From Will Truman to Pray Tell: The evolution of TV’s queer leading men – NBC News

In 2001, Eric McCormack made history by winning the lead comedy actor Emmy for portraying a gay man on Will & Grace. Back then, the challenge was reflecting the gay experience as accurately as his co-star Debra Messings plotlines as a straight character in the NBC sitcom about two best friends.

We needed to show that the most accurate way to represent those two relationships was that they were always equal which, probably, they werent in the old days, McCormack says. It was easier to have handsome guys come on and date Deb Messing. Mine were handled with a lot more attention and a lot of being careful.

Today, as McCormack is eligible for a final nomination as the titular Will, his character is joined by a new class. The race includes Ben Platt, who portrays sexually fluid teenager-turned-early 20s politician Payton Hobart in Netflixs The Politician; Matt Bomers Jamie Burns, a man whose intimate connection with an old friend brings about carnage in Season 3 of USAs The Sinner; and Billy Porters Pray Tell in Pose, an HIV-positive ballroom emcee who got to explore a romance in the second season of the FX drama. The list of characters reflecting different facets of the queer experience and the fact that Platt, Bomer and Porter are all openly gay (McCormack is straight) shows how far TV has come since Will was standing more or less alone.

Porter, last years lead drama actor Emmy winner, has seen the shows storytelling grow even more complex in its second season. In addition to performing an intimate love scene, Porter was also a part of a story about the re-emergence of trauma from parental abuse. This allowed the actor to draw from personal experience.

Ive been waiting for this moment, Porter says. Ive been living for this moment to be able to tell my story. And as dark and as rich as the story is, I have a firsthand connection to it. I reached back to my memories and, every moment, just tried to share those with the world.

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That potential of creating art in part by drawing upon experience, and converting the tragic into catharsis is what queer actors taking on the spotlight allows.

We are at the forefront of telling our own narrative, says Porter, whose early career was marked by demands to play stereotypical roles when he was offered parts at all. Its not at the hands of other people who are outside the community anymore. Its so dreamy I just feel so blessed to have lived long enough to see this day.

Matt Bomers storyline on The Sinner provides less uplift than creepiness, but reflects the possibilities available beyond whats easily categorizable.

It was very important for Derek [Simonds, the shows creator] that it not be about a gay relationship, but about two men who had achieved this profound sense of intimacy where they had a shared sexual history, Bomer says. Its transcended that and become a romance with a philosophy and a sort of rage against society at large.

Just as his character exists beyond the nameable Bomer describes the season as Strangers on a Train mixed with Jekyll and Hyde mixed with Macbeth as interpreted by Patricia Highsmith so too does the actor see his own sexuality as existing somewhat apart from the character. (He played opposite Chris Messina, who is straight.)

What tends to be what I am hired for is to have chemistry, but I dont think its because of my comfort with my sexuality, he says. A lot of it just depends on the actors you get to work with and how open they are to come to set and drop the ego and play together and create something new.

All of which might have been too tangled for TV when Will & Grace was on the air in its first run in the 1990s and which made it a nostalgic throwback in its three victory-lap seasons. It knew its limitations: To do a really big, special episode of Will & Grace about the trans experience would have been taking on too much, McCormack says. But what we can do is show two very different gay men finding happiness, being in committed relationships, having a child.

While Will & Grace was built for a different TV moment one before characters on The Politician, Pose and The Sinner could probe queer life a bit more deeply and was a comedy besides, McCormack sees in its final seasons a depiction of Will that was as flawed and gratifyingly so as his three friends.

He wasnt on some sort of pedestal, McCormack says. Were all people, and were all growing.

So, too, is the medium, allowing for more complication in the lives of characters that existed in very different forms a generation before.

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From Will Truman to Pray Tell: The evolution of TV's queer leading men - NBC News

Behind Joe Bidens Evolution on L.G.B.T.Q. Rights – The New York Times

If we established purity tests for elected officials, nobody would pass, said Emily Hecht-McGowan, who served as director for L.G.B.T.Q. equality at the Biden Foundation, a nonprofit group, until it was disbanded in 2019 when he began his presidential run. If we keep holding up our elected officials to these purity tests, we will never grow us a nation.

Mr. Griffin, the political consultant, said he was not bothered by the Defense of Marriage Act vote that, he noted, was 25, 26 years ago, when I was 19 years old and still in the closet.

Joe Biden has had 25 years since then to establish his own record and legacy, he said. I do not think that anyone can define Joe Biden by a vote 25 years ago when he has literally spent more than a decade championing L.G.B.T.Q. rights.

From the first weeks after the riots at the Stonewall Inn and the start of the modern-day gay rights movement, L.G.B.T.Q. leaders called for gay men and lesbians to come out. The explicit strategy was that increased visibility as family members, co-workers, civic leaders, celebrities would lead to more acceptance by the general public. One of Mr. Bidens grandchildren identifies as L.G.B.T.Q., an aide said.

Ms. McBride said that Mr. Biden grieved with her after her husband died at the age of 28; Mr. Biden had just lost his own son. He has officiated at two gay weddings, including in 2017 when Henry R. Muoz III, who was then the Democratic National Committees finance chairman, married his husband at Mr. Bidens home at the time in Northern Virginia.

He let me work alongside of him to push people in the administration on marriage equality, and then he married me, Mr. Muoz said.

The moment that elevated Mr. Bidens standing among gay and lesbian activists was his appearance on NBCs Meet the Press as vice president in 2012 when, in response to a question, he said he supported same-sex marriage. His response, which aides said was not calculated or planned, blindsided the White House and Mr. Obama, who had not yet staked out that position.

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Behind Joe Bidens Evolution on L.G.B.T.Q. Rights - The New York Times

Scientists at Nainital-based ARIES shed new light on evolution of stars – The Tribune India

Vijay Mohan

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 21

Astronomers at the Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES), Nanital, have found that stars of varied ages can co-exist in open clusters.

This challenges earlier understanding that all stars in an open cluster have the same age.

Open star clusters are a system of stars bound by gravity in which stars are born from the same molecular clouds. All the stars in a cluster follow the evolutionary sequence as per their initial masses at the time of formation of these stars. Open clusters are also important in probing the formation and evolution of the Milky Way galaxy as they are distributed throughout the galactic disk.

Scientists at ARIES measured the light emitted from three poorly studied open clusters, NGC-381, NGC-2360 and Berkeley-68 using the 1.3-m telescope situated in the Himalayas for studying the evolution of stars in these clusters. They found two different stellar evolutionary sequences in the cluster NGC-2360, which has been observed in very few open clusters in the Milky Way until now.

The team at ARIES, an autonomous institute under the Department of Science and Technology, observed thousands of stars in the three aforementioned clusters. The clusters are found to be relatively older, having ages between 446 Million years to 1,778 million years.

Other than the stellar evolution, the researchers also studied the dynamical evolution of these clusters for the first time. The mass distribution of stars belonging to the clusters has shown the preferential distribution of massive stars in the inner part of the clusters while low mass stars are found towards outer region of the clusters.

Scientists believe that some of the very low mass stars have in fact, left their parent clusters and may be roaming as a free star like our own Sun.

The study, recently published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, a leading journal in the field of astronomy and astrophysics published by Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, has lent important insight about the stellar and dynamical evolution of these clusters.

According to a statement issued by the Ministry of Science and Technology today, the scientists are further aiming to do an in-depth analysis of many more open star clusters in the near future using observational facilities available at ARIES along with the supplementary data provided by other space missions.

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Scientists at Nainital-based ARIES shed new light on evolution of stars - The Tribune India

Norway’s Salmon Evolution names new CEO of land-based project – Undercurrent News

Land-based farming operation Salmon Evolution has chosen to stick withHakon Berg as its CEO, it announced.

Berg was first appointed CFO of the company in November 2019, and since March 2020 has held the role of acting CEO, when Odd Tore Finnoy stepped down.

Berg has "industrial and financial experience and expertise after many years of working with various industrial companies, and background from leadership in strategy and business development", his firm said.

Before joining Salmon Evolution, he was chairman of the board at Pure Norwegian Seafood, according to his LinkedIn profile.

"It is the combination of being the first to travel a full-scale industrial adventure of this magnitude in Norway, and my passion and experience in the seafood sector, which are the biggest driving forces and generates enthusiasm in me," Berg said.

He said he was confident the eventual 36,000 metric ton salmon farm -- likely one of Europes largest land-based facilities, when completed -- was going to solve several aquaculture issues, including sea lice, disease control, and sludge management.

"Controlled onshore production also opens up new circular opportunities, which in turn will create technology development, jobs, and resource reuse," he added.

Salmon Evolution chairman, Tore Tonseth, said the company would be "expanding the organization further in line with our needs", now that it had its CEO in place and had begun the first stages of construction.

The board of Salmon Evolution. From left: Glen Bradley, Kristofer Reiten, chairman Tore Tonseth, Peder Stette, Frode Kjolas

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Norway's Salmon Evolution names new CEO of land-based project - Undercurrent News

BMW Group unveils new logo in India: Brief evolution of BMW logos since 1917 – The Financial Express

BMW Group today introduced its new brand and corporate identity with its new logo and the rollout of its first communication campaign in India called Just Cant Wait. The BMW, BMW i and BMW M communication logos have been reworked with a new logotype. The Group says that the new brand logo delivers on the expectations and visual style of today and is better suited for the digital age. The #JustCantWait campaign is aimed at reflecting the brands customer-centricity and positivity.

BMW has always cherished its relationship with its esteemed customers and has introduced innovative products and value-added services. The new brand design and logo stand for openness and clarity. It symbolises the brands significance and relevance for mobility and driving pleasure in the future, Arlindo Teixeira, acting President, BMW Group India said.

BMW Group India has transformed itself to better serve its existing and new customers needs. With innovative services such as BMW Contactless Experience, BMW Easy Start Plan, BMW Advanced Hygiene Packages and Aftersales service packages, the brand stands true to its promise of offering Sheer Driving Pleasure to customers at all times, he added.

The new logo is much simpler in comparison to the previous one which was three-dimensional. BMW says that the pared-down and two-dimensional design conveys openness and clarity, adding that the change reflects BMWs transition from centering purely on the automotive world to being about technology and connections.

A brief history of BMW logos

The companys origin dates back to 1913 when it specialised in aircraft engines and was called Rapp Motorenwerke. The logo was changed to the first edition of the white & blue logo weve been used to seeing when the company was renamed Bayerische Motoren Werke or BMW in July 1917.

BMW entered the motorcycle market in 1923 with the R32. Its first car was a licensed copy of Austin Seven but by the early 1930s, BMW was producing cars developed in-house and that was also when in 1933 the logo was tweaked with thicker lettering and lines.

Also read:BMW India launches service & maintenance packages: 10-year service, unlimited repair mileage & more

BMW kept the 1933 logo for 20 years before changing it in 1953 bringing it closer to the one we grew up seeing with white lettering on black. This was updated 10 years later to a crisper but still a 2D logo in 1963. The 3D logo was introduced in 1997 and used until 2020. The new logo is back to 2D, is flatter, simpler and loses the dark background signifying transparency.

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BMW Group unveils new logo in India: Brief evolution of BMW logos since 1917 - The Financial Express

UAE Securities And Commodities Authority Hosts Webinar On The Evolution Of Supervisory Technology For Arab Regulators In Collaboration With Arab…

As part of its efforts to promote supervision over the securities sector in the country, the Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA), in collaboration with the Arab Federation of Exchanges (AFE), hosted a joint webinar on the evolution of supervisory technology, or SupTech, for Arab regulators. The webinar, titled Evolution of Supervisory Technology for Capital Markets, was held on June 15, using Microsoft Teams.

Its purpose was to share and exchange international experiences on supervisory technology. Participants in the webinar included representatives from financial market institutions, relevant stakeholders, economic and financial policymakers, in addition to representatives from supervisory and regulatory authorities and international organizations. An elite group of speakers, experts, and specialists in this field participated in the webinar sessions and discussions.

Items on the agenda included welcoming remarks by H.E. Dr. Obaid Al Zaabi,SCAs CEO, Vice Chair of the board of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), and Chair ofIOSCOs Growth and Emerging Markets Committee (GEMC). Richard Cutress delivered a presentation that provided an overview of supervisory technology and presented the perspective of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) of the UK.

The webinar included a panel discussion titled Adoption of SupTech and Lessons for Arab Regulators led by Varun Mittal, EY Global Emerging Markets Fintech Leader, and moderated by Mirna Sleiman, Founder and CEO of Fintech Galaxy. It featured panelists, including Narjes Farookh Jamal, Chief Operating Officer at Bahrain Bourse, and Sherif Samy, Chairman of the EgyptianFinTechAssociation and Former Chairman of the Financial Regulatory Authority.

The webinar was concluded with a keynote speech by Rami El Dokany, AFEs Secretary General, while the closing remarks were delivered by Lara Abdulmalak, Unlock Blockchains Editor-in-Chief.

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UAE Securities And Commodities Authority Hosts Webinar On The Evolution Of Supervisory Technology For Arab Regulators In Collaboration With Arab...

The Whirlwind Path of Human Evolution – The Wire

Art showing stencilled hands (mostly left) in the Cueva de las Manos caves, Argentina, is dated between 11,000-7,000 BC. Photo: Mariano/Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0.

Any story that begins with the words 14 billion years ago is bound to be epic, and Transcendence: How Humans Evolved Through Fire, Language, Beauty, and Time, by Gaia Vince, is no exception. In the first chapter alone, Vince, an award-winning science writer and broadcaster based in London, covers the Big Bang, evolution, photosynthesis, the extinction of the dinosaurs, climate change and the presence of our early primate ancestors on the African savannah. Its a whirlwind and its only the beginning.

By the books conclusion, Vince has taken readers on a journey encompassing tens of thousands of years of human evolution that shows how our exceptional species has reset our relationship with nature and transformed into a new creature from our hypercooperative mass of humanity: we are becoming a superorganism. Vince calls it Homo omnis.

Whether you enjoy this kind of epic treatment of human history might depend on whether you like authors such as Jared Diamond, Stephen Pinker, Bill Bryson, and Yuval Noah Harari, who all write in a similar style: approachable, smart, and very ambitious. (Bryson got there first but nearly all of these authors books could have been called A Short History of Nearly Everything) Transcendence is most comparable to Hararis 2014 blockbuster Sapiens: both offer a sweeping account of human existence beginning with our origin as a species and ending with the idea that our species is becoming something post-human.

Unlike Harari, who focuses on a series of revolutions from the cognitive to the scientific, Vince chooses to highlight more nebulous and even poetic turning points in human evolution like beauty and time. We exist as the result of what she calls an evolutionary triad of genes, environment, and culture, and are now agents of our own transformation. She defines Homo omnis as a species that has transcended our evolutionary purpose to advance our genes for our cultural purpose, which is to be self-determining. Today, we are organisms with options: We can edit our genomes, choose the embryos of our offspring, prolong our lifespans, and maybe one day defeat death itself.

Vince takes care to deftly transition between one subject and another, bringing the reader along as she moves from topics like Wikipedia to cultural evolution to altruism to the neocortex to gossip to the survival of genes to monotheistic religion, as she does in the chapter called Telling. She argues early on that new collaborations between scientific fields, and in particular between the natural and social sciences, has allowed us to look at ourselves with new eyes and recognise the deep links that run through our biology, culture, and environment.

Likewise, Vince assembles the threads of these different disciplines and weaves them together to create moments of revelation for readers. She is uniquely talented in this respect, capable of presenting an impressive breadth of research from palaeoarchaeology to genetics to anthropology. In one of the best chapters, Story, she gives a rich and compelling account of Australian Aboriginal storytelling and the culturally universal strategy of the brain using story as a means to organise information and make it more memorable. Stories are a powerful survival adaptation, writes Vince, because they dont just allow us to travel back in time with our memories, they also allow us to mentally explore different future scenarios without expending time and energy.

Vince offers readers a vertiginous perspective of our existence on the planet. The cumulative effect seems intended to create awe and wonder in the reader, and inspire them to take seriously the responsibility of being an extraordinary species capable of directing our own destiny. But such an approach doesnt leave much room for nuance, and there are many instances when Vince presents readers with statements that would seem to merit greater skepticism, such as when she writes that In the United States, southerners are, as a group, more friendly and polite than northerners, who are often more brusque and ruder. Or, that more intelligent people tend to have fewer children; perhaps intelligence is being diluted in the gene pool.

Should we really accept without any discussion that people who live in cities are more inventive, or that the number of friends we have is determined by our genes? Other assertions seem intended to knock us over with profundity but end up feeling like platitudes. While animals are driven by biological urges to find food and mate, humans are also motivated by meaning and purpose, Vince writes. Or, We are all creatures of time.

In the end, Vinces provocative assertion that we are becoming a new species and the implications for our future become somewhat vague. She writes that human cultural evolution involves peaks and troughs, and that while there are reasons for pessimism and despair about the fate of our species today, its mostly a problem of perspective. Once we recognise and embrace our shared humanity, according to Vince, we can achieve a good, liveable Anthropocene. Perhaps. The lack of specificity regarding how our species will transcend the serious problems she enumerates (tribalism, individual self-interest, partisanship, fascism, war, violence, environmental catastrophe) feels like a letdown after such an intellectually voracious book.

Its worth asking why there is such a public appetite for science books written from a God-like vantage point at this time. Why do we seek out authors who try to explain everything? Is there security in the sense that someone out there can offer a coherent narrative that makes sense of where we come from and where we are going? Unfortunately, such authoritative, sweeping narratives often leave out what makes science so interesting in the first place: not just the certainties but the unknowns. Transcendence never lets us in on the process or methodologies by which studies come to their conclusions. Readers arent given a sense of the evolution of ideas or debates within scientific disciplines, or the individual scientists behind these ideas and what might drive them to do their research. We are never shown that just as science gives us answers, it also exposes the mysteries of our existence.

M.R. OConnor, a 2016-17 Knight Science Journalism fellow at MIT, writes about the politics and ethics of science, technology and conservation. She is the author of Resurrection Science: Conservation, De-Extinction and the Precarious Future of Wild Things and Wayfinding: The Science and Mystery of How Humans Navigate the Earth.

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The Whirlwind Path of Human Evolution - The Wire

Revolution or evolution: has the moment for retail robotics arrived? – eDelivery

Recent weeks have seen automation and robotics start-ups netting new funding from investors, in a sign that retailers may be embracing automation in the wake of the coronavirus disruption.

Locus Robotics, a warehouse robotics company which counts DHL and Boots amongst its customers, netted $40 million in its latest funding round. The funding round, led by funds Zebra Ventures and Scale Venture Partners, brings Locus Robotics total funding to over $105 million.

Logistics robotics company Geek+, which offers robots for services such as cleaning and goods-to-picking, announced last week (18 June) that it had netted $200 million in its most recent funding round.

This has come as major retailers have adopted the technology, with Superdry deploying robots in warehouses in Europe while Gap has introduced them in the US.

Nigel Lahiri, sales director for EMEA at GreyOrange, a robotics company which counts Zalando amongst its customers, says that the pandemic has accelerated adoption of robotics in the logistics space. He highlights predictions that ecommerce will come to take up 40% of total retail (in the US),

Retailers understand that the acceleration [to ecommerce] is going to cause supply chain challenges.

He cites the hugely higher returns rates in online retail compared to physical as well as the generally lower margins available in ecommerce.

Retailers appetite for large-scale capital investments may be dampened by uncertainty about the economy in the wake of the Covid-19 shut-down. This will mean that retailers may deploy robots on a service model, paying a monthly fee rather than gutting their warehouses and buying robots in bulk.

Mark Thomson, director of retail at Zebra Technologies, whose investment arm led the recent funding round into Locus Robotics, says: Retailers dont particularly want to own the hardware why should they own robots? They want that service which robots are providing and the efficiency.

When youre dealing with a service level agreement from the provider you have a much more regular and ongoing conversation rather than a sales or transactional one.

He describes the adoption as an evolutionary rather than revolutionary process.

Its difficult to justify a huge structural investment in CapEx to rekit out, redesign or invest in brand new ones.

With its investment in Locus, Zebra Ventures is backing the cobot model, where robots are installed alongside human workers.

He says that while robots lack the dexterity of humans and cannot easily take over the actual picking and packing process without significant investment, they can take over routine, labour-intensive tasks.

One of these, which Locus specialises in, is robots walking the items from storage over to where they are picked, consolidated and packed.

This improves pick rate per hour without significant changes, making staff much more efficient.

Look at what you already have and look how you can optimise what is already in there, is how Thomson summarises the approach.

Zebra Technologies itself launched its SmartSight solution in January, an automated unit which can move around stores and automate certain processes there, such as making sure products are in the right place and have labels.

The fact that Covid-19 has led to retailers needing to implement social distancing within warehouses only makes the investment case for robots stronger in Thomsons view.

However, Thomson doesnt expect human workforces to disappear far from it.

Staff are not going away weve listened to a number of big retailers who say staff will become more expensive. Theyve actually increased the rates of pay because staff are critical to the customer experience. But they are not great at delivering customer experience if theyre doing these mundane, monotonous, labour-intensive tasks which you can do with automation.

Considering the uncertain economic climate and retailers caution about new technology, we shouldnt expect to see robots everywhere overnight. But as Thomson says, an evolution is taking place to a more hybrid model.

Image: Locus Robotics

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Revolution or evolution: has the moment for retail robotics arrived? - eDelivery

Healthcare Nanotechnology Market Evolution of Key Players That Will Change Industry: Amgen, Teva Pharmaceuticals, Abbott – Jewish Life News

Healthcare Nanotechnology Market Research Report provides customers with a complete analytical study that provides all the details of key players such as company profile, product portfolio, capacity, price, cost and revenue during the forecast period from 2020 to 2027. A Healthcare Nanotechnology market that includes Future Trends, Current Growth Factors, Meticulous Opinions, Facts, Historical Data and Statistically Supported And Industry-Validated Market Data.

This Healthcare Nanotechnology market research provides a clear explanation of how this market will make a growth impression during the mentioned period. This study report scanned specific data for specific characteristics such as Type, Size, Application and End User. There are basic segments included in the segmentation analysis that are the result of SWOT analysis and PESTEL analysis.

RequestSample PDF of Healthcare Nanotechnology Market Report https://www.worldwidemarketreports.com/sample/256063

Amgen, Teva Pharmaceuticals, Abbott, UCB, Roche, Celgene, Sanofi, Merck & Co, Biogen are some of the major organizations dominating the global market.

(*Note: Other Players Can be Added per Request)

Key players in the Healthcare Nanotechnology market were identified through a second survey, and market share was determined through a first and second survey. All measurement sharing, splitting and analysis were solved using a secondary source and a validated primary source. The Healthcare Nanotechnology market report starts with a basic overview of the Industry Life Cycle, Definitions, Classifications, Applications, and Industry Chain Structure. The combination of these two factors will help key players meet the market reach and help to understand offered characteristics and customer needs.

The report also makes some important suggestions for the new Healthcare Nanotechnology market project before evaluating its feasibility. Overall, this report covers Healthcare Nanotechnology market Sales, Price, Sales, Gross Profit, Historical Growth and Future Prospects. It provides facts related to mergers, acquisitions, partnerships and joint venture activities prevalent in the market.

This report includes market size estimates of value (million US $) and volume (K MT). The top-down and bottom-up approaches are used to estimate and validate the market size of the Healthcare Nanotechnology market, estimating the size of various other submarkets in the overall market. Major players in the market were identified through secondary studies, and market share was determined through primary and secondary studies. All ratio sharing, splitting and analysis were determined using the secondary source and the identified primary source.

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Complete knowledge of the Healthcare Nanotechnology market is based on the latest industry news, opportunities and trends in the expected region. The Healthcare Nanotechnology market research report provides clear insights into the influential factors expected to change the global market in the near future.

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Worldwide Market Reports is your one-stop repository of detailed and in-depth market research reports compiled by an extensive list of publishers from across the globe. We offer reports across virtually all domains and an exhaustive list of sub-domains under the sun. The in-depth market analysis by some of the most vastly experienced analysts provide our diverse range of clients from across all industries with vital decision making insights to plan and align their market strategies in line with current market trends.

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Healthcare Nanotechnology Market Evolution of Key Players That Will Change Industry: Amgen, Teva Pharmaceuticals, Abbott - Jewish Life News

Lost 8 Billion Light Years of Universe Evolution Revealed by Gravitational Waves – SciTechDaily

Artistic impression of the background hum of gravitational waves permeating the Universe. Credit: Carl Knox, OzGrav/Swinburne University of Technology

Every year, 2 million black hole mergers are missed Australian scientists work out how to detect them, revealing a lost 8 billion light-years of Universe evolution.

Last year, the Advanced LIGO-VIRGO gravitational-wave detector network recorded data from 35 merging black holes and neutron stars. A great result but what did they miss? According to Dr. Rory Smith from the ARC Centre of Excellence in Gravitational Wave Discovery at Monash University in Australia its likely there are another 2 million gravitational wave events from merging black holes, a pair of merging black holes every 200 seconds and a pair of merging neutron stars every 15 seconds that scientists are not picking up.

Dr. Smith and his colleagues, also at Monash University, have developed a method to detect the presence of these weak or background events that to date have gone unnoticed, without having to detect each one individually. The method which is currently being test driven by the LIGO community means that we may be able to look more than 8 billion light-years further than we are currently observing, Dr. Smith said.

This will give us a snapshot of what the early universe looked like while providing insights into the evolution of the universe.

The paper, recently published in the Royal Astronomical Society journal, details how researchers will measure the properties of a background of gravitational waves from the millions of unresolved black hole mergers.

Artistic impression of the background hum of gravitational waves permeating the Universe. Credit: Carl Knox, OzGrav/Swinburne University of Technology

Binary black hole mergers release huge amounts of energy in the form of gravitational waves and are now routinely being detected by the Advanced LIGO-Virgo detector network. According to co-author, Eric Thrane from OzGrav-Monash, these gravitational waves generated by individual binary mergers carry information about spacetime and nuclear matter in the most extreme environments in the Universe. Individual observations of gravitational waves trace the evolution of stars, star clusters, and galaxies, he said.

By piecing together information from many merger events, we can begin to understand the environments in which stars live and evolve, and what causes their eventual fate as black holes. The further away we see the gravitational waves from these mergers, the younger the Universe was when they formed. We can trace the evolution of stars and galaxies throughout cosmic time, back to when the Universe was a fraction of its current age.

The researchers measure population properties of binary black hole mergers, such as the distribution of black hole masses. The vast majority of compact binary mergers produce gravitational waves that are too weak to yield unambiguous detections so vast amounts of information is currently missed by our observatories.

Moreover, inferences made about the black hole population may be susceptible to a selection bias due to the fact that we only see a handful of the loudest, most nearby systems. Selection bias means we might only be getting a snapshot of black holes, rather than the full picture, Dr. Smith warned.

The analysis developed by Smith and Thrane is being tested using real world observations from the LIGO-VIRGO detectors with the program expected to be fully operational within a few years, according to Dr. Smith.

Reference: Inferring the population properties of binary black holes from unresolved gravitational waves by Rory J E Smith, Colm Talbot, Francisco Hernandez Vivanco and Eric Thrane, 10 June 2020, Royal Astronomical Society.DOI: 10.1093/mnras/staa1642

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Lost 8 Billion Light Years of Universe Evolution Revealed by Gravitational Waves - SciTechDaily

The First Gene on Earth May Have Been a Hybrid – Scientific American

DNA and RNA, the two major modern forms of genetic code underpinning all of earthly biology, could have coexisted in strict pairings on our planet before life arose here, scientists in England, Scotland and Poland say. Using a hydrogen cyanidebased chemical system intended to mimic conditions in Earths early history, the researchers made four bases, the molecular letters of the genetic alphabet. Strung together, these bases form gene sequences that cells translate into proteins. But surprisingly, the team found that of the four bases their experiments consistently made, two were in a form found in DNA, whereas the other two were of a kind seen in RNA.

The study, published in Nature and conducted by John Sutherland of the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, England, and his colleagues, further undermines the so-called RNA world hypothesis. This idea, long one of the most prominent in origins-of-life research, posits that RNA formed the basis of Earths biosphere long before DNA and other molecules important to life emerged. Yet to date, scant evidence has been found of chemical pathways to make the RNA-exclusive system that rigid versions of the idea adopt or that could lead to DNA. People have tended to think of RNA as the parent of DNA, Sutherland says. This [paper] suggests that they are molecular siblings.

Other scientists who were not involved with the study question the plausibility of the conditions used in this hydrogen cyanide-based route, however. Frances Westall, director of the exobiology group at the French National Center for Scientific Researchs Center for Molecular Biophysics in Orlans, notes that forming the bases requires very specific conditions. Mixtures would need to dry out and be exposed to ultraviolet lighttwo hurdles most easily surmounted on dry land, which was in short supply during our planets ocean-covered early days more than four billion years ago. These conditions certainly existed on the early Earth, Westall says. They would not have been that common because there was not that much exposed landmass. Although she adds that the study is clever and not completely impossible, she concludes that there are other, better hypotheses as to locations for the emergence of life and prebiotic molecules.

Arguments about plausibility have plagued the chemistry-based quest to understand lifes beginnings on Earth since the early 1950s, when American researchers Stanley Miller and Harold Urey performed a landmark experiment. The pair simulated the effects of lightning in the early Earths atmosphere and ocean by triggering electrical discharges in flasks containing hydrogen, water, ammonia and methane. Although their experiment famously produced sizable organic molecules vital for biochemistry, for decades other researchers have debated the plausibility of its conditions. Nevertheless, Miller and Ureys work showed that it was relatively simple to make important substances, such as the amino acids that link up to form proteins that perform myriad functions within living cells. Of particular relevance to origins-of-life studies, proteins can act as catalysts, enhancing and speeding up other chemical reactions that would otherwise be too slow or inefficient to plausibly occur. But proteins are not the only possible catalysts behind the rise of life on Earth.

In work that would ultimately net the 1989 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, molecular biologist Sidney Altman and biochemist Thomas Cech found that RNAlong considered merely an intermediate carrier of genetic information that is subservient to DNAcan also behave as a catalyst. The RNA world hypothesis suggests that such molecules could self-replicate, enabling early evolution before the existence of DNA and proteins. The idea, however, was an overzealous, overenthusiastic response to a brilliant discovery, Sutherland says.

That response might have come partly because, to a naive chemist, it looks easy to leap from RNA to DNA. To create the long chains we often see coiled up into the DNAs iconic double helix, the bases are first connected to a backbone of sugar molecules. These combinations make up nucleosides: deoxyribonucleotides in DNA and ribonucleosides in RNAwhich, unlike its DNA cousin, forms a single helix. The nucleosides do not use table sugar, or sucrose, but rather ribose in RNA and deoxyribose in DNA (the different sugars give each material its first initial). The distinction between the two sugar types is tiny: just one oxygen and one hydrogen atom. Yet that difference is enough for DNA and RNA to have distinct biological roles. And biochemically removing the atoms is far harder than simply erasing the letters representing them in a notebook.

Another flaw in the RNA world idea has been the difficulty of making ribose in the conditions that probably existed on the early Earthand to then connect it to a base. Sutherland and his colleagues therefore sought more likely ways to make ribose sugars and ribonucleosides. One of their most promising approaches relied on two gases thought to have been relatively abundant in the planets early atmosphere: hydrogen sulfide and hydrogen cyanide. When dissolved in water, bathed in ultraviolet light and subjected to cycles of drying, these simple compounds have produced many more complex molecules. They include amino acids and glycerol, the backbones of fatty molecules that can form cells outer wall.

Sutherland took this approach a step further last year. Working with Ramanarayanan Krishnamurthys team at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif., he and his colleagues showed that the ribonucleosides cytidine and uridine could be transformed into deoxyribose and the nucleoside and deoxyadenosine. Nowprimarily via the efforts of team members Jianfeng Xu and Vclav Chmela, both then at the Laboratory of Molecular Biologythe researchers have made even more progress. They mixed some of the intermediate molecules from the teams previous studies with salts such as sodium nitrite and magnesium chloride that could have been prevalent on the primordial Earth, then subjected them to acidic conditions and heat, respectively. Through these steps, the scientists found two possible routes to add a fourth base, the less common nucleoside inosine, to their preexisting collection. The addition was enough to make a four-letter genetic alphabet in which each base in a strand would exclusively pair with one of the other three letters in a second strand That base-pairing complementarity is how modern RNA and DNA works. But in the experiment, two letters came from RNA, and two came from DNA.

The arrangement suggests that the chemistry to make RNA and DNA isnt as different as people have thought, Sutherland says. People have tended to think of RNA coming before DNA and somehow then being taken over. This, to me, is suggesting that its possible that you could have had an RNA-DNA hybrid, which could then give rise to the two separate molecules. Sutherlands team has not yet assembled the individual nucleosides and ribonucleosides into longer chains, however. Doing so is important, because showing that hybrid strands can really form and bind to a partner strand is crucial for moving the idea beyond speculation.

This is a key issue for Nicholas Hud, an origins-of-life researcher at the Georgia Institute of Technology, who was not involved in the study. He calls it an excellent compilation of organic chemistry research on water-based nucleoside synthesis. But Hud is not convinced that the paper resolves whether these nucleosides actually arose before living creatures. His own research suggests amino acids could have linked up to carry information and act as a catalyst before RNA. Hud thinks evolution would then have gradually produced the current genetic system over long stretches of geologic time. If a molecule looks very difficult, from a chemical perspective, to make, yet it functions exquisitely in biology, then its probably the case that it has been evolved over time, he says. For the same reasons, he is also skeptical about the RNA world hypothesis.

Furthermore, Hud sees the new studys reliance on rigid incremental steps, each performed in strict order and under carefully controlled conditions, as a significant weakness. If the order of the steps changed or certain products were not isolated, Sutherland and his colleagues would have made much less of the substances they are interested in, Hud says. That caveat reduces the chances of the scenario unfolding in the chaotic environs of the early Earth.

Sutherland admits that, absent a time machine to travel back to lifes true origins on our planet, plausibility is everything in this rarefied field of research. Even so, he firmly backs his teams work on establishing chemical routes to lifes building blocks. There are many, many fingers pointing at hydrogen cyanide, Sutherland asserts. Does it prove that it all happened from hydrogen cyanide? It doesnt prove it. But its good enough for me.

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The First Gene on Earth May Have Been a Hybrid - Scientific American

It’s Evolution Over Revolution for the All-New 2021 Ford F-150 – The Drive

Good Monday morning and welcome back to Speed Lines, The Drive's roundup of what matters in the world of cars and transportation. Today we're discussing the online car sales boom, what to expect from the debut of the all-new 2021 Ford F-150 this week, and the new date for Tesla's important Battery Day event.

Though plans have been waylaid by the pandemic, several important new cars are set to come out in 2020. But none of them are as important as the new 2021 Ford F-150. Sure, the new Bronco and Bronco Sport should be fun, and crucial additions to Ford's crossover lineup, but the F-150 is America's best-selling vehicleand the thing that keeps the lights on in Dearborn. It's the most crucial vehicle Ford makes, and we'll see it on Thursday.

Ford can't afford to screw this one up. Not after the debacle that was last year's Explorer launch, which was beset with delays and quality problems. Someone's head is going to be on a pike if there's anything close to problems like that again, especially when you consider that as strong a seller as the F-150 is, it's been losing ground to Ram and Chevrolet in recent years and this new one set to debut in a year when truck sales are basically propping up the American automakers.

So what can we expect from this all-important new F-150, this miracle machine that may or may not save CEO Jim Hackett's job? For starters, it's not going to be as revolutionary as its predecessor, which controversially switched to an aluminum body. No, instead, the focus will be on the interior and technology, reports Automotive News.

By now you've probably seen the big touch screens or read about the flat-folding seats you can sleep in. There's also the next-generation Sync system that now allows for over-the-air software updates, a hybrid system that can serve as a mobile generator, and maybe a few unexpected surprises. A fully electric version of the truck is also set to bow at some point, but I don't think we'll see that variant on Thursday.

Tune in to The Drive this week for more info as it's released, or as is more likely with Ford, as it leaks out.

It took a global pandemic to drag America's car dealerships kicking and screaming onto the internet. But in recent months, despite excruciatingly slow sales amid the economic downturn, a robust online presence has been the saving grace for many dealers. Home delivery, online financing, virtual tours and an emphasis on completing the process on the internet have all equated to a big shift for dealers. Until recently, research was the primary thing done online; now more of the process can be completed that way too.

The Wall Street Journal reports that those changes are here to stay, especially as we come to understand we'll be dealing with COVID-19 for a long time. One Chevrolet dealership interviewed even saw sales up 20 percent year over year in May, despite the downturn, because of the speed with which cars can be bought online now.

But there's a chance that long-term, this will mean fewer dealership jobs:

After some sales success, many in the industry expect the online push to continue. As dealerships reopen across the country, many are rethinking how they staff locations, including cutting traditional sales roles and shifting more employees into digital operations, managers and owners say.

[...] AutoNation, which laid off 7,000 workers this spring as the outbreak spread, anticipates it will need fewer sales staff going forward. While it plans to bring back some workers, many showroom positions will go unfilled as it redirects more employees to online retailing, a company spokesman said.

Further proof that many jobs are sadly not coming back when the pandemic is "over."

Finally, speaking of important debuts this year, Tesla has punted its July 7 Battery Day event to September 15, tentatively. It was postponed along with Tesla's shareholder meeting due to coronavirus concerns; CEO Elon Musk made the announcement on Twitter.

This event is said to be a big deal, and "one of the most of exciting days in Tesla's history", as Musk put it recently. It was where Tesla was expected to unveil the so-called "million-mile batteries" it's been working on, a new kind of low-cost, low-cobalt, long-lasting EV battery that could achieve cost parity with internal combustion vehicles. If true, it's going to be a game-changer for Tesla and the EV sector as a whole.

We'll have to wait a bit longer to see what's up Musk's sleeve. Hopefully, it won't go the way battery swapping did.

GM takes 3D printing beyond prototypes (Automotive News)

Aston Martin taps ex-Jaguar Land Rover CFO Kenneth Gregor as finance head (Reuters)

Spains Auto Industry to Get $4.2 Billion in Government Stimulus (Bloomberg)

New Woe for a Jittery N.Y.C.: Illegal Fireworks Going Off All Night (NY Times)

The strategies to help you build a lower-risk Covid social bubble (Quartz)

Ill Be Gone in the Dark Is a Touching Eulogy for Michelle McNamara, the Writer Obsessed With Finding the Golden State Killer (MEL Magazine)

What do you want out of your modern truck?

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It's Evolution Over Revolution for the All-New 2021 Ford F-150 - The Drive

11 of the Most Important Milestones in the Evolution of Diving Suits – Interesting Engineering

Diving suits have enabled us to explore the deepest ocean depths. Initially developed to reclaim lost items from sunken ships or inspect ship's hulls, they have since opened up new possibilities for ocean exploration.


And so, without further ado, here are some of the major milestones in the evolution of the diving suit. This list is far from exhaustive and is in no particular order.

One of the first major steps in the evolution of the diving suit was Konrad Kyeser's "Diving Dress". A renowned military engineer, Kyeser wrote a book in the early-1400s called Bellifortis, on military arts and technology.

Within it was a description and depiction of an early diving suit.

Another important step in the development of the modern diving suit was Franz Kessler's diving bell. Kessler spent his life as an artist and inventor within the Holy Roman Empire between the 16th and 17th centuries.

One of his inventions, the diving bell, was a crude but effective underwater exploration device. Kessler is believed to have been inspired by the earlier work ofGuglielmo de Lorena, who actually dove in a sunken Roman vessel in his own diving bell in the 1530s.

Kessler's devive consisted of an airtight, wooden, upside-down, bell-chamber that could accommodate a small crew of divers. Once lowered into the water, air would remain trapped inside the bell, allowing the crew to breathe underwater for a short period of time.

In the 15th century, Leonardo Da Vinci made the first known mention of the concept of air tanks. In one of his notebooks, called the Atlantic Codex, he provided tantalizing descriptions of systems that may have been used at the time to artificially breathe air underwater.

He also made some sketches of what appeared to be different kinds of snorkels and an air tank that was carried on the diver's chest. No mention is made of whether these tanks were connected to the surface or not.

Additional drawings showed a form of a complete diving suit, equipped with some sort of mask, with a box containing air. He even included provisions for a urine collector in his design.

Da Vinci also famously made designs for an "Underwater Army" diving suit with bamboo pipes, sheepskin suit, and a bell-shaped air-trap.

In the early-1700s, an English inventor called John Lethbridge developed one of the first-known, completely enclosed suits to help divers during salvage work on sunken ships. His suit provided the diver with a fair amount of maneuverability in order to complete the work successfully.

After initial trials in his garden pond, Lethbridge actually used the device to dive a number of wrecks -- four sunken English men-of-war, one East Indiaman, a Spanish galleon, and some galleys.

Through his exploits as a salvage diver, Lethbridge became very wealthy, with one particular dive on the Dutch Slot ter Hooge, sunk off Madeira, netted him three tons of silver.

In the 1710s, the French aristocratPierre Rmy de Beauvemade another important step forward in the development of the diving suit. His 'diving dress' featured a metal helmet with two connected hoses.

One hose supplied the helmet with air from above via a bellows, the other removed the diver's exhaled air.

Another major milestone in the development of the modern diving suit was Charles and John Deane's diving helmet. Building on their work for an earlier smoke helmet for the fire brigade in the 1820s, the brothers adopted the design for potential use underwater.

At the time, diving bells were the main go-to for dive and rescue missions, but were very limited. The Deane's design was effectively a large metal bowl with vision ports that also sported a short jacket that could prevent water from reaching the wearer's face.

Air was supplied to the helmet via a surface air pump. It also included an air exhaust that would direct bubbles away from the diver's field of vision.

Yet another important step in the evolution of the diving suit was the work of Lodner D. Phillips. In the 1860s, Phillips developed one of the world's first-ever, fully-enclosed atmospheric diving suits.

It featured articulated joints, a viewing chamber, and even a hand-cranked propeller for movement. While there is documentary evidence of the suit's existence, it is not clear if one was ever made for use.

In the 1880s, however, the Carmagnolle Brothers, drawing their inspiration from Phillip's design, developed their own articulated atmospheric diving suit.

Another important development in the evolution of the diving suit was "The Old Gentleman of Raahe". Created to help inspect the hulls of ships without the need for a drydock, it is currently one of the oldest surviving early diving suits in the world.

Dating to the early 18th century, this suit is primarily constructed using hand-stitched seams. The suit was sealed and waterproofed using a mixture of mutton tallow, tar, and pitch.

The helmet was reinforced with a wooden frame, to prevent it from collapsing, and an air pipe was affixed to the front. Air was supplied using bellows, and exhaust air was removed via a pipe at the rear of the helmet.

Skipping forward in time, another milestone in the evolution of the diving suit was the JIM suit. Developed in the late-1960s by Mike Humphrey and Mike Burrow, the first JIM suit was inspired by Joseph Peress' 1930s Tritonia diving suit.

An atmospheric diving suit, it was specifically designed to maintain an internal pressure of 1 atmospheredespite external water pressure. Because of this, no gas mixtures were required, and deep-sea divers did not need to undergo decompression when they returned to the surface.

It was made from cast magnesium and weighed in at around 499 kg. The suit featured breathing apparatus that supplied air for up to 72 hoursand delivered air through the mask directly to the diver's mouth and nose.

No discussion of diving equipment would be complete without a discussion of self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (SCUBA). While many of the basic elements of SCUBA had been invented by the 1940s (notably Henry Fluess' rebreather), it tookJacques-Yves Cousteau andEmile Gagnan to modify them sufficiently to make SCUBA of practical use for most people.

The pair were able to redesign a car regulator to function as a demand valve that provided divers with a supply of compressed air delivered with each breath. This compressed air was stored in a tank, allowing the diver, for the first time, to swim untethered for long periods of time.

Called the "Aqua-Lung" by Cousteau and Gagnan, the lightweight and relatively easy-to-use SCUBA equipment suddenly opened up diving for pleasure to the general public.

And finally, the "Newtsuit" is the current go-to diving suit for sea exploration and underwater work. It was invented by Phul Nuyetten in the late-1980s and is a fully articulated atmospheric diving suit that enables divers to reach a depth of up to 305 meters.

The suite features an acrylic dome for visibility and can be modified with an optional backpack, with two horizontal and two vertical thrusters for added maneuverability underwater.

Primarily used for ocean drilling rigs, pipelines, salvage work, and photographic studies, it is the standard deep-sea diving suit of many of the world's navies too.

Unlike the JIM suit, the Newtsuit is primarily composed of aluminum, trimming its total weight down to113 kgs, making it more practical and easier to use than its heavierpredecessor.

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11 of the Most Important Milestones in the Evolution of Diving Suits - Interesting Engineering

Molecular Templates’ Presentations at the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2020 Highlight Evolution of ETB Platform -…

Update Provided Phase I Study of MT-5111 in HER2-positive Cancers

Conference Call and Webcast to Discuss AACR Posters on June 25th at 10:30am Eastern Time

AUSTIN, Texas, June 22, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Molecular Templates, Inc. (Nasdaq: MTEM, Molecular Templates, MTEM or the Company), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of the Companys proprietary targeted biologic therapeutics, engineered toxin bodies (ETBs), announced that four poster presentations featuring pre-clinical data on its pipeline programs are being presented at the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) Virtual Annual Meeting 2020, being held June 22-24, 2020. Copies of the posters presented at AACR can be found in the Presentations section of Molecular Templates website at http://ir.mtem.com/events-and-presentations/presentations. MTEM also announced an update on its ongoing Phase I study of MT-5111 in HER2-positive cancers.

Poster Title: In Vivo Efficacy of a PD-L1 Targeted, Antigen Seeding Engineered Toxin Body

MT-6402 is a unique agent designed to deplete tumor and repressive immune cells in the tumor microenvironment. It has multiple unique mechanisms of action that may provide greater potency than is seen with current PD-L1 antibodies. MT-6402 was shown to have potent in vitro activity against a variety of PD-L1+ tumor cells and results in tumor growth delay and survival benefits in NSCLC PDX in vivo model. MT-6402 can alter the immunophenotype of the tumor and allow for recognition by effector T cells. Non-human primate (NHP) data show that MT-6402 mediated PD-L1+ immune cell clearance can elicit highly potent monotherapy immune activation in a way that has not been seen previously in NHP models with checkpoint inhibitors. MT-6402 is slated for IND filing in 2H20.

Poster Title: CTLA-4 Targeted Engineered Toxin Bodies Designed to Deplete Regulatory T Cells (Tregs)

Tumor resident regulatory T cells (Tregs) are important mediators of an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment (TME) promoting tumor immune evasion. The presence of Tregs, and a higher ratio of Tregs to effector T cells in the TME, are associated with poor prognosis. There is concern that antibodies to CTLA-4 are not sufficiently effective at clearing Tregs from the TME. ETBs are being developed to specifically target CTLA-4+ Tregs and clear them from the TME. Because CTLA-4-targeted ETBs preferentially affect Tregs versus CTLA-4+ CD8 T-cells, ETBs may also have a safer profile than CTLA-4 antibodies. In co-culture models CTLA-4 ETBs were shown to relieve Treg suppression of T-effector proliferation. Experiments in mice showed that CTLA-4 ETB 1 (as labeled on the AACR poster) displays a short serum half-life and is well tolerated in vivo. An IND for a CTLA-4 ETB is expected to be filed in 2021.

Poster Title: Novel Engineered Toxin Bodies Targeting SLAMF7 (CS1)

SLAMF7 (CS1) is a clinically validated target of monoclonal antibody therapy for the treatment of multiple myeloma. The approved antibody-based therapeutic, elotuzumab, works indirectly by recruiting effector cells to the tumor but does not show single agent clinical activity. ETBs have the potential to deplete malignant cells by means of potent and direct cell kill through enzymatic ribosomal destruction. SLAMF7 ETBs were shown to be active alone and in the presence of elotuzumab. Epitopes distinct from elotuzumab are options for ETB engagement, allowing activity in the presence of elotuzumab. SLAMF7 ETBs combine with standard of care chemotherapy (IMiDs) and bortezomib in a positive manner in vitro. Lead selection is underway with the testing of various ETB scaffolds and additional binding domains targeting multiple SLAMF7 epitopes.

Poster Title: CD45 Targeted Engineered Toxin Bodies Deplete Hematopoietic and Malignant Cells

CD45, the leucocyte common antigen, is a haemopoietic cell-specific tyrosine phosphatase. Targeted and potent ETBs with intrinsically short half-lives are being developed to specifically destroy CD45 expressing cells including malignant cells of B, T and myeloid lineage. A single agent, targeted conditioning method for bone marrow transplant (BMT), employing ETBs, has the potential to increase patient safety and eliminate genotoxic effects that are associated with existing conditioning regimens. Antibody discovery campaigns have the potential to direct ETBs to specific isoforms of CD45 for refinement of indications including various cancers and autoimmune diseases.

Update on Phase I study of MT-5111

MT-5111, a HER2 targeted ETB, is in an ongoing Phase 1 study that has two parts: Part 1 is dose escalation and Part 2 is dose expansion, which will begin when a maximum tolerated dose (MTD) or Recommended Phase 2 Dose (RP2D) is established in Part 1. To date, 10 subjects, with a median of 5 prior lines of therapy and a median of 2 prior HER2-targeting regimens, have been treated with MT-5111 (metastatic cholangiocarcinoma n=5, metastatic breast cancer n=4, metastatic gastro-esophageal junction carcinoma n=1). Thus far, no dose limiting toxicities (DLTs) have been observed in any cohort and MT-5111 appears to be well tolerated, with no cardiotoxicity to date (cardiotoxicity is a known potential toxicity for HER2 targeted therapies).

Currently there are 4 subjects in total on treatment from the second (1 g/kg/dose) and third cohorts (2 g/kg/dose). No cardiac AEs or abnormalities in cardiac biomarkers have been noted thus far. Reported AEs that may be causally related among the 3 cohorts to date include the following: one instance of grade 1 chills, one instance of grade 1 hypophosphatemia, one instance of grade 1 nausea, and one instance of grade 2 AST elevation. The grade 2 AST elevation occurred in a subject in cohort 1 with disease progression in hepatic metastases; no causally related AST or ALT elevations have been noted in any other subjects to date. The ongoing subject from cohort 2 (45 y/o female with metastatic breast cancer) has stable disease (the subject only has evaluable disease but no measurable lesions per RECIST 1.1, and is classified as non-CR, non-PD per protocol) and remains on treatment, now in cycle 5. One subject in cohort 3 with metastatic breast cancer has had a follow-up CT scan at the end of cycle 2 and has stable disease. Six subjects have discontinued for disease progression and two subjects are too early to evaluate. Cohort 4 (3.0 g/kg/dose) is anticipated to open shortly. Molecular Templates is encouraged by the safety profile to date in these heavily pretreated patients and expects to provide an update on results from the patients currently on treatment as well as higher dose cohorts from the dose escalation portion of the Phase 1 study (including doses that are predicted to be clinically active based on preclinical data) in 4Q20.

Conference Call and Webcast to Discuss AACR Posters

Molecular Templates will host a live webcast and conference call in Eric Poma, Ph.D., Molecular Templates Chief Executive Officer and Scientific Officer, will provide an update on the Companys pipeline programs and discuss the four abstracts presented at AACR.

Thursday, June 25th at 10:30am Eastern Time

Domestic: 877-705-6003International: 201-493-6725Conference ID: 13704222Webcast: https://viavid.webcasts.com/starthere.jsp?ei=1322770&tp_key=655ccca2f4

The Molecular Templates management team will be available for a question and answer session at the conclusion of this call.

About Molecular Templates Molecular Templates is a clinical-stage company focused on the discovery and development of targeted biologic therapeutics. Our proprietary drug platform technology, known as engineered toxin bodies, or ETBs, leverages the resident biology of a genetically engineered form of Shiga-like Toxin A subunit to create novel therapies with potent and differentiated mechanisms of action for cancer and other serious diseases.

Forward-Looking StatementsThis press release contains forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the Act). Molecular Templates disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements, and claims the protection of the Acts Safe Harbor for forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included in this press release regarding strategy, future operations, future financial position, future revenue, projected expenses, prospects, plans and objectives of management are forward-looking statements. In addition, when or if used in this press release, the words may, could, should, anticipate, believe, estimate, expect, intend, plan, predict and similar expressions and their variants, as they relate to Molecular Templates may identify forward-looking statements. Examples of such statements include, but are not limited to, statements relating to the Companys options with respect to the second and third tranche term loans.

Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results may differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors including, but not limited to, the uncertainties inherent in the preclinical and clinical development process; whether the Company will achieve its expected milestones; risks from global pandemics including COVID-19; whether the Companys cash resources will be sufficient to fund its continuing operations for the periods and/or trials anticipated; the ability of the Company to protect its intellectual property rights; and legislative, regulatory, political and economic developments, as well as those risks identified under the heading Risk Factors in the Companys filings with the SEC. Any forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date hereof, and the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether because of new information, future events or otherwise

Investor Contact:Adam CutlerChief Financial Officeradam.cutler@mtem.com862-204-4006

Source: Molecular Templates, Inc.

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Molecular Templates' Presentations at the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2020 Highlight Evolution of ETB Platform -...

Headache May Predict Clinical Evolution of COVID-19 – Medscape

Editor's note: Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape's Coronavirus Resource Center.

Headache may be a key symptom of COVID-19 that predicts the disease's clinical evolution in individual patients, new research suggests.

An observational study of more than 100 patients showed that headache onset could occur during the presymptomatic or symptomatic phase of COVID-19 and could resemble tension-type or migraine headache.

Headache itself was associated with a shorter symptomatic period, while headache and anosmia (loss of sense of smell) were associated with a shorter hospitalization period.

In a subgroup of participants, headache persisted even after the symptoms of COVID-19 had been resolved.

Investigators note that understanding the pathophysiology of headache in COVID-19 could improve understanding of migraine and other headache disorders.

"It seems that those patients who start early on, during the asymptomatic or early symptomatic period of COVID-19, with headache have a more localized inflammatory response that may reflect the ability of the body to better control and respond to the infection by SARS-CoV2," lead investigator Patricia Pozo-Rosich, MD, PhD, head of the Headache and Craniofacial Pain Unit at Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, Barcelona, Spain, told Medscape Medical News.

She presented the findings at the American Headache Society (AHS) Annual Meeting 2020, which was virtual this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Headache is one of the main symptoms of COVID-19. A recent study of 214 patients with COVID-19 showed that approximately 13% of the participants had headache and 5% had anosmia.

SARS-CoV2 penetrates the cells through the ACE2 receptor, which is present throughout the body.

"SARS-CoV2 enters the body through the nasal cavity and it probably penetrates the nervous system in the periphery through afferent branches of the olfactory and trigeminal nerve," Pozo-Rosich said.

It travels to the lungs and, later, the bloodstream. This generates systemic inflammation that may turn into a cytokine storm. Evidence has identified cortical hyperintensities and olfactory bulb hyperintensities in patients with COVID-19, suggesting that the virus directly infects the central nervous system.

Interleukin-6 (IL-6), one of the main inflammatory molecules, has been proven to be related to COVID-19 and has become a therapeutic target. Levels of IL-6 may be lower and tend to be more stable in patients with both COVID-19 and headache than in patients with COVID-19 only.

The researchers observed 130 patients (51% women; mean age, 54 years) with COVID-19 who were attended by neurologists at Vall d'Hebron. In this group, 74.4% had headache.

Patients with headache tended to be younger than those without headache (mean age, 50 years vs 63 years, respectively) and tended to be women (58.6% vs 29.4%).

Approximately one third of patients with headache had a history of migraine. Most reported mild to moderate pain that resembled tension-type headache. In participants with severe pain and migraine-like features, headache more often began during the asymptomatic phase of COVID-19.

The investigators followed up on 100 of the 130 patients with COVID-19, of whom 74 had headache. About 38% of these patients had ongoing headache after 6 weeks, which suggests that some patients may develop a new daily persistent headache once a 3-month period has elapsed.

Half of this group had no previous headache history. Headache had been the prodromal symptom of COVID-19 for 21.4% of these patients.

Results showed that headache predicted the clinical evolution of COVID-19. The symptomatic phase of COVID-19 was 7 days shorter for patients with headache than for those without headache.

In addition, the period of hospitalization was 7 days shorter for patients with headache and anosmia compared with patients who had neither headache nor anosmia.

Most therapies, including ibuprofen, candesartan, and anti-CGRP monoclonal antibodies, are safe for treating headache in COVID-19, the investigators note.

"We should just try to initially avoid steroids to avoid interference with the body's reaction to SARS-CoV2," Pozo-Rosich said.

Researchers at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia are currently studying intranasal vazegepant, an anti-CGRP therapy, as a way to potentially blunt the severe inflammatory responsein the lungs of patients with COVID-19, she noted, adding that this peptide may have a future role not only in headache, but also in COVID-19.

Commenting on the study for Medscape Medical News, Matthew S. Robbins, MD, associate professor of neurology at Weill Cornell Medicine, New York City, said the findings associating headache with a shorter symptomatic phase of COVID-19 were "interesting."

"Headache is common with mild viral infections. More severe viral infections may simply feature more overwhelming respiratory symptoms and fever that lead to underreporting or underascertainment of headache," said Robbins, who was not involved with the research.

He noted that the finding showing an association of headache and COVID-19 with a younger age and in women "may be related to a higher prevalence of migraine biology in such patients, and being triggered by the virus or the psychological stress associated with it."

Robbins added that viral illnesses have long been associated with new daily persistent headache, "dating back to the early 1980s," when it was first described in association with Epstein-Barr virus. These infections have also been implicated in the progression of migraine to chronic migraine in adolescents.

"In my view, treatment should be aimed at the symptomatic headache type for which new daily persistent headache resembles, regardless of the potential inciting factor," Robbins said.

Pozo-Rosich has received consulting fees from Allergan, Amgen, Almirall, Biohaven, Chiesi, Eli Lilly, Medscape, Novartis, and Teva Pharmaceuticals. Robbins has disclosed no relevant financial relationships.

American Headache Society (AHS) Annual Meeting 2020: Presented June 13, 2020.

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Headache May Predict Clinical Evolution of COVID-19 - Medscape

Happy Fathers Day to All the Fish Dads Underwater – The New York Times

A clown fish uses his fins to fan water across a glistening mass of eggs, keeping them aerated. A silver arowana scoops up his fertilized eggs with his mouth and holds them gently for two months, until a host of miniature adults swims free from his jaws. A seahorse drifts through coral, his belly pouch swollen with unborn young.

Most fish are uninvolved parents. They dump their eggs and sperm, then swim off and let nature take its course. But some species of fish take their parental duties more seriously and among them, the majority of caring parents are dads. Care from mothers, or from both parents at once, is much less common. In a study published last fall in Evolution, researchers found evidence that paternal care, the system in which dads are the sole caretakers, has evolved dozens of times in fish.

These fish arent exactly helicopter dads. Their most common parenting style is simply guarding eggs after theyre fertilized. Some people are surprised this is considered care, said Frieda Benun Sutton, an evolutionary biologist at the City University of New York.

But it does count. To learn more about why this type of care in fish usually comes from dads, Dr. Benun Sutton and her co-author, Anthony Wilson, of Brooklyn College, took a deep dive into the family history of fish parents. They started with an evolutionary tree, built by other researchers in 2017 using genetic data, that shows how almost 2,000 fish species are related. Then they mapped onto the tree all the information they could find about parental care in those species: Were young cared for by fathers, mothers, both or nobody? They also added other factors including the size and number of each fishs eggs and how theyre fertilized.

The completed tree showed that care by fathers is no evolutionary accident: It has arisen at least 30 separate times. Hundreds of the species in this sample have absent mothers and caring fathers. But why?

We do see consistent patterns that occur across the entire evolutionary tree, Dr. Benun Sutton said.

One important pattern is that every species with paternal care also uses external fertilization sperm and egg meeting out in the open and spawns in pairs, not groups. This makes sense, the authors say, because when fertilization happens in a group or inside a females body, a male cant be sure of his paternity. Caring for those young could be a waste of his energy, evolutionarily speaking. But if he fertilizes a fresh batch of eggs and then stands guard over them, he believes hes caring for fish that share his genes.

The link between external fertilization and doting dads is a hypothesis several decades old. But more recent research has shown that external fertilization doesnt ensure fish dads end up caring for their own young, said Sigal Balshine, a behavioral ecologist at McMaster University in Ontario. Other males may sneak some of their own sperm onto the eggs.

In a 2012 study of plainfin midshipman fish, Dr. Balshine and her co-authors gave paternity tests to babies and found that only about half of the young in a nest belonged to the dad who was guarding it. There was a lot more hanky-panky going on, Dr. Balshine said.

The new study is the most comprehensive look yet at how parenting has evolved in fish, Dr. Balshine said. But it looked at only a small fraction of the worlds more than 30,000 fish species, and may not be a representative sample.

Dr. Benun Sutton agrees that the link between paternal care and external fertilization is an older, perhaps dusty hypothesis that her work revives. But if caring fish fathers were being cuckolded too often, she says, they would pass on their genes so sparsely that their behavior would die out altogether.

The puzzle of fish dads has long fascinated biologists, Dr. Balshine said.

When we humans think about parental care, we think immediately of moms holding newborn babies, she said. Its true that females are the primary caregivers across much of the animal kingdom, from mammals to birds to reptiles. Fish provide an intriguing counterexample.

Dr. Benun Sutton said fish illustrate that, under the right circumstances, either parents care can be critical. Theres no evolutionary rule that moms have to be the main providers a lesson we can apply to our own species, she said. There is a very important role for dads.

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Happy Fathers Day to All the Fish Dads Underwater - The New York Times

Evolution of the immune system and modern lifestyle have left us vulnerable to coronavirus – iNews

As we shelter behind closed doors, the Sars-CoV-2 virus causing Covid-19 has spread like no other disease before. In just a few months, from its identification in December 2019, more than a third of humanity was living under some form of lockdown. It is, to use the clich of 2020, unprecedented.

The Covid-19 pandemic has undeniably and dramatically exposed many weaknesses in human society. But it has also revealed that, despite the enormous advances we have made in medical science and technology, humans are just as vulnerable as any other organism to a novel disease. We are equipped with a very effective immune system that keeps us all alive, but that system has to learn to identify new invaders, and to react appropriately. Our naive immune system renders us all vulnerable to Covid-19, and in some people the overreaction of the immune system in response to the virus, a cytokine storm, can be fatal.

Our immune system, in all its complexity, is an evolved feature. It is an adaptation that, through natural selection, has been shaped and refined to combat disease. But there are subtler aspects of our evolutionary heritage at play during this pandemic. In the modern world of our own creation some of these aspects, so central to our global dominance as a species, can also conspire against us.

Evolution has equipped humans with large and complex brains capable of abstract thought, innovation, language and qualities we term intelligence. The evolved structure of our brain and the thought processes it allows also help us to be social, living and working collectively. Together, these features have allowed humans to achieve truly incredible things. At the same time, some of these features have rendered us horribly and uniquely vulnerable topandemics.

Social behaviour was essential during our evolutionary past, when our ancestors were far more likely to be the hunted than the hunter. Grouping for defence, and using the power of groups to keep safe and extend our diet, went hand-in-hand with evolutionary changes, and larger social units became possible. This accelerated greatly when we latched onto the idea of agriculture. Released to some extent from a foraging existence, human societies expanded, our skulls, dentition and metabolism evolved, technological advances flowed and ever larger settlements became possible. The supercity of the modern world is the culmination of this simultaneous expansion and concentration of humanity. Technology, arising from our unparalleled ability for innovation allows for such control over our environment that sometimes tens of millions of people are able to live a high-rise, high-density lifestyle, literally on top of each other. But high-density urban living provides the perfect conditions for a disease to spread.

The modern lifestyle hugely increases the number of people we have contact with, both socially and when we are crammed together in offices, streets and train carriages. Our social behaviour is now a threat, our conversations a liability. The primary defensive strategy in the face of Covid-19 is to actively and continually oppose our evolutionary heritage and, rather than group together for defence, we must defend ourselves by isolation.

Social distancing is affecting most parts of our daily lives at a local level, but we have also distanced globally. Our large and innovative brains dreamed of flight long before we invented the jet engine and shrank the world. The problem is that our ability to fly is also shared by any diseases we carry with us.

Gathering together people from far and wide for long periods in cramped airports and flying them all over the world is a wonderful dispersal mechanism for a virus like Sars-Cov-2. It is evolution that gave us all the innovative power of our brain, and it is our brain that has allowed us to create a globalised, interconnected world. If viruses had hands they would be have been rubbing them together in anticipatory glee when the Wright brothers took to the air.

Our cerebral evolutionary legacy laid the track for this pandemic but evolved aspects of our bodies arent always helping either. We have a wonderful ability to lay down fatty reserves, and for many of us the modern world is a landscape of caloric potency and opportunity.

Obesity is a major health risk any way you look at it, but it is also emerging as a risk factor for complications arising from Covid-19. The simple evolutionary story of obesity, often repeated, is that we are famine-adapted creatures living in a world of feast. The thrifty gene hypothesis as it is known is a seductive and popular idea, not least because of the implication that getting fat is somehow not our fault.

But it has proved difficult to support. Thrifty genes have been identified, in South Pacific islanders for example, but globally the evidence suggests that obesity cannot be put down to a Boy Scout metabolism, always prepared for famine.

Another evolutionary explanation is that, a few million years ago, the predation risk to our ancestors decreased. Evolved upper limits to fat storage were no longer so restrained by having to run away and they changed upwards not by natural selection but by a process called genetic drift (the drifty gene hypothesis). Whether we are thrifty or drifty, echoes of the mismatch between our evolutionary past and the calorie-filled modern world we have created are being heard.

Beneath our thin veneer of civilisation, far away from the dazzle and glare of our achievements, humans are vulnerable animals. Covid-19 has changed that. It has found itself the perfect host, a species with a powerful evolutionary double-hit of highly social behaviour and an innovative brain, leading to dense urban living and global travel.

The very nature of the modern world, building as it does on our evolutionary heritage, is our weakness in this pandemic. But just as our brain power helped us to get into this, it will also be our way out.

Unfit for Purpose: When Human Evolution Collides with the Modern World by Adam Hart (Bloomsbury Sigma, 16.99) is out now

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Evolution of the immune system and modern lifestyle have left us vulnerable to coronavirus - iNews

The Evolution Of The British Airways Livery – Simple Flying

Liveries are an interesting way to mark the time and history of an airline. In this article, we wanted to go over the evolution of the British Airways livery from its creation through the merger of several airlines through to today and the livery we are all used to seeing.

As you may have already known, British Airways was formed through the merger of several airlines: BOAC, BEA, NEA, and Cambrian. For quite a few years after the official merger, many of the aircraft kept their old colors and applied British Airways titles.

Then in 1974, the fleet was given a fresh look designed by firm Negus and Negus. British Airways described it as a modern and fresh design was based on the British national colors of red, white and blue. It featured a streamlined evolution of the BOAC and BEA insignia by way of a quartered Union Flag with a red tip on the tailfin and the Speedbird symbol on the nose.


In 1980 there would be a slight change to the titling while in 1984, there would be experimentation with a silver top as you can see in the photos below (and their respective captions).

Designed by the famous design house Landor Associates, an updated scheme was unveiled in December 1984. It was quite similar to the Negus scheme, but the white roof was replaced with Pearl Grey and the belly replaced with Midnight Blue. The speedbird was replaced with a Brilliant Red speedwing running along the lower fuselage. The title font was also changed and capitalized.

Then, in 1996, some of the BA fleet began appearing with an odd lowered lighter blue belly without the speedwing. While the tail remained in the Landor scheme, the changes seemed to indicate that BA was preparing for a new livery and was unwilling to repaint aircraft into the old Landor scheme. This interim design appeared on several 737s, 747s, 767s, and A320s.

In 1997 British Airways unveiled its new World Images livery, designed to replace the Landor livery across the airline completely. Given the name Project Utopia, the livery intended to reflect the best of British values blended with the nations more modern attributes. The airline described it as friendly, youthful, diverse and cosmopolitan, open to many cultures.

As for the fuselage, the Pearl Grey upper was replaced with a bright white, and the blue belly was lowered and lightened. A new Speedmarque logo was added on the upper fuselage, and the titles moved under the window line.

One of the 1997 Project Utopia tails, also known as Chatham Dockyard was initially applied only to the Concorde. However, it became the standard BA tail livery after phasing out all other Utopia tails.

The design was based upon a stylized Union flag as flown by English naval commander Lord Nelson whos fleet was based at the historic Chatham Royal Dockyard. This remains as the airlines most current livery.

In 2012, British Airways repainted nine A319s with a dove design to mark the London 2012 Olympics. Additionally, British Airways created a distinctive yellow, orange, and gold livery for the aircraft that transported the Olympic Flame from Athens to London named The Firefly.

In early 2019 BA unveiled four special retro liveries to mark its centenary. The four designs were BOAC, BEA, Negus, and Landor. While the BEA design was painted on an Airbus A319, the other three designs were applied to Boeing 747-400s. The first image at the top of this article shows the four designs together.

Were you aware of all the different liveries that British Airways aircraft have worn? Let us know in the comments.

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The Evolution Of The British Airways Livery - Simple Flying

How the coronavirus escapes an evolutionary trade-off that helps keep other pathogens in check – The Conversation US

Viruses walk a fine line between severity and transmissibility. If they are too virulent, they kill or incapacitate their hosts; this limits their ability to infect new hosts. Conversely, viruses that cause little harm may not be generating enough copies of themselves to be infectious.

But SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes the COVID-19 disease, sidesteps this evolutionary trade-off. Symptoms often dont appear until after infected people have been spreading the virus for several days. One study of SARS-CoV-2 estimated that the highest rate of viral shedding, and therefore transmissibility, was one to two days before the person infected begins to show symptoms.

Put simply, you only feel ill once the virus has accomplished its evolutionary goal: to spread.

Viruses that are good at making copies of themselves, and then getting those copies inside new hosts, are more successful and become more prevalent until host immunity or public health efforts restrain them.

As professors who study evolutionary medicine, we know the trade-off between virulence and transmissibility helps keep a pathogen in check. The very destructiveness of a virus keeps it from spreading too much. This has been the case with other pandemic pathogens, including Marburg, Ebola and the original coronavirus responsible for SARS. Outbreaks that consistently cause severe symptoms are more easily corralled by public health measures because infected individuals are easy to identify. SARS-CoV-2, however, can invade communities stealthily, because many infected individuals have no symptoms at all.

Looking at it this way, COVID-19 resembles a sexually transmitted disease. The infected person continues to look and feel fine while spreading the illness to new hosts. HIV and syphilis, for example, are relatively asymptomatic for much of the time they are contagious. With SARS-CoV-2, recent research suggests that 40-45% of people infected remain asymptomatic. And those carriers seem able to transmit the virus for a longer period.

COVID-19 has another similarity to many sexually transmitted diseases. Its severity is not the same across hosts, and often its dramatically different. There is evidence that the ability to fight the infection differs among people. The severity among strains of the virus might also differ, though there is no solid evidence of this yet.

Even for a single strain of SARS-CoV-2, the virus can affect people in different ways, which could facilitate its spread. The SARS-CoV-2 virus or any other pathogen is not deliberately changing what it does in order to exploit us and use our bodies as vehicles for transmission, but pathogens can evolve to look like they are playing games with us.

Studies show pathogens can express conditional virulence meaning that they can be highly virulent in some individuals and less virulent in others depending on host characteristics, like age, the presence of other infections and an individuals immune response. This might explain how SARS-CoV-2 escapes the trade-off. In some individuals, virulence is maximized, such as in older hosts. In others, transmissibility is maximized.

Age, so far, seems the critical factor. Older people tend to get highly destructive infections, while younger hosts, although just as infectious, remain largely unscathed. This might be because different hosts have different immune responses. Another explanation is that as we get older, we are more likely to develop other illnesses, such as obesity and hypertension, which can make us more susceptible to harm from SARS-CoV-2.

Regardless of the mechanism, this age-based pattern permits SARS-CoV-2 to have its evolutionary cake and eat it too: ravaging older individuals with high virulence, yet maintaining younger individuals as vehicles for transmission. Some studies suggest younger people are more likely to be asymptomatic. Both presymptomatic and asymptomatic carriers can transmit the virus.

What do we know about the evolution of SARS-CoV-2? Unfortunately, not much yet. There is some evidence that the virus may be adapting to us as its new hosts, but so far no evidence shows that these mutations are causing changes in the virulence or transmissibility of SARS-CoV-2. And because SARS-CoV-2 may be able to circumvent the typical trade-off between virulence and transmissibility, there may be little evolutionary pressure to become less severe as it spreads.

For all the mysteries surrounding COVID-19, one thing is certain: We cannot be lulled into a false sense of security. As Sun Tzu warned in The Art of War, know your enemy. There is a great deal more to know about SARS-CoV-2 before we claim any victories.

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How the coronavirus escapes an evolutionary trade-off that helps keep other pathogens in check - The Conversation US


Sounds of music and excited children will ring out from Gayndah schools this week


WHERE:Saint Josephs Catholic Primary School(10.30am) 38 Meson Street, Gayndah QLD 4625

WHERE:Burnett State College (1pm) 65 PineappleStreet, Gayndah QLD 4625

DATE: Tuesday. 23 June 2020

TIME:Saint Josephs Catholic Primary School 10.30am and Burnett State College - 1pm

CONTACT:Rural Aid Media 0447 116 757 | media@ruralaid.org.au

SPOKESPERSON: Rural Aid CEO John Warlters | 0409 618 641

ON-SITE CONTACT: Jen Curnow-Trotter Rural Aid CommunitySupport 0416 765 678

Rural Aid is delighted to announce theCommunity Support team is delivering musical instruments to Burnett State Collegeand St Josephs Catholic Primary School in Gayndah, tomorrow.

Rural Aid CEO John Warlters said Burnett State College and St Joseph's Catholic Primary School are part of a generous $120,000 donation of musical instruments from Evolution Mining to eight schools around their Mt Rowden and Cracow mining operations.

"I would like to thank Evolution Mining for their generous donation, which is part of a $1.5 million donation to help support Aussie farmers with disaster assistance and their communities," John Warlters said.

In the past, weve been well knownfor our disaster assistance program: providing hay, drinking water, financialand counselling assistance to farmers, rural and regional communities. Buildingsustainable, stronger futures for primary producers and rural communitiesunderpins everything we do.

Were pleased to announce a new remitfor community focused support, including schools. All community initiatives,from July 2020, will fall under the auspice of Rural Aids Stronger FuturesProgram.

Schools are a key element of allrural communities and we will continue supporting them as part of our focus oncommunity sustainability. This was evidenced recently with our technology forschools initiative to assist rural schools with at-home-learning.

Weve had some challenges thrown ourway with Covid-19 in having to place Rural Aids Our Town and Farm RescuePrograms in hibernation. And, our volunteers are readying themselves for therecommencement of community support activities.

Im please to say weve been workingin the background to deliver fodder and drinking water during Covid-19 andplanning for when schools return and, our workforce can make their way safelyback out in the field.

Were helping schools prepare for thecommencement of Term 3 music programs with deliveries underway this week.

Our thanks go to Rural Aid sponsor,Evolution Mining, a large employer of local communities backing localcommunities. They have made this and many other opportunities possible for farmersand rural and regional communities," John Warlters said.

Other schools also receiving musical instruments in the Gayndah region, thanks to Evolution Mining's generosity, are listed below.

Some of the schools receiving musical instruments:




Tuesday 23 June 2020


Coalstoun Lakes State School

Tuesday 23 June 2020


St Josephs Catholic Primary School

Tuesday 23 June 2020


Burnett State College

Tuesday 23 June 2020


Gayndah State School

Wednesday 24 June 2020


Eidsvold State School

Wednesday 24 June 2020


Mundubbera State School

Wednesday 24 June 2020


Boynewood State School

About RuralAid

RuralAid is one of Australias largest rural charities. Well known for the highlysuccessful Buy a Bale campaign, the charity also provides financialassistance, water and counselling to farmers in times of drought, flood orfire. Other initiatives support its vision that farming and rural communitiesare safeguarded to ensure their sustainability both during and after thesenatural disasters. Visit http://www.ruralaid.org.au for further information onthese programs and other support for our rural communities.

Media: 0447 116757 | media@ruralaid.org.au

Spokesperson: Rural AidCEO John Warlters | 0409 618 641

FollowRural Aid for updates on:

Rural Aid FB: @ruralaidaustralia | IG:@ruralaid |IN: Rural Aid Ltd | TW: @ruralaidaust

Buy A Bale FB: @buyabaleofhay | IG: @buyabale | TW: @buyabale


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