Maybe singing mice (Scotinomys teguina) wouldn’t make it to Hollywood in America’s Got Talent, but they put on a good show. Males of these diminutive Neotropical rodents sing by producing a series of trills when attracting mates (Figure 1). Like some birds, singing mice take short breaths between notes, and can modulate the frequency by changing the size of their mouth opening (audio file). Females are attracted to the “love songs” of certain males. Bret Pasch at ........ Read more »
Pasch, B., George, A., Campbell, P., & Phelps, S. (2011) Androgen-dependent male vocal performance influences female preference in Neotropical singing mice. Animal Behaviour, 82(2), 177-183. DOI: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2011.04.018
One potential way to combat the obesity epidemic and environmental degradation all in the same go is urban agriculture. I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately, wondering if it is feasible in climates like New York City and Toronto, if it can actually generate enough food to continuously feed a city, and of course, also improve diet quality at a population-level.Urban agriculture refers to agricultural practices (usually intensive) within and around cities that compete for resources such as........ Read more »
Pearson, L., Pearson, L., & Pearson, C. (2010) Sustainable urban agriculture: stocktake and opportunities. International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability, 8(1), 7-19. DOI: 10.3763/ijas.2009.0468
by Moselio Schaechter in Small Things Considered
by Merry Youle
Something bizarre can be seen in TEMs of a Caulobacter crescentus phage, φCbK. This was first reported in a paper published back in 1972 (see the image to the right). In most respects, φCbK is your typical ho-hum siphovirus with an elongated head (60 nm diameter, 200 nm long) sporting a 290 nm long non-contractile tail with the usual tail fibers. But even with the limited imaging techniques available in 1972 these researchers could see that this phage has a single long filame........ Read more »
Guerrero-Ferreira RC, Viollier PH, Ely B, Poindexter JS, Georgieva M, Jensen GJ, & Wright ER. (2011) Alternative mechanism for bacteriophage adsorption to the motile bacterium Caulobacter crescentus. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 108(24), 9963-8. PMID: 21613567
Imagine that you're a media mogul and you over-hear people estimating how much of the newspaper market you control. Would it be preferable, do you think, to hear an under-estimate or an over-estimate? Xianchi Dai at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and his colleagues have addressed this very question, producing some findings that they say have practical social lessons for us all.
Based on classic findings in psychology showing that most of us like to see ourselves in a positive light, the r........ Read more »
Google has decided to wind down its “labs”, the section of its operations from whence the experimental, developmental applications, such as GMail, Buzz, Wave and, of course, Google+ emerged. They are planning to do it gently, and some labs such as those for GMail and Calendar will persist, but this could be the end of [...]Post from: David Bradley's Sciencetext Tech TalkThe myth of the recreational workplace
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Torkild Thanem, Sara Värlander, & Stephen Cummings. (2011) Open space . Int. J. Work Organisation and Emotion, 4(1), 78-98. info:/
Fossil trackways are simultaneously wonderful and frustrating things. They are preserved bits of prehistoric behavior, but, unless an animal actually dies and becomes preserved in its tracks, identifying exactly what creature left the traces can be fraught with difficulty. (The types of prehistoric environments which preserved tracks often destroyed body fossils, so, when the two [...]... Read more »
Randomness often does more harm than good. Take the phrase: “nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.” I replaced a random word in this sentence with a random, different word, and got: “nothing in biology makes sense except in doctorishness light of evolution.” Not only did this random replacement turn Dobzhanksy’s [...]
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Carroll SM, Ortlund EA, & Thornton JW. (2011) Mechanisms for the evolution of a derived function in the ancestral glucocorticoid receptor. PLoS genetics, 7(6). PMID: 21698144
This week I will have four blog posts on the topic of hoarding. This post will focus on the hoarding of animals, followed by posts on mental health disorders in hoarders, a review of manuscript looking a genetic factors in hoarding and then finishing with a review of pharmacotherapy treatment of hoarders.Hoarding occurs in a variety of forms. Some individuals with hoarding collect newspapers, clothes or other specific items such as dolls.One group of hoarders appear vulnerable to col........ Read more »
Steketee, G., Gibson, A., Frost, R., Alabiso, J., Arluke, A., & Patronek, G. (2011) Characteristics and antecedents of people who hoard animals: An exploratory comparative interview study. Review of General Psychology, 15(2), 114-124. DOI: 10.1037/a0023484
Patronek GJ, & Nathanson JN. (2009) A theoretical perspective to inform assessment and treatment strategies for animal hoarders. Clinical psychology review, 29(3), 274-81. PMID: 19254818
The lion wasn’t roaring.
It was making sounds, all right, while I was sitting next to the lion enclosure in the Melbourne Zoo. Metal fences separated the lions and me when one started vocalizing.
The lion wasn’t growling, either. It’s hard to describe the sound it was making. It was a raspy, open mouthed sound, almost like someone breathing hard after exercise. But the lion was just walking slowly, not in any way winded.
But that sound had so much power.
I think I almost stopped breath........ Read more »
Packer C, Swanson A, Ikanda D, & Kushnir H. (2011) Fear of darkness, the full moon and the nocturnal ecology of African lions. PLoS ONE, 6(7). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0022285
The literature on mock juries has been criticized for years for use of convenience samples (i.e., college students). An upcoming issue of the journal Behavioral Sciences and the Law is devoted to examining mock jury research and assessing where we have been and where we need to go. The authors argue that since we are trying [...]
Related posts:Why do the African American mock jurors all sit together?
Should you try online jury research?
The “Nerd Defense”: Redux
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They invade...they proliferate...they destroy. It sounds like the tagline for a terrible summer blockbuster starring Samuel L. Jackson and an animated sidekick voiced by one of the Kardashians, but it’s the tagline of something far more sinister and real. I’m talking about tumors. Today’s image is from a paper showing how a membrane protein called caveolin-1 can support tumor invasion. Caveolin-1 is a membrane protein and a major component of caveolae, which are small membrane invagi........ Read more »
Goetz, J., Minguet, S., Navarro-Lérida, I., Lazcano, J., Samaniego, R., Calvo, E., Tello, M., Osteso-Ibáñez, T., Pellinen, T., Echarri, A.... (2011) Biomechanical Remodeling of the Microenvironment by Stromal Caveolin-1 Favors Tumor Invasion and Metastasis. Cell, 146(1), 148-163. DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2011.05.040
Ok class, now quieten down. Bryony – how many times do I have to tell you? Mobile phones away! Today we are going to be looking at an important topic: Childhood behaviour. In a moment, we’re going to try to get a serious answer to a controversial question. Oh Jimmy, please put that cigarette lighter … Continue reading »... Read more »
Steer, A. (2009) A review of behaviour standards and practices in our schools. Learning Behaviour: Lessons Leaned. info:other/
Achenbach, T., Dumenci, L., & Rescorla, L. (2003) Are American Children's Problems Still Getting Worse? A 23-Year Comparison. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 31(1), 1-11. DOI: 10.1023/A:1021700430364
Verhulst, F., Ende, J., & Rietbergen, A. (1997) Ten-year time trends of psychopathology in Dutch children and adolescents: no evidence for strong trends. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 96(1), 7-13. DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0447.1997.tb09898.x
Mitchell, T. (1997) Temporal Adjustments in the Evaluation of Events: The “Rosy View”, ,. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 33(4), 421-448. DOI: 10.1006/jesp.1997.1333
Buffer From a structured review of websites of 1800 US hospitals focusing on their Facebook, Twitter and Youtube accounts: 21% used social media More likely to be large, urban hospitals run by nonprofit, nongovernment organisations More likely to participate in graduate medical education Used social media to target a general audience (97%) Provide content about [...]
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Description of a superluminal communication device... Read more »
Ghirardi, G., Rimini, A., & Weber, T. (1980) A general argument against superluminal transmission through the quantum mechanical measurement process. Lettere al Nuovo Cimento, 27(10), 293-298. DOI: 10.1007/BF02817189
After 27 years, scientists finally appear to have unraveled most of the mystery surrounding a very enterprising group of (primarily) female bottlenose dolphins (tursiops aduncus) who live in Shark Bay, off the coast of Western Australia. The story opens in … Continue reading →... Read more »
Smolker, R., Richards, A., Connor, R., Mann, J., & Berggren, P. (2010) Sponge Carrying by Dolphins (Delphinidae, Tursiops sp.): A Foraging Specialization Involving Tool Use?. Ethology, 103(6), 454-465. DOI: 10.1111/j.1439-0310.1997.tb00160.x
Krutzen, M. (2005) Cultural transmission of tool use in bottlenose dolphins. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 102(25), 8939-8943. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0500232102
Patterson, E., & Mann, J. (2011) The Ecological Conditions That Favor Tool Use and Innovation in Wild Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops sp.). PLoS ONE, 6(7). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0022243
Over the past few months I’ve been using the Chronic Pain Acceptance Questionnaire (CPAQ-8) as part of a battery of questionnaires used at intake and outcome measures. Along with the CPAQ-8, we use the Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia, the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale, the Pain Anxiety Symptoms Scale, the Pain Catastrophising Scale, Pain Self Efficacy … Read more... Read more »
Fish, R., McGuire, B., Hogan, M., Morrison, T., & Stewart, I. (2010) Validation of the Chronic Pain Acceptance Questionnaire (CPAQ) in an Internet sample and development and preliminary validation of the CPAQ-8. Pain, 149(3), 435-443. DOI: 10.1016/j.pain.2009.12.016
Bacteria have busy social lives. You might get a glimpse of this the next time you take a shower. The slimy discolored patches that form on bath tiles and on the inside of shower curtains are the mega-cities of the bacterial world. If you zoom into these patches of grime, you’ll find bustling microcosms that are teeming with life at a different scale... Continue reading →... Read more »
Jin F, Conrad JC, Gibiansky ML, & Wong GC. (2011) Bacteria use type-IV pili to slingshot on surfaces. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. PMID: 21768344
Gibiansky ML, Conrad JC, Jin F, Gordon VD, Motto DA, Mathewson MA, Stopka WG, Zelasko DC, Shrout JD, & Wong GC. (2010) Bacteria use type IV pili to walk upright and detach from surfaces. Science (New York, N.Y.), 330(6001), 197. PMID: 20929769
Just a few days ago, I was co-authoring a submission for a journal on the issue of handling social media with care and needed to cite a bunch of blogs and non-traditional online sources of information (including Tweets and Friendfeed … Continue reading →... Read more »
How do galaxies grow? One of the most common ways seems to be by merging with other nearby galaxies (a hot research topic that Rita’s talked about in more detail). Seems simple enough, but to really understand how this happens you need to look at a large number of them, at various stages of the [...]... Read more »
R.C. McGurk, C.E. Max, D.J. Rosario, G.A. Shields, K.L. Smith, S.A. Wright. (2011) Spatially-Resolved Spectroscopy of SDSS J0952 2552: a confirmed Dual AGN. Submitted to ApJL. DOI: arXiv:1107.2651
If Daniel Moerman, PhD is correct and the subjective improvement is what is important, then we should pay attention to the following chart of subjective improvement. Subjective improvement is what the patient thinks is real, even if reality does not agree.
When we go to a magic show and see a woman being cut in half, we are experiencing subjective reality. The objective reality is that the woman was never really cut in half, even though our subjective experience is that she has been cut in ha........ Read more »
Wechsler, M., Kelley, J., Boyd, I., Dutile, S., Marigowda, G., Kirsch, I., Israel, E., & Kaptchuk, T. (2011) Active Albuterol or Placebo, Sham Acupuncture, or No Intervention in Asthma. New England Journal of Medicine, 365(2), 119-126. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1103319
Moerman, D. (2011) Meaningful Placebos — Controlling the Uncontrollable. New England Journal of Medicine, 365(2), 171-172. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMe1104010
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