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How did Star Wars get to Dubrovnik?

first_imgShooting the series Game of Thrones, put Dubrovnik on world film charts. Media exposure did not go unnoticed, so Dubrovnik has already served as a film set for the American series “Dig”, and Indian film “Fan”.This is a big thing for the additional development of tourism in Dubrovnik, which, when viewed last year, has achieved record results. There were 932.621 arrivals, which is a total of 8% more than the year before. During 2015, 3,3 million overnight stays were realized, or 6% more than in 2014. Of the total number of overnight stays, foreign tourists realized 3,1 million. Last year was also the year of the flourishing of private accommodation, which recorded an increase of as much as 24%.Dubrovnik will soon host the world’s most famous film series, which attracts a lot of attention and has a huge number of fans around the world. It’s about Star Wars, which has earned more than four billion dollars since the first and fourth episodes, recorded almost 40 years ago (1977), and the franchise itself (toys, video games, DVD…) is estimated at around 32 billion. So many greenbacks have been provided to George Lucas and society by loyal fans, who are eagerly awaiting new sequels.From March 9 to 16, Dubrovnik will host another mega popular film series – Star Wars. We asked the first man of the city, Mayor Andro Vlahušić, how the cooperation and agreement came about and what Dubrovnik as a city has to do with it.”Apart from heritage and culture, Dubrovnik has a film-oriented city administration that has been diligently working for the past 7 years to ensure conditions for large foreign productions to take place in public spaces, indoors, in institutions.” The financial effects of previous cooperation advertising, media coverage, articles in the world’s leading magazines and newspapers, not to mention web publications, blogs, social networks. Everything is reflected in the tourism industry on which the economy of Dubrovnik is based. When a Michael Fassbender mentions Dubrovnik in a New York Times article and enthusiastically talks about how he was received, what is the value of such an announcement, which is not ordered, but is real and real? ”City of Dubrovnik / Dubravko LenertAlthough there are no official and exact data on the number of tourists who decided to visit Dubrovnik only due to the fact that the Game of Thrones embodied the King’s parapet, this number is certainly not negligible. Confirmation of this are the numerous posts on social networks recorded by fans in the most impressive locations used in the series. This is supported by the fact that a large number of tourist tours with themes from the series and even themed weddings have been introduced.”The city did not sit idly by. Last year, we opened a Visitor Center at the Benedictine Monastery on Lokrum, one of the filming locations, with a permanent exhibition dedicated to the Game of Thrones series. The central part of the exhibition is occupied by the original HBO replica of the Iron Throne made especially for us, while a significant part of the exhibition is related to interesting facts from the history of Lokrum, and numerous legends associated with the island. – said Vlahušić.Although, as he has already said, the financial effects of the cooperation so far are incalculable, the mayor notes that the goal is not to add money. The production teams almost always met with logistical support and securing the locations for the filming, and they paid all the real costs to the City and the utility companies.”Consumption is also significant in the private sector, because many of our fellow citizens are engaged as extras, and we are especially pleased that the cooperation usually takes place regularly with Croatian and Dubrovnik professionals.”How do you look at Dubrovnik in the future, that is, the further development of film tourism. There are growing rumors that the third-largest franchise in terms of earnings, James Bond, could also be filmed in Dubrovnik and that negotiations are ongoing.“We believe James Bond will come at the end of the story. In a world where there are four, five big film / TV franchises, most of them have arrived in Dubrovnik. Our contacts are wide, but we do not trade but create conditions to be in the City that had Duška Popova, one of the templates for Fleming ‘s story of the first James Bond, connects the beginning and continuation of one of the following Bonds. Dubrovnik does not care about time but quality. The arrival of Bond because of the above can only be his return home. ”What is the general collaboration with production companies, whose films are shot in Dubrovnik. Are they demanding, are they looking for something that is hard to fulfill, are they behaving like movie stars?”No, we manage to agree on everything. Their requirements are realistic, and are defined by the specifics of individual productions. For example the Bollywood spectacle Fan starring one of the most popular actors from that market, Shah Rukh Khan, and whose trailer was released on February 29, was seen by almost 24 million people in the first 3 hours alone. It is a huge market and quantitatively the world’s largest production, and the action scenes of the chase on the rooftops in the historic center and the motor chases in the old city port are really impressive. Especially demanding in terms of production, due to the large insurance, was the scene of the so-called. the Queen of Cersei’s walk of shame in the fifth season of Game of Thrones. It was necessary to completely close part of the city, but everything went smoothly. Now, for the first time, we are completely closing Stradun. Filming will take place in the evening and at night, so that the special regime of movement inside the walls will not cause major problems for citizens and tourists. We are committed as a city of good hosts, we understand the importance that such a promotion brings to Dubrovnik and we are happy to work only with the best, but we welcome all productions that want to come to film in our city. “City of Dubrovnik / Dubravko LenertAre you seriously considering building a large film studio in Dubrovnik, as could already be read on some portals? This would probably make Dubrovnik even more attractive to production companies.”In the whole story about Dubrovnik becoming a real film mecca, we had the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia, the Government, Embassy Film, but right at the very beginning the idea of ​​a film studio crystallized. We have made an analysis of European film studios, we know their sizes, advantages, disadvantages, shooting prices in these studios. We even found several locations suitable for the construction of studios in a circle of about 30 kilometers around Dubrovnik. The companies we worked with showed a great willingness to participate in co-financing and creating new content. We need a film studio and we as the City are willing to co-finance this project in different ways ” – Vlahušić emphasized and concluded that the studio could not only produce series and films for Croatia and the region, if necessary, but the studio could also be used for the needs of the Summer Games, festivals and everything that requires top technology and logistics.last_img read more

Greening of Pula on the occasion of St. Patrick

first_imgThe Tourist Board of Pula is organizing a celebration of St. Patrick’s Day on Thursday, March 17, thus accepting the initiative of the Embassy of Ireland. The program will take place at the Customs Pier, and begins at 18.30:XNUMX p.m. On this occasion, the popular Pula cranes will be illuminated in green.As part of the global project of greening the cultural and historical material heritage on the occasion of St. Patrick’s Day, the city of Pula joins by lighting the cranes of the shipyard Uljanik.Is Pula the brightest city in Croatia? Judging by the imagination of the Visualia project, then Pula is synonymous with the play of light, and the new, green light will give the Irish St. Patrick’s Day, which has traditionally been celebrated worldwide for decades on March 17. This year, Pula will paint with green lights and thus revitalize the industrial architecture above the water, as opposed to the classic and traditional on the coast. The green color of Ireland will illuminate the port industrial complex of the Uljanik shipyard in order to make the otherwise less attractive part of the city landscape attractive to citizens and visitors. Pula will thus be side by side with world metropolises such as Rome, Rio de Janeiro, Sydney, New York or Munich in support of the Irish community and culture on a day that marks not only this Christian holiday, but also the XNUMXth anniversary of the Easter Uprising in Dublin. for independence from the British Crown.Apart from the well-known historical and cultural parallels with Croatia, the stay of the Irish writer James Joyce in Pula in 1904/1905 is an additional reason for greening. where he writes Dubliners and the first sketches for his epochal Ulysses, which Pula has been celebrating for five years on June 16 in the form of the Bloomsday Croatia festival. With the support of the Embassy of the Republic of Ireland, the Tourist Board of the City of Pula and the Visualia Festival, Bloomsday Croatia thus announcing its sixth edition to be held with a handful of surprises on June 16 and 17 at various city locations.last_img read more

Find out all about digital tourism at OMGcommerce Retail & Tourism Trends

first_imgLast year, at the OMG conference with over 350 top participants, Uber’s arrival was announced, which shook the Croatian taxi market with digitalization, while PayPal presented itself to domestic retailers.Organized this year Netocracy The fourth OMGcommerce is held from June 1 to 3 in Zagreb, and a special feature is the entry of tourism through the big doors through OMGcommerce Retail & Tourism Trends conference. If you are in the digital market, this is where you need to be, a place where as entrepreneurs, marketers, traders, leaders and members of the domestic digital economy, you come to find new partners and customers and discover where they are and where to go in the digital market!You will get a clear and concrete answer to the question of how much Croatian tourism really uses digital technologies and what will affect you in 2016. As part of OMGcommerce Retail & Tourism Trends conference on the first day, June 01, there will be two panel discussions on the topic Loyalty 2.0 i Sharing economy , all influenced by digital trends in tourism.” We will be based on Loyalty 2.0, how to create new loyalties in tourism using digital processes and how representatives of the sharing economy can influence Croatian tourism in the long run. How it is changing and how hotels, but also other stakeholders in tourism, can adapt to new digital trends. The panel will be hosted by Horwath HTL, while other panelists will be revealed soon. In addition, the partner of the conference is the Association of Employers in the Croatian Hotel Industry (UPUHH).”Points out Josip Zurak from Netokracija and adds that the panel will be able to concretely find out how it is possible to present your tourist product and tourist destination digital in the digital world.If you are not online, then you are not there and that is why it is important to follow all new digital trends and be at the top of all business processes. Changes in the digital world are getting faster and faster and it is necessary to follow all the new trends in order to be competitive because the competition does not sleep, in fact, it uses all available tools to be more successful than you.The next day, more precisely on Thursday, June 02, there will be a business training for tourism professionals called ” Digital tourism “.  For Croatia, tourism as a key branch of the economy still does not use digital marketing to its full potential, so there are still many colleagues who must discover it and invest in digital solutions in order to exceed their goals in the 2016 and 2017 seasons.”The second day focuses on educational workshops, where there will be lectures on digital marketing, why it is important for hoteliers and the entire tourism sector, and how to incorporate it into your business. For now, I will reveal only one of the confirmed speakers, and that is the digital agency Degordian, who just at the Communications Days in Rovinj received the Mixx award for the campaign they worked for the client Camping village Šimuni on the island of Pag, in the category Direct Response and Lead Generation campaign” Zurak points out.The basic ticket price for the first day (OMGcommerce Retail & Tourism trends) is 299,00 kn, for the second day (OMGcommerce Business Education) is 999,00 kn and for both days together also 999,00 kn.Until 03.05. You can buy tickets at better prices through  early-bird action 2za1 with the code, and for all readers of the HrTurizam.hr portal with the entered code hrturizamhrpricaprice and after the early-bird period it is realized 10% for card. Tickets will be available during the day today at www.entrio.hr.As per the research of the Boston Consulting Group 95 percent of customers use digital channels to organize our travels, it’s time to fully digitize tourism, right?See you.last_img read more

Marinko Benić heads Karisma Hotels Adriatic, and Veljko Ostojić takes over Agrolaguna

first_imgIn accordance with the continuous market changes and in order to strengthen the management teams, as well as on the basis of the analysis of new business tasks and profiles of leading personnel in the Concern, today a decision was made on the rotation of management personnel.Thus, it was decided that he would be appointed to the position of the President of the Management Board of Agrolaguna dd Veljko Ostojic, and in the position of President of the Management Board of Karisma Hotels Adriatic, he will replace him Marinko Benić, former member of the Management Board of Karisma Hotels Adriatic. Marinko Benić, was born in 1970 in Dubrovnik, and after graduating from the Faculty of Maritime Studies, as well as the Faculty of Trade and Tourism, he worked as an advisor for bank rehabilitation and privatization, he was a member of the Board of Vaba Bank Varaždin, Chairman of the Board of PGM Ragusa, and Chief Financial Officer of Coning Group. At the end of 2012, he helped found Karisma Hotels Adriatic, where he soon became Chief Financial Officer and a member of the Management Board.At the same time, Goran Kramarić, the current President of the Management Board of Agrolaguna, takes over the position of President of the Management Board of Zvijezda dd from Goran Pajnić who will continue his work in Agrokor as Executive Director for Agriculture with a focus on the entire regional agricultural segment of Agrokor Group.last_img read more

Research shows that kids as young as 18 months understand stoicism

first_imgLinkedIn Share on Facebook Email When you’re one and a half years old, having your favourite ball taken away is likely to result in a temper tantrum. But while babies wear their feelings on the sleeves of their onesies, adults often mask their emotions, responding to life’s disappointments with stoic reserve.While you might think that witnessing such reactions would confuse toddlers and lead them to believe emotionally reserved adults aren’t being honest — so by extension are untrustworthy to begin with — new research shows that they actually do understand that a stiff upper lip can be appropriate in certain situations.In a study recently published in the journal Infant Behavior and Development, Concordia psychology researchers showed 71 18-month-old toddlers a series of events during which an actor had an object stolen from her. In one scenario, infants then saw the actor display sadness while in the other she remained neutral. Afterwards, the infants interacted with the actor in several basic tasks. Pinterestcenter_img Share on Twitter Share “Because our research subjects can’t yet speak to us in full sentences, we monitor their eye movements and look for non-verbal reactions,” says lead author Sabrina Chiarella, who recently completed her PhD in psychology at Concordia. “We saw infants in both groups spend an equal amount of time looking at the scene and engaging in similar levels of hypothesis testing –looking back and forth between the actor’s empty hand and face to their parents to make sure everything was okay.”But while the infants displayed less concern for neutral than sad individuals after a negative event, they were just as willing to help and imitate them — and be guided by their emotional expressions — as they were for those individuals who expressed appropriate sadness after a negative experience.“It seems toddlers are willing to give stoic people the benefit of the doubt,” suggests Chiarella. “They understand that sadness is the more appropriate reaction but also that a neutral response doesn’t necessarily mean a person is untrustworthy.”The experiment confirms that, at 18 months, infants consider a neutral expression just as appropriate as a sad expression following a negative experience. And because the infants showed greater empathy towards those who expressed sadness, the study further demonstrated that toddlers are sensitive to the significance of emotional expressions following negative events.“Because others’ behaviours can often be explained through their emotional expressions, understanding those expressions is critical in early development,” says senior author and Concordia psychology professor, Diane Poulin-Dubois. “Our research has helped confirm that children at a young age do not consider a lack of emotional reaction as unjustified. This, in turn means they will be able to build trusting relationships with those who are less emotionally expressive in a negative situation.”So parents can relax: there’s no need to throw a temper tantrum next time you lose your keys. Your toddler will still trust you, even if you choose to grin and bear it.last_img read more

Men get ahead by chatting before negotiations

first_imgPinterest Share on Facebook Share on Twitter LinkedIn According to the researchers, it comes down to expected gender behaviors and stereotypes. Because women are expected to be more communicative, they are anticipated to make small talk and thus earn no extra social capital for engaging in “chit chat” before a negotiation. “It’s not as notable a behavior when a woman makes small talk,” Mislin said. “So she is not as likely to experience a social boost from the effort.” But the same communal behavior from men is unexpected, and thus contributes to more positive perception of men as well as more favorable final offers.The researchers discovered that the benefits to men who small talk are more pronounced in negotiation situations that are characterized by more ambiguity and where small talk is not necessarily expected. In situations where expectations are clearly defined, including an expectations of small talk (e.g. an employment contract interview), both men and women who small talk are perceived more favorably. But this positive perception only translates into better deals for men who small talk.“Our findings reinforce the notion that men and women in the same situation, engaging in the same behavior, can experience different reactions because of different behavioral expectations associated with their gender,” Mislin said. “But our research also suggests that there may be areas where violating stereotypes is beneficial, as we see here for the men who engage in small talk.”center_img Whether sealed with a handshake, a million-dollar contract, or a string of curses, every business deal is a reflection of trust. Both parties trust that the other will hold up their end of the bargain. Good negotiators have a store of social capital before bargaining begins; built up through interactions outside the negotiations that establish trust. Working with a team of researchers from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität and Technische Universität in Munich, Germany, American University’s Kogod School of Business professor of management Alexandra Mislin researched how small talk before a negotiation impacted perceptions and outcomes.The study, titled “Should He Chitchat? The Benefits of Small Talk for Male Versus Female Negotiators,” published in the Basic and Applied Social Psychology reveals that small talk can be another tool in the arsenal for men, one that builds social capital and increases their likelihood of beneficial gains from negotiation. “We saw a boost in positive negotiation outcomes for men when they engaged in small talk before the negotiation,” Mislin said. “Even a little small talk contributed to getting a better deal.” However, the same is not true for women.For example in a salary negotiation with one’s employer, “based on our findings, we suggest that people negotiating employment contracts, particularly men, think twice before skipping the small talk,” said Mislin. “While both men and women may experience benefits from small talk when negotiating salary, men might walk away with a better deal.” Share Emaillast_img read more

Parents inclined to misjudge child happiness based on personal feelings

first_imgShare on Facebook Email Share Share on Twitter Parents’ estimations of their children’s happiness differ significantly from the child’s own assessment of their feelings, a study has shown.Research by psychologists at Plymouth University showed parents of 10 and 11-year-olds consistently overestimated their child’s happiness, while those with 15 and 16-year-olds were inclined to underestimate.Published in the Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, the study attributed the discrepancies to an “egocentric bias” through which parents rely too heavily on their own feelings in assessing the happiness of the family unit as a whole.center_img Children’s and adolescents’ happiness has gained considerable attention in recent research, however the potential problems of relying on parental report to assess children’s happiness have been overlooked.Researchers say this latest study could provide valuable information, not only for advancing knowledge about well-being but also for improving parent-child relationships and paving the way for carrying out improved interventions.The study was conducted by Dr Belén López-Pérez, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Developmental and Social Psychology at Plymouth University, and Ellie Wilson, a recent graduate of the BSc (Hons) Psychology course.They questioned a total of 357 children and adolescents from two different schools in Spain, along with their parents, and their happiness was assessed using a range of self-reporting measures and ratings.The results showed that parents were inclined to score a child or adolescents’ happiness closely in line with their own emotional feelings, whereas in fact there were notable differences in the child’s own reports.In this regard, children and adolescents reported very similar levels of happiness, however parents also reported different levels depending on the age of their child. Thus, the study not only showed discrepancies between informants but also a decline in the level of happiness in parents of adolescents.“Studying informants’ discrepancies and the relationship between parents’ and children’s self-reports on happiness is vital to determine whether parental report is valid,” Dr Lopez Perez says. “Being unable to read children’s happiness appropriately may increase misunderstanding between parents and children/adolescents, which has been shown to have negative consequences for parent-child relationships. Furthermore, parents might not be able to provide the appropriate emotional support or attend to their children’s needs accurately.” LinkedIn Pinterestlast_img read more

What’s the best time to launch a video game?

first_imgThe video game industry is a massive one, with some $93 billion in annual sales. Budgets for major titles rival those for major motion pictures. This fall’s 800-pound gorillas include Halo 5 and Star Wars Battlefront. But releasing a new video game title is a more complicated business than releasing a movie because in order to buy the game consumers must first own the platform it runs on, typically meaning a console or computer or tablet or phone — so game sales interact with platform sales. (Halo 5 is an Xbox One exclusive; Battlefront is for the Xbox One and Sony’s PS4.)Research from the Robert H. Smith School of Business, at the University of Maryland, offers new insight into the strategies companies should use to maximize sales of their games. In general, the study finds, companies ought to weigh the tradeoffs between reaching early adopters of game consoles, who purchase more content (and more-sophisticated content), and later adopters, who buy less but who over time make up more and more of the population of console owners.The study, by John Healey, a Smith School Ph.D. graduate now teaching at Tulane University’s A.B. Freeman School of Business, and Wendy W. Moe, a professor of marketing at the Smith School and director of the Master of Science program in marketing analytics, looked at sales for games of the PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii, the generation of consoles that held sway from 2005-06 until a couple of years ago (when the Xbox One, PS4, and Wii U arrived). Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share Pinterestcenter_img “In prior studies, researchers have focused on how the number of people who have adopted the platform influences sales,” Healey says. “We wanted to look deeper to investigate how the base of console owners changes over time and how these changes affect content purchasing behavior.”Healey and Moe focused on the shifting proportions of “innovators” — early adopters — and “recent” purchasers shifted over time. Earlier research and surveys have suggested that innovators tend to buy more games, over a longer period, and that they gravitate to games that push the limits of gaming technology. People who bought the consoles later in the cycle, in contrast, are likely to buy fewer games over a shorter period of time, and they likely favor more middle-of-the-road fare, including family-friendly games. The mathematical model that the authors developed to describe the expected pattern of game sales takes into account the shifting proportion of each type of gamer, as a console gets older, and as new holiday seasons arrive.The study looked at console and game sales during the first 230 weeks that each console was available. (The Xbox launched in November 2005, the PS3 and Wii in November 2006.) They also looked at sales data for 98 game titles that were released on all three systems. The authors defined innovative console-purchasers in several ways –including the first 2.5 percent of buyers, and the first 15 percent. The role of later adopters was explored by examining “recent” purchasers — those who had bought a title within the last one, two, three, four or five weeks of a given date. The general findings of the study didn’t depend on how innovators and recent consumers were defined.The proportion of “recent” console purchasers becomes more important as a console ages, the study found. Therefore, when game companies should release a given title “depends on the kind of people your game would appeal to,” Moe says. “If yours is one of the innovative games that target the lead users, it might make sense to release it early in a console’s lifecycle — even at the same time as the console launch. If it is a more general-interest game, you might want to release it later.”As a more general observation, Healey suggested that companies tended to err by releasing games later in a console’s life cycle than is optimal, because they underestimate the role in sales played by the innovators, and overestimate the importance of the sheer number of consoles sold.Innovators tend to own the first holiday season when a console is released. But a few years into a console’s lifespan, it is the recent adopters whose proportion spikes during the holiday season. A big uptick in “recent” purchasers also occurs when a console drops in price.Naturally, companies understand in in a broadly intuitive way that factors other than the sheer number of consoles in circulation matter. That a gazillion original Wii’s have been bought hardly matters by now, because so many are gathering dust and a new generation of consoles is out. “Companies grasp the phenomenon we are studying in the extreme cases, but it’s in the intermediate growth state that they are not looking at the full picture,” Moe says.In short, the authors write, game makers “need to consider the dynamic components of installed base recency and innovativeness when releasing content.” The authors say the work may also offer insights to other industries, such as music and streamed video, that depend on consumers adopting specific platforms. Email LinkedInlast_img read more

Young adults’ problem drinking may have lasting health effects

first_imgThe findings are surprising, said lead researcher Randy Haber, Ph.D., of the Palo Alto Veterans Affairs Health Care System, in Menlo Park, Calif.It’s clear that people’s lives improve when alcohol dependence goes into remission, Haber pointed out, but it is not clear whether there are hidden consequences that remain after heavy drinking has ceased. For instance, evidence shows that both brain and body are affected by excessive drinking, but we don’t know how long these effects last.The new findings suggest that years of alcohol dependence during young adulthood result in silent but “permanent” injuries that, in later life, appear to result in serious health problems, according to Haber.The findings are based on men taking part in a larger study of Vietnam-era veterans. Haber’s team focused on 368 men who did not report any symptoms of alcohol dependence at any point in adulthood, 221 who had at least three symptoms of dependence in young adulthood and middle-age and 75 who had symptoms in early adulthood but not after the age of 30. Overall, the study found that men who had alcohol dependence symptoms for at least five years in early adulthood scored lower on standard measures of both physical and mental health once they’d reached their 60s.For example, those with alcohol dependence in young adulthood had, on average, three medical conditions in later life whereas those without this history reported two. In addition, their scores on a depression scale were about twice as high. Most important, these effects were seen even among men who’d been free of dependence symptoms for several decades.The reasons are unclear. But, Haber said, other studies have shown that chronic drinking may injure parts of the brain involved in emotional regulation, self-control and decision making. It’s possible, he noted, that years of alcohol exposure in early adulthood could have lasting effects on those brain areas.Still, Haber stressed that this study is reporting “averages” and not what any one person is destined for.He said that people who not only quit problem drinking but also turn their lifestyle around–eating well, not smoking and just generally “taking care of themselves”–will likely see health benefits that last into late life.Plus, he said, there is a “whole body of literature” showing that when people with alcohol dependence go into recovery, their lives improve in almost every area.“If you have entered (alcohol dependence) recovery, keep going,” Haber said. “Live your life to its fullest.” Young adults with symptoms of alcohol dependence may see health effects late in life–even decades after conquering their problem drinking, according to a study in the November 2016 issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.Researchers found that, of 664 U.S. male veterans, those who had symptoms of alcohol dependence for at least five years in young adulthood generally had poorer physical and mental health by the time they were in their 60s.And that was true even if they’d gotten control over their drinking problems by the age of 30. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter LinkedIncenter_img Email Pinterest Sharelast_img read more

Split brain does not lead to split consciousness

first_imgShare on Twitter A new research study contradicts the established view that so-called split-brain patients have a split consciousness. Instead, the researchers behind the study, led by UvA psychologist Yair Pinto, have found strong evidence showing that despite being characterised by little to no communication between the right and left brain hemispheres, split brain does not cause two independent conscious perceivers in one brain. Their results are published in the latest edition of the journal Brain.Split brain is a lay term to describe the result of a corpus callosotomy, a surgical procedure first performed in the 1940s to alleviate severe epilepsy among patients. During this procedure, the corpus callosum, a bundle of neural fibres connecting the left and right cerebral hemispheres, is severed to prevent the spread of epileptic activity between the two brain halves. While mostly successful in relieving epilepsy, the procedure also virtually eliminates all communication between the cerebral hemispheres, thereby resulting in a ‘split brain’.This condition was made famous by the work of Nobel laureate Roger Sperry and Michael Gazzaniga. In their canonical work, Sperry and Gazzaniga discovered that split-brain patients can only respond to stimuli in the right visual field with their right hand and vice versa. This was taken as evidence that severing the corpus callosum causes each hemisphere to gain its own consciousness. Pinterest Share For their study, Pinto and his fellow researchers conducted a series of tests on two patients who had undergone a full callosotomy. In one of the tests, the patients were placed in front of a screen and shown various objects displayed in several locations. The patients were then asked to confirm whether an object appeared and to indicate its location. In another test, they had to correctly name the object they had seen, a notorious difficulty among spit-brain patients. ‘Our main aim was to determine whether the patients performed better when responding to the left visual field with their left hand instead of their right hand and vice versa’, says Pinto, assistant professor of Cognitive Psychology. ‘This question was based on the textbook notion of two independent conscious agents: one experiencing the left visual field and controlling the left hand, and one experiencing the right visual field and controlling the right hand.’To the researchers’ surprise, the patients were able to respond to stimuli throughout the entire visual field with all the response types: left hand, right hand and verbally. Pinto: ‘The patients could accurately indicate whether an object was present in the left visual field and pinpoint its location, even when they responded with the right hand or verbally. This despite the fact that their cerebral hemispheres can hardly communicate with each other and do so at perhaps 1 bit per second, which is less than a normal conversation. I was so surprised that I decide repeat the experiments several more times with all types of control.’According to Pinto, the results present clear evidence for unity of consciousness in split-brain patients. ‘The established view of split-brain patients implies that physical connections transmitting massive amounts of information are indispensable for unified consciousness, i.e. one conscious agent in one brain. Our findings, however, reveal that although the two hemispheres are completely insulated from each other, the brain as a whole is still able to produce only one conscious agent. This directly contradicts current orthodoxy and highlights the complexity of unified consciousness.’In the coming period, Pinto plans to conduct research on more split-brain patients to see whether his findings can be replicated. ‘These patients, who are rapidly decreasing in numbers, are our only way to find out what happens when large subsystems in the brain no longer communicate with each other. This phenomenon raises important questions that cannot be investigated in healthy adults because we have no technique to isolate large subsystems in healthy brains.’center_img LinkedIn Email Share on Facebooklast_img read more

Fake ‘God Helmet’ can elicit extraordinary experiences — especially among ‘spiritual’ people

first_imgShare on Facebook LinkedIn Share on Twitter Some people report “extraordinary experiences” after wearing a skateboarding helmet with inactive wires attached to it — particularly those who describe themselves as spiritual.That’s according to a new field study in the journal Religion, Brain & Behavior, in which Dutch scientists took a so-called God Helmet — a placebo brain stimulation device — to a music festival.“From previous studies, we knew that the God Helmet is able to elicit authentic extraordinary experiences (i.e., ‘feeling of a presence’; ‘out-of-body’ experience) in a minority of the subjects we test,” explained study author David Maij of the University of Amsterdam. “With this study we wanted to examine: What type of traits are associated with people who get extraordinary experiences? Would alcohol, by decreasing prefrontal regulation, increase the percentage of people that are responsive to the God Helmet?”The researchers recruited 193 participants at Lowlands — a large three-day music festival — and measured their blood alcohol level. The participants were told the God Helmet would electromagnetically stimulate their brain to elicit spiritual experiences, and they were also hooked up to a variety of sham medical equipment that was never turned on.The helmet itself was “a transformed metallic-colored skate helmet with wires attached to the back of a bogus analog to digital-box which had a flickering light,” the researchers explained in their study.Each participant sat with the God Helmet on for 15 minutes while they were blindfolded and listened to earphones that played white noise. They were able to click a computer mouse to indicate when they were having an extraordinary experience.Maij and his colleagues found that the God Helmet elicited a wide range of extraordinary experiences. Several participants reported strong bodily sensations, such as involuntary movements or the sensation of floating. Many also reported seeing imagery and hearing voices.“I came loose from the chair, the chair fell and I was floating. The desk started to shake heavily and I felt the presence of a dark figure next to me. It whispered something in my ear that I could not understand,” one participant told the researchers.Weak bodily sensations such as itches, dizziness, sleepiness and heart rate increases were also frequently reported.Maij and his colleagues found that people who said they were spiritual believers were more likely to have a response to the God Helmet. But they failed to find evidence that alcohol consumption increased responsiveness to the God Helmet.“The study was conducted at a music festival, so that we could investigate a large number of intoxicated people. However, the amount of alcohol consumed was actually really low. People did not dare to combine alcohol with ‘brain stimulation’. In future studies, we should test the effects of alcohol in a more controlled environment,” he told PsyPost. “In another study, which is currently under revision at the journal Consciousness & Cognition, we found that people who score high on absorption are especially responsive. Absorption is the tendency of some people to get fully immersed in external stimuli (e.g., watching a movie or listening to music) or internal stimuli (e.g., your own thoughts and sensations).” “Thus, what we expect is going on is that when people undergo the placebo brain stimulation suggestion (i.e., we tell them about research on the God Helmet, we wear lab coats, we show them an fMRI scanner and they see a movie about a professor telling about her experiences with the God Helmet), some people get immersed/absorbed in this suggestion and come to experience more vividly what they are thinking,” Maij explained to PsyPost.“For example, you always have random fluctuating bodily sensations, but you are simply not aware of them. In combination with the context and sensory deprivation, you now come to interpret these bodily sensations in terms of our suggestion.”“With the God Helmet, research finally has a tool to investigate real-life ‘extraordinary experiences’ such as speaking in tongues or feeling the Holy Spirit in a controlled lab environment,” Maij concluded.The study, “The role of alcohol in expectancy-driven mystical experiences: a pre-registered field study using placebo brain stimulation“, was co-authored by Michiel van Elk and Uffe Schjoedt.center_img Share Pinterest Emaillast_img read more

International study fails to find consistent relationships between conservatism and threat sensitivity

first_imgLinkedIn “At the same time, this important finding was not comprehensively evaluated across different countries, different types of threats, and different types of political beliefs. This means that the link between threat and ideology might hold, or it might be specific to a limited number of countries, types of threats, and political beliefs,” Brandt said.For their study, the researchers examined responses from 60,378 individuals who participated in the 6th wave of the World Values Survey, which collected data from 56 countries from 2010 to 2014. Importantly, the survey included measures of threats related to violent conflict, neighborhoods/local crime, the police, economics, poverty, and government surveillance.The survey also collected data on cultural beliefs, such as opposition to abortion and homosexuality, and economic beliefs, such as opposition to inequality and opposition to government ownership of business/industry.The researchers found that different types of political beliefs were associated with different types of threats — and the links between political beliefs and threats did not always fit into neat ideological categories. The findings indicate that there is not a “simple nor straightforward association between threat and ideology,” Brandt said.When summing up the data across all countries, right-wing cultural beliefs were associated with increased concerns about violent conflict, such as terrorism or civil war. But increased concerns about violent conflict were also associated with more left-wing views on government ownership.Left-wing economic beliefs, on the other hand, were associated with increased concerns about economic threats, such as lack of quality education and unemployment, while experiencing greater poverty was associated with more right-wing cultural views.Heightened fears related to the police were associated with more left-wing cultural political beliefs, but were unrelated to economic political beliefs. Heightened fears about surveillance were associated with more right-wing views on government ownership.To complicate matters further, the link between threat and political beliefs varied across different countries.“If you hear people say that generally speaking conservatives experience and feel more threat, this is incomplete. Instead, whether liberals or conservatives experience more threat depends on the specific type of threat (e.g., economic vs. violence), the specific type of political belief (e.g., economic attitudes or social attitudes), and the specific country. It is not a simple story,” Brandt told PsyPost.“We point out that liberals and conservatives both find some things threatening. There is a temptation to see this as ‘liberals and conservatives are the same’. I think that this would be shortsighted. For example, although both groups find some things threatening, they find different things threatening. This is important,” he added.“We also do not assess if the different types of threats are more or less reasonable. Feeling threatened by climate change or COVID-19 seems quite reasonable to me given the state of the world, whereas feeling threatened by immigrants does not. It remains to be seen if liberals or conservatives are better as calibrating their feelings of threat to the objective levels of threat in a situation.”The study — like all research — includes some limitations.“A major task for future studies is to figure out when and why threat and ideology are related,” Brandt explained.“The study also only used cross-sectional data, which means that we cannot make any claims about causality. It could be that threats cause people’s political beliefs or that people see different things as threatening depending on their political beliefs. We don’t have the answers to those questions.”The study, “The Association Between Threat and Politics Depends on the Type of Threat, the Political Domain, and the Country“, was authored by Mark J. Brandt, Felicity M. Turner-Zwinkels, Beste Karapirinler, Florian Van Leeuwen, Michael Bender, Yvette van Osch, and Byron Adams. Email Share on Facebook Share on Twittercenter_img Share New research published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin suggests that it is not necessarily the case that right-wing individuals are more sensitive to perceived threats. The study, which analyzed data from dozens of countries, found few consistent relationships political beliefs and concerns about various threats.“The finding that conservatives and people on the political right tend to feel more worried and threatened than liberals and people on the political left is an important finding in political psychology,” said study author Mark Brandt of Tilburg University.“It has implications for the situations that will cause people to shift to the left or the right, the types of persuasive messages that are most likely to work for people on the left and the right, and highlights the different types of psychological functions left-wing and right-wing belief systems give.” Pinterestlast_img read more

HHS finds school-based pandemic vaccine clinics effective

first_imgJun 18, 2010 (CIDRAP News) – Federal officials looked to the relatively new model of school-based immunization clinics as an efficient way to deliver the pandemic vaccine to children, and a report from clinic observers detailed that the process worked well, though most schools would need more resources to hold future clinics.When the novel H1N1 flu virus emerged last April, only a few school districts such as those in Hawaii, East Baton Rouge, La., Knox County, Tenn., and Aurora, Colo., had ever conducted flu immunization clinics.Before the flu pandemic, momentum had been building for school-based clinics, especially after vaccine advisors for the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in February 2008 expanded their flu vaccine recommendation to include all schoolchildren. They previously focused the recommendation on preschoolers.Early evidence showed that pandemic H1N1 virus was taking a greater toll on children, and in July 2009 the CDC’s vaccine advisors placed young people ages 6 months through 24 years old in its priority group to receive the first doses of the vaccine, which focused attention on school-based vaccine clinics as an ideal delivery tool to reach large numbers of children.Given the relative newness of the school-based vaccine clinic model, the CDC said it would be useful to evaluate administration of the pandemic vaccine at school-based sites. In response, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) conducted on-site reviews in November and December 2009 at 38 elementary school–based clinics in six localities.Federal officials released the OIG findings on Jun 16 in a 32-page report. The goals of the study were to determine the extent of vaccination, how sites administered the clinics, and what lessons schools learned from the experience.The OIG said most states prioritized young people between ages 6 months and 24 years to receive the vaccine, and 40 of them used school-based vaccine programs to some extent to reach the group.Investigators based their clinic evaluations on five elements: ensuring proper vaccine storage, distributing consent forms and verifying eligibility, staffing, parent communications, and billing for vaccine administration.They found that sites vaccinated an average of 28% of enrolled students during 1-day programs, which federal officials said compares favorably with state and national vaccination rates. For example, the average vaccination rate for the six states included in the study is 37%, which reflects a child vaccination period of about 3 months at multiple sites such as doctor’s offices, pharmacies, and community clinics. Most of the 38 locations said the school-based clinics were a useful vaccination method but said they would not hold them in the future without additional resources.About 42% of the children vaccinated at the sites received the nasal mist form of the vaccine, and 59% received the injection. Reviewers noted that three of the six localities reported decreased demand for the nasal mist version, due to parent and staff misconceptions about its safety, which were driven by incorrect media messages that the nasal mist was riskier because it contained a live attenuated virus.Most school sites used recommended vaccine storage containers, but only half monitored the temperature of the cooler or refrigerator as recommended.All locations used parental consent forms to verify student eligibility, though most said they would revise the procedures for future vaccine clinics. Some said they needed more staff available to call parents to verify some of the information on the form. Others said they would reformat the form for varying parent reading levels and translate the forms as needed.Paperwork seemed to be a bottleneck. Schools said they would have distributed information to parents and schools earlier and that it would be useful to provide staff with more training about registering children and verifying the forms.For staffing, all sites used contractors, such as local public health officials or volunteers, to supplement clinic personnel. Some reported problems gathering enough workers to staff the clinics. They reported that lack of registrars led to some clinic delays, which were particularly apparent in after-school settings in which parents and siblings added to the number of people to be vaccinated.Several sites reported that they would streamline communication with parents and that a challenge was providing consistent messages about the need for a second dose for children younger than 10 and about vaccine safety.Four of the six localities didn’t establish a billing system for vaccine administration, instead using Public Health Emergency Response grant funding to cover the costs. The two that did used commercial community vaccinators found that, although Medicare and Medicaid reimbursed administration costs, some private insurers did not.See also:Jun 16 HHS OIG report on school-based vaccinationFeb 27, 2008, CIDRAP News story “ACIP recommends flu shots for all school children”Nov 19, 2008, CIDRAP News story “Experts weigh advisability of school-based flu shots”last_img read more

NEWS SCAN: HCW flu vaccination in nursing homes, trial of new antiviral, HUS in E coli O111, rising dengue toll

first_imgOct 12, 2010Review: Vaccinating health workers may not lower flu in nursing homesAfter poring through more than 1,000 potentially relevant articles, researchers have concluded that studies of the effects of healthcare worker (HCW) vaccination on influenza in elderly residents of long-term care facilities are few and flawed and the data inconclusive. The three scientists, two of whom are affiliated with the Cochrane review system, searched seven electronic databases. They identified only four randomized controlled trials (RCTs, from 1997, 2000, 2006, and 2009) and one observational study (from 2000) that addressed the topic with enough specificity to be included in the review. Pooled data from three of the RCTs showed that HCW vaccination had no effect on serologically proven influenza, pneumonia, or deaths from pneumonia but did show lower all-cause mortality and influenza-like illness (ILI). However, because flu causes less than 10% of all deaths even in epidemic years, the authors questioned the appropriateness of using all-cause mortality as an outcome measure. Also, because flu constitutes less than 25% of ILI and the data did not show a reduction in serologically proven flu, they also questioned whether the reductions in all-cause mortality and ILI were due to confounding.Oct 10 Vaccine abstractNew antiviral looks good in Asian clinical trialThe new, long-acting influenza drug laninamivir compared well with oseltamivir (Tamiflu) in an international clinical trial involving close to 1,000 participants, according to a report published by Clinical Infectious Diseases. Laninamivir is an inhaled neuraminidase inhibitor that was recently approved in Japan under the name Inavir but has not been licensed in the United States. In the study, researchers from Japan, Taiwan, Korea, and Hong Kong used a double-blind, randomized, controlled design to assess whether laninamivir was noninferior to oseltamivir. They assigned 1,003 adult patients with “febrile influenza symptoms” to receive either one 40-mg dose of laninamivir, one 20-mg dose of laninamivir, or 5 days of oseltamivir treatment (75 mg twice a day). The patients started treatment within 36 hours of onset of illness. The median time to illness alleviation was 73.0 hours for the 40-mg laninamivir group, 85.8 hours for the 20-mg group, and 73.6 hours for the oseltamivir group. The percentage of patients who were shedding virus on day 3 was significantly lower in the 40-mg laninamivir group than in the oseltamivir group. The study was supported financially by Daiichi Sankyo, maker of laninamivir.Oct 11 Clin Infect Dis study abstractAdults were hard-hit by HUS in E coli O111 outbreakAn analysis of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) cases linked to a 2008 outbreak of Escherichia coli O111, an unusual strain, found that the attack rate was similar to that for the more common E coli O157:H7, but adults were unusually hard-hit. Researchers from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Oklahoma State Department of Health published the findings yesterday in the Archives of Internal Medicine. The outbreak, which struck patrons of a Locust Grove, Okla., restaurant, was the nation’s largest involving the E coli O111 strain. The contamination source was never identified. The outbreak sickened 341 people and led to 72 hospitalizations and 1 death. Of the 156 confirmed and probable case-patients, 26 had HUS. Unlike in other E coli outbreaks, which usually hit young children hardest, adults accounted for three quarters of hospitalizations and close to 60% of HUS cases in the Oklahoma outbreak. Signs on hospital admission that were linked to HUS included elevated initial white blood cell count and creatinine levels and vomiting.Oct 11 Arch Intern Med abstractWHO official says dengue cases have doubled in past decadeA World Health Organization (WHO) official said global dengue fever cases have doubled in the last 10 years, and the toll is significantly worse this year than it was last year, according to an Oct 10 Xinhua report. Shin Young-soo, the WHO’s Western Pacific regional director, made the comments at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He said dengue has become the fastest-growing mosquito-borne disease in the world. The reasons for the increasing toll are unknown but may include rising temperatures, increased rainfall, urbanization, and better surveillance for the disease, Shin said. The story said Malaysia’s health ministry recorded 37,419 dengue cases from January through Oct 2 of this year, a 17% increase over the same period last year. Meanwhile, the health ministry said it had obtained permission from Malaysia’s National Biosafety Board to release genetically modified mosquitoes in an effort to stop the spread of dengue, according to the story. The ministry said offspring of the modified mosquitoes die in the larval stage.Oct 10 Xinhua reportlast_img read more

Dengue cases rise in Colombia, Asia-Pacific

first_imgOct 13, 2010 (CIDRAP News) – Colombia is seeing twice the usual number of dengue cases this year, and Asian Pacific countries are also experiencing a rise in the mosquito-borne illness, according to health officials.In Colombia, high temperatures from an unusually strong El Nino weather pattern, combined with heavy rains, helped double the number of dengue infection cases this year, ReliefWeb reported yesterday.About 120,000 cases have been reported so far, 115 of them fatal.The warmer weather has contributed to the emergence of certain dengue strains that Colombia has not detected since 1998, according to the report from ReliefWeb, an information portal hosted by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The hotter conditions have also raised dengue activity in other South American, Central American, and Caribbean countries.Health officials said Colombia’s dengue outbreak has revealed vulnerabilities in the country’s health and environment systems. About two thirds of Colombia’s cities report conditions that contribute to dengue epidemics, such as poor sanitation, improper garbage and tire disposal, inadequate rain water drainage, and risky water storage practices.Meanwhile, Asia-Pacific countries have also seen a rise in dengue infections, and at a regional World Health Organization (WHO) conference today, Malaysia’s health minister, Liow Tiong Lai, urged the WHO to push countries to adopt a more comprehensive approach to handling the dengue threat, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported.He said Malaysia has recorded a 53% increase in dengue cases this year, including 117 deaths among the 38,000 cases.The WHO’s regional director, Shin Young-soo, acknowledged dengue cases have doubled in the region over the past decade. He said that, although the WHO is working with member countries, individuals also need take measures in their own homes and communities to reduce the risk.In other dengue developments, researchers from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have identified a key step in how the virus infects cells. The findings appeared Oct 7 in Public Library of Science (PLoS) Pathogens.The investigators determined how the dengue virus releases itself from the protective membrane that is present as it penetrates deep within the cell. During the cell infection process, the virus binds to the cell membrane, which engulfs the virus in an endosome. The virus must then release itself from the endosome before it releases its genetic material into the cell’s cytosol.In a press release, the NIH said discovery will allow researchers to study the invasion process in the lab and test treatment candidates.See also:Oct 12 ReliefWeb reportOct 7 PLoS Pathog studyOct 12 NIH press releaselast_img read more

NEWS SCAN: Cholera update, non-O157 E coli, origins of plague, H1N1 vaccine coverage, HIV and H1N1 in kids

first_imgNov 2, 2010PAHO: Haiti’s cholera fatality rate dropping but still highThe case-fatality rate for cholera patients in Haiti has dropped some but is still higher than expected, mainly because of poor access to medical care, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said today. At a news briefing, PAHO Deputy Director Jon Andrus said the fatality rate has ranged from 2% to 6.8%, compared with 9% reported previously. The latest PAHO numbers on the epidemic, reported yesterday, are 4,764 cases and 337 deaths. “We have information that approximately half the deaths occur without [patients] ever reaching the hospital,” Andrus said. He also reported that 88% of case-patients in the most affected province, Artibonite, have been 5 years old or older. Besides Artibonite, cases have occurred in Central and West provinces, and suspected cases are being investigated in other provinces, including North, Northwest, and Northeast, he reported. Andrus also said health workers are trying to prepare for a possible strike by tropical storm Tomas. At the request of the Haitian government, PAHO teams are visiting hospitals and cholera treatment centers to check their readiness for the storm and to provide extra materials and medical supplies.Andrus’s statement at Nov 2 briefingNov 1 PAHO situation updateMeat producers anticipate testing for more E coli strainsMeat producers should prepare for future federal monitoring of non-O157:H7 strains of Shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC), Jim Marsden, a science advisor for the North American Meat Producers Association, said at a recent conference, according to a report yesterday by Meatingplace.com. Dan Engeljohn of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), said in another presentation at the conference that the FSIS has validated tests for four of six non-O157 STECs and is close to having a testing methodology for all six. The non-O157 STECS are thought to represent an emerging threat to the food supply, and over the past 3 years the USDA has considered adding them to its list of adulterants in meat, which would trigger testing. However, it has lacked the tests to rapidly detect the strains. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists six non-O157 STEC strains that are pathogenic for humans: O26, O111, O103, O121, O45, and O145.May 27 CIDRAP News scanResearchers suggest plague originated in China 2,000 years agoGenome sequencing has indicated that the organism responsible for the 14th-century outbreak of plague known as the Black Death, which killed 100 million people, originated in or near China more than 2,000 years ago, according to a letter in Nature Genetics. Researchers conducted phylogenetic analyses on 17 whole genomes of Yersinia pestis, the bacterium that causes plague, to trace their lineages. They reported, “Our phylogenetic analysis suggests that Y pestis evolved in or near China and spread through multiple radiations to Europe, South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia.” The Black Death is thought have wiped out 30% to 60% of Europe’s population, which took 150 years to rebound, according to a story on the report in Medical News Today.Oct 31 Nature Genetics reportNov 1 Medical News Today storyStudy finds links between seasonal and pandemic flu vaccine coverageResearchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology and the CDC found that states with high rates of flu vaccination during the H1N1 pandemic generally had higher rates of past seasonal flu immunizations and use of other preventive health services, according to a Georgia Tech press release today. The researchers examined factors that might have contributed to the wide range of pandemic vaccination rates, which varied from 34% in South Dakota to 9% in Mississippi. The findings were presented Oct 26 at the annual meeting of the Society for Medical Decision Making. Lower adult H1N1 vaccination coverage was seen in states where the disease circulated for a long time. Julie Swann, one of the authors and an associate professor in Georgia Tech’s H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, said this might have occurred because in households where someone had the flu, others did not feel the need to get vaccinated, according to the release. Vaccination uptake also was lower in states where it took more time to order allocated doses, the researchers found. The researchers also found that states with larger percentages of children had lower vaccine coverage, while an emphasis on vaccination at schools was associated with higher coverage.Nov 2 Georgia Tech news releaseHIV-positive and healthy kids respond similarly to H1N1 infection A study of a series of 15 HIV-positive children ranging from 8 to 16 years old who were infected with pandemic 2009 H1N1 found that their clinical course, viral shedding, and antibody responses were comparable to those of children without HIV. All but one patient had symptoms within 7 days of infection, most commonly fever, cough, and fatigue. Eight children had only low-grade fevers for less than 24 hours and cough. Five patients who had high-grade fever, cough, and fatigue received oseltamivir (starting within 2 days of symptom onset) for 7 days instead of the usual 5 days over concern for possible severe disease in this immunocompromised population. Oseltamivir shortened the duration of viral shedding, and all patients tested developed novel H1N1–specific antibodies. The authors conclude, “In accordance with current recommendations, HIV-1–infected patients should be vaccinated, and in cases of suspected influenza infection, an empirical early antiviral treatment is strongly advised.”Oct 29 Clin Infect Dis abstractlast_img read more