TMS Unveils New Terrace Area – Trenton Republican Times

Photo Courtesy of TMS Principal Daniel Gott Students at Trenton Middle School were able to enjoy the beautiful weather on Thursday with lunch on the newly constructed terrace on the north side of the building. The terrace will be used as an outdoor cafeteria, a classroom, a school meeting site and a place for parents and community members to use when in the area of the school.

Website: GPCink.com

Website: Historical Society

Continue reading here:

TMS Unveils New Terrace Area – Trenton Republican Times

Posted in Tms

Geoffrey Boycott to continue on TMS after apologising for ‘unacceptable’ comment – The Dumbarton and Vale of Leven Reporter

Geoffrey Boycott will continue as a BBC Test Match Special pundit after offering an unreserved apology for an alleged racist comment.

The 76-year-old former England and Yorkshire batsman suggested he would have a better chance of being knighted if he blacked up, the Daily Mirror reported on Tuesday.

And Boycott responded on Twitter, accepting his comments were unacceptable and clearly wrong.

Boycott will remain an outspoken expert on BBC Radio 4s TMS, the BBCs flagship cricket programme, a spokesman for the corporation said.

A BBC spokesperson said: He has rightly apologised unreservedly for these clearly unacceptable comments. He will be part of the team for the West Indies Tests.

The Mirror reported that Boycott was speaking at a question and answer session during a break in play of the England v West Indies day-night Test at Edgbaston in Birmingham.

Boycott was alleged to have said knighthoods were handed out like confetti to West Indies cricketers, including Sir Viv Richards, Sir Garfield Sobers and Sir Curtly Ambrose.

The Mirror reported Boycott said: Mines been turned down twice. Id better black me face.

Boycott wrote on Twitter on Tuesday: Speaking at an informal gathering I was asked a question and I realise my answer was unacceptable.

I meant no offence but what I said was clearly wrong and I apologise unreservedly. I have loved West Indian cricket my whole life and have the utmost respect for its players.

Boycott played 108 Tests for England, scoring 8114 runs at an average of 47.72. He hit 22 Test centuries and 42 half centuries.

He was renowned for his defensive play, but more recently Boycott has become known for his at times scathing punditry on television and radio.

Originally posted here:

Geoffrey Boycott to continue on TMS after apologising for ‘unacceptable’ comment – The Dumbarton and Vale of Leven Reporter

Posted in Tms

Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) Sees RCI Nearing Key … – Melville Review

Shares of Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) are nearing some key technical levels as the Rank Correlation indicator has trending higher over the past few sessions, nearing potential overbought territory. Crossing the 80 mark would suggestthat a chance of a reversal is increasing.

The Rank Correlation Index (RCI) is based on an analysis algorithm by Charles Spearman. It uses a combination of price change data and time change data to identify potential changes in market sentiment, thereby exposing turning points. Zero crossings are seen as buy and sell signals, with tops and bottoms yielding overbought and oversold information.

Investors also might be looking to track the ATR or Average True Range of the stock. Currently, Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) has a 14-day ATR of 0.00. The Average True Range is an investor tool used to measure stock volatility. The ATR is not used to figure out price direction, just to measure volatility. The ATR is an indicator developed by J. Welles Wilder. Wilder has developed multiple indicators that are still quite popular in todays investing landscape. The general interpretation of the ATR is the higher the ATR value, the higher the volatility.

The Williams Percent Range or Williams %R is another technical indicator worth checking out. Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) currently has a 14 day Williams %R of -150.00. The Williams %R fluctuates between 0 and -100 measuring whether a security is overbought or oversold. The Williams %R is similar to the Stochastic Oscillator except it is plotted upside-down. Levels above -20 may indicate the stock may be considered is overbought. If the indicator travels under -80, this may signal that the stock is oversold. Chart analysts may also use the indicator to project possible price reversals and to define trends.

The Average Directional Index or ADX is technical analysis indicator used to discern if a market is trending or not trending. The ADX alone measures trend strength but not direction. Using the ADX with the Plus Directional Indicator (+DI) and Minus Directional Indicator (-DI) may help determine the direction of the trend as well as the overall momentum. Many traders will use the ADX alongside other indicators in order to help spot proper trading entry/exit points. Currently, the 14-day ADX for Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) is 38.92. Generally speaking, an ADX value from 0-25 would indicate an absent or weak trend. A value of 25-50 would indicate a strong trend. A value of 50-75 would signal a very strong trend, and a value of 75-100 would indicate an extremely strong trend.

Traders may be leaning on technical stock analysis to help with investing decisions. Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) currently has a 14-day Commodity Channel Index (CCI) of -75.59. Despite the name, CCI can be used on other investment tools such as stocks. The CCI was designed to typically stay within the reading of -100 to +100. Traders may use the indicator to determine stock trends or to identify overbought/oversold conditions. A CCI reading above +100 would imply that the stock is overbought and possibly ready for a correction. On the other hand, a reading of -100 would imply that the stock is oversold and possibly set for a rally.

Traders are paying renewed attention to shares of Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V). The current 14-day RSI is presently sitting at 32.99, the 7-day is 33.42, and the 3-day is 31.69. The RSI, or Relative Strength Index is a popular oscillating indicator among traders and investors. The RSI operates in a range-bound area with values between 0 and 100. When the RSI line moves up, the stock may be experiencing strength. The opposite is the case when the RSI line is heading lower. Different time periods may be used when using the RSI indicator. The RSI may be more volatile using a shorter period of time. Many traders keep an eye on the 30 and 70 marks on the RSI scale. A move above 70 is widely considered to show the stock as overbought, and a move below 30 would indicate that the stock may be oversold. Traders may use these levels to help identify stock price reversals.

More here:

Targeted Microwave Solutions Inc. (TMS.V) Sees RCI Nearing Key … – Melville Review

Posted in Tms

Neurotechnology – Wikipedia

Neurotechnology is any technology that has a fundamental influence on how people understand the brain and various aspects of consciousness, thought, and higher order activities in the brain. It also includes technologies that are designed to improve and repair brain function and allow researchers and clinicians to visualize the brain.

The field of neurotechnology has been around for nearly half a century but has only reached maturity in the last twenty years. The advent of brain imaging revolutionized the field, allowing researchers to directly monitor the brain’s activities during experiments. Neurotechnology has made significant impact on society, though its presence is so commonplace that many do not realize its ubiquity. From pharmaceutical drugs to brain scanning, neurotechnology affects nearly all industrialized people either directly or indirectly, be it from drugs for depression, sleep, ADD, or anti-neurotics to cancer scanning, stroke rehabilitation, and much more.

As the field’s depth increases it will potentially allow society to control and harness more of what the brain does and how it influences lifestyles and personalities. Commonplace technologies already attempt to do this; games like BrainAge,[1] and programs like Fast ForWord[2] that aim to improve brain function, are neurotechnologies.

Currently, modern science can image nearly all aspects of the brain as well as control a degree of the function of the brain. It can help control depression, over-activation, sleep deprivation, and many other conditions. Therapeutically it can help improve stroke victims’ motor coordination, improve brain function, reduce epileptic episodes (see epilepsy), improve patients with degenerative motor diseases (Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, ALS), and can even help alleviate phantom pain perception.[3] Advances in the field promise many new enhancements and rehabilitation methods for patients suffering from neurological problems. The neurotechnology revolution has given rise to the Decade of the Mind initiative, which was started in 2007.[4] It also offers the possibility of revealing the mechanisms by which mind and consciousness emerge from the brain.

Magnetoencephalography is a functional neuroimaging technique for mapping brain activity by recording magnetic fields produced by electrical currents occurring naturally in the brain, using very sensitive magnetometers. Arrays of SQUIDs (superconducting quantum interference devices) are the most common magnetometer. Applications of MEG include basic research into perceptual and cognitive brain processes, localizing regions affected by pathology before surgical removal, determining the function of various parts of the brain, and neurofeedback. This can be applied in a clinical setting to find locations of abnormalities as well as in an experimental setting to simply measure brain activity.[5]

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is used for scanning the brain for topological and landmark structure in the brain, but can also be used for imaging activation in the brain.[6] While detail about how MRI works is reserved for the actual MRI article, the uses of MRI are far reaching in the study of neuroscience. It is a cornerstone technology in studying the mind, especially with the advent of functional MRI (fMRI).[7] Functional MRI measures the oxygen levels in the brain upon activation (higher oxygen content = neural activation) and allows researchers to understand what loci are responsible for activation under a given stimulus. This technology is a large improvement to single cell or loci activation by means of exposing the brain and contact stimulation. Functional MRI allows researchers to draw associative relationships between different loci and regions of the brain and provides a large amount of knowledge in establishing new landmarks and loci in the brain.[8]

Computed tomography (CT) is another technology used for scanning the brain. It has been used since the 1970s and is another tool used by neuroscientists to track brain structure and activation.[6] While many of the functions of CT scans are now done using MRI, CT can still be used as the mode by which brain activation and brain injury are detected. Using an X-ray, researchers can detect radioactive markers in the brain that indicate brain activation as a tool to establish relationships in the brain as well as detect many injuries/diseases that can cause lasting damage to the brain such as aneurysms, degeneration, and cancer.

Positron emission tomography (PET) is another imaging technology that aids researchers. Instead of using magnetic resonance or X-rays, PET scans rely on positron emitting markers that are bound to a biologically relevant marker such as glucose.[9] The more activation in the brain the more that region requires nutrients, so higher activation appears more brightly on an image of the brain. PET scans are becoming more frequently used by researchers because PET scans are activated due to metabolism whereas MRI is activated on a more physiological basis (sugar activation versus oxygen activation).

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is essentially direct magnetic stimulation to the brain. Because electric currents and magnetic fields are intrinsically related, by stimulating the brain with magnetic pulses it is possible to interfere with specific loci in the brain to produce a predictable effect.[10] This field of study is currently receiving a large amount of attention due to the potential benefits that could come out of better understanding this technology.[11] Transcranial magnetic movement of particles in the brain shows promise for drug targeting and delivery as studies have demonstrated this to be noninvasive on brain physiology.[12]

Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a form of neurostimulation which uses constant, low current delivered via electrodes placed on the scalp. The mechanisms underlying tDCS effects are still incompletely understood, but recent advances in neurotechnology allowing for in vivo assessment of brain electric activity during tDCS[13] promise to advance understanding of these mechanisms. Research into using tDCS on healthy adults have demonstrated that tDCS can increase cognitive performance on a variety of tasks, depending on the area of the brain being stimulated. tDCS has been used to enhance language and mathematical ability (though one form of tDCS was also found to inhibit math learning),[14] attention span, problem solving, memory,[15] and coordination.

Electroencephalography (EEG) is a method of measuring brainwave activity non-invasively. A number of electrodes are placed around the head and scalp and electrical signals are measured. Typically EEGs are used when dealing with sleep, as there are characteristic wave patterns associated with different stages of sleep.[16] Clinically EEGs are used to study epilepsy as well as stroke and tumor presence in the brain. EEGs are a different method to understand the electrical signaling in the brain during activation.

Magnetoencephalography (MEG) is another method of measuring activity in the brain by measuring the magnetic fields that arise from electrical currents in the brain.[17] The benefit to using MEG instead of EEG is that these fields are highly localized and give rise to better understanding of how specific loci react to stimulation or if these regions over-activate (as in epileptic seizures).

Neurodevices are any devices used to monitor or regulate brain activity. Currently there are a few available for clinical use as a treatment for Parkinson’s disease. The most common neurodevices are deep brain stimulators (DBS) that are used to give electrical stimulation to areas stricken by inactivity.[18] Parkinson’s disease is known to be caused by an inactivation of the basal ganglia (nuclei) and recently DBS has become the more preferred form of treatment for Parkinson’s disease, although current research questions the efficiency of DBS for movement disorders.[18]

Neuromodulation is a relatively new field that combines the use of neurodevices and neurochemistry. The basis of this field is that the brain can be regulated using a number of different factors (metabolic, electrical stimulation, physiological) and that all these can be modulated by devices implanted in the neural network. While currently this field is still in the researcher phase, it represents a new type of technological integration in the field of neurotechnology. The brain is a very sensitive organ, so in addition to researching the amazing things that neuromodulation and implanted neural devices can produce, it is important to research ways to create devices that elicit as few negative responses from the body as possible. This can be done by modifying the material surface chemistry of neural implants.

Researchers have begun looking at uses for stem cells in the brain, which recently have been found in a few loci. A large number of studies[citation needed] are being done to determine if this form of therapy could be used in a large scale. Experiments have successfully used stem cells in the brains of children who suffered from injuries in gestation and elderly people with degenerative diseases in order to induce the brain to produce new cells and to make more connections between neurons.

Pharmaceuticals play a vital role in maintaining stable brain chemistry, and are the most commonly used neurotechnology by the general public and medicine. Drugs like sertraline, methylphenidate, and zolpidem act as chemical modulators in the brain, and they allow for normal activity in many people whose brains cannot act normally under physiological conditions. While pharmaceuticals are usually not mentioned and have their own field, the role of pharmaceuticals is perhaps the most far-reaching and commonplace in modern society (the focus on this article will largely ignore neuropharmaceuticals, for more information, see neuropsychopharmacology). Movement of magnetic particles to targeted brain regions for drug delivery is an emerging field of study and causes no detectable circuit damage.[19]

Stimulation with low-intensity magnetic fields is currently under study for depression at Harvard Medical School, and has previously been explored by Bell (et al.),[20] Marino (et al.),[21] and others.

Magnetic resonance imaging is a vital tool in neurological research in showing activation in the brain as well as providing a comprehensive image of the brain being studied. While MRIs are used clinically for showing brain size, it still has relevance in the study of brains because it can be used to determine extent of injuries or deformation. These can have a significant effect on personality, sense perception, memory, higher order thinking, movement, and spatial understanding. However, current research tends to focus more so on fMRI or real-time functional MRI (rtfMRI).[22] These two methods allow the scientist or the participant, respectively, to view activation in the brain. This is incredibly vital in understanding how a person thinks and how their brain reacts to a person’s environment, as well as understanding how the brain works under various stressors or dysfunctions. Real-time functional MRI is a revolutionary tool available to neurologists and neuroscientists because patients can see how their brain reacts to stressors and can perceive visual feedback.[8] CT scans are very similar to MRI in their academic use because they can be used to image the brain upon injury, but they are more limited in perceptual feedback.[6] CTs are generally used in clinical studies far more than in academic studies, and are found far more often in a hospital than a research facility. PET scans are also finding more relevance in academia because they can be used to observe metabolic uptake of neurons, giving researchers a wider perspective about neural activity in the brain for a given condition.[9] Combinations of these methods can provide researchers with knowledge of both physiological and metabolic behaviors of loci in the brain and can be used to explain activation and deactivation of parts of the brain under specific conditions.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a relatively new method of studying how the brain functions and is used in many research labs focused on behavioral disorders and hallucinations. What makes TMS research so interesting in the neuroscience community is that it can target specific regions of the brain and shut them down or activate temporarily; thereby changing the way the brain behaves. Personality disorders can stem from a variety of external factors, but when the disorder stems from the circuitry of the brain TMS can be used to deactivate the circuitry. This can give rise to a number of responses, ranging from normality to something more unexpected, but current research is based on the theory that use of TMS could radically change treatment and perhaps act as a cure for personality disorders and hallucinations.[11] Currently, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is being researched to see if this deactivation effect can be made more permanent in patients suffering from these disorders. Some techniques combine TMS and another scanning method such as EEG to get additional information about brain activity such as cortical response.[23]

Both EEG and MEG are currently being used to study the brain’s activity under different conditions. Each uses similar principles but allows researchers to examine individual regions of the brain, allowing isolation and potentially specific classification of active regions. As mentioned above, EEG is very useful in analysis of immobile patients, typically during the sleep cycle. While there are other types of research that utilize EEG,[23] EEG has been fundamental in understanding the resting brain during sleep.[16] There are other potential uses for EEG and MEG such as charting rehabilitation and improvement after trauma as well as testing neural conductivity in specific regions of epileptics or patients with personality disorders.

Neuromodulation can involve numerous technologies combined or used independently to achieve a desired effect in the brain. Gene and cell therapy are becoming more prevalent in research and clinical trials and these technologies could help stunt or even reverse disease progression in the central nervous system. Deep brain stimulation is currently used in many patients with movement disorders and is used to improve the quality of life in patients.[18] While deep brain stimulation is a method to study how the brain functions per se, it provides both surgeons and neurologists important information about how the brain works when certain small regions of the basal ganglia (nuclei) are stimulated by electrical currents.

The future of neurotechnologies lies in how they are fundamentally applied, and not so much on what new versions will be developed. Current technologies give a large amount of insight into the mind and how the brain functions, but basic research is still needed to demonstrate the more applied functions of these technologies. Currently, rtfMRI is being researched as a method for pain therapy. deCharms et al. have shown that there is a significant improvement in the way people perceive pain if they are made aware of how their brain is functioning while in pain. By providing direct and understandable feedback, researchers can help patients with chronic pain decrease their symptoms. This new type of bio/mechanical-feedback is a new development in pain therapy.[8] Functional MRI is also being considered for a number of more applicable uses outside of the clinic. Research has been done on testing the efficiency of mapping the brain in the case when someone lies as a new way to detect lying.[24] Along the same vein, EEG has been considered for use in lie detection as well.[25] TMS is being used in a variety of potential therapies for patients with personality disorders, epilepsy, PTSD, migraine, and other brain-firing disorders, but has been found to have varying clinical success for each condition.[11] The end result of such research would be to develop a method to alter the brain’s perception and firing and train patients’ brains to rewire permanently under inhibiting conditions (for more information see rTMS).[11] In addition, PET scans have been found to be 93% accurate in detecting Alzheimer’s disease nearly 3 years before conventional diagnosis, indicating that PET scanning is becoming more useful in both the laboratory and the clinic.[26]

Stem cell technologies are always salient both in the minds of the general public and scientists because of their large potential. Recent advances in stem cell research have allowed researchers to ethically pursue studies in nearly every facet of the body, which includes the brain. Research has shown that while most of the brain does not regenerate and is typically a very difficult environment to foster regeneration,[27] there are portions of the brain with regenerative capabilities (specifically the hippocampus and the olfactory bulbs).[28] Much of the research in central nervous system regeneration is how to overcome this poor regenerative quality of the brain. It is important to note that there are therapies that improve cognition and increase the amount of neural pathways,[2] but this does not mean that there is a proliferation of neural cells in the brain. Rather, it is called a plastic rewiring of the brain (plastic because it indicates malleability) and is considered a vital part of growth. Nevertheless, many problems in patients stem from death of neurons in the brain, and researchers in the field are striving to produce technologies that enable regeneration in patients with stroke, Parkinson’s diseases, severe trauma, and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as many others. While still in fledgling stages of development, researchers have recently begun making very interesting progress in attempting to treat these diseases. Researchers have recently successfully produced dopaminergic neurons for transplant in patients with Parkinson’s diseases with the hopes that they will be able to move again with a more steady supply of dopamine.[29][not in citation given] Many researchers are building scaffolds that could be transplanted into a patient with spinal cord trauma to present an environment that promotes growth of axons (portions of the cell attributed with transmission of electrical signals) so that patients unable to move or feel might be able to do so again.[30] The potentials are wide-ranging, but it is important to note that many of these therapies are still in the laboratory phase and are slowly being adapted in the clinic.[31] Some scientists remain skeptical with the development of the field, and warn that there is a much larger chance that electrical prosthesis will be developed to solve clinical problems such as hearing loss or paralysis before cell therapy is used in a clinic.[32][need quotation to verify]

Novel drug delivery systems are being researched in order to improve the lives of those who struggle with brain disorders that might not be treated with stem cells, modulation, or rehabilitation. Pharmaceuticals play a very important role in society, and the brain has a very selective barrier that prevents some drugs from going from the blood to the brain. There are some diseases of the brain such as meningitis that require doctors to directly inject medicine into the spinal cord because the drug cannot cross the bloodbrain barrier.[33] Research is being conducted to investigate new methods of targeting the brain using the blood supply, as it is much easier to inject into the blood than the spine. New technologies such as nanotechnology are being researched for selective drug delivery, but these technologies have problems as with any other. One of the major setbacks is that when a particle is too large, the patient’s liver will take up the particle and degrade it for excretion, but if the particle is too small there will not be enough drug in the particle to take effect.[34] In addition, the size of the capillary pore is important because too large a particle might not fit or even plug up the hole, preventing adequate supply of the drug to the brain.[34] Other research is involved in integrating a protein device between the layers to create a free-flowing gate that is unimpeded by the limitations of the body. Another direction is receptor-mediated transport, where receptors in the brain used to transport nutrients are manipulated to transport drugs across the bloodbrain barrier.[35] Some have even suggested that focused ultrasound opens the bloodbrain barrier momentarily and allows free passage of chemicals into the brain.[36] Ultimately the goal for drug delivery is to develop a method that maximizes the amount of drug in the loci with as little degraded in the blood stream as possible.

Neuromodulation is a technology currently used for patients with movement disorders, although research is currently being done to apply this technology to other disorders. Recently, a study was done on if DBS could improve depression with positive results, indicating that this technology might have potential as a therapy for multiple disorders in the brain.[32][need quotation to verify] DBS is limited by its high cost however, and in developing countries the availability of DBS is very limited.[18] A new version of DBS is under investigation and has developed into the novel field, optogenetics.[31] Optogenetics is the combination of deep brain stimulation with fiber optics and gene therapy. Essentially, the fiber optic cables are designed to light up under electrical stimulation, and a protein would be added to a neuron via gene therapy to excite it under light stimuli.[37] So by combining these three independent fields, a surgeon could excite a single and specific neuron in order to help treat a patient with some disorder. Neuromodulation offers a wide degree of therapy for many patients, but due to the nature of the disorders it is currently used to treat its effects are often temporary. Future goals in the field hope to alleviate that problem by increasing the years of effect until DBS can be used for the remainder of the patient’s life. Another use for neuromodulation would be in building neuro-interface prosthetic devices that would allow quadriplegics the ability to maneuver a cursor on a screen with their thoughts, thereby increasing their ability to interact with others around them. By understanding the motor cortex and understanding how the brain signals motion, it is possible to emulate this response on a computer screen.[38]

The ethical debate about use of embryonic stem cells has stirred controversy both in the United States and abroad; although more recently these debates have lessened due to modern advances in creating induced pluripotent stem cells from adult cells. The greatest advantage for use of embryonic stem cells is the fact that they can differentiate (become) nearly any type of cell provided the right conditions and signals. However, recent advances by Shinya Yamanaka et al. have found ways to create pluripotent cells without the use of such controversial cell cultures.[39] Using the patient’s own cells and re-differentiating them into the desired cell type bypasses both possible patient rejection of the embryonic stem cells and any ethical concerns associated with using them, while also providing researchers a larger supply of available cells. However, induced pluripotent cells have the potential to form benign (though potentially malignant) tumors, and tend to have poor survivability in vivo (in the living body) on damaged tissue.[40] Much of the ethics concerning use of stem cells has subsided from the embryonic/adult stem cell debate due to its rendered moot, but now societies find themselves debating whether or not this technology can be ethically used. Enhancements of traits, use of animals for tissue scaffolding, and even arguments for moral degeneration have been made with the fears that if this technology reaches its full potential a new paradigm shift will occur in human behavior.

New neurotechnologies have always garnered the appeal of governments, from lie detection technology and virtual reality to rehabilitation and understanding the psyche. Due to the Iraq War and War on Terror, American soldiers coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan are reported to have percentages up to 12% with PTSD.[41] There are many researchers hoping to improve these peoples’ conditions by implementing new strategies for recovery. By combining pharmaceuticals and neurotechnologies, some researchers have discovered ways of lowering the “fear” response and theorize that it may be applicable to PTSD.[42] Virtual reality is another technology that has drawn much attention in the military. If improved, it could be possible to train soldiers how to deal with complex situations in times of peace, in order to better prepare and train a modern army.

Finally, when these technologies are being developed society must understand that these neurotechnologies could reveal the one thing that people can always keep secret: what they are thinking. While there are large amounts of benefits associated with these technologies, it is necessary for scientists, citizens and policy makers alike to consider implications for privacy.[43] This term is important in many ethical circles concerned with the state and goals of progress in the field of neurotechnology (see Neuroethics). Current improvements such as brain fingerprinting or lie detection using EEG or fMRI could give rise to a set fixture of loci/emotional relationships in the brain, although these technologies are still years away from full application.[43] It is important to consider how all these neurotechnologies might affect the future of society, and it is suggested that political, scientific, and civil debates are heard about the implementation of these newer technologies that potentially offer a new wealth of once-private information.[43] Some ethicists are also concerned with the use of TMS and fear that the technique could be used to alter patients in ways that are undesired by the patient.[11]

Cognitive liberty refers to a suggested right to self-determination of individuals to control their own mental processes, cognition, and consciousness including by the use of various neurotechnologies and psychoactive substances. This perceived right is relevant for reformation and development of associated laws.

More:

Neurotechnology – Wikipedia

Technology Key to Fighting Neurological Disease – R & D Magazine

New technologies may be on the way to better help doctors diagnose and treat patients with neurological diseases.

Researchers from the National Neuroscience Institute (NNI) and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU) have come together to develop several new technologies, including an artificial intelligence system that can accurately identify types of traumatic brain injuries from computed tomography (CT) scans.

Innovation occurs at intersections of disciplines, knowledge and expertise, associate professor Ng Wai Hoe, Medical Director of the National Neuroscience Institute, said in a statement. Doctors have a deep understanding of clinical needs from their everyday interactions with patients.

Our unique collaboration brings these medical needs to engineering laboratoriesan environment where imagination is encouraged in the form of technological advances and capabilities.

The researchers also plan to develop a computer algorithm for more precise identification of tissues during brain surgeries, which aim to restore the neurological functions of patients suffering from various conditions including Parkinsons disease.

A new fellowship programmanaged by NTUs Institute for Health Technologieswill see up to two neurosurgical residents at NNI work full-time with NTU professors on campus, with each resident receiving $100,000 to complete and commercialize these projects.

The program was designed to foster a relationship over the next three years between medical practitioners and engineers through annual fellowships and student attachment programs.

The rapidly ageing population will lead to a significant rise in neurological diseases globally, Hoe said. By harnessing the power of the human brain, neurotechnology can provide solutions to revolutionize the treatment of brain disorders.

This partnership has great potential to be an innovation launchpad for neurotechnology.

A student attachment program aimed at grooming multidisciplinary scientists will also be introduced, giving students an opportunity to widen their engineering knowledge into medical practice, gaining first-hand exposure to various aspects of clinical medicine by interacting with neurosurgeons.

Professor Lam Khin Yong, NTU’s Chief of Staff and Vice President for Research, said the new technology will assist the next wave of doctors.

This collaboration creates a unique multidisciplinary research environment by integrating healthcare with both medical and engineering expertise from NTU’s Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine and College of Engineering, Yong said in a statement. This will not only nurture next-generation doctors armed with a multidisciplinary skillset to meet Singapore’s healthcare needs, but also enhance medical technologies to diagnose and treat neurological conditions more effectively.

In Switzerland, additional technological advancements are making an impact in the treatment of neurological disorders.

Researchers from the National Centre of Competence in Research Robotics at cole Polytechnique Fdrale de Lausanne (EPFL) and at the Lausanne University Hospital in Switzerland, have developed an algorithm to help those paralyzed by a neurological disorder or injury. The algorithm helps a robotic harness facilitate the movements of patients, enabling them to move naturally. This new technology could help patients regain their locomotor skills

A variety of neurological disorders including stroke, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, can lead to paralysis. Currently, people with motor disabilities rehabilitate by walking on a treadmill with the upper torso being supported by an apparatus. However, this can be either too rigid or does not allow the patient to move naturally in all directions.

Locomotor rehabilitation requires helping the nervous system relearn the right movements, which is difficult due to the loss of muscle mass in patients, as well as train the neurological wiring that has forgotten correct posture.

The researchers designed the algorithm to overcome these obstacles. The robotic rehabilitation harness was tested on more than 30 patients and markedly and immediately improved the patients locomotor abilities.

The harnesscalled the smart walk assistis a body-weight support system that manages to resist the force of gravity and push the patient in a given direction to recreate a natural gait and movement that the patient needs in their everyday lives.

Read the original post:

Technology Key to Fighting Neurological Disease – R & D Magazine

New technologies to diagnose and treat neurological diseases – Medical Xpress

August 21, 2017 The partnership between NNI and NTU Singapore will see the development of innovative technologies to better diagnose and treat patients with neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and brain injuries. Credit: NTU Singapore

The National Neuroscience Institute (NNI) and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) are collaborating to develop innovative technologies to better diagnose and treat patients with neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and brain injuries.

These include developing an artificial intelligence system that can accurately identify types of traumatic brain injuries from computed tomography (CT) scans.

Another project involves coming up with a computing algorithm for more precise identification of tissues during brain surgeries. It aims to restore the neurological functions of patients suffering from various conditions such as Parkinson’s disease.

Over the next three years, the collaboration will also foster closer working relations between medical practitioners and engineers through annual fellowships and student attachment programmes.

Managed by NTU’s Institute for Health Technologies (HealthTech NTU), the one-year fellowship programme will see up to two neurosurgical residents at NNI work full-time with NTU professors on campus. Each resident will receive S$100,000 to complete and commercialise their projects.

A student attachment programme that spans a few weeks will also be introduced, allowing NTU engineering students to work alongside neurosurgeons at NNI.

Aimed at grooming multidisciplinary scientists, students will get to widen their engineering knowledge into medical practice. They will gain first-hand exposure to various aspects of clinical medicine by interacting with neurosurgeons in the course of their work.

Associate Professor Ng Wai Hoe, Medical Director of the National Neuroscience Institute, said, “Innovation occurs at intersections of disciplines, knowledge and expertise. Doctors have a deep understanding of clinical needs from their everyday interactions with patients. Our unique collaboration brings these medical needs to engineering laboratories – an environment where imagination is encouraged in the form of technological advances and capabilities.

“The rapidly ageing population will lead to a significant rise in neurological diseases globally. By harnessing the power of the human brain, neurotechnology can provide solutions to revolutionise the treatment of brain disorders. This partnership has great potential to be an innovation launchpad for Neurotechnology.”

Professor Lam Khin Yong, NTU’s Chief of Staff and Vice President for Research, said, “This collaboration creates a unique multidisciplinary research environment by integrating healthcare with both medical and engineering expertise from NTU’s Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine and College of Engineering.

“This will not only nurture next-generation doctors armed with a multidisciplinary skillset to meet Singapore’s healthcare needs, but also enhance medical technologies to diagnose and treat neurological conditions more effectively.”

HealthTech NTU develops and translates new technologies to solve health problems and improve the quality of life. It tackles healthcare challenges with innovative solutions, cutting-edge technologies, and expert interdisciplinary teams.

Explore further: Academia, industry collaborate on solutions to neural disease, injury

A team approach is vital to the successful diagnosis and treatment of complex neurological infections related to placement of devices in the brain, or as a result of neurosurgery or head trauma. This is among the recommendations …

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

See original here:

New technologies to diagnose and treat neurological diseases – Medical Xpress

What is Neurohacking? – NEUROHACKER COLLECTIVE

The term hacker has its origins in computer programming subcultures from the 60s, and was used to describe people who wanted to take on hard problems in a spirit of playful exploration and a resistance to unearned authority. Although the methods, means and intentions of hackers varied widely, all seemed to share a unique ethos that mixed a deep commitment to individual autonomy and agency with an equally deep commitment to collaboration and co-creation.

Over time, the concept of hacking has traveled far from its origins, finding its way into a number of domains like Biohacking, Consciousness Hacking, Flow Hacking and Life Hacking. Each is a kind of hacking because each shares this hackers ethos and a commitment to using it to find the most effective ways to optimize the human experience.

We call the common thread that links these hacking communities together, empowered responsibility. This notion expresses the dual recognition that we are no longer able to rely on external authorities to take care of us (in any domain) but through a combination of ubiquitous information, individual experimentation and open collaboration, we are increasingly empowered to take responsibility for ourselves.

In the Biohacking community, the spirit of empowered responsibility drives the process of optimizing ones biological health and performance. Biohackers learn from each other how they can modify their nutrition, exercise, sleep, movement, and mindset to achieve the specific kind of well-being that they individually desire.

The Consciousness Hacking community takes empowered responsibility in using technology as a catalyst for psychological, emotional and spiritual flourishing. They utilize mindfulness techniques and biofeedback tools for self-exploration, taking personal responsibility for their conscious experience in this most individual of journeys.

Emerging from within and alongside these movements, we are observing the coalescence of a new and important domain: Neurohacking.

Whereas biohacking concentrates on the body, and consciousness hacking explores the inner experience, neurohacking is somewhere in the middle, focusing on the mind-brain interface the intersection of neurology and consciousness. Specifically, neurohacking involves applying science and technology to influence the brain and body in order to optimize subjective experience.

The desired outcomes of neurohacking cover everything from focused productivity, to expanded creativity, more restful sleep, reduced anxiety, enhanced empathy, and anything else that contributes to the psychological well-being and emotional health of whole, thriving human beings.

The technologies of neurohacking run the gamut from chemical technologies like nootropics and entheogens, probiotics to support the gut-brain connection, bioelectrical technologies like neurofeedback and transcranial stimulation, photic therapies like low level laser therapy and all the way to embodied practices like somatics and meditation. So long as there is a scientifically accessible biological mechanism for effecting subjective experience, it belongs in the domain of neurohacking.

Of course, like all emergent phenomena, neurohacking didnt just come from nowhere. For years there have been many movements and communities out there, playing in and pioneering some aspect of the neurohacking space.

Some of these domains include:

We propose that it is now timely and useful to perceive the commonality among these different movements and communities as shared aspects of Neurohacking. And in an effort to make these commonalities more visible and legible to each other, in the upcoming weeks we will take a deeper dive into each, highlight some notable people and projects in each space and explore the frontiers of the community from the point of view of Neurohacking.

In our next post, we will begin this exploration with the domain of Nootropics.

See the rest here:

What is Neurohacking? – NEUROHACKER COLLECTIVE

Neuro Hacking r/NeuroHacking – reddit

subscribeunsubscribe295 readers

1 user here now

Neurohacking is the colloquial term for (usually personal or ‘DIY’) neuroengineering. It is a form of biohacking focusing on the brain and CNS. Strictly speaking it is any method of manipulating or interfering with the structure and/or function of neurons for improvement or repair.

Posting Guidelines:

Always link to the original source. No Blogspam. A blog with a significant amount of additional content about the content is fine.

Use the [PDF] tag when submitting PDFs.

Do not use URL shortening services.

Please vote for no reason other than quality of content.

Related Reddits:

Rendered by PID 85453 on app-234 at 2017-08-23 03:42:05.277433+00:00 running cc1a18c country code: US.

View post:

Neuro Hacking r/NeuroHacking – reddit

Cf. – Wikipedia

The abbreviation cf. (short for the Latin: confer, meaning “compare”)[1] is used in writing to refer the reader to other material to make a comparison with the topic being discussed. It is used to form a contrast, for example: “Abbott (2010) found supportive results in her memory experiment, unlike those of previous work (cf. Zeller & Williams, 2007).”[2] It is recommended that “cf.” be used only to suggest a comparison, and the word “see” be used to point to a source of information.[3][4]

In biological naming conventions, cf. is commonly placed between the genus name and the species name to describe a specimen that is difficult to identify because of practical difficulties, such as the specimen being poorly preserved. For example, “Barbus cf. holotaenia” implies that the specimen is believed to be Barbus holotaenia but the actual identification cannot be certain.[5]

Cf. can also be used to express a possible identity, or at least a significant resemblance, such as between a newly observed specimen and a known species or taxon.[5] Such a usage might suggest a specimen’s membership of the same genus or possibly of a shared higher taxon, such as in, “Diptera: Tabanidae, cf. Tabanus”, where the author is confident of the order and family (Diptera: Tabanidae), but can only offer the genus (Tabanus) as a suggestion and has no information favouring a particular species.[6]

Continued here:

Cf. – Wikipedia

Posted in Cf

Cystic fibrosis – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a genetic disorder that affects mostly the lungs, but also the pancreas, liver, kidneys, and intestine.[1][5] Long-term issues include difficulty breathing and coughing up mucus as a result of frequent lung infections. Other signs and symptoms may include sinus infections, poor growth, fatty stool, clubbing of the fingers and toes, and infertility in some males. Different people may have different degrees of symptoms.[1]

CF is inherited in an autosomal recessive manner. It is caused by the presence of mutations in both copies of the gene for the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) protein.[1] Those with a single working copy are carriers and otherwise mostly normal.[3] CFTR is involved in production of sweat, digestive fluids, and mucus.[6] When CFTR is not functional, secretions which are usually thin instead become thick.[7] The condition is diagnosed by a sweat test and genetic testing.[1] Screening of infants at birth takes place in some areas of the world.[1]

There is no known cure for cystic fibrosis.[3] Lung infections are treated with antibiotics which may be given intravenously, inhaled, or by mouth. Sometimes, the antibiotic azithromycin is used long term. Inhaled hypertonic saline and salbutamol may also be useful. Lung transplantation may be an option if lung function continues to worsen. Pancreatic enzyme replacement and fat-soluble vitamin supplementation are important, especially in the young.[1]Airway clearance techniques such as chest physiotherapy have some short-term benefit, but long-term effects are unclear.[8] The average life expectancy is between 42 and 50 years in the developed world.[4][9] Lung problems are responsible for death in 80% of people with cystic fibrosis.[1]

CF is most common among people of Northern European ancestry and affects about one out of every 3,000 newborns.[1] About one in 25 people is a carrier.[3] It is least common in Africans and Asians.[1] It was first recognized as a specific disease by Dorothy Andersen in 1938, with descriptions that fit the condition occurring at least as far back as 1595.[5] The name ‘cystic fibrosis’ refers to the characteristic fibrosis and cysts that form within the pancreas.[5][10]

The main signs and symptoms of cystic fibrosis are salty-tasting skin,[11] poor growth, and poor weight gain despite normal food intake,[12] accumulation of thick, sticky mucus,[13] frequent chest infections, and coughing or shortness of breath.[14] Males can be infertile due to congenital absence of the vas deferens.[15] Symptoms often appear in infancy and childhood, such as bowel obstruction due to meconium ileus in newborn babies.[16] As the children grow, they exercise to release mucus in the alveoli.[17]Ciliated epithelial cells in the person have a mutated protein that leads to abnormally viscous mucus production.[13] The poor growth in children typically presents as an inability to gain weight or height at the same rate as their peers, and is occasionally not diagnosed until investigation is initiated for poor growth. The causes of growth failure are multifactorial and include chronic lung infection, poor absorption of nutrients through the gastrointestinal tract, and increased metabolic demand due to chronic illness.[12]

In rare cases, cystic fibrosis can manifest itself as a coagulation disorder. Vitamin K is normally absorbed from breast milk, formula, and later, solid foods. This absorption is impaired in some cystic fibrosis patients. Young children are especially sensitive to vitamin K malabsorptive disorders because only a very small amount of vitamin K crosses the placenta, leaving the child with very low reserves and limited ability to absorb vitamin K from dietary sources after birth. Because factors II, VII, IX, and X (clotting factors) are vitamin Kdependent, low levels of vitamin K can result in coagulation problems. Consequently, when a child presents with unexplained bruising, a coagulation evaluation may be warranted to determine whether an underlying disease is present.[18]

Lung disease results from clogging of the airways due to mucus build-up, decreased mucociliary clearance, and resulting inflammation.[19][20] Inflammation and infection cause injury and structural changes to the lungs, leading to a variety of symptoms. In the early stages, incessant coughing, copious phlegm production, and decreased ability to exercise are common. Many of these symptoms occur when bacteria that normally inhabit the thick mucus grow out of control and cause pneumonia. In later stages, changes in the architecture of the lung, such as pathology in the major airways (bronchiectasis), further exacerbate difficulties in breathing. Other signs include coughing up blood (hemoptysis), high blood pressure in the lung (pulmonary hypertension), heart failure, difficulties getting enough oxygen to the body (hypoxia), and respiratory failure requiring support with breathing masks, such as bilevel positive airway pressure machines or ventilators.[21]Staphylococcus aureus, Haemophilus influenzae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa are the three most common organisms causing lung infections in CF patients.[20] In addition to typical bacterial infections, people with CF more commonly develop other types of lung disease. Among these is allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis, in which the body’s response to the common fungus Aspergillus fumigatus causes worsening of breathing problems. Another is infection with Mycobacterium avium complex, a group of bacteria related to tuberculosis, which can cause lung damage and does not respond to common antibiotics.[22]

Mucus in the paranasal sinuses is equally thick and may also cause blockage of the sinus passages, leading to infection. This may cause facial pain, fever, nasal drainage, and headaches. Individuals with CF may develop overgrowth of the nasal tissue (nasal polyps) due to inflammation from chronic sinus infections.[23] Recurrent sinonasal polyps can occur in 10% to 25% of CF patients.[20] These polyps can block the nasal passages and increase breathing difficulties.[24][25]

Cardiorespiratory complications are the most common cause of death (about 80%) in patients at most CF centers in the United States.[20]

Prior to prenatal and newborn screening, cystic fibrosis was often diagnosed when a newborn infant failed to pass feces (meconium). Meconium may completely block the intestines and cause serious illness. This condition, called meconium ileus, occurs in 510%[20] of newborns with CF. In addition, protrusion of internal rectal membranes (rectal prolapse) is more common, occurring in as many as 10% of children with CF,[20] and it is caused by increased fecal volume, malnutrition, and increased intraabdominal pressure due to coughing.[26]

The thick mucus seen in the lungs has a counterpart in thickened secretions from the pancreas, an organ responsible for providing digestive juices that help break down food. These secretions block the exocrine movement of the digestive enzymes into the duodenum and result in irreversible damage to the pancreas, often with painful inflammation (pancreatitis).[27] The pancreatic ducts are totally plugged in more advanced cases, usually seen in older children or adolescents.[20] This causes atrophy of the exocrine glands and progressive fibrosis.[20]

The lack of digestive enzymes leads to difficulty absorbing nutrients with their subsequent excretion in the feces, a disorder known as malabsorption. Malabsorption leads to malnutrition and poor growth and development because of calorie loss. Resultant hypoproteinemia may be severe enough to cause generalized edema.[20] Individuals with CF also have difficulties absorbing the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.[28]

In addition to the pancreas problems, people with cystic fibrosis experience more heartburn,[28] intestinal blockage by intussusception, and constipation.[29] Older individuals with CF may develop distal intestinal obstruction syndrome when thickened feces cause intestinal blockage.[28]

Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency occurs in the majority (85% to 90%) of patients with CF.[20] It is mainly associated with “severe” CFTR mutations, where both alleles are completely nonfunctional (e.g. F508/F508).[20] It occurs in 10% to 15% of patients with one “severe” and one “mild” CFTR mutation where little CFTR activity still occurs, or where two “mild” CFTR mutations exist.[20] In these milder cases, sufficient pancreatic exocrine function is still present so that enzyme supplementation is not required.[20] Usually, no other GI complications occur in pancreas-sufficient phenotypes, and in general, such individuals usually have excellent growth and development.[20] Despite this, idiopathic chronic pancreatitis can occur in a subset of pancreas-sufficient individuals with CF, and is associated with recurrent abdominal pain and life-threatening complications.[20]

Thickened secretions also may cause liver problems in patients with CF. Bile secreted by the liver to aid in digestion may block the bile ducts, leading to liver damage. Over time, this can lead to scarring and nodularity (cirrhosis). The liver fails to rid the blood of toxins and does not make important proteins, such as those responsible for blood clotting.[30][31] Liver disease is the third-most common cause of death associated with CF.[20]

The pancreas contains the islets of Langerhans, which are responsible for making insulin, a hormone that helps regulate blood glucose. Damage of the pancreas can lead to loss of the islet cells, leading to a type of diabetes unique to those with the disease.[32] This cystic fibrosis-related diabetes shares characteristics that can be found in type 1 and type 2 diabetics, and is one of the principal nonpulmonary complications of CF.[33] Vitamin D is involved in calcium and phosphate regulation. Poor uptake of vitamin D from the diet because of malabsorption can lead to the bone disease osteoporosis in which weakened bones are more susceptible to fractures.[34] In addition, people with CF often develop clubbing of their fingers and toes due to the effects of chronic illness and low oxygen in their tissues.[35][36]

Infertility affects both men and women. At least 97% of men with cystic fibrosis are infertile, but not sterile and can have children with assisted reproductive techniques.[37] The main cause of infertility in men with CF is congenital absence of the vas deferens (which normally connects the testes to the ejaculatory ducts of the penis), but potentially also by other mechanisms such as causing no sperm, abnormally shaped sperm, and few sperm with poor motility.[38] Many men found to have congenital absence of the vas deferens during evaluation for infertility have a mild, previously undiagnosed form of CF.[39] Around 20% of women with CF have fertility difficulties due to thickened cervical mucus or malnutrition. In severe cases, malnutrition disrupts ovulation and causes a lack of menstruation.[40]

CF is caused by a mutation in the gene cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR). The most common mutation, F508, is a deletion ( signifying deletion) of three nucleotides[41] that results in a loss of the amino acid phenylalanine (F) at the 508th position on the protein. This mutation accounts for two-thirds (6670%[20]) of CF cases worldwide and 90% of cases in the United States; however, over 1500 other mutations can produce CF.[42] Although most people have two working copies (alleles) of the CFTR gene, only one is needed to prevent cystic fibrosis. CF develops when neither allele can produce a functional CFTR protein. Thus, CF is considered an autosomal recessive disease.

The CFTR gene, found at the q31.2 locus of chromosome 7, is 230,000 base pairs long, and creates a protein that is 1,480 amino acids long. More specifically, the location is between base pair 117,120,016 and 117,308,718 on the long arm of chromosome 7, region 3, band 1, subband 2, represented as 7q31.2. Structurally, CFTR is a type of gene known as an ABC gene. The product of this gene (the CFTR protein) is a chloride ion channel important in creating sweat, digestive juices, and mucus. This protein possesses two ATP-hydrolyzing domains, which allows the protein to use energy in the form of ATP. It also contains two domains comprising six alpha helices apiece, which allow the protein to cross the cell membrane. A regulatory binding site on the protein allows activation by phosphorylation, mainly by cAMP-dependent protein kinase.[21] The carboxyl terminal of the protein is anchored to the cytoskeleton by a PDZ domain interaction.[43]

In addition, the evidence is increasing that genetic modifiers besides CFTR modulate the frequency and severity of the disease. One example is mannan-binding lectin, which is involved in innate immunity by facilitating phagocytosis of microorganisms. Polymorphisms in one or both mannan-binding lectin alleles that result in lower circulating levels of the protein are associated with a threefold higher risk of end-stage lung disease, as well as an increased burden of chronic bacterial infections.[20]

Several mutations in the CFTR gene can occur, and different mutations cause different defects in the CFTR protein, sometimes causing a milder or more severe disease. These protein defects are also targets for drugs which can sometimes restore their function. F508-CFTR, which occurs in >90% of patients in the U.S., creates a protein that does not fold normally and is not appropriately transported to the cell membrane, resulting in its degradation. Other mutations result in proteins that are too short (truncated) because production is ended prematurely. Other mutations produce proteins that do not use energy (in the form of ATP) normally, do not allow chloride, iodide, and thiocyanate to cross the membrane appropriately,[44] and degrade at a faster rate than normal. Mutations may also lead to fewer copies of the CFTR protein being produced.[21]

The protein created by this gene is anchored to the outer membrane of cells in the sweat glands, lungs, pancreas, and all other remaining exocrine glands in the body. The protein spans this membrane and acts as a channel connecting the inner part of the cell (cytoplasm) to the surrounding fluid. This channel is primarily responsible for controlling the movement of halogens from inside to outside of the cell; however, in the sweat ducts, it facilitates the movement of chloride from the sweat duct into the cytoplasm. When the CFTR protein does not resorb ions in sweat ducts, chloride and thiocyanate[45] released from sweat glands are trapped inside the ducts and pumped to the skin. Additionally hypothiocyanite, OSCN, cannot be produced by the immune defense system.[46][47] Because chloride is negatively charged, this modifies the electrical potential inside and outside the cell that normally causes cations to cross into the cell. Sodium is the most common cation in the extracellular space. The excess chloride within sweat ducts prevents sodium resorption by epithelial sodium channels and the combination of sodium and chloride creates the salt, which is lost in high amounts in the sweat of individuals with CF. This lost salt forms the basis for the sweat test.[21]

Most of the damage in CF is due to blockage of the narrow passages of affected organs with thickened secretions. These blockages lead to remodeling and infection in the lung, damage by accumulated digestive enzymes in the pancreas, blockage of the intestines by thick feces, etc. Several theories have been posited on how the defects in the protein and cellular function cause the clinical effects. The most current theory suggests that defective ion transport leads to dehydration in the airway epithelia, thickening mucus. In airway epithelial cells, the cilia exist in between the cell’s apical surface and mucus in a layer known as airway surface liquid (ASL). The flow of ions from the cell and into this layer is determined by ion channels such as CFTR. CFTR not only allows chloride ions to be drawn from the cell and into the ASL, but it also regulates another channel called ENac, which allows sodium ions to leave the ASL and enter the respiratory epithelium. CFTR normally inhibits this channel, but if the CFTR is defective, then sodium flows freely from the ASL and into the cell. As water follows sodium, the depth of ASL will be depleted and the cilia will be left in the mucous layer.[48] As cilia cannot effectively move in a thick, viscous environment, mucociliary clearance is deficient and a buildup of mucus occurs, clogging small airways.[49] The accumulation of more viscous, nutrient-rich mucus in the lungs allows bacteria to hide from the body’s immune system, causing repeated respiratory infections. The presence of the same CFTR proteins in pancreatic duct and skin cells also cause symptoms in these systems.

The lungs of individuals with cystic fibrosis are colonized and infected by bacteria from an early age. These bacteria, which often spread among individuals with CF, thrive in the altered mucus, which collects in the small airways of the lungs. This mucus leads to the formation of bacterial microenvironments known as biofilms that are difficult for immune cells and antibiotics to penetrate. Viscous secretions and persistent respiratory infections repeatedly damage the lung by gradually remodeling the airways, which makes infection even more difficult to eradicate.[50]

Over time, both the types of bacteria and their individual characteristics change in individuals with CF. In the initial stage, common bacteria such as S. aureus and H. influenzae colonize and infect the lungs.[20] Eventually, Pseudomonas aeruginosa (and sometimes Burkholderia cepacia) dominates. By 18 years of age, 80% of patients with classic CF harbor P. aeruginosa, and 3.5% harbor B. cepacia.[20] Once within the lungs, these bacteria adapt to the environment and develop resistance to commonly used antibiotics. Pseudomonas can develop special characteristics that allow the formation of large colonies, known as “mucoid” Pseudomonas, which are rarely seen in people who do not have CF.[50] Scientific evidences suggest the interleukin 17 pathway plays a key role in resistance and modulation of the inflammatory response during P. aeruginosa infection in CF.[51] In particular, interleukin 17-mediated immunity plays a double-edged activity during chronic airways infection; on one side, it contributes to the control of P. aeruginosa burden, while on the other, it propagates exacerbated pulmonary neutrophilia and tissue remodeling.[51]

Infection can spread by passing between different individuals with CF.[52] In the past, people with CF often participated in summer “CF camps” and other recreational gatherings.[53][54] Hospitals grouped patients with CF into common areas and routine equipment (such as nebulizers)[55] was not sterilized between individual patients.[56] This led to transmission of more dangerous strains of bacteria among groups of patients. As a result, individuals with CF are now routinely isolated from one another in the healthcare setting, and healthcare providers are encouraged to wear gowns and gloves when examining patients with CF to limit the spread of virulent bacterial strains.[57]

CF patients may also have their airways chronically colonized by filamentous fungi (such as Aspergillus fumigatus, Scedosporium apiospermum, Aspergillus terreus) and/or yeasts (such as Candida albicans); other filamentous fungi less commonly isolated include Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus nidulans (occur transiently in CF respiratory secretions) and Exophiala dermatitidis and Scedosporium prolificans (chronic airway-colonizers); some filamentous fungi such as Penicillium emersonii and Acrophialophora fusispora are encountered in patients almost exclusively in the context of CF.[58] Defective mucociliary clearance characterizing CF is associated with local immunological disorders. In addition, the prolonged therapy with antibiotics and the use of corticosteroid treatments may also facilitate fungal growth. Although the clinical relevance of the fungal airway colonization is still a matter of debate, filamentous fungi may contribute to the local inflammatory response and therefore to the progressive deterioration of the lung function, as often happens with allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis the most common fungal disease in the context of CF, involving a Th2-driven immune response to Aspergillus species.[58][59]

Cystic fibrosis may be diagnosed by many different methods, including newborn screening, sweat testing, and genetic testing.[60] As of 2006 in the United States, 10% of cases are diagnosed shortly after birth as part of newborn screening programs. The newborn screen initially measures for raised blood concentration of immunoreactive trypsinogen.[61] Infants with an abnormal newborn screen need a sweat test to confirm the CF diagnosis. In many cases, a parent makes the diagnosis because the infant tastes salty.[20] Immunoreactive trypsinogen levels can be increased in individuals who have a single mutated copy of the CFTR gene (carriers) or, in rare instances, in individuals with two normal copies of the CFTR gene. Due to these false positives, CF screening in newborns can be controversial.[62][63] Most U.S. states and countries do not screen for CF routinely at birth. Therefore, most individuals are diagnosed after symptoms (e.g. sinopulmonary disease and GI manifestations[20]) prompt an evaluation for cystic fibrosis. The most commonly used form of testing is the sweat test. Sweat testing involves application of a medication that stimulates sweating (pilocarpine). To deliver the medication through the skin, iontophoresis is used, whereby one electrode is placed onto the applied medication and an electric current is passed to a separate electrode on the skin. The resultant sweat is then collected on filter paper or in a capillary tube and analyzed for abnormal amounts of sodium and chloride. People with CF have increased amounts of them in their sweat. In contrast, people with CF have less thiocyanate and hypothiocyanite in their saliva[64] and mucus (Banfi et al.). In the case of milder forms of CF, transepithelial potential difference measurements can be helpful. CF can also be diagnosed by identification of mutations in the CFTR gene.[65]

People with CF may be listed in a disease registry that allows researchers and doctors to track health results and identify candidates for clinical trials.[66]

Women who are pregnant or couples planning a pregnancy can have themselves tested for the CFTR gene mutations to determine the risk that their child will be born with CF. Testing is typically performed first on one or both parents and, if the risk of CF is high, testing on the fetus is performed. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends all people thinking of becoming pregnant be tested to see if they are a carrier.[67]

Because development of CF in the fetus requires each parent to pass on a mutated copy of the CFTR gene and because CF testing is expensive, testing is often performed initially on one parent. If testing shows that parent is a CFTR gene mutation carrier, the other parent is tested to calculate the risk that their children will have CF. CF can result from more than a thousand different mutations.[68] As of 2016, typically only the most common mutations are tested for, such as F508[68] Most commercially available tests look for 32 or fewer different mutations. If a family has a known uncommon mutation, specific screening for that mutation can be performed. Because not all known mutations are found on current tests, a negative screen does not guarantee that a child will not have CF.[69]

During pregnancy, testing can be performed on the placenta (chorionic villus sampling) or the fluid around the fetus (amniocentesis). However, chorionic villus sampling has a risk of fetal death of one in 100 and amniocentesis of one in 200;[70] a recent study has indicated this may be much lower, about one in 1,600.[71]

Economically, for carrier couples of cystic fibrosis, when comparing preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) with natural conception (NC) followed by prenatal testing and abortion of affected pregnancies, PGD provides net economic benefits up to a maternal age around 40 years, after which NC, prenatal testing, and abortion have higher economic benefit.[72]

While no cures for CF are known, several treatment methods are used. The management of CF has improved significantly over the past 70 years. While infants born with it 70 years ago would have been unlikely to live beyond their first year, infants today are likely to live well into adulthood. Recent advances in the treatment of cystic fibrosis have meant that individuals with cystic fibrosis can live a fuller life less encumbered by their condition. The cornerstones of management are the proactive treatment of airway infection, and encouragement of good nutrition and an active lifestyle. Pulmonary rehabilitation as a management of CF continues throughout a person’s life, and is aimed at maximizing organ function, and therefore the quality of life. At best, current treatments delay the decline in organ function. Because of the wide variation in disease symptoms, treatment typically occurs at specialist multidisciplinary centers and is tailored to the individual. Targets for therapy are the lungs, gastrointestinal tract (including pancreatic enzyme supplements), the reproductive organs (including assisted reproductive technology), and psychological support.[61]

The most consistent aspect of therapy in CF is limiting and treating the lung damage caused by thick mucus and infection, with the goal of maintaining quality of life. Intravenous, inhaled, and oral antibiotics are used to treat chronic and acute infections. Mechanical devices and inhalation medications are used to alter and clear the thickened mucus. These therapies, while effective, can be extremely time-consuming.

Many people with CF are on one or more antibiotics at all times, even when healthy, to prophylactically suppress infection. Antibiotics are absolutely necessary whenever pneumonia is suspected or a noticeable decline in lung function is seen, and are usually chosen based on the results of a sputum analysis and the person’s past response. This prolonged therapy often necessitates hospitalization and insertion of a more permanent IV such as a peripherally inserted central catheter or Port-a-Cath. Inhaled therapy with antibiotics such as tobramycin, colistin, and aztreonam is often given for months at a time to improve lung function by impeding the growth of colonized bacteria.[73][74][75] Inhaled antibiotic therapy helps lung function by fighting infection, but also has significant drawbacks such as development of antibiotic resistance, tinnitus, and changes in the voice.[76] Inhaled levofloxacin may be used to treat Pseudomonas aeruginosa in people with cystic fibrosis who are infected.[77]

Antibiotics by mouth such as ciprofloxacin or azithromycin are given to help prevent infection or to control ongoing infection.[78] The aminoglycoside antibiotics (e.g. tobramycin) used can cause hearing loss, damage to the balance system in the inner ear or kidney failure with long-term use.[79] To prevent these side-effects, the amount of antibiotics in the blood is routinely measured and adjusted accordingly.

Several mechanical techniques are used to dislodge sputum and encourage its expectoration. In the hospital setting, chest physiotherapy is used; a respiratory therapist percusses an individual’s chest by hand several times a day, to loosen up secretions. Chest physiotherapy is beneficial for short-term airway clearance.[8] Devices that recreate this percussive therapy include the ThAIRapy Vest and the intrapulmonary percussive ventilator. Other methods such as biphasic cuirass ventilation, and associated clearance mode available in such devices, integrate a cough assistance phase, as well as a vibration phase for dislodging secretions. These are portable and adapted for home use.

Ivacaftor is a medication taken by mouth for the treatment of CF due to a number of specific mutations.[80][81] It improves lung function by about 10%; however, as of 2014 it is expensive.[80]

Aerosolized medications that help loosen secretions include dornase alfa and hypertonic saline.[82] Dornase is a recombinant human deoxyribonuclease, which breaks down DNA in the sputum, thus decreasing its viscosity.[83]Denufosol, an investigational drug, opens an alternative chloride channel, helping to liquefy mucus.[84] Whether inhaled corticosteroids are useful is unclear, but stopping inhaled corticosteroid therapy is safe.[85] There is weak evidence that corticosteroid treatment may cause harm by interfering with growth.[85]

As lung disease worsens, mechanical breathing support may become necessary. Individuals with CF may need to wear special masks at night to help push air into their lungs. These machines, known as bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) ventilators, help prevent low blood oxygen levels during sleep. Non-invasive ventilators may be used during physical therapy to improve sputum clearance.[86] It is not known if this type of therapy has an impact on pulmonary exacerbations or disease progression.[86] It is notknown what role non-invasive ventilation therapy has for improving exercise capacity in people with cystic fibrosis.[86] During severe illness, a tube may be placed in the throat (a procedure known as a tracheostomy) to enable breathing supported by a ventilator.

For children, preliminary studies show massage therapy may help people and their families’ quality of life.[87]Pneumococcal vaccination has not been studied as of 2014.[88]

Some lung infections require surgical removal of the infected part of the lung. If this is necessary many times, lung function is severely reduced.[89]

Lung transplantation often becomes necessary for individuals with CF as lung function and exercise tolerance decline. Although single lung transplantation is possible in other diseases, individuals with CF must have both lungs replaced because the remaining lung might contain bacteria that could infect the transplanted lung. A pancreatic or liver transplant may be performed at the same time to alleviate liver disease and/or diabetes.[90] Lung transplantation is considered when lung function declines to the point where assistance from mechanical devices is required or someone’s survival is threatened.[91]

Newborns with intestinal obstruction typically require surgery, whereas adults with distal intestinal obstruction syndrome typically do not. Treatment of pancreatic insufficiency by replacement of missing digestive enzymes allows the duodenum to properly absorb nutrients and vitamins that would otherwise be lost in the feces. However, the best dosage and form of pancreatic enzyme replacement is unclear, as are the risks and long-term effectiveness of this treatment.[92]

So far, no large-scale research involving the incidence of atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease in adults with cystic fibrosis has been conducted. This is likely because the vast majority of people with cystic fibrosis do not live long enough to develop clinically significant atherosclerosis or coronary heart disease.

Diabetes is the most common nonpulmonary complication of CF. It mixes features of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and is recognized as a distinct entity, cystic fibrosis-related diabetes.[33][93] While oral antidiabetic drugs are sometimes used, the recommended treatment is the use of insulin injections or an insulin pump,[94] and, unlike in type 1 and 2 diabetes, dietary restrictions are not recommended.[33]

There is no strong evidence that people with cystic fibrosis can prevent osteoporosis by increased their intake of vitamin D.[95]Bisphosphonates taken by mouth or intravenously can be used to improve the bone mineral density in people with cystic fibrosis.[96] When taking bisphosphates intravenously, adverse effects such as pain and flu-like symptoms can be an issue.[96] The adverse effects of bisphosphates taken by mouth on the gastrointestinal tract are not known.[96]

Poor growth may be avoided by insertion of a feeding tube for increasing food energy through supplemental feeds or by administration of injected growth hormone.[97]

Sinus infections are treated by prolonged courses of antibiotics. The development of nasal polyps or other chronic changes within the nasal passages may severely limit airflow through the nose, and over time reduce the person’s sense of smell. Sinus surgery is often used to alleviate nasal obstruction and to limit further infections. Nasal steroids such as fluticasone are used to decrease nasal inflammation.[98]

Female infertility may be overcome by assisted reproduction technology, particularly embryo transfer techniques. Male infertility caused by absence of the vas deferens may be overcome with testicular sperm extraction, collecting sperm cells directly from the testicles. If the collected sample contains too few sperm cells to likely have a spontaneous fertilization, intracytoplasmic sperm injection can be performed.[99]Third party reproduction is also a possibility for women with CF. Whether taking antioxidants affects outcomes is unclear.[100]

The prognosis for cystic fibrosis has improved due to earlier diagnosis through screening and better treatment and access to health care. In 1959, the median age of survival of children with CF in the United States was six months.[101] In 2010, survival is estimated to be 37 years for women and 40 for men.[102] In Canada, median survival increased from 24 years in 1982 to 47.7 in 2007.[103]

Of those with CF who are more than 18 years old as of 2009, 92% had graduated from high school, 67% had at least some college education, 15% were disabled, 9% were unemployed, 56% were single, and 39% were married or living with a partner.[104]

Chronic illnesses can be very difficult to manage. CF is a chronic illness that affects the “digestive and respiratory tracts resulting in generalized malnutrition and chronic respiratory infections”.[105] The thick secretions clog the airways in the lungs, which often cause inflammation and severe lung infections.[106][107] If it is compromised, it affects the quality of life of someone with CF and their ability to complete such tasks as everyday chores. It is important for CF patients to understand the detrimental relationship that chronic illnesses place on the quality of life (QOL). According to Schmitz and Goldbeck (2006), the fact that CF significantly increases emotional stress on both the individual and the family, “and the necessary time-consuming daily treatment routine may have further negative effects on quality of life”.[108] However, Havermans and colleagues (2006) have shown that young outpatients with CF who have participated in the Cystic Fibrosis Questionnaire-Revised “rated some QOL domains higher than did their parents”.[109] Consequently, outpatients with CF have a more positive outlook for themselves. Furthermore, many ways can improve the QOL in CF patients. Exercise is promoted to increase lung function. Integrating an exercise regimen into the CF patients daily routine can significantly improve QOL.[110] No definitive cure for CF is known, but diverse medications are used, such as mucolytics, bronchodilators, steroids, and antibiotics, that have the purpose of loosening mucus, expanding airways, decreasing inflammation, and fighting lung infections, respectively.[111]

Cystic fibrosis is the most common life-limiting autosomal recessive disease among people of European heritage.[113] In the United States, about 30,000 individuals have CF; most are diagnosed by six months of age. In Canada, about 4,000 people have CF.[114] Around 1 in 25 people of European descent, and one in 30 of Caucasian Americans,[115] is a carrier of a CF mutation. Although CF is less common in these groups, roughly one in 46 Hispanics, one in 65 Africans, and one in 90 Asians carry at least one abnormal CFTR gene.[116][117] Ireland has the world’s highest prevalence of CF, at one in 1353.[118]

Although technically a rare disease, CF is ranked as one of the most widespread life-shortening genetic diseases. It is most common among nations in the Western world. An exception is Finland, where only one in 80 people carries a CF mutation.[119] The World Health Organization states, “In the European Union, one in 20003000 newborns is found to be affected by CF”.[120] In the United States, one in 3,500 children is born with CF.[121] In 1997, about one in 3,300 Caucasian children in the United States was born with CF. In contrast, only one in 15,000 African American children suffered from it, and in Asian Americans, the rate was even lower at one in 32,000.[122]

Cystic fibrosis is diagnosed in males and females equally. For reasons that remain unclear, data have shown that males tend to have a longer life expectancy than females,[123][124] but recent studies suggest this gender gap may no longer exist perhaps due to improvements in health care facilities,[125][126] while a recent study from Ireland identified a link between the female hormone estrogen and worse outcomes in CF.[127]

The distribution of CF alleles varies among populations. The frequency of F508 carriers has been estimated at one in 200 in northern Sweden, one in 143 in Lithuanians, and one in 38 in Denmark. No F508 carriers were found among 171 Finns and 151 Saami people.[128] F508 does occur in Finland, but it is a minority allele there. CF is known to occur in only 20 families (pedigrees) in Finland.[129]

The F508 mutation is estimated to be up to 52,000 years old.[130] Numerous hypotheses have been advanced as to why such a lethal mutation has persisted and spread in the human population. Other common autosomal recessive diseases such as sickle-cell anemia have been found to protect carriers from other diseases, a concept known as heterozygote advantage. Resistance to the following have all been proposed as possible sources of heterozygote advantage:

CF is supposed to have appeared about 3,000 BC because of migration of peoples, gene mutations, and new conditions in nourishment.[139] Although the entire clinical spectrum of CF was not recognized until the 1930s, certain aspects of CF were identified much earlier. Indeed, literature from Germany and Switzerland in the 18th century warned “Wehe dem Kind, das beim Ku auf die Stirn salzig schmeckt, es ist verhext und muss bald sterben” or “Woe to the child who tastes salty from a kiss on the brow, for he is cursed and soon must die”, recognizing the association between the salt loss in CF and illness.[139]

In the 19th century, Carl von Rokitansky described a case of fetal death with meconium peritonitis, a complication of meconium ileus associated with CF. Meconium ileus was first described in 1905 by Karl Landsteiner.[139] In 1936, Guido Fanconi described a connection between celiac disease, cystic fibrosis of the pancreas, and bronchiectasis.[140]

In 1938, Dorothy Hansine Andersen published an article, “Cystic Fibrosis of the Pancreas and Its Relation to Celiac Disease: a Clinical and Pathological Study”, in the American Journal of Diseases of Children. She was the first to describe the characteristic cystic fibrosis of the pancreas and to correlate it with the lung and intestinal disease prominent in CF.[10] She also first hypothesized that CF was a recessive disease and first used pancreatic enzyme replacement to treat affected children. In 1952, Paul di SantAgnese discovered abnormalities in sweat electrolytes; a sweat test was developed and improved over the next decade.[141]

The first linkage between CF and another marker (Paroxonase) was found in 1985 by Hans Eiberg, indicating that only one locus exists for CF. In 1988, the first mutation for CF, F508 was discovered by Francis Collins, Lap-Chee Tsui, and John R. Riordan on the seventh chromosome. Subsequent research has found over 1,000 different mutations that cause CF.

Because mutations in the CFTR gene are typically small, classical genetics techniques had been unable to accurately pinpoint the mutated gene.[142] Using protein markers, gene-linkage studies were able to map the mutation to chromosome 7. Chromosome-walking and -jumping techniques were then used to identify and sequence the gene.[143] In 1989, Lap-Chee Tsui led a team of researchers at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto that discovered the gene responsible for CF. CF represents a classic example of how a human genetic disorder was elucidated strictly by the process of forward genetics.

Gene therapy has been explored as a potential cure for CF. Results from clinical trials have shown limited success as of 2016, and using gene therapy as routine therapy is not suggested.[144] A small study published in 2015 found a small benefit.[145]

The focus of much CF gene therapy research is aimed at trying to place a normal copy of the CFTR gene into affected cells. Transferring the normal CFTR gene into the affected epithelium cells would result in the production of functional CFTR protein in all target cells, without adverse reactions or an inflammation response. To prevent the lung manifestations of CF, only 510% the normal amount of CFTR gene expression is needed.[146] Multiple approaches have been tested for gene transfer, such as liposomes and viral vectors in animal models and clinical trials. However, both methods were found to be relatively inefficient treatment options,[147] mainly because very few cells take up the vector and express the gene, so the treatment has little effect. Additionally, problems have been noted in cDNA recombination, such that the gene introduced by the treatment is rendered unusable.[148] There has been a functional repair in culture of CFTR by CRISPR/Cas9 in intestinal stem cell organoids of cystic fibrosis patients.[149]

A number of small molecules that aim at compensating various mutations of the CFTR gene are under development. One approach is to develop drugs that get the ribosome to overcome the stop codon and synthesize a full-length CFTR protein. About 10% of CF results from a premature stop codon in the DNA, leading to early termination of protein synthesis and truncated proteins. These drugs target nonsense mutations such as G542X, which consists of the amino acid glycine in position 542 being replaced by a stop codon. Aminoglycoside antibiotics interfere with protein synthesis and error-correction. In some cases, they can cause the cell to overcome a premature stop codon by inserting a random amino acid, thereby allowing expression of a full-length protein.[150] The aminoglycoside gentamicin has been used to treat lung cells from CF patients in the laboratory to induce the cells to grow full-length proteins.[151] Another drug targeting nonsense mutations is ataluren, which is undergoing Phase III clinical trials as of October 2011[update].[152]Lumacaftor/ivacaftor was approved by the FDA in July 2015.[153]

It is unclear as of 2014 if ursodeoxycholic acid is useful for those with cystic fibrosis-related liver disease.[154]

Original post:

Cystic fibrosis – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Posted in Cf

About Cystic Fibrosis | CF Foundation

Watch a video that provides a glimpse into the everyday life of Kaitlyn Broadhurst, a 25-year-old living with cystic fibrosis.

People with cystic fibrosis are at greater risk of getting lung infections because thick, sticky mucus builds up in their lungs, allowing germs to thrive and multiply. Lung infections, caused mostly by bacteria, are a serious and chronic problem for many people living with the disease. Minimizing contact with germs is a top concern for people with CF.

The buildup of mucus in the pancreas can also stop the absorption of food and key nutrients, resulting in malnutrition and poor growth. In the liver, the thick mucus can block the bile duct, causing liver disease. In men, CF can affect their ability to have children.

Breakthrough treatments have added years to the lives of people with cystic fibrosis. Today the median predicted survival age is close to 40. This is a dramatic improvement from the 1950s, when a child with CF rarely lived long enough to attend elementary school.

Because of tremendous advancements in research and care, many people with CF are living long enough to realize their dreams of attending college, pursuing careers, getting married, and having kids.

While there has been significant progress in treating this disease, there is still no cure and too many lives are cut far too short.

See original here:

About Cystic Fibrosis | CF Foundation

Posted in Cf

Adam Jones Becomes 1st Orioles CF Since 1924 with 4-for-4, 2-Homer Night – Bleacher Report

Baltimore Orioles veteran Adam Jones finished Tuesday’s game against the Oakland Athletics 4-for-4 with two home runs, becoming the team’s first center fielder since William “Baby Doll” Jacobson in 1924 to post that stat line, per ESPN Stats & Info.

Jones’s two home runs were both solo shots, but he did score three runs on the night en route to the team’s 7-3 victory. His four hits on the night also increased his batting average from .275 to .281 on the season.

The 32-year-old has been on a tear during August, batting .342/.378/.605 with five home runs and 12 RBI over 76 at-bats. His output assisted in a win that keeps the Orioles within striking distance of the Wild Card.

Despite Jones’ recent surge, the Orioles own just a 10-10 record during August and a 2-4 record in their last six games. The club sits 3.5 games back of the Minnesota Twins for the second wild-card spot following Monday’s results.

Although the five-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glove-winner began his career with the Seattle Mariners when he debuted in 2006, he joined the Orioles two short years later and has roamed center field for the club ever since.

Since joining the outfield in Baltimore, he hasn’t played fewer than 119 games in a season and has hit at least .265 in every campaign. Jones has also collected at least 25 home runs in each of the last six seasons and needs just one more to reach the mark again in 2017.

Jones has one additional year remaining on his contract with the Orioles in 2018, but his future with the club remains uncertain beyond that. He will be 33 years old entering 2019, so he should have at least a couple years of effectivenessremaining when his current deal expires.

For now, Jones and his teammates will continue to focus on inching up the standings toward a Wild Card berth. The club returns to action for the second of a three-game set against the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday evening.

View original post here:

Adam Jones Becomes 1st Orioles CF Since 1924 with 4-for-4, 2-Homer Night – Bleacher Report

Posted in Cf

U-CF School Board prepares for new school year – Chester County Press

By John ChamblessStaff Writer

A relatively short meeting for the Unionville-Chadds Ford School Board on Aug. 21 included some last-minute hiring and staff adjustments for the school year, which begins on Aug. 28.

In his opening remarks, district superintendent John Sanville set the tone for the year by saying, We are preparing to welcome 4,000 students, 700 employees and 3,500 families to the 2017-18 school year. We will be opening our arms as wide as we can to embrace everyone. In a year when we are so divided as a nation, I am thankful to be part of the U-CF community that accepts differences and focuses on common goals. We are a thoughtful, respectful and caring place. A place that has not, and will not, tolerate harassment, intimidation or hate of any kind. A place where every person can feel safe and be respected.

Before a vote on a list of tentative school field trips for the year, board member Gregg Lindner reiterated his comments from a previous meeting that, Some of these day trips are too expensive. Particularly, there’s one that costs almost $200 to see a play in New York. My concern is that places a burden on many parents, and we should avoid those kinds of trips.

Assistant superintendent John Nolen agreed, saying, We did have a discussion with the high school administration about this last week. They concur 100 percent. We will continue to be very careful. For that specific trip, we’re going to look for alternatives.

Lindner said, Thank you for such a fast turnaround.

It’s important to us that these activities are available at a reasonable rate to all students, Nolen responded.

The bridge in Pocopson, which has been under construction for months, is slated to be completed on Sept. 1, Sanville said, adding that the company has a firm deadline, with penalties for being late. We have sent messages to families whose students are part of that bus route over that bridge, he said. For the first four days, students will be on a slightly longer bus ride until the bridge opens up.

At last week’s school board meeting, the board heard from school nurses about an updated immunization rule from the state that had some families scrambling to get their children to a doctor before the start of school. The district is adjusting its policy to align with the state guidelines.

The immunization policy came up for first reading last week, Sanville said. Administrators and nurses and support staff in all six of our buildings contacted the families of 250 students who were not in compliance with the new immunization policy for start of the school year. We are feverishly receiving immunization notifications from families. The number of students who do not meet the requirements is now about cut in half, Sanville added.

During comments regarding legislation affecting the district, board member Jeff Hellrung addressed the delay in an approved state budget, saying, I’m rather dismayed to see that. We’re just not getting a revenue package out of the legislature. I did not think they should have been taking vacation this summer without giving us a budget. The state is quickly getting into trouble regarding cash reserves to pay bills. It’s not a good situation in Harrisburg.

Hellrung then read from his statement about a reduction in state PSSA testing for elementary school students that was approved by Gov. Wolf. One test section will be eliminated in the math and English language arts PSSA test, amounting to a 93 minute total time reduction, Hellrung said. Also, approximately 22 minutes will be saved by eliminating questions from the PSSA science test. We all know our elementary students are subjected to far too many state and federally mandated, high-stakes standardized tests, right? So this reduction in time must be a fine idea.

But wait, he continued. PSSA tests are designed to measure student achievement versus our Pennsylvania core content standards, and year-to-year growth for individual students. They are the only federally mandated or state tests for our elementary students. Math and language arts are tested annually in grades 3 to 8, and science is tested in grades 4 and 8.

We devote approximately 0.5 percent of elementary school time from kindergarten through eighth grade to mandated testing. Is that excessive? The PSSA gives us our best and most comprehensive single measure of student learning. So why did we just diminish the value of the PSSA by reducing test time?

The campaign against state testing is driven by a false narrative from many of our top educational leaders in Pennsylvania. Too many of these leaders claim that we are swamped by too many standardized tests. That’s false. They also claim that test preparation takes an extreme amount of time and forces out creativity, exploration and collaboration. But school districts that overdo test preparation have only themselves to blame. They shortchange students in the futile hope that the result will be a better report card for the district. Instead, they should integrate PSSA content into their curriculum and trust their well-qualified teachers.

PSSA scores have no influence on promotion, placement or grades for our students, Hellrung said. For teachers, they offer valuable feedback that can lead to continuous improvement in their educational practices. The PSSA does have the potential to embarrass school districts. I believe most senior administrators who criticize the PSSA are trying to escape accountability for the performance of their students and their schools.

Updated information on the school district is available at http://www.ucfsd.org.

To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email jchambless@chestercounty.com.

Read the original here:

U-CF School Board prepares for new school year – Chester County Press

Posted in Cf

JaCoby Jones anxious to reclaim Tigers’ CF role – Detroit News – The Detroit News

Autoplay

Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

JaCoby Jones is back in Detroit, and eager to prove he belongs.(Photo: Robin Buckson / Detroit News)

Detroit This wasnt the script he envisioned. Especially not after he stole the starting center-field job out of spring training and then hit a home run in Chicago in his first at-bat of the season.

But, this is exactly the script the Tigers envisioned for JaCoby Jones.

This was the whole discussion in spring training, manager Brad Ausmus said. We thought he was our best center fielder and obviously you want to win at the Major League level. But whats best for JJ? Is it better for him to go down and get at-bats?

I guess it was a blend of those two trying to do whats best for the team and whats best for him. Not exactly how you plan it out, but we will see how it works in the long run.

Ausmus rips umps for protesting Kinsler’s ‘leniency’

Jones is back. After spending the better part of the last three months at Triple-A Toledo, he was in the starting lineup, in center field, Saturday. At the time he was recalled, it was just to fill the roster spot of pitcher Anibal Sanchez, who is on the disabled list.

Right now he is up in lieu of a starting pitcher, Ausmus said. We dont need one until Saturday. But we will see what the move is when we get there.

Which means Jones has a chance to earn an extended stay before rosters are expanded in September.

When I was up here earlier, I was struggling, scuffling a little bit, said Jones, who was 1-for-2 with a strikeout in Saturday’s 3-0 loss. Strikeouts were coming in bunches. I wasnt helping the team offensively. My defense was there, but my offense it was a struggle.

They wanted me to go down there and work on my game, and thats what Ive been doing.

Jones struck out 19 times in 45 plate appearances in April, before getting hit in the jaw with a fastball against the Twins on April 22. When he came back nearly a month later, the strikeouts persisted seven in 12 plate appearances.

Ive just tried to be more disciplined at the plate, he said. The discipline is the biggest thing for me. Im always antsy, always trying to do everything, always wanting to hit every pitch, he said. Im still learning to be disciplined, to swing at pitches I can hit.

By rule, Tigers’ Upton could’ve had HR nullified

It took him a while to get going at Toledo, as well. He struck out 103 times in 388 plate appearances. But he also had nine home runs, 43 RBIs and stole 12 bases in 16 attempts.

I know my numbers down there arent those of a superstar player or anything like that, Jones said. But Ive felt good in the box.

In the last week, four games, he hit .375 (6-for-16) with 1.007 OPS, striking out four times in 19 plate appearances.

Everything happens for a reason and I think it was a good thing for me to go down there and get more at-bats and play every single day, Jones said. Up here, if I was struggling, I wouldve only played against left-handed pitching, probably only play once every three or four days. Playing every day down there, trying to find that groove was good for me.

If Jones figures it out offensively, Saturday could be a preview of the outfield alignment in 2018 Jones in center and Mikie Mahtook in right field. Or, if Justin Upton elects to opt out of the final three years of his contract with the Tigers, Mahtook could be the starting left fielder next season and perhaps Nick Castellanos would be the right fielder.

Time will tell.

Jones is probably our best defensive center fielder right now, Ausmus said. Mikie is a good center fielder, but I think he has a chance to be a really good corner outfielder.

cmccosky@detroitnews.com

twitter.com/cmccosky

See the article here:

JaCoby Jones anxious to reclaim Tigers’ CF role – Detroit News – The Detroit News

Posted in Cf

Pennsylvania CF robs home run in Junior League championship game – ABC News

Pennsylvania center fielder Jack Regenye made a catch Sunday in the championship game of the Junior League World Series that rivaled anything you’ll see in the big leagues this year.

In the fourth inning of the game between Kennett-Unionville in Pennsylvania and Chinese Taipei, Regenye leaped over the wall in center, snared the ball in his glove and flipped over the fence. He stood and held up the ball to signal the catch.

“I saw the ball,” Regenye said on SportsCenter, “and I saw Nick [Patterson] to my right, yelling ‘fence, fence, fence’ …. like the first time ever. I tracked it, and instincts kicked in, and I caught the ball.”

The catch was first ruled an out. Then the call was overturned, then overturned again.

Chinese Taipei’s manager argued that the ball was already over the fence when the catch was made, and the umpires reconsidered and called the ball a home run.

The batter, Yi Hsiang Lin, rounded the bases and gathered with his teammates to celebrate.

The celebration was short-lived. After a second conference by the umpires, the call was changed back to an out.

The catch was shown on ESPN, and videos of it went viral, proclaiming it the catch of the year, the greatest catch ever and the catch of the millennium.

“It’s crazy,” Regenye said. “I’ve never had my phone blow up like that — in 10 minutes.”

Regenye’s catch was in a losing effort. Chinese Taipei, the Asia-Pacific champion, defeated East champion Kennett-Unionville 12-1 to take the Junior League World Series title.

The Junior League World Series, part of the Little League organization, is a tournament for 12- to 14-year-olds. The Junior League game is played on a full-size Major League Baseball field using major league rules.

The tournament is held annually in Taylor, Michigan, about 25 miles outside of Detroit.

Read more here:

Pennsylvania CF robs home run in Junior League championship game – ABC News

Posted in Cf

Startwise, a New Crowdfunding Platform using Reg CF Goes Live with Revenue Sharing Offerings – Crowdfund Insider

Making Revenue Sharing Investments Accessible to Everyone

Today, Startwise, the newest FINRA approved Reg CF platform, hasofficially launched a marketplace where you can invest in companies you care about for as little as $100. The newest entrant into the crowdfunding sector joins a growing list of regulated platforms for a market that is quite small.

There are now 29 FINRA approved Reg CF portals, including Startwise. Meanwhile, only $42.7 million has been raised under Reg CF an exemption that allows issuers to raise at most $1.07 million.

So why jump into a such a crowded space?

Startwise is on a mission to make revenue sharing easy and accessible to investors for as little as $100, backing companies they believe in. Anyone may invest not just accredited investors. Meanwhile, small businesses may be able to raise much needed growth capital.

Our vision is to allow businesses to raise capital from consumers and to create a mutually beneficial relationship for both parties, says Grace Leung Shing, CEO of Startwise.

Startwise is launching with two deals for smaller companies that want to expand:

Each of these new offers will use a revenue share investment strategy. Investors will earn a fixed percentage of top line revenue until the maximum payout is earned back. This is not equity crowdfunding but more of a hybrid loan.

Catherine Yushina, COO of Startwise, believes that revenue sharing enables an investor to connect with a company that resonates with their values. Crowdfunding empowers a more inclusive economy.

Citing data from Locavesting, the crowdfunding success rate for women entrepreneurs has been 87.5% and for minority-only founders was 46% which were both better than the 41% success rate for male teams.

Crowdfund Insider connected with Yushina to learn more about Startwise and her vision for the newest crowdfunding entrant in the Reg CF space. Our discussion is below.

Why did you decide to offer Revenue Sharing investments?

Catherine Yushina:My co-founder Grace and I were working in a Venture Capital fund when we understood that equity model works for a very limited type of businesses those looking to have an exit sometime soon, which is not the case for the majority of the businesses.

We work with consumer small and medium businesseswherefounders and owners are actually looking to build a legacy, grow the company long-term and make sure they stay true to the mission that lays at the core of their business. These are not the tech startups that will get acquired fast. So revenue sharing provides the alternative capital option for small businesses, enabling them to tap into the consumers for support and pay them back as they grow their business.

The purpose of the Startwise platform is also to bridge the gap toinclude the majority of the population in the opportunity to invest in small businesses they believe in. Most of the people are not deeply knowledgeable about equity valuation, dilution. Revenue sharing enables us to offer accessible investment mechanism since it is the easy-to-understand type of investment that doesnt require a high level ofexpertise. It does, however, offer the opportunity to get a financial return even if you invest as small as $100.

Will you offer other types of securities in the future? IE equity, SAFEs, Convertibles etc.

Catherine Yushina:So far we are focused exclusively on revenue sharing. We are brainstorming different variations of structuring this type of the investment mechanism to make sure we balance the interests of both investors and companies, but we think that the future success of crowdfunding platforms is laying in their focus and specialization. So our plans are to stay true to revenue sharing model.

How are you sourcing deals?

Catherine Yushina:Weve built a community around our idea and are happy to see the referrals growing. While we execute on a lot of strategies around industry-focused events, community reach outs, targetedmarketing, we prefer the word-of-mouth strategy. I think that is the most rewarding part when business owners and service providersstart referring business owners to us.

Will you list investment using Reg A+? What about Reg D? What about side-by-side Reg D /CF?

Catherine Yushina:So far we are focusing on Reg CF. There are some shifts happening right now crowdfunding is still forming as an industry, especially on the side of regulation and laws.

Recently FINRA and SEC held an industry call where they were discussing recent findings, including a number of concerns that they have in regards to the activities of funding portals and issuers under the Reg CF. One of them was actually the side-by-side offering of securities under different regulations. They are still discussing internally whether the portals will need to create separate platforms and each platform has to be focused on one specific type of offering. I guess we will have to see what would be their final decision on this issue.

What is your competitive advantage in contrast to other investment crowdfunding platforms?

Catherine Yushina:Revenue sharing is largely an untapped market, most of the platforms focused on equity crowdfunding and startups. Weve decided that revenue sharing with businesses that are already in the market and are generating revenue is a focus that was missing. Weve also built our proprietary software and made it double-sided it also facilitates repayments and reporting from companies to investors after the campaigns are closed. It makes it easy for investors to track their portfolio since they can access everything in one place. And business owners dont have to spend hours to send 100+ wires to every single investor, our system splits the payment among all the investors based on their pro-rata share. And we are excited to be forging partnerships with accelerators, business and investor communities, and finance groups.

Have a crowdfunding offering you’d like to share? Submit an offering for consideration using our Submit a Tip form and we may share it on our site!

. Bookmark the

.

Read more here:

Startwise, a New Crowdfunding Platform using Reg CF Goes Live with Revenue Sharing Offerings – Crowdfund Insider

Posted in Cf

88% eclipse wows people during CF program – Ocala

We stopped selling tickets for this on Aug. 2 because we had reached our limit, said Senior Learners, Inc. chairman Bob Holloran of the 80 attendees.

Most local residents were thankful to have perfect blue skies for Mondays Great American Eclipse, which led thousands of people outside at about 2:45 p.m. to see the moon cover about 88 percent of the sun from Marion County vantage points.

Surprisingly, there was little change in the amount of sunlight in the county, though the temperature did drop by 5 degrees (from 95 degrees to 90 degrees) in some local locations during the first United States coast-to-coast eclipse in 99 years.

Most people at least those with eclipse glasses stepped outside their homes and offices to catch a glimpse of the event, while others attended one of a handful of eclipse parties. While some people gathered at the downtown branch of the Marion County Library, about 90 Senior Learners, Inc. members attended an event at the College of Central Floridas University Center.

I didnt expect that we would have such a perfect day to see the eclipse, said Gwynn Pealer, 71, a retired Marion County biology/chemistry teacher and the vice-chairwoman of Senior Learners.

Pealer is credited with jump-starting the eclipse party idea months ago, making sure the group secured about 100 pairs of NASA-certified eclipse glasses for the event. A typical Senior Learners event draws about 20 people. The eclipse party, which featured food and refreshments for a small fee, drew four times that many.

One highlight of the event for the attendees was getting a look at the showdown of the eclipse on the sidewalks near the University Center. The sunlight traveled through tree branches, similar to light traveling through a pinhole in a box, and created a shadow of the eclipse. If one looked closely, there were dozens of eclipse shadows all around the tree.

This is awesome, Myrna Watkins, a retired Marion County Public Schools employee, said of the mini-eclipse shadows. It was fun to take part in this.

Bob Holloran, Senior Learners chairman, delighted the group by using binoculars to reflect the image of the partial eclipse on a white sheet of paper lining the bottom of a cardboard box.

We stopped selling tickets for this on Aug. 2 because we had reached our limit, said Holloran of the fact they had originally set the maximum at 80 attendees.

Before the event, Senior Learners member Rich Hautanen set up laptops to show members informative videos from NASA about eclipses. He showed one on safety, detailing the importance of wearing approved eyewear.

I cant wait for this one, said Lynne Stephens, 78, who witnessed a near-full eclipse off the Atlantic coast from her Baltimore, Maryland, home in 1994. That one (1994) was absolutely incredible. I had to see another one.

About 45 minutes before Marion Countys maximum eclipse, CF President Jim Henningsen and his daughter, Juliana, 9, arrived at the University Center to join the festivities. He took his daughter out of school a few hours early so Juliana, who is fascinated with eclipses, could see her first one.

The Marion County school district canceled all outdoor activities on Monday and allowed parents to withdraw their child early, which would be excused.

This is fascinating, Henningsen said.

Juliana, wearing her Dr. N.H. Jones Elementary School uniform, walked around chatting with many of the Senior Learners members. She said the next goal is to see a full eclipse, adding that it may not happen until Aug. 12, 2045, when this part of Florida will see six minutes of a full eclipse.

Henningsen said an eclipse on April 8, 2024, which will travel from Mexico to Maine, may be the next opportunity to try to be in a spot for Juliana to see a full eclipse.

We better start making reservations now, Henningsen said.

Mondays eclipse event included two Senior Learners classrooms connected to a live feed from different areas of the U.S. Each time a new location showed the full eclipse, there was a collective gasp and displays of awe.

Senior Learners is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing educational opportunities to seniors (ages 50 and older) by presenting noncredit, college-level classes covering a broad range of academic interests.

Holloran handed out course schedules for the fall. New courses start in early September. Most courses costs between $5 to $25, with a a few classes costing $50. The cost depends on the subject and materials needed. For more information, go to https://seniorlearnersinc.wildapricot.org, email info@seniorlearners.org or call 239-8780.

Joe Callahan can be reached at 867-4113 or at joe.callahan@starbanner.com. Follow him on Twitter @JoeOcalaNews.

Read the original post:

88% eclipse wows people during CF program – Ocala

Posted in Cf

Investors must not feel shy to buy these stocks: CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF), The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS) – StockNewsJournal


Press Telegraph
Investors must not feel shy to buy these stocks: CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF), The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS)
StockNewsJournal
CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:CF) market capitalization at present is $6.84B at the rate of $29.18 a share. The firm's price-to-sales ratio was noted 1.83 in contrast with an overall industry average of 3.65. Most of the active traders and
8100 Shares in CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF) Acquired by ZWJ Investment Counsel Inc.TrueBlueTribune
Choosing Between CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF) and Monsanto Company (MON)StockNewsGazette
Rhumbline Advisers Sells 754 Shares of CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF)StockNewsTimes
BBNS –Week Herald –AllStockNews –Zacks Investment Research
all 24 news articles »

The rest is here:

Investors must not feel shy to buy these stocks: CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF), The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS) – StockNewsJournal

Posted in Cf

Analysts’ Views on CF Industries after 2Q17 Earnings – Market Realist – Market Realist

Agribusiness Stocks: Analysts’ Rating Updates for August 2017 PART 5 OF 9

CF Industries (CF) reported its quarterly earnings on August 2, 2017. ItsEPS (earnings per share) was $0.10, which was in line with analysts consensus estimate. Since the earnings announcement, the stock has risen about 1.0%. However, as of August 18, 2017, the stock has fallen almost 9.0% YTD (year-to-date).

To read more about CF Industries 2Q17 earnings, readWhat You Need to Know about CF Industries 2Q17 Earnings.

As of August 18, 2017, the mean consensus analyst rating for CF Industries (CF) stock was 2.6 with a hold recommendation for the next 12-month period. Similar to PotashCorp (POT), Agrium (AGU), and Mosaic (MOS), the analyst recommendation for CF Industries month-over-month has remained unchanged.

Of the 18 analysts surveyed by Reuters, two had a strong buy recommendation for CF Industries over the next 12 months, while five had a buy recommendation for the same period. Ten analysts had a hold recommendation, and only one had a sell recommendation for CF stock.

As of August 18, 2017, the consensus price target for CF Industries was $31.20 per share, which was higher than last months price target of $30.60. CF stockclosed at $29 on August 18. The current price target has about a 6.0% upside over the next 12 months if the current price converges with the analysts price target.

Next, well take a look at analyst recommendations and the price target for seed giant (MOO) Monsanto (MON).

Link:

Analysts’ Views on CF Industries after 2Q17 Earnings – Market Realist – Market Realist

Posted in Cf

Childfree – reddit

Discussion and links of interest to childfree individuals. “Childfree” refers to those who do not have and do not ever want children (whether biological, adopted, or otherwise).

Childfree Subreddits Network (For further discussion and laughter)

Support Subreddits Network (For help, assistance and support)

Use the filters to see or exclude posts from one category at a time, and “Show All” to return to the original feed.

SHOW ALL

Originally posted here:

Childfree – reddit