Post List

  • June 19, 2009
  • 10:45 AM

DSM-V, dimensions, categories, and the elephant of impairment

by Nestor Lopez-Duran PhD in Child-Psych

As I interact with colleagues I sense an incredible, almost exuberant, level of excitement and anticipation for the DSM-V. “It will change psychiatry”, “it will answer the questions”, “it will abandon categories”, etc, etc, etc. The expectations are so great and in so many directions, that I can’t help but to think that the DSM-V [...]... Read more »

  • June 19, 2009
  • 10:28 AM

Aviation Radiation Redux

by sciencebase in Sciencebase Science Blog

In May, I reported that Russian scientists at the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics in Pushchino and the Institute of High-Energy Physics in Protvino, had investigated the chronic effects of the radiation to which we are exposed every time we fly in high altitude aircraft. They wanted to know if any putative damage [...]Post from: Sciencebase Science Blog... Read more »

S. Zaichkina, O. Rozanova, G. Aptikaeva, A. Akhmadieva, H. Smirnova, S. Romanchenko, O. Vakhrusheva, S. Sorokina, A. Dyukina, & V. Peleshko. (2009) Adaptive response and genetic instability induced in mice in vivo by low dose-rate radiation simulating high-altitude flight conditions. Int. J. Low Radiation, 6(1), 28-36.

  • June 19, 2009
  • 08:17 AM

Out of the harvester, into the shotgun

by Roger Jovani in Birds and Science

Common quails (Coturnix coturnix) breed in Spanish wheat and barley fields; when harvesters arrive, destroy their habitat as if you cut the forest of a woodpecker. Harvesting is not simultaneous through Spain and the authors of this paper already suspected from long ago that quails respond to this ecological threat migrating from early towards later fields. But…. How to test this hypothesis? Domingo Rodríguez-Teijeiro and his team have confronted the issue with three information sources: ring........ Read more »

  • June 19, 2009
  • 08:08 AM

Eyes abound

by Todd Oakley in Evolutionary Novelties

Unraveling and disentangling homology and convergence is one of the most fascinating endeavors in biology. Homology indicates common origin and maintenance, and is often taken as evidence for importance: ancient features are thought to be maintained because they are too useful to dispose of during evolution. In contrast, convergence, is the separate invention of similar features or functions during evolution. Convergence is taken as evidence for an element of predictability in evolution. For........ Read more »

  • June 19, 2009
  • 08:00 AM

Quorum-Sensing Molecules

by Steve W in Bridgehead Carbons

I was fascinated by Bonnie Brasler's TED talk on Quorum-Sensing, and being a chemist I wanted to know more about the molecules involved. She did put up a slide with structures during the talk, but I wanted more so I did a search on PubMed and found this Perspective written by Brassler and Michael Federle. My only experience with the notion of a “quorum” is our Faculty Assembly where we sometimes have difficulty achieving a quorum. In order for the meeting to be “official” and for any........ Read more »

Federle, M. (2003) Interspecies communication in bacteria. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 112(9), 1291-1299. DOI: 10.1172/jci200320195  

  • June 19, 2009
  • 07:26 AM

Nettab 2009 Day Three: Semantic Integration

by Duncan Hull in O'Really?

A brief report (well just some scribbled notes, bullet points and links really) on the third and final day of Network Applicatoins and Tools in Biology (NETTAB) 2009 in Catania, Sicily. There was a special section on Methods and Tools for RNA Structure and Functional Analysis. Disclaimer: RNA mania isn’t really my thing – so [...]... Read more »

Das, S., Girard, L., Green, T., Weitzman, L., Lewis-Bowen, A., & Clark, T. (2009) Building biomedical web communities using a semantically aware content management system. Briefings in Bioinformatics, 10(2), 129-138. DOI: 10.1093/bib/bbn052  

  • June 19, 2009
  • 06:00 AM

Tb family trees

by iayork in Mystery Rays from Outer Space

Macrophage engulfing Bacillus Calmette-Guérin

The oldest vaccine, as everyone knows, is the smallpox vaccine. 1 Another  old vaccine (though not in the same class as smallpox vaccine) is the tuberculosis vaccine, Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG), developed in 1921.

There’s all kinds of interesting stuff about BCG. It’s a live vaccine, meaning that the vaccine is live [...]... Read more »

  • June 19, 2009
  • 03:27 AM

Lies, damned lies, and scientific misconduct

by Jacob Aron in Just A Theory

“Science is inevitably biased to some extent,” says Dr Daniele Fanelli, “because it’s made by human beings.” One might easily dismiss this claim as unfounded, but Fanelli has the numbers to back it up. His recent research paper combined over 20 previous studies on scientific misconduct, and found that nearly 2% of scientists admit to [...]... Read more »

  • June 19, 2009
  • 03:27 AM

Backup and fault tolerance in systems biology: Striking similarity with Cloud computing

by Abhishek Tiwari in Fisheye Perspective

Striking similarity between biological systems and computing paradigms is not new, and in past there have been several attempts to draw an analogy between systems biology and computing systems. For interested readers I will recommend my last post which examine how systems biology of human can be describes as a grid of super-computers. Over the time researchers have developed several bio-inspired fault-tolerance methods to support fault detection and removal in both hardware and softwares systems........ Read more »

Gitter, A., Siegfried, Z., Klutstein, M., Fornes, O., Oliva, B., Simon, I., & Bar-Joseph, Z. (2009) Backup in gene regulatory networks explains differences between binding and knockout results. Molecular Systems Biology. DOI: 10.1038/msb.2009.33  

  • June 19, 2009
  • 12:01 AM

Metaphors in systems biology-A grid of super-computers

by Abhishek Tiwari in Fisheye Perspective

Using metaphors to explain complex scientific phenomenon is not new, and indeed metaphors are widely used in science. In biology tree of life is utilized as a metaphor for common descent in the evolutionary sense, which occasionally represented as a web or a net of life. Many scientists suggest that concept of tree of life is misleading and there is no strong evidence that the tree of life is a reality. Similarly in genomics the genome as the book of life and selfish gene are commonly ........ Read more »

  • June 19, 2009
  • 12:00 AM

Thinking that you're blushing makes you blush even more

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

In what sounds like a rather unpleasant experience, participants who were given false feedback that they were blushing, subsequently blushed more and anticipated being negatively judged by the people they were conversing with. The finding could help explain why some shy people fall into a vicious of circle of fearing blushing, feeling that they are blushing more than they are, and ultimately fearing social situations because of it.Corine Dijk and colleagues recruited one hundred undergrads who'd........ Read more »

  • June 18, 2009
  • 11:26 PM

The latest trends in logistics and supply chain management research

by Jan Husdal in

What is at the forefront of current research in supply chain management and logistics right now? I know, thanks to to Gyöngi Kovács at, who attended the NOFOMA 2009 conference, where Emerald, one of the world's leading publishers of management journals, presented some statistics on which articles that were most downloaded from their online journals during the first quarter of 2009.... Read more »

Christopher, M., & Lee, H. (2004) Mitigating supply chain risk through improved confidence. International Journal of Physical Distribution , 34(5), 388-396. DOI: 10.1108/09600030410545436  

Hanafi, J., Kara, S., & Kaebernick, H. (2008) Reverse logistics strategies for end-of-life products. The International Journal of Logistics Management, 19(3), 367-388. DOI: 10.1108/09574090810919206  

Masson, R., Iosif, L., MacKerron, G., & Fernie, J. (2007) Managing complexity in agile global fashion industry supply chains. The International Journal of Logistics Management, 18(2), 238-254. DOI: 10.1108/09574090710816959  

Spekman, R., & II, P. (2006) RFID: from concept to implementation. International Journal of Physical Distribution , 36(10), 736-754. DOI: 10.1108/09600030610714571  

  • June 18, 2009
  • 05:47 PM

Csikszentmihalyi & Hermanson (1999) Intrinsic Motivation in Museums: Why Does One Want to Learn?

by Samuel Joseph in linklens

This is another paper that was recommended to me by Peter Leong who is teaching a course in Second Life this summer for the College of Education at the University of Hawaii. We are trying to better understand how we might build engaging learning spaces in Second Life.Reading this paper I started wondering what proportion of the population went to museums. Superficially I imagine computer games and films/tv to be far more frequently consumed by the general population, although since having chil........ Read more »

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, & Kim Hermanson. (1999) Intrinsic Motivation in Museums: Why Does One Want to Learn?. The educational role of the museum By Eilean Hooper-Greenhill, 146-160. DOI:  

  • June 18, 2009
  • 05:08 PM

Atheists also have a sense of awe and wonder

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

Cardinal Cormack Murphy O'Connor caused a stir last month with his claim that atheists are not fully human because they don't have a sense of transcendental. Now, atheists mostly aren't transcendental almost by definition - the word refers to a belief in something for which there is no evidence.But do atheists also lack more common human emotions, like a sense of awe and wonder? After all, these emotions are also irrational - they depend upon imbuing a quality to objects that isn't intrinsic to ........ Read more »

  • June 18, 2009
  • 03:45 PM

A Sensor for Cyanide Ions in Water

by Michael Long in Phased

Francois Gabbai (Texas A and M University)

and coworkers have developed an easy-to-use sensor for cyanide ions

in water, with a detection limit relevant for environmental monitoring.

This news feature was written on June 18, 2009.... Read more »

Kim, Y., Zhao, H., & Gabbaï, F. P. (2009) Sulfonium Boranes for the Selective Capture of Cyanide Ions in Water. Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 48(27), 4957-4960. DOI: 10.1002/anie.200901275  

  • June 18, 2009
  • 03:41 PM

Myth of the Depression Gene

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

There never was a single "depression gene", and those patting themselves on the back because of the ceremonial defenestration of that straw man are fooling themselves.Yes, a new meta-analysis in JAMA (Risch et al., 2009) found that a variant of the serotonin transporter gene (the 5-HTTLPR polymorphic region) is not linked to an increased risk of depression, either alone or in combination with stressful life events. This study examined 14 prior papers, including the now-maligned article by Caspi ........ Read more »

Risch N, Herrell R, Lehner T, Liang KY, Eaves L, Hoh J, Griem A, Kovacs M, Ott J, Merikangas KR. (2009) nteraction between the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR), stressful life events, and risk of depression: a meta-analysis. JAMA, 301(23), 2462-2471.

  • June 18, 2009
  • 02:37 PM

Heavy in the Halo

by Jon Voisey in Angry Astronomer

If you've been following my blog a long time, you may remember a post on stellar evolution that was responding to some rather silly claims made by some Creationists. One of the claims was that the universe must be young, because we see young, massive stars where there's no gas and dust to form them. The example he used was near the galactic center. My response then (and still is) that this makes the rather ignorant assumption that stars stay where they're formed.The center of the galaxy is a ver........ Read more »

  • June 18, 2009
  • 02:00 PM

A Fluorine-Based Imaging Tracer for Magnetic Resonance Imaging

by Michael Long in Phased

Yihua Yu (University of Maryland) and coworkers have

developed an improved fluorine-19 imaging tracer for magnetic

resonance imaging that is nontoxic, stable and rapidly excreted

from the body, is simple to process, and generates unambiguous

imaging data.

This news feature was written on June 18, 2009.... Read more »

  • June 18, 2009
  • 02:00 PM

Inducing and Monitoring Amyloid Aggregation in Living Cells

by Michael Long in Phased

Elizabeth Jares-Erijman (Universidad de Buenos Aires,

Argentina) and coworkers have developed a non-perturbing protocol

for inducing and monitoring the formation of amyloid aggregates,

implicated in a number of neurodegenerative conditions,

in living cells.

This news feature was written on June 18, 2009.... Read more »

Roberti, M. J., Morgan, M., Menéndez, G., Pietrasanta, L. I., Jovin, T. M., & Jares-Erijman, E. A. (2009) Quantum Dots As Ultrasensitive Nanoactuators and Sensors of Amyloid Aggregation in Live Cells. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 131(23), 8102-8107. DOI: 10.1021/ja900225w  

  • June 18, 2009
  • 01:12 PM

Ooh aah Cantona! Welcome back Eric…

by Duncan Hull in O'Really?

It is great to see the eminent french football philosopher and scientist Eric Cantona back in his adopted hometown of Manchester. As well as visiting in person during production of the latest Ken Loach film (on the famous Keppel Road, Chorlton) and appearing at the premiere, Eric is currently gracing silver screens in cinemas all [...]... Read more »

Hopkin, M. (2006) Goal fever at the World Cup. Nature, 441(7095), 793-793. DOI: 10.1038/441793a  

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