Post List

  • September 26, 2011
  • 06:00 AM

Aging gene not clear cut

by Suzanne Elvidge in Genome Engineering

Eating less makes you live longer. Despite the jokes that it just makes it seem longer, it’s true – animal studies, including in nematodes and rats show an up to 50% increase in lifespan, and the Calorie Restriction Society believes that it can work for people too. The CALERIE study at Duke University is a two year study to assess its practicality and safety. Researchers had linked the lifespan extension to the gene SIR2, which codes for sirtuins, but a paper in Nature has cast doubt........ Read more »

Burnett, C., Valentini, S., Cabreiro, F., Goss, M., Somogyvári, M., Piper, M., Hoddinott, M., Sutphin, G., Leko, V., McElwee, J.... (2011) Absence of effects of Sir2 overexpression on lifespan in C. elegans and Drosophila. Nature, 477(7365), 482-485. DOI: 10.1038/nature10296  

  • September 26, 2011
  • 04:55 AM

Stone axes and the Little Ice Age (LIA)

by Umberto in Up and Down in Moxos

What do stone axes have to do with the LIA ?In his famous paper entitled “The anthropogenic greenhouseera began thousands of years ago” Ruddiman [2003]put forward a fascinating idea: “CO2 oscillations of ∼10ppm in the last 1000 years are too large to be explained by external(solar-volcanic) forcing, but they can be explained by outbreaks of bubonicplague that caused historically documented farm abandonment in western Eurasia.Forest regrowth on abandoned farms sequesteredenough carbo........ Read more »

  • September 25, 2011
  • 09:40 PM

Nuclear Pore Complex studied in thermophilic fungus

by stajich in The Hyphal Tip

Sometimes choosing a hot lover can make all the difference. In this case, choosing a thermophilic fungus was the right eukaryote for the job to purify stable proteins from the nuclear pore complex and test their interactions. Since high temperatures (60C as compared to what its relative Chaetomium globosum prefers, 24C) will denature proteins, [...]... Read more »

  • September 25, 2011
  • 08:08 PM


by stajich in The Hyphal Tip

Previously I posted on an article on making biodiesel using the fungus Gliocladium roseum. Here is a new study reporting conversion of lipids to biodiesel using the basidiomycete Cryptococcus curvatus. There has been also other progress in this area where Mucor circinelloides can also be used to produce oils suitable for biodiesel production as reported in [...]... Read more »

  • September 25, 2011
  • 07:07 PM

Pictures worth thousands of words and dollars

by zacharoo in Lawn Chair Anthropology

Looking into subdural empyema, which is a meningeal infection you don't want, I stumbled upon a study from the roaring 1970s - the glorious Nixon-Ford-Carter years - using computerized axial tomography (hence, CAT scan) to visualize lesions within the skull (Claveria et al. 1976). Nowadays people refer to various similar scanning techniques simply as "CT" (for computed tomography, though this is not exactly the same as magnetic resonance imaging, MRI).It's pretty amazing how medical imaging has ........ Read more »

Carlson KJ, Stout D, Jashashvili T, de Ruiter DJ, Tafforeau P, Carlson K, & Berger LR. (2011) The endocast of MH1, Australopithecus sediba. Science (New York, N.Y.), 333(6048), 1402-7. PMID: 21903804  

Cooper, D., Erickson, B., Peele, A., Hannah, K., Thomas, C., & Clement, J. (2011) Visualization of 3D osteon morphology by synchrotron radiation micro-CT. Journal of Anatomy, 219(4), 481-489. DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7580.2011.01398.x  

  • September 25, 2011
  • 06:26 PM

Article Review: Effects of intravenous administration of Lactated Ringer’s solution on hematologic, serum biochemical, rheological, hemodynamic, and renal measurements in healthy isoflurane-anesthetized dogs

by Austin Bouck in Animal Science Review

Review and Discussion of article from JAVMA.... Read more »

William W. Muir III, Anusak Kijtawornrat, Yukie Ueyama, Steven V. Radecki, & Robert L. Hamlin. (2011) Effects of intravenous administration of lactated Ringer’s solution on hematologic, serum biochemical, rheological, hemodynamic, and renal measurements in healthy isoflurane-anesthetized dogs. JAVMA, 239(5), 630-637. info:/

  • September 25, 2011
  • 04:11 PM

SIMBAS, Everything the Blood Touches Is Our Kingdom

by Hector Munoz in Microfluidic Future

Hey, how’s your biotin? What? No it’s not an organic metal, maybe you call it B7? You’re probably fine, but have you been depressed, lethargic or losing your hair lately? Biotin is pretty important; it’s necessary for metabolism within our cells, so I make sure I never leave home without it. It’s rare for someone to have a biotin deficiency, but if you want to know your levels, give me a drop of your blood, and I’ll have an answer from you in 10 minutes. How? Oh just my self-powered ........ Read more »

Dimov, I., Basabe-Desmonts, L., Garcia-Cordero, J., Ross, B., Ricco, A., & Lee, L. (2011) Stand-alone self-powered integrated microfluidic blood analysis system (SIMBAS). Lab on a Chip, 11(5), 845. DOI: 10.1039/C0LC00403K  

  • September 25, 2011
  • 12:00 PM

Sloane's viperfish

by beredim in Strange Animals

Despite its frightening appearance, the Sloane's viperfish (or Sloane’s fangfish) is a harmless to humans dragon fish of the Chauliodus genus. It can be found all over the world in tropical and subtropical oceans, living in very deep depths.... Read more »

  • September 25, 2011
  • 09:24 AM

Targeting antivirals to the host, part 2 - success?

by Connor Bamford in The Rule of 6ix

Viral pneumonia (from influenza possibly) results from an accumulation of immune cells and fluid in the lung tissue. But how can we stop it?

  In the northern hemisphere it's coming up to 'flu season - the time when many of us will be getting our yearly influenza vaccinations. In the coming months during the thousands of potential viral infections, some form of disease/clinical symptoms may set in (maybe not if you're vaccinated) - think of that headache, cough, runny nose, etc. ........ Read more »

Teijaro, J., Walsh, K., Cahalan, S., Fremgen, D., Roberts, E., Scott, F., Martinborough, E., Peach, R., Oldstone, M., & Rosen, H. (2011) Endothelial Cells Are Central Orchestrators of Cytokine Amplification during Influenza Virus Infection. Cell, 146(6), 980-991. DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2011.08.015  

  • September 25, 2011
  • 08:23 AM

Fatty Acids and Suicide Risk

by Jennifer Gibson, PharmD in Brain Blogger

Omega-3 fatty acids have long been associated with improved cardiovascular health. More recently, these polyunsaturated fatty acids, including docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), have been identified as essential to mental health as well. Specifically, a new study of military personnel published by the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry concludes that low levels of DHA are associated with an [...]... Read more »

  • September 25, 2011
  • 08:02 AM

The XV Workshop on Statistical Mechanics and nonperturbative Field Theory

by Marco Frasca in The Gauge Connection

This week I was in Bari as the physics department of that university organized a major event: SM&FT 2011. This is a biennial conference having the aims to discuss recent achievements in fields as statistical mechanics and quantum field theory that have a lot of commonalities. The organizers are well-known physicists and so it was [...]... Read more »

P. Cea, & L. Cosmai. (2011) The trivial Higgs boson: first evidences from LHC. arXiv. arXiv: 1106.4178v1

Marco Frasca, & Marco Ruggieri. (2011) Magnetic Susceptibility of the Quark Condensate and Polarization from Chiral Models. Phys.Rev.D83:094024,2011. arXiv: 1103.1194v1

  • September 25, 2011
  • 05:40 AM

The Neurophysiology of Pain During REM Sleep

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

In the last post, we learned about The Phenomenology of Pain During REM Sleep. Real life pain can intrude into dreams, as was shown for experimentally induced pain (Nielsen et al., 1993) and in hospitalized burn patients (Raymond et al., 2002). In this post we'll hear about a fascinating experiment that recorded laser evoked potentials directly from the brains of epilepsy patients who were being surgically monitored for seizures (Bastuji et al. 2011). Only under rare circumstances can intracran........ Read more »

  • September 25, 2011
  • 04:26 AM

Barnacles (Crustacea: Cirripedia)

by Marc in Teaching Biology

Cirripedes (barnacles) are known for their sessility – it’s their defining characteristic. They count as one of the first model organisms of evolutionary biology, having been comparatively studied by Darwin for over 8 years (they were probably his favourite animals). The 4 resulting monographs (two for Recent, two for fossil) are still some of the [...]... Read more »

Høeg, J. (1995) The biology and life cycle of the Rhizocephala (Cirripedia). Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 75(03), 517. DOI: 10.1017/S0025315400038996  

  • September 25, 2011
  • 02:10 AM

Hepatosplenomegaly with fever in a child

by Debajyoti Datta in Medicine...Life

Yesterday I got into a discussion with one of my friendsabout a case. He had examined a 7 year old male child who presented with feverfor the last 7 days. The fever was of mild grade, continuous in type. The feverwas not associated with any chills... Read more »

Nacher M, Treeprasertsuk S, Singhasivanon P, Silachamroon U, Vannaphan S, Gay F, Looareesuwan S, & Wilairatana P. (2001) Association of hepatomegaly and jaundice with acute renal failure but not with cerebral malaria in severe falciparum malaria in Thailand. The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene, 65(6), 828-33. PMID: 11791981  

  • September 24, 2011
  • 06:58 PM

Language is not necessary for analogy

by Hannah Little in A Replicated Typo 2.0


Analogy is a trait thought to be uniquely human and the origin is largely unknown. Recent studies have suggested that some language trained apes can find relations between relations, which is thought to be what is at the root of analogy. However, a new study in the journal  Psychological Science  has tested baboons using shapes . . . → Read More: Language is not necessary for analogy... Read more »

  • September 24, 2011
  • 06:43 PM

Faster Than a Speeding Photon: "Measurement of the neutrino velocity with the OPERA detector in the CNGS beam"

by Chad Orzel in Uncertain Principles

There have been a lot of pixels spilled over this faster-than-light neutrino business, so it might not seem like something I should take time away from pressing work to write up. It is the story of the moment, though, and too much of the commentary I've seen has been of the form "I am a {theorist, journalist} so hearing about experimental details gives me the vapors" (a snarky paraphrase, obviously). This suggests that there's still room for a canine-level write-up going into a bit more depth ab........ Read more »

The OPERA Collaboraton: T. Adam, N. Agafonova, A. Aleksandrov, O. Altinok, P. Alvarez Sanchez, S. Aoki, A. Ariga, T. Ariga, D. Autiero, A. Badertscher.... (2011) Measurement of the neutrino velocity with the OPERA detector in the CNGS beam. CERN. arXiv: 1109.4897v1

  • September 24, 2011
  • 05:52 PM

Decoding fMRI activity evoked by natural movies

by Patrick Mineault in xcorr

The Gallant lab have just published a new paper in Current Biology about decoding visual activity in fMRI evoked through natural movies. TryNerdy has a very high level overview of the paper. Here I’ more interested in the nitty gritty computational/statistical details. The idea is to train an encoding model using fMRI responses during natural [...]... Read more »

Shinji Nishimoto, An T. Vu, Thomas Naselaris, Yuval Benjamini, Bin Yu, & Jack L. Gallant. (2011) Reconstructing visual experiences from brain activity evoked by natural movies. Current Biology. info:/10.1016/j.cub.2011.08.031

  • September 24, 2011
  • 05:29 PM

Neutrinos and the future of physics

by nuclear.kelly in Miss Atomic Bomb

The scientific community is buzzing, or one would imagine we are, after news of this paper came out last week. Could neutrinos, those mysterious particles which hardly interact with normal matter, really be traveling faster than the speed of light? It was all over the news. The collaboration held a news conference. Hints of another cold fusion fiasco creep into conversations.... Read more »

The OPERA Collaboraton: T. Adam, N. Agafonova, A. Aleksandrov, O. Altinok, P. Alvarez Sanchez, S. Aoki, A. Ariga, T. Ariga, D. Autiero, A. Badertscher.... (2011) Measurement of the neutrino velocity with the OPERA detector in the CNGS beam. arXiv. arXiv: 1109.4897v1

  • September 24, 2011
  • 01:09 PM

Etruscan Rite & Roman Religion

by Cris Campbell in Genealogy of Religion

“Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains.”
With this famous sentence, Jean-Jacques Rousseau begins his masterful critique of political power. Less well known is another sentence from The Social Contract (1762): “No State has ever been founded without Religion serving as its base.”
My reading of history is that Rousseau was right. State-formation [...]... Read more »

Briquel, Dominique. (2007) Tages Against Jesus: Etruscan Religion in Late Roman Empire. Etruscan Studies, 10(1), 153-161. info:/

  • September 24, 2011
  • 10:00 AM

Megatherium Gets a New, Tiny Cousin

by Laelaps in Laelaps

Researchers have discovered a dwarf-sized cousin of the giant ground sloth in 17-million-year-old rock. Paleontology blogger Brian Switek reports.... Read more »

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