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CONGRATULATIONS: Dr Kingsley Chin, Jamaican doctor pioneers disc replacement procedure....an artificial disc, owned exclusively by a Jamaican-born (Buff Bay, Portland) doctor, can be used as a tool to drive medical tourism in Jamaica.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017 Excerpt Jamaica Observer

A group of doctors has high hopes that an artificial disc, owned exclusively by a Jamaican-born doctor, can be used as a tool to drive medical tourism in Jamaica.
The technology was used for the first time in a four-level disc replacement procedure at the Andrews Memorial Hospital in St Andrew on February 1. The surgical procedure was performed by orthopaedic spinal surgeon Dr Kingsley Chin, who was born in Buff Bay, Portland.
Dr Kingsley Chin (second left) and his team (from left) Dr J Geoffrey Liburd,
Harisha Buggam and Violet Gordon performing the first four-level viscoelastic disc
replacement with his product, the Freedom Cervical Disc, at Andrews Memorial
Hospital in St Andrew, recently.
Chin is CEO of KIC Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on the health technology sector and the owner of AxioMed, a health tech company that has developed the technology known as the Freedom Cervical disc. AxioMed was founded to advance the standard of care for patients with degenerative spine conditions and has now successfully developed the artificial disc that most closely mimics the normal disc using viscoelastic polymer technology.
In disc replacement, worn or damaged disc material between the small bones in the spine (vertebrae) is removed and replaced with a synthetic or ‘artificial’ disc. The goal of the procedure is to relieve back pain while maintaining more normal motion than is allowed with some other procedures, such as spinal fusion. The Freedom Cervical disc is said to most closely mimic the natural properties of a healthy human disc and has been proven to withstand the forces and wear of decades of use. On February 1, Dr Chin operated on a female patient with a prolapsed disc who would’ve been in need of several surgical procedures with sequential disc replacement or a fusion of the discs, which would’ve limited her neck motion.
For the procedure, he worked with his team of University of the West Indies (UWI) and Oxford-trained Rhodes Scholar Dr David Walcott, UWI & Yale-trained neurosurgeon Dr J Geoffrey Liburd, and anaesthesiologist Dr Patrick Toppin.
Andrews chief executive officer Dr Marvin Rouhoutas and Keith Shakespeare were instrumental in facilitating the procedure, along with theatre manager Nurse Roxanne Shaw-Edwards and her staff nurses.
Dr Chin’s colleague and president of AxioMed, Jake Lubinski, also witnessed the historic launch of his company’s product that was used in the surgical procedure and, which Dr Walcott has described as “unprecedented”.
Live feeds from the operating theatre are said to have generated much excitement in the USA. An exclusive technology never before pioneered in the USA, Dr Chin plans to expand and brand it within Jamaica.
He is confident that it will strengthen Jamaica’s medical tourism industry, a sentiment echoed by Dr Walcott. more

POPULAR Jamaican dancehall deejay “Alkaline” released without charge

BY TANESHA MUNDLE Observer staff reporter mundlet@jamaicaobserver.com  Tuesday, February 14, 2017

POPULAR dancehall deejay “Alkaline” was yesterday released from police custody following a judge’s order that he be charged or released by 6:00 pm after spending four days behind bars.
The artiste, who had been in custody since last Thursday, was released about 3:15 pm.
01
Alkaline in Red
Senior Parish Judge Andrea Pettigrew-Collins had made the order yesterday morning in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court following a
habeas corpus application by Alkaline’s attorney, Peter Champagnie. The deejay had surrendered to the police who wanted him for questioning in relation to the murder of Rohan Morris in Maverley on January 13.
Champagnie, during his application, argued that his client had been in custody for four days without being charged, and was neither advised by the police of any pending charge.
Superintendent Mevral Smith, who was a part of the investigating team, objected to Alkaline’s release, stating that the investigation was still being carried out. He also told the court that the deejay was asked 100 questions, but only responded by saying, “I am innocent of these charges.”
But the judge quickly told him that entertainer was not obligated to answer any of the questions.
“You either have the evidence to charge him or you don’t,” Judge Pettigrew-Collins said.
The judge then raised concerns about the frequent practice by police officers arresting suspects before conducting a proper investigation.
“With the greatest of respect, police too often put the horse before the cart. more

CONGRATULATIONS: JAMAICAN scientists close to creating affordable hepatitis C drug from ganja...Dr. Henry Lowe & Dr. Wayne McLaughlin responsible for the finding along with Dr Ngeh Toyang of the Cameroon

BY VERNON DAVIDSON Executive editor – publications davidsonv@jamaicaobserver.com  Sunday, February 12, 2017

Research scientists, led by Dr Henry Lowe, say they have discovered properties in Cannabidiol (CBD), one of the major bioactive compounds in the cannabis (ganja) plant, that have the potential to provide affordable treatment as nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals for hepatitis C.
Information on the new discovery can be found in the latest issue (January - March 2017) of
Dr Wayne McLaughlin
Pharmacognosy Research, a publication of Pharmacognosy Network Worldwide, making it subject to peer review.
“We report here for the first time in vitro studies to demonstrate the antiviral activity of CBD against HCV,” Dr Lowe and his research team —Jamaican Wayne McLaughlin and Cameroonian Dr Ngeh Toyang — state in their published study, adding that Cannabidiol was shown to have activity against HCV in vitro but not against hepatitis B virus (HBV).
On Friday, Lowe, who is known worldwide for his anti-cancer and ganja research, as well as the production of a range of nutraceuticals using Jamaican plants, told the Jamaica Observer that the discovery is a major development.
“This is a new discovery which has fantastic potential for the future, especially for people in developing countries, because there is a drug which was developed for hepatitis C treatment, but it’s over US$85,000 per treatment and very few people in the developing world can afford this,” he said. “So it is very important that we find less expensive means of treatment, and that is why this discovery and its potential to manage this disease is so important.
Dr. Henry Lowe
“Most of the incidences [of Hepatitis C] are in the developing world, so this means this could make a big difference if it’s taken to finality,” Lowe argued.
Dr Ngeh Toyang
“This journal publication is not current, insofar as the research is concerned, because we have to protect intellectual property. We have gone far beyond this in terms of research and development to the point where we’re hoping that by next year, with the data we have, we should be able to go to clinical trials. So it’s a major, major new development,” he said.
He further stated that a nutraceutical product is currently being developed which should be ready for the market by year end. Talks, he added, have started with the South African Government on the cannabis research and development which, he believes, could open the way to the products to the developing world.
In their study, the scientists point out that viral hepatitis is caused by a group of viruses divided into five types – A, B, C, D, and E — and they are primarily known to attach to the liver.
“Hepatitis B virus and hepatitis C virus are the most dangerous and prevalent of the five virus types,” they state. more

BOMBSHELL: Donald Trump’s National Security Adviser Michael Flynn Resigns... Apology: ‘Inadvertently Briefed’ Pence With ‘Incomplete Information’... EARLIER: DOJ Reportedly Warned White House That He Could Be Vulnerable To Russian Blackmail... Army Investigating Potential Payment From Russian Gov’t... PETRAEUS A Potential Replacement!...

WASHINGTON ― National security adviser Michael Flynn resigned late Monday, following revelations that he discussed U.S. sanctions against Russia with that country’s ambassador in the days surrounding their imposition ― and weeks prior to Donald Trump’s inauguration.
Michael Flynn
Retired Lt. Gen. Joseph Keith Kellogg Jr. will serve as acting national security advisor until a full-time replacement is named, the White House announced. Kellogg, as well as Vice Adm. Robert Harward and retired Gen. David Petraeus are the three candidates in line to succeed Flynn, according to the administration.
Flynn’s resignation came after a tumultuous few days of revelations about his ties to Russia and his role in attempting to ease sanctions that were put in place weeks before the Trump administration took office. 
In late December, President Barack Obama announced the sanctions, which included the expulsion of 35 Russian intelligence operatives, in response to Russian interference in the November election designed to help Trump win.
Flynn at first denied that he had discussed the sanctions when he spoke with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak. He said the conversations concerned setting up a phone call between Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin and offering condolences after the murder of a Russian diplomat in Turkey.
But following a Washington Post report ― based partially on transcripts of the conversations ― Flynn’s office revised his earlier statements, and said that he couldn’t recall whether the topic of sanctions had come up. On Monday night, the plot thickened, with The Washington Post reporting that top officials at the Department of Justice warned the Trump administration weeks ago that Flynn might have been compromised by Russian influences and The New York Times reporting that the Army had investigated whether Flynn received payments from the Russian government in 2015.
As the revelations have piled up, the question has turned to why the Trump administration didn’t act sooner to sever ties. Trump has faced his own criticism for being too cozy to Russia. more

WARNING! WARNING: Jamaican arrested at US airport in Orlando, Florida for possession of child porn on his cell phone after being searched.

A man, said to be a Jamaican citizen, was Monday arrested at the Orland International Airport in Florida after his cellphone was searched and found to contain two child porn videos, the ABC News affiliate, WHTV9 reported on its website yesterday.
He is facing a charge of possession of child pornography.
The man, identified as Anthony Carl Spence, was searched by US Customs and Border Protection officers just after getting off a flight from Jamaica, the report said. Investigators did not say what prompted the search.
The WHTV9 report said that when asked about the two videos found on his phone, Spence allegedly told investigators he showed one to a class of Jamaican schoolchildren “in order to determine whether any of them had ever been molested”. The report, quoting court documents, said when the suspected child porn was found, officials at Orlando International Airport called Homeland Security agents, who responded and took a more in-depth look at Spence’s phone.
Spence, according to the court documents, claimed a girlfriend in New York sent him one of the videos and the other he had forwarded to a relative as a warning that her child “could be acting in a similar manner”.
It added that when asked about the incident involving the Jamaican schoolchildren, Spence told investigators that he was not employed by the school, but his nieces attended and he had gotten permission from a teacher to show students one of the videos.
Spence, who told agents he had five daughters, allegedly admitted sending the videos to a number of friends and relatives while in Jamaica, including “women with children”, court documents said. more

JAMAICA'S ZERO TOLERANCE FOR CRIME: Government to target perpetrators of domestic violence, sexual abuse and grooming of minors signalling its approach towards arresting the growing crime wave sweeping the island

BY KIMONE FRANCIS Observer staff reporter francisk@jamaicaobserver.com  Thursday, February 09, 2017    

THE Andrew Holness-led Administration yesterday announced a zero-tolerance approach towards perpetrators of domestic violence, sexual abuse and grooming of minors signalling its approach towards arresting the growing crime wave sweeping the island.
The announcement of enforcing existing laws comes in the wake of an escalation in crimes against women and children in recent weeks.
01
Prime Minister Andrew Holness addresses journalists at
 yesterday’s press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister.
 Also present are Acting Commissioner of Police Novelette Grant (left)
 and Attorney General Marlene Malahoo-Forte.
 (Photo: Bryan Cummings)
Prime Minister Holness, at a hastily-called press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister following a special meeting of the Cabinet, suggested that the nation has been brought to its knees with crime because violence has been used as a currency of social transaction, effectively identifying its root as a cultural one.
Holness promised that the coming crime plan will undoubtedly cause disruption in the way the country has operated. “The Government will be using existing laws, which include preventative detention in live and imminent situations of domestic violence, sexual abuse and grooming of minors to remove aggressors from the scene, thereby de-escalating the situation,” he told journalists at the press conference, while insisting that the announcement is not a knee-jerk reaction.
Front cover of today's paperHe noted, too, that at an appropriate time he will be putting together all the elements Government has been working on to tackle crime.
But, as part of the zero-tolerance approach, the police, assisted by the Transport Authority, will be targeting ‘robot’ (illegal) taxis as of Monday next week, and will be removing dark tints from all public passenger vehicles.
The police have arrested and charged 1,442 perpetrators of crimes against women and children over the past 13 months.
Acting Police Commissioner Novelette Grant, who also spoke at the press conference, disclosed that 86 people had been held for shooting, 67 for murder, 252 for rape, 280 for robbery, 202 for sexual offences/indecent assault, 237 for sexual intercourse with a girl under the age of 16, 169 for break-ins, while 54 were held for larceny under the category of crimes against women and children over the last 13 months.
At the same time, Attorney General Marlene Malahoo-Forte stressed that the preventative detention measure to be used complies with the constitution and laws of the country. more