Steel tariff dispute between US and Canada Mexico could get resolved as

first_img Comment Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland arrives at the office of the U.S. trade Representative in Washington D.C. on Wednesday.Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images Recommended For You’Not a brand change’: New name, same pipeline challenges for TC EnergyOpinion: C-69 will allow our courts to be tools of economic demiseHelp on way for canola farmers, but no ‘simple answer’ when it comes to replacing Chinese demandUPDATE 1-European bond markets cheer as EU picks France’s Lagarde to head ECBMarkets are more gloomy about our economy than the Bank of Canada — who is right? ← Previous Next → Steel tariff dispute between U.S. and Canada, Mexico could get resolved as early as today, official says Lighthizer will make proposal during meeting with Foreign Minister Freeland advertisement Twitter May 15, 201911:58 AM EDT Filed under News Economy 5 Comments Facebook Redditcenter_img Join the conversation → What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation Share this storySteel tariff dispute between U.S. and Canada, Mexico could get resolved as early as today, official says Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn More Sponsored By: Reuters Email Featured Stories WASHINGTON — U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Wednesday said the United States is close to resolving steel and aluminum tariffs with Canada and Mexico, the Wall Street Journal reported.U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, who is scheduled to meet with Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, will propose a process for removing steel and aluminum tariffs, CNBC reported separately citing an unnamed senior official.© Thomson Reuters 2019Related Stories:Europe should brace for U.S. tariffs on several fronts -German officialUnited States adds India to steel tariff dispute at WTOU.S. steel tariffs on Mexico do not put USMCA ratification in danger – Mexican official last_img read more

Deep Dive Into Teslas Low Cost ShortRange Model 3 Pack Design

first_imgCheck Out These Stories: What’s the story here and how much might this new battery pack really save Tesla?We’ve had lots of news in the last week. Tesla told us during their earnings conference call that they maintained 20% gross margins during the 3rd quarter. On the other hand, it also delayed production on the short range version (again) because the gross margins are not quite there. It appears Tesla is waiting for a new short-range pack design.We came up with a new design that achieves the same outcome, that’s actually lighter, better, cheaper and we will be introducing that around the end of this year – probably reach volume production on that in Q1 or something. That will make the car lighter, better, and cheaper and achieve a higher range. Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on November 2, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Tesla Apparently Gearing Up For Base $35,000 Model 3 In-Depth Look At Tesla Model 3 Mid-Range Electric Miles 34 photos Source: Electric Vehicle News What is this new pack design that’s lighter better and cheaper, how much money does it save Tesla, and what might be its impact on gross margin?Here’s a tweet from CEO Elon Musk about the MR pack:It’s a long range battery with fewer cells. Non-cell portion of the pack is disproportionately high, but we can get it done now instead of ~February4:14 PM – 18 Oct 2018In this last tweet, Musk is saying that the new MR pack will use the same module casings as the long range, only with fewer cells. However, it is our feeling that that case configuration will just be temporary until around February. At that time, the MR pack will switch to shorter module casings. Tesla will then simply depopulate the new MR module casings or just de-rate it with software for the 50-kWh pack.Aside from the two Musk tweets above, Tesla hasn’t told us much about the new short-range pack. However, we can deduce what it is based on what they have told us and a bit of computer modeling.Electrek has reported that the mid-range pack is 62 kWh’s usable (ref). That number makes sense based on our computer modeling. Our modeling also predicts the size of the SR pack required to get 220 miles AER = 50 kWh. So, we have three size packs: the LR pack with a total available usable 78.3 kWh (ref), the mid-range pack with a usable 62 kWh plus a reduced size module (in February time frame), and the SR pack with 50 kWh usable in the new shorter mid-range module casing with fewer cells or just a software de-rate.Tesla has also told us that they will be getting new Grohmann battery assembly automation equipment in the 4th quarter, which will speed production of battery packs and reduce prices. We don’t know exactly how much the new Grohman machines will lower pack cost for Tesla, but we can estimate fairly accurately how much money Tesla will save by reducing the cell count in the two packs. In addition to fewer cells, we also believe Tesla has designed a new mid-range module that is shorter than the LR modules, so they can save on all the connections and module casing etc. as well. So, the move to the new MR module should save slightly more money than just removing cells.We also are estimating that Tesla will simply de-populate (or de-rate) the new mid-range modules in order to get the 50 kWh SR module, based on what they have done in the past.Here’s our estimate of what the new pack designs will be and how much they will impact gross margin.An explanation of the math:The first step was to calculate the gross margin in $ using average sell price times Tesla’s claimed 20% margin.Each time Tesla lowers its cost of the pack, it lowers its cost of goods sold. That’s nice, but if you lower the selling price of the car more than you lower your costs you end up losing profit margin. So with each new configuration, we subtract the difference between what Tesla saved on cost and the drop in the average selling price. If Tesla drops the price more than their cost savings, it drops their gross margin by that amount as well.We calculated the cost savings as follows:Based on the $115/kWh cost to tesla for cells and another estimated cost of $10/kWh for smaller module casing and connections, we estimate Tesla lowered its cost of goods sold by $2,075 for the MR. It dropped the selling price of the mid-range version $3,000, so it came very close to holding the same margin with the mid-range version.The short-range version is tougher. Tesla takes out less kWh’s than going to the mid-range version, plus, if our theory on depopulation (same module size with dummy cells) is correct, then they don’t save the extra bit associated with going to a smaller module. Now, add on top of that a bigger jump down in price that leads to a pretty big hit to gross margin reduced from 19% for the mid-range version to only 12% for the short-range version.However, this 12% margin has doesn’t factor in the new Grohmann assembly machines, as well as whatever else is done to the assembly line to increase production rate. Even with those improvements, it’s still tough for us to imagine Tesla getting back to 19% gross margin with the new Grohmann machines. The numbers are just not there. Even in the extreme case where Tesla reduced the pack cost by an additional 10% with the new Grohmann assembly machines, that would only increase its gross margin from 12% to 13.4% … still way shy of getting back to 19%. In comparison, Troy Teslike is predicting Tesla will reduce its gross margin from 15% to 5% with the short-range pack (ref). So again, way shy of acceptable.Therefore, we think that Tesla will have to increase the price of the short-range version around $2,500.Commenters:Let us know what you think Tesla has up its sleeve with this new “lighter, better and cheaper” battery pack. Maybe they will change to a new cooling scheme (flat plate?). Maybe they have a gen-two 2170 cell design waiting in the wings?Also, we are proposing that the MR pack is the main configuration and the SR pack is a depopulated (or software de-rated) MR pack. Perhaps you think the SR pack should be smaller modules, not a depopulated MR pack?For those that are wondering why we haven’t factored in a lower cost electric motor and wiring as we discussed in an earlier article, we have it from a reliable source that the same motor is used in all variants of the Model 3.This article was a team effort between the author and Keith Ritter,Thanks for reading our articles.TESLA MODEL 3 Source: Tesla Model 3 Mid-Range Battery Pack Is 62 kWhlast_img read more

Road Test 2018 Nissan Leaf

first_imgRestart for the EV Volume LeaderThe Nissan Leaf, introduced in 2010 as a 2011 model, is the world’s most popular mass-production electric car. But, with an expanding EV market, it was time for an upgrade.While the original car was a study in soft curves, the 2018 Nissan Leaf is edgier, and looks more like a regular car, with a traditional face on the outside and a more upright and structured dash panel inside. The body shape remains a four-door hatchback with room for five and generous cargo space.The new Leaf fits better into the Nissan familyWhile the similarly sized and shaped Chevrolet Bolt EV gets 238 miles of range from its 60-kWh lithium-ion battery, the Leaf pulls just 150 from its 40-kWh one. Nissan says a 60-kWh, 200+ mile-range battery is coming, but my Deep Blue Pearl test car had the 40.The Mid-Range ConundrumWhy would Nissan introduce a brand-new Leaf with significantly less range than the Bolt EV, its most direct competitor? One reason is that 150 miles is a lot more than the previous model’s 107 (from a 30-kW battery), and it may be enough for most uses.The other reason is price. While the lower-level Bolt LT stickers at $36,620, the base S model Leaf starts at just $29,990. The mid-level SV begins at $32,490, while the upper-level Leaf SL, with leather seating (blended smooth hide and suede), power adjustment (unavailable in any Bolt) and more, lists at $36,200—nearly identical to the base Bolt. My SL tester came to $38,115, including a few options and an $885 destination charge. For comparison, a fully configured Bolt EV runs just under $44,000.A bigger battery is the big story for 2018–with a bigger one comingThe 2018 Nissan Leaf’s 110-kW AC synchronous electric motor is good for 147 horsepower (hp) and a potent 236 pounds-feet (lb.-ft.) of torque. You can really feel it as you zoom ahead in normal driving; the Eco setting makes acceleration more lethargic, but still adequate, moving the 3,508-pound car down the road competently. For comparison, the Bolt EV is more powerful, with a 150 kW, 200-hp motor, with 266 lb.-ft. of torque.Tech FeaturesThe 2018 Nissan Leaf offers e-Pedal, which lets you use your right foot to press on the accelerator to move forward and ease up on the pedal to slow down—even to a stop. This is possible with electric motors, not gas engines. The e-Pedal works almost exactly like L (Low) in the Bolt, but once you set it, it stays on until you turn it off, while the Bolt defaults to normal D (Drive) and needs an extra flick of the lever to engage.New tech has been added to the 2018 LeafNissan offers ProPILOT Assist Technology on the Leaf, meant to reduce driver fatigue. While it’s not autonomous driving—you must keep your hands on the wheel—you can set a following distance from the car in front while steering assist keeps you in the center of the lane automatically. It’s is a toe in the water of autonomy.The Leaf’s electric port remains in its nose. You need to pop it open using a button on the dash, unlike the Bolt’s left-fender-mounted door. In there, two sockets sit side by side, since the Leaf uses the J1772 connector for Level 1 and 2 charging and the big round CHAdeMo socket for quick charging.You can add up to 111 miles to the battery charge in five hours on Level 2 (240-volt) charging. Home charging on 120-volt household current is much slower, but you can add around 50 miles of range overnight. At public quick-charge stations you can add 90 miles in 30 minutes, so a 45-minute lunch stop should get you on your way.My CommuteI like the Bolt’s 238 miles, but for my 18 miles each way of commuting, and running around the San Francisco Bay Area on weekends, 150 miles is actually plenty. The official EPA stats are 125 MPGe city/100 highway/112 combined. Compare these numbers to other battery-electric vehicles. Naturally, the Smog and Greenhouse gas numbers are perfect 10s.A comfortable environment for most commutesTime in the Leaf is very pleasant, with supportive bucket seats and padded door panels that feel more luxurious than the more utilitarian Bolt. The screen in the center of the dash is much smaller then the generous 10.2-inch one in the Bolt. Climate controls sit in a low-mounted but easy to decipher bow tie. The steering wheel is adjustable for height but does not telescope. The little, round, blue-illuminated shift knob remains and is easier to use than the Bolt’s.The new 2018 Nissan Leaf is much improved, both for its increased range and its style. But looking carefully, I realized that much of it is actually carried over. The distinctive windshield pillars remain, as do the front doors—inside and outside—and the interior and exterior door handles! With the changes, though, the car looks current and matches better with its fellow Nissans in the showroom.(Ed note: And there’s more Leaf news coming—check it out here. The Leaf also has had a rough patch with battery issues in some recent models.(Ed note2: One of our other regular contributors, Gary Lieber, did a head-to-head test of the 2018 Bolt and Leaf here.)Lead photo by Lex AdamsRelated Stories You Might Enjoy—The Latest EV CompetitionLA Auto Show: 2020 Kia Soul EV DebutsLA Auto Show: 2019 Kia Niro EV IntroducedNews: Entry-Level EV from Volkswagen?News: 2019 Hyundai Kona Crossover Goes ElectricEvent: Chevrolet Bolt EV Autocross ExperienceNews: Nissan IMx Electric Crossover ComingNews: Tesla Hits Production Milestone with Model 3News: Honda Fit EV Returning in 2020Disclosure:Clean Fleet Report is loaned free test vehicles from automakers to evaluate, typically for a week at a time. Our road tests are based on this one-week drive of a new vehicle. Because of this we don’t address issues such as long-term reliability or total cost of ownership. In addition, we are often invited to manufacturer events highlighting new vehicles or technology. As part of these events we may be offered free transportation, lodging or meals. We do our best to present our unvarnished evaluations of vehicles and news irrespective of these inducements.Our focus is on vehicles that offer the best fuel economy in their class, which leads us to emphasize electric cars, plug-in hybrids, hybrids and diesels. We also feature those efficient gas-powered vehicles that are among the top mpg vehicles in their class. In addition, we aim to offer reviews and news on advanced technology and the alternative fuel vehicle market. We welcome any feedback from vehicle owners and are dedicated to providing a forum for alternative viewpoints. Please let us know your views at publisher@cleanfleetreport.com.The post Road Test: 2018 Nissan Leaf appeared first on Clean Fleet Report. Source: Electric, Hybrid, Clean Diesel & High-MPG Vehicleslast_img read more

Two Bit da Vinci Wonders If The EV Future Is Batteries Or

first_img Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on December 13, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Source: Electric Vehicle News Mr. Mobile Drives Hydrogen Toyota Mirai To See If It’s Really The Future Battery-electric vehicles (BEV) have come a long way over a short period of time, mostly by virtue of the fact that electricity is readily available and charging infrastructure is continually growing at an increasing rate. Most people have electricity at home, and that has been true for many years. While road-tripping in a BEV might be an issue for people in some areas, that is quickly changing. Public charging infrastructure is nowhere near where it needs to be in order for BEVs to take hold immediately. However, we’re currently entering a major transitional period. Thus, over the course of the next few years, this issue should begin to become a thing of the past.Some questions to entertain:How many people have the ability to charge an FCEV at home? Where are hydrogen fueling stations available? How many FCEV vehicles are currently available, where can you get them, and how much do they cost?The answers to these questions are obvious to most. Charging your FCEV at home is a “no go.” There are only a few cars available with the technology, they’re not cheap, and you can’t get them in most locations.But, but, but … some of this was the case with electric vehicles initially as well. However, most people could always charge a BEV at home; there are several electric cars available in many areas; and charging infrastructure — while limited in some areas — does exist.The real question here is … why are we even asking if FCEVs can gain traction?Two Bit da Vinci dives deep into some of the best sources surrounding this topic to provide us with his take.What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comment section below.Video Description via Two Bit da Vinci on YouTube:Why Battery Electric Cars are Dominating Hydrogen Fuel Cell CarsToday we’re discussing two different approaches to the electric vehicle: Batteries, and the hydrogen fuel cell. It’s no secret that batteries have been winning out, thanks largely to Tesla. But is there any future for the hydrogen fuel cell? And what might the the future for both technologies look like?Sources:1. https://www.energy.gov/eere/fuelcells…2. https://www.wingas.com/fileadmin/Wing…Link to Real Engineering’s Video: https://youtu.be/f7MzFfuNOtY What’s The Real Truth About Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles? Hyundai’s Hydrogen-Powered Nexo SUV Priced From Nearly $60K How about a closer look at whether hydrogen-powered cars can find success.At InsideEVs, we cover all electric vehicles, as long as they have a plug. While some people don’t realize it, hydrogen fuel cell cars (FCEVs) are electric vehicles. However, we don’t focus much on FCEVs since the technology is not very efficient and it’s highly limited in terms of location and adoption. Mostly due to the success of Tesla, more and more people are becoming aware of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs). However, that’s not really the case with FCEVs. Is there a chance that fuel cell tech can eventually catch on and work to overtake battery-powered cars?More On The Future Of FCEVs:last_img read more

MercedesBenz EQC 400 Extended Drive To Red Rock Canyon

first_imgThe EQC’s interior and dashboard is typical Mercedes. Beautifully laid out, and luxurious. The MBUX infotainment system looks great.Regenerative BrakingThe EQC has five different levels of regenerative braking. The most interesting is the default setting, called Auto. In this mode regenerative braking is constantly adjusting based on topography, traffic, stereo cameras, and radar data, to intelligently set the strength of regeneration. Mercedes believes most drivers will appreciate how well this mode works, and use it for the majority of their driving. For those who want stronger or weaker regeneration, there are paddles on the left and right side of the steering wheel, just like Hyundai has on the Kona Electric.The left paddle strengthens the amount of regen, and the right one lessens it. One pull of the right paddle from the default Auto mode puts the car in “sailing” mode. We were told this is basically the same as freewheel coasting. The other extreme is One-Pedal mode which is activated by two pulls from the left paddle.  In D mode the vehicle mimics a conventional ICE with an automatic transmission. Below is how Mercedes describes the 5 regenerative braking modes:D Auto (recuperation via ECO Assist to suit the situation)D + (coasting)D (low recuperation)D – (medium recuperation)D – – (high recuperation). This makes one-pedal driving possible, because in most situations the recuperative deceleration is enough not to require operation of the brake pedal.Performance & Quiet CabinThe EQC has two asynchronous 150-kW motors that deliver a total of 408 hp and 564 lb-ft of torque. That’s good enough to propel the heavy EQC for 0-60 mph in 4.9 seconds. As mentioned above, our driver really gave us a good idea of how well the electric crossover can perform when pushed, and it was definitely impressive. Hopefully, we’ll get the opportunity to drive an EQC ourselves closer to the European launch. Even though the two motors both produce 150 kW of power, they aren’t created equal. The motor in the front has only 5 windings, and is more efficient than the rear motor. The front motor will do most of the work by itself unless more power is needed. When that happens, the rear motor, that has 7 windings and is less efficient, is called upon to join in.The cabin is extremely quiet, and is perhaps the quietest EV I’ve ever driven in, that says a lot. Mercedes spent a lot of time eliminating as much noise as possible, and it’s still not exactly where they want it to be. We were told this vehicle didn’t have the glass for the side windows that the production version will, which will be milimeters longer to close even the slightest gap that currently allows some outside noise in.2020 Mercedes-Benz EQC batteryBattery & Thermal ManagementThe EQC has an 80 kWh battery, which we found out during the drive is the usable capacity, not the total. The pack, the power electronics and drive motors are all liquid-cooled, and the vehicle also employs a heat-pump.The EQC is equipped with the latest generation of a lithium-ion (Li-Ion) battery serving as the energy source for both electric motors. The battery consists of 384 cells and is located in the vehicle floor, between the two axles. The battery system is modular in design, consisting of two modules with 48 cells each and four with 72 cells each. The powerful high-voltage battery has a nominal voltage of approx. 350 V and a nominal capacity of approx. 218 Ah, for an energy content of 80 kWh (according to NEDC/WLTP).The integral overall cooling concept of the EQC, consisting of a heat pump function and two electric PTC heater boosters, not only includes the power electronics, the electric motor and the rotor, but also the battery. The entire battery system is liquid-cooled. At low temperatures a battery heater ensures outstanding performance and efficiency. – MercedesConclusionThere’s a lot to like about the EQC. Personally, I like the exterior design, and I really like the interior, for both comfort and user experience. The Mercedes MBUX infotainment system is easy to navigate and intuitive. The Voice controls didn’t work very well, but I was assured that was because this was a pre-production vehicle and not made for the US market, which caused some connectivity issues.The EQC has plenty of power and performed surprisingly well for a heavy crossover. Ride quality is what you’d expect from a Mercedes, as bumps and road irregularities disappear without notice under the vehicle. However, when called upon, the EQC can handle corners at speeds that most owners will never push it to. The cabin was exquisitely quiet and perhaps the quietest EV to date. There is plenty of cargo space behind the rear seats, (I forgot to confirm if the rear seats fold flat) and it can tow a respectable 3,968 lbs.On the negative side, I think Mercedes dropped a ball on charging rates. In my opinion, large battery EVs like the EQC should have level 2 charging at 40-amps or 48-amps, like the Audi e-tron and Model 3, respectively. The 32-amp onboard charger will take about 11-12 hours to fully charge the EQC from empty. A 40-amp charger would cut that down to about 9 hours, and charging at 48-amps would be about 7.5 hours. However, the 110 kW DC fast rate is probably an even bigger fumble. Granted, there aren’t many cars that can charge at more than 110 kW today, but there will be in 2020 when the EQC launches in the US, and there will be quite a few charging stations that can deliver 150+ kW, courtesy of Electrify America.While other manufacturers quoting DC fast recharging times often say, “Up to 80% in 30 minute,” Mercedes has to say “10-80% in 40 minutes.”  We realize that might not be a big deal for many Mercedes buyers, especially those new to EVs.  However, experienced EV owners understand how the extra 10 or 15 minute wait at a DC Fast charge station can be at the very least, annoying. The Audi e-tron, for example, is larger, has a bigger battery, can charge at 150 kW. Plus, the BMW iX3, another EQC competitor launching in 2020, will also support 150 kW charging. Mercedes should have offered the same 150 kW charge rate as the competition in our opinion.That brings us to the price. Mercedes hasn’t yet announced pricing, so it’s difficult to really say how we feel about the EQC. If Mercedes can manage to keep the price at or under $75,000 we think it’s a good buy relative to the competition. The larger Audi e-tron lists at $79,500 and the smaller Jaguar I-Pace starts at $69,500. Both of which have larger batteries, but very similar ranges and standard features. Tesla dropping the Model X 75D was a belated Christmas present to Mercedes, as well as to Audi and Jaguar, because the least expensive Model X is now the 100D, which starts at $97,000.That really opens up the market for the three European competitors (plus the BMW iX3 in 2020) to gain back some of the ground that Tesla had taken from them. Well, at least until the Model Y becomes available. Ride Inside The Mercedes-Benz EQC: Video Compared: Mercedes EQC, I-Pace, Tesla Model X, Audi e-tron, BMW iX3 14 photos Let’s Take An Up-Close Look At The Mercedes EQC: Includes Cutaways Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 12, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Ride along with us in the EQC electric SUV.Crusing down the strip in Las Vegas in the Mercedes EQC 400, it’s very possible to completely forget you’re in an electric car. The lights, outside music and inevitable slow crawl in Vegas strip traffic can remove some of the most enjoyable features of driving electric; that being the instant torque of the electric motor, the quiet cabin and smooth vibration-less accelleration.Mercedes EQC News Source: Electric Vehicle News So I was definitely pleased when Mercedes informed me we’d be leaving the lights and action of the Vegas strip, and venturing out to Red Rock Canyon for my EQC ride-along. Better yet, we were leaving before dawn, therefore, cruising around the winding canyon roads just as the sun rose.The Mercedes EQC at Red Rock Canyon, Nevada at dawn.Yes, I said ride-along, as Mercedes isn’t allowing any EQC press drives just yet, the sole exception being Jay Leno last week, but hey, he is Jay Leno. Luckilly though, the driver was Mercedes engineer, Bastian Schult, who knows how to drive, and was more than willing to prove that. When urged, he even pushed the EQC to the point of slightly drifting around a few of the tight curves the canyon provided.Perhaps aided by the morning dew on the road, but yes, you can drift in an EQC. In hindsight, I really wish I had a drone recording us as we carved up the winding roads of Red Rock at dawn. Schult was enjoying himself a little too much for the other Mercedes representative sitting in the back seat, who, more than once had to say, “OK, that’s enough of that,” before Schult eased off the accelerator and slowed down.What was learnedNot a dedicated EV platformThe EQC is not a dedicated-platform EV.  It shares many components with the C-Class and GLC line. It’s going to be manufactured on the same line as the C-Class and GLC in Daimler’s plant in Bremen, Germany. Mercedes told us that by sharing the production line and components, they could easilly increase or decrease EQC production as needed to meet market demand. Europe will be first to get the EQC, with the launch planned for June 2019. The US will have to wait 7 or 8 months longer, until early 2020.We believe the fact that the EQC doesn’t have a dedicated platform is the reason why there isn’t any storage space under the hood, and also probably part of the reason why the EQC weighs in at a porky 5,346 lbs. We were also told that the next few vehicles coming from the EQ line will be larger than the EQC, and have dedicated platforms, and be made at Mercedes’ Tuscaloosa, Alabama plant. In all, there will be 10 all-electric vehicles from Mercedes by 2022.RangeAs for range, Mercedes has been quoting 400 km, which is based on the European WLTP range test. Shult has been driving the EQC for a while now, and knows exctly what it’s capable of. He told us of a recent trip when they drove the vehicle (normal driving not hypermiling) 228 miles and had 7% battery left. He added that we’d have to wait for the official EPA range rating, but that he expects it to be about 220 miles. That seems about right if you do the math based on the 400 km WLTP rating (by the way, the “400” in the EQC 400 name, is based on the 400 km WLTP rating). On other EVs, we’ve noted that the EPA rating has been roughly 10% – 15% lower than the WLTP, and 220 is 12% lower than the 249 mi (400 km) the EQC was rated. For what it’s worth, the car estimated that it had 230 miles of range when we started out in the morning, fully charged.ChargingThe EQC is equipped with a 32-amp onboard charger, good for AC charging up to 7.4 kW. The car will come with a 120-volt portable EVSE in the US, and Mercedes will offer Level 2 charging options for purchase. As for DC Fast charging, the EQC will accept up to 110 kW, allowing the vehicle to charge from 10% to 80% in about 40 minutes. I asked why Mercedes didn’t match the Audi e-tron and provide 150 kW charging, and was told that they believe 110 kW works fine for the 80 kWh battery. If the battery was larger, then they would have possibly allowed a higher charging rate. It was further explained that Mercedes believes 10%-80% in 40 minutes is “quite good” for a 200+ mile EV in today’s market.Driving ModesThere are four driving modes, plus an Individual customized setting. The four standard modes are: Comfort, Sport, Eco and Max Range. The car always defaults to Comfort upon startup. In Sport mode the car offers the most dynamic performance, with more power available off the line and more direct steering response. In Eco the car offers less power and is more efficient, and in Max Range, the vehicle will deliver the maximum possible range. Our Mercedes rep warned us that it’s not fun driving in Max Range, but it will get the driver most range available. Individual mode allows the driver to personalize certain driving characteristics to their liking.Mercedes describes the driving modes as follows:COMFORT: Default setting; accelerator pedal characteristic supports a comfortable driving style, but also automatically becomes more dynamic depending on the driving style.ECO: Driving program focused on high efficiency and low consumption.MAX RANGE: Intelligent driving program that can help the driver achieve the maximum possible range.SPORT: Driving program focused on the best response for the highest driving performance.INDIVIDUAL: Allows the driver to customize each individual parameter separately.last_img read more

Tesla launches new Wall Connector with NEMA 1450 plug

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Tesla is launching today a new Wall Connector with a NEMA 14-50 plug – the automaker’s first non-hardwired Wall Connector for a home charging solution. more…The post Tesla launches new Wall Connector with NEMA 14-50 plug appeared first on Electrek.last_img

New Rivian R1T Electric Pickup Truck Image Shows Inside Of Factory

first_img Rivian Releases New R1T Truck & R1S SUV Videos Go ahead and find yourself some dirt.The Rivian R1T pickup truck prefers some dirty paths. It’s not afraid to play it messy.This new image of the Rivian R1T electric pickup truck shows us a glimpse of the Rivian factory, as well as providing us with what may become the automaker’s motto.More Rivian R1T Trucks News Source: Electric Vehicle News Rivian Pricing: Think GMC Denali, Chevy Suburban, Loaded Ford F-150 Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on March 9, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Hot Or Not? Front End Of Rivian R1T Pickup Sure Ain’t No Silverado HD Rivian has been pitching its R1T truck and R1S SUV as adventure vehicles (Rivian trademarked that phrase, in fact), but now we see what could become the automaker’s tagline or motto.Look above the R1T in the image and you’ll see a sign that reads:Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few are dirt.Maybe not the catchiest of phrases, but again it reinforces Rivian’s adventure vehicle approach. The R1T and R1S are indeed off-road capable electric vehicles and Rivian is surely pitching that point to the world.These aren’t just on-the-pavement electric cars. Indeed, in its latest video installment, Rivian showed us both the R1T and R1S out in the snowy backcountry at some 10,000 feet.last_img read more

Tesla dashcam catches pickup truck trying to roll coal a Model 3

first_imgA Tesla Model 3 owner managed to barely avoid a pickup truck owner trying to roll coal, which consists of spewing black sooty exhaust fumes, on the electric car.The whole incident was captured on the TeslaCam dashcam. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1zk7Eb8r-s&list=PL_Qf0A10763mA7Byw9ncZqxjke6Gjz0MtThe post Tesla dashcam catches pickup truck trying to ‘roll coal’ a Model 3 appeared first on Electrek. Source: Charge Forwardlast_img read more

Porsche Taycan will drive like a 911 fewer than 10000 units this

first_imgPorsche CEO Oliver Blume says that the Taycan, the German automaker’s first all-electric car, will “drive like the 911”.Blume also revealed a few more details about the Taycan in a new interview. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1zk7Eb8r-s&list=PL_Qf0A10763mA7Byw9ncZqxjke6Gjz0MtThe post Porsche Taycan will drive like a 911, fewer than 10,000 units this year, says CEO appeared first on Electrek. Source: Charge Forwardlast_img read more

Friday Roundup

first_imgAnother Prosecutorial Common Law DefeatRelated to the above, one of the best guest posts in FCPA Professor history was this 2011 post from Michael Levy in which he described the concept of prosecutorial common law.  Prosecutorial common law is all around us.  Take a look at the footnotes of the FCPA Guidance – most of the “authority” cited for “legal” propositions is DOJ or SEC settlements.For obvious reasons, prosecutorial common law does not sit well with federal court judges.  For instance, in U.S. v. Bodmer, Judge Shira Scheindlin of the Southern District of New York, in rejecting the DOJ’s position that the FCPA’s criminal penalty provisions applied to a foreign national prior to the 1998 FCPA amendments, noted as follows – “the Government’s charging decision, standing alone, does not establish the applicability of the statute.”  Likewise as noted in this previous post about the Giffen enforcement action, Judge William Pauley of the Southern District of New York stated that prosecutorial common law ”is not the kind or quality of precedent this Court need consider.”Prosecutorial common law recently suffered another defeat when the Southern District of New York ruled that the Food & Drug Administration can’t bar a drug company from marketing a pill for off-label use as long as the claims are truthful.  (See here for the Wall Street Journal article).The decision follows a 2012 decision in U.S. v. Caronia (see here for the prior post) in which the Second Circuit concluded that the DOJ’s theory of prosecution concerning so-called off-label promotion of drugs was invalid. Prior to Caronia and even after Caronia, the DOJ has used the theory of prosecution to secure billions in settlement against risk-averse pharmaceutical companies.****A good weekend to all. Wal-Mart related, quotable, spot-on, scrutiny alerts and updates and prosecutorial common law defeat. It’s all here in the Friday roundup.Wal-Mart RelatedIn its recent 2Q FY2016 earnings call Wal-Mart stated:“FCPA and compliance-related costs were approximately $30 million, comprised of approximately $23 million for the ongoing inquiries and investigations, and approximately $7 million for our global compliance program and organizational enhancements. Last year, FCPA and compliance-related costs were $43 million in the second quarter. We expect FCPA-related expenses to continue to trend down, so we now expect our full year FCPA-related expenses to range between $130 million and $150 million. This compares to our guidance in February of $160 to $180 million.”Doing the math, Wal-Mart’s 2Q FCPA and compliance-related costs is approximately $470,000 per working day.Over the past approximate four years, I have tracked Wal-Mart’s quarterly disclosed pre-enforcement action professional fees and expenses. While some pundits have ridiculed me for doing so, such figures are notable because, as has been noted in prior posts and in my article “Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Ripples,” settlement amounts in an actual FCPA enforcement action are often only a relatively minor component of the overall financial consequences that can result from corporate FCPA scrutiny.  Pre-enforcement action professional fees and expenses are typically the largest (in many cases to a degree of 3, 5, 10 or higher than settlement amounts) financial hit to a company under FCPA scrutiny.While $470,000 per working day remains eye-popping, Wal-Mart’s recent figure suggests that the company’s pre-enforcement action professional fees and expenses have crested as the figures for the past seven quarters have been approximately $516,000, $563,000, $640,000, $662,000, $855,000, $1.1 million and $1.3 million per working day.In the aggregate, Wal-Mart’s disclosed pre-enforcement professional fees and expenses are as follows.FY 2013 = $157 million.FY 2014 = $282 million.FY 2015  = $173 million.FY 2016 = $63 million (projections for the remainder of the FY of approximately $67 – $87 million)QuotableRegarding the recent BNY Mellon enforcement action, Jay Darden (Paul Hastings and recently the Assistant Chief of the DOJ’s Fraud Section) stated: “it’s not the U.S. government’s job to regulate hiring policy.” (See here).*****In this Corporate Crime Reporter, Lamia Matta (Miller & Chevalier) states:“Companies are less aggressive in [voluntarily] reporting. Companies are finding that they don’t save a whole lot by going in and self-reporting as soon as they find a problem. They are still subject to extensive investigation. The cost is the same if they self-report and then cooperate as it would be if they just cooperate. The agencies say that is not the case. But if you look at the trends, that does seem to be the case.”“The other thing is that the decision to self-report is taking a lot longer than it once used to. Companies might think — it may make sense to self-report, but we are going to wait it out a bit before we do so. The process is now much more considered than it once used to be.”“And companies are not as inclined to buy into the agencies’ aggressive theories of jurisdiction as they might have once been. For all of these reasons, you are seeing companies being less quick to self report. I don’t know if the self-reporting numbers are down or not. They are difficult to track.”Spot-OnThis Bryan Cave alert regarding the recent order in the DOJ’s enforcement action against Lawrence Hoskins (see here for the prior post) is spot-on.It states:“This holding directly contradicts the “guidance” provided by the U.S. in its Resource Guide, published jointly by the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. That guidance states unequivocally:‘Individuals and companies, including foreign nationals and companies, may also be liable for conspiring to violate     the FCPA—i.e., for agreeing to commit an FCPA violation—even if they are not, or could not be, independently charged with a substantive FCPA violation.* * *A foreign company or individual may be held liable for aiding and abetting an FCPA violation or for conspiring to violate the FCPA, even if the foreign company or individual did not take any act in furtherance of the corrupt payment while in the territory of the United States.’This Order reminds companies and individuals that some of the legal principles surrounding the FCPA recently have been developed out of settlements with the government instead of through the courts. On issues as important as these, it can be worthwhile to test some of the government’s theories in the only place they can be adjudicated.”To learn about other selective information, half-truths, and information that is demonstratively false in the FCPA Guidance see “Grading the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Guidance.”Scrutiny Alerts and UpdatesFord Motor Co.Reuters reports:“The [SEC] is helping German prosecutors to investigate the alleged payment of bribes by Ford to speed the passage of containers through Russian customs, a source at the U.S. carmaker said on Tuesday. Ford and Schenker, the freight business of state-owned German rail company Deutsche Bahn, have been under investigation in Germany since 2013 over suspected bribery and other offences related to the busy Russian port of St. Petersburg. The port is Russia’s European gateway with more than 2,000 companies using it for shipments, according to its website, but it is also known among customers for notoriously long delays. The [SEC] has now joined investigations by prosecutors in Cologne, where Ford’s European headquarters are based, a source at the carmaker told Reuters, confirming a report in Tuesday’s Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper. Two Ford employees, eight current and former workers at Schenker and one staffer from a Russian contractor are under investigation, a spokesman at the Cologne prosecutor’s office said.”PetrobrasIn regards to this recent media report, the company stated in this filing:“Petrobras hereby declares that, in relation to news published in the media concerning the payment of a fine to the U.S. authorities, there are no ongoing negotiations regarding the eventual payment of a fine for the winding up of civil and criminal investigations in the United States regarding the violation of the anti-corruption legislation. Nor has there been any decision by the U.S. authorities regarding the merit of such an investigation or the eventual amounts involved.”SciClone PharmaceuticalsOne of the longest instances of FCPA scrutiny concerns SciClone Pharmaceuticals.  As highlighted in this prior post, in August 2010 the company disclosed:“On August 5, 2010 SciClone was contacted by the SEC and advised that the SEC has initiated a formal, non-public investigation of SciClone. In connection with this investigation, the SEC issued a subpoena to SciClone requesting a variety of documents and other information. The subpoena requests documents relating to a range of matters including interactions with regulators and government-owned entities in China, activities relating to sales in China and documents relating to certain company financial and other disclosures. On August 6, 2010, the Company received a letter from the DOJ indicating that the DOJ was investigating Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues in the pharmaceutical industry generally, and had received information about the Company’s practices suggesting possible violations.”Recently the company disclosed:“In July 2015, SciClone reached an agreement in principle with the staff of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for a proposed settlement for a range of matters, including without admitting or denying possible violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The agreement, which includes disgorgement, prejudgment interest, and penalties totaling $12.8 million, is contingent upon the execution of formal settlement documents and approval of the settlement by the SEC’s governing Commission. The Company has not yet reached a resolution of these matters with the Department of Justice (DOJ) and management continues to work diligently to obtain closure on this matter.”Akamai Technologies The company updated its previous FCPA-related disclosure as follows:“We are conducting an internal investigation, with the assistance of outside counsel, relating to sales practices in a country outside the U.S. that represented less than 1% of our revenue during the three and six months ended June 30, 2015, and in each of the years ended December 31, 2014, 2013 and 2012. The internal investigation includes a review of compliance with the requirements of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other applicable laws and regulations by employees in that market.  In February 2015, we voluntarily contacted the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Justice to advise both agencies of this internal investigation. We are cooperating with those agencies. As of the filing of this quarterly report on Form 10-Q, we cannot predict the outcome of this matter. No provision with respect to this matter has been made in our consolidated financial statements.”General Cable The company recently disclosed the following regarding its previously disclosed FCPA scrutiny.“We have been reviewing, with the assistance of external counsel, certain commission payments involving sales to customers of our subsidiary in Angola. The review has focused upon payment practices with respect to employees of public utility companies, use of agents in connection with such payment practices, and the manner in which the payments were reflected in our books and records. We have determined at this time that certain employees in our Portugal and Angola subsidiaries directly and indirectly made or directed payments at various times from 2002 through 2013 to officials of Angola government-owned public utilities that raise concerns under the FCPA and possibly under the laws of other jurisdictions. Based on an analysis completed with the assistance of our external counsel and forensic accountants, we have concluded at this time, that we are able to reasonably estimate the profit derived from sales made to the Angolan government-owned public utilities in connection with the payments described above which we believe is likely to ultimately be disgorged. As a result, we recorded an estimated charge in the amount of $24 million as an accrual as of December 31, 2014. There was no change to the accrual in the second quarter of 2015. The accrued amount reflects the probable and estimable amount of the Angola-related profits that the Company believes is subject to being disgorged, and does not include any provision for any fines, civil or criminal penalties, or other relief, any or all of which could be substantial.We also have been reviewing, with the assistance of external counsel, our use and payment of agents in connection with our Thailand and India operations and certain transactions in our Egypt and China businesses, which may have implications under the FCPA. We have voluntarily disclosed these matters to the SEC and the DOJ and have provided them with additional information at their request, including information in response to an SEC subpoena. The SEC and DOJ inquiries into these matters are ongoing. We continue to cooperate with the DOJ and the SEC with respect to these matters. At this time, we are unable to predict the nature of any action that may be taken by the DOJ or SEC or any remedies these agencies may pursue as a result of such actions. We are continuing to implement a third party screening process on sales agents that we use outside of the United States, including, among other things, a review of the agreements under which they were retained and a risk-based assessment of such agents to determine the scope of due diligence measures to be performed by a third-party investigative firm. We also have provided anti-corruption training to our global sales force, and ultimately will provide such training to all salaried employees. In addition, we have hired a Chief Compliance Officer, who is responsible for the day-to-day management of our compliance function. The Chief Compliance Officer reports to our Chief Executive Officer, and also has a reporting relationship with the Audit Committee.”last_img read more

FCPA Challenge

first_imgHow much do you know about the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act? Let’s find out.To commemorate the FCPA’s 40th year, FCPA Professor is presenting the FCPA Challenge.Each Thursday during 2018, a question will be posed and the answer will be below the fold.This week’s question is: this 2011 enforcement action concerned alleged payments to Mexican veterinarians as well as placing their wives on the company’s payroll while “knowing that the wives did not actually perform any services” for the company?Answer: Tyson Foods (see here for the prior post).last_img read more

Joe Biden – Distancing Himself from AOC Left

first_img « WEC Survey is In Categories: Uncategorized Joe Biden has been distancing himself from AOC and the extreme left. Biden has made it clear that the majority of Democrats are “center left” not “way left,” and looking at the midterm elections, the majority of people elected were center not way left. Biden is the traditional Democrat who knows where the majority of the support lies. If he moved extreme left, the Democrats would find their funding vanish rapidly. I believe that the Democratic Party will swing the ticket one way or another to make Biden their candidate.last_img read more

International respiratory group calls for immediate ban on flavorings and marketing of

first_imgUntil recently, the risks of e-cigarettes and their rising popularity with children and adolescents were under-recognized or ignored. We wrote this statement to address growing public health concerns over e-cigarette use among youths.Product design, flavors, marketing, and perception of safety and acceptability have increased the appeal of e-cigarettes to young people. These products are ‘normalizing’ smoking and leading to new generations addicted to nicotine.” Although exposure to potentially harmful ingredients from electronic cigarettes may be lower than traditional cigarettes, this does not mean that e-cigarettes are harmless.And when we’re talking about children and adolescents who are trying e-cigarettes for the first time, we should not be comparing their use to traditional cigarettes. We should be comparing them to no tobacco use.” Related StoriesMore than 936 million people have sleep apnea, ResMed-led analysis revealsMaking Bacterial Infections a Thing of the Past for Chronic Respiratory ConditionsPuzzling paralysis affecting healthy children warns CDCThe paper puts forward a series of expert recommendations that the authors say will protect this vulnerable group. They state that e-cigarettes should be regulated in the same way as tobacco products and included in smoke-free policies. They say that there should be a ban on sales to youths worldwide, which must be enforced. Advertising e-cigarettes as lower-risk alternatives directed to youths and young adults should cease.The paper also calls for a ban on flavored products, because there is evidence that flavorings draw young people to e-cigarettes. There are currently more than 7,500 different flavored e-cigarettes and refills available. Finally, the authors recommended further research on the health effects of e-cigarettes as well as surveillance of use across different countries.Regulation of e-cigarettes varies widely around the world. For example, legislation on a minimum age for buying e-cigarettes is non-existent or not enforced in most countries.Dr. Aneesa Vanker, a senior specialist in pediatric pulmonology, at the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, University of Cape Town, South Africa, was also a co-author on the paper. She added: Some people truly believe e-cigarettes could be used as a smoking cessation technique, but these products also are an entry to nicotine addiction and tobacco use in young people.” Charlotta Pisinger, clinical professor of tobacco control at Bispebjerg and Frederiksberg Hospital and University of Copenhagen, Denmark was also a co-author. She said: Jun 1 2018In a statement published in the European Respiratory Journal, a coalition of respiratory doctors and scientists from six continents have warned of the dangers posed to children and adolescents by electronic cigarettes.They say there is mounting evidence that e-cigarettes damage health and are highly addictive, yet manufacturers are marketing them as “healthier” cigarettes and their popularity among young people is growing.As a result, they are calling for an immediate ban on flavorings and on marketing e-cigarettes as lower risk alternatives to children and adolescents.The Forum of International Respiratory Societies is a collaborative of nine organizations –including the American Thoracic Society — from North and South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia that was created to promote lung health worldwide.The paper brings together a wide range of research findings on e-cigarettes. It highlights evidence that children and adolescents are highly susceptible to nicotine addiction, and that use of e-cigarettes has risen steeply in this age group to become the most commonly used tobacco-related product among adolescents in some countries.The authors lay out a set of evidence-based recommendations for protecting youth from nicotine addiction and its harmful effects.The paper was co-authored by Thomas Ferkol, MD, Alexis Hartmann professor of pediatrics and professor of cell biology and physiology at Washington University in St. Louis, USA. He said: E-cigarettes are largely unregulated, particularly in low and middle-income countries. They are marketed as a smoking cessation tool and a safer alternative to tobacco cigarettes.However, there is growing evidence that nicotine has many acute and long-term adverse effects, including addiction. Young people are at particular risk for this.We want local, national, and regional decision-makers to recognize the growing public health threat that e-cigarettes pose to children and adolescents. Inhaling something other than air is never good for a child’s lungs.” Source: http://www.thoracic.org/ The authors found growing evidence that e-cigarettes act as a “one-way bridge” to cigarette smoking in adolescents.Professor Ferkol added:last_img read more

NewMed appointed as exclusive UK distributor for a large PEMF device manufacturer

first_imgOMI has a large and well-respected choice of PEMF therapy devices that I am excited to offer to our customers. We look forward to being able to represent them exclusively in the UK.” PEMF therapy is an idea harnessed by NASA which uses the Earth’s magnetic fields in a concentrated manner to provide non-invasive and drug-free pain relief. PEMF therapy stimulates cellular repair to improve your body’s overall performance and has many benefits such as improving recovery time, pain-relief and sleep.Istvan Magyar, CEO of OMI, comments: I believe our mission, to develop wellness products and medical devices that help people rediscover their natural equilibrium and thrive, corresponds with that of NewMed’s, helping people to improve their quality of life. That is why I feel that our PEMF devices are well suited to their portfolio and I look forward to this partnership with them.” Jul 2 2018NewMed Ltd. is proud to announce it has signed a deal to be the exclusive UK distributor for a large PEMF device manufacturerLarge, international manufacturer, Oxford Medical Instruments Ltd (OMI), who specialize in all-natural, drug free medical devices, have chosen NewMed Ltd. to be their exclusive distributor for their PEMF therapy devices across the UK.center_img Based in Kent, NewMed Ltd. is the one-stop shop for PEMF therapy, offering a wide range of products to suit all needs and budgets.Andy Smith, Sales Director, says: Source:https://www.pemfnews.co.uk/news/newmed-appointed-as-exclusive-uk-pemf-therapy-distributor-for-omi/last_img read more

New method to evaluate drug benefits may reduce health care costs

first_imgJul 31 2018With the cost of drugs a critical issue in health care, health insurance companies and government payers need to understand how new and existing drugs compare in terms of benefits and risks.But there’s a problem. When drugs are first approved, they have typically been compared in clinical trials to either a placebo or to one standard of care, which is an established treatment that has previously been widely accepted. However, there may be multiple drugs on the market that have already been shown to be better than the standard. And in diseases with high unmet needs, drugs may even be approved without any comparisons.”This,” says David Cheng, a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, “limits our ability to compare the effectiveness of new drugs to all the other available treatment options that are out there.”To get around this problem, people often engage in “a kind of naïve comparison,” says Cheng. “They’d look, say, at the rates of survival for a cancer drug by a given time in one study and then compare them to another, even though the two studies would not be directly comparable. The patients might have more late-stage disease in one study and more early-stage disease in the other, or some other significant difference in patient characteristics, and this wouldn’t be taken into account in the analysis. You’d end up with massive confounding.”Dealing with such confounding bias is especially challenging as analysts and researchers often only have access to the full individual patient-level data for the new drug and must rely on data summaries from academic publications for existing drugs on the market.Related StoriesExperts release scientific statement on predicting survival for cardiac arrest survivorsIncreasing access to mental health services improves outcomes for people with HIVGender inequality bad for everyone’s health finds researchTo overcome the problem, analysts and researchers have turned to a method called matching-adjusted indirect comparison (MAIC). “If you have access to the individual-level data from one drug trial,” says Cheng, “then you could reweight the observations or adjust the final analysis so that the patient characteristics match the summaries of another trial.” Results provided by MAIC have been used in more than 20 successful reimbursement submissions and included in guidance on indirect comparisons issued by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence in the UK.Despite the increasing use of MAIC to inform drug reimbursement decisions, the statistical performance of MAIC has not been extensively studied or reported. Research conducted by Cheng and managing principal James Signorovitch and colleagues from Analysis Group–a global consulting firm with expertise in health economics and outcomes–is the first to identify conditions under which MAIC is valid. If applied correctly, MAIC can provide unbiased estimates of a treatment effect when patient populations between trials are sufficiently similar, and the probability an individual is selected into one trial versus another can be adequately modeled. It also compares the potential for bias through simulations to some other common approaches to such comparisons across studies.”This work can help decision-makers understand when MAIC results are reliable and when there are challenges in the data that would produce unreliable results,” says Cheng. “This could, in turn, enable better decision-making and ultimately inform smarter allocation of resources to drugs that work best.” Source:https://www.amstat.org/asa/files/pdfs/pressreleases/2018-JSM-DrugComparison-Final.pdflast_img read more

Ortho Clinical Diagnostics receives FDA approval for two hepatitis B assays

first_imgJul 31 2018Ortho Clinical Diagnostics (Ortho), a global leader of in vitro diagnostics, has received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Ortho’s VITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products HBeAg Assay and the VITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products Anti-HBe Assay for use on Ortho’s VITROS® 3600 Immunodiagnostic System and Ortho’s VITROS® 5600 Integrated System.Both assays, currently available on Ortho’s VITROS® ECi/ECiQ Immunodiagnostic Systems in the US, are used as an aid in diagnosis of hepatitis B infection in individuals with acute or chronic hepatitis B or recovery from hepatitis B infection. This achievement allows customers the ability to consolidate all hepatitis tests onto Ortho’s single high-throughput VITROS® System, enabling them to better manage large volumes of diagnostic tests.”We are committed to designing assays to help our laboratory customers diagnose infectious diseases as early as possible in the disease cycle, while also supporting labs in managing their workloads as effectively and efficiently as possible,” said Robert Yates, Ortho’s chief operating officer. “The FDA’s approval of our hepatitis B assays for use on our VITROS® automated analyzers is an important step toward achieving those goals.”Related StoriesHbA1c analyzer identifies diabetics with poor glycemic control and high risk of sight lossNanotechnology-based compound used to deliver hepatitis B vaccineMaking Laboratories More Efficient with the Most Modern LIMS on the MarketAccording to the CDC, millions of Americans have chronic viral hepatitis and most of them do not know they are infected. An estimated 240 million people worldwide are currently living with chronic hepatitis B, a life-threatening infection of the liver.iiOrtho has a long legacy in and commitment to the diagnosis of different forms of hepatitis. In 1989, Ortho introduced the first test for the detection of antibodies to hepatitis C. In 2000, Ortho released the first commercially available test for the direct detection in blood and plasma of hepatitis C core antigen, a marker of early infection in hepatitis C-infected individuals. Since then, Ortho has expanded its leadership in hepatitis testing by developing a growing portfolio of tests for Hepatitis A, B, and C. The introduction of Ortho’s VITROS® Anti-HBe and HBeAg on VITROS® 3600 and 5600 Systems complements the other hepatitis tests already available on VITROS® 3600 and 5600 Systems:VITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products HAV IgMVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products HAV TotalVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products Anti-HBcVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products Anti-HBc IgMVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products Anti-HBs QuantitativeVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products HBsAgVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products HBsAg ConfirmatoryVITROS® Immunodiagnostic Products Anti-HCVSource: https://www.orthoclinicaldiagnostics.com/last_img read more

Sugar helps fuel bitter nutrition debate in US UK

Efforts are under way to convince both American and British consumers to eat healthier foods—and today, government-led proposals on both sides of the Atlantic are, predictably, generating much debate.In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today held a public meeting to discuss draft changes it proposed in February to its Nutrition Facts label, the cliff notes summarizing the amount of fats, protein, carbohydrates, sugars, and more found in food and beverages. FDA hasn’t overhauled the food label since 1993. Since then, obesity rates, eating patterns, and our understanding of various nutrients have changed substantially. “The evidence requires a rethinking,” said Michael Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest. That’s the one point upon which everyone seems to agree—but reaching consensus looks unlikely. FDA has received more than 4000 comments on its draft proposal and recently extended the comment period to early August.Like other nutritional advocates, Jacobson, who spoke at today’s meeting in downtown Washington, D.C., embraces FDA’s suggestion to include so-called added sugars—sugars that are added to foods—to labels. “Added sugars exert deleterious health effects beyond empty calories,” agreed Frank Hu, who studies nutrition and epidemiology at Harvard Medical School in Boston and who also spoke. There’s “compelling evidence,” he argued, that they contribute to obesity and diabetes as well as to other health problems. One question, though, was whether simply listing the amount of added sugars, as FDA proposes, is sufficient. Jacobson wants the agency to include the amount as a percentage of a recommended daily dose—after all, consumers are unlikely to deduce whether 1 gram, 5 grams, or 15 grams are problematic unless they’re provided context. FDA says it lacks a scientific basis for setting such a limit. Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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It released a behemoth 366-page report earlier today recommending that the population as a whole have an average consumption of “free sugar” that’s 5% of the diet. (Free sugar includes added sugars, as well as sugars naturally present in honey, syrups, and unsweetened fruit juices.) In both countries, people consume far more added sugar than is considered healthy; in the United States, it makes up on average 16% of calories.Industry groups are not happy with some of the recommendations. “We believe certain aspects of the proposal lack some merit, particularly the addition of added sugar,” said Donna Garren, who was representing the American Frozen Food Institute at the FDA meeting. A BBC story about the U.K. proposal quoted the sugar industry saying that “demonising one ingredient” will not solve the epidemic of obesity.FDA is proposing numerous other changes to its nutrition label. Among them: dropping the requirement to list how much vitamin A and vitamin C are in foods, because evidence suggests deficiencies in those vitamins are rare. Instead, FDA wants manufacturers to list how much vitamin D and potassium their foods include, because of the importance of the first in bone health and the second in controlling blood pressure.As nutritional science advances and, in some cases, becomes increasingly nuanced, there’s concern that efforts to simplify labels so consumers can quickly understand them risk going too far. FDA, for example, wants to enlarge the calorie count in foods. Hu understands this instinct, but points out that calories aren’t everything—highlighting them risks sending customers to buy products with artificial sweeteners that are less healthy, rather than high-calorie foods such as nuts and seeds that are more healthy. FDA is proposing removing the “Calories from Fat” label, because more and more evidence suggests that certain fats are good for you.After lunch today, speaker after speaker stood up to comment on FDA’s plan, usually suggesting the agency was either not doing enough or going too far. Should sodium recommendations be lower? Should phosphorus be added to labels, as a useful guide for people with kidney disease who may need to keep an eye on phosphorus intake? Should FDA’s food labels try to reduce intake of saturated fat? The list goes on—along with the research parsing the many variables of our diets. read more

NIH ends funding for experiments using random source dogs

first_imgNIH’s new policy may reduce that number to zero. Responding to the NAS report, the agency launched a pilot program to see if Class A dealers could provide the same types of dogs that Class B dealers usually provide—that is, mature, large, and well-socialized animals. NIH found that Class A dealers could indeed provide these animals. As a result, the agency announced late last year that, as of 1 October, 2014, it would not fund the procurement of dogs from Class B dealers. (All such projects funded before this date may continue.)“We’re very pleased that NIH has taken this action. It’s long overdue,” says Cathy Liss, president of the Washington, D.C.–based Animal Welfare Institute, which has pushed for the more humane treatment of laboratory animals. But she notes that random source cats and dogs can still be used by researchers and educators who don’t rely on government money. Since 1996, her organization has been pushing Congress to pass the Pet Safety and Protection Act, which would effectively outlaw the use of all random source dogs and cats in the United States. “Only then,” she says, “we will eliminate this blight on research.” As of today, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) will no longer fund research on dogs procured from pounds, breeders, and other so-called random sources. The move is in response to a 2009 National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report, which concluded that cats and dogs acquired from such places were not critical for biomedical research, and that using them could damage the reputation of the research enterprise with the public. NIH ended funding for random source cats in 2012.Dogs and cats enter U.S. research laboratories via two main sources: Class A and Class B dealers. Class A dealers—typically large, corporate entities—only sell animals they raise themselves, while Class B dealers—typically smaller, “mom-and-pop” operations—sell animals that they obtain from other sources, such as pounds and breeders. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has policed both types of dealers since the 1960s, but the Class B system has long been plagued with charges that some of its dealers sell stolen and abused pets. Tougher regulations have shrunk the number of Class B dealers from about 200 in the 1970s to just a handful today. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrycenter_img Email 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 Zimbabwelast_img read more

White House plans big 2016 budget ask to fight antibiotic resistance

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 In advance of the 2016 budget proposal, the White House has tipped its hand on one big priority: the fight against antibiotic resistance. A fact sheet released today describes how President Barack Obama plans to double the government’s investment in combating the mounting public health crisis of drug-resistant infections by spreading roughly $1.2 billion in funding across several federal agencies.That sum includes $650 million for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to study mechanisms of resistance in bacteria and promote the development of new antibiotics and diagnostics. Funding for NIH would also support a clinical trial network that would let drug developers more easily collect data across multiple clinics, according to the fact sheet.The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would receive $280 million for monitoring and research, including the addition of 10 sites to its Emerging Infections Program. The fact sheet also hints at two new programs: a detection network to identify new outbreaks and a comprehensive “isolate bank” to collect known resistant bacteria. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration would receive $47 million to evaluate new drugs and diagnostics and to continue its efforts to phase out the use of certain antibiotics in feed animals—a major threat to the value of these drugs as human medicines. The Department of Agriculture would also see a quadrupling of its funding to explore alternatives to antibiotic use in livestock.The comprehensive approach closely follows recommendations from a recent report from the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, notes Amanda Jezek, vice president of public policy at the Infectious Diseases Society of America in Washington, D.C. “This seems to be what we were hoping for in terms of next steps,” she says.The proposal is the latest in an international effort to revitalize research and drug development on antibiotics—a historically inhospitable industry for big pharmaceutical companies. The short course of treatment for antibiotics and physicians’ desire to withhold the most effective drugs for future emergencies make it hard for companies to turn a profit. And in the scientific quest to identify new targets for antibacterial drugs, “the low hanging fruit has been picked,” says Gail Cassell, a drug company executive and visiting scholar at Harvard Medical School who chairs a task force on antimicrobial resistance for the American Society for Microbiology.But the new funding is likely to stimulate development, says Cassell, who praises in particular the White House’s emphasis on new diagnostics. Doctors desperately need ways to detect resistant microbes and choose the right treatment quickly, without waiting days for lab results. Earlier this year, the White House announced that NIH and BARDA would co-sponsor a $20 million prize for a quicker test to recognize highly resistant infections. But Cassell points out that companies developing these technologies face other barriers—notably the complexities of health care reimbursement for their products—that can’t be addressed with a government funding boost alone.Jazek expects this part of the budget proposal to meet with friendly ears in Congress—both the House of Representatives and the Senate have prioritized the issue and have proposed bills to create an accelerated approval pathway for new antibiotics, she points out. “The federal budget picture is going to be challenging,” she says, but in the jockey for new money, this proposal “stands a better shot than most.”The antibiotics initiative will part of Obama’s budget request, to be fully unveiled on 2 February, for the 2016 fiscal year, which begins in October.Click here to see all of our Budget 2016 coverage.center_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Emaillast_img read more

Why taking morphine oxycodone can sometimes make pain worse

first_imgThere’s an unfortunate irony for people who rely on morphine, oxycodone, and other opioid painkillers: The drug that’s supposed to offer you relief can actually make you more sensitive to pain over time. That effect, known as hyperalgesia, could render these medications gradually less effective for chronic pain, leading people to rely on higher and higher doses. A new study in rats—the first to look at the interaction between opioids and nerve injury for months after the painkilling treatment was stopped—paints an especially grim picture. An opioid sets off a chain of immune signals in the spinal cord that amplifies pain rather than dulling it, even after the drug leaves the body, the researchers found. Yet drugs already under development might be able to reverse the effect.It’s no secret that powerful painkillers have a dark side. Overdose deaths from prescription opioids have roughly quadrupled over 2 decades, in near lockstep with increased prescribing. And many researchers see hyperalgesia as a part of that equation—a force that compels people to take more and more medication, while prolonging exposure to sometimes addictive drugs known to dangerously slow breathing at high doses. Separate from their pain-blocking interaction with receptors in the brain, opioids seem to reshape the nervous system to amplify pain signals, even after the original illness or injury subsides. Animals given opioids become more sensitive to pain, and people already taking opioids before a surgery tend to report more pain afterward.But how opioids actually interact with pre-existing pain has been poorly studied, says Peter Grace, a neuroscientist at the University of Colorado (CU), Boulder. His team has been trying to trace hyperalgesia to the way opioids affect the immune system. In the new study, he and his collaborators used a rat model meant to mimic chronic nerve pain in people—the kind many might feel from traumatic nerve injury, stroke, or nerve damage caused by diabetes. They sliced into the rats’ thighs and tied a fine thread around a major nerve. The thread swelled over time, causing the nerve to painfully constrict, and then dissolved after about 6 weeks. 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 (*) Emailcenter_img Ten days after that injury, half the rats received a 5-day treatment of morphine. Then over about 3 months, the researchers periodically measured the rodents’ threshold of pain by poking their hind paws with stiff nylon hairs of varying thicknesses. (The finer the hair that causes the rat to withdraw its paw, the logic goes, the more sensitive it is to pain.) After 6 weeks, injured rats that had received no morphine withdrew from the same kind of pokes as uninjured control rats. But morphine-treated rats remained sensitive to pokes with much finer hairs. It took them 12 weeks to return to the same pain sensitivity as the control rats, the team reports today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Even after the physical injury had presumably healed, they were in pain.“Just the primary observation itself, I think, is amazing,” says Vania Apkarian, a neuroscientist at Northwestern University, Chicago, in Illinois, who was not involved in the study. The result “should have a wake-up impact on the field.”Control rats with no injury also saw their pain tolerance dip if they got morphine, but they returned to their original threshold after about a week. So what made pain sensitivity jump so much more dramatically in the rats with an injury?The authors propose that the nerve damage and the morphine delivered a kind of one-two punch to cells in the spinal cord called microglia—sentinels of the nervous system that scout for infection. Microglia release inflammatory signaling molecules into the spinal cord, which activate neurons that shoot pain signals up to the brain. Previous studies have shown that opioids make microglia more sensitive to activation. In the new study, the authors found that morphine activates a specific group of signaling proteins in microglia, collectively known as an inflammasome.That’s not likely to be the only mechanism behind hyperalgesia, Apkarian notes. But in the study, inhibiting microglia—by inserting a gene for a receptor that makes them susceptible to a deactivating drug—reversed the pain-prolonging effect in morphine treated-rats, as did blocking certain proteins in the inflammasome.Researchers are already exploring drugs that interrupt this pathway to treat pain or improve the performance of opioids. A clinical trial recently launched at Yale University, for example, will test whether an antibiotic that inhibits glial cells prevents the inflammatory effects of opioids. And Linda Watkins, a CU Boulder neuroscientist and senior author on the new study, co-founded a company to develop a chronic pain treatment that blocks one of the signaling proteins in the inflammasome, called toll-like receptor 4.In the meantime, the finding certainly shouldn’t be the basis for withholding opioids from people in pain, says Catherine Cahill, a neuroscientist at the University of California, Irvine. These drugs also work to block the emotional component of pain in the brain, she notes—a form of relief this study doesn’t account for. And opioids might not prolong pain in humans the way they did in these rats, she says, because the dosing of morphine and its quick cessation likely caused repeated withdrawal that can increase stress and inflammation. Humans usually don’t experience the same withdrawal because they take sustained-release formulations and taper off opioids gradually.Grace says the field badly needs a human study that systematically tests pain thresholds over time in opioid users. His team is working to confirm the animal findings with pain from other kinds of injury, and in female rats, which weren’t included in this study. In the meantime, he says, “I hope that it’ll get people to really question what the benefit of long-term opioid therapy might be.” 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 Zimbabwelast_img read more