148 posts · 149,376 views
Many thanks to NCBI ROFL for providing this excellent gem of a paper. I was actually going to do another one that I found via their site, but then I saw this one and I HAD TO HAVE IT. And so much additional thanks goes to Jason of the Thoughtful Animal and twitter bud hectocotyli, who managed to find the paper, as Sci only has access to the stacks copy and was about to pull her hair out.
And it was all worth it, my friends! This is a paper of such hilarious awesome that Sci can barely conta........ Read more »
Shafik, A. (1992) Contraceptive efficacy of polyester-induced azoospermia in normal men. Contraception, 45(5), 439-451. DOI: 10.1016/0010-7824(92)90157-O
A good while ago I did a Friday Weird Science which I thought was really cool. Unfortunately, it just wasn't...weird...enough, and so I put it into poetry, because everything is better in verse. It was on Prairie Voles and monogamy, and was called Prairie Voles in Love:
Out on the lonely prairie, gazing at the stars above
I saw through the night
the wondrous sight
Of prairie voles in love
So you can imagine my happiness when I found out that it's not just in voles!!! A study came out rec........ Read more »
H. Walum, L. Westberg, S. Henningsson, J. M. Neiderhiser, D. Reiss, W. Igl, J. M. Ganiban, E. L. Spotts, N. L. Pedersen, E. Eriksson.... (2008) Genetic variation in the vasopressin receptor 1a gene (AVPR1A) associates with pair-bonding behavior in humans. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(37), 14153-14156. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0803081105
Sci was going to try and stick with the sex this week, but this paper reminded her SO much of this article in the New Yorker, which then reminded her SO much of that awesome YouTube video, and the next thing you knew Sci had to blog bees on crack. It's how I roll.
But first, let's get in the mood:
(Nice web, crack spider)
And from the New Yorker:
There's that fat kid again. I'm going to sting this whole family! "Aah!" They're running! I'm buzzing, I'm buzzing, I'm buzzing, this is incredibl........ Read more »
Sometimes, Sci is simply inundated with weird science opportunities, and such a week is this one. There is SO MUCH WEIRD OUT THERE, you guys. This is great, as it keeps Friday Weird Science in business, but sometimes Sci has to file away so many for later that she loses track. Here's really hoping that she WON'T lose track, because she found some real beauties today. And this was one of the best one.
In response to a question from awesome reader and friend of the blog Pascale: Can I post on........ Read more »
This is a paper in which Sci has a certain amount of personal investment. You see, Sci has a family member who suffers from rheumatoid arthritis. And when I say suffer, I mean she suffers terribly. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease where you own body attacks the lining of the membranes between your joints. The result is painful swelling and stiffness (arthritis) which usually affects the smaller joints first (like your fingers) and which can severely impair your quality of life. ........ Read more »
Kimio Nasu, Hitoshi Kohsaka, Yoshinori Nonomura, Yoshio Terada, Hiroshi Ito, Katsuiku Hirokawa, and Nobuyuki Miyasaka. (2000) Adenoviral Transfer of Cyclin-Dependent Kinase Inhibitor Genes Suppresses Collagen-Induced Arthritis in Mice. Journal of Immunology, 7246-7252. info:/
Palmer and Schloss. "An ecological valence theory of human color preference" PNAS, 2010.
Sci will admit that she didn't really know all that much about color preference theory until she read this paper. And that until she read this paper...she thought a lot of it was silly.
Also, she doesn't have a favorite color. That might have something to do with it. Can someone have a favorite color palette instead?
Anyway, let's talk color preference theory. Read the rest of this post... | ........ Read more »
Palmer, S., & Schloss, K. (2010) An ecological valence theory of human color preference. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(19), 8877-8882. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0906172107
In celebration of the holiday season, Sci went looking for something seasonal. But referring constantly to things like how many calories we eat around this time (Sci is no exception) is really a downer. So this season, Sci decided to find out what would happen if you plug the word "christmas" into pubmed.
It turns out there are a lot of people named Christmas.
But Sci ALSO came across this study, which she found to be a really really cool phenomenon of SCIENCE! And so, as her holiday gift ........ Read more »
CAPPELLETTI, M., JANSARI, A., KOPELMAN, M., & BUTTERWORTH, B. (2008) A case of selective impairment of encyclopaedic numerical knowledge or ‘when December 25th is no longer Christmas day, but ‘20 5’ is still 25’. Cortex, 44(3), 325-336. DOI: 10.1016/j.cortex.2006.07.005
As I'm sure most of you are aware, the human species isn't really in immediate danger from dying out due to lack of mating partners (other reasons, I leave up to you). And after all, if all else fails, a trip to a sperm bank can often be arranged. But what about those rare animals growing steadily rarer from the encroachment of humans on their habitat? Well this is when you need to lend a hand. It's time to preserve some...eland semen.
Nel-Themaat et al. "Isolation, culture and characteri........ Read more »
Nel-Themaat, L., Gómez, M., Damiani, P., Wirtu, G., Dresser, B., Bondioli, K., Lyons, L., Pope, C., & Godke, R. (2007) Isolation, culture and characterisation of somatic cells derived from semen and milk of endangered sheep and eland antelope. Reproduction, Fertility and Development, 19(4), 576. DOI: 10.1071/RD06153
It's all about the music.
Gill and Purves. "A biological rationale for musical scales" PLoS ONE, 2009
So you might think that music like this:
(HOT STUFF. Go to 0:35 for the real hotness. It's Victoria's O Magnum Mysterium)
(Also some killer hot stuff, 3:50 has the real chills. The Lauridsen version)
Don't have much in common with THIS hot stuff:
(That'll wake you up! No idea who this guy is, but he's hilarious, and the dancers wearing body suits under skimpy outfits are the........ Read more »
This time of year is a rough one is the Southeast. It's a time of angiosperm related hyprocrisy. It's so pretty outside that it cries out for Easter egg hunts, picnics, and other outside activities.
(it really does look like this)
Unfortunately, once the weather is warm for a few days, it looks like this.
(Sci's car this morning, only it was worse than that. RUN FOR YOUR LIVES.)
As you might be able to imagine, this sort of thing means that the sneezing rate in the south has a remarkabl........ Read more »
Langer N, Beeli G, & Jäncke L. (2010) When the sun prickles your nose: an EEG study identifying neural bases of photic sneezing. PloS one, 5(2). PMID: 20169159
Early spring is a good time of year. Sci starts feeling a little more motivated, it's finally warm enough to feel comfortable running outside again (not that Sci ran inside, she was just very uncomfortable outside), and it's asparagus season!
When Sci was wee and her mother would try to feed her asparagus, Sci turned up her little nose at such nonsense. Why on earth would anyone eat something that was that green and looked like it had hair!?
(You can see my issue here)
I seem to remember a........ Read more »
Waring RH, Mitchell SC, & Fenwick GR. (1987) The chemical nature of the urinary odour produced by man after asparagus ingestion. Xenobiotica; the fate of foreign compounds in biological systems, 17(11), 1363-71. PMID: 3433805
...they wear big exoskeletons.
Today's Friday Weird Science comes to you courtesy of the talented, handsome, and soon to be no longer stranded in Australia (hopefully), Ed of Not Exactly Rocket Science. Because no one can tell you more about beetles and the size of their...mandibles...than Ed. :)
Yamane et al. "Dispersal and ejaculatory strategies associated with exaggeration of weapon in an armed beetle" Proceedings of the Royal Society B, 2009.
And here we have today's male of ch........ Read more »
Yamane, T., Okada, K., Nakayama, S., & Miyatake, T. (2010) Dispersal and ejaculatory strategies associated with exaggeration of weapon in an armed beetle. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2009.2017
So the other day Sci is chatting with some friends, and mentions how INCREDIBLY AMUSED she always is by romance novels. This is for several reasons.
One (1): They have covers like this:
(Seriously, I crack up just looking at these. LOL!!! Ooooh. My new favorite. Look at that bulging codpiece. *snort* HAHAHAHAHAHA.)
Two (2): They are so predictable, particularly the period ones. Sci could write one RIGHT NOW:
"Cerise Everett Longwood, the lovely and rebellious daughter of t........ Read more »
Schober JM, Meyer-Bahlburg HF, & Dolezal C. (2009) Self-ratings of genital anatomy, sexual sensitivity and function in men using the 'Self-Assessment of Genital Anatomy and Sexual Function, Male' questionnaire. BJU international, 103(8), 1096-103. PMID: 19245445
Well well well. Here we are. It's Friday. And we've been talking about SPERM ALL WEEK.
What to do...what to do...
Nel-Themaat et al. "Quality and freezing qualities of ﬁrst and second ejaculates collected from endangered Gulf Coast Native rams" Animal Reproduction Science, 2006.
So it turns out that the people who wrote the study Sci covered the other week wrote ANOTHER one. Also, it turns out the eland is not endangered, but the other species they were working with, the Gulf Co........ Read more »
NELTHEMAAT, L., HARDING, G., CHANDLER, J., CHENEVERT, J., DAMIANI, P., FERNANDEZ, J., HUMES, P., POPE, C., & GODKE, R. (2006) Quality and freezing qualities of first and second ejaculates collected from endangered Gulf Coast Native rams. Animal Reproduction Science, 95(3-4), 251-261. DOI: 10.1016/j.anireprosci.2005.09.014
Thanks again to NCBI ROFL, who finds these hilarious things and posts their abstracts for all the world to see, and for Sci to giggle over and then run around trying to find hilarious pictures of didgeridoos.
So, let's talk about your snoring problem.
And then let's talk about your musical stylings on the didgeridoo.
Puhan, et al. "Didgeridoo playing as alternative treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome: randomised controlled trial" British Medical Journal, 2006.
And to get an ........ Read more »
Puhan, M. (2006) Didgeridoo playing as alternative treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome: randomised controlled trial. BMJ, 332(7536), 266-270. DOI: 10.1136/bmj.38705.470590.55
This is one of those things that isn't really related to neuroscience, to weird science, or to any of Sci's normal science. Really, it was just something Sci found (in various places), and thought was really awesome. Cause it is!
BEHOLD! The INCREDIBLE HEALING MOUSE!!!
For those who know about working with rodents, it looks like a rat, don't it? It's a mouse! But it looks like a rat because these dudes are some big boys. This is an MRL mouse, which stands for 'Murphy Roths Lar........ Read more »
Bedelbaeva K, Snyder A, Gourevitch D, Clark L, Zhang XM, Leferovich J, Cheverud JM, Lieberman P, & Heber-Katz E. (2010) Lack of p21 expression links cell cycle control and appendage regeneration in mice. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 107(13), 5845-50. PMID: 20231440
As you might have noticed, Sci is really interested lately in the concept of food reward systems, in particular the issues associated with the effects of binge eating on reward systems in the brain, and the issue of "food addiction".
And Sci is not the only one who is interested. Lots of other people in the scientific world (not to mention people outside the scientific world) are interested as well. And in the same issue of Nature Neuroscience that published the paper that Sci covered on do........ Read more »
Epstein DH, & Shaham Y. (2010) Cheesecake-eating rats and the question of food addiction. Nature neuroscience, 13(5), 529-31. PMID: 20421898
Sci came across this abstract via NCBI ROFL, the aggregation site with some truly hilarious studies on it, many of them worthy Friday Weird Science materials. And of course this one is EXTRA worthy. It's from the Journal of Medical Hypotheses. Wither Weird Science, Medical Hypotheses, but for thee?
So, coming up into this next week, Sci is proud to announce an awesome series of guest posts. Seeing as we spent the last three weeks or so on female reproduction, it seems only fair to represent........ Read more »
KUMAR, A. (2008) Swinging high and low: Why do the testes hang at different levels A theory on surface area and thermoregulation. Medical Hypotheses, 70(3), 698-698. DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2007.06.023
This is somewhat of a followup post. What's really cool about this paper (to Sci, anyway), is that it brings two different areas that she's been interested in into one cool glob of SCIENCE. And it helps to explain many of the questions that Sci got in response to two of the papers she has blogged about recently.
They are these:
1) The Incredible Healing Mouse: Bedelbeava et al. "Lack of p21 expression links cell cycle control and appendage regeneration in mice" Proceeding of the National Aca........ Read more »
Pechnick, R., Zonis, S., Wawrowsky, K., Pourmorady, J., & Chesnokova, V. (2008) p21Cip1 restricts neuronal proliferation in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(4), 1358-1363. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0711030105
Sci would like to note that today's entry is being written on the adorably tiny screen of her netbook, which is named Ruby. Everyone say hi to Ruby!
Unfortunately, this is because her wireless on her normal computer suddenly decided that it was too good for her modem. Perhaps it's an April Fool's Day joke. This is not a good time for this to happen, but of course the not good times ARE the times when this happens, as we all know. And so, until that gets fixed, we are stuck on the netbook, w........ Read more »
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