News Article | April 19, 2017
Magnesium could hold the key to preventing one of the most preventable causes of disability in middle-aged to elderly people, according to new research led by academics at the Universities of Bristol and Eastern Finland. BRISTOL, 19-Apr-2017 — /EuropaWire/ — Bone fractures are one of the leading causes of disability and ill health especially among the ageing population and this increases the burden on the health care system. It is well-known that calcium and vitamin D play an important role in bone health. Magnesium is an essential nutrient and is an important component of the bone. Though there have been suggestions that magnesium may have a beneficial effect on bone health, no study has been able to show its effect on bone fractures. Researchers at the Universities of Bristol and Eastern Finland followed 2,245 middle-aged men over a 20-year period. They found that men with lower blood levels of magnesium had an increased risk of fractures, particularly fractures of the hip. The risk of having a fracture was reduced by 44 per cent in men with higher blood levels of magnesium. None of the 22 men who had very high magnesium levels (> 2.3 mg/dl) in the study population experienced a fracture during the follow-up period. In the same study, dietary magnesium intake was not found to be linked with fractures. A finding that has been consistently demonstrated in several previous studies. Dr Setor Kunutsor, Research Fellow from the University of Bristol’s Musculoskeletal Research Unit and lead researcher, said: “The findings do suggest that avoiding low serum concentrations of magnesium may be a promising though unproven strategy for risk prevention of fractures.” Although blood levels of magnesium depend on magnesium intake from food and water, this may not be the case for the elderly, people with certain bowel disorders, and those on certain medications. For such people, increasing the intake of foods rich in magnesium may not necessarily increase blood magnesium levels. Treating the underlying conditions and magnesium supplementation may be another way of avoiding low blood levels of magnesium. These new findings may have public health implications as low blood levels of magnesium are very common in the population. This is especially among middle-aged to elderly individuals who are also prone to fractures. Majority of these individuals do not experience any symptoms. Since blood magnesium is not measured routinely in the hospital, individuals with low levels of magnesium are very difficult to identify. These findings could help trigger initiatives to include blood magnesium screening in routine blood panels, especially for the elderly. Professor Jari Laukkanen from the University of Eastern Finland and principal investigator, said: “The overall evidence suggests that increasing serum magnesium concentrations may protect against the future risk of fractures; however, well-designed magnesium supplementation trials are needed to investigate these potential therapeutic implications.” ‘Low serum magnesium levels are associated with increased risk of fractures: a long-term prospective cohort study‘ by Setor K. Kunutsor, Michael R. Whitehouse, Ashley W. Blom and Jari A. Laukkanen in European Journal of Epidemiology [open access]
News Article | April 21, 2017
A nanosatellite built at the University of Adelaide has been launched by NASA from Cape Canaveral, on board the Atlas V rocket bound for the International Space Station. It’s the culmination of four years’ hard work by about 50 University of Adelaide students and a dozen staff led by Research Fellow Dr. Matthew Tetlow, and it will play a key role in a project to explore the upper reaches of the atmosphere. The “CubeSat” is one of three miniaturized or “nanosatellites” developed in Australia under the European-funded project QB50, an international network of 50 CubeSats — the first Australian-built satellites to be launched for 15 years.
News Article | April 19, 2017
President Donald Trump today will meet with senior advisors and members of his cabinet to discuss the future of the Paris Climate Treaty, approved at COP-21 in December 2015. Then-President Obama never submitted the treaty to the United States Senate for ratification but began implementing its mandates unilaterally in 2016. When he was running for president, Trump promised to pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Treaty. More than 300 scientists have urged Donald Trump to remove the United States from the treaty. Heartland’s work on the Paris agreement includes this webpage, this opinion piece by Research Fellow H. Sterling Burnett, and this Research & Commentary on COP-21 and the Paris agreement. The following statements from climate policy experts at The Heartland Institute – a free-market think tank – may be used for attribution. For more comments, refer to the contact information below. To book a Heartland guest on your program, please contact New Media Specialist Billy Aouste at media(at)heartland(dot)org and 312/377-4000 or (cell) 847/447-7554. ________________________________________ “President Trump should run, not walk, away from the Paris Climate Treaty, for three main reasons. First, there is no scientific basis for the agreement. The only people who believe global warming is man-made and dangerous are the scientifically illiterate reporters/activists in the old media. The left tried to politicize the science and make a case for their political agenda, and they failed. Most scientists do not believe global warming is a crisis that merits current efforts aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, much less the draconian cuts envisioned by the Paris Climate Treaty. “Second, the Paris Climate Treaty puts America last, the exact opposite of what candidate Trump and now President Trump has promised. The treaty would require the United States to make massive reductions in emissions and pay billions of dollars in ‘climate reparations’ to Third World dictators, while requiring no emission cuts from developing countries including India and China. Why should the United States pay hundreds of billions of dollars to developing countries at a time when the U.S. government is running massive debts, when economic growth is slower for a longer period of time than at any time since the Great Depression, and when American workers are losing out to lower-paid workers in China and India? “Third, the Paris Climate Treaty is a job killer. Reducing emissions destroys jobs by increasing energy costs, which impoverishes American consumers and makes U.S. manufacturers less competitive with foreign producers. Low energy prices in the United States due to low coal, oil, and natural gas prices fueled nearly all the economic growth that occurred during the Obama years. If Obama-era restrictions on developing natural resources are lifted, billions of dollars in new manufacturing investment in the United States will occur and millions of jobs will be created. “Please, Mr. President, withdraw the United States from this anti-American treaty. Better yet, pull this noxious weed out by the roots by withdrawing the United States from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), a process that would be both faster and more certain to keep the hands of governments, both foreign and domestic, off our energy in the future.” “Were we to remain in the Paris Climate Treaty, it would give the world the message that even under President Trump, pacifism remains the way of the United States. The treaty is a plan to redistribute wealth in the world with absolutely no benefit to the planet’s environment. And it ultimately hurts the poorest of the poor because it will forever cheat them of the low-cost fossil fuel that has allowed most of the world to prosper.” “For the last eight years, we had a president who cared more about appealing to European allies than taking care of people struggling at home. On the campaign trail, then-candidate Donald Trump promised he would withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement and put American workers first. “The Paris Climate Agreement embodies everything wrong with former President Obama’s polices that caused thousands of people to lose their jobs and put Americans last. What’s worse, the supposed environmental benefits of this treaty are essentially zero. “Surrendering is for the French. Americans should not surrender their sovereignty to a foreign body they did not elect. Chinese manufacturers would be tickled pink if the United States stays in this agreement, but it does nothing but put the United States at a disadvantage to the rest of the world.” “As part of his ‘American First’ economic, energy, and foreign policy, President Trump should keep his campaign promise and pull out of the fatally flawed, costly, Paris Climate Agreement. The agreement puts U.S. companies at the mercy of international competitors in China, India, and beyond. We cut emissions and stifle economic growth while their economies keep chugging along and spewing emissions – and all for no global climate gain. “Going farther, Trump should end America’s participation in the entire United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which has done nothing but stifle innovation and economic progress while empowering international bureaucrats in enriching scientists and politicians on the backs of the American taxpayers. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been squandered, and there has been no reduction in poverty or improvement in environmental quality to show for it. Just a lot of rich bureaucrats and heads of NGOs travelling first class to exotic destinations, staying at five-star hotels and eating expensive meals. The money spent on all of these meetings could have saved thousands of lives each year. These meetings, not factory smokestacks, is where the real hot air is spewed.” “One of Donald Trump’s pledges to the American people when he was campaigning for the presidency was he would withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Treaty. Now that he is president, it is time for him to make good on that promise. Simply, one cannot ‘Make America Great Again’ if America is still shackled to the Paris Climate Treaty, which seeks emissions reductions from the United States that are incompatible with economic growth and job creation. “Instead of keeping the United States tied to this albatross of an agreement that promotes even more taxes, regulations, and subsidies aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions, President Trump should withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Treaty and support sound environmental stewardship that is pro-energy, pro-environment, and pro-jobs. Doing so would produce enormous economic dividends that would genuinely improve people’s lives.” Tim Benson Policy Analyst The Heartland Institute tbenson(at)heartland(dot)org 312/377-4000 ________________________________________ The Heartland Institute is a 33-year-old national nonprofit organization headquartered in Arlington Heights, Illinois. Its mission is to discover, develop, and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems. For more information, visit our Web site or call 312/377-4000.
News Article | April 25, 2017
Plants need nitrogen to grow, and intensive agriculture requires the input of nitrogen compounds. However, classical, nitrate-based fertilization is responsible for considerable environmental problems, such as the contamination of surface and underground water due to nitrate leaching, and the emission of greenhouse gases, owing to the effect of the micro-organisms in the soil that use the nitrate and produce nitrous oxide, a significant greenhouse gas. In order to alleviate these problems, "an attempt is being made to encourage a different type of fertilizer treatment, and one of them is the use of ammonia together with nitrification inhibitors. The inhibitors cause this ammonia to be in the soil for longer and this helps to mitigate nitrate leaching and also nitrous oxide emissions," explained Daniel Marino, researcher in the UPV/EHU's NUMAPS research group, which has conducted this study in collaboration with Dr Pedro Aparicio-Tejo of the UPN/NUP-Public University of Navarre. Yet this source of nitrogen has a special feature: "it can be toxic for plants and lead to reduced growth than when nitrate is used. In our group we are studying the tolerance and sensitivity of different plants to this source of nitrogen". Seeking to go further into this subject, they went on to study the proteome of a model plant, Arabidopsis thaliana. "Without focussing on any protein in particular, we decided to see what differences were displayed by this plant within the synthesised proteins as a whole when ammonium or nitric fertilizers are applied," said Daniel Marino. The same results in edible plants When studying the type and quantity of proteins accumulated in the plants with each type of nutrition, "what seemed most interesting to us is that there were some proteins related to the metabolism of glucosinolates which accumulate in a greater quantity in plants receiving an ammonium input," stressed the researcher. In general, glucosinolates have two properties: they are natural insecticides and one of them in particular, glucoraphanin, has anticarcinogenic properties. Given that the experiments had been conducted using the plant Arabidopsis thaliana, a model plant widely used in research but of no commercial interest, they decided to repeat the experiment, "but this time with broccoli plants. Although we did not manage to study the glucosinolate content in the part of the broccoli of greatest food interest, which is the flower, we saw that the leaves of the young plants accumulated a greater quantity of glucoraphanin when we added the source of nitrogen by means of ammonium than when we did so using nitrate," explained Marino. In view of these results, the research group is continuing to work on this aspect and they have even been in contact with several companies that could be interested in them. So in order to pursue their possible commercial application "we carried out field experiments where the system is much more complex, due, among other things, to the micro-organisms in the soil that also use ammonium as a source of nitrogen. So in the field experiments we will also be interested in analysing the glucosinolate content in the broccoli inflorescence, the part of the plant that is consumed most. On the other hand, from a more fundamental point of view, we are also interested in knowing the effect that the glucosinolates could have on the ammonium tolerance of the plant itself," he explained. The biologist Daniel Marino-Bilbao, an Ikerbasque Research Fellow at the UPV/EHU, is a member of the research group NUMAPS (Nutrition Management in Plant and Soil), led by Carmen González-Murua, of the department of Plant Biology and Ecology in the UPV/EHU's Faculty of Science and Technology. Marino D, Ariz I, Lasa B, Santamaría E, Fernández-Irigoyen J, González-Murua C, Aparicio-Tejo P (2016) Quantitative proteomics reveals the importance of nitrogen source to control glucosinolate metabolism in Arabidopsis thaliana and Brassica oleracea. Journal of Experimental Botany 67: 3313-3323.
News Article | April 17, 2017
THE island of Sardinia is remarkable for the fact that an exceptionally high proportion of the population is seemingly descended from people who have occupied it since the Neolithic and Bronze Age, between 8,000 and 2,000 years ago. For centuries after that, they had little interaction with mainland Europe. Now, University of Huddersfield researcher Dr Maria Pala has taken part in a project that has helped to unlock the genetic secrets of her Mediterranean homeland. One of the findings is that some modern Sardinians could have evolved from people who colonised the island at an even earlier period, the Mesolithic. Dr Pala - whose first degree was from the University of Sassari in her native Sardinia - is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Huddersfield and a member of its Archaeogenetics Research Group. The group is led by Professor Martin Richards and includes Dr Francesca Gandini as Research Fellow. They are all co-authors of a new article, titled Mitogenome Diversity in Sardinians: A Genetic Window onto an Island's Past, appearing in the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution. It states that modern Sardinians are a "unique reservoir of distinct genetic signatures" and it describes how the research team, based at a number of UK, European and American universities and institutes, analysed 3,491 DNA samples from the present day population and compared them with 21 ancient samples taken from skeletal remains found in rock-cut tombs spanning from the Neolithic period to the Final Bronze Age. Dr Pala explained that this new study focused on the mitochondrial genome - the maternal line from mothers to daughters - because it provided an unbroken line of descent, much less complex than the whole genome. It emerged that 78.4 per cent of the modern mitogenomes actually cluster into "Sardinian-specific haplogroups". "That percentage is extremely high," said Dr Pala. "If you look at Europeans as a whole, you cannot essentially distinguish an English person from an Italian or a French, because Europeans have mixed together for a long time." Sardinia has always been an island, but it is believed that there was a time when a lower sea level meant it retained links with the continent, and through these links the first inhabitants reached the island from continental Europe. Then the sea level rose but, despite this, connections with the continent remained active through the Neolithic and Bronze Age, possibly fuelled by the abundance of natural resources such as obsidian and metals present in the island. Then, whether suddenly or gradually, these connections were severed or became sporadic so that for thousands of years Sardinians were isolated, developing their own language, culture, society and sense of identity. To this day, Sardinians speak their own tongue and they remain genetically distinctive, as the new article co-authored by Dr Pala demonstrates. It concludes that: Contemporary Sardinians harbour a unique genetic heritage as a result of their distinct history and relative isolation from the demographic upheavals of continental Europe. Whilst the major signal appears to be the legacy of the first farmers on the island, our results hint at the possibility that the situation might have been much more complex, both for Sardinia but also, by implication, for Europe as a whole. It now seems plausible that human mobility, inter-communication and gene flow around the Mediterranean from Late Glacial times onwards may well have left signatures that survive to this day.
News Article | May 5, 2017
While many members of the general public may have heard of "bitcoin", the first decentralised cryptocurrency launched in 2009, a new report from the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) paints a broader picture of "cryptocurrencies". The report shows that cryptocurrencies – broadly defined as digital assets using cryptography to secure transactions between peers without the need for a central bank or other authority performing that role – are increasingly being used, stored, transacted and mined around the globe. The Global Cryptocurrency Benchmarking Study gathered data from more than 100 cryptocurrency companies in 38 countries, capturing an estimated 75 per cent of the cryptocurrency industry. Prior to this research, little hard data existed on how many people around the world actively use cryptocurrencies. The conventional wisdom has been that the number of people using bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies was around 1 million people; however, based on newly collected data, including the percentage of the estimated 35 million cryptocurrency "wallets" (software applications that store cryptocurrencies) that are in active use, the CCAF research team estimates that there at least 3 million people actively using cryptocurrency today. While bitcoin remains the dominant cryptocurrency both in terms of market capitalisation and usage, it has conceded market cap share to other cryptocurrencies – declining from 86 per cent to 72 per cent in the past two years. The study by the CCAF at Cambridge Judge Business School breaks down the cryptocurrency industry into four key sectors – exchanges, wallets, payments, and mining. Highlights of the findings are: Cryptocurrency exchanges provide on-off ramps to cryptocurrency systems by offering services to users wishing to buy or sell cryptocurrency. This sector was the first to emerge in the cryptocurrency industry, and has the most operating entities and employs the most people. Currently, about 52 per cent of small exchanges hold a formal government license, compared to only 35 per cent of large exchanges. Wallets have evolved from simple software programs to sophisticated applications that offer a variety of technical features and services. As a result, the lines between wallets and exchanges are increasingly blurred, with 52 per cent of wallets providing an integrated currency exchange feature. Cryptocurrency payment companies generally act as gateways between cryptocurrency users and the broader economy, bridging national currencies and cryptocurrencies. They can fit into two broad categories: firms that use cryptocurrency primarily as a "payment rail" for fast and efficient cross-border transactions, and firms that facilitate the use of cryptocurrency for both users and merchants. The study found that the size of the average business-to-business cryptocurrency payment ($1,878) dwarfs peer-to-peer and consumer-to-business cryptocurrency payments. In the absence of a central authority, cryptocurrencies are created by a process called "mining" – usually the performance of a large number of computations to solve a cryptographic "puzzle". The study shows how cryptocurrency mining has evolved from a hobby activity into a professional, capital-intensive industry in which bitcoin miners earned more than $2 billion in mining revenues since 2009. The cryptocurrency mining map indicates that a significant proportion of publicly known mining facilities are concentrated in certain Chinese provinces. The study found that more than 1,800 people are now working full time in the cryptocurrency industry, as more companies are engaged across various cryptocurrency sectors. "Cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin have been seen by some as merely a passing fad or insignificant, but that view is increasingly at odds with the data we are observing," says Dr Garrick Hileman, Research Fellow at the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) at Cambridge Judge Business School, who co-authored the study with Michel Rauchs, Research Assistant at CCAF. "Currently, the combined market value of all cryptocurrencies is nearly $40 billion, which represents a level of value creation on the order of Silicon Valley success stories like Airbnb," Dr Hileman says in a foreword to the study. "The advent of cryptocurrency has also sparked many new business platforms with sizable valuations of their own, along with new forms of peer-to-peer economic activity." Explore further: Towards equal access to digital coins More information: The report is available online: www.jbs.cam.ac.uk/faculty-research/centres/alternative-finance/publications/global-cryptocurrency/
News Article | April 17, 2017
The National Science Foundation (NSF) today recognized Baratunde "Bara" A. Cola of the Georgia Institute of Technology and John V. Pardon of Princeton University with the nation's highest honor for early career scientists and engineers, the Alan T. Waterman Award. This marks only the second time in the award's 42-year history that NSF selected two recipients in the same year. Bestowed annually, the Waterman Award recognizes outstanding researchers age 35 and under in NSF-supported fields of science and engineering. In addition to a medal, awardees each receive a $1 million, five-year grant for research in their chosen field of study. "We are seeing the significant impact of their research very early in the careers of these awardees," said NSF Director France Córdova. "That is the most exciting aspect of the Waterman Award, which recognizes early career achievement. They have creatively tackled longstanding scientific challenges, and we look forward to what they will do next." Cola pioneered new engineering methods and materials to control light and heat in electronics at the nanoscale. He serves as an associate professor at Georgia Tech's George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering. In 2015, Cola and his team were the first to overcome more than 40 years of research challenges to create a device called an optical rectenna, which turns light into direct current more efficiently than today's technology. The device could lead to highly efficient solar cells with the potential to power new generations of cell phones, laptops, satellites and drones. The technology uses carbon nanotubes that act as tiny antennas to capture light. Light is then converted into direct current by miniature, nanotechnology-enabled mechanisms called rectifier diodes. The research has the potential to double solar cell efficiency at one-tenth the cost, according to Cola. "Ultimately, we see the Waterman as fueling the final leg of our long-term effort to be the first to truly bring transformational applications of carbon nanotubes to the market," Cola said. "As of now, we know that there will be a substantial investment in engineering another breakthrough in carbon nanotube optical rectenna science." Cola also works to commercialize other novel nanotechnology-based innovations. In 2015, he participated in NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) at Georgia Tech, a program that immerses scientists and engineers in entrepreneurial training, teaching them to look beyond the lab and consider the commercial potential or broader impacts of their research. I-Corps participants interview prospective customers and identify market needs for federally funded innovations. In addition, Cola and colleagues were responsible for engineering breakthroughs, including the first thermally conductive amorphous polymer, the first practical electrochemical cell for generating electricity from waste heat and the first evidence of thermal energy conduction by surface polaritons. Cola, 35, is the founder of Carbice Nanotechnologies, Inc., a company that uses a carbon nanotube-material to remove heat from computer chip testing stations, allowing for faster and cheaper testing of chips during production. The technology could eventually result in smaller, faster, more powerful computer chips for use in everything from smartphones to supercomputers. Carbice Nanotechnologies received support from NSF's Small Business Innovation Research program. He also is co-founder of the NSF-funded Academic and Research Leadership Network, a group of more than 300 Ph.D. engineering researchers from minority groups underrepresented in academia, industry and government laboratories. Pardon is a Clay Research Fellow and professor of mathematics at Princeton University. His research focuses on geometry and topology, the study of properties of shapes that are unaffected by deformations, such as stretching or twisting. He is known for solving problems that stumped other mathematicians for decades and generating solutions that provide new tools for geometric analysis. In 2013, Pardon published a solution to the Hilbert-Smith conjecture, a mathematical proposition involving the actions of groups of "manifolds" in three dimensions. Manifolds include spheres and doughnut-shaped objects. The conjecture originates from one of the 23 problems published in 1900 by German mathematician David Hilbert, which helped guide the course of 20th century mathematics. American topologist Paul Althaus Smith proposed a stronger version of the problem in 1941. This problem has connections to many other areas of mathematics and physics. Pardon's publication was notable for proving this longstanding conjecture, a major achievement in mathematics. Prior to that publication, as a senior undergraduate at Princeton, Pardon answered a question posed in 1983 by Russian mathematician Mikhail Gromov regarding "knots," mathematical structures that resemble physical knots, but are closed, instead of having any ends. Gromov's question involved a special class of knots called "torus knots." He asked whether these knots could be tied without altering or distorting their topology. Pardon figured out a way to use the distortion between two properties of knots -- their intrinsic and extrinsic distances -- to control their topology. He showed that torus knots are limited by their geometric properties, and can be tied without altering their topology. Pardon's solution has important applications in fluid dynamics and electrodynamics, calculating forces involved in aircraft movement, predicting weather patterns, determining the flow of liquids through water treatment plant pipelines, determining the flow of electrical charges, and more. Pardon, who received his doctorate in mathematics in 2015 from Stanford University, has been a full professor at Princeton since fall 2016. Among other awards, Pardon earned a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship to support his graduate studies at Stanford. As of October last year, Pardon had published 11 papers on such subjects as contact homology, virtual fundamental cycles, the distortion of knots, algebraic varieties, and the carpenter's rule problem.
News Article | April 21, 2017
Optogenetics utilizes methods where light can be used to control cellular functions. In contrast to traditional methods, optogenetic methods allow more temporally and spatially accurate way to control cells. In brain research, these tools have been used successfully to regulate individual nerve cells in millisecond time scale using light instead of electrical stimulus. Optogenetic methods and tools have evolved fast, and in addition to be able to control cellular activity, researchers can now control the activity of gene function. In the study published in Nucleic Acids Research, the researchers were able to induce and inhibit the expression of genes in mammalian cell cultures and were able to regulate intracellular protein levels using light signals. The approach was also used to regulate gene transcription at endogenous genomic sites when combined with CRISPR/Cas9 technology. "The research carried out in zebrafish unit of the University of Helsinki showed that in addition to cell cultures, these optogenetic tools worked also in living tissues," says Academy Research Fellow Jari Rossi. The field has many medical applications, and it is possible that optogenetics may be applied in the future to treat human illnesses. First clinical studies are undergoing to restore vision in patients with retinitis pigmentosa. "Although the medical applications utilizing light regulated gene expression are in the distant future, the first applications will be probably found among life science basic research areas which are in the need of accurate control of gene function" Dr. Rossi says. "I am myself interested in using these tools for example in obesity- and diabetes research." On the other hand, the manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals still rely on using old technologies. "The pharmaceutical- and bioindustry might benefit from using these more up-to-date methods, which can be used to control pharmaceutical production processes in cell factories more accurately and efficiently," Dr. Rossi states. Explore further: Biochemists develop new way to control cell biology with light More information: Gopal P. Pathak et al. Bidirectional approaches for optogenetic regulation of gene expression in mammalian cells using Arabidopsis cryptochrome 2, Nucleic Acids Research (2017). DOI: 10.1093/nar/gkx260
News Article | May 1, 2017
DANBURY, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--In support of its continued drive to be the leading innovator in the global polymer additive market, Addivant™ announced today the promotion of Dr. Hayder Zahalka as Addivant’s first Research Fellow. This designation is recognized globally as an expert in a technology platform area as evidenced by peer-reviewed publications, patents and major contributions to an industry. In his announcement to the company, John Steitz, CEO stated, “Hayder is recognized globally and is our foremost technical expert on polyethylene and elastomer technologies. He is our primary technical contact with PE and elastomer customers demonstrating the value of WESTON® 705. We are very fortunate to have such a leading global expert on our team and continue to expect great innovations from Hayder and our entire R&D organization.” Dr. Zahalka holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry-Biochemistry, a Master of Science in Applied Chemistry, and a PhD in Catalysis and Process Development from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Additionally, he completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Organometallic Chemistry at the University of Ottawa. Dr. Zahalka is Addivant’s leading presenter at national and international conferences, with 39 papers delivered globally since 2008. He is an inventor or co-inventor on 6 granted patents and 2 pending applications. Addivant™ is an innovator in the field of polymer additives, developing customized solutions that provide customers enhanced application performance, safe handling, and reduction in cost of use. The company is recognized industry-wide for its extensive portfolio of specialty additives including antioxidants, light stabilizers, rubber additives, polymer modifiers, metal deactivators, polymerization inhibitors, and intermediates. Addivant is an international company with 11 plants on five continents, as well as research, manufacturing, and sales facilities around the globe. The company maintains its global headquarters in Connecticut, USA, with regional headquarters in Al Jubail, Saudi Arabia, Basel, Switzerland, and Shanghai, China. Addivant is an independent portfolio company of SK Capital. Visit www.addivant.com for more information. ADDIVANT™, WESTON®, ANOX®, POLYBOND®, LOWINOX®, ULTRANOX®, GENOX®, NAUGARD® and FLEXAMINE® are trademarks of Addivant.
D'Andreta D.,Research Fellow
Journal of health services research & policy | Year: 2013
We contribute to existing knowledge translation (KT) literature by developing the notion of 'enactment' and illustrate this through an interpretative, comparative case-study analysis of three Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) initiatives. We argue for a focus on the way in which the CLAHRC model has been 'enacted' as central to the different KT challenges and capabilities encountered. A comparative, mixed method study created a typology of enactments (Classical, Home-grown and Imported) using qualitative analysis and social network analysis. We identify systematic differences in the enactment of the CLAHRC model. The sources of these different enactments are subsequently related to variation in formative interpretations and leadership styles, the implementation of different governance structures, and the relative epistemic differences between the professional groups involved. Enactment concerns the creative agency of individuals and groups in constituting a particular context for their work through their local interpretation of a particular KT model. Our theory of enactment goes beyond highlighting variation between CLAHRCs, to explore the mechanisms that influence the way a particular model is interpreted and acted upon. We thus encourage less focus on conceptual models and more on the formative role played by leaders of KT initiatives.