Post List

  • November 8, 2016
  • 02:57 AM
  • 256 views

"A Putative Blood-Based Biomarker for Autism Spectrum Disorder-Associated Ileocolitis"

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

Contrary to Murphy's Law - 'never repeat a successful experiment' - replication or reproducibility is a cornerstone of good science. Today, I'm blogging about a piece of research that aimed to do just that as per the findings reported by Stephen Walker and colleagues [1] (open-access).The title of this post has been borrowed from the title of the Walker paper to illustrate how moving on from the quite widely known 'fact' that functional gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms are over-represented wh........ Read more »

  • November 7, 2016
  • 02:39 PM
  • 180 views

Snakes Defend Themselves with Shape-Shifting Eyes

by Elizabeth Preston in Inkfish



Superman donned glasses to disguise himself and blend in with other people. One snake hides its identity using a similar trick: when threatened, it changes the shape of its pupils. This makes it resemble a much more dangerous animal.

The mock viper (Psammodynastes pulverulentus) is mild-mannered, not superpowered. It's common across much of Asia, and—as you might have guessed from its name—looks a lot like a viper. Actual vipers are a widespread family of venomous snakes. Like true v........ Read more »

Silva, I., Crane, M., Artchawakom, T., Suwanwaree, P., & Strine, C. (2016) More than meets the eye: change in pupil shape by a mock viper. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 14(8), 453-454. DOI: 10.1002/fee.1420  

  • November 7, 2016
  • 01:57 PM
  • 293 views

Neuroteratogenic Viruses: ZIKV, the placenta and IUGR

by thelonevirologist in Virology Tidbits

In humans, the most common infectious neuroteratogenic agents are summarised by the mnemonic “TORCH(S)” (Toxoplasmosis, Others, Rubella, (Human) Cytomegalovirus, Herpes Simplex, Syphilis) with ZIKV either classified as “Others” or by expanding the mnemonic to TORCHSZ and indeed health authorities in affected countries regularly test cases of microcephaly suspected to be associated with neurological infections not only for ZIKV but also for the presence of TORCH(S). Microc........ Read more »

Yockey LJ, Varela L, Rakib T, Khoury-Hanold W, Fink SL, Stutz B, Szigeti-Buck K, Van den Pol A, Lindenbach BD, Horvath TL.... (2016) Vaginal Exposure to Zika Virus during Pregnancy Leads to Fetal Brain Infection. Cell, 166(5), 1247-12560000. PMID: 27565347  

El Costa H, Gouilly J, Mansuy JM, Chen Q, Levy C, Cartron G, Veas F, Al-Daccak R, Izopet J, & Jabrane-Ferrat N. (2016) ZIKA virus reveals broad tissue and cell tropism during the first trimester of pregnancy. Scientific reports, 35296. PMID: 27759009  

Quicke KM, Bowen JR, Johnson EL, McDonald CE, Ma H, O'Neal JT, Rajakumar A, Wrammert J, Rimawi BH, Pulendran B.... (2016) Zika Virus Infects Human Placental Macrophages. Cell host , 20(1), 83-90. PMID: 27247001  

Bayer A, Lennemann NJ, Ouyang Y, Bramley JC, Morosky S, Marques ET Jr, Cherry S, Sadovsky Y, & Coyne CB. (2016) Type III Interferons Produced by Human Placental Trophoblasts Confer Protection against Zika Virus Infection. Cell host , 19(5), 705-12. PMID: 27066743  

Ning F, Liu H, & Lash GE. (2016) The Role of Decidual Macrophages During Normal and Pathological Pregnancy. American journal of reproductive immunology (New York, N.Y. : 1989), 75(3), 298-309. PMID: 26750089  

Lash GE, Pitman H, Morgan HL, Innes BA, Agwu CN, & Bulmer JN. (2016) Decidual macrophages: key regulators of vascular remodeling in human pregnancy. Journal of leukocyte biology, 100(2), 315-25. PMID: 26819320  

Olagnier D, Amatore D, Castiello L, Ferrari M, Palermo E, Diamond MS, Palamara AT, & Hiscott J. (2016) Dengue Virus Immunopathogenesis: Lessons Applicable to the Emergence of Zika Virus. Journal of molecular biology, 428(17), 3429-48. PMID: 27130436  

  • November 7, 2016
  • 03:13 AM
  • 296 views

8.6% of children with autism have epilepsy?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Epilepsy was reported to co-occur in 8.6 % of ASD [autism spectrum disorder] cases."That was the headline conclusion reported by Shiny Thomas and colleagues [1] as they drew on data from "the most recent U.S. National Survey of Children's Health, 2011-2012" to add to the extensive literature looking at how common epilepsy is when it comes to autism.Including some 1600 children/young adults diagnosed with autism - equivalent to a prevalence of 1.8% of the entire 85,000-strong co........ Read more »

  • November 7, 2016
  • 12:30 AM
  • 295 views

What The Future Will Hold

by Aurametrix team in Aurametrix Blog

Elections are bad for your health. More than half of Americans, independently of their party preference, are stressed about upcoming elections, especially the oldest and the youngest voters. Social media is one of the major factors making this stress even worse. ​... Read more »

Waismel-Manor I, Ifergane G, & Cohen H. (2011) When endocrinology and democracy collide: emotions, cortisol and voting at national elections. European neuropsychopharmacology : the journal of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology, 21(11), 789-95. PMID: 21482457  

Neiman J, Giuseffi K, Smith K, French J, Waismel-Manor I, & Hibbing J. (2015) Voting at Home Is Associated with Lower Cortisol than Voting at the Polls. PloS one, 10(9). PMID: 26335591  

  • November 6, 2016
  • 09:05 PM
  • 269 views

Obama invades Europe: “Yes, we can!”

by Piter Boll in Earthling Nature

by Piter Kehoma Boll This information was known by me and some other people for quite a while, but only recently has caught attention of the general public. Obama is the newest threat in Europe. No, I’m not talking about the … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • November 5, 2016
  • 04:20 AM
  • 305 views

Sensory subtypes and anxiety and autism

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"This is the first study to identify the existence of sensory subtypes among older children and adolescents with ASD [autism spectrum disorder] and explore their association with anxiety levels."Far be it from me to question the above quote provided in the paper by Mirko Uljarević and colleagues [1] but I'm inclined to suggest that there has already been some research published on the link between sensory issues and anxiety in the context of the autism spectrum before (see here and se........ Read more »

Uljarević M, Lane A, Kelly A, & Leekam S. (2016) Sensory subtypes and anxiety in older children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder. Autism research : official journal of the International Society for Autism Research, 9(10), 1073-1078. PMID: 26765165  

  • November 4, 2016
  • 09:13 AM
  • 297 views

Study shows that articles published in English attract more citations

by SciELO in SciELO in Perspective

Among the many factors that influence citation practice in scholarly communication, the language of publication plays a key role. A study by Argentine researchers showed that English articles receive more citations than those published in other languages. Despite being perceived by many as of lower quality and relevance, articles in Spanish from two Latin American journals were blind evaluated and were not, in fact, underqualified. … Read More →... Read more »

  • November 4, 2016
  • 06:12 AM
  • 250 views

Two recent case reports on BHD – Epidemiologic study of patients in Asia and new FLCN mutation

by Joana Guedes in BHD Research Blog

Furuya et al. (2016) present a new study describing genetic, epidemiologic and clinicopathologic features of 312 Asian individuals with BHD manifestations based on data from 120 probands from different families (119 Japanese and 1 Taiwanese), 36 siblingss with genetic testing and 156 siblings without genetic testing.... Read more »

Furuya M, Yao M, Tanaka R, Nagashima Y, Kuroda N, Hasumi H, Baba M, Matsushima J, Nomura F, & Nakatani Y. (2016) Genetic, epidemiologic and clinicopathologic studies of Japanese Asian patients with Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome. Clinical genetics, 90(5), 403-412. PMID: 27220747  

  • November 4, 2016
  • 05:00 AM
  • 259 views

Friday Fellow: Silvergreen Moss

by Piter Boll in Earthling Nature

by Piter Kehoma Boll Found throughout most of the world, you probably have encountered this fellow many times in your life, but did not pay any attention. After all, it is just a moss! Scientifically known as Bryum argenteum and popularly … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • November 4, 2016
  • 04:03 AM
  • 279 views

Hyperhomocysteinemia as a significant risk factor for autism?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The findings reported by Naushad Shaik Mohammad and colleagues [1] provide some blogging fodder today and the suggestion of a link between some of the genetics of the folate pathway and the finding of elevated levels of homocysteine with [some] autism in mind.OK, from the start, the genetics of folate metabolism mentioned in the context of autism typically means reference to the quite well replicated finding of issues with the gene methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) (see ........ Read more »

Shaik Mohammad N, Sai Shruti P, Bharathi V, Krishna Prasad C, Hussain T, Alrokayan SA, Naik U, & Radha Rama Devi A. (2016) Clinical utility of folate pathway genetic polymorphisms in the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders. Psychiatric genetics. PMID: 27755291  

  • November 3, 2016
  • 11:10 PM
  • 316 views

Stereotyped ethnic names as a barrier to workplace entry

by Ingrid Piller in Language on the Move

Who of the three women in this image do you think German employers are most likely to consider as a...... Read more »

  • November 3, 2016
  • 01:49 PM
  • 320 views

Does The Motor Cortex Inhibit Movement?

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic_Discover

A new paper could prompt a rethink of a basic tenet of neuroscience. It is widely believed that the motor cortex, a region of the cerebral cortex, is responsible for producing movements, by sending instructions to other brain regions and ultimately to the spinal cord. But according to neuroscientists Christian Laut Ebbesen and colleagues, the truth may be the opposite: the motor cortex may equally well suppress movements.



Ebbesen et al. studied the vibrissa motor cortex (VMC) of the rat, ... Read more »

  • November 3, 2016
  • 04:10 AM
  • 317 views

Antibiotic brain part 3

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"This study demonstrates an association between antibiotic use in the first year of life and subsequent neurocognitive outcomes in childhood."So said the findings reported by Slykerman and colleagues [1] who relied on data from the Auckland Birthweight Collaborative Study (an initiative set up to determine whether "internationally recognized risk factors for small-for-gestational-age (SGA) term babies were applicable in New Zealand") to examine the suggestion that early life antib........ Read more »

Slykerman RF, Thompson J, Waldie KE, Murphy R, Wall C, & Mitchell EA. (2016) Antibiotics in the first year of life and subsequent neurocognitive outcomes. Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992). PMID: 27701771  

  • November 2, 2016
  • 04:56 PM
  • 250 views

When I read things like this...

by Craig Payne in Running Research Junkie

When I read things like this...... Read more »

Hollander K, Heidt C, van der Zwaard B, Braumann KM, & Zech A. (2016) Long-Term Effects of Habitual Barefoot Running and Walking: A Systematic Review. Medicine and science in sports and exercise. PMID: 27801744  

  • November 2, 2016
  • 11:09 AM
  • 286 views

Weight Training Boosts Brain Size and Performance

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Aerobic exercise increases brain blood flow and has demonstrated beneficial effects on cognition.The effects of weight training exercise on the brain is less frequently studied. Hence, we know little about the effect and mechanism of weight training on brain function and performance.A recent study provides some needed insight on this topic.A study by C Suo and colleagues from Australia examined the effects of resistance training and cognitive skills training on brain structure and function.The k........ Read more »

Suo C, Singh MF, Gates N, Wen W, Sachdev P, Brodaty H, Saigal N, Wilson GC, Meiklejohn J, Singh N.... (2016) Therapeutically relevant structural and functional mechanisms triggered by physical and cognitive exercise. Molecular psychiatry, 21(11), 1645. PMID: 27090304  

  • November 2, 2016
  • 10:30 AM
  • 260 views

Testing an Automated and Humane Way to Resolve Barking

by CAPB in Companion Animal Psychology Blog

Teaching a quiet behaviour using an automatic feeder is a promising solution to barking problems.Some dogs bark when their owner is out and they are left home alone. A recent study by Alexandra Protopopova  (Texas Tech University) et al investigates the effectiveness of a humane, automated approach to solving barking problems.The research was conducted because some owners use citronella or shock collars to try and prevent their dogs from barking. While the devices may sometimes work, there ........ Read more »

  • November 2, 2016
  • 08:00 AM
  • 127 views

Estrogen, Memory, & Aging: DNA methylation of the ERα promoter contributes to transcriptional differences in age across the hippocampus

by Lara Ianov in EpiBeat

Estradiol (E2) influences a number of processes that are important for maintaining healthy brain function, including memory. The ability of E2 to protect the brain and enhance or maintain memory function depends on the interaction of E2 with different estrogen receptors.1 In particular, the expression of estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) has been linked to synaptic plasticity, inflammation, and neuroprotection.2-5 Thus, it may be important that expression of ERα in the hippocampus, a bra........ Read more »

Bean LA, Ianov L, & Foster TC. (2014) Estrogen receptors, the hippocampus, and memory. The Neuroscientist : a review journal bringing neurobiology, neurology and psychiatry, 20(5), 534-45. PMID: 24510074  

Adams MM, Fink SE, Shah RA, Janssen WG, Hayashi S, Milner TA, McEwen BS, & Morrison JH. (2002) Estrogen and aging affect the subcellular distribution of estrogen receptor-alpha in the hippocampus of female rats. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 22(9), 3608-14. PMID: 11978836  

Benedusi V, Meda C, Della Torre S, Monteleone G, Vegeto E, & Maggi A. (2012) A lack of ovarian function increases neuroinflammation in aged mice. Endocrinology, 153(6), 2777-88. PMID: 22492304  

Merchenthaler I, Dellovade TL, & Shughrue PJ. (2003) Neuroprotection by estrogen in animal models of global and focal ischemia. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 89-100. PMID: 14993043  

Zhang QG, Raz L, Wang R, Han D, De Sevilla L, Yang F, Vadlamudi RK, & Brann DW. (2009) Estrogen attenuates ischemic oxidative damage via an estrogen receptor alpha-mediated inhibition of NADPH oxidase activation. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 29(44), 13823-36. PMID: 19889994  

Bean LA, Kumar A, Rani A, Guidi M, Rosario AM, Cruz PE, Golde TE, & Foster TC. (2015) Re-Opening the Critical Window for Estrogen Therapy. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 35(49), 16077-93. PMID: 26658861  

Han X, Aenlle KK, Bean LA, Rani A, Semple-Rowland SL, Kumar A, & Foster TC. (2013) Role of estrogen receptor α and β in preserving hippocampal function during aging. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 33(6), 2671-83. PMID: 23392694  

  • November 2, 2016
  • 04:30 AM
  • 283 views

What Came First the Concussion Or the Lower Extremity Musculoskeletal Injury?

by Kyle Harris in Sports Medicine Research (SMR): In the Lab & In the Field

Athletes who reported sustaining a concussion were 1.6 to 2.9 times more likely to have also sustained a lower extremity musculoskeletal injury at the end of their intercollegiate athletic careers.... Read more »

Gilbert, F., Burdette, G., Joyner, A., Llewellyn, T., & Buckley, T. (2016) Association Between Concussion and Lower Extremity Injuries in Collegiate Athletes. Sports Health: A Multidisciplinary Approach, 8(6), 561-567. DOI: 10.1177/1941738116666509  

  • November 2, 2016
  • 03:55 AM
  • 305 views

ADHD (symptoms) and pain

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

If a primary goal of medicine is to relieve pain and suffering then the paper by Andrew Stickley and colleagues [1] might provide an important insight into how medicine might be missing some important groups when it comes to the experience of pain "assessed by the degree to which it interfered with work activity in the previous month."Drawing on data from the English 2007 Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey (APMS) (a resource that has cropped up on this blog before), auth........ Read more »

Stickley A, Koyanagi A, Takahashi H, & Kamio Y. (2016) ADHD symptoms and pain among adults in England. Psychiatry research, 326-331. PMID: 27750114  

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