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Professor evaluates influenza vaccine

first_imgVaccines are arguably one of the most important lines of defense against the spread of influenza, a common seasonal virus that can have uncommonly nasty effects in elderly individuals with compromised immune systems. Contrary to conventional wisdom, however, a recent study by assistant professor of biological science Benjamin Ridenhour found that in a comprehensive analysis of people ages 65 and over, the influenza vaccine was only about 20 percent effective, underscoring the need for better flu vaccines. Previous studies by researchers in the field focused on different age groups for determining the effectiveness of the influenza vaccine, and extrapolation led to an overstatement of the usefulness of the annual influenza vaccines in the elderly population, Ridenhour said. Individuals from this age group account for most of the roughly 25,000 people who die each year from influenza in the United States alone, Ridenhour said. “Normally the influenza vaccine – going with what the party line is – is about 60 percent effective, which is not great but definitely better than nothing,” Ridenhour said. “One of the big issues there is that this 60 percent number has come from studies of people that are between the ages of 20 and 65, and less than five. “So there are two age groups that we haven’t done a lot of studies on: one of those age groups is the elderly, 65 and over, and the other is the intermediate five to 18 year-old age group. There’s more concern for the elderly group because these are the people that die from flu.” Ridenhour’s novel findings hinged on access to a comprehensive, centralized database of health records from Ontario, Canada that also recorded all vaccinations received by individuals, he said, unlike the largely undocumented vaccination process in the United States.   “It turned out that going to Ontario was great because we had data as far back as 1993, so we had approximately 15 years of data that we looked at,” he said. “It encompassed all the elderly individuals in Ontario, so that’s a really nice facet of the study – you don’t have to worry about selecting a special sub-population, we got everybody.” Ridenhour said the low level of flu vaccine success in the elderly population that emerged from the data demonstrates how urgently improvement in the vaccine is needed. Part of his current research efforts focuses on strategies for developing a vaccine that would protect against the actual strain of influenza confronted by population, instead of an across-the-board estimated strain. “There are ways that you can predict the future and improve vaccine effectiveness,” he said. “Part of it has to do with where you pick your vaccine strains from because of the way flu circulates around the globe. If you pick your vaccine strains from different places they represent different snapshots in time, so if you pick from the right places you can predict what it will be the next time. “Doing that, you can actually come up with some of these strategies where you can produce two to three alternative vaccines that have multiple strains in them and you can produce higher vaccine effectiveness in the population as a whole by doing that.” Aside from researching development strategies for an improved vaccine, Ridenhour’s next step will be to investigate the environmental factors that play a key role in the spread of influenza, he said. “Right now our focus is going to stay in Canada, and we’re going to try and take the data we have and look at other factors that might be causing illness,” he said. “The effects of the environment are much less studied. It’s hard at the basic level to figure out how effective a vaccine is. Adding in other complicated factors, such as environmental ones, makes it even more difficult. But we have this great data set that we can actually do this with.” In the meantime, the best way to improve the effectiveness of the influenza vaccine is to improve coverage and have more people vaccinated, Ridenhour said. Typically only 30 to 40 percent of Americans go out and get vaccinated each year, which allows the flu to circulate more freely in the population. “Despite low effectiveness numbers, everybody should definitely go out and get vaccinated,” Ridenhour said.last_img read more


Bomber varisty teams off to respective provincial tournaments

first_imgThe L.V. Rogers girl’s soccer and boy’s rugby squad take to the road to compete in their respective provincial tournaments.The LVR Rugby Bomber trek to Abbotsford for round two of the B.C. High School AA Boy’s Championships against Equimault.The seventh-ranked Bombers dropped the opener Saturday to Southridge 28-7 to drop to the consolation round of the tournament.The tournament continues Thursday before the finals Saturday.Last year LVR finished 13th overall. Meanwhile, the Bomber girls are in Kamloops Thursday to open play in the B.C. High School AA Girls Championships.First up for the Bombers, which won the Kootenay Zone title last week over David Thompson Lakers of Invermere, is host Sahali Sabres Thursday at 11 a.m.Game two of the four-team round robin is later in the day against Seycove of North Vancouver.The preliminary round concludes Friday at 9 a.m. against Surrey Christian.The teams then advance to the playoff round depending on their finish in round robin play.The final of the tournament goes Saturday at 11:30 a.m.The Bombers failed to advance to the provincials in 2011, losing out to J. Lloyd Crowe Hawks in the Kootenay Final.last_img read more


Two boys suspected of taking handbag with cash from office

first_imgGardai are searching for two young boys suspected of stealing a handbag containing a substantial amount of cash from an office in Letterkenny.The robbery took place at Pearse Road at 9.30am on Saturday morning last.The suspects are described as being either 14 or 15 years old. The first is described as wearing an 11 degrees navy hooded with grey tracksuit bottoms.The second suspect is about 15 years old with red, short or sandy hair and he was wearing a navy hoodie and navy tracksuit bottoms.The area would have been quite busy that morning as the local car boot sale takes place at nearby Letterkenny Community Centre.Anybody who may have spotted these suspects or may know anything about the crime should contact Letterkenny Gardai. Two boys suspected of taking handbag with cash from office was last modified: August 27th, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:handbagletterkennyPearse Roadtheftlast_img read more


Date confirmed for social welfare Christmas bonus

first_imgSocial welfare recipients will be receiving their extra Christmas payments in the first week of December 2019, the Department of Employment and Social Affairs has confirmed.Over 1.2million people in Ireland will receive their payments in the week commencing Monday 2nd December.A total of €279.4 million will be paid pensioners, people with disabilities, carers, lone parents, long-term unemployed people and many other recipients. The bonus is paid at a rate of 100% for people on long-term social welfare payments.Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Regina Doherty said: “Last year, I was particularly pleased to announce the restoration of the additional Christmas Payment at a rate of 100%.  I am very happy that despite the current climate of uncertainty generated by Brexit, the Christmas Payment will again be paid at a rate of 100% this year.“This payment recognises the seasonal needs of people who are long-term financially dependent on their social welfare payment for all or most of their income, such as pensioners, people with disabilities and carers. This payment will help those people meet the extra expenses incurred over the Christmas period as well as provide an additional boost for local economies.”Date confirmed for social welfare Christmas bonus was last modified: November 22nd, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more


Buckeye Valley-DACC students experience FFA success

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Two Buckeye Valley-DACC FFA members have been recognized for their outstanding Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) projects.  SAEs provide students the opportunity to maintain long term, self determined experiential learning projects that directly relate to classroom concepts.After being declared state winners in May, Curtis Harsh and Sarah Lehner had their projects forwarded to the National FFA Organization for further review.  Sarah, a Buckeye Valley junior, had her dairy production entrepreneurship project returned and rated gold. Curtis’ beef production entrepreneurship project was rated gold, and selected as one of four national finalists to be judged at the National FFA Convention held in Indianapolis, Indiana this October.Curtis is a 2015 Buckeye Valley graduate currently attending Iowa State University majoring in animal science.last_img read more


9 months agoMarchisio backing Juventus to win Champions League

first_imgAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say Marchisio backing Juventus to win Champions Leagueby Carlos Volcano9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveClaudio Marchisio is backing Juventus to win the Champions League this season.The midfielder left Juve for Zenit St Petersburg earlier this term.Marchisio said, “I hope this is Juve’s year for the Champions League because it would mark the end of an unstoppable cycle for them, especially for those who have been there since the first Scudetto but also for the great work everyone’s doing, from the club to the staff.“I think they deserve it, but they know that, even if they have a better chance now than in previous seasons, it’s always very difficult.“Racism is a big problem and I understand foreign players playing in Italy very well, but I’d try to be even stronger and keep playing so the idiots aren’t given any attention.” last_img read more


The life and legacy of John Trudell

first_imgAPTN National NewsHe was an actor, poet and outspoken activist.John Trudell was a household name for many Indigenous people.He passed away Tuesday at his California home. He was 69.APTN’s Shaneen Robinson looks at the life and legacy of John Trudell.last_img


Reconciliation is going to take years if not generations Trudeau

first_imgKenneth Jackson APTN National NewsOTTAWA – If residential schools can be equated to a 100 year walk into the woods then fixing the damage they did to Indigenous people is going to be a long walk back out.That was the message Canadians heard Wednesday from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaking of the first steps of reconciliation his government is taking by meeting with Indigenous leaders from all walks. Trudeau said the purpose of the Wednesday morning meeting was to set that direction.“We talked about a number of specific issues,” said Trudeau. “But also engaged directly on how we’re going to work together to address these problems concretely. This is an engagement that is going to take years, decades and generations, perhaps.”Trudeau didn’t get into specifics, but for Indigenous peoples the specifics surround them.Residential schools destroyed up to seven generations of their families.The schools began with the first kids in the late 1800s then the next generation were taken and so on.One after another. By truck.By train, like cattle, in some cases.Some parents unknowingly walked their kids to schools run by Church and funded by the State.Those that fought back did so under threat of imprisonment if they didn’t hand over their kids to the priest at the door in the throes of residential school system that pulled in over 150,000 children to indoctrinate them with the white way of living and language. There are cases of scientific and medical experiments, documented cases of sexual and physical abuses and thousands of deaths, some 3,200 officially. But many more are suspected according to Justice Murray Sinclair who led the Truth and Reconciliation Commission documenting all the specific details its final report released Tuesday.The TRC has 94 recommendations on what needs to be done to fix the mess of residential schools – one is an inquiry into the high number of missing and murdered Indigenous women. The Trudeau government has already begun work on the inquiry.One recommendations that isn’t so easy for Trudeau to achieve is an official apology from the Catholic church, as it falls outside of the federal government’s jurisdiction. Trudeau said Wednesday he’ll seek an apology from the Pope.“I’m not going to pretend it is my job to order other governments or other organizations to do anything but I certainly look forward to constructive engagement to address this issue,” he said.Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde said an apology is needed“The Catholic church is the only church that has not officially apologized to the survivors,” Bellegarde said Wednesday flanking Trudeau.But as Trudeau, his ministers, Aboriginal leaders and the grassroots move forward it’s important to ensure this first meeting wasn’t just a meeting to have more meetings, said the prime minister.“It’s important to start with a true sense of collaboration and partnership and that’s exactly what we cemented this morning,” he said.That means not passing the buck said Dawn Harvard, president of the Native Women’s Association of Canada.“We cannot afford to sit around talking about jurisdiction, who is responsible for what when we all have a role to play,” said Harvard.After all, people’s lives are at risk she [email protected]last_img read more


Nation To Nation Two courts will be hearing some important cases

first_imgAPTN Nation To NationAn on-going court case could put a little more money in the pocket of band members in 21 Anishinabek First Nations, something the federal government is fighting.They are collectively suing the Crown in Ontario Superior Court, saying their $4 annuity is a broken treaty promise.Indigenous people around Lake Huron signed the Robinson Huron Treaty in 1850. One of its stipulations was a dollar a year annuity.However, the treaty had a provision that if Crown revenues went up so would the annuity. And it did in 1874 when it was raised to $4. But that was the last increase.“The Crown appears to have the impression that there’s a limitation on the annuity, that $4 is the maximum,” said Mike Restoule, chair of the Robinson Huron Litigation Fund.“We took a different interpretation of it. Because the treaty says the annuity would be increased.”In 2014, the matter was taken to court. And since last fall, Justice Patricia Hennessy has heard witnesses and elders argue for the Anishinabek, who want the annuity increased substantially.Starting this week the government will be presenting their case as to why the annuity should remain the same. Of note all the hearings are being livestreamed.Another big court hearing happens this Monday at the Supreme Court of Canada.The nine justices will hear a case brought forward by the Misikew Cree Nation from northern Alberta.It wants the court to rule that the Misikew should be consulted before legislation that affects their treaty rights is passed into law.“Law making is such a critical and important strategic decision making tool by the government,” explained Karey Brooks, lawyer for the Misikew. “That has the potential to adversely affect a broad number of First Nations in very significant ways.”As well, host Todd Lamirande spoke to Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Deputy Grand Chief Derek Fox about yesterday’s announcement by Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale.He announced $291 million over the next five years in funding for Indigenous police services.The Nishnawbe Aski police service is the largest in Canada and serves 35 communities.Fox is happy with the announcement, indicating the first thing to be done will be to update equipment such as cars and radios.Fox also commented on NAN’s creating of a website to get people to sign a petition asking for the resignation of Senator Lynn Beyak.“Everything she’s been talking about, the racism and the bigotry, is not good for our people, it’s not good for the city of Dryden.”You can subscribe to the Nation To Nation podcast below:last_img read more


Bell Rogers and Quebecor win round in court battle with operator of

first_imgOTTAWA – Bell, Rogers and Quebecor have won a round in their court battle with the operator of the TVAddons website — which they allege violates their commercial rights under the Copyright Act.A panel of three Federal Court of Appeal judges has ruled unanimously that Federal Court Judge Richard Bell should not have disallowed a court order that permitted a search of the Montreal home of the website’s operator, Adam Lackman.The panel also ruled that the companies’ request for an injunction against Lackman should have been granted by Judge Bell while the Federal Court deals with the plaintiffs’ allegations. The panel awarded the companies $50,000 in court costs.The case against TVAddons can now proceed to trial at the Federal Court’s trial division.Lackman posted an online statement Wednesday that asked supporters to help fund the legal battle and noted the Federal Court has yet to test any of the claims brought forward by the companies.He has argued that the primary purpose of TVAddons is to provide software add-ons for the KODI media player, which can play various types of video, music and other multimedia content from the internet.The plaintiffs allege content that they own can be accessed by KODI users with some of the add-ons on the website.The appeal was sought by Bell Media Inc. and other companies in the BCE group of companies, Rogers Media Inc. and its parent company and two companies within the Quebecor group — Videotron and Group TVA Inc.All three media groups are part of the FairPlay Canada coalition, which is proposing the creation of a new anti-piracy unit within the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.Companies in this story: (TSX:BCE, TSX:RCI.B, TSX:QBR.B)Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version said the case would go to the Federal Court of Appeal.last_img read more