The paper by Alyse Brown and colleagues  (open-access available here) is probably not going to gain any significant media headlines (unlike other recent studies - see here and see here) but does cover a rather important question regarding the autism research landscape: how representative is autism research?Specifically looking at the collected research on visual processing (distinct from physical issues with the eyes that still require greater awareness) with autism in mind, the authors ........ Read more »
Brown AC, Chouinard PA, & Crewther SG. (2017) Vision Research Literature May Not Represent the Full Intellectual Range of Autism Spectrum Disorder. Frontiers in human neuroscience, 57. PMID: 28261072
Is it possible to attach a single label to the different approaches and professional practices of Psychology regarding work? Are there irreconcilable differences between psychology approaches, for example, an approach with a concentrated focus on management and another focused on the health of workers? … Read More →... Read more »
BERNARDO, M., OLIVEIRA, F., SOUZA, H., & SOUSA, C. (2017) Linhas paralelas: as distintas aproximações da Psicologia em relação ao trabalho. Estudos de Psicologia (Campinas), 34(1), 15-24. DOI: 10.1590/1982-02752017000100003
mTORC1 and mTORC2 are two distinct mammalian TOR (target of rapamycin) complexes that regulate cell growth and metabolism. In cancer, genetic alterations lead to activation of mTOR signalling impacting tumour metabolism. Upregulated glutaminolysis is part of the metabolic reaction occurring in cancer that liberates high levels of ammonium, a toxic waste product. Although the importance of glutamine as a tumour nutrient is recognized, little is known about the potential effects of ammonium produc........ Read more »
Merhi A, Delrée P, & Marini AM. (2017) The metabolic waste ammonium regulates mTORC2 and mTORC1 signaling. Scientific reports, 44602. PMID: 28303961
by Piter Kehoma Boll Let’s return once more to the troublesome and neglected protists. This time I’m bringing you another tiny but beautiful alga, more precisely a golden alga. Its name is Dinobryon divergens and as usual there is no common … Continue reading →... Read more »
Franke, W., & Herth, W. (1973) Cell and lorica fine structure of the chrysomonad alga, Dinobryon sertularia Ehr. (Chrysophyceae). Archiv für Mikrobiologie, 91(4), 323-344. DOI: 10.1007/BF00425052
Herth, W. (1979) Behaviour of the chrysoflagellate alga, Dinobryon divergens, during lorica formation. Protoplasma, 100(3-4), 345-351. DOI: 10.1007/BF01279321
KARIM, A., & ROUND, F. (1967) Microfibrils in the lorica of the freshwater alga Dinobryon. New Phytologist, 66(3), 409-412. DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-8137.1967.tb06020.x
Sandgren, C. (1981) Characteristics of sexual and asexual resting cyst (statospore) formation in Dinobryon cylindricum Imhof (Chrysophyta). Journal of Phycology, 17(2), 199-210. DOI: 10.1111/j.1529-8817.1981.tb00840.x
Sheath, R., Hellebust, J., & Sawa, T. (1975) The statospore of Dinobryon divergens Imhof: Formation and germination in a subarctic lake. Journal of Phycology, 11(2), 131-138. DOI: 10.1111/j.1529-8817.1975.tb02760.x
Although it is not necessarily new news that (a) autism rarely exists in some sort of diagnostic vacuum, and (b) that some of the comorbidity 'over-represented' when it comes to autism can actually be more disabling than autism itself, there are still more investigations to be done.The paper by Vicki Bitsika & Christopher Sharpley  represents an example of how autism science is starting to go past the whole 'is there a connection between...' bit when it comes to autism and various comorbi........ Read more »
Bitsika, V., & Sharpley, C. (2017) The association between parents’ ratings of ASD symptoms and anxiety in a sample of high-functioning boys and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 38-45. DOI: 10.1016/j.ridd.2017.02.010
There was a time when the neuroscience world was consumed by the question of how individual neurons were coding information about the world. Was it in the average firing rate? Or did every precise spike matter, down to the millisecond? Was … Continue reading →... Read more »
Srivastava KH, Holmes CM, Vellema M, Pack AR, Elemans CP, Nemenman I, & Sober SJ. (2017) Motor control by precisely timed spike patterns. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 114(5), 1171-1176. PMID: 28100491
Nemenman I, Lewen GD, Bialek W, & de Ruyter van Steveninck RR. (2008) Neural coding of natural stimuli: information at sub-millisecond resolution. PLoS computational biology, 4(3). PMID: 18369423
I wanted to briefly talk about the paper by Francesca Garofoli and colleagues  on congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and autism not because it contains any novel data (see here), but because it reminds us that the potential 'pathways' to a diagnosis of autism are multiple and not necessarily 'pre-programmed' as per the 'it's all genetic' arguments that frequently figure in various domains.Congenital CMV infection refers to the transmission of CMV - "a common virus that belongs to the ........ Read more »
Garofoli F, Lombardi G, Orcesi S, Pisoni C, Mazzucchelli I, Angelini M, Balottin U, & Stronati M. (2017) An Italian Prospective Experience on the Association Between Congenital Cytomegalovirus Infection and Autistic Spectrum Disorder. Journal of autism and developmental disorders. PMID: 28258350
Bees latch on to similarly-sized nectarless flowers to unpick pollen - like keys fitting into locks, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Stirling.
The research shows the right size of bee is needed to properly pollinate a flower. The bee fits tightly with the flower's anthers, to vibrate and release the pollen sealed within.
"We found that a pollinator's size, ... Read more »
Solís-Montero, L., & Vallejo-Marín, M. (2017) Does the morphological fit between flowers and pollinators affect pollen deposition? An experimental test in a buzz-pollinated species with anther dimorphism. Ecology and Evolution. DOI: 10.1002/ece3.2897
What to do when your prey refuses to be swallowed? Eurasian Spoonbills (Platalea leucordia) in Hungary have a solution…... Read more »
I was rather interested to read the paper by Michela Traglia and colleagues  (open-access available here) concluding that: "maternal and fetal genetic make-up are important determinants of mid-gestational maternal circulating levels of some environmental organohalogens." Interested because, in these days of gene-environment interactions being applied to just about everything, the detail that is missing - which genes might potentially be linked to which environmental factors - has not yet........ Read more »
Traglia M, Croen LA, Lyall K, Windham GC, Kharrazi M, DeLorenze GN, Torres AR, & Weiss LA. (2017) Independent Maternal and Fetal Genetic Effects on Mid-gestational Circulating Levels of Environmental Pollutants. G3 (Bethesda, Md.). PMID: 28235828
It discusses information and art starting from the books of artists, from the collection of the Núcleo de Arte Contemporânea da Paraíba (NAC/UFPB), analyzing the performance of CI through the representation of information, in a collaborative working relationship between professionals. The representation of information could help in the treatment and organization of information, softening the complexity of these objects in the face of their possibilities of abstraction and fruition. … Re........ Read more »
CATOIRA, T., & AZEVEDO NETTO, C. (2016) The importance of a differentiated representation of information for Contemporary Art: Use of fruition as a classification attribute. Transinformação, 28(3), 263-274. DOI: 10.1590/2318-08892016000300002
What IS that? A photo by Stefan Kraft at Wikimedia Commons.1. Platypuses are so strange, that when British scientists first encountered one, they thought it was a joke: A Governor of New South Wales, Australia, sent a platypus pelt and sketch to British scientists in 1798. Even in their first published scientific description of the species, biologists thought that this duck-beaked, beaver-bodied, web-footed specimen may be some Frankenstein-like creation stitched together as a hoax. But this is ........ Read more »
Warren, W., Hillier, L., Marshall Graves, J., Birney, E., Ponting, C., Grützner, F., Belov, K., Miller, W., Clarke, L., Chinwalla, A.... (2008) Genome analysis of the platypus reveals unique signatures of evolution. Nature, 453(7192), 175-183. DOI: 10.1038/nature06936
What is the impact of this blog? And who am I writing it for? Those are not questions I regularly ask myself. The main reason I started blogging was to organise all the interesting stuff I was collecting for my introduction to oceanography lecture at the University of Bergen in one place, so I would…... Read more »
Shanahan, M. (2011) Science blogs as boundary layers: Creating and understanding new writer and reader interactions through science blogging. Journalism, 12(7), 903-919. DOI: 10.1177/1464884911412844
I'd encourage readers interested in the background to the response paper by Michael Sharpe and colleagues  to have a look at a previous blogging occasion when the topic of the PACE trial, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and 'recovery' were discussed (see here).Suffice to say that this latest paper is a reply to one published by Carolyn Wilshire and colleagues  who concluded that: "The claim that patients [with CFS] can recover as a result of CBT [cognitive behaviour therapy] ........ Read more »
M Sharpe, T Chalder, AL Johnson, KA Goldsmith, & PD White. (2017) Do more people recover from chronic fatigue syndrome with cognitive behaviour therapy or graded exercise therapy than with other treatments?. Fatigue: Biomedicine, Health , 1-5. info:/10.1080/21641846.2017.1288629
I enjoy clubbing and pop/rock concerts exclusively with my ear plugs in. Does that mean I miss out? No, I enjoy the music exactly as it is meant to be. Picture by Melianis at fi.wikipedia (CC BY 2.5) Since 2004 the urban dictionary includes the term ‘deaf rave’ to describe a ‘rave, or party, organised […]... Read more »
Huang J, Gamble D, Sarnlertsophon K, Wang X, & Hsiao S. (2013) Integration of auditory and tactile inputs in musical meter perception. Advances in experimental medicine and biology, 453-61. PMID: 23716252
Zhao F, Manchaiah VK, French D, & Price SM. (2010) Music exposure and hearing disorders: an overview. International journal of audiology, 49(1), 54-64. PMID: 20001447
Bibliometric research analyzes the use of Social Representation Theory (SRT) in Organizational Studies (OS). We investigated 90 papers published in journals and scientific events from 2001 to 2014. The results indicate that the use of SRT in OS is incipient, superficial and presents theoretical and methodological inconsistencies. … Read More →... Read more »
Martins-Silva, P., Silva Junior, A., Peroni, G., Medeiros, C., & Vitória, N. (2016) Teoria das representações sociais nos estudos organizacionais no Brasil: análise bibliométrica de 2001 a 2014. Cadernos EBAPE.BR, 14(4), 891-919. DOI: 10.1590/1679-395155900
The evolving epidemic of opioid overdose and overdose deaths is receiving increased public and research attention.Opioids overdoses and overdose deaths are often unintentional or accidental. It has been known that concurrent use of opioids with alcohol or benzodiazepines (i.e. Valium or Xanax) increases risk for overdose toxicity.A recent study published in the British Medical Journal confirmed the association of concurrent benzodiazepine prescription with opioid overdose.This research team exam........ Read more »
Sun EC, Dixit A, Humphreys K, Darnall BD, Baker LC, & Mackey S. (2017) Association between concurrent use of prescription opioids and benzodiazepines and overdose: retrospective analysis. BMJ (Clinical research ed.). PMID: 28292769
It’s been a while since we’ve had a new cognitive bias to share with you. Previously we’ve blogged on many different biases and here are a handful of those posts. Today’s research paper combines three biases—two of which we’ve blogged about before: the better-than-average effect, confirmation bias and also, the endowment effect. The endowment effect […]... Read more »
Gregg AP, Mahadevan N, & Sedikides C. (2017) The SPOT effect: People spontaneously prefer their own theories. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 70(6), 996-1010. PMID: 26836058
Meet the Moroccan flic-flac spider (Cebrennus rechenbergi), a truly unique spider that when provoked or threatened escapes by doubling its normal walking speed using forward or backward flips similar to acrobatic flic-flac movements used by gymnasts.
C. rechenbergi is a species of huntsman spider indigenous to Morocco and can be found in the sand dunes of the Erg Chebbi desert . The spider ... Read more »
Ralf Simon King. (2013) BiLBIQ: A Biologically Inspired Robot with Walking and Rolling Locomotion. Biosystems . info:/10.1007/978-3-642-34682-8
"While pregnant women should continue to avoid handling soiled cat litter, given possible T. gondii exposure, our study strongly indicates that cat ownership in pregnancy or early childhood does not confer an increased risk of later adolescent PEs [psychotic experiences]."So said the findings reported by Francesca Solmi and colleagues  (open-access) who brought a smile to any reader of the title of their paper: "Curiosity killed the cat: no evidence of an association between cat ownershi........ Read more »
Solmi F, Hayes JF, Lewis G, & Kirkbride JB. (2017) Curiosity killed the cat: no evidence of an association between cat ownership and psychotic symptoms at ages 13 and 18 years in a UK general population cohort. Psychological medicine, 1-9. PMID: 28222824
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