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first_img 0 Comments Skip The Dishes is leading the food delivery space, according to a survey.Ashley Fraser/Postmedia Financial Post Staff Comment Nicholas Sokic Recommended For YouU.S. FDA approves Karyopharm Therapeutics’ blood cancer drugOntario Cannabis Store pulls affected CannTrust products amid Health Canada probeUPDATE 2-FDA approves expanded label for Regeneron/Sanofi’s DupixentTrump pick for Fed seat says doesn’t want to pull rug from under market -CNBCAP Explains: US sanctions on Huawei bite, but who gets hurt? More Twitter Facebookcenter_img Email Reddit Canadians ordered takeaways in record numbers last year, as food delivery apps such as SkipTheDishes, UberEATS and DoorDash try to beat each other to the door to get a slice of the $4.3-billion — and growing — business of delivered food.Predictably, tech savvy 18-34-year-olds were the biggest users of third-party online delivery services, with 23 per cent ordering in at least once a week, according to Restaurants Canada’s 2019 Foodservice Facts published last week. Generation Z — those born in the mid-90s — will likely be even bigger users, as they have never known a world without cell phones or the Internet.“The movement towards a ‘stay-at-home’ economy has led to exponential growth in delivery sales spearheaded by these same two digital-friendly groups,” the report said, noting that delivering foodservice sales via online and mobile apps and traditional telephone grew 44 per cent compared to last year.“Its impact is most profoundly felt in major urban centres where population density makes delivery economically viable,” the guide noted.A number of food delivery apps have proliferated over the past year, with Winnipeg-based SkipTheDishes, leading the list of third-party food delivery services, according to a separate survey by Angus Reid Global and the Agri-Food Analytics Lab at Dalhousie University.The study of 1,500 Canadians during May 17-19 shows 29 per cent of Canadians have used SkipTheDishes app at least once, while 14 per cent used UberEats.DoorDash, the California-founded delivery service also recently announced its entry into Winnipeg — its 50 th Canadian city. The company became the top-selling U.S. delivery service in March, overtaking UberEATS and GrubHub.While the surge has been impressive, the Angus-Reid study concludes with the prediction that food-delivery app use will peak, with the possibility of resurgence in 2022.“Despite a high satisfaction rate of many leaders in the market, the intent to use delivery apps is slowly approaching its peak in some parts of Canada,” the Angus Reid study noted. “A total of 31 per cent of Canadians intend to use a food delivery app within the next 6 moths which is 2 per cent more than the current user rate. Only 37 per cent of consumers in Manitoba intend to use a delivery app over the next 6 months which is down from 45 per cent.”However, SkipTheDishes CEO Kevin Edwards sees no signs of the industry peaking.“If you just look at the rate of customer acquisition that we’re seeing, even in a mature market like Winnipeg where… our acquisition is at 30 per cent, it doesn’t really take into account customer frequency,” said Edwards. “That’s where we see the biggest growth in the business, it’s not really just for special occasions anymore it’s part of customers everyday lives.”SkipTheDishes which was taken over by UK-based global online food delivery company Just Eat Plc. for $110 million in 2016, is working on addressing industry complaints such as packaging and network efficiency, Edwards said. While he welcomes the competition that DoorDash would bring, he expects SkipTheDishes to soon become the first profitable food delivery app.“We believe we have the best restaurant selection and we believe we have the best technology driving the network. They’re coming up against the number one service in Canada,” said Edwards.While online delivery services are convenient for consumers, restaurants are worried that the service is cannibalizing their in-house sales.As many as 37 per cent of restaurant operators told Restaurants Canada that third-party apps/websites hurt their on-premise dinner sales, and 27 per cent said it was denting their on-premise lunch sales.“So, why do they do it? There is profit to be made according to 79 per cent of operators who use them. However, the vast majority felt that third-party apps/websites are only ‘slightly profitable’,” according to the report.“Another 21 per cent said that they were ‘not at all profitable’. For some, this may be a case where it’s necessary to bite the bullet and give the people what they want, then figure out how to make it work.”The surge in online food deliveries is part of the expanding restaurant business in the country. Total food services sales in 2019 are expected to grow 4.2 per cent to $93.6 billion, and is estimated to surpass $100 billion by 2021, according to Restaurants Canada. May 28, 201911:01 AM EDT Filed under News Retail & Marketing Share this storyRestaurants may crib, but stay-at-home Canadians are hungry for food delivery services Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Join the conversation → Restaurants may crib, but stay-at-home Canadians are hungry for food delivery services A number of food delivery apps have proliferated over the past year last_img read more

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California weighs higher subsidies for EVs.Bloomberg reports that California will hold a hearing this week about increasing incentives to buy plug-in cars from the current $2,500 to $4,500.One of the reason is that some plug-in car manufacturers already hit or soon will hit the federal tax credit limit of 200,000 vehicles sold, which starts the phase-out of $7,500 federal tax credit (it will decrease by 50% for up to six months and then to 25% for another six months, before drying out completely).Tesla already reached 200,000 in July, while GM is expected to sell its 200,000th plug-in electric car in U.S. several months from now.Incentives What Incentives Do I Qualify For By Buying An Electric Vehicle? Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on September 26, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News New York Offers $4,000 Rebate To Install Charging Point There is also a chance that the additional $2,000 could be provided directly to consumers at the point of sale.“The state is able to consider an increase in its electric-car subsidy partly because revenue is becoming available as companies buy more credits to comply with the state’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard, said Dan Sperling, a University of California Davis transportation professor who is also a member of the Air Resources Board. At this week’s hearing, the board will consider requiring oil companies to cut carbon intensity by 20 percent by 2030, compared with 2010 levels, from a 5 percent reduction mandated this year.California may provide the funding generated from this program as subsidies directly to consumers at the point of sale, as proposed by automakers, electric utility companies and others, rather than via mail rebates later.”The current state rebate ($2,500) is financed from the purchase of credits to comply with the state’s cap-and-trade program for reducing carbon-dioxide emissions.Other topics under consideration will be whether or not to increase support for:fast charging infrastructurehydrogen stationselectric busesSource: Bloomberg Peugeot Hopes That France Revives Incentives For PHEVs Source: Electric Vehicle News read more

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Tesla is launching today a version of Model 3 with a new ‘mid-range’ battery pack for $45,000 before incentives.The new version, which was never announced, is coming as a surprise and it changes the whole pricing structure of Model 3. more…The post Tesla launches new Model 3 with ‘mid-range’ battery for $45,000, changes pricing structure appeared first on Electrek. Source: Charge Forward

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first_img Volkswagen Factory Will Build Up To 500,000 Battery Packs Per Year Source: Electric Vehicle News Volkswagen CFO Frank Witter said VW intends to be much more open to partnerships and, when asked about sharing MEB with Ford, he didn’t exclude such a possibility.“Whether we might provide access to other brands outside of the VW Group is theoretically possible, but there is no decision,”Volkswagen probably will be open to partnering with other companies on autonomous driving, too.Source: Automotive News Volkswagen Plans Massive Electric Car Offensive: 1 Million EVs By 2025 VW Mulling Over Chattanooga To Produce Three EVs Ford EVs on the Volkswagen MEB platform?Volkswagen Group and Ford could form a development and production alliance that would strengthen the competitiveness of both manufacturers, at least in certain market segments.Media speculates that besides areas like light commercial vehicles (under consideration at least since June), VW and Ford could partner in EVs, which recently have not been the strongest point of Ford. Volkswagen could share its MEB platform, scheduled for late 2019, with Ford for a profit while Ford would be able to produce all-electric cars with lower investment costs.Volkswagen MEB Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on October 31, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

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first_imgSource: Electric Vehicle News Mahindra Racing driver D’Ambrosio prevailed in the shoot-out that followed the late-race safety car ahead of Virgin Racing duo Robin Frijns and Sam Bird. More Formula E News Vergne Has New Approach For Formula E Title Defense The drama was started by Sims attacking his BMW Andretti teammate on the outside of the approach to the Turn 7 left-hander at the end of the track’s main straight.Both locked up and then came together on the edge of the corner, with da Costa going straight into the barrier, while Sims ran wide but carried on to run fourth in the safety car queue.The safety car took the pack around for three laps, with most of the field taking their final attack mode allowance with just four minutes of the race remaining.Sims was the only driver in the top four to enter the shoot-out with the higher power available and he attacked Bird as D’Ambrosio’s lead was erased by Frijns.But the Dutch driver could not find a way by despite D’Ambrosio locking up at the final corner and then shooting to the line to win by just 0.143s, with Bird foiling Sims’ attacks at the Turn 4/5 chicane and Turn 7 to seal third.At the start, Bird had led away from pole and appeared to have first place sealed on the run into Turn 1, but his fellow front-row starter Jean-Eric Vergne squeezed himself down the inside and the pair touched at the apex.The contact sent Vergne spinning and the pack had to take urgent action to avoid him, which dropped Sebastien Buemi and Mitch Evans down from third and fourth to 13th and 14th.There was also contact between Nelson Piquet, Pascal Wehrlein and Lucas di Grassi, while the HWA teammates Stoffel Vandoorne and Gary Paffett also collided – with both retiring a little while later due the damage they sustained.Bird led the two BMW drivers – Sims taking advantage of the Turn 1 chaos to move up to second – during the early stage, before the duo swapped places and da Costa took up the pursuit of Bird on lap 11 of what would become a 31-lap race.A leading pack of six formed, with Frijns, D’Ambrosio and di Grassi joining the three leaders, to edge away at the front.Da Costa stalked Bird before shooting to the inside of the Turn 4/5 chicane – taking the lead after the British driver cut the corner and lost out on the exit, with Sims also getting past his compatriot on the run to Turn 7.From there, the two BMWs edged clear and Bird fell back and was passed by Frijns, and then D’Ambrosio and di Grassi.The BMW pair looked to have taken a winning advantage before D’Ambrosio, who had deposed Frijns, led the rest of the top six back up to the leaders shortly before their dramatic collision.Vergne set scintillating pace for DS Techeetah to recover from the back of the pack after his spin to finish fifth.At the end of lap one he was 14 seconds behind then-leader Bird, a gap he closed to four seconds by the time of the safety car’s appearance on lap 27.Andre Lotterer also carved his way up the order from 21st on the grid to finish behind teammate Vergne in P6, with the pair of them moving past di Grassi before the race was suspended.Buemi and Evans recovered to eighth and ninth, with Daniel Abt taking 10th in the second Audi.Piquet ended up 14th after starting ninth, with Felipe Massa bringing up the rear of the field in 18th.Wehrlein was the final non-finisher as he retired from his FE debut as a result of the damage he sustained at Turn 1. Marrakesh Formula E Video Preview Formula E Drivers Expect Lots Of Attack Mode Overtakings Jerome d’Ambrosio won the Marrakesh E-Prix, the second round of the 2018-19 ABB Formula E Championship, after the dominant BMWs of Antonio Felix da Costa and Alexander Sims collided and threw away victory. Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 12, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

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first_imgDeliveries of Tesla’s Model 3 recently started in Germany, the home of VW, Audi, BMW, Porsche, and Daimler; a country that is famous for engineering and truly proud of its automotive heritageSource: CleanTechnica Car Reviews RSS Feedlast_img

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first_imgZero Motorcycles is the biggest electric motorcycle manufacturer in the world.Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img

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first_imgShare on Twitter Fabio Capello told the Football Association at the outset of negotiations over his appointment as England manager that he might be subject to an investigation by Italian tax authorities, according to sources close to the deal.The Italian and his advisers were aware that Turin magistrates and tax authorities were examining his affairs and told the FA last month it was possible he would be involved in their investigations. Capello’s disclosure, and his guarantee that he has nothing to fear from the inquiry, satisfied the FA that there was no risk attached to hiring the former Juventus coach.Capello’s camp believe that as a high-profile figure he is being singled out by the tax authorities, who have previously targeted celebrities including the world champion motorcyclist Valentino Rossi and the actress Sophia Loren.While the FA shares Capello’s regret that the investigation has become public, senior Soho Square officials are relaxed about the affair and are confident that their faith in Capello will be borne out.Unusually for a football deal, Capello’s arrangement with the FA is understood to be a straightforward employment contract, with no clauses covering image rights or other promotional work. The FA is understood to have insisted that Capello be paid in the most straightforward manner possible, with his gross salary of £6m a year paid in monthly instalments to a British bank account in his name, with tax and national insurance deducted at source.The FA also dismissed as a technicality the revelation that Capello struck a plea-bargain over allegations that an acquaintance falsified documents on his behalf to gain a tax advantage.Capello paid a fine to avoid being prosecuted alongside the former mayor of Campione d’Italia, an Italian-Swiss enclave on the shores of Lake Lugano, where Capello has been based for several years.The Italian investigation is understood to focus on about €10m (£7.4m) earned from Capello’s contract with the glasses manufacturer Zerorh+, which is understood to have been paid to a Luxembourg-based company, Sport 3000, thought to be controlled by the Capello family trust. Until recently the trust was based in Guernsey but sources close to the Italian said it had been moved to the US.A source close to Capello said the investigation was focused on whether he had derived any benefit from the trust’s holdings and thus avoided tax. Share on WhatsApp Share on Facebook This article is more than 11 years old Wed 16 Jan 2008 22.01 EST Fabio Capello leaving the FA headquarters last night. Photograph: Shaun Curry/AFP/Getty Images Share on Facebook Capello informed Soho Square of looming tax probe from the outset news Shares00 First published on Wed 16 Jan 2008 22.01 EST This article is more than 11 years old Topicscenter_img Soccer Share on Pinterest Share on Messenger England Soccer Fabio Capello Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Paul Kelso Share on Twitter Reuse this content Share via Emaillast_img read more

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first_imgA lot of you will be traveling this week just as snow has arrived in our mountain passes. Triple-A expects more than 1 million travelers to originate from Washington alone this holiday weekend alone, and that doesn’t include those driving to the Apple Cup. Winter storms and bad weather are a factor in nearly half a million crashes and more than two thousand road deaths every winter, according to research by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.To stay safe when driving during winter conditions, AAA recommends what NOT TO DO when driving:1. Don’t drive during winter conditions at the same speed as you would when traveling in clear, dry conditions. · Slush, snow and ice can dramatically reduce your tires’ traction. · Slow down to maintain traction that’s lost due to the weather conditions. 2. Do not brake and turn at the same time. · Asking your vehicle to do two things at a time makes it more likely that your tires will lose traction. · Brake first, then turn, then accelerate. 3. Don’t follow behind other vehicles during winter conditions as closely as you would when driving in clear, dry conditions. · Slick roads means your vehicle cannot slow down or stop as quickly. · Increase following distances to a minimum of 5-6 seconds. · Always keep open space to at least one side of your vehicle, in case you need make an emergency maneuver. 4. Don’t be rough with your steering, acceleration and braking. · If you’re not gentle with steering, acceleration and braking, your vehicle’s balance can be negatively affected, increasing the chance of experiencing a skid. · Always steer, accelerate and brake smoothly. · Four-wheel and all-wheel drive vehicles do not stop or steer better on ice. 5. Don’t hit the brakes if you start to skid. · If you start to skid. Don’t panic and slam on the brakes, it can make the skid worse. · If skidding, continue to look and steer the vehicle in the direction you want to go. If road conditions are hazardous or you don’t feel comfortable with your ability to drive in the conditions, avoid driving if possible. Wait until road and weather conditions improve before you venture out in your vehicle.last_img read more

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first_imgWENATCHEE, Wash. – In their first home game of the season, the Wenatchee AppleSox lost to the River City Athletics, 7-6, in a non-league game at Paul Thomas Sr. Field on Tuesday night.The AppleSox got off to a strong start with a five-run first inning, but could not overcome the rough middle innings and suffered the loss.For the second time in three days, the AppleSox sent all nine men to the plate in an inning and scored five runs. Sunday, it came in the second inning against Victoria, but tonight, it happened in the first.John Sage led off with a single, stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. After Mason Marenco walked, Jordan Rathborne, playing in his first game of the season with the AppleSox, singled in Sage and Alix Garcia followed with a sacrifice fly to score Marenco and make it 2-0, AppleSox.Cory Meyer followed with a walk to put runners at first and second with one out. An out later, Joey Magro tripled to left-center to plate both runners. Nolan McCafferty singled to right to score Magro and make it 5-0. River City starter Jeb Callaghan exited after allowing five runs on four hits in the first inning.After the Athletics sent nine men to the plate and scored three in the third and then used a three-run homer to take a 6-0 lead in the top of the fourth, the AppleSox responded in the bottom of that same inning.After a double play, the AppleSox went to work with two outs. Meyer and Cole McKenzie both singled to put runners at first and second with two outs. Nolan McCafferty picked up his second RBI single of the game to tie the game up. During Taylor Poffenroth’s at-bat, River City’s first baseman Drew VanKemske couldn’t handle a throw over to first and his error allowed the go-ahead run, McKenzie, to score.Five of Wenatchee’s seven runs on Tuesday night came with two outs. Overall, the AppleSox hit .500 (9-18) with two outs and also drew three walks.The AppleSox took a 7-6 lead into the fifth, but two pitches into the inning, the Athletics’ rightfielder Andrew Vargas homered to left field to tie the game up.Neither team would strike again until the ninth, when VanKemske walked and scored two batters later on an RBI double by Vargas. The AppleSox put two on in the bottom of the inning, but could not complete the rally.Cashmere native Tyler Chipman got the start for the AppleSox and struck out four batters, but could not overcome eight walks en route to allowing six runs.Steen Fredrickson struck out seven batters in 3.1-innings of scoreless relief. Fredrickson struck out the side twice and now has nine strikeouts over 4.1-innings in two appearances.The AppleSox are back at Paul Thomas Sr. Field on Wednesday night for another non-league game, this one against the Northwest Honkers. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. and tickets are still available at applesox.com and in person at the ballpark.From a release by the Wenatchee AppleSoxlast_img read more

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first_imgIn research published today, Babraham Institute researchers have shown that some tumors use not one but two levels of protection against the immune system. Knocking out one level boosted the protective effects of the second and vice versa. The research demonstrates that a two-pronged approach targeting both cell types simultaneously may offer a promising route for the development of new cancer immunotherapies.The development and growth of a cancerous tumor often occurs despite a fully functioning immune system, capable of recognizing and killing cancer cells. Tumors hijack certain cells in our immune system to create a growth-permissive environment and give protection from the anti-tumor elements. In particular, tumors recruit immune cell allies, cells called tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) and regulatory T cells (Treg), to evade immune attack.Specifically inhibiting the recruitment of TAMs by blocking the actions of a protein called colony-stimulating factor 1 (CSF1) reduces tumor growth in mouse models. Although clinical trials of inhibitors targeting TAMs are underway, results in patients haven’t been as effective as hoped. A lack of understanding of how TAMs promote tumor progression potentially limits the therapeutic value of these inhibitors.Likewise, inhibiting the action of Treg cells in mice by inactivating a key enzyme called PI3K delta gives protection against a range of tumors. A PI3K delta inhibitor is approved for treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) and follicular non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), but the potential for PI3K delta inhibitors for the treatment of solid cancers in humans is yet to be demonstrated.Related StoriesStudy: Nearly a quarter of low-risk thyroid cancer patients receive more treatment than necessaryNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskThe research published today used a mouse model of colorectal cancer to explore the synergy between TAMs and Treg cells, showing that each cell type was able to compensate for the effects of the loss of the other to maintain the tumor’s protection from the immune system. However, jointly inhibiting TAMs and Treg cells substantially inhibited tumor growth.Dr David Gyori, first author on the paper, said: “Strikingly, preventing tumor immunosuppression by both TAMs and Treg cells caused almost complete tumor rejection by the immune system and half of the mice became completely tumor-free. Taken together, our findings provide a convincing rationale for assessing the clinical value of combinatorial therapies targeting the CSF1 receptor and PI3K delta.”Professor Klaus Okkenhaug, one of the authors on the study by Gyori et al. and a parallel study by Lim et al. said: “Harnessing the power of the immune system to kill cancer cells is becoming a successful therapeutic strategy. These studies demonstrate the importance of fully understanding the interplay between the many elements of the immune system to ensure that combinatorial therapies are both synergistic and effective.” Source:https://www.babraham.ac.uk/news/2018/06/breaking-through-a-tumours-defences Jun 8 2018 Researchers identify the dominant immune cells contributing to tumor tolerance by the immune system Silencing the tumor-shielding cells of the immune system allows T cell attack on tumors and restricts tumor growth Research findings suggest new targets for cancer immunotherapieslast_img read more

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first_imgFigure 1. Assembly of the structure based on a nanoparticle and the barnase-barstar protein complex. Image courtesy of the authors of the paper and Lion_on_helium, MIPT press office Jun 19 2018Biophysicists have developed a method for modifying the surface of micro- and nanoparticles — tiny structures measuring between a thousandth and a millionth of a millimeter — by covering them with biological molecules. Engineered in this way, the particles can serve as both therapeutic and diagnostic agents, delivering drugs to cancer cells.The paper was published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. Its authors are researchers from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IBCh RAS), National Research Nuclear University MEPhI, Sechenov University, and Macquarie University (Australia).Magic bullet: Seek and cureThe concept of a “magic bullet” was originally formulated around 1900 by Paul Ehrlich, the winner of the 1908 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine. He envisioned drugs that would have a component which recognizes the pathogen in the body and another component that acts on the target. Usually, such drugs target receptors on the surface of the damaged cells. These receptors also allow the agent to recognize the cell. A universal system of this kind can be used for diagnostics, therapy, or both. When therapy and diagnostics are combined, this is known as theranostics.To make a system incorporating a therapeutic and a diagnostic component, a “molecular glue” is needed for holding the two parts together. This glue can be realized as proteins capable of forming a stable complex by binding to each other. One of the most stable complexes of this kind is the barnase-barstar protein pair. There is a value known as the binding constant that characterizes how strongly the molecules in a complex are coupled. The binding constant of the barnase-barstar complex is 1,000 to 1 million times greater than those of the antigen-antibody complexes, which are the basis of our immune response.Barnase and barstar can be used to engineer various functional modules for theranostics. For example, barnase can be bound to therapeutic agents — antibodies, drugs, fluorescent molecules, etc. — while barstar can be fused with a targeting agent. This concept was suggested by Sergey Deyev, the head of Molecular Immunology Laboratory of IBCh RAS. The two modules are then combined, forming a bifunctional compound, which has therapeutic and diagnostic properties, and enables targeted drug delivery. By fusing barnase and barstar with various therapeutic and diagnostic molecules, researchers can develop a range of theranostic agents based on the same principle. These molecular structures can be carried on the surface of nano- or microparticles. The particles themselves can have auxiliary properties, including fluorescence or the ability to be destroyed when exposed to radiation, killing off the surrounding harmful cells, such as cancer cells. Dozens of molecular structures of different types can be deposited on a tiny particle, potentially increasing its therapeutic effects.Molecular assembly kitThe notion of using nano- and microparticles to deliver drugs is being actively researched in many laboratories. The Russian and Australian researchers developed a nanoparticle-based theranostic agent using the barnase-barstar protein complex and studied its properties.“Most of the currently used methods for chemically coupling biomolecules to nanoparticles have serious flaws,” says lead author Victoria Shipunova, a researcher at MIPT’s Nanobiotechnology Lab and a senior researcher at the Molecular Immunology Lab of the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry. “The spatial orientation of the biomolecules is poorly controlled, and they encounter problems when binding to their targets. The density of the coupled molecules is fairly low, and the procedure is time-consuming.”Related StoriesUsing machine learning algorithm to accurately diagnose breast cancerTrends in colonoscopy rates not aligned with increase in early onset colorectal cancerEmbrace your natural skin tone to prevent skin cancer, say experts“We developed a method based on the barnase-barstar protein pair that does not alter the spatial structure of the targeting molecules. Two further advantages are its high specificity and rapid coupling: It only takes several minutes for all modules to bind,” she explains.The researchers used silicon dioxide-coated particles as the carriers for their molecular complex. The primary targets of the biostructures described in the paper are cancer cells, identifiable by the HER2/neu oncomarker on their surface, shown as a red outgrowth in figure 2. HER2/neu is a protein responsible for cell growth and division and present in healthy cells. In cancer cells, however, this protein is in excess — or overexpressed — enabling them to grow and divide uncontrollably. Figure 2. Theranostic structure operating principle. Image courtesy of the authors of the paper and Lion_on_helium, MIPT press office In effect, the researchers have created a universal assembly method, which allows a number of molecules with therapeutic and diagnostic potential to be easily combined, while preserving their spatial structure and properties.center_img The researchers used a molecule from the class of designed ankyrin repeat proteins, or DARPins, as the targeting agent recognizing the HER2/neu protein. Shown as light blue bellflower-shaped structures in figures 1 and 2, DARPins are small and highly stable proteins capable of selectively binding to the target molecule. Besides a DARPin molecule, which recognizes cancer cells, the structure needs to incorporate a molecule capable of binding to the carrier particle’s surface — that is, to silicon dioxide. For this, the researchers used a silicon dioxide-binding peptide obtained by rational design at Macquarie University. As a result, they created the following structure: A nano- or microparticle is coated with silicon dioxide, to which the barnase-DARPin module is attached via the silicon dioxide-binding peptide fused with barstar (figure 1). Importantly, each of the elements involved can be altered or even replaced, modifying the properties of the overall structure. In a way, it is similar to a molecular kit of building blocks, which can be assembled in many ways, producing different therapeutic agents. Source:https://www.mipt.ru//last_img read more

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first_img Source:https://newsroom.uw.edu/news/stem-cells-restore-function-primate-heart-failure-study Jul 3 2018Researchers at UW Medicine in Seattle have successfully used human stem cells to restore heart function in monkeys with heart failure. The findings suggest that the technique will be effective in patients with heart failure, the leading cause of death in the world.”The cells form new muscle that integrates into heart so that it pumps vigorously again,” said”In some animals” Murry said, the cells returned the hearts’ functioning to better than 90 percent of normal.” Murry and his colleagues report their findings in the July 2 issue of the journal Nature Biotechnology. The paper’s lead authors are Drs. Yen-Wen Liu, Billy Chen and Xiulan Yang.”Our findings show that human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes can re-muscularize infarcts in macaque monkey hearts and, in doing so, reduce scar size and restore a significant amount of heart function,” Murry said. “This should give hope to people with heart disease.”Most heart failure is caused by the death of heart muscle due to heart attacks. Because heart muscle does not regenerate, the damaged areas are replaced with scar tissue, which does not contract. As a result, the heart grows weaker. At a certain point, the heart can no longer pump enough blood to supply the body with the oxygen it needs to function. This is called heart failure. Symptoms include fatigue, profound weakness and shortness of breath. About 6.5 million Americans live with heart failure, and more than 600,000 die of the disease each year. Currently, there is no way to restore the heart’s lost muscle function.In the new study, the researchers induced experimental heart attacks in macaque monkeys. Macaques were chosen because their heart size and physiology are close to that of humans. The heart attacks reduced the hearts’ left ventricular ejection fractions –a measure of how much blood the heart pumps per beat–from about 65 percent to 40 percent, enough to put the animals into heart failure.Two weeks later, the researchers took heart cells that they had grown from embryonic human embryonic stem cells and injected them into and around the young scar tissue. Each animal received roughly 750 million of these human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. For comparison, a control group was injected with a cell-free version of the solution that was used to inject the stem cells into the treatment animals.Related StoriesWeightlifting is better for the heart than cardioTeam approach to care increases likelihood of surviving refractory cardiogenic shockStroke should be treated 15 minutes earlier to save lives, study suggestsThe researchers found that, at four weeks after treatment, the ejection fraction of the untreated control animals remained essentially unchanged, It stayed at about 40 percent, but in the treated animals the ejection fraction had risen to 49.7 percent, about half-way back to normal. Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, scans showed that new heart muscle had grown within what had been scar tissue in the treated hearts, while no new muscle was seen in the untreated animals.The researchers followed two treated animals and one control animal for three months, The ejection fraction in the control animal declined, whereas the treated animals continued to improve,. Their ejections fractions rose from 51 percent at four weeks after treatment to 61 percent and 66 percent – essentially normal ejection fractions –at three months.When the researchers studied the hearts, they found the human heart cells had formed new muscle tissue in the damaged region. The new muscle tissue had replaced 10 percent to 29 percent of the scar tissue, integrated with the surrounding healthy tissue and developed into mature heart cells.Murry said the goal of his group’s research is to develop a treatment that could be given to people shortly after a heart attack to prevent heart failure. Because heart cells are long-lived there should be no need for additional treatments, he said. The transplanted stem cells would also be genetically altered to reduce the risk of immune rejection, which often complicates organ transplantation.”What we hope to do is create a ‘one-and-done’ treatment with frozen ‘off-the-shelf’ cells that, like O-negative blood, can go into any recipient with only moderate immune suppression,”Murry said.The UW Medicine team plans to begin clinical trials of the approach in 2020.last_img read more

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first_img Source:https://www.augusta.edu/mcg/ Jul 19 2018In exfoliation glaucoma, a protein dandruff clogs the outflow pathway for the fluid in our eyes.Scientists have evidence that variants of the same gene that enables us to make connective tissue by crosslinking proteins is associated with this unusual glaucoma.Now they are looking in human eye tissue at a long piece of RNA that helps control expression of that LOXL1 gene with the idea that it may be a culprit in the destructive pileup of LOXL1 protein inside the eye.A new, $440,000 grant from the National Eye Institute is helping Dr. Yutao Liu and his colleagues further explore the relationship between the gene and this long, noncoding RNA dubbed lncLOXL1.A long-term goal is finding better treatment targets for this glaucoma, which is generally more aggressive and difficult to treat than its more common counterpart, primary open angle glaucoma, says Liu, vision scientist and human geneticist in the Department of Cellular Biology and Anatomy at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University.”Variants of this gene are associated with the disease in every population we have studied worldwide,” Liu says, including Caucasians, blacks in South Africa, the Japanese as well as Southeast Asians in India. They found the expression of LOXL1 consistently elevated early in the disease in every population. Variants are basically a slight difference in the most usual sequence of letters in the DNA.High levels of LOXL1 protein that clog outflow tracts for the eye’s aqueous humor also are a constant in all those patients. Still, there is conflicting laboratory evidence about the role of the suspect gene because neither removing or overexpressing it always results in the classic protein accumulation and high pressure inside the eye, at least in lab animals. So Liu and his team are also now looking at lncLOXL1, which regulates the gene’s expression.So far they have seen the expression level of the gene and lncLOXL1 correlate in both gene variations the scientists have seen in the human populations they have studied. They also have seen that as disease progresses, the gene expression goes down even as the protein piles up, typically at about age 60.One of the many things they want to know now is what happens to the lncLOXL1 expression in disease. Does its expression also go down when disease becomes symptomatic, or does its parallel expression with the gene part ways at that point?Knowing that will help determine whether it might one day need to be turned up or down to help patients, Liu says.They also are further refining exactly what lncLOXL1 does and how it does it by looking at what genes/proteins are affected when it’s knocked out and overexpressed.”We are looking at what happens to expression of both the LOXL1 gene and its protein when we remove lncLOXL1 from the equation and when we overexpress it,” Liu says.They are also looking at other factors floating in the eye fluid with disease. Along with way too much protein, there are proinflammatory factors like transforming growth factor beta one, a protein with a wide range of functions from helping cells mature, grow, differentiate and even die, to promoting an inflammatory response; cytokines secreted by immune cells; and hydrogen peroxide, a product of high levels of oxidative stress.Related StoriesMother calls for protein shake regulation after daughter diesNew ‘molecular scaffolding’ could help restore sight loss caused by glaucomaInhibition of p38 protein boosts formation of blood vessels in colon cancerThey want to know if lncLOXL1 needs one or all these factors to do the damage they think it does. If they block these factors, for example, does the destruction still happen? Liu has already seen that treatment of human eye cells with transforming growth factor beta one impacts expression of this long, noncoding RNA. Now he is looking at things like what happens to levels of the LOXL1 protein.They also are looking at the impact of environmental factors like ultraviolet light, since proximity to sunlight, like individuals who live in the mountains of Iceland, is an established risk factor for exfoliation glaucoma.”From what we have seen so far, we don’t think coding changes of this gene have anything to do with the disease, so it must be gene regulation,” Liu says, and that could mean lncLOXL1.A handful of years ago, Liu and colleagues at Duke University did a genetic association study – which looked at genetic risk factors – and found that variants of the gene LOXL1 in the noncoding region were associated with exfoliation glaucoma. The variance was in a sequence of the gene’s DNA called the intron, which helps regulate gene expression, so how much of which proteins get made by the gene rather than actual protein production. Coding regions of genes that make proteins are called exons, and introns are considered non-coding regions.The genetic variants appeared to impact not which proteins got made, but how much got made. With exfoliation glaucoma, it’s definitely too much.In addition to clogging fluid paths, over time the protein pileup appears to nibble away at the endothelial cells that line blood vessels as well as the pericytes, contractile cells that wrap around the endothelial cells and help give blood vessel walls strength and flexibility. The protein also weakens zonules, transparent tendons that help hold the lens of the eye in place.Although inflammation contributes to the destruction in exfoliation glaucoma, the immune system often does not eliminate the dandruff-like flakes congesting fluid flow of the eye. Pressure inside the eye soars and the eyedrops that help the more common open-angle glaucoma by increasing outflow and/or decreasing fluid production don’t work. Surgery to improve outflow often does not work long either.The current studies are primarily using eye tissue from the lens capsule of 20 patients with exfoliation glaucoma as well as 20 patients who needed cataract surgery and are considered the controls. One thing both populations have in common is they are older, which is when cataracts and symptoms of exfoliation glaucoma both tend to surface.Liu notes that not everyone with one of the known gene variants develops exfoliation glaucoma, and that as with many diseases, it’s likely a combination of genes and environment that’s causative.The aqueous humor directly provides nutrition to the eye and the invaluable fluid is normally replaced about every 90 minutes.In recent years, long, noncoding RNAs, which as the name implies are longer than some of their colleagues like microRNA, have been associated with an increasing number of diseases including a wide variety of cancers and cardiovascular disease.last_img read more

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first_imgRepresentative-elect Joe Cunningham (D–SC) arrives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and infant son for an orientation for newly elected members. They’ve won their elections and are headed to Washington, D.C. Their next challenge is using their expertise to make Congress work better.Among the more than 100 newly elected members of the U.S. House of Representatives are six who touted their backgrounds in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields and medicine on the campaign trail. All Democrats, they helped their party seize control of the 435-seat House for the first time since 2010. At the same time, they promised constituents they would reach across the aisle to get things done—something they will have many chances to do with Republicans maintaining their grip on the Senate and Republican President Donald Trump in the White House.Fresh off their electoral victories, the new STEM members talked with Science last week about national issues that also affect the scientific community. Topics included whether scientific facilities should be part of any upgrading of the country’s infrastructure, how to provide accessible and affordable health care, and how the billions spent on political campaigns limit who can run for office. They also described their preferences for committee assignments, which are determined by party leaders, and their thoughts on being part of the largest Democratic gain in the House since the 1974 post-Watergate class. By Jeffrey MervisNov. 15, 2018 , 4:05 PM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe The comments below are based on individual interviews with biochemical engineer Sean Casten of Illinois, industrial engineer Chrissy Houlahan of Pennsylvania, pediatrician Kim Schrier of Washington, nuclear engineer Elaine Luria of Virginia, ocean engineer Joe Cunningham of South Carolina, and nurse and health policy analyst Lauren Underwood of Illinois.On campaign finance reformAll the new members mentioned the need for greater transparency and, in particular, their support for disclosing who contributes to so-called super PACs, political action committees that fund politically charged ads but operate independently of any candidate. Requiring disclosure would “make sure that people don’t lose confidence in our democracy, because everybody assumes the worse if you don’t know,” Casten says.But Casten thinks that’s not nearly enough to ensure a level playing field in elections. “In the longer term, we really need to have public financing of campaigns,” he argues. “It’s not lost on me that, had I not just sold a company, I wouldn’t have been able to run.” He’s referring to Recycled Energy Development, a company he and his father formed in 2007. Casten used some of the money from its sale to bankroll his successful race against Representative Peter Roskam (R–IL), in which each man spent more than $6 million.Now that he’s won a seat, Casten is concerned that the need to fund his reelection campaign in 2020 will crimp his ability to do his job as a legislator. “The practical reality is that, given the amount of time you have to spend raising money, the taxpayers are, in effect, paying members of Congress to raise money,” he notes. “If we want to pay them to legislate and be informed on the issues, we need to free up their day.”Houlahan also thinks public financing would directly benefit STEM-trained professionals and others who have traditionally not participated in the political process. “I have been running for Congress for the past 20 months, all in, and that is without holding another job—this is a 60- to 80-hour-a-week job by itself,” she says. “And that means you can’t guarantee that this is a democratic process if people must take the better part of 2 years out of their working lives to take a swing at this.”“As a STEM person, I understand that scientists are not likely to have the networks and be part of a business culture of helping one another run for office, as other professions do,” she adds. “So, I think we need to look at it in a more holistic manner. The current process simply doesn’t promote the type of diversity that we need for our democracy to work as it should.”On infrastructure improvementsBoth Trump and Democrats have suggested an infrastructure spending bill could be an area of cooperation. Luria hopes it would accomplish three goals: Modernize the country’s transportation system, create jobs, and address climate change. The last is especially important for her southeastern Virginia district, where sea-level rise not only disrupts daily life with periodic flooding, but also threatens the country’s largest naval base. She also hopes some infrastructure money would trickle down to two federal research installations in her district—the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility and NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility. But the problem is how to pay for what many Democrats say should be a trillion-dollar investment.“We didn’t do ourselves any favors by passing a tax bill that incurs $3.9 trillion in debt,” Luria says, referring to a measure passed earlier this year by the Republican-led Congress. She and her Democratic colleagues opposed the Trump-sponsored cut, which she felt helped corporations at the expense of the middle class. At the same time, she thinks Republican votes will be needed to pass an infrastructure bill. “Nobody thinks that improving infrastructure is a bad idea. The question is what’s in the package, and the timeline. I hope we can work across the aisle to agree on priorities.”Cunningham, who claimed an open seat in a very conservative district, says he wouldn’t want an infrastructure a bill to increase overall federal spending. And he says a good place to find savings is in what the government spends on prescription drugs for seniors.“If Medicare could negotiate the price of drugs, we could save hundreds of millions of dollars a year,” he says. “And there are lots of other areas in which government is inefficient and needs to be tuned up.”On restoring earmarksCongressional leaders stopped the practice of directing money to a specific project in a member’s district in 2011, after some glaring abuses. But many members in both parties would like to see earmarking return. They argue it dovetails with Congress’s constitutional authority to appropriate funds and can also be used as a carrot to persuade otherwise reluctant lawmakers to sign on to pending legislation.That tactic is what turns off good-government advocates on both sides of the aisle. And the new STEM candidates are divided in whether earmarks should be brought back.“A lot of people who I respect have said that there was more comity in Congress when earmarks existed because it was a political currency that could be exchanged,” Casten says. “And that makes intuitive sense to me. So, I’d like to have that tool in my belt, And then I can be judged by how responsible I am in using it.”Cunningham is less convinced of the value of earmarks, but he doesn’t rule them out. “If you have people who can reach across the aisle, then you don’t need earmarks,” he says, reiterating his campaign pledge to work with Republicans. “I’d rather focus on bringing people together, and then use earmarks as a last resort.”Schrier doesn’t even want to go there. After narrowly defeating Dino Rossi for an open seat in a district outside Seattle, Washington, that has traditionally voted Republican, she says she is focused on improving a “broken” U.S. health care system and that earmarks are not on her radar.On preferred committee assignmentsWhat is important to Schrier is getting a seat on a House committee that lets her apply the knowledge she’s gained as a primary care physician. She’ll be the only female doctor in Congress, and she doesn’t think the current contingent of physicians in the House, most of whom are Republican, have represented the profession well.“You would not know it, by looking at the doctors in Congress, that most doctors have as their goal to make sure their patients are covered and to improve health care,” she says. “That is the voice that I will bring, and I would love to have the opportunity to pursue those issues by serving on the Energy and Commerce Committee [which oversees most federal health care agencies].”Underwood has likewise set her sights on a panel that deals with health care, a list that includes Ways and Means and the Committee on Education and the Workforce, as well as Energy and Commerce. She also knows freshmen rarely get chosen for such “A” level committees, but she doesn’t see that as an obstacle. “I think that I will be able to have an impact on legislation that comes to the floor of the House no matter what committees I serve on,” she says.Her north-central Illinois district is home to DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, a world leader in high-energy physics. But the science committee is not an option, she says, because two other members of the Illinois delegation—representatives Dan Lipinski (D) and Bill Foster (D)—already sit on the panel. “I’ve been informally encouraged to look at committees on which there is not already robust representation from my state,” she says.Another member from her home state now sits on the committee, but Republican Randy Hultgren won’t be returning to Congress because Underwood defeated him this month.Luria says she’d be happy to serve on the science committee because it oversees federal research efforts to improve resiliency against climate change. “I think my technical background would allow me to understand the issues they tackle,” she notes. However, she also cited geographic balance as a possible barrier, although one of the two Virginians on the panel, Republican Barbara Comstock, also lost her seat in last week’s elections.Being part of a waveThe 116th Congress will contain a number of “first-ever” Democrat members of the House, as well as the most women—more than 100—in history.For Schrier, that record number means “a lot of women decided at the same time to lead, to roll up their sleeves and get involved. Our percentages are still low, but we’ve gone from under 20% to almost 25% [of House members]. And that’s moving toward 50%. So, yes, I do feel that I am part of a wave, and I look forward to bringing in even more women.”Houlahan also feels her victory is part of a bigger movement. “It’s a wave of people elected that provide diversity on many dimensions,” she says. “Not just gender, but with their STEM backgrounds. And I’m also one of several veterans and an entrepreneur in the class. I think those backgrounds are missing in Congress right now.”On the next House speakerCunningham is the only one in the group who said he would definitely vote “no” on a bid by Representative Nancy Pelosi (D–CA), the longtime leader of House Democrats, to become speaker of the House again. But he doesn’t have a favorite. “I want to see who else is running,” he said last week. “Before you hire somebody, you want to interview them see their qualifications. And I don’t know yet who all will be running.”The other new members are taking a wait-and-see approach. “What I have said to Pelosi and anybody else who may be considering a run is that I want to sit down and chat about your goals,” Casten says. “And after meeting them I can be an informed voter.” Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)center_img Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo Email STEM candidates elected to U.S. House prepare for their new jobs Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more

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first_img “We have families that have been here six generations, and some have a sense of ownership of the island,” says Hutton, a longtime advocate for the eradication.Originally scheduled for 2018, the effort was postponed for a year because of a snag in government pesticide permits, organizers say. The delay gave them time to rethink how baits would be distributed in occupied areas, which brought many remaining detractors on board.People weren’t the only complication. Research in 2007 had revealed that the poison, a rodenticide called brodifacoum, might endanger two endemic birds, the Lord Howe Island woodhen and the Lord Howe Island currawong. Since April, a team from Sydney’s Taronga Zoo has been involved in rounding them up, housing the roughly 200 woodhens and 125 currawongs captured so far—more than half the wild populations—in aviaries and pens. The birds have “settled in beautifully,” says Leanne Elliott, wildlife conservation officer at the zoo. Once the poison has broken down, they’ll be released into the wild again, likely in stages toward the end of the year.By then the rats should be gone, and biodiversity should start to rebound, says Melanie Massaro, an ornithologist at Charles Sturt University in Albury, Australia, who has been studying the currawong. Providing the eradication is successful, she says, “Some smaller seabirds that have been previously lost will likely start breeding on the island again; some populations of currently threatened species will increase in numbers, and there’s also the potential of reintroducing species.”One early returnee might be the Lord Howe stick insect, long thought extinct. In 2001, a few individuals were found clinging to life atop windswept Ball’s Pyramid, a 551-meter-tall rocky sea stack 23 kilometers to the southwest. The insects have since been bred at Australia’s Melbourne Zoo, and in 2017 researchers confirmed that their DNA matches that of museum specimens collected from the main island more than a century ago. The first step in the species return will come in 2021 with a trial release of captive-bred phasmids onto an islet in Lord Howe’s lagoon that is now being revegetated.”It’s all going to be done very carefully,” Hutton says. “In 100 years, there have been a lot of changes and the phasmid was part of an ecosystem that has altered,” he says, arguing that some of the missing birds may once have kept it in check. Without native predators, the stick insect population could surge.Then again, some of those birds may return as well. Norfolk Island, about 900 kilometers to the north, hosts related subspecies of parrots, owls, and several other birds that once made their home on Lord Howe. They are contenders for reintroductions. Others, such as the Kermadec petrel and white-bellied storm petrel, found on surrounding islets, may return on their own—providing this summer’s campaign can end the centurylong reign of the rats. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Rodents wiped out the cigar-size Lord Howe Island stick insect on the main island, but it clung to life on a nearby islet. IAN HUTTON A beguiling, 11-kilometer-long speck of land in the Pacific Ocean 780 kilometers northeast of Sydney, Australia, Lord Howe Island hosts some of the world’s southernmost tropical coral reefs as well as throngs of endemic birds and insects. But invasive species have laid siege to its unique biodiversity, the worst of them the black rats that first scurried ashore in 1918 after the steamship SS Makambo grounded on the reef. Now, a unique effort to eradicate the invaders is unfolding—against a background of controversy among the island’s roughly 380 human inhabitants.To protect or restore native species, introduced rodents have been extirpated on more than 700 islands worldwide, many around New Zealand, with its rich but threatened endemic fauna. But the Lord Howe project, years in the making, “will be the largest rodent eradication undertaken on a permanently inhabited island anywhere in the world,” says Andrew Walsh of the Lord Howe Island Rodent Eradication Project, who is overseeing the effort to spread 42 tons of poisoned cereal pellets across the island. Some 28,000 bait stations were filled across farmed and residential areas starting 22 May, and helicopters will scatter baits over more forested and mountainous parts of the island as soon as weather permits.Walsh and his colleagues hope to undo some of the damage from the voracious rodents, which have wiped out five endemic birds, two plants, and 13 insects, including the 15-centimeter-long, black, waxy-looking Lord Howe Island stick insect, also called the phasmid or tree lobster (Dryococelus australis). Some lost species, including the phasmid, have subsequently been rediscovered on surrounding islets. Eliminating the estimated 360,000 rodents—including house mice, which arrived in the 1860s—could allow the native animals to return to the main island, and will also protect another 70 or more threatened species, such as the little shearwater, masked booby, and several endemic palms that grow in the island’s cloud forest. Email IAN HUTTON Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) “It’s going to be a landmark project throughout the history of eradications,” says Ian Hutton, naturalist and curator of the Lord Howe Island Museum, who has led research and conservation on the island since the 1980s. But the fact that Lord Howe Island—a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is officially part of the Australian state of New South Wales—is a tourist destination with an established human population created a unique challenge. Many residents feared the baits might harm children, pets, cattle, and other wildlife or damage the lucrative tourist trade.The island’s governing body decided in 2017 to go ahead with the AU$10.5 million eradication, after 15 years of research and planning and a referendum that saw 52% of islanders vote in favor. But others remained bitterly opposed. “This whole thing will be a disaster. We might as well kiss our World Heritage listing goodbye,” islander Rodney Thompson told Sydney’s The Daily Telegraph newspaper in April. Mass rodent poisoning on this remote Australian island could bring back giant stick insect Lord Howe Island has reefs, forests, and endemic species threatened by invasive rodents. By John PickrellJun. 5, 2019 , 12:45 PMlast_img read more

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first_img ‘For all those of you losers who call me CHOR…’: Vijay Mallya’s response to trolls after pic of him with Gayle goes viral  Vijay Mallya, Vijay Mallya extradition order, Vijay Mallya extradition, Kingfisher airlines vijay mallya, vijay mallya bank fraud, vijay mallya UK, indian express Vijay Mallya remains on bail on an extradition warrant executed by Scotland Yard in April 2017. (File Photo)The UK High Court Tuesday permitted beleaguered liquor baron Vijay Mallya to appeal against his extradition order signed off by home secretary on at least one of five grounds, PTI reported. 0 Comment(s) Advertising Bombay High Court gives no relief to Vijay Mallya A two-member bench of the Royal Courts of Justice comprising Justices George Leggatt and Andrew Popplewell made the conclusion after hearing the arguments.The 62-year-old, owner of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines, is wanted for wilful default of over Rs 9,000 crore loan from Indian banks. He is facing charges of fraud, money laundering and violation of Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) in India. Explained | The cases against Vijay MallyaMallya had been pinning his hopes on receiving a successful appeal as he had lost a UK High Court “leave to appeal”, which led to an oral hearing of his renewal application this week. Hence, the ruling has come as a reprieve for him. Advertising Related News By Express Web Desk |New Delhi | Updated: July 2, 2019 9:34:47 pm Bombay HC dismisses Vijay Mallya’s plea seeking protection from sale of assets Since he has been granted permission to appeal, the case will now proceed to a full hearing stage at the UK High Court.Ahead of the hearing, Mallya told reporters outside the court that he was feeling “positive”. Representatives from the Indian High Commission in London were present in court to observe the proceedings.Mallya, on the other hand, has continued to make a series of interventions on social media to offer “100 per cent payback” to state-owned Indian banks to cover his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines’ debt.He remains on bail on an extradition warrant executed by Scotland Yard in April 2017, involving a bail bond worth 650,000 pounds and other restrictions on his travel.At the end of a year-long extradition trial at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London last December, Judge Arbuthnot had found “clear evidence of dispersal and misapplication of the loan funds” and accepted a prima facie case of fraud and a conspiracy to launder money against Mallya, as presented by the Crown Prosecution Service.With PTI inputslast_img read more

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first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Email By Alex FoxMay. 17, 2019 , 4:25 PM The ‘superblack’ patches on these spiders make their other colors glowMale peacock spiders attract mates through elaborate dances that show off their brilliant colors. The key to those vibrant hues appears to be so-called “superblack” patches on the arachnid’s abdomen. Using an electron microscope and hyperspectral imaging, scientists found that the patches are made up of an array of small, tightly packed bumps called microlenses. These microlenses reflect less than 0.5% of light, thus eliminating any highlights in the black and making the other nearby colors appear far brighter—even glowing.‘Wood wide web’—the underground network of microbes that connects trees—mapped for first time (left to right): JURGEN OTTO; KABIR GABRIEL PEAY; REPTILES4ALL/SHUTTERSTOCK Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Top stories: Superblack spiders, the ‘wood wide web,’ and an antivenom funding infusion Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Trees, from the mighty redwoods to slender dogwoods, would be nothing without their microbial sidekicks. Millions of species of fungi and bacteria swap nutrients between soil and the roots of trees, forming a vast, interconnected web of organisms throughout the woods. Now, for the first time, scientists have mapped this “wood wide web” on a global scale, using a database of more than 28,000 tree species living in more than 70 countries.Snakebites, a globally neglected killer, get a ‘transformational’ injection of research fundsSnakebites kill as many as 138,000 people a year, mostly among the rural poor in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Another 400,000 victims suffer major disabilities such as amputation. Yet funders, more interested in infectious diseases that can be prevented and eradicated, have largely stayed away. That is now changing. This week, the Wellcome Trust charity in London announced an £80 million, 7-year research program to improve antivenoms and search for new treatments—a major influx of money in a small field.The world needs to get serious about managing sand, U.N. report saysOur reliance on sand is staggering—by volume, the amount we use is second only to water. As a key component of cement, asphalt, and glass, sand is integral to our phones, schools, hospitals, and roads. But our insatiable demand for sand now poses “one of the major sustainability challenges of the 21st century,” and meeting it will require “improved governance of global sand resources,” concludes a United Nations report released this month.Citizen sleuths exposed pollution from a century-old Michigan factory, with nationwide implicationsIn 2010, citizens in Rockford, Michigan, started to uncover evidence that a shuttered tannery owned by bootmaker Wolverine Worldwide had contaminated large swaths of land and water with “forever chemicals” linked to a wide array of health problems, known as a per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs). The citizen sleuthing helped trigger a statewide survey of PFAS contamination and spurred hundreds of lawsuits. It has also made Michigan a closely watched battleground in a rapidly expanding scientific, political, and legal dispute over the threat PFASs may pose to millions of people in the United States.last_img read more

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first_imgThe applications said that hearing on claims and objections had started February 15 and two types of hearing were on — family tree-based hearing and family-based hearing.Stressing the need for reverification, the Centre’s application cited likely law and order problems. It said “the list prepared after this exercise will be final and will have critical impact on the people whose names may not be included in the same. It is therefore pertinent that the exercise of sample verification must necessarily follow before the publication of the final list”.The Centre said “while every step is being taken to ensure that the process of preparation for final NRC is correct and fair”, a reverification would be in order “considering the unprecedented large scale of complexities involved and the issues coming forward by way of various applications and news reports”.Its plea said that the sample reverification being sought was both for inclusions and exclusions. It pointed out that while 2,89,83,677 people were included in the final draft, the number of objections received was only 2 lakh. Jharkhand court drops ‘donate Quran’ condition for bail to Ranchi woman over offensive post Post Comment(s) Centre will identify illegal immigrants and deport them: Amit Shah in Rajya Sabha Advertising After Masood Azhar blacklisting, ICJ verdict in Kulbhushan case isolates Pakistan The Centre and state urged the court “to suitably modify the timeline fixed for publication of the final from 31st July 2019 to a future date”.The applications pointed out that Assam had filed an affidavit on August 27, 2018 suggesting reverification as a means to address concerns about exclusion of genuine citizens and inclusion of illegal immigrants.Following this, the court, in its order dated August 28, 2018, had said “we are of the view that the court should consider the necessity of carrying out the sample reverification of at least 10% of the names included in the final draft NRC”, the parties pointed out.After this order, Assam filed another application on October 29, 2018 “seeking reverification of samples to be done and completed before proceeding further with claims and objections and also prayed for constitution of a High Level Committee for identification of criteria and prepare guidelines for reverification exercise to be carried out by the State Coordinator and monitor the same closely”, it said, adding “however no order has been passed by this honourable court for reverification”. Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield Related News center_img Among those still missing in NRC, son of freedom fighter and Assam agitation participant Mentioning the pleas before a bench of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Aniruddha Bose, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta sought an urgent hearing. The bench said it will examine the request.The applications requested the court to “pass an order directing 20% sample reverification of names included in the final draft NRC in districts of State of Assam bordering Bangladesh and a 10% sample reverification of names included in the final draft NRC in the remaining districts of Assam”.They also wanted the court to pass orders “directing such reverification to be conducted by Class I officers of the state government from other districts who have knowledge and experience of handling the process of enquiry/investigation” and “directing the venue of sample reverification be undertaken at the place different from the place where the NRC exercise had taken place”. Advertising Best Of Express Tejasvi Surya appeals to govt to extend NRC to Karnataka Written by Ananthakrishnan G | New Delhi | Published: July 17, 2019 3:53:27 am , assam citizenship row, NRC deadline extension, NRC deadline assam citizenship issue, nrc in assam, assam nrc, assam nrc row, nrc row in assam, assam police, india news, northeast news, Indian ExpressThe Centre and the Assam government on Tuesday moved the Supreme Court, seeking 20 per cent sample reverification of names included in the final draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in the districts bordering Bangladesh, and extension of the July 31 deadline set by the court for publishing the final NRC.last_img read more

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first_imgPeter Suciu has been an ECT News Network reporter since 2012. His areas of focus include cybersecurity, mobile phones, displays, streaming media, pay TV and autonomous vehicles. He has written and edited for numerous publications and websites, including Newsweek, Wired and FoxNews.com.Email Peter. Apart from some minor cosmetic changes, today’s iPhone doesn’t look much different from the handset that launched a decade ago.”An iPhone 7 next to 10-year-old iPhone looks the same,” said IHS Markit’s Fogg.”Both have unibody metal design, and function much the same way,” he said.To continue to be successful in the market, Apple likely will need to follow the industry with a design refresh. This could include removing the bezel so that the whole front is nothing but screen.”To do this, they would need to move or miniaturize the buttons,” Fogg added. “Everyone is trying to do that right now, but that could lead to some different smartphones. That is important, because in this space innovative design is still the key thing.” Market Disrupter Slow but Steady The iPhone’s success launched the smartphone age, with Google’s Android operating system arriving just a year later. Combined, those innovations made the world of mobile computing a reality and helped diminish the PC’s importance.”Now, a smartphone is the primary device — if not the only device — people in emerging markets or underserved segments of [the U.S.] market use to access the Internet,” said Crandall.The iPhone also changed the Internet, he added.”Rather than accessing any site or application on the ‘World Wide Web’ via a Web browser, the iPhone’s framework of mobile apps has created a fragmented reality that threatens the open Internet and complicates the development landscape,” Crandall explained.As a result, “we’re even seeing apps that are designed for a limited mobile device — small screen, less memory, slower processor — being marketed for use on laptops and desktops via Windows and Chrome OS,” he noted. The first iPhone now is remembered for its innovative design, but the truth is that it was underpowered when it was first released. It was a 2G phone when the industry already was moving to 3G, and its camera was lackluster compared to many other high-end handsets.Functionality mattered more at the time, though, and Apple kept refining it. With each new product update, the iPhone became a little better — and those incremental improvements changed the handset lifecycle.”Ten years ago the operating system for mobile phones was updated every two or three years,” recalled Fogg.”Now Apple updates its OS every year,” he added. “The pace of innovation that Apple has pursued over the past decade is really extraordinary.” Time for a Facelift? Just as the iPod may have saved Apple and allowed it to develop the iPhone, that device in turn has driven the company’s R&D efforts, which have supported other products including the iPad, Apple Watch and Apple TV.However, Apple largely has stuck to its proven strategy of improving the handset and releasing a new model. It has seen steady sales, but it is unlikely it can reach higher market share — especially as Google’s Android OS also has been successful over the past nine years.”Apple doesn’t play at every price point, so some people simply are priced out,” noted Fogg.”Apple has always targeted the top of the market with premium models, reaping the greatest profits in the industry,” said Netpop Research’s Crandall.”The company has used these profits to bolster iTunes, Beats, development of Apple Maps, and other R&D,” he noted.This strategy may not serve Apple so well in the long term, however, especially as it has lost significant market share to Android.Google’s OS “now accounts for approximately 65-70 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, and even [more] in emerging markets,” said Crandall.For this reason, Apple has started to move downstream with its SE models, but it still must compete against third-party Android manufacturers, including Huawei and Samsung, which can provide lower-cost smartphones.”The real question is,” said Kagan, is “will another OS enter the picture and successfully compete with iPhone and Android?”Even if that should happen, “the Apple iPhone will continue for the foreseeable future,” he maintained. “It remains a great quality device with a huge customer base and solid ecosystem.”center_img Market Growth Move Over, PC The iPhone isn’t the first product line that Apple shepherded to market dominance by differentiating from existing products. Although the company had been practically at death’s door a decade earlier, it revitalized itself with the introduction of the iPod in the fall of 2001, and that success led to development of the iPhone.The iPhone “was completely different from anything on the market when it was released in 2007,” said Ian Fogg, senior director for mobile and telecom at IHS Markit.”It featured a 3.5-inch touchscreen interface that offered graphic acceleration that responded to finger movements, and it had a desktop quality Web browser,” he told TechNewsWorld.”It also offered a metal unibody design that was unlike anything else on the market,” Fogg added.Thanks to these and other features, “the iPhone changed the game entirely,” said Josh Crandall, principal analyst at Netpop Research.”The combination of space-aged materials — gorilla glass and flat batteries — and pocket-sized convenience brought the Internet into the palms of our hands — anytime, everywhere,” he told TechNewsWorld. “It flipped Silicon Valley’s perspective from building a faster laptop to focus on a ‘mobile-first’ world.” Mobile phones used to be about making phone calls and to a lesser extent sending text messages. Today, thanks to the emergence of smartphones, the world is connected via the handset.”The iPhone ushered in a new way of connecting — connecting with each other by voice, video, text, social networks and so on,” said telecommunications industry analyst Jeff Kagan.”The iPhone is much more than just connecting with each other, and it has created an entirely new area for business to grow,” he told TechNewsWorld.It has allowed individuals to do banking and pay bills, search the Web, price compare while shopping, and even make purchases. The road ahead could be the automobile and connected car.”Uber and Lyft transformed the taxi and limousine industry using the iPhone and Android as their way to connect with countless customers worldwide,” Kagan pointed out. “The iPhone is transforming the automobile industry. Just look at any new car today, and you will see how you can connect the iPhone and use it on the dashboard screen.” Connecting the World Apple celebrated the 10th anniversary of its iconic iPhone on Thursday. Since former CEO Steve Jobs debuted the original device, the company has gone on to sell more than a billion handsets worldwide, and the iPhone has become one of the most successful product categories in the electronics industry.The iPhone proved to be a major disrupter in the mobile phone category after its unveiling on June 29, 2007. At the time, the industry was dominated by companies such as Nokia, Motorola, Ericsson, BlackBerry maker Research In Motion, and Palm. Over the past decade, those players have seen their respective market shares erode — to the point that the companies or their mobile businesses either were bought or otherwise exited the market.Once-dominant R.I.M., whose BlackBerry earned the moniker “crackberry” for its seeming addictiveness, is now just a niche player that no longer manufactures phones.The iPhone helped usher in the age of touchscreen-friendly devices, while in essence killing off flip and so-called “feature” phones. Today, the smartphone is dominant, and whole product categories now offer the touchscreen user interface that the iPhone popularized.last_img read more

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