Kendrick Perkins supports Kevin Durant; addresses Game 2 incident with Stephen Curry

first_imgWith Durant in the zone, it fully captured why the Warriors acquired him as a free agent in the 2016 offseason. Beyond Durant’s obvious talent, the Warriors had extra reinforcement in case Stephen Curry (3-of-16) and Klay Thompson (4-of-11) had off shooting nights as they did in Game 3. Durant’s move prompted criticism around the NBA, including those with Oklahoma City, something that still leaves Perkins scratching his head.“What made them a super team? At the end of the day before him, they only won one championship and then lost,” Perkins said. “They lost that year before he came. What made them a super team? I don’t understand that. He made the best decision for Kevin Durant. I’m happy for him despite what anything might say. If anyone has anything negative to say, they’re just hating.”Perkins offered nothing but love about Durant, who might win a Finals MVP for the second consecutive year. But Perkins believes Durant is obsessed with a different set of hardware.“He made a decision for himself. It’s turning out great for him. He’s winning and playing well. You can have all the individual accolades you want. But at the end of the day, the ultimate goal, if you care about the game and love the game like he does, all you want to do is win championships,” Perkins said. “At the end of the day, I’m one of the guys that’s a big supporter of his decision. He made a decision to leave to win. I’m happy for him, man. I love him as a brother.”Perkins does not have the same affection for Warriors guard Stephen Curry. The two traded barbs when the buzzer sounded at the end of the third quarter during the Warriors’ eventual Game 2 win on Sunday in Oakland. After attempting a 3-pointer that hit off the rim as time expired, Curry sailed backwards and brushed against Perkins’ knees. Afterwards, Curry chalked up the heated words to “much ado about nothing,” but it appeared Perkins intentionally had spread his legs out in hopes to trip him.“First of all, I’m sitting down. At the end of the day, I don’t understand what he wanted me to do. He wanted me to get up and move? I don’t understand that,” Perkins said. “He comes to me, ‘Are you trying to hurt my knee?’ I was like, ‘Man really dog? Im not trying to hurt you man.’ I went through a stage in my career where I tore my ACL. I’m not in on that. May the best man win. But I’m never wishing or trying to hurt somebody because of the game of basketball. It’s serious, but its not that serious. He landed in my area. I’m not trying to hurt nobody. I tore my ACL. I know how it feels.”Perkins also know how Durant feels after talking to him usually at least every other day. Perkins has supported Durant’s desire to “make the best decision for yourself.” He has reminded Durant that organizations also trade players for the same reason. And even if it came at his own expense, Perkins has congratulated Durant with how he has paved the way to collect his second NBA championship.“You’re talking about arguably the best scorer of all time. There’s no flaws in his offensive game,” Perkins said. “KD has been a guy who leads by example. He’s going to punch in the clock every day. One thing you got to love about Kevin, before he comes at you with a negative attitude, he’s going to come more encouraging than anything. He’s always uplifting.”So is Perkins, even if he saluted his former teammate with two middle fingers as Durant spoke at the podium.Follow Bay Area News Group Warriors beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Yes, they are. The Warriors enter Game 4 against Cleveland on Friday with a 3-0 series lead and a chance become the first team to sweep an NBA Finals since the San Antonio Spurs did the same thing to the Cavaliers in 2007. Durant also recorded a playoff-record 43 points, while shooting 15-of-23 from the field, 6-of-9 from 3-point range and 7-of-7 from the free-throw line along with posting 13 reboudns and seven assists. Well before Durant made a go-ahead 3-pointer that gave the Warriors a 106-100 lead with 49.4 seconds left, Perkins sensed the inevitable.“I’ve seen it coming. I watched the first quarter,” said Perkins, who marveled at Durant posting 13 points on 4-of-4 shooting. “I saw the rhythm he was in. I saw the shot he was hitting was not hitting the rim. I know KD and I played with him for five years. I know when he’s in the zone.”To subscribe to the Planet Dubs podcast click here. Click HERE if you are unable to view this photo gallery on your mobile device.CLEVELAND — The affection for Kevin Durant seemed evident with Kendrick Perkins’ words. After the pair played together with the Oklahoma City Thunder between 2011 and 2014, Perkins complimented Durant about his play, leadership and his decision to leave the Thunder for the Warriors almost two years ago.But with Perkins since serving as a mentor for the Cleveland Cavaliers, his competitive juices are flowing. Therefore, as the Athletic’s Jason Lloyd first reported, Perkins saluted Durant with two middle fingers during his press conference following the Warriors’ Game 3 win over the Cavaliers.Want Warriors news in your inbox? Sign up for the free DubsDaily newsletter.“Right now, he’s not my brother,” Perkins told The Bay Area News Group. “But at the end of the day, things are turning well for him.”last_img read more

Banyana win, in hunt for semi-final spot

first_img1 November 2012Banyana Banyana bossed their African Women’s Championship clash against Senegal at the Malabo Stadium in Equatorial Guinea on Wednesday, but had to settle for a 1-0 victory, which kept them in the running for a place in the semi-finals of the competition.Chance after chance was spurned as Senegalese goalkeeper Mariane Fall struggled to deal with a steady stream of crosses from out wide, but South Africa were eventually rewarded for their dominance when striker Andiswe Mgcoyi netted in the 70th minute.The defeat effectively rules Senegal out of the semi-finals. They were beaten 1-0 by the Democratic Republic of Congo in their first outing.Hosts’ big victoryEquatorial Guinea, meanwhile, booked their semi-final place by overwhelming DR Congo 6-0 in their second outing. They beat Banyana Banyana 1-0 in the opening game of the finals.Given the Congolese struggles against the hosts, South Africa should have enough firepower to beat them in their last group game and clinch a semi-final place, but coach Joseph Mkhonza’s charges will need to be far more effective in front of goal.“It’s a well-deserved win. We should have won the match with an avalanche of goals,” Mkhonza told Times Live. “Congrats to the girls for a job well done.“We just need to win our last group match against Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday,” Mkhonza said.‘We will go all the way’“I still maintain we will go all the way to the final and win the tournament, though I have to confess [that] there are no easy games.”Fielding an attack-minded formation, the South Africans had too much pace on the flanks for Senegal, with Nothando Vilakazi, who moved from left back to left wing for the match, giving the Senegalese defenders fits.Banyana Banyana’s midfield dominated possession and the South Africans could have had a healthy, match-winning advantage by half-time.In the seventh minute, the livewire Mgcoyi latched on to a superb through-ball to beat the Senegalese offside, but saw her attempted lob going narrowly wide with the advancing goalkeeper Mariane Fall well beaten.100th internationalPortia Modise, playing in her 100th international game, was in an attacking mood, but goalkeeper Fall kept her at bay.In the second half, Mkhonza continued his offensive approach with Bloemfontein Celtics Ladies’ striker Sanah Mollo and Durban Ladies goal-hungry Silindile Ngubane – on for Noko Matlou and Nocawe Skiti respectively – playing key roles in forcing the Senegalese side back into their own half for long periods of play.Spurs WFC speedster Jermaine Seoposenwe – on for Mgcoyi in the final minutes of the match – also looked dangerous on the attack and was unlucky to have a goal disallowed for being offside after South Africa had strung together a flowing passing movement.The Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana play their final Group A fixture against the Democratic Republic of Congo, in Bata on Saturday, 3 November.SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Microsoft pushes African hi-tech future

first_img11 February 2013 Microsoft is set to introduce an affordable smartphone tailored specifically for Africa as the global software giant moves to kickstart its 4Afrika Initiative, a drive to boost the adoption of smart devices, empower small businesses and accelerate skills development on the continent. Announcing the 4Afrika Initiative at launch events in Egypt, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa last week, the Washington-based company said that it planned to help place tens of millions of smart devices in the hands of young Africans by 2016. At the same time, the initiative aimed to “bring 1-million African small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) online, upskill 100 000 members of Africa’s existing workforce, and help an additional 100 000 recent graduates develop employability skills, 75 percent of whom Microsoft will help place in jobs”.Huawei 4Afrika phone To get the ball rolling, Microsoft has partnered with Chinese manufacturer Huawei to introduce the 4Afrika phone, a full-functionality Windows Phone 8 which will come pre-loaded with select applications designed for Africa. The phone will initially be available in Angola, Egypt, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and South Africa later this month.Windows AppFactories To support this drive – and as part of the company’s move into an area so far dominated by rivals Apple and Android – Microsoft is moving to unearth Africa-relevant Windows and Windows Phone applications through AppFactories recently opened in South Africa and Egypt. According to the company, the AppFactory teams of student interns have already built 73 Windows apps and 39 Windows Phone apps, and at full capacity plan to contribute up to 90 new apps a month to the Windows Store.SME Online Hub, Afrika Academy Microsoft also announced a new SME Online Hub through which African SMEs will have access to “free, relevant” products and services from Microsoft and other partners – starting with a “welcome offer” of one year’s free domain registration and free tools for SMEs interested in creating a professional web presence. The hub is expected to open initially in South Africa and Morocco in April, and to expand to other African markets over time. To complement this, Microsoft has established the Afrika Academy, an education platform leveraging online and offline learning tools, to help Africans develop technical and business skills for entrepreneurship and improved employability. Starting in March, the academy will offer training at no cost to recent higher education graduates and government leaders. “The world has recognized the promise of Africa, and Microsoft wants to invest in that promise,” 4Afrika Initiative general manager Fernando de Sousa said in a statement last week. “We want to empower African youth, entrepreneurs, developers, and business and civic leaders to turn great ideas into a reality that can help their community, their country, the continent and beyond. “The 4Afrika Initiative is built on the dual beliefs that technology can accelerate growth for Africa, and Africa can also accelerate technology for the world.”‘TV white space’ technology As part of the initiative, Microsoft has also announced a pilot project with the Kenyan government and local internet service provider Indigo Telecom to provide low-cost, high-speed wireless broadband in the East African country. The initiative – dubbed “Mawingu” which is Kiswahili for cloud – will involve the first deployment of solar-powered base stations working together with “TV white spaces” to deliver high-speed internet access to areas lacking even electricity. Microsoft said it hopes to implement similar pilots in east and southern Africa in the coming months to further explore the commercial feasibility of TV white space technology. “These pilots will be used to encourage other African countries to accelerate legislation that would enable this TV white space technology to deliver on the promise of universal access for Africa,” the company said. Jean-Philippe Courtois, president of Microsoft International, said the company believed “there has never been a better time to invest in Africa”, and that access to technology, particularly cloud services and smart devices, “can and will serve as a great accelerator for African competitiveness. “The launches of Windows 8 and many other new products in the coming months represent a new era for Microsoft, which we believe will redefine the technology industry globally. These additional investments under the 4Afrika banner will help define our company’s new era in Africa.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

South Africa to showcase its success at Davos

first_img15 January 2015The high-level South African delegation of cabinet ministers and business leaders attending the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, from 20 to 25 January will be headed up by the President Jacob Zuma, the Presidency said in a statement on Wednesday.The flagship event of the Swiss non-profit takes place every year at the end of January, and is attended by global leaders from across business, government, international organisations, academia and civil society – brought together to discuss the global economy.The theme of this year’s conference, which runs from 21 to 24 January, is “The New Global Context”. WEF says on its website that this reflects the “profound” political, economic, social and technological transformations that confront the world today – changes that affect global decision-making and ones that are bringing “the era of economic integration and international partnership that began in 1989” to an end.Watch an introduction to this year’s Davos programme:The Presidency said South Africa planned to use the opportunity to market South Africa as an attractive and reliable investment destination as well as a development partner.The gathering gives South Africa the opportunity to tell the country’s story of economic competitiveness, represented by the National Development Plan (NDP), the country’s policy framework for reducing unemployment, inequality and poverty by 2030.The South African delegation will also share the story of its “achievements scored since the dawn of freedom in 1994, which brought about a better life for millions more citizens who had been excluded during the period of apartheid colonialism”, the Presidency said.The areas of investment that South Africa plans to market include:Mining and beneficiation;Agro-processing;Industrial infrastructure, including telecommunications, energy, water, sanitation and transport;Tourism (primarily hotel and resort development);Health care;Manufacturing;Information and communication technology; andForestry and related products.Zuma will be accompanied by Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene; Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies; Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Minister Jeff Radebe; Health Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi; Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane; Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel; and the South African Brand Ambassador, Dr Zweli Mkhize.Support Team SA at Davos on social media by using the hashtag #SAinDavos.SAinfo reporter and SAnews.govlast_img read more

Three BSF personnel injured in bomb blast in Manipur

first_imgThree personnel of 120 Border Security Force were seriously wounded on Saturday night when a powerful remote controlled bomb was detonated near Telipati, Imphal east district in Manipur, at 11:30 p.m. The personnel were taken to the J.N. Institute of Medical Sciences in the same district.No underground organisation has claimed responsibility for the blast.There is a permanent police picket at Telipati which is dominated by people originating from Bihar. Police have registered a case. So far there is no breakthrough in the investigation.last_img read more

India-England Test series: All eyes on Oval as decider draws near

first_imgWINNING BUNCH: India now has the best chance in years to win a series overseasIndia is agog. England waits upon its fate, as grim as a boy outside the headmaster’s study. The sun blazes, warming and beckoning a touring team that seemed beaten a month ago. All eyes will be,WINNING BUNCH: India now has the best chance in years to win a series overseasIndia is agog. England waits upon its fate, as grim as a boy outside the headmaster’s study. The sun blazes, warming and beckoning a touring team that seemed beaten a month ago. All eyes will be on the Oval as the teams meet in the decisive Test match of a series as erratic as a drunken cyclist. Five days of intrigue are promised with every ball followed in packed stands and upon radios and screens from Kolkata to Kerala. Five days! A fellow could get to the moon in that time ?India did not have the slightest chance of winning at Leeds. Everyone knew that. Headingley is a ground for chains and armour and India weaves a delicate cloth. Some looked to the stars for an explanation as the days unfolded and the vulnerable suddenly appeared insuperable. But the victory was no miracle born in the heavens. Nor did luck play a part. No sucker punch was thrown from the canvas by a desperate pugilist. No, it was a lot better than that. Far from delivering a knockout blow, India simply kept jabbing till its opponent capitulated. Only during the inspired, compelling and amusing partnership between Sourav and Sachin (for the time being their first names can be used, as the last names suffice for Dylan and Tagore) did the Indians cut loose. Otherwise it was a professional performance, bold of conception, thorough of execution, unwavering of intent. Nonetheless it could have gone horribly wrong.For once India had the nerve to back itself far, playing to its own strengths and to heck with orthodoxy and the conditions. They did not have a choice, but that is said easily and hard to act upon. Much was owed to the determination and skill of a second-wicket pair showing the stubbornness respected wherever the game is played, especially in Yorkshire with its disdain of fancy hats. This is a county for the working man and chip butties.India understood and cut their cloth accordingly. Rahul Dravid’s innings counts among the finest ever played in adversity. Certainly this greying observer cannot recall anything to surpass it, not even from Sachin or Steve Waugh, the most cussed batsman of his time. Of course, Tendulkar and Ganguly carted the bowling around superbly whilst Very Very Special Laxman threw his wicket away in the interests of the team. Laxman’s effort told the tale. It was “all for one, and one for all”. The cry of the musketeers.advertisementREAR GUARD: Dravid’s innings at Leeds was among the best ever played in adversityNow it is time to eat some humble pie. India also bowled with heart, brain and menace. Previously the attack had not seemed capable of escaping a wet paper bag and now it had the Englishmen hopping around and hanging on for dear life. Zaheer Khan was a thorn in the side of his opponents and the spirit of Ajit Agarkar spread around the field like the words of an orator. Even Parthiv Patel has something about him, a cheeky grin, a twinkle that cheers his colleagues.In a strong team every player is distinct. They can be told from their gait, almost their silhouette. Every man has a story to tell. Anonymity and victory do not walk hand in hand. Success requires the exploration of the edges of the character, the extremities of the team. India are moving in this direction. The players are emerging and this indicates confidence and fellowship.India could still fall flat on its face. Ganguly’s team, though, will take some stopping. Already India have risen from the dead (which always impresses westerners) to win the Nat West series. Next they fought back to save the match in Nottingham, an indication that the tide had turned. King Canute himself could not produce such a reversal.Everyone knows that India have a chance in the poorer southern parts of London, on the wrong side of the river, where the accents crackle with cockney.The pitch at the Oval is fast enough to encourage the strokeplayers and often dusts enough to encourage the spinners. Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh are finally forming their long-awaited partnership. The older man bowled with vigour in Leeds, a spicy curry replacing the bland stew at Lord’s. Nowadays Kumble is trying to look like a filmstar with his moustache and elegant ways. He remains a fierce competitor and happily still glares at errant fieldsmen like a mean boss at an expenses claim. He provides the solidity that gives the novice time to master his craft.EYES OF THE TIGER: Bangar and the rest bowled with heart, brain and menaceIndia’s spinners will be hoping to take wickets at the Oval. Doubtless they remember the havoc wreaked by Muttiah Muralitharan a few years ago. Nothing, though, can be taken for granted. Groundsmen are a crafty lot and some can produce to order Pitches in Kennington have turned this season but, then, Saqlain Mushtaq has been playing for the home side. A decade ago Devon Malcolm unleashed the fastest and most hostile spell of pace bowling seen in this country as the South Africans were torn apart.India must be ready for all eventualities. Most particularly the captain – and he has become a proper captain, leading from the front and concerned about the welfare of his players – must remind his players that the series is square and that the scoreboard will read 0-0 as the players walk out on that first morning a few days hence.A match has been won, magnificently and against the odds, but the issue remains to be settled. India have a wonderful opportunity to win a series overseas for the first time in much too long. Still, it is too early to get carried away because the deed has not been done. Indeed, excitement may be India’s enemy as hard work and patience were their friends at Headingley. India have fought back and England’s response is awaited. Much will depend upon the mood in the camps.No one is beaten till the mind has called “enough”! Remarkably, India will start as hot favourite. Ganguly’s team has come a long way in a few weeks and now must take a giant leap. It’s going to be fascinating, and the spoils will go to the team that holds its nerve. As the poet says, “Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.” Such is the fate of all teams. It is only tomorrow that counts.Peter Roebuck, former Somerset captain, is among the world’s leading cricket writersadvertisementlast_img read more

Team India looks like a bunch of losers

first_imgS KannanWatching sport is supposed to make you happy and feel positive but if you happen to be watching M.S. Dhoni’s Team India in Tests overseas, there is a miserable feeling that follows pedestrian showings, as is happening in the ongoing series against England.After India won the second Test at the historic Lord’s, one was hoping that Dhoni’s pathetic record as captain in overseas Tests would finally witness an upswing. But the win turned out to be an aberration and the ‘can’t bat, can’t bowl, can’t catch’ moments have defined the sloppy Indians.For Dhoni the batsman, it has been a series in which he has scored runs quite bravely. Watching the captain take blows on the chest and shoulder and yet fight it out at The Oval, it is clear he has not been found wanting with the bat. However, Dhoni’s real malaise has been in not getting the playing 11 right at any time in the series. When the surface demanded a genuine fast bowler like Varun Aaron to be played, Dhoni picked Pankaj Singh.The slide in India’s fortunes began after winning the second Test with England skipper Alastair Cook being dropped on 15 at Southampton. The beleaguered Cook went on to score 95. Usually, one dropped catch does not reverse a team’s fortunes, but this is something like a top tennis player losing an important service game in a Grand Slam tournament and crashing out.Dhoni never got the mix of players right. If Shikhar Dhawan was a disaster as an opener early on, bringing in Gautam Gambhir has not worked at all. Gambhir has scored over 4,000 Test runs but suddenly looks like a dilettante in the middle as there is absolutely no footwork and his bat is waiting to edge the new cricket ball. Whether it is a destruction of confidence or the team morale hitting a new low, the players look jittery, as if they want to be done with the Test series. Then again, if you have carefully heard what Dhoni says at the end of a match, he doesn’t seem to be too concerned as to how badly the team is doing.advertisementM.S. Dhoni scored 82 in India’s first innings score of 148 at The Oval.For long, Rohit Sharma has been touted as the next big thing in Indian cricket. The manner of his exclusion is very surprising at a time when the team needs a batsman of his calibre in the middle. The continuing failures of Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara are a reflection of how they are making mistakes and the inability of coach Duncan Fletcher to iron out their faulty technique.And how does one justify Stuart Binny’s presence – batsman or bowler? One does not know as he certainly is not Test class in either department and his presence in the side has done no good, even if he played a good knock on debut and helped India salvage a draw in the first Test.Looking at the fast bowlers, Ishant Sharma was expected to be the spearhead. Barring one spell at Lord’s, he has been a big letdown with his match fitness not up to scratch. In a five-Test series, the team’s main strike bowler has to be capable of lasting physically just as James Anderson and Stuart Broad have for England. To be sure, it is not just Ishant but the entire bunch which looks disoriented.When the minnows play a tough series, there is ridicule all around. Yes, India does control the commerce of cricket with N. Srinivasan now the ICC chairman. But on the field, the body language of Team India makes for poor viewing with the hands of slip fielders looking so slippery. Looking back, the manner in which England captain Cook was hounded, the pressure was on him. Not only has he played himself back into form, he has also marshalled his resources admirably.And if you still think India could have sent one fast bowler who could have made an impact in England, it has to be Umesh Yadav. But then we all know more than the wise men in the selection committee; it’s skipper Dhoni whose voice has to be heard. Whether right or wrong.s.kannan@mailtoday.inlast_img read more

Breakthrough research reveals how deadly pneumococcus avoids immune defenses

first_imgReviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Nov 12 2018Scientists at the University of Liverpool have discovered a new and important function of a toxin produced by disease-causing bacteria that could have significant implications for future vaccine design.Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcus) is a major cause of life-threatening invasive diseases such as pneumonia, septicaemia and meningitis, and is responsible for more than one million deaths every year. Key to its disease-causing success is the action of a potent toxin called pneumolysin, which works by creating ‘holes’ in the membranes of human cells, and either killing them directly or causing significant tissue damage.Until now, scientists believed that the effects of pneumolysin resulted purely from the binding of the toxin to cholesterol in host cell membranes. A new study published in Nature Microbiology, however, shows that pneumolysin can also bind directly to a host cell receptor on specialized immune cells to suppress the immune response.Related StoriesTAU’s new Translational Medical Research Center acquires MILabs’ VECTor PET/SPECT/CTScientists develop universal FACS-based approach to heterogenous cell sorting, propelling organoid researchTrump administration cracks down on fetal tissue researchThe study was a collaboration between the Bacterial Pathogenesis and Immunity Group at the University’s Institute of Infection and Global Health and the Department of Microbiology, Tumour and Cell Biology at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm.Using specialised in vitro experiments in human cells and in vivo studies in mice, the team has shown that pneumolysin can bind directly to a host cell receptor called Mannose Receptor C type-1 (MRC-1) on immune cells, including macrophages and dendritic cells, causing them to reduce their production of molecules that promote inflammation and protective immunity. The bacteria can then survive more easily in the airways, as inflammation and immune cell activity is suppressed.Professor Aras Kadioglu, who led the study in Liverpool said: “This is really a key moment in our understanding of how the pneumococcus causes disease. First of all, because it breaks a long-standing dogma that pneumolysin can only bind to cholesterol, indeed the identification of a host receptor for pneumolysin has been the holy grail in the field for many decades, and secondly, because it changes our understanding of how the pneumococcus uses its toxin to manipulate and alter our immune response to its advantage. I am very excited by the potential of these new findings.”Dr Daniel Neill who is a joint first author, added: “Understanding how bacteria are able to promote infection via toxin production will help scientists to develop new ways of combatting serious infectious diseases. Several vaccines in development contain detoxified pneumolysin and it is important that we further explore how the newly-described receptor-binding activity might influence the immune responses induced by such vaccination.” Source: read more

Research advances offer hope for patienttailored AML treatment

first_img Source: Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Dec 10 2018Rapid drug response screening for leukemia stem cells offers clues to relapse and to improving patient-specific therapiesAdvances in rapid screening of leukemia cells for drug susceptibility and resistance are bringing scientists closer to patient-tailored treatment for acute myeloid leukemia (AML).Research on the drug responses of leukemia stem cells may reveal why some attempts to treat are not successful or why initially promising treatment results are not sustained.AML is a serious disorder of certain blood-forming cells. In this disease, certain early precursor cells in the bone marrow that usually develop into white blood cells don’t mature properly. They remain frozen as primitive cells called blasts, unable to further differentiate and mature. These can accumulate and cause low blood counts that reduce the ability to fight infections, and low platelet counts that cause risk of life-threatening hemorrhage.Leukemia stem cells – the progenitors for the immature, cancerous blood cells – propagate AML, and also play a role in the cancer returning after treatment. Cancer researchers are interested in how genes are expressed in this cell population, because this data may hold clues to resistance to standard therapies and answers to why some patients relapse.A study presented at the 60th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology in San Diego looked at the drug response patterns of stem cells and blast cells taken from individual patients diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. The information was gathered through high throughput screening, a state of the art method for quickly evaluating and testing many samples.The researchers found that leukemia stem cells and blast cells diverged in their drug susceptibility patterns, and also that these patterns differed from patient to patient.Related StoriesStudy identifies patterns of chronic lymphocytic leukemia growthCancer stem cells elude the body’s immune cells by deactivating danger detectorResearch reveals genomic basis of acute erythroid leukemiaFor example, blast cells s responded in the test to the drugs most commonly used to treat patients, but none were effective against leukemia stem cells. The researchers did find 12 drugs from eight classes that seemed to preferentially target leukemia stem cells, compared to blast cells. Many of them are not often used in patients with this type of cancer.The multidisciplinary team on the project included stem cell biologists, hematologists, medical oncologists, pathologists, computer scientists, drug developers and others.The senior researcher was hematologist Dr. Pamela Becker, professor of medicine at the UW School of Medicine. She is also a scientist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the UW Medicine Institute for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine, and sees patients with blood disorders at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.In the laboratory study, the researchers compared the drug sensitivity of blast cell and stem cell populations taken from the same six patients. In doing so, they tested a custom panel of drugs, targeted agents and drug combinations on the cells, and did genetic analyses for 194 mutations. The panel included both FDA approved and investigational drugs.The unique drug susceptibility patterns observed in leukemia stem cells and blast cells are leading the scientists to hope that patient-specific approaches could be developed against acute myeloid leukemia, with the goal of improving the outcomes for people with this form of blood cancer.last_img read more

Sphingotec reports new applications of bioADM at 39th ISICEM

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 20 2019Diagnostics company sphingotec GmbH reports novel applications of bio-ADM® (bio-active adrenomedullin), the very first biomarker capable to diagnose the onset of septic shock, allowing physicians earliest life-saving therapeutic interventions in sepsis critical care. At the 39th International Symposium on Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine (ISICEM, 19-22 March, 2019, Brussels), Prof Peter Pickkers (Radbound umc Nijmegen, The Netherlands) will report that bio-ADM® is used to select patients at high risk for septic shock for treatment with the antibody Adrecizumab (Adrenomed AG, Hennigsdorf, Germany), which is being evaluated in an ongoing Phase II study on patients with early septic® is the only biomarker capable of diagnosing endothelial dysfunction, which has been demonstrated to precede the life-threatening blood pressure break down that causes multi-organ failure, shock and death of sepsis patients at intensive care units (ICUs) and in emergency departments (EDs). In studies on more than 20,000 patients, high bio-ADM® plasma levels (>70pg/ml) have been shown to predict the onset of septic shock, 28-day mortality and vasopressor demand independently of co-morbidities or inflammation. Without bio-ADM® testing, norepinephrine administration is initiated about 3.1 ± 2.5 hours after the onset of septic shock. Every 1-hour of treatment delay is associated with a 5.3% increase in mortality. Early identification of patients running into shock will thereby statistically benefit one out of five septic shock patients (20%). As decreasing bio-ADM® levels have been linked to improved outcomes in clinical testing and pilot routine testing, bio-ADM® not only supports early clinical decision making but also monitoring of response to therapeutic intervention.Related StoriesImplanted device uses microcurrent to exercise heart muscle in cardiomyopathy patientsCutting around 300 calories a day protects the heart even in svelte adultsRepurposing a heart drug could increase survival rate of children with ependymomaAccording to Pickkers, the further utility of bio-ADM® testing is provided by the selection of high-risk patients in clinical trials. Lack of stratification out of the highly heterogeneous sepsis population has been a major cause of failure in more than 60 late-stage trials with potential sepsis therapeutics in the past 20 years. Adrenomed AG is developing an antibody that leads to enrichment of bio-ADM® in the vessel lumen, where the vasoactive peptide hormone restores vascular integrity.”It’s a great advantage that we are able to improve patient enrichment using sphingotest® bio-ADM® in order to demonstrate the efficacy of Adrecizumab”, commented Dr. Andreas Bergmann founder of both, sphingotec and Adrenomed, and CEO of sphingotec. “However, we should be aware that the diagnostic utility of bio-ADM® goes far beyond patient enrichment, as a single bio-ADM® measurement can exclude or diagnose endothelial dysfunction and thus assist critical care specialists to save lives in patients who most urgently need rapid therapeutic intervention.” Dr.Bergmann is the co-founder of BRAHMS/ThermoFisher Scientific and co-inventor of procalcitonin, a sepsis diagnostic with an annual turnover of $600m. He is currently working to establish fully automated blood POC testing of bio-ADM® as well as establishing an innovative critical care biomarkers on the Nexus IB 10 platform, by summer 2019. Source: read more