May 19, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – Indonesia’s recent announcement that it would immediately begin sharing H5N1 avian influenza genetic sequences with a new public database is being hailed by experts as a promising development, though there is a concern that having actual virus isolates would be better.Indonesia’s decision, announced by Health Minister Siti Fadilah Supari, was detailed in a May 15 report from the Associated Press (AP).In early 2007 Indonesia stopped sharing H5N1 virus samples with the World Health Organization (WHO) to protest what it perceived as a lack of access to costly pandemic vaccines that companies in developed countries produce from the shared samples. The government has shared only a few samples with WHO labs since then.Though Indonesia’s embargo has drawn support from some other developing countries and nongovernmental organizations, the country was widely criticized by global health officials and researchers, who have said sample sharing is crucial for tracking the evolution of the virus and developing treatments and vaccines.”We have always promoted the sharing of influenza data, all we ask for is that it be done in a fair, transparent, and equitable manner,” Supari said of Indonesia’s decision to contribute sequence data to the new database, known as the Global Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Data (GISAID), according to the AP report.A WHO working group has met several times to resolve the virus-sharing dispute, but has made little progress. The issue is expected to surface at the annual World Health Assembly, which started today in Geneva. However, the working group’s next formal meeting is scheduled for November.Benefits, limitations of sequence dataTwo researchers who work with H5N1 viruses say they are pleased that Indonesia, which leads the world in human H5N1 cases and deaths, will share the genetic sequences from their virus samples. However, their opinions varied on how useful the genetic sequences will be without the actual H5N1 virus isolates, which are used to make seed strains for vaccines.Richard Webby, PhD, a virologist at St Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., told CIDRAP News that the sequences would allow researchers to track virus evolution.”It is absolutely a step in the right direction, and it allows everyone to see how the Indonesian viruses are evolving genetically,” Webby said. “Unfortunately, however, our ability to accurately predict antigenic and biologic properties from sequence data alone is embarrassingly poor. So, no, it [providing genetic sequence data] is not as good as sharing viruses.”Webby added that the most important aspect scientists can determine from a viral isolate that they can’t learn from a sequence is antigenicity—how well a virus will cross-react with antibodies generated against other strains. “Antigenic relatedness, not genetic relatedness, is key to vaccine strain selection,” he said.Also, sequence data alone can’t predict the transmission and pathogenicity changes that researchers depend on to make risk assessments, Webby said.Adolfo Garcia-Sastre, PhD, a virologist at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, also welcomed the news about Indonesia sharing its viral sequences and voiced a more optimistic view on their usefulness.”Sequences are very important to understand antigenicity, and even if no viruses are shared, provide the basis to make reagents to experimentally test antigenicity and pathogenicity,” he told CIDRAP News. Garcia-Sastre is also principal investigator for the Center for Research on Influenza Pathogenesis, one of six National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance.GISAID launches data-sharing platformThe idea for the GISAID database was generated by a group of 70 scientists and health officials who signed a letter in the August 31, 2006, issue of Nature proposing the formation of a new consortium to promote greater sharing of H5N1 genetic sequences.Aside from concerns about potential social inequities, virus-sharing has been a flashpoint for other controversies, including intellectual property rights and published credits for virus sources in scientific papers.Supari had earlier signaled Indonesia’s support for the GISAID database when she announced its initial launch in March 2007, according to a Mar 28, 2007, GISAID press release. Her support for the GISAID database followed a technical meeting on the virus-sharing issue that was attended by health ministers of countries that have been hit by the H5N1 virus, GISAID’s statement said.An official with GISAID, who asked not to be named, told CIDRAP News that the database’s platform for sharing H5N1 genetic sequences went live on May 15. The official confirmed that Indonesia has committed to sharing its virus data and is currently uploading its sequences into the GISAID EpiFlu database. China, Russia, and other nations are also in the process of submitting sequences, the GISAID source said.”This global health research community will find that the GISAID platform provides a high standard of data and analysis tools that uniquely promotes responsible sharing of information,” Supari said in the 2007 press release.GISAID said the public can freely access the database, which includes both human and animal H5N1 sequences, after they register and agree to share and credit the use of others’ data, analyze findings jointly, publish results collaboratively, and refrain from pressing intellectual property rights issues that relate to diagnostic, drug, and vaccine developments.When the plan to form GISAID was announced in 2006, one of the global health officials who signed the Nature letter was Dr. Nancy Cox, head of the Influenza Division at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Cox had told CIDRAP News that the GISAID database would be very useful because it would be linked with clinical and epidemiological data.The efforts of Peter Bogner, GISAID director, were instrumental in garnering the support of Supari and other officials, the AP reported. Bogner is a former broadcast executive who became involved in virus-sharing issues after attending a World Economic Forum in Switzerland 2 years ago, the report said.See also:Aug 25, 2006, CIDRAP News story “Scientists launch effort to share avian flu data”GISAID Web sitehttp://www.gisaid.org/WHO World Health Assembly agenda and proceedings
Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditITTA BENA, Miss. (AP) — Gerard Andrus scored 24 points with 15 rebounds and Prairie View A&M beat Mississippi Valley State 88-69 on Monday night to remain atop Southwestern Athletic Conference standings.Devonte Patters scored 17 points with seven assists for the Panthers (16-11, 12-2), who have won six straight. Chancellor Ellis scored 14 points and Dewayne Cox had 10. Faite Williams made a career-high 10 assists and scored nine points.Caleb Hunter scored 16 points and Michael Green had 12 for the Delta Devils (2-25, 2-13), who have lost four straight. Torico Simmons had 11 points and Jordan Lyons had 10. February 24, 2020 Prairie View beats Mississippi Valley St. 88-69 Associated Press The Panthers improve to 2-0 against the Delta Devils on the season. Prairie View defeated Mississippi Valley State 102-83 on Jan. 27. Prairie View plays Alabama State at home on Saturday. Mississippi Valley State takes on Jackson State on the road on Saturday.___For more AP college basketball coverage: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and http://twitter.com/AP_Top25___This was generated by Automated Insights, http://www.automatedinsights.com/ap, using data from STATS LLC, https://www.stats.com
Ghana is expected be reinstated as a member of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) after the national association received a donation of 10,000 US dollars from the CEO of McDan Shipping, Danny McKorley to settle arrears with the international body.Ghana was slapped with a ban by the ITF earlier this year after accruing three years of unpaid affiliation fees with the international body. Ghana was given a grace period which was stretched to this year.During the grace period youngster Isaac Nortey took part in the world junior championship in Switzerland while the junior national team also participated and excelled in an ITF West Central African tournament in Lome, Togo. The ban prevented Ghana from partcipating in any ITF-sanctioned activity after it was activated.This included administratve courses, tournaments and scholarship programmes for talented players.At a brief presentation ceremony at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Mr McKorley, who is a tennis enthusiast said “the decision to support the sport is inspired by my passion for the sport and I wanted to extend this gesture to support the national association to restore the image of the nation. There are many undiscovered tennis talents in the country which can be unearthed and when they are supported they can go places.” Mr McKorley also used the opportunity to announce his outfit’s plan to build an ultra-modern tennis arena in Accra as well as introduce the McDan Open tournament on the local tennis calendar. “Tennis is a big sport all over the world and its rather sad that Ghana has to experience this problem. At my company we are committed to fulfilling our social responsibility and also want to help the sport to develop,” Mr McKorley told Joy Sports. Youth and Sports Minister Elvis Afriyie Ankrah who received the cheque on behalf of the GTA encouraged more corporate support for sports to enable non-football disciplines grow. Ghana tennis has seen major challenges over the last few years most of which are financial. Due to the lack of sponsorship, the Ghana Tennis Association (GTA) has had major challenges organising tournaments. This is also compounded with the nation’s inability to qualify from Euro-Africa Zone Three of the Davis Cup. The junior national teams have remained Ghana’s brightest spot in tennis with consistent medal-winning performances at major tournaments.
Harrison Barnes was on the court for the Mavericks when reports came down that he was traded. pic.twitter.com/YnqCbW3cuV— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 7, 2019The internet had a tough time trying to figure out if Barnes knew whether he’d been traded:Not sure if Harrison Barnes knows he got traded…sitting on the bench…Kings players got pulled pic.twitter.com/R20dh3thkm— gifdsports (@gifdsports) February 7, 2019does he know? pic.twitter.com/qtP6XhDwDs— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) February 7, 2019Harrison Barnes still hanging around the Mavs bench after getting traded pic.twitter.com/Nkij6KRKQE— gifdsports (@gifdsports) February 7, 2019It seems someone eventually let the 26-year-old in on the trade news:Think someone just told Harrison Barnes he got traded pic.twitter.com/QlZstU2QA6— gifdsports (@gifdsports) February 7, 2019Probably not the way Barnes thought his night was going to go. NBA TRADE RUMORS: Latest news, buzz, reported deals ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Wednesday night that Dallas had traded Barnes to Sacramento:The Kings are trading Justin Jackson and Zach Randolph to the Mavericks for Harrison Barnes, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 7, 2019This was one of several trades made that night, but it immediately stood out because Barnes was playing in a game for the Mavericks when the news of his trade broke. The NBA trade deadline is Thursday, and a multitude of players are finding themselves on the move.Trade news often breaks on the internet before players are notified, as was the case for Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes.
By Chris Rotolo |MIDDLETOWN –A unique aspect of the township’s municipal campus is its location just off state Highway 35.In their plans to completely upgrade the 57-year-old town hall, township officials say they intend to leverage its valuable location to the advantage of their residents.During their June 19, 2017 meeting, the township committee identified its municipal campus at 1 Kings Highway and adjacent planning department and EMS facilities on Penelope Laneas “an area in need of development,” citing archaic infrastructure, an outdated HVAC system and a lack of parking as the reasons for a redevelopment project that would cost upward of $20 million.More than a year later the township is taking steps to move forward with the construction of a new 23,000-square-foot, multistory structure to replace the current municipal building, police department, the Johnson Gill Annexand the Penelope Lane properties. The result will be a unified municipal headquarters with the new establishment of two independent commercial or retail units on site (pad sites).According to Mayor Kevin M. Settembrino, the committee has introduced a subdivision plan for the 15,700-square-foot Kings Highway property, which would allow for the construction of the two pad sites.“We’ve made a conscious decision to go the redevelopment route, which gives the township the option to create these pad sites for revenue offset, and/or to sell those pad sites outright,” Settembrino said in a Sept. 10 interview with The Two River Times.“We could potentially receive cash for those sites, which would turn into an annuity. But we haven’t really decided on that financial vehicle yet.”Township administrator Anthony Mercantante said the design will allow Middletown to benefit from the complex’s proximity to a major state roadway.“What we’re trying to do is take advantage of the fact that we have a municipal complex right on a state highway. It’s valuable land and we’re trying to capitalize on that and use it to reduce the cost of the overall project,” he said.Settembrino, an architect, added that this is not a conventional design project, but a partnership between a public entity, the Township of Middletown, and a private entity, the redevelopment firm of Brandywine Acquisition & Development, LLC of Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. Choosing this path provides the added advantage of setting a fixed price for the project.“The governing body is employing multiple items here to make certain that not only can the building be built with the guaranteed maximum price, but to reduce the risk to taxpayers and to generate new revenue based on a new lease payment,” said Settembrino, who noted that Brandywine would be tasked with acquiring tenants for the independent pad sites.As for the permitted uses of these pad sites, Mercantante affirmed that most retail and commercial operations could be accommodated.“The only restriction we’ve put in place on them is that they can’t be drive-thru restaurants,” Mercantante said, explaining the safety concern of having too many cars circulating. “There can be retail or commercial uses but no drive-thrus. Anything else that could normally go on the highway would be permitted.”Mercantante said the redevelopment project could begin in parts this winter, but should be in full swing by spring 2019.Both Settembrino and Mercantante said efficiency is the theme of this construction, not only in terms of green energy but for residents who, for the first time since the complex’s construction in 1961, will have access to all municipal and government departments under the same roof.There will be cutting-edge innovations to help residents, such as computer kiosks where residents will be able to apply and pay for permits, licenses, classes, camps and various other township-related items and experiences.“In addition to having everything in one place to maximize convenience, everything will be new, because what we have right now is dinosaur-age,” Mercantante said. “This project is all about efficiency. And it has to be that way. The future of municipal government is all about efficiency, because costs are going up every year and we have to be creative to keep costs and taxes down.”This article was first published in the Sept. 13 – 19, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times.
CHAMPAGNE ROOM: Battled tested and consistent, she broke her maiden in her second start as well, in the Grade II, 6 ½ furlong Sorrento Stakes a Del Mar Aug. 6. Subsequently third in the Grade I Del Mar Debutante Sept. 3, she was then fourth in the Grade I Chandelier Stakes here on Oct. 1, which was her first try at two turns. Off at 33-1 in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, she settled nicely under Mario Gutierrez and went on to a three quarter length win. By all accounts, she’s trained very well for her return and despite her lack of recency, can be counted on for a top effort at one mile. Owned by Sharon Alesia, Cialia Racing, LLC, Exline-Border Racing, LLC, Gulliver Racing, Christensen and Legan, Champagne Room is 5-2-1-1 with earnings of $1,286,600. THE GRADE II LAS VIRGENES STAKES WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS IN POST POSITION ORDERRace 6 of 9 – Approximate post time 1:30 p.m. PT UNIQUE BELLA: With her two wins from three career starts coming by a combined 17 ¾ lengths, this grey daughter of Tapit has many observers comparing her to her multiple Eclipse Award winning stablemate, 4-year-old filly, Songbird. Owned by Don Alberto Stable and bred in Pennsylvania, she indeed has the look of something special and can be expected to show plenty of early speed under regular rider Mike Smith on Sunday. Given her pedigree, recent graded stakes win and her high flying connections, Unique Bella should go favored over Champagne Room in the Las Virgenes on Sunday. ARCADIA, Calif. (Feb. 2, 2017)–Rapidly improving Unique Bella will try two turns for the first time as she takes on Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Champion Champagne Room and three other sophomore fillies at a flat mile in Sunday’s Grade II, $200,000 Las Virgenes Stakes at Santa Anita.Trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, Unique Bella comes off a stirring 7 ½ length win in the Grade II, seven furlong Santa Ynez Stakes Jan. 8, while trainer Peter Eurton’s Eclipse Champion 2-year-old Filly Champagne Room has been idle since her signature achievement in the Grade I Juvenile Fillies at a mile and a sixteenth here on Nov. 5. Mopotism–Flavien Prat – 118Champagne Room–Mario Gutierrez–123Mistressofthenight–Corey Nakatani – 118Unique Bella–Mike Smith–120Miss Southern Miss–Kent Desormeaux–118 There will be a special early first post time on Big Game Sunday at Santa Anita of 11 a.m. Admission gates will open at 9 a.m. For scratches, changes and complete morning line information, please visit santaanita.com.