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£25k Royal Society Science Book Prize receives record number of submissions

The Royal Society Science Book Prize has received the highest number in its 33-year-history, as the judging panel is revealed for the first time….

The Royal Society Science Book Prize has received the highest number in its 33-year-history as immunologist Professor Luke O’Neill is named chair of the judges. 

The £25,000 prize celebrates the best in popular science writing from around the world. A shortlist of six titles, from submissions published between 1st July 2020 and 30th September 2021, will be whittled down by the judges. 

Organisers revealed that a record number of entries – 267 – were received this year, the highest number in the award’s 33-year-history. This is an increase of 66% on last year’s submissions.

The judging panel has also been revealed. Immunologist, presenter and writer Professor Luke O’Neill (pictured) has been announced as the chair of judges for this year’s award. He will be joined by television presenter Ortis Deley, mathematician Dr Anastasia Kisil alongside author and creative writing lecturer Christy Lefteri and Clive Myrie, a writer and film-maker.

“Science communication has always been very important, to entertain, inform and inspire,” O’Neill said. “This has never been more relevant than this year, with scientists engaging with the public across all media on a daily basis because of Covid-19. A tremendously interesting number of books have been nominated this year, across a huge range of topics, making our job very enjoyable but also challenging. Science communication is clearly in very good hands.”

The shortlist will be announced in September with the winner announced at a ceremony in November. Each of the shortlisted authors will be awarded £2,500.

Last year the prize was won by Dr Camilla Pang for Explaining Humans (Penguin Books), which examined neurodiverse perspectives on everyday life. In 2019 Caroline Criado Perez won for her examination of gender bias in Invisible Women (Chatto & Windus). 

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This post originally posted here The European Times News

Matthew Akiyama, MD, Receives NIDA Avenir Grant

Avenir HIV/AIDs recipient Matthew Akiyama, MD, an assistant professor and clinician-investigator at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in New York City, is a blood-borne infections sleuth.

With a 4-year, $ 2.5M Avenir Awards grant from the National Institutes of Drug Abuse (NIDA), Akiyama and his colleagues plan to leverage the power of next-generation gene sequencing to further their work on HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV) transmission among people who inject drugs (PWID) in Kenya, Africa. “New sequencing technology will allow us to understand — at a very detailed level — the breadth of the quasi-viral species that exist within a single host,” Akiyama told Medscape Medical News.

PWID account for a large percentage of HIV/HCV co-infections and are central to HCV transmission globally. Understanding the network dynamics of transmission of one infection facilitates understanding of the other because they are often intertwined.

Akiyama’s novel approach embraces the spirit and philosophy of the Avenir Awards: using vital data to discover new avenues of prevention and treatment among at-risk PWID, in this case, those based on molecular epidemiology.

“Solving network dynamics will enable us to understand who in the community may be central to transmission pathways, as well how their behaviors lead to transmission. By understanding this, you can then target prevention interventions,” Nina Volkow, MD, NIDA’s director, told Medscape.

Part Sleuth, Part Anthropologist

“Dr Akiyama’s work is interesting. He mixes the whole concept of infectious disease and genetics of viruses with anthropology,” Volkow said. Akiyama’s study has multiple components that together may provide a template that can be scaled up into larger, global efforts.

The challenges of working with hard-to-reach populations such as PWID in low- to middle-income regions such as Sub-Saharan Africa are much the same as those seen in high-income regions. Those challenges include stigma, marginalization, limited interactions with the healthcare system, and inherent distrust in the system itself. Study recruitment (slated for fall or winter 2021) will start with response-driven sampling through needle and syringe programs in Kenya. That will be followed by chain referral or snowball sampling. Ultimately, Akiyama hopes to recruit roughly 3500 Kenyan PWID to reach a sample size of ~500 HCV-viremic participants over 2 to 3 years. He will then follow these patients to characterize HCV transmission networks.

Akiyama said that the Kenyan health authorities have been extremely progressive in rolling out medications for opioid use disorder as well as needle and syringe programs. “We’re hoping that those efforts have curbed the spread of blood-borne pathogens and we’ll be able to conduct an updated analysis to determine how widespread transmission has become,” Akiyama said. His previous analysis was conducted in 2019.

“The strong gradation from the coast inland to Nairobi (which at last count ranged from roughly 2% to 20%, respectively) can help us to better understand how molecular epidemiologic approaches can be used in areas of moderate and very low [HCV] prevalence to tailor interventions that target testing and linkage to care and move toward preventing outbreaks among populations who’ve seen very little spread thus far,” he explained.

In addition to the molecular analysis, Akiyama and colleagues plan to incorporate ethnographic and qualitative analyses among subgroups to better understand context-specific, local factors that drive or contribute to high-risk transmission in certain regions.

“This project will ultimately help to create a [two-step] template based on next-generation sequencing and phylogenetic analysis followed by qualitative analysis that have more widespread applications,” said Akiyama. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to carry out this research.”

Akiyama and Volkow report no relevant financial relationships.

Liz Scherer is an independent journalist specializing in infectious and emerging diseases, cannabinoid therapeutics, neurology, oncology, and women’s health.

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This post originally posted here Medscape Medical News

Argos receives ‘significant’ PS5 shipment ahead of restock ‘next week’

Argos aren’t the only UK retailer that is expected to be taking orders for the PS5 once again soon.

This week we’ve already seen Amazon UK and John Lewis open orders for the PS5 once again, with Very, Smyths Toys and ASDA also predicted to be taking orders again in the coming days.

While today it has also emerged that GAME are gearing up for its next PS5 restock.

The retailer has today updated its website to add new PS5 pre-order purchase options which have a release date of July 30.

According to @PS5UKStockAlert, GAME could have around 8,000 PS5 consoles up for sale in its next restock.

And the PS5 stock tracker account is predicting orders will open up once again at GAME on Wednesday July 21.

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This post originally posted here Daily Express

Journalist Andreas Kluth Receives The American Citizens Abroad, Inc. (ACA) Thomas Paine Award

American Citizens Abroad, Inc. (ACA) is pleased to announce its awarding of the ACA Thomas Paine Award to journalist Andreas Kluth.

WASHINGTON, D.C., UNITED STATES, July 13, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ — American Citizens Abroad, Inc. (ACA), the largest non-profit, non-partisan, Washington DC headquartered organization representing Americans overseas, is pleased to announce its awarding of the ACA Thomas Paine Award to journalist Andreas Kluth.Created in 1995 ACA, Inc. Awards | Washington, DC | (americansabroad.org), the Thomas Paine Award acknowledges common sense, creativity and boldness in the journalistic coverage of overseas Americans. ACA is pleased to confer this excellence in journalism award to Andreas Kluth in recognition of his balanced and straight-forward coverage of Americans living and working overseas.

Andreas Kluth is a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion and is currently based in Berlin, Germany. From March of 2017 to February of 2019, he was editor-in-chief of Handelsblatt Global, the English-language edition of Germany’s leading business newspaper. For the two decades before that, he wrote for The Economist — in London, Hong Kong, Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, and Berlin. Kluth is also the author of, Hannibal and Me: What History’s Greatest Military Strategist Can Teach Us About Success and Failure. Hannibal and Me: life lessons from history (andreaskluth.org)

Andreas Kluth is a dual national, US and German, and has written passionately about Americans living and working overseas; writing not only about their concerns and issues but also about who they are and their reasons for living overseas. His opinion pieces in Bloomberg and elsewhere have been cited by ACA and other organizations in their efforts with the U.S. Congress and Administration. “Andreas’ work to draw media attention to Americans overseas is an invaluable asset to the community for which we are most grateful,” said Jonathan Lachowitz, ACA Chairman.

Kluth proudly follows in the journalistic footsteps of Thomas Paine. Paine’s Common Sense, written in January 1776, made the argument for the U.S. Colonies to separate from England and described a revolution for independence as not only achievable but inevitable. Paine’s ability to present plain and forthright arguments helped garner the Colonists’ support for independence.

Paine lived in the nascent United States and abroad as an expatriate or American overseas, and in both places, he demonstrated the extraordinary power of the pen in stoking revolutionary fires to promote greater freedom and a more equal sharing of human rights by all mankind. “Andreas ability to communicate with forcefulness and resolve are clearly in the spirit of Thomas Paine. We hope his efforts will provide similar results for positive change for Americans overseas,” added Marylouise Serrato, ACA Executive Director.

Award ceremony to be determined based on scheduling. For more information on ACA, please see: www.americansabroad.org. For more information on Andreas Kluth, please see: https://andreaskluth.org/.

Contact information: [email protected] or +1 202 322 8441

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p class=”contact c4″ dir=”auto”>Marylouise Serrato
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BIOLYTICAL LABORATORIES INC. RECEIVES CE MARK FOR THE WORLD’S FIRST ONE MINUTE HEPATITIS C (HCV) ANTIBODY RAPID TEST

bioLytical announced today that its INSTI® HCV Antibody Test has received approval for immediate market entry into the European Union by its Notified Body

By providing access to the world’s first one minute HCV test, we are excited to play a role in reducing transmission in Europe to help diagnose and connect individuals to care.”

— Robert Mackie, CEO

RICHMOND, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA, July 12, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ — • bioLytical’s INSTI® HCV Antibody Test is the world’s first one minute test
• bioLytical has received CE Mark and approval to sell across Europe
• The test is portable, does not require any additional equipment, and can be performed in a multitude of settings with easy-to-interpret results in real-time
• Test performance in clinical studies demonstrated high accuracy of over 99%
• bioLytical’s quality system is MDSAP certified

bioLytical Laboratories Inc. (“bioLytical”), a global leader in rapid in vitro medical diagnostics, announced it received CE Mark for the world’s first one minute HCV Antibody Test, allowing it to sell its kits across Europe. The innovative rapid through-flow technology allows INSTI® to provide accurate test results in real-time, offering medical professionals the ability to test patients easily and flexibly in different locations.

Affecting an estimated 71 million globally, Hepatitis C (“HCV”) is a growing international health concern. It can remain asymptomatic and thus undiagnosed, and if left untreated, can cause serious health problems, including liver damage, cirrhosis, liver cancer and even death.

With both taking the test and receiving results in real-time, bioLytical’s INSTI® HCV Antibody Test will help connect more people to care. Treatment can cure more than 95% of people with Hepatitis C, but access to diagnosis is still too low. Ending an epidemic starts with testing. That’s why we’ve developed an all-new, one minute solution for HCV antibody testing.

“By using our proven INSTI® platform, we were able to take advantage of our rapid test technology to develop a fast and easy-to-use test with over 99% accuracy,” said Robert Mackie, CEO for bioLytical. “Ending HCV in Europe begins with testing. By providing access to the world’s first one minute HCV test, we are excited to play a role in reducing transmission in Europe to help diagnose and connect individuals to care.”

Leveraging bioLytical’s proven INSTI® technology, the INSTI® HCV Antibody Test was designed to identify HCV antibodies, paving the way for reliable and fast screening using a simple fingerstick method to receive results that are more than 99 percent accurate in only one minute. bioLytical will manufacture the INSTI® HCV Antibody Tests in its facility in Richmond, British Columbia, to sell and distribute across Europe.

Proven Testing Technology Now Broadly Available
The INSTI® HCV Antibody Test uses the same proven and innovative technology as the existing INSTI® platform, joining the INSTI® line-up of infectious through-flow rapid tests that have been available for sale in Europe since 2015, including the HIV-1/HIV-2 Antibody Test, the HIV Self Test, the Multiplex HIV Syphilis Ab Test, and the COVID-19 Antibody Test.

About bioLytical
bioLytical Laboratories Inc. is a privately-owned Canadian company focused on the research, development and commercialization of rapid in vitro medical diagnostics using its proprietary INSTI® technology platform. bioLytical has won several local and industry awards, including B.C. Exporter of the Year in 2019. We have been named Lifesciences B.C.’s Growth Stage Med Tech Company of the Year and have been featured on B.C.’s Fastest Growing Companies four years in a row, including the Globe and Mail’s Fastest Growing Companies list in 2020. bioLytical moved to a significantly larger, state-of-the-art facility in Richmond, B.C. in 2020 to accommodate the extraordinary growth achieved through our team. Providing accurate results in one minute or less, the INSTI® range includes the INSTI HIV-1/HIV-2 Antibody Test, INSTI® Multiplex HIV Syphilis Ab Test, INSTI® HIV Self Test, INSTI® Covid-19 Antibody Test, and now the INSTI® HCV Antibody Test. bioLytical sells its products in Europe, North America, South America, Africa, and Asia.

By delivering accurate results in real-time, INSTI® generates meaningful outcomes for medical professionals, patients, and public health organizations worldwide and is a key partner in tackling some of the world’s most severe healthcare challenges. Please visit www.insti.com and www.bioLytical.com for more information.

References
https://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12889-020-09515-6
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29427484/#:~:text=The%20availability%20of%20pangenotypic%20direct,8%2D12%20weeks%20of%20treatment.

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Derek Chauvin Receives 22 and a Half Years for Murder of George Floyd

MINNEAPOLIS — Derek Chauvin, the former police officer convicted of murder in the death of George Floyd, was sentenced on Friday to 22 and a half years in prison, bringing a measure of closure to a case that set off waves of protest across the nation over police abuse of Black people.

The sentence, delivered by Judge Peter A. Cahill of Hennepin County District Court, came more than a year after a widely shared cellphone video captured Mr. Chauvin pressing his knee on the neck of Mr. Floyd for more than nine minutes along a Minneapolis street. Earlier this year, Mr. Chauvin was convicted of second-degree murder, and the sentence followed emotional statements in court Friday by members of Mr. Floyd’s family as well as by Mr. Chauvin’s mother.

Mr. Chauvin, who spoke only briefly during the hearing on Friday, offering condolences to the Floyd family, has been behind bars since his trial, which ended in April. The judge said Mr. Chauvin would be credited with 199 days already served toward his sentence. Officials said he was being kept in solitary confinement for his own safety.

Before the sentencing hearing, Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric J. Nelson, had pressed the court for leniency, asking for probation and time served. Mr. Nelson wrote in a memorandum that Mr. Chauvin had not known that he was committing a crime when he tried to arrest Mr. Floyd on a report that he had tried to use a fake $ 20 bill to buy cigarettes. Mr. Nelson also argued that placing Mr. Chauvin in prison would make him a target of other inmates.

In seeking a 30-year prison sentence for Mr. Chauvin, prosecutors had argued that the former officer’s actions had “traumatized Mr. Floyd’s family, the bystanders who watched Mr. Floyd die, and the community. And his conduct shocked the nation’s conscience.”

The killing of Mr. Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, by Mr. Chauvin, 45, who is white, led to a national reckoning over racial injustice in almost every aspect of American life. Calls emerged around the country to defund police budgets, remove statues of historical figures tied to racism and diversify predominantly white corporate boards.

The maximum sentence allowed under Minnesota law for second-degree murder, the most serious charge Mr. Chauvin was convicted of, is 40 years. Under Minnesota’s sentencing guidelines, though, a presumptive sentence for someone like Mr. Chauvin with no criminal history is 12.5 years. The jury, which deliberated for just over 10 hours following a six week trial, also convicted Mr. Chauvin of third-degree murder and manslaughter.

In recent weeks, Judge Cahill had ruled that four so-called “aggravating factors” applied to the case, raising the prospect of a harsher sentence. The judge found that Mr. Chauvin acted with particular cruelty; acted with the participation of three other individuals, who were fellow officers; abused his position of authority; and committed his crime in the presence of children, who witnessed the killing on a Minneapolis street corner on May 25, 2020.

Mr. Chauvin’s conviction was a rare rebuke by the criminal justice system against a police officer who killed someone while on duty. Officers are often given wide latitude to use force, and juries have historically been reluctant to second guess them, especially when they make split-second decisions under dangerous circumstances.

Mr. Chauvin is one of 11 police officers who have been convicted of murder for on-duty killings since 2005, according to research conducted by Philip M. Stinson, a criminal justice professor at Bowling Green State University. The lightest sentence has been just less than seven years in prison, while the harshest was 40 years. The average sentence has been 21.7 years.

Mr. Chauvin’s sentencing on Friday, while a significant milestone, does not end the legal proceedings concerning Mr. Floyd’s death. Mr. Chauvin still faces criminal charges in federal court, where he is accused of violating Mr. Floyd’s constitutional rights. And three other police officers face a state trial, scheduled for March, on charges of aiding and abetting. Those officers, too, were indicted by a federal grand jury as well.

Author: Tim Arango
This post originally appeared on NYT > Top Stories

Prince William Receives First Dose of COVID-19 Vaccine

LONDON (AP) — Prince William said Thursday he has received his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine as Britain’s National Health Service expands it inoculation program to younger people.

William, 38, received his shot at London’s Science Museum, one of the large-scale vaccination centers opened around the country. A photo of the prince receiving his shot was posted on his social media account.

“On Tuesday, I received my first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine,’’ he wrote. “To all those working on the vaccine rollout — thank you for everything you’ve done and continue to do.”

Britain last week opened its national vaccination program to anyone over the age of 34. The program has been gradually expanded to progressively younger age groups since it began in early December.

Other members of the royal family, including Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, have also received their shots publicly to promote vaccine take-up.

More than 70% of Britain’s adults have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

Author: AP News The Associated Press
This post originally appeared on Snopes.com

Ronaldo receives ‘GOAT jersey’ after goalscoring feat – only for Juve to suffer embarrassing loss to minnows as title hopes fade

Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo was presented with a GOAT jersey on Sunday, but any joy was short lived as Juventus were embarrassed at home by minnows Benevento.

A short ceremony to honor the 36-year-old saw him presented with the shirt – which also contained the number 770 in reference to his Pele-surpassing career goal tally – by his chairman Andrea Agnelli.

The Italian businessman and FIAT board member has recently irked fans of the sport by proposing changes to the Champions League that would favor supposedly elite outfits such as The Old Lady. 

In ironic fashion, however, the Turin giants were dumped out of the competition by a unfancied Porto to match similar early exits in recent years at the hands of less well-resourced teams such as Lyon and Ajax. 

In today’s latest slip, Juventus remained 10 points behind leaders Inter Milan in failing to see off their 16th-placed, relegation-threatened foes. 

In the 69th minute, CSKA loanee Adolfo Gaich stole the spoils for the visitors much to the amusement of the nine times back-to-back title winners’ detractors. 

“Juventus presented Cristiano Ronaldo with a GOAT shirt before kick-off and then lost at home to little Benevento. Such a flawed project…,” remarked Spanish football journalist Ben Hayward.

“Flawed gesture, not flawed project. The project was ended by Porto. If they had done the GOAT thing before that match I’d have agreed 100%. He’s not there to win the league,” replied a Twitter user.

Such developments could see new manager Andrea Pirlo’s time in the dugout ended prematurely, while Ronaldo may also be forced to seek pastures new. 

Since the latest debacle on the continent, rumors have linked CR7 to a return to Real Madrid, where he lifted the iconic big-eared trophy on four occasions and enjoyed his best years.

In his absence, Zinedine Zidane’s men have been unable to find a suitable replacement despite the best efforts of former strike partner Karim Benzema.
Also on rt.com Ronaldo grabs best player gong in ‘strange but positive year’ & hints at playing until FORTY after choosing his best goal (VIDEO)

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Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury: Eddie Hearn receives ‘bizarre’ Far East offer

The highly-anticipated heavyweight unification bout between Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury could be set to take place in Asia after a huge offer was tabled to host the event by an unnamed individual. The all-British fight has been in the works for some time, with Matchroom supremo Eddie Hearn claiming earlier this week that a deal had been signed and sealed pending confirmation of the date and the location.
Fury and Joshua currently hold all four major heavyweight titles between them, meaning that a bout would crown the first undisputed champion of the division since Lennox Lewis achieved the feat 22 years ago.

The location has proved to be a key talking point in recent months, with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United States all having been mentioned as potential destinations.

The former has regularly been tipped as the front runner due to its prior success in hosting the rematch between Joshua and Andy Ruiz Jr in December 2019.

However, it appears as though Joshua and Fury could end up facing off in Asia after Hearn received an unconventional offer from a wealthy punter in the Far East.

The Matchroom chief, who promotes Joshua, refused to go into detail on the latest development but claimed that the individual in question is more than capable of meeting the lofty financial commitments required to host a major world title fight.

JUST IN: AJ and Fury have secret exit clause which could derail £200m fight

“I had an approach yesterday [on Wednesday], not from the Middle East, but it was the most bizarre approach,” Hearn told the Daily Mail.

“I can’t say who it was, but it was from a very wealthy individual and he wants to do something very special. We’ve had 20 approaches for this fight but you know which ones are serious.

“But this one was just well out there. And it’s a realistic option, money is not an issue with this guy. Commercially it’s a bit strange, but it’s not about that. It’s a trophy asset to say: ‘this is the biggest event in the world’.

“That’s the mindset of an individual who wants to bring it to his own country. It’s not about selling tickets, it’s not about government investment… it would be him saying: ‘I’d be paying for it’.

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“There’s a number for the fight, you hit the number, you get the fight and the number was not an issue for this individual.”

The Chinese enclave of Macau was previously touted as a potential location last year, but Hearn admitted that Wednesday’s offer was tabled from elsewhere on the Asian continent.

“Saudi have paid the site fee before, we’ve worked together before,” he continued. “It’s not complicated, it’s just about tying up the dates.

“But this offer is a bit different. All I will say is it’s in Asia, not Macau but not far away.”

Although the fight date is still uncertain, it has been suggested that the bout could take place in late June, early July, or even December.

Hearn addressed the speculation by confirming that the aim is to arrange a summer event, stressing that an end-of-year date is not being considered by any party.

“I see some of the comments saying the sites might prefer the fight in November or December,” he added. “But that is not what is on the table, that’s not what we are pitching.

“If the question comes back: ‘can we do it later in the year?’. The answer is no, that’s the date.”

Roger Federer receives Tokyo Olympics offer as Swiss makes gold medal his 'big goal'

“When I see the wall of champions, it’s great moments. Especially when I see that Roger won that year as well,” Bencic said.

“I mean it’s exciting for everyone.

“We were all counting the days (to his return). I thought he was playing today and then I was like, ‘Oh no!’ One more day we have to wait.

“He is coming back on my birthday (Wednesday).

“I wish him the best of luck. We are in contact sometimes and he is helping me a lot with some tips, things I need, and wishing me luck. I do the same.”