Using the green plant playbook to design better energy tech

The transfer and storage of energy during photosynthesis is considered one of the world’s great marvels, and a new study has identified natural design principles within the process that could improve energy efficiency in new solar technology.

Five Things Every Home Buyer Should Know About Title Insurance

Title insurance has become a popular tool for purchasers and lenders to mitigate against certain risks associated with the transactions involving real estate however, title insurance does not provide coverage for all matters of title and policy-holders should understand the limits of their policy. Read about five common concerns of title insurance policies here. 

Stoll Keenon to Add Indiana Firm

Evansville, Indiana law firm Bamberger Foreman Oswald & Hahn LLP is merging with Lexington, Kentucky-based Stoll Keenon Ogden PLLC. The two law firms will join forces Sept. 1 and have a total of 144 attorneys.

Global Elite Law Firm Allen & Overy Selects iManage Work Product Management

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM–(Marketwired – Jun 28, 2017) – iManage, the company dedicated to transforming how professionals work, today announced that Allen & Overy LLP — one of the world’s most elite law firms advising national and multinational corporations, financial institutions, and governments — has selected iManage Work for the firm’s document and email management.

Castrén & Snellman Selects iManage RAVN Artificial Intelligence Engine to Transform Real Estate and M&A Due Diligence

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM–(Marketwired – Jun 28, 2017) – iManage, the company dedicated to transforming how professionals work, today announced that Castrén & Snellman, a leading Finland-based law firm, has selected iManage RAVN to improve real estate and M&A due diligence.

Aaron Scheuer,Attorney,Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd,P.A. to Speak at TKG's Speaking Opportunity- State Tax Credit Transfers:What You Need to Know in 2017 and Beyond

Polaris Recalls 35,000 ATVs Due to Asbestos

Last week, Minneapolis-based company Polaris recalled 35,000 all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) because of violations to asbestos bans in Australia, Europe, and New Zealand. Twelve different models were recalled in Australia. The ATVs had been in market since at least December 31, 2003.

Minneapolis has a lengthy history of industry and historic preservation, which makes asbestos exposure, and the risk of mesothelioma, an ongoing concern for workers and others.

According to Polaris spokesman James Fuller, “A supplier provided parts with asbestos to the company. A firm Polaris hired tested the parts and determined they didn’t represent a health risk.”

The recalls are not expected to be issued in the U.S. and Canada, because those countries have not yet banned asbestos.

In the automotive manufacturing and repair industries, brake pads are historically one of the most common parts to contain asbestos. Asbestos was quite useful for its fire-resistant properties as the heat generated by stopping a heavy vehicle could exceed 2,500 degrees fahrenheit. This created a substantial hazard.

Although the health hazards of asbestos became public knowledge in 1977, asbestos dust continues to be a danger in brake pad applications. U.S. automakers claim that asbestos materials are no longer used in friction products.

However, foreign manufacturers of after-market brake pads are under no economic or regulatory pressure to cease using asbestos materials. There are also no laws on the books that require such products to be labeled as containing asbestos.

An investigation by two Seattle reporters revealed that dust collected from over thirty urban auto repair facilities across the nation contained anywhere from 2% –63% asbestos.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that automotive repair personnel take appropriate precautions by using a wet cleaning solution or enclosure when working with brake components. Auto mechanics are especially at risk for asbestos exposure.

NIH names winners of “Follow that Cell” Phase 2 competition

Pet Therapy Can Help Cancer Patients Who Love Dogs

As a pet owner, you know the power of pet therapy to boost your mood when you’re not feeling well. If you or someone you love has cancer, don’t be so quick to shy away from your pets because of lethargy or fear of infection. Your four-legged friend might be just what you need. When the power of pets is used along with medical therapy, such as cancer treatment, to improve a patient’s overall well being, it’s formally called Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT), according to the American Humane Association, and the practice is growing in the cancer community.

Researchers are currently working to prove all the ways pet therapy can help cancer patients through treatment. If you’re lucky, you may find that “therapy dogs” (not to be confused with “service dogs,” who help disabled populations) are allowed in hospital rooms or at the location of your cancer treatments.

What Are the Benefits?

The American Humane Association’s “Canines and Childhood Cancer” (CCC) clinical trial is currently underway at five children’s hospitals nationwide with nearly 100 patients and 30 therapy dogs participating. This study will be the first and largest clinical trial to scientifically document the use and effects of animals in cancer treatment and will measure the well being for the children with cancer, their parents and the therapy dogs themselves. In their review of previously published studies on the subject, they found the reported benefits of receiving pet therapy include decreased stress, less loneliness and depression, increased physical skills and improved social skills.

In addition, a recent study, found in The Journal of Community and Supportive Oncology, showed that head and neck cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiation, who also received daily AAT, saw significant increases in both social and emotional well being.

How Are Caregivers Affected?

Dr. Amy McCullough, the national director of humane research and therapy at the American Humane Association, says she found something surprising in the preliminary results in the CCC study so far: “The dogs are helping the parents as well as the children, which was unexpected. Cancer in a child affects the parents deeply and seeing their child smile and relax with the dogs during cancer treatment is helping parents relax, too.”

She also reported some preliminary results on the children’s blood pressure and pulse before and after treatment sessions with dog (compared to children not receiving AAT), suggesting the dog calms the patient. She says they’re also studying whether pet therapy during cancer treatment can help kids overcome problems at school and even help with the physical symptoms of nausea and pain.

“Kids don’t want to get in the car to go to chemo treatments,” says Dr. McCullough, “But when there is a dog involved with the chemo treatment, they’re actually excited to go.” Dr. McCullough is hopeful the findings from the CCC study will help increase the use of pet therapy dogs in hospitals, and more specifically, in oncology wards and cancer centers.

How Can Your Pets at Home Help?

Be sure to tell your oncologist what type of pet you have at home and how you like to handle them so you know any specific warnings and hygiene rules, depending on your type of cancer and treatment. And, keep your pet’s vaccines up to date before you begin your cancer treatment. If you have a dog at home, you might find extra encouragement to keep up with daily walks during cancer treatment, when you’re able. Doctors say keeping active and getting outside daily is important to helping you feel better during treatment.

The post Pet Therapy Can Help Cancer Patients Who Love Dogs appeared first on UVA Cancer Center Blog.