Italian Prosecutor: Stem Cell Group Is a ‘Criminal Organization’

first_imgROME—After a 4-year investigation, a public prosecutor in Turin has delivered a withering indictment about a controversial stem cell therapy provided by the Stamina Foundation in Italy. The report, issued on Wednesday, describes Davide Vannoni, who introduced the treatment in Italy, as the head of a criminal organization that has defrauded about a thousand patients since 2006 by administering a dangerous and unapproved treatment in exchange for money.Prosecutor Raffaele Guariniello accuses 19 others as well; they include physicians, members of ethics committees, and directors at three public hospitals where Vannoni treated his patients, as well as the owner of a drug company, two foreign scientists, and the head of the Department of Research and Clinical Trials at AIFA, the Italian Medicines Agency.Vannoni has asked for up to €48,000 per treatment and €10,000 per year to store cells extracted from adults and children, the report says; his treatments exposed patients to serious risks, it concludes, including the risk of infection, severe bleeding, spinal cord injury, cancer, and ischemia. The report identifies a series of problems with the treatment. No preclinical and clinical studies were done, for instance; Vannoni’s team processed, handled, and injected cells under nonsterile conditions; and “bovine serum with no specified origin” was used as a culture medium. Patients “were turned into guinea pigs,” the report states.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)A judge must now decide whether the accusations warrant a trial. ScienceInsider could not reach Vannoni for comment. In the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Vannoni said that he had expected the charges but said they were unfounded. “I have the documents to prove it and I’ll defend my self; 180 civil judges have already proven us right” by ruling that patients have a right to get the treatment, the paper quoted him as saying.Vannoni, who has a degree in philosophy and was a psychology professor at the University of Udine, is now president of the Stamina Foundation in Turin. He rose to national fame in Italy in 2012, when a popular TV show named The Hyenas claimed that he had cured people of neurodegenerative diseases including ALS, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s, as well as several rare diseases affecting both adults and children. Soon, patients began seeking out the therapy.The treatments were administered at various locations. In 2011, Vannoni signed an agreement with the Spedali Civili Hospital in Brescia to treat 12 patients there. According to the report, some other patients were secretly treated at the Burlo Garofolo Hospital in Trieste. Vannoni also had patients treated in beauty centers in San Marino, a tiny republic surrounded by Italy, and even in the basement of a house in Turin, Guariniello writes.The 69-page report says Vannoni had a well-developed strategy that aimed to bypass the law on stem cell therapies, take the treatment to public hospitals, get the Italian government to pay for it, and expand the business around the world. In addition, he actively pushed patients to go to court to claim the right to be treated, the report says.Physicians at the hospital in Brescia were in the dark about the details of the treatment administered there; the report says they used to temporarily leave the lab because a Stamina Foundation biologist “had to add a secret ingredient to the stem cells” that supposedly helped the cells develop into neurons. “What the dossier claims is staggering,” says Michele De Luca, director of the Centre for Regenerative Medicine “Stefano Ferrari” in Modena, Italy. “It adds a sense of serious danger to the scientific inconsistency of the Stamina method which we were already aware of. We will wait, however, for justice to take its course.”The report may not be the end for Stamina’s treatment. Italy’s health minister, Beatrice Lorenzin, has already said that a scientific review of the method needs to proceed as planned.The review is the result of a political intervention. In 2012, AIFA and the National Transplant Center shut down Stamina’s activities after an inspection at the Brescia hospital found several serious problems with the lab and treatment. Following public protests, the Italian Parliament in May 2013 adopted a law ordering the government to design and fund a proper clinical trial of Stamina’s method. In September, however, a panel set up to investigate the method said there was no scientific basis for a trial. (The prosecutor’s report says that the documents Vannoni provided to the panel were produced by a medicine student who relied mainly on Wikipedia.)Vannoni successfully appealed the committee’s rejection in court, arguing that some of its members weren’t impartial. Lorenzin then nominated a new committee that is set to review the method soon. That panel could still propose a clinical study.But Amedeo Santosuosso, chair of the European Centre for Law, Science and New Technologies of the University of Pavia and a member of the first panel, hopes the saga will end before then. “At this point the minister should have the moral and political strength to take the right decision and put to a definitive end the whole story,” he says. “This is one of the darkest chapters in the history of medicine of this country.”last_img read more

Super Bowl 49 Highest-Rated Ever

first_imgNEW YORK — An estimated 114.4 million people watched New England’s thrilling win over Seattle, making it the fifth time in six years that a Super Bowl game has set a record as the most-watched event in U.S. television history.The Nielsen company said the game’s viewership exceeded the record of 112.2 million set last year, when Seattle beat Denver.The game also set records for social media reach. A stirring comeback by New England and game-saving interception in the final minute kept viewers glued to the set.(DAVID BAUDER, AP Television Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Carnival’s Results Better than Expected

first_imgzoom British-American owned cruise line Carnival Corporation & plc has raised its expectations for the full year 2014 net revenue yield amid improvement in booking trends.“The sustained improvement in booking trends as we have progressed through the year combined with yield increases in the second half of 2014 builds confidence that we will see continued yield growth in 2015 and beyond,” said Carnival Corporation & plc President and Chief Executive Officer Arnold Donald.Donald also noted that new product initiatives and innovative marketing campaigns implemented across the brands over the past year are driving the improvement in consumer demand and pricing trends.The company announced non-GAAP net income of $1.2 billion, or $1.58 diluted EPS for the third quarter of 2014 compared to non-GAAP net income for the third quarter of 2013 of $1.1 billion, or $1.38 diluted EPS.For the third quarter of 2013, U.S. GAAP net income, which included impairments net of unrealized gains on fuel derivatives of $139 million, was $934 million, or $1.20 diluted EPS. Revenues for the third quarter of 2014 were $4.9 billion, compared with $ 4.7 billion the prior year. “Strong close-in demand and higher onboard spending helped drive significantly better than expected third quarter results and 15 percent year-over-year earnings improvement. Our Asia operations performed particularly well during the quarter, driven by a double-digit yield increase in our China program, further solidifying our industry leading presence in this important emerging cruise market. Our continental European operations also enjoyed strong yield and profit improvement in the quarter, reflecting continued progress for the Costa brand. In addition, our summer Caribbean product successfully attracted nearly 20 percent more guests than the prior year, reinforcing the popularity of the world’s largest cruising region,” Donald added.For fiscal 2015, net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD are expected to increase approximately three percent due primarily to a significantly higher level of dry-dock days scheduled next year to install new air emissions technology as well as other technology designed to improve fuel efficiency, the company said.The company expects the exhaust gas cleaning system or scrubber technology will be installed on approximately 70 percent of its fleet by 2016, thus enabling the company to meet the 2015 stricter air emissions standards as well as mitigate escalating fuel costs that will result from the new requirements.The company anticipates the new regulations will result in higher fuel costs in 2015 of approximately $0.10 per share with that increase expected to be reduced by half in 2016 and mostly offset in 2017 based on the system roll-out.Also, in 2016, the company plans to revert back to a more normalized dry-dock schedule, which will offset approximately half of the increase in 2015 net cruise costs excluding fuel.“Our implementation of the air emissions technology is a sound investment in our company’s future and more importantly it will benefit the environment for years to come,” said Donald. “These technology investments are laying a solid foundation towards sustainable earnings improvement. Combined with our other strategic initiatives designed to foster revenue growth and contain costs, we are gaining momentum towards our goal of achieving double digit returns on investment over time.”Carnival announced that Alan Buckelew, Chief Operations Officer, will be expanding his leadership role by relocating to China to more closely oversee the company’s growing operations in the country.Buckelew’s experience in Asia is extensive, previously serving as the CEO of Princess Cruises before taking on the assignment of Chief Operations Officer for Carnival Corporation & plc.  In his expanded role, he will lead all of the company’s initiatives in China, while also continuing to provide oversight of all maritime and port operations around the world and a number of related functions as part of his COO role.This past May, the company announced Costa Serena will deploy year-round in China next year, making Carnival Corporation the first global cruise company with four ships based in China, one of the world’s fastest-growing cruise markets. Costa Cruises plans to debut Costa Serena inShanghai in April 2015, where it will join Costa Victoria and Costa Atlantica, sister ships already deployed in China. The move will increase Costa’s overall capacity in Asia by 74 percent.In addition to Costa Serena, Princess Cruises — another iconic Carnival Corporation brand — began home-porting the Sapphire Princess out of Shanghai this past summer.Adding a third ship based in China this year increases Carnival Corporation’s total 2014 capacity in the country by 66 percent. In 2015, with four ships based in China for the first time, Carnival’s industry-leading capacity is expected to jump 140 percent over a two-year period. Press Release; September 25, 2014last_img read more

Enhanced FinancingMentoring For Fishery Businesses

first_imgA memorandum of understanding between the Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board and the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council will enhance access to financial services and business mentoring for fish harvesters and sea farmers. The partnership will help loan board clients get financing, such as working capital loans and lines of credit, through the council’s member credit unions. “Fish harvesters and sea farmers need access to expanded loan services in order to develop their industries and grow our rural economy,” said Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Keith Colwell. “This agreement enhances access to those services for the loan board’s clients by linking them to working capital and lines of credit.” The Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board seeks to encourage, sustain, improve and develop the province’s fishing industry. The partnership will create a new financing stream for fisheries and aquaculture under the Nova Scotia Small Business Loan Guarantee Program which is administered through the council. “The board is focused on meeting the needs of its clients and enhancing the quality of service we provide to the industry,” said Roy Surette, chair of the Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board. “The partnership with the co-operative council helps us do that and is a win for our clients and the communities that the credit unions serve.” Clients will also be able to access mentoring through the co-operative council’s business network. “Our credit union loan programs have been very successful in providing financial support to businesses across Nova Scotia, particularly those in our resource-based sectors,” said Dianne Kelderman, president and CEO of the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council. “We look forward to building our relationship with the Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board and to supporting fishery-related businesses as they create jobs and contribute to their local communities.” Information about the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council is available at www.novascotia.coop. Programs offered by the Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture Loan Board can be found under funding programs at www.novascotia.ca/fish/.last_img read more

Manitoba Hydro boss announces retirement says the time is right to leave

first_imgWINNIPEG – The president and CEO of Manitoba Hydro has announced he is retiring less than three years after joining the Crown corporation.Kelvin Shepherd, who joined the utility in December 2015 after a five-year stint at MTS Inc., says in a release that he will be stepping down Nov. 16.Manitoba Hydro’s board of directors, citing an inability to work with the provincial government, resigned en masse in March.Premier Brian Pallister said the dispute stemmed from a multimillion-dollar deal, which was quashed by the government, between the utility and the Manitoba Metis Federation.The deal was designed to forestall opposition to future power-related projects and the agreement’s demise prompted the federation to pursue court action.Weeks later, the province’s Public Utilities Board rejected Manitoba Hydro’s request to raise electricity rates by almost eight per cent at a time the Crown is building northern power stations and a transmission line to bring electricity south.During his tenure, Shepherd oversaw the elimination of hundreds of positions through voluntary departures that were expected to save the company more than $90 million a year in operating costs.Shepherd said in a release that it’s been a privilege to lead the hard-working people at Manitoba Hydro and that it was a difficult personal decision for him to leave.“Like any job, the position of CEO comes with both good and bad that one must accept and manage,” he said. “I have done my best to lead our company through both the challenges and opportunities we have faced, but I know in my heart that now is the right time to move on to a new stage in my life.”Marina James, the recently appointed chair of the Manitoba Hydro board, said Shepherd is leaving the corporation with a stronger senior leadership team.“Kelvin has been an invaluable asset and he has played an exemplary role as the CEO of this company,” she said.A search for a new president and CEO is already underway.last_img read more

Gaza SecretaryGeneral voices concern over closure of crossing points

18 January 2008United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed concern over Israel�s decision to close crossing points used to transport supplies into Gaza, and highlighted the potential humanitarian consequences of such action. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed concern over Israel’s decision to close crossing points used to transport supplies into Gaza, and highlighted the potential humanitarian consequences of such action. “If this situation endures, the closure will also cause further shortages of food, medical and relief items in the Gaza Strip,” Mr. Ban said in a statement issued by his spokesperson, calling on Israel to “refrain from actions that will harm the well-being of the general civilian population in Gaza.” The closure interrupts the supply of urgently-needed fuel supplies to pump water and supply electricity to homes and hospitals, he said. The statement also appealed for an immediate end to the violence engulfing Gaza and affecting communities in southern Israel. The Secretary-General reiterated the need for the cessation of Palestinian sniper and rocket attacks into Israel and for the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) to show maximum restraint. He reminded the parties “of their obligation to comply with international humanitarian law and not to endanger civilians.” Mr. Ban also voiced concern that the hostilities will hurt the chances for peace generated by the political process that started in Annapolis, Maryland, last November. UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs John Holmes also sounded the alarm about the impact of today’s closure of crossing points on the already “extremely worrying and fragile” humanitarian situation in Gaza. The crossings are “the lifeline for the delivery of humanitarian assistance and other goods into Gaza,” and the closure will result in even greater shortages of food items, medical goods, among other relief supplies and basic daily necessities, Mr. Holmes, who also serves as Emergency Relief Coordinator, told reporters in New York. The recent escalation of violence in the area threatens the political process, “which is so urgently needed,” he added. read more

Sicille Kotelawala granted bail in Golden Key credit card case

Sicille Kotelawala was arrested last month when she returned to Sri Lanka after fleeing the country and evading arrest. (Colombo Gazette) Sicille Kotelawala was today granted bail by the Appeal Court in the Golden Key credit card case.In 2009, Sicille and her husband, the former chairman of Ceylinco Group Lalith Kotelawala and eight other directors were charged of misappropriating nearly Rs. 26 billion deposited in the Golden Key Credit Card Company.

Serious injuries in Main Gage crash

A 20-year-old man was taken to hospital after a crash in Hamilton.It happened around 10:00 last night on Main Street East near Gage Avenue. An SUV and car collided, sending the SUV through a fence into Gage Park. The car slammed into a concrete pole.The driver of the car was taken to Hamilton General Hospital with serious head injuries. The people in the SUV were treated by paramedics.

Burger assault sentencing

Two Hamilton men have now been sentenced for assault with a weapon, they threw a hamburger and drink in the face of a sleeping man at McDonalds, then posted the attack on Facebook.The incident happened in March of last year, both men are now 24 and they say they’re remorseful.Neither will spend time in jail. Joseph Reid got a suspended sentence and Matthew West got a conditional discharge.Reid was at McDonalds at about 1am on March 16, 2015. He’s filming and egging on his friend. Matthew West was putting a half-eaten burger into a drink. He later throws the drink and sandwich at a man who had fallen asleep at another table.That night they posted this video to Facebook. In the morning, they faced backlash from horrified viewers.Both 24 year olds pleaded guilty to assault with a weapon, and apologized during sentencing.“I’ve lost many friends I cared about. I know what I did was wrong and I’m trying to change the way people look at me again. I’m so sorry” West said, through tears.His parents sobbed from the back of the room and again, when the judge agreed West would get a conditional discharge. That means he won’t get a criminal record. He’s training to be an electrician and shares custody of his four year old son.His lawyer says West stopped drinking and has been doing community service.Reid already has a criminal record, so he got a suspended sentence. Court heard he basically raised himself from the age of 13, and spent his teens looking for a place to sleep and something to eat.As part of their probation conditions Reid and West have to stay away from the McDonalds at Barton and Lottridge, where the incident happened.The crown thought the 71 year old victim would want to return here and enjoy his meal, without fear of confronting his attackers.Both men have two years probation and 120 hours of community service to complete.The judge said he couldn’t find the words to express his disgust at their actions, but he hoped community service would make them understand what it’s like to be poor, alone and depressed.The victim did not come to court or write a victim impact statement, he seemed to just want to forget this happened. read more

Head of UN human rights inquiry decries disastrous civilian death toll in

In an update to the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council, Paulo Pinheiro, Chair of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, appealed to the warring parties to stop fighting and get back to the negotiating table. Civilians, he said, are in the unenviable role of being the target of most of the violence, he said. In his latest update to the Human Rights Council, Mr. Pinheiro said it was his twentieth report to the body and underscored once again the unspeakable toll on civilians.The so-called “de-escalation zones” agreement – which is guaranteed by Russia, Turkey and Iran – had resulted in a “discernible” reduction in violence in Idlib and western Aleppo. And while that initiative – along with UN-facilitated intra-Syrian talks – was a “step in the right direction,” the enduring violence in Homs, Damascus and southern Dara’a, “has not changed in nature,” he explained to the Council members.“Whether it be the unrestrained use of airstrikes against residential neighbourhoods, attacks against doctors and hospitals, or the use of suicide bombers that deliberately target civilians, fighting remains brutal in purpose and reprehensible in method,” stated Mr. Pinheiro. Intensified airstrikes led to a ‘staggering loss of life’ in RaqqaHe went on to note that Syrian opposition forces were continuing their assault on Raqqa city, where the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) was losing ground. Success against the terrorist group could lead to the liberation of civilians trapped in the city, including Yazidi women and girls, three years after they were captured in neighbouring Iraq to be sold as sex slaves to ISIL fighters. ISIL’s abuse of the Yazidi people is nothing less than an “ongoing and unaddressed genocide,” Mr. Pinheiro said.Grave as this charge is, he insisted that the fight to retake terrorist strongholds should not be “at the expense” of the “mounting number of civilians” killed in airstrikes – a reference to aerial attacks that had preceded the opposition forces’ advance on Raqqa, and which he said had caused a “staggering” loss of life.Elsewhere in what remains of Syria’s cities and towns, some 600,000 people remain under siege. They have been denied humanitarian aid for prolonged periods, and this has led to severe shortages of food and stunted children whose health will be affected for life, Mr Pinheiro stated. The only way to end civilian suffering is to end this warThe only way to end this suffering is to end the war, he appealed to parties involved in the conflict – and to Member States who could influence those fighting: “Time and time again, warring parties and influential States have failed to capitalize on the opportunities presented by respites from hostilities. And time and again, Syrian men, women, and children pay the price for the continuation of the war. Warring parties must not let yet another opportunity pass by. The parties must press to ensure that any de-escalation in hostilities is accompanied by renewed efforts to access communities in need, to strengthen the human rights protections for all people across Syria, and to generate meaningful momentum for peace.” read more

EHF EURO 2018 will be played in Arena Zagreb

“Arena Zagreb will stay open for the upcoming Men’s EHF EURO 2018” is the part of the statement of Ingra company who is responsible for the biggest hall in Croatia and the biggest venue of upcoming handball event with capacity over 15.000 seats.Problems between City of Zagreb and Goverment from one side and Ingra will be solved.The first match in Arena Zagreb will be played on January 13, when Germany will meet Montenegro, and Slovenia play against Macedonia at the start of the Main Round. ← Previous Story New Belgrade Summer Cup 2017 in June Next Story → Serbian 16 for EHF EURO 2016 – Six newcomers! read more

Geek deals 2012 MacBook Air 13inch Adobe Lightroom more

first_img2012 was a big year for Apple, with every single product getting a significant refresh, including the iPad being refreshed twice! They also truly cemented the term “Retina” display in the consumer market, finally opening the eyes of the average consumer to the benefits of quality displays.As we saw through 2012, and continue to see in 2013, Apple’s products are in such high demand that discounts are a rarity. Luckily, we no longer have the limited stock that continued through late 2012 on the more popular items, like the impressive MacBook Pro 15-inch Retina, but prices for the most part remain at or just around MSRP.That’s why when we find any half decent discount on an Apple product, it automatically hits hot status. Today we found the newest generation MacBook Air 13-inch (model MD231LL/A) for $99.01 below Apple’s MSRP. The ultraslim MBA measures in at just 3 mm (0.11-inches) thin in the front and 17 mm (0.68-inches) in the rear, while keeping weight down to just under 3 lbs with its single-piece aluminum chassis.While you won’t find the MacBook Air outfitted like an enterprise class mobile workstation, Apple was able to squeeze in a few ports and features to ensure you can still function on the go. You get a pair of USB 3.0 ports, one of the new Thunderbolt ports, and an SD card slot (only available on the 13-inch model). While that may not sound like much compared to your average, beefy 15-inch Windows laptop, how much more do you actually use while out and about?B&H Photo Video is one of the most competitive vendors we’ve come across when it comes to Apple products and they are also offering a choice of free software packages along with your discounted MacBook: FileMaker database software, LoJack for Laptops, or Parallels Desktop 8 virtualization software.Apple MacBook Air 13-inch Core i5 Laptop for $1,099.99 + free shipping (reg. $1,199 | ends soon)Our other top deals:Toshiba Satellite C850 15.6″ Dual-core Laptop w/Win 8 (customizable) for $299.99 + shipping (reg. $509.99 | use coupon EMC85050 | ends Jan. 24 or sooner)Dell S2340L 23″ 1080p IPS panel LED-backlit LCD Monitor for $169.99 + free shipping (reg. $219.99 | ends soon)Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 for $99.98 + free shipping (reg. $149.99)last_img read more

Viva Victoria festival to celebrate multiculturalism

first_imgTying in with cultural diversity week in March, Melbourne will celebrate the proud unification of cultures from across Victoria in the ‘Viva Victoria Multicultural Festival’.The festival will take place on Sunday 22 March at Federation Square in the city’s centre, and will see many cultures’ most important foods, dance and music.The festival will host five separate stages across the city venue, where a number of Greek Australians will perform live.Celebrating harmonious difference is one of the most important ways to congratulate the efforts of all cultures who take pride in their Australian existence, and to further ensure the sustainability of an Australian future fuelled by difference and equality. Viva Victoria is your chance to celebrate your contribution to this beautifully diverse land and to thank every single being who does the same. Do not miss your chance to take pride in and appreciate your Australian identity.For all information regarding the event, head to http://www.multicultural.vic.gov.au/ Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Official Beskitas confirm the signing of Karius

first_imgLiverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius has completed his move to Turkish side Besiktas on a two-year loan deal.Karius has not played a competitive game for the Reds since committing two errors in the Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid in May.The German, 25, has made 49 appearances for Liverpool since joining the club from Mainz in 2016. He was equally named on the bench in Liverpool’s game against West Ham.“Everybody at LFC wishes Loris the best of luck during his loan spell,” said a statement on Liverpool’s website.Jurgen Klopp opted to keep Simon Mignolet as the second choice goalkeeper considering his vast Premier League experience.Roberto Firmino, LiverpoolVirgil van Dijk praises Roberto Firmino after Liverpool’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Virgil van Dijk hailed team-mate Roberto Firmino after coming off the bench to inspire Liverpool to a 3-1 comeback win against Newcastle United.The Merseysiders continued their winning start in the Premier League with a narrow 1-0 win over Brighton. The solitary strike from Mo Salah was enough to send the Reds to the top after Man City drew at Wolves.Karius will play in the Europa League if his new side seals a spot in the group stages.Besiktas contested the first leg of their Europa League play-off against Partizan on Thursday and continue their league schedule at home to Antalyaspor on Sunday evening.last_img read more

Bahamas Defence Force Makes Arrest in Bimini

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, October 17, 2017 – Bimini – An American visitor was taken into custody by Royal Bahamas Defence Force Marines on Friday night after he was found with undeclared rounds in the northern Bahamas.While conducting a routine search at the Bimini Bay Marina shortly after 5:00 pm, Marines assigned to the Bimini detachment boarded and searched a 37-ft yellow and white intrepid craft.   It was discovered that a total of 26 rounds were undeclared by the foreign visitor.   He was subsequently taken into custody and handed over to Custom officials for further processing.   He was subsequently fined five hundred dollars ($500.00) and the rounds were confiscated.This type of arrest aligns with the Force’s mandate of guarding our heritage.RBDF Assists with TransportAlso, in other news, the Airwing Section of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force was busy taking officials to Long Island Sunday morning. Representatives from the Port Department and the Ministry of Environmental Health Department were transported on the Defence Force’s aircraft to investigate the circumstances involving a grounded barge offshore Gray’s, Long Island.   More information will be provided as details become available.The Royal Bahamas Defence Force remains committed to protecting the territorial integrity of The Bahamas.(For further information please contact the RBDF Public Relations Department or visit our website: www.rbdf.gov.bs, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and view our Youtube channel) -rbdf-#GuardOurHeritagePress Release: RBDFPhoto credit: RBDF Related Items:last_img read more

Officer lectures mother who left children in hot car

first_imgThe temperature outside on that day was around 75 degrees, so the conditions inside the locked car likely climbed at least five to 10 degrees in a matter of minutes — leaving the children vulnerable to heat distress.“Their body physiology, they haven’t quite develop the best coping mechanisms to the heat, so that’s why you have to be extra careful,” said an official.The police chief stands by his officer’s reaction.“I know he has children of his own, and you have to remember police officers are just people,” said Vancouver Police Chief Adam Palmer. “We’re all human beings and everybody may react slightly different to every set of circumstances, and he was trying to convey to that woman the seriousness of what she had done with her children.”No charges have been filed but the case has been turned over to child welfare officials for further investigation.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. VANCOUVER, Canada (WSVN) — An officer had a few words for a mother who left her two children in a hot car in Canada.Cellphone video shows witnesses and the officer confronting the mother after finding the children, ages 2 and 6 years old, inside the car.“Your kids were in there on a hot day; that’s pretty stupid,” said one witness.“I was here for five minutes,” the mother responded.However, surveillance shows that the woman was in the store for nearly 20 minutes.The two children were rescued. However, they were dehydrated.“You don’t seem to understand what you have done,” the officer told the woman. “Your children could have died. The windows were up, and it’s hot out.” last_img read more

Pines Middle School briefly placed on lockdown due to suspicious activity

first_imgUPDATE: Our investigation revealed the suspicious incident to be unfounded. The school lockdown has been lifted. https://t.co/L22W4kfk7v— Pembroke Pines PD (@PPinesPD) September 26, 2018Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. PEMBROKE PINES, FLA. (WSVN) – Pines Middle School was briefly placed on lockdown Wednesday morning.According to Pembroke Pines Police, the lockdown was put in place as a result of a suspicious incident that happened in the area near the school.Officers immediately responded to the school but found nothing suspicious, and the lockdown has since been lifted.last_img read more

Hands And Politics On Far Cry 5 Sure is a Video Game

first_imgStay on target The Biggest Trailers From the 2018 Game AwardsUbisoft Confirms New Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, and The Crew, For Some… Out of all of Ubisoft’s relatively interchangeable open-world franchises, I’ve always found Far Cry to be the one with the most merit. Maybe it’s the residual Crytek influence. Maybe it’s the first-person perspective. Maybe it’s the fact that since the series isn’t pumped out annually like Assassin’s Creed (until Origins) each entry feels like a bigger leap forward. Or maybe it’s because of the franchise’s spicier take on contemporary politics, prehistoric Far Cry Primal notwithstanding.It’s that last aspect, the politics, that have so far made next month’s Far Cry 5 seem so… fascinating. After four games set in exotic yet dangerous parts of the globe, Far Cry 5 turns its attention to a more domestic threat: a fictional Montana county that’s been turned into its own third-world hellscape by a rustic death cult. In this year especially, that’s a premise piping hot with potential insight, and controversy, too. Unfortunately, my hands-on session with the game left me skeptical of its political bravery, even if it is a fun video game.But we might as well start with what works. After a brief scripted sequence that leaves you stranded in cult territory, you’re free to explore the gorgeous open-world Northwest before you. The terrain is covered in mountains, valleys, forests, and bodies of water that provide a convincing naturalistic wrapper for typical Ubisoft content chunks.AdChoices广告And even those chunks aren’t so typical this time. There’s only one tower to climb, and the game makes a joke about it. I solved a clever environmental puzzle to access a doomsday prepper weapons cache by swimming beneath an abandoned shack and emerging from the broken floor. There are hunting and fishing minigames as distractions, but when a dangerous militia is on the rise, I was more selflessly concerned with getting myself prepared for the fight.Progress is measured by a hashtag Resistance meter that tracks how much power you drain from the cult by liberating prisoners, taking over outposts, and completing story missions. A more immediately tangible sign of your growing influence is the ability to take partners into battle with you and assign them perks, kind of like assassin recruits. Whether it’s a grateful survivor, bumbling story character like franchise mainstay Hurk, a bear, or a fellow real-life human in co-op, the extra gun for hire is obviously useful while ziplining into cult camps or shooting down helicopters while flying in your own helicopter.All of the pieces are in place for the best Far Cry yet from a sandbox mayhem perspective. But that’s not the only valid perspective from which you can (and should) view this game. Far Cry 5 is literally a 2018 game about a heavily armed rural American death cult violently seizing startling amounts of power using religious rhetoric. And the fact no one, at least so far, acknowledges just how inherently political this is as baffling as it is disappointing.This is worth mentioning because the effort to depoliticize the game, and avoiding to risk alienating the (likely conservative) customers who’d feel targeted, actively hurts the experience. It makes everything hollow in a way that saps the power from such a well-researched, “realistic” depiction of cults in America.You play as a cop no matter what but can choose your gender and skin color (and whether or not to wear gloves with skeleton fingers on them). But no one ever reacts any differently to your identity. The cult is driven by a fervent belief in an upcoming apocalypse, as well as fanatical worship of Father Joseph Seed, but its equal opportunity hostility towards outsiders is pretty progressive relatively speaking. People of color even appear as unnamed cult members to shoot down. And for a 2018 religious Montana armed death cult, welcoming Black members seems even more fantastical than regenerating health or MacGyver-leveling crafting prowess.It doesn’t help that the scary, deadly serious, The Hills Have Eyes tone frequently clashes with the game’s goofier, yet also incoherently politically charged, elements. One quest-giver complains about “Obama-loving libtards” while his well-meaning son apologizes for assuming your gender. The same son, tagging along as an optional gun for hire, then talks about feeling a breeze between his taint while a story character recounts in horrific detail how one cultist fed starving kidnapped children their own parent’s severed toes.Far Cry 5’s political failings are emblematic of modern AAA gaming’s general desperate desire to be stretched thin into all things at once to all people. An open-world shooter with a serious story about hot-button political issues but also tons of silly good fun with side content and co-op and oh please don’t sell this game back. There’s already a season pass planned with expansions about fighting zombies, Martians, and the Viet Cong.One surreal section challenges you to obediently, efficiently slaughter as many enemies as possible while in drugged-out bliss for what feels like Spec Ops: The Line-esque critical self-commentary of the military gaming industrial complex and player complicity. But again it feels hollow when coupled with the game’s reflexive fetishism of guns themselves as well as the “good” Montana militias that aid you against the “bad” cult that frankly both spring from the exact same unacknowledged and destructive toxic patriarchal American gun culture. Whoops.I tried to express these concerns during an interview with the developers. But the responses I heard, while made in good faith, just furthered my disappointment. No specific reference point was ever mentioned, not even specific groups researched by the cult consultant. My student film has more direct references to Jim Jones. The team talked about vague feelings of “bad stuff happening soon” they felt about three years ago, but those bad feelings never got a name, even though I can think of a few bloated orange ones.Instead of any kind of specific commentary, the game was described as a “choose your own adventure” that could’ve been made at any point in time. Childhood Cold War fears were cited as an influence for this game, again a game that’s about a religious rural Montana death cult. Imagine if something like Wolfenstein II approached its political narrative of Nazi-controlled America with this same level of, and I’m sorry to say this, cowardice. It honestly makes the previous, thematically similar Far Cry games seems more suspect in retrospect, or maybe that’s just my American privilege finally catching up with me. Intentional or not, Far Cry 5 is absolutely a game about the danger of unchecked American right wing extremism, the same poisonous conservatism currently in charge of the country while worming deeper into gamer culture as well, and the developers need to own it.I don’t want to sound too mean, because even walking this close to saying something politically relevant in a AAA game is risky and laudable. The creators behind Far Cry 5 are certainly talented and were kind enough to politely answer my somewhat antagonistic questions. And even though the game goes out of its way to avoid slighting any specific real-world groups or take any “side,” right wing losers still got upset about “white genocide” or whatever, so kudos to the game for causing that.But even if I’m being charitable, the best I can say about the opening hours of Far Cry 5 I experienced is that it feels like an exploitative Law and Order “ripped from the headlines” type narrative that wants to take the provocative, timely, fascinating parts of a lurid fringe issue like rural religious cults in America without doing the extra hard and dangerous important work of actually saying anything of substance. In a pure schlock fantasy like the Southern Bayou nightmare of Resident Evil 7 that can be an entertaining trashy tactic. But it feels irresponsible in something as almost real as Far Cry 5.Far Cry 5 launches on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC on March 27. At least it’ll probably be a fun video game.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

Trade In Your Nintendo Switch For a Better Battery With a Catch

first_img After first being announced a month ago, the revised Nintendo Switch is now hitting store shelves. Look for the box with more red on the package and you’ll get the model with a vastly superior battery life. It’s even better than the upcoming Nintendo Switch Lite while retaining the ability to dock. However, if you recently bought the old Nintendo Switch and are feeling suckered, cheer up. According to a Reddit post reported by GameXplain, Nintendo is offering to replace old consoles with the newer model, at least in America. The catch is the deal only applies if you bought a Switch after the revision was announced on July 17. So early adopters will just have to pay up.When it comes to new Nintendo Switch hardware, everyone is still buzzing about the Nintendo Switch Lite. The recently announced September revision strips the console part out of Nintendo’s hybrid and leaves you with a smaller machine you can only play in handheld mode. The upside is the battery is better, the system is sturdier, there’s a real D-pad, and it’s a $100 cheaper.But there are plenty of reasons to still get a regular Nintendo Switch, including the fact that it still docks to a television. And later in August, Nintendo is also rolling out a subtly upgraded version of the original Switch.Nintendo Switch model number HAC-001(-01) (just look for product serial numbers beginning with “XKW”) will feature the mildly upgraded components. Rumors and FCC filings had suggested Nintendo was revamping the Switch’s Nvidia Tegra X1 processor. Some were hoping this was a hint of some kind of Switch Pro that many still claim is coming next year.But instead of improving graphical performance Nintendo opted to improve battery life. That makes sense. Previously the Switch’s battery life was a bit weak for a handheld device. But this new model ups the range from 2.5-6 hours to a whopping 4.5-9 hours, better than the Switch Lite. Nintendo says expect 5.5 hours of play with a game as intensive as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.Along with this Switch revision Nintendo also dropped a few other random announcements. They’re releasing some new Joy-Con colors (suspiciously timed with news reports of current Joy-Con controllers experiencing debilitating analog stick issues). Snap on purple, blue, and orange controllers to the sides of your Switch that still supports Joy-Con, aka not the Switch Lite.Luigi’s Mansion 3 also got a spooky release date for October 31, Halloween itself. I enjoyed my recent hands-on demo with the game and am looking forward to the final version. For more on Nintendo Switch here are a bunch of cool games to play right now. Controller Patent Teases SNES Games on SwitchReview: The 8BitDo SN30 Pro+ Is an Elite Nintendo Switch Controller Stay on targetlast_img read more

Mole rat dental structure similar to a shark

first_img(PhysOrg.com) — Sharks are capable of continually growing new teeth. As the teeth age, they fall out and new ones move forward similar to that of a tooth conveyor belt. Humans, and most mammals, on the other hand are only given two sets of teeth and must make them last. However, researchers have found there are exceptions to this rule and a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that the silvery mole rat is one of the exceptions. It was first noted by Stuart Landry back in 1957 that these moles had more molars than the average rodent, but it was never investigated further. That is until Helder Gomes Rodrigues from the University of Lyon began this current study.For this study, Rodrigues looked at the skeletal remains of some 55 mole rats and discovered that the molars at the back of these rodent’s jaws seem to move forward. As they move forward, they erupt upward and are worn down through normal wear and tear. By the time a molar reaches the front molar row, they have been completely eroded and seem to be absorbed back into the jawbone.The only other mammals with this similar ability to make more teeth are three different manatee species and a pygmy-rock wallaby. However, the mole rat seems to be the only one that has the set-up where the teeth move forward and upward. The other mammals have molars that sprout up, move to the front and fall out, similar to human baby teeth.While it is believed that the manatee and wallaby have evolved to replace teeth due to the hard elements in their diet, the mole rat feeds on soft tubers and plants. Rodrigues believes that an explanation for this evolution to replacing molars in the mole rat may have something to do with digging rather than eating. While they primarily dig with their front incisors, they grind things with their molars and swallow abrasive dust. However this is still just a theory and the real reason behind this evolution of multiple molars still remains a mystery. Citation: Mole rat dental structure similar to a shark (2011, October 11) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-10-mole-rat-dental-similar-shark.html © 2011 PhysOrg.com Explore further More information: Continuous dental replacement in a hyper-chisel tooth digging rodent, PNAS, Published online before print October 10, 2011, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1109615108AbstractContrary to their reptilian ancestors, which had numerous dental generations, mammals are known to usually develop only two generations of teeth. However, a few mammal species have acquired the ability to continuously replace their dentition by the constant addition of supernumerary teeth moving secondarily toward the front of the jaw. The resulting treadmill-like replacement is thus horizontal, and differs completely from the vertical dental succession of other mammals and their extinct relatives. Despite the developmental implications and prospects regarding the origin of supernumerary teeth, this striking innovation remains poorly documented. Here we report another case of continuous dental replacement in an African rodent, Heliophobius argenteocinereus, which combines this dental system with the progressive eruption of high-crowned teeth. The escalator-like mechanism of Heliophobius constitutes an original adaptation to hyper-chisel tooth digging involving high dental wear. Comparisons between Heliophobius and the few mammals that convergently acquired continuous dental replacement reveal that shared inherited traits, including dental mesial drift, delayed eruption, and supernumerary molars, comprise essential prerequisites to setting up this dental mechanism. Interestingly, these dental traits are present to a lesser extent in humans but are absent in mouse, the usual biological model. Consequently, Heliophobius represents a suitable model to investigate the molecular processes leading to the development of supernumerary teeth in mammals, and the accurate description of these processes could be a significant advance for further applications in humans, such as the regeneration of dental tissues. X-ray synchrotron microtomographic 3D rendering of the upper dentition of a young specimen of Heliophobius. Image: PNAS, doi:10.1073/pnas.1109615108 Mice teeth explain the troubles with human wisdom teeth This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more