Close-up of the apical end of a shipworm taken from the He'eia mangroves. Shipworms are not actually worms but bivalves (this picture shows one of the shells, the other is obscured by tissue).Teredo worms (or shipworms), which are actually bivalves of the family Teredinidae, are legendary in their appetites for ship hulls, wood pilings, or any other wood found in the ocean. Like a clam or any other bivalve, they have two sharp shells on one end, but their long, soft body makes them look mor........ Read more »
Cragg, S., Jumel, M., Al-Horani, F., & Hendy, I. (2009) The life history characteristics of the wood-boring bivalve Teredo bartschi are suited to the elevated salinity, oligotrophic circulation in the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 375(1-2), 99-105. DOI: 10.1016/j.jembe.2009.05.014
ROBERTSON, A., & DANIEL, P. (1989) Decomposition and the annual flux of detritus from fallen timber in tropical mangrove forests. Limnology and Oceanography, 34(3), 640-646. DOI: 10.4319/lo.1989.34.3.0640
by Jenika in ionpsych
Suppose you’re sitting around one night and log in to Facebook. You scan through your friends’ status updates, and notice one person excitedly trumpeting the arrival of their new iPad 2, chattering about all the cool features. Maybe you’re not … Continue reading →... Read more »
Van Boven, L., Campbell, M., & Gilovich, T. (2010) Stigmatizing Materialism: On Stereotypes and Impressions of Materialistic and Experiential Pursuits. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 36(4), 551-563. DOI: 10.1177/0146167210362790
How does one go about selling a sabercat skeleton? This was the question the Argentinean naturalist Francisco Javier Muñiz asked Charles Darwin in a letter sent on August 30, 1846.
Almost one year previously, in the pages of the Gaceta Mercantil, Muñiz published a detailed description of a nearly-complete saber-toothed cat skeleton. The article’s title proclaimed [...]... Read more »
Rincon, A., Prevosti, F., & Parra, G. (2011) New saber-toothed cat records (Felidae: Machairodontinae) for the Pleistocene of Venezuela, and the Great American Biotic Interchange. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 31(2), 468-478. DOI: 10.1080/02724634.2011.550366
by Vincent Racaniello in virology blog
Last week we discussed the second known virophage, but we didn’t have any explanation of why such viruses might evolve. This week we have the discovery of a third virophage, hints of many more, and a hypothesis for what they might be doing in the global ecosystem. The newest virus eater is called Organic Lake [...]... Read more »
Yau S, Lauro FM, Demaere MZ, Brown MV, Thomas T, Raftery MJ, Andrews-Pfannkoch C, Lewis M, Hoffman JM, Gibson JA.... (2011) Virophage control of antarctic algal host-virus dynamics. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. PMID: 21444812
So, if you're an evolutionary biologist, or really if you follow the biology literature at all, you have probably heard about the paper published last fall in Nature by Martin Nowak, Corina Tarnita, and E. O. Wilson. The paper claims that all theories based on kin selection and inclusive fitness are fundamentally flawed and unsupported by any empirical evidence.
Recently, responses to the paper were published in Nature, and the original article has been criticized on a number of counts.&n........ Read more »
Abbot, P., Abe, J., Alcock, J., Alizon, S., Alpedrinha, J., Andersson, M., Andre, J., van Baalen, M., Balloux, F., Balshine, S.... (2011) Inclusive fitness theory and eusociality. Nature, 471(7339). DOI: 10.1038/nature09831
Boomsma, J., Beekman, M., Cornwallis, C., Griffin, A., Holman, L., Hughes, W., Keller, L., Oldroyd, B., & Ratnieks, F. (2011) Only full-sibling families evolved eusociality. Nature, 471(7339). DOI: 10.1038/nature09832
Creative Commons, Credit.
While traveling a few weeks ago, I had ample opportunity to observe the art of waiting. Or rather, the art of not waiting. New Yorkers aren’t known for their patience—something that became painfully obvious when I got frustrated with the service S and I received at a south Florida restaurant. (If it takes more than 10 minutes for a server to come by and get drink orders after the customer has been seated, there is something wrong. We left, by the way, as even t........ Read more »
Antonides, G., Verhoef, P., & van Aalst, M. (2002) Consumer Perception and Evaluation of Waiting Time: A Field Experiment. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 12(3), 193-202. DOI: 10.1207/153276602760335040
Holland RW, Roeder UR, van Baaren RB, Brandt AC, & Hannover B. (2004) Don't stand so close to me: the effects fo self-construal in interpersonal closeness. Psychological science : a journal of the American Psychological Society / APS, 15(4), 237-42. PMID: 15043640
Ruback, R., Pape, K., & Doriot, P. (1989) Waiting for a Phone: Intrusion on Callers Leads to Territorial Defense. Social Psychology Quarterly, 52(3), 232. DOI: 10.2307/2786718
Most people reading this blog will have heard of the "selfish gene" - the idea, formally defined by Hamilton and popularised by Dawkins, that what matters from the perspective of evolution is not organisms, but genes.
Those genes that maximise their chances of survival - regardless of what happens to individuals - will be the ones that come to predominate.
It comes in for a lot of flack, mostly from people who wrongly equate selfish genes with selfish people. To be fair, there also a lot of co........ Read more »
West, S., El Mouden, C., & Gardner, A. (2010) Sixteen common misconceptions about the evolution of cooperation in humans. Evolution and Human Behavior. DOI: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2010.08.001
In my previous post, I explored the relationship between ulcerative colitis (UC) and gut bacteria. Here, the theme of "treatment" continues.A UK microbiology team, led by Sandra Macfarlane at the University of Dundee, pored over the UC research and became convinced that UC has something to do with the body overreacting to its normal gut bacteria. Basically, it's a case of the gut is crying wolf, saying, "Hey, there's something wrong with this bacteria in here!" even when everything's fine.We alr........ Read more »
Furrie, E. (2005) Synbiotic therapy (Bifidobacterium longum/Synergy 1) initiates resolution of inflammation in patients with active ulcerative colitis: a randomised controlled pilot trial. Gut, 54(2), 242-249. DOI: 10.1136/gut.2004.044834
Fujimori S, Gudis K, Mitsui K, Seo T, Yonezawa M, Tanaka S, Tatsuguchi A, & Sakamoto C. (2009) A randomized controlled trial on the efficacy of synbiotic versus probiotic or prebiotic treatment to improve the quality of life in patients with ulcerative colitis. Nutrition (Burbank, Los Angeles County, Calif.), 25(5), 520-5. PMID: 19201576
by Ida Salusky in ionpsych
A pregnant woman comes into an emergency room on a weekend evening. She reports that she fell on her stomach and is worried about her unborn child. The woman also has some minor bruising around her wrists and arms not … Continue reading →... Read more »
Sormanti M, & Smith E. (2009) Intimate partner violence screening in the emergency department: U.S. medical residents' perspectives. International quarterly of community health education, 30(1), 21-40. PMID: 20353925
This is the second part of my posts about teaching Electricity and Magnetism (EM). Part I can be found here, which dealt with the confusion of students in learning electricity and magnetism together. Part II deals with a paper looking at ways to help improve teaching methods for EM. The paper is entitled “Using multimedia [...]... Read more »
Sadaghiani, H. (2011) Using multimedia learning modules in a hybrid-online course in electricity and magnetism. Physical Review Special Topics - Physics Education Research, 7(1). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.010102
Magnetism remains the most developed way to store digital information. The giga and terabytes of computer hard drives as well as the magnetic stripes that still are used for credit cards or hotel room keys, all function with the help of magnetic fields. There, the direction of the magnetic fields, up or down, expresses the [...]... Read more »
Radu, I., Vahaplar, K., Stamm, C., Kachel, T., Pontius, N., Dürr, H., Ostler, T., Barker, J., Evans, R., Chantrell, R.... (2011) Transient ferromagnetic-like state mediating ultrafast reversal of antiferromagnetically coupled spins. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature09901
Figure 1. Slime molds are frikin cool. (Source) Social amoebae (sometimes referred to as slim molds, though they are not true members of the slime mold group) are a diverse group of unicellular organisms that congregate into “multicellular” forms for … Continue reading →... Read more »
Eichinger, L., Pachebat, J., Glöckner, G., Rajandream, M., Sucgang, R., Berriman, M., Song, J., Olsen, R., Szafranski, K., Xu, Q.... (2005) The genome of the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. Nature, 435(7038), 43-57. DOI: 10.1038/nature03481
Strassmann JE, Zhu Y, & Queller DC. (2000) Altruism and social cheating in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. Nature, 408(6815), 965-7. PMID: 11140681
Sucgang, R., Kuo, A., Tian, X., Salerno, W., Parikh, A., Feasley, C., Dalin, E., Tu, H., Huang, E., Barry, K.... (2011) Comparative genomics of the social amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum and Dictyostelium purpureum. Genome Biology, 12(2). DOI: 10.1186/gb-2011-12-2-r20
I was most surprised and honored to find out this morning that the Annals of Neurology has declared Neuroskeptic to beIrreverent, sometimes profane, and can skirt the boundaries of good taste. Nonetheless, Neuroskeptic covers a rich mixture of important, engaging, or amusing topics focusing on the basic and clinical neurosciences, and does so in a data-driven, user-friendly, and comment-enabled format. Neuroskeptic is only one of a number of increasingly used web sites and blogs dedicated to pro........ Read more »
What causes a child’s language problems? Is it a problem with hearing? A problem with the brain’s interpretation of speech? Is it genetic? Specialists sometimes diagnose ‘Auditory Processing Disorder’ but the term itself is a complicated affair, writes Dorothy Bishop. Five-year-old Charlie doesn’t speak very clearly, and doesn’t always understand what people are saying. His [...]... Read more »
Bishop, D. (2006) Developmental cognitive genetics: How psychology can inform genetics and vice versa. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 59(7), 1153-1168. DOI: 10.1080/17470210500489372
Bishop, D. (2007) Using mismatch negativity to study central auditory processing in developmental language and literacy impairments: Where are we, and where should we be going?. Psychological Bulletin, 133(4), 651-672. DOI: 10.1037/0033-2909.133.4.651
Bishop DV, Hardiman MJ, & Barry JG. (2010) Lower-frequency event-related desynchronization: a signature of late mismatch responses to sounds, which is reduced or absent in children with specific language impairment. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 30(46), 15578-84. PMID: 21084613
Dawes P, & Bishop DV. (2007) The SCAN-C in testing for auditory processing disorder in a sample of British children. International journal of audiology, 46(12), 780-6. PMID: 18049967
Dawes P, & Bishop D. (2009) Auditory processing disorder in relation to developmental disorders of language, communication and attention: a review and critique. International journal of language , 44(4), 440-65. PMID: 19925352
Ferguson MA, Hall RL, Riley A, & Moore DR. (2011) Communication, listening, cognitive and speech perception skills in children with auditory processing disorder (APD) or Specific Language Impairment (SLI). Journal of speech, language, and hearing research : JSLHR, 54(1), 211-27. PMID: 20689032
Loo JH, Bamiou DE, Campbell N, & Luxon LM. (2010) Computer-based auditory training (CBAT): benefits for children with language- and reading-related learning difficulties. Developmental medicine and child neurology, 52(8), 708-17. PMID: 20370814
Moore, D. (2006) Auditory processing disorder (APD): Definition, diagnosis, neural basis, and intervention. Audiological Medicine, 4(1), 4-11. DOI: 10.1080/16513860600568573
Moore DR, Ferguson MA, Edmondson-Jones AM, Ratib S, & Riley A. (2010) Nature of auditory processing disorder in children. Pediatrics, 126(2). PMID: 20660546
Stegosaurus had a formidable tail. Studded with four long spikes, this dinosaur’s business end would have given Allosaurus and other Jurassic predators plenty of incentive to keep moving. But do we have any evidence that Stegosaurus really used its tail this way? Among paleontologists, the four-spiked tail of Stegosaurus is called a “thagomizer.” It is [...]... Read more »
Carpenter, Kenneth; Sanders, Frank; McWhinney, Lorrie A.; and Wood, Lowell. (2005) Evidence for predator-prey relationships: Examples for Allosaurus and Stegosaurus. The Carnivorous Dinosaurs, 325-350. info:/
Methamphetamine Chemical StructureMethamphetamine dependence can lead to an early death. The magnitude and mechanism of this effect is not well understood. One way to better understand effects of drug abuse/dependence on mortality is the prospective outcome study. These types of studies tend to be costly and may require many years to yield research results. That’s why there are not many published studies to answer the question of this post.A recent study from Taiw........ Read more »
Kuo CJ, Liao YT, Chen WJ, Tsai SY, Lin SK, & Chen CC. (2010) Causes of death of patients with methamphetamine dependence: A record-linkage study. Drug and alcohol review. PMID: 21355920
by Abi Millar in Elements Science
Meetings are one of the hot topics in occupational psychology. How can this bane of working life best be addressed? Asks Abi Millar.
Related posts:Shopping, Death and Stereotypes
... Read more »
Kohn, N., & Smith, S. (2010) Collaborative fixation: Effects of others' ideas on brainstorming. Applied Cognitive Psychology. DOI: 10.1002/acp.1699
Luong, A., & Rogelberg, S. (2005) Meetings and More Meetings: The Relationship Between Meeting Load and the Daily Well-Being of Employees. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 9(1), 58-67. DOI: 10.1037/1089-2622.214.171.124
Nixon, C., & Littlepage, G. (1992) Impact of meeting procedures on meeting effectiveness. Journal of Business and Psychology, 6(3), 361-369. DOI: 10.1007/BF01126771
Reader of these pages are probably well aware of the countless supplements, potions, pills, and other products being enthusiastically advertised (and sold) for weight loss.
Although this is a billion dollar market, most users of these products (after spending a fortune) will have realised that virtually none of them hold any of the advertised promises (viz. [...]... Read more »
Onakpoya IJ, Wider B, Pittler MH, & Ernst E. (2011) Food supplements for body weight reduction: a systematic review of systematic reviews. Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.), 19(2), 239-44. PMID: 20814412
Natural disasters always seem to strike in the worst places. The Sendai earthquake has caused over 8,000 deaths, destroyed 450,000 people’s homes, crippled four nuclear reactors, and wreaked over $300 billion in damage. And it’s only the latest disaster. Haiti will need decades to rebuild after its earthquake. New Orleans still hasn’t repopulated following Hurricane Katrina. Indonesia still feels the effect of the 2004 tsunami. The list could go on and on. The unfortunate lesso........ Read more »
Connell JH. (1978) Diversity in tropical rain forests and coral reefs. Science (New York, N.Y.), 199(4335), 1302-10. PMID: 17840770
There will be no NORMAL Friday Weird Science this week. Sci's got something special coming at ya! Keep your eyes peeled. But of course, I couldn't just do a week without doing my NORMAL weird science, right?? Ok, I'll be honest, nothing else really appealed to me and...it's SNAILS IN SPACE. You know what? [...]... Read more »
Balaban, P., Malyshev, A., Ierusalimsky, V., Aseyev, N., Korshunova, T., Bravarenko, N., Lemak, M., Roshchin, M., Zakharov, I., Popova, Y.... (2011) Functional Changes in the Snail Statocyst System Elicited by Microgravity. PLoS ONE, 6(3). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0017710
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