Post List

  • June 15, 2009
  • 03:20 PM

Another editorial chimes in: Time for a new approach to musculoskeletal problems?

by Bronwyn Thompson in Healthskills: Skills for Healthy Living

For many years, as I started to work in vocational management, I felt like a lonely voice in the wilderness. It seemed that apart from the people I was working with, and perhaps the compensation system, no-one was particularly interested in return to work attempts. Now it’s a slightly different story – but [...]... Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 02:52 PM

A viral protease interferes with interferon

by Vincent Racaniello in virology blog

Viruses are known to evade the early, or innate, host defenses by interfering with the sensing of infection, production of IFN, and synthesis and activity of ISGs. Today we’ll examine the evidence that the function of one or more ISGs is blocked in poliovirus-infected cells.

When IFN is added to the medium of cultured cells, hundreds of ISGs [...]... Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 01:10 PM

Mental time travel

by Mo in Neurophilosophy

Memory, Blake wrote, enables us to "traverse times and spaces far remote". It constitutes mental time travel, with which we can recollect, in vivid detail, events that took place many years ago. We have known, for the best part of a century, that memory is reconstructive rather than reproductive. That is, recollection involves piecing together specific details of the event, and mixing these with our own biases and beliefs. While not being completely accurate, our memories are, in most cases, rel........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 12:24 PM

Marijuana Withdrawal Syndrome

by Shaheen Lakhan in Brain Blogger

There are now several clinical trials showing that mice and dogs show evidence of cannabis withdrawal. (For THC-addicted dogs, it is the abnormal number of wet-dog shakes that give them away.) Today, scientists have a much better picture of the jobs performed by anandamide, the body’s own form of THC. This knowledge helps explain a [...]... Read more »

Vandrey, R., Budney, A., Kamon, J., & Stanger, C. (2005) Cannabis withdrawal in adolescent treatment seekers. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 78(2), 205-210. DOI: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2004.11.001  

WILSON, D., VARVEL, S., HARLOE, J., MARTIN, B., & LICHTMAN, A. (2006) SR 141716 (Rimonabant) precipitates withdrawal in marijuana-dependent mice. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, 85(1), 105-113. DOI: 10.1016/j.pbb.2006.07.018  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 12:19 PM

Nettab 2009 Day One: Bio-wikis (and football)

by Duncan Hull in O'Really?

A brief wiki-report and some wiki-links from the first short and introductory day of Network Applications and Tools in Biology (NETTAB 2009) in Sicily where there was a tutorial on Technologies of wiki resources and bio-wikis delivered by Paolo Romano and Elda Rossi. This covered Gene Wiki, Wikiproteins, Wikigenes and Wikipathways [1-4].

There is already a [...]... Read more »

Mons, B., Ashburner, M., Chichester, C., van Mulligen, E., Weeber, M., den Dunnen, J., van Ommen, G., Musen, M., Cockerill, M., Hermjakob, H.... (2008) Calling on a million minds for community annotation in WikiProteins. Genome Biology, 9(5). DOI: 10.1186/gb-2008-9-5-r89  

Huss, J., Orozco, C., Goodale, J., Wu, C., Batalov, S., Vickers, T., Valafar, F., & Su, A. (2008) A Gene Wiki for Community Annotation of Gene Function. PLoS Biology, 6(7). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0060175  

Pico, A., Kelder, T., van Iersel, M., Hanspers, K., Conklin, B., & Evelo, C. (2008) WikiPathways: Pathway Editing for the People. PLoS Biology, 6(7). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0060184  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 12:00 PM

Questioning Freedom

by Sandra Kiume in Channel N

Experimental philosophy in a fun, short video illustrating a question posed by Aristotle.

Brain and behaviour video curating at PsychCentral, the web's most trusted source of mental health info.... Read more »

Phillips, J., & Knobe, J. (2009) Moral Judgments and Intuitions About Freedom. Psychological Inquiry, 20(1), 30-36. DOI: 10.1080/10478400902744279  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 12:00 PM

Understanding Our Bodies: Leptin (The Fullness Hormone)

by Christie Wilcox in Nutrition Wonderland

Time and time again, I tell you guys that the best way to stay healthy is to stay informed. Read labels, I say. Know what you’re eating. Know what you’re not eating. Know this, know that, etc and make informed decisions. Well, part of making informed decisions is understanding how your body works. And for that reason, I’ve decided to dive into a bit of physiology.

Even informed consumers tend to know very little about how their appetites actually work. What makes you hungry........ Read more »

Huo, L., Gamber, K., Greeley, S., Silva, J., Huntoon, N., Leng, X., & Bjørbæk, C. (2009) Leptin-Dependent Control of Glucose Balance and Locomotor Activity by POMC Neurons. Cell Metabolism, 9(6), 537-547. DOI: 10.1016/j.cmet.2009.05.003  

Pratley RE, Nicolson M, Bogardus C, & Ravussin E. (1997) Plasma leptin responses to fasting in Pima Indians. The American journal of physiology, 273(3 Pt 1). PMID: 9316457  

Enriori, P., Evans, A., Sinnayah, P., Jobst, E., Tonelli-Lemos, L., Billes, S., Glavas, M., Grayson, B., Perello, M., & Nillni, E. (2007) Diet-Induced Obesity Causes Severe but Reversible Leptin Resistance in Arcuate Melanocortin Neurons. Cell Metabolism, 5(3), 181-194. DOI: 10.1016/j.cmet.2007.02.004  

Wang, J., Obici, S., Morgan, K., Barzilai, N., Feng, Z., & Rossetti, L. (2001) Overfeeding Rapidly Induces Leptin and Insulin Resistance. Diabetes, 50(12), 2786-2791. DOI: 10.2337/diabetes.50.12.2786  

Shapiro A, Mu W, Roncal C, Cheng KY, Johnson RJ, & Scarpace PJ. (2008) Fructose-induced leptin resistance exacerbates weight gain in response to subsequent high-fat feeding. American journal of physiology. Regulatory, integrative and comparative physiology, 295(5). PMID: 18703413  

Peyron-Caso E, Taverna M, Guerre-Millo M, Véronèse A, Pacher N, Slama G, & Rizkalla SW. (2002) Dietary (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids up-regulate plasma leptin in insulin-resistant rats. The Journal of nutrition, 132(8), 2235-40. PMID: 12163668  

Winnicki M, Somers VK, Accurso V, Phillips BG, Puato M, Palatini P, & Pauletto P. (2002) Fish-rich diet, leptin, and body mass. Circulation, 106(3), 289-91. PMID: 12119240  

Nedeltcheva AV, Kilkus JM, Imperial J, Kasza K, Schoeller DA, & Penev PD. (2009) Sleep curtailment is accompanied by increased intake of calories from snacks. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 89(1), 126-33. PMID: 19056602  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 10:44 AM

Test your boundaries -- then find out how you made them

by Dave Munger in Cognitive Daily

[Originally posted in February, 2007]

When you look out the window and then look away, how do you remember what you saw? Do you hold a picture of the window in your head, frame and all? What about a photo? Do you remember the physical photo, or do you imagine the real scene it represents? If you remember the scene, and not the photo, then how do you form the boundaries of the scene? Does your memory end precisely where the photo does?

Here's a little test to see how accurate your short-term me........ Read more »

Intraub, H., Hoffman, J.E., Wetherhold, J., & Stoehs, S. (2006) More than meets the eye: The effect of planned fixations on scene representation. Perception , 68(5), 759-769.

  • June 15, 2009
  • 09:36 AM

New theory on Earth's Magnetic Field: Theory interesting, reporting botched

by Greg Laden in Greg Laden's Blog

This is one of those science stories that is on one hand fairly simple, and on the other hand fairly complex, where the interface between simplicity and complexity causes little balls of misunderstanding to come flying out of the mix like pieces of raw pizza dough if the guy making the pizza was the Tasmanian Devil from the cartoons.

What is true: A scientist named Ryskin proposes that decadal or century scale minor wiggling in the measured Earth's magnetic field is influenced by changes in ........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 09:30 AM

Flowers change colour and back again to advertise their opening hours

by Ed Yong in Not Exactly Rocket Science

Many living things, from chameleons to fish to squid, have the ability to change their colour. But flowers? Yes, over 450 species of flower have the ability to shapeshift, altering their colour and positions over the course of a day. The goal, as with many aspects of a flower's nature, is communication. The secondary palette tells pollinators that a particular flower has already been visited and not only needs no pollen but has little nectar to offer as a reward. The visitor's attentions (and th........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 09:29 AM

Firesetting in childhood and adolescence: early sign of psychopathology?

by Nestor Lopez-Duran PhD in Child-Psych

This past week, police officers in Florida arrested an 18-year-old kid as prime suspect in a wave of cat killings and mutilations. The killing and torturing of animals for pleasure (excluding traditional hunting) is one of the strongest signs of serious psychopathology. Firesetting is likely a close second, with most adults and adolescents who engage [...]... Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 09:02 AM

Its about time! A new radio supernova in Messier 82

by Dave Strickland in Exploding Galaxies and other Catastrophysics

Brunthaler et al (2009, A&A, 499, L17) have just reported the discovery of a new radio transient in the nucleus of the nearby starburst galaxy Messier 82 (M82).In short, radio telescopes see something now that wasn't there two years ago, and this is most probably a radio supernova, indeed, one of the closest supernova to Earth in the last five years.But why is this scientifically interesting?M82 has been called the "exploding galaxy" with good reason: huge filaments and arcs of very hot gas ........ Read more »

Brunthaler, A., Menten, K., Reid, M., Henkel, C., Bower, G., & Falcke, H. (2009) Discovery of a bright radio transient in M 82: a new radio supernova?. Astronomy and Astrophysics, 499(2). DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/200912327  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 08:41 AM

Andrea Wiggins on little e-Science

by Duncan Hull in O'Really?

Andrea Wiggins [1,2] from Syracuse University, New York is visiting Manchester this week and will be doing a seminar on “Little e-Science“, the details of which are below.

Date, time: 12 and 2pm on Thursday 18th June

Location: Atlas 1&2, Kilburn building

Title: Little eScience

Abstract: An interdisciplinary community of researchers has started to coalesce around the study of [...]... Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 08:15 AM

Conspicuous consumption

by iayork in Mystery Rays from Outer Space

Tuberculosis and the Grim Reaper

A while ago I made the point that many of the biggest killers of 19th-century London were almost unknown today, because of vaccination (”hooping cough”, measles, smallpox) and sanitation (typhus, cholera) (see “Life & Death, pre-vaccination“).

I have a small confession to make: I kind of rigged that chart, because I wanted to avoid [...]... Read more »

Wilson, L. (2004) Commentary: Medicine, population, and tuberculosis. International Journal of Epidemiology, 34(3), 521-524. DOI: 10.1093/ije/dyh196  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 04:56 AM

Driver stereotypes affect our memory of how fast a car was travelling

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

When I see a car fast approaching in the rear-view mirror, I find I can't help but make assumptions about the personality of the driver based on the model of car they're driving. Now a new study suggests these kinds of stereotypes can affect our memory for how fast a car was travelling - a finding that could have important implications for the trustworthiness of eye witness statements.In an initial experiment, Graham Davies played ten-second video clips of a BMW and a (smaller, less powerful) Vo........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 02:34 AM

PCOS is not the only reason for androgen-excess

by staticnrg in survive the journey

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is often a convenient diagnosis for many actually suffering with other endocrine disorders. Cushing's patients are frequently misdiagnosed with PCOS. It is an easy diagnosis (in layman's terms) and avoids the multiple tests and confusion which suspicion of Cushing's seems to bring. In a previous post, I wrote about 4 cases of Cushing's misdiagnosed as PCOS. Once treated for the Cushing's, all symptoms which had been attributed to PCOS resolved.A new article in........ Read more »

Noordam C, Dhir V, McNelis JC, Schlereth F, Hanley NA, Krone N, Smeitink JA, Smeets R, Sweep FC, Claahsen-van der Grinten HL, Arlt W. (2009) Inactivating PAPSS2 mutations in a patient with premature pubarche. New England Journal of Medicine, 360(22), 2310-2318. DOI: 19474428  

  • June 15, 2009
  • 02:26 AM

Evolution 2009: Day two

by Jeremy Yoder in Denim and Tweed

After a late (early) night yesterday, I started my day at the R.A. Fisher Award talk, a presentation of results from "an outstanding Ph.D. dissertation paper published in the journal Evolution." This year's winner turned out to be a paper I remember reading when it was first published, in which Megan Higgie and Mark Blows showed that sexual selection for mate-signaling hydrocarbons in Drosophila serrata is opposed by selection to avoid mating with the closely related D. birchii. Populations of D........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2009
  • 02:10 AM

Diagnosing irritable bowel

by Robert Badgett in ClinDx

This comprehensive systematic review by the Rational Clinical Examination is very helpful after a few adjustments. First, the review allows source studies to place patients with symptoms of irritable bowel who are found to have diverticulosis or polyps into the category of underlying organic illness...... Read more »

  • June 14, 2009
  • 03:11 PM

Early management of low back pain – activity is good, early self-management is best!

by Bronwyn Thompson in Healthskills: Skills for Healthy Living

It must be really difficult to be a reductionist, biomedically-oriented doctor who believes fervently in the need to ‘abolish pain’ in order for people to recover from low back pain. It must be even more difficult when the ’source of the nociception’ fails to be identified even after numerous placebo-controlled ‘diagnostic’ nerve blocks have [...]... Read more »

  • June 14, 2009
  • 11:41 AM

Sage advice?: NC to join 13 states in outlawing Salvia divinorum

by David J Kroll in Terra Sigillata

Salvia divinorum (Salvia, Magic Mint) is a plant used for entheogenic purposes by the Mazatec people of Mexico. A relative of the common garden plant "scarlet sage" (Salvia splendens), S. divinorum contains several hallucinogens that include salvinorin A, the first non-nitrogenous agonist known for kappa opioid receptors (KOR).

I had known of salvinorin A since a highly-cited 2002 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences paper by Bryan Roth, Richard Rothman and colleagues (full text her........ Read more »

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