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United Academics Connects Science to Society.
You might be wondering what Pinocchio and Captain Hook have in common. Well, they are both from children’s stories, they both have prosthetics, they have issues with being honest, and they both experience interesting maritime adventures. But there is something else too: they are both annoyed by a continuous ticking sound that follows them everywhere. For Pinocchio it is Jiminy Cricket who bothers him while for Hook the crocodile is ticking merrily away. I can hear you saying: “So? Wh........ Read more »
Okamoto, H., Stracke, H., Stoll, W., & Pantev, C. (2009) Listening to tailor-made notched music reduces tinnitus loudness and tinnitus-related auditory cortex activity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(3), 1207-1210. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0911268107
Pantev C, Rudack C, Stein A, Wunderlich R, Engell A, Lau P, Wollbrink A, & Shaykevich A. (2014) Study protocol: Münster tinnitus randomized controlled clinical trial-2013 based on tailor-made notched music training (TMNMT). BMC neurology, 40. PMID: 24581050
Pantev, C., Wollbrink, A., Roberts, L., Engelien, A., & Lütkenhöner, B. (1999) Short-term plasticity of the human auditory cortex. Brain Research, 842(1), 192-199. DOI: 10.1016/S0006-8993(99)01835-1
Sanchez, T., & Rocha, C. (2011) Diagnosis and management of somatosensory tinnitus: review article. Clinics, 66(6), 1089-1094. DOI: 10.1590/S1807-59322011000600028
Patent for Bozepinib approved by scientists of University of Granada
Researchers at the University of Granada, Spain, have patented Bozepinib, a drug that inhibits the growth of cancer stem cells in breast, colon and melanoma cancers.
The mechanisms of action of Bozepinib were first described in an article published in the Open Access journal Oncotarget back in 2014. The team showed that Bozepinib was able to inhibit growth and metastasis of tumors in mice without inducing toxicity. Follow........ Read more »
Ramírez A, Boulaiz H, Morata-Tarifa C, Perán M, Jiménez G, Picon-Ruiz M, Agil A, Cruz-López O, Conejo-García A, Campos JM.... (2014) HER2-signaling pathway, JNK and ERKs kinases, and cancer stem-like cells are targets of Bozepinib small compound. Oncotarget, 5(11), 3590-606. PMID: 24946763
Eager to travel to Mars? Think twice!
NASA, galactic cosmic rays, mars, space travel
Explorations of Mars with probes and spacecraft are revealing intriguing features of the Red Planet. The most recent discovery by the NASA spacecraft Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, that liquid water very likely flows on Mars, has stirred enthusiasm among scientists who have been looking for signs of “life-as-we-know-it” on the planet for the last twenty years.
One of the major future goals of ........ Read more »
Using special antibodies to attack HIV
HIV, AIDS, ART, treatment, therapy, health
More than thirty-five million people in the world today are living with HIV/AIDS. In the last few decades there have been concerted, large-scale efforts worldwide to contain the spread of this pandemic and to help infected people survive the virus and live with it.
At the forefront of anti-HIV therapy stands a class of drugs known as anti-retroviral therapy or ART. These drugs are able to reduce the number........ Read more »
Pegu, A., Asokan, M., Wu, L., Wang, K., Hataye, J., Casazza, J., Guo, X., Shi, W., Georgiev, I., Zhou, T.... (2015) Activation and lysis of human CD4 cells latently infected with HIV-1. Nature Communications, 8447. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms9447
Sung, J., Pickeral, J., Liu, L., Stanfield-Oakley, S., Lam, C., Garrido, C., Pollara, J., LaBranche, C., Bonsignori, M., Moody, M.... (2015) Dual-Affinity Re-Targeting proteins direct T cell–mediated cytolysis of latently HIV-infected cells. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 125(11), 4077-4090. DOI: 10.1172/JCI82314
Different colors and flavors of pig?
pig, micro pig, genetics, gene editing, agriculture, pets
The Chinese genomics institute BGI (Beijing Genomics Institute) has announced that tiny pigs, created through genetic-editing techniques, are now being sold as pets. The profits generated through revenue will be used to further develop research in this area.
Demand for pigs as pets has been growing, especially among the U.S public. Yong Li, director of BGI believes that in the future gene-edit........ Read more »
Li F, Li Y, Liu H, Zhang H, Liu C, Zhang X, Dou H, Yang W, & Du Y. (2014) [Production of GHR double-allelic knockout Bama pig by TALENs and handmade cloning]. Yi chuan , 36(9), 903-11. PMID: 25252308
Once upon a time there was a high school student who was struggling to write a literature essay. The student couldn’t find anything good about the writer she had to discuss; he simply looked like a depressed misogynist, unable to even properly commit suicide at the first try. There is no need to write and publish a poem called “Death Will Come and Will Have Your Eyes” just because a woman broke up with you (not that the student would blame her), right?
The student grew up, f........ Read more »
Caputo GB. (2015) Dissociation and hallucinations in dyads engaged through interpersonal gazing. Psychiatry research, 228(3), 659-63. PMID: 26112448
Goldstein MA, Kilroy MC, & Van de Voort D. (1976) Gaze as a function of conversation and degree of love. The Journal of psychology, 92(2d Half), 227-234. PMID: 1271300
Prevention of peanut allergies is a controversial issue, leaving society uncertain whether children should eat or avoid peanuts. Recent scientific studies show...... Read more »
Du Toit G, Katz Y, Sasieni P, Mesher D, Maleki SJ, Fisher HR, Fox AT, Turcanu V, Amir T, Zadik-Mnuhin G.... (2008) Early consumption of peanuts in infancy is associated with a low prevalence of peanut allergy. The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology, 122(5), 984-91. PMID: 19000582
Du Toit G, Roberts G, Sayre PH, Bahnson HT, Radulovic S, Santos AF, Brough HA, Phippard D, Basting M, Feeney M.... (2015) Randomized trial of peanut consumption in infants at risk for peanut allergy. The New England journal of medicine, 372(9), 803-13. PMID: 25705822
Gruchalla RS, & Sampson HA. (2015) Preventing peanut allergy through early consumption--ready for prime time?. The New England journal of medicine, 372(9), 875-7. PMID: 25705823
Fleischer DM, Sicherer S, Greenhawt M, Campbell D, Chan E, Muraro A, Halken S, Katz Y, Ebisawa M, Eichenfield L.... (2015) Consensus Communication on Early Peanut Introduction and Prevention of Peanut Allergy in High-Risk Infants. Pediatric dermatology. PMID: 26354148
Gupta R, Holdford D, Bilaver L, Dyer A, Holl JL, & Meltzer D. (2013) The economic impact of childhood food allergy in the United States. JAMA pediatrics, 167(11), 1026-31. PMID: 24042236
The cyberspace evolution of beauty
Researchers using CGI images found that beauty evolves in two steps.
beauty, cyberspace, CGI, women, female, attraction, attractive
Symmetrical faces and bodies are nice to look at. Men prefer a specific waist-to-hip ratio. People with a Body Mass Index within a certain range are more often perceived as beautiful, and tall people are generally judged as being more attractive.
Explanations of beauty abound. Yet, all of the ........ Read more »
Brooks, R., Shelly, J., Jordan, L., & J.W. Dixson, B. (2015) The multivariate evolution of female body shape in an artificial digital ecosystem. Evolution and Human Behavior, 36(5), 351-358. DOI: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2015.02.001
Germine L, Russell R, Bronstad PM, Blokland GA, Smoller JW, Kwok H, Anthony SE, Nakayama K, Rhodes G, & Wilmer JB. (2015) Individual Aesthetic Preferences for Faces Are Shaped Mostly by Environments, Not Genes. Current biology : CB, 25(20), 2684-2689. PMID: 26441352
Predatory Open Access publishers on the rise
open access, publishing, open access publishing, predators, predatory publishing, articles, peer review
The increase in so-called “predatory” Open Access publishers is posing a threat to the integrity of Open Access publishing. Predatory Open Access publishers charge authors high publishing fees without providing proper editorial and peer review services. They are abusing the opportunity created by the Gold Open Access publishing mod........ Read more »
Shen C, & Björk BC. (2015) 'Predatory' open access: a longitudinal study of article volumes and market characteristics. BMC medicine, 230. PMID: 26423063
Three big ideas from World Water Week 2015
World Water Week is an annual conference organised by the Stockholm International Water Institute that discusses global issues concerning water. Held in August 2015, World Water Week attracted over 3,000 participants, including government ministers, scientists and economists, from 130 different countries. To celebrate its 25th anniversary this year, here are 3 big ideas from World Water Week 2015.... Read more »
Polyglot like a pitcher plant or cryptolectic like a sperm whale?
A: “Pitcher Tower, this is Bat K hardwickii, established ILS 16. Do you copy me?”
B: “Bat K hardwickii, clear to land. Please confirm: are you ready to discharge the cargo?”
A: “Roger. Affirmative.”
This is how I imagined a conversation between the tropical carnivorous pitcher plant Nepenthes hemsleyana and the bat Kerivoula hardwickii would go. No, I am not on drugs; bats and plants can........ Read more »
Cantor M, Shoemaker LG, Cabral RB, Flores CO, Varga M, & Whitehead H. (2015) Multilevel animal societies can emerge from cultural transmission. Nature communications, 8091. PMID: 26348688
Schöner MG, Schöner CR, Simon R, Grafe TU, Puechmaille SJ, Ji LL, & Kerth G. (2015) Bats Are Acoustically Attracted to Mutualistic Carnivorous Plants. Current biology : CB, 25(14), 1911-6. PMID: 26166777
Don’t be so quick to throw out your feline companions
I have to admit that as an animal lover, I was biased when I approached this research. A post titled “Cats = Schizophrenia” appeared on my Facebook page and my first though was “Bollocks! What is the science behind this?!” My search began.... Read more »
Fuller Torrey E, Simmons W, & Yolken RH. (2015) Is childhood cat ownership a risk factor for schizophrenia later in life?. Schizophrenia research, 165(1), 1-2. PMID: 25892720
Calcaterra V, Veggiotti P, Palestrini C, De Giorgis V, Raschetti R, Tumminelli M, Mencherini S, Papotti F, Klersy C, Albertini R.... (2015) Post-operative benefits of animal-assisted therapy in pediatric surgery: a randomised study. PloS one, 10(6). PMID: 26039494
Spiders Sailing The Seven Seas
Discovery of a new type of behaviour shows that some spiders are really good sailors.
With the exception of the coldest places on our planet, spiders are almost everywhere. From giant bird-eating tarantulas to pin-prick-sized web-builders, from solitary hunters to social colonies, spiders are versatile in more ways than one.
Some of our eight-legged friends on the smaller side of the size/weight scale even know how to fly! ... Read more »
Hayashi M, Bakkali M, Hyde A, & Goodacre SL. (2015) Sail or sink: novel behavioural adaptations on water in aerially dispersing species. BMC evolutionary biology, 118. PMID: 26138616
While it sounds like something from The Island of Dr. Moreau, physicians and research scientists are convinced that clinical trials will be underway in the near future.... Read more »
Iwase, H., Liu, H., Wijkstrom, M., Zhou, H., Singh, J., Hara, H., Ezzelarab, M., Long, C., Klein, E., Wagner, R.... (2015) Pig kidney graft survival in a baboon for 136 days: longest life-supporting organ graft survival to date. Xenotransplantation, 22(4), 302-309. DOI: 10.1111/xen.12174
Cooper DK. (2012) A brief history of cross-species organ transplantation. Proceedings (Baylor University. Medical Center), 25(1), 49-57. PMID: 22275786
Energy drinks boost your adrenaline, but not without health risks.... Read more »
Cavka A, Stupin M, Panduric A, Plazibat A, Cosic A, Rasic L, Debeljak Z, Martinovic G, & Drenjancevic I. (2015) Adrenergic System Activation Mediates Changes in Cardiovascular and Psychomotoric Reactions in Young Individuals after Red Bull (©) Energy Drink Consumption. International journal of endocrinology, 751530. PMID: 26124829
While at times, media can be seen as forces out to create negative feelings towards minority groups, recent research by Garretson of Vanderbilt University shows an example of the positive powers that media can have on group-mechanisms. ... Read more »
Garretson, J. (2014) Exposure to the Lives of Lesbians and Gays and the Origin of Young People's Greater Support for Gay Rights. International Journal of Public Opinion Research, 27(2), 277-288. DOI: 10.1093/ijpor/edu026
Hyenas, like humans, are social animals. It turns out that a hyena, as is usually the case with humans, won’t befriend all the members in their clan. Extensive research reveals their social network strategies... Read more »
Ilany A, Booms AS, & Holekamp KE. (2015) Topological effects of network structure on long-term social network dynamics in a wild mammal. Ecology letters, 18(7), 687-95. PMID: 25975663
To assess the value of spirituality, this article aims to give a clear, imaginable and humble impression of spirituality research. It describes research of spiritual practices, which are practiced by people of multiple religious affiliations and even by irreligious people.... Read more »
Vickhoff, B., Malmgren, H., Åström, R., Nyberg, G., Ekström, S., Engwall, M., Snygg, J., Nilsson, M., & Jörnsten, R. (2013) Music structure determines heart rate variability of singers. Frontiers in Psychology. DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00334
de Ridder D, Kroese F, Adriaanse M, & Evers C. (2014) Always gamble on an empty stomach: hunger is associated with advantageous decision making. PloS one, 9(10). PMID: 25340399
Friese M, Schweizer L, Arnoux A, Sutter F, & Wänke M. (2014) Personal prayer counteracts self-control depletion. Consciousness and cognition, 90-5. PMID: 25277947
Bhasin MK, Dusek JA, Chang BH, Joseph MG, Denninger JW, Fricchione GL, Benson H, & Libermann TA. (2013) Relaxation response induces temporal transcriptome changes in energy metabolism, insulin secretion and inflammatory pathways. PloS one, 8(5). PMID: 23650531
Ybarra O, Burnstein E, Winkielman P, Keller MC, Manis M, Chan E, & Rodriguez J. (2008) Mental exercising through simple socializing: social interaction promotes general cognitive functioning. Personality , 34(2), 248-59. PMID: 18212333
Radicalization is an analyzable process, rather than the outcome of an ‘evil’ personality.... Read more »
Karagiannis, E. (2012) European Converts to Islam: Mechanisms of Radicalization. Politics, Religion , 13(1), 99-113. DOI: 10.1080/21567689.2012.659495
Adding some ‘worry time’ to your day could work better than pills.... Read more »
Koffel EA, Koffel JB, & Gehrman PR. (2015) A meta-analysis of group cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. Sleep medicine reviews, 6-16. PMID: 24931811
Sivertsen B, Omvik S, Pallesen S, Bjorvatn B, Havik OE, Kvale G, Nielsen GH, & Nordhus IH. (2006) Cognitive behavioral therapy vs zopiclone for treatment of chronic primary insomnia in older adults: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA, 295(24), 2851-8. PMID: 16804151
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