Trio of NCS playoff games on deck

first_imgThe North Coast Section prep football playoffs continue today as a trio of local teams will look to advance beyond the first round. St. Bernard’s, the lone home team in action today, will host Albany while a pair of resurgent teams from the Little 4 Conference, Hoopa and Ferndale, will look to pick up upset road wins over St. Helena and Berean Christian, respectively.No. 12 Albany (6-3) at No. 5 St. Bernard’s (6-4)If a match up was ever that of the “new kid on the block” against the …last_img

Report: Giants may keep Bumgarner, deal reliever to Rays

first_imgThe suddenly surging Giants are reportedly considering just keeping ace Madison Bumgarner and trading one of their relievers to bolster their lineup for a possible run at the playoffs.MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reported Tuesday the Giants and the Rays could make a deal before the trade deadline on July 31, namely a possible swap of a San Francisco reliever for a former Oakland infielder such as rookie Michael Brosseau or Joey Wendle — Brosseau played at Oakland College while Wendle was an …last_img

Stem Cells Polarize Ethics

first_imgAdult stem cells are continuing to promise revolutionary therapies, while embryonic stem cells remain a political football even after Obama’s loosening of restrictions.  Some stories seem to suppress the word “embryonic” and just talk about “stem cells,” but there is a big difference in the ethics of one over the other.  Embryonic stem cells require harvesting a human embryo.Adult Stem Cell NewsDiabetes:  Sufferers of peripheral artery disease, common among diabetics, may have hope using stem cells from their own bone marrow.  PhysOrg reported that researchers at the University of Western Ontario isolated three types of stem cells from bone marrow that can regrow blood vessels.Bone:  Arthritis?  Hip fracture?  The BBC News reported that stem cells from bone marrow are showing promise to regrow bone.  Researchers at Keele University attach the stem cells to tiny magnets and then guide them to places where they are needed.  “The technique combines the patients [sic] own bone marrow stem cells with donor bone cells to patch-repair damaged bones that would otherwise need treatment with metal plates and pins.” Angina:  Adult stem cells may alleviate the pain of angina and allow patients with the heart condition to walk again.  Autologous (from-the-patient) stem cells from bone marrow helped patients walk longer on a treadmill without pain, reported Science Daily.Embryonic Stem Cell NewsFetal harvesting:  An upbeat article from Science Daily says “New Stem Cell Therapy May Lead To Treatment For Deafness.”  The body of the article describes a scientist from University of Sheffield harvesting cochlear cells from 9- to 11-week old human fetuses.  They got them to differentiate into inner ear cell types, but not to form the hair bundles characteristic of the cochlea.  The research is in the early stages; no actual treatments are being proposed.  It was not clear from the article where they got the fetuses.Brazil nuts:  Science last week reported that Brazil ran roughshod over religious leaders by banking on embryonic stem cell research over their objections.  “Despite vocal opposition from religious groups, the Brazilian government has launched a major initiative in pluripotent stem cell research.  In the past 3 weeks, eight university labs in four states started receiving the first payments of a 3-year, $9.3 million grant intended to reshape them into Cell Technology Centers.”  In this predominantly Catholic country, religious leaders have opposed ES research for years, but “A coalition of scientific groups, including the Brazilian Society for the Advancement of Science, and patients’ advocacy organizations fought back.”  Last year, after one advocate “helped fill the Supreme Federal Court galleries with people in wheelchairs and their relatives,” Brazil’s Supreme Court upheld a 2005 law allowing the harvesting of stem cells from fertility clinics.  Now the government is supporting it with the taxes of those who oppose it.Harvesting Obama for more:  Constance Holden wrote in Science March 20 that scientists, though thrilled with Obama’s executive order loosening restrictions on embryonic stem cell research, want more: “Many scientists would like to work with lines created through research cloning, or somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT).”  Human cloning was considered abhorrent by most ethicists during the Bush administration.  Arguments for stem cells from fertility clinics at the time stressed that those embryos were going to be destroyed anyway.  Many politicians on both sides of the aisle at the time stressed that they did not support human cloning.    Obama’s executive order, however, did not specify the source of the embryos.  It appears that scientists might have the liberty to choose what stem cells to work on – including those of human embryos created solely for research purposes.  What guidelines or restrictions will the National Institutes of Health (NIH) provide?The traditional opponents of hES cell research are expecting the worst.  Even with the derivation of new cell lines still banned, some fear the new policy will turn the federal government into an indirect supporter of cloning.  The executive order “turned out to be far more extreme than [the] biggest proponents had hoped,” said the Family Research Council.  “With no clear policy from the White House, you and I could be footing the bill for research that clones embryos just to scavenge their parts.”  Psychiatrist and columnist Charles Krauthammer, a former member of the president’s bioethics commission, said in an op-ed column that he does not oppose hES cell research but accused the president of “moral abdication” in leaving it up to scientists whether to create embryos solely for research.    On the contrary, says Harvard University’s George Daley: “We need legislation that allows [such] decisions … to be left to scientists.”  Daley points out that guidelines hammered out in 2005 by a committee of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and regularly updated, as well as recommendations by the International Society for Stem Cell Research, do not specify what biological sources should be used but focus on informed consent procedures for obtaining eggs, sperm, or embryos, and proper scientific procedures.    So far, there’s no available evidence that researchers anywhere are using lines other than from excess IVF embryos….The tone of the article indicates that scientists want to police their own policies but fear running afoul of public concerns over ethics.  Meanwhile, Kurt Gottfried and Harold Varmus, in the same issue of Science (March 20), portrayed the Obama Era (including his support of embryonic stem cell research) as “The Enlightenment Returns.”  This presumably portrays the Bush Era as a kind of scientific Dark Ages.  They commented on Obama’s call for scientific integrity, which they interpreted as science free from political agendas performed by those with good scientific qualifications, but they did not use the words ethics or morals.  Speaking of ethics, two researchers wrote in the same March 20 issue of Science about the growing problem of offshore clinics that lure patients with promises of miracle cures with stem cells. Where to draw the line?  The editorial in Nature March 26 said, “Now that the US federal funding ban on human embryonic stem cells is lifted, scientists must engage the public’s concerns about embryo research.”  What kind of embryos are acceptable for research?  Notice where these strong advocates of embryonic stem cell research drew an ethical line:A key requirement for productive dialogue is a common frame of reference.  Here, the word ‘embryo’ is a stumbling block.  This term refers to everything from a newly fertilized single-celled egg to millions of cells organized into eyelids, ears, genitals and limbs.  Yet the latter form, which is present some eight weeks after fertilization, is not only ethically unacceptable for research but also far too old to yield embryonic stem cells.    Multiple sets of widely accepted guidelines from, for example, the US National Academies, the International Society for Stem Cell Research and Britain’s Warnock Report agree that the first sign that cells for the future body are starting to specialize – the glimmer of a structure known as the primitive streak at about 14 days after an egg begins to divide – marks the end of when any laboratory research on human embryos should be considered.  To discuss this responsibly, scientists should insist on precision, specifying an embryo’s developmental state in terms of its age, for example, or the number of cells.But is this stage of the embryo such a clear dividing line?  Could it not be pushed to 15 days, then 16, then three weeks or more by a future consortium of scientists and politicians, especially when money or fame are at stake?  The Germans learned in a grim way that scientific consensus is no bedrock on which to anchor a standard of what is “acceptable” (04/07/2005).Leading science journals have been attacking the Bush era and praising the Obama administration for its support of embryonic stem cell research.  Nature said last week, “President Barack Obama’s appointment of academic scientists and economists to positions of high authority in his administration has created the sort of excitement in universities and among researchers that has not been seen for eight years.  Certainly, after George W. Bush’s grudging agreement to a constricted programme of stem-cell research and his politicization of scientific findings about the environment, Obama’s choice of prominent scholars is a breath of fresh air.”    Likewise, Science interviewed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, giving her high marks for her support of “science.”  Reporter Jeffrey Mervis called her a “big hit” and said she “lights up a crowd” with her support of scientific institutions.  “Donning her mantle as party leader, she used the events to take a swipe at the Bush Administration,” he said, quoting her: “For a long time, science had not been in the forefront.  It was faith or science, take your pick.  Now we’re saying that science is the answer to our prayers.”  She also told a group of “assembled biomedical bigwigs” that “we need your help again to make President Obama’s executive order on stem cell research the law of the land.”The scientific societies, wedded to liberal politics as they are, don’t know ethics from a black hole.  “We don’t see anyone cloning humans… yet” they say, softening the public, like a frog in the pot, to accept what is coming.    To understand what is going on, read Ann Coulter’s book Godless about the secular liberal love fest with abortions and embryonic stem cells, in spite of the scientific evidence.  Read how liberals use victims and emotional propaganda, like celebrity pleas and courtrooms filled with wheelchairs, to spin their desire to kill as “compassion.”  See intentional folly turn into moral evil in the name of science by people who hate real science.  It will break your heart.    From the people who deny God as the Author of life, and who see humans as evolved slime, what would you expect?  Life is cheap.  Life is trash.  Scientists can play with it and do whatever they want.  Morals, shmorals.  If a cure for some disease emerges, fine, but it’s not a requirement.  Just get me a Nobel Prize.  In a perverted revolutionary cry, the out-of-control scientists shout: give me liberty, and give me death.(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Mobile phones bring the internet’s power to Africa’s poor

first_imgPoor people across Africa are increasingly aware of the power of the internet to improve their lives, such as find a job, and use sophisticated online tools to do just that. In under-resourced environments, mobile phones are the most efficient way for them to access these benefits. A girl takes a photo with her mobile phone during the opening ceremony for a new library in El Fasher, the capital city of North Darfur, Sudan. (Photo: Albert González Farran, UNAMID) • Mobile money is transforming Africa’s economy • Africa urged to invest in artists as visionaries • Africa and space: the continent looks skyward • Kumoodi: from Lagos to the world • Africa’s youth population can lift the continentIndra de Lanerolle, University of the WitwatersrandThere is abundant evidence that poorer people in Africa are now using the internet. In South Africa, most new users come from low income households, many of them living below the poverty line.The main driver of this trend is declining costs. Most people in Africa connect to the internet via mobile devices and the price of these is falling. Nokia, for example, launched a $29 internet phone this year.Pay-as-you-go data can be purchased in small bundles in many African countries, sometimes in increments as low as $0.10. This is true even though data prices in South Africa remain high.Solid data on how far internet use has spread is limited. The most reliable survey conducted in 11 countries in 2011 and 2012 found that about one in three South Africans, one in four Kenyans and fewer than one in 20 Ethiopians used the internet.But it appears clear that where networks are available and prices are affordable, people will use internet services.Low income users appear increasingly aware of the benefits of internet access. A study just published of South African users on low and very low incomes (most of them in households with incomes between about $45 and $450 dollars per month) found that many were aware of and used sophisticated online tools.They recognise the power of the internet for improving their lives, in looking for a job for example. Young women using their mobile phones in rural Makurdi, Benue state, Nigeria. (Photo: Kristian Buus, Stars Foundation)Different uses depending on where you areThe internet implies a single thing, a single network. But we may be coming to a point where this is no longer a useful way to describe the realities of the complex web of physical, economic, social and content networks that span the planet.For those who are well-connected, some in Africa, but most in rich countries, the internet means a wide range of services – from quickly messaging friends to storing files and photos in the cloud to accessing global databases. All are available quickly and cheaply 24/7 at home, at workplaces and educational institutions and in public spaces on a variety of devices including those with keyboards.For many of Africa’s new users, the internet means access to instant messaging (a cheaper substitute to expensive SMS text messaging) and some social media via a mobile phone. It is highly rationed and slow.Our research shows that rich media online – music and video – is consumed very lightly because of cost and slow connections. A Kenyan soldier, part of the African Union Mission to Somalia, takes a photo of himself with his mobile phone at Kismayo seaport in southern Somalia. (Photo: Tobin Jones, AU-UN IST)Broadband challenges remainThis research, and the work of others, point to the fact that for the poor, in Africa and elsewhere, the internet is a mobile-centric world.So people on low incomes are getting benefit from internet access. But the experience is a long way from the visions of broadband for all which more than 20 African countries have committed to.As one young internet user told me in a village in Kenya, you can’t write a job application on your mobile phone. And dependency on mobile networks also means that where competition is limited, data costs are too high for many people to consume data on anything but a very rationed diet.There are also concerns about the openness and security of the internet in Africa. There are significant threats of censorship. Some initiatives to make the internet more widely available are being challenged, undermining its openness. Sahal Gure Mohamed, 62, texts on his mobile while waiting to register at the Ifo refugee camp in Dadaab, Kenya, in August 2011, after fleeing from Beledhawo in Somalia. Just over 10% percent of new arrivals and some 20% of long-term residents at the camp reportedly accessed information through mobile phones. (Photo: Internews Europe)African internet progress set for reviewThe next meeting of the World Internet Project, a network of researchers from over 30 countries, is to be held in Africa for the first time. The July gathering in Johannesburg will be an opportunity to compare progress and challenges on the continent with other parts of the world.It will also provide the opportunity to engage with policy makers, researchers and the private sector on how to build on what has been achieved to enable an affordable, accessible and open internet that is truly global.Indra de Lanerolle is Visiting Researcher, Network Society Project at University of the Witwatersrand.This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.last_img read more

School land leased out to Nithyananda’s ashram: CBSE seeks report from Gujarat

first_imgThe Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has sought a report from Gujarat Education department on how land of a school was leased out to self-styled godman Nithyanand’s ashram in Ahmedabad without its permission, according to officials.“The board has written to the State Education Department to inquire into the matter of leasing out land of DPS Maninagar, Ahmedabad to Swami Nityananda ashram without permission of the board,” a senior CBSE official said.“It has been asked to conduct the enquiry expeditiously and convey the outcome of the report and status of No Objection Certificate (NOC) issued by the State department to the school for seeking CBSE affiliation,” the official added.last_img

San Sebastian victorious over CDSL to earn a spot in the Elite Eight

first_imgLATEST STORIES Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments Read Next Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss PLAY LIST 02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss00:50Trending Articles03:47Tropical Depression ‘Quiel’ enters PAR01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Do not bring these items in SEA Games venues Don’t forget to catch the latest league news and updates by visiting the official website at collegiatechampionsleague.netYou may also follow us on social media via Facebook and on Twitter @PCCLeague.ADVTADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMCcenter_img John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding 8th Top Leaders Forum assessed the progress of public-private efforts in building climate and disaster resilient communities Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Asian shares slide on weak Japan data; US markets closed BI on alert for illegally deployed OFWs to Iraq As expected, the two undefeated schools in the group stages went toe to toe all throughout, with neither team leading by more than eight. The action remained intense with less than two minutes remaining in the ball game, as Stags star Michael Calisaan, who has struggled shooting from the field, made the most from the free throw line, sinking both of his charities to give SSC-R an 83-79 lead with 1:24 to play.With so much on the line, CDSL refused to go away lightly. Jan Dominic Formento nailed a three-point shot in the ensuing possession to pull within one, but in the end, San Sebastian executed when it mattered the most by making crucial plays and hitting from the charity stripe that enabled them to seal the victory.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSSC-R’s starters, save for Calisaan, were all in double digits scoring wise for a combined 60 points, as total team effort managed to cover for their usually dependent forward’s struggles in the game.As a result of their win in the NCR Qualifiers, San Sebastian has earned a spot to play in the PCCL Elite Eight where other top-ranked squads will compete in a single elimination tournament format to determine the country’s one true National Champion! The NCR Qualifiers of the 2017-18 Philippine Collegiate Champions League ended with a bang as the San Sebastian Stags triumphed over the Colegio de San Lorenzo Griffins, 90-85, in a highly entertaining game at the Jose Rizal University Gymnasium in Mandaluyong City Thursday afternoon, January 18.ADVERTISEMENT Afflalo suspended 2 games for fighting with Bjelicalast_img read more