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  • jkabtech 4:17 am on April 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Admits, Antivirus, Certain, Conditions, , , , Third-Party, ,   

    Microsoft Admits Windows Can Disable Third-Party Antivirus Software Under Certain Conditions 

    Photo Credit: Karlis Dambrans

    Highlights Kaspersky filed complaint with EU earlier in June Microsoft says it offers Windows Insider to ensure compatibility It built Windows 10 feature to disable incompatible antivirus

    After coming under antitrust fire from Kaspersky in the wake of the WannaCry ransomware, Microsoft has attempted to clear the air by talking about its work on safety and security

    View the Original article

  • jkabtech 12:48 am on January 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: antibiotic, Bacillus, cereus, Certain, Lifestyle, resist, ,   

    Lifestyle switching: Bacillus cereus is able to resist certain antibiotic therapies 

    The bacterium B. cereus had so far been considered to be exclusively endospore-forming. In response to harsh conditions, the bacteria form protective endospores enabling them to remain dormant for extended periods. When conditions are more favourable, the endospores reactivate to become fully functioning bacteria.

    Elrike Frenzel, Markus Kranzler and Monika Ehling-Schulz of the Institute of Microbiology at the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna have now shown for the first time that B. cereus has an alternative lifestyle in the form of so called small colony variants (SCVs). In B. cereus these SCVs form in response to exposure with aminoglycoside antibiotics. SCVs grow slower than the original form of B. cereus. They have an altered metabolism and are resistant to those antibiotics which triggered this state, namely aminoglycosides.

    “The bacterium protects itself against the harmful effects of the antibiotics by forming these Small Colony Variants. But B. cereus is usually treated with exactly those antibiotics which induce the SCV state. If an antibiotic triggers the formation of SCVs, it also triggers resistance,” first author Frenzel explains.

    Rethinking therapy and diagnostics

    The mechanism discovered by Frenzel, Kranzler and Ehling-Schulz is of enormous significance in clinical practice. Traditional diagnostic methods are based on the identification of metabolic features of B. cereus. These tests will not detect SCVs, however, as they have a slower, altered metabolism. This may result in incorrect antibiotic therapies or even failed diagnoses. Study author Frenzel sees molecular-based diagnostics as the only way to diagnose this form of B. cereus.

    Treating B. cereus infections using only aminoglycoside antibiotics could bear the risk of a prolonged infection. SCVs grow more slowly, but they still produce toxins that are harmful to the body. “In this case, a combination therapy with other antibiotic groups is advisable,” Frenzel recommends.

    New molecular mechanism of SCV formation

    One species of bacteria that has been known for years to be a multiresistant hospital pathogen and which poses a life-threatening risk for immunocompromised individuals in particular is Staphylococcus aureus. Those bacteria also form SCVs, but unlike B. cereus they are capable of reverting to its original state. For B. cereus, the adaptation to a small colony variant appears to be final. “We believe that the SCV formation in B. cereus functions differently than in S. aureus,” says study author Ehling-Schulz.

    Environmental niche to cope with stress

    “The ability to form SCVs appears to be of environmental significance for the bacteria,” Frenzel believes. “This alternative lifestyle allows the bacteria to avoid threatening stress factors such as antibiotic exposure. B. cereus are soil-dwelling, and other microorganism in the soil produce antibiotics. Here, too, the formation of SCVs would be an advantage for the bacteria.”

    Journal Reference:

    Elrike Frenzel, Markus Kranzler, Timo D. Stark, Thomas Hofmann, Monika Ehling-Schulz. The Endospore-Forming PathogenBacillus cereusExploits a Small Colony Variant-Based Diversification Strategy in Response to Aminoglycoside Exposure. mBio, 2015; 6 (6): e01172-15 DOI: 10.1128/mBio.01172-15

    View the original article here

  • jkabtech 8:50 am on January 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Certain, Guesstimate, , Spreadsheet,   

    Introducing Guesstimate, a Spreadsheet for Things That Aren’t Certain 

    Existing spreadsheet software is made for analyzing tables of data. Excel, Google Sheets, and similar tools are fantastic for doing statistics on things that are well known.

    Unfortunately many important things are not known. I don’t yet know if I will succeed as an entrepreneur, when I will die, exactly how bad sugar is for me. No one really knows what the US GDP will be if Donald Trump gets elected, or if the US can ‘win’ if we step up our fight in Syria. But we can make estimates, and we can use tools to become as accurate as possible.

    Estimates for these things should feature ranges, not exact numbers. There should be lower and upper bounds.

    The first reaction of many people to uncertain math is to use the same techniques as for certain math. They would either imagine each unknown as an exact mean, or take ‘worst case’ and ‘best case’ scenarios and multiply each one. These two approaches are quite incorrect and produce oversimplified outputs.

    This is why I’ve made Guesstimate, a spreadsheet that’s as easy to use as existing spreadsheets, but works for uncertain values. For any cell you can enter confidence intervals (lower and upper bounds) that can represent full probability distributions. 5000 Monte Carlo simulations are performed to find the output interval for each equation, all in the browser.

    At the end of this you don’t just understand the ‘best’ and ‘worst’ scenarios, but you also get everything in between and outside. There’s the mean, the median, and several of the percentiles. In the future I intend to add sensitivity analyses and the value of information calculations.

    Guesstimate is free and open source. I encourage you to try it out. Make estimates of things you find important or interesting. I’m looking forward to seeing what people come up with.

    View the original article here

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