Post List

  • October 12, 2014
  • 02:11 PM
  • 125 views

What Really Drives Academic Citations?

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic_Discover

Citations are today the international currency of the scholarly economy. In theory, academic citations are the gold standard measure of the ‘impact‘ of a piece of work. If it gets other academics talking then it’s important. But why do individual academics cite particular articles? A paper out now in the Social Studies of Science journal […]The post What Really Drives Academic Citations? appeared first on Neuroskeptic.... Read more »

Erikson MG, & Erlandson P. (2014) A taxonomy of motives to cite. Social studies of science, 44(4), 625-37. PMID: 25272615  

  • October 12, 2014
  • 11:30 AM
  • 120 views

Your Artificial Sweeteners, Your Bacteria, and Your Health

by Geoffrey Hannigan in Prophage

It seems like one cannot help hearing about this paper throughout the microbiome and related fields. The paper "Artificial Sweeteners Induce Glucose Intolerance by Altering the Gut Microbiota" was recently published in Nature, and it has had a lot of press...... Read more »

Suez, J., Korem, T., Zeevi, D., Zilberman-Schapira, G., Thaiss, C., Maza, O., Israeli, D., Zmora, N., Gilad, S., Weinberger, A.... (2014) Artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance by altering the gut microbiota. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature13793  

  • October 12, 2014
  • 10:55 AM
  • 110 views

Is EV-D68 causing mysterious polio-like symptoms in children?

by EE Giorgi in CHIMERAS

Bubble fun at the Santa Fe Renaissance Fair © EEG One of the twists in my latest book, Gene Cards, is an unknown pathogen threatening the fictional city of Liasis. I confess that when I came up with the idea I was a little nervous. My story is set in the future, and with all the state-of-the-art technology we already have, is it feasible to think that we will still deal with diseases without a known causative agent? The thing is, new viruses and new pathogens arise all the time. Take the f........ Read more »

Zangwill KM, Yeh SH, Wong EJ, Marcy SM, Eriksen E, Huff KR, Lee M, Lewis EM, Black SB, & Ward JI. (2010) Paralytic syndromes in children: epidemiology and relationship to vaccination. Pediatric neurology, 42(3), 206-12. PMID: 20159431  

  • October 12, 2014
  • 09:56 AM
  • 106 views

Largest methane hotspot in the US found in the Four Corners: fracking not to blame!

by Jonathan Trinastic in Goodnight Earth

New space-based observation has found a methane hotspot in the Four Corners due to coalbed methane from coal mines!... Read more »

Kort, E., Frankenberg, C., Costigan, K., Lindenmaier, R., Dubey, M., & Wunch, D. (2014) Four corners: The largest US methane anomaly viewed from space. Geophysical Research Letters. DOI: 10.1002/2014GL061503  

  • October 11, 2014
  • 04:14 PM
  • 142 views

Poop Pills, Yeah they are a Thing Now

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

When someone is lying it isn't too abnormal to hear someone say, "you're full of sh..." well you get the idea. Our poop defines us, the microbes that live in our digestive tract make it possible for us to digest food, absorb nutrients, and stay healthy. Heck they may even cause your cravings! Unfortunately sometimes --whether due to abuse of antibiotics or some medical condition like C. diff infection-- gut bacteria can work against us, leading to all sorts of problems. As of now, the only real........ Read more »

Ilan Youngster, MD,, George H. Russell, MD,, Christina Pindar, Tomer Ziv-Baran, PhD, Jenny Sauk, MD, & Elizabeth L. Hohmann, MD. (2014) Oral, Capsulized, Frozen Fecal Microbiota Transplantation for Relapsing Clostridium difficile Infection. Journal of the American Medical Association . info:/10.1001/jama.2014.13875

  • October 11, 2014
  • 12:06 PM
  • 107 views

Efficacy of foetal stem cell transplantation in autism...

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The recent news that researchers might be one step closer to 'curing' type 1 diabetes following the publication of the paper by Pagliuca and colleagues [1] brought back into focus how stem cell therapy might hold some promise for all manner of conditions. The idea that researchers could generate "hundreds of millions of glucose-responsive β cells from hPSC [human pluripotent stem cells] in vitro" still faces a few challenges, including overcoming the immune assault central to the autoimmun........ Read more »

Bradstreet JJ, Sych N, Antonucci N, Klunnik M, Ivankova O, Matyashchuk I, Demchuk M, & Siniscalco D. (2014) Efficacy of fetal stem cell transplantation in autism spectrum disorders: an open-labeled pilot study. Cell transplantation. PMID: 25302490  

  • October 11, 2014
  • 11:39 AM
  • 90 views

Saying NO to Our Food Craving Is Not as Simple as It Seems

by Wiley Asia Blog in Wiley Asia Blog - Life Sciences

Fitness junkies would not believe this, but our road to obesity could be greatly affected by the number and type of bacteria living within us. Researchers from UC San Francisco, Arizona State University and University of New Mexico suggest that a power struggle inside our gut happens daily. As it is a game of ‘survival-of-the-fittest’, our gut microbes would compete with each other over the availability of their preferred nutrient (e.g. sugar or fats). As a result, they influence our........ Read more »

  • October 11, 2014
  • 04:48 AM
  • 107 views

Yet more air pollution and autism risk research

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

Air pollution and autism risk. It's a topic which has cropped up a few times on this blog (see here and see here and see here) with the majority of the research (but not all) suggesting that there may be something to see when it comes to such a correlation.Enter then the paper by Amy Kalkbrenner and colleagues [1] to proceedings, and their conclusion: "Our study adds to previous work in California showing a relation between traffic-related air pollution and autism, and adds similar findings in a........ Read more »

  • October 10, 2014
  • 11:26 PM
  • 101 views

The red of bearded vultures—allure or cure?

by Yao-Hua Law in TORCH

[This story first appeared on Earth Touch News] Soaring high among the mountains from Europe to China and to Africa, the bearded vulture (Gypaetus barbatus) commands attention at any lunch party. It likes to gate crash into the frenzy around carrion, pushing other scavengers aside with wings that could stretch the height of Michael Jordan, […]... Read more »

  • October 10, 2014
  • 11:09 PM
  • 63 views

Axon Guidance Meets Statistical Physics

by Wadsworth in Wadsworth Guidance

The proposition that the response of an axon to guidance cues is a random walk provides a different perspective of axon guidance.For the most part, Biologists like deterministic models, i.e. cause and effect.  From the deterministic point-of-view, axon guidance is caused when axon outgrowth activity occurs at the site where the neuron detects an external attractive guidance cue. But what if the direction of axon outgrowth activity were to rapidly fluctuates in different directions?  In this ........ Read more »

  • October 10, 2014
  • 05:49 PM
  • 132 views

How the Brain Heals After a Stroke

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

You have all the brain cells you'll ever have when you reach adulthood. That was the science lesson I was taught in high school from, maybe a misguided teacher, or maybe just misinformed, I do not know. That statement however is not true, we know that the brain is very plastic and ever changing. It's resilience still amazes us, even today with all that we know about it. Now a previously unknown mechanism through which the brain produces new nerve cells after a stroke has been discovered, showing........ Read more »

Magnusson, J., Goritz, C., Tatarishvili, J., Dias, D., Smith, E., Lindvall, O., Kokaia, Z., & Frisen, J. (2014) A latent neurogenic program in astrocytes regulated by Notch signaling in the mouse. Science, 346(6206), 237-241. DOI: 10.1126/science.346.6206.237  

  • October 10, 2014
  • 11:54 AM
  • 79 views

A "parsimonious" Bayesian supertree model for estimating species trees

by Leonardo Martins in bioMCMC

When we have sequence alignments regarding several genes from a group of taxa, we usually want to extract the phylogenetic information common to all of them. However, in many cases such phylogenomic analyses depend on selecting one sequence from each species per gene family (=alignment), or excluding paralogs, or partitioning these paralogous sequences into loci, or utilizing only gene families without apparent paralogs. If we want to analyse all our data at once, without excluding sequences or ........ Read more »

  • October 10, 2014
  • 10:00 AM
  • 115 views

Ebola Virus VP40 -A protein straight out of “transformers”

by Clay Clark in Biochem Blogs

  Ebola. Just the word is enough to make people panic. Well “Ebola” is actually just a river in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Of course when they hear the word, most people think about the deadly virus discovered near this river in 1976. To clarify the terminology, “Ebola” is the river; “Ebolavirus” is […]... Read more »

Bornholdt Zachary A., Dafna M. Abelson, Peter Halfmann, Malcolm R. Wood, Yoshihiro Kawaoka, & Erica Ollmann Saphire. (2013) Structural Rearrangement of Ebola Virus VP40 Begets Multiple Functions in the Virus Life Cycle. Cell, 154(4), 763-774. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2013.07.015  

Feldmann Heinz. (2011) Ebola haemorrhagic fever. The Lancet, 377(9768), 849-862. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0140-6736(10)60667-8  

  • October 10, 2014
  • 09:22 AM
  • 83 views

How sharing a toilet helps students make more friends

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

The built environment shapes our behaviour profoundly - piazzas and park benches promote unplanned encounters between strangers whereas car-friendly streets have the opposite effect, the efficiency of speedy travel promoting "streets as corridors" over "streets as sociable space".What’s true at the level of cities also applies within buildings, including student residences. This has been investigated in the past, one famous example being Leon Festinger’s 1950 study that suggested students fo........ Read more »

  • October 10, 2014
  • 08:00 AM
  • 119 views

For Disguise, Female Squid Turn On Fake Testes

by Elizabeth Preston in Inkfish

Did you know this week is International Cephalopod Awareness Days? I’ll assume your gifts are in the mail. Today is dedicated to squid, and you can’t have total cephalopod awareness without discussing fake squid testes. This post was first published in September 2013. The best way to stay out of trouble, if you’re a shimmery, […]The post For Disguise, Female Squid Turn On Fake Testes appeared first on Inkfish.... Read more »

DeMartini DG, Ghoshal A, Pandolfi E, Weaver AT, Baum M, & Morse DE. (2013) Dynamic biophotonics: female squid exhibit sexually dimorphic tunable leucophores and iridocytes. The Journal of experimental biology, 216(Pt 19), 3733-41. PMID: 24006348  

  • October 10, 2014
  • 08:00 AM
  • 117 views

Fly Life: How to name your new fruit fly gene (and what not to name it)

by Bethany Christmann in Fly on the Wall

When it comes to genetic research, fruit flies take the spotlight. They are often used to study specific genes, and researchers who find new genes get the privilege of naming them. The best way to study a gene is to mutate it and see what happens when the gene’s function is lost. As a result, […]... Read more »

Choudhry Zia, Adnan Maqsood Choudhry, Sadaf Tariq, Fozia Zakaria, Muhammad Waheed Asghar, Muhammad Khan Sarfraz, Kamran Haider, Afia Ansar Shafiq, & Nusrat Jahan Mobassarah. (2014) Sonic hedgehog signalling pathway: a complex network. Annals of Neurosciences, 21(1). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5214/ans.0972.7531.210109  

  • October 10, 2014
  • 07:55 AM
  • 123 views

The Friday Five for 10/10/14

by Bill Sullivan in The 'Scope

Paralyzed rats walk again, origins of AIDS, science of touching and kissing, and how to tell if you're dying.... Read more »

Wenger N, Moraud EM, Raspopovic S, Bonizzato M, DiGiovanna J, Musienko P, Morari M, Micera S, & Courtine G. (2014) Closed-loop neuromodulation of spinal sensorimotor circuits controls refined locomotion after complete spinal cord injury. Science translational medicine, 6(255). PMID: 25253676  

Pinto, J., Wroblewski, K., Kern, D., Schumm, L., & McClintock, M. (2014) Olfactory Dysfunction Predicts 5-Year Mortality in Older Adults. PLoS ONE, 9(10). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0107541  

Faria, N., Rambaut, A., Suchard, M., Baele, G., Bedford, T., Ward, M., Tatem, A., Sousa, J., Arinaminpathy, N., Pepin, J.... (2014) The early spread and epidemic ignition of HIV-1 in human populations. Science, 346(6205), 56-61. DOI: 10.1126/science.1256739  

  • October 10, 2014
  • 04:50 AM
  • 66 views

Little Albert - one of the most famous research participants in psychology's history, but who was he?

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

In 1920, in what would become one of the most infamous and controversial studies in psychology, a pair of researchers at Johns Hopkins University taught a little baby boy to fear a white rat. For decades, the true identity and subsequent fate of this poor infant nicknamed "Little Albert" has remained a mystery.But recently this has changed, thanks to the tireless detective work of two independent groups of scholars. Now there are competing proposals for who Little Albert was and what became of h........ Read more »

Richard Griggs. (2015) Psychology's Lost Boy: Will The Real Little Albert Please Stand Up?. Teaching of Psychology. info:/

  • October 10, 2014
  • 04:40 AM
  • 107 views

Vitamin D supplement improves autistic behaviours?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I don't want to get too ahead of myself with this post talking about the paper by Feiyong Jia and colleagues [1] (open-access) who concluded: "Vitamin D supplementation may be effective in ameliorating the autistic behavioral problems in children with autism spectrum disorders [ASDs]".The idea however that issues with vitamin D seemingly present in quite a few cases of ASD [2] (see here too) but not all [3] might actually have more direct consequences for behavioural presentation ........ Read more »

  • October 10, 2014
  • 03:00 AM
  • 89 views

The Amsterdam Patient Charter for Global Kidney Cancer Care

by Lizzie Perdeaux in BHD Research Blog

Kidney cancer patients face a number of challenges, such as lack of awareness both by patients and their doctors, difficulty getting a diagnosis, limited access to treatment, inappropriate treatment, lack of information and lack of support. Given that there were … Continue reading →... Read more »

Giles RH, Maskens D, & the International Kidney Cancer Coalition. (2014) Amsterdam Patient Charter for Global Kidney Cancer Care. European urology. PMID: 25257033  

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