30 research outputs found

    Decreasing Inequality Under Latin America's "Social Democratic" and " Populist" Govenments: Is the Difference Real?

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    This paper addresses the claim that the governments of Argentina, Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela, Latin America's so-called "left-populist" governments, have failed to effectively reduce inequality in the 2000s and have only benefitted from high commodity prices and other benign external conditions. In particular, it examines the econometric evidence presented by McLeod and Lustig (2011) that the "social democratic" governments of Brazil, Chile and Uruguay were more successful and finds that their original results are highly sensitive to the use of data from the Socioeconomic Database for Latin America and the Caribbean (SEDLAC). Conducting the same analysis using data on income inequality from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) leads to the exact opposite result: it is the so-called "left-populist" governments who appear to have effectively reduced income inequality over the last decade. The key difference between data from SEDLAC and ECLAC is that the latter corrects for income underreporting -- when households in an income survey underreport their true amount of income, thus biasing the measurement of inequality -- while the former does not. Absent reasonable criteria for choosing one dataset over the other, the paper suggests that any econometric results based on income inequality data should prove robust to both sources

    More Pain, No Gain for Greece: Is the Euro Worth the Costs of Proa

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    This week the Greek government reached agreement with the European authorities and the IMF for 130 billion euros in lending, as part of a new adjustment package to replace the current IMF program that began in May of 2010. Although the agreement should allow the government to avoid default in March, there are grave doubts as to whether the agreed upon program will lead the country to a point where it returns to growth, has a sustainable debt burden, and can borrow from private markets

    The Argentine Success Story and its Implications

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    The Argentine economy has grown 94 percent for the years 2002-2011, using International Monetary Fund projections for the end of this year. This is the fastest growth in the Western Hemisphere for this period, and among the highest growth rates in the world. It also compares favorably to neighboring economies that are commonly seen as quite successful, such as Brazil, which has had less than half as much growth over the same period.During this period, Argentina has seen considerable progress on social indicators. Poverty has fallen by over two-thirds from its peak, from almost half of the population in 2001 to approximately one-seventh of the population in early 2010. Unemployment has fallen by over half from its peak, to 8.0 percent. And employment, by early 2010, had risen to 55.7 percent, the highest on record, as social spending nearly tripled in real terms. Income inequality has also fallen dramatically.Argentina was trapped in a severe recession from mid-1998 to the end of 2001. Attempts to stabilize the economy and maintain the currency peg to the U.S. dollar, through monetary and fiscal tightening, led by the IMF and backed by tens of billions of dollars in lending, failed to arrest the economy's downward spiral. In December of 2001, the government defaulted on its debt, and a few weeks later it abandoned the currency peg to the dollar. Recovery began after one quarter of contraction and continued until the world economic slowdown and recession of 2008-2009. Now it has rebounded, and the IMF projects growth of 8 percent for 2011.This paper looks at Argentina's success and the important implications behind this success for Europe, including the weaker eurozone economies

    Decreasing Inequality Under Latin America’s “Social Democratic” and “Populist” Governments: Is the Difference Real?

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    This paper addresses the claim that the governments of Argentina, Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela, Latin America’s so-called “left-populist” governments, have failed to effectively reduce inequality in the 2000s and have only benefitted from high commodity prices and other benign external conditions. In particular, it examines the econometric evidence presented by McLeod and Lustig (2011) that the “social democratic” governments of Brazil, Chile and Uruguay were more successful and finds that their original results are highly sensitive to the use of data from the Socioeconomic Database for Latin America and the Caribbean (SEDLAC).inequality, latin america

    Update on the Jamaican Economy

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    Galphaq negatively regulates the Wnt-beta-catenin pathway and dorsal embryonic Xenopus laevis development

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    The non-canonical Wnt/Ca2+ signaling pathway has been implicated in the regulation of axis formation and gastrulation movements during early Xenopus laevis embryo development, by antagonizing the canonical Wnt/beta-catenin dorsalizing pathway and specifying ventral cell fate. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in this antagonist crosstalk are not known. Since Galphaq is the main regulator of Ca2+ signaling in vertebrates and from this perspective probably involved in the events elicited by the non-canonical Wnt/Ca2+ pathway, we decided to study the effect of wild-type Xenopus Gq (xGalphaq) in dorso-ventral axis embryo patterning. Overexpression of xGalphaq or its endogenous activation at the dorsal animal region of Xenopus embryo both induced a strong ventralized phenotype and inhibited the expression of dorsal-specific mesoderm markers goosecoid and chordin. Dorsal expression of an xGalphaq dominant-negative mutant reverted the xGalphaq-induced ventralized phenotype. Finally, we observed that the Wnt8-induced secondary axis formation is reverted by endogenous xGalphaq activation, indicating that it is negatively regulating the Wnt/beta-catenin pathway

    Primary lung cancer cell culture from transthoracic needle biopsy samples

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    Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the world. The high mortality rate of this pathology is directly related to its late detection, since its symptoms can be masked by other diseases of lower risk. Although in recent years the number of research related to this subject has increased, molecular mechanisms that trigger this disease remains poorly understood. Experimental models are therefore vital for use in research. Immortalized cell lines have inherent limitations. Explanted tumoral cells obtained by transthoracic needle biopsy can be a potential source of primary culture of human lung tumor cells. Tumor specimens from 14 patients suspected of primary or metastatic lung cancer were obtained by CT-guided transthoracic lung biopsy. Solid tumors were mechanically disaggregated under a stereoscope. Cells were cultured in Base C growth media supplemented with 5% fetal bovine serum in 24-well cell culture plates. Primary lung cancer cell culture was successfully cultured from 12 out of 14 patients. Once a confluent monolayer was obtained, cells were enzymatically harvested and passaged to Petri culture dishes. These primary cell cultures were characterized by cytogenetic tests and gene expression analysis of diagnostic markers. These primary cell cultures revealed chromosome rearrangements and changes in their chromosome complement typical of tumoral cells. Additionally, Fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis demonstrated that three cultures exhibited EGFR amplification. Finally, expression profiles of CK7, NAPSIN A, TTF1, and P63 genes allowed in some cases to confirm sample tumor phenotype. These results demonstrate that primary lung cancer cell culture is possible from percutaneous puncture and provides an important biological source to asses and investigate the molecular mechanisms of lung cancer

    The 1alpha,25-dihydroxy Vitamin D3 receptor preferentially recruits the coactivator SRC-1 during up-regulation of the osteocalcin gene

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    Binding of 1alpha,25-dihydroxy Vitamin D3 to the C-terminal domain (LBD) of its receptor (VDR), induces a conformational change that enables interaction of VDR with transcriptional coactivators such as the members of the p160/SRC family or the DRIP (Vitamin D interacting complex)/Mediator complex. These interactions are critical for VDR-mediated transcriptional enhancement of target genes. Recent reports indicate that nuclear receptors, including VDR, interact with p160/SRC members and the DRIP/Mediator complex in a sequential, cyclical, and mutually exclusive manner when bound to a target promoter, exhibiting also a high exchange rate. Here, we present an overview of how these coactivators are recruited to the bone-specific osteocalcin (OC) gene in response to short and long exposures to 1alpha,25-dihydroxy Vitamin D3. We find that in intact osteoblastic cells VDR and SRC-1 rapidly bind to the OC promoter in response to the ligand. This recruitment correlates with transcriptional enhancement of the OC gene and with increased histone acetylation at the OC promoter. In contrast, binding of the DRIP205 subunit, which anchors the DRIP/Mediator complex to the VDR, is detected at the OC promoter after several hours of incubation with 1alpha,25-dihydroxy Vitamin D3. Together, our results indicate that VDR preferentially recruits SRC-1 to enhance basal bone-specific OC gene transcription. We propose a model where specific protein-DNA and protein-protein interactions that occur within the context of the OC gene promoter in osteoblastic cells stabilize the preferential association of the VDR-SRC-1 complex
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