On Feb. 13 the Faculty Council heard updates on the quantitative reasoning requirement and on course registration.The Council next meets on Feb. 27. The preliminary deadline for the March 5 meeting of the Faculty is Feb. 19 at noon.
Under the new policy, PenSam said that if, for example, companies were associated with suspicious tax practices or paid less than 10% tax on their total earnings, or if a firm had placed all its profits in a country with a low tax rate, it would investigate them further. Torsten Fels, PenSam“We want to use the new tax payment information to enter into dialogue with companies that show particularly problematic behaviour and push for them to change their practice in this area,” said Fels.The pension fund said had several tax measures in place for funds, but has extended this to include tax checks on companies issuing equities and corporate bonds.As well as this, PenSam said it had a tax policy in place that partners and external investment managers must accept and abide by when making new investments.Under this policy, aggressive tax planning or direct tax avoidance are not acceptable, and there are consequences for the relationship with PenSam if this happens.In October 2018, the pension fund said it would increase its focus on accountability and the screening of its investments and partners following media coverage of the ‘Cum-Ex’ withholding tax fraud case.Fels called the revelations “the expression of a sick culture and business ethic in a broad swathe of the international financial sector”. Labour market pension fund PenSam has added tax as a special area in its responsible investment policy following a number of high-profile scandals.The DKK127bn (€17bn) pension fund said it would investigate any companies in which it invests if they pay very little tax or channel profits through tax havens.Torsten Fels, PenSam’s chief executive, said: “Proper payment of tax is the starting point for providing a good public service to citizens, and therefore it is particularly important for us at PenSam that our members’ pensions grow responsibly.”Fels pointed out that some of PenSam’s members worked its social and heath assistants in a tax-financed welfare sector.read more
The Michigan House of Representatives this week overwhelmingly passed plans sponsored by state Rep. Daire Rendon removing outdated sections of law relating to vocational schools for boys.House Bill 5769 removes a reference authorizing the Department of Social Welfare – which no longer exists – to acquire land for a boys’ vocational school.Michigan operated youth conservation and rehabilitation camps in the 1950s and ‘60s that were designed to rehabilitate youth offenders by requiring them to participate in a boot camp setting, or conduct conservation projects. At this time, the state does not have any of these facilities in operation. House Bill 5893 would remove references to these camps that are now nonexistent.“As lawmakers, we’re always focused on what more we can do to help make the lives of every Michigander better,” Rendon said. “However, sometimes less is better than more. Removing these obsolete laws cleans up our government so it can become more efficient.”HBs 5769 and 5893 now advance to the Senate for further consideration. 16May House approves Rendon bills eliminating outdated laws Categories: Daire Rendon Newsread more
Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Dec 18 2018A federal court ordered a Michigan-based food manufacturer to discontinue selling food products until the company complies with federal regulations and other requirements. This action follows several inspections conducted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, which found Listeria monocytogenes (L. mono) in the company’s food preparation area.U.S. District Judge Paul L. Maloney for the Western District of Michigan entered a consent decree of permanent injunction on Nov. 30, 2018, between the U.S. and Saranac Brand Foods, and the company’s co-owners, Dennis M. Nowak and Daniel R. Nowak. Saranac Brand Foods specialized in manufacturing a variety of 35 different ready-to-eat foods including prepared salads, dips and sauces.The consent decree prohibits the defendants from receiving, preparing, processing, packing, holding, labeling and/or distributing foods at or from their facility, or any other facility, until certain requirements are met. The defendants told the court they discontinued all food operations in August 2018 and intend to dissolve the company. If the defendants choose to resume operations, the consent decree requires them to notify the FDA and take corrective actions before resuming operations.”The FDA and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development have documented a pattern of food safety violations at this facility. The inappropriate and unsafe practices of Saranac Brand Foods. not only violated the law, but also put consumers in harm’s way,” said FDA Associate Commissioner for Regulatory Affairs Melinda Plaisier. “This type of behavior is unacceptable to the FDA and is why we took action to prevent the defendants from introducing contaminated or potentially contaminated food products into the marketplace.”Related StoriesLean manufacturing methods spur innovations in the testing of drug delivery devicesNew personalized prosthetic liners could help more amputees walk againResearchers improve training modules for future surgeons with 3D printingAccording to the complaint, filed by the U.S. Department of Justice on behalf of the FDA, FDA and state officials inspected the facility several times since 2012 and found L. mono in the facility during three separate inspections. The inspections also documented that the defendants were processing food under insanitary conditions, in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act). L. mono is a pathogenic bacterium that can cause listeriosis, a rare but potentially life-threatening illness. People with compromised immune systems, the elderly, pregnant women and developing fetuses are particularly susceptible to listeriosis.In August 2016, the FDA issued the defendants a Warning Letter, informing them of the L. mono contamination and objectionable conditions at the facility. The Warning Letter emphasized the serious nature of the deficiencies and stated that it was the defendants’ responsibility to ensure that their products comply with the FD&C Act. In November 2017, the FDA’s investigators issued the defendants a list of inspectional observations that identified insanitary conditions observed during a follow-up inspection.Consumers are encouraged to contact the FDA to report problems with any FDA-regulated products.The FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency also is responsible for the safety and security of our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products. Source:https://www.fda.govread more
A miniature blood vessel, formed on agarose/gelatin hydrogel. Green represents VE-cadherin, a protein that glues cells together, and blue is nuclei. Credit: Yongzhi Qiu Citation: Mini-vessel device probes blood interactions in malaria, sickle cell disease (2018, April 30) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-mini-vessel-device-probes-blood-interactions.html Biomedical engineers have established a model system for studying these problems, which has potential for use in other cardiovascular diseases as well. The system builds a network of artificial blood vessels, based on familiar “hydrogel” materials that dissolve with heat: gelatin and agarose, a sugar derived from seaweed.The results were recently published by Nature Biomedical Engineering.”The key technological innovation here is that our hydrogel can keep these vessels growing for weeks to months, which is much longer than standard approaches,” says senior author Wilbur Lam, MD, Ph.D. “With this system, we can study not only how vessels respond to aspects of disease but also how well the vessels will heal over time once those insults are removed.”Lam is assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine and in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University.Working with Lam, instructor Yongzhi Qiu, Ph.D. and colleagues constructed a hydrogel-based microfluidic device, with branching vessels roughly 20 micrometers across. The device can then be coated by endothelial cells, which line blood vessels, and connected to a pump. An advantage of using hydrogels, the authors write, is that hydrogels are not as stiff as solid polymers, and thus respond in a more physiological relevant manner to changes in fluid flow.Once fully assembled, the endothelial cells weaken their barriers in response to inflammatory molecules such as TNF-alpha and then heal afterwards.The researchers also tested responses to heme, a component of hemoglobin formed when red blood cells break open, and they tested the effects of occlusion-prone red blood cells from sickle cell disease patients and red blood cells infected by Plasmodium parasites.The model system could be used to further dissect the effects of red blood cells vs other cells and inflammatory molecules, and to screen for drugs that could prevent damage to blood vessels, the researchers say. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Journal information: Nature Biomedical Engineering In diseases such as malaria and sickle cell disease, red blood cells break down, with harmful effects on the rest of the body – particularly the lining of small blood vessels. Provided by Emory University Engineers create miniature self-sealing ‘wound’ More information: Yongzhi Qiu et al. Microvasculature-on-a-chip for the long-term study of endothelial barrier dysfunction and microvascular obstruction in disease, Nature Biomedical Engineering (2018). DOI: 10.1038/s41551-018-0224-zread more