A cross-country collaboration

first_imgEight years ago, two former Stanford University postdoctoral fellows, one of them still in California and the other at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute (HSCI) in Cambridge, began exchanging theories about why patients with leukemia stop producing healthy blood cells. What was it, they asked, that caused bone marrow to stop producing normal blood-producing cells?And after almost a decade of bicoastal collaboration, Emmanuelle Passegué, now a professor in the Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research at the University of California, San Francisco, and Amy Wagers, a professor in Harvard’s Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, have the answer.They have found that cancer stem cells actively remodel the environment of the bone marrow, where blood cells are formed, so that it is hospitable only to diseased cells. This finding could influence the effectiveness of bone marrow transplants, currently the only cure for late-stage leukemia, but with a 25 percent success rate due to repopulation of residual cancer cells.University of California Professor Emmanuelle Passegué (right) also worked with Koen Schepers, who was the first author on the study. Schepers is now at the University Medical Center Utrecht. Photo by Cindy ChewTheir results, which were recently published online in Cell Stem Cell, show that leukemia cells cannot replicate in the bone marrow niche as well as healthy blood-forming stem cells can, so the cancer cells gain the advantage by triggering bone marrow-maintenance cells to deposit collagen and inflammatory proteins, leading to fibrosis — or scarring — of the bone marrow cavity.“They remodel the microenvironment so that it is basically callous, kicking the normal stem cells out of the bone marrow and encouraging the production of even more leukemic cells,” Passegué said. This model is a shift from the widely held theory that cancer cells simply crowd out the healthy cells.Passegué and Wagers stayed in touch, despite the distance between their laboratories, via annual, two-day, “off-the-record” symposiums of junior investigators at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). The meetings, which began in 2005 and have continued, require all registrants to keep presentations no longer than 15 minutes and only to discuss unpublished work. “It’s sort of Las Vegas rules,” Wagers said.At the second such meeting, Passegué was intrigued by Wagers’ cell isolation-based approach to studying the bone marrow niche, the environment where stem cells are found. In the ensuing years, the two scientists swapped protocols, chemical reagents, mice, and even postdoctoral researchers in the pursuit of discovering what causes healthy blood cell dysfunction in leukemia. “Wagers was really involved as a creative spirit in the development of this story,” Passegué said.The observation that leukemia cells can remodel the bone marrow niche parallels work done by HSCI co-director David Scadden of the Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital, who demonstrated that particular genetic modifications of bone-forming cells initiate changes in the marrow cavity that suppress normal blood formation and promote the emergence of leukemic cells. “So there’s this bidirectional communication that’s self-reinforcing, “Wagers said. “And if there’s a communication loop like that, you can think about interrupting in many different ways.”Passegué wants to understand how bone-marrow support cells are manipulated to sustain leukemia cells, instead of normal blood cells, in order to design therapies that block these detrimental changes. In the short term, her work could explain why 75 percent of bone marrow transplants are unsuccessful. “A poor niche is likely a very important contributing factor for failure to engraft,” she said. Her lab has shown that fibrotic bone marrow conditions can be reversed in as little as a few months by removing the bad-acting maintenance cells, and she is now investigating how to restore the healthy bone marrow environment in leukemia patients.Passegué and Wagers believe the success of this research reflects the value of scientific partnerships. “Both HSCI and CIRM understand the importance of fostering the open communication and collaboration that drives innovation in science,” Wagers said. The 2013 HSCI/California Junior Faculty Symposium will take place Nov. 8 and 9 at the University of California, Los Angeles.Koen Schepers, now at the University Medical Center Utrecht, was the first author on this study. The work was supported by the National Institutes of Health, CIRM, a NWO Rubicon Fellowship, and a KWF Fellowship.last_img read more

Ending HIV transmission by 2030

first_imgAfter four decades of fighting AIDS and the human immunodeficiency virus that causes it, the U.S. government is pressing forward with a plan to end HIV transmission in the country by 2030.The plan targets about 48 “hotspots” where transmission is concentrated with enhanced surveillance and tracking, as well as stepped up prevention and treatment efforts. It dovetails with a similar international goal supported by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), which also seeks to greatly reduce transmission by 2030.Max Essex, the Mary Woodard Lasker Professor of Health Sciences Emeritus and chair of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health AIDS Initiative, has been on the epidemic’s front lines from its start in the early 1980s. He was one of the first scientists to hypothesize that a retrovirus was the cause of AIDS and conducted early work that led to one of the first blood tests for HIV. Through the Botswana-Harvard Partnership, he conducted research on the global pandemic in southern Africa, among the world’s hardest-hit spots.Essex talked to the Gazette about the Trump administration’s plan to end HIV transmission — announced during last month’s State of the Union address — its chances of succeeding, and what the approach of such a milestone means to those who’ve worked in the field for decades.Q&AMax EssexGAZETTE:  What was your reaction when you heard about the plan?ESSEX:  I was a little bit surprised, but not hugely, because I think it was pushed hard by [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert] Redfield. Redfield has connections with Christian evangelical groups that he and others worked closely with in ’02 or ’03, during the second Bush administration, to set up the PEPFAR program [the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief].I’m sure that constituency, with Tony Fauci [head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases], still exists, although it’s probably somewhat back-burnered by the others who are stronger voices in the Republican Party right now.GAZETTE: How realistic is the idea that we can end transmission here in the U.S.?ESSEX: It’s realistic.Just as background, I’m on the UNAIDS advisory council. That was the group that initially proposed the 90-90-90 guidelines that recommend 90 percent of people who are HIV-positive in a given country should know they’re positive. Of those who are positive, 90 percent should be in treatment. And of those in treatment, 90 percent should be in complete viral suppression, meaning the treatment is working. And if the treatment is working, then they’re not infectious because virus levels in their body, including in reproductive tract fluids and blood, wouldn’t be infectious.If, by 2020, the world is — or given countries are — in adherence with 90-90-90, then 10 years after that, by 2030, there should be a 90 percent reduction in new infections. That has been interpreted by some as meaning the end of the epidemic, but it’s not really the end.That’s because the more cases that you successfully treat, the more HIV-positive people you’re keeping on drugs for a long time, maybe a lifetime. So, the total number of people who are infected goes up because they’re not dying.That plan has worked best in countries that have had the highest rates of infection — in southern Africa: Botswana, Namibia, places like that — where the populations were ready to be tested and get treatment and everything else.They’ve been doing extremely well and are already at 90-90-90. Probably in Botswana it’s 95-95-95.GAZETTE:  Really?ESSEX: Yes. We published a paper two or three years ago saying Botswana was almost at 90-90-90. The bottom line is that in places like that, in Namibia for sure and to some degree in South Africa and Swaziland and Zimbabwe, new infections are decreasing very dramatically, much more so than in the U.S.One of the reasons is probably because they’re generalized epidemics that affect a large fraction of adults. In the U.S., it’s an uneven epidemic that’s concentrated in certain populations and some of the poorest sections of big cities, like Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, where there’s high injection-drug use. It’s also in other communities, not necessarily the biggest cities, characterized by higher rates of hepatitis B and things that are associated with injection transmission, as well as cities that have high rates of gay-men transmission and poverty-related transmission.It’s logical the CDC would focus in on [those hot spots] because the CDC first gets the information through surveillance. They know which populations are most infected geographically, behaviorally, and otherwise. So, they are the most logical ones to draw up a plan that says we’re going to concentrate our resources for testing and “treatment as prevention” in those places where incidence is highest.It remains to be determined how universally accepted the interventions will be by those communities. “If, by 2020, the world is — or given countries are — in adherence with 90-90-90, then 10 years after that, by 2030, there should be a 90 percent reduction in new infections.” GAZETTE: Is that the biggest hurdle? Community acceptance?ESSEX: I think the biggest hurdle is participation by many in the highest-risk groups. That’s especially true in those places and for those subpopulations who’ve been most marginalized and outside of public health programs, like injection drug users who haven’t been exposed to clean needle exchanges and programs like that.That’s going to be very uneven, according to different state [programs] and local stigma and things like that. It will take a fairly involved analysis and a lot of education of the local political establishment, as well as of the population at risk.GAZETTE: And do you have a sense that the folks at the CDC and Health and Human Services and whoever else might be involved can pull it off?ESSEX: Redfield is certainly very knowledgeable, appreciates the magnitude of the problem, and knows what to do. But the extent to which he’ll get cooperation from local and regional politicians in places where there’s still a lot of stigma and discrimination, whether it’s based on sexual orientation or injection-drug use or whatever else, is not as clear to me.I think that’s a much bigger hurdle for places like the U.S. and other somewhat developed countries of the world as opposed to places like southern Africa, where it was a generalized epidemic early on.GAZETTE: That’s an interesting distinction you’re making. It sounds like the characteristic of the epidemic in southern Africa that made it such an existential threat — that most of the transmission was heterosexual and it was in the general population — has also made these prevention measures easier and more acceptable to the general population there. Here, antiretrovirals came in right away and the epidemic flirted with crossing into the general population, but we managed to beat it back, and the fear of AIDS has kind of receded. Is that success in some ways working against us in these last phases?ESSEX: Yes, though I’m not sure a lot of injection-drug users who are at higher risk have quite the same issues.But for example, younger gay men, some of whom may be fairly sophisticated and recognize that now, going on modern, three-drug regimens with drugs like Dolutegravir — which doesn’t generate drug resistance and is easily tolerated — is not hugely different from going on drugs for hypertension, in the context of taking drugs on a regular basis for the rest of your life, and not having huge side effects from them.GAZETTE: You’ve been involved with this epidemic from the start. Did you think you’d get to a point where we’d be talking about the end of transmission — clearly a critical milestone — without a vaccine? Researchers, ethicists wrestle with how to run a large study that could show effectiveness of ‘treatment as prevention’ Harvard licenses genotyping platform ESSEX: It depends on the timeframe in which you’re asking the question. In the 1980s or early 1990s, I would have said our only hope is a vaccine. There’s no chance we’ll get ahead of this with drugs.If it was in the early 2000s, before 2008 or 2010, I would say drugs are showing an awful lot of promise and the more people who are on them the fewer people who are going to get infected.But if it was five to 10 years ago, I would say it’s really looking very promising that drugs will be the answer and a vaccine isn’t even needed. Further, I’d probably say that it wouldn’t be possible to do efficacy trials on a vaccine in a conventional way [which would require control subjects to forego known, effective treatment, like PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis)].The change has been a combination of how well treatment-as-prevention is working to decrease transmission, and how well PrEP is working on high-risk groups who aren’t yet infected but are such high risk that drugs might prevent infection.I think those things, to those of us in the business, were apparent years before they were apparent even to the general health establishment.GAZETTE: You conducted trials on treatment-as-prevention — which aims to not only keep a person well, but also reduce their viral load to the point they’re not infectious, right?ESSEX: Beginning by about 2010. We’re getting answers to these questions and they’re clearly affirmative.It’s apparent to everyone now that you can do tremendous things with drugs. Even more than that, I would say the biggest change — that I wouldn’t have expected — is how well some of the drugs work. They don’t generate drug resistance because they’re well-tolerated, so people have no reason not to take them on a regular basis.GAZETTE: So, we have good drugs. We have a strategy to slowly strangle the epidemic as opposed to killing it quickly with a vaccine, and here we are?ESSEX: Yes. There was a timeframe where [many thought] such drug approaches wouldn’t work because the drugs were so expensive. Twenty years ago, some of us were saying, “Yeah, I don’t know how on earth they’ll ever be cheap enough or available enough for widespread use treating people at low-income sites.”GAZETTE: I remember that narrative. What happened to it? Did the price come down? Or did more money, from PEPFAR, the Clinton Foundation, and other sources, just become available?ESSEX: It was all of the above. The Clinton Foundation played a big role in that, for sure. And yet, making generics in India and a few other places played a big role in it too. And developing drugs that didn’t generate drug resistance, like Dolutegravir, played a big role. Now Dolutegravir is being used in Africa. For the future, newer slow-release formulations of such drugs will also be very important.So it was all of the above. Some things more than others, but it’s been quite a ride. Related Harvard-backed Botswana project to test treatment-as-prevention on wide scale Toward an AIDS-free generation Viral load as an anti-AIDS hammer Novel approach aids development of drug resistance testing products for HIV The Daily Gazette Sign up for daily emails to get the latest Harvard news.last_img read more

[The Source Podcast] Database Solution Update with Sam Lucido

first_imgThe Source Podcast: Episode #95: Database Solution UpdateAudio Playerhttp://traffic.libsyn.com/thesource/DellEMC_The_Source_Episode_95_audio.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Don’t miss “Dell EMC The Source” app in the App Store. Be sure to subscribe to Dell EMC The Source Podcast on iTunes, Stitcher Radio or Google Play and visit the official blog at thesourceblog.emc.comEMC: The Source Podcast is hosted by Sam Marraccini (@SamMarraccini) What does Hyper Converged mean to your data base platforms? Licensing, performance, protection? Where does Software Defined Storage fit? Sam Lucido (@Sam_Lucido) stops by with the details this week on Dell EMC The Source Podcast.last_img read more

Free Online Yoga Classes

first_imgAnd here’s a bonus video {45-Minute Spring Yoga Flow for Balance & Intention Setting} for the Spring Equinox yesterday! https://youtu.be/J2r4GSoaFrw  Namaste in Nature was planning on an official launch of the 2020 season this week but it’s crazy how much the world has changed recently. We are confident that life and business will return to normal-ish again soon, but until then, we are sharing the tools we use to stay happy and healthy via the following FREE videos.Now, more than ever, it’s important to put extra effort into maintaining your mental, physical and emotional health. Even if you’ve never practiced yoga or meditation or hiking before, here are 108 reasons (health benefits) as to why you should give it a try or keep maintaining your current practice. Video 1 – “10 Minute Sensory Meditation to Calm Down and Boost Immunity“ A 10-minute sensory meditation that will get us out of our heads and into our bodies. https://youtu.be/y1a1dZzlWy8 Video 3 – “Gentle Yoga for A Healthy Immune System” A gentle, immune-boosting yoga asana practice with plenty of twists and folds to help refresh the sinuses and detox the body. https://youtu.be/M8DyopN6klY center_img We will be so grateful if you subscribe to our Youtube channel and/or share these videos with colleagues, customers, friends and family. It’s FREE and we will be releasing many more yoga and meditation videos over the next several days and weeks that you can practice from the safety and comfort of your home. It will also help us work towards recovering lost income (getting paid by YouTube) from not being able to teach yoga in person right now.Sending some happy & healthy vibes your way and Happy Spring Equinox! Video 2 – “How To: Walking Meditation (Calm Down & Boost Immunity)” A guided walking/hiking meditation designed to get you outside into the fresh air and sunshine, which has been scientifically proven to help boost immunity or speed illness recovery. https://youtu.be/VhFprM6jgIYlast_img read more

South Dade Senior High wins mock trial crown

first_imgSouth Dade Senior High wins mock trial crown May 15, 2003 Regular News “Objection your Honor!”Those words rang through the Orange County Courthouse recently, but they were not the words of experienced trial attorneys, but those of high school students participating in the 2003 Florida High School Mock Trial Competition state finals.South Dade Senior High School from Dade County took the first place Lady of Justice trophy this year, defeating Tallahassee’s Lincoln High School in the finals. South Dade will now represent Florida at the National High School Mock Trial Championships, which will be held in New Orleans this month.The teams argued the fictional criminal case State of New Columbia v. Haley Brunetti, which asked the question whether the defendant, Haley Brunett, was responsible for the death of Jackie Potomski, who was shot and killed with Haley’s hunting rifle by Haley’s cousin, Nicki Blanc.“Teams consisting of six to eight students studied the case for five months in preparation for the competition,” said Kevin Haman, of the Florida Law Related Education Association – which sponsors the event – adding that 18 high schools and more than 170 students from across the state participated in the program.Pinellas Park High School finished third followed by Fletcher High School from Duval County, and William R. Boone High School from Orange County.More than 250 volunteers from Florida’s legal community also donated approximately 1,000 service hours to the exercise in justice, serving as judges and coaches in the mock trial circuit and state competitions. At the end of each round the judges gave critiques and helpful advice to the students.Bar President Tod Aronovitz, who addressed the students during the opening ceremonies, said the mock trial program teaches students about the legal system and the vital role the third branch of government plays in our society.“This exercise in justice helps students learn to respect the rule of law and understand the processes in place in our democracy for resolving disputes,” said Annette Boyd Pitts, FLREA’s executive director.Pitts said students who participate in the program not only gain a greater knowledge of the legal system, but they learn practical skills that will help them throughout their lives.center_img South Dade Senior High wins mock trial crownlast_img read more

West Nile transmission may involve wide range of animals

first_img The article states, “We believe that NVT is a plausible component of the WNV transmission cycle that may have contributed to its rapid spread in North America.” In particular, the results suggest that horses that are immune to WNV because of vaccination may be playing a role in transmission. In all five trials, some initially uninfected mosquitoes became infected, even though the 1-hour feeding time was too short for the mouse to become viremic, the authors report. Of 470 “recipient” mosquitoes that were tested for WNV, 18 became infected, for an average infection rate of 3.8%. In one trial, a 2.3% infection rate was found among 87 previously uninfected mosquitoes that had fed next to one infected mosquito. The current understanding is that mosquitoes contract WNV when they bite infected birds, which carry the virus in their blood. Infected mosquitoes then pass the virus to humans by biting them. Animals that are not susceptible to WNV are believed to be “dead-end hosts” that cannot pass the virus to uninfected mosquitoes. However, at this point the findings don’t necessarily imply a need for changes in WNV control measures, nor do they suggest an increased risk of human cases, Higgs said. Higgs S, Schneider BS, Vanlandingham Dana L, et al. Nonviremic transmission of west Nile virus. Proc Natl Acad Sci 2005 Jun 21;102(25):8871-4 [Full text] The report says most mammals are regarded as dead-end hosts for WNV because they either are not susceptible or because they become infected at too low a level to pass the virus on to biting insects. But the new findings suggests that mammals can play a role in transmission even if they aren’t susceptible to the virus or have immunity through vaccination. “If this is happening in the field, it has two consequences,” Higgs told CIDRAP News. “Transmission time is accelerated because you don’t depend on animals becoming viremic. And if you don’t need viremic animals to be involved, it means that any animal could transmit the virus.” But the new study indicates that mosquitoes can pick up the virus from carrier mosquitoes by feeding on the same host animal at the same time, even if the animal doesn’t have the virus in its bloodstream. The researchers call this “nonviremic transmission” (NVT).center_img Jun 24, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – The range of animal species that can contribute to the spread of West Nile virus (WNV) may be much broader than experts have believed, according to a study published recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Higgs said he doesn’t yet understand how nonviremic transmission occurs. “That’s a darn good question,” he said, adding that he plans several more experiments to try to find the answer. “In terms of control measures and things, we can’t say that anything needs to be different. People are still going to have to do the same things,” he said. Also, “Just because we’ve seen this, it doesn’t influence transmission in terms of numbers—it’s not going to have an effect on the number of West Nile cases.” The investigators allowed infected mosquitoes in a container sealed with nylon mesh to feed on an anesthetized, uninfected mouse by placing the mouse over the container. After the uninfected mosquitoes had fed for 5 minutes, a sealed carton containing uninfected mosquitoes was placed next to the first carton, and the mouse was positioned to lie over both cartons. Both infected and uninfected mosquitoes were then allowed to feed on the mouse for an hour, after which the mouse was euthanized and its blood serum was analyzed. The experiment was done five times. An experiment showed that mosquitoes can pick up WNV just by feeding on an uninfected mouse at the same time infected mosquitoes feed on it, according to the report by Stephen T. Higgs, an associate professor in the pathology department at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, and colleagues. “The population of vertebrates that may contribute to the WNV transmission cycle is probably much greater than was previously believed,” the article says. The authors say this may help explain why the virus spread across North America so quickly. The virus first emerged in New York City in 1999 and has spread to most US states and Canada since then.last_img read more

Brown signalization and educational waiting rooms have been set up in Nin

first_imgThe Tourist Board of the City of Nin has implemented two new projects through investments in tourist infrastructure.It is about educational bus waiting rooms in the area of ​​Nin Apartments, Grba and Poljica Briga (undeveloped areas that are an integral part of the Tourist Board of the City of Nin) and Welcome table destinations in the Tourist Board of an underdeveloped area (tourist places of an underdeveloped area that do not have access to the sea, and are an integral part of the Tourist Board of the City of Nin), for which funds were received from the Croatian Tourist Board in the amount of HRK 39.000,00.As pointed out by TZG Nin, after a series of positive emotions by tourists and locals related to the six arranged bus waiting rooms in Nin and rural areas, it was decided to continue this project due to educational processes aimed at informing the population, tourists and visitors. rural area of ​​Nin.Thus, through this new project, 3 bus waiting rooms have been arranged in Ninski Stanovi, Grbe and Poljica Brig, and the waiting rooms, in addition to their informative and educational role, also have an aesthetic experience. As part of this project, the waiting rooms in Ninski Stanovi and Poljica Briga, in addition to the motifs of these rural places, have additional attractive images of rare birds that live in the wider area of ​​Nin. The waiting room in Grbe, in addition to the motifs of that rural place and the picture, brings a story with information about the so-called triumphal arch, as tourists call the entrance door in the center of the coat of arms due to ignorance. Along with a picture of the rest of the doors of the oldest tobacco factory on the Adriatic, a floor plan and 3D view of the former factory was set up. There is also a text in Croatian and English that additionally informs about this cultural monument from the 18th century.Photo: TZG NinThe installation of tourist signs was carried out in the rural area of ​​the destination Nin, in order to better improve the living conditions of tourists in underdeveloped places. Three brown signposts have been set up for the Don Mar Donkey Farm in Žerava and one Welcome sign at the entrance to the City of Nin in Poljica Brig from the direction of the Municipality of Poličnik. Improving the living conditions of tourists is important because in rural areas, residents are increasingly turning to tourism.In 2017, there were 12 registered renters, apartments, camps and holiday homes with swimming pools in Grbe, 10 in Ninski Stanovi, 4 in Poljica Brig and 1 in Žerava, which is a total of 27 registered renters in the rural area of ​​the City of Nin, conclude the Tourist Board Nina.Arrangement of the promenade along the ramparts in the historic center of Nin – Coast of Petar Krešimir IV.Thanks to a donation from the Adris Foundation, promenades along the ramparts in the historic center of Nin are being arranged. The mentioned project of arranging the promenade would include the area along the mantle of the city walls, from the upper stone bridge and the upper city gate to the lower Nin bridge and Bardeline, and thus connect the two entrances to the historic center of Nin. In accordance with the special conditions of the Ministry of Culture, Conservation Department in Zadar, the promenade should be defined with minimal interventions, with decently designed urban equipment so that the emphasis is still on the city walls. “The implementation of this project, in addition to the arrangement of the protected historic core, would greatly contribute to the promotion of knowledge and information related to the culture and heritage of the City of Nin”Point out from the Adris Foundation and add that the donation of the Adris Foundation from 2014 arranged the approach to the church of St. Nicholas.last_img read more

Trump supporters must be voted out

first_imgKudos to Tom Williams’s May 19 letter which, in one concise paragraph, boiled down what is so very wrong with the Trump administration and its wannabe dictator. Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion With apologies to feline fanciers, you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting Trump or someone associated with him who a) has Russian connections; b) is enriching him/herself at the expense of the American taxpayers; and c) is supremely unqualified for whatever position he/she holds. Like dirty air and water? Pruitt’s your man. Ryan (“drill, baby, drill”) Zinke is another. Mick (“consumers don’t need no protection”) Mulvaney is yet another. The list is endless. They. Don’t. Care.Trump, known for his mean-spirited name-calling, deserves one of his own. Let’s call him “Drop’em, Spanky” (Thanks, Stormy). Lincoln had his team of rivals; Spanky has his team of toadies. If you don’t agree with Spanky, you’re fired, hence the yes men/women surrounding Spanky. That includes Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan and most of the Republican Congress — men and women who are complicit in their refusal to challenge this guy. New normal? There’s nothing even remotely normal about Spanky or this administration.Spanky swore to uphold the U.S. Constitution, a document he’s probably never even read. He has no understanding of the rule of law, no respect for the office of the presidency, and finally, absolutely no idea how to govern. He has mistaken the bully pulpit for bullying. The answer to all this corruption is vote in November. It won’t solve all the problems, but it’s a start.Cynthia SwansonNiskayunaMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationPuccioni’s two goals help Niskayuna boys’ soccer top Shaker, remain perfectEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Niskayuna girls’ cross country wins over Bethlehemlast_img read more

Blow for JLL as two staff walk

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Alpha Bank Secures USD 250 Mn for Shipping Industry

first_imgGreek lender Alpha Bank has completed a financing transaction of USD 250 million through shipping securitisation with US investment bank Citi. “The successful completion of this new financing transaction with a top international financial organisation demonstrates once more the bank’s ability to diligently support such transactions and contributes significantly to the implementation of Alpha Bank’s business goal for funding diversification by utilising all its assets efficiently,”  CEO of Alpha Bank, Demetrios P. Mantzounis said.This is the second such transaction carried out by the bank which follows the inaugural shipping securitisation issuance of USD 500 million in 2014.The transaction is a non-recourse 4-year term dollar funding with a unique structure and the only shipping securitisation transaction placed by a Greek bank, according to Alpha Bank. “The transaction underlines Citi’s strong and continued commitment to working with Alpha Bank and key industry partners in developing and delivering innovative market solutions to the shipping industry,” Citi’s EMEA Head of Markets and Securities Services, Leonardo Arduini, commented.The maritime sector continues to suffer from the retrenchment of its traditional capital sources.The availability of funding for shipowners, which has already been scarce, is becoming ever more restricted and further threatened by the pressure from regulators, in Europe in particular.last_img read more