi in 2013 to fight the transmission of dengue fever. And in a widely circulated news video documenting Zika control efforts in Brazil, El-Sabaawi was troubled by footage of a municipal government worker apparently “wandering around with a bunch of guppies and basically just introducing them in ditches.”That’s unnerving for El-Sabaawi and her co-authors because they know guppies are efficient invaders. They’re hearty and fertile, surviving in relatively polluted water, reproducing often, and giving birth to fast-growing, live young. A combination of accidental aquarium releases and mosquito control projects have spread the species from its native range in the Caribbean and the northern coast of South America to at least 69 countries, according to a 2011 survey.And several studies suggest that introduced guppies threaten biodiversity. Researchers in Hawaii found that guppies released in the 1920s drove down native fish populations, perhaps by competing with them for food and living space, and had likely changed the cycle of nutrients in water: Guppy-rich areas showed increased levels of dissolved nitrogen—from ammonium in fish urine and gill excretions—which, in turn, stimulated algae growth. (Another fish commonly used in mosquito control—Gambusia affinis—has also been associated with declines in native fish species.)The authors also question whether guppies are reliable mosquito slayers. Studies that back their effectiveness tend to have flaws, they say. Lab tests often starved the fish before exposing them to a diet of exclusively mosquito larvae. And studies in the wild have been small and poorly designed.That critique may be correct, but dismissing guppies as a control strategy is counterproductive, says John Hustedt, senior technical officer of the nonprofit Malaria Consortium in Phnom Penh, which has been releasing the fish into water storage jars in rural households to combat dengue fever and other mosquito-transmitted diseases. Hustedt hopes that a study his group has just completed will provide new evidence for the guppies’ value. Preliminary results showed that reductions in the number of adult mosquitoes were two times greater in households with guppies than in those without.“If someone comes out and says, ‘Actually it doesn’t work and it’s going to cause you a problem,’ that can decrease the chance that the government would be more open to trying [guppy release] on a large scale,” he says.As for ecological risks, guppies in isolated containers may be less likely to spread than those dumped into urban sewers and ditches. But Hustedt also questions the distinction between native and nonnative for a species that is already so ubiquitous. The guppies used in his project were found in a farm in a province outside Phnom Penh; their original source is unknown. “It seems to me that they’ve been here for quite a long time, and they’re already in the environment,” he says.Although the benefits and risks of guppy releases may be highly context-dependent, some researchers are simply taking a hard line. “The use of fish to control mosquito disease vectors should be abandoned by authorities,” says Valter Azevedo-Santos, an ichthyologist at São Paulo State University in Botucatu, Brazil, who co-authored a letter objecting to the strategy published in Science earlier this year. He believes resources would be better spent on other control measures: insecticides, sanitary measures such as eliminating standing water in homes, and even the experimental release of genetically engineered mosquitoes to spread a lethal gene. As health workers cast around for ways to combat Zika, he hopes this paper will give them pause. “This mismanagement must be abandoned, or new fish invasions will occur in the near future,” he says. “This is a special moment.”last_img read more

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A fetus needs to defend itself against foreign bodies—so how does it

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first_img By Gretchen VogelJun. 14, 2017 , 1:00 PM The developing immune system has a built-in control mechanism that prevents it from attacking the mother’s cells. A fetus needs to defend itself against foreign bodies—so how does it avoid attacking its mother? The immune system of a fetus developing in the womb faces a quandary: It has to prepare itself to attack dangerous pathogens after birth, by distinguishing its own cells from those of invaders. But until that time, it needs to avoid attacking the mother, whose cells are also “foreign.” A new study of fetal tissue has revealed one way the developing immune system keeps itself in check: by interrupting the production of a key weapon in the body’s arsenal against invaders.The new insights might help researchers better understand certain types of miscarriages and a deadly immune response in premature babies. It also could lead to new ways to keep the adult immune system in check when it gets out of balance.To better understand how the different pieces of the immune system develop, immunologists Florent Ginhoux and Naomi McGovern at the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) in Singapore and their colleagues studied tissue from nearly 100 elective abortions performed between 14 and 22 weeks of gestation. Consistent with other studies, they found that as early as 13 weeks of development, the fetus was producing a range of immune system cells, including dendritic cells, which recognize invaders and signal other immune cells to attack. These cells were fully functional, the researchers found: In lab experiments, they responded as well as adult dendritic cells to molecules that mimic pathogens, the researchers report today in Nature. 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 Zimbabwecenter_img Dendritic cells usually send out signals that ramp up proliferation of another type of immune cell, T cells, which then attack invaders. But when the researchers added the dendritic cells to a mix of adult immune cells, the fetal dendritic cells triggered more than the usual number of T regulatory cells, which keep the production of T cells in check. The researchers also found that different genes were switched on in fetal dendritic cells than in adult dendritic cells. In particular, fetal cells made high amounts of arginase-2, an enzyme that breaks down L-arginine, a key ingredient in the production of a key messenger named tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha). TNF-alpha triggers inflammation, a general state of war against an invader; make less of it, and your immune system reacts less aggressively. “The system is fully active and able to respond,” Ginhoux says, but at the same time it has built-in brakes.The insight “builds nicely on a number of studies” showing that parts of the fetal immune system are in place fairly early in development, says Jakob Michaelsson, an immunologist at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. The fetal cells’ ability to keep the immune response in check is quite potent, he says, and harnessing that ability in adults could lead to new ways to treat autoimmune diseases, in which the body improperly attacks its own cells. In another set of experiments, the researchers found that fetal dendritic cells could block the production of TNF-alpha by adult T cells as well.Ginhoux and his colleagues also note that high levels of TNF-alpha are common in some types of miscarriage, gestational diabetes, and necrotizing enterocolitis, an out-of-control immune reaction that often afflicts premature infants. The arginase-2 pathway might be a way to better understand and perhaps find treatments for those conditions, Ginhoux says. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country angelhell/iStockphoto Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)last_img read more

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One of Indianas new congressmen is a Vietnam veteran a farmer …

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first_img Email By Jeffrey MervisJan. 31, 2019 , 4:50 PM Not Baird, who ran as a self-proclaimed “conservative Republican” in the solidly red Indiana district where he grew up that stretches west from the suburbs of Indianapolis. Although he earned a doctorate in animal nutrition from the University of Kentucky (UK) in Lexington in 1975, during the campaign Baird instead chose to highlight his military service, including his year in Vietnam in 1970–71, his farming background, and the 4 decades he spent as a small businessman.The strategy worked brilliantly. Running a bare-bones, mostly self-financed campaign for an open seat, Baird upset the presumed favorite in the Republican primary—the brother of the man that Hoosiers last fall elected to the U.S. Senate, no less—and then trounced his Democratic opponent in November 2018. He was sworn into office on 3 January.Last week, Baird won a seat on the agriculture committee, his first choice, giving him a voice on issues vital to his rural district. He also agreed to serve on the science committee. It’s a much less prestigious post—Republicans are still scrambling to fill two vacancies among their 17 slots—but one that Baird feels he’s eminently qualified to take on.“Well, I think I understand science,” Baird told ScienceInsider yesterday. “I’ve done research. I’m also used to looking at the raw data, analyzing it, and leaving out my biases.”School, then serviceBaird grew up on a family farm in west central Indiana and earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in animal sciences at Purdue University in nearby West Lafayette. His master’s thesis on gestation management systems in swine stemmed not just from his upbringing, he says, but also from learning that “mammalian tissue is very similar at the cellular level across species.”Ty Cline, who spent 40 years on the Purdue faculty before retiring in 2005, claims some of the credit for turning Baird on to the intricacies of animal nutrition and how to apply it to improve performance and production in livestock. Now retired, Cline taught Baird as both an undergraduate and graduate student. “His father and I had been in the swine business,” recalls Cline, who grew up on a farm in central Illinois and says a love for teaching pushed him into an academic career.Baird aimed to take the much more common path into industry. But in 1969, the Vietnam War was still raging, and Uncle Sam was calling. About to be drafted, Baird won a short respite to finish his master’s degree before enlisting.In December 1970, Baird found himself an Army infantry officer leading a platoon of the 523rd Transportation Company in the central highlands of Vietnam. It was running cargo convoys to support an offensive by the U.S.-backed Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) that was designed to undermine an expected invasion the next year by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) from just south of the demilitarized zone in Laos.Ultimately, it was a futile mission. U.S. ground troops were being withdrawn, and the ARVN forces weren’t able to slow the NVA buildup. But it was a seminal experience for Baird. “I wouldn’t want to do it again, but I learned a lot about myself,” says Baird, who was seriously wounded in a 12 March 1971 attack that killed the driver of the gun truck he was commanding. “Most people don’t realize their strengths and weaknesses. But I’m happy in my skin, and I’m content with what I’ve done in my life.”Overcoming obstaclesNow 73, Baird has worked as an animal nutritionist for a farmer co-op and feed companies and well as running Baird Family Farms and a home health care company. In 2006, he ran successfully for county commissioner, and he spent 8 years in the Indiana state legislature before resigning to seek the congressional seat being vacated by Republican Todd Rokita, who lost his bid for governor.But after returning from Vietnam and recovering from his injuries, Baird’s first order of business was to earn his Ph.D. at UK, where he had been accepted before entering the military. A rudimentary prosthesis interfered with his ability to work in the lab, but he persisted.“Jim faced and overcame more obstacles than any other student I’ve had” during a 50-year career, recalls Gary Cromwell, a retired professor of swine nutrition and recent inductee to UK’s Animal and Food Sciences Hall of Fame. “Doing research with pigs is hard work,” he adds, “but he was bound and determined to finish. And he’s a tough kid.”Baird says he didn’t know where his degree would lead him, but both his former professors suspect that economic factors strongly influenced his choice of careers. “The pay is so much better in industry,” Cline says. Cromwell adds: “A Ph.D. would open up a lot more doors in the feed industry.”Although Baird didn’t enter politics until his seventh decade, Cline says he’s not surprised at his former student’s electoral success. “He was always well-liked,” Cline recalls. “And those type of people have a chance to make it in politics.”Baird points to his military experience as a more direct reason. “I’m a decorated combat Vietnam veteran, and I care a lot about this country,” he says. “I’m not sure that there are a lot of other people who feel as strongly.”Questions and answersAlthough he largely ignored his academic credentials on the campaign trail, Baird thinks they played a vital role in his work in the feed and livestock industry. “Over the years we’ve made some significant improvements in the performance of animals and in improving production efficiency,” he says, citing how the average weight of a hog at slaughter has risen by as much as 50% since he entered the business. “And that’s because we understand the nutritional cycle much better.”Nor is Baird above showing off that knowledge. During the interview, Baird suddenly sprung a quiz on this reporter. “You write for Science. Do you know the 10 essential amino acids?” he asked.After I admitted my ignorance, Baird offered a mnemonic—TT HALL, I’M Vice President—and then rattled off their names: “threonine, tryptophan, histidine, alanine, lysine, leucine, isoleucine, methionine, valine, and phenylalanine. And I can spell them, too.”It was meant to be an impressive feat of long-term memory. But Baird is not quite correct according to most biochemistry textbooks, which say that there are only nine essential amino acids. (“Essential” means the body doesn’t produce them and thus, they must be supplied through one’s diet.) And none of them puts alanine in that category. Rather, alanine is classified as nonessential.At the same time, Baird didn’t specify whether he was talking just about humans or was referring to mammals in general. If the latter, it’s possible to make the case for a 10th amino acid—arginine—being essential for young rats and other organisms. So Baird may well have been taught that livestock need arginine, too, thus upping the total to 10.Randy Wadkins, a biochemistry professor at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, gave a lecture this week to undergraduates on the 20 common amino acids that make up life on earth. Humans “can make all but nine of the normal 20, and therefore those nine must come from our diets,” he explains.Wadkins also happens to have run for Congress last year—as a Democrat, losing by a wide margin to the Republican incumbent. Even so, Wadkins is willing to give Baird the benefit of the doubt. “Although I am a solid Democrat, a Republican with some biochemical knowledge on [the science] committee makes me happy,” Wadkins says.Baird is much less precise when talking about scientific matters beyond amino acids, however. Asked whether he feels the federal government should spend more—or less—on basic research and whether there are any particular areas he would like to see increased, Baird said, “I’ll have to look at that as I move onto the [science] committee.”His answers to questions about what the government should do to reduce carbon emissions or combat climate change were equally evasive. “I’ll have to look at their data once I start on the committee,” he says. “I’m a data man, and we’ll just have to take a look at that.” 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 Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP Photo 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 (*) One of Indiana’s new congressmen is a Vietnam veteran, a farmer … and a scientist Jim Baird (R–IN) and other freshmen members of Congress choose their offices through a lottery. The infantrymen whom Jim Baird led in Vietnam fondly called him “pig farmer” because of his passion for breeding pigs. Now, nearly a half-century after he was helicoptered out of a firefight in which he lost his left arm, Baird answers to a new moniker: congressman.He’s the only rookie legislator with a science Ph.D. on the newly reformulated science committee of the U.S. House of Representatives. And he’s the only Republican among the three members of the 37-person panel holding such a degree.Last year, some four dozen candidates touted their scientific training in seeking a seat in Congress. All but a few were Democrats, and most were harsh critics of how science has fared under President Donald Trump.last_img read more

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Jason—a secretive group of Cold War science advisers—is fighting to survive in

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first_img N. DESAI/SCIENCE During the Vietnam War, Jason designed a forerunner to the electronic battlefield: an anti-infiltration barrier that linked hidden acoustic and seismic sensors on the ground to bombers and artillery. In the mid-1980s, the group invented a way for telescopes to detect and compensate for the jitters caused by atmospheric turbulence, by using a laser to create an artificial guide “star”—a glowing spot high in the atmosphere. The technology, intended for tracking satellites and missiles, remained classified until 1991, when lobbying by Jasons helped convince the Air Force to open it up to astronomers. In 1989, the group reviewed the Star Wars antimissile program called Brilliant Pebbles, judging it technologically unsound; the program was canceled in 1993. In 1995, Jason’s study on what could be learned from small nuclear tests—not much—helped convince then–DOD Secretary William Perry to recommend that the United States sign the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. (The Senate, however, refused to ratify it.)With the end of the Vietnam and Cold wars, Jason members began to branch out from physics and engineering. In 1977, they did their first assessment of global climate models and later advised DOE on which atmospheric measurements were most critical for the models. Since the mid-1990s, Jason has studied biotechnologies, including techniques for detecting biological weapons.Membership has shifted along with the subjects under study. Many first generation Jasons have died or retired. (Notable exceptions are Freeman Dyson, 95, emeritus faculty at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, and Richard Garwin, 91, retired from IBM, both still regularly involved as senior advisers.)Jasons are, as they always have been, selected only by other Jasons. The criteria for selection include intellectual brilliance—maybe a third are members of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine—in fields that are more or less matched to the current range of studies. As a result, though half of the Jasons are still physicists, the group now includes statisticians, mathematicians, computer scientists, chemists, oceanographers, geologists, atmospheric scientists, materials scientists, aeronautical engineers, and electrical engineers, along with what William Press of UT Austin, a former Jason chair, calls a “critical mass with esprit” of biologists and biochemists. Jason—a secretive group of Cold War science advisers—is fighting to survive in the 21st century weapon testing Project Sunrise..Members develop concept of electronic Sallie Keller, University of Virginia Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) After 59 years of service, Jason, the famed science advisory group, was being fired, and it didn’t know why. On 29 March, the exclusive and shadowy group of some 65 scientists received a letter from the Department of Defense (DOD) saying it had just over a month to pack up its files and wind down its affairs. “It was a total shock,” said Ellen Williams, Jason’s vice chair and a physicist at the University of Maryland in College Park. “I had no idea what the heck was going on.”The letter terminated Jason’s contract with DOD’s Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (USDR&E) in Arlington, Virginia, which was Jason’s contractual home—the conduit through which it was paid for all of its government work. So, in effect, the letter killed off all of Jason’s work for defense and nondefense agencies alike.Just days away was the group’s spring meeting in Washington, D.C., where members and government sponsors would refine the dozen or so problems Jason would tackle in San Diego, California, during members’ summer leave from their campuses and labs. Jason had to keep functioning, even as it prepared to die. It told sponsors it was still planning to do the studies, and advised members to keep their calendars open but not sign summer leases. It made plans for an attenuated spring meeting reception: not the usual dinner, but meatball and spinach-feta appetizers and plastic cups at the cash bar. for missile detection systems. First woman , astronomer Claire Max, joins Jason.Study finds little benefit to nuclear in maintaining stockpile.First study for Department Email By Ann FinkbeinerJun. 27, 2019 , 1:30 PM 20 physicists. Meanwhile, members hurriedly wrote emails and made urgent phone calls, looking for other contractual homes. Then, on 25 April, the night before the reception, came a reprieve. Williams and Jason’s chair, Russell Hemley, a materials chemist at the University of Illinois in Chicago, heard from the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), which for decades had commissioned Jason to study the health of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile. Now, NNSA said it couldn’t afford a gap in its studies and pledged to pick up the Jason contract, at least until January 2020.At the reception, in an auditorium at MITRE Corporation, Jason’s administrator in McLean, Virginia, Jason members appeared relieved by NNSA’s decision, although what went wrong at DOD was unclear. “The department remains committed to seeking independent technical advice and review,” a USDR&E spokesperson said in a statement. “This change is in keeping with this commitment while making the most economic sense for the department.” Mike Griffin, a former NASA administrator who heads USDR&E, declined to speak to Science about the dismissal. .Office of the Under Secretary of Defense Research and Engineering and Human models 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 guide “star” Initially called Evolve or die By taking on more studies unrelated to national security, Jason has expanded its customer base. But the Department of Defense has severed its relationship with the group. as a group At a U.S. Air Force site in New Mexico, lasers create an artificial star. Invented by Jason, the technique can help a telescope correct for jitters in the air. with Jason.Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency ends of Health 1960196519701975198019851990199520002005201020202015 Bureau barrier for Vietnam War.Group’s first assessment of global climate ends contract DIRECTED ENERGY DIRECTORATE/U.S. AIR FORCE Contributing to Jason is one of the most important things I do. with Jason. The reprieve leaves Jason without a long-term home—and still facing an existential question: Can a group created during the Cold War’s nuclear and missile races, when the U.S. government was keenly aware it needed scientific advice, survive today? Times and national problems have changed. The government employs many more of its own scientists and has many options for getting scientists’ advice. “If Jason didn’t exist, who would create it? Maybe nobody,” says Henry Abarbanel, a physicist at the University of California (UC), San Diego, and a Jason since 1975.But the group has always had a plan for survival. It actively self-renews—between two and five young scientists join Jason every year—and it is diversifying its customer base. Traditionally, Jason did national security studies for DOD, DOE, and the intelligence agencies. In the past 5 years, though, it has ramped up its nondefense studies and now works with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Census Bureau, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).Catherine Woteki was USDA’s chief scientist in 2016 when she commissioned a Jason study on ways to remotely detect crop yields. She thinks the group is as relevant as ever. “Science agencies need external advice,” she says. “And especially in times like this, where science advice is perhaps undervalued by the public, it’s more important that the science agencies get things right.”Many of Jason’s customers seem to agree. Even after its near-death experience, Jason had 13 studies to work on, starting the morning after the reception. Pragmatic as always, its members left the reception a half-hour before it was set to end.A mythical beginningJason was created in 1960 by a group of physicists who had summers off and were familiar with government consulting. They also had prestige: Eleven early Jasons—including Charles Townes, Murray Gell-Mann, and Burton Richter—eventually won Nobel Prizes. Their main customer was DOD’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which originally dubbed them Project Sunrise—a name that seemed presumptuous to them. So, inspired by Mildred Goldberger, wife of one of the founding members, they renamed themselves in honor of the mythical Jason, leader of the Argonauts.The name change was a small but telling example of the group’s independence. “I used to tell sponsors from the get-go,” says Roy Schwitters, a physicist at the University of Texas in Austin (UT Austin) and Jason’s head from 2005 to 2011, “that we tell people things they might not want to know.”That independence sometimes gets the group in trouble. In 2002, the long relationship with DARPA dissolved when the agency tried to nominate members for Jason. Within months, the group used its connections to find a new home within DOD: USDR&E. Such dust-ups aren’t surprising. Political appointees don’t always want independent advice, says Albert Teich, a science policy expert at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and former head of science policy at AAAS (publisher of Science). “They want the advice that supports the positions they’ve already carved out for themselves,” he says. As a result, Teich says, study requests come mostly from civil servants, who are more likely to know their agencies’ technical problems.In Jason’s early decades those problems were physics-related defense questions, like how to detect the infrared signals of an enemy’s missile launch or decipher the seismic signals of an underground nuclear weapon test. In an early study for the Navy, Jason devised a communications system for nuclear submarines, first called Bassoon, that bounced low-frequency radio signals off the ionosphere and into the oceans. It operated from 1989 until 2004, when the Navy declared it an unnecessary Cold War system. Jason founded Services relationship of about .First study for U.S. Census .Members propose laser (Click on the timeline and scroll right to see more.) It is also no longer just a boys’ club. Jason took 23 years to invite its first female scientist: Claire Max, now the director of the UC Observatories in Santa Cruz. Today, women are being invited to join at higher rates: Nine of the 23 Jasons who have joined since 2010 are women. Many take on the leadership of studies. “Contributing to Jason is one of the most important things I do,” says Sallie Keller, a statistician at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville who joined in 2007 and led Census Bureau and HHS studies.They’re reportedly paid $1200 per day—a goodly amount but less than what many of them could make as industry consultants. Upward of half of their studies are classified—perhaps explaining why their membership list is not public and why they prefer not to name other Jasons. They’re generally allergic to publicity: Six of the 17 Jasons approached for this story refused interviews.But they are not allergic to work. They spend some or all of 6 weeks, every summer, at General Atomics, a defense and energy contractor in San Diego. They take over the second floor of a secure building, a hallway lined with small offices, two or three people per office. “It looks cheap and it is,” Schwitters says. “We bump into each other when we roll back in our chairs.” Jasons say the forced proximity favors interdisciplinary cooperation.The working culture is no-nonsense. There’s no recognition or prizes for the work. It’s get the job done, says Douglas Finkbeiner (no relation to the author), an astrophysicist at Harvard University who joined in 2014. “It’s this brutal efficiency,” he says, “like, ‘We need this info, I’ll email’—‘No don’t email, get them on the phone, now.’” A draft report is critiqued in real-time by other Jasons and sent to the sponsor by 1 October.Expanding horizonsIn the past 5 years, the range of studies Jason has done for nondefense agencies has broadened. HHS, for instance, has sponsored Jason only since 2013. The first of its three studies for the agency proposed an information systems architecture that would allow electronic health records to be operable across all health systems. In response, HHS formed a Jason Task Force that helped implement the report’s recommendations through something called the Argonaut Project. “The health community has a unique sense of humor,” says Teresa Zayas-Cabán, chief scientist at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology at HHS in Washington, D.C.The next HHS studies, in 2014 and 2017, were broader. One was about how data not in electronic health records—environmental data, data from health apps and fitness devices, social media data—could be used to improve personal health without threatening privacy. The other, Keller says, studied how to apply artificial intelligence (AI) to health, given the problems of uneven data quality and opaque, irreproducible AI models. Zayas-Cabán says one reason she likes Jason is the group’s independence. The field of health care has “many powerful and entrenched interests,” she says, “so independent and expert study of our issues can be extremely valuable.”The Census Bureau commissioned Jason after John Thompson, the bureau’s director at the time, happened to sit on a national committee with Keller. “You got these brainy people to look at our problems,” Thompson says, “and the price wasn’t that much, it was a buy.” The 2020 census will be the first to be conducted mainly online, which could open up new avenues for fraud. Jason’s first report, in 2015, said the threat to the integrity of the census would come less from individual mischief than from large, organized attempts at fraud. Jason’s second report, on the 2030 census, suggested that 90% of the population could be located simply by combining, for instance, Social Security and Internal Revenue Service data.In 2016, USDA asked Jason about using data from remote sensors for midsummer estimates of fall crop yields, instead of relying on farmers’ reports. Woteki, now at Iowa State University in Ames, says one reason she commissioned Jason was that it knew about DOD’s remote-sensing capabilities.The impact of Jason reports is sometimes hard to assess. Many sponsors talk in generalities about their value: For instance, John Abowd, the Census Bureau’s chief scientist in Suitland, Maryland, says only that Jason’s report on the 2030 census “has been incorporated into our thinking.”Part of the reason for that fog is that a finished report belongs to the sponsor, who can implement all, some, or none of it, and can publish it or keep it private. For sponsors, owning the report is self-protective. Jason can say your program “is stupid,” says Gerald Epstein, who is now at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C., but worked loosely with Jason when he was at the Department of Homeland Security, “but they don’t have to tell your boss or the rest of the world.”What happens when Jason’s contract with NNSA expires in 2020 is unclear. One possibility is yet another home within DOD: This month, the U.S. House of Representatives added a line to DOD’s preliminary budget directing the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment to pick up Jason’s contract.Many people say the government ought to find a way to tap into Jason’s blunt advice. “Yes, there’s a continuing need,” says John Holdren, a physicist at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government who was former President Barack Obama’s science adviser. “And yes, Jason should be kept alive to help meet that need.” Abowd thinks Jason has lasted this long “because of its reputation for not being manipulable,” he says. “You can’t stack the deck.”But if nobody picks up the contract, Williams says, “is Jason revocable or irrevocable?””I don’t want to go there,” she says. “For now, I’m feeling optimistic. But I really don’t know.”last_img read more

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The moon is losing 200 tons of water a year to meteorite

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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 When meteorites slam into the moon, they undoubtedly kick up a little dust. Now, a new study suggests they also shake loose quite a bit of water—something on the order of 200 tons each year.Planetary scientists were tipped to the leaching after reviewing sensor data from a moon-orbiting probe. Between November 2013 and April 2014, the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer recorded occasional spikes in the numbers of particles, including water molecules, that were lofted off the moon. Of the 39 spikes, 29 occurred within 48 hours of the moon and Earth passing through annual meteor showers that are broad enough to hit both bodies. In general, the stronger the meteor stream, the more particles were tossed into space from the moon, the researchers report today in Nature Geoscience.The amounts of water detected by the sensors were far too high to have come from the meteorites themselves or from vaporized soil, the researchers suggest. Instead, they propose that most of that water was probably shaken loose from lunar soil grains near the meteorites’ impact sites. Over the course of a year, meteorites probably set free about 300 metric tons of water from the moon’s soil. Whereas about one-third of that water ends up elsewhere on the moon, including permanently shadowed areas near the lunar poles, the remainder—about 200 tons—is permanently lost to space. By Sid PerkinsApr. 15, 2019 , 11:15 AM Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) The moon is losing 200 tons of water a year to meteorite strikes The team’s findings suggest lunar soil between a desiccated surface layer 8 centimeters thick to a depth of 3 meters contains between 200 and 500 parts per million of water—and that the water may be more readily extracted from the soil than previously presumed. NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University last_img read more

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