Dogecoin tumbles after Elon Musk’s jokes about it on SNL

Dogecoin tumbles after Elon Musk's jokes about it on SNL

Maye Musk appeared at the end of her Tesla CEO son’s SNL monologue to ask what he got her for Mother’s Day.

“I’m thrilled for my Mother’s Day gift,” Maye Musk said. “I just hope it’s not dogecoin!”

“It’s true,” said Elon Musk. “Absolutely.”

After increasing the value of the cryptocurrency in the lead-up to Musk’s appearance at SNL, investors heavily sold the dogecoin after the Musks spoke about it on the show. Dogecoin was down 40%, trading as low as 44 cents early on Sunday. The cryptocurrency started at around 70 cents on Saturday and was selling for around 66 cents just before SNL aired at 11:30 p.m. ET.

Cryptocurrencies are notoriously volatile and dogecoin is in absolute break this year. It has grown over 12,000% since January and has gained 800% this month alone.

Musk has been dogecoin’s loudest and most prominent supporter. He frequently tweets about cryptocurrency, and just one of his bizarre tweets to his 50 million subscribers can send dogecoins soaring. This is what happened in April, when Musk tweeted “Doge barking at the moon” and shared a photo of a painting by Spanish artist Joan Miró, titled “Dog barking on the moon”.

Dogecoin started out in 2013 as a joke – a nod to the ‘doge’ meme that was all over the internet at the time. But that’s no longer a joke: it’s the fifth largest cryptocurrency in the world, with a market value just south of $ 70 billion, according to Coinbase.

Dogecoin and Tesla had both traded higher in anticipation of Musk’s SNL appearance. Futures contracts on Tesla were not trading on Saturday night during the show.

It is not known what motivated the sale of dogecoin. Maybe investors wanted Musk to say something more cryptocurrency-friendly. But more likely there was a “buy the rumor / sell the news” strategy, trying to capitalize on investors’ predictions coming true by selling high.

Dogecoin traded so actively that Robinhood announced early Sunday morning that it was having problems processing crypto transactions and was working to fix the problem.

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Elon Musk opens ‘SNL’ by telling his mom he’s gifting his dogecoin for Mother’s Day

After much fanfare, anticipation and some controversy, the eccentric tech billionaire took the stage at Studio 8H as the host of “Saturday Night Live” on Saturday.
“It is an honor to host” Saturday Night Live. I mean this, “Musk said.” Sometimes after I say something, I have to say, ‘I mean this,’ so people really know I mean it. ‘

Musk, who is the CEO of Tesla and one of the richest people on the planet, wasted no time jumping into jokes on his Twitter account, smoking weed with Joe Rogan and the name of her son, “X Æ A-12.”

“They say the cat runs on the keyboard,” he says of his son’s name.

Musk was not alone on stage, however. The CEO brought out his mother Maye during her monologue since Sunday is Mother’s Day.

“I’m thrilled for my mother’s day gift. I just hope it’s not a dogecoin,” Musk’s mother said, mentioning the cryptocurrency, which Musk has been a strong supporter of.

“That’s right,” Musk said with a smile. “Absolutely.”

Musk’s monologue covered a bunch of topics but Musk seemed at ease, which says a lot considering he’s not an actor or comedian.

Musk is a surprising choice for the show given that “SNL” isn’t known for picking hosts from the tech or business world. The pick also raised a few eyebrows, with some of the cast signaling their displeasure with the pick as Musk has courted controversy in the past.

Musk has spoken a bit about his erratic comments while making jokes to kick off the series.

For example, he shared his vision for the future with the public saying that he believes in a future of renewable energy and that humans must become a multi-planetary civilization.

“These goals sound exciting, don’t they?” he said. “Now think, if I just posted this on Twitter, it’ll be fine.”

Musk added that he knew that sometimes he said or posted strange things, but that was how his brain worked.

“To everyone I’ve offended, I just want to say that I reinvented electric cars and send people to Mars in a rocket,” Musk said. “Did you also think I was going to be a normal cold guy?”

Dogecoin tumbles after Elon Musk jokes about it on 'SNL'

Musk has also starred in skits including one where he played a medic in “Gen Z Hospital,” another where he played the Nintendo character Wario, and also appeared during the show’s “Weekend Update.”

“I don’t know if you’re following the news today, but a space rocket that was spinning out of control just minutes ago crashed into the ocean,” said cast member Colin Jost . “And for once, we know it’s not Elon’s fault.”

Jost added that “a lot of people have wondered, ‘why is he hosting our show?’

“Now we know it’s because he needed an alibi,” Jost said.

Saturday’s “SNL” was also notable because it was the show’s first time to air live internationally. YouTube streamed it live to more than 100 countries, including Australia, Canada, India, Mexico, Russia and the UK, NBC announced on Saturday.

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Colonial pipeline: cyber attack forces major US gas pipeline to close

The operator, Colonial Pipeline, said on Saturday that the incident involved ransomware.

The attack comes amid growing concerns about cybersecurity vulnerabilities in U.S. critical infrastructure following recent incidents, and after the Biden administration last month launched an effort to strengthen cybersecurity in the country’s power grid. countries, calling on industry leaders to install technologies that could thwart attacks on electricity supplies.

Colonial, which transports more than 100 million gallons of gasoline and other fuels from Houston to New York Harbor daily, according to its website, said it learned of the cyberattack on Friday, forcing them to suspend operations.

“In response, we proactively took some systems offline to contain the threat, which temporarily halted all pipeline operations and affected some of our IT systems,” the company said in a statement.

On September 16, 2016, a file photo shows tankers lined up at a Colonial Pipeline Co. facility in Pelham, Ala., Near the site of a 250,000 gallon gasoline spill caused by a ruptured gasoline pipeline.

Colonial said it hired a third-party cybersecurity company to launch an investigation into “the nature and scope of this incident” and also contacted law enforcement and other federal agencies.

The US Agency for Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security is “engaged with society and our interagency partners to address the situation,” Eric Goldstein, deputy director of CISA’s cybersecurity division, said on Saturday.

“This highlights the threat that ransomware poses to organizations regardless of size or industry,” he said. “We encourage every organization to take steps to strengthen their cybersecurity posture to reduce their exposure to these types of threats.”

President Joe Biden was informed of the shutdown on Saturday morning, a White House spokesman said.

“The federal government is actively working to assess the implications of this incident, avoid supply disruptions and help the company restore pipeline operations as quickly as possible,” the White House spokesman said.

A White House official said analysis is underway to determine if supply could become an issue after the event. The White House is planning a number of scenarios, the official said, and is working with state and local authorities to determine possible steps to take to help mitigate any potential impact on supply, if necessary.

Cyber ​​security has been a major focus following two alarming incidents: the SolarWinds intrusion campaign by suspected Russian hackers that compromised nine US agencies and dozens of private organizations, and the Chinese hack of Microsoft Exchange server vulnerabilities. which has exposed tens of thousands of systems around the world. – as well as a high-profile, but unsuccessful, cyberattack in Florida earlier this year that sought to compromise a water treatment plant.
Ransomware attacks have worsened over the years, with recent targets as diverse as state and local governments, hospitals, and police departments. Cyber ​​attacks involve a type of malware that locks down a victim’s computer and renders it unusable until the victim pays the attacker, often in Bitcoin.

A spokesperson for the Department of Energy said the department “coordinates with Colonial Pipeline Company, the energy industry, states and interagency partners to provide situational awareness and support response efforts to this incident.”

“The DOE also works closely with the energy sector coordination councils and energy information sharing and analysis centers, and monitors any potential impact on the energy supply,” said the spokesperson in a statement to CNN.

Colonial said on Friday that it is “taking steps to understand and resolve this problem.”

“Right now our main focus is on the safe and efficient restoration of our service and our efforts to return to normal operation. This process is already underway, and we are working diligently to resolve this issue and minimize disruption to our customers and those who rely on Colonial Pipeline, ”the company said.

Colonial, founded in 1962, says it hauls about 45% of all fuel consumed on the East Coast. The more than 5,500 mile pipeline system has two main lines: one for gasoline and another for things like diesel and jet fuel.

The company also had to suspend its pipeline in 2017 when Hurricane Harvey hit the Gulf Coast. The pipeline was closed for 11 days in September 2016 due to an underground leak and in November 2016 due to a fatal fire that started along a section of the pipeline in Alabama.

This story was updated with additional developments on Saturday.

CNN’s Jamie Crawford, Brian Fung, Geneva Sands, Donald Judd and Arlette Saenz contributed to this report.

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Lily James & Sebastian Stan Channel Pamela Anderson & Tommy Lee For Hulu Limited Series

Lily James and Sebastian Stan are basically unrecognizable in the first photos of the pair transformed into Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee, respectively, for Hulu’s upcoming limited series “Pam & Tommy.”

Hulu has shared the first images of Sebastian Stan and Lily James as Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee for an upcoming limited series.

Hulu released the footage on Friday.

The series, which Hulu called “comedic,” will tell “the real story behind the release of the very first viral video in history – the Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee sex tape.”

The series, which does not yet have an official premiere date, also includes Seth Rogen, Nick Offerman, Taylor Schilling, Andrew Dice Clay, Pepi Sonuga, Spencer Granese and Mozhan Marnò.

Anderson and Lee married in 1995 and divorced in 1998. They have two sons together.

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Federal Grand Jury Charges 4 Former Minneapolis Police Officers In George Floyd Death

Tou Thao and J. Alexander Kueng were also charged with their failure to intervene in Chauvin’s use of unreasonable force, in accordance with the indictment. Chauvin, Thao, Kueng and the fourth officer, Thomas Lane, are all accused of failing to provide medical assistance to Floyd.

According to the indictment, “the defendants saw George Floyd lying on the ground, clearly in need of medical attention, and willfully failed to assist Floyd, thus acting with willful indifference in the face of substantial risk of harm to him. Floyd “.

What we know about the 2017 meeting that led to Derek Chauvin's second indictment

Chauvin was also indicted in a separate indictment relating to an incident in which he allegedly used unreasonable force on a 14-year-old Minneapolis in September 2017, the Department of Justice said in a statement on Friday.

The first count in this indictment states that Chauvin “held the teenager by the throat and hit him several times on the head with a flashlight,” according to the DOJ statement. A second count says he “held his knee to the teenager’s neck and upper back even after the teenager was lying on his stomach, handcuffed and without resistance, also resulting in bodily injury.”

CNN has reached out to lawyers for the four officers for comment. Chauvin’s attorney Eric Nelson declined to comment, as did Thomas Plunkett, an attorney representing Kueng. CNN has also reached out to the Minneapolis Police Department and the City Police Union for their comment.

Floyd’s death on May 25, 2020 sparked protests across the country against police brutality and racial injustice.

A viewer video showed Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds as the 46-year-old man, handcuffed and lying on his stomach in the street, gasped for breath, telling police, “I can’t not breathe. “
Trial juror Derek Chauvin said 'the evidence was overwhelming' against ex-policeman
Thao, Kueng and Lane were at the scene with Chauvin. They also face charges from the state, including aiding and abetting second degree murder and aiding and abetting second degree manslaughter. They have pleaded not guilty and their joint trial is scheduled to take place this summer.

The three former officers appeared with their attorneys in federal court on Friday via video conference, and all three were released on $ 25,000 bail. Chauvin, who awaits his conviction on state convictions in June, remains in detention.

The new federal charges are separate from the civilian investigation into Minneapolis policing practices announced by Attorney General Merrick Garland last month, the Justice Department said on Friday.

Lawyers representing Floyd’s family said in a statement they were “encouraged by these accusations and anxious to see continued justice in this historic case that will affect black citizens and all Americans for generations to come.”

The statement by civil rights attorneys Ben Crump, Antonio Romanucci and L. Chris Stewart said that “Derek Chauvin’s additional indictment shows a pattern and practice of behavior.”

Stewart told CNN’s Pamela Brown in an interview on Friday that they spoke with Garland after the charges and shared how the family reacted.

“It was emotional,” said Stewart. “They’re thrilled about it. We actually spoke to Attorney General Garland today, and I haven’t heard such passion or sympathy and intention from an Attorney General in a very long time. The first thing he started with was , he said no one is above the law and that meant a lot. “

Stewart added, “He just expressed his sympathy, and you could hear the intention in his voice and the determination to seek family justice. It meant a lot. We were very honored that he did this.”

Derek Chauvin's lawyer files a motion for a new trial

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, who has led the state’s prosecution of Chauvin, called the charges “entirely appropriate,” saying the federal government has “a responsibility to protect the civil rights of every American. and to pursue justice to the fullest extent of federal law. “

News of the indictments was celebrated by civil rights leaders and activists like Reverend Al Sharpton and the National Action Network, who said in a statement that the charges show that “we have a Justice Department that deals with police crime and does not excuse it “.

“For many years we have tried to get the federal government to make it clear that these crimes are not just state crimes, but violate civil rights at the federal level when the police engage in this type of behavior,” indicates the press release. “What we couldn’t get them to do in the case of Eric Garner, Michael Brown to Ferguson and countless others we are finally seeing them do today and it’s a significant development for those of between us who have been engaged in the struggle. and the police reform movement. “

Asked about the indictments on Friday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said they and Chauvin’s verdict were reminders that “there is still a lot to be done.”

“While this is a moment of righteousness, certainly it is only the beginning,” Psaki said. “And it’s a reminder of the need to bring in police reform through our legislative process and to put those reforms in place across the country.”

CNN’s Omar Jimenez, Christina Carrega, Dan Berman, Josh Campbell, Anna-Maja Rappard, Dave Alsup, Paul P. Murphy and Eric Levenson contributed to this report.

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WHO clears Chinese Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use

Empty tables and chairs are cordoned off outside a downtown restaurant during the lockdown in Chemnitz, Germany on May 6.
Empty tables and chairs are cordoned off outside a downtown restaurant during the lockdown in Chemnitz, Germany, May 6. Bodo Schackow / dpa / AP

The third wave of the coronavirus pandemic in Germany appears to be drawing to a close, the German Minister of Health said on Friday.

“The trend of the past few weeks has shown that the third wave appears to be over,” Jens Spahn said at a weekly health briefing, while adding a warning that if the number of infections increases, they are ” always at a very high level. ”

The country’s social distancing measures as well as the acceleration of the vaccination campaign have contributed to this trend, Spahn added.

The infection rate in Germany fell to less than 126 cases per 100,000 population in seven days, he said.

The incidence rate of coronavirus infections was declining in all age groups, Lothar Wieler, head of the German infectious disease agency Robert Koch Institute.

“The current development with a decrease in the number of infections, a slow decrease in the number of patients with Covid in intensive care units and the acceleration of the vaccination campaign is very positive and gives hope that we will soon control the pandemic, ”he said.

Meanwhile, new legislation in Germany will come into force this weekend, granting more freedoms to fully vaccinated people and those who have recovered from Covid-19.

These groups will no longer need a negative test if they want to go shopping, go to the hairdresser or visit a botanical garden. Those vaccinated will also be allowed to meet in private without restrictions. Quarantine after travel abroad will not be mandatory if fully inoculated, with some regional exceptions.

The government has said it is not about granting privileges but restoring constitutional rights, but opponents of the settlement fear it will create a two-class society.

After a hesitant start, Germany stepped up its vaccination program. Nearly 31% of people have received a first dose of the coronavirus vaccine and nearly 9% are fully vaccinated, the Robert Koch Institute said.

Earlier this week, Spahn said the government was working to provide a digital vaccination card to those who have been vaccinated by the end of June at the latest.

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Covid deaths could be double what we thought – Coronavirus Fact vs Fiction

Covid deaths could be double what we thought - Coronavirus Fact vs Fiction

The coronavirus has killed 6.9 million people, more than double the 3.2 million officially reported deaths worldwide, according to an analysis by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington (IHME).

With 574,000 deaths, the United States has reported more causes of Covid-19 than any other country. But the IHME report puts the death toll in the United States at more than 905,000 people, about 58% more.

The United States is not the only one undercounting deaths, the IHME said, adding that the death toll was “significantly underreported in almost every country. He noted, however, that the underreporting is “unintentional,” explaining that the varied screening capacity, overburdened health systems and unreported deaths at the start of the pandemic all contributed to the numbers discrepancy.

Compared to other countries, the US underreporting is “not bad,” IHME said, naming India and Mexico as two countries where the death toll is estimated to be around three times as high. higher than the reported official figures, according to which both would overtake Brazil. in coronavirus deaths.

India is estimated to surpass the United States in terms of total Covid-19 deaths in September, accounting for 1.4 million deaths, according to the model. Russia’s analysis predicts an even more drastic gap, with the estimated total number of deaths there more than five times higher than reported, placing the country in fifth place for the highest number of deaths in the world .

For its analysis, the IHME compared countries’ excess mortality rates to expected mortality rates.


Q: Advice on masks is confusing. Who should wear one and when?

A: There are different rules in many parts of the world and it is always a good idea to follow the guidelines of your health authority. The situation is also complicated by the fact that in many countries some people are vaccinated and others are not. A consensus is developing, however, that you can relax using masks if you’re outside and not in a crowded place. This is based on the science of the spread of the coronavirus.

As a general rule, you should always wear a face shield in indoor public places and outdoors if you cannot maintain a safe distance from other people. Of course, people who have been fully immunized can be even more relaxed.

Dr Leana Wen explains more in this short video.
Send your questions here. Are you a health worker fighting Covid-19? Message us on WhatsApp about the challenges you are facing: +1 347-322-0415.


India continues with $ 1.8 billion construction plan as hospitals struggle to stay afloat

As India’s second wave continues to claim the lives of more than 3,000 people a day, stretching its healthcare system past breaking point and leaving patients to die outside overwhelmed clinics, the Prime Minister Indian Narendra Modi is moving forward with a $ 1.8 billion parliament renovation plan.

Modi’s decision to go ahead with the project – which is expected to employ around 46,700 people and could serve as a mass-market event – is the latest in a series of moves that opponents (and a growing section of the public) say the insensitivity of the government’s response to Covid-19.

Last month, as India headed on the brink of a humanitarian crisis, Modi and members of his BJP party continued to organize large-scale election rallies and authorized the month-long Hindu festival, Kumbh Mela – that attracts tens of millions of pilgrims to four hubs – moving forward.

As the country reported 414,188 new cases of Covid-19 on Friday – its highest daily record – critics of the prime minister expressed their frustrations on Twitter, with some comparisons between Modi and Nero, the Roman Emperor who the legend, fiddled with while Rome burned down.

Opinion: With vaccine patent waiver in sight, time to rethink intellectual property rules

The Biden administration backed a plan to waive patents on Covid-19 vaccines on Wednesday. The proposal, first presented by South Africa and India in October 2020, aims to temporarily lift certain intellectual property rights owned by pharmaceutical companies so that other countries can develop generic versions of the drugs.

Ironically, the patent system was supposed to improve public welfare, writes Ruth L. Okediji, Jeremiah Smith Jr. professor of law at Harvard Law School. In practice, however, the system has enabled the creation of drugs that pharmaceutical companies can sell at high prices, to patients who can afford them, and largely for diseases prevalent in wealthy countries.

Germany stands firm against relinquishment of vaccine patents

German officials say they oppose waiving patents for Covid-19 vaccines, throwing wrench into plan presented by India and South Africa, and backed by the United States this week, to facilitate an exchange vaccine formulas. The hope would be that this decision would reduce the immunization gap between rich and poor countries.

A German government spokesperson on Thursday said the country had opposed the measure, adding that “intellectual property protection is a source of innovation” and that the Biden administration’s decision would have ” important implications for vaccine production “. Germany argues that the current manufacturing constraints for Covid-19 are due to production capacity and high quality standards, not a patent issue.


  • Businesses, universities, and states in the US are offering alcohol, baseball, and bonds in a creative attempt to convince those holding the vaccine to get the shot.
  • Australia is dropping its controversial entry ban on anyone who has been to India in the past 14 days. From May 15, it will now allow citizens and permanent residents who have stayed there to return.
  • Florida’s new law prohibiting companies from asking if employees or customers have been vaccinated could negatively impact its cruise operations, with the CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line saying he could suspend departures from Florida and relocate his ships elsewhere.
  • A California bar owner who allegedly sold fake Covid-19 vaccine cards at his business has been charged with several crimes, including forgery and identity theft.
  • The guidelines for wearing masks in the United States have been relaxed. But some people want to keep wearing them. Here’s why.


Many people are still hesitant to take a vaccine when offered one, and some people are wary of the new mRNA technology used in Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna injections. So how can you help insure friends and family who are on the fence?

The key is to explain the science. CNN chief medical correspondent Dr Sanjay Gupta points out that mRNA technology is older than some people think. Part of the reason these vaccines came out so quickly is that they were already in development after the SARS outbreak in the early 2000s.

SARS was not as widespread as feared, so researchers halted vaccine development in this area. But that meant that when Covid-19 emerged, much of the preparatory work was already done.

That aside, there are reasons to feel optimistic and trust these vaccines. Clinical trial data and now real world data – with hundreds of millions of people now having these photos taken – shows that they are very effective in preventing serious Covid-19 disease and that side effects are minimal .

“The safety data around these vaccines is among the most rigorous, really, of all the medical therapies available,” Gupta said. Click here for a video of Gupta answering other questions about Covid-19.

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A tiny dinosaur hunted in the dark and heard better than an owl

That’s one of the findings of two groundbreaking studies released Thursday that examined and reconstructed the inner ears of ancient fossilized beasts and compared them to the ear canals of living animals.

The results offer intriguing insights into how dinosaurs may have experienced their world, especially whether they were nocturnal hunters, attentive parents, clumsy travelers, or dwellers of the earth.

“Of all the structures that can be reconstructed from fossils, the inner ear is perhaps the one that most resembles a mechanical device,” said paleontologist Bhart-Anjan Bhullar, lead author of one. new studies published in the journal Science, in a press release.

“It is entirely dedicated to a particular set of functions. If you are able to reconstruct its shape, you can reasonably draw conclusions about the actual behavior of extinct animals in an almost unprecedented way,” said Bhullar, assistant professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences and an Assistant Curator at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History.

It & # 39; s  is about  a reconstruction of  artist of Shuvuuia deserti by Viktor Radermaker.

Both studies used computerized tomography (CT) scanning technology to scan rock and bones to visualize and model the inner ear, which is located deep within an animal’s skull. This means that it is often well preserved and protected in fossils, but also difficult to access for paleontologists.

“Until recently, the advances presented by these teams of authors were unthinkable, as many aspects of internal anatomy and certainly their connection to habits such as parental care and patterns of daily activity were out of reach, ”said Lawrence Witmer, professor of paleontology. and anatomy in the Department of Biomedical Sciences, Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, Ohio University, in an article accompanying the studies. Witmer was not involved in the research.

Night hunter

The traditional scientist the opinion of the dinosaurs was that they were mainly active during the day. Anatomical evidence that would suggest sensory innovations – like acute sight and hearing – necessary for hunting prey at night has gone unnoticed in the fossil record and has been clouded by a lingering assumption that dinosaurs were cold-blooded creatures.
In the second study, Lars Schmitz, associate professor of biology at the WM Keck Science Center at Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps Colleges, collaborated with a team of international researchers to collect detailed information on the relative sizes of the eyes and inner ears of nearly 100 species of living birds and extinct dinosaurs.
Scientists specifically looked at the lagena, which processes sound information entering the ear. (This structure corresponds to the cochlea in mammals and modern-day birds and crocodiles.) The team also measured the ring of bones that make up the orbit. The larger the eye, the larger the pupil, which means more light can enter, which allows for better night vision.
Hungry teenage bullies help explain puzzling fact about dinosaur diversity

Researchers found that a small dinosaur, Shuvuuia deserti, had proportionately larger pupils than any living bird or dinosaur and an inner ear similar to that of a barn owl. These characteristics suggested that it was a highly specialized night hunter, said. Therapod – the same family as T. rex and a lineage that eventually evolved into living birds, the chicken-sized creature is believed to have lived in very dry habitats in what is now Mongolia about 66 million years old.

“It’s a little strange dinosaur”, Schmitz mentionned. “What we are seeing are very large pupils, an elongated internal ear canal. Hypersensitive eyes. It really rivals today’s nocturnal specialists like barn owls and bats.”

“We think he would have stalked his prey – small mammals – at night when the temperatures were cooler.”

The team found that many carnivorous theropods such as the Tyrannosaurus had optimized daytime vision and above-average hearing, likely to help them hunt. Other dinosaurs such as Velociraptor, the predatory carnivore made famous by the “Jurassic Park” movie franchise, may have been active at dusk, Schmitz mentionned.

Shuvuuia deserti lived in very dry habitats in what is now Mongolia about 66 million years ago.

Dedicated parents?

Using computed tomography technology to determine its three-dimensional shape, Bhullar’s study compared the inner ear of 128 different living and fossilized animals, including Hesperornis, an 85-million-year-old bird species that has teeth. and a beak; the Velociraptor; and the flying pterosaur Anhanguera.

Researchers have found groups of different species with similar inner ear traits. The clusters, the team said, corresponded to different ways the animals moved and viewed the world.

This fossil reveals how dinosaurs urinated, pooped and had sex

For example, one group included restless or clumsy fliers like modern chickens and ducks, which fly in fast, straight gusts, and seabirds and vultures. The inner ears of the bird-like dinosaurs called troodontids, pterosaurs, flying reptiles, Hesperornis and Archeopteryx “dino-bird” were part of this group, suggesting that they had a simple flight ability but perhaps did not have any. not be flown gracefully through the air.

Bhullar and his team at Yale also identified a group of a large group of species, including all modern birds and crocodiles, known as archosaurs, which had a similar elongation in the lower part of the inner ear – the cochlear system – which has been associated with greater hearing sensitivity, especially at higher locations. The living animals in this group have a very complex vocal repertoire, explained Bhullar, who said the common ancestors of crocodiles and birds probably sang too.

While this could be explained as an evolutionary adaptation to locate prey, avoid predators or communication, the authors said their analysis suggested it was more likely related to parental care – allowing the creatures to respond to their acute calls. offspring to grab their attention (think birds chirping in a nest).

Recent technological advancements, like the CT scans used in these studies, offer scientists more possibilities for future discoveries, Witmer said. “Teeth and limbs will always provide clues to reconstruct evolutionary histories,” he said. “But relatively new anatomical players like the inner ear and the bony eye rings are opening new windows to the past.”

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This rare jewel up for auction once belonged to Napoleon’s daughter

Written by Jacqui Palumbo, CNN

A rare set of nine jewels once belonging to Stéphanie de Beauharnais, Grand Duchess of Baden and adopted daughter of Napoleon Bonaparte, is auctioned 200 years after the death of the French Emperor.

The sapphire and diamond set includes a tiara, earrings, ring, bracelet and pendants. They will be sold individually at Christie’s in Geneva on May 12, with high estimates ranging from 10,000 to 250,000 Swiss francs ($ 11,000 to $ 275,430) per piece. The tiara and bracelet jewels – which were once part of a belt – have been remodeled by the Grand Duchess’s daughter, Princess Josephine.

The tiara was once a belt but was remodeled by the daughter of the Grand Duchess.

The tiara was once a belt but was remodeled by the daughter of the Grand Duchess. Credit: Courtesy of Christie’s

“Under Napoleon’s court, jewelry was a staple of fashion and women wore matching tiaras, necklaces, bracelets, brooches, rings, earrings and belts decorated with precious stones,” Christie specialist Lukas Biehler said in an email. “Fashion dictated that the waist was very high on dresses and court ladies needed a belt, which was placed just below the neckline. High quality sapphires were incredibly rare as it was long before the era of industrial mining. “

Christie’s sale also includes a crown of sapphires and diamonds that once belonged to 19th-century Portuguese monarch Maria II, whose daughter, Infanta Antónia, eventually married Stephanie de Beauharnais’ grandson, Prince Leopold of Hohenzollern. The high Crown estimate is 350,000 Swiss francs ($ 385,602).

The crown of Maria II, whose daughter married Stéphanie de Beauharnais' grandson, is also part of Christie's sale.

The crown of Maria II, whose daughter married Stéphanie de Beauharnais’ grandson, is also part of Christie’s sale. Credit: Courtesy of Christie’s

The Beauharnais set was made in the early 1800s from 38 sapphires originating in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), according to a press release from Christie’s. The earrings are crafted with pear and cushion shaped sapphires, while the necklace is made from octagonal sapphires, all rimmed with diamonds.

A written note found with the jewelry boxes indicated that the cousin of the Grand Duchess of Baden, Hortense de Beauharnais, had given her the set, according to Christie’s.

“It is possible that Stephanie bought her dear cousin’s adornment,” said Biehler, pointing out the close relationship between the two which has been documented through their numerous letters, which reside in the collection of the Fondation Napoléon in Paris.

The nine-piece set, including this brooch, was most likely given to the Grand Duchess by her cousin.

The nine-piece set, including this brooch, was most likely given to the Grand Duchess by her cousin. Credit: Courtesy of Christie’s

The jewelry is similar in style to an emerald and diamond necklace and earring housed in the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, believed to have been a gift from Napoleon and his wife Josephine to the Grand Duchess. According to the museum’s description, “the large stones and the simplicity of the design are typical of the jewels favored at the court of Napoleon”.

It is believed that the set of Victoria & Albert Museum, which is also part of a larger finery, was a wedding gift for her arranged marriage to the Grand Duke of Baden in 1806. Napoleon himself did not have of direct heirs at the time of his death.

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United States supports relinquishment of vaccine patents. Now what? – Facts about the coronavirus versus fiction

His government bowed to pressure on Wednesday as members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) discussed a proposal by India and South Africa last October to waive patents for vaccines and Covid-19 treatments. No decision has been made, but America’s backing could turn the tide on a WTO decision.

“The Administration strongly believes in intellectual property protections, but in the service of the end of this pandemic, it supports the lifting of these protections for COVID-19 vaccines,” wrote US Trade Representative Katherine Tai in a statement. .

Some experts say that even with patent waivers, much of the developing world does not necessarily have the means to produce vaccines on the scale needed. There is an urgent need to simply share more vaccines from the rich world and transfer the technology to help poorer countries make injections later.

As the United States gets ahead with its immunization schedule – 32% of its population is now fully immunized – many poor countries are struggling to get doses of vaccine for their elderly and most vulnerable by the through purchase agreements or COVAX, a global vaccine sharing initiative. , Writes Laura Smith-Spark.

India, on the other hand, has fully immunized just over 2% of its population, or around 30 million people. It has administered more than 160 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine since mid-January, but doses are now scarce for its nearly 1.4 billion people.

India has become the new epicenter of the pandemic, regularly destroying daily records of infection and death. Clarissa Ward of CNN has witnessed the devastating impact on health care systems in India on the brink of collapse. Relatives are trying to resuscitate loved ones in hospitals where overworked doctors simply can’t give everyone the attention – or oxygen and ventilators – they need.


Q: Will waiving vaccine patents help end the pandemic?

A: Activists and some world leaders say this is the only way to speed up access to Covid-19 vaccines for developing countries at a time when richer countries have bought the lion’s share of the global supply. But some say what is really needed is technology transfer.

“It’s not just a question of intellectual property. It’s also the transfer of know-how,” Thomas Bollyky, director of the global health program at the Council on Foreign Relations, told CNN. “I don’t think there is clear evidence that a waiver of intellectual property will be the best way for this transfer of technology to occur.”

That’s because patent waivers won’t work the same for vaccines as they do for drugs, Bollyky said. For example, with anti-HIV drugs, manufacturers were more or less able to reverse-ingest them without much help from the original developer, whereas with vaccines, “it’s really a process. organic as much as a product ”.

The deal between AstraZeneca and the Serum Institute of India is a successful example of such technology transfer, said Bollyky, where the licensing of intellectual property was done on a voluntary basis. “The question is, what can we do to facilitate more agreements like the one between AstraZeneca and the Serum Institute of India to achieve this transfer,” he said.

Nonetheless, the waiver of intellectual property rights will contribute to a global effort to ensure a sustainable and long-term supply of vaccines, according to the director general of the World Health Organization, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu, who said in march that it should be part of a global program. holistic approach to the fight against the virus. “We have to do everything,” he said.

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Data shows Pfizer and Moderna may work with multiple variants

Vaccine makers are trying to get ahead of new variants. The new mRNA technology used in the Moderna and Pfizer images makes it easier to adapt them to the new variants. Here is what we know.

Pfizer / BioNTech: A study from Qatar found an estimated 89.5% efficacy against the British variant of B.1.1.7 two weeks or more after a second dose, the researchers wrote in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine. It was 75% effective against B.1.351, the variant first identified in South Africa, which is good news, as the first real data showed that some other vaccines did not work against it. More importantly, the vaccine was over 97% effective in preventing serious illness or death, they said.

Moderna: This vaccine enhances the immune response against B.1.351 and the P.1 variant first identified in Brazil, Moderna said in a statement. The genetic material used as the basis of vaccines is made in a laboratory and the sequence is easily changed. Moderna tested booster doses of its current vaccine or a version designed specifically against B.1.351 in 40 people who had been vaccinated six to eight months previously.

Blood tests showed that half of these volunteers had a weak antibody response against the B.1.351 and P.1 variants before receiving the booster. Two weeks after the booster, their antibody levels had increased against the so-called wild-type coronavirus – the most common variant in the world – as well as B.1.351 and P.1, Moderna said in the statement.

Nepal’s cases are multiplying. There is a concern that this may soon reflect India.

Nepal is in the grip of a worrying second wave, with Covid-19 cases skyrocketing, hospitals overwhelmed and the country’s prime minister calling on other countries for help. The rapid spread of the virus has raised fears that Nepal is on the brink of a crisis just as devastating as India’s – if not worse, report Asha Thapa, Julia Hollingsworth and Sophie Joeng.

“What is happening in India right now is a horrific glimpse into the future of Nepal if we cannot contain this latest wave of Covid which is claiming more lives per minute,” said the president of the Red Cross Nepalese, Dr. Netra Prasad Timsina.

Daily infections in Nepal started to increase in mid-April, several weeks after the start of the second wave in India. Today, these cases are increasing at an exponential rate, with a seven-fold increase in cases per 100,000 people in just two weeks. Last weekend, 44% of Covid tests in Nepal came back positive, according to government figures, with more than 8,600 new cases on average reported daily. Of particular concern is how Nepal’s fragile health system will cope, given that it has fewer doctors per capita than India and a lower vaccination rate than its neighbor.

Meanwhile, at least 19 climbers have been evacuated from an expedition to Dhaulagiri, the world’s seventh highest peak, after four people tested positive for Covid-19 at base camp. And fears are growing that Covid-19 could complicate the climbing season at Mt. Everest.

Some have predicted a pandemic baby boom. In the United States, it was a baby bust.

Americans are just not in the mood. The birth rate in the country fell significantly in the last quarter of 2020 – by more than 6% – compared to the same period the year before, in the first sign that the pandemic has been more collapsed than boom in the baby manufacturing department.

December 2020 is the first month signs of a baby boom may have emerged, roughly nine months after the lockdowns went into effect. A more detailed breakdown of government birth data also shows that the largest decline in births occurred in December, writes Catherine E. Shoichet.

The data confirms what some experts predicted earlier – that fewer births would slow population growth in the country, already hit by rising deaths and declining immigration.


Employees of an Indonesian pharmaceutical company have been accused of washing and repackaging nasal swab kits for passengers at Kualanamu International Airport in the city of Medan.
  • Up to 10,000 air passengers at an airport in Sumatra, Indonesia, may have been tested for Covid-19 with reused nasal swabs in a scam that lasted four months, police said.
  • The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has listed the coronavirus variant B.1.617 first detected in India as a “variant of interest.” Here is what it means.
  • Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has called on China to withdraw 1,000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine just two days after receiving the vaccine itself. The vaccine is not authorized in the country.
  • Hospitals in the Japanese prefecture of Osaka no longer have beds available for patients with severe Covid-19, with bed occupancy rates exceeding capacity on Wednesday.
  • New Zealand has suspended non-quarantine travel arrangements for flights from Australia’s most populous state of New South Wales after an outbreak in Sydney.


Many countries have reported an increase in calls to child abuse helplines as the pandemic has kept children at home for long periods of time.

In the United States, researchers evaluated calls and texts to the national Childhelp child abuse hotline from March to May 2020 and compared them to the same time period in 2019. The team found an increase of 13 , 75% of the total number of requests made to the hotline from 2019 to 2020, according to a study published Monday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.

Everyone should be on the lookout for signs of child abuse, experts say, not just social workers, child care or education. It’s important to report abuse as soon as it’s detected because it can cause permanent damage to the developing brain and can contribute to lifelong health problems, said Dr. Suzanne Haney, Chairman of the Board of the American. Academy of Pediatrics on Child Abuse and Neglect, in an email.

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