CEOs Urge Deficit Deal With More Taxes Entitlement Program Spending Cuts

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A group of more than 80 CEOs are pressing Congress to cut the deficit through a combination of higher taxes and reduced federal entitlement costs. The Associated Press/Los Angeles Times: CEOs Urge Congress To Reduce Federal DeficitChief executives from more than 80 major U.S. companies are pressing Congress to reduce the federal deficit by raising taxes and cutting spending. They warned in a statement issued Thursday that the uncertainty spawned by the deficit … is dampening businesses’ hiring and investment and stifling the fragile economic recovery. The CEOs said the solution required a combination of higher taxes and reduced government spending, including cutting entitlement programs such as Medicare and Medicaid (10/26).The New York Times: Business Leaders Urge Deficit Deal Even With More TaxesThe partisan rift over taxes has blocked a deficit reduction deal for two years and has spilled into the 2012 campaigns. … The business leaders’ goal contrasts with the campaign messages of both parties. While the executives seem to answer Mr. Obama’s call for “economic patriotism” by their tentative embrace of higher personal taxes, in interviews many of them have rejected his “pay your fair share” talk as class warfare, and a good number oppose his re-election. But the business leaders’ position also contradicts the stand of Mitt Romney and other Republicans, who say that all tax increases are “job killers,” that the federal budget can be balanced with spending cuts alone and that any overhaul of the tax code should be “revenue neutral,” neither raising nor lowering the government’s total tax collection (Calmes, 10/25).The Wall Street Journal: CEOs Call For Deficit ActionThe CEOs, in a statement to be released on Thursday, say any fiscal plan “that can succeed both financially and politically” has to limit the growth of health-care spending, make Social Security solvent and “include comprehensive and pro-growth tax reform, which broadens the base, lowers rates, raises revenues and reduces the deficit” (Wessel, 10/25). CEOs Urge Deficit Deal With More Taxes, Entitlement Program Spending Cutslast_img read more

Higher Rate Requests Come As Insurers Wrestle With Effects Of Health Law

first_img Under the Affordable Care Act, insurers are required to make public any rate proposals that increase by at least 10 percent on the federal government’s website. Though premium rates vary significantly depending on the region, major carriers including UnitedHealthcare, Athena and Blue Cross Blue Shield have proposed rate increases for next year between 10 and 30 percent in a handful of states. … Some are even higher. … Insurers attribute the higher rates to the rising cost of prescription drugs as well as their added costs from new consumers enrolled under the law’s health exchanges. … This is the first year that insurers actually have data on the ACA’s new enrollees—including how healthy or sick they are and how they affect the risk pools. Before this year, insurers were essentially playing a guessing game when setting premium rates for 2014 and 2015, and because of that, many were optimistic and set rates too low. (Ehley, 6/2) The Fiscal Times: Double Digit Rate Hikes Loom For Obamacare 2016 Higher Rate Requests Come As Insurers Wrestle With Effects Of Health Law The Obama administration released a list of insurers seeking to raise premiums more than 10 percent. Insurers are using their first full year of experience in the new Obamacare market to set prices. Many Georgians could face double-digit increases in their health insurance premiums next year, based on initial rates sought by insurers. Insurers’ requests in Georgia range as high as a 64.2 percent increase for a Time Insurance Co. plan for individual coverage starting in January. But most of the double-digit increases being requested in the state are in the range of 10 percent to 20 percent. (Miller, 6/2) Around the country, major health insurers are proposing to increase monthly premiums by 26 percent to 51 percent. This, predictably, has reignited the political debate over the Affordable Care Act. But there’s something more important going on, and it’s happening in the belly of the insurance industry. Insurers are grappling with new rules to bring price stability to their businesses. (Gorenstein, 6/2) Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times offers this take on Medicare and health care costs – Los Angeles Times: Price Of A Common Surgery Varies From $39,000 To $237,000 In L.A. Insurers say they want to hike rates because enrollees are going to the doctor, getting lab work and filling prescriptions more than they had originally anticipated.”We’ve seen a great pent-up demand for services,” said Aaron Billger, spokesman for Highmark, a Blue Cross Blue Shield licensee offering plans in Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia. Enrollees in Obamacare exchange plans use more healthcare than those in job-based policies, he noted. (Luhby, 6/2) Georgia Health News: Big Jump Looming In Health Insurance Rates Marketplace: Insurers Grapple With Keeping Premiums Stable center_img Orlando Sentinel: Some Florida Health Insurers Request Big 2016 Rate Increases Nearly a dozen health insurers are proposing double-digit rate increases for 2016 Florida plans sold on the exchanges created under Obamacare as well as individual coverage sold through brokers and agents. One of Aetna Health Inc.’s plans requested a 21 percent hike, and plans for United Health Care of Florida and Coventry Health Care of Florida were looking for increases of 18 percent. United requested a 31 percent increase in one of its plans sold off the exchange, according to preliminary rate information released Monday on the federal government’s HealthCare.gov website. (6/2) Fox News: Health Insurers Seek Big Premium Hikes For Obamacare Plans In 2016 The preliminary requests were announced as the Supreme Court prepares to rule on the validity of ObamaCare’s tax credits to offset the cost of premiums for lower-income consumers in most states in the country. Individual health insurance policies are a relatively small slice of the overall market. Many more people are insured through an employer. And it is not clear whether any of these preliminary rate hikes will stick. (6/2) CNN Money: Obamacare Sticker Shock: Big Rate Hikes Proposed For 2016 A short drive in the Los Angeles area can yield big differences in price for knee or hip replacement surgery. New Medicare data show that Inglewood’s Centinela Hospital Medical Center billed the federal program $237,063, on average, for joint replacement surgery in 2013. That was the highest charge nationwide. And it’s six times what Kaiser Permanente billed Medicare eight miles away at its West L.A. hospital. Kaiser billed $39,059, on average, and Medicare paid $12,457. (Terhune and Poindexter, 6/2) Several state news outlets looked at the proposals too – This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Insurance Execs Again In Congressional Hot Seat As House Panel Examines Proposed

first_img Members of both political parties expressed increasing skepticism Tuesday when they continued their scrutiny of the proposed mergers of insurance giants Aetna and Humana and Anthem and Cigna. Lawmakers have been subjected to heavy lobbying from the American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association, who oppose the proposed mergers, as well as from local doctors and hospitals who warn of an unhealthy concentration of market share in the health insurance industry. (Radelat, 9/29) Insurance Execs Again In Congressional Hot Seat As House Panel Examines Proposed Acquisitions The CEOs from Aetna and Anthem testified before the House Judiciary Committee, arguing that the proposed Aetna-Humana and Anthem-Cigna megamergers will not hurt consumers. In recent weeks, lawmakers have been heavily lobbied by hospital and doctor associations that oppose the deals. Marketplace: Insurance CEOs Again Called Before Lawmakers The CEOs of Aetna and Anthem returned to Capitol Hill Tuesday to defend their respective transactions to House members, the second such congressional hearing in a week, but hospitals and doctors said the deals remain unjustified and deserve sharp federal scrutiny. (Herman, 9/29) The Connecticut Mirror: Aetna, Anthem Merger Plans Under Scrutiny, Again, By Congress center_img Top health insurance executives are making the rounds these days in Washington. Last week, CEOs from Aetna and Anthem – who are each looking to complete mega-mergers – testified before the Senate, and the two return again Tuesday for a hearing in the House. Lawmakers have pressed the executives to detail how consumers will benefit from these potential deals. (Gorenstein, 9/29) Modern Healthcare: Hospitals, Doctors Rip Insurance Deals At Capitol Hill Hearing This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Oversight Lapses Lack Of Clear Roles Hobbled EPAs Response To Flints Water

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. The Wall Street Journal: EPA Report Faults Response To Flint Water Crisis A spokeswoman for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality said the water crisis “highlighted the fragile nature of the aging infrastructure throughout the country, as well as a number of ways the federal lead and copper rule needs improvement and/or clarification.” She said that Michigan has “taken a lead role” in updating its lead and copper rule. (Barrett and Maher, 7/19) The Environmental Protection Agency’s failure to intervene earlier and stop the water crisis in Flint, Mich., exposed a need for wholesale changes to how federal officials monitor drinking water systems, a government watchdog said Thursday. A report from the E.P.A.’s Office of Inspector General said management weaknesses hobbled the agency’s response to the lead and other contaminants that poisoned Flint’s drinking water for more than a year and that federal officials should have taken stronger action to correct repeated blunders by state regulators. (Smith and Friedman, 7/19) “While oversight authority is vital, its absence can contribute to a catastrophic situation,” EPA Inspector General Arthur A. Elkins Jr. said in releasing the findings, which stated that “while Flint residents were being exposed to lead in drinking water, the federal response was delayed, in part, because the EPA did not establish clear roles and responsibilities, risk assessment procedures, effective communication and proactive oversight tools.” (Dennis, 7/19) The Washington Post: After Flint Debacle, EPA Must Strengthen Oversight Of Mich. Drinking Water Programs, Watchdog Says center_img In a 74-page report released Thursday, the EPA’s inspector general report pointed to “oversight lapses” at the federal, state and local levels in the response to Flint’s contaminated drinking water. ” While oversight authority is vital, its absence can contribute to a catastrophic situation,” the inspector general, Arthur A. Elkins, said in a statement. His office has concluded the EPA was too slow and passive in responding to the Flint crisis. (7/19) The New York Times: After Flint, Watchdog Urges E.P.A. To Monitor Drinking Water More Closely ‘Oversight Lapses,’ Lack Of Clear Roles Hobbled EPA’s Response To Flint’s Water Crisis, Watchdog Report Finds The EPA’s inspector general report also urged the agency to now do more to monitor drinking water across the country. The Associated Press: Flint Water Crisis Prompts Call For More Federal Oversight last_img read more

Onex to buy wealth manager Gluskin Sheff in 445 million deal

first_img Sponsored By: Recommended For YouJapan ruling bloc to keep simple majority in upper house, may get 2/3- NHK exit pollDavid Rosenberg: Deflation is still the No. 1 threat to global economic stability — and central banks know itTrans Mountain construction work can go ahead as National Energy Board re-validates permitsBank of Canada drops mortgage stress test rate for first time since 2016The storm is coming and investors need a financial ark to see them through What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation March 25, 20197:13 AM EDTLast UpdatedMarch 25, 20195:04 PM EDT Filed under News FP Street Facebook Gerry Schwartz, chairman and chief executive of Onex.Galit Rodan/Bloomberg Onex to buy wealth manager Gluskin Sheff in $445 million deal Gluskin Sheff will continue to be led by its existing leadership team and operate under its brand ← Previous Next → Comment More Emailcenter_img Share this storyOnex to buy wealth manager Gluskin Sheff in $445 million deal Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Reddit Onex Corporation is acquiring wealth management firm Gluskin Sheff + Associates Inc. in a  $445 million deal.The private equity firm said Gluskin Sheff will continue to be led by its existing leadership team and operate under its brand.The $14.25 per share offer represents a 28 per cent premium to Gluskin Sheff’s closing share price on Friday, March 22.“Gluskin Sheff is one of the largest and most respected independent wealth management firms in Canada, serving high net worth families and institutional investors, with a strong long-term track-record of risk-adjusted investment returns and outstanding client service,” said Gerry Schwartz, chairman and chief executive of Onex, in a press release.“By combining Gluskin Sheff’s public securities investing platforms with Onex’ private equity and private debt platforms the clients of both firms will have greater investment options.”More to come … Featured Stories 1 Comments Financial Post Staff advertisement Twitter Join the conversation →last_img read more

Canadian Tire profit dips on onetime charge but tops expectations

first_img Email Share this storyCanadian Tire profit dips on one-time charge, but tops expectations Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn TORONTO — Canadian Tire Corp. Ltd. reported a dip in its fourth-quarter profit compared with a year ago, as it took a one-time charge related to its financial services deal with Scotiabank.The retailer says it earned a profit attributable to shareholders of $254.3 million or $3.99 per diluted share for the 13-week period ended Dec. 29, compared to a profit of $275.7 million or $4.10 per diluted share a year earlier.Revenue totalled $4.13 billion, up from $3.92 billion.Canadian Tire says its normalized earnings for the quarter, which exclude the $50-million financial services charge, amounted to $4.78 per diluted share, up from $4.10 per diluted share a year ago.Analysts on average had expected a profit of $4.69 per share, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.The company also announced that Dean McCann, its chief financial officer, will retire at the end of the year. Canadian Tire took a one-time charge related to its financial services deal with Scotiabank.Bloomberg advertisement Comment Reddit Join the conversation → Canadian Tire profit dips on one-time charge, but tops expectations CFO to retire at end of year More Sponsored By: center_img Recommended For YouCME cattle futures weaken as U.S. beef prices declineCintas Corporation Announces Record Fiscal 2019 ResultsSaudi Arabia approves new tendering and procurement lawU.S. retail sales data dents stocks, lifts Treasury yieldsMexico’s markets weaken as Pemex plan underwhelms Facebook What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation ← Previous Next → February 14, 20196:58 AM ESTLast UpdatedFebruary 14, 20197:16 AM EST Filed under News Retail & Marketing Featured Stories 0 Comments Twitter The Canadian Press last_img read more

Renault ADA Launch MoovinParis Car Sharing

Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on September 30, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Volkswagen Launches “We Share” With 2,000 Electric Cars In Berlin Starting in October, 120 Renault’s EVs are to be available in ParisAs the Autolib car sharing came to an end this summer, other players are trying to fill the gap. Renault and PSA immediately announced their plans and finally they are introducing a new offer.Renault, together with ADA (a subsidiary of the Rousselet Group), is deploying 120 electric vehicles in Paris and Clichy (Hauts-de-Seine) – 100 ZOE and 20 Twizy – for free-floating car sharing using the new ‘Moov’in.Paris by Renault’ application. The number of vehicles is expected to increase, following customer demand.Service will start in October, without subscription for €0.39/minute (but no less than 10 minutes / €3.90).See Also Car Sharing EV Style: It’s All the Rage These Days “The Moov’in.Paris application is now available for download from the Apple Store, and Google Play. The new user can create his account very simply and associate the requested documents (pictures of his identification document, driving licence). He will be able to book a vehicle as soon as they are put into service in October.”“The reservation process is simple: the customer locates an available vehicle nearby, reserves it via the application and then has 15 minutes to access and connect to the vehicle via Bluetooth®. The user checks the reference inventory to verify the condition of the vehicle on the application, modifies it if necessary and provides pictures to indicate new damage, and validates it. They are then free to make their journey.At the end of the journey the customer parks the vehicle on the road in an authorized location in Paris or Clichy. They validate the electronic inventory of return to complete the rental. The invoicing is then triggered, at a price of 0.39 euro per minute of rental, with a minimum of 10 minutes. The customer does not have to worry about paying for parking nor charging the vehicle.Renault supplies the vehicles and carries out maintenance and repair. ADA offers its expertise through its digital application dedicated to very short-term rental. It will also carry out the removal, recharging, cleaning and repositioning of electric vehicles.Moov’in.Paris is part of the strategy of the Groupe Renault and ADA to develop new mobility services accessible to all in a single application, both for very short periods (less than 4 hours) and for short periods (more than 4 hours). Be ready, download Moov’in.Paris now.”https://www.moovin.paris/ Source: Electric Vehicle News Nissan Teams With Kohnan Shoji To Expand Japan Car-Sharing Service read more

US EV Obituary Cadillac CT6 PlugIn We Hardly Knew Ye

first_imgThe latest Plug-In Cadillac died as it lived: in obscurityAccording to GM Authority, the plug-in hybrid variant of the Cadillac CT6 has been unceremoniously killed in the U.S. A Cadillac spokesperson confirmed this to GM Authority, stating “Although production of the CT6 Plug-In for North America is discontinuing for the 2019 model year, alternative fuel vehicles remain a part of our future product portfolio as we move deeper in to our 10-year plan.”More About The CT6 Plug-In This isn’t a surprise considering InsideEVs estimates the car sold less than two dozen units on a typical month. We also have not seen any new inventory hit dealers in nearly 2 months.The plug-in CT6 launched in the U.S. at $75k for the 2017 model year. While engineered with the knowledge taken from the Voltec program, the car shared little directly in common with the popular Chevy Volt. The Cadillac had 31 miles of EPA electric range and a disappointingly inefficient 62 MPGe.The standard CT6 is already a low volume seller in the states. From the beginning, Cadillac insisted that the vehicle would see limited availability in North America. In 2016, GM president Dan Ammann told Bloomberg “China has tremendous government incentives to produce what they call NEV – new energy vehicles – and they give tremendous financial incentive to every customer that buys one of these.”The PHEV model in particular is aimed at the Chinese market where it sells in much higher quantities. While the non plug-in CT6 is manufactured in Detroit, the electrified model is only assembled in Shanghai. Because it is produced locally, it also received generous government EV incentives in China. The car is also an important key in meeting the country’s New Energy Vehicle (NEV) mandates. So for the time being, the model will remain on sale in the Chinese market.Source: GM Authority Source: Electric Vehicle News Plug-In Cadillac CT6 Has Arrived In The US, Complete With 31 Miles Electric Range Cadillac CT6 PHEV Is A Volt On Steroids Cadillac CT6 PHEV Debuts In Shanghai, Gets 37 Miles Of Range Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on November 15, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

Everything Gone Wrong With This Tesla Model 3 Video

first_imgThe Tesla Model 3 is fantastic, but still, things may go awry.It’s important to note that this review is not discounting the all-new Tesla Model 3. Conversely, it further proves that it’s truly a terrific car. However, it’s not uncommon for first-year models to encounter some expected issues. This is true of nearly all OEMs, and of course, new automakers like Tesla.Additional Tesla Model 3 Coverage: The only time new cars may not experience issues is if the automaker is not innovating. True innovation brings issues and generates complaints. Thus, Redline Reviews is honest to share some early concerns. What can you expect to go wrong early on?Fortunately, for upcoming owners, the new Tesla Model 3 has undergone myriad changes and updates, so many of these problems may become a moot point. Tesla is known for correcting issues in its cars on the fly. Rather than dealing with model year changes, the automaker addresses problems and owners’ concerns nearly immediately via over-the-air updates. In addition, Tesla changes out hardware and overall vehicle build features as soon as it learns of a better way.Do you own a Tesla Model 3? Early build or late? What are your immediate concerns? Let us know in the comment section below.Video Description via Redline Reviews on YouTube:2018 Tesla Model 3 Update #1 – Here’s Everything That Has Gone WRONGAfter over 4 months and nearly 6,000 miles, our long term 2018 #Tesla #Model3 has been one of the coolest cars we’ve ever had the pleasure of owning. However, buying a car like this has its challenges and we’ve managed to experience quite a few of those issues and the car has spent quite a good chunk of its life at the service center since taking delivery at the end of August 2018. Find out in our first update video exactly what those issues have been and if we still love the car, despite all the headaches.TESLA MODEL 3 PERFORMANCE Source: Electric Vehicle News Tesla Model 3 Review: After 6 Months And 10,000 Miles: Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 7, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle Newscenter_img Tesla Model 3 Was 5th Best-Selling Sedan In U.S. Last Month 10 photos Check Out This Brand-New In-Depth Tesla Model 3 Reviewlast_img read more

EGEB Renewables giant tries floating solar Wyoming coal and wind and more

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Today in EGEB, Norwegian renewables giant Statkraft tries its hand at a floating solar plant. Wyoming passes a bill to keep coal power alive in the state — and it’s a great state for wind. And New York City will bring “meatless Mondays” to its public schools to reduce emissions. more…The post EGEB: Renewables giant tries floating solar, Wyoming coal and wind, and more appeared first on Electrek.last_img

VE Advises Rice Energy in 67B Merger with EQT

first_img Lost your password? Remember me Lawyers at Vinson & Elkins are advising on Monday’s big $6.7 billion merger between two Pennsylvania energy companies, Rice Energy and EQT Corp . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Usernamecenter_img Password Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.last_img

How Will The Fed Decision to Raise Interest Rates Affect YouWenatchee Valley

first_img(NEW YORK) —  The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) announced on Wednesday that it was raising short-term rates by 25 basis points.It is the first time in almost a decade that the rates have been raised. ABC News financial correspondent, Rebecca Jarvis explains how it affects you.last_img

Study sheds light on why adolescence may be vulnerable period in emotional

first_imgJun 12 2018Adolescents don’t distinguish between negative emotions as clearly as younger children and adults in their 20s do, according to findings published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science. The study sheds light on how experiences of emotion vary at different ages and why adolescence may be a particularly vulnerable period in emotional development.”We found a pretty interesting developmental trajectory when it comes to emotion differentiation,” says psychological scientist Erik Nook of Harvard University, first author on the study. “Children tend to report feeling only one emotion at a time, producing differentiated but sparse emotional experiences. Adolescents begin to co-experience emotions but they are not well differentiated, and adults both co-experience and differentiate emotions.””These findings suggest that the influx of co-experienced emotions in adolescence makes this a period of more murkiness in what emotions one is feeling,” Nook explains.In the study, 143 participants, ranging in age from 5 to 25, completed a set of emotion-related tasks. To assess understanding of different emotion words, the researchers asked participants to define 27 different emotion terms. The researchers used five of these emotion terms – angry, disgusted, sad, scared, and upset – in a subsequent emotion differentiation task. In this task, participants viewed a series of 20 images showing a negative scene of some kind. Participants indicated how much they felt each of the five negative emotions when looking at an image by sliding a bar on a scale to the appropriate number (from 0 = not at all to 100 = very).The results revealed a U-shaped pattern in participants’ experiences of negative emotions, with differentiation between emotions decreasing from childhood to adolescence and increasing again from adolescence to early adulthood.Although children showed high emotion differentiation, their ratings differed from participants of other ages in that the emotions they reported did not overlap – they showed a stronger tendency to report experiencing one emotion at a time. Adolescents, on the other hand, were more likely to report experiencing several highly-correlated emotions at one time. Adults tended to report feeling several emotions simultaneously, but they appeared to be able to distinguish between emotions across trials.Related StoriesResearchers identify gene mutations linked to leukemia in children with Down’s syndromeDaily intake for phosphates in infants, children can exceed health guidance valuesWhy Mattresses Could be a Health Threat to Sleeping Children”We found that the non-linear shape for emotion differentiation arises because children are more likely to report feeling only one emotion at a time,” says Harvard University professor Leah Somerville, senior author on the study. “These singular ratings of emotions result in differentiated emotional experiences, but they aren’t adult-like because adults differentiate emotions even when they are co-experienced.”The results show that the means by which individuals differentiate emotions vary according to their developmental stage, suggesting a developmental trajectory that can be confirmed in future research with longitudinal data.And the findings illuminate one reason why adolescence is a special, more vulnerable, time in emotional development:”Adolescence is a period of heightened risk for the onset of psychopathology, and now we know that this is also a period when there’s less clarity in what one is feeling — something that lots of work has already connected to mental illness,” Nook says. “We need to do a lot more work to draw a firm link between these two things, but it’s possible that increases in co-experienced emotions makes it more difficult for teens to differentiate and regulate their emotions, potentially contributing to risk of mental illness.””We hope to see how this finding might help us know more about when emotions go awry in adolescence,” Nook concludes. Source:https://www.psychologicalscience.org/news/releases/negative-emotions-are-murkier-less-distinct-in-adolescence.htmllast_img read more

Study explores impact of surgeons on genetic testing in breast cancer patients

first_imgJul 4 2018For many women diagnosed with breast cancer, genetic testing can offer important information that might guide treatment choices. But studies have shown that only about half of women who could benefit receive genetic testing.A new study finds that surgeons are a key influence.”The surge of genetic testing in cancer care is a major challenge for surgeons,” says Steven J. Katz, M.D., MPH, professor of general medicine and of health management and policy at the University of Michigan. “There is a lack of consensus around guidelines and approach to testing, and legitimate uncertainty about its value in guiding treatment, especially with newer genes whose cancer risks are not well defined.”Related StoriesTrends in colonoscopy rates not aligned with increase in early onset colorectal cancerNew research links “broken heart syndrome” to cancerStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskKatz is the lead author of a new paper in JAMA Surgery that looks at the impact of surgeon attitudes on genetic testing rates. Researchers led by the U-M Rogel Cancer Center surveyed 3,910 women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer. These surveys were linked to 370 surgeons who had treated them.Overall, 27 percent of patients received genetic testing, including 52 percent of those who had higher risk of a genetic mutation.Guidelines recommend genetic testing for women with breast cancer who are at elevated risk of a genetic mutation based on age, family history of cancer or characteristics of their cancer.Several factors contributed to the variability in testing, the study found. Patients’ risk factors accounted for 20 percent – in other words, patients who had elevated risk of a genetic mutation were more likely to get testing.But the surgeon accounted for 17 percent of the variation. Some surgeons referred patients for testing more often than others, regardless of risk. Among women who fall within the recommended guidelines for testing, the probability of receiving it ranged from 26 percent to 72 percent based on surgeon.This was significantly influenced by how many breast cancer patients the surgeon saw: High-volume surgeons were more likely to recommend testing.The researchers also asked surgeons about their attitudes toward testing. They found surgeons’ confidence in talking about the pros and cons of genetic testing varied widely, suggesting the need for better guidelines and training.”Genetic testing can help inform decisions about breast cancer treatment and prevention of future cancers in patients and in their families. It’s important to ensure patients who need this information receive it as part of the treatment discussion, regardless of the surgeon they see,” Katz says. Source:http://www.med.umich.edu/last_img read more

Strange new subatomic particles discovered at atom smasher

first_img Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Exotic subatomic particles made up of five quarks that physicists briefly thought they had discovered back in 2003 now finally appear to be in the bag. So say physicists working at the CERN laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland, who claim to have found conclusive evidence for the existence of so-called pentaquarks within the debris of high-energy proton collisions.The discovery has “filled a big hole” in the theory that describes how matter is built up from the fundamental particles known as quarks, says Guy Wilkinson, a spokesman at LHCb, one of the four main detectors at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), which was behind the find. That theory, put forward by physicist Murray Gell-Mann in 1964, describes how the protons and neutrons that make up atomic nuclei are themselves composed of three quarks and how other particles known as mesons are made from pairs of quarks and their antimatter counterparts, antiquarks. However, Gell-Mann’s scheme also pointed to the existence of pentaquarks, made up of four quarks and an antiquark. The lack of any evidence for such particles over the past 50 years, says Wilkinson, “didn’t throw the theory into disrepute but was becoming increasingly troublesome.”To catch the elusive prey, Wilkinson and colleagues studied the decay of “lambda-b” particles created by protons colliding within LHCb. They measured the combined energy of two of the decay products—a proton and a meson known as J/Psi, which consists of a “charm” quark and antiquark—and then totted up how many times they recorded each energy value across the thousands of collisions they studied. They found that the number of pairings with a certain energy—a little under five times the mass of the proton—was far higher than would be expected by chance. (Energy and mass are equivalent, according to Einstein’s equation E = mc2.) The researchers concluded that that was the mass of a fleeting “charmonium” pentaquark containing two up quarks, one down quark, one charm quark, and one anticharm quark. LHCb collected the data back in 2011 and 2012, but Wilkinson’s team held back from announcing their discovery to avoid the fate of those who had made the earlier claims of pentaquark sightings. Twelve years ago, about a dozen research groups from around the world announced that they had evidence for a lighter pentaquark known as theta-plus, but more detailed studies showed that all of the claims were illusory.To insure their result was robust, the LHCb collaboration made use of data showing not only the energy of the particles produced in the CERN collisions but also their directions. Running these data through a computer model, they found that they could get the experimental results and model output to agree only when they included two charmonium pentaquarks in the lambda-b decay process—one having a mass of 4.45 gigaelectronvolts (GeV) and the other a mass of 4.38 GeV. (For comparison, a proton weighs in at 0.94 GeV.) The research has been uploaded to the arXiv server and submitted to the journal Physical Review Letters.Physicists from outside the collaboration agree that the result looks convincing. “They appear to have found strong evidence for a ‘heavy quark’ pentaquark state,” says Ken Hicks of Ohio University. Curtis Meyer of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, agrees. “In reading the paper, I have seen nothing that I can easily point to as a potential problem,” he says, although he adds that “with any result like this, confirmation is very important.”The LHC started up again in April after a 2-year shutdown to upgrade the machine to operate at higher energies. Now, the fresh data that will flow into LHCb should enable scientists to study the pentaquarks’ structure, Wilkinson says. It is not clear at this point, he explains, whether all five quarks are bound tightly together inside the new particle, or whether instead three quarks group together as they do inside protons and neutrons and the other two form a separate meson—a bit like two atoms combining to form a molecule.Wilkinson says that because pentaquarks might be formed inside collapsing stars, their discovery might tell us more about what stars are composed of and how they evolve. The new data might also lead to the discovery of other pentaquarks with different masses. “Now that we know nature allows five quarks to be bound together, it would be very strange indeed if just this set of quarks is allowed to coexist in this manner,” he says. “There should be many others. We will just have to go and hunt for them.”center_img Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more

Odd wildebeest cousin had a vuvuzela in its head

first_imgIn 1983, paleontologists gave an odd, now-extinct cousin of the wildebeest the name Rusingoryx atopocranion (Greek for “the strange-skulled antelope from Rusinga”). But at the time, they had no idea how strange the beast truly was. Turns out, it had an S-shaped tube in its skull—a feature known from no other mammal, living or extinct—that may have allowed it to bellow at unusually low frequencies. The finding, reported online today in Current Biology, comes from CT scans of several more-complete skulls of the species (artist’s concept, above) also unearthed on Kenya’s Rusinga Island, a near-shore landmass in the northeastern corner of Africa’s Lake Victoria. The newly described fossils, entombed in sediments deposited on a floodplain sometime between 40,000 and 285,000 years ago, include the skulls of both adults (which are about the same size as today’s wildebeest) and juveniles. Using computer analyses, researchers suggest that airflow through the bony tube would have generated sound with a frequency somewhere between 248 and 746 cycles per second—a range that encompasses the droning tone of the South African vuvuzela, which became notorious during soccer matches held during the 2010 World Cup. Yet when soft tissues of the throat and windpipe are also considered, the tone could easily have dropped below 20 cycles per second, a frequency that most humans—and more importantly, most predators on the arid African savanna—couldn’t have heard. Besides helping the creature avoid predators, the low-frequency bellows (which could possibly have been heard 10 kilometers away) may have enabled herds to communicate surreptitiously with each other, or for males to attract females. The odd tube, although absent in all living animals, has been found inside the skull crests of certain species of dinosaurs—which also might have used the feature for low-frequency communication.last_img read more

Podcast veggie sharks and quantum computing

first_imgAleria Jensen, NOAA/NMFS/AKFSC David Grimm—online news editor for Science—talks with Sarah Crespi about two underwater finds: the first sharks shown to survive off of seagrass and what fossilized barnacles reveal about ancient whale migrations.Sarah also interviews Staff Writer Adrian Cho about what happens after quantum computing achieves quantum supremacy—the threshold where a quantum computer’s abilities outstrip nonquantum machines. Just how useful will these machines be and what kinds of scientific problems might they tackle?Listen to previous podcasts. [Image: Aleria Jensen, NOAA/NMFS/AKFSC; Music: Jeffrey Cook]last_img read more

Urban planners aim to eliminate slums—with computer programs

first_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Cities across the globe are exploding in size. Some 4 billion people—more than half the world’s population—now live in urban areas, and the number is expected to reach 6.4 billion by 2050. The problem with such rapid growth is that when cities fill up or become too expensive, new residents are forced to settle in slums, which lack access to water, sanitation, emergency services, and hospitals. Now, scientists have come up with a way to redesign these underserviced areas, using a computer program that takes a mathematical approach to urban planning.Called topology, the new approach maps out residents’ access to vital roads and city services as a spatial network. Places—like buildings and open spaces—represent the nodes of the network, and roads and paths represent the network connections. By designing an algorithm to model these access networks, the researchers were able to determine where new roads were needed to maximize access and minimize disruption to existing residents, the team reports today in Science Advances.The researchers tested their approach in two slums—one in Cape Town, South Africa, and another in Mumbai, India. There, they worked with locals to gather data, run the algorithm, and decide—based on the data—where they wanted their new roads to be. They then sent their proposals to government officials. By Frankie SchembriAug. 29, 2018 , 2:30 PM Emailcenter_img Urban planners aim to eliminate slums—with computer programs Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Because the new topological approach doesn’t depend on the gridlike geometry of most city layouts, it can be used to analyze neighborhoods in almost any urban area—from Las Vegas, Nevada, to Harare. The scientists hope their research will help city officials work with local communities to eliminate existing slums—and prevent the creation of new ones.last_img read more

Surprise Shutdown also disrupting US science agencies that arent closed

first_imgHundreds of furloughed workers and others rallied in Washington, D.C., on 10 January to call for an end to the partial shutdown of the U.S. government. AFGE/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Surprise! Shutdown also disrupting U.S. science agencies that aren’t closed At DOE, managers are reportedly telling some employees to cancel travel because of the shutdown, even though the department is fully funded. The reports have prompted members of Congress to ask DOE to explain.Meanwhile, the shutdown also continues to wreak havoc at agencies such as NASA that are mostly closed. Yesterday, 181 postdoctoral fellows working at five NASA research centers were placed on leave after their funding dried up.Here are more details on this trio of shutdown stories:NIH reschedules panel meetingsNIH, which was closed during the last shutdown, hasn’t been spared entirely this time around. The agency has already had to reschedule at least three peer-review panels and is scrambling to avoid moving others because of its Federal Register problem.Typically, NIH study sections, or peer-review panels, must publish a notice of an upcoming meeting at least 15 days in advance. Because the Office of the Federal Register is shut down (it is part of the National Archives and Records Administration, an independent agency), it is only publishing certain documents.According to an 11 January notice, funded agencies that want to post something must certify in a “special handling letter” that a delay “would prevent or significantly damage the execution of funded functions at the agency.” That does not include “documents related to normal or routine activities.”Although study sections would appear to be part of NIH’s routine operations, an agency spokesperson says it has gotten one letter approved for a meeting set for 31 January and is awaiting word on others. But the agency has also moved an environmental science panel set for 8 January to late February and indefinitely postponed two clinical study panels set for 11 and 15 January.That may not be a complete count. Neurobiologist John Foxe of the University of Rochester in New York took to Twitter to lament a 1-month delay of a panel he serves on, commenting: “This thing is beginning to bite hard into the work of your nation’s scientists folks. … What utter foolishness!” Another researcher was told this week that his panel would be moved if the shutdown lasts another 1–2 weeks, then got another email saying NIH hoped “new procedures” would allow the agency to stay on track. Many of the councils for NIH’s institutes and centers, which make the final decisions about grants, also meet in January and February. But those notices were submitted to the Federal Register before the shutdown, so the meetings can take place, NIH says.Many more study section meetings scheduled for late January and February could now be in limbo. NIH officials are hoping to negotiate a blanket approval, arguing that the meetings are critical to its operations. “We’re trying to resolve this issue,” an NIH spokesperson says. —Jocelyn KaiserDOE’s mysterious travel banOn 10 January, Greenwire reported that DOE officials told workers within two programs—the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and the Advanced Research Projects Agency­-Energy—to cancel travel because of the shutdown. Yesterday, that report prompted Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson (D–TX), the chair of the House of Representatives science panel, to ask Energy Secretary Rick Perry for an explanation.“DOE is not impacted by the shutdown and based on the information available to me thus far, these travel restrictions seem arbitrary and capricious,” she wrote in a letter to Perry. “I sincerely hope that these reports are inaccurate,” she added, asking for answers by 25 January. —David MalakoffNASA postdocs on leave, but can get loansOn 16 January, a NASA contractor—the nonprofit Universities Space Research Association (USRA) in Columbia, Maryland—notified the 181 postdoctoral fellows it funds at five NASA research centers that they had to go on unpaid leave. That’s because NASA, which has been shuttered since 22 December 2018, can’t make the payments to USRA that it needs to run the $18-million-a-year postdoctoral program.Although the fellows can’t do any science, USRA is offering them interest-free loans to help them pay their bills this month, says Nicholas White, the group’s senior vice president for science. The stipends start at $60,000 and can exceed $80,000 for those living in high-cost locations, and the loans will fill the gap caused by losing 2 weeks’ pay. USRA has borrowed $500,000 to cover the January payments, White says, and expects that its costs could top $1 million if the shutdown extends through February.“We recognized that we needed to help out and that postdocs don’t have a lot of money,” White says. The loans are optional, he says, and USRA hopes NASA will agree to reimburse the organization once the shutdown ends. The fellows would be allowed to tack on any lost days at the end of their fellowships, which run for 2 years and sometimes are extended for a third year.The 79 foreign fellows in the group are facing a double whammy, White noted. They enter the United States on a J1 visa, which prohibits them from filing for unemployment and from taking another job while on leave.Some foreign fellows were initially concerned that being put on leave would invalidate the terms of their visa and require them to go home. But the Department of State has said the fellows retain their status so long as they are not destitute, according to White. Toward that end, USRA is also paying for health insurance while the fellows are shut out of their labs. —Jeffrey MervisClick here to see all of our stories about this and past shutdowns.center_img By Science News StaffJan. 19, 2019 , 10:30 AM Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Many U.S. government scientists and federally funded researchers breathed a sigh of relief last month, after the partial shutdown of the U.S. government began. That’s because the budget impasse between Congress and President Donald Trump didn’t affect some of the largest federal research agencies, including the $39 billion National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the $35.6 billion Department of Energy (DOE). Their spending had already been approved.This week, however, it became clear that the shutdown is hampering even agencies that are open—sometimes in unexpected ways.At NIH, for example, officials have been scrambling to comply with a rule that requires them to publish notice of upcoming proposal review meetings in the Federal Register, the public notice publication for federal agencies. But the agency that publishes the Federal Register is closed, threatening NIH’s grantmaking process.last_img read more

Founder of geometric analysis honored with Abel Prize

first_img Andrea Kane/Institute for Advanced Study Karen Uhlenbeck By Allyn JacksonMar. 19, 2019 , 7:10 AM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Founder of geometric analysis honored with Abel Prize Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) She initially majored in physics as an undergraduate at the University of Michigan. But her impatience with lab work and a growing love for math led her to switch majors. She nevertheless retained a lifelong passion for physics, and centered much of her research on problems from that field.In physics, a gauge theory is a kind of field theory, formulated in the language of the geometry of fiber bundles; the simplest example is electromagnetism. One of the most important gauge theories from the 20th century is Yang-Mills theory, which underlies the standard model of elementary particle physics. Uhlenbeck and other mathematicians began to realize that the Yang-Mills equations have deep connections to problems in geometry and topology. By the early 1980s, she laid the analytic foundations for mathematical investigation of the Yang-Mills equations.“Karen is the first person to introduce analytic tools from differential geometry to the study of Yang-Mills equations,” says Alice Chang of Princeton University, who serves on the Abel Prize selection committee. “‘Pioneer’ is the right word for her.”In the early 1990s, Uhlenbeck helped establish the Park City Mathematics Institute in Utah, one of the first “vertically integrated” programs that brought together schoolteachers, undergraduate majors, graduate students, and researchers. By then Uhlenbeck had risen to the top of her field, but she and other female mathematicians of her age “didn’t see large numbers of women coming after us,” she told Celebratio.org.Around that time, she took up research in integrable systems, which model certain kinds of physical phenomena such as shallow water waves. She and her collaborator, Chuu-Lian Terng of the University of California, Irvine, founded a mentoring program that was initially held in conjunction with the Park City group and grew into the Women and Mathematics Program at IAS in Princeton. Now in its 26th year, the program brings together about 60 female undergraduates, graduate students, and postdocs for 2 weeks of lectures, panels, and informal interactions.“It takes a person of the stature of Karen to persuade the IAS to host such a program,” Chang says. “Everywhere I go—when I give a lecture in Taiwan, or in Europe—I will have women come to me and say that they have participated in the program.”Chang said she is “thrilled” that Uhlenbeck is getting the Abel Prize and counts her as a personal mentor. But Chang is also careful to point out that the Abel Prize committee stuck strictly to research in choosing the prizewinner. The prize citation does not mention Uhlenbeck’s mentoring efforts or her role as an inspiration to female mathematicians.Much has changed in math since Uhlenbeck rose to prominence. When she got her Ph.D., the number of female math professors in the top universities in the United States could be counted on one hand. Today, the numbers are still small, but growing. And in 2014, the Fields Medal, the oldest and most prestigious honor in math and one that is given to mathematicians age 40 or younger, was awarded for the first time to a woman, Maryam Mirzakhani, a mathematician at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, who died in 2017.Has the time come for everyone to ignore the gender of major math prizewinners? “I don’t think we’ve quite got there yet,” Series says. “The Abel committee might have chosen somebody else, right? It’s significant that she was the one they chose.” The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters today announced that Karen Uhlenbeck has won the 2019 Abel Prize, a Nobel-level honor in math. Uhlenbeck won for her foundational work in geometric analysis, which combines the technical power of analysis—a branch of math that extends and generalizes calculus—with the more conceptual areas of geometry and topology. She is the first woman to receive the prize since the award of 6 million Norwegian kroner (approximately $700,000) was first given in 2003.Caroline Series, a math professor at the University of Warwick in Coventry, U.K., and president of the London Mathematical Society, says, “To see a woman right up there, honored for a lifetime of distinguished work in math, who has made a huge difference to the development of the field in the last 40 years—that is hugely important.”Uhlenbeck, 76, spent much of her career at the University of Texas in Austin and is now a visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, New Jersey. Her work stands at the heart of several important advances in math, including the revolutionary work in 4D topology by Simon Donaldson of the Simons Center at the State University of New York in Stony Brook. It has also fertilized interactions between math and theoretical physics, including string theory. An example of the kind of object studied in geometric analysis is a minimal surface. Analogous to a geodesic, a curve that minimizes path length, a minimal surface minimizes area; think of a soap film, a minimal surface that minimizes energy. Analysis focuses on the differential equations governing variations of surface area, whereas geometry and topology focus on the minimal surface representing a solution to the equations. Geometric analysis weaves together both approaches, resulting in new insights.The field did not exist when Uhlenbeck began graduate school in the mid-1960s, but tantalizing results linking analysis and topology had begun to emerge. In the early 1980s, Uhlenbeck and her collaborators did ground-breaking work in minimal surfaces. They showed how to deal with singular points, that is, points where the minimal surface is no longer smooth or where the solution to the equations is not defined. They proved that there are only finitely many singular points and showed how to study them by expanding them into “bubbles.” As a technique, bubbling made a deep impact and is now a standard tool.Born in 1942 to an engineer and an artist, Uhlenbeck is a mountain-loving hiker who learned to surf at the age of 40. As a child she was a voracious reader and “was interested in everything,” she said in an interview last year with Celebratio.org. “I was always tense, wanting to know what was going on and asking questions.” Emaillast_img read more