Tencent’s Next Interest Is in Chinese Video Streaming Service

two girls on smartphone

A popular Chinese video streaming service gained the support of major investment holding companies.

Kuaishou is a video streaming service that is held in high esteem by young Chinese users. Tencent Holdings Ltd. saw the great potential of this business. This is why it organized a fundraising on behalf of the video sharing app. The final sum rounded up to a total of $350 million USD. This is just a secondary step in the company’s plan to go public on the United States market sometime at the end of 2017.

The Video Streaming Service Attracted Investors as Baidu, DCM, and Sequoia

The new round of funding for the popular Chinese video streaming service was designated for one purpose only. The company will use this financial support to streamline the user experience and improve its research and development operations.

Kuaishou explained the new direction of its business with a focus on artificial intelligence and the latest technologies in video analytics. This way, the company wants to ramp up its position on the market and entice new users with latest tech products.

The success of Kuaishou previosuly inspired other investment holding behemoths to support the business. These are DCM, Baidu, and Sequoia. However, the new round of fundraising didn’t reveal their second participation. On the other hand, Kuaishou will not receive financial support only.

Tencent Saw a Great Bussiness Opportunity in its New Project

On the contrary, the company managed to close a partnership with Baidu and Tencent. Together, they are going to improve the technology and product of the Chinese video streaming service. The ultimate goal is to attract new users through a top-notch experience on the platform.

The founder and chairman of Tencent, Pony Ma, is excited for the new project and partnership with his company.

“Kuaishou has brings people closer with their focus on the recording and sharing everyday lives. It’s a product that closes to users for its warmth and vigor.”

Tencent acknowledged the trend that is going to help video content expand into an even bigger market in the future. By merging their efforts together, Kuaishou and Tencent will complete their unique user insights, professional expertise, and conquered tech boundaries to come up with groundbreaking methods to seize business opportunities.

At the moment, the popularity of Kuaishou created a large community of 400 million global users. The social media application offers them a creative way to capture their everyday life on live stream or video clips. Afterward, they can share their work with the world. The tackled topics are usually inspired by everyday life. However, there are also beauty tutorials and quirky entertainment.

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China Backs Off on Overseas Investments

beijing scenery

Zhong Shan, the commerce minister of China, urged businesspersons to slow down on irrational overseas investments.

Last year, China scored a new record when it comes to overseas investments. Many Chinese companies sought to invest outside the country and bought businesses valued at a total of $225 billion. This record number marked the Chinese business leaders as a new global power. However, policy makers are worried of to how much extent money is leaving Chinese territory. With this idea in mind, the authorities are urging businesspersons to slow down this expansion.

Commerce Minister Calls for Cognition over Overseas Investments

Even though the portfolio of companies in China extended to unbelievable heights, Zhong Shan, the commerce minister, perceives this movement as imprudent. The minister defined this expansion as “blind and irrational investment.” During the annual meeting of Congress in China, Zhong Shan announced at a news briefing several future plans. To mitigate this situation, he stated that officials are going to strengthen their monitoring over a selected number of companies.

“Some even have had a negative impact on our national image” stated Mr. Zhong who is also a trusted personality in President Xi Jinping’s  political entourage. By this, he referred to several enterprises that left a negative trail after the completion of their acquisitions overseas.

Repercussions of the Recent Comments

Even though the company didn’t explain the event, Wanda Group failed to honor the deal on Friday with Dick Clark Productions, the producer of Golden Globe Awards. The Chinese conglomerate led by the Wang Jianlin was supposed to conclude an already announced purchasing act with Dick Clark Productions last week. However, it was Wanda Group that didn’t honor the $1 billion agreement. It is uncertain if this sudden shift is related to Beijing stepping in or if this was a realization of a big mistake.

It was not only companies but also Chinese families, who relied on overseas investments for their economy. They felt how the national finances are slowing down amid a weak currency and other such issues. China had to cover around $1 trillion expenses during the last two and a half years to support the value of the currency.

On the other hand, companies are showing signs of leaving the irrational investments behind and heading for safer territories. A managing partner at DLA Piper, a law firm in China, Qiang Li, stated “There is no question that investors will continue to invest overseas, by getting the proper approvals.” He explained this projection as an observation of the recent deals in which he participated. Only a quarter of them continued to get money out of China. The rest of them relied on dollars that are owned by China and which they already got in circulation overseas.

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Rookie Doctors Are Now Able to Work 24-Hour Shifts

young female resident smiling

New work regulations indicate that rookie doctors will soon be able to work 24-hour shifts. These rules will take effect this summer. Supporters of the new law stated that this would improve training for newcomers. A Chicago-based team which sets work standards for graduates of the US medical school has decided to eliminate 16-hour shifts for first-year residents.

On March 10, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education announced their initiative as being part of revisions that encompass reinstating the longer limit for rookies. The same limit of hours is allowed for advanced residents. The new rules re-iterate the 80-hour limit per week for residents at all levels. Dr. Anai Kothari is a third-year resident on a council panel which recommended the changes.

He stated that he only sometimes works 24-hour shifts.  All the extra hours give him enough time to finish up with his patients instead of going home at the end of his regular shift, in the middle of a case. He works at Loyola University Medical Center near Chicago.

Dr. Samantha Harrington, who is a first-year resident, believes that working for so many hours might endanger patients’ state of health and residents’ safety. They would be too tired to think clearly and a treat a patient right. Even the slightest mistake at first can turn into a dangerous one which could jeopardize the life of a patient.

Harrington noted that her 14-hour shifts at Cambridge Hospital located near Boston already mean too much. It is difficult for her to stay awake for so long and be 100% focused on all medical cases because the life of your patients depends on your decisions. It is even harder to stay awake when driving home from work.

She claims that these laborious hours are based on a patriarchal system in which other physicians which worked there longer argue that if they managed to do it when they were residents than residents nowadays should be able to do it too. Harrington is also a member of the Committee of Interns and Residents. This union organization opposes the new regulations which will soon be adopted.

Another union group called the American Medical Student Assn believes that the new changes will not be beneficial. Dr. Kelly Thilbert, the president of this group, believes that the 16-hour shift is a lot safer for all residents.

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Kids II Recalls Almost 700,000 Oball Rattles Due to Chocking Hazard

oball rattles

So far, 42 parents filed reports stating Kids II’s Oball rattles were prone to breaking and constitute a chocking hazard for the little ones.

Recently, Kids II was forced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to recall nearly 700,00 Oball rattles manufactured last years, after multiple parents reported the toys were prone to breaking, releasing small beads that babies could choke on if swallowed.

Up to date, nearly 17,000 Oball rattles have been recalled in Canada and 68,000 in the U.S. According to the company, the recall affects the model numbers 81548 and 81031, made and sold last year.

Kids II Oball Rattles

The baby rattles recalled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission  has 28 4-inch finger holes with disc-shaped plastic containers filled with small beads. As it turns out, one of the discs is prone to breaking, releasing the beads. Because they are brightly colored, the children are tempted to eat them. However, if swallowed, the beads could choke the children, which can lead to serious injuries and even death, officials say.

Chocking Hazard

Up to this point, 42 reports flew in stating the clear disc broke and subsequently released the colorful beads. Out of the total number of cases reported, on two occasions the parents found beads inside the mouths of their children, and three little ones chocked on them.

In light of these events, the company has announced the recall on its official Facebook page, mentioning details of the recall.  According to the CPSC, only rattles in blue, green, orange, and pink, with certain date codes pose a threat to children. Hence, the products recalled bear the T0486, T1456, T 2316, T 2856, and T3065 etched inside the triangle of the rattle.

Furthermore, the products were sold both online, as well as in retail shops between January 2016 and February 2017. Walmart, Walgreens, Target, Babyhaven.com, Amazon.com, Diapers.com, and ToysRUs.com sold the rattles for prices between $5 to $7.

Returning the Flawed Products

CPSC officials urged any parents that still own any of the Kids II harmful rattles should take them away from children and ask the company for a full refund. They can do that by contacting the company at 877-243-7314 from March 6th to March 9th between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Also, parents have the option of visiting Kids II’s official website and ask for a full refund of the product.

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Texas Family Files Lawsuit Against Dentist Who Performed Unnecessary Procedure on Toddler

texas family

A Texas family demands compensations for the untimely death of their 14-month-old toddler who died after a dentist performed unnecessary surgery.

Following the death of 14-month-old in 2016, a Texas family has filed a lawsuit against the dentists who handled the toddler’s procedure. According to the grieving family, the procedures performed on the toddler were unnecessary, resulting in the little girl’s death. The Texas family is demanding financial reparations amounting to $1 million.

In the Wake of the Tragedy

The Texas family of 14-month-old Daisy Lynn Torres, the toddler who died in March 2016 due to anesthesia complications after a dental procedure, intends to file an unlawful death lawsuit against Michael Melanson, the dentist who performed Daisy’s procedure. Melanson and his anesthesiologist are both under scrutiny, after the official investigation conducted by Travis County’s Medical examiner revealed that the dentists performed unnecessary procedures.

As Daisy’s family recalls, on the 29th of March, 2016, the toddler was taken to the North Austin Medical Center to have two cavities filled. However, upon consulting the 14-month-old girl, Michael Melanson, the toddler’s appointed dentist, decided to do two additional root canal procedures and put dental crows on at least four teeth.

According to Melanson’s case file, during the said dental procedure, the 14-month-old toddler lost consciousness right after the anesthesiologist finished administering the sleeping agent. Unfortunately, the doctors weren’t able to resuscitate the toddler.

One year later, the girl’s parents have decided to file an unlawful lawsuit against Melanson, his anesthesiologist, and the dental clinic where the toddler was treated. Prior to the girl’s visit to the North Austin Medical Center, the family took her for dental X-rays.

Texas Family vs. The Dentist

After reviewing the dental X-rays and comparing them to Melanson’s surgical approach, the Travis County’s Medical Examiner concluded that the procedures were not necessary. Moreover, court documents reveal that Melanson’s procedures were part of a larger corporate scheme designed to extract a large amount of money from taxpayers.

Elizandro Torres, the toddler’s father, declared in a press statement that he and his family decided to take this course of action because they want the public to become aware of what happens behind the scenes, after paying their monthly taxes.

Sean Breen, the Texas family’s legal consultant, declared that the lawsuit serves two major purposes. First of all, for the family to seek justice for the death of their daughter and, at the same time, to discourage clinics and doctors from recommending and performing unnecessary procedures.

Daisy’s family are now demanding $1million in financial reparations from Melanson, his anesthesiologist, and the North Austin Medical Center.

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Twice as More Adults Will Probably Experience Hearing Loss by 2060, New Study Suggests

hearing loss

As hearing loss occurs over time, it is possible that patients are oblivious to early signs and, before they know it, go completely deaf, researchers warn.

According to a recent paper published in the journal JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery on March 2nd, almost 50 percent more American adults will lose their hearing in several decades’ time. The health experts said hearing loss is expected to increase in adults older than 20 from 44 million in 2020 to 73.5 million by 2060. In percentage points, this would mean 23 percent more Americans will go deaf by 2060, compared to 15 percent adults expected to experience severe hearing issues in 2020.

Dim Predictions

Researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore say that the increase will be most noticeable among older adults. According to the health experts’ calculations, 55 percent of the adults that are supposedly going to lose their hearing in 2020 will be roughly 70 years old. in contrast, these rates will jump to 67 percent four decades later, predict the researchers.

Hence, lead author of the study and a fellow researcher at Hopkins’ Center said there will need to be a much greater focus on easy access to hearing health care services and affordable interventions in the future.

Health experts, including American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s chief staff officer, Neil DiSarno, say they have been deeply troubled by the recent findings. Even more so, as professional hearing care is equally costly compared to all aspects of health care, they said.

Hearing Loss and Mental Ability Decline

Moreover, the researchers discovered hearing loss is directly linked to a decrease in mental abilities, said the head of otology of New York Lenox Hill Hospital’s Center for Hearing and Balance Disorders at the New York Head and Neck Institute.

However, a spokesperson for the American Academy of Otolaryngology, head and Neck Surgery, Dr. Debara Tucci, said aging American adults are not necessarily doomed to lose their hearing forever. As is the case with most conditions, hearing loss can also be prevented, she said.

This is possible by avoiding prolonged exposure to loud noises. Furthermore, she urges the population to take precautionary measures early, as hearing loss occurs over time and early signs are extremely subtle. Hence, those at risk can one day lose their hearing for good, an irreversible change, the spokesperson added.

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Health Experts Compiled a List of the Most Popular Plastic Surgery Procedures

plastic surgery procedures

While some people went for a major overhaul, most Americans chose minimally invasive plastic surgery procedures for better looks.

As people’s insecurities seem to not come to an end pretty soon, plastic surgery procedures are still in high demand in the United States. A recent report compiled by plastic surgeons reveals that most Americans chose to go under the knife for a prettier face or less fat in various parts of their bodies. On Wednesday, March 1st, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons released its annual plastic surgery statistics report, reveling the most popular procedures performed last year in the U.S. Even though the statistics mirror last year’s findings, it appears certain trends are rising to popularity.

Most Sought After Surgical Procedures

In 2016, experts say approximately 1.8 million major plastic surgery procedures were performed in the U.S. Also, 15.5 million Americans chose to make only minor improvements to their appearance last year.

The most popular procedures of 2016 were:

  • Breast augmentation, performed on 290,467 patients who wished to alter the shape or volume of their breasts.
  • Liposuction was 235,237 Americans’ preferred cosmetic procedure.
  • Rhinoplasty, intended to modify the shape of the nose, was demanded by 223,018 Americans.
  • Eyelid surgery, for lifting saggy eyelids, was performed on 209,020 people.
  • Facelifts, intended to rectify sagging, wrinkled patches on the neck and face, and drooping were performed 131,106 times nationwide.

Minimally Invasive Plastic Surgery Procedures

While some people chose to drastically change their appearance, there were some who only resorted to fillers, peels, or hair removal. Hence, most popular minimally invasive plastic surgery procedures in 2016 were:

  • Botox, a drug that is injected into the face of the patient to smooth facial wrinkles, demanded by 7 million Americans.
  • Soft-tissue fillers, similar to Botox, injected into the lips or face for fuller appearance, performed on 2.6 million patients.
  • Chemical peels, which refers to the application and then removal of a chemical substance from the skin for a younger appearance, sought by 1.36 million individuals.
  • Laser hair removal, which refers to permanently removing unwanted hair from various areas of the body, performed 1.1 million times.
  • Microdermabrasions, performed 775,000 times with a special instrument that sands the patient’s skin to improve complexion.

Health experts say that the list of most wanted plastic surgery procedures is the same as it was two years ago. However, researchers included, for the first time, records of labiaplasties in their report, a procedure that alters the women’s genitalia. It was this cosmetic procedure that grew extremely

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World Health Organization Experts Compiled a List of the Most Aggressive Superbugs

superbugs

Modern medicine took a step back from drug-resistant pathogens. Now, health experts are coming at superbugs from anew angle.

After a woman lost her life in Nevada because of an incurable infection caused by a superbug last year, only adding to the already large number of patients who lost their lives to pathogens resilient to medication, World Health Organization officials have compiled a list of the most aggressive superbugs for the first time in modern medicine history. The pathogens were prioritized in three main categories, based on the level of threat they pose to the population.

Health experts at WHO say this is an effort to raise awareness on drug-resistant superbugs and to prompt public research and drug companies to make it a priority to collaborate in order to design new medication to stop these pathogens from claiming, even more, lives in the future. Even more so, as Antimicrobial Resistance’s senior technical officer with WHO in Geneva, Dr. Elizabeth Tayler says coming up with a new antibiotic could take up to a decade.

The list is as follows:

Critical

The top priority superbugs to be analyzed is a family of three multidrug-resistant bacteria, E. coli included, that oftentimes prove fatal for those admitted to nursing homes and hospitals. According to Dr. Tayler, these pathogens are gut bacteria, found in the intestinal tract following fecal contamination of food and water sources or unsterilized operating room equipment that are highly transmittable.

Once in the bloodstream, health experts say these superbugs cause life-threatening infections, pneumonia, and various open wound infections that are very hard to treat.

High Priority

While the first category referred to bacteria, high priority category is composed of multidrug-resistant microbes, including salmonella, gonorrhea, and staph infections. Health experts say they are almost powerless against them, as these pathogens spread incredibly fast and easily and set the stage for severe health conditions.

Medium

The last category includes a penicillin-resistant and flu bug streptococcus bacteria. Even though these pathogens show significant resistance to modern day treatments, health experts say they are listed under “medium” because there are currently several other ways to deterring them, including immunization. However, Dr. Tayler says they are not to be taken lightly, as these superbugs still raise difficulties for physicians and are perfectly capable of killing their host, nonetheless.

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Researchers Believe Oversleeping Is an Early Sign of Alzheimer’s

alzheimer's

Understanding the early signs of Alzheimer’s, such as oversleeping and rambling speech, can help patients better acclimatize with their condition, scientists say.

Once they get retired, sleeping in most mornings becomes a luxury that they have been waiting for decades. However, elderly people who beg for those few extra minutes under the blanket can actually be twice as predisposed to Alzheimer’s disease of other forms of dementia, researchers say.

Latest Findings

A team of Boston University researchers analyzed the sleep patterns of thousands of elderly people past the age of 60 and discovered that those who consistently slept for more than nine hours a night were twice as likely to be more predisposed to neurological damage than those who woke up earlier. Hence, seven percent of the participants over the age of 65 developed Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. Moreover, the researchers say the risk even doubles every five years individuals gain in age.

However, forcing oneself to reduce the amount of rest per night does not necessarily mean the threat will go away. Even more so, as scientists say oversleeping is actually a symptom of the condition, rather than a cause. Furthermore, the researchers found that having a superior education degree provides some sort of protection against the disease, as those who did not have a high school degree and overslept increased their risk by a factor of six. Even though education plays an important role for the people at risk, there is no way, at the moment, to stop or halt the advancement of the disease, unfortunately.

Alzheimer’s Trials

For their study, Dr. Matthew Pase and his team collected data from more than 2,400 patients who also took part in the Framingham Heart Study, a major survey with heart disease risk factors as the main focus point. Patients with an average age of 72 were asked about the amount of sleep they get per night and were kept under surveillance for the next decade. In the follow-up period, 234 patients were diagnosed with some form of dementia.

Hence, the researchers concluded sleeping more than nine hours each night doubles the risk of dementia, especially Alzheimer’s. Furthermore, such behavior was also associated with smaller brain volume. Ultimately, feeling the need for more sleep in the morning, together with rambling speech, can be apparent long before more specific symptoms of Alzheimer’s start to show, such as memory loss, researchers said.

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Afternoon Drowsiness Linked to Anti-Social Behavior in Teens

Drowsiness in class

UK researchers discovered that afternoon drowsiness in teens can result in anti-social behavior.

Ever felt like putting down your head on the bench and sleep through the whole lesson while you were in class? While most of us, at some point, fell asleep during class, it appears that those who do it on a regular basis are more likely to develop an anti-social behavior. A new study from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of York reveals that teens who tend to experience drowsiness in class are more likely to engage in criminal activities during adulthood.

Studying Teenage Drowsiness

After studying the link between criminal behavior and attention span in adolescents, a team of researchers from UK’s University of York and the University of Pennsylvania have discovered that individuals who experience drowsiness in class, especially in the afternoon, are 4.5 times more likely to become anti-social and even to engage in criminal activity in later adulthood.

Adrian Raine, the study’s co-author, stated that the study regarding the link between drowsiness and anti-social behavior began approximately 15 years ago. While conducting research for his Ph.D. thesis, Raine managed to amass a large volume of data on teenage criminal activity. Furthermore, according to the study’s co-author, it appears that the data spans over 39 years. However, this is the first time Raine managed to study the phenomenon in detail.

In order to ascertain if there is indeed a causal relationship between afternoon drowsiness and anti-social/delinquency, Raine and Peter Venables, solicited the help of over 100 teenagers. All participants were 15-years-old and studied in North England school.

Over the span of several weeks, the volunteers were asked to participate in special classes. The classes were scheduled for the 1 to 3 pm interval. During each session, the participants were asked to grade their drowsiness level using a one to seven scale, one meaning that they were alert, while seven meant that they were feeling sleepy.

The Result of the Study 

So, what were the results of this study? As you would expect, not all participants who reported feeling drowsy during the afternoon classes developed anti-social/criminal behavior. However, Raine pointed out that 17 percent of participants were charged and imprisoned for violent crimes.

All in all, Raine and Venables have discovered that teens who fall asleep each day during afternoon classes are 4.5 times more likely to be involved or commit violent crimes by the time they reach the age of 29.

Now, as Raine pointed out, the study’s results should be taken with a grain of salt meaning that not all teens who fall asleep during class end up in jail for committing violent crimes.

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