Government has approved some US0,000 into a study that would seek to determine if natural gas could be utilised for electricity generation.Minister of State Joseph Harmon said the proposal by Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson was given approval by Cabinet on Tuesday.The two-month desk study will be undertaken by Energy Narrative, a United States oil and gas consultancy firm.During the eight-week period, energy work will seek to verify natural gas supply projections, verify natural gas demands projections, analyse the technical feasibility of the proposed natural gas pipeline, compare the proposed natural gas pipeline with other transportation media, analyse the technical feasibility of existing power generation equipment, integrating new gas fired electricity generation equipment, analyse the cost to deliver natural gas and estimated impact on electricity prices and prepare the interim report.Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman on Wednesday evening told the local business community that the Government has decided to bring the natural gas to shore.The latest information from ExxonMobil, which will be producing Guyana’s first oil, quantifies the available natural gas, which was found along with the oil, at around 30-50 million cubic feet per day.Trotman said that amount can provide a 200 megawatt generation plant.However, Government is still to decide how the natural gas will be used.The considerations for the use of the gas include generating electricity, and fuelling the alumina plant if it is resuscitated or used in industry.Minister Trotman said those are decisions that have to be made along with the decision on where the gas will go if there was going to be a pipeline along the coast whether from Georgetown to Crab Island.The company has submitted its financial and technical proposals to the Government, Minister Harmon noted.
Tigers end WVC season with 2-3 recordBy Paul LeckerSports ReporterMARSHFIELD — Bryce Gadke and Jacob Limmex each won in straight sets, and the Marshfield boys tennis team finished its Wisconsin Valley Conference regular-season schedule with a 4-3 win over Wisconsin Rapids on Thursday at the Boson Courts.Gadke won at the No. 1 singles and Limmex at No. 2 by identical 6-3, 6-3 scores.Dylan Handrich and Sam Trudeau won in straight sets at No. 1 doubles, and Tanner Boson and Tom Kruger won in three sets, 6-2, 6-7 (3), 6-3, at No. 3 doubles for Marshfield’s other two wins.The Tigers finish the WVC dual meet schedule with a 2-3 record. Marshfield will compete at the Tomah Quad on Saturday and at the Wisconsin Valley Conference Tournament on Tuesday at Wausau East and West high schools.(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)Marshfield 4, Wisconsin Rapids 3Singles: 1. Bryce Gadke (M) def. Dane Steidl 6-3, 6-3; 2. Jacob Limmex (M) def. Zach Gilmaster 6-3, 6-3; 3. Tyler Wolosek (WR) def. John Weisenberger 6-2, 5-7, 6-1; 4. Ryan Graczkowski (WR) def. Tyler Droste 6-1, 6-1.Doubles: 1. Dylan Handrich-Sam Trudeau (M) def. Josh Beyer-Stevie Hanzlik 6-3, 6-1; 2. Sam O’Shasky-Shane Glinski (WR) def. Austin Christianson-Jared Draxler 6-1, 6-1; 3. Tanner Boson-Tom Kruger (M) def. Luke Mertes-Marcus Bean 6-2, 6-7 (3), 6-3.Records: Wisconsin Rapids 1-4; Marshfield 2-3.
A pair of old fishing buddies is now steering the ship at the Scripps Research Institute, one of the world’s largest private basic biomedical research institutes. Today, Steve Kay, formerly the dean of the college of arts and sciences at the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles was announced as Scripps’s president, whereas Peter Schultz, currently a Scripps chemist and director of the California Institute for Biomedical Research (Calibr) in San Diego, was named CEO. Kay will be in charge of day-to-day operations, whereas Schultz will lay out Scripps’s long-term strategic plan.The announcement likely brings to a close a contentious chapter at Scripps, which has campuses in San Diego, California, and Jupiter, Florida. Just over a year ago, Scripps faculty led a revolt against the institute’s former leadership amid financial troubles and merger discussions with USC. The appointments also portend a new push aimed at marrying the institute’s historical strength in basic biomedical research with translational medicine designed to turn research leads into novel treatments.“It’s a very exciting move,” says Peter Kim, formerly the head of the Merck Research Laboratories and now a biochemist at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. In addition to running Calibr, Schultz previously led the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation (GNF), and has been a founder of eight startups involved in using robotics and other high throughput technologies to advance biomedicine and materials science. Before joining USC, Kay also worked with Schultz at Scripps and GNF. Together the pair has raised well over $1 billion in backing from pharma companies, foundations, and private donations in their recent positions.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Scripps is “very fortunate” to have landed both to share the top duties at the institute, Kim says. Phil Baran, a Scripps chemist and member of the search committee that selected Kay and Schultz, agrees. “I think everyone here will be relieved that we have icons charting the course of the ship, which will let us go back to doing science,” he says.The ship’s previous course got a bit turbulent. Last July, Scripps’s board of trustees called off merger talks with USC after the Scripps faculty revolted. The potential marriage was offered as a way out of the red for Scripps, which had seen a sharp drop in research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). USC at the time was flush, in the midst of a $6 billion capital campaign. The university also has a medical school, which meant potentially easier access to clinical research for Scripps’s stable of basic biomedical researchers. But Scripps faculty feared loss of autonomy and objected loudly to news of the merger talks. Ultimately, Scripps’s then-President and CEO Michael Marletta resigned, cell biologist Jim Paulson was named as an interim president and CEO, and a search committee was formed to find a new direction.An emphasis on translationThe centerpiece of this new direction, say Kay and Schultz, will be a long-term push into translational research. Like most academic institutions, today Scripps sticks mainly to basic research, discovering the molecular underpinnings of health and disease. Pharmaceutical companies, by contrast, focus most of their efforts at the other end of the drug development pipeline, moving potential drug compounds through human clinical trials into the market. The space between basic science and drug approval—the translational piece—has come to be known as the “valley of death,” because many promising findings never make it to market. Translational researchers must take promising early-stage compounds and go through a host of refinements to improve measures such as how long compounds last in the body and how well they move through the bloodstream, find their targets, and minimize their toxicity.Kay and Schultz say they plan to form alliances with Calibr and other institutes to ease the path for Scripps faculty to do much of this translational research in house. By doing so, they say, this will ensure that more compounds make it into human trials, bring extra licensing royalties into the institute, and, ultimately, improve the lives of patients. “If we are successful, not only are we making new medicines that can help people, we are potentially creating additional financial resources [for Scripps],” Schultz says.Scripps already has a strong track record for getting medicines into the clinic. According to the institute, eight compounds originally discovered at Scripps are now on the market, while another 30 are in various stages of clinical development. Those were developed, in part, as a byproduct of previous alliances in which pharmaceutical companies payed for rights to develop would-be drugs discovered at Scripps, as well as through the more traditional approach of licensing early-stage compounds to startup companies that then raise money to develop them further.That model, particularly finding institutional backing from pharma companies, “probably no longer works,” Schultz says. Today, large pharma companies are more averse to risking money on unproven therapies, and thus more apt to sit on the sidelines until compounds advance at least until early-stage human clinical trials. That forces biotech companies that license compounds to do much of the translational research themselves, something they aren’t always best suited to do.To make matters worse, when research institutes license their promising compounds very early in development, the terms of such deals often aren’t great for the basic researchers. The institute doesn’t get much money, and researchers lose control over what happens to their compounds, says Patrick Griffin, who runs a translational research center at Scripps in Florida. Many compounds then go on to fail—not because they aren’t effective, Griffin adds, but because companies decide to move in a different business direction. “If you can move a [would-be drug] along in a nonprofit, you can nurture it so it has a better opportunity to advance,” Griffin says. “Fewer will fail, and you will have more shots on goal,” of making it to market, he says.Those extra shots are critical, Griffin and others say, because 95% of all would-be drugs fail during development. When costs of the failures are added in, the price of bringing a new drug to market is well over $1 billion. That has not only caused large pharma companies to back away from early-stage drug discovery, but it has forced them to pursue primarily large-market blockbuster drugs for common conditions such as heart disease and cancer, while avoiding medicines for rare diseases.As a nonprofit focused on translational research, Calibr has already begun to change this arrangement in a small way. Today, the institute, which opened in 2012, has a staff of only about 110 people and an annual budget of some $25 million. But thanks to early progress on would-be drugs for neglected diseases, Calibr has already attracted funding from nonprofit foundations such as the Wellcome Trust, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Schultz says the institute expects to put four to six drugs into the clinic over the next year or two.Cutting costsSchultz and Kay plan to take more immediate actions to shore up Scripps’s finances. According to a July report by Fitch, a bond rating agency, Scripps’ finances are “stable.” But the institute has operated in the red for years, and has been forced to cover its deficit by drawing down its endowment, which shrunk from $430 million in fiscal year 2012 to $397 million in fiscal year 2014.One move that could save $12 million annually would be to replace nearly 37,000 square meters of leased lab space with two newly constructed buildings owned by Scripps. Schultz and Kay say they continue to explore an existing plan to raise more than $100 million to pay for the buildings. “That would have a big impact pretty quick,” Griffin says. But ultimately, he says, Scripps’s stability will be decided on how effective Schultz and Kay are in hooking together formerly disparate parts of the drug development pipeline, and how many would-be drugs the fishing buddies manage to snare in their net.*Correction, 18 September, 3:07 p.m.: This story incorrectly identified Scripps as the world’s largest basic biomedical research institute. It is among the world’s largest private biomedical research institutes.
If you can tell French Chardonnay from Italian, you might have an annoying insect to thank. Microbes that live on grape plants—specifically, yeast of the species Saccharomyces cerevisiae—vary from place to place in ways that cause subtle but detectable differences in the taste of the resulting wine. Now, researchers have found that different strains of the yeast mingle and mate like crazy inside the guts of hibernating wasps. The findings suggest that wasps might help to foster yeast biodiversity, with important implications for ecology and industry.S. cerevisiae is one of the most widely cultivated fungi in the world—used not only in winemaking, but also in baking, brewing, and lab experiments. But researchers have known little about its ecology in the wild, where it grows on ripe fruit.Thanks to the new results, reported online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, they know a lot more. “It’s the first evidence that shows that in the gut environment, S. cerevisiae can [produce spores], germinate, and mate,” says Duccio Cavalieri, a biologist at the University of Florence in Italy, who led the project.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)When Cavalieri and his collaborators first reported finding yeast in wasp intestines in a 2012 paper, they speculated that wasps feeding on yeasty grapes might transfer the yeast from fruit to fruit during warmer months and provide a safe place for it to wait out the winter. But they didn’t know what happened to the yeast during its months inside a hibernating wasp.To find out, they fed European paper wasps five different strains of S. cerevisiae each. After letting the wasps hibernate for as long as 4 months, they compared the gut-dwelling yeast with colonies that came from the same starting strains but were grown in the lab instead. The different S. cerevisiae strains from the wasps had bred with each other just as much as they had in the controls. In addition, some of the wasps’ S. cerevisiae strains had mated with S. paradoxus, a related species of wild yeast that doesn’t normally breed with S. cerevisiae in the wild.Together, the results show that the wasp’s belly is more than just a holding chamber for yeast. The yeast are “living, dying, battling for resources, all within this wasp,” says Anne Madden, a microbiologist at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and North Carolina State University in Raleigh, who was not involved in the study.The fact that S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus were able to mate inside the wasps means the gut environment could propagate hybrid strains that wouldn’t otherwise occur, the researchers argue.The findings suggest that wasps may be much more important than usually thought, Madden says. “What’s often perceived as a pest species by humans can have incredible relevance, not only to our understanding of greater ecology, but in terms of having real commercial and industrial value,” she says. “What we’re beginning to learn is that there’s wide unexplored world of microbes and bugs—insects, spiders, mites.”For instance, beers and wines have regional flavor difference influenced in part by their microbes, including yeasts. “Maintaining this uniqueness requires maintaining the uniqueness of the microbial communities,” says Cavalieri, who comes from a long line of vintners. Wasps could help. But he also thinks there’s a larger ecological context for the work.“We normally wage chemical warfare against insects all over the place,” he says. “What our findings are basically saying is that if we continue killing the wasps, we lose a fundamental part of the ecological cycle.” Cavalieri’s team is investigating whether similar processes occur in other insects, such as ants.Not everyone is convinced. Matthew Goddard, a biologist at the University of Lincoln in the United Kingdom, and the University of Auckland in New Zealand, notes that the team didn’t directly demonstrate that the yeast reproduced within the gut. But Cavalieri says his group’s microbiology techniques make it extremely unlikely that the yeast formed cross-species hybrids after they were removed from the wasps.
The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
Posted on November 18, 2010November 13, 2014Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, The Lancet, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the Harvard School of Public Health, and the University of Queensland School of Population Health invite submission of abstracts for oral or poster presentations at the Global Health Metrics & Evaluation: Controversies, Innovation, Accountability conference, to be held on March 14–16, 2011 in Seattle, WA, USA.The peer-review process will be organized by The Lancet. Accepted abstracts will be published in a booklet and on The Lancet‘s website. The GHME Organizing Committee will cover the registration fee, air travel, and accommodation expenses during the conference dates for all individuals whose abstracts are selected for an oral presentation and for some individuals whose abstracts are selected for a poster session. Students and participants from low-or middle-income countries whose abstracts are accepted for the poster session will be given priority for financial support. Please submit your abstract as an attached Microsoft Word document to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than December 6, 2010. Participants will be informed of the acceptance of abstracts for oral or poster presentation no later than Jan. 24, 2011. For more information about the GHME 2011 conference, please visit the conference website ghme.org.Share this: Topics A broad range of topics related to health metrics and evaluation will be covered during the conference. Abstracts can be submitted on the following topics:The latest approaches to measuring maternal mortalityTransitions in non-communicable diseases in rich and poor countriesControversies in the burden of malariaTrends in health inequalities Integrated surveillance systems Responsible data sharing and strengthening country capacity for analysis New quantitative tools for priority settingThe next generation of metrics for health-system performanceGuidelines for abstract submission250-300 words in lengthWritten in EnglishAbstracts should include the following:Background/introductionObjective Methodology Results Conclusions/recommendations Please indicate whether the abstract is being submitted for consideration as:An oral presentation A poster Either an oral presentation or a poster ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Man Utd captain Young: Maguire already a leaderby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United captain Ashley Young says Harry Maguire is already a squad leader.Maguire was jeered by Leicester City fans throughout United’s 1-0 win at Old Trafford yesterday, but the £80million centre back responded with a fine performance to help his side to a second clean sheet of the season.”You know, I think the manager’s said about him, he talks non-stop, he’s a real leader and he can play as well,” said Young.”The style of play we use, we use the centre-halves a lot to play out from the back and everybody has got confidence in him. And everybody has confidence in Victor [Lindelof], Jonah [Phil Jones], Marcos [Rojo] – all the defenders, all the centre-backs can go in there and do the job.”Again he showed today what a man he is, and I think as a backline we played a really good game.”
COLUMBUS, OH – NOVEMBER 03: A general view as the Ohio State Buckeyes enters the field before the game against the Wisconsin Badgers on November 3, 2007 at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State defeated Wisconsin 38-17. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)Note to graduate assistants everywhere – most of you cannot stop a collegiate running back who is running at full speed. In the below video, posted by OSU assistant Corey Dennis, graduate assistant Brian Mason, who is standing on the sideline, gets absolutely trucked by a Buckeyes running back during practice. He does his best to brace himself beforehand, but it doesn’t really seem to matter.It looks like the staff is having some fun with the clip. Enjoy:The @S1LVERBULLETS might need to find a new coach… @Mason_BM pic.twitter.com/tGg3WBHe3a— Corey Dennis (@Coreydennis_) December 16, 2015OMG…. https://t.co/fkgZRfFDu8— Mark Pantoni (@markpantoni) December 16, 2015
According to Mr. Samuda, the three-day international trade show, conceptualised and executed by the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association (JMA) in Montego Bay, was not only a huge success but provided an opportunity for many local businesses to access the global marketplace. In the meantime, President of the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce, T’Shura Gibbs, said the event was remarkable. Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Karl Samuda, says the recently held Jamaica International Exhibition (JIE) was a major boost for manufacturing and the services sector.According to Mr. Samuda, the three-day international trade show, conceptualised and executed by the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association (JMA) in Montego Bay, was not only a huge success but provided an opportunity for many local businesses to access the global marketplace.“This was a remarkable expo. This is the kind of trade show that our country needs and where our local business owners get to rub shoulders with their overseas counterparts,” the Minister told JIS News.Mr. Samuda said he knew that the JMA and its team had put in a lot of work to make the event a reality, but he was a “little surprised at how extraordinarily well the turnout was, especially for an inaugural event”.The Minister, who also toured and interacted with all the booth holders on June 2, said that not only was the JIE a big breakthrough for a number of local businesses, “it also provided another opportunity for brand Jamaica to be showcased in an international forum and one befitting of its status as a global powerhouse”.“The JIE has not only opened doors; it has also created the opening where local businesses can now build on the contacts they have made, ensuring that, from now on, they will know where to go and who to call on, as it relates to doing business on the global front,” Mr. Samuda said.In the meantime, President of the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce, T’Shura Gibbs, said the event was remarkable.“The JMA and all who assisted in making this a reality must be commended for what they have done. As a first-time event, this is simply amazing. What it also shows is that the opportunities for economic growth and prosperity are real and are there for us to take full advantage of. This is what the JIE is about… to bring businesses together in an up-close and personal manner, where deals can be made,” she said.The JIE, which ran for three days (June1-3) at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, St. James, had more than 200 buyers and suppliers from 11 countries, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Switzerland, participating.It also saw a wide cross section of participants from both local and international companies, including tourism, construction, business process outsourcing, agriculture and manufacturing. Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Karl Samuda, says the recently held Jamaica International Exhibition (JIE) was a major boost for manufacturing and the services sector. Story Highlights
1999Bulls13-37-8.6Missed playoffs1355—— 1983Lakers58-24+5.1Lost Finals16051606+1 2009Cavaliers66-16+8.9Lost Conf. Finals17251742+17 2017Cavaliers51-29+3.2TBD1566TBDTBD 1982Celtics63-19+6.4Lost Conf. Finals16861703+17 2008Spurs56-26+5.1Lost Conf. Finals16621678+16 2014Heat54-28+4.2Lost Finals15811604+23 1985Celtics63-19+6.5Lost NBA Finals16681685+17 2003Lakers50-32+2.7Lost 2nd Round16551651-4 2008Cavaliers45-37-0.3Lost 2nd Round15061562+56 1988Lakers62-20+4.8Won Title16431662+19 2009Celtics62-20+7.4Lost 2nd Round16931653-40 1979Bullets54-28+4.8Lost Finals15811554-27 2017Cavaliers51-29+3.4TBD1566TBDTBD Forget looking at defending champions, though. The more important variable, as far as sports bettors are probably concerned, is LeBron. Between his experience, his toughness, and his ability to thrive in crunch-time situations, he has a game well tailored to the playoffs. And that shows up in the data: 1993Bulls57-25+6.2Won Title16791726+47 1990Pistons59-23+5.4Won Title16661716+50 2001Lakers56-26+3.7Won Title16471779+132 ELO RATING IN PLAYOFFS 1986Lakers62-20+6.8Lost Conf. Finals16521647-5 16351669+34 YEARTEAMRECORDPOINT DIFF.PLAYOFFSSTARTENDDIFF. Average* 2011Heat58-24+7.5Lost Finals16721702+30 1997Bulls69-13+10.7Won Title17661802+36 2010Lakers57-25+4.8Won Title16131695+82 1995Rockets47-35+2.3Won Title15311665+134 2006Spurs63-19+6.7Lost 2nd Round16851675-10 ELO RATING IN PLAYOFFS YEARTEAMRECORDPOINT DIFF.PLAYOFFSSTARTENDDIFF. 1980SuperSonics56-26+4.2Lost 2nd Round16391614-25 2013Heat66-16+7.9Won Title17571754-3 2015Spurs55-27+6.3Lost 1st Round17331721-12 Average* 2013Heat66-16+7.0Won Title17571754-3 2006Cavaliers50-32+2.2Lost 2nd Round15621564+2 2010Cavaliers61-21+6.5Lost 2nd Round17011646-55 How defending NBA champions fared the next season 1998Bulls62-20+7.2Won Title17281785+57 1996Rockets48-34+1.6Lost 2nd Round14851497+12 2004Spurs57-25+7.5Lost 2nd Round17341719-15 2016Warriors73-9+10.4Lost NBA Finals17881756-32 1978Trail Blazers58-24+5.9Lost 1st Round15581551-7 LeBron James’s teams usually find a higher gear in the playoffs 2000Spurs53-29+5.9Lost 1st Round16371625-12 2005Pistons54-28+3.3Lost NBA Finals16131689+76 2011Lakers57-25+6.0Lost 2nd Round16591624-35 2014Heat54-28+4.8Lost Finals15811604+23 1992Bulls67-15+10.1Won Title17691762-7 1991Pistons50-32+3.1Lost Conf. Finals15521535-17 1989Lakers57-25+6.4Lost NBA Finals16371677+40 * Average excludes 2017 Cavaliers.Source: Basketball-reference.com 2015Cavaliers53-29+4.4Lost Finals16311692+61 2016Cavaliers57-25+6.0Won Title16421759+117 198476ers52-30+2.4Lost 1st Round15871572-15 The Cleveland Cavaliers haven’t been any good lately. And I don’t just mean their loss Sunday against the Atlanta Hawks, in which they became only the third team in NBA history to blow a 26-point fourth-quarter lead. They’re 12-13 since the All-Star break. They have one of the NBA’s worst defenses, having allowed 107.9 points per 100 possessions — in the same territory as the Orlando Magic and the New York Knicks. They haven’t won a road game against a Western Conference playoff team all season. But handicappers think LeBron James and company have a pretty good chance of winning their second-straight NBA title anyway.Their view depends on their belief in the existence of Playoff LeBron, a superhero that transcends his already-formidable regular season form to carry his team to ever-greater heights. The good news for Cavs’ fans is that Playoff LeBron exists. He just might not be mighty enough to drag this team to a title.On the basis of their regular-season record and point differential, this season’s Cavs have been in the same general vicinity as teams such as the Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors and Utah Jazz. Those teams are variously 30-to-1 to 100-to-1 longshots to win the title, according to Vegas bookmakers. But the Cavs are nonetheless the second-favorite team to win the championship, with a 20 to 25 percent chance according to bookmakers.Computer systems disagree. All of them have the Warriors as odds-on favorites to win the title, with the San Antonio Spurs as the next-best bet, and the Cavs as part of an undistinguished mass of teams beneath them. ESPN’s BPI puts Cleveland’s chances at just 4 percent. Basketball-Reference’s playoff odds also have them at 4 percent. And FiveThirtyEight’s Elo-based ratings1In this article, I’m mostly ignoring the difference between Elo ratings and “CARM-Elo” ratings, which are Elo ratings adjusted for our pre-season CARMELO projections. Our forecasts are based on Carm-Elo ratings, but the Cavs’ Elo rating is 1566 and their Carm-Elo rating is 1562, so this makes little difference at this stage of the season., which heavily weight recent play, have them even lower at just 2 percent.Usually, Elo-type ratings mimic betting markets fairly well. We give the Warriors a 65 percent chance of winning the title, for instance, and the San Antonio Spurs an 11 percent chance — right in line with where markets have them. So what accounts for the huge difference on Cleveland?One explanation is that this is all just sort of irrational: the Cavs are a marquee team and bettors just can’t stomach the idea that they’re just the Raptors with better uniforms. But I’m not sure I totally buy that; NBA betting markets are usually fairly sharp.Instead, bettors expect the Cavs to find a higher gear in the postseason. This isn’t an idea they just came up with; it was already priced into their assessment of the Cavs before the year began. At the start of the NBA season, FiveThirtyEight’s projections forecast the Cavs to win 57 regular-season games. (They have 51 now, so they’ll finish with no more than 53 wins.) That forecast was almost the same as what Vegas gave them, which put their over-under at 56.5 wins. But we also gave the Cavs only an 11 percent chance of winning the title whereas Vegas put them at 5-to-2 against, or a 29 percent chance. In other words, handicappers and the computer models agree on “regular-season Cavs.” It’s just that Vegas thinks that “playoff Cavs” are different — and much better — whereas our Elo ratings make no such distinction.But is there good reason to think that Cleveland can turn it up a notch?It’s not hard to recall examples of defending champions that lollygagged their way through the regular season, only to show up as the best version of themselves in the playoffs. In 2000-01, Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers finished with a 56-26 record — better than the Cavs this year, but not by that much — before winning 15 of 16 playoff games and repeating as NBA champion. And Hakeem Olajuwon and the 1994-95 Houston Rockets finished at 47-35 before winning the title despite being the No. 6 seed. In his last season in Miami, James and the 2013-14 Miami Heat had an uninspired regular season, going 54-28. But they made the NBA finals before losing to San Antonio.I’ve done a bit of cherry-picking there, however. Overall, it’s not clear if defending champs overperform by much in the playoffs. In the table below, I’ve looked at every defending NBA champion since the ABA-NBA merger in 1976-77. If the “higher gear” theory is correct, then they should systematically beat Elo’s expectations in the postseason, in which case their Elo ratings will rise over the course of the playoffs. On average, however, these teams’ Elo ratings increased only from 1644 to 1658 during the playoffs.2This average excludes the 1998-99 Chicago Bulls, the only NBA champion since the merger to miss the playoffs. So there’s a little something there, but in Elo terms, that’s pretty minor — not much more than a rounding error.3An Elo rating of 1644 is equivalent to 55.5 regular season wins in an 82-game season, while an Elo rating of 1658 is equivalent to 56.7 wins. 2002Lakers58-24+7.2Won Title16761738+62 2007Heat44-38-1.2Lost 1st Round15051479-26 1987Celtics59-23+6.6Lost NBA Finals16761659-17 * Average excludes 1999 Bulls and 2017 CavaliersSource: Basketball-reference.com 2007Cavaliers50-32+3.9Lost Finals15981621+23 2012Heat46-20+6.4Won Title16131712+99 1981Lakers54-28+3.3Lost 1st Round16101595-15 16441658+15 1994Bulls55-27+2.9Lost 2nd Round15751607+32 James’ teams have made the playoffs 11 times prior to this season. And they’ve played really well, both in absolute terms and relative to their regular-season performance. James and the Cavs did have a disastrous postseason in 2010 — when, as the No. 1 overall seed, they lost to the Celtics in the second round — but that’s pretty much the only exception. On average, they’ve gained 34 Elo points from the start of the playoffs to the end. And over James’s past six postseasons, they’ve outperformed their regular-season ending Elo rating by an average of 55 points.So let’s say that Elo has the Cavs’ underrated by somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 points. Call that a “LeBron clutch factor” or whatever else you like. I asked my colleague Jay Boice to add 50 Elo points to the Cavs’ Elo rating and rerun our playoff simulations. Their championship odds rose … but only to 6 percent.Instead, you have to add about 150 points of Elo rating to get the Cavs’ odds in the same vicinity as Vegas has them.4With a 150 Elo-point boost, the Cavaliers’ NBA title probability would be 21 percent. That’s a lot. Elo sees the Cavs’ current level of performance as equivalent to a 48-34 regular-season record. Add 150 Elo points to that total, and they’d project to a 62-20 regular season record. That’s a 14-win gain — about what you’d get from adding someone like Kawhi Leonard or Anthony Davis to the roster.Have no doubt: I’d love to plunk some money down on the Cavs at the odds our forecast and the other computer models give them. Playoff basketball is a pretty different specimen from regular-season basketball, and our model isn’t doing anything to account for that. This is something for us to examine for future iterations of the model, even if the Cavs get bounced in the first round.But I also wonder if the bookies aren’t going too far in the other direction. There are plenty of defending champions — and James-led teams — that underwhelmed in the regular season before going on to win a title or at least reach the finals. But few of them underperformed as much as the Cavs have. They also tended to benefit from down periods in the league, as the 1994-95 Rockets and 2000-01 Lakers did. This year, the Cavs will have to get past the Warriors, who might be even better than last year’s 73-9 version5The Warriors’ point differential is better last year’s — and the fourth-best in NBA history — and they have Kevin Durant., or, failing that, probably the Spurs.Nor will the Cavs’ enter the postseason with much rest. Instead, as the East’s No. 1 overall seed has been up in the air between the Cavs and the Celtics, James has averaged 43 minutes per over the team’s last five games. Kyrie Irving has gotten only two days off since the All-Star break. Kevin Love has played heavy minutes despite missing time in February and March due to knee surgery.James has beaten expectations so many times in the playoffs that transcendent things are almost expected from him. If he leads the Cavaliers to another title this year it really might be his greatest accomplishment yet. 2012Mavericks36-30+1.8Lost 1st Round15471525-22