A somewhat cryptic comment a few days ago on a year-old post on domestication eventually led us to an intriguing 2007 article in The Times which we unaccountably seem to have missed the first time around. The article quotes liberally from a Journal of Archaeological Science paper which puts forward something of an unorthodox take [...]... Read more »
KEREM, Z., LEVYADUN, S., GOPHER, A., WEINBERG, P., & ABBO, S. (2007) Chickpea domestication in the Neolithic Levant through the nutritional perspective. Journal of Archaeological Science, 34(8), 1289-1293. DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2006.10.025
Even naps as short as ten minutes have been shown to provide psychological benefits in terms of reduced fatigue and improved concentration (pdf). But would-be nappers face some awkward decisions, most obviously - does it matter whether I nap in my chair or ought I try to find somewhere to lie down? And then ... if remaining seated, is it okay to lean forwards and rest my head on a desk?When it comes to napping while leaning back in a chair or car seat, past research has shown that the further yo........ Read more »
Zhao, D., Zhang, Q., Fu, M., Tang, Y., & Zhao, Y. (2010) Effects of physical positions on sleep architectures and post-nap functions among habitual nappers. Biological Psychology, 83(3), 207-213. DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2009.12.008
One of the things that interests me about suicide attacks is how groups go about developing them as a weapon and turning them into a re-useable capability in their operations. A key part of my thesis argument centres on the importance of organizational resources and processes in delivering an effective capability. Thomas Hegghammer’s 2008 article [...]... Read more »
HEGGHAMMER, T. (2008) Islamist violence and regime stability in Saudi Arabia. International Affairs, 84(4), 701-715. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2346.2008.00733.x
What are Academies of Medical Educators?As defined by Dewey et al , Academies are "a formal organization of academic teaching faculty who have been formally (or specifically) recognized for excellence in their contributions to the education mission of the medical school, and who serve specific functions on behalf of the institution . . . . A functioning organization, not simply a group of recognized faculty."The overarching purpose of Academies is to bring education back as the central focus ........ Read more »
Searle, N., Thompson, B., Friedland, J., Lomax, J., Drutz, J., Coburn, M., & Nelson, E. (2010) The Prevalence and Practice of Academies of Medical Educators: A Survey of U.S. Medical Schools. Academic Medicine, 85(1), 48-56. DOI: 10.1097/ACM.0b013e3181c4846b
In most countries the ratio of obesity between men and women is approximately equal. Yet, the clients in most obesity clinics and weight loss centres are mainly women.
So what is with the guys?... Read more »
Deville-Almond J, Tahrani AA, Grant J, Gray M, Thomas GN, & Taheri S. (2010) Awareness of Obesity and Diabetes: A Survey of a Subset of British Male Drivers. American journal of men's health. PMID: 20413385
There are about 1.5 million scholarly articles published in all the sciences, spread over about 24,000 journals. Even if there were a single database or entry-point providing access to all the literature, nobody would be able to keep up with everything that is being published in their field of work any more. Desperately looking for some clue as to which publications to select for in-depth reading and which to ignore, scientists began to rank the journals according to how often the articles in th........ Read more »
Hougas, R. (1956) Foreign potatoes, their introduction and importance. American Potato Journal, 33(6), 190-198. DOI: 10.1007/BF02879217
Since I just spent hours staring at onychophorans (instead of studying), gonna skimp out on the Sunday Protist this week. So here's a wonderful alien-looking freak with a proboscis, Rostronympha; I totally demand an SEM of this, by the way:Parabasalid Rostronympha. Image by Guy Brugerolle via Micro*scope.I can't find the original description at the moment, but vaguely recall having searched for it ambitiously once and failed miserably. It's supposed to be (Duboscq, Grassé & Rose, 1937), wit........ Read more »
Cepicka, I., Hampl, V., & Kulda, J. (2010) Critical Taxonomic Revision of Parabasalids with Description of one new Genus and three new Species. Protist. DOI: 10.1016/j.protis.2009.11.005
Most galaxies have a supermassive black hole in their center – sometimes even more than one. These black holes can have masses up to ten billion solar masses (1010 M⊙) or more. One of the largest known examples is part of a binary system, and it weighs in at 1.8×1010 M⊙ – see here, here, or here. (There are exceptions, such as the nearby M33, which apparently does not have a central black hole of mass more than 3000 M⊙.)All black holes gravitationally attract ........ Read more »
Evans, D., Reeves, J., Hardcastle, M., Kraft, R., Lee, J., & Virani, S. (2010) THE HARD X-RAY VIEW OF REFLECTION, ABSORPTION, AND THE DISK-JET CONNECTION IN THE RADIO-LOUD AGN 3C 33. The Astrophysical Journal, 710(1), 859-868. DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/710/1/859
Gunn et.al. (2009), comparing a number of aged/aging twinned and non-twinned subjects (some of the non-twins were of different ages), have concluded that the primary indicators of aging in women are: skin wrinkling hair graying lip height (measured from the “vermillion border on the philtral crest” (the high points of the upper lips spaced around [...]... Read more »
Ron Milo (Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel) and coworkers have developed theoretical carbon fixation cycles that are improvements over the Calvin-Benson cycle by up to a factor of 3. This news feature was written on April 25, 2010.... Read more »
Bar-Even, A., Noor, E., Lewis, N. E., & Milo, R. (2010) Design and analysis of synthetic carbon fixation pathways. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0907176107
An analysis of a recent fMRI study that examined social interaction via live video... Read more »
Redcay E, Dodell-Feder D, Pearrow MJ, Mavros PL, Kleiner M, Gabrieli JD, & Saxe R. (2010) Live face-to-face interaction during fMRI: a new tool for social cognitive neuroscience. NeuroImage, 50(4), 1639-47. PMID: 20096792
Blakemore SJ. (2010) The developing social brain: implications for education. Neuron, 65(6), 744-7. PMID: 20346751
An article about the Fungal Genetics Stock Center written by the curators provides some insight into the 50 year history of this resource. It is a great summary of how the stock center has grown over the years and demonstrates how it is an essential aspect of how research on filamentous fungi is possible. The [...]... Read more »
McCluskey K, Wiest A, & Plamann M. (2010) The Fungal Genetics Stock Center: a repository for 50 years of fungal genetics research. Journal of Biosciences, 35(1), 119-26. PMID: 20413916
Mixed methods are always attractive, but many researchers give up because each method typically requires some epistemology which often conflicts with the epistemology of other methods. When mixed methods are done, they are often done in sequence. For example, qualitative work to understand enough about a phenomenon to develop a survey or interviewing survey respondents to get richer information about their responses. Network methods are neither quantitative* nor qualitative and it's n........ Read more »
Velden, T., Haque, A., & Lagoze, C. (2010) A new approach to analyzing patterns of collaboration in co-authorship networks: mesoscopic analysis and interpretation. Scientometrics. DOI: 10.1007/s11192-010-0224-6
Scientists identify multiple species of killer whale
... Read more »
Morin, P.A. et al. (2010) Complete mitochondrial genome phylogeographic analysis of killer whales (Orcinus orca) indicates multiple species. Genome Research. DOI: 10.1101/gr.102954.109
There's an Italian cafe/deli round the corner. It's a quiet place, which seems to suit the proprietors well in a Black Books-sort of way (although without the personality defects): they open when they feel like it and there are...... Read more »
Hamada, T., Sakube, Y., Ahnn, J., Kim, D., & Kagawa, H. (2002) Molecular Dissection, Tissue Localization and Ca2 Binding of the Ryanodine Receptor of Caenorhabditis elegans. Journal of Molecular Biology, 324(1), 123-135. DOI: 10.1016/S0022-2836(02)01032-X
Its not quite marine science (hey, its my blog, so nerrr), but there's a paper in PLoS One this week where the authors describe the assembly of a genome sequence (all the DNA from beginning to end) from a single cell of a bacterium. Normally it would take a whole bunch of cultured cells to do this, which limits genome sequencing to those bacteria that can be cultured and right now that isn't ... Read more »
Obesity is one symptom of several, which together constitute what is now termed metabolic syndrome. Morbid obesity is also associated with a host of other symptoms including high blood sugar, high blood lipids, insulin resistance and liver disorders. The root causes of which are traced back to excessive food consumption, reduced physical activity and in some cases, genetic predisposition.
I have written before on the connection found between gut microbe populations and metabolic syndrome.... Read more »
Vijay-Kumar, M., Aitken, J., Carvalho, F., Cullender, T., Mwangi, S., Srinivasan, S., Sitaraman, S., Knight, R., Ley, R., & Gewirtz, A. (2010) Metabolic Syndrome and Altered Gut Microbiota in Mice Lacking Toll-Like Receptor 5. Science, 328(5975), 228-231. DOI: 10.1126/science.1179721
As much as I'm obsessed with protists, I'm a rather promiscuous type when it comes to academic relationships, and thus can find the occasional non-protist cute and interesting. Forgive me if that is 'immoral', but I'm not Christian and thus am not obligated to be intellectually monogamous. So there.Onychophorans (velvet worms) are fucking adorable. Now, whether they are more or less adorable than, say, hypotrich ciliates or Apusomonas proboscidea, is open to debate (I remain loyal to my tribal a........ Read more »
Dias, S., & Lo-Man-Hung, N. (2009) First record of an onychophoran (Onychophora, Peripatidae) feeding on a theraphosid spider (Araneae, Theraphosidae). Journal of Arachnology, 37(1), 116-117. DOI: 10.1636/ST08-20.1
Mayer, G., & Harzsch, S. (2007) Immunolocalization of serotonin in Onychophora argues against segmental ganglia being an ancestral feature of arthropods. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 7(1), 118. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2148-7-118
Mayer, G., & Whitington, P. (2009) Neural development in Onychophora (velvet worms) suggests a step-wise evolution of segmentation in the nervous system of Panarthropoda. Developmental Biology, 335(1), 263-275. DOI: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2009.08.011
Reinhard, J., & Rowell, D. (2005) Social behaviour in an Australian velvet worm, Euperipatoides rowelli (Onychophora: Peripatopsidae). Journal of Zoology, 267(01), 1. DOI: 10.1017/S0952836905007090
Sexuality is an important component of overall health and quality of life. An active sex life can reduce stress, strengthen the immune system, improve cardiovascular health and promote longevity. Not only does sex lead to health benefits, but good health leads to improved sexuality. A recent British Medical Journal (BMJ) report concluded that the better [...]... Read more »
Camacho, M., & Reyes-Ortiz, C. (2005) Sexual dysfunction in the elderly: age or disease?. International Journal of Impotence Research. DOI: 10.1038/sj.ijir.3901429
Lindau, S., & Gavrilova, N. (2010) Sex, health, and years of sexually active life gained due to good health: evidence from two US population based cross sectional surveys of ageing. BMJ, 340(mar09 2). DOI: 10.1136/bmj.c810
Smith, L., Mulhall, J., Deveci, S., Monaghan, N., & Reid, M. (2007) Sex After Seventy: A Pilot Study of Sexual Function in Older Persons. The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 4(5), 1247-1253. DOI: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2007.00568.x
BBC World Service citing the Global Fund (Early Evidence of Sustainable Impact on Malaria) reported yesterday that malaria mortality declined by almost 50% in Ethiopia. The Global fund report states a 54% decline in malaria cases and 48% decline in malaria deaths.
Are such figures true? Working on malaria research projects in south Ethiopia I [...]... Read more »
Otten, M., Aregawi, M., Were, W., Karema, C., Medin, A., Jima, D., Kebede, W., Gausi, K., Komatsu, R., Korenromp, E.... (2009) Initial evidence of reduction of malaria cases and deaths in Rwanda and Ethiopia due to rapid scale-up of malaria prevention and treatment. Malaria Journal, 8(1), 14. DOI: 10.1186/1475-2875-8-14
Accorsi, S., Bilal, N., Farese, P., & Racalbuto, V. (2010) Countdown to 2015: comparing progress towards the achievement of the health Millennium Development Goals in Ethiopia and other sub-Saharan African countries. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 104(5), 336-342. DOI: 10.1016/j.trstmh.2009.12.009
Hogan, M., Foreman, K., Naghavi, M., Ahn, S., Wang, M., Makela, S., Lopez, A., Lozano, R., & Murray, C. (2010) Maternal mortality for 181 countries, 1980–2008: a systematic analysis of progress towards Millennium Development Goal 5. The Lancet. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(10)60518-1
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