Tag Archives: US

TV series Review: TWISTED

twisted“Twisted” centers on a charismatic 16-year-old with a troubled past, who recently reconnected with his two female best friends from childhood. He becomes the prime suspect when a fellow student is surprisingly found dead in her home.

Formerly known as “Socio”, the series was renamed to be more emblematic of its murder mystery format. Due to the Sandy Hook shootings in late 2012, there was some concern that ABC Family would not pick up the show. Executive produced by Gavin Polone, David Babcock and Adam Milch,
who also wrote the pilot.

twisted 2Main Cast:
Avan Jogia……….. as Danny
Maddie Hasson…… as Jo
Kylie Bunbury……. as Lacey
Ashton Moio………. as Rico
Kimberly Quinn….. as Tess
Sam Robards…….. as Kyle

Recurring Cast:
Kathy Najimy……. as Mrs. Fisk
Grey Damon…….. as Archie
Season 1 — ?? Episodes

1×01 — Mar 19, 2013 — Pilot – (Full Episode Early Release – Sneak Peek)

1×01 — Jun 11, 2013 — Pilot – (Yes, the same one that aired in March 2013)
1×02 — Jun 18, 2013 — Grief Is A Five Letter Word
1×03 — Jun 25, 2013 — PSA de Resistance
1×04 — TBA
1×05 — TBA
1×06 — TBA
1×07 — TBA
1×08 — TBA
1×09 — TBA
1×10 — TBA
1×11 — TBA
1×12 — TBA
1×13 — TBA

Additonal Information:

Download from torrents here


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Fearing SMALLPOX bio-terrorism, US prepares

The United States government is buying enough of a new smallpox medicine to treat two million people in the event of a bio-terrorism attack, and took delivery of the first shipment of it last week. But the purchase has set off a debate about the lucrative contract, with some experts saying the government is buying too much of the drug at too high a price. (DGMcNeil, NYTimes)

A small company, Siga Technologies, developed the drug in recent years. Whether the $463 million order is a boondoggle or a bargain depends on which expert is talking. The deal will transform the finances of Siga, which is controlled by Ronald O. Perelman, a billionaire financier, philanthropist and takeover specialist.

Smallpox was eradicated by 1980, and the only known remaining virus is in government laboratories in the United States and Russia. But there have long been rumors of renegade stocks that could be sprayed in airports or sports stadiums. Experts say the virus could also be re-engineered into existence in a sophisticated genetics lab.

As part of its efforts to prepare for a possible bioterrorism attack, the government is paying more than $200 for each course of treatment.

Siga argues that the price is a fair return on years of investment. And Robin Robinson, director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, part of the Department of Health and Human Services, the overseer of the contract for the drug, Arestvyr, defended the size of the order and the price paid. He said that two million doses was the amount analysts predicted would be needed to contain a smallpox outbreak in a large city and that the whole country would require 12 million, along with vaccines.

The price, he said, was arrived at through federal purchasing guidelines and was “fair and reasonable” compared with the price of other commercial antiviral drugs, which he said ranged from $108 to $7,364.

But when stockpiling a smallpox drug was first proposed in 2001 after the Sept. 11 and anthrax attacks, it was expected to cost only $5 to $10 per course, said Dr. Donald A. Henderson, who led a government advisory panel on biodefense in the wake of those attacks. Dr. Henderson was a leader in the eradication of smallpox in the 1960s and is now at the Center for Biosecurity at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Dr. Richard H. Ebright, a bioweapons expert at Rutgers University, said there was little need for so much Arestvyr since the country has raised its stockpile of smallpox vaccine to 300 million doses now, up from only 15 million in 2001.

“Is it appropriate to stockpile it? Absolutely,” he said. “Is it appropriate to stockpile two million doses? Absolutely not. Twenty thousand seems like the right number.”

Vaccines are normally given before an infection to prevent a disease, while antivirals like Arestvyr are given after virus infections, to treat them. Smallpox has such a long incubation period that the vaccine can prevent disease even if it is given as late as three days after infection. Arestvyr may also prevent infection if given early enough, but that has not been proven.

Dr. Eric A. Rose, the president of Siga and a vice president of Mr. Perelman’s holding company, MacAndrews & Forbes, acknowledged that the drug cost little to make, but said the price being charged for a patented drug was a bargain compared with AIDS antiretrovirals that cost $20,000 a year and cancer drugs that cost more than $100,000 a year.

Asked about the size of the purchase, he compared it with a flu drug. “There are 80 million courses of Tamiflu in the strategic national stockpile,” he said. “Smallpox is just as contagious and has 30 times the mortality. By measures like that, I’d say 2 million is on the low end.”

He also said that Mr. Perelman had invested $80 million in the company through years of research with no sales. Without a profit potential, no company would take up smallpox, Ebola and other lethal but very rare diseases, he said.

And Dr. Isaac B. Weisfuse, who was formerly head of pandemic planning for the New York City health department and is now Siga’s medical policy director, said that plans calling for tens of million Americans to be vaccinated within days of a major smallpox outbreak were unrealistic and that Arestvyr could save lives.

Arestvyr — which until November was known as ST-246 or tecovirimat — prevents the virus from forming the double outer envelope that lets it break out of the first cells it infects and spread throughout the body. A 14-day course can be taken in combination with smallpox vaccine, offering double protection, which Dr. Henderson called “quite amazing.”

Arestvyr is not approved by the Food and Drug Administration except for use in emergencies.

It has never been tested on smallpox in humans because the disease was eradicated. However, it has prevented death in dozens of monkeys injected with what would normally have been lethal doses of smallpox or a related virus, monkey pox.

It also appears to have helped several humans suffering from potentially lethal reactions to smallpox vaccine, which is itself a live smallpox-related virus but is normally harmless. They included a child near death after catching his father’s vaccination virus, a soldier vaccinated just before discovering he had leukemia, and a woman whose immune system was suppressed by steroids and who was infected by touching bait meant for raccoons that contained a combined rabies/smallpox vaccine.

However, those patients were also given immune globulin, other drugs and hospital care, so it is hard to know exactly what worked.

Bio-terrorism experts say the need for Arestvyr has declined since the United States increased its stockpile of smallpox vaccine, which was once given to people routinely before the disease was brought under control, including a less potent but less risky backup vaccine for those who cannot tolerate the standard one.

The word “smallpox” still strikes fear. John Grabenstein, a retired colonel and a top biodefense adviser to the Defense Department after the 2001 attacks, recalled reports of refrigerated Soviet warheads loaded with the virus that could, in theory, aerosolize it over large areas. Others have envisioned a few infected terrorists mingling in crowds.

Left untreated, smallpox kills a third of victims. But prominent experts say the danger is overblown. Because it can take up to two weeks before an infected person becomes seriously ill, and up to five more days before he or she begins to infect others, there is time to respond, they said.

Also, they said, by the time smallpox victims reach the infectious stage, when their pox are erupting, they are too sick to wander around. That is why outbreaks in schools or factories were nearly unheard of.

Smallpox was eradicated by “ring vaccination” — finding each case and vaccinating just the 50 to 200 people closest to it.

If there were a lage-scale bioterrorism attack using smallpox, health officials could move quickly, some experts say.

“If we had to, we could vaccinate the entire country in three days,” said Dr. William H. Foege, another leader of the smallpox eradication effort who now advises the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This vaccine does not use a syringe, but a forked pin that Dr. Foege said he could “train anyone to use in 10 minutes.” In a true emergency, he argued, schoolteachers, police officers, firefighters and others would all be vaccinators.

Other experts think that is overoptimistic, since an attack would cause panic.

Also, Dr. Rose of Siga pointed out, there are only an estimated 700 million doses of smallpox vaccine in a world of 7 billion people, so the United States might use its vaccine and Arestvyr stockpile to help other countries. (Only the United States, Japan and Israel are believed to have enough doses for their entire populations, experts said.)

Dr. Henderson and Dr. Philip Russell, who formerly headed the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and served on the advisory panel with him, said they expected the government to pay much less for an antiviral drug since they cost little to make and the alternative, vaccines, cost the government $3 a dose. “If they’re talking $250 a course, they’re a bunch of thieves,” Dr. Russell said.

Other experts, like Dr. Grabenstein, said that since the drugs have no other use, they are like aircraft carriers: to entice companies to make them, the government has to pay all the costs plus guarantee the producer a profit — and that it might be prudent to have extras on hand.

Mr. Perelman’s company, MacAndrews & Forbes, has spent more than $1 million lobbying each year since 2008, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a watchdog group. A spokeswoman for the company, Christine Taylor, said it had done “absolutely no lobbying” for the Siga contract.

Original post here


Tags: , ,

Petition to STOP Cruelty to dogs in China: Pls. sign in the comments area

Reposted from here

dog cruelty 4dog cruelty 2dog cruelty 3


Through Mr. Obama (US President) and
Mr. Barroso (President of the European Commission),

We are all world citizens and were shocked to see how the Dogs are treated and killed in China, as you can see directly from the snapshots above and in this video below.

We do not need words, because we don’t have any word, to comment on the brutality and ferocity of what we saw, and we don’t have the courage and strength to review the video twice.

The DOG is always considered, by all civilizations, man’s best friend and it never hesitated to sacrifice its life for men.

For this and other many reasons, we want all together to make our voices heard because this senseless cruelty is stopped, the dogs’ dignity, as well as that of every living creature is respected, and it will be sent an official note by the European Commission and US Government to the Chinese Government because this brutal and uncivilized practice will be stopped immediately.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Low Back Pain?

Low back pain is pain between the bottom of the ribs to the area just underneath the buttocks. It may or may not be accompanied by leg pain, or sciatica. In about 10% of cases, doctors can diagnose a specific reason for the pain. The other 90% of the low back pain cases are known as non-specific low back pain, because doctors can’t definitively say what causes it.

It’s estimated that around 15% of adults experience low back pain at any given moment. Nearly everyone (60%-85%) will have low back pain sometime in their life.

For the United States, low back pain is collectively one of the most expensive disorders that medical doctors treat. Costs run in the billions of dollars each year. Most of the expense is due to lost work days, but the cost of diagnosis andtreatment are also significant factors.

Often, a person with low back pain will have pain in other areas of their body as well. The patient might have headaches, pain in the legs or arms, or other places. This type of pain is called widespread pain. Generally, back pain patients with widespread pain do worse than those whose low back pain is confined to the area described above. For these people, treatment may emphasize the management of pain, including pain reduction, preventing disability that comes with a chronic condition, and getting back into full participation in work and play.

Experts say that most of the time, lower back pain goes away on its own. But a 2005 study from Toronto Western Hospital Research sheds light on this clinical fact by revealing the tendency of low back pain episodes to recur. The study showed that while most lower back pain is mild in severity, less than one-third of the cases resolve within a year. The study revealed that 20% of all lower back pain cases comes back within 6 months. Older adults in the study had more persistent and recurring low back pain than their younger counterparts; there was a total of 1110 participants in the study.

By Anne Asher

University of Michigan Health System. Acute low back pain. Ann Arbor (MI): University of Michigan Health System; 2003 Apr [rev. Oct 2004]. 13 p. [8 references]
Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (ICSI). Adult low back pain. Bloomington (MN): Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (ICSI); 2006 Sep. 65 p. [124 references]
Krismer M, van Tulder M; The Low Back Pain Group of the Bone and Joint Health Strategies for Europe Project. Strategies for prevention and management of musculoskeletal conditions. Low back pain (non-specific). Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2007 Feb.
Cassidy, J., Cote, P., Carroll, L., & Kristman, V. (2005). “Incidence and Course of Low Back Pain in Episodes in the General Population”.Spine, 30(24), Retrieved: March 5 2007.
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 20, 2011 in Education, Health & Medicine, People


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Oil prices down in Asian trade

Crude prices were lower in Asian trade Thursday as investors awaited more data indicating the health of the US economy, the world’s biggest oil consuming nation. The US government is expected to release figures on jobless claims and inflation in the world’s biggest economy, which is struggling to avoid dipping back into recession. 

A stronger US dollar also helped push prices lower as it makes the dollar-priced commodity more expensive for buyers using other currencies, dampening demand, analysts said. New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate light sweet crude for September delivery, was down 33 cents to $87.25 a barrel in Asian morning trade. Brent North Sea crude for October fell 30 cents to $110.30.

“Jobs are where the angst resides, the inflation call is more benign, though not completely,” DBS Bank said in a market commentary on the US economy. “Poor sentiment of the past two weeks is bound to feed into some of the hard data and the fact is that labour/jobs data are the most prone of all to sentiment,” it said. “Another fact is that jobs data make for the biggest headlines and nobody wants to see more sand thrown into the wind just now. So if we can get through this week and next week without a surge in jobless claims, then the outlook for Q3 has just gone up by an order of magnitude.”

Investors are closely watching the health of US economy amid fears it could sink into another recession because it consumes more oil than any other country in the world. Victor Shum, an analyst with Purvin and Gertz energy consultancy in Singapore, said oil prices were also edging down “in parallel with the strengthening of the US dollar against the euro”.

Agence France-Presse
11:18 am | Thursday, August 18th, 2011


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

%d bloggers like this: