Downtown fish mural to be completed this week

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisAlpena, Mich. — Reconstructing the fish mural in downtown Alpena has been an ongoing process ever since weather destroyed the creation back in 2017.Now, the fish mural is only days away from completion. Artist Tony Hendrick has been setting the 3–D elements of the mural over the past few days. He will finish up installing the last few fish and plans to coat the elements. The project is expected to be completed on Wednesday.Hendrick believes that this is only the beginning for more community involved art projects around the town.“The community literally is the creator of this art,” said Hendrick. “There is so much more that can be done because this project shows what the community of Alpena can do.”Hundreds of community members helped paint the 3-D fish on the mural. Folks are encouraged to stop by and say hello to Hendrick while he finishes up the artwork.Art in the Loft plans to throw a celebration in honor of the mural completion on July 20. Find out more details about the celebration by visiting their website http://www.artintheloft.org/AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThis Tags: 3-D elements, alpena, Art, Art in the Loft, community, Downtown Alpena, Fish Mural, Mural, Tony HendrickContinue ReadingPrevious Photo of the Day for Monday, May 13Next New library exhibit encourages thinking beyondlast_img read more

Mother of Danielle McLaughlin to visit site where her daughter was murdered

first_imgThe devastated mother of murdered Buncrana women Danielle McLaughlin plans to visit the site where her daughter’s mutilated body was found.The Donegal woman was raped and killed in India in 2017. Local man Vikat Bhagat is currently on trial.The 28-year-old’s mother Andrea Brannigan told the Irish Mirror she wants to come face-to-face with the alleged killer. She said: “I will go to the site where her body was found. Locals and tourists have made a shrine there.“The farmer that owns the land gave them permission and they held a Mass service there on her anniversary.“There are loads of photos of Danielle and people can light some candles.“If the trial is on I’ll go to it when I get over there. I would like to see him but I don’t know what I’d say to him. Danielle would be for forgiveness herself but I have no feelings for him at all. “I’ll never get justice because Danielle is not here but I would like answers.”Ms Brannigan also criticised the Government for its slow progress on amending the Victim’s Charter to include Irish victims of crime abroad.Taoiseach Leo Varadkar told her following their meeting last September it would be amended in Danielle’s name.She was informed via email it would be finalised this summer however, a spokeswoman for the Department of Justice has said it is now being redrafted entirely, much to Ms Brannigan’s disappointment.The spokeswoman added: “The Victims Charter is currently being redrafted in its entirety, taking account of the arrangements being embedded in the criminal justice system for victims arising from the EU Victims Directive and the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Act, 2017. “Work is well advanced with a view to finalising the Charter in the near future. Engagement will continue with the family of Danielle McLaughlin in the completion of this work.”The late Danielle McLaughlinMs Brannigan said: “I’m frustrated we don’t know yet what’s going to be included in it and we want to make sure it does help people who are affected by crime abroad.“People don’t know where to turn when something like this happens and I want support for families that are struggling.”Meanwhile, it’s understood Danielle’s murder trial could last a number of years. Yesterday the court heard from the eighth witness, one of 50 set to give evidence.Ms Brannigan said: “I don’t cope some days, it’s really hard.“I just want the court case over with.“I struggle when I see her friends moving on and she isn’t here.“I often wonder what Danielle would be doing now.”Mother of Danielle McLaughlin to visit site where her daughter was murdered was last modified: September 17th, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Secularists Adrift with Embryonic Ethics

first_img(Visited 13 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 From stem cells to genetically-modified embryos, technology is outpacing ethical rules, and secular ethicists are at a loss what to endorse.The decade-long tug-of-war between advocates of embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells continues.  The retraction of Obokata’s quick-and-easy STAP method (Science, Nature; see 1/30/14 entry) for producing induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) leaves other production methods unharmed.  In fact, researchers are finding out that there’s untapped potential in the human body, Medical Xpress reported: “adult pluripotent stem cells are located throughout the body and are able to become every tissue, provided these cells receive the right instructions.”  These cells act as a “reserve army for regeneration” in the body.  The Editor of the FASEB journal is optimistic: “As the intersection between cancer and stem cell research becomes closer and clearer, all of today’s medical treatments will begin to look as crude as Civil War medicine.”The CIRM ChroniclesWith this arsenal of ethically-clear cells at the cutting edge of research, why work with human embryos at all?  Proponents of embryonic stem cell research continue their quest—with nothing to show for it.  Nature reports today that the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, funded with $3 billion after a hyped ballot initiative promised medical breakthroughs with embryonic stem cells, is “on the line” to back up that hype with hope.  In “Stem cells: hope on the line,” Erica Check Hayden reports,A decade ago, voters in California changed the biomedical research landscape by directly funding embryonic stem-cell research. Now the organization they created needs a hit to survive….Californians voted CIRM into existence in 2004, making it the largest funder of stem-cell work in the world. The money — the proceeds of bond sales that must be repaid with $3 billion in interest by taxpayers — helped to bring 130 scientists to the state, and created several thousand jobs there. It has funded research that led to the publication of more than 1,700 papers, and it has contributed to five early clinical trials.The institute has navigated a difficult path, however. CIRM had to revamp its structure and practices in response to complaints about inefficiency and potential conflicts of interest. It has also had to adapt its mission to seismic shifts in stem-cell science.A decade later, no successful medical treatment has arrived.  The real-estate developer, Robert Klein, who wrote and promoted the initiative and became CIRM’s first chairman of the board (till 2011), is at it again, because CIRM is running out of money.  Promoting “CIRM 2,” he is depicting stem cell funding as warfare between science (i.e., pro-Obama liberalism) and religion (i.e., conservative ethics): “we will protect the freedom of science to ethically pursue knowledge in this country outside of religious ideology.”  (It’s clear he thinks ethics can detach itself from religion.)  With this angle, he hopes to tap another $2 billion from taxpayers to keep CIRM alive past 2017.To stay alive, though, CIRM has had to latch onto the bandwagon of non-embryonic sources: iPSCs and other adult stem cells.  That’s where the real progress has been made outside of CIRM (such as growing cornea tissue from adult stem cells; see Massachusetts Eye and Ear Center).  Despite all the funding to CIRM, “they haven’t cured a patient,” a critic noted.  Klein is backtracking, claiming that his Proposition 71 never promised cures in ten years.  Hayden, though, retorts by quoting ads from the time that promised “curing diseases and saving lives.”  One disillusioned voter says in a callout in the article, “I’m telling you, pal, I would have a hard time voting for it again.”CIRM will “need a home run” to stay viable, Hayden says.  Meanwhile, they’re shifting their hype from hope to attack on the religious right, using fear tactics.  CIRM’s current chairman, Jonathan Thomas, put it this way: “If we don’t take a position now, the next ten years may see a theocratic government at the state and federal level that restricts scientific research in this country for the next 50–100 years.”  So hand over another $2 billion, taxpayers.One would hope that successful research that leads to tangible cures would not have trouble raising money without relying on the government dole.  As for what he and Klein meant by working to “ethically pursue knowledge,” Hayden didn’t say.Embryo PolicyEarlier in June, two scientists in Nature warned that researchers need to “sell help not hope” by regulating the stem cell industry.  “Stem cells are being used as a wedge in calls to allow unproven medical interventions onto the market, warn Paolo Bianco and Douglas Sipp.”  They view with alarm the charlatans in foreign countries who use the phrase “stem cells” as a draw.  Nature’s editors could not point to a single treatment using human embryonic stem cells in its editorial, “Good practice,” advocating freedom to use them.UC San Diego claims that cloned stem cells are better than iPSCs.  The researchers claim that embryonic stem cells are the gold standard; cloned cells (somatic cell nuclear transfer), “in which genetic material from an adult cell is transferred into an empty egg cell” are almost as good, and iPSCs are third best.  Since they involve extraction of an egg, cloned stem cells (championed by Mitalipov last year; see 6/12/13) have some of the same ethical issues as embryonic stem cells, which “have long been limited by ethical and logistical considerations.”  Nature, though, says that “Nuclear transfer is ethically, logistically and technically more difficult” than iPSC work.  “It requires young women to provide eggs and creates an embryo that is then destroyed for research.”One letter-writer to Nature in June made it clear he knows what embryonic research is about.  Even though he supports it, he admitted, “Central to the debate is the ethical status of the human embryo between fertilization and implantation.”  Joep Geraedts wrote because he is irked by the “democracy carousel” of citizen campaigns that try to restrict research on human embryos.Nature printed an article by an Arab, Rana Dajani, promoting Jordan’s new policy on research with human embryos:There is no consensus on when human embryonic life begins, but the majority of Muslim scholars consider it to start 40–120 days after conception and therefore hold the view that a fertilized egg up to 5 days old has no soul — it is not ‘human life’ but ‘biological life’. So for many, there is no ethical problem in the Islamic faith with using an early embryo to produce stem cells.There is a problem, of course, in Jewish and Christian theology.  Why, then, should Nature consider this a policy that can “guide the Middle East” where many citizens do not concur with the views of “the majority of Muslim scholars”?Three Parents and a BabyEmbryo researchers continue to push the line.  New to the technology is the concept of “three parents and a baby” – using donor cells to bypass defective mitochondria in biological parents.  The BBC News reported that the technology may be available within 2 years in the UK, making it hard for ethicists to contain a potential Pandora’s box.  “Ethical concerns have been raised and some campaign groups are worried it could be the thin end of the wedge to genetic modification of people,” the article says.  A headline from the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna says, “Three parents and a baby – Scientists advise caution with regard to artificial insemination method”.  Even staunchly secular New Scientist asked, “Is the UK being too hasty over three-parent babies?”  In that article, two bioethicists, Donna Dickenson and Marcy Darnovsky, think society needs time; at a recent public conference, “All those who spoke on the issue thought that allowing human trials would be premature.”Key worries include remnants of mutant mitochondrial DNA that persist despite the treatment, and the disruption of complex interactions between mitochondrial genes and those in the cell nucleus. There are also daunting challenges in terms of designing meaningful trials, or safe ones, because pregnancy and childbirth pose major health risks for women with serious mitochondrial disorders.Furthermore, MPs were troubled by a lack of proposals to legally require follow-up studies for a technique that may have implications not only for the children born as a result of it, but for their descendants.Perhaps the headline on an unrelated topic is apropos: “Because we can, does it mean we should?” (The Conversation).  PhysOrg reminds readers of the decades-long negative impacts of China’s forced one-child policy; now the country is attempting to “rebalance” the gender inequality, but it looks like too little, too late.  Two letter-writers to Nature wrote about Germany’s ongoing skittishness with any practices that arouse “residual suspicion of genetic diagnostics after the sinister history of Nazi eugenics” (embryo screening being the current concern).  The long-term impacts of bad ethical choices cannot be ignored.Ronald Reagan famously said that the scariest words in the English language are, “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help you.”  Some might want to replace “government” with “science lab.”If citizens do not keep watch on them, their government and their scientists will get away with whatever they feel like doing.  We are not lab rats for elites.  While there are many honest men and women in these institutions, we need to realize that government officials and scientists act often with mixed motives.  Government should exist by the consent of the governed.  Similarly, scientific research should proceed by the consent of the society.  Only an informed public, well-taught in the principles of ethics, can rein in mad scientists who treat embryos as personal playthings.  And ethics without Biblical theology is like a ship with a short anchor.  It provides some drag, but drifts wherever the helmsman wishes to go.  Some secular “ethicists” don’t even provide drag; they speed up the route to the rocks.last_img read more

SA wheelchair tennis shines at Ability Challenge

first_img9 April South Africa’s excellence in wheelchair tennis was celebrated at The Ability Challenge at iThembelihe Lsen School in Primrose, Germiston on Tuesday, with some of the country’s wheelchair stars taking on top players and celebrities in a team competition. The iThembelihe Lsen School is one of the development schools earmarked by Wheelchair Tennis South Africa to introduce and develop the game.Wheelchair tennis stars World number two in the quads division Lucas Sithole, number seven in the women’s rankings KG Montjane, and men’s number 15 Evans Maripa were among those in action. TV and radio anchor Robert Marawa acted as master of ceremonies and and a festive vibe of music, dance and top-class tennis entertained the 400-strong crowd, which included former First Lady Zanele Mbeki. Four teams – Expresso Brews, e-Flava, Power of 5 and Ten-Spiration – battled for title honours in the challenge, with each team consisting of a celebrity, a wheelchair tennis player and two able-bodied players.Winning team The winning team was Ten-Spiration, the SABC Morning Live team, which featured anchor Vaylen Kirtley, wheelchair tennis star Leon Els, Danie Visser – formerly a world number one in doubles – and tennis professional Michelle Sammons. They defeated the team of Expresso Brews – presenter Adrian Hogan, professional coach Holger Losch, Evans Maripa and professional player Madrie Le Roux – 4-3 in a thrilling final. Morning Live presenter Vaylen Kirtley said she was happy to have won the title with her team and was honoured to be part of the event. “What a great initiative and hats off to Airports Company South Africa and Wheelchair Tennis South Africa for putting the challenge together,” she said afterwards. “This sets the tone for the forthcoming Gauteng and SA Open events, which are sure to be a great success.”‘A shining example’ South African Davis Cup captain John-Laffnie de Jager, part of the Power of 5 team, said he felt honoured to be part of the day. “Wheelchair tennis in our country is a shining example of what a sporting code needs to do to encourage interest and participation,” he said. “The atmosphere was unbelievable and what great fun was had by all. I’ll be back, if invited again.” DJ Milkshake, another member of the Power of 5 team, was equally enthusiastic about the day. “That was really wicked! What a cool day, and I am real blessed to be part of it. Just a pity my team didn’t smack it,” he enthused. ‘This is so good for the game’ Former ATP professional and Davis Cup player Jeff Coetzee, who turned out for e- Flava team, said the Challenge was inspirational. “Tennis is such a fun loving sport, the game of a life time, and the game of love. Today we had tons of fun, saw players and fans of all ages, and everyone just loved the day. This is so good for the game. What tennis needs is more Ability Challenges,” he reckoned Members of South Africa’s Fed Cup squad – Natalie Grandin, Madrie Le Roux, Natasha Fourouclas and Michelle Sammons – also participated in the Challenge.‘Committed Unathi Batyashe of Airports Company South Africa, the sponsors of the event and of the two big forthcoming international wheelchair tennis tournaments, commented: “Disabled sport is globally becoming more recognised and Airports Company South Africa have earmarked wheelchair tennis as the disability code they are committed to supporting. “We were excited and delighted to have exposed more people to wheelchair tennis and to our top wheelchair players at the Ability Challenge. “We believe through the event more people appreciated the skills and performances of these players by watching them in action at iThembelihe Lsen School.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

The Truth About Telling the Truth

first_imgThe client had a major problem. They weren’t achieving the outcomes they needed, and they were entering a critical stage, one in which it was imperative that they obtain the outcomes their clients needed.The first reason this company was not obtaining the results they needed was driven by the fact they selected a partner who wasn’t strategic enough. This supplier lacked the core competencies and capabilities to help them. This was a good company, they simply had the wrong business model for this particular client.The second reason they were failing was that they weren’t spending enough money.A Case of UnderinvestingDuring our first meeting, I explained to the CEO and his Chief Operating Officer that they were underinvesting in the outcome they needed. I explained to them that in order to reach their goals, they would have to spend an additional million dollars over 12 months. That was the required investment based on their current situation.After meeting with me, this company decided to meet with a competitor. That competitor provided conflicting information. Where I had recommended they spend $1 million, my competitor recommended they spend $500,000, not an insignificant amount of money. Naturally, they wanted to believe a $500,000 investment would achieve the results they needed. They accepted my competitor’s recommendation, and they rejected mine.One week later, I received an email from someone on the operations team literally begging for help with this set of data points that indicated that the $500,000 investment was not working.The TruthYou do not serve your clients by allowing them to underinvest in the results they need. You do not serve your clients by telling them what they want to hear, especially when it comes to what is necessary to produce results, whether those things are money, time, energy, or real changes. You don’t serve your clients by avoiding uncomfortable conversations.If you really want to help people, tell them the truth, not what you believe they want to hear so that you can win an opportunity only to fail the client. The truth about telling the truth is that it won’t always win your business in the short run. But it will help you with the long game.last_img read more

‘Confident’ Rene Catalan vows to beat Yoshitaka Naito

first_img“Definitely, this is the toughest and biggest match of my career,” said Catalan, who has the edge in striking but is also ready the moment Naito takes the fight to the ground. “Naito is a former world champion, well-experienced and we all know how dangerous he is on the mat, but I’m confident with my skills and I will do whatever it takes to win and get my title shot.”“I’ve been training for these kinds of guys for so long, and I’ve been training hard almost everyday.” he said. “I feel good and confident about this match. I will win in Yangon and put myself closer to my dream of becoming a world champion.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesCatalan is still going strong at 40. In fact, he claims to be coming off “one of the best” training camps he’s had.“This is definitely one of the best camps I had, which is just in time for the most important match of my career,” he said. P2.5 B shabu seized in Makati sting, Chinese national nabbed LATEST STORIES Rene Catalan. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netFilipino Rene Catalan vows to win ahead of the biggest fight of his career against former strawweight world champion Yoshitaka Naito of Japan in ONE: Reign of Valor on Friday in Yangon, Myanmar.Catalan is putting his five-match winning streak on the line against Naito, who is eager to bounce back from a tough loss at the hands of another Filipino in Joshua Pacio six months ago.ADVERTISEMENT PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH 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 City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss MOST READ P2.5 B shabu seized in Makati sting, Chinese national nabbed Hong Kong tunnel reopens, campus siege nears end Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Trump campaign, GOP groups attack Google’s new ad policy Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Depleted UST stuns La Salle in 3 sets for share of 3rd spot Lacson backs proposal to elect president and vice president in tandem SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte 1 dead, 3 injured in Quezon road crash View commentslast_img read more

Getting robotic surgical tools from the lab to the operating room

Citation: Getting robotic surgical tools from the lab to the operating room (2018, May 9) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-robotic-surgical-tools-lab-room.html The latest ARMA tech—a prototype robot system to remove bladder tumors—shows great promise, having proved successful in animal studies. The research, recently published by the Journal of Endourology, earned a best paper award at the 2018 Engineering and Urology Society conference.Among all cancer diagnoses, the incidence of bladder cancer ranks fourth in the United States and seventh worldwide in males. “Bladder cancer also is very expensive to treat. It requires repeat resections because surgeons remove a bladder tumor ‘piecewise’ and that often results in recurrence and more surgeries,” Simaan said.Simaan and his team developed a transurethral robot platform called TURBot. It is the first endoscopic robotic system to provide full surgical coverage with visibility of the bladder, including the neck and dome, and the first to have been evaluated during in vivo animal experiments.Three 1.8 mm working channels of TURBot’s miniature multibackbone continuum robot use graspers, custom flexible cameras, and other imaging probes to reach all regions of the bladder. Simulated bladder lesions were successfully ablated by laser.Simaan and two former students have co-founded a startup to develop such technologies for robot-assisted transurethral resection of bladder tumors. Yet Nabil Simaan, a mechanical engineering professor who specializes in designing robots to help surgeons perform operations in areas of the body that are hard to reach, does not deter easily. He has years of experience working collaboratively with commercial entities while collecting numerous patents—three in 2017 alone.Simaan’s Advanced Robotics and Mechanism Applications Laboratory at Vanderbilt leads the way in advancing several robotics technologies for medical use, including miniature robots for single small-incision, cochlear implant and minimally invasive throat surgeries.”A key focus of the research is the design of intelligent robotic devices that can sense and regulate their interaction with the anatomy,” Simaan said. “These robots can be used collaboratively with a surgeon to safely excise or ablate tissue.”Simaan is co-inventor of the Insertable Robotic Effector Platform. IREP—a portfolio of multiple patents—is believed to be the world’s smallest robotic system and was hailed as a medical science breakthrough in 2013. It is licensed to Titan Medical and led to the development of the Titan SPORT system for single-port access surgery.The minuscule robotic surgical tool enters the body through a remarkably small incision—six-tenths of an inch, or 15 millimeters. Once inside the body, it unfolds to reveal a camera system for 3-D visualization and imaging feedback, and two snakelike arms that perform the surgery.IREP has gone through several development stages. First, Columbia University computer scientist Peter Allen devised an insertable camera that tilted, panned and followed the movements of surgical instruments from inside the abdomen, and projected its vision onto a computer screen. Surgeon Dennis Fowler at Columbia performed a number of appendectomies, nephroscopies and other operations on porcine models using the technology. At Vanderbilt, Simaan equipped IREP with two snakelike arms built from a series of push-pull flexible beams that can bend and twist the arms in the required directions. Simaan also gave IREP wrists and grippers to manipulate objects.”Typically, as a research lab, we try to be at least 10 years ahead of industry to help usher in new approaches to surgery via new technologies,” he said. “But university researchers and industry are catching up.” Simaan moved the ARMA lab to Vanderbilt when he joined the engineering faculty in 2012. The path from university lab to commercialization is especially complex in the biotech industry. Challenges range from long lead times, sometimes measured in decades, to the costs of transforming ideas into innovations, as well as issues of intellectual property, patenting and licensing. Explore further Nabil Simaan’s Advanced Robotics and Mechanism Applications Laboratory at Vanderbilt leads the way in advancing several robotics technologies for medical use. Credit: Vanderbilt University Insertable robot offers new approach to minimally invasive surgery Provided by Vanderbilt University IREP is licensed to Titan Medical. Credit: Vanderbilt University 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. read more