My personal and professional adventure into Science

Archives for March 2013

Problems with commenting at the blog – can you help?

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Update: The problem has been solved. Apparently when “Users must be registered and logged in to comment” is ticked it is not working, so now I have disabled that.

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I unfortunately have a problem with the comment function at the blog. So far I have checked all possible settings in WordPress and I have not been able to solve the problem. Until now I have found out that it is not Theme related, the setting “disable comments” is unticked and all users should be able to comment. I can’t even comment using my admin user.

If you have experience with this problem, please send me a mail to bent[at]cbs.dtu.dk to guide me on the right way. Hopefully I will find the solution soon.

PhD Summer School on Machine Learning 2013 at DTU Compute

During my PhD I have used Machine Learning to train Neural Networks. It is an excellent tool to find patterns in data and train models to predict on unknown data. In august DTU compute is offering a Summer School for PhD’s on Machine Learning. I haven’t attended the course myself, you can see the invitation below.

 

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PhD Summer School on Machine Learning
(www.imm.dtu.dk/courses/02901)

August 12 – 16, 2013 (both days included)
DTU Compute, Technical University of Denmark,

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We hereby invite you to participate in the PhD Summer School on Machine Learning that will take place at the Technical University of Denmark.

The course will consist of lectures given by invited speakers with expertise in machine learning as well as members of the research groups at DTU Compute. The course will cover key topics in machine learning including Bayesian parametric and non-parametric inference, optimization, low rank matrix factorization and kernel methods. As preparation for the course we recommend reading the book by Christopher M. Bishop “Pattern Recognition and Machine Learning”, Springer 2006 (chapter 1-6 and 9). The course requires basic Matlab programming skills.

Confirmed invited Speakers:

Joaquin Quiñonero Candela, Facebook

Ryota Tomioka, University of Tokyo

Further information regarding the summer school can be found on our webpage:
www.imm.dtu.dk/courses/02901

For registration, please contact: Marian Solrun Adler masad@dtu.dk or Morten Mørup mmor@dtu.dk

We hope to see you at the campus of the Technical University of Denmark!

The organizers,
Morten Mørup, Lars Kai Hansen, Mikkel N. Schmidt and Ole Winther

Doctors cure child born with HIV – hope for potential HIV treatment

Yesterday the news was out that US doctors have made medical history in a potential ground breaking case. They seem to have cured a Mississippi baby born with HIV. The child, who is now 2.5 years old, no longer needs medication against the HIV virus. This is only the second time ever in history that a case like this has been documented.

Scanning electron micrograph of HIV-1 virions budding from a cultured lymphocyte.

Scanning electron micrograph of HIV-1 virions budding from a cultured lymphocyte. Source

The mother was unaware that she had HIV but a standard test during labor showed that she was positive for HIV infection. The child was then put on a cocktail of three different retroviral drugs at the age of 30 hours by Dr Hannah Gay, a pediatric HIV specialist at the University of Mississippi.

Several days after the child tested positive for HIV and the doctors continued treatment. A few months after start of the treatment, the level of HIV in the childs blood had fallen to a level that made it difficult to detect. At some point the mother stopped attending the doctors and for a period of 5-10 months the doctors did not see the child at all. When the child came back to the doctors, blood tests did not show any detectable levels of HIV.

The medical staff believes that the fast action knocked out the HIV before it could form viral hideouts in the child’s body.

“This is a proof of concept that HIV can be potentially curable in infants”

, Dr Deborah Persaud, a virologist at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, said when she presented the findings at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in Atlanta.

“Our next step is to find out if this is a highly unusual response to very early antiretroviral therapy or something we can actually replicate in other high-risk newborns,” Persaud says.

The news rise hope for possible HIV treatment for infants, to date the best cure still remains as prevention with the use of condoms.

 

Further reading:

Johns Hopkins news hub: Infant born with HIV reportedly cured

Johns Hopkins Children’s Center: Hopkins Researchers Describe First ‘Functional HIV Cure’ in an Infant

Virologist Deborah Persaud interview: Functional cure of an HIV-infected infant

The Guardian: HIV baby cured by US doctors – video

The Guardian: US doctors cure child born with HIV

Out.com – News and Opinion: Doctors Cure Child Born With HIV

BBC news: US HIV baby ‘cured’ by early drug treatment

The Australian: Doctors ‘cure’ newborn baby of AIDS virus

ABC-news: Mississippi Baby Born With HIV ‘Functionally Cured,’ Doctors Say

Bloomberg: HIV-Infected Infant Cured With Early Use of AIDS Drugs

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