Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Brain cancer growth halted by absence of protein

“We thought that when we put glioma cells into a mouse brain that was neuroligin-3 deficient, that might decrease tumor growth to some measurable extent. What we found was really startling to us: For several months, these brain tumors simply didn’t grow,” said Michelle Monje, MD, PhD, assistant professor of neurology and senior author of the study. The findings suggest that interrupting the neuroligin-3 signal could be a helpful strategy for controlling high-grade gliomas in human patients, Monje added.

High-grade gliomas are a group of deadly brain tumors that include adult glioblastoma, the brain cancer now affecting U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona; anaplastic oligodendroglioma; pediatric glioblastoma; and a pediatric tumor called diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma. Five-year survival rates are 60 percent for anaplastic oligodendroglioma, around 10 percent for adult and pediatric glioblastomas and virtually nonexistent for DIPG. New treatments are urgently needed.

Hijacking the normal machinery

The new findings build on prior research published by Monje’s team in 2015. At that time, the scientists showed that neuroligin-3 fueled the growth of high-grade gliomas. This was surprising because the protein is a part of the normal machinery of neuroplasticity in a healthy brain, and it is a relatively new concept that cancer can hijack an organ’s healthy function to drive cancer growth.

In the new study, Monje’s team examined mice that were genetically engineered to lack neuroligin-3. These mice have nearly normal brain function. However, when their brains were implanted with any of the forms of human high-grade glioma, the cancer cells could not proliferate. The growth stagnation persisted for several months.

“Lack of neuroligin-3 doesn’t kill the cancer cells; the cells that are there remain there, but they do not grow,” Monje said. However, 4½ months after implantation, tumors in some mice circumvented their dependency on neuroligin-3 and began to grow again, she added.

Effect specific to high-grade gliomas

The researchers also tried implanting the brains of mice lacking neuroligin-3 with human breast cancer cells. Lack of neuroligin-3 did not affect breast cancer growth, showing that the effect is specific to high-grade gliomas.

We will have to attack these tumors from many different angles to cure them.
The growth-stagnation effects, conserved across different classes of high-grade glioma, were unexpectedly strong. To find out why, the researchers conducted follow-up experiments that examined the cell signals involved in neuroligin-3’s role in the division of glioma cells, which demonstrated that neuroligin-3 activates multiple cancer-promoting signaling pathways and also increases the expression of genes involved in cell proliferation, promotion of malignancy, function of potassium channels and synapse function. The researchers now believe that neuroligin-3 is more than just a gatekeeper of glioma cell division, though further research is needed to clarify its exact role, Monje said.

The team also explored whether blocking neuroligin-3 has therapeutic potential for treating gliomas. Using mice with normal neuroligin-3 brain signaling and human high-grade gliomas, the researchers tested whether two inhibitors of neuroligin-3 secretion could stop the cancers’ growth. One of the inhibitors has never been tested in humans, but the other has already reached phase-2 clinical trials as a potential chemotherapy for other forms of cancer outside the brain.

Both inhibitors significantly reduced glioma growth during a short-term trial, suggesting that the strategy of inhibiting neuroligin-3 secretion may help human patients.

‘Clear path forward for therapy’

“We have a really clear path forward for therapy; we are in the process of working with the company that owns the clinically characterized compound in an effort to bring it to a clinical trial for brain tumor patients,” Monje said. Inhibition of neuroligin-3 will not represent a cure for high-grade gliomas, she cautioned, since it does not kill the cancer cells. Ultimately, she hopes to combine it with other treatment strategies against the tumors.

“We will have to attack these tumors from many different angles to cure them,” Monje said. But given how devastating the tumors are, the possibility of using neuroligin-3 inhibition to slow tumor progression is a hopeful development, she added. “Any measurable extension of life and improvement of quality of life is a real win for these patients.”

The team’s work is an example of Stanford Medicine’s focus on precision health, the goal of which is to anticipate and prevent disease in the healthy and precisely diagnose and treat disease in the ill.

Other Stanford co-authors are undergraduate Lydia Tam; life science research associate Pamelyn Woo; and graduate students James Lennon, Surya Nagaraja and Shawn Gillespie. Monje is a member of Stanford’s Child Health Research Institute, the Stanford Institute for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Biology, Bio-X, the Stanford Cancer Institute and the Stanford Neurosciences Institute.

Scientists from Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences also contributed to the study.

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better medicine for women help everyone

Q. What do you consider the biggest challenge to ensuring that sex and gender are routinely considered as variables in biological research?

Stefanick: There is a systematic lack of recognition, and therefore interest, among basic researchers of the possible role of sex in the questions they are pursuing, and also a general lack of understanding of what “gender” is and that it is not synonymous with “sex.”

It’s crucial, for example, that the differences in the sex of chromosomes or the differences in hormone-producing glands — and hormone levels — be considered in any clinical research so that it and any resulting treatment represent both men and women.

New diagnostic tests address the divide in some research, especially with regard to identifying and treating heart disease in women, but prevention and treatment guidelines are still based primarily on research that was mostly conducted on males.

Q. What areas of medicine can most quickly benefit from a shift in focus to improve standards of care for women?

Stefanick: Raising awareness of sex differences in immunology and cancer would be of immediate benefit to women, but would also benefit a large proportion of men.

It is worth pointing out that cardiovascular medicine has been a leader in recognizing the importance of differences between women and men, particularly younger women versus their male counterparts, in specific conditions, symptoms, diagnoses and optimal treatments. Yet a large proportion of people, including physicians, still consider heart disease a “man’s disease” and do not apply the best prevention or treatment approaches for women to their female patients.

Q. You say that considering gender and sex in both research and treatment benefits everyone. How does it benefit men, and why do you think this is especially important now?

Stefanick: The more we learn about how treatments affect women differently from men, the more we also learn about the range of biological implications among men and women, as well as the “spectrum” of biological sex rather than the contrasts and differences between them.

For example, 15 percent of women who were prescribed what was at first considered the standard dose of Ambien experienced driving impairment eight hours after taking it. In addition, 3 percent of the men reported the same side effect when taking the then-standard dose of the widely prescribed sleeping medication. The side effect alerted physicians to the need to lower the dose in women, but it also indicates a need to consider how doses apply to men, as well.

The same principle applies to understanding that few diseases affect only men or only women. So the more we learn about diseases that affect one sex predominantly, the more we should learn about detecting and treating that disease in the opposite sex.

Q. You are obviously passionate about making medicine more inclusive. What drives you to be such a strong advocate for change?

Stefanick: Most scientists want to have precise and accurate information about whatever they are studying, and I don’t believe we can have this without seeking a more comprehensive understanding of sex and gender than our current, biased knowledge base. 

There is plenty of evidence that men and women differ in many ways beyond reproductive function, and yet we tend to offer a one-size-fits-all medical approach. On the other hand, our societal biases overemphasize sex and gender differences in many domains that lead to biased medical practice, which is also harmful.

But beyond medicine, understanding a fuller range and spectrum of male to female biology would give us more insight into basic biology.

Q. Do you have suggestions for how women can advocate for themselves in interactions with physicians and others involved in their care?

Stefanick: Ask physicians questions about what evidence there is in women (and/or whatever age group they fall into, or if pregnant) for any diagnostic test or treatment they are about to conduct or prescribe. This would raise awareness among physicians that they probably never learned this in medical school or pursued these questions on their own.

In a nutshell, physicians assume that what they’ve learned is appropriate for most of their patients. In fact, there may be little to no information about gender differences for many of the drugs and treatments they prescribe. Physicians should think about their oath to “do no harm” in the context of what they know or do not know about how they are managing the health care of the full range of patients in their practice, particularly women, who have often not been included in clinical studies or who have not been studied across the range of their reproductive phases.

We need to raise awareness of the fact that we are not providing optimal care and may even be harming half of our patients, and also that we have many biases that lead to wrong assumptions which may be thwarting our progress in understanding basic biology.

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new technique that uses light to separate mirrored molecules

Molecules made in labs often have a downside that nature mysteriously avoids. The problem is that many molecules are chiral, which means they have an asymmetrical structure. A consequence of chirality is that when we synthesize a chiral molecule we also often make its doppelganger, a mirror image of the intended molecule. The two may look similar but, like the right and left hand, they aren’t interchangeable.

Depending on the handedness, the molecule limonene smells like oranges or turpentine, ibuprofen can be four times more potent and thalidomide either treats morning sickness or leads to severe birth defects.

“Approximately 50 percent of drugs and 30 percent of agrichemicals are chiral, which means they can be left- or right-handed. Of those, more than 90 percent are sold as mixtures of both handed molecules because it’s so hard to separate them,” said Jennifer Dionne, associate professor of materials science and engineering at Stanford University. The normal chemical methods of separating molecules – to keep the good version and weed out the bad – are expensive, time-intensive or inefficient.

Dionne’s lab has now shown one approach that holds promise for separating chiral molecules. It involves a nanostructured filter that, when illuminated with a laser, attracts one handed specimen while repelling its mirror image. The team published this technique in the Sept. 25 issue of Nature Nanotechnology.

A light handshake
Focused light can change the momentum of an object. This effect has been used to create incredible tools, called optical tweezers, which allow scientists to manipulate particles with highly focused beams of light. (It was his work with optical tweezers that earned Steven Chu, professor of physics at Stanford and professor of molecular and cellular physiology in the Stanford School of Medicine, the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1997.) Although the idea of tweezing apart chiral forms has seemed appealing, many of the molecules we want to target are too small to be pulled apart by optical forces directly.

Yang Zhao, a postdoctoral fellow in the Dionne lab, overcame that weakness by creating a nanostructure that allows circularly polarized light to interact more strongly with small specimens. The light path in the nanostructure maps a spiral in one direction but not the other. Once the chiral light has passed through this path, it interacts with molecules that complement its shape and pulls those downward.

The researchers tested their prototype by measuring the forces exerted on chiral specimens. They built a tool called a chiral optical force microscope, which combines the optical tweezers with an atomic force microscope (AFM), a tool capable of resolving the chemical structure of a single molecule. A chiral AFM tip served as the chiral specimen and, at the same time, mapped out the forces specific to the handedness of the tip. They showed that the optical forces produced by their tweezers are strong enough to separate certain chiral molecules.

Building the optical filter
The team has not yet tested the tweezers on actual chiral molecules, but Zhao has begun quantifying the forces they are able to apply to DNA and certain proteins. These chiral molecules have a specific handedness in nature but can be either handedness if produced in a lab.

The next step will be assembling their tweezers into a sort of filter that can separate two forms of a drug or other molecules.

“We will put many of these nanostructures on a microfluidic chip where a drug of interest can be introduced,” said Zhao. “If it works as we want it to, we should be able to have the drug separated upon illumination.”

In addition to sorting drugs to make them safer or more effective, the researchers think their tweezers could be put to other uses, such as monitoring the folding or unfolding of a protein or enabling light-mediated synthesis of chiral chemicals.

Stanford co-authors of this paper include Brian Baum, Justin A. Briggs, Alice Lay, Olivia Alexandra Reyes-Becerra and Amr A.E. Saleh, who is also of Cairo University in Giza, Egypt. Additional co-author Marie Anne van de Haar is at FOM Institute AMOLF in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Dionne is also a member of Stanford Bio-X, an affiliate of the Precourt Institute for Energy and a member of the Stanford Neurosciences Institute.

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Monday, 25 September 2017

Researchers at the University of Washington have invented a prototype phone that makes calls using energy from ambient radio waves and sunlight instead of a battery.

Researchers at the University of Washington have invented a prototype phone that makes calls using energy from ambient radio waves and sunlight instead of a battery.

watch video for full understanding

Sunday, 24 September 2017

options for U.S. in dealing with North Korea

Stanford News Service interviewed two Stanford experts about the escalating situation between the two countries and what options leaders have on the table when it comes to North Korea.

Michael R. Auslin is the inaugural Williams-Griffis Research Fellow in Contemporary Asia at the Hoover Institution. He specializes in global risk analysis, U.S. security and foreign policy strategy, and security and political relations in Asia.

Gi-Wook Shin is a professor of sociology, a senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and director of the Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center.

Since North Korea conducted its first nuclear test in 2006, the United Nations and individual countries, including the U.S., have imposed several sanctions on the country. Despite those efforts to pressure North Korea to denuclearize, the country’s nuclear capabilities have steadily increased. Why do you think these previous efforts did not work?

Auslin: North Korea has been intent on getting a nuclear weapon for decades, so the basic premise that Pyongyang would bargain away its program was likely faulty. Serious, comprehensive sanctions were never tried, in part because of Chinese and Russian opposition. By effectively taking the threat of the use of force off the table, previous administrations gave Pyongyang no incentive to take negotiations seriously. Previous North Korean undermining of agreements resulted in no serious cost and instead spurred Washington and its allies to offer further negotiations.

Shin: I think that the main obstacles to the previous efforts to pressure North Korea were China and Russia’s partial support for, and not-so-full implementation of, the sanctions. For instance, despite Beijing’s announcement that it would uphold the sanctions, border trade and economic activities between China and North Korea continued, and Beijing knowingly allowed this to happen. Additionally, North Korea is so used to living under difficult economic circumstances that it has found ways to be less affected by sanctions, learning how to get around sanctions – e.g., through smuggling – instead.

What does North Korea hope to gain by amassing a nuclear arsenal?

Auslin: North Korea has wanted to prevent the possibility of any foreign attack and a nuclear capability is the best means of achieving that goal. It also seeks to use any means to intimidate its neighbors and prevent them from undertaking any anti-North Korean action. It also may hope to end its international isolation by fielding a nuclear arsenal so that it can no longer be “ignored” by the international community.

Shin: By amassing a nuclear arsenal, North Korea hopes to secure the Kim regime internally and externally. Nuclear development is a main pillar of Kim’s byeongjin policy, a policy of simultaneous development of nuclear weapons and the economy. Once North Korea obtains nuclear state status, it will try to negotiate with the U.S. and South Korea for what it really wants. This could be economic support, international recognition, a peace treaty with the U.S., etc.

Are there still diplomatic means of addressing this situation that have not been explored? What are they and what is the likelihood they would be effective?

Shin: I am a believer in diplomatic power and continue to think that we shouldn’t give up on diplomacy, but it’s true that all previous diplomatic efforts with North Korea have failed, and it is questionable whether any diplomatic approach will be effective at this point. But one possible – perhaps final – approach that has not yet been explored is a Trump-Kim summit at which the two leaders might make a “big deal” – that is, to get North Korea to denuclearize in exchange for a normalization of their relationship, i.e., a peace treaty, between North Korea and the U.S. But this would be an extremely difficult thing to pull off, both politically and diplomatically.

Auslin: No package of incentives has been effective for the past quarter-century, and both bilateral and multilateral negotiations have failed. There is little reason to believe that there are untried diplomatic means that can make a breakthrough where so many have failed.

Can a diplomatic solution be reached without the cooperation of China?

Shin: China has always advocated diplomacy with North Korea, and I believe that China’s cooperation is essential, but I would also caution against relying or counting on China too heavily. From China’s perspective, the main reason for North Korea’s nuclearization has to do with the American threat – perceived or real – to its national security.

Auslin: China has shown little appetite for constructively solving the North Korean crisis through diplomatic means. Moreover, it is unclear that China retains significant political influence in Kim Jong-un’s era, even given the importance of Chinese trade with North Korea. However, if Washington and Beijing decided that a more coercive approach was necessary, then China would have a major role to play.

What are the military options on the table for the U.S.?

Auslin: Very few, short of all-out war. The North Korean nuclear program is too advanced and dispersed to be taken out by pinpoint bombing, and its missiles are on road-mobile launchers when not hidden, making them difficult to track and destroy. Seoul remains at risk from thousands of conventional artillery launchers that would certainly be used in the event of an American strike inside North Korea.

Shin: There are a number of possibilities, including a surgical strike, but given that North Korea would most likely retaliate by attacking South Korea – an action that would lead to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of South Korean citizens, plus a good number of U.S. soldiers and citizens in the country – it’s not a tempting option. The U.S. government and its military are well aware that any military action would be very dangerous.

What potential actions could lead to even more destabilization and should be avoided?

Shin: Any major military action should be avoided, as it would put both South Korea and possibly the U.S. at great risk. Given that North Korea will continue its efforts to become a nuclear state, and given that military options are not viable, we may have to find a way to live with a nuclear North Korea. It is a reality that we have worked hard to avoid, but time is not on our side. I hear more and more South Koreans calling for South Korea to go nuclear now and a similar movement could begin in Japan. This would mean that the region is entering into a very unfortunate and dangerous situation.

2017 Bright Award given to green energy innovators

When the 2008 financial crisis hit Ukraine, the Zinchenko brothers, Andrij and Roman, both lost their jobs in media and communications. Trying to make the most of their unexpected free time and severance money, the brothers decided to help finish a house – originally built for evacuees from Chernobyl Displacement Area – that their parents had bought about 40 miles outside Kiev.

That decision, and what it taught them about the energy markets in Ukraine, led the brothers into a new career supporting green energy innovation. Less than a decade later, the Zinchenkos have built a thriving sustainable energy education and innovation community, founding one of the first green energy incubators in Ukraine, Greencubator. A network of sustainable energy enthusiasts and experts, Greencubator encourages technical, social and economic energy innovation through education, media initiatives, mentorship and events, including large-scale hackathons.

In recognition of their groundbreaking work, the Zinchenkos have been awarded the 2017 Stanford Bright Award. This $100,000 prize is given annually to recognize otherwise unheralded contributions to global sustainability.

“Stanford Law School alumnus Ray Bright, who was a lifelong conservationist, established the Bright Award,” said Law School Dean M. Elizabeth Magill. “There are two goals of the Bright Award that were Ray’s ideas: one is to recognize unsung heroes of environmental conservation; the other is to increase the influence of their work by giving it international recognition.”

Learning by doing
Assessing what needed to be done to restore the former evacuee house, the Zinchenko family members decided to complete much of the work themselves. They heard a friend had recently installed his own energy and water systems and they could rely on the knowledge of their father, a history professor who has a degree in math and electrical engineering. The brothers were also emboldened by the legacy of their do-it-yourselfer grandfather Leonid and nature-loving grandmother Ganna.

After six months or so, the Zinchenkos and their father finished most of the plumbing and wiring on the structure themselves, including as many energy-smart solutions as they could devise.

Then, when it came time to finally hook the home up to the power grid, they were given the choice to either pay to install new transformers and power lines or to bribe the power company representatives. This outright corruption stood in stark contrast to the Zinchenkos’ successful independent work up to that point and gave Andrij and Roman a new ambition: the democratization of energy.

“I believe that energy democracy and open grids will unlock freedom, growth and innovation opportunities on a scale similar to what the internet did,” Roman said. “And I hope someday even the house we built will feed electricity into the grid.”

Innovators and inspirations
The Zinchenkos founded Greencubator in 2009. Since then it has brought together seasoned experts in sustainable energy, those starting to develop new energy solutions and people who are only just beginning to learn more about energy and sustainability.

Ukrainian startups Ecoisme and uMuni are examples of efforts helped along by Greencubator. Ecoisme, an app-enabled home energy monitor startup, won Greencubator’s 2013 TeslaCamp, an open-air, off-the-grid, solar-powered hackathon. A joint hackathon with Lviv Business School, called Smart EnergyHackathon, furthered the progress of uMuni, a service that automatically monitors and analyzes energy efficiency on the municipal level using data from meters. Soon after the hackathon, uMuni was tested in Lviv and saved the city over $1 million. Roman still acts as an adviser to both startups.

In 2015 Greencubator launched Hack4Energy, one of the largest parallel hackathons in Eastern Europe, which connects representatives from several Ukrainian cities via video-link to develop new sustainable energy solutions. Greencubator is also the origin of the energy group Reanimation of Package Reforms, which Andrij co-founded and managed. This coalition of over 70 nongovernmental organizations and independent experts from all across Ukraine is working to develop, promote and advocate for energy reform solutions.

In 2016 Greencubator also entered new sectors, releasing a documentary, “There Is Life Here,” dedicated to Chernobyl-area revival, and the video series “Energy Heroes,” portraying Ukraine’s green innovators. It also translated StartupAmsterdam’s book Startup City to help Ukrainian cities grow startup ecosystems.

“There are the stories of people finding their calling in energy and sustainability with some impact from our awareness work,” said Roman, when asked about the success of Greencubator. “Learning that some of our talks defined personal paths of some amazing people I know, thanks to Greencubator, was really important for me during some tough days in my life.”

In addition to his Greencubator roles, Roman is a visiting lecturer at Kiev School of Economics and Lviv Business School, and has hosted and curated TEDxKiev for several years. With support from Greencubator, Andrij also works on fundraising for EnergyTorrent, which is developing open-source components to allow people to produce their own renewable energy technology, and for SolarSprouts, a community-owned solar power plant which raises funds for energy and solar sustainability startups.

“The Zinchenko brothers have galvanized energetic and entrepreneurial people from many different sectors, and their work has helped create both well-known start-ups and a broad network of like-minded people.  They have also had an influence on government policy,” Magill said. “The work they have done is impressive, and I have every hope that it will be a lasting achievement.”

A surprising win
Roman learned of the Bright Award win while winding down from the TNW Conference, a large technology festival in Europe, and first thought it was an email scam. He forwarded the email to Andrij, just in case, and unplugged for the night.

“It the morning I realized it was real,” recalled Roman. “And then a strange thing happened: I went numb. I froze emotionally. This is Stanford, the coolest place on Earth – and somehow I wasn’t jumping with joy yet. I’m more than surprised with such a response.”

Part of the award money will be used to establish a memorial stipend dedicated to Anatoliy Kopets, the late founder of Association Energy Efficient Cities of Ukraine, a sustainability promoter and friend of the Zinchenkos who died two years ago. Kopets was particularly interested in fostering sustainable energy awareness in younger generations. Following his example, the stipend will support energy and sustainability talent found within universities. The Zinchenkos haven’t planned out precisely what they’ll do with the rest of the money but it will likely go to support solar projects, resilient local energy cooperatives and new energy innovations.

Reflecting on the importance of their work and what they plan to do next, Andrij said, “Linus Torvalds is my personal hero and, just as Linux opened up countless opportunities for millions of people and companies – big and small – to use free software, co-create and make things that were not possible before, we are providing people with energy democracy, which unlocks the creativity and potential to make energy truly human-centered and empowering rather than over-regulated and monopolized as it is in most cases now.”

The 2017 Bright Award for Environmental Sustainability will be presented to Andrij and Roman Zinchenko on Nov. 9 at Stanford’s Paul Brest Hall. As part of the presentation, the Zinchenkos will give a public lecture and there will be a panel discussion on “Democratizing Energy: Building Sustainability From the Ground Up,” followed by a reception. This event is open to the public but RSVPs are required. For more information and to RSVP, please visit the event website.

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Hacked Credit Card 25 September 2017

 AMEX   372893267475000 12/20 2547 JAMES WHALEN 260 SOUTH ST Medfield MA 02052 UNITED STATES

 AMEX   379569856381006 12/20 6536 LISA WILSON 5761 RICHARDS VALLEY ROAD Daniels MD 21043 UNITED STATES

 AMEX   372813806416000 02/21 3462 Denitra Warren 114 Corinth Drive Piedmont SC 29673 UNITED STATES

 AMEX   371536455004006 02/22 1759 David Brottman 3325 N Arlington Heights Rd Arlington Height IL 60004 UNITED STATES

 AMEX   371297496511000 01/22 8295 Brent Verdugo 1528 E Coronado Rd Phoenix AZ 85006 UNITED STATES

4917821810043250 06/19 829 Dagmar Cottrell Hardunghausstr.17 Osnabruck state 49090 Germany

Stanford researchers team up to reduce pollution and improve health

Stephen Luby’s epiphany came to him 30,000 feet up in the air. The Stanford epidemiologist was flying over India when he realized the view from his window seat was adequate to identify brick kilns on the ground below. The insight was startling for its potential to shed light on an environmental nightmare that kills thousands of people every year.

Luby, a professor of medicine, and a team of Stanford researchers including political scientist Francis Fukuyama and geophysicist Howard Zebker are following up on Luby’s insight to revolutionize brickmaking in South Asia, an industry that burns coal, biomass and even tires to dry hand-molded clay into the ubiquitous building material. Brick kilns across South Asia have a global warming impact equivalent to that of all passenger cars in the U.S., and air pollution from these kilns kills tens of thousands of people each year as a result of respiratory and cardiovascular disease, according to Luby.

Starting in Bangladesh, the novel collaboration is working to measure kilns’ health effects and incentivize kiln owners to switch to cleaner technologies.

“We’re doing something completely novel here,” Luby said.

First find the kilns
Before they could reach out to kiln owners, the researchers had to figure out the number and location of kilns, which are poorly regulated and tracked. That’s where Luby’s Jet Airways flight comes in.

“I got to thinking: Well, wait a minute, if I can do this sitting in a plane, we must be able by remote satellite to detect (kilns) as well,” Luby said of his aha moment.

When Luby’s plane touched down, he looked up Stanford satellite data experts. He found Zebker, a professor of electrical engineering and geophysics and an authority on developing space-borne radar systems and using remote sensing data to study earthquakes, volcanoes, polar ice movements and other phenomena. “This being Stanford, I can send him an email, and he says ‘Yeah, sure, let’s have coffee.’” Luby looped in Fukuyama, a senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, to help him understand related governance issues and formulate a politically effective message of change.

One form this message will take is a public website allowing people to locate information about kilns in their area and to learn ways of nudging kiln owners toward making their operations more efficient and profitable. Site users will be able to pinpoint kilns that violate ordinances on proximity to communities and design standards, among others, and join a larger discussion among public and private sector stakeholders.

“It won’t just be an outdated report nobody sees,” Luby said.

Crucial to the planned website – and the entire initiative – is the Sentinel 1 satellite launched by the European Space Agency in 2015. It provides publicly available images of Earth at a resolution about the size of a racquetball court (30 by 30 feet). Armed with that data and GPS locations of kilns found by ground teams, electrical engineering graduate student Abhilash Sunder Raj developed a model that understands what kilns looks like from space. Sunder Raj adjusted his algorithm to account for seasonality (kilns don’t run in the rainy season from November to March) and to avoid false positives such as household fires and furnaces. The model worked so well that it even found kilns the ground team had missed.

“We are able to find these needles in a haystack very, very accurately,” Sunder Raj said.

Serious health risk
They may look innocuous from space, but kilns are outsized threats on the ground. In Bangladesh, a single brick kiln puts out up to 48,000 kilograms of carbon monoxide in one season. Multiply that by the country’s 8,000 or more kilns, and you have a catastrophe for health and global warming. Researchers in Bangladesh have found dangerous airborne particulates at average levels more than 90 times greater than World Health Organization-recommended levels. The result: hundreds of thousands of people who live downwind from kilns are at elevated risk for cardiovascular and respiratory disease.

Although the kilns are clearly a health risk, few good data exist about the magnitude of the problem. Alex Yu, a postdoctoral scholar in infectious disease, is trying to fill in those gaps and learn whether other sources of pollution contribute to health problems to an extent that even if brick kilns were less polluting, the health issues would continue. He is comparing rates of asthma, pneumonia and carbon monoxide, among other air-related illnesses, in villages with and without kilns.

“There are chimney stacks everywhere pouring out black smog,” Yu said of the dystopian landscape he witnessed on the outskirts of Dhaka, Bangladesh’s capital city. “You walk one block and your body is covered by a thin layer of soot.”

In addition to contaminating air, the kilns degrade soil around them as workers dig it up to be made into the clay that will be molded, heated and dried into bricks. Runoff from stripped patches of land damages the fertility of surrounding cropland, making it harder to grow food and compounding the kilns’ health effects, Yu said.

Incentives for change
Shifting the brick-making paradigm in Bangladesh and other countries that rely on the polluting kilns will require shifting incentives. Leo Kirby, a graduate student in the International Policy Study program and a research assistant to Fukuyama, is looking at how to most effectively align the interests of stakeholder groups in Bangladesh and how to identify effective approaches to behavior change in a country where the rule of law has limited reach.

“It’s a great example of the challenges of changing policy in an environment of weak governance,” Kirby said. “Existing regulations are imperfectly enforced at best. So, to change behavior, you have to change the incentive structures.”

Kirby’s interviews with brick kiln owners, international NGOs and various environmental and community organizations will serve as the basis for a case study for a policy reform training program Fukuyama runs for mid-career public officials in developing countries.

Nina Brooks, a doctoral candidate in the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources, will talk with kiln owners to better understand what constrains decisions to adopt improved efficiency. The Stanford team is working with Greentech Knowledge Solutions, a Delhi-based leader in improving brick kiln efficiency.

Luby is approaching the climate community to help support the transformation of the brick kiln sector in Bangladesh and, ultimately, across South Asia. The improvements in efficiency will pay for themselves, but stakeholders will need support to achieve this more favorable equilibrium.

Luby is also a senior fellow in the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment and the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, and director of research at the Center for Innovation in Global Health. Fukuyama is also the Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow and Mosbacher Director at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law in the Freeman Spogli Institute.

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Stanford researchers plan for digital companies and workers’ rights in an online world

Technology is changing the way we work, providing unique challenges for both employers gauging prospective talent and for employees ensuring their rights and proper working conditions.

Through a series of projects in the Stanford Cyber Initiative, Stanford researchers in the program’s Future of Work focus area are investigating how best to develop online work platforms and how policy can mitigate their negative effects.

“Our goals have been to envision what that future might look like, to build technology to empower new forms of organizing and to understand what impact these platforms are going to have on people,” said Michael Bernstein, an assistant professor of computer science.

More work in the future will involve crowdsourcing, an already popular method of bringing together virtual workers to accomplish tasks. Bernstein and Melissa Valentine, an assistant professor in management science and engineering, improved on this trend with Foundry, an online platform where people can create their own company. The company’s workers are comprised of flash teams, online groups of experts in specific fields. Foundry’s ability to adapt to the varied requirements of its owners and its egalitarian model – allowing any of its members to make changes to their business platform – have proven effective in early testing.

“Anyone with a web browser can create and lead an organization of globally-distributed, diverse experts within half an hour,” Bernstein said.

But the Cyber Initiative has concerns about workers’ rights on these sorts of online platforms, particularly because most online workers are contracted for short-term projects, leaving benefits like health insurance, paid time off and job security in question.

Margaret Levi, a professor of political science and director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, and Bernstein looked to industries — like farming, the creation of railroads and the early development of automobiles — throughout history that followed a similar short-term model to predict the effects on workers’ rights and to find policy solutions.

“The new platforms for matching employers and employees do a terrific job at facilitating wide-
ranging searches for the right people for the right jobs at the right time,” said Levi. “But they have two deficiencies that our project is trying to correct: providing effective power to workers over pay and working conditions, and providing reputational mechanisms that accurately assess the skills and quality of employees. “

Employers are challenged as well, often unable to verify an online employee’s quality before hiring. Because they can’t count on quality, they don’t pay much. And because employees aren’t earning much per job, they don’t put in much effort. The result is a decrease in both quality and pay.

“We are considering ways to increase workers’ control over the labor supply and over the determination of who is qualified as means for improving workers’ rights and power,” Levi said.

They are exploring the idea of a “digital hiring hall.” The platform would draw on information across the internet, compiling and verifying certificates, courses and work experience. It would provide employers confidence in candidates’ quality of work, and also allow employees to band together for fair wages and working conditions.

Bernstein described the platform as a “LinkedIn in which every line on your resume represents work you have verifiably completed on online work platforms.”

Working alongside Bernstein, Valentine and Levi in the Future of Work area is Ramesh Johari, an associate professor in management science and engineering. His work focuses on rating systems and how they can be adapted to function for online employees.

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Monday, 18 September 2017

Hacked Credit Card 18 September 2017

 372124385514003|10|2021|4422|UNITED STATES|Alan|Patterson|155 Lloyd Avenue|Pittsburgh|PA|15218|4129159905|

 4494654411451635 0518 851 richard lucas 2200 alturas rd atascadero 12 93422 UNITED STATES 8054594077 VALID!!

 AMEX   372767918058003 06/20 4314 maria wilkie 40 clubhouse drive easton PA 18042 UNITED STATES 610-392-7302

 4342561014183396 06/21 072 JOEY KULICH 3323 N Copenhagen Dr. 3323 N Copenhagen Dr. Avondale 4 85392 UNITED STATES

 AMEX   379745460281002 04/20 4325 Paul J OLeary 4461 Clairmont Ave S Birmingham Alabama 35222 UNITED STATES N/A

AMEX   379574041231009 01/21 4347 Brian J Wiele 115 Stonewall Circle West Harrison New York 10604 UNITED STATES N/A

 4300230201998996 1218 207 Zachary Henze Bristol WI 53104 US 12903 78th place 816-229-0804 VALID!!

Friday, 15 September 2017

Stanford researchers study the relationship between nectar microbiomes and pollination

Dipping its beak into the sweet nectar of a flower, a hummingbird is doing more than getting a meal – it’s contributing to a microbial community that could potentially determine the fate of that flower. Recognizing that this fleeting interaction could have major implications on crop success and the health of pollinator species, the research group led by Tadashi Fukami, an associate professor of biology at Stanford, has studied the relationships between pollinators, microbes and plants for nearly a decade.

“Pollination is an important ecosystem service for people,” said Fukami. “Microbes could be one of the missing pieces that we have to think about in order to understand more about pollination and what more we can do to make it efficient.”

When Fukami came to Stanford in 2008, he was tasked with developing a new field biology class that would fit with other courses in the department focused on the study of yeast. Hoping to unite his research on ecological communities with his teaching, Fukami asked staff scientist Nona Chiariello where yeast might be present in the university’s 1,198-acre Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve, and she suggested flowers.

Given this idea, Fukami chose to study the sticky monkey flower. These vibrant yellow flowers are popular among local pollinators, like bees and hummingbirds, and require pollination in order to produce seeds. But, with each visit, pollinators also introduce different microorganisms, like yeast, into a flower’s initially sterile nectar. The chemical makeup of the resulting microbial communities influence whether pollinators continue to visit the flower and, therefore, a flower’s chances of reproducing.

After two years testing the new field course, the biology instructor team led by Fukami began to bring classes of over 100 students to Jasper Ridge, where they conducted field research in conjunction with lab work. In March 2013 he was awarded the Science Prize for Inquiry-Based Instruction for this course.

Now, the Fukami Lab has been honored with a 2017 Dimensions of Biodiversity award from the National Science Foundation to support further research on nectar microbial communities, related to three dimensions of biodiversity: functional, genetic and phylogenetic.

Fake flowers and competing microbes
Fukami, along with his lab members and his students, have devised many ways to study the monkey flowers’ microbial communities over the years. They have fed hummingbirds sugar water in order to obtain microbial samples from them and, in other studies, captured pollinator visits to the flowers with motion-activated cameras. They even created artificial monkey flowers, which allow them to experiment with customized nectar.

In one experiment, where the team limited which pollinators could access the flowers, they were surprised to find that the order in which the microbes enter the nectar seems to drastically affect the progression of the microbial community.

“In flowers with many immigration events, you can see different communities developing in each one, depending on the order of arrival of microbial immigrants,” Fukami said.

For example, the group found that nectar containing yeast seems to reject the introduction of bacteria, with the opposite also being true. This is a particularly significant finding because the researchers have also shown that pollinators tend to avoid nectar if it has bacteria in it.

Building off these findings, the team has also been able to predict how the evolutionary relatedness of the microbes and temperature influence which microbes will find their way into a flower’s nectar. Now, the researchers are developing mathematical models to predict the effect that climate change could have on pollinators, microbes and plants and their interactions. These models could be important for crops that rely on pollinators because they could help predict how these plants, their microbial communities and their pollinators might respond to different climate change scenarios.

Taking a closer look
The Dimensions of Biodiversity award will help Fukami and his team pursue three related lines of research. They will investigate how microbes affect the ability of the flowers to produce seeds, whether evolutionary relationships between bacterial species in the nectar can help us predict their impact and what different genetic variations of yeast do to the chemistry of the nectar.

Fukami is also looking forward to another year of his fieldwork course, which will continue to contribute to this research.

“We’ve been really happy with how we’ve been able to combine teaching and research,” said Fukami. “We’ve been doing that for years now but I’m still excited about it.”

The work funded by the NSF Dimensions of Biodiversity award is collaborative research with Adina Howe at Iowa State University, as co-principal investigator, and also involves Nona Chiariello, Kaye Storm of Stanford University’s Office of Science Outreach and Rachel Vannette at the University of California, Davis, as senior personnel. Fukami’s Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve work is also supported by the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning at Stanford and the Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute.

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Friday, 8 September 2017

Czech Republic Hacked Credit Card

 5168440032251238 | 2019 | 10 | 164 | Stephen | Galle | Mrkosova 517/12 | 724922127 |  |  |  | Czech Republic | Air Bank, A.s. |  |  |  | Mastercard |  | debit

 5168440313351194 | 2019 | 07 | 121 | Dominika | Safrankova |  | 420723399881 |  |  |  | Czech Republic | Air Bank, A.s. |  |  |  | Mastercard |  | debit

 5168342101975731 | 2019 | 08 | 895 | Adela | Hajkova | Severni 1171 | 776303246 |  |  |  | Czech Republic | Ceskoslovenska Obchodni Banka |  |  |  | Mastercard |  | debit

 5168440018486691 | 2018 | 05 | 188 | Pavel | Brunda | U Parku 1509 | 775300309 |  |  |  | Czech Republic | Air Bank, A.s. |  |  |  | Mastercard |  | debit

Online consumers choose inferior products despite evidence of their poor quality, Stanford research finds

When evaluating online purchases, a product’s rating and number of reviews seem helpful to an unsure consumer.

But how often do we scrutinize those figures to learn their true meaning? Not nearly enough, according to a recent study by Derek Powell, a postdoctoral research fellow at Stanford University. The study, which appeared Aug. 21 in Psychological Science, finds that most people fail to do a simple statistical task when viewing online ratings and reviews, leading them to purchase inferior products.

More reviews, inferior quality
When shopping online, consumers engage in a type of social learning by which they become informed from the decisions of others. For example, you’re probably more likely to purchase a book at the top of the New York Times’ best-sellers list or buy an app that’s been downloaded millions of times.

Woman making online order
Consumers relying on a product’s online reviews may be swayed by the number of reviews rather than the number of stars. (Image credit: martin-dm / Getty Images)
But observing other people’s choices is only a part of social learning. The other is noting the resulting outcomes through mechanisms like online star ratings. But how people interpret – or fail to interpret – this data is affecting their decision-making in a negative way.

The researchers presented 138 adults with a series of cellphone cases (in pairs) to purchase. Each case was accompanied by its average star rating and number of reviews. The star ratings varied minimally, but one of the cases always had 125 more reviews than the other.

Across two experiments, the researchers found that participants preferred the case that had more reviews, despite the fact that the way they set up the experiment, that case was likely to be inferior. (The researchers assessed the product’s quality not by stars or reviews alone, but by analyzing millions of reviews on

Making the wrong call
Think about it this way. Twenty-five people review a product and award an average 2.9 rating (out of five stars). While the rating is below average, there’s a possibility that with such few reviews the product may not be as poor as indicated, Powell said.

Now imagine 150 consumers give that same product a 2.9 rating. That’s six times as many people rating the product below average. That should be a stronger signal of the product’s poor quality.

Participants took the high number of reviews as a signal of quality, said Powell, rather than as an indicator of how accurately the review score should reflect the true quality of the product. Instead of conducting a rather simple statistical analysis to arrive at that conclusion, consumers are taking the number of reviews at face value.

“What they’re doing is simply weighing cues,” Powell said. “People seem to have this belief that popularity is good and are willing to use that as an important cue when making decisions.”

Powell and his fellow researchers found evidence of this trend beyond their experiments. They examined 15 million reviews of more than 350,000 actual products on and found that there was no relationship between the number of reviews and its rating.

“It doesn’t necessarily mean that better things don’t become more popular,” said Powell, “but as a consumer, when you’re looking at this data point (number of reviews), it’s not telling you anything.”

Following the herd
Overcoming this bias is difficult, Powell said, because consumers find comfort in popularity.

“There are lots of contexts where following the herd is the rational thing to do,” he said. “If there isn’t enough information available, that can be a smart thing to do.

“But what we’re arguing is that you have more information than just what people did; you also have what happened – did they like it, were they happy or unhappy with their purchase.”

Powell suggests consumers should focus on whether the product’s score is above or below average – product averages usually range from 3.7 to 4, depending on the product’s category, he said – then apply that rating to the number of reviews. Examining those figures in concert should supply consumers with confidence that the product’s rating reflects its true quality.

The study’s co-authors are Jingqi Yu, Indiana University; and Melissa DeWolf and Keith Holyoak, UCLA.


Thursday, 7 September 2017

United States Hacked Credit Card 7 September 2017

 5275150032003063|05|2021|546|UNITED STATES|Angel Luis|Lopez|2501 Bennet Ave E1106|Dallas||75206|2149300459|||Mozilla5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 1032 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit603.2.4 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version10.0 Mobile14F89 Safari602.1||||||

5312660004397108 11/20 780 MARINA S VILLAFRANCA allan vasquez 1911 new windsor New York 12553

 4147202173796044|12|2017|619|UNITED STATES|Erika|Psacharopoulos|9834 Kentsdale drive|Potomac|20854|US||||||

 5312600020511845 1019 284 - 4.08 : APPROVED! Faraque Jamal 160 sura blvd Orlando STATE 32809 US

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Indian Approved Hacked Credit Card

CCnum:: 5241931166298004
 Cvv: 468
 Expm: 04
 Expy: 20
 Fname: Tushara
 Lname: Nair
 Address: B bldg Flat no 2 Patil Complex Takshashila coop hsng soc. 37 Aundh Road Khadki Pune 20
 City: PUNE
 Zip: 411020
 Country: INDIA

CCnum:: 5241930059687000
 Cvv: 691
 Expm: 01
 Expy: 21
 Fname: Jayath
 Lname: Menon
 Address: Prasadam Sec 48131 Samata Colony
 Zip: 411017
 Country: INDIA

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Tuesday, 5 September 2017

New biosecurity initiative launched

A new biosecurity initiative at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI) aims to identify and mitigate biological risks, both natural and man-made, and safeguard the future of the life sciences and associated technologies.

The initiative will be led by David A. Relman, a senior fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation and FSI. Relman, the Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor in the Departments of Medicine, and Microbiology & Immunology, has served as the science co-director at CISAC for the past four years. He will leave this position on Aug. 31 to lead the new initiative.

Michael McFaul, director and senior fellow at FSI, said, “With exceptional leadership skills, valuable experience and abundant energy, David Relman is ideally positioned to work with scholars from across campus who offer critical expertise in biosecurity. This is an exciting, challenging and important new initiative for FSI that is designed to protect public health from the many new risks now accelerating.”

Relman said the biosecurity initiative will seek to advance the beneficial applications of the life sciences while reducing the risks of misuse by promoting research, education and policy outreach in biological security. His CISAC leadership gives him the know-how to lead such a wide-ranging effort across diverse disciplines and communities.

Relman said, “The opportunity to serve as co-director at CISAC has been a wonderful experience, one that has afforded me the chance to get to know outstanding faculty and staff, their scholarship, and critical policy-relevant work, all of which I had not fully appreciated sitting across campus. This experience has made clear the unusual qualities of Stanford University, and the great people that work here. I am now greatly looking forward to this new opportunity at FSI.”

Biosecurity collaborations

During Relman’s term as CISAC’s science co-director from 2013-2017, he led an expansion of the transdisciplinary work in science and security to include biology, biological and other areas of engineering, medicine, and earth and environmental sciences.

The foundations for work in biological science, technology and security were established at CISAC, especially in the hiring of Megan Palmer, a senior research scholar at CISAC and FSI. Both Relman and Palmer worked together on engagements and discussions with a growing network of more than 20 faculty involved in biosecurity across Stanford.

Palmer said, “Stanford has an opportunity and imperative to advance security strategies for biological science and technology in a global age. Our faculty bring together expertise in areas including technology, policy, and ethics, and are deeply engaged in shaping future of biotechnology policy and practices.”

New insights, new risks

In his new post, Relman said he intends to build on this foundation by creating an initiative that consolidates and focuses activity in biosecurity, develops research and educational programs, attracts new resources, and looks outward at opportunities for policy impact and changing practices across the globe.

Relman said that “new capabilities and insights are reshaping important aspects of the life sciences and associated technologies, and are accompanied by a host of new risks.” If misused, whether by malice or accident, “they pose the potential for large-scale harm,” he noted.

Relman added that the initiative will bring together interest and expertise across the centers and programs of FSI in partnership with Schools and Departments across the university.

At FSI, CISAC will co-sponsor the biological security initiative, which will leverage Stanford expertise in the life sciences, engineering, law and policy.  Key partners will include Tim Stearns (biology), Drew Endy (bioengineering), Mildred Cho (bioethics), and Hank Greely (law), according to Relman. The biosecurity group will also partner with another new program at FSI in global health and conflict, which is led by Paul Wise, Frank Fukuyama, Steve Stedman, Steve Krasner, and others, he added.

Stanford’s School of Medicine and Department of Medicine will also co-sponsor the initiative, thanks to leadership from Lloyd Minor, Michele Barry and Robert Harrington. Relman looks forward to establishing similar relationships with other schools and departments, he said.

 “These partnerships are critical. I’m excited to work with a growing community both within and beyond Stanford towards the goal of a peaceful and prosperous world in the century of biology,” he said.

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Stanford professor tests a cooling system that works without electricity

It looks like a regular roof, but the top of the Packard Electrical Engineering Building at Stanford University has been the setting of many milestones in the development of an innovative cooling technology that could someday be part of our everyday lives. Since 2013, Shanhui Fan, professor of electrical engineering, and his students and research associates have employed this roof as a testbed for a high-tech mirror-like optical surface that could be the future of lower-energy air conditioning and refrigeration.

A fluid-cooling panel designed by Shanhui Fan, professor of electrical engineering at Stanford, and former research associates Aaswath Raman and Eli Goldstein being tested on the roof of the Packard Electrical Engineering Building. This is an updated version of the panels used in the research published in Nature Energy. (Image credit: Aaswath Raman)
Research published in 2014 first showed the cooling capabilities of the optical surface on its own. Now, Fan and former research associates Aaswath Raman and Eli Goldstein, have shown that a system involving these surfaces can cool flowing water to a temperature below that of the surrounding air. The entire cooling process is done without electricity.

“This research builds on our previous work with radiative sky cooling but takes it to the next level. It provides for the first time a high-fidelity technology demonstration of how you can use radiative sky cooling to passively cool a fluid and, in doing so, connect it with cooling systems to save electricity,” said Raman, who is co-lead author of the paper detailing this research, published in Nature Energy Sept. 4.

Together, Fan, Goldstein and Raman have founded the company SkyCool Systems, which is working on further testing and commercializing this technology.

Sending our heat to space
Radiative sky cooling is a natural process that everyone and everything does, resulting from the moments of molecules releasing heat. You can witness it for yourself in the heat that comes off a road as it cools after sunset. This phenomenon is particularly noticeable on a cloudless night because, without clouds, the heat we and everything around us radiates can more easily make it through Earth’s atmosphere, all the way to the vast, cold reaches of space.

“If you have something that is very cold – like space – and you can dissipate heat into it, then you can do cooling without any electricity or work. The heat just flows,” explained Fan, who is senior author of the paper. “For this reason, the amount of heat flow off the Earth that goes to the universe is enormous.”

Although our own bodies release heat through radiative cooling to both the sky and our surroundings, we all know that on a hot, sunny day, radiative sky cooling isn’t going to live up to its name. This is because the sunlight will warm you more than radiative sky cooling will cool you. To overcome this problem, the team’s surface uses a multilayer optical film that reflects about 97 percent of the sunlight while simultaneously being able to emit the surface’s thermal energy through the atmosphere. Without heat from sunlight, the radiative sky cooling effect can enable cooling below the air temperature even on a sunny day.

“With this technology, we’re no longer limited by what the air temperature is, we’re limited by something much colder: the sky and space,” said Goldstein, co-lead author of the paper.

The experiments published in 2014 were performed using small wafers of a multilayer optical surface, about 8 inches in diameter, and only showed how the surface itself cooled. Naturally, the next step was to scale up the technology and see how it works as part of a larger cooling system.

Putting radiative sky cooling to work
For their latest paper, the researchers created a system where panels covered in the specialized optical surfaces sat atop pipes of running water and tested it on the roof of the Packard Building in September 2015. These panels were slightly more than 2 feet in length on each side and the researchers ran as many as four at a time. With the water moving at a relatively fast rate, they found the panels were able to consistently reduce the temperature of the water 3 to 5 degrees Celsius below ambient air temperature over a period of three days.

Stanford researchers in 2014 reflected in mirror-like optical surface they developed
This photo from 2014 shows the reflectivity of the mirror-like optical surface Fan, Raman and Goldstein have been researching, which allows for daytime radiative sky cooling by sending thermal energy into the sky while also blocking sunlight. The people in this photo (left to right) are Linxiano Zhu, PhD ‘16, co-author of the 2014 paper, Fan and Raman. (Image credit: Norbert von der Groeben)
The researchers also applied data from this experiment to a simulation where their panels covered the roof of a two-story commercial office building in Las Vegas – a hot, dry location where their panels would work best – and contributed to its cooling system. They calculated how much electricity they could save if, in place of a conventional air-cooled chiller, they used vapor-compression system with a condenser cooled by their panels. They found that, in the summer months, the panel-cooled system would save 14.3 megawatt-hours of electricity, a 21 percent reduction in the electricity used to cool the building. Over the entire period, the daily electricity savings fluctuated from 18 percent to 50 percent.

The future is now
Right now, SkyCool Systems is measuring the energy saved when panels are integrated with traditional air conditioning and refrigeration systems at a test facility, and Fan, Goldstein and Raman are optimistic that this technology will find broad applicability in the years to come. The researchers are focused on making their panels integrate easily with standard air conditioning and refrigeration systems and they are particularly excited at the prospect of applying their technology to the serious task of cooling data centers.

Fan has also carried out research on various other aspects of radiative cooling technology. He and Raman have applied the concept of radiative sky cooling to the creation of an efficiency-boosting coating for solar cells. With Yi Cui, a professor of materials science and engineering at Stanford and of photon science at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Fan developed a cooling fabric.

“It’s very intriguing to think about the universe as such an immense resource for cooling and all the many interesting, creative ideas that one could come up with to take advantage of this,” he said.

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Monday, 4 September 2017

Fighting memory loss with virtual reality

At UCLA, Nanthia Suthana is one of the first neuro-scientists in the world to harness the power of VR to unravel how someone’s brain encodes and retrieves memories while the person explores a new virtual setting on foot.

Her work recently captured the attention of the popular digital network, Mashable, which profiled her in its “How She Works” video series.

“Without our memories, each of us would be lost in time and cut off from other people,” said Suthana, an assistant professor of neurosurgery and psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. “At UCLA, we are the first to blend virtual reality with a surgically implanted prosthesis to reveal what happens inside the brain when we create memories.”

The ultimate goal? To develop therapeutic tools that could restore lost memories to people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, traumatic brain injury and other disorders.

UCLA researchers are the first to blend virtual reality with a surgically implanted prosthesis to reveal what happens in the brain when people create memories.
Credit: Mashable
In 2015, Suthana recruited a crack team of experts in bioengineering, neuroscience, computer science and physics to help design a virtual-reality lab at UCLA. She crafted a study that correlates electrical activity from the neuro-prosthesis deep inside the brain with a patient’s physical movement in the virtual environment. No one has achieved this before.

In the Mashable video, Suthana preps research patient David Kidd, who suffers from profound memory loss. He wears a black motion-capture bodysuit and cap (think actor Andy Serkis as Caesar in “Planet of the Apes”) studded with reflective markers to track his movement.

A set of goggles transports Kidd into a virtual environment where yellow lights signal locations for him to walk toward and remember. Then the research team tests his ability to remember the route without the lighting cues.

After the experiment, Suthana wirelessly downloads the recording of Kidd’s electrical brain activity from the neuro-prosthetic device implanted in his head. Later, she’ll analyze his deep brain waves to measure the strength of his learning and recall.

Virtual reality allows the UCLA team to observe how Kidd’s memories are formed and recalled while navigating a new environment.

A patient wears a backpack and motion capture suit that sends key data to UCLA researchers studying what happens inside the brain when people form memories while walking.
Credit: Mashable
“All of our daily memories are visually linked to space — the setting in which they are created,” said Suthana who is also the Ruth and Raymond H. Stotter Chair in Neurosurgery. “When you forget where you left your keys or parked your car, you automatically try to visualize where and when you last saw them. The same principle holds true for complex tasks, like navigating a grocery store or learning your way around a new city.

“We take these basic functions for granted — the ability to remember a friend’s face, your wedding day or spouse’s birthday,” she added. “But when someone loses these memories, it devastates their quality of life.”

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Hacked Credit Card 4th September 2017

5353165291567884|03|2019|277|AUSTRALIA|Ally|Lynch|Virgin Active Australia|Zetland||2017|0403032699|||Mozilla5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; Trident7.0; rv:11.0) like Gecko||||||

 4293183110793744|05|2021|127|AUSTRALIA|Damian|Taylor|313 William Street|Balaclaba||||||||||||

 5163103004492587|03|2021|754|AUSTRALIA|Gabrielle|Spencer|30 Gellibrand St|Campbell||2612|0403199339|||Mozilla5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10116) AppleWebKit537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome59.0.3071.115 Safari537.36||||||

 5163104002038695|10|2021|710|AUSTRALIA|Natalie Merunovich|Unit 23|Chatswood|2067|

 5353161401570058|12|2020|076|AUSTRALIA|Jane|Peters|7 Moorhen street|Pitt Town||2756|0412327045|Enteryouremailaddress||Mozilla5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 1033 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit603.3.8 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version10.0 Mobile14G60 Safari602.1||||||

 5353165294086171|06|2020|111|AUSTRALIA|Sarah|Bowtell|61-63 Dudley Street|Wallan||3756|400025289|||Mozilla5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 1033 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit603.3.8 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version10.0 Mobile14G60 Safari602.1||||||

 5449270928014205|11|2021|212|UNITED STATES|Tor|Nikolaisen|19815 Trapper Trail|Strongsville||4414a9|4404796218|||Mozilla5.0 (Linux; Android 7.0; SM-G930V BuildNRD90M) AppleWebKit537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome59.0.3071.125 Mobile Safari537.36||||||