Go back to the enewsletterFollowing its acquisition of Emporium Hotel in January, award-winning Ovolo Hotel Group is continuing to stamp its mark on Queensland’s capital, this month revealing a major multi-million-dollar evolution of the iconic property which will see it become the flagship Queensland hotel for the group.Ovolo The Valley will debut in November, however the Ovolo Hotel Group is already accepting bookings online for stays effective immediately. The project by acclaimed global architecture firm Woods Bagot, the award-winning designers behind the revitalisation of Brisbane’s Howard Smith Wharves and The Ivy in Sydney, will take Emporium into the new era with a hotel theme inspired by the eclectic culture and iconic history of Fortitude Valley. Ovolo The Valley draws guests into a whimsical oasis of colour, art and surprising hints of quirk, curated throughout its 103 rooms.CEO and Chairman of the Ovolo Group, Girish Jhunjhnuwala says Ovolo has invested approximately $55 million in adding a niche boutique designer hotel to Brisbane’s booming tourism and hospitality market.“There are many newcomers to the Brisbane hotel market, but Ovolo’s biggest point of difference is our exceptional customer service and design. We strive to exceed expectations and our rankings and customer feedback says it all. We are confident Ovolo The Valley will be a market leader for Brisbane in the near future,” Jhunjhnuwala said.“Our brief to Woods Bagot was that each of our hotels must have their own unique personality and style, inspired by local surrounds, culture, heritage and Ovolo’s playful, forward-thinking spirit, and they’ve delivered exactly that with The Valley.“There is an element of fantasy, escapism and play in The Valley. We’re positioning it as the perfect contemporary oasis to escape our busy urban lives,” said Jhunjhnuwala.Woods Bagot’s Principal and Hotel Sector Leader (Australia), Bronwyn McColl, says the design of Ovolo The Valley celebrates Fortitude Valley’s eclectic mix: the rich colours of the streets and laneways, and its social and cultural diversity. At the same time, with rooms inspired by nature for a whimsical luxe experience, it provides an unexpected, private oasis for guests.“With an eccentric mix of art, fashion, style and a whole lot of fabulous, we’ve created a new personality in Brisbane’s hotel market. We started by exploring the spaces behind The Valley’s indiscernible facades and the spaces in between, and translated them into playful, yet sophisticated, experiences that take the Ovolo guest by surprise, including the most incredible rock star suites in honour of the late David Bowie, with 1970s-inspired velvet lounges and a gold bar, for those who dare!” said McColl.The interior design for the new hotel’s 103 rooms focus on creating a whimsical oasis for guests, replete with playful and colourful elements and commissioned art pieces including custom wallpaper and eccentric furniture and illustrations.Ovolo’s effortless living ethos is no stranger at The Valley, with 24-hour room service, large flatscreen televisions, Google Chromecast, additional wall plugs, phone chargers in rooms and Amazon’s Alexa cloud-based voice service, able to assist guests with just about every command.A rooftop swimming pool, gym, sauna, meeting rooms and Ovolo’s signature standard inclusions – free breakfast, free Wi-Fi, free in-room mini-bar, free laundry and free happy hour drinks daily – make The Valley a distinguished luxury hotel experience.Food and drink is a big part of the Ovolo Hotel Group concept, with award-winning restaurants at its other Australian properties including Alibi at Ovolo Woolloomooloo (Sydney) fronted by restauranteur Matthew Kenney; Monster Kitchen & Bar at Ovolo Nishi (Canberra); and Salon De Co at Ovolo Inchcolm (Brisbane). The group recently opened Mister Percy at Ovolo 1888 (Sydney), a Mediterranean-style wine bar fronted by renowned chef Justin North.Rates start from $300 per night.For more information and to book, see: www.ovolohotels.com.au/ovolothevalleyGo back to the enewsletter
March 12, 2002 At the FebruaryWorkshop Graduation WesOzier, workshop coordinator, presents a diploma to Jesse Karp whohas just completed his 5-week Workshop Program . [T] New graduates >>fromtop left>> Michael Lengton,Bradley Bishop, Luke White, Nobuya Katsura,Andy Bradshaw, Seth Guinchard, Jody Smyth III, Brennan McFadden, RayLam >>from middle left>> Jung Kwon, Jesse Karp, >>from bottom left>>Junko Kobayashi, Phoebe Ellette, Bridgid Kutner, Anya Gorka >>frombracket left>> Brandy Follet, Ayano Atsumi. [T] This monthlyceremony was held at Morning Meeting when many of the Arcosantiresidents are present. [photo: S.A. & text: T]
Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland has upped Henning Nieslony to the management team of its digital division, RTL Interactive.Henning NieslonyIn his new role as head of commercial management for video-on-demand, Nieslony will be tasked with further expanding RTL’s TV NOW offering into a fully-fledged streaming service.Nieslony was previously marketing manager of VOD / corporate and head of strategy and media in marketing at Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.“The successful expansion of TV NOW is a central pillar of our digital strategy,” said Jan Wachtel, chief digital content officer of Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.“Henning is well acquainted with the brand and the product through his previous work and, with his great expertise, will be instrumental in shaping the future of TV NOW.”Nieslony succeeds Robert Dube, who is due to leave the company.
Campaigners have cast doubt on Twitter’s commitment to protecting disabled people from vile disablist abuse on its social media platform.They spoke out after the media giant launched its new Twitter Trust and Safety Council, which it claimed would help “ensure that people feel safe expressing themselves on Twitter”.The council is made up of 50 individuals and organisations from across the world, including representatives of anti-bullying, LGBT, Muslim, Jewish and feminist organisations.But with the exception of the Samaritans and a campaigning Australian mental health charity, there is not a single disability-related organisation represented on the new council, and there does not appear to be a single disabled member.Disabled activists say this underlines Twitter’s failure to take seriously the disablist abuse that blights the social media platform.One disabled Twitter user, who asked not to be named, said: “What this says is that Twitter just don’t care about disability hate crime being carried out on their site.“They don’t care about disabled people being told to die, that we should be beaten.“They don’t care about people organising hate mobs to try to ruin disabled people’s lives.”She said: “I’ve read lots of articles about the council; and not one addresses the fact that Twitter are basically sanctioning disability hate crime on their platform by not being interested in tackling disablist abuse.”One disabled campaigner who contacted Disability News Service told how she was subjected to the following tweet: “You’re just a disabled bitch that should be put down. nothing but a lazy workshy, scrounger.”She said the person was subsequently banned by Twitter “for about an hour”.Another disabled activist was called “spastic”, “retard” and “cretin” during a short Twitter exchange.Another was called a “fucking freak”, and told: “You should be in a care home and not let out without mental health carers you’re a danger to the public you’re mentally retarded.”One prominent online disabled activist, Ella Sumpter, was forced to block several Twitter-users who subjected her to abuse, often suggesting she was “faking” her impairments and claiming benefits fraudulently.Although this happened three years ago, one referred to her “designer diseases”, said she had a “severe case of spazzeritus”, and called her a “benefit scrounging wanker”, before adding: “Now I hate disabled people because some benefits scrounging cunt can’t be arsed to get up. Fuck right off. How many starving Africans have ME.”David Gillon, an online disabled activist, monitored the disablist abuse that followed the screening of Channel Four’s Benefits Britain: 1949, for a blog he wrote in August 2013.He said that tweets that featured the #BenefitsBritain hashtag included: “Funny how it’s the fat, foul mouthed bint with illness u can fake that is the one with the issues,” “Luckily for these slackers, it’s difficult to prove ‘pain’,” and “#Motability What clown thought this idea up? Free cars for bone idle, lard-arses.”Many #BenefitsBritain responses even threatened violence, such as: “I’d quite happily kick the shit out of that fat, lazy fucker!!”, “Take the cane off that woman and beat her over the head with it,” and “Utterly contemptuous cow. I hope she really does become confined by her ailments. Permanently. In a wooden box.”Gillon said that Twitter had a “lackadaisical approach” to stopping online abuse in general, despite being forced to improve its procedures following the harassment of a number of high-profile women’s rights campaigners.He said that Twitter’s page that deals with online abuse gives “the definite impression they don’t want to be bothered with it”.He said: “First they tell you unwanted replies are legitimate, then that you should block the person, and that if it escalates to threats, contact the police.“There is no coverage of harassment and abuse short of threats of violence.“Buried just below that, with no separate header, is: ‘You can report the contact to Twitter here.’“If I was trying to hide the link to minimize use, that’s exactly how I would do it.“Then it tells you to ‘reach out’ to friends or relatives to help you deal with it, which I think amounts to victim blaming.”He also pointed out that Twitter’s form that allows users to report harassment does not provide a clear option for reporting hate speech.He said: “Twitter need to be more pro-active, and they need a report form that actually allows us to report hate speech.”Twitter has refused to comment.
Voicify, LLC Receives Second Round of Funding from Multiple Investors PRNewswireMay 9, 2019, 12:08 pmMay 9, 2019 fundingJeff McMahonMarketing TechnologyNewsvoice experience platformVoicifyVoicify Voice Experience Previous ArticleShop Direct Enhances Customer Engagement, Revenues with Revionics AI-Based Price OptimizationNext ArticleBirdEye Honored As Most Innovative Tech Company in 2019, Winning Its Second Stevie Award Voicify, a voice experience platform company, announced it has completed a $2 million round of funding from several leading early-stage investors. This is Voicify’s second round of financing. Participation in the round included both new and returning investors. With this investment, Voicify will continue to advance the platform and expand its team to meet the significant interest from the market.Jeff McMahon, Chief Executive Officer of Voicify said, “The response from the investment community was overwhelming. We were oversubscribed within a few weeks of going to market and we were able to close within thirty days of starting the fund-raising process. We were fortunate to be able to bring in top tier investors who really understand the space and are already adding a lot of value.” McMahon added, “we plan on using the additional capital to solidify our leadership position in the market by investing further in our technology platform and expanding our engineering, customer service and business development teams.”Marketing Technology News: Media.net Donates Code To IAB Tech Lab To Promote Open Transparent MarketplacesVoicify has already established a clear leadership role in the enterprise voice app creation space. While much of the market is focused on building tools for developers to assist in building voice apps with limited functionality, Voicify has achieved significant traction with many leading global brands. This is largely attributed to the fact that Voicify’s more robust platform was built specifically for the needs of marketing departments of major brands and organizations.Voicify is the market leader in enterprise voice experience management software. The Company’s platform combines voice optimized content management, cross-platform deployment, and voice-specific customer insights. Voicify was established in 2017 and is headquartered in Boston, MA.Marketing Technology News: New Soda Study Reveals Significant Increase in Customer Personalization Budgets Despite Lag in CapabilitiesThe Voicify Voice Experience Manager enables marketers to connect with their customers by creating highly engaging and personalized voice experiences that are automatically deployed to a broad array of voice platforms such as voice assistants (Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Microsoft Cortana), chatbots and other services. The platform enables non-technical users to deploy feature-rich voice applications quickly and efficiently while offering the flexibility of unlimited customization.Marketing Technology News: Amazon or Alibaba: Freedonia Compares These Global E-Commerce Leaders
New partnership additions include Uberall, Web.com, SinglePlatformMoz, Inc., the leader in search engine optimization technology, announced the expansion of its Partner Ecosystem. Uberall, Web.com, and SinglePlatform join the ecosystem to offer customers an expansion of best-in-class resources.The partnership with Uberall enhances Moz’s local presence management platform to allow customers an even greater breadth of features to increase visibility in local search, while the partnership with SinglePlatform provides more vertical-focused businesses, like restaurants and spas, the opportunity to include online menus to reach patrons.Google’s recent changes indicate a continued evolution into local search, as February saw algorithm updates giving Local SERP features new abilities such as, “Get in Line” and “Reserve with Google.” As Moz doubles down on Local SEO, these partnerships allow for the SEO leader to deliver valuable insights and accurate, incomparable data.Marketing Technology News: Triton Digital Integrates Centro’s Basis Platform with the a2x Programmatic MarketplaceWith unparalleled listing management and distribution, validated listing accuracy, duplication detection and closure, and advanced analytics for traffic, ranking, customer behavior and competitive intelligence, Moz delivers performance-driving insights and recommendations that help businesses gain an edge over their competitors.“Similar to Moz, we believe search is the critical marketing strategy that will help grow businesses; so, it’s no surprise CMOs are implementing SEO initiatives and seeking the best search resources to stay ahead of the competition,” said Florian Huebner, Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Uberall. “Partnering with Moz was a strategic move by both organizations to hone in on Local SEO and continue to lead the industry.”Marketing Technology News: Mindtree to Showcase Contextual, Real-Time Solutions for Personalized Traveler Experiences at HITEC MinneapolisOver the past year, Moz positioned itself as the leading SEO technology and authority in keyword research, link building tools and now Local SEO. To add even more value for its customers, Moz launched a complete overhaul of Domain Authority, Moz’s proprietary scoring system; and acquired STAT Search Analytics, a leading provider of SEO software and longtime friend of Moz. Both announcements came on the heels of the launch of Moz’s new link index, which made data 35x larger and 30x fresher; and its keyword Corpus expansion, which doubled.“Our partner ecosystem plays a critical role in helping us meet the high demand for better SEO practices, tools and expertise, and it puts the power of the Moz platform into the hands of more enterprises, agencies and SMBs,” said Sarah Bird, CEO of Moz. “As Google becomes more locally focused, we want to ensure users have access to the right resources to maximize exposure to prospects and customers.”Marketing Technology News: CoreMedia Announces CoreMedia Content Cloud – Marketing Connector on Salesforce AppExchange, the World’s Leading Enterprise Cloud Marketplace domain authorityEcosystemMarketing TechnologyMozNewsSarah BirdSEOUberall Previous ArticlePriceless Experiences Are Coming to a Smart Speaker Near YouNext ArticlePhrasee Launches Dashboard to Give Marketers Real-Time Revenue Review of Global Email Campaigns Moz Expands Partner Ecosystem, Delivers Best-of-Breed Local Presence Management & SEO Business WireJune 18, 2019, 1:55 pmJune 18, 2019
Televerde Joins United Nations Global Compact MTS Staff Writer1 day agoJuly 22, 2019 Membership Supports Mission to Transform Lives of 10,000 Disempowered People Televerde, a global integrated sales and marketing technology organization, announced that it has joined the United Nations Global Compact¾a voluntary leadership platform for the development, implementation and disclosure of responsible business practices. Launched in 2000, the United Nations Global Compact is the largest corporate sustainability initiative in the world, with more than 9,500 companies and 3,000 non-business signatories based in over 160 countries.“I’m proud to work for a purpose-driven company that puts diversity, inclusion and sustainability practices into action,” said Michelle Cirocco, Chief Social Responsibility Officer for Televerde. “We continuously search out ways to align ourselves with organizations that want to have a meaningful impact on society. The U.N. Global Compact has the unique ability to make a difference in so many areas that need attention including human rights, labor and the environment.”Marketing Technology News: Collabra Technology Launches FlashCards Innovative Social Media Videos for Real Estate MarketingMembers of the United Nations Global Compact have visions that align with the Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations General Assembly. Believed to be essential to achieving transformational change, the goals are universal calls to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure all people enjoy peace and prosperity. Added Cirocco, “We believe in unleashing human potential and pledge to keep the Sustainable Development Goals at the forefront of everything we do. We’re proud to stand up in support of ending poverty and hunger, championing good health and well-being, and making sure individuals have access to quality education and decent work.”Marketing Technology News: New Strategy Book Reveals How to Respond to the Trade Wars and Digital Age DisruptionsTeleverde is a part of the Global Impact Sourcing Coalition, a global network of businesses dedicated to creating a market for inclusive employment by raising awareness of Impact Sourcing and demonstrating how inclusive hiring practices lead to greater business growth and social impact. “Every step we take gets us closer to our mission of transforming the lives of 10,000 disempowered people over the next decade,” said Cirocco.Marketing Technology News: Filmzie: A Place to Meet Exceptional Movies and Their Fans Marketing Technology NewsMichelle CiroccoNewsTeleverdeUnited Nations Global Compact Previous ArticleWhy Measurement Matters to Influencers Now More Than EverNext ArticleThomson Reuters Closes Acquisition of Confirmation
Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Apr 9 2019In a study published online in Brain on April 1, researchers from Dr. XU Jin’s lab at the Institute of Neuroscience of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and their collaborators revealed a new cellular mechanism for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), suggested a novel therapeutic strategy targeting the RNA degradation pathway, and identified an asthma drug as a potential medication for ALS.ALS is the most common motor neuron disease and one of the most devastating neurodegenerative diseases caused by progressive motor neuron degeneration. There is no cure for the disease and current treatment options are very limited. Thus, the disease is characterized by fast progression and high lethality.Recent genetic advances have identified a group of new genes whose mutations contribute to the development of ALS. Among these genes, C9orf72 is the most common genetic cause of familial ALS, and even contributes to sporadic ALS.Related StoriesHealthy lifestyle lowers dementia risk despite genetic predispositionStudy provides new insight into longitudinal decline in brain network integrity associated with agingNew therapy shows promise in preventing brain damage after traumatic brain injuryUnlike commonly seen point mutations and deletions, (GGGGCC)n hexa-nucleotide repeats expansion (HRE) in a non-coding region of C9orf72 is the culprit. Intriguingly, these repeats could generate RNA and protein products and affect RNA metabolism as some other ALS-causing mutant proteins do, although the underlying mechanisms remain to be fully understood.In this study, by coupling unbiased bioinformatic analysis of various transcriptome studies with validation experiments in multiple C9orf72 cellular and animal models, Dr. XU’s team unveiled the inhibition of the nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) pathway as a conserved consequence of the C9orf72 HRE.NMD is a type of RNA surveillance machinery vital for the removal of defective or harmful RNA generated from faulty transcription, alternative splicing or viral infection. Key protein components of NMD are found in cytoplasmic structures called processing bodies.Interestingly, researchers found that HRE-derived neurotoxic dipeptide repeats (DPRs) could inhibit the NMD pathway by suppressing processing-body formation while promoting stress granule formation.To test whether the NMD pathway could be a potential therapeutic target for ALS, they first genetically reactivated the NMD pathway and found that core NMD genes, such as UPF1, could effectively protect against C9orf72 DPRs neurotoxicity. Next, after evaluating several potential NMD-activating compounds, they identified Tranilast as the most promising NMD-activating drug and found that it could rescue cells and fruit flies from C9orf72 DPR-induced neurotoxicity.Given that blood-brain barrier-permeable Tranilast has been clinically used to treat asthma with a great safety record since the 1980s, this study will prompt future pre-clinical and clinical investigations to test the therapeutic potential of Tranilast and other NMD-activating compounds in ALS patients with defective RNA metabolism.The patent related to this discovery is pending. Source:http://english.cas.cn/
Because we’ve shined a spotlight in recent years on emerging and early signs of psychosis, diagnosis of schizophrenia is like a new fad, and it’s a problem especially for those who are not schizophrenia specialists because symptoms can be complex and misleading. Diagnostic errors can be devastating for people, particularly the wrong diagnosis of a mental disorder.”Krista Baker, L.C.P.C., Manager of Adult Outpatient Schizophrenia Services at Johns Hopkins Medicine Credit: Getty ImagesIn a report of the study in the March issue of the Journal of Psychiatric Practice, the researchers say that therapies can vary widely for people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression or other serious types of mental illness, and that misdiagnosis can lead to inappropriate or delayed treatment.The findings, the researchers say, suggest that second opinions at a specialized schizophrenia clinic after initial diagnosis are wise efforts to reduce the risk of misdiagnosis, and ensure prompt and appropriate patient treatment. Hearing voices is a symptom of many different conditions, and sometimes it is just a fleeting phenomenon with little significance. At other times when someone reports ‘hearing voices’ it may be a general statement of distress rather than the literal experience of hearing a voice. The key point is that hearing voices on its own doesn’t mean a diagnosis of schizophrenia.”Russell L. Margolis, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and the Clinical Director of the Johns Hopkins Schizophrenia Center at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Apr 22 2019In a small study of patients referred to the Johns Hopkins Early Psychosis Intervention Clinic (EPIC), Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers report that about half the people referred to the clinic with a schizophrenia diagnosis didn’t actually have schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a chronic, severe and disabling disorder marked by disordered thinking, feelings and behavior. People who reported hearing voices or having anxiety were the ones more likely to be misdiagnosed. In speculating about other reasons why there might be so many misdiagnoses, the researchers say that it could be due to overly simplified application of criteria listed in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, a standard guide to the diagnosis of psychiatric disorders.”Electronic medical record systems, which often use pull-down diagnostic menus, increase the likelihood of this type of error,” says Margolis, who refers to the problem as “checklist psychiatry.”Russell L. Margolis said: According to the National Institute of Mental Health, schizophrenia affects an estimated 0.5 percent of the world population, and is more common in men. It typically arises in the late teens, 20s and even as late as the early 30s in women. Symptoms such as disordered thinking, hallucinations, delusions, reduced emotions and unusual behaviors can be disabling, and drug treatments often create difficult side effects.The new study was prompted in part by anecdotal evidence among health care providers in Baker’s specialty clinic that a fair number of people were being seen who were misdiagnosed. These patients usually had other mental illnesses, such as depression.To see if there was rigorous evidence of such a trend, the researchers looked at patient data from 78 cases referred to EPIC, their specialty clinic at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, for consultation between February 2011 and July 2017. Patients were an average age of 19, and about 69 percent were men. Seventy-four percent were white, 12 percent African American and 14 percent were another ethnicity. Patients were referred to the clinic by general psychiatrists, outpatient psychiatric centers, primary care physicians, nurse practitioners, neurologists or psychologists.Each consultation by the clinic took three to four hours, and included interviews with the patient and the family, physical exams, questionnaires, and medical and psychosocial histories.Related StoriesRandomized controlled trial introduces new psychotherapeutic approach to schizophreniaStimulating parvalbumin-containing cells causes surprising changes in blood volume, flowNew machine-learning method more precisely quantifies a known indicator for psychosisOf the patients referred to the clinic, 54 people came with a predetermined diagnosis of a schizophrenia spectrum disorder. Of those, 26 received a confirmed diagnosis of a schizophrenia spectrum disorder following their consultation with the EPIC team, which is composed of licensed clinicians and psychiatrists. Fifty-one percent of the 54 cases were rediagnosed by clinic staff as having anxiety or mood disorders. Anxiety symptoms were prominent in 14 of the misdiagnosed patients.One of the other most common symptoms that the researchers believe may have contributed to misdiagnosis of schizophrenia was hearing voices, as almost all incorrectly diagnosed patients reported auditory hallucinations. The big take-home message from our study is that careful consultative services by experts are important and likely underutilized in psychiatry. Just as a primary care clinician would refer a patient with possible cancer to an oncologist or a patient with possible heart disease to a cardiologist, it’s important for general mental health practitioners to get a second opinion from a psychiatry specialty clinic like ours for patients with confusing, complicated or severe conditions. This may minimize the possibility that a symptom will be missed or overinterpreted.” Margolis cautioned that the study was limited to patients evaluated in one clinic. Nonetheless, he was encouraged by the willingness of so many patients, their families and their clinicians to ask for a second opinion from the Johns Hopkins clinic. If further study confirms their findings, it would lend support to the belief by the Johns Hopkins team that overdiagnosis may be a national problem, because they see patients from across the country who travel to Johns Hopkins for an opinion. They hope to examine the experience of other specialty consultation clinics in the future.Source: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/newsroom/news-releases/study-suggests-overdiagnosis-of-schizophrenia
Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jun 29 2019A team of Penn State and University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine researchers is attempting to answer a question that has long puzzled experts: Why do some individuals suffer post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after experiencing trauma, and others do not?The research, led by Nanyin Zhang, professor of biomedical engineering and Lloyd & Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair in Brain Imaging at Penn State, explores whether individual vulnerability to PTSD is due to pre-existing conditions or to a response to trauma exposure.The team used the predator scent model of PTSD in rats and longitudinal design, which involves repeated observations of the same subject over a period of time. Using this methodology, they measured pre-trauma, brain-wide, neural circuit functional connectivity; behavioral responses to trauma exposure; release of corticosterone, a steroidal hormone produced in the cortex of adrenal glands; and post-trauma anxiety.The results, reported in a recent issue of Nature Communications, found that rats that freeze and become motionless in response to predator scent exposure, correlate with functional connectivity in a set of neural circuits in the brain of these rats. Functional connectivity is the connectivity between different regions of the brain that share functional properties, and is measured via magnetic resonance imaging.The researchers found that pre-existing neural circuit function can predispose animals to different fearful responses to threats. Such a framework has a variety of potential benefits for further research into PTSD prevention and treatment.”This research can help us understand core components of the vulnerability to stress-induced neuropsychiatric disorders,” Zhang said. “These components can potentially serve as indicators to not only predict risk for developing anxiety disorders like PTSD but also assist in evaluating different stages of PTSD and possible recovery.”Related StoriesEarly life adversity and high levels of FKBP5 protein amplify anxiety-like behaviorStudy reveals how genetic message to produce healthy heart tissue is altered during stress, agingStress during early pregnancy may reduce future fertility of offspringUsing rats as test subjects helped overcome a major obstacle of investigating risk factors of PTSD in humans — the difficulty of monitoring PTSD development from pre- through post- trauma in humans via exposure to well-controlled traumatic events. Studies on humans focus on populations already exposed to a variety of uncontrolled traumatic events and can lead to inconsistent results. Such barriers were overcome in the present study by using rats and applying longitudinal design with controlled traumatic stressors.”The outcomes of the research can potentially be translated to human studies,” Zhang said. “For instance, a biomarker predicting a vulnerability to stress-induced disorders will help determine the risk of assigning an individual to a highly stressful environment, such as combat.”One interesting aside in the study was a counterintuitive finding. Rats with lower freezing behavior showed more avoidance of the predator scent, a prolonged corticosterone response, and higher anxiety long after exposure to the scent.”It is very likely that they froze less as they adopted different reactions to threats, such as fleeing,” Zhang said.Zhang said the next steps for the research team include identifying neuroimaging biomarkers that can predict an individual’s response to threats and developing a process for determining the probability an individual will develop PTSD-like behaviors when exposed to trauma. The team will also explore methods to protect animals with high-risk factors from developing PTSD-like behaviors, such as through optogenetics, which is the use of light to control the activities of individual neurons in freely moving animals.Along with Zhang, other researchers working on the study include David Dopfel, doctoral candidate in bioengineering; Pablo Perez, postdoctoral fellow in bioengineering; Alexander Verbitsky, graduate research assistant in engineering science and mechanics; and Yuncong Ma, doctoral candidate in bioengineering, all at Penn State; Héctor Bravo-Rivera, graduate student, University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine; and Gregory Quirk, professor of psychiatry, University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine. Source:Penn State The data we gathered provides a framework of pre-existing circuit function in the brain that determines threat responses. This may directly relate to PTSD-like behaviors.”Nanyin Zhang, professor of biomedical engineering and Lloyd & Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair in Brain Imaging at Penn State
Social media and television are forms of media that frequently expose adolescents to images of others operating in more prosperous situations, such as other adolescents with perfect bodies and a more exciting or rich lifestyle. Furthermore, based on reinforcing spirals theory, people seek out and select information congruent with their current state-of-mind. The algorithmic features of television viewing and in particular, social media, create and maintain a feedback loop by suggesting similar content to users based on their previous search and selection behavior. Thus, the more one’s depressive state influences their viewing choices, the more similar content is being suggested and provided, and the more likely one will be continuously exposed to such content, therewith maintaining and enhancing depression.”Study’s lead author, Elroy Boers, post-doctoral researcher at UdeM’s Department of Psychiatry Related StoriesSome children are at greater risk of ongoing depression long after being bulliedPesticide exposure may increase risk of depression in adolescentsPerinatal depression screenings may overlook women having suicidal ideationThis study could have important implications for how youth and families choose to regulate digital screen time in order to prevent and reduce symptoms of depression. “Many people attribute increasing rates of depression among young people in North America to the recent introduction of mobile digital devices to our society. The study’s findings indicate social media use and television viewing are important predictors of depression in adolescence. While our results are based on observational research design, the nature of statistical approach that we used to test possible causal effects robustly controlled for any potential common underlying vulnerability to high levels of screen time and depression. Furthermore, the effects could be explained through mediation analyses, which further supports a causal hypothesis. Nevertheless, more research is needed, among which research that includes experimental designs, to confirm that exposure to social media is causing elevated rates of depression in young people,” said Dr. Patricia Conrod, senior author and Professor of Psychiatry at Universite de Montreal, and Tier 1 Canada Research Chair at CHU Sainte-Justine.Screen time and depressionDr Conrod’s team followed almost 4,000 Canadian teenagers from ages 12 to 16 years who were part of the Co-Venture Trial. Each year of high school, teens were asked to self-report time spent in front of digital screens and specify the amount of time spent engaging in four different types of screen activities (social media, television, video gaming and computer use).Moreover, the teenagers completed self-reported questionnaires on various depressive symptoms between ages 12 and 16. Then, after data collection, state-of-the-art statistical analyses were performed to assess the between-person and with-person associations between screen time and depression in adolescence. These analyses augment standard analyses by modeling the year-to-year changes of both sets of problems, thus taking into account possible common vulnerability and possible natural developmental changes in each set of behaviors or symptoms.”Our research reveals that increased time spent using some forms of digital media in a given year predicts depressive symptoms within that same year,” said Conrod. This is highly encouraging from a prevention perspective, she added. “Early identification of vulnerability to depression gives clinicians and parents a large window of time in which to intervene. Regulating teens’ social media and television use might be one way to help young people manage depressed mood or vulnerability to depressive symptoms.”Conrod and her colleagues hope that this study will help guide the design of new intervention strategies for at-risk youth, before the symptoms become clinically significant. Source:University of Montreal Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jul 16 2019A new study by a team of CHU Sainte-Justine scientists has revealed that social media use and television viewing are linked to increases in adolescent depressive symptoms.Changes in adolescent social media use and television use predict increases in symptoms of depression. The study, published July 15 in JAMA Pediatrics, revealed that a higher than average frequency of social media and television viewing over four years predicts more severe symptoms of depression over that same time frame. Over and above a potential common vulnerability linked to both sets of behaviors, the study demonstrated that if teens reported increases that their social media use and television viewing surpassed their overall mean level of use in a given year, then their depression symptoms also increased in that same year.Thus, the more time adolescents spend on social media and in front of the television, the more severe their symptoms of depression become. Video gaming and computer use beyond average, social media use and other internet browsing, were also included in the study, but were not identified as predictors of depression in adolescence.The study tested three explanatory hypotheses: Displacement, Upward Social Comparison, and Reinforcing Spirals. The data from teens appeared to conform with the latter two hypotheses: There was no evidence that screen time affected adolescent depression by reducing their involvement in physical activities, but there was evidence that interacting with media outlets that were more conducive to promoting upward social comparisons was particularly associated with reductions in self-esteem, which then explained increases in depressive symptoms. The study also found evidence that social media, and not other screen-based activities, might further promote depressive symptoms in those already experiencing depressive symptoms, through a reinforcing spiral process.Consistent with previous hypothesesThese results are consistent with previous hypotheses about how depression develops.
German luxury automaker Daimler has chosen Harald Wilhelm as its next financial director, it said Wednesday, hiring him as he leaves the European aerospace group Airbus. Weak 2018 sees Daimler boss Zetsche leave on sour note © 2019 AFP Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Daimler draws future CFO Wilhelm from Airbus (2019, February 13) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-02-daimler-future-cfo-wilhelm-airbus.html Wilhelm, 52, will join the Daimler board on April 1, but take up his responsibilities only in late May when current chief financial officer (CFO) Bodo Uebber steps down, a statement said.Airbus is in the midst of a broad renewal of its board, and Wilhelm was already preparing to leave the company in April.He will help Daimler take a decisive turn as it switches its focus from diesel engines to electric, autonomous vehicles, with the company planning to invest more than 18 billion euros ($20 billion) in research and development. “Harald Wilhelm will provide outstanding support to Daimler in its transformation into a mobility provider and will drive this strategic change,” the statement said.In the 1990s Wilhelm worked in Daimler’s aerospace division, part of which merged with French and Spanish companies to form the European Aeronautic Space and Defence company (EADS), now known simply as Airbus. Harald Wilhelm is joining Daimler to help guide its transition towards electric, autonomous vehicles
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