Language can reveal, or conceal, the soul. Words express thoughts, share emotions, and foretell actions. Now, speech can predict victory in boxing matches. It is probably fair to say that few boxers are considered masters of the spoken word. But, researchers in Arkansas recently presented results of a study at the 16th Annual International Stress [...]... Read more »
Freeman P, Coffee P, & Rees T. (2011) The PASS-Q: the perceived available support in sport questionnaire. Journal of sport , 33(1), 54-74. PMID: 21451171
Nicolas M, Gaudreau P, & Franche V. (2011) Perception of coaching behaviors, coping, and achievement in a sport competition. Journal of sport , 33(3), 460-8. PMID: 21659673
Zourbanos N, Hatzigeorgiadis A, Tsiakaras N, Chroni S, & Theodorakis Y. (2010) A multimethod examination of the relationship between coaching behavior and athletes' inherent self-talk. Journal of sport , 32(6), 764-85. PMID: 21282837
Classic rivalries of summer 2011: Harry verus Voldemort. Cap versus the Red Skull. Optimus versus Megatron. And now, worms versus fungus.
Normally, we think of fungi as decomposers that sit around and wait for something to die. Some fungi might infect the living. But there are are few have decided to screw all that and will kill for their sustenance.
Fungi are not mobile, so their technique is to create snares. They form a loop of cells that can inflate when their inner surface is touch, trapp........ Read more »
Maguire SM, Clark CM, Nunnari J, Pirri JK, & Alkema MJ. (2011) The C. elegans touch response facilitates escape from predacious fungi. Current Biology. info:/10.1016/j.cub.2011.06.063
Spicules shooting up from the Sun as seen by the Solar Dynamics Observatory in April. The full disk image is also worth a look. Image credit: NASA/SDO/AIA One of the many mysteries about our Sun is how its outer atmosphere (corona) gets heated to more than 20 times its surface temperature. Well, it looks like [...]... Read more »
McIntosh SW, De Pontieu B, Carlsson M, Hansteen V, Boerner P, & Goossens M. (2011) Alfvénic waves with sufficient energy to power the quiet solar corona and fast solar wind. Nature, 475(7357), 477-80. PMID: 21796206
De Pontieu B, McIntosh SW, Carlsson M, Hansteen VH, Tarbell TD, Schrijver CJ, Title AM, Shine RA, Tsuneta S, Katsukawa Y.... (2007) Chromospheric alfvenic waves strong enough to power the solar wind. Science (New York, N.Y.), 318(5856), 1574-7. PMID: 18063784
by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room
When Robert Hare casually uttered the above statement, it caused small shock waves through the media. We are all familiar with psychopaths who end up in prison but we tend to not consider the reality that “they” walk among us. Recently, a study of 203 executives was conducted as part of a larger effort at [...]
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In the news recently: Operation Rat Drop, where tylenol-laden mice were dropped from planes over Guam. It’s not a bizarre headache remedy; the idea is to try to kill brown tree snakes (a non-native invasive species) when they eat the mice. Acetaminophen kills snakes. Who knew? That reminded me of a similar–but much odder–project: Operation Cat Drop. It’s an [...]... Read more »
O'Shaughnessy, P. (2008) PARACHUTING CATS AND CRUSHED EGGS The Controversy Over the Use of DDT to Control Malaria. American Journal of Public Health, 98(11), 1940-1948. DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2007.122523
We’ve written a fair bit about the System of Rice Intensification, or SRI, and our most recent little piece sparked what passes for a vociferous debate over at Facebook (which of course I cannot now link to). As I recall it all seemed to hinge on whether there was one SRI or several different systems, [...]... Read more »
Shepherd, C., & McWilliam, A. (2011) Ethnography, Agency, and Materiality: Anthropological * Perspectives on Rice Development in East Timor. East Asian Science, Technology and Society, 5(2), 189-215. DOI: 10.1215/18752160-1262876
It’s not just tabloids that are having their pants pulled down at the moment. Medical journals are too. A few weeks the BJGP – Europe’s leading general practice journal – heralded apparently ground-breaking research on the benefits of acupuncture. On closer inspection, the research was poorly constructed, drew dubious conclusions and biased in extremis. I … Continue reading »... Read more »
Paterson, C., Taylor, R., Griffiths, P., Britten, N., Rugg, S., Bridges, J., McCallum, B., & Kite, G. (2011) Acupuncture for ‘frequent attenders’ with medically unexplained symptoms: a randomised controlled trial (CACTUS study). British Journal of General Practice, 61(587), 295-305. DOI: 10.3399/bjgp11X572689
Jones, R. (2011) Editor's response. British Journal of General Practice, 61(589), 495-495. info:/10.3399/bjgp11X588367
Farrimond, S. (2011) Acupuncture for `frequent attenders' with medically unexplained symptoms. British Journal of General Practice, 61(689), 494-495. info:/10.3399/bjgp11X588349
FM-TOX. These evil scientist aren’t even trying to hide their motives anymore; they admit it’s toxic in the acronym! But there’s more to the story, as usual. The TOX in the title’s just a cover story. (This post is part 2 of a series uncovering the dark side of scientific methods; part 1 is here). [...]... Read more »
Quastel JH, & Wheatley AH. (1938) Anaerobic oxidations. On ferricyanide as a reagent for the manometric investigation of dehydrogenase systems. The Biochemical journal, 32(5), 936-43. PMID: 16746707
Catterall, K., Robertson, D., Hudson, S., Teasdale, P., Welsh, D., & John, R. (2010) A sensitive, rapid ferricyanide-mediated toxicity bioassay developed using Escherichia coli. Talanta, 82(2), 751-757. DOI: 10.1016/j.talanta.2010.05.046
Forget swinging pocket watches and unedifying stage antics, hypnosis is a genuinely useful tool for studying psychogenic symptoms - that is, neurological symptoms with no identifiable organic cause (known in psychiatry as "conversion disorder", the idea being that emotional problems are "converted" into physical ailments).
Consider hand paralysis, which some patients complain of in the absence of any neurological injury or disease. In a new study led by Martin Pyka at the University of Marburg,........ Read more »
Pyka, M., Burgmer, M., Lenzen, T., Pioch, R., Dannlowski, U., Pfleiderer, B., Ewert, A., Heuft, G., Arolt, V., & Konrad, C. (2011) Brain correlates of hypnotic paralysis—a resting-state fMRI study. NeuroImage, 56(4), 2173-2182. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.03.078
Buffer Found an interesting article on the use of e-readers in medical education, the Kindle. The Kindle was used by medical students during family medicine clerkship and by family medicine clerkship preceptors. The e-reader was loaded with medical textbooks and other relevant material such as guidelines. The hypotheses was that the information demand during education [...]
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Shurtz, S., & von Isenburg, M. (2011) Exploring e-readers to support clinical medical education: two case studies. Journal of the Medical Library Association : JMLA, 99(2), 110-117. DOI: 10.3163/1536-5050.99.2.002
In this post, the second slide has 6 impressive insect fossil localities pictured. They’ve proven quite popular and I’ve received several e-mails asking for details. At some point, maybe I’ll write dedicated posts similar to this one about them. Anyway, one locality that is missing from there is Eckfeld, so I will introduce it here [...]... Read more »
Lutz, H., & Kaulfuß, U. (2006) A dynamic model for the meromictic lake Eckfeld Maar (Middle Eocene, Germany). Zeitschrift der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Geowissenschaften, 157(3), 433-450. DOI: 10.1127/1860-1804/2006/0157-0433
The subject of feathered dinosaurs and the evolution of birds is something that fascinates me and captures my imagination, as I'm sure it does a lot of people. Not only because it changes the way we look at the world around us, specifically birds, but also because there's a lot of cool evolutionary science involved in the study of the early evolution of birds from... well, yes that's the question, isn't it? From what exactly? We know that in any evolutionary sense that matters, birds are dinosau........ Read more »
Xu, X., You, H., Du, K., & Han, F. (2011) An Archaeopteryx-like theropod from China and the origin of Avialae. Nature, 475(7357), 465-470. DOI: 10.1038/nature10288
First off, I want to start with an apology. I have neglected to update this site and for that I apologize. Please expect that in the future, posts will come regularly.Okay, so today I want to shift focus from cardiology to developmental biology. Many people struggle to understand this subject, but in breaking it down this field can make more sense. I will divide it into segments, therefore allowing each post to offer up enough focus without getting overly complicated. &nb........ Read more »
Dickens, B. (2003) Ectopic pregnancy and emergency care: ethical and legal issues. International Journal of Gynecology , 82(1), 121-126. DOI: 10.1016/S0020-7292(03)00175-9
"Of Mankind we may say in general they are fickle, and greedy of gain." --Machiavelli (1532)
In several of the posts on this blog, we have written about the various forms and functions of social hierarchies in society. For instance, we have written about the perils of economic inequality here and here, we have written (here) about how power can corrupt people--unless they are prosocially oriented (read: nice), and we have written (here) about our paradoxical ne........ Read more »
Flynn FJ, Reagans RE, Amanatullah ET, & Ames DR. (2006) Helping one's way to the top: self-monitors achieve status by helping others and knowing who helps whom. Journal of personality and social psychology, 91(6), 1123-37. PMID: 17144769
Is there any brain-based evidence for the theory of multiple intelligences? From my viewpoint, the answer seems clear: Yes….and no. (Germans have a nice colloquialism for this in ‘jein’, pronounced yine.)... Read more »
Miller L. (1986) 'Narrow localizationism' in psychiatric neuropsychology. Psychological medicine, 16(4), 729-34. PMID: 3823292
Satoh M, Nakase T, Nagata K, & Tomimoto H. (2011) Musical anhedonia: Selective loss of emotional experience in listening to music. Neurocase. PMID: 21714738
The last time I wrote about the usefulness of shark puke, I discussed a few of the less obvious uses of diet studies on sharks. As apex predators, sharks can sample a wide variety of potential prey species, and diet studies can provide just as much information on those species as the sharks themselves. That said, the main function and justification for sifting through shark vomit is to figure out what kind of predatory impact the sharks have, which lets us know how these predators fit into the........ Read more »
Bush, A., & Holland, K. (2002) Food limitation in a nursery area: estimates of daily ration in juvenile scalloped hammerheads, Sphyrna lewini (Griffith and Smith, 1834) in Kane’ohe Bay,O’ahu, Hawai’i. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 157-178. info:/
Olson, R., & Mullen, A. (1986) Recent developments for making gastric evacuation and daily ration determinations. Environmental Biology of Fishes, 16(1-3), 183-191. DOI: 10.1007/BF00005170
I'm sure everyone is aware of the kind of effects virus infection and replication has on the health of humans and other animals (just scroll along my last blog posts and you'll see).
It's really not good.
And, in most cases we don't have much to prevent or cure it: maybe a vaccine here, some antivirals there yet what we really would like is something that would act against ALL kinds of viruses, from influenzas to smallpox to ebola and even HIV. Most vaccines and antivirals target a very li........ Read more »
This week a plug for my new book that just came out: Musical Cognition: A Science of Listening (Read fragments of it online at Google Books; currently available with more than 30% discount on the hardcover at Amazon and Barnes & Noble).From the cover:"Musical Cognition suggests that music is a game (or, in other words, 'benificial play'). In music, our cognitive functions such as perception, memory, attention, and expectation are challenged; yet as listeners we often do not realize that the ........ Read more »
It is of course a cliche to state that eukaryotic cells (i.e., cells that are not bacteria) are complex. In the case of an animal, tens of thousands of proteins engage in fantastically elaborate interactions that somehow coax a single cell into generating a unique and magnificent organism. These interactions are often protrayed as exquisitely precise, using metaphorical images such as 'lock-and-key' and employing diagrams that resemble subway maps.
Many of these interacting proteins are en........ Read more »
Won, A., Garbarino, J., & Lim, W. (2011) Recruitment interactions can override catalytic interactions in determining the functional identity of a protein kinase. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(24), 9809-9814. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1016337108
Scientists can be utter bastards some of the time. Not content with letting us unwashed masses revel in our ignorance, they systematically poke and prod the world around us, looking for answers to questions best left unanswered.... Read more »
Juliane Kaminski, Martina Neumanna, Juliane Bräuera, Josep Calla, & Michael Tomaselloa. (2011) Dogs, Canis familiaris, communicate with humans to request but not to inform. Animal Behaviour. DOI: http://dx.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2011.06.015
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