Apple Watch more effective at detecting heart condition than KardiaBand accessory, study finds

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A continuing study into the medical potential of consumer wearables has confirmed devices like Apple Watch are sensitive enough to detect abnormal heart rhythms with a 97 percent accuracy, a performance that beats out add-on ECG accessory KardiaBand.
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Idea partners with Panasonic to offer P100 at an effective starting price of Rs. 3799

Earlier this month Panasonic launched its P100, a budget Android smartphone at a starting price of Rs. 5299, exclusively on Flipkart. Today Idea Cellular has announced that it has partnered with Panasonic to offer a cashback of Rs. 1,500 on P100 for Idea customers, the device will be available at an effective price, which is over 25% lower than the MRP. Idea customers will get a cashback of Rs. 300 after the first 12 months of use, and Rs. 1,200 after the next 12 months, on the purchase of the latest Panasonic P100 which is priced at Rs. 5,299 for 1GB RAM variant and Rs. 5,999 for 2GB RAM. With the cashback of Rs. 1,500, the effective price of the 4G device will be Rs. 3,799 and Rs. 4,499, respectively. To avail the special offer, Idea customers need to do a cumulative recharge of Rs. 2,500 during the first 12 months and the same amount during the next 12 months period. Idea customers need to recharge with a minimum of Rs. 199 or above, each month, to be eligible for the cashback. Rs. 199 comes with unlimited calls across all networks, 28 GB data (1GB/day), 100 SMS/ Day, free roaming (outgoing and incoming) and a validity of …
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Researchers Discover Dye That’s Safe and Effective for Treating Malaria

Fight Against Malaria

New research has shown the dye methylene blue kills malaria parasites at an unparalleled rate and is safe for human use. In the recent study, which was conducted in Mali by scientists at Radboud University Medical Center, the University of California (UCSF), and the Malaria Research and Training Center (MRTC), malaria patients were treated with a combination of the blue dye and artemisinin-based combination therapy (a fairly standard treatment). Within two days, the patients were cured of malaria and were also no longer able to transmit malaria parasites if they were bitten by a mosquito again.

The research, which will be published in the journal The Lancet Infectious Diseases this week, marks a significant breakthrough in the treatment of malaria. Malaria parasites are growing increasingly resistant to existing drug treatments. When they are effective, current medications still do not prevent the spread of parasites — meaning that even if a patient’s symptoms are treated successfully, when they are bitten by another species of mosquito that spreads malaria, it could transmit the disease to someone else.

Malaria can still be transmitted from a person to a mosquito for at least a week using traditional treatment methods. Malarial parasites stay in an infected person’s blood for a long time, and while they’re there they split into gametocytes — male and female sex cells. When a new mosquito comes along and bites an infected person, they suck in those gametocytes in the person’s blood. In the new mosquito, they become fertilized, and when the mosquito bites someone else, the cycle continues, spreading the parasites.

With the addition of the blue dye, researchers saw that they could stop transmission of the parasite in just two days.

Teun Bousema (Radboudumc), who coordinated the study, explained in the team’s press release that its ability to prevent the spread of the disease so quickly is what makes methylene blue so promising. Bousema added that the treatment also seems to work well “in species that are resistant to certain medicines.”

The Only Drawback

The researchers have noted just one side effect of using the blue dye. “I have used it myself,” Bousema said “and it turns your urine bright blue. This is something that we need to solve because it could stop people from using it.”

While the side effect may be strange and could be alarming if patients weren’t aware that it could happen, it doesn’t appear to be harmful. As Bousema pointed out, if researchers aren’t able to suppress the dye’s effect on urine, providers who use the treatment will need to communicate the possible side effect, its cause, and explain that it isn’t a cause for concern in order to assure it doesn’t dissuade patients from starting or completing treatment.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), each year around the world 212 million people contract malaria and an estimated 429, 000 die. The group of people that most often die as a result of malaria infection are children, specifically those living in Africa. While preventative measures like insecticides and mosquito nets have helped reduce the number of annual deaths by nearly half in the last decade, the spread of malaria continues to take lives.

The new treatment shows promise, and although there are still a few small hurdles (such as the blue urine) that need to be worked out before the dye would become widely available for treatment purposes, having another treatment — especially one that helps prevent the spread of the parasite — could certainly contribute to our goal of eliminating malaria once and for all.

The post Researchers Discover Dye That’s Safe and Effective for Treating Malaria appeared first on Futurism.


Research Finds Esketamine Effective in Treating the Worst Cases of Depression

Resisting Treatment

A study led by Ella Daly of Janssen Research and Development has established that esketamine could be a fruitful option for people suffering from treatment-resistant depression. Esketamine is closely related to ketamine, a medication used as an anesthetic that’s also been adopted as a recreational drug.

A total of 60 participants diagnosed with major depressive disorder who had previously experienced an inadequate response to two or more antidepressants were administered esketamine for the study. The sample was split into three groups who were each given different dosages, and all three scored better on the Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale than the placebo group.

Janssen is working on a single-use, disposable nasal spray to help ensure that esketamine administered as a treatment for depression isn’t abused in the same way as ketamine. The key here is that a minimal amount of the drug remains in the device container after it’s administered, so there’s a reduced risk of any surplus being misused.

Plan B

The Federal Drug Administration has assigned esketamine with a “Breakthrough Therapy” designation for two conditions; treatment-resistant depression, and major depressive disorder with an imminent risk of suicide. Daly notes that this recognition demonstrates its potential to help patients who are in dire need, which is why further research is so important.

“If approved by the FDA, esketamine would be one of the first new approaches to treat major depressive disorder available to patients in the last 50 years,” she explained in an email to Futurism. “We look forward to continuing to work closely with the FDA throughout the development and review process.”

Major depression is considered to be one of the most common mental health disorders in the United States. In 2015, the National Institute of Mental Health reported that 16.1 million adults in the country had at least one major depressive episode over the preceding twelve months – totaling 6.7 percent of all adults in the US.

While many people suffering from depression are able to find antidepressants that help, around a third of patients don’t respond to treatment. Esketamine could potentially provide an alternative to current methods, which could result in a massive improvement to their quality of life.

“The results of the study showed that treatment with intranasal esketamine produced a significant, rapid improvement of depressive symptoms in patients with treatment-resistant depression,” Daly wrote. “We look forward to seeing the results of our Phase III clinical trials.”

Janssen is currently in the process of carrying out these clinical trials, and expects to file with the FDA by the end of 2018. There’s still a long way to go before this treatment might be available to the public, but these are all crucial steps to ensure that esketamine can be used safely for these purposes.

The post Research Finds Esketamine Effective in Treating the Worst Cases of Depression appeared first on Futurism.


TuneIn drops out of audiobook market effective January 15th

Subscribers to TuneIn Premium will not be psyched to learn that the streaming audio service is dropping out of the audiobook market effective January 15th. TuneIn started offering unlimited audiobook streaming for Premium subscribers in August 2015, making this feature decently short-lived.

TuneIn Premium subscriptions are currently being offered for 40% off as part of Google Play’s holiday deals, though there is no proactive notification that audiobooks are being removed next month.

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TuneIn drops out of audiobook market effective January 15th was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Airtel launches Celkon Star 4G+ smartphone at an effective price of Rs. 1249

Airtel has once again partnered with Celkon to launch Celkon Star 4G+, a budget VoLTE phone at an effective price of Rs. 1249, after launching the Celkon Smart 4G back in October. It is part of Airtel’s Mera Pehla 4G Smartphone initiative under which the operator will partner with multiple mobile manufacturers in an aim to create an ‘open ecosystem’ of … Continue reading “Airtel launches Celkon Star 4G+ smartphone at an effective price of Rs. 1249”
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Vodafone, itel launch A20 4G VoLTE phone at an effective price of Rs. 1590

After launching Micromax Bharat 2 Ultra 4G smartphone at an effective price of Rs. 999, Vodafone has now teamed up with itel Mobile to launch new A20 4G smartphone at an effective price of Rs. 1,590. Under this partnership, existing and new Vodafone customers will have to buy itel A20 smartphone for 3,690 and will have do a recharge of at least … Continue reading “Vodafone, itel launch A20 4G VoLTE phone at an effective price of Rs. 1590”
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Airtel, Intex launch Aqua LIONS N1, Aqua A4 and Aqua S3 4G phones starting at an effective price of Rs. 1649

After Karbonn and Celkon, Airtel has partnered with Intex to launch range of  affordable 4G smartphones – Aqua LIONS N1, Aqua A4 and Aqua S3 at effective price of Rs. 1649, Rs. 1999 and Rs. 4379, respectively. All the phones run Android 7.0 (Nougat) and come with 4G VoLTE support. This gets the same Rs. 169 plan that offers unlimited … Continue reading “Airtel, Intex launch Aqua LIONS N1, Aqua A4 and Aqua S3 4G phones starting at an effective price of Rs. 1649”
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Getting a fecal transplant in a pill might be just as effective as a colonoscopy

Getting a fecal transplant in a pill might be just as effective as getting one with a colonoscopy, according to new research. This could be very good news for people with a painful bowel infection, since taking a capsule by mouth is far less unpleasant than undergoing surgery.

Fecal transplants involve replacing a person’s feces in the bowel with those of a healthy donor. They are used to treat a type of infection, brought by the bacteria Clostridium difficile, that causes severe diarrhea and sometimes fever, nausea, or even kidney failure. Because the C. diff bacteria disrupts the normal bacteria in the gut, fecal transplants — which include plenty of healthy gut bacteria — can solve the issue. Though the procedure is usually done via…

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Adax: Telcos need effective packet core for IoT

Adax: The IoT needs an effective packet core

In a contributed article for Internet of Business, Robin Kent, director of European operations at telco software company Adax, discusses how mobile network operators need to get their packet transport layers in order.

Telcos need an effective packet core for IoT
Robin Kent, European director of Adax

While IoT device manufacturers are bullish about the future of connected devices, those who must lay the infrastructure for these to work are more reserved. A recent industry report from finds that the vast majority of telcos (more than eight out of ten, in fact) admit that they are not ready for IoT and only a few show signs of actual progress beyond this general state of unreadiness.

Despite its slow progress, IoT still promises to fundamentally reshape the telecoms industry. The reliability of connections, after all, is vital for the growth and success of the IoT revolution. And while many predict that 5G will go some way to supporting the vast number of connections needed, there are still likely to be problems with performance and reliability if the right solutions and network infrastructure aren’t implemented.

Read more: Telcos could look to IoT to recover huge losses

Packet problems ahead

The huge scale of IoT adoption is a major challenge for network operators. Experts believe that network operators have the power to unlock the true capabilities of IoT, but speed is of the essence and the industry is frantically trying to keep up with end-user demands and expectations. In light of this, a key problem that needs to be addressed is the protocols needed to run IoT applications.

If IoT is to truly take off and its full capabilities realized, operators must be prepared to maintain enough capacity in the core network, and more importantly, manage the connections to keep a IoT-associated packet moving along, without creating bottlenecks.

Typically, GPRS Tunnelling Protocol (GTP) solutions have been able to handle up to 25,000 to 30,000 Packet Data Protocol (PDP) contexts per application, but operators now need to be looking towards coping with millions. By anticipating this huge surge, operators should prepare appropriately, rather than waiting for huge numbers of packets to turn up unexpectedly at their door.

Operators need to consider a GTP solution that enables traffic capacity to be increased by accelerating data paths and removing bottlenecks, which in turn, accelerates the GTP tunnels and  packet filtering. This results in higher performance and vastly improves quality of service (QoS) and quality of experience (QoE) for the end user. Bandwidth throttling or rate-limiting is performed to guarantee QoS return on investment (ROI) via the efficient use of bandwidth.

Operators should also be prepared for the varying levels of service requirements across different applications. This will be vital when device numbers are massive; both the signaling and data plane throughout will be dependent upon good performance from GTP-U tunnels. The effective solution to low-latency tolerance is a control plane issue and requires good GTP-C tunnels and most importantly effective SCTP [Stream Control Transmission Protocol]. In other words, it’s basically an issue of using transport layer protocols to keep a packet moving to where it needs to be. 

Read more: NetNumber: Signaling control must adapt to IoT age

Security headaches

Another potential headache for mobile operators is that IoT applications have many additional security requirements, because of the nature of the endpoint devices and the potential high level of service criticality. In serving a high volume of devices, networks are exposed to signaling storms, and intentionally malicious denial of service attacks. Such attacks can have a serious detrimental impact on devices, and the quality of experience the end user expects and demands. In a bid to tackle such issues, operators should adhere to the GSMA’s IoT Security Guidelines for Network Operators.

These guidelines have been designed with the entire IoT ecosystem in mind, including device manufacturers, service providers, developers, and, where this topic of discussion is concerned, network operators. The GSMA describes the most fundamental security mechanisms as; identification and authentication of entities involved in the IoT service; access control to the different entities that need to be connected to create the service; data protection to guarantee the security and privacy of the information carried by the network for the IoT service; and the processes and mechanisms to ensure availability of network resources and protect them against attack.

Read more: Ericsson launches new network services in preparation for massive IoT

Prepare now or fall behind

It’s clear that IoT is only set to grow in adoption, so capacity and security must be an issue that operators address now or face falling behind competitors in delivering the high level of service customers have come to expect in the connected world. To ensure the capabilities of IoT can be embraced and implemented, network operators must take the lead and apply their own measures and protocols.

An effective packet core needs to be dimensioned for cost-effective deployment and operations, but it should also be able to expand rapidly to maintain reliable performance as the number of users, devices and packets keeps growing.

The post Adax: Telcos need effective packet core for IoT appeared first on Internet of Business.

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