Home / 2020 / June / 26

Daily Archives: June 26, 2020

‘Fair & Lovely’ Skin Lightener to Get Makeover After Backlash

 

MUMBAI – Unilever will drop the word “fair” from its “Fair & Lovely” skin lightening products, it said on Thursday, in the latest makeover of a brand in response to a global backlash against racial prejudice.

Skin lightening cosmetics have a huge market in South Asia, but their promotion is being questioned, especially in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Earlier this month, Johnson & Johnson said it would stop selling skin-whitening creams in Asia and the Middle East, while PepsiCo said it would change the name and brand image of its Aunt Jemima pancake mix and syrup.

Unilever’s “Fair & Lovely” brand dominates the market in South Asia. Similar products are also sold by L’Oréal and Procter & Gamble (P&G).

“We recognize that the use of the words ‘fair,’ ‘white’ and ‘light’ suggest a singular ideal of beauty that we don’t think is right, and we want to address this,” said Sunny Jain, president of Unilever’s beauty and personal care division.

In India, the biggest market for “Fair & Lovely,” fairness products have long been endorsed by leading Bollywood celebrities, as well as other youth icons.

Advertisements have regularly featured two faces showing skin tone transformation, as well as shade guides to show “improvement.”

Unilever’s India unit, in which the company owns a 67 percent stake, said it had shifted from such marketing in 2019 and would continue to evolve it to feature women of different skin tones.

Several users on Twitter applauded the move, though some said it was too little, too late.

“This is a big win, but it’s only the beginning,” Nina Davuluri, who in 2014 became the first Indian American to be crowned Miss America, told Reuters.

“While Unilever removing words such as ‘fair, white, & lightening,’ and changing the … brand name is a step towards inclusion, it’s only one piece of a much larger fight to end colorism.”

Davuluri on Tuesday wrote an open letter to Unilever CEO Alan Jope, urging him to stop production of the products.

The name change is subject to regulatory approvals, Unilever’s India unit, Hindustan Unilever, said. It declined to say what the new name would be.

Public records indicate Hindustan Unilever last week filed an application to trademark a logo for soaps, creams, shampoos and other products under the brand name “Glow & Lovely.”

In 2018, the company also registered trademarks to market skincare and hair care products under the brand names “Even & Lovely,” “Always Lovely,” “Care & Lovely” and “I Am Lovely,” among others.

Separately, a source at L’Oréal in India said the French company was also having discussions in view of the backlash.

L’Oréal India declined to comment. L’Oréal in France did not respond to an e-mail seeking immediate comment.

P&G declined to comment.

 

Source: Voice of America

 

20 Years On, Human Genome Project Helps Drive COVID-19 Research

WASHINGTON – Until this March, machines at the Broad Institute in Massachusetts were decoding the equivalent of an entire human genome every 10 minutes.

The automated DNA sequencing facility is among the world’s largest genomics labs. Its technology descends from that which produced the first working draft of the human genome 20 years ago Friday.

When COVID-19 started taking hold in the United States, scientists at the institute, affiliated with Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, realized its genome-reading machines could be repurposed to test patient samples for the coronavirus that causes the disease.

Over the course of two weeks in March, the lab retooled. At a time when testing for the virus has been a critical failing in the U.S. response to the pandemic, Broad says it now has the capacity to run 35,000 tests per day.

Broad is one of several genomics labs across the country that have reinvented themselves as COVID-19 testing centers. Machines that routinely decoded the 3 billion letters that make up a person’s genetic blueprint have been quickly brought to bear on the coronavirus’ 30,000-letter genome.

“It was just a matter of tweaking the laboratory procedures,” said Eric Green, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, which funds many of these labs. The same machinery analyzes “a much smaller genome, but at a much higher volume.”

Moonshot to mundane

In the 20 years since the Human Genome Project produced its first working draft, reading an organism’s complete genetic code has gone from moonshot to mundane.

In a White House ceremony on June 26, 2000, President Bill Clinton called the draft “the most important, most wondrous map ever produced by humankind.”

The full genome was published three years later. That first map took scientists on three continents 13 years and nearly $3 billion to put together.

Now, one lab can do it in a day or two for less than $1,000.

That advance has been brought to bear on the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Trivial’

The coronavirus now ravaging the world was unknown until late last year. But Chinese scientists had decoded its complete genome, or sequence, by January 12.

Thanks to technology that made the Human Genome Project possible, “it’s actually quite trivial to sequence a given virus,” Green said. “And that’s why it got done so quickly.”

The computing power developed to assemble the complete 3 billion-letter human genome sequence from countless fragments is being used to follow tiny changes in the viral genome as it spreads.

“This gives us an enormous ability to track the virus,” said Lee Hood, co-founder of the nonprofit Institute for Systems Biology research center, and co-inventor of automated DNA sequencing.

Researchers can also quickly follow how easily the virus spreads and how virulent it is as it evolves, he added.

Fundamental questions

Scientists are also scouring patients’ genomes for clues as to why one patient dies of coronavirus infection while another develops no symptoms whatsoever.

“These kinds of comparative analyses can let us get at fundamental questions like, ‘Why is it that the old are much more susceptible than the young? Why is it that males are more susceptible than females?’” Hood said.

The techniques are mainstream enough that scientists are proposing using them to monitor municipal wastewater for the virus.

“In wastewater are a lot of clues about what are people being exposed to, what viruses are they shedding,” Green said. “It is absolutely the fruits of the field of genomics that now can be used” to monitor the environment.

Green added that the size and scope of the human genome project drove a change in the culture of science that’s visible in the response to the coronavirus.

When the genome project began in 1990, he said, “team science in biology was not very popular. It was actually frowned upon and almost looked down upon. And sharing data before you publish your paper was almost unheard of. That’s completely changed.”

COVID-19 research is all about collaborative, open science and data sharing, he said.

“I don’t think genomics deserves all the credit,” Green added, “but I do think we deserve quite a bit of credit for being the first to really push this and really showcase that and show that it actually benefits everybody.”

 

 

Source: Voice of America

 

 

Calgon Carbon Expands Mississippi Activated Carbon Plant

PITTSBURGH, PA – 06/25/2020, June 26, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —

  • New production line will increase capacity by 50 million pounds of granular activated carbon per year
  • Expansion estimated for completion in late-2022
  • Creates 38 new jobs

Calgon Carbon Corporation today announced that it intends to expand capacity at its Pearlington, Mississippi plant by adding a second virgin activated carbon production line. The expansion is expected to add 38 jobs at the plant when complete. The estimated investment in the additional production line will be $185 million. When completed, Calgon Carbon’s virgin granular activated carbon capacity will exceed 200 million pounds per year.

Calgon Carbon has been in conversation with the Mississippi Development Authority and the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission regarding this exciting project for several months. A final board decision on the plant expansion was granted on June 24 by Kuraray Co., Ltd. (TYO: 3405) (Kuraray)., who completed its acquisition of Calgon Carbon in March 2018.

“This expansion enables our activated carbon products to be more broadly used to clean the world’s air and water on an even larger scale,” said Steve Schott, Calgon Carbon’s President and CEO. “There is no better place for this expansion, we have always felt at home in Mississippi, and we appreciate the support and enthusiasm the state and local economic development leaders have shown us, and our parent company, Kuraray.”

“Aptly positioned on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Calgon Carbon’s innovative products help industries and communities clean their air and water to protect our precious natural resources.

This $185 million expansion will further boost production capacity, increasing investment in our natural resources for future generations,” said Governor Tate Reeves. “Tapping into our skilled workforce and creating 38 new jobs, I’m excited to see more Mississippians get to work and help make these important products that are used across our great nation and the world.”

The Pearlington, MS plant sits on 100 acres within the Port Bienville Industrial Park and has 200,000 square feet of production space and 42 employees. Once the expansion is complete, which is expected in late 2022, the facility will be approximately 400,000 square feet with 80 employees.

“The innovative products manufactured by Calgon Carbon’s skilled workforce in Bay St. Louis position the company as a leader in making consumers’ water and air safer and cleaner. The addition of 38 new employees at the Hancock County facility will enable the company to continue pioneering the way in this essential sector,” said MDA Interim Director John Rounsaville.

“The Commission and our team at Port Bienville are proud of our 30-year relationship with Calgon Carbon. We competed against two other states for this investment and won,” said Bill Cork, CEO of the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission. “Our people and our relationships made the difference, and we are thrilled to be offered the opportunity to help our friends at Calgon Carbon continue their successful run here in Hancock County, Miss.”

About Calgon Carbon Corporation

Calgon Carbon, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kuraray Co., Ltd. (TYO: 3405) (Kuraray), is a global leader in the manufacture and distribution of innovative coal-, wood- and coconut-based activated carbon products – in granular, powdered, pelletized and cloth form – to meet the most challenging purification demands of customers throughout the world.  Complemented by world-class activated carbon and ultraviolet (UV) light purification and disinfection equipment systems and service capabilities, as well as diatomaceous earth and perlites, Calgon Carbon provides purification solutions for more than 700 distinct applications, including drinking water, wastewater, pollution abatement, and a variety of industrial and commercial manufacturing processes.

Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Calgon Carbon employs approximately 1,350 people and operates 20 manufacturing, reactivation, innovation and equipment fabrication facilities in the U.S., Asia, and in Europe, where Calgon Carbon is known as Chemviron.

Calgon Carbon was acquired by Kuraray in March of 2018. With complementary products and services, the combined organization will continue to focus on providing the highest quality and most innovative activated carbon and filtration media products, equipment, and services to meet customer needs anywhere in the world. For more information, visit calgoncarbon.com.

Media Contact:
Amanda Lofty
Amanda.Lofty@Kuraray.com
724-541-2658

Amanda Lofty
Calgon Carbon Corporation
724-541-2658
alofty@calgoncarbon.com

Calgon Carbon Expands Mississippi Activated Carbon Plant

PITTSBURGH, PA – 06/25/2020, June 26, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —

  • New production line will increase capacity by 50 million pounds of granular activated carbon per year
  • Expansion estimated for completion in late-2022
  • Creates 38 new jobs

Calgon Carbon Corporation today announced that it intends to expand capacity at its Pearlington, Mississippi plant by adding a second virgin activated carbon production line. The expansion is expected to add 38 jobs at the plant when complete. The estimated investment in the additional production line will be $185 million. When completed, Calgon Carbon’s virgin granular activated carbon capacity will exceed 200 million pounds per year.

Calgon Carbon has been in conversation with the Mississippi Development Authority and the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission regarding this exciting project for several months. A final board decision on the plant expansion was granted on June 24 by Kuraray Co., Ltd. (TYO: 3405) (Kuraray)., who completed its acquisition of Calgon Carbon in March 2018.

“This expansion enables our activated carbon products to be more broadly used to clean the world’s air and water on an even larger scale,” said Steve Schott, Calgon Carbon’s President and CEO. “There is no better place for this expansion, we have always felt at home in Mississippi, and we appreciate the support and enthusiasm the state and local economic development leaders have shown us, and our parent company, Kuraray.”

“Aptly positioned on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Calgon Carbon’s innovative products help industries and communities clean their air and water to protect our precious natural resources.

This $185 million expansion will further boost production capacity, increasing investment in our natural resources for future generations,” said Governor Tate Reeves. “Tapping into our skilled workforce and creating 38 new jobs, I’m excited to see more Mississippians get to work and help make these important products that are used across our great nation and the world.”

The Pearlington, MS plant sits on 100 acres within the Port Bienville Industrial Park and has 200,000 square feet of production space and 42 employees. Once the expansion is complete, which is expected in late 2022, the facility will be approximately 400,000 square feet with 80 employees.

“The innovative products manufactured by Calgon Carbon’s skilled workforce in Bay St. Louis position the company as a leader in making consumers’ water and air safer and cleaner. The addition of 38 new employees at the Hancock County facility will enable the company to continue pioneering the way in this essential sector,” said MDA Interim Director John Rounsaville.

“The Commission and our team at Port Bienville are proud of our 30-year relationship with Calgon Carbon. We competed against two other states for this investment and won,” said Bill Cork, CEO of the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission. “Our people and our relationships made the difference, and we are thrilled to be offered the opportunity to help our friends at Calgon Carbon continue their successful run here in Hancock County, Miss.”

About Calgon Carbon Corporation

Calgon Carbon, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kuraray Co., Ltd. (TYO: 3405) (Kuraray), is a global leader in the manufacture and distribution of innovative coal-, wood- and coconut-based activated carbon products – in granular, powdered, pelletized and cloth form – to meet the most challenging purification demands of customers throughout the world.  Complemented by world-class activated carbon and ultraviolet (UV) light purification and disinfection equipment systems and service capabilities, as well as diatomaceous earth and perlites, Calgon Carbon provides purification solutions for more than 700 distinct applications, including drinking water, wastewater, pollution abatement, and a variety of industrial and commercial manufacturing processes.

Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Calgon Carbon employs approximately 1,350 people and operates 20 manufacturing, reactivation, innovation and equipment fabrication facilities in the U.S., Asia, and in Europe, where Calgon Carbon is known as Chemviron.

Calgon Carbon was acquired by Kuraray in March of 2018. With complementary products and services, the combined organization will continue to focus on providing the highest quality and most innovative activated carbon and filtration media products, equipment, and services to meet customer needs anywhere in the world. For more information, visit calgoncarbon.com.

Media Contact:
Amanda Lofty
Amanda.Lofty@Kuraray.com
724-541-2658

Amanda Lofty
Calgon Carbon Corporation
724-541-2658
alofty@calgoncarbon.com

Philips’ General Meeting of Shareholders approves dividend proposal

June 26, 2020

Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) announced that today’s Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders (EGM) approved the proposal to declare a distribution of EUR 0.85 per common share against the net income for 2019, in shares only.

The dividend timetable is as follows:

Ex-dividend date June 30, 2020
Dividend record date July 1, 2020
Announcement of ratio and number of dividend shares July 6, 2020
Payment date As from July 7, 2020

The number of share dividend rights entitled to one new common share will be determined based on the volume-weighted average price of all traded common shares of Koninklijke Philips N.V. at Euronext Amsterdam on June 30, and July 1 and 2, 2020. The company will calculate the number of share dividend rights entitled to one new common share, such that the gross dividend in shares will be approximately equal to EUR 0.85.

For more information about Philips’ EGM, which was held today in Amsterdam, please click on this link.

For further information, please contact:

Ben Zwirs
Philips Global Press Office
Tel.: +31 6 15213446
E-mail: ben.zwirs@philips.com

Derya Guzel
Philips Investor Relations
Tel.: +31 20 59 77055
E-mail: derya.guzel@philips.com

About Royal Philips
Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a leading health technology company focused on improving people’s health and enabling better outcomes across the health continuum from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment and home care. Philips leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver integrated solutions. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company is a leader in diagnostic imaging, image-guided therapy, patient monitoring and health informatics, as well as in consumer health and home care. Philips’ health technology portfolio generated 2019 sales of EUR 19.5 billion and employs approximately 81,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. News about Philips can be found at www.philips.com/newscenter

Attachments

Philips’ General Meeting of Shareholders approves dividend proposal

June 26, 2020

Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) announced that today’s Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders (EGM) approved the proposal to declare a distribution of EUR 0.85 per common share against the net income for 2019, in shares only.

The dividend timetable is as follows:

Ex-dividend date June 30, 2020
Dividend record date July 1, 2020
Announcement of ratio and number of dividend shares July 6, 2020
Payment date As from July 7, 2020

The number of share dividend rights entitled to one new common share will be determined based on the volume-weighted average price of all traded common shares of Koninklijke Philips N.V. at Euronext Amsterdam on June 30, and July 1 and 2, 2020. The company will calculate the number of share dividend rights entitled to one new common share, such that the gross dividend in shares will be approximately equal to EUR 0.85.

For more information about Philips’ EGM, which was held today in Amsterdam, please click on this link.

For further information, please contact:

Ben Zwirs
Philips Global Press Office
Tel.: +31 6 15213446
E-mail: ben.zwirs@philips.com

Derya Guzel
Philips Investor Relations
Tel.: +31 20 59 77055
E-mail: derya.guzel@philips.com

About Royal Philips
Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a leading health technology company focused on improving people’s health and enabling better outcomes across the health continuum from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment and home care. Philips leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver integrated solutions. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company is a leader in diagnostic imaging, image-guided therapy, patient monitoring and health informatics, as well as in consumer health and home care. Philips’ health technology portfolio generated 2019 sales of EUR 19.5 billion and employs approximately 81,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. News about Philips can be found at www.philips.com/newscenter

Attachments

New data reconfirms long-term safety profile of the Philips Stellarex low-dose Drug-Coated Balloon

June 26, 2020

Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA), a global leader in health technology, today announced the four-year results from the ILLUMENATE European Randomized Controlled Trial (EU RCT). The Stellarex DCB cohort demonstrated similar all-cause mortality compared with the control arm through four years. This analysis included missing data found post hoc to achieve a follow-up compliance of 93.9%, increasing the robustness of the statistical analysis. Along with the recently-published data on the ILLUMENATE Pivotal trial, this is the second RCT which has indicated similar mortality rates, further validating the long-term safety profile of Philips’ Stellarex low-dose Drug-Coated Balloon [1]. The data were presented in the evening of 25 June as part of Vascular Interventional Advances’ (VIVA) first-ever late-breaking clinical trials livestream.

The four-year ILLUMENATE EU RCT data are the latest from a series of trials evaluating the safety and efficacy of the Philips Stellarex .035″ DCB in restoring and maintaining blood flow in the superficial femoral artery and popliteal arteries of patients with peripheral arterial disease. The results were evaluated compared to percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA) treatment with uncoated balloons, the current standard of care. The mortality rate at four years shows no statistical difference between two patient groups, at 17.7% for the Stellarex patient group and 14.1% for the control group. Secondary safety outcomes were also similar across the two groups.

“These latest data from the ILLUMENATE EU RCT study add to the ILLUMENATE Pivotal RCT results and continue to demonstrate no statistical difference in mortality when comparing the DCB and PTA arms of the trial,” said William Gray, MD, FACC, FSCAI, and President of the Lankenau Heart Institute, an investigator for the Stellarex clinical trials who presented the results during the livestream.

“The results from the ILLUMENATE EU RCT trial continue to demonstrate durable long-term results at a high rate of follow-up compliance,” said Marianne Brodmann, MD, Professor, vascular specialist at the Medical University of Graz, Austria and a primary investigator for the trial.

“The ILLUMENATE EU RCT results now establish Stellarex as the only paclitaxel DCB that has shown a consistent lack of statistical difference in mortality compared with PTA at each annual follow-up through four years across two randomized controlled trials,” said Chris Landon, General Manager, Image Guided Therapy Devices at Philips. “We continue to proactively communicate relevant clinical findings to ensure physicians can make the best-informed decision for each patient.”

Featuring Philips EnduraCoat technology, a unique coating consisting of a polyethylene glycol excipient with amorphous and crystalline paclitaxel, the Stellarex .035” DCB is unlike any other drug-coated balloon for the treatment of peripheral artery disease. EnduraCoat technology provides efficient drug transfer and effective drug residency coupled with high coating durability and minimal particulate loss, thereby enabling a low therapeutic drug dose.

Philips’ Image Guided Therapy business provides complete procedural solutions of systems, smart devices, disease-specific software and services for minimally invasive procedures,  helping caregivers decide, guide, treat and confirm the right therapy for each patient during their procedure.

[1] Low-dose DCBs are those that deliver a dose of only 2 micrograms of the drug paclitaxel per square millimeter, which is lower than some other DCBs on the market.

For further information, please contact:

Mark Groves
Philips Global Press Office
Tel: +31 631 639 916
Email: mark.groves@philips.com
Twitter: mark_groves

Fabienne van der Feer
Philips Image Guided Therapy
Tel: +31 622 698 001
Email: fabienne.van.der.feer@philips.com
Twitter: FC_Feer

About Royal Philips

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a leading health technology company focused on improving people’s health and enabling better outcomes across the health continuum from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment and home care. Philips leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver integrated solutions. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company is a leader in diagnostic imaging, image-guided therapy, patient monitoring and health informatics, as well as in consumer health and home care. Philips generated 2019 sales of EUR 19.5 billion and employs approximately 81,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. News about Philips can be found at www.philips.com/newscenter.

Attachment