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A federal judge in Texas issued a ruling Friday de

first_imgA federal judge in Texas issued a ruling Friday declaring the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, apparently setting the stage for another hearing on the health care law by the U.S. Supreme Court.The ruling by U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor invalidates what’s commonly referred to as Obamacare nationwide, and casts into doubt the survival of the law on the eve of the deadline for tens of millions of Americans to sign up for health care coverage in 2019.The ruling comes in a lawsuit brought against what was one of the major domestic achievements of the Obama administration. An alliance of 19 Republican attorneys general and a governor led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton challenged the law.As NPR’s Alison Kodjak explained on All Things Considered,”The lawsuit had to do with whether when Congress last year repealed or eliminated the penalty for not having insurance — it was a tax penalty for people who didn’t have insurance — whether that meant the rest of the law didn’t apply anymore. The court case argued that all of the pieces of the law were dependent upon each other, so by eliminating the penalty the rest of the law fell apart. The judge agreed with that opinion.”In his 55-page opinion, Judge O’Connor said the debate over the ACA’s interlocking provisions is “like watching a slow game of Jenga, each party poking at a different provision to see if the ACA falls.”In a statement, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders praised the ruling.”Obamacare has been struck down by a highly respected judge. The judge’s decision vindicates President Trump’s position that Obamacare is unconstitutional. Once again, the President calls on Congress to replace Obamacare and act to protect people with preexisting conditions and provide Americans with quality affordable healthcare. We expect this ruling will be appealed to the Supreme Court. Pending the appeal process, the law remains in place.”Shortly afterwards, President Trump tweeted, “As I predicted all along, Obamacare has been struck down as an UNCONSTITUTIONAL disaster! Now Congress must pass a STRONG law that provides GREAT healthcare and protects pre-existing conditions.”California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who led the coalition of states that defended the ACA promised to continue the court fight to preserve the law.Rep. Nancy Pelosi, who is expected to be House speaker when Democrats come into the majority next month, tweeted, “Tonight’s absurd ruling exposes the monstrous endgame of the GOP’s all-out assault on people w/ pre-existing conditions & the ACA. When @HouseDemocrats take the gavel, the House will swiftly intervene in the appeals process to #ProtectOurCare!”Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.last_img read more

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Disabled and older people have compared a council

first_imgDisabled and older people have compared a council’s plans to cut £5 million from its adult social care budget to “social cleansing” and have accused it of “treating people no better than animals in Longleat”.The comments were included in The Voice of those Affected, a report by Healthwatch Merton into proposed cuts by Merton council in south-west London.The report was commissioned by the council after heavy lobbying by campaigners, and was based on comments by 72 service-users and carers during a series of focus groups.The report was released as more than 20 campaigners – many of them disabled people – protested outside the council’s offices before a committee meeting this week at which councillors discussed the proposed cuts.The protesters had heard that members of the council’s ruling Labour group had already voted in secret – although not unanimously – not to increase council tax for 2016-17, or to take advantage of new powers allowing councils to increase council tax by two per cent a year to boost adult social care spending.Six speakers, including Lyla Adwan-Kamara, chief executive of Merton Centre for Independent Living (MCIL), and two disabled people affected by the proposals, spoke to the council’s healthier communities and older people’s scrutiny panel about the report and the likely impact of the cuts.Adwan-Kamara said afterwards that those speeches “brought to life what was in that report, what had been happening to them and even worse what was going to happen to them”.Following those and other presentations and discussions, the panel rejected three proposed cuts – to care and support packages, to staffing, and to scrapping a respite service – and agreed to send them back to the council’s cabinet for “review and reconsideration”.People who took part in the Healthwatch Merton focus groups said the cuts would damage their health, sever social connections, and affect every aspect of their lives, leaving some believing that life was no longer worth living.Words and phrases used to describe the cuts included “disgusting”, “devastating”, “wickedness” and “survival of the fittest”.One told a focus group: “It is like social cleansing, they are trying to get rid of the people they don’t need.”One man in his 80s said – apparently quite seriously – that he would now have to “start practising to eat less from now on”, while another contributor said: “I will end up in my flat like a hermit, self-harming again.”Another said: “I was placed in a care home. It feels like a prison. I pay £600 per week to live somewhere I hate and I don’t use any of the services.”One focus group member said the council had become “less and less supportive”, and accused it of “withdrawing help and taking things back to Victorian times”, while another said: “I had to beg social services to take notice of me. What chance is there going to be for people that don’t have a voice like I did?”The report calls for the council to commission a more detailed, independent evaluation of the impact of the cuts on disabled and older people, and concludes: “One of the key feelings voiced was a sense of betrayal and abandonment by Merton Council.“People talked of being left behind, being left on the scrapheap, and not being treated equally.”The report says there were people crying in nearly every one of the focus groups, and it warns that if the cuts go ahead, people will “potentially be making heat or eat type decisions as they may need to pay for their own care, or pay more for services that they need”.After the scrutiny panel meeting, Adwan-Kamara told Disability News Service that it was the first time the council had “really listened to our members”, but that the £5 million in cuts was “still hanging over people’s heads”.She said of the Healthwatch Merton report: “I had a fairly clear view of what people would say, because we have been hearing this through our casework.“As a centre for independent living, we knew what the issues were, but to see those comments written down in black and white and made so explicit and clear was really emotional.”She said the Labour group’s decision not to increase council tax was “unconscionable”.She said: “They have that opportunity and they are refusing to take it. They have made a choice not to raise council tax, so they have made a choice not to support the most vulnerable people in Merton.”A spokeswoman for Merton’s Labour group confirmed the scrutiny panel had asked the cabinet to look again at the three proposed cuts to adult social care, and said the budget would now be considered by the cabinet on 15 February, with a final decision taken by the full council on 2 March.She said that the Labour group “intends to keep its promise to residents to freeze council tax” and would not take advantage of the two per cent increase option.Cllr Stephen Alambritis, leader of the council, said in a statement: “I promised residents a four year council tax freeze and if there’s one thing you can say about me I keep my promises.  “I’m a business-man and I believe in running a business-like council, making what we do more efficient so we can continue to deliver the services people need the most.”Cllr Mark Allison, the cabinet member for finance, added: “The government have cut council funding by more than 40 per cent but in Merton we have done our best to protect adult social care services by ensuring it gets a lower share of the cuts than other departments, and by adding a further £12 million to its budget.  “As a result we have managed to keep the amount we spend on adult social care virtually the same since 2010.”last_img read more

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Labours policy on universal credit has again beco

first_imgLabour’s policy on universal credit has again become mired in confusion after its leader, Jeremy Corbyn, promised to scrap the government’s “catastrophic” and “iniquitous” benefit system if his party wins the next general election.Such a move would be seen as a significant victory for disabled activists and allies who have pushed the party to promise to scrap universal credit, instead of pledging only to halt the rollout of the system and fix its many flaws.Interviewed after the party’s success in last week’s Peterborough by-election, Corbyn told Channel 4 News (pictured): “We are ready for a general election, and that general election will deliver a Labour government.”He added: “If you voted Remain in 2016, and you’re on universal credit, if you voted Leave in 2016 on universal credit, you actually want to get rid of universal credit. That’s what Labour offers.”Despite Corbyn’s comments, what seemed to be a significant change in policy appeared not to have been noticed by any mainstream media.And the party’s press office today (Thursday) issued a statement that conflicted with what Corbyn said, merely stating again that a Labour government would pause the rollout of UC and try to make it fit for purpose.A party spokesperson said: “Universal credit isn’t working and cannot continue in its current form.“Labour will stop the roll-out, and ensure our social security system genuinely protects people from poverty.”Disabled activists, particularly Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC), have campaigned for the government – and any future Labour government – to “stop and scrap” universal credit (UC).Only last week, DPAC released new research which detailed media articles on UC published between January and May this year, which it said was “a damning record of UC systemic and catastrophic failures”.It said that UC had reached a point where it was “unable to adapt to claimants’ complex circumstances, and is forcing people with the least resources into further poverty, homelessness, and hunger”. DPAC said it was calling for UC to be scrapped because it had become a social security system “which not only does not offer security, but actively undermined people’s ability to cope with the hazards of life”.A DPAC spokesperson said last night (Wednesday), in response to Corbyn’s comments, but before the party had released its statement: “We welcome it as it’s the only credible position that Labour or any other party can take given UC’s well-evidenced fundamental failings, enormous waste and terrible harm but we remain unsure of Labour’s position until there is a firm public commitment.”It is not the first time that Labour has appeared to call for UC to be scrapped and then retreated from that position.Last October, the party had to back-track after deputy leader John McDonnell said in a television interview that UC was a “shambles” and “iniquitous” and added: “I think we are moving to a position now where it is just not sustainable. It will have to go.”But the party’s press office later stressed that Labour’s position was that “universal credit in its current form simply isn’t working”.Labour’s work and pensions secretary, Margaret Greenwood, was also heavily-criticised by disabled activists after telling the party’s annual conference in Liverpool last September that the government must “stop the rollout of universal credit and fix its many flaws”, rather than calling for it to be scrapped. A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…last_img read more

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Zuckerberg Some Tech Is Worrying but Not Facebook

first_img News reporter May 26, 2017 Zuckerberg: Some Tech Is Worrying, but Not Facebook Mark Zuckerberg The story of Facebook’s founding has entered American legend, but its founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg couldn’t resist briefly rehashing its conception in a Harvard dorm room during a commencement speech at his alma mater on Thursday.Zuckerberg, who founded Facebook before dropping out of Harvard, also used his speech to explain his view of technology in starkly clear terms: he believes that technological progress as a whole is threatening to many people’s way of life, but certain individual technologies, including Facebook, actually change people’s lives for the better. It all comes down to a sense of purpose, according to Zuckerberg. Millennials like him have it, while many older people have lost it thanks to technological change.”When our parents graduated, that sense of purpose reliably came from your job, your church, your community,” Zuckerberg said. “But today, technology and automation are eliminating jobs. Membership in a lot of communities has been declining, and a lot of people are feeling disconnected and depressed, and are trying to fill a void in their lives.”His remarks echo those of many government and business leaders who are grappling with the prospect of robots taking over people’s jobs. The European Union is even considering a form of social security tax on automated factories to make up for an anticipated decline in wages being paid to humans. Others, including U.S. Secretary of Labor Steve Mnuchin, aren’t as worried about a robot revolution.To Zuckerberg, though, not all technology is menacing, especially not the world’s largest social network. Echoing the company’s motto, he explained that Facebook is the way the world connects, and he suggested that the world is a better place because of it. “This idea was so clear to us, that all people want to connect, so we just kept working on it,” he said, recalling early coding sessions in his dorm room.What Zuckerberg didn’t get around to in his speech is that more than 10 years after those sessions, Facebook is now a multinational company that snapped up many smaller ones, including Instagram, which the Royal Society for Public Health recently determined to be the “most detrimental” social media platform for young people’s mental health and wellbeing. Fireside Chat | July 25: Three Surprising Ways to Build Your Brand Enroll Now for $5 This story originally appeared on PCMag Next Article center_img In his Harvard commencement address, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg reminisced about his intentions for starting the social network. Add to Queue Image credit: catwalker | Shutterstock 2 min read Tom Brant Learn from renowned serial entrepreneur David Meltzer how to find your frequency in order to stand out from your competitors and build a brand that is authentic, lasting and impactful. –shareslast_img read more

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Every Entrepreneur Should Listen to These 10 Podcasts

first_img Register Now » May 15, 2019 Image credit: Hoxton/Tom Merton | Getty Images Listening to these podcasts is the next best thing to having lunch with some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs. Next Article Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. –shares VIP Contributor Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Add to Queue Podcasts Deep Patel Whether we’re commuting to work, taking a lunch break or just looking to relax before bed, podcasts have become a best friend to many of us. It’s easy to see why. In recent years there has been an explosion of quality podcasts on nearly any topic you can think of.Podcasts fit well with our busy lives. They’re portable and easy to access at a moment’s notice; all it takes is a set of earbuds and a device with internet access. They also create a feeling of connection between the listener and the host. The intimacy of audio makes us feel like we’re part of a cozy conversation — we get to listen like we’re the only ones in the room.There are tons of great podcasts out there to explore. Below are 10 of my all-time favorites. Each offers incredible insights and amazing interviews with some of the biggest names of our time.1. The Tim Ferriss ShowTim Ferriss is a self-experimenter and bestselling author, known for his book The 4-Hour Workweek. The Tim Ferriss Show tackles topics Ferris is interested in, and is sure to teach you something new. Guests have included Arnold Schwarzenegger, LeBron James and Silicon Valley journalist Kara Swisher.During his show, Ferriss interviews world-class performers from eclectic areas, including investing, chess and pro sports, and then digs deep to find the tools, tactics and tricks that listeners can use.Related: How to Quit Slacking and Start Being More Productive With Tim Ferriss2. This Week in StartupsJason Calacanis and a rotating group of guest experts bring you this weekly take on the best, worst, most outrageous and most interesting stories from the world of web companies. Calacanis gives listeners amazing insights into how angel investing works and how he builds companies.This Week in Startups offers in-depth interviews with heavy-hitters in the tech industry who offer an insider’s look at what’s happening and what trends are emerging. Whether you’re looking to start your own company, need strategies for improving your business, need help motivating your team or just want to catch up on what’s happening in Silicon Valley and beyond, your journey should begin here.3. How I Built ThisHow I Built This showcases Guy Raz’s ability to dive into the stories behind some of the world’s best-known companies. In nearly every show, Raz uses his disarming sense of “wow” to get his guests to open up.Raz is able to tap into something deep with each person he interviews, pulling out insights and getting them to open up about nitty-gritty details they wouldn’t normally share. How I Built This weaves a narrative journey about innovators, entrepreneurs and idealists, uncovering their vulnerabilities and the inner turmoil they faced along the journey to success.4. The School of Greatness with Lewis HowesThe School of Greatness is one of the top podcasts by any standard of measurement. It has run for 500-plus episodes, has more than 40 million downloads and continually manages to snag celebrity names like Tony Robbins and Maria Sharapova.Host Lewis Howes is the best-selling author of The School of Greatness and The Mask of Masculinity. He played professional Arena League football until an injury cut his career short. His show delves into what makes the greatest people great and how to apply those lessons to your life. In The School of Greatness, he aims to share inspiring stories from the most brilliant business minds, world-class athletes and influential celebrities on the planet.Related: Listen to the Latest Episode of Entrepreneur’s How Success Happens Podcast5. How to Start a StartupThis collection of video lectures is designed to be a kind of one-stop business course for people who want to start startups. How to Start a Startup offers firsthand, hard-won knowledge from Sam Altman and others at Y Combinator. These were originally given as class lectures at Stanford University, and now they’re being offered to the world at large.The course includes lectures from Sam Altman, Dustin Moskovitz, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, Marc Andreessen and Marissa Mayer. The show covers everything: how to come up with ideas and evaluate them, how to get users and grow your base, how to do sales and marketing, how to hire, how to raise money, company culture, operations and management, business strategy and more. If you’re serious about starting a startup, invest the time in listening to this podcast.6. a16zThe eclectic topics and insightful conversations of guests and interviewers draw you into a16z. If you’re looking for a window into the world of a top venture-capital firm, you need not look any further. Andreessen Horowitz (aka “a16z”) is a Silicon Valley–based venture-capital firm that produces this prolific podcast with multiple episodes per week. The show is typically made up of interviews with startup founders, and various partners and analysts at the firm.There are great insights here, not just into how to grow a business with venture capital, but also into tech trends in general. The host and guest experts offer advice and information that will be useful to those at any level of entrepreneurship. The show discusses tech and culture trends and news, and how they will all impact us in the near future. It features industry experts, business leaders and other interesting thinkers and voices from around the world.Related: Check Out All-New Episodes of Entrepreneur’s Problem Solvers Podcast Here7. Recode Decode with Kara SwisherOne of Silicon Valley’s most prominent journalists, Kara Swisher, hosts candid interviews with tech execs, politicians, celebrities and more, focusing on their big ideas and how they’re changing our world. In Recode Decode, she brings her ruthless, no-mercy journalism style to one-on-one interviews with some of the biggest names in tech.In a world of tech journalism that tends toward softball pitches, Swisher is playing hardball. She’s intense and intimidating, and is always ready with an incisive follow-up question. Her interviewees include Tesla CEO Elon Musk, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.8. The James Altucher ShowJames Altucher interviews the world’s peak performers in every area of life. But instead of giving you the typical success story, Altucher digs deeper to find the “Choose Yourself” story. These are the moments we can all relate to, when someone rises up from personal struggle to reinvent themselves.The James Altucher Show brings you into the lives of these ultra-successful performers, including billionaires, best-selling authors, rappers, astronauts, athletes, comedians, actors and the world champions in every field. He seeks out those who forged their own paths, found financial freedom and harnessed the power to create more meaningful and fulfilling lives. Altucher himself is a successful entrepreneur, chess master, investor and writer.9. MixergyIf you’re an ambitious entrepreneur crafting your next startup, there is no better way to get a “street smarts” education than Mixergy. The show offers listeners a chance to “learn from proven entrepreneurs.”In over 1,000 interviews, Andrew Warner doesn’t back down from asking uncomfortable questions to dig deeper into the successes and failures of the most prosperous business founders and thought leaders of our time. The ideas and stories he unearths on the show are powerful and inspiring.10. Smart Passive IncomePat Flynn is a passive-income whiz. He’s earned more than $3 million in the last six years by creating authoritative and helpful websites that cover a vast array of businesses. Smart Passive Income reveals all of his online business and blogging strategies, income sources and shrewd marketing tips and tricks so you can be ahead of the curve with your online business or blog. Flynn has been supporting his family with 100 percent passive income generated online, easily earning a 6-figure salary while working only a few hours a week.His show covers everything you need to set up successful passive income, including automation, outsourcing, crowdsourcing, search engine optimization, building authority and trust, niche sites, social media, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, podcasting, e-books, online courses and affiliate marketing. Listen in to learn about everything that works (and doesn’t work) about creating passive income to help you better understand how to crush it with your online business. Every Entrepreneur Should Listen to These 10 Podcasts Serial Entrepreneur 7 min readlast_img read more

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IDG Communications Names Gene Bishop Global CIO

first_img CMS systemsGene BishopIDG CommunicationsIT infrastructureMarketing TechnologyNewsTechnology Previous ArticleInstagram Stories and Video Ads Become Branding Staples in SocialNext ArticleAdColony Selects Pixalate as Fraud Prevention Partner IDG Communications, Inc. – the world’s leading tech media, data, and marketing services company – announces the appointment of Gene Bishop as Global CIO, focusing on overall strategy, architecture, delivery, and use of technology and IT infrastructure to drive business forward.In this role, Bishop will partner with global divisions of IDG Communications to ensure business objectives align with a world-class technology infrastructure. Based in New York, Bishop will be an internal resource for the executive leadership team on overall business technology strategy, including architecture, security and risk management. IDG’s continued investment in technology is devised to provide a quality user experience for both internal and external customers.“We pride ourselves on using technology to build bridges between the buyers and sellers of technology and create quality experiences for our readers, advertisers and employees,” said Kumaran Ramanathan, President, IDG Communications, Inc. “We are thrilled to have Gene join our team and contribute to our unified global technology strategy. His focus on process and people and his innovative spirit align with our goals at IDG Communications.”Marketing Technology News: Amazon Dominates E-Commerce Share, Ebay and Walmart Less of a Focus, Feedvisor Study FindsBishop brings more than 30 years of technology and media experience to this role, including expertise in CMS systems, data platforms and other operating technologies to provide an impressive experience for IDG’s engaged technology decision-maker reader audience and the technology marketers looking to reach them. Throughout his career, Bishop has held several senior technology leadership positions, including more than 20 years at Dow Jones/The Wall Street Journal in various roles focusing on quality assurance, editorial, advertising and finance support. Most recently, he was VP of Technology for ALM.Marketing Technology News: Elliot’s Mobile-First Commerce Platform Enables Direct-to-Consumer Distribution at Global Scale“Technology is often the catapult that elevates businesses and provides a positive user experience that encourages users to return. IDG Communications is known as an organization that embraces innovation, and I am delighted to bring my technology expertise and collaborate with this stellar team. I firmly believe that when you combine great technologies, with great teams of people and leadership the possibilities are endless,” said Bishop.Marketing Technology News: Vyond Announces End of Beta for Vyond Studio, Enhanced Security Features IDG Communications Names Gene Bishop Global CIO PRNewswireMay 22, 2019, 7:33 pmMay 22, 2019 last_img read more

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Nanovaccine boosts immunity in mice with gut microbiomemediated metabolic syndrome

first_img Source:http://news.cornell.edu/stories/2019/03/nanovaccine-boosts-immunity-sufferers-metabolic-syndrome Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 29 2019A new class of biomaterial developed by Cornell researchers for an infectious disease nanovaccine effectively boosted immunity in mice with metabolic disorders linked to gut bacteria – a population that shows resistance to traditional flu and polio vaccines.The study is the first to explore the interrelationship among nanomaterials, immune responses and the microbiome, an increasingly important area of research. The microbiome – the collection of microorganisms living in the body – is believed to play a critical role in human health.”This paper highlights how the microbiome can impact our engineered vaccines and how we can overcome these problems by developing advanced materials,” said Ankur Singh, assistant professor in the Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) and the Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering (BME).Singh is senior author of “Immunomodulatory Nanogels Overcome Restricted Immunity in a Murine Model of Gut Microbiome-Mediated Metabolic Syndrome,” which published March 27 in Science Advances. The paper’s first author is Matthew Mosquera, a doctoral student in engineering.”This work opens up a new, very exciting area of investigation into how biological factors and underlying disease conditions impact the performance of established nanovaccines,” said Singh, who is also a member of the Englander Institute for Precision Medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine and the newly formed Cornell Center for Immunology. “More importantly, it shows how you can use these engineered materials and make them more workable across a wider population to overcome immunity to vaccines.”More than a third of Americans and a quarter of people worldwide are believed to suffer from metabolic syndrome, an umbrella for several disorders including obesity, inflammation and insulin resistance.The gut microbiome is among the factors that can cause metabolic syndrome, and researchers are interested in microbiome-induced metabolic syndrome because of evidence linking both the microbiome and metabolic disorders to the immune system.”Understanding how the microbiome affects future engineered vaccines is of utmost importance from a public health perspective,” said Ilana Brito, assistant professor of biomedical engineering and a co-author of the paper. “This research will open up new avenues for exploring how specific components of the microbiome alter immune responses. When engineering new vaccines, it’ll be important to design materials that are effective across a diversity of microbiome compositions.”Previous research showed that traditional human flu and polio vaccines fail in mice that have metabolic disorders caused by disruptions to their gut biomes. “That motivated us to look into what happens with nanovaccines, which can be better than soluble vaccines, to better understand the role of underlying obesity and inflammation that develops in gut alterations,” Singh said.Related StoriesStructure of bacteria responsible for traveler’s diarrhea decipheredMetabolic enzyme tied to obesity and fatty liver diseaseAMSBIO offers new, best-in-class CAR-T cell range for research and immunotherapyNanovaccines, which are generally composed of nanomaterials, can be taken up by cells in the immune system and have been found to induce stronger immunity than traditional soluble vaccines in pre-clinical models.But researchers found that the most widely used type of nanovaccine, made of poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA), is not very effective in mice with gut-initiated metabolic syndrome. When researchers tested PLGA nanovaccines on the mice, it was less successful than they had expected, even with the addition of a widely used immune booster.”We asked, are there ways to overcome this restricted response by engineering new nanomaterial vaccines?” Singh said. “Then we looked deeper into a new class of material that modulates the immune system, pyridine functionalized poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate), the potential of which we recently discovered.”The new material formed a stable nanogel with protein antigens, which was found to be effective under gut-initiated metabolic syndrome conditions. Working with Cynthia Leifer, associate professor of immunology in the College of Veterinary Medicine, the group discovered that this new material stimulates a receptor that recognizes pathogenic danger signs on microbes.”This study is important because it shows that these nanogels can supply both antigen and adjuvant without the need for an extra immune booster, which likely contributes to their stronger immune activation and ability to overcome limitations imposed by diseases or altered microbiomes,” Leifer said. “Immunomodulatory therapies are a hot topic, and materials-based immunomodulation approaches are in their infancy. There is so much that can be done with them.”While it has been established that the microbiome impacts the immune system, these findings suggest that nanovaccines can influence the microbiome in return.”Nanomaterials can modulate the composition of the gut microbiome – I think that’s of tremendous importance to the entire field and could have implications in material design,” he said. “Whether it’s a causative effect or the reason behind this is not very well understood – there are several hypotheses that remain to be tested, so this will be future work for us.”last_img read more

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New study provides increasing evidence base substantiating vapings harm reduction potential

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jun 12 2019A new study by Imperial Brands, owners of leading vape brand blu, contributes to the increasing evidence base substantiating vaping’s harm reduction potential compared to smoking.The research, presented at the 58th annual meeting of the Society of Toxicology earlier this year, compared the in-vitro toxicological responses of a 3D model of human lung tissue to myblu vapour and cigarette smoke across a range of biological endpoints.Cells were repeatedly exposed to either 30, 60 or 90 puffs of vapour, smoke and air over 4 weeks, and the results were conclusive. While myblu vapour delivered significantly more nicotine compared to the cigarette smoke, it did not trigger any significant toxicological responses under test conditions.Related StoriesNew genetic marker linked to higher risk of premenopausal breast cancerResearchers develop new technique to enhance infection-fighting potential of natural chemicalsOmron donates cutting-edge laboratory to help UH engineering students gain real-world skillsArguably the most striking observation involved the cilia on the surface of the cells- mobile, hair-like structures that line the airways and lungs, helping keep them clear of mucus and dirt. After 4 weeks of repeated exposure to undiluted myblu vapour, there was no recorded decrease in either the number of cilia, or the number of ciliated cells. In fact, tissue integrity was indistinguishable from air control. The observations were in marked contrast to cigarette smoke’s negative impact on lung cells, even when diluted at 1:17 ratio.Dr Roman Wieczorek, Group Biological & Toxicological Laboratory Manager at Imperial Brands Science and study author, commented: “Utilising state-of-the-art in-vitro methodologies based on TT21C principles, we continue to investigate the mechanistic effects of our Next-Generation Product (NPG) portfolio to substantiate its harm reduction potential”.”Our ethical assays use cells derived from humans. This negates the need to test on animals, while targeting multiple endpoints of direct relevance to adult smokers.”Dr Grant O’Connell, Head of Scientific Affairs at Imperial Brands, added: “Our process of scientific substantiation focuses on all aspects of population level harm reduction, allowing us to develop robust scientific evidence packages that demonstrate the risk-reduced potential of our NGPs.”Unfortunately, media headlines based on misleading science containing non-realistic human exposures and extrapolated results continue to prove confusing and unhelpful at best and disastrous to the global public health agenda at worst.”Imperial Brands and blu urge public health bodies, regulators and journalists across the world to cut through the misleading, agenda-driven murk and help us in our mission to deliver something better for the world’s smokers.” Source:Imperial Brandslast_img read more

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