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Largest study finds CTE in 6 of athletes and nonathletes

first_imgReviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Jun 23 2019Nearly 6% of athletes and non-athletes were found to have the neurodegenerative disorder chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in the largest, and broadest, study conducted of the disease to date. The findings were published June 14 in the international journal Brain Pathology. Generally our findings point to CTE being more common in athletes and more common in football players, but this study is a bit more balanced and accurately reflects the general population compared to previous studies.”Lead author Kevin Bieniek, Ph.D., of UT Health San Antonio Dr. Bieniek led the research while at the Mayo Clinic before moving to Texas. He now directs the brain bank at the Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer’s and Neurodegenerative Diseases, which is part of UT Health San Antonio.Unbiased screenCTE, linked with repetitive blows to the head, has been found in 80-99% of autopsied brains of pro football players. “Nobody has really looked at it from kind of an epidemiological perspective,” Dr. Bieniek said. “We compared people who played a sport with those who didn’t play. We studied both young and old people, and amateur players versus college and professional players. And we studied both men and women, which had not been done previously. What we aimed to do was an unbiased screen for CTE from all sorts of different cases.”Biographical information utilizedThe team scanned obituaries and high school yearbooks of 2,566 individuals whose brain autopsies are a part of the Mayo Clinic Tissue Registry. The study focused on a variety of contact sports: baseball, basketball, boxing, football, hockey, lacrosse, soccer and wrestling. Non-contact sports, such as golf and tennis, were excluded.This analysis identified 300 former athletes and 450 non-athletes. “We screened the brains of all of these cases for evidence of CTE in a blinded fashion, intentionally not knowing which brain tissue was related to which case,” Dr. Bieniek said.FindingsA small number of cases, 42, had CTE pathology (5.6% of the total). CTE was found in 27 athletes and 15 non-athletes, and in 41 men and one woman. American football had the highest frequency of CTE (15%) of the contact sports studied, with participation beyond high school resulting in the highest risk of developing CTE.Related StoriesStudy provides new insight into longitudinal decline in brain network integrity associated with agingStudy offers clues about how to prevent brain inflammation in Alzheimer’sIT Faces the Digital Pathology Data Tsunami”The 42 cases, or 6%, is more of a grounded, realistic number,” Dr. Bieniek said. “That might not seem like a lot, but when you consider there are millions of youth, high school and collegiate athletes in the United States alone who play organized sports, it has the potential of being a significant public health issue. There are many ongoing questions regarding CTE pathology, however, and we don’t want to discourage sources of healthy physical and cardiovascular activity like these sports. Rather, we emphasize safe strategies to reduce the possibility of head injuries and properly treat them when they are sustained.”Non-athletes’ casesThe identification of 15 CTE cases in non-athletes raises interesting questions, Dr. Bieniek said. “Did these people have trauma from another source?” he asked. “Were they actually athletes and we were unable to detect it from biographical information? Is there another disease with similar features?”Cases with CTE tended to be a bit older than the cases without it, and many CTE cases also showed evidence of Alzheimer’s disease. “At the Glenn Biggs Institute, we study the concept of multiple neurodegenerative disorders happening within the brain of a person who has dementia,” Dr. Bieniek said.The crucial role of donors”This is an important national study led by our brain bank director, Dr. Bieniek,” said Sudha Seshadri, M.D., professor of neurology at UT Health San Antonio and director of the Glenn Biggs Institute. “We have a great team of scientists at the Biggs Institute, and the brain bank is key to the research aims of these investigators. We are so grateful for the many patients and normal older persons who have signed on to be brain donors after their death. The program runs 24/7/365, is free to the family, and gives the family the peace and knowledge of a definitive diagnosis for their loved one’s condition.”Several studies related to traumatic brain injuries and CTE by Dr. Bieniek and his colleagues are currently ongoing at UT Health San Antonio, including how certain genetic variants might protect or put a person at higher risk for developing CTE. Source:University of Texas Health Science Center at San AntonioJournal reference:Bieniek, K.F. et al. (2019) Association between contact sports participation and chronic traumatic encephalopathy: a retrospective cohort study. Brain Pathology. doi.org/10.1111/bpa.12757.last_img read more

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A brief history of immersion centuries before VR

first_img Engraving depicting one of Robertson’s phantasmagorical shows and the effects they had on audiences. Credit: Memories by Etienne Gaspard Robertson Immersive experiences are fashionable at the moment, as virtual reality finally emerges into the mainstream with headsets now commercially available. But immersion is a technique much older than technology. It is the key to storytelling, in literature, film, videogames, even in the spoken stories told by our ancestors around the campfire. We are taken in by the experience: we become so involved with a character that we share their emotions, or build expectations about their progress in the story – and react when these expectations are either fulfilled or thwarted. Provided by The Conversation Credit: milliganpuss, CC BY You can imagine the multi-sensory aspects of this experience: the design and shape of the space would have been critical to its impact on the audience, with light flooding in from the east. With dust and smoke in the interior, and the sound of a priest’s sermon and choir reverberating around the vaulted ceilings, even by today’s standards it would be pretty immersive.Smoke and mirrorsIn the late 18th century, the quirkily named phantasmagoria used – quite literally – smoke and mirrors along with magic lanterns, a form of early image projector, invisible screens and sound effects to create a theatrical performance. This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Citation: A brief history of immersion, centuries before VR (2018, May 16) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-history-immersion-centuries-vr.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img Recovered written accounts of the phantasmagoria are very interesting, as they link the rise in the use of magic lantern projections with the history of cinema. Via these immersive experiences, we get to the development of contemporary virtual reality devices.The origins of phantasmagoria are associated with the work of German Johann Georg Schropfer who used magic lantern projections as part of monastic rituals – another form of immersive religious experience.Participants would often fast for 24 hours prior to a performance and were greeted ceremoniously with drugged punch or salad. Skulls, candles and other monastic paraphernalia were used to set the scene. Accounts indicate that in these original performances three ghosts would be summoned, serving the monastic search for a deeper truth through contact with the spirit world. To be fully immersive, sources of haptic stimulation in VR apps need to be shown, researchers find Look at immersion from a historical perspective and we see the rituals and social practices that gave rise to immersive experiences, and the relevance of the past to the hyped products of today.In the middle ages, the use of stained glass in churches was designed to create an immersive sense of otherworldliness by bathing the church’s interior with coloured light. It was designed to provide churchgoers with a sense of direct contact with the divine, through visual stories aimed at a largely illiterate population.Stained glass was an important form of visual storytelling. It was one of the ways that religious institutions could exert their hold on believers through the sanctity of messages delivered through colour and light, for which believers had to crane their necks up towards the sky to face the high windows.A great example of this is the recently restored Great East Window at York Minster, a very large expanse of painted glass created in the early 1400s. The sheer scale of this window is extraordinary. It is the largest expanse of glass in the minster and one of the biggest in Europe. All designed and created by one artist, John Thornton. Its subject is no less than the beginning and the end of the world representing in its huge number of panes scenes from Genesis and from the Day of Judgement. As such, it can be easily interpreted as a form of immersive storytelling for audiences of the late middle ages. Inflicting terrorThis soon became popular entertainment, and the showman Paul Philidor produced elaborate shows for audiences in Vienna. Another was the Belgian Etienne-Gaspard Robertson in the first few years of the 19th century in Paris. He would use three moving magic lanterns behind a transparent screen, accompanied by elaborate costumes and decorations and augmented with horrifying sounds, to inflict terror upon his audience. With the growing Victorian interest in all things gothic, phantasmagoria performances spread to England where they were delivered alongside seances to deceive, terrify and manipulate their audiences. Some of the mechanics of today’s immersive experiences can be found in these early examples. The use of a projection system is common to phantasmagoria and to contemporary cinema. Head-mounted displays seen in modern VR systems can be first seen in the stereoscopic imagery of the View Master, which dates back to the 1930s and is still available in children’s toy shops today. From the 1950s, different cinematic techniques were introduced, including 3-D cinema using stereoscopic glasses, an approach that still captivates audiences to this day – the 3-D film Avatar is among the most financially successful movies of all time. I remember one of my first immersive experiences was watching How the West Was Won in the 1960s on a Cinerama screen – where a film is projected onto a giant, curved screen that provides an immersive experience via the wrap-around effect of the huge screen on the viewers’ field of view.So the current obsession with immersive virtual and augmented reality experiences will continue – we love our illusions and the stories that go with them. But we should not forget that to be swept away and out of the present by an immersive story is a timeless human desire, that’s origins go back as far as we do. Great East Window, York Minster, which depicts scenes from the beginning and the end of the world. Credit: University of York Explore furtherlast_img read more

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Solar Impulse Efficient Solution label for profitable startups to boost clean energy

first_imgInvestors respond better to the profit potential of green innovations such as solar-powered planes rather than their eco-credentials, according to Dr Bertrand Piccard, founder of Solar Impulse. Credit: Milko Vuille, licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0 New energy innovation report highlights central role of emerging economies Provided by Horizon: The EU Research & Innovation Magazine It was one of a number of initiatives launched at the Mission Innovation clean energy conference in Malmö, Sweden, on 23 May.Clean energy innovations are often high risk, yield low returns and take a long time to reach maturity. The idea of the label is that showing the financial impact of environmental solutions will help sell the concept of clean and renewable energy to governments and potential financial backers. It’s led by Dr Bertrand Piccard, the first person to fly around the world in a solar-powered aircraft.’When we consider climate change and consumption, it’s not only our comfort, our growth, our lifestyle that is the reason for that,’ said Dr Piccard. ‘It’s the fact that the technologies that we use are wasting half of the energy that is produced. Half of the pollution is only due to the losses, to the waste and the inefficiencies of the systems that are in use today.’He told the conference that he had already used arguments around profitability and job creation to convince right-wing politicians in Switzerland, who are generally against environmental initiatives.By the end of 2018, Dr Piccard aims to have selected 1,000 recipients of the label, and the EU is helping to reach the target by identifying the most promising EU-funded projects.Carlos Moedas, EU Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, who launched the label with Dr Piccard, said that it would change the conversation around clean energy by focusing on solutions.’The efficient solutions label clearly demonstrates the economic opportunities that innovative clean technologies bring,’ he said. ‘Its rigorous and strict criteria will help raise the profile of new breakthrough solutions and make them attractive for investors.’In 2019, Dr Piccard will travel around the world to promote the solutions to governments and businesses, and they will also be presented at the UN’s 24th climate change conference COP24 in December 2018. The aim is to encourage the adoption of more ambitious environmental targets and energy policies by highlighting the financial advantages of doing so.Two-thirdsEnergy consumption and production account for two-thirds of greenhouse gas emissions, so sustainable energy innovation is vital if the world is to achieve its climate goals. Explore further The pioneering solar flight foundation Solar Impulse has launched an ‘Efficient Solution’ label for clean energy start-ups and innovations that can demonstrate their profitability, in a bid to boost investment in the sector. That’s one of the reasons that the Mission Innovation project was launched in 2015 at the Paris climate change conference, where countries agreed to limit global warming to two degrees above pre-industrial levels. It aims to double public investment for early-stage clean energy entrepreneurs by 2021 in a bid to dramatically speed up innovation in this sector, and is supported by 24 members, including the EU.’Citizens and innovators can help us to accelerate the clean energy revolution,’ said Commissioner Moedas.Ahead of the Malmö conference, the World Economic Forum (WEF) launched a white paperthat identified the main problems faced by clean energy entrepreneurs, including a so-called financial valley of death – meaning that there is little long-term risk capital available in the sustainable energy sector.According to the WEF, governments currently supply more than two-thirds of global investment into research development and demonstration (RD&D) for clean energy projects, while most private RD&D is focused on oil and gas rather than renewable technology.The paper set out six bold ideas for improvement – including creating institutions for energy innovation, establishing an independent international fund to finance energy projects that combines public and private donations, and developing instruments for public-private co-investment. It highlighted the need for alliances between organisations and companies that promote innovation, and praised the Mission Innovation programme as a best-practice example.Through the Mission Innovation initiative, India has also proposed an international incubator to test clean energy technologies in local markets, and Sweden has launched a competition to promote disruptive innovations funded by public-private partnerships.However, part of the problem is a lack of visibility, as clean energy entrepreneurs don’t always have access to the platforms where potential investors are active.ChampionsIn an effort to address this, Mission Innovation is setting up a Mission Champions scheme to promote excellent clean-energy researchers and innovators and raise their profile on a global scale.The champions will be flown to the next Mission Innovation conference where they have the opportunity to network with ministers and business leaders, and they will be encouraged to engage in cross-border idea exchanges with other champions. The idea is that through the scheme, the champions’ visibility will be enhanced, which could lead to potential investment opportunities.To date, the Mission Innovation initiative has set out seven so-called Innovation Challenges that push member countries towards ambitious goals in a variety of clean energy sectors. The EU is co-leading challenges on converting sunlight into storable solar fuels and affordable heating and cooling of buildings. A new eighth challenge on hydrogen energy was launched this week and will also be led by the EU.So far, research in this area has boosted the production of aviation biojet fuels under the ITAKA project and have led to the development of new approaches to make building heating and cooling systems more sustainable and efficient under the Celsius City project. ITAKA in particular achieved greenhouse gas savings of more than 70%, and improved local air quality by 30%. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Solar Impulse ‘Efficient Solution’ label for profitable start-ups to boost clean energy investment (2018, May 28) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-solar-impulse-efficient-solution-profitable.htmllast_img read more

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Crackdown on immigrant families to start Sunday Trump says

first_img World 1d ago Dutch prime minister to visit White House on July 18 – Trump spokeswoman Related News WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A nationwide wave of arrests of immigrants facing deportation will commence over the weekend, U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday, confirming that the plan, intended to discourage a surge of Central American migrants, was on track after a delay.The operation is expected to target hundreds of families in 10 cities that have recently been ordered deported by an immigration court but have not yet left the country. Trump revealed the operation on Twitter last month and then postponed it. It is unusual for the government to announce deportation operations ahead of time.”People are coming into this country illegally, we are taking them out legally,” Trump told reporters on Friday, calling it a “major operation” that would mainly focus on removing criminals. In a typical week, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrests thousands of immigrants who are staying in the country illegally, according to government data. Most of those arrests are made without any advance publicity.Immigrant advocates have said advance word of the weekend raids could help some of those targeted to evade arrest. But the president, speaking to reporters at the White House on Friday, said he was not concerned that the advance notice could help targeted immigrants evade arrest.”If the word gets out, it gets out,” he said.Since Trump first spoke of the plan, a number of city mayors, nearly all Democrats, have repeated their long-standing policies of not cooperating with ICE officials on deportations and have advertised helplines people can call to understand their rights.Democratic lawmakers, among others, have also sought to inform immigrants of their rights, telling them not to open their door for ICE unless agents present a court-issued warrant, and not to say or sign anything before speaking with a lawyer.GRAPHIC – Trump immigration enforcement lags behind Obama : https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/editorcharts/USA-IMMIGRATION/0H001PBKB5E8/index.htmlDETERRING BORDER CROSSINGSTrump, a Republican who has made cracking down on illegal immigration a centrepiece of his administration, is trying to deal with a surge of mostly Central American families crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Many families are approaching border officials to seek asylum.The latest planned arrests would follow widespread criticism of the crowded, unsanitary conditions in which immigrants are being detained along the southwestern border and concerns about children being separated from adults by border officials.In a hearing on the subject on Friday at the U.S. House of Representatives, some Democrats said they feared the forthcoming arrests could result in more immigrant children being separated from their families.Elijah Cummings, the chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, asked a federal watchdog about its recently issued report saying detention conditions were below standards.Jennifer Costello, the acting inspector general for the Department of Homeland Security, told the congressional hearing that the government was falling short in terms of “crowding, the prolonged detention, some of the hygiene that the children are supposed to have.”Costello said it would be “impossible” to meet required standards under “the conditions that we saw there.” “It’s shocking,” she said.REPORTERS TAKEN INSIDE Trump sent Vice President Mike Pence to visit some of the criticized detention facilities in McAllen, Texas, on Friday along with journalists, who have generally been denied access to detained immigrants.Reporters who joined the tour saw immigrants, including children, lying on mats on the floor covered with thin aluminium blankets. A few toys lay about, and some watched television. The Trump administration has increased pressure on the governments of Mexico and several Central American countries to stem the flow of migrants reaching the U.S. border.Trump is to meet with Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales at the White House on Monday for talks on immigration and security. Morales may sign an agreement with Trump declaring Guatemala a safe destination for asylum seekers, which could prevent many from applying in the United States, according to officials in both governments.Alongside these international efforts, Trump has sought to deter border crossings with highly publicized crackdowns in the United States.The operation that Trump said would start on Sunday is an example. ICE is expected to target families whose immigration cases were handled through an expedited court process that began in 2018.The agency has notified about 2,000 of those people that they face deportation because they failed to appear in court, acting ICE Director Mark Morgan said last month. Immigration rights activists have complained that in many cases immigrants, especially those involved in expedited hearings, do not receive proper notice of their court dates.ICE has declined to discuss the weekend’s operation, including whether those families are among those being targeted.The American Civil Liberties Union and other civil rights groups sued this week to stop the arrests going ahead, asking a court to prevent the deportation of asylum-seeking families who missed their court dates until they at least get a hearing. (Reporting by Nandita Bose; Additional reporting by Mica Rosenberg, Matthew Lavietes and Jonathan Allen in New York, Richard Cowan and Mohammed Zargham in Washington and Kristina Cooke in San Francisco; Writing by Susan Heavey and Jonathan Allen; Editing by Dan Grebler and Diane Craft) {{category}} {{time}} {{title}}center_img World 1d ago Brazil’s Bolsonaro offers his son the post of ambassador in Washington Related News World 2d ago Arrests of immigrant families promised by Trump to begin on Sunday, Times sayslast_img read more

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They chose to ignor

They chose to ignore the bus stop warnings and should be given lengthy sentences. How does a driver miss a big yellow bus.

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said the prayer was important not because Mrs. Federer topped the Boris Becker group with American Sock in second place. Are your lectures droning on? Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, a former U. N. U Mumba’s defensive frailties led to the team failing to qualify for the play-offs. "should not get dragged back into another ground war in the Middle East. read more

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