Kevin Carmichael What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation Email Twitter Featured Stories Sponsored By: April 30, 20198:07 PM EDTLast UpdatedMay 7, 20197:40 AM EDT Filed under News Economy Comment Reddit Blaming the weather sounds like a cop out to a lot of people, including those who find themselves doing it.“I hate using weather as an excuse,” said José Cil, chief executive of Restaurant Brands International Inc., who nonetheless used unusually frigid temperatures as a partial explanation for poor sales at Tim Hortons restaurants over the first three months of the year.Cil, who released his company’s latest quarterly results on April 29, isn’t the only executive who found his or her plans knocked off track by a terrible winter. Canada’s economy unexpectedly shrinks as resource sector stalls Turns out, there’s more to Alberta’s economic story than pipelines ‘Thank God I diversified’: An Alberta business leader reflects on the province’s future “What happened to us in February, especially in the first two weeks of March, was extraordinary,” Keith Creel, chief executive of Canadian Pacific Railways Ltd., told analysts on April 23.He was explaining a lower-than-expected profit, as his trains moved freight at the lowest rate per mile in eight years, mostly because the tracks were covered in snow and ice. Airports and highways were equally unforgiving.I hate using weather as an excuse Share this storyCanadians love to complain about the weather — this time we may be right Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Alberta had bigger problems than ice and snow this winter. It’s possible the cold made them feel worse.Gavin Young/Postmedia I have talked to about a dozen Alberta entrepreneurs, executives and venture capitalists over the past few weeks about what’s going on with their economy. The latest conversation was with Chris Jones, who advises a few dozen companies on management strategies. “The attitude, I’ve never seen it this low,” said Jones, who made his name 20 years ago when he invented and started selling a glove for football receivers.He blamed the province’s moodiness on the usual suspects: the slump in oil prices and “all three levels of government.” I’ve heard that from just about everyone. Then he added a new variable: Mother Nature.“We had eight to 10 weeks of cold, pissy weather,” Jones said from Calgary. Layer that onto the bad economy and broad-based disenchantment with politicians, and you have your answer for why one of Canada’s main economic engines is belching so much angry, black smoke.“I work with a lot of leadership teams,” said Jones, who runs Strategic Traction Inc. “This is a really bad spot.” advertisement United Parcel Service Inc.’s shares fell almost 10 per cent on April 25 after the company said it would need a strong second half to meet revenue targets after winter storms slowed deliveries. Takeoffs and landings decreased at eight of Canada’s 10 busiest airports in February compared with a year earlier, Statistics Canada reported on April 30.Restaurant Brands, CP Rail, and UPS have issues other than the weather. But if you get a critical mass of companies saying the same thing, there might be something to it. Stephen Poloz, the Bank of Canada governor, said last week that the trade data so far this year are “puzzling,” citing the weather as a possible explanation. Gross domestic product dropped 1.1 per cent over the same period, as a big drop in output by the transportation and warehousing and construction industries outweighed a 4.1-per-cent increase in professional and scientific services, StatCan said in a separate report on April 30.All of this chatter about the weather matters because of the uncertainty over whether Canada’s economic slump is transitory or entrenched. It’s possible that the poor trade numbers have more to do with weaker global demand, the trade wars, and the fact that Canada trades seriously with too few places. That would mean there will be no offset for weaker household spending, an inevitability given record levels of debt.Poloz and others see a rebound in the second half. Tony Valente, senior foreign-exchange dealer at AscendantFX, a payments firm, observes that the U.S. Conference Board’s leading economic indicator, which has a good track record of forecasting downturns and rebounds, has turned upwards.Blaming the weather sounds like a cop out to a lot of people More Canadians love to complain about the weather — this time we may be right Kevin Carmichael: Who knows? Spring might not just bring sunshine; it might also bring an economic recovery 38 Comments Recommended For YouAre you on speaking terms with your old pensions? Ignoring them could cost youThe storm is coming and investors need a financial ark to see them throughTrans Mountain construction work can go ahead as National Energy Board re-validates permitsDavid Rosenberg: Deflation is still the No. 1 threat to global economic stability — and central banks know itBank of Canada drops mortgage stress test rate for first time since 2016 ← Previous Next → Join the conversation → Facebook Caroline Miller of BCA Research in Montreal said her firm senses that China and Europe are on the verge of recoveries after slumps last year. Easier financial conditions will help, as central banks, including the Bank of Canada, have made clear they are “less worried about leaving interest rates too low for too long,” Miller said.In Alberta, which weighs heavily on Poloz’s outlook for the broader economy, Jones said he thinks things are getting a little better, in part because spring finally has arrived.About 34 centimetres of snow fell at Calgary International Airport in February, 10 centimetres less than the same month a year earlier, according to Environment Canada data. But it was colder: the average temperature was -18.2 C compared with an average of -11.6 C in February 2018. And it’s possible that consecutive nasty winters took a toll: the average February snowfall between 2013 and 2017 was about 12 centimetres and the average temperature was closer to zero.Alberta had bigger problems than ice and snow this winter. It’s possible the cold made them feel worse. Some sunshine, low interest rates and a global economic rebound will do the province some good.• Email: email@example.com | Twitter:
Audi e-tron GT Concept Test Drives In LA: Videos Tesla Model X Compared To Jaguar I-Pace In Slick New Video Jaguar I-PACE Shines In Netherlands With Over 600 Sales While some may continue to say OEMs’ crossovers offer no rival to Tesla, let’s take a close look.Let’s just start ahead with a feeble attempt to kill the haters. We know full well that there are very few all-electric crossovers on the market. Still, many continue to assert that the Jaguar I-Pace and Audi e-tron are not Tesla Model X rivals, and we agree on many levels. However, these OEM crossovers are finally attempting to offer some healthy competition with the Model X. While they may not compete on available seating capacity or overall volume, they still may rival on other specs. In the end, it all comes down to your needs and priorities.Related Content: Whether Tesla fans support it and/or like it or not, there are now a few new entrants when it comes to family hauling battery-electric options. And, we at InsideEVs continue to assert that fans of EV adoption should work to support and promote these vehicles, despite the fact that they’re not manufactured by Tesla. Otherwise, we continue to have a huge wave of followers that aren’t really true EV advocates, but rather Tesla fans.Yes, if you need third-row seating, the Audi e-tron and Jaguar I-Pace aren’t the case. Let’s remember, however, that while the Tesla Model X was launched with three rows of seats as standard, that is no longer the case. To get extra seating in the current Model X, you must upgrade.At any rate, we’re incredibly happy to report that a few OEMs are actually moving forward — not as a never ending barrage of press releases, but actually in real life — with EVs. The fact that they’re focusing on the crossover market ups the ante considerably.Check out this latest video and let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.Video Description via TFL Car on YouTube:Compared: 2019 Audi e-tron vs Tesla Model X vs Jaguar I-Pace!Mike tells you everything you need to know about the 2019 Audi e-tron. Plus, we compare the e-tron to its closest competition, the Tesla Model X and the Jaguar I-Pace. Source: Electric Vehicle News Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on December 18, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News
BYTON Releases New Interior Teaser Image Of Electric SUV Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 11, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News BYTON Founders Exude Confidence At CES This picture was taken from about 12″ above ground level. Even at this low point, the driver can see the camera. Can you really see past that thing?We’ve had quite a few posts here on BYTON since their world introduction at CES 2018. By far, the most controversial feature in BYTON’s vehicles is the giant 48″ long display screen that stretches across the entire dashboard.More From BYTON In nearly every post, we get comments on how distracting the display screen will be, as well as concerns of whether or not it obstructs the driver’s view. We’ve driven in the M-Byte five or six times now, and have conveyed in previous posts that the screen auto-dims at night, and that since the content is static while driving, it doesn’t appear to present a distraction issue.Once we’re able to take the M-Byte for a proper test drive later this year, we’ll be able to comment definitively on that. Until then, we understand why those that haven’t been in the vehicle might be concerned.You can actually see the top of the hood above the display screen. Therefore, the display doesn’t obstruct the driver’s view.BYTON has assured us that they have spent a lot of time making sure the display will not present a distraction problem, and that while the car is in motion it will display static content that most cars today already display. For instance, all of the content on the left 1/3 of the screen, which is in front of the driver, (in most markets) will be what is normally seen by the driver, like speed, range, navigation info, state of charge, etc.While we can’t prove that here today, we can demonstrate that the screen doesn’t physically present a line-of-sight issue, as some have claimed it would. We understand why some may think that, since most of the pictures of the dashboard are taken from a lower position than the driver’s line-of-sight, giving the allusion that the view is severely obstructed. We spoke to BYTON’s VP of Design, Benoit Jacob at CES, and he told us that they designed the display so it wouldn’t obstruct any part of the driver’s view, and that the line-of-sight angle actually exceeds what is required by regulations.So, take a look at the pictures we took earlier this week at the BYTON booth at CES, and you can judge for yourself.This picture is taken about 6 feet from the front of the vehicle and at about hood level. This picture was taken about 8 feet from the front of the vehicle and at about 5′ off the ground, slightly lower than the roofline. BYTON Provides Look At M-Byte Electric SUV Production Model At CES Source: Electric Vehicle News
Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 18, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Seamless EV Charging Is Catching On In North America This Hack Provides A Boost That Reduces EV Charging Time The Top 3 Ways to Save Money Through Efficient EV Charging The new tech was developed by aerospace engineer Kostya Khomutov, with the assistance of two electrical engineers: Alex Tkachenko and Nick Sherstyuk. In addition, CCO Tim Sherstyuk had his hands in the effort. The publication also notes that funding has already come in by way of Plug and Play, Airbus Ventures, SV Angel, and Initialized Capital. Khomutov shared:Most companies are focused on developing new chemistries or materials (ex. Enevate, Storedot) to improve charging speed of batteries. Developing new materials is difficult, and scaling up production to the needs of automotive companies requires billions of $,” said Khomutov. “Our technology is a combination of software algorithms (AI) and electronics, that works with off-the-shelf Li-ion batteries that have already been validated, tested, and produced by battery manufacturers. Nothing else needs to change.GBatteries says its tech can charge a 60-kWh battery pack with ~120 miles of range in about 15 minutes. It also claims that the system will work with current lithium-ion battery packs. You’ll have to utilize this new fast-charging system and a special adaptor to make it all work. Still, the company was able to prove such claims in live demonstrations at 2019 CES in Las Vegas, Nevada.The technology works by slowing down and speeding up vehicle charging over time, based on certain algorithms and conditions set by AI. This is much different from the current situation, in which safely and efficiently topping up an electric vehicle battery may be impacted differently based on a multitude of factors that may be out of the user’s control. Sherstyuk voiced his concerns with current systems and stated:We’ve always tinkered with stuff together since before I was even a teenager, and over time had created a burgeoning hardware lab in our basement. While I was studying Chemistry at Carleton University in Ottawa, we’d often debate and discuss why batteries in our phones got so bad so rapidly – you’d buy a phone, and a year later it would almost be unusable because the battery degraded so badly.This sparked us to see if we can solve the problem by somehow extending the cycle life of batteries and achieve better performance, so that we’d have something that lasts. We spent a few weeks in our basement lab wiring together a simple control system along with an algorithm to charge a few battery cells, and after 6 months of testing and iterations we started seeing a noticeable difference between batteries charged conventionally, and ones using our algorithm. A year and a half later of constant iterations and development, we applied and were accepted in 2014 into YC.Sadly, due to its startup nature, we have no clue when this tech might come to the forefront. However, the reality of this charging breakthrough seems more viable than anything else we’ve shared in the past.What are your thoughts? Please let us know in the comment section below.Source: Autoblog Source: Electric Vehicle News This startup says their technology can charge an EV as fast as gassing up … well not quite.Startup GBatteries surfaced as a Y Combinator seed. The company claims incredibly fast electric car charging speeds are on the horizon. According to a report on Autoblog (via TechCrunch), GBatteries employs Artificial Intelligence (AI) tech to optimize its EV battery charging system.Check Out These Stories:
Smart and simpleAll those who would like to better secure the Tesla Model 3‘s trunk from thieves receive a new, brilliant solution.It’s a simple 3D-printed locking mechanism, developed by Jon Osborne, who not only presents it but also shared all the files to make your own.See Also Tesla Sentry Mode: Bach’s Toccata And Fugue … Keep Summer Safe? Tesla Model 3 Rear Seat Lock Is Pure Genius: Video Sentry Mode Coming Soon For Tesla Cars With Enhanced Autopilot It could be a valuable security device, especially when so many thieves are trying to steal precious cargo. Usually, they are breaking the rear corner glass, reaching their hand in and folding down the seats to see if you have anything of value in the trunk. With this locking mechanism, that will not be possible.Separately, Tesla is developing Sentry Mode, which will be using Enhanced Autopilot cameras to:give owners a 360-degree look at their car while they’re awayoption to record footage for use later (10-minute clips)Source: Tesla Model 3 rear seat lock details, Teslarati Source: Electric Vehicle News Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 28, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News
Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 30, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Driving 700 Miles In The Hyundai Kona Electric Source: YouTube From 12 To 80 percent at 4 degrees C (39.2 F).The Hyundai Kona Electric is on the verge of hitting showrooms in the U.S., so it’s probably a good time to take a look at how it fast charges. Of course, the exact charging profile will differ somewhat, depending on things like the output ability of the specific charger, the ambient temperature, and that of the battery. The video above gives us some indication of what to expect charging from about 20 percent to 80 percent at a particular 50kW station when it’s 4 degrees C (39.2 F).More on the Hyundai Kona Electric Hyundai-Kia Team With EVgo To Ease Charging Experience Hyundai Kona Electric Charging Rates Compared: 39-kWh vs 64-kWh Source: Electric Vehicle News The footage found on YouTube channel The EV Puzzle suggests it may take longer than you might expect to charge when things get a little chilly. As you’ll notice, the car is only accepting energy at the rate of about 37 kW instead of 50 kW. Whether this is the fault of the car or of this particular charger, it’s hard to say without more data. It’s also worth noting, though, that even that power level drops down to 23 kW after the battery reaches a 76 percent full state of charge.In any case, the host points out a dilemma worth amplifying. At this particular charging spot, the owners have a one-hour limit. However, to get the car to 80 percent full takes more than that. There’s not really a great solution to this, but it’s one of those little frustrations some owners might experience.Video description:In this video I document a normal day of Kona Electric ownership. Starting with 45% battery and an indicated 125 mile range we have two journeys planned. The first a near 60 mile round trip followed by a second of around 45 miles. My first instinct is to add an hour or two of home charging on our 7.2kw Zappi charger, adding 40 or 50 miles , being a nice contingency addition BUT with an indicated 20 mile contingency I could just “go for it” and see how close it gets, charging when I’m home. I would like to see how accurate the GOM is at lower % levels and so this is a good example to test it with. But with winter driving in very cold wet conditions , perhaps risking running out isn’t the wisest of choices. I therefore decide to stop on the way home, to charge at a rapid charger thus adding 10 miles extra contingency whilst also testing how the GOM changes. Results: 125 start, 57 miles travelled, 65 miles range remaining (-3 miles lost) 21 miles more driven 38 miles range remaining (-6 miles lost) 12 miles more driven 28 miles range remaining (+2 miles gained) (125 – 89.5 = 35.5 expected Vs 28 actual ) It appears therefore in cold conditions the GOM at half full can be 10 miles out, although with slower driving (40mph) it’s possible to gain a couple of miles as the SOC reduces to very low levels. The Rapid charge offers 36/37kw from 12% all the way to 76%, where it drops to 23kw through to 80 %. An hour brings the charge from 12 to 66% but to 80% it takes 76 to 77 mins in total, a fraction over the time quoted by Hyundai. As per previous videos and examples provided by other YouTube contributors, it makes no sense why during this charge the rate could have increased at some point beyond 37kw. On this occasion it actually feels like the charger may have limited the charge. If not, it just doesn’t make sense.
Above: Inside the Tesla Model S (Image: Tesla)“I also spend no money and no time on service,” says Autry. “The only real service I’ve had was an in-warranty replacement of the regular 12v battery that supports the car’s computers and infotainment system. No oil changes, no cooling flushes, no brake jobs (magnetic mostly), no transmission servicing and no time wasted on that stuff.”Tesla’s recommended maintenance includes changing the batteries in the key fob, checking the wiper blades and topping off the windshield washer fluid. The company suggests, but doesn’t require, replacing the brake fluid every 25,000 miles.“Estimated savings from 20 oil changes at $50 each and $50 for my wasted time is $2,000 plus a couple of cooling flushes and brake jobs = $2,500. Model S cost down to $77.5k,” Autry smugly reports.Mr. A figures he’ll keep his Model S for 150,000 miles, a not unreasonable expectation for a modern vehicle. That will bring the savings on gas and maintenance to $22,500, and the effective cost of the car to $63,000. Once he does decide to sell, he can expect a very decent resale value. A 2018 report by Loup Ventures found that Teslas tend to retain their value better than other vehicles in their class (and far better than other EVs). After 50,000 miles, Loup estimates that a typical Model S loses 28% of its value, whereas a Mercedes S-Class loses around 36%, and a BMW 7 Series around 40%. According to Autrynomics, that superior retained value is worth $10,400, bringing his effective cost down to $52,560.Now we enter the realm of advanced theoretical mathematics. The Tesla’s long service life means Autry won’t have to buy another car, saving him half of the purchase price, or $47,500 – about what he’d pay for another car. “So, my Tesla will cost just $5,060 if driven for 150,000 miles!” he gleefully concludes.Is Professor Autry’s economic reasoning sound? Well, some of it is based on verifiable, dollars-and-cents figures, some is based on benefits that aren’t available to all buyers, and some is arguably a little fanciful. On the other hand, there’s no way to put a price on the Tesla’s superior safety rating, the convenience of over-the-air updates, or the tons of carbon dioxide and other pollutants that electric cars do not spew into the air. Above: Tesla’s Model S (Image: Tesla)Now, it’s one thing for a company to trumpet the savings delivered by its product, but in the case of Tesla, many a satisfied customer has done so as well. The latest of these to attract our attention is Greg Autry, who tells us in a recent post on Forbes that, after logging 50,000 miles in his Tesla Model S, he calculates its effective cost at a mere $5,060 – not a bad price for a luxury vehicle. Furthermore, Autry calls his Model S “the best product of any kind that I have ever purchased.”When Autry first went shopping for an EV, he test-drove a Ford Focus Electric. The salesperson told him that “electric cars just don’t go fast.” As he observes, it’s “no wonder Tesla ate their electric lunch.” (After years of negligible sales, the Focus Electric has been discontinued, and Ford currently has no electric model in its lineup.)Autry bought a 2014 Chevy Volt, which he describes as “a comfortable, decent-looking plug-in hybrid that could just barely get me to work on [a charge].” While he doesn’t seem to have found the Volt exciting, it did clue him in to “the low Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and lifespan advantages of electric vehicles.”Those advantages are many, but can the effective price of a Model S really work out as low as five grand? Read on…Autry paid $95,000 (including taxes, registration, and the usual extras) for his Model S, and took advantage of a $7,500 federal tax credit and a $2,500 incentive from the state of California, bringing the up-front cost down to 85 big ones. Unfortunately, new buyers won’t get the full $7,500 credit, but you can still get $3,750 if you buy in the first half of 2019.At home, Autry charges his Tesla with solar energy generated on his roof, and on the road, he charges for free using the Supercharger network. “No gas bills for 50k miles driven has saved me $5,000. Model S cost down to $80k,” he gloats. Alas, most new buyers won’t get free Supercharging, and while the energy coming from the sun may be free, the panels required to capture it are not. However, there’s no question that running on electricity is cheaper than burning gas – the prices of both vary widely around the world, but a very rough rule of thumb is that driving electric will save you around two thirds of your fuel bill. Video Interview: Fremont Police Captain Talks Tesla Model S Patrol Car Above: Zero tailpipe emissions in a Tesla Model S (Image: Tesla)As a well-known marketing maxim has it, buyers make decisions based on emotion, then justify them with logic. In case you need some logic to justify buying a Tesla (or perhaps, to convince your significant other), there are plenty of facts and figures available – Mr. Autry is far from the only Tesla owner to celebrate his vehicle’s low TCO. We reported on a study last January, and another in February, both of which found that EVs offer a lower TCO than legacy vehicles. In December, we told the story of Marco “Speedy” Jeanrenaud, a Swiss automobile connoisseur who prepared a spreadsheet with data on several cars that he’s owned, and found that “it’s cheaper to drive a Tesla than anything else.”===Written by: Charles Morris*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers, free of charge. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX. Check out the site here. How Much Does A Tesla Model S, 3, X & Y Actually Cost? *This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Charles Morris. The opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily our own at InsideEVs. Source: Electric Vehicle News America’s Greatest Muscle Car Is The Tesla Model S P100D CAN A TESLA END UP COSTING YOU ONLY FIVE GRAND?As any electric vehicle owner will explain, the higher purchase price of an EV is partially offset by the savings on fuel and maintenance, and for many buyers, by federal and state incentives. Tesla has always emphasized this fact – when you order a vehicle online, the web site helpfully takes into account incentives and savings on operating costs to calculate your effective price. Years ago, Tesla’s online savings calculator even incorporated the time saved by not going to gas stations (at $100 per hour!), until embarrassed fans convinced the company that this was stretching a marketing technique a bit too far.More Tesla Model S Content: Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on March 25, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News
Newsflash: Many Tesla Model 3 owners aren’t rich, but you do have to be smart with your money.Source: Electric Vehicle News
Moynihan sounds warning if cuts bite into 2012 medal budget Share on Pinterest First published on Sun 30 Nov 2008 20.23 EST Shares00 … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Olympic Games 2012 Share on Messenger Share on Twitter This article is more than 10 years old Since you’re here… Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Sun 30 Nov 2008 20.23 EST Olympic Games British Olympic Association Share via Email Martin Ziegler, Press Association news Share via Email This article is more than 10 years old Funding cuts for Olympic athletes that are expected to be confirmed this week will leave the British team facing a realistic target of eighth rather than fourth place in the medal table at the London 2012 Games, it was warned yesterday.Lord Moynihan, chairman of the British Olympic Association, made the stark prediction and called on the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, to honour his original 2006 commitment of £100m a year for Olympic sports.A £79m funding hole – almost £20m a year up to 2012 – has still to be filled because the Government’s plan of attracting private sector investment has so far failed to bring in any money at all.”We will be deeply disappointed this week if the Government move away from their commitment,” Moynihan said. “To give our Olympic and Paralympic athletes the best chance of success in 2012 the full investment programme agreed by Gordon Brown when he was chancellor must be honoured in full.”Moynihan, a former Conservative MP and minister for sport, said the BOA would continue to work to try to secure funding to ensure that the British team could maintain the fourth place it won at the Beijing Games last summer, but believed that it was the Treasury’s duty to make up the shortfall.Under the proposals submitted to the Treasury in 2006, a number of funding options were put forward to target either fourth, sixth or eighth in the 2012 medals table.The then chancellor agreed on a package to target fourth place – and even if the Treasury agrees an extra £20m, as some believe it will, the £59m shortfall in funding would exactly match the difference with the package for the eighth-place target. A UK Sport board meeting tomorrow will decide where the cuts are to be made.Moynihan also warned that the funding cuts would influence more than just the medal target. “It has serious implications for London’s ticketing policy for 2012 because a successful British team is essential to maximise ticket sales,” he added.”Raising public participation in sport is also partly dependent on the success of Team GB and that will be damaged.”Moynihan said team sports such as handball and basketball, which do not have established success, would also be affected. The handball teams, for example, have been training in Denmark for the past two years and that programme could be closed down if they are hit by cuts. “Basketball have told me it could affect their ability actually to compete at the Games,” said Moynihan. “This would clearly damage the 2012 Olympic basketball tournament.”Moynihan gave credit to the culture secretary, Andy Burnham, for working “very hard” to try to deliver the full funding but said the onus is now on Brown and the Treasury. Olympic Games 2012 Share on Facebook Topics Support The Guardian Reuse this content
The practice of law – as well as other corporate positions in the FCPA space – occasionally result in certain periods of downtime.The next 10 days or so are often a downtime. If you have substantive work great (or perhaps not), but if not substantive work probably will not hit your desk until the New Year.However, this downtime can be used effectively to elevate your Foreign Corrupt Practices Act knowledge and sophistication.This post provides a downtime reading package designed to do just this.FCPA – StatuteA good place to start, and to better understand how we got here in the first place, is to read the “Story of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.” The article weaves together information and events scattered in the FCPA’s voluminous legislative record to tell the FCPA’s story through original voices of actual participants who shaped the law. The FCPA’s story remains important and relevant to government agencies charged with enforcing the law, those subject to the law, and policy makers contemplating reform.Next, read the actual FCPA statute. It can be found here (in 50 different languages). When reading the FCPA realize that the law appears much more dense than it actually is. The FCPA’s anti-bribery provisions are divided into three separate prongs (dd-1, dd-2, and dd-3 for “issuers,” “domestic concerns,” and persons other than issuers or domestic concerns). While each prong contains certain differences – particularly as to jurisdictional issues – the key substantive provisions are essentially repeated three times.FCPA EnforcementTo start, it is important to recognize that the FCPA is enforced two different ways.The first (traditional) way is for the enforcement agencies (the DOJ or SEC) to allege FCPA violations and to prove those violations to a judge or jury in the context of an adversarial proceeding.The second more common approach over the past decade is for the enforcement agencies to utilize leverage over risk-averse business organizations and to resolve alleged FCPA violations through alternative resolution vehicles – such as a non-prosecution agreement or deferred prosecution agreement – in the absence of any meaningful judicial scrutiny.As to the first way, you should read every substantive FCPA judicial decision – after all there are not that many despite the FCPA being around for 38 years. At a minimum, read the following cases: U.S. v. Liebo, U.S. v. Esquenazi, U.S. v. Carson, U.S. v. Lindsey Manufacturing, SEC v. Straub, SEC v. Steffen, U.S. v. Kay, SEC v. Mattson, U.S. v. Bourke, SEC v. Jackson, U.S. v. Castle, and SEC v. World-Wide Coin.As to the second more common way of resolving alleged instances of FCPA violations, you may want to check out this article titled “The Facade of FCPA Enforcement.” In addition, this article titled “Measuring the Impact of NPAs and DPAs on FCPA Enforcement,” highlights how alternative resolution vehicles have become the dominant way the DOJ resolves corporate FCPA scrutiny and serve as an obvious reason for the general increase in FCPA enforcement over the past decade. To the many cheerleaders of increased FCPA enforcement, NPAs and DPAs are thus worthy of applause. Yet in a legal system based on the rule of law, quality of enforcement is more important than quantity of enforcement. Through empirical data and various case studies, the article measures the impact NPAs and DPAs have on the quality of FCPA enforcement and concludes that NPAs and DPAs — while resulting in higher quantity of FCPA enforcement — result in lower quality of FCPA enforcement.Despite the prevalence of NPAs and DPAs in FCPA enforcement, on occasion the DOJ or SEC are still put to their burden of proof, and more often than not, the end result is a defense win. This article asks the question – “What Percentage of DOJ FCPA Enforcement Losses is Acceptable?”Regardless of how an alleged FCPA violation is resolved, it is important to understand various FCPA enforcement theories by reading actual FCPA enforcement actions. All DOJ FCPA enforcement actions (minus a few exceptions) can be found here and all SEC FCPA enforcement actions (minus a few exceptions) can be found here. For a more in-depth review of every FCPA enforcement action since July 2009 (and most “old” FCPA enforcement actions), visit the FCPA Professor search page and look for the subject-matter tag “(year) enforcement actions.”Additional Reading on Enforcement and Related IssuesWhile FCPA enforcement actions by the DOJ or SEC are worthy of attention, a sophisticated understanding of the FCPA is to recognize that settlement amounts in an actual FCPA enforcement action are often only a relatively minor component of the overall financial consequences that can result from FCPA scrutiny or enforcement. By coining a new term of art – the “three buckets” of FCPA financial exposure – and through various case studies and examples, this article titled “FCPA Ripples” demonstrates how FCPA scrutiny and enforcement can impact a company’s business operations and strategy in a variety of ways from: pre and post-enforcement action professional fees and expenses; to market capitalization; to cost of capital; to merger and acquisition activity; to impeding or distracting a company from achieving other business objectives; to private shareholder litigation; to offensive use of the FCPA by a competitor or adversary to achieve a business objective or to further advance a litigating position.The below links contain extensive year-in-review articles regarding FCPA enforcement, enforcement agency policy, and related issues. Combine the below articles and you will have an extensive collection of FCPA enforcement statistics, trends, and other information over time.For 2014, see here.For 2013, see here.For 2012, see here.For 2011, see here.For 2010, see here.For 2009, see here.For a general overview of the FCPA and its enforcement in a Q&A format, see here for the “FCPA 101” page of FCPA Professor.Although much tends to be written about the FCPA and its enforcement, there are certain FCPA facts that are seldom discussed. Yet such facts, covering the entire span of the FCPA — from the statute’s enactment, to its statutory provisions, to FCPA enforcement, to FCPA reform, to the FCPA industry itself — occasionally bear repeating. This article, highlights ten seldom discussed FCPA facts that you need to know.Guidance / ComplianceIt is also worth your time to review other information and sources of guidance relevant to the FCPA.This include: the SEC’s 1981 guidance concerning the FCPA’s books and records and internal controls provisions (here); the DOJ’s and SEC’s 2012 FCPA Guidance (here); and DOJ FCPA Opinion Procedure Releases (here). For an article titled “Grading the FCPA Guidance” see here.An FCPA expert should also be well-versed on compliance best practices and benchmarking metrics that can be found in the following documents: the DOJ’s Principles of Prosecution of Business Organizations; the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines; and the OECD Good Practice Guidance on Internal Controls, Ethics, and Compliance.Looking for a fun way to benchmark FCPA compliance. See here for the article titled “How a Successful Football Organization Can Inform FCPA Compliance in a Business Organization.”FCPA ReformJust because the FCPA may be a fundamentally sound statute does not mean that the FCPA (or its enforcement) could not be improved.In November 2010, the Senate held an FCPA hearing (see this post for the full hearing transcript and vide0). In June 2011, the House followed with its own FCPA hearing and here is the transcript.Much of the discussion in both hearings focused on an FCPA compliance defense. To better understand how an FCPA compliance defense can better accomplish the goals of the FCPA as well as other policy objective see here for the article titled “Revisiting an FCPA Compliance Defense.”And Finally …The FCPA is not the only statute in the federal criminal code concerning bribery. Rather, the FCPA was modeled in large part after the U.S. domestic bribery statute, and when speaking of its FCPA enforcement program, the government has recognized that it “could not be effective abroad if we did not lead by example here at home.” Indeed, the policy reasons motivating Congress to enact the FCPA — that corporate payments were subverting the democratic process, undermining the integrity and stability of government, and eroding public confidence in basic institutions — apply with equal force to domestic bribery.Against this backdrop, this article titled “The Uncomfortable Truths and Double Standards of Bribery Enforcement” explores through various case studies and examples whether the United State’s crusade against bribery suffers from uncomfortable truths and double standards. Through these case studies and examples you can decide for themselves whether the U.S. government “practices what it preaches” when it comes to the enforcement of bribery laws and whether the United States is indeed “in a unique position to spread the gospel of anti-corruption.”
A “foreign official.”Without one, there can be no FCPA anti-bribery violation (civil or criminal). Who were the alleged “foreign officials” of 2017?This post highlights the alleged “foreign officials” from 2017 corporate DOJ and SEC FCPA enforcement actions.There were 13 core corporate enforcement actions in 2017. Of the 13 enforcement actions 7 (54%) involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged state-owned or state-controlled entities (“SOEs) with an additional 2 actions (15%) involving, in whole or in part, individuals associated with foreign health care systems.By way of comparison:in 2016, 78% of corporate enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here);in 2015, 55% of corporate enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here);in 2014 60% of corporate enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here);in 2013, 77% of corporate enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here);in 2012, 42% of corporate enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here at pages 348-353);in 2011, 81% of corporate enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here at pages 29-41);in 2010, 60% of corporate FCPA enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here at pages 108-119); andin 2009, 66% of corporate FCPA enforcement actions involved, in whole or in part, employees of alleged SOEs (see here at pages 410-44).In 2014, in an issue of first impression for an appellate court, the 11th Circuit set forth a control and function test for whether an alleged SOE can be “instrumentality” under the FCPA such that its employees are “foreign officials” under the FCPA. As highlighted here and more extensively in my Supreme Court amicus brief supporting the cert petition, there were many flaws in the 11th Circuit’s reasoning. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case. As to whether Congress intended employees of SOEs to be “foreign officials” under the FCPA, see here for my “foreign official” declaration.The remainder of this post describes (as per DOJ/SEC allegations) the “foreign officials” of 2017. As is apparent from the descriptions below, in certain instances the enforcement agencies describe the “foreign official” with reasonable specificity; in other instances with virtually no specificity.[Note: certain of the enforcement actions below technically only involved FCPA books and records and internal control charges or findings. As most readers know, actual charges in many FCPA enforcement actions hinge on voluntary disclosure, cooperation, collateral consequences, and other non-legal element issues. Thus, even if an FCPA enforcement action is resolved without FCPA anti-bribery charges, most such actions remain very much about the “foreign officials” involved – a fact evident when reading the actual enforcement action. Nevertheless, in 2017 there appeared to be one “pure” FCPA books and records and internal controls provisions case (Las Vegas Sands) in which it was unclear whether the DOJ believed that “foreign officials” were involved in the alleged improper conduct.MondelezSECIndian government officials to obtain licenses and approvals for a chocolate factoryZimmer BiometDOJ/SECMexico customs officials (the Brazil portion of the enforcement concerned using a “prohibited distributor” implicated in the prior, original enforcement action).SQMDOJ/SECChilean politicians, political candidates, and individuals connected to themOrthofixSEC“doctors employed at government-owned hospitals”Las Vegas SandsDOJThe enforcement action concerned the transfer of approximately $60 million to a Consultant for the purpose of promoting Sands’ business and brands. According to the DOJ: “Several of Sands’ contracts with and payments to Consultant had no discernible legitimate business purpose, Sands senior executives were repeatedly warned about the Consultant’s dubious business practices and the high risk of Sands’ transactions with Consultant [including those involving Chinese SOEs].”Rolls-RoyceDOJIndividuals at PTT Public Company Ltd. [a Thai state-owned and state-controlled oil and gas company, which owned extensive submarine gas pipelines in the Gulf of Thailand, and was controlled by the Thai government and performed government functions that the Thai government treated as its own]Individuals at Petrobras [a corporation in which the Brazilian government directly owned a majority of common shares with voting rights, while additional shares were controlled by the Brazilian Development Bank and Brazil’s Sovereign Wealth Fund]Individuals at Asia Gas Pipeline [AGP a joint venture between Kazakh and Chinese state-owned and state-controlled entities that was designed to transport gas through a pipeline between Kazakhstan and China. AGP was controlled by the Kazakh and Chinese governments and performed government functions for Kazakhstan and China]Individuals at SOCAR [the Azeri state-owned and state-controlled oil and gas company]Individuals at SOC [South Oil Company, an Iraqi state-owned and state-controlled oil company].Individuals at Sonangol [an Angolan state-owned and state-controlled oil company]LindeDOJhigh-level officials at the National High Technology Center (NHTC) of the Republic of Georgia, a 100% state-owned and-controlled entityCDM SmithDOJofficials in the National Highways Authority of India (“NHAI”), India’s state-owned highway management agencyHalliburtonSECSonangol officialTeliaDOJ/SECAn Uzbek government official, and a relative of a high-ranking Uzbek government official, with influence over decisions made by the Uzbek Agency for Communications and Information (“UzACI”) – this individual has been widely reported to be Gulnara Karimova] Alere SECIndividuals associated with a “set of entities known as an Entidad Promotora de Salud, or EPS, which provided health insurance services for their members. These entities were created by Colombian law as part of the Colombian government’s efforts to provide universal health benefits to its citizens. Under this system, EPSs were responsible for organizing and guaranteeing the provision of health services for their enrolled participants and managing their participants’ health risks. Among other things, EPSs contracted for health services on behalf of their participants through a network of public, private, and their own health service providers. EPSs were both private and government controlled.”SBM OffshoreDOJ“state-owned oil companies in Brazil, Angola, Equatorial Guinea, Kazakhstan, Iraq and elsewhere”Petrobras officialsnine Angolan officials within Sonangol and Sonusa. [Sonusa refers to Sonangol USA Co. which is described as a Houston-Texas based company that is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sonangol described as a state-owned and state-controlled oil company. Sonusa was controlled by the Angolan government and performed government functions for Angola.]”at least nine Equatorial Guinean officials within GEPetrol and MMIE. [GEPetrol is described as the national oil company of Equatorial Guinea, controlled by the country’s Ministry of Mines, Industry and Energy [MMIE] and performed government functions for Equatorial Guinea.”at least one KazMunayGas officials at least one Company 1 employee. [KazMunayGas is described as Kazakhstan’s state-owned and state-controlled oil company, controlled by the Kazakh government that performed government functions. Company 1 is described as a subsidiary of an Italian oil and gas company in which the government of Kazakhstan granted the company a concession as the operator of the Kashagan oil field development in Kazakhstan. In this capacity, Company 1 was acting in an official capacity for or on behalf of KazMunayGas in awarding contracts].”at least two Iraqi officials within SOC. [SOC is described as South Oil Company, an Iraqi state-owned and state-controlled oil company, controlled by the Iraqi government that performed government functions.].Keppel OffshoreDOJ“Brazilian Official 1 [described as an employee of Petrobras], Brazilian Official 2 [described as an employee of Petrobras] and the Worker’s Party [described as a political party in Brazil].” Free 90 Minute 2017 FCPA Year In Review Video A summary of every corporate enforcement action; notable statistics and issues to consider; compliance take-away points; and enforcement agency and related developments. Click below to view the engaging video tutorial. View
How much do you know about the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act? Let’s find out.To commemorate the FCPA’s 40th year, FCPA Professor is presenting the FCPA Challenge.Each Thursday during 2018, a question will be posed and the answer will be below the fold.This week’s question is: this enforcement action included allegations that a company subsidiary provided cash payments to Chinese state-owned hospitals and healthcare providers – including a mid-wife – employed by the Chinese government.Answer: Pfizer/Wyeth (see here and here).
James Morriss III, Thompson & Knight’s environmental practice group leader and Austin office leader, has been selected to join the American College of Environmental Lawyers (ACOEL).Morriss, a graduate of The University of Texas School of Law, focuses his practice on environmental permitting, compliance counseling, facility siting, including wetlands and endangered species work, legislative lobbying and administrative and judicial litigation before local, state, and federal environmental agencies and state and federal courts.The ACOEL is a professional association of lawyers who practice in the field of environmental law. Membership is by invitation only. To learn more, please . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Username Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook. Lost your password? Remember me Password
Lost your password? Username Password Remember me Stacie McNulty is a highly-respected authority on intellectual property. Her observations on the subject have been cited by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. But her long-standing commitment to programs dealing with HIV and other public health issues commands something close to awe. As a result, she’s a finalist in the upcoming Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Details in The Texas Lawbook.You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.
Source:http://www.media.uzh.ch/en/Press-Releases/2018/Effects-of-Drugs.html Jul 11 2018A new approach established at the University of Zurich sheds light on the effects of anti-cancer drugs and the defense mechanisms of cancer cells. The method makes it possible to quickly test various drugs and treatment combinations at the cellular level.Cancer cells are cells over which the human body has lost control. The fact that they are transformed body cells makes it all the more difficult to combat them effectively – whatever harms them usually also harms the healthy cells in the body. This is why it is important to find out about the cancer cells’ particular weaknesses.In certain types of breast and ovarian cancer, for example, such a weakness is given by mutations in genes that play a role in DNA repair. Treating cancer cells of this kind with a group of newly approved drugs – so-called PARP inhibitors – makes it difficult for these cells to replicate their DNA, and they ultimately perish. Normal cells, however, can solve such problems using their intact DNA repair machinery.Effect of drugs observed in thousands of cellsThe Department of Molecular Mechanisms of Disease of the University of Zurich uses cancer cell cultures to investigate the exact effects of this new group of drugs. “Our method of fluorescence-based high-throughput microscopy allows us to observe precisely when and how a drug works in thousands of cells at the same time,” explains postdoc researcher Jone Michelena. Her measurements have revealed how PARP inhibitors lock their target protein in an inactive state on the cells’ DNA and how this complicates DNA replication, which in turn leads to DNA damage. If this damage is not repaired quickly, the cells can no longer replicate and eventually die.Related StoriesBacteria in the birth canal linked to lower risk of ovarian cancerTrends in colonoscopy rates not aligned with increase in early onset colorectal cancerSugary drinks linked to cancer finds studyThe new approach enables researchers to analyze the initial reaction of cancer cells to PARP inhibitors with great precision. What’s special about the very sensitive procedure is the high number of individual cells that can be analyzed concurrently with high resolution using the automated microscopes at the Center for Microscopy and Image Analysis of UZH. Cancer cells vary and thus react differently to drugs depending on their mutations and the cell cycle phase they are in. The UZH researchers have now found a way to make these differences visible and quantify them precisely.Rapid and precise testing of cancer cells Outside of the laboratory, the success of PARP inhibitors and other cancer medication is complicated by the fact that in some patients the cancer returns – after a certain point, the cancer cells become resistant and no longer respond to the drugs. The high-throughput method employed by UZH researchers is particularly useful for this kind of problem: Cells can be tested in multiple conditions with short turnover times, and specific genes can be eliminated one by one in a targeted manner. Doing so can reveal which cell functions are needed for a certain drug to take effect.In addition, mechanisms of drug combinations can be analyzed in great detail. In her study, Jone Michelena has already identified such a combination, which inhibits cancer cell proliferation to a significantly higher extent than the combination’s individual components by themselves. “We hope that our approach will make the search for strategies to combat cancer even more efficient,” says Matthias Altmeyer, head of the research group at the Department of Molecular Mechanisms of Disease at UZH.
Source:https://www.burness.com/ Jul 12 2018Aeras, a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing vaccines against tuberculosis (TB), today announced the publication of the full results from a Phase 2, randomized, controlled clinical trial of two TB vaccines– the currently available BCG vaccine and an investigational vaccine, H4:IC31–in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM).This proof-of-concept study showed that vaccination can reduce the rate of sustained TB infections in a high-transmission setting, such as in uninfected, healthy adolescents in the Western Cape of South Africa where the study was conducted. In the trial, revaccination with BCG significantly reduced sustained TB infections in adolescents with a 45.4% vaccine efficacy. H4:IC31 also reduced sustained infections, although not at statistically significant levels, showing 30.5% vaccine efficacy. However, the trend observed for H4:IC31 is the first time a subunit vaccine has shown any signal that it may be able to protect against TB infection or disease in humans. In the trial, TB infections were measured by a blood test (QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube (QFT)) converting from negative to positive, and sustained infections were defined by a QFT test that remained positive for at least six months.Related StoriesNanotechnology-based compound used to deliver hepatitis B vaccinePrevalence of anal cancer precursors is higher in women living with HIV than previously reportedHIV therapy leaves unrepaired holes in the immune system’s wall of defenseJacqueline Shea, PhD, Chief Executive Officer at Aeras, said: “With this study, we showed that vaccines against TB infection can work. The results highlight the importance of investing in new approaches to fighting the leading infectious disease killer and to evaluating new concepts in clinical trials. Further, the collaborative effort established between industry leaders, nonprofits and clinical sites during this trial showed how powerful combining such forces can be for developing new interventions against a global health threat. The BCG results are important findings with significant public health implications that could lead to saving millions of lives. Likewise, the novel prevention-of-infection trial design can be used to inform clinical development of new vaccine candidates before entry into large-scale prevention-of-disease efficacy trials. We are very grateful to the trial participants and our partners and funders who enabled the conduct of this trial.”Initial results from the study were presented at the 5th Global Forum in New Delhi, India in February 2018.BCG is the only licensed tuberculosis vaccine available globally. H4:IC31 is an investigative subunit vaccine candidate being developed jointly by Aeras and Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines business of Sanofi (EURONEXT: SAN) (NYSE: SNY), and the Statens Serum Institut. The clinical trial was funded by Sanofi Pasteur, the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Aeras. The clinical trial was conducted at the South African Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative (SATVI) at the University of Cape Town and at the Emavundleni Research Centre (part of the Desmond Tutu HIV Centre). The study was approved by the Medicines Control Council of South Africa and the relevant local independent ethics committees.
Source:http://icus-society.org/ Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Sep 7 2018A simple enhanced ultrasound scan of the kidney is more accurate than computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance (MR) imaging in predicting whether suspicious masses are cancerous — and can eliminate the need for unnecessary biopsies and surgeries, according to a 10-year study presented today at an international medical conference in Chicago.”Contrast enhanced ultrasound is a very robust technique with an extremely high predictive value,” according to Dr. Richard Barr, who presented the findings Wednesday to members of the International Contrast Ultrasound Society. Barr is a professor of radiology at Northeast Ohio Medical University and is a member of the board of directors of the organization.Related StoriesContinuous personnel changes are a major cause of NHS ultrasound staff shortage, shows studyStudy shows how low-intensity ultrasonic waves can modulate decision-making process in the brainNew intervention shows promise for relief of shoulder pain in wheelchair users with spinal cord injuryBarr said that the study followed 721 patients with approximately 1,000 kidney masses for up to 10 years. Following contrast enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) exams, 367 of the patients were spared biopsy, surgery, or close follow-up, while 5 patients thought to have benign lesions actually had cancerous tumors.In a subgroup of patients initially believed to have a high probability of malignancy, CEUS found that 78% of the tumors were actually not malignant at all, according to Barr — and those patients were spared invasive biopsies or surgery to remove the tumor. In addition, in another subgroup of patients believed to have a 100% chance of malignancy, 38.7% of the kidney masses were found to be nonmalignant — and those patients also avoided surgery.According to Barr, the initial CEUS exams were so reliable that they also eliminated the need for monitoring and follow up imaging of some patients.CEUS uses liquid suspensions of biocompatible microbubbles that are injected into a patient’s arm vein during an ultrasound scan. The microbubbles reflect ultrasound waves as they flow through the body’s microvasculature with red blood cells, and are expelled from the body within minutes.Barr said that CEUS does not expose patients to ionizing radiation and the microbubbles present no risk of kidney or liver damage. He also noted that CEUS offers real time imaging and the opportunity for an immediate assessment of a tumor’s blood flow – which in turn indicates whether the tumor is malignant.Ultrasound contrast agents are FDA-approved for enhancing ultrasound images of the heart and liver, but they are used safety and effectively around the world for imaging other organs including the kidneys, according to Dr. Stephanie Wilson, a professor of radiology at the University of Calgary and co-president of the organization.”CEUS is an excellent imaging technique that is extremely reliable, and it is also the easiest to perform,” Wilson said.
Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Sep 12 2018The internet is rife with ads for health products, from weight-loss systems to arthritis cures–but whether they actually work can be difficult to discern. Now, experts at the University of British Columbia have devised a simple screening tool to evaluate if the products popping up on your newsfeed are likely to be scams.The Risk of Deception Tool assigns points based on the type and number of persuasion techniques used in the ad. If the ad includes a celebrity endorsement, it gets one point; if it uses pseudo-technical language, it gets another point. More points are added if the ad uses “mystical” language or claims that the product is very rare or in short supply. The higher the overall score, the greater the probability that the ad is a scam.Related StoriesStill-to-be-approved drug proves to be new option for treating active rheumatoid arthritisStudy shows link between BMI and disease severity in psoriatic arthritisSurvey: More than 50% of people with arthritis have tried medical marijuana or CBDThe system was devised by a team of two nurses, two doctors, two physiotherapists, a pharmacist and a social worker, all from UBC.”We were exploring internet health ads and found, not surprisingly, that the internet provided a massive market for people to promote, in some cases, completely deceptive products that are not based on any scientific evidence,” said lead researcher Bernie Garrett, an associate professor in the school of nursing.Researchers analyzed advertisements targeting 112 different health concerns. They found that the most common deceptive ads were those promoting bodybuilding and weight loss, followed by medicinal products, which claim to treat pain, asthma or other conditions, and lifestyle products, which include anti-aging or sexual enhancement remedies.”We also found a high number of advertisements from alternative health practitioners that made claims that were well outside what their therapies could reasonably achieve,” said Garrett.Most of the scams identified originated in the United States.”There were many wacky and weird ones,” said Garrett. “The one that surprised us the most was a video course that claimed to teach individuals how to repair their own DNA to achieve healing and spiritual changes.”Misleading health ads on the internet are concerning because consumers may end up self-medicating, say researchers.”Research shows that only about one per cent of people exposed to fraudulent offers eventually lose money to them,” said Garrett. “However, even if the worst outcome is that consumers are losing money, we should still be concerned. People may take these as actual therapeutic options for their own illnesses, rather than seek proper medical advice.” Source:https://news.ubc.ca/2018/09/12/new-tool-developed-at-ubc-screens-online-health-ads-for-deception/