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The government aims to make northeast India a gateway to Southeast Asia and was making huge investments for the overall development of the region, but lack of cleanliness could hamper this dream, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.“If such a beautiful gateway is unclean, diseased, illiterate or disbalanced, then it will fail to cross the gateway of the country’s development. There is no reason why, with all our resources, we should remain backward or poor,” the Prime Minister said.Addressing the centenary celebrations of the prominent voluntary organisation, Bharat Sevashram Sangha, in Shillong through video conferencing, he lamented that “only Gangtok had found a place among the first 50 clean cities”, out of the 12 cities from the region surveyed as part of the recent nationwide cleanliness survey.While four northeastern cities found a place between 100 and 200 clean cities, seven were positioned between 200 and 300, with Shillong being the 276th, he said, while stressing that ‘Swachhata’ or cleanliness was a major challenge for everyone in the region.“We have to make the northeast a gateway for Southeast Asia,” Mr. Modi said, adding if this gateway is dirty, then the dream would not be fulfilled and asked the people and organisations like the Sangha to join hands with the State governments and their agencies in the cleanliness campaign.Observing that there had been no balanced development in the region so many years after Independence, Mr. Modi said his government, “with all its resources”, had planned to bring about balanced development of the States here.He said the major thrust was to improve connectivity and develop the region for tourism purposes.“All these initiatives will help to make the northeast the gateway of Southeast Asia,” he said.While an investment of ₹40,000 crore is being made to improve the road infrastructure in the entire region, 19 big railway projects have also been started, he said.“We are also improving the electricity situation and trying to bring even more tourists to the region,” Mr. Modi said.Announcing that the region would soon be connected with UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagarik) scheme, he said small airports were also being developed, while the extension of the runway at Shillong airport has been approved.Lauding the Sangha for playing a critical role during natural calamities, the Prime Minister said a myth was sought to be created that spirituality and service cannot go together. The Sangha has dispelled it, he added.
Thousands of onion farmers in Gujarat’s Amreli and Bhavnagar districts are in distress due to a crash in prices, with onions being sold at just ₹25-30 for a bag of 20 kilos, way below the production costs.In the last few days, angered by the government’s apathy, hundreds of farmers have thrown truck loads of onions onto the roads.In the Saurashtra region of Gujarat, acreage under onion has increased with new areas being added. As a result, the State is witnessing a bumper crop which in turn led to a crash in prices.“More than 500 farmers of 10 village of my area threw their entire produce on the roads because of low prices. To produce 20 kg onion, a farmer invests more than ₹75-85 that includes inputs like fertilisers, water, seed and labour costs. Now, he gets only ₹25-30 per 20 kg,” Paresh Dhanani, the Congress MLA of Amreli told The Hindu.According to him, more than 1.5 lakh farmers in Amreli and Bhavnagar districts have been affected by the fall in prices.“I had planted onion in eight acres land. This year, we have bumper yield but no price. I will not recover even a third my investment. Same is the situation of thousands of farmers across this onion growing belt of Bhavnagar,” said Punjabhai Ahir, a farmer.He added that the government must fix a remunerative price of onion at ₹100 per 20 kg. Mr. Dhanani agreed and said, “Neither the State nor the Central government has done anything to help the farmers in distress.”
A deputy chief education officer (DCEO) was suspended and an inquiry was ordered against him for allegedly creating hindrances in election- related works in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kishtwar district, officials said on Saturday. DCEO, Kishtwar, Javed Ahmad Kitchloo was placed under suspension pending an inquiry by District Election Officer Angrez Singh Rana on Friday, they said.“He was suspended for misusing the name of the deputy commissioner’s office and creating undue hindrances in election-related works by detaching a teacher, Lok Raj, who was attached in the office of the Tehsildar, Bounjwah, for smooth functioning of special summary revision 2017-18 as well as the preparation for the panchayat election,” the officials said. The DCEO, in his order on November 9, had asked Tehsildar, Bounjwah, to direct Mr. Raj to report to his original place of posting at the Mughabad Middle School by citing a telephonic message from the deputy commissioner (DC) of Kishtwar, they said. The officials said that the Tehsildar, Bounjwah, in his response on November 23, had requested the Kishtwar DCEO not to detach the official by citing that “his services were required in election-related works till the completion of the summary revision”.No such telephonic message was given to any officer from the DC’s office in Kishtwar, they said. The officials said that Mr. Kitchloo was called on Friday by the DC to explain the reasons for misusing the name of his office and causing the undue hindrance in urgent election- related assignments. However, instead of explaining his action, he got agitated and warned the DC that he “would create trouble for him”, they claimed. Mr. Kitchloo was immediately placed under suspension for “creating hindrance in the election-related works and for his unbecoming behaviour as an officer”, the officials said The DC has ordered a detailed inquiry and asked officials concerned to furnish their report within 10 days, they said.
A 10-member delegation of Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) would leave for New Delhi on Tuesday to hold talks with Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and the top brass of BJP over its contentious separate state demand. Sources in BJP and IPFT said meetings would help them forge an electoral alliance in ensuing Assembly election slated for next month.N.C. Debbarma, president of IPFT, last week led a delegation to Guwahati to hold dialogue with BJP’s Tripura poll in-charge and Assam Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. The meeting, however, was inconclusive as the BJP reiterated its stand against separate State demand though a decision was taken to hold further discussions in New Delhi.“Meetings will take place on Wednesday. Leaders of all fronts of IPFT are in the delegation for Delhi,” Mr. Debbarma told The Hindu on Monday.Twenty seats in 60-member Tripura Assembly are reserved for tribals and the BJP is trying to work out coalition with a common tribal platform consisting of IPFT, Indigenous Nationalist Party of Twipra (INPT), National Conference of Tripura (NCT), and an IPFT faction led by former MLA Rajeshwar Debbarma to take on the CPI(M) in Assembly polls. Of them IPFT visibly stands strongest as it gained support of a large number of tribals with its separate state or ‘Tipraland’ plank.The IPFT mooted vision to convert the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) into Tipraland – a separate State for indigenous people. One third population in Tripura is tribal and the TTAADC consists of three-fourth geographical area of the State.Mr. Debbarma conceded that Tipraland issue has been the bone of contention in way of electoral understanding with BJP as the latter categorically opposed any move to divide Tripura on basis of ethnic identity. “However we are open to discussions with BJP leadership on every issue and we are responding to their calls”, he added.The IPFT chief, who retired as Station Director of All India Radio Agartala a decade ago, said his party will contest Assembly elections with or without BJP. “If we have to fight alone, we would put up candidates in more than 50 seats and we are confident of winning a number of seats”, he stated.
The skill training of jail inmates in Rajasthan has received a boost with the State Skill and Livelihoods Development Corporation identifying more areas of skills for them. New training partners have also been invited to work with the Jails Department.As part of the regular skill training programme, the jail inmates in the State receive training in a variety of trades, such as vermiculture and vermicomposting, nursery management, electrical house wiring and jewellery making. The training has laid emphasis on providing emotional and financial support to the inmates, many of whom are first-time criminals and victims of circumstances.State Commissioner (Skills, Employment and Entrepreneurship) Krishna Kunal said here on Monday that the training had enabled the prison inmates to learn new vocations and lead a life of dignity and self-respect.The State Skill and Livelihoods Development Corporation officials, jail authorities and the training partners met at Kaushal Bhavan here last week to make the skill training more effective and resolve the difficulties of inmates.Mr. Kunal said more than 890 jail inmates in the State’s nine districts had been trained since 2015 through the initiative, while the jail administration had counselled and mobilised them. He said new partnerships had been forged with trainers for the sectors such as agriculture and horticulture, bridal jewellery making, garment making, Indian sweets and snacks, paper mache, candle-making and jute products.Training partnersNew training partners invited to work for jail inmates and adolescents lodged in juvenile homes include Prayas Juvenile Aid Society, Sarthak Educational Trust, Dhara Foundation, Jagran Professional Studies and Vidya Kiran Education Society.Additional Director-General (Prisons) Bhupendra Singh said the jail inmates had been motivated for self-employment as a result of their skill training. “Many of them are earning decent livelihood and have promoted entrpreneurship in the State,” he said, adding that the jail administration was willing to incorporate novice trades to make skilling more aspirational for the inmates.
India and Pakistan are set to install new gates at the Attari-Wagah border, where people from both sides throng every evening to watch the lowering of the national flags. The daily Beating Retreat drill involves the Border Security Force and the Pakistan Rangers clanging shut the gates for the night at the joint check post about 30 km from here, amid a synchronised display of aggression. The new gates, which are likely to be put up by the end of the month, will let the audience get a better view of the daily spectacle. A BSF officer said the design of the new gates will allow people to look across to the other side even when they are closed.
Giani Gurbachan Singh, jathedar of the highest Sikh temporal seat, the Akal Takht, has tendered his resignation from the post on health grounds. Mr. Singh has forwarded his resignation to SGPC president Gobind Singh Longowal.
Three burglars involved in abduction and rape of an eight-year-old girl after committing theft at her house were arrested in Odisha’s Ganjam district.The accused — Kalia Patra, Mohan Topakul and Siba Kanmur, all from the same district — were tracked down and arrested on Tuesday night. According to police officers, they have confessed to committing the crime.Ganjam Superintendent of Police Brijesh Kumar Ray said the trio had allegedly broken into the victim’s house in Dhoyakana village around 2 a.m. on October 31 and stolen ₹20,000 cash as well as gold and silver ornaments. On their way out, they took the girl, sleeping in her bedroom, with them and sexually assaulted her in a nearby paddy field. The victim is still undergoing treatment at a hospital in Berhampur.Two special police teams had been formed to investigate the case. Later, a Special Investigation Team had been formed to monitor the developments in the investigation, the officer said. Initial investigation suggests the three accused were involved in at least 11 incidents of burglary and theft in Badagada, Dharakote, Polasara, Aska police station areas of Ganjam district. Instruments used to break into houses and some stolen ornaments were seized from their possession, the police said.
A Delhi court on Wednesday sought a detailed report from Tihar jail authorities on a plea by Christian Michel, the alleged middleman arrested in the ₹3,600-crore AgustaWestland chopper deal, claiming he has been kept in solitary confinement in the prison.Special Judge Arvind Kumar asked the jail superintendent or a competent authority to appear before the court to respond to Michel’s allegation that he was not allowed to interact with co-prisoners.“The Director-General (Prison) shall authorise jail superintendent or some other official who is well conversant with facts to appear before the court on February 28,” the court said. An assistant superintendent present in the court denied the allegation. He told the court that the British national has not been kept in solitary confinement but in a high-security cell with all facilities provided to prisoners. He, however, failed to state as to why Michel has been moved to the other cell. Michel told the court that the new cell remains illuminated 24 hours because of which he was having problems in sleeping. The plea, filed by advocate Aljo K. Joseph, sought direction to the jail superintendent to treat Michel on a par with other inmates and provide basic facilities.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday praised Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for its role in the production of fighter jets in the past 70 years, but criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for allegedly sidetracking it in the Rafale fighter aircraft deal.Addressing a public rally near Sunabeda in Koraput district of Odisha, Mr. Gandhi said engines of MiG and Sukhoi fighter aircraft were made at the HAL unit in Sunabeda. The country’s youth, especially the ones from Odisha, extended their hands to protect the country through this unit. “But the Prime Minister, who speaks of nationalism, handed over the money of the Air Force to Anil Ambani, who has never manufactured any aircraft”, he said.He said that while HAL had no pending loans, Mr. Ambani had a ₹. 45,000- crore loan on his head. The United Progressive Alliance government had decided to give the contract for manufacturing Rafale aircraft to the HAL. The rate of each of the 126 aircraft had been escalated from ₹. 526 crore to ₹ 1600 crore only to benefit Mr. Ambani, he alleged.“President of France says Indian Prime Minister had made it clear that if Rafale aircraft were to be bought, then HAL will not be involved in its production and Mr. Ambani should get the contract for it”, he said. France would surely gain money from the Rafale deal, but the youth of Odisha would not get anything from it, he added.Mentioning the documents of the Defence Ministry related to Rafale deal published in The Hindu, Mr. Gandhi said officials of the Defence Ministry and Air Force say Mr. Modi had prepared the new contract, sidetracking the negotiating team. The aim was to give ₹. 30,000 crore to Mr. Ambani, he alleged.Mr. Gandhi promised loan waiver for farmers and a hike in the minimum support price of paddy to ₹. 2500 a quintal in Odisha in 10 days if the Congress comes to power. He alleged that four to five officers were running the Odisha government and a few friends of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik were getting the benefits.He ended his speech by saying, ”we do not want to make you hear our mann ki baat, we want to provide a government that hears your mann ki baat.”Women’s reservation billBefore the public meeting, Mr. Gandhi interacted with a group of women on the occasion of Women’s Day. He promised to get the women’s reservation bill passed and a policy of zero tolerance towards atrocities against women, if his party came to power.He also promised free education, be it technical education, medical or any other field, to all women if the party came to power.
Painkillers May Curb Memory Loss From Medical MarijuanaMarijuana helps alleviate pain and nausea, but it can also cause memory loss and a decreased attention span. Now, scientists have found that over-the-counter painkillers like ibuprofen can actually curb these side effects. Researchers hope the results will broaden the use of medical marijuana and help those who want to reap the drug’s benefits without getting stoned.European Parliament Approves Horizon 2020 Funding PlanThe European Parliament has formally approved Horizon 2020, the European Union’s funding program for research and innovation for 2014 through 2020. This leaves just one formal step to go before the program’s actual rollout.Autistic People May Have a Tangling of the SensesA new study has found a link between autism and synesthesia, a condition when one sense triggers another (like seeing sounds in color). The overlap should help us understand autism better and helps explain why people with autism seem to experience a more extreme version of the world than the rest of us.Lice Eggs Linger Before HatchingHere’s some lousy news: Lice eggs can take 2 weeks to hatch in human hair, making standard 7-day delousing treatments ineffective in some cases. New research shows that if conditions are right, lice eggs can sit dormant during treatment, only to pop later and reinfest the scalp.Do-It-Yourself Biologists Doing No HarmEverybody relax: DIY biologists aren’t trying to take over the world and kill us all. A new survey finds that at-home biology hobbyists are instead improving public engagement with science, creating useful products, and even contributing to scientific research. Still, some argue that a regulatory framework is necessary for the community.
As the Ebola outbreak in West Africa accelerates, the containment measures that worked in the past, such as isolating those who are infected and tracing their contacts, clearly have failed. This has spurred hopes that biomedical countermeasures, such as monoclonal antibodies and vaccines, can help save lives and slow spread. But as President Barack Obama calls for an aggressive ramp up of the U.S. government’s response, resolve is colliding with a grim reality: The epidemic is outpacing the speed with which drugs and vaccines can be produced.Administration officials have begun working with industry to speed manufacturing of experimental drugs and vaccines. “We’re trying to do everything we can to scale up product,” says Nicole Lurie, assistant secretary for preparedness and response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). But the logistical obstacles are huge, and makers are getting a late start.An Ebola vaccine made by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in Rixensart, Belgium, is the furthest along, having entered phase I human trials on 2 September. GSK has committed to manufacturing up to 10,000 doses of the vaccine, which consists of an Ebola surface protein stitched into a weakened chimpanzee adenovirus, by the end of the year. If it passes muster in the early studies, it could be given to health workers as soon as November. But hundreds of thousands of doses would be needed to put a dent in the outbreak. That “would take one-and-a-half years at the scale we’re working at,” says Ripley Ballou, who heads the Ebola vaccine program for GSK.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The scientific hurdles are not particularly high. Companies have made similar vaccines at high volume, and animal studies have shown that Ebola virus is fairly easy to defeat with the proper immune response. “Although Ebola is a very scary, hemorrhagic virus, all you need is fairly modest neutralizing antibody response and you’re protected,” says John Eldridge, chief scientific officer at Profectus BioSciences, a Maryland and New York–based company making an Ebola vaccine that has struggled to attract funding.Ballou says GSK is considering several options for speeding production. But first the company wants to be sure that there’s a market for the vaccine. He says that when the company contacted the World Health Organization at the start of this outbreak this past March, no one showed much interest. “The answer was, ‘Thanks, we’ll get back to you.’ ”NewLink Genetics of Ames, Iowa, has a second vaccine in a phase I trial that consists of a crippled vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), which infects livestock, with the gene for the Ebola virus surface protein. Only 1500 doses exist. Profectus makes a similar vaccine that should be ready for human testing next June. Like GSK, Profectus needs a commitment from a funder before it can scale up production from the planned 5000 to 20,000 doses, Eldridge says.As a result, vaccinemakers have yet to confront the technical challenges of boosting production. In principle, vaccine production is straightforward: Grow a “master seed” strain of virus on a large scale, then harvest and process it. Okairos, a small company that produces the GSK vaccine at a facility near Rome,, grows its virus in a human cell line in up to 200-liter wave bags, so-called because they rock back and forth on a platform. In all, it will take about 2 months to grow, harvest, and prepare the promised 10,000 or so doses.Company founder Riccardo Cortese says with an investment of about $10 million, they could convert their facility to process several 400-liter bags simultaneously in as little as 3 months. At that scale, he says, “I calculated we could make 100,000 doses per month.”GSK’s Ballou is more circumspect. First, they need more master seed. “There were only so many vials made, and we’re depleting them,” he says. And mass production, he says, would work best in huge bioreactors, stainless steel fermenters that resemble beer tanks and hold 1000 liters or more. But the cell lines that produce the vaccine virus are finicky. “The driver is really the productivity of the cell line,” Ballou says. He puts the most optimistic timeline for 100,000 to 500,000 doses at 9 months—and the cost at $25 million. Treatment is stuck in a similar rut. A cocktail of Ebola antibodies called ZMapp has shown remarkable efficacy in monkey experiments and has been given to seven people. But there’s less than one dose left. Made by Mapp Biopharmaceutical of San Diego, California, ZMapp contains three monoclonal antibodies produced in tobacco plants. The process from plants to product takes a few months and now yields just tens of doses.HHS’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), which was established to speed development of treatments and vaccines for emergencies, has contacted two other outfits that can make the antibodies in tobacco plants. But this will boost production to only hundreds of doses per month. BARDA is now exploring the possibility of producing the antibodies in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells—the standard system for making monoclonals. But a 2012 study suggested that the antibodies would have reduced potency if made in CHO cells. “You’re not going to make 100,000 doses anytime in the near future,” says someone familiar with the discussions who did not want to be named.A bill now moving through the U.S. Congress would give BARDA $58 million for Ebola vaccines and treatments. That’s sure to help, but not soon enough. “I don’t know that we’re going to have these countermeasures in time to make a big dent now,” says HHS’s Lurie. “But hopefully we’ll have the countermeasures by the next time there’s an outbreak so this never, ever happens again.”*The Ebola Files: Given the current Ebola outbreak, unprecedented in terms of number of people killed and rapid geographic spread, Science and Science Translational Medicine have made a collection of research and news articles on the viral disease freely available to researchers and the general public.
Virologist Heinz Feldmann has spent most of his career studying the deadly Ebola virus at research institutes in Germany, Canada, and the United States. He is now at the Rocky Mountain Laboratories of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in Hamilton, Montana.Feldmann has co-developed one of the vaccine candidates that is scheduled to be tested soon and has helped contain several Ebola outbreaks in the past. On 8 September, he returned from 3 weeks in Monrovia, Liberia’s capital, where he ran a diagnostic lab for a treatment center operated by Doctors Without Borders (MSF). This interview has been edited for clarity and brevity.Q: What was your impression of the situation in Monrovia?Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)A: The first impression was actually that nothing is wrong. The part of the city we were in, outside the center, was pretty calm. But when you get to the Ebola ward, that impression turns. It is a disastrous situation. There are a lot of sick people hanging around, trying to get in, but the ward is just not big enough. They have to turn obviously sick people back into the community because there are no beds. I think we would need at least five to 10 times the capacity in Monrovia. The city is totally overwhelmed by the number of cases and the outbreak.Q: What about yourself? How afraid were you of getting Ebola?A: As a lab worker, I feel extremely safe. We’re very well trained for this. You would really have to have a catastrophic event happen in order to get a high-risk exposure. Having said that, you would be surprised what you sometimes get. You get tubes wrapped in gloves, including the needle, or broken glass vials. Those kinds of things you have to watch out for.People working for MSF, the clinicians, the nurses, that is a different story. They have a much higher potential of being exposed because they have to deal with the patient. Patients are like virus factories producing up to a hundred million virus particles per milliliter of blood, and a patient is unpredictable; a patient could cough, could spit at you, vomit on you, or even become aggressive and attack you. So these people really have the highest risk and have the highest burden. Q: But isn’t there a risk of contracting the virus off the job as well?A: If you move around, you never know who is infected and who isn’t. This is the bigger problem for me personally. You have to basically avoid contact with local people, which is very difficult because these are friendly people, they like to touch each other.I actually think passing through the airport on my way out was the highest risk. They are bringing hundreds of people into a very confined space with a lot of direct contact, so if you get a patient into that environment, you are going to have exposures. It is a ridiculous situation. Also, they are checking your temperature three times before you get into the airport, but if you look at the people that do this kind of work, they don’t really know how to use the devices. They are writing down temperatures of 32°C, which everybody should know is impossible for a living person. All the checks they do are completely useless because they are done by people who are not well trained or overwhelmed by the number of passengers. It is just a disaster, and it needs to be fixed.Q: What did you do in Monrovia?A: We came to Liberia with the mission to go to a smaller town up in the northern part of the country, very close to the border with Guinea and Sierra Leone. There is a hotspot up there. But when we got to Monrovia, MSF just started to operate this tent structure that they call ELWA3, an Ebola treatment center on the outskirts of the city. It had 120 beds at the time we left, but they are scaling up to 400, that is their goal.Patients are lying on mattresses on the ground in tents. ELWA3 is currently not set up for intravenous support, so it is only oral rehydration and certain supportive medications, antimalarials or antibiotics, if appropriate, to treat secondary infections. At the time we got there, there was also only limited capacity to confirm the infection and separate those who are actually sick from Ebola from others. MSF was desperately looking for laboratory support. So the mission lead decided that we would stay with ELWA3.Q: So you started doing diagnostic tests?A: In the first 3 weeks we basically did nothing but testing for Ebola using PCR. It’s very simple diagnostics. Just Ebola: yes or no? But it was overwhelming at the beginning. Among the new submissions, the positivity rate was up to 90% or even higher.Q: You have seen many outbreaks of Ebola. What is different about this one?A: We still believe it was caused by a single introduction of the virus into the human population. What is different is that we see a lot of human-to-human transmission chains. Normally there are a few, three or four maybe. But now there are many more chains of transmission.Q: There has been speculation that the virus could mutate or has already mutated to spread more easily. How likely is that?A: I don’t think there is any data right now to support that. If you look at the virus sequence, it falls within the normal range of Zaire Ebola strains. Of course any of these mutations could have a dramatic effect, which we don’t know right now. But there is nothing obvious that would point to a more transmissible, more virulent virus, or a change of transmission route.You can speculate in every direction, of course, but I think it should be fact-based, it should be data-based, and I think it makes absolutely no sense to bring in aerosol transmissibility as a potential. I think this is really not helpful, unless you have data to support that.Q: Is there any genetic data from Ebola strains in Liberia?A: Right now our diagnostics is largely based on sequence data from Sierra Leone. But it has become very, very important to get the sequence of the currently circulating virus strains in Liberia to make sure that our assays are working properly. There is one gene target that we are not using anymore because we were missing cases.Q: At the moment, you are storing some blood samples from patients in Monrovia, but you’re not sending any samples out to be sequenced?A: No, and that is a very common situation. It goes into the discussion of intellectual property. In my view the owner of the specimen is the patient, first of all, and then the country, so the ministry of health or the government. So in order to bring samples out of Liberia there needs to be some kind of agreement in place that this is allowed, and that takes time. People are working on a memorandum of understanding and I think and hope we’re going to get it very quickly. But you cannot just export clinical samples without proper permission.Q: So you haven’t done any science yet?A: I think at the moment this is strictly outbreak response, and there is no time to do research. But I hope that once we have reached the peak and are on the downside—I cannot tell you when that will be—that we will get the opportunity to do some more clinical research that will help us to better design treatments and prophylactic measures and to better design patient management. Right now I don’t think it’s time.Q: You’ve done a lot of research and helped develop one of the candidate vaccines that is going to be tested now. Is it going to help end this epidemic? A: At the moment the focus is very much on experimental vaccines and treatments. Those things would help but I don’t think they will show an immediate impact on this outbreak. Really, outbreak control measures should be the key.Q: I would have thought you were more positive about your vaccine candidate.A: Of course, I would like to see it used. We just have to be realistic. How many people would you have to immunize to see that impact? I think with the amount of doses that are currently available, this is just a drop in the ocean. I don’t know how many people you would have to reach. In measles, people talk about a necessary coverage of more than 90%.Q: But measles is much more infectious than Ebola. Models suggest that if only half the people are protected from Ebola by a vaccine, that could already stop the outbreak.A: Right, but how many doses do you need to achieve 50%? I think we just don’t have the doses at the moment. Without the proper production I think it is just an almost useless discussion. I have no idea of how quickly production could be scaled up to produce enough doses.Q: But many people are expecting this outbreak to take many more months. Doesn’t that mean that vaccines could play a role even if they are months away?A: I agree we certainly need to move on and consider it. But I would warn people to expect an immediate impact on this outbreak because that is not realistic. We could maybe see a little impact. There is a lot of discussion of using a vaccine to protect health care workers. And maybe there is enough to do that. But is that ethical? Who do you pick? Who do you protect?*The Ebola Files: Given the current Ebola outbreak, unprecedented in terms of number of people killed and rapid geographic spread, Science and Science Translational Medicine have made a collection of research and news articles on the viral disease freely available to researchers and the general public.
Demonetisation has brought the trafficking of women and girls for sex worka Rs20 trillion industryto a grinding halt, studies and rescue workers said. Related Items
The world’s tallest statue will be erected in the sea to honour an Independence hero, but it might quickly be outdone by a monument of a Hindu warrior King in the financial capital of the country, Mumbai. India is going to spend almost $1 billion on the tallest effigies, each will be taller than the Statue of Liberty.Read it at The Live Mirror Related Items
The Indians got back to work without a hitch, taking a 1-0 lead in the second inning before Kansas City’s Alex Gordon homered in the top of the third to make it 1-1.Cleveland sent seven batters to the plate in the bottom of the third, and two of them scored. After the Royals pulled back a run in the top of the fourth, the Indians piled on four runs in the bottom of the frame to take control.The Indians led 7-4 when Encarnacion led off the seventh inning with a homer against Royals relief pitcher Kevin McCarthy.With the victory, and the Minnesota Twins’ loss to the Toronto Blue Jays later Saturday, the Indians clinched their second straight American League Central division title.ADVERTISEMENT Lindor had three hits on the night and Edwin Encarnacion homered as the Indians rebounded briskly from their 4-3 loss to the Royals on Friday night.That was the Indians’ first defeat since August 23. Their 22 straight wins established an American League record and surpassed the 21-game streak put together by the National League’s Chicago Cubs in 1935, but came up short of the Major League record 26-game winning streak of the 1916 New York Giants.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“We had good energy. I was happy about that. It’s nice to see them go right back out there and try to be as good a team as we can be,” Indians manager Terry Francona said.“They outplayed us yesterday, but that’s in the past. Today was another day,” Lindor added. Alvarez, Golovkin fight to a brutal draw; rematch to come BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight View comments Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City E.T. returns to earth, reunites with grown-up Elliott in new ad Read Next LATEST STORIES Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Trump attends World Series baseball game in Washington DC PLAY LIST 01:04Trump attends World Series baseball game in Washington DC00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police 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 Games CLEVELAND, OH – SEPTEMBER 16: Francisco Lindor #12 of the Cleveland Indians scores past Drew Butera #9 of the Kansas City Royals on a single by Austin Jackson #26 during the sixth inning at Progressive Field on September 16, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. Ron Schwane/Getty Images/AFPCleveland’s historic winning streak may have ended at 22 games, but shortstop Francisco Lindor’s streak was still going strong after the Indians bounced back Saturday with an 8-4 win over the Kansas City Royals.Lindor hit a run-scoring double in the sixth inning, his 10th straight game with an extra-base hit. That’s a club record, and left him four shy of the major league record of 14.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary
Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion MOST READ Detroit trailed by four after a 6-0 run late in the fourth, but an awkward-looking hook shot by Andre Drummond missed everything, and the 76ers were able to close out the game.“It’s mind boggling to have two games in a row where we weren’t ready to play. We have to figure out a way to fix that, whether those five guys can boost the intensity or if we have to change the lineup,” Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said. “I’m going to take the blame for Simmons. I’m not saying the players couldn’t have done things better, but we didn’t have a good game plan for him.”Drummond had 14 points and 14 rebounds for the Pistons.TIP-INS76ers: Simmons had double-doubles in his first three games, but Philadelphia lost them all.Pistons: Drummond moved into sixth place on Detroit’s career rebounding list, passing Walter Dukes. Drummond is now four shy of 5,000. … All Detroit starters scored in double figures except Stanley Johnson, who went without a point. Reggie Jackson had 16 points and seven assists.ADVERTISEMENT CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Kin of Misamis Oriental hero cop to get death benefits, award — PNP Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Bledsoe sent home after reeling Suns fire Watson View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. SLIPPERYThis was the second Pistons game at Little Caesars Arena, the new downtown venue they share with the Detroit Red Wings. The people mopping the floor were pretty busy trying to keep it dry in the second half, and 76ers coach Brett Brown said he was glad nobody was hurt.“You can appreciate our reaction when you see Joel Embiid slip and slide and then hold his knee,” Brown said. “And then 30 seconds later, Jerryd Bayless goes down and starts holding his hip. We’ve experienced a lot of injuries. It’s not anybody’s fault. It just happened. There was a wet part of the floor and we were lucky to get away without any injuries.”Embiid (left knee) sat out the game at Toronto. He shot 11 of 15 from the field against Detroit, although he did turn the ball over seven times.NEW FACILITYThe Pistons and Henry Ford Health System broke ground on a new complex a couple miles north of Little Caesars Arena that will house a training facility and corporate headquarters for the franchise. It’s scheduled to open in 2019.UP NEXT76ers: Philadelphia hosts Houston on Wednesday night.Pistons: Detroit hosts Minnesota on Wednesday night before heading on a three-game western trip. QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort LATEST STORIES Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Read Next Detroit, which rallied from a 21-point deficit to beat the New York Knicks on Saturday night , fell behind by 21 again in the second quarter against the 76ers. The Pistons chipped away and were within three in the fourth, but Philadelphia held on.“It’s awesome to have a triple-double, but at the same time, it’s even better to have a win,” Simmons said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSimmons was the No. 1 pick in the 2016 draft before missing all of last season with a foot injury. He finished two assists shy of a triple-double at Toronto on Saturday night, and his skill and versatility were evident in Detroit.Philadelphia never trailed. It was 56-43 at halftime and 75-67 after three quarters before the Pistons cut the deficit to three on a 3-pointer by Anthony Tolliver. The teams traded baskets for a bit before a three-point play by Robert Covington and 3-pointer by T.J. McConnell put the 76ers up by nine. Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) shoots as Detroit Pistons forward Stanley Johnson, right, defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Oct. 23, 2017, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)DETROIT — Four games into his NBA career, Ben Simmons already has a triple-double to his credit.And with some help from Joel Embiid, he finally led the Philadelphia 76ers to a victory.Simmons had 21 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, and Embiid scored 30 points to lift the 76ers to a 97-86 win over the Detroit Pistons on Monday night.ADVERTISEMENT Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police 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 Games Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101
The U.S. will have Venus Williams take on Arantxa Rus and CoCo Vandeweghe will face Richel Hogerkamp on Saturday as it opens its Fed Cup title defense. Sunday’s scheduled singles matches have Venus Williams facing Hogerkamp and Vandeweghe taking on Rus.But this weekend’s headline is the return of Serena Williams, who participated in a Dec. 30 exhibition match but otherwise hasn’t played since that 2017 Australian Open.Williams said Friday she’s unsure about how she will manage her schedule and whether she will play all three remaining Grand Slam events this year. Williams’ 23 Grand Slam singles titles put her one behind the record held by Margaret Court.“I have long-term goals obviously, but right now my main goal is just to stay in the moment,” Williams said. “It goes unsaid (that) 25 is obviously something that I would love, but I’d hate to limit myself.”Williams’ daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., was born Sept. 1. Williams who is married to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, said motherhood is “an amazing journey.”ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH “It’s probably been the most fun of my life,” she said. “It’s a totally new experience. I love motherhood, and I look forward to just being the best mom I can be.”Williams said she has benefited from having her sister alongside her as she attempts this comeback.“She’s been really, really positive,” Williams said. “There (are) moments that have just been hard, just getting back out there and doing it every day. You have to get used to that and get in the rhythm of that. I’ve been able to really rely on her for that.”Venus Williams has been impressed with her younger sister’s parenting skills.“I think she’s the best mother I ever saw,” Venus Williams said. “She’s amazing. She does everything herself.”Venus Williams was asked how motherhood had changed her sister.“She might go out a little less,” Venus said before breaking into a grin. “But she’s definitely remained just very youthful and childlike at heart. I think sometimes motherhood changes people in a way that they become less young and more serious, but that hasn’t affected her.”Serena Williams acknowledged there have been “a lot of ups and downs” in her comeback as she mentioned “fighting against all odds to be out there and to be competing again.”She mentioned there are “moments that have just been hard, getting back out there doing it every day.” Williams had told Vogue magazine that she developed several small blood clots in her lungs after her daughter was born.Williams had opted against trying to defend her Australian Open title this year. “I think she’s smart to take her time and not to play Australia,” ESPN analyst and 18-time Grand Slam singles champion Chris Evert said last week. “Playing Fed Cup and easing her way back with exhibitions. Maybe she wants to peak for Wimbledon, that would be her best chance at a Grand Slam.”Williams said the Fed Cup represents an ideal setting for her return. Not only does it allow her to practice alongside a few different players, it also enables her coach and teammates to offer different perspectives on her progress.“It actually is a really perfect opportunity to try to come back,” Williams said. Serena Williams of the US Jelena returns the ball to Ostapenko of Latvia during the Mubadala World Tennis Championship 2017 match in Abu Dhabi, on December 30, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / NEZAR BALOUTASHEVILLE, N.C. — Tennis fans anxiously awaiting Serena Williams’ return to competitive tennis will have to wait one more day.Williams won’t be playing in either of Saturday’s Fed Cup singles matches as she makes her comeback five months after becoming a mother. Williams teams up with Lauren Davis to face Lesley Kerkhove and Demi Schuurs of the Netherlands in Sunday’s doubles match.ADVERTISEMENT Read Next John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers MOST READ AFP official booed out of forum Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games01:29Police 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 Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH “It’s definitely the start of a long process,” Williams said. “Physically, I feel good. Every day, I get better and I get stronger. That’s just something I always keep telling myself every day, I have to get better.”Williams, 36, hasn’t played an official match since winning the 2017 Australian Open. Williams later revealed she was pregnant during that tournament.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAlthough Williams isn’t scheduled to play any singles matches this weekend, that could change. U.S. captain Kathy Rinaldi has the right to change her Sunday lineup after Saturday’s play.“We’ll wait and see how tomorrow goes and then we’ll make our adjustments, if any,” Rinaldi said Friday. WATCH: Wade receives standing ovation in Heat return Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments