‘Health of Ebola Survivors in Liberia Has Improved,’ Study Shows

first_imgDr. Mosoka Fallah is a joint Principal Investigator of the studyOne-year results from PREVAIL 3 published in the New England Journal of MedicineA five-year study of Ebola survivors in Liberia, funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), has found that although certain health problems remain more common among survivors than among their household and sexual contacts who never had the virus, overall, the health of survivors improved during their first year of follow-up, a press release said yesterday.“The Liberian government, through President George Manneh Weah and the Ministry of Health, would like to thank the researchers and the brave Ebola survivors for their contributions to this study. These results will impact the lives of many others, and I am proud of Liberia‘s role,” said Health Minister Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah.Although survivors initially reported symptoms of urinary frequency, headache, fatigue, muscle pain, memory loss, and joint pain more often than their close contacts in the study, the occurrence of these symptoms and other physical exam findings went down in both groups over a year. Nevertheless, both Ebola survivors and their close contacts were found to have many health problems overall.These are among the first-year study findings reported in the March 7th issue of the New England Journal of Medicine by the Partnership for Research on Ebola Virus in Liberia (PREVAIL). PREVAIL, established in 2014, is a clinical research collaboration between the government of Liberia and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the NIH.“The study validates the fact that Liberia has emerged out of the onslaught of the 2014 Ebola outbreak to become a leader in Ebola research that is benefiting humanity,” notes Mosoka P. Fallah, PhD, the Liberian Principal Investigator of the study. “It further signifies the impact of building modern research in a resource-constrained nation through collaboration with a developed country. The champions of this study are the survivors without whom this study would not have been possible,” Dr. Fallah adds.PREVAIL 3, launched in 2015, is the largest study comparing the health of 966 Ebola survivors and 2,350 of their uninfected close contacts, who help researchers more reliably identify which health issues are specific to survivors. The study is ongoing at three study sites: John F. Kennedy Medical Center, C.H. Rennie Hospital, and Duport Road Clinic.The new report describes findings from the participants examined at three different times: at study entry, at a 6-month follow-up, and at a 12-month follow-up. For each visit during that first year, the PREVAIL team compared reported symptoms, physical findings, and laboratory values in the survivor and close contact groups.A smaller group of 564 survivors and 635 close contacts received eye exams by PREVAIL eye doctors at the JFK Medical Center. Uveitis (a group of inflammatory eye diseases that can cause pain, redness, swelling, tissue damage, light sensitivity, and vision loss) was the only health condition that did not improve in both survivors and close contacts during the one-year follow-up period. Survivors are encouraged to visit eye doctors to check for eye inflammation (and treatment if needed).All other abnormal findings and symptoms declined among both survivors and close contacts in one year, and no new findings or symptoms were observed. According to the researchers, this improvement may be attributed to several factors, including resolution of post-traumatic stress disorder over time, interaction with a health care system, and resolution of tissue damage sustained during the acute Ebola illness.Still, the frequency of most symptoms, neurologic findings, and uveitis was greater among survivors than among close contacts. Study neurologists continue to follow a smaller group of the survivors and close contacts to better understand and describe the neurologic issues experienced after surviving the illness.“The PREVAIL Ebola survivors study is groundbreaking. It now helps us to better understand the excruciating pains, complications, and health issues facing our heroes after they survive this horrible disease,” notes Tolbert Nyenswah, LLB, MPH, Director-General of the National Public Health Institute of Liberia. “We will not rest until we find a lasting solution to the Ebola scourge,” he adds.Previous studies indicate that Ebola virus genetic material (RNA) can persist in the semen of male survivors, posing a potential risk of virus transmission to sexual partners. Ebola virus RNA was detected in samples from 30 percent of the 266 male survivors. The longest time from acute illness to detection of Ebola virus RNA was 40 months.  The study also found that more than 30 men had two consecutive negative tests followed by one or more positive test, suggesting that Ebola virus RNA may appear and disappear in semen for longer than previously reported by others. The presence of Ebola virus RNA in semen, however, does not prove the presence of infectious virus, and more research is needed to understand the risks.During the remaining years of study, PREVAIL researchers will continue to follow the health of survivors as well as to determine whether people who survive Ebola have developed immunity that will protect them from getting Ebola in the future. They also seek to determine whether EVD survivors can transmit Ebola infection to close contacts.Co-leaders of the study are Dr. Fallah, Deputy Director General for Technical Services at the National Public Health Institute of Liberia; and Michael C. Sneller, MD, Medical Officer at NIAID/NIH. The study was sponsored by the Liberia Ministry of Health in collaboration with NIAID/NIH. Study partners include the National Eye Institute and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, both part of NIH; the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis; and the Johns Hopkins University Wilmer Eye Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, the release concluded.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Salamander Genes Give Darwinists a Wake-Up Call

A press release from UC Berkeley says that the evolutionary family tree of salamanders, once thought secure, has been turned topsy-turvy by a study of the genes.  The opening paragraph is reminiscent of an irritating alarm clock going off in a comfy bedroom:Biologists take for granted that the limbs and branches of the tree of life – painstakingly constructed since Linnaeus started classifying organisms 270 years ago – are basically correct.  New genetic studies, the thinking goes, will only prune the twigs, perhaps shuffling around a few species here and there.    Hence the surprise when a new University of California, Berkeley, study of the largest family of salamanders produced a genetic family tree totally inconsistent with the accepted classification, which is based primarily on physical features. (Emphasis added in all quotes.)To be sure, the study did not put salamanders in with birds or sharks or something that radical.  But the results were radical enough to make evolutionists seriously consider a radical interpretation: that some lineages lost a function and then re-evolved it:Salamanders formerly classified together because of similar characteristics, such as a tail that breaks at only one spot as opposed to anywhere when stressed, now appear not to be close relatives at all.  And salamanders that go through an aquatic larval stage are scattered about on different branches instead of grouped on one limb of the tree: Apparently some salamander lineages lost the larval stage and then reacquired it again.“The results were stunningly different than what we anticipated,” said David Wake, an expert on salamanders at the university.  The study conducted by one of his graduate students found major upsets in the phylogenetic tree determined from mitochondrial DNA analysis.  The student, Rachel Mueller, learned a lesson: “this does tell us that, when reconstructing evolutionary relationships, you have to be careful which morphological features you assume are conservative and haven’t evolved much, and which you think are likely to have changed over time.”The new family tree shows, however, that some terrestrial salamanders regained their larval stage after moving back to the water.  This may have happened in three separate lineages of Plethodontids [the largest family of salamanders], which is surprising for a seemingly complex feature biologists have assumed arose just once, very early in the history of salamanders.Wake also has found that the three very different types of salamander tongues, some which are short and stubby and some that can be flung out nearly the length of the salamander’s body, “have evolved several times in different lineages.”  The new genetic data, published in PNAS,1 tend to confirm that, he said.    Meanwhile, in Science Sept. 10,2 Elizabeth Pennisi says James Hanken of Harvard has proposed, based on genetic studies, that a certain line of miniature salamanders from Mexico acquired upper teeth independently four times.  He defended this view against critics at the 7th International Congress of Vertebrate Morphology in Boca Raton, Florida last month:Some of Hanken’s colleagues question his interpretation, noting that the common wisdom holds that once a trait disappears from a group of organisms, it rarely resurfaces.  Hanken’s conclusion is “something that’s hard to defend,” says Ann Huysseune of Ghent University in Belgium.  But Hanken argues that these small vertebrates must have had a lot of evolutionary tricks up their sleeves in order to survive tough times.  He points to the success that small animals in general have had after mass extinctions and attributes that to their ability to rapidly change and adapt.    Thorius species, he thinks, may have retained the capability of making upper teeth, even if their tooth-building program became short-circuited.  The reappearance of upper teeth in the four salamander species, says Hanken, “offers an example of latent developmental potentialities that reside within living species but which may not be manifest or expressed until far into the future.”1Mueller, Wake et al., “Morphological homoplasy, life history evolution, and historical biogeography of plethodontid salamanders inferred from complete mitochondrial genomes,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 10.1073/pnas.0405785101, published online Sept. 13, 2004.2Elizabeth Pennisi, “Tiny Salamanders Show Their Teeth,” Science, Vol 305, Issue 5689, 1396-1397, 3 September 2004, [DOI: 10.1126/science.305.5689.1396b].How long must we hold onto an outmoded hypothesis when it continually forces its adherents to believe absurd things?  To get a larval stage or a ballistic tongue once is astronomically improbable.  How can anyone believe it happened multiple times?  And to believe that something as complex as the suite of developmental genes for a set of teeth can just wait inert in a genome for the right time far into the future, without being eliminated by natural selection, violates Darwin’s own principles.  Salamanders don’t have sleeves.  How can they hide tricks up them?  If any problem in evolution can be explained away by magic tricks, it is not science.  The genetic data are not proving Darwin right, so Chuck his theory.  Wake up; it was only a bad trip (see 09/12/2004 commentary).(Visited 9 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 read more

The Hustler’s Playbook: Be Authentic

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now You do not need to wait for someone to give you permission to be the real and authentic version of yourself. You don’t need anyone else’s approval or their blessing to become what you must become. Withholding who you are is to withhold your gifts, your truth, your contribution. You have all the permission you will ever need now.You don’t need to imitate anyone else. You don’t need to be a pale copy of a brighter original. You don’t need to succumb to the fear that you are somehow not enough and that it would be better to be like someone else (or to be that someone). You are enough.You also don’t need to be a derivation. You don’t need to be “the next” anyone or anything. Your truth is your own. Living someone else’s truth is to live a lie. Your interpretation is as valid as anyone else’s. No one else’s way is your way.You have to believe in yourself. You have to believe that your truth is enough, that your contribution is enough, that you are enough. The doubt you feel is the fear of being judged by others. It’s what happens when you live in a society that judges, that separates us from each other. Your belief in yourself has to be strong enough to overcome your fear of being judged.You have to have the confidence to act. You have to believe that you have the right to live your truth, even when those around you will work to make you believe that you don’t. Some would have you believe it’s safer to conform, to turn down your light, or extinguish it completely. But the real danger isn’t acting; it’s not acting and wasting the time you have been given.You have to rely on yourself. You have to trust yourself, your intuition, and your instincts. You have to believe that you alone can do what must be done and that you can make a difference. You have to be the one that you count on.Your mission and vision are your own. Your purpose is your own, and you decide what that purpose is. Your time is short. Make the most of it. Today is day one.last_img read more

Zomato secures 210 million from Alibabas payment affiliate Ant Financial

first_imgZomatoFacebookThe battle for supremacy in the food delivery platform in India is going to get stiffer as Zomato has secured a fresh funding of $210 million from Alibaba’s payment affiliate Ant Financial.The company plans to take its rival Swiggy head on to have a larger chunk of the pie in the Indian food delivery marketplace. In a stock filing on Friday, Info Edge submitted that its stakes in Zomato will decrease from 30.91% to 27.68% after the latest fund infusion from Alipay Singapore Holding Pte. Ltd or other affiliates of Ant Financial.The filing said that “We would like to bring to your knowledge that Zomato has signed a definitive agreement to undertake a primary fundraise of approximately USD 210 million from Alipay Singapore.”The Economic Times reports that if the estimates are to be believed, the investment will more than 10 percent stake which will take the valuation of Zomato to approximately $2 billion. Earlier this year, the food delivery platform had raised $150 million from Ant Financial, which was valued at $1.1 billion.Last month, as a part of the investment round, Ant financials secured the right to become the largest stakeholder in one of India’s biggest food delivery platform, Zomato. The fresh investment is expected to make Ant Financial the largest shareholder, or close to Info Edge’s 27.68 percent stake post-dilution. Before the current round of investment, it held around 20-22 percent stake in Zomato.The search for future investment in Zomato is likely to continue as its rival Swiggy is under discussion to secure $500-700 million from Alibaba rival and WeChat application owner Tencent besides existing backer Naspers at a valuation of $2.5-3 billion.Zomato is aggressively looking for the investors as last month it held talks with China’s online travel agency Ctrip for an approximate $400 million in the company. Besides that Zomato as well as Swiggy held discussions with Japanese Softbank Vision Fund.Zomato claimed to have received 21 million monthly order run rate in its operations based out of India in the month of September. It also witnessed the highest daily order volume during last month at 7,00,000 orders each day of the week.last_img read more

The information man of Jessore

first_imgAshraf HossainAshraf Hossain is a living legend in Jessore’s Chaugacha upazila, helping the people in his area to avail the Right to Information (RTI) act. Ashraf approaches various departments of government organisations for information and provides this information to people who need assistance. Thus he tries to render government and private organisations accountable.Abdul Jabbar needed help from Ashraf Hossain. He is a day labourer of Boro Gobindapur in Jessore’s Chaugacha upazila. He cut his hand while on the job and rushed to hospital on Saturday. Jabbar’s brother called Ashraf and Ashraf called the Chaugacha health complex’s authorities.Ashraf’s call made the hospital authorities provide Jabbar their best treatment.Jabbar told Prothom Alo, “The doctor took time and care to stitch my hand. I would not get the best treatment if Ashraf uncle had not called them”.Ramzan Ali from the village Laskarpur has been facing inordinate delays in registering land at the upazila land office. Ashraf Hossain sent him to an official and the work was done within a few days.Ramzan said, “Without Ashraf’s help I would have faced more hassle”.Ashraf Hossain, 50, lives with his wife and two children in Jamlata village of the upazila. And eighth grade drop-out Ashraf, is a timber trader.Ashraf always protested against any irregularities, corruption, and unlawful activities around him since his childhood. Now he fights against the corrupt with proof. He even provides the proof and information to the media.Ashraf Hossain applies for necessary information to different government departments, using RTI. He asks for information if he hears of any irregularities or corruption.He complains to the information commission if any official refuses to provide him with the necessary information.Ashraf, so far, has submitted application 26 times to various government departments under the RTI act. He received 18 sets of information on time, four after approaching the information commission and four are being processed.Ashraf was harvesting rice with his son in the field near home when the Prothom Alo correspondent visited him.Ashraf said, a private development organisation MRDI arranged a training camp on the RTI act in it office at Shinghajhuli union parishad in 2015. The seven-day camp was organised by Manusher Jonno Foundation.”I came to know that according to the law every citizen has the right to any information from the authorities. After the training ended, I started to seek information from different departments of the government offices” he added. Ashraf said, Chaugacha upazila health complex, Chaugacha Upazila Education Office, Chaugacha Juba Unnayan Office and Shishu Niloy Foundation refused to provide him with information.Shishu Niloy Foundation did not even accept his application and an official even insulted him. He complained against the foundation and three government offices to the information commission.Ashraf said the officers apologised and provided him with the information he asked for later on.Now his applications are under process in Chaugacha Primary Education office, Dhuliani UP, the office of Jessore district civil surgeon and Chaugacha Rural Electrification office.According to Ashraf, the RTI act is a great initiative as it renders various organisations accountable. But he had been threatened too, while trying to avail information. His wife, Taslima Khatun said, “My husband helps people, I am happy about that. But sometimes he has to face threats to his life. I am worried about him” Ashraf’s initiative to ask for information is the talk of the town. Following his footsteps, Jahangir Alam, a Singapore migrant from Ujirpur village, Abu Kalam, Dablu Mia from Muktarpur and Nawab Ali from Fatehpur sought information from various offices under the RTI act.Sukumar Das, the acting president of TIB’s Shocheton Nagorik Committee in Jessore said, “This is certainly a positive initiative by Ashraf Ali. Being inspired, many others are seeking information from different offices.”Earlier, Ashraf applied for lists of free medicines provided by the government and the register book that contained the patient lists provided with the medicines from January to September on 26 August in 2015. He applied to the Jessore civil surgeon’s office on 7 October. They did not provide him with any information.Ashraf then complained to the information commission and the commission ordered them to provide him with the necessary information within 15 days.After that, the patients started to receive free medication and treatment at the Upazila Health Complex.A patient at the health complex, Shahar Banu said, “I have been admitted into the hospital for 10 days. I got all the medicines for free.”Ashraf applied to the Chaugacha upazila education officer for a copy of the student-list who get the stipend and government allocations in Garibpur primary school. There have been no irregularities in distribution of stipend since then. ASM Kabir Hossain, the senior information officer of Jessore district said, “Every citizen has the right to information from any department. Ashraf Hossain is seeking information using RTI act which is a very positive initiative”.Shaheen Anam, the executive director of Manusher Jonno Foundation, said the RTI act was introduced with the purpose to establish good governance. “We can achieve the goal if the public starts to use the act” he added.Shaheen again said, “It is sad that rural people are using the RTI act more than urban ones. We need to work on this to change the scene”.*The article originally published in Prothom Alo print edition has been rewritten in English by Farjana Liakat.last_img read more

Court calls Nizam Hazaris MP status legal

first_imgNizam Uddin Hazari. File photoThe High Court on Thursday declared parliament membership of the Awami League’s Nizam Uddin Hazari legal, reports UNB.The single bench of justice Md Abu Zafar Siddique handed down the verdict rejecting the writ petition filed challenging the legality of his parliament membership.On 27 February, the same bench set Thursday for delivering its verdict on completion of the hearing, said Satyaranjon Mandal, lawyer of the petitioner.On 15 January, the single HC bench of justice Farid Ahmed felt embarrassed to hear the petition and sent it to the then acting chief justice Md Abdul Wahhab Miah.Later, the acting chief justice assigned justice Md Abu Zafar Siddique for hearing and disposing of the petition.The High Court felt embarrassed for eight times to hear the writ petition and gave split orders once after hearing the pleas.On 6 December last year, an HC bench delivered the dissenting verdicts on the writ petition challenging the legality of AL MP Nizam Uddin Hazari’s parliament membership.Senior judge of the bench justice Md Emdadul Huq declared the election of the Feni-2 constituency MP illegal while junior judge justice FRM Nazmul Ahsan rejected the petition.In 2014, Shakhawat Hossain Bhuiyan, a Jubo League leader of Feni, filed the writ petition with the HC attaching a newspaper report of 10 May 2014, stating that Nizam Uddin Hazari had been awarded 10 years’ imprisonment in an arms case, but had been freed from prison two years and 10 months before his jail term was completed.last_img read more

Now accepting reservations Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas

first_img Share Tags: California, Four Seasons, Los Cabos, Resort Travelweek Group Now accepting reservations: Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas LOS CABOS, MEXICO — The all-new Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas is now accepting reservations beginning Nov. 1, 2019, inviting guests to experience Los Cabos in a new way.Situated on the East Cape of the Baja California Peninsula, the 405-hectare resort community of Costas Palmas stretches along 3.2 kilometres of swimmable white sand beach on the shores of the Sea of Cortez.“We are truly breaking new ground here, being part of this community that, while only 45-minutes from Los Cabos International Airport, presents an undiscovered paradise like no other on the Baja Peninsula,” says Vince Parrotta, Four Seasons President, Hotel Operations – Americas West.The grounds offer five dining options, seven hectares of organic farm and orchards, a Spa and Wellness Centre with 10 stand-alone treatment rooms with two couples suites; four expansive pools; a Robert Trent Jones II 18-hole golf course; a Sports Complex that includes tennis, volleyball and basketball and fitness facilities; and a well-stocked Teen Centre and Kids for All Seasons program.More news:  Le Boat has EBBs along with its new 2020 brochureThe resort features 141 guest rooms, including 23 suites, all with views of the Sea of Cortez and private terraces. The interiors include sunlit bathrooms with sea views and free-standing oversized bathtubs. Four Seasons Private Residences will also soon be available for short-term vacation stays.The on-site culinary team is led by Chef Tonatiuh Cuevas, who most recently introduced the Nayarit-inspired restaurant Zanaya at Four Seasons Hotel Mexico City. Dining venues include Casa de Brasa, a Baja-inspired brasserie; El Puesto, for sea-to-table ceviches; The Cove, an al fresco bar and grill; and Ginger’s, an all-day eclectic café. There’s also an extensive collection of local tequilas and mezcals to complement the food and beverage offerings, as well as an impressive collection of Greek, French and regional wines from Baja Mexico, the oldest wine-producing nation in the Americas.“Costa Palmas and now Four Seasons Resort truly introduce a new way to experience Cabo. Our vision from the outset was to create a fresh and mindfully planned community in the natural beauty of the East Cape for those of all ages who appreciate a natural setting, a refined approach to design, a spirited sense of adventure and of course, impeccable service,” adds Jason Grosfeld, Chairman and CEO of Irongate (Costa Palmas developer).More news:  CIE Tours launches first-ever River Cruise CollectionFor more information, visit fourseasons.com/loscabos.center_img Posted by Wednesday, May 22, 2019 << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more