WHO says Turkish cases may yield new findings on H5N1

first_imgJan 11, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – A World Health Organization (WHO) official says two Turkish brothers who have tested positive for H5N1 avian influenza were not sick, potentially offering scientists a rare opportunity to learn more about how the virus affects humans, according to news reports.The two boys had played with dead birds they found near their home in the town of Beypazari, prompting their anxious parents to have them tested for the virus, according to a Reuters report published today.”This is a very interesting case. They have still shown no symptoms of the virus and yet have tested positive,” Dr. Guenael Rodier, head of a WHO team in Turkey, told Reuters.”We hope to study this case carefully,” he added. “This is an opportunity to learn about the disease.”The two boys tested positive on Jan 8, according to Reuters. They are among 15 Turks who have tested positive in Turkish labs in little more than a week. Reports have not specified what kind of test was used in the boys’ cases.The WHO has officially recognized only four of the Turkish cases so far, following confirmation by reference laboratories outside Turkey. However, the agency has praised the quality of testing done by Turkey’s national influenza lab and has said that the other cases are likely to be confirmed by further tests.The two boys’ cases could help answer one of the pressing questions about H5N1: whether, or how often, it infects people without causing serious illness.Nearly all of the 147 human cases registered by the WHO since late 2003 have been severe, and 78 patients have died, a fatality rate of 53%. But some suspect that the confirmed cases may be heavily outnumbered by mild and asymptomatic cases that have gone undetected.So far, no one has published any large-scale blood-testing, or serologic, surveys to assess how many people in bird flu–affected areas carry antibodies to H5N1. If many people do, it would suggest they had infections that went undiagnosed.The two symptomless boys were being observed in Kecioren Hospital in Ankara, the Turkish capital, the International Herald Tribune reported yesterday. A Canadian Press (CP) report yesterday said doctors began treating the boys, aged 4 and 5, with oseltamivir (Tamiflu) as soon as they tested positive.Two other brothers from the Ankara area tested positive for H5N1 though they had only mild symptoms, according to the Herald Tribune. They too were under observation in an Ankara hospital. They had touched gloves that had been used to dispose of a dead duck.The atypical human cases are the not the only reason the Turkish situation offers a good opportunity to learn more about the H5N1 virus, according to news reports.The CP report said some of the Turkish cases were detected early, permitting doctors to assess how oseltamivir treatment affects the disease when started early. In addition, Turkish authorities have shown a willingness to cooperate with international scientists, the story said.”It is likely that the Turkish outbreaks will be more accessible to flu scientists than those cases in Vietnam and Thailand, where it’s been very difficult to penetrate,” virologist John Wood of Britain’s National Institute for Biological Standards and Control was quoted as saying.Rodier said Turkish scientists are already making plans for serologic studies, according to the CP report.Turkish Health Minister Recep Akdag today described the condition of all 13 surviving H5N1 patients as good, according to the Reuters report.last_img read more

Boots Pension Scheme backs Legal & General multi-factor fund

first_img“Factor-based investing is growing in popularity as it can be used to meet different investment objectives in a cost-efficient manner,” he said.The fund was developed in partnership with Scientific Beta, the provider of factor-based indices established by EDHEC-Risk Institute. The fund uses Scientific Beta’s recently launched High Factor Exposure indices as “building blocks” for the portfolio.LGIM said it customised these building blocks to target a balanced factor exposure while enhancing diversification and reducing risk by controlling region and currency exposures.The fund is run by multi-asset fund manager Andrzej Pioch alongside LGIM’s broader asset allocation team, which is responsible for more than £37bn.LGIM manages £35bn in factor-based strategies and alternatively weighted indices. Last November, the fund manager launched the L&G Future World Fund in collaboration with the HSBC Bank UK Pension Scheme.The multi-factor global equities index fund that incorporates a climate “tilt” to address the investment risks associated with climate change.The fund was picked as HSBC Bank UK Pension Scheme’s equity default option within its defined contribution scheme. Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM) has launched a multi-factor global equity fund with initial investment from the £7.2bn (€8.1bn) Boots Pension Scheme.The LGIM Diversified Multi-Factor Equity Fund invests in a diversified portfolio of global equities based on smart beta factors, and is a pooled vehicle aimed primarily at UK institutional clients.The group said the fund aimed to reduce risk relative to the global equity market by diversifying more effectively across regions and reducing stock-specific concentration.Adam Willis, head of index and multi-asset distribution at LGIM, said investors were increasingly looking for alternatives to traditional market-cap and multi-asset products.last_img read more

Record Walker Cup win for GB&I

first_img13 Sep 2015 Record Walker Cup win for GB&I Great Britain and Ireland defeated the United States of America 16½-9½ to win the 45th Walker Cup Match at Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club today and achieve their greatest winning margin in the match since it was first played in 1922.Leading 7-5 going into the final day, GB&I secured the victory with a dominant final day performance that saw them win the final morning foursomes 3-1 to take a four point lead going into the afternoon singles, where they won a further 6 ½ points.Captain Nigel Edwards achieved his second win in his three matches in charge after leading the team to victory at Royal Aberdeen in 2011.England’s Jimmy Mullen, who was GB&I’s leading points-scorer with a perfect 4-0 record, led the team’s afternoon domination of the singles in which they won five, halved three and lost just two matches. England’s Ashley Chesters, at 26, the oldest GB&I player (3½), and Cormac Sharvin of Ireland (3) were the other leading GB&I performers.Mullen joined Paul Casey and Luke Donald among the small group of GB&I players who have achieved 4-0 records in a single match.College All-Americans Bryson DeChambeau, the 2015 U.S. Amateur and NCAA Division I men’s individual champion, and Beau Hossler were the only USA players to win their matches in the final singles. Hossler (3), DeChambeau (2½) and Robby Shelton (2) were the leading point-scorers for the USA.GB&I has now won five of the last six matches played on home soil, dating back to 1999. The only American win in that stretch was in 2007 at Royal County Down in Northern Ireland. With the GB&I victory, the two teams now stand at 7-7 in the 14 matches since 1989. The USA leads the overall series 35-9-1.Key quotes:Nigel Edwards:“I’m delighted with the victory. We had a very strong front and we have strength throughout the team. I said last night to the team that as long as the lads keep doing what they have been doing all week, playing their own games, their short games are fantastic, which is probably what has given us the edge. Some of the bunker shots have been exceptional but also the standard of play here has been fantastic.”Jimmy Mullen:“It doesn’t matter if I won all of my games as long as the team won that was the main thing. To win all of my games was just the icing on the cake.”Ashley Chesters:“Nigel obviously put me there to get some points early and I have managed to do that for him. I have done it most of the year for England, I did it last year in the St Andrews Trophy for GB&I and I did it for Europe in the Bonallack Trophy so it is the same as that. I have got no problem going out first at all. We have won and it’s great to get the trophy back.”Cormac Sharvin:“It feels great. It has just been an unbelievable experience. My golf game has been pretty good as well and it has been nice to get three out of three but as I said before it is a team effort and I’m just glad I could contribute to the win.”John “Spider” Miller:“I don’t think we handed them anything. I think they went out and played well, very well, and they won it. I’d feel bad if we were three-putting and giving them holes. I think our guys played well. They just played very well. They outplayed us and earned it.”For the full results from the match visit the Walker Cup websiteThe 2017 Walker Cup Match will be played on 9 and 10 September at Los Angeles Country Club in California.Team image courtesy R&A.13/09/2015GB&I take lead into Walker Cup second day Great Britain and Ireland took a two point lead into the second day of the 45th Walker Cup match at Royal Lytham & St Annes todayGB&I captain Nigel Edwards said: “We’ll carry on doing what we’re doing and look after ourselves. We won’t worry about anyone else.”The home team got off to an excellent start in their bid to win back the trophy from the USA, who won the 2013 match at National Golf Links of America in Southampton, New York, and lead 7-5 after yesterday’s singles and foursomes matches.GB&I, led by Captain Nigel Edwards, took a 3-1 lead, after the morning foursomes and followed that up by winning three and halving two of the afternoon singles matches.England’s Jimmy Mullen won both his points while Ashley Chesters was unbeaten, winning his foursomes in partnership with Mullen and halving his singles.In the morning foursomes, GB&I got off to an excellent start winning three matches to the USA’s one. The English pairing of Chesters and Mullen were never behind in their match with McNealy and Stewart and won 3&2. They were quickly followed by Sharvin and McDonald, who enjoyed an emphatic 5&4 victory over Niebrugge and Shelton.Hossler and McCarthy put the first point on the board for the USA with a 3&1 result against the Irish pairing of Dunne and Hurley but their compatriots Hume and Moynihan rounded off a good morning for GB&I with a 3&2 win over McCoy and McCoy.In the opening singles match, Chesters and the 2015 US Amateur Champion Bryson DeChambeau were locked in a close struggle throughout the afternoon with neither having more than a one-hole lead. The 21-year-old DeChambeau, who sat out the morning foursomes, bounced back from losing the 15th hole to go one down by winning the next with a birdie and then bravely holing a 12ft par putt on the last to halve the match.Afterwards Chesters said: “It was a really good game, there was all sorts going on really but I don’t think anyone was ever any more than one up. I think a half is a pretty fair outcome in the end, neither of us really deserved to lose.”The USA, led by Captain John “Spider” Miller took the next two matches as Hunter Stewart defeated Ireland’s Paul Dunne by two holes and Scott Harvey overcame Scotland’s Grant Forrest 2&1.Stewart remarkably holed his 113 yard nine-iron approach for an eagle on the par four 11th hole and then chipped in from the side of the green on the 14th for a birdie three to win both holes. Dunne, the 54-hole joint leader in The Open at St Andrews, responded by holing out from a greenside bunker on the 13th but when his birdie putt lipped out on the 18th his two hole defeat was confirmed.England’s Jimmy Mullen performed strongly on the back nine, winning three consecutive holes from the 11th, to win his match with Denny McCarthy by two holes and notch up his second point of the day. Ireland’s Gary Hurley and Robby Shelton of the USA halved their match before Beau Hossler clinched a one hole win over Ireland’s Jack Hume.Scotland’s Ewen Ferguson secured a one hole victory against Maverick McNealy. The 19-year-old sat out the morning foursomes and started in determined fashion to lead by two after four holes. The Scot led throughout the match but McNealy fought back strongly to take the match down the last and force Ferguson to hole a five-foot par putt to complete a one hole win.GB&I secured another point when Ireland’s Gavin Moynihan defeated Jordan Niebrugge, the winner of the Silver Medal at The Open, by 4&2. The 20-year-old, who played in the 2013 Walker Cup alongside Niebrugge, won the 7th, 8th and 10th holes to take a grip on the match.Click here for more information and scoringTeam GB&I image courtesy RR&A.last_img read more

Inside Conditions…Ladder of excellence, a chat with Dusty Baker

first_imgDUSTY BAKER (Courier Photo/J.L. Martello) May 31 marked the beginning of the festivities celebrating another African-American heritage celebration at PNC Park. I was pleasantly surprised to see so many African-American “families” together not only just out to take in a ballgame but to enjoy themselves as a unit.Also, it doesn’t hurt to have the legendary Pittsburgh show band “House of Soul” live on the main stage at the Pirates ‘Friday Night Block Party’ with saxophonist Calvin Stemley and the “horney horns” along with the rest of the band including one of Pittsburgh’s finest R&B vocalists Wayne Barber not only carrying a tune but running with it; even the Cincinnati Reds faithful joined along with the Pirates fans participating in the very lively pregame show. It was fitting that the band mirrored the headliner “Kool and the Gang” who were scheduled to appear in a post game concert after Saturday’s game.Well, boys and girls, Saturday did not go as well for yours truly because I missed my 3 p.m. 56C Lincoln Place-McKeesport chariot (actually the bus was five minutes early) and I was compelled to call an urban based cab, (jitney) to transport me to Downtown. My “limo” driver turned out to be none other than the infamous Jimmy Giles who used to run a pool hall over on Frankstown Avenue in Homewood.I zipped into the press cafeteria to grab a bite to eat before I exited to go to the field to chat with Cincinnati Reds Manager Dusty Baker.By the way, Mr. Baker is one of the most gracious and conscientious players and/managers that I have ever had the pleasure of sitting down with; the other two were former St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa and number one of course was and still is the late Pirates skipper Charles “Chuck” Tanner who will always remain at the top of my “interview” food chain.last_img read more

Training a Thoroughbred for Monmouth Park

first_imgArt Petrosemolo will follow Rainbow At Midnite when she returns to Monmouth Park in April and will be at the rail when she goes to the starting gate for her first race. By Art PetrosemoloVeteran New Jersey thoroughbred trainer John Mazza and owner Rosemarie Shockley are getting close to an answer for their $64,000 question.Exercise rider heading to the track for early morning workout at Gulfstream Park, Hallandale, Fla.After two years of careful handling, good food, vitamins, visits to the vet, romping in the paddock and Florida training, Mazza and Shockley soon will know if their group of Holly Crest thoroughbreds have what it takes to succeed in the sport of kings.Two-year-old gray filly Rainbow At Midnite and her six stablemates will relocate from Florida’s Circle S ranch to Monmouth Park soon for final race-ready preparations before their first start. Midnite’s sister Holy Rainbow, a three-year-old, has run well at Florida’s Gulfstream Park with two solid third-place finishes. It has pleased Mazza and Shockley and has given them hope for Midnite.Mazza, who has trained Vincent Annaralla’s horses at Holly Crest Farm in Locust, for years, says, “training is not an exact science. Everyone goes about it a little different. But with correct breeding, proper handling and good training, you could – if the horse has a competitive spirit – have a fast and successful thoroughbred.”Translated, fast and successful means capable of succeeding in allowance and even stakes races and not missing a paycheck! “If the horse just doesn’t have the speed or the heart to be a winner,” continues Mazza, “then you hope the genes are good so that he or she might pass it along to offspring.”Two year olds enjoy the Florida sun in the Circle S paddock.Thoroughbred training is a long and expensive process. Horses are foaled in the winter (hopefully January to March) and grow under the watchful eye of the broodmare and the farm staff. Food, care and surroundings all contribute to early growth as horses stay with their mothers for most of their first year. (Every thoroughbred ages one year on Jan. 1.)During its second year, the thoroughbred, now called a yearling, continues to grow and mature with other yearlings spending the warm months in grassy paddocks. As they turn two, trainers and owners decide when and if the yearling will be broke and readied for the track. There are special trainers and farms in the southern United States that specialize in getting these feisty fillies and colts to mature before the final exam at a racetrack a few months away.Third generation trainer Tim Kelly is preparing the Holly Crest hopefuls for racing this year at Circle S Ranch in Florida horse country about a half-hour from Gulf­stream Park. Kelly says when the two year olds arrive at the farm – usually in December – they spend the first month getting used to people and being touched and handled. “We brush them, talk to them, clean their feet and bathe them daily,” he says. “These horses have spent the first two years of their lives growing and playing with minimum human contact.”A pair of Holly Crest Farm two year olds work out on the soft track at Circle S Ranch.Kelly then begins to get each thoroughbred comfortable with the racing equipment including saddle cloth, saddle and bridle. “This is the first time these animals have had anything in their mouths,” he says, “and it isn’t natural.”It could be as long as eight weeks in the training program before a thoroughbred feels the weight of an exercise rider on its back and it doesn’t like it. Says Kelly, “Anything on a horse’s back is a predator and the horse will try to buck him off in self defense.” The phrase “breaking horses” comes from getting the horse to break the habit of resisting being ridden.The maturing but still feisty two year olds train six days a week and start by learning to walk, jog and gallop in a round pen, attached to a tether and then under the hands of the exercise rider. The thoroughbred then learns how to respond to the rider’s steering through the bridle by walking and jogging in figure eights and other patterns in a larger pen.But it isn’t all work, all day, says Mazza; two year olds spend the afternoons enjoying Florida weather grazing in large, shaded paddocks.Holy Rainbow in her morning workout at Gulfstream Park.Once the two year old is schooled, Kelly moves them to the training track. At Circle S, the oval is one-half mile with a starting chute and starting gate. “The surface is deep and soft,” says Mazza, “which allows the horses to develop bone and muscle.” The two year olds train un-shoed until their feet reach adult size in early spring and they may only have their front feet shoed to start.Horses work in groups. At Circle S, they are trained in pairs. “We have horses gallop in front of each other so the trailing horse gets used to sand in its face,” Kelly explains. They also gallop beside each other so they get used to running in close quarters and they change positions during each session, each day.Rainbow At Midnite gallops on the soft surface at Circle S Ranch getting ready for her debut at Monmouth Park later this spring.Mazza and Shockley make the trip to Circle S each week to watch the two year olds and confer with Kelly on their training. Mazza can tell when a “baby” (as he calls them) is progressing as expected. “You can tell the way they walk, jog, gallop and carry themselves,” he says.It’s all about bringing a horse along at the right pace, Mazza feels. “I am old school,” he smiles, “and I take the extra time to get the two year old ready. I only have one chance with each horse to do it right and I don’t want to rush it.” Mazza wants to see a two year old come back from a mile gallop unwinded and ready for more. When Holly Crest horses arrive at Monmouth Park in April, Mazza says he continues to bring them along slowly until he is sure they are ready for their first race.Trainer John Mazza watches a pair of Holly Crest two year olds exercise on the Circle S training track.Two year olds are not timed while in the breaking process. Trainers won’t have any idea of what speed these horses have and whether they might be better for short or long races until they “breeze” (gallop) 5/8 of a mile later this spring at their home track. It’s then that trainers will begin to get the answer to the $64K question on whether these young thoroughbreds have what it takes. The first final exam – a maiden race against other two year olds for a purse – comes soon after. And only then will Mazza and Shockley get their first real answer to whether they have a winner.last_img read more

Fill ‘Er Up! Coffee Mugs Get Connected with RFID

first_imgDespite the deeply intrenched techie community within coffee shops around the globe, the process of buying coffee has yet to see significant innovation. Sure, there are some new ways to order coffee, even via text message, but a unique and elegant purchasing solution has evaded coffee shops and other frequented business – that is, perhaps, until now. A company called Smug Coffee has created what it says is the world’s first smart mug, or “smug.” Instead of opting for wasteful plastic cups, coffee drinkers can instead buy a special mug with embedded radio frequency identification (RFID) chips that store account information and purchase habits. Customers simply present their mug to a special scanner at check-out, and the barista can see their recent coffee orders – making a personalized ordering experience much easier. No need to grab a wallet or fork over cash – the chips connect to the customer’s coffee shop account and automatically deduct funds. RFID and similar technologies have long been used to provide customers with new ways to interface with a point-of-sale. I have used a special key fob to charge gas purchases to my credit card since I was in high-school, and other solutions let customers wave their cards at a special scanner. What the technology has been waiting for is practical and elegant implementations, and Smug accomplishes that.The Smug not only speeds up ordering and paying, but it helps save Mother Earth one plastic cup at a time. By using the mugs, customers are offered discounts and deals and can earn points toward free drinks. Encouraging the reuse of mugs puts a dent in the use of plastic cups that end up in a landfill. While the use of RFID is limited to the store where the mug is purchased, having the mug may also cause frequent coffee drinkers to think twice about using a plastic cup when at other coffee shops.Eventually, solutions like the Smug will be commonplace and we will hardly realize the technology behind the purchases we make. Simply resting the mug near the check-out will tell the cashier our purchasing habits so we can order up “the usual” and pay for it without even thinking about it. The brainchild of Marquette University student Chris Hallberg, Smug Coffee is currently supported by a handful of small coffee shop chains, and processed its first transaction in May of this year. What are some other great examples of RFID in the consumer space? Let us know in the comments below! Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Internet of Things#web Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img chris cameron Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

How to Animate via Audio Frequencies in Adobe After Effects

first_img“Without music, life would be a mistake” ―Friedrich Nietzsche. Without music, animation and motion graphics would also be a mistake.This is why Davey.Studio created the FreqReact script for Adobe After Effects. This helpful little tool allows you to harness specific sound frequencies and use them to animate properties of a graphic element.This might remind you of a tutorial I created several months ago that was all about how to use audio to drive animations via keyframes, pickwhips, and the graph editor. While this method is certainly useful, it’s not as streamlined and intuitive as using the FreqReact script. Let’s take a step-by-step look at how to use this tool in a real-world animation scenario.In this particular tutorial, I’m going to animate a rocket flying through space. I’ll use the bass of a PremiumBeat track to control the flames of the rocket, as well as the star-field in the background.Step 1 — Create a New ProfileFirst, I’ll need to create a new profile. With the music track selected in the timeline, I’ll click on the New Profile button in the FreqReact panel, and I’ll name it Bass. I can choose to apply the profile to the entire comp or a specific work area.Step 2 — Select the FrequencyNow for the fancy part. FreqReact will generate a new comp, allowing me to view the spectral frequency of my music track. I’ll use the preset views in the FreqReact panel to isolate the desired range of the frequency, or I can manually type in a range. Now, I’ll use the bounding box in the comp panel to highlight the bass area I’d like to use to drive my animations. Once selected, I’ll press the Bake button.Step 3 — BakeBaking adds all of the necessary keyframes to my audio track. The beauty here is that I can add multiple profiles to one single music track, as each one will show up as a separate effect. Now, I’m ready to apply these as animations.Step 4 — ReactTo animate, I’ll need to select a property. First, I want the flame of my rocket to shoot out during the bass hits. To apply, I’ll select the Scale attribute of the Flame layer. Next, I’ll grab the Bass profile in the FreqReact panel, then grab the Pulse controller. Now, I can apply the effect via the React button. For the stars in the background, I’ll grab the necessary attribute and follow the same steps as above.Step 5 — CustomizeAfter pressing the React button, a new Pulse effect applies to the layers, allowing me to customize the intensity of the pulse via the Effect Controls panel. For the star-field, I’ll open up the Mods section of the effect and select Additive. This’ll make the stars move across the screen instead of simply moving back and forth.Voilà! A quick and easy animation with just a few simple clicks. To pick up a copy of FreqReact, head over to Davey.Studio’s website.Looking for more on Adobe After Effects? Check out these articles.15 FREE Camera Shake Presets for After Effects and Premiere ProLearn to Create Your Own 8-Bit Art in Adobe After Effects7 Useful Ctrl and Cmd Key Shortcuts in Adobe After EffectsAdobe Releases New Content Aware Fill Tool for After Effects5 Ways to Animate with Trim Paths in Adobe After Effectslast_img read more

20 days agoEngland coach Southgate challenges axed Spurs midfielder Alli

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say England coach Southgate challenges axed Spurs midfielder Alliby Paul Vegas20 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveEngland coach Gareth Southgate has explained axing Dele Alli from his latest squad.Tottenham midfielder Alli has only just returned from injury but, while Southgate admitted dropped players is the hardest part of his job, he insisted he will never pick players on reputation or name as was the case in the past.England boss Southgate said: “I think when you’re selecting a squad, the players need to see some sort of meritocracy when possible, and like I said in there, to bring those guys back in, who am I going to leave out?“With Dele [Ali] and Alex [Oxlade-Chamberlain] in particular, they haven’t really had the number of games this year to get themselves into a rhythm. They’re both recovering from different injuries, one long term, one a bit shorter term.“So, I’m expecting those guys to really push – you know they are both fighters, there have been good conversations with both of them. The pressure is on guys who go in to play well and impress.“But we want to look at some of the young players. Let’s invest time in some of those younger players. Let’s have a closer at them, knowing that we’ve got to keep winning matches now by exposing people to the level and the environment and seeing how they cope with it.” last_img read more

19 days agoAC Milan directors Boban and Maldini admit Elliott differences

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say AC Milan directors Boban and Maldini admit Elliott differencesby Carlos Volcano19 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveAC Milan directors Zvonimir Boban and Paolo Maldini admit they have different ambitions compared with owners Elliott Management.Elliott remain in the business of selling the club.“No young team, with all young players, won the Champions League. That’s a fact,” said Maldini to the FT.“Even a Scudetto,” added fellow director and former teammate Boban.“Our dream is to have results tomorrow. [Elliott] have a different path, they have a different vision . . . I think we can find a way that we’re both happy.” last_img read more