Mar 4, 2017

Rare and Loving Photos of Frida Kahlo from the Last Years of Her Life in Mexico City


In 1950, photographer Gisèle Freund embarked on a two-week trip to Mexico, but she wouldn’t leave until two years later. There she met the legendary couple Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera.


Welcomed into their home, she immersed herself in their private lives and the cultural and artistic diversity of the country, taking hundreds of photographs.

These powerful photographs, among the last taken before Kahlo’s death, bear poignant witness to Frida’s beauty and talent.

Frida Kahlo at work, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo at home in Mexico City, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo in the garden of her house, La Casa Azul, in Coyoacán, Mexico City, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo in her garden, 1951—Photo: © IMEC / Fonds MCC / Dist. Rmn / Photo Gisèle Freund

Frida Kahlo in front of the ornamental pool in her garden, 1951—Photo: © IMEC / Fonds MCC / Dist. Rmn / Photo Gisèle Freund

Frida Kahlo in her garden, 1951—Photo: © IMEC / Fonds MCC / Dist. Rmn / Photo Gisèle Freund

Frida Kahlo with her dogs in Coyoacán, Mexico City, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo in her garden, 1951—Photo: © IMEC / Fonds MCC / Dist. Rmn / Photo Gisèle Freund

Frida Kahlo, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo in her studio painting Portrait of My Father, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo and Dr. Juan Farill photographed in her home, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Frida lying on her bed, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Frida Kahlo in her studio painting Portrait of My Father, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

A rare and detailed portrait of Frida Kahlo in 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Interior view of Kahlo's house, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Interior view of Kahlo's house, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC

Mask, doll, and ex-votos in Kahlo's house, 1951—Photo: © Gisèle Freund / IMEC / Fonds MCC
Fuente

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

Mar 2, 2017

Scientists closer to poliovirus-free vaccine production



• Summit tackles meningococcal, pneumococcal disease
• Pfizer’s Prevenar 13 provides protection against pneumonia
* Product helps sickle cells patients, persons with HIV/AIDS
In a promising development for keeping the world polio-free after eradication, a recent study has produced stable polio vaccine using virus-like particles (VLP) in the place of live poliovirus.
The study published by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) used VLPs made of empty viral capsids – the viruses’ protein coats – to produce the vaccine which, in initial testing, worked as well as traditional inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) made from inactivated wild vaccine-virus strains in protecting against polio.
Also, the first West African Vaccine Summit has advanced on most effective ways of managing pneumococcal and meningococcal diseases even as it made recommendations for vaccination, the ethics of vaccination, and the vaccination of special population groups and mass gatherings.
Meningococcal disease describes infections caused by the bacterium Neisseria meningitidis 
(also termed meningococcus). It carries a high mortality rate if untreated but is a vaccine-preventable disease. 
While best known as a cause of meningitis, widespread blood infection can result in sepsis, which is a 
more damaging and dangerous condition. Meningitis and meningococcemia are major causes of 
illness, death, and disability in both developed and developing countries.
Pneumococcal disease is an infection caused by the Streptococcus pneumoniae (S. pneumoniae) bacterium, also known as pneumococcus. Infection can result in pneumonia, infection of the blood (bacteremia/sepsis), middle-ear infection (otitis media), or bacterial meningitis.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that pneumococcal disease is the world’s number one vaccine-preventable cause of death among infants and children younger than five years of age.
Medical Lead- Anglophone West Africa and East Africa Pfizer Vaccines, Deshnee Achary, in her welcome address said meningococcal disease is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide with reported epidemics and outbreaks in different parts of the world. Achary said despite the availability of antimicrobial therapy, challenges remain in early recognition and prevention of disease, and several vaccines have been developed to date aiming at preventing disease spread.
She said MenACWY-TT (Nimenrix) has been extensively studied for use in different age groups and that Phase I and III randomized trials have demonstrated its immunogenicity when administered in children aged one year and older, adolescents and adults.
Professor of Medicine at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) Ile-Ife, Osun State, Gregory E. Erhabor, said the worldwide health burden attributable to pneumococcal disease remains significant, particularly in children aged under five and adults aged over 65. Erhabor said Africa bears a large portion of this burden with the region having the highest global incidence and mortality rate of pneumococcal disease in children younger than five years.
He said addressing child pneumococcal disease would bring us closer to realizing the fourth United Nations Millennium Development Goal, which pledges to reduce the mortality of children under five years by two-thirds.
Erhabor said the importance of disease prevention is paramount and clinical evidence has demonstrated that immunization with pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCVs) results in a reduction in the incidence of pneumococcal disease.
The professor of medicine said the vaccine has been shown to be very helpful for sickle cell patients and persons with Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). Erhabor said there a plan for development of guideline for the use of Prevenar 13 for people living with sickle cell disease and HIV/AIDS.
Director of Corporate Affairs, Pfizer Nigeria and East Africa Region, NEAR, Mrs. Margaret Olele, said PCV Prevenar13, which was launched at the Summit has demonstrated real-world effectiveness against: invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD); Pneumonia; and Otitis media (ear infection).
Olele said Prevenar 13 is generally well tolerated and has a demonstrated safety profile and the first and only PCV approved from infancy through adulthood.
She said that Pfizer pulled down the cost of the vaccine specifically to expand access to disaster prone challenges including about six million persons in the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps in northern Nigeria.
A paediatrician at the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Dr. Adejumoke I. Ayede, said Prevenar 13 is one of the conjugate vaccines that cover the stereotype that can cause pneumonia and is the best that can give the wider spectrum. Ayede said evidences upon evidence, research upon every research has shown initial in Africa, North America, Asia Europe that once you bring PCV 13 it reduces the mortality.

Ayede said: “It reduces morbidity and that is why the medical profession is really excited that this has come not only is it effective its also cost effective and there is also what is called the head effect that if you treat a child or a sick person in the family, you prevent a diseases. To keep everybody safe so it is a matter of not just vaccinating some people and the whole community is protected.
Meanwhile, the GPEI said the breakthrough opens up the possibility of not needing to keep stock of wild poliovirus to manufacture polio vaccines. A virus-free production process would reduce the risks presented by keeping stocks of the virus, reducing the need for strict biosafety requirements and bringing down the cost of vaccine production.
The GPEI said such an approach could significantly increase countries’ capacity to produce their own national supply of the vaccine, including in developing country settings, due to the strict guidelines for any facility with stocks of live poliovirus.



Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

Feb 27, 2017

Buffett and Gates: America Is Already Great, Thanks to Immigrants



Bill Gates, the world’s richest man, and Warren Buffett, the third richest, are—not entirely coincidentally—two of the most unremittingly optimistic men on the planet. So when I met the two of them in New York recently to talk about the state of humankind, and about the future of American democracy, I had a clear understanding of my mission, which was to pressure-test their sanguinity at every turn.

I tried, and failed, though not completely. Both men appear to doubt some of President Trump’s innovations in rhetoric and policy. Both men have warm feelings about immigrants, and also about facts, and so are predisposed to react skeptically to recent developments in the capital. When I asked whether they believed America needed to be made great again, Buffett nearly jumped out of his chair: “We are great! We are great!” And when I asked about the Trump Administration’s problematic relationship with empiricism, Gates said, “I predict a comeback for the truth.” He went on to say, “To the degree that certain solutions are created not based on facts, I believe these won’t be as successful as those that are based on facts. Democracy is a self-correcting thing.”

On immigration, both men were emphatic: In explaining the success of the American experiment, Buffett said, “You had a welcoming attitude toward immigrants who then did wonders for this country.”
Despite their ephemeral worries, Buffett and Gates are both believers in the inexorable nature of progress, not only because they have been treated kindly by fate, and not only because they have concluded that America’s fortunes cannot be reversed during a single four-year presidential term, but because they have overseen a rather remarkable experiment in data-driven philanthropy. The work of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, underwritten in part by Buffett’s support (in 2006 he pledged to donate $31 billion), has saved untold millions of lives. (The only person who could plausibly be credited with saving more lives in this period is President George W. Bush, who dramatically expanded the U.S. war on infectious disease during his two terms in office.) They have also overseen a remarkable experiment in peer-pressure-driven philanthropy: Their “giving pledge” encourages the world’s richest people to do as they have done, and commit much of their fortunes to good deeds. So far, they have gotten 157 pledges, which isn’t enough, but it’s something.

The impetus for this joint interview was the release of the annual letter issued by Bill and Melinda Gates on behalf of their foundation. The letter this year was addressed to Buffett, to whom Bill and Melinda Gates are profusely grateful. (Full, very MSMish-sounding disclosure: My wife works as an adviser on gender issues to Melinda Gates’s office, but she was not involved in the drafting of the letter.)

Once, a long time ago, Bill Gates was known principally as a brilliant, cold-eyed technologist and ruthless capitalist, but the work he and his wife have done to combat childhood mortality and infectious disease and promote vaccines and quality education has served to transform his public image. A Gates Foundation-supported effort has helped vaccinate 580 million children since 2000, and thanks in part to the work of the foundation, childhood mortality worldwide has dropped by half in less than 30 years. Polio, a core preoccupation of the foundation, has been very nearly nearly wiped out. Last year there were just 37 new cases worldwide, down from 350,000 when the campaign launched in 1988. The global public-health struggle against diarrheal diseases, which kill hundreds of thousands of children each year, has hugely benefited from Gates Foundation expertise and largesse.

The world, Bill and Melinda tell Buffett in their letter, is becoming a better place. This is an empirically true thing in many ways, and yet, for many people, in the U.S. and elsewhere, this period does not feel particularly hopeful. I asked Buffett and Gates why this might be so.

“I live in an upper-middle class neighborhood where the average income is $100,000, and every single person living there is living better than John D. Rockefeller lived, because of medicine, entertainment, you name it,” Buffett said. “My neighbors don’t have the power or prestige Rockefeller had, but if you have the choice of living the life that he could live and the life that they could now live, they’re all better off. In every respect, we’re living better than Rockefeller, a fellow who was alive in my lifetime.” He went on, “And you would think that people would be happy in this utopia, but they’re in a funk. They think their children are going to be worse off than they are. They’re absolutely wrong. ”
In our conversation below, you will find their analysis of the current, sour moment, and you will find—if this is a thing you need—some unalloyed good news. I’ve edited the transcript for concision and clarity.

Jeffrey Goldberg: We’ve had an economy that’s been in recovery for eight years, there are a lot of indicators suggesting that life is getting better, yet we’re in this fairly sour and fractured moment in the U.S., and, by the way, in Europe and elsewhere. Where’s the disconnect?

Warren Buffett:  I live in an upper-middle class neighborhood where the average income is $100,000, and every single person living there is living better than John D. Rockefeller lived, because of medicine, entertainment, you name it. My neighbors don’t have the power or prestige Rockefeller had, but if you have the choice of living the life that he could live and the life that they could now live, they’re all better off. In every respect, we’re living better than Rockefeller, a fellow who was alive in my lifetime.
And you would think that people would be happy in this utopia, but they’re in a funk. They think their children are going to be worse off than they are. They’re absolutely wrong. Their children are going to live better and their grandchildren are going to live even better. We’ve got half as many people in the world under five dying, and that number is going to get cut in half again, as Bill and Melinda show in their letter.

Goldberg: So what’s wrong with people? Why can’t they be happy?

Buffett: I think the disparity is what bothers people. It bothers me. Nobody can name the person who topped the Forbes list in 1982. It was Dan Ludwig. He had two billion dollars in 1982. It put him on top of the list. He’d barely make the cut today. The aggregate wealth on that list has gone from $93 billion to $2.4 trillion and the disparities are extraordinary.
There are two things you could have told my parents that they wouldn’t have believed back when I was born in 1930. One was that real GDP, capital, would go up six for one. In one person’s lifetime. The second thing is that, for a significant percentage of the people, not overwhelming, but a significant percentage, they wouldn’t be able to support a family with a couple of kids by working a 40-hour week. Both of these things happened.
With communication being so good now, people understandably feel that they haven’t participated in the growth. They’ve got iPads and smartphones that make their lives better, but because of these, they also see this incredible disparity.
Goldberg: Is this disparity reversible?

Buffett: People are correctly perceiving that a more and more specialized society will create wider disparities and results. Government has always interceded in some ways to change what a market system does—a market system is wonderful in producing what people want, but it also divides up the spoils. Absent government interference, an unfettered division of the spoils will produce greater disparities now than it would have a couple of hundred years ago.
Goldberg: Bill, you’re a technology optimist. But people have access on their phones to information that is false and that also highlights disparities.

Bill Gates: This all depends on how you use the phone. The real facts about child mortality going down are on the phone. Gatesletter.com is accessible on all of those phones. Visibility is generally your friend. Anyone can publish; you can see information and adapt.
On the actual improvements that we’ve seen, take my favorite book, The Better Angels of our Nature, by Steven Pinker, which talks about the decline in violence. The only thing that has declined faster than violence is people’s willingness to accept violence. So now, if you’re in a crowd and someone takes their kid and starts spanking them, people around them are like, “Oh my God, what are you doing? Should we call social services?” But in the 1950s, 90 percent of households said that teachers should spank kids in school who misbehave. So it’s changed a lot, and that disgust is a good thing.
We’re not sitting here saying, “Hey, completely cheer up.” The fact is, the poverty rate is still significant. The dropout rate has come down a little bit, but it’s still significant. How could we take this dissatisfaction and tap into it in a constructive way?
Goldberg: Both of you come out of fact-based fields: Warren, you have to know accurately what’s happening in the markets, and Bill, you have to know if the software is actually working or not. But we’re in a discussion now in this country about whether we’re becoming a post-fact society. Does this pose an existential danger to progress?
Buffett: People learn from something. They get information some way. When I was a kid, it was basically newspapers. It wasn’t television, it was newspapers. The president would talk on the radio and we didn’t have anything else but a radio so people listened. Today information is coming at us from all angles, including from voices that, 50 years ago, they wouldn’t have been part of the scene.
Goldberg: So you’re worried about the future of truth.
Buffett: You always worry.
Gates: But I predict a comeback for the truth.
Goldberg: People in my business are certainly waiting.
Gates:  First of all, I think it’s overblown, this term “post-fact.” People want success, they want education that works, they want healthcare that works, and so to the degree that certain solutions are created not based on facts, I believe these won’t be as successful as those that are based on facts. Democracy is a self-correcting thing. And so, yes, I think facts will stay strong.
Buffett: I believe, and I think this has been borne out over 240 years, that this country gets better all the time.
Goldberg: Let me stay pessimistic here and ask, do you think democracy can survive social media, and the flattening out of information?
Buffett: Sure, sure.
Goldberg: Why are you two so optimistic about everything?
Buffett: [America] survived civil war, world wars, the atomic bomb, and the Great Depression. We survive. We’ve been gotten through a lot in this country. The truth is, we’ve got something that works, and the fact is it works and has kept working. It took us 150 years to get the 19th Amendment, but things gets better. We’re an aspirational country in a sense, and this country has a mechanism that allows aspirations to work their way into society, with a lot of fits and starts.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

National immunisation programme kicks off Karachi



15 HOURS AGO BY APP

SUKKUR: Ghotki Deputy Commissioner Syed Aijaz Ali Shah on Monday inaugurated the anti-polio campaign by administering polio drops to children at the District Headquarters Hospital.

Speaking to the senior officials of the Health and Education departments, heads of vaccination teams and other staff, he directed for maximum coverage and said that every vaccinated child should be given a finger-mark to identify administered ones from the unadministered.
In this connection, the deputy commissioner (DC) also held meetings with the heads of various union councils to discuss arrangements.
The DC appealed to the parents and guardians of children to cooperate with the teams visiting their homes.
“It would be difficult for us to control the disease if parents do not cooperate with the teams and refuse to get their children vaccinated,” he said.
He also advised parents to ensure completing the general vaccination courses of their babies to save them from crippling diseases.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

Doctors warn of boycotting anti-polio campaign



Demands fierce action against DC

Badin doctors on Monday announced to boycott the upcoming campaign of polio vaccination until the transfer of Badin deputy commissioner (DC) over a tension in a meeting held to review arrangements for the campaign.
They have also warned of closing down the outpatients departments (OPD) if the strict action is not taken against the DC.
According to details, a meeting called for reviewing the arrangements for the upcoming polio campaign of district Badin turned into a chaos after the Badin Deputy Commissioner’s (DC) fierce interrogation of the doctors over 11 unvaccinated children of UC Badin-II.
During the meeting, the DC accused District Health Officer (DHO) Dr Hemraj Rathi of negligence and warned him of taking a strict action against him.
The doctors, upon this, boycotted the meeting and protested against the disrespectful behaviour of the DC.
Doctors held a press conference at the Badin press club on Monday, they were outraged at the insulting tone of the DC and alleged that the DC hadn’t provided them with enough vaccines to combat polio virus.
Dr Sharif Chandio, Dr Zahoor Abbasi, Dr Gulab Kashmiri, Dr Hafiz Samoon, Ghulam Hussain Soomro and others were present on the occasion.
The doctors protested against the DC’s ill language termed such act as against the rules and principles of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
While talking to media persons, Badin DC representative Shoukat Hussain Jokhio rejected doctors’ accusation of low provision of vaccines.
He said that a third party was engaged to evaluate the Inactivated Polio Vaccine (IPV) vaccination, adding, randomly four union councils were selected for Lot Quality Assurance Sampling (LQAS) by that party and eleven children were found unvaccinated.
Moreover, he said, the district administration had received expensive IPV from the WHO but doctors failed to vaccinate all the children.
The spokesman said that a letter has been written to the Health chief secretary and secretary stating, “Due to a poor performance of the doctors, the Badin district administration couldn’t run the polio campaign in the district and demanded an immediate transfer of the DHO and provision of the active team”.

Post Polio Litaff, Association A.C _APPLAC Mexico

These NASA Satellite Images Show the Stunning Toll of Climate Change


By Joe McCarthy|

Ice avalanche in Tibet’s Aru Range
NASA
Climate change rarely transforms an environment overnight. By the time ice shelves disappear, ocean waves creep onto main streets, and forests shrivel, the forces of climate change have been at work for decades. 
Fortunately, NASA is tracking these environmental changes with satellites so that the public knows the full scale of transformations taking place. From one month to the next, an environmental change might seem slight, but when you zoom out to the level of years and decades, the combined shifts paint a devastating portrait. Of course, there are also sudden, dramatic events like flash floods that overwhelm a region overnight. But these, too, are the result of weather patterns that have morphed over decades.   
Here are seven transformations that NASA has captured. 

Melting Arctic Ice

September, 1984
Older, thicker Arctic sea ice declinesImage: NASA
September, 2016
Older, thicker Arctic ice declines -- 2016Image: NASA

Fire Damage in Yellowstone National Park

October 10, 1987
Yellowstone National Park / NASAImage: NASA
June 17, 2016
Fire Damage in Yellowstone National ParkImage: NASA

Early Ice Melt in Greenland

June 10, 2014
Greenland IceImage: NASA
June 15, 2016
Ice melt in GreenlandImage: NASA

Sea-Ice Breakup in Beaufort Sea, Arctic

April 13, 2015
Sea ice break-up in ArcticImage: NASA
April 15, 2016
Sea ice break-up in ArcticImage: NASA

Coal Mine Growth in Powder River Basin, Wyoming

June 29, 1984
Coal mines in Wyoming
June 21, 2016
Coal mines in Wyoming - 2016Image: NASA

Flooding in Yangtze River Basin, China

March 27, 2016
Screen Shot 2017-01-05 at 9.43.04 AM.png
July 28, 2016
Ganges River In IndiaImage: NASA

Flooding on the Ganges River, India

August 10, 2015
Screen Shot 2017-01-05 at 9.52.01 AM.png
August 15, 2016
Satellite view of Ganges River in IndiaImage: NASA

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