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News Article | April 28, 2017

Opposition Social Democrats leader Zoran Zaev bleeds after being injured when supporters of former leading party VMRO-DPMNE entered the parliament following an allegedly unfair vote for a parliamentary speaker in Skopje on April 27, 2017 (AFP Photo/Stringer) Skopje (AFP) - Macedonia's rival political parties traded blame Friday for an eruption of violence in the unstable Balkan country's parliament which left about 100 people injured. The chaos in Skopje broke out on Thursday evening, with dozens of nationalist demonstrators -- including a group of masked men -- breaking a police cordon and storming parliament in anger over a vote for a new speaker, an ethnic Albanian. The riots, which came after two years of political crisis, drew widespread condemnation, with NATO and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan echoing the worries expressed by the European Union and Washington. "Acts of violence like those we saw yesterday must not be allowed to happen again," said NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg. Footage from the scene showed chairs being thrown as fistfights broke out in the parliamentary press room, while Zoran Zaev, leader of the opposition Social Democrats (SDSM), was among the bloodied MPs. An early election in December was supposed to end Macedonia's turmoil, but its inconclusive result only deepened the uncertainty and has led to nightly protests by nationalist demonstrators, who support the conservative VMRO-DPMNE party of former premier Nikola Gruevski. They oppose a proposed coalition between the SDSM and ethnic Albanian parties, which they perceive as a threat to national unity. The storming of parliament was sparked by a vote by the SDSM and Albanian groups for a new parliamentary speaker, Talat Xhaferi. While the EU said it took "positive note" of Xhaferi's election, the protesters considered the vote unlawful, taking place after the former speaker had closed the day's session. Condemning the violence on Friday, Gruevski said the SDSM and their allies had "knowingly decided to violate the law and the constitution, which directly caused the event that ensued". The SDSM said the speaker's election was "a major step" in the democratic process and blamed the violence on "a policy of conflict, hatred and division" brought on by the rule of Gruevski, who served as premier for a decade until last year. Although the SDSM reached a post-election deal with Albanian parties to form a coalition, President Gjorge Ivanov has denied Zaev a mandate, alleging national sovereignty would be undermined by a demand that Albanian be made a nationwide official language. Ethnic Albanians make up around a quarter of Macedonia's two million people. Ivanov, an ally of Gruevski, on Thursday appealed for calm and invited party leaders to his office on Friday, but the meeting did not go ahead after the SDSM and Albanian groups refused to attend. Ethnic Albanian party BESA said the interior ministry had "allowed VMRO-DPMNE hooligans to attack the highest legislative institution". Police eventually took control of the parliament late Thursday, using stun grenades to clear out the protesters, but fresh street demonstrations began on Friday evening. Eight people were detained for questioning over the violence that led to MPs, journalists and police officers being injured, according to officials. Most of the injured deputies were from the SDSM party, but ethnic Albanian MP Ziadin Sela appeared to be one of the most badly wounded. "They were kicking him and hitting him with wooden batons. When they hit him in the face I screamed, 'You'll kill the man!' and they hit me in the arm after that," journalist Dusica Mrgja from TV 24 News told AFP. The political crisis in Macedonia, which aspires to join both the EU and NATO, erupted in 2015 when Zaev released tapes that appeared to show mass government wiretapping under Gruevski, along with top-level corruption. Gruevski denies the allegations but his rivals accuse him of using the ethnic card in a bid to stay in power.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2014-ETN | Award Amount: 3.88M | Year: 2015

The European Brain Council (EBC) has recommended the disorders of the brain to be prioritised for funding. The purpose of this ChildBrain ETN is 1) to train young scientists, Early Stage Researchers (ESRs), to utilise evidence-based neuroscientific knowledge for helping children, especially those at high risk for dropout due to neurocognitive disorders, to meet future educational and societal demands. The network aims 2) to develop new, innovative brain imaging-based tools through research and industry to be applied by researchers and clinical sector end users for 3) increasing understanding and improving diagnosis and treatment of neurocognitive disorders, as well as enhancing targeted educational programs. To accomplish these goals, we aim 4) to form a cross-disciplinary and trans-sectorial European network of experts. Three research and two training work packages (WPs) are planned to reach these goals. The Childhood neurodevelopmental disorders WP comprises new research and training on the neural underpinnings of dyslexia, ADHD, epilepsy, and hearing loss and creates links to healthcare industry and special education. The Brain development WP will focus on understanding the systems-level brain development at the level of the individual child. The Brain research methods WP will develop new multi-modal data analysis methodologies that are essential for children and will also further brain research in adults. The academic, industrial and private sector partners will work across these themes, offering the ESRs project-specific collaboration, secondments, workshops, summer school and courses on scientific, transferable and entrepreneurial skills, as well as supervision. The ChildBrain ETN will produce a new generation of scientists with the theoretical, technological, and entrepreneurial skills necessary for making breakthroughs in the understanding of brain development and childhood neurocognitive disorders.

PubMed | Aarhus University Hospital, Imperial College London, Electrical Geodesics, Inc., University of Oslo and BESA GmbH
Type: | Journal: Seizure | Year: 2016

To determine the agreement between five different methods of ictal EEG source imaging, and to assess their accuracy in presurgical evaluation of patients with focal epilepsy. It was hypothesized that high agreement between methods was associated with higher localization-accuracy.EEGs were recorded with a 64-electrode array. Thirty-eight seizures from 22 patients were analyzed using five different methods phase mapping, dipole fitting, CLARA, cortical-CLARA and minimum norm. Localization accuracy was determined at sub-lobar level. Reference standard was the final decision of the multidisciplinary epilepsy surgery team, and, for the operated patients, outcome one year after surgery.Agreement between all methods was obtained in 13 patients (59%) and between all but one methods in additional six patients (27%). There was a trend for minimum norm being less accurate than phase mapping, but none of the comparisons reached significance. Source imaging in cases with agreement between all methods was not more accurate than in the other cases. Ictal source imaging achieved an accuracy of 73% (for operated patients: 86%).There was good agreement between different methods of ictal source imaging. However, good inter-method agreement did not necessarily imply accurate source localization, since all methods faced the limitations of the inverse solution.

Few education institutions are sufficiently investing in cloud and IT infrastructure to address availability concerns, meaning that student expectations of a fully connected learning experience may not be met LONDON, United Kingdom: September 5, 2016 Veeam® Software, the innovative provider of solutions that delivers Availability for the Always-On Enterprise™, today called for education institutions in the UK to reassess investments between IT infrastructure and digital content ahead of the new academic year. At present, spend on digital education is increasing yearly. The UK education sector has one of the highest levels of technology deployments, with 1.4 students per computer according to the British Educational Suppliers Association (BESA). Across the UK in 2015, £900m was spent on technology in schools, with £95m spent on software and digital content in the same period. However, this transformation in digital learning resources is not in parallel with the relatively small investments being made in technical IT systems. The influx of connected learning resources will put immense strain on under-equipped infrastructure, creating an Availability Gap between what students are expecting and the realities of what schools and universities can deliver. Research from the 2016 Veeam Availability Report of 1,140 IT decision-makers across 24 countries shows that just 36 percent of private and Higher Education institutions are currently investing in private cloud infrastructure, while only 23 percent are using public clouds for Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS). And, despite the vast rise in digitally connected learning equipment, only 30 percent are looking to add new IT sites or data centres to support the growth in online materials. “This academic year will be the most technology-centred, digitally connected on record” said Richard Agnew, ‎VP NW EMEA, Veeam Software. “The students approaching this year will see technology as second nature. Now, more than ever, is the optimal time for the education sector as a whole to think about the infrastructure that supports the wider trends in digital transformation. At this moment in time, we’re heading for a situation where the networks used by education institutions won’t be able to cope with the traffic and quantity of data they are being asked to handle. Of equal concern is how quickly students will be able to access information, applications and data when the network fails, as this fundamentally affects the learning experience. 24.7.365 availability of data and services must be the aim for UK schools and universities.” Meanwhile, technology and delivering a connected learning programme is becoming a key differentiator for universities and Higher Education institutions, particularly in light of the hike in tuition fees that have been passed on to domestic and international students in recent years. Essential education materials such as learning resources, library files and assignment documents are digitised and stored centrally in university-owned or school repositories. “What’s important is that schools and universities have in place a rapid and reliable mechanism for protecting and recovering student data, while providing real-time access to centralised services, including class programmes, research materials and in-class services. There’s no use in spending vast quantities on hardware, software and digital learning programmes when there’s no guarantee they can be accessed or recovered quickly. By ensuring that they are constantly available, or easily restored, operations can continue and the learning process can be seamless,” said Agnew. About Veeam Software Veeam® recognizes the new challenges companies across the globe face in enabling the Always-On Enterprise™, a business that must operate 24.7.365. To address this, Veeam has pioneered a new market of Availability for the Always-On Enterprise™ by helping organizations meet recovery time and point objectives (RTPO™) of less than 15 minutes for all applications and data, through a fundamentally new kind of solution that delivers high-speed recovery, data loss avoidance, verified recoverability, leveraged data and complete visibility. Veeam Availability Suite™, which includes Veeam Backup & Replication™, leverages virtualization, storage, and cloud technologies that enable the modern data center to help organizations save time, mitigate risks, and dramatically reduce capital and operational costs, while always supporting the current and future business goals of Veeam customers. Founded in 2006, Veeam currently has 41,000 ProPartners and more than 205,000 customers worldwide. Veeam's global headquarters are located in Baar, Switzerland, and the company has offices throughout the world. To learn more, visit

Wu H.C.,Wayne State University | Nagasawa T.,Wayne State University | Brown E.C.,Wayne State University | Juhasz C.,Wayne State University | And 7 more authors.
Clinical Neurophysiology | Year: 2011

Objective: We measured cortical gamma-oscillations in response to visual-language tasks consisting of picture naming and word reading in an effort to better understand human visual-language pathways. Methods: We studied six patients with focal epilepsy who underwent extraoperative electrocorticography (ECoG) recording. Patients were asked to overtly name images presented sequentially in the picture naming task and to overtly read written words in the reading task. Results: Both tasks commonly elicited gamma-augmentation (maximally at 80-100. Hz) on ECoG in the occipital, inferior-occipital-temporal and inferior-Rolandic areas, bilaterally. Picture naming, compared to reading task, elicited greater gamma-augmentation in portions of pre-motor areas as well as occipital and inferior-occipital-temporal areas, bilaterally. In contrast, word reading elicited greater gamma-augmentation in portions of bilateral occipital, left occipital-temporal and left superior-posterior-parietal areas. Gamma-attenuation was elicited by both tasks in portions of posterior cingulate and ventral premotor-prefrontal areas bilaterally. The number of letters in a presented word was positively correlated to the degree of gamma-augmentation in the medial occipital areas. Conclusions: Gamma-augmentation measured on ECoG identified cortical areas commonly and differentially involved in picture naming and reading tasks. Longer words may activate the primary visual cortex for the more peripheral field. Significance: The present study increases our understanding of the visual-language pathways. © 2011 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology.

Nagasawa T.,Wayne State University | Nagasawa T.,Tokyo Medical and Dental University | Juhasz C.,Wayne State University | Rothermel R.,Wayne State University | And 4 more authors.
Human Brain Mapping | Year: 2012

High-frequency oscillations (HFOs) at ≥80 Hz of nonepileptic nature spontaneously emerge from human cerebral cortex. In 10 patients with extraoccipital lobe epilepsy, we compared the spectral-spatial characteristics of HFOs spontaneously arising from the nonepileptic occipital cortex with those of HFOs driven by a visual task as well as epileptogenic HFOs arising from the extraoccipital seizure focus. We identified spontaneous HFOs at ≥80 Hz with a mean duration of 330 ms intermittently emerging from the occipital cortex during interictal slow-wave sleep. The spectral frequency band of spontaneous occipital HFOs was similar to that of visually driven HFOs. Spontaneous occipital HFOs were spatially sparse and confined to smaller areas, whereas visually driven HFOs involved the larger areas including the more rostral sites. Neither spectral frequency band nor amplitude of spontaneous occipital HFOs significantly differed from those of epileptogenic HFOs. Spontaneous occipital HFOs were strongly locked to the phase of delta activity, but the strength of δ-phase coupling decayed from 1 to 3 Hz. Conversely, epileptogenic extraoccipital HFOs were locked to the phase of delta activity about equally in the range from 1 to 3 Hz. The occipital cortex spontaneously generates physiological HFOs which may stand out on electrocorticography traces as prominently as pathological HFOs arising from elsewhere; this observation should be taken into consideration during presurgical evaluation. Coupling of spontaneous delta and HFOs may increase the understanding of significance of δ-oscillations during slow-wave sleep. Further studies are warranted to determine whether δ-phase coupling distinguishes physiological from pathological HFOs or simply differs across anatomical locations. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

PubMed | Danish Epilepsy Center, Aarhus University Hospital, Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Copenhagen University and BESA GmbH
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Clinical neurophysiology : official journal of the International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology | Year: 2016

To investigate how often discharge propagation occurs within the spikes recorded in patients evaluated for epilepsy surgery, and to assess its impact on the accuracy of source imaging.Data were analyzed from 50 consecutive patients who had presurgical workup. Discharge propagation was analyzed using sequential voltage-maps of the averaged spikes, and principal components analysis. When propagation was detected, sources were modeled both at onset and peak.Propagation occurred in half of the patients. The median time of propagation between onset and peak was 17 ms. In 60% of the cases with propagation (15/25 patients) this remained in the same sub-lobar area where onset occurred. The accuracy of source imaging in cases of propagating spikes was 67% when only analyzing onset or peak. This was lower as compared to cases without propagation (79%). Combining source imaging at onset and at peak increased the accuracy to 83% for the propagating spikes.Propagation occurs often in patients with focal epilepsy, evaluated for surgery. In 40% of the propagating cases, the source of onset and peak were in different sub-lobar regions.For optimal clinical utility, sources should be modeled both at onset and at peak epochs of the spikes.

PubMed | Aarhus University Hospital, Copenhagen University and BESA GmbH
Type: Evaluation Studies | Journal: Clinical neurophysiology : official journal of the International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology | Year: 2016

Reviewing magnetoencephalography (MEG) recordings is time-consuming: signals from the 306 MEG-sensors are typically reviewed divided into six arrays of 51 sensors each, thus browsing each recording six times in order to evaluate all signals. A novel method of reconstructing the MEG signals in source-space was developed using a source-montage of 29 brain-regions and two spatial components to remove magnetocardiographic (MKG) artefacts. Our objective was to evaluate the accuracy of reviewing MEG in source-space.In 60 consecutive patients with epilepsy, we prospectively evaluated the accuracy of reviewing the MEG signals in source-space as compared to the classical method of reviewing them in sensor-space.All 46 spike-clusters identified in sensor-space were also identified in source-space. Two additional spike-clusters were identified in source-space. As 29 source-channels can be easily displayed simultaneously, MEG recordings had to be browsed only once. Yet, this yielded a global coverage of the recorded signals and enhanced detectability of epileptiform discharges because MKG-artefacts were suppressed and did not impede evaluation in source-space.Our results show that reviewing MEG recordings in source-space is accurate and much more rapid than the classical method of reviewing in sensor-space.This novel method facilitates the clinical use of MEG.

Lanfer B.,University of Munster | Roer C.,University of Munster | Scherg M.,BESA GmbH | Rampp S.,Friedrich - Alexander - University, Erlangen - Nuremberg | And 2 more authors.
Brain Topography | Year: 2013

The simultaneous evaluation of the local electrocorticogram (ECoG) and the more broadly distributed electroencephalogram (EEG) from humans undergoing evaluation for epilepsy surgery has been shown to further the understanding of how pathologies give rise to spontaneous seizures. However, a well-known problem is that the disruption of the conducting properties of the brain coverings can render simultaneous scalp and intracranial recordings unrepresentative of the habitual EEG. The ECoG electrodes for measuring the potential on the surface of the cortex are commonly embedded into one or more sheets of a silastic material. These highly resistive silastic sheets influence the volume conduction and might therefore also influence the scalp EEG and ECoG measurements. We carried out a computer simulation study to examine how the scalp EEG and the ECoG, as well as the source reconstruction therefrom, employing equivalent current dipole estimation methods, are affected by the insulating ECoG grids. The finite element method with high quality tetrahedral meshes, generated using a constrained Delaunay tetrahedralization meshing approach, was used to model the volume conductor that incorporates the very thin ECoG sheets. It is shown that the insulating silastic substrate of the ECoG grids can have a large impact on the scalp potential and on source reconstruction from scalp EEG data measured in the presence of the grids. The reconstruction errors are characterized with regard to the location of the source in the brain and the mislocalization tendency. In addition, we found a non-negligible influence of the insulating grids on ECoG based source analysis. We conclude, that the thin insulating ECoG sheets should be taken into account, when performing source analysis of simultaneously measured ECoG and scalp EEG data. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

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