Every so often, a conservation problem rears its head that, upon reflection, we realize we had some inkling of even decades ago. Global warming, biofuels, overfishing, etc. The information was there, but scarce, buried in obscurity, or seemingly counterintuitive. Why not try and recognize the crucial questions early, before the lobster is [...]... Read more »
Sutherland, W., Clout, M., Côté, I., Daszak, P., Depledge, M., Fellman, L., Fleishman, E., Garthwaite, R., Gibbons, D., & De Lurio, J. (2010) A horizon scan of global conservation issues for 2010. Trends in Ecology , 25(1), 1-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.tree.2009.10.003
A ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta), photographed at the Bronx Zoo.
Who doesn't love lemurs? The strepsirrhine primates, or wet-nosed cousins of ours, are favorite documentary subjects and extremely popular zoo attractions. And, in one of those bits of zoological trivia that everyone knows, lemurs only live on the island of Madagascar off Africa's southeastern coast. The question is how they got there.
Documenting the paths of animals during geological history is not an easy task. In the da........ Read more »
Animals may have ridden 'rafts' to Madagascar
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Often, when you publish something in a reasonably posh journal, your mates right you a little email to say congratulations. However, if you write a word like 'daft' in an article that is published in a posh journal like BMJ, it is not just your mates who say congratulations! I got about 40 emails from people I have never heard of over this one. What, exactly, drew such a word out of me? Well it is idea of the placebo being a mysterious, almost magical thing that just happens sometimes. I wrote........ Read more »
Lorimer Moseley. (2010) I got the word 'daft' published in the British Medical Journal. BodyinMind. info:/
The Hawaiian archipelago has a lot of amazing and adorable creatures. Here's a great shot of a baby white tern, or Manu-o-ku, c/o my lab mate Tonatiuh. It was taken by National Geographic explorers in 2005 while they were in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.
When people think of Hawaii, they think of the 8 main islands where people live, but the archipelago stretches another 1,200 miles and includes many islands and atolls with vibrant coral reefs and amazing wildlife. This area is so special ........ Read more »
Jander, K., & Herre, E. (2010) Host sanctions and pollinator cheating in the fig tree-fig wasp mutualism. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2009.2157
Drake, A., & Klingenberg, C. (2010) Large‐Scale Diversification of Skull Shape in Domestic Dogs: Disparity and Modularity. The American Naturalist, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1086/650372
Akey, J., Ruhe, A., Akey, D., Wong, A., Connelly, C., Madeoy, J., Nicholas, T., & Neff, M. (2010) Tracking footprints of artificial selection in the dog genome. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(3), 1160-1165. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0909918107
Jenkins, A., Jupiter, S., Qauqau, I., & Atherton, J. (2009) The importance of ecosystem-based management for conserving aquatic migratory pathways on tropical high islands: a case study from Fiji. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. DOI: 10.1002/aqc.1086
The duck-billed Platypus is such an odd creature that one could get the idea that its survival depends on potential predators laughing themselves to death, but in fact it can rely on a far more potent defense. It carries a venomous sting on its hind legs. Envenoming by a male Ornithorhynchus anatinus causes not only [...]... Read more »
Kita, M., Black, D., Ohno, O., Yamada, K., Kigoshi, H., & Uemura, D. (2009) Duck-Billed Platypus Venom Peptides Induce Ca Influx in Neuroblastoma Cells . Journal of the American Chemical Society, 131(50), 18038-18039. DOI: 10.1021/ja908148z
Does the spectral properties of GFP can be modulated by antibody-derivatives? To explore this hypothesis, Axel Kirchhofer and colleagues from Munich Center for Advanced Photonics have designed a number of NanoBodies (NBs) to bind to GFP. (Nanobodies? They are small, antigen-binding, single-domain polypeptides derived from some camelid antibodies). The authors found NBs could increase or decrease GFP fluorescence: in fact, co-chystallization of GFP-NB complexes revealed NBs inducing subtle chan........ Read more »
Kirchhofer, A., Helma, J., Schmidthals, K., Frauer, C., Cui, S., Karcher, A., Pellis, M., Muyldermans, S., Casas-Delucchi, C., Cardoso, M.... (2009) Modulation of protein properties in living cells using nanobodies. Nature Structural , 17(1), 133-138. DOI: 10.1038/nsmb.1727
One of the really great things about science is its potential for self-correction. If you have an hypothesis, a result (strange or otherwise), a set of data, it can be tested by anyone. This is encouraged, in fact: when you publish you’re not just saying ‘look how clever I am’ but also ‘here’s something new! [...]... Read more »
Beloqui, A., Guazzaroni, M., Pazos, F., Vieites, J., Godoy, M., Golyshina, O., Chernikova, T., Waliczek, A., Silva-Rocha, R., Al-ramahi, Y.... (2009) Reactome Array: Forging a Link Between Metabolome and Genome. Science, 326(5950), 252-257. DOI: 10.1126/science.1174094
Another reason why staying socially connected to your loved ones is so important: pain reduction. Looking at photos of one’s significant other during physically painful situations reduced perceptions of pain. Partners are often thought of as being a pain, but in this case, their photo might prove to be the opposite!... Read more »
Master, S., Eisenberger, N., Taylor, S., Naliboff, B., Shirinyan, D., & Lieberman, M. (2009) A Picture's Worth: Partner Photographs Reduce Experimentally Induced Pain. Psychological Science, 20(11), 1316-1318. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02444.x
It's been a bit of a long week on lung cancer articles and while I was planning on talking about something else today, this new article in my database caught my eye: Part of the reason is nostalgia - it's...... Read more »
Vivanco, I., & Sawyers, C. (2002) The phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase–AKT pathway in human cancer. Nature Reviews Cancer, 2(7), 489-501. DOI: 10.1038/nrc839
Massion, P. (2004) Early Involvement of the Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase/Akt Pathway in Lung Cancer Progression. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 170(10), 1088-1094. DOI: 10.1164/rccm.200404-487OC
Turke, A., Zejnullahu, K., Wu, Y., Song, Y., Dias-Santagata, D., Lifshits, E., Toschi, L., Rogers, A., Mok, T., & Sequist, L. (2010) Preexistence and Clonal Selection of MET Amplification in EGFR Mutant NSCLC. Cancer Cell, 17(1), 77-88. DOI: 10.1016/j.ccr.2009.11.022
Every stoner knows about the munchies, the fondness for junk food that comes with smoking marijuana. Movies have been made about it.It's not just that being on drugs makes you like eating: stimulants, like cocaine and amphetamine, decrease appetite. The munchies are something specific to marijuana. But why?New research from a Japanese team reveals that marijuana directly affects the cells in the taste buds which detect sweet flavors - Endocannabinoids selectively enhance sweet taste.Yoshida et a........ Read more »
You know the drill, I find a paper detailing some wonderful discovery, waffle a bit of background and then give a glib summary of the conclusions. This is a bit different, this is the scientific process snow leopard caught outside it's den, looking for a kill. Because the answer here is, "We don't know".... Read more »
... Read more »
FARMER, M., & HABURA, A. (2010) Using Protistan Examples to Dispel the Myths of Intelligent Design. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology, 57(1), 3-10. DOI: 10.1111/j.1550-7408.2009.00460.x
Because of my research I’m interested in term correlation not just in pairs but in groups of ‘n’ terms (ngrams). Looking for some statistic measures and explanations about the advantages and implementations of Log-Likelihood measures I reached:
Joaquim Ferreira da Silva, & Gabriel Pereira Lopes (1999). A Local Maxima method and a Fair Dispersion Normalization for
extracting multi-word units from corpora Sixth Meeting on Mathematics of Language
In this paper the authors present a new al........ Read more »
Joaquim Ferreira da Silva, & Gabriel Pereira Lopes. (1999) A Local Maxima method and a Fair Dispersion Normalization for extracting multi-word units from corpora . Sixth Meeting on Mathematics of Language. info:/
... Read more »
Wanless, S., Bacon, P., Harris, M., & Webb, A. (2002) Evaluating the coastal environment for marine birds. Journal of Coastal Conservation, 8(1), 17. DOI: 10.1652/1400-0350(2002)008[0017:ETCEFM]2.0.CO;2
The brain processes fearful faces more quickly when seen out of the corner of the eye than when viewed straight on. Dimitri Bayle and colleagues, who made their finding using magnetoencephalography (MEG) brain scanning, believe this bias has probably evolved because threats are more likely to come from side-on.Eleven participants had their brains scanned while they judged whether faces on a computer screen were happy or not. Unbeknown to the participants, each of these visible faces was actually........ Read more »
Bayle DJ, Henaff MA, & Krolak-Salmon P. (2009) Unconsciously perceived fear in peripheral vision alerts the limbic system: a MEG study. PloS one, 4(12). PMID: 20011048
I don’t know about you, but in my laziness I often catch myself making the assumption that a centre of crop origin is also one of crop diversity. That is of course sometimes the case, but by no means always, as Vavilov himself recognized. A recent open access paper in Diversity makes the point very [...]... Read more »
Clement, C., de Cristo-Araújo, M., d’Eeckenbrugge, G., Alves Pereira, A., & Picanço-Rodrigues, D. (2010) Origin and Domestication of Native Amazonian Crops. Diversity, 2(1), 72-106. DOI: 10.3390/d2010072
For some time now, there has been a heated debate in Australia about home births. Home birth advocates argue that a woman should have the right to choose how to give birth to her baby and if she chooses to have a home birth, that choice should be supported by providing the her with adequate [...]... Read more »
The prehistoric peoples of the American Southwest were agriculturalists. Different societies may have calibrated their mix of farming, hunting, and gathering differently, but they all seem to have done all three eventually, and for most it’s quite apparent in the archaeological record that farming was the predominant method of subsistence. The crops they grew were [...]... Read more »
Hill, J. (2001) Proto-Uto-Aztecan: A Community of Cultivators in Central Mexico?. American Anthropologist, 103(4), 913-934. DOI: 10.1525/aa.2001.103.4.913
Suffice it to say that
(X + Y+ Z) * (A*B)= This
X = Sci
Y = Cold
Z = Migrain
A = cold medication
B = Migraine medication
This = Annnnnnd WHEEEEEEE!!!!!!
And you know, that's good. That's good because Sci had to go and see THIS first thing in the morning.
Ouchie. First off, Sci has to correct some major misconceptions here on behalf of teh blonde ladiez everywhere (though others have come before me, and verily, they are awesome). And then Sci has to go on a minor rant. Ho........ Read more »
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