Guest post by Patrick Rabbitt, commenting on an article that claimed that simple reaction time is slower now than in the Victorian era. Mundane differences in equipment sensitivity may be responsible... Read more »
Michael A. Woodley, Jan te Nijenhuis, & Raegan Murphy. (2013) Were the Victorians cleverer than us? The decline in general intelligence estimated from a meta-analysis of the slowing of simple reaction time. Intelligence. info:/http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.intell.2013.04.006
I am thrilled to announce that this month I am joining a new top-notch science blogging team at Scitable, Nature Education’s award-winning science education website! (But don’t worry, friends. I will continue to post here about animal physiology and behavior every Wednesday). Next week, Scitable will be launching eleven new blogs covering topics like neuroscience, genetics, oceanography, physics and more. I will be co-authoring an evolution blog called Accumulating Glitches together with Se........ Read more »
Johnson, J., Trubl, P., Blackmore, V., & Miles, L. (2011) Male black widows court well-fed females more than starved females: silken cues indicate sexual cannibalism risk. Animal Behaviour, 82(2), 383-390. DOI: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2011.05.018
It may not be traditionally what you think of as flu season, but lately there’s been a great deal of talk about some viruses that are concerning public health officials and infectious disease specialists. You might have heard of the H7N9 situation in China, and the NCoV virus in France that made headlines. But researchers [...]... Read more »
Squires, R., Noronha, J., Hunt, V., García-Sastre, A., Macken, C., Baumgarth, N., Suarez, D., Pickett, B., Zhang, Y., Larsen, C.... (2012) Influenza Research Database: an integrated bioinformatics resource for influenza research and surveillance. Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses, 6(6), 404-416. DOI: 10.1111/j.1750-2659.2011.00331.x
Pickett, B., Sadat, E., Zhang, Y., Noronha, J., Squires, R., Hunt, V., Liu, M., Kumar, S., Zaremba, S., Gu, Z.... (2011) ViPR: an open bioinformatics database and analysis resource for virology research. Nucleic Acids Research, 40(D1). DOI: 10.1093/nar/gkr859
Some people would think twice before buying a house next to high-voltage power line. Wasn’t there something in the news about these wires causing cancer? Indeed many media have elaborately cited people worrying about the risks of electricity. But often without offering a scientific view on the subject.... Read more »
Draper, G. (2005) Childhood cancer in relation to distance from high voltage power lines in England and Wales: a case-control study. BMJ, 330(7503), 1290. DOI: 10.1136/bmj.330.7503.1290
Heavy metal poisoning is a major health concern across the world. Heavy metal ions frequently leak into the environment from industrial waste causing multiple health problems in humans, animals, and other organisms. While there is no universally accepted definition of … Continue reading →... Read more »
Bertin G., & Averbeck D. (2006) Cadmium: cellular effects, modifications of biomolecules, modulation of DNA repair and genotoxic consequences (a review). Biochimie, 88(11), 1549-1559. DOI: 10.1016/j.biochi.2006.10.001
Schwager Stephan, Lumjiaktase Putthapoom, Stöckli Martina, Weisskopf Laure, & Eberl Leo. (2012) The genetic basis of cadmium resistance of . Environmental Microbiology Reports, 4(5), 562-568. DOI: 10.1111/j.1758-2229.2012.00372.x
LEE JENNIFER G., ROBERTS SAMANTHA B., & MOREL FRANÇOIS M. M. (1995) Cadmium: A nutrient for the marine diatom Thalassiosira weissflogii. Limnology and Oceanography, 40(6), 1056-1063. DOI: 10.4319/lo.19184.108.40.2066
Five to seven million companion animals arrive at animal shelters in the US each year, and about half of these are animals being surrendered by their owners. Why do people surrender their pets? To find out, a new study by Jennifer Kwan and Melissa Bain compared dogs being relinquished at three Sacramento animal shelters to those dogs that were there simply to receive their vaccinations.The experimenter spent time at the shelters during the hours when relinquishments could take place, and w........ Read more »
Kwan, J., & Bain, M. (2013) Owner Attachment and Problem Behaviors Related to Relinquishment and Training Techniques of Dogs. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 16(2), 168-183. DOI: 10.1080/10888705.2013.768923
Biodiversity loss is a serious problem. The loss of a single species may have ramifications for every other species. Who knew that a species of fungus would save us from millions of bacterial infection deaths. To drive home the point of diversity, efforts are being made to predict the number of species present on Earth. In the early 1900’s, estimates ranged from 100,000 to 500,000, but 2011 estimates put the number at more like 11.3 million. Bacteria alone could raise this number to 1 bill........ Read more »
Mora, C., Tittensor, D., Adl, S., Simpson, A., & Worm, B. (2011) How Many Species Are There on Earth and in the Ocean?. PLoS Biology, 9(8). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001127
ADL, S., SIMPSON, A., FARMER, M., ANDERSEN, R., ANDERSON, O., BARTA, J., BOWSER, S., BRUGEROLLE, G., FENSOME, R., FREDERICQ, S.... (2005) The New Higher Level Classification of Eukaryotes with Emphasis on the Taxonomy of Protists. The Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology, 52(5), 399-451. DOI: 10.1111/j.1550-7408.2005.00053.x
Having too much body fat makes arteries become stiff after middle age, a new study has revealed.
In young people, blood vessels appear to be able to compensate for the effects of obesity. But after middle age, this adaptability is lost, and arteries become progressively stiffer as body fat rises – potentially increasing the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease.... Read more »
Sam Wong. (2013) Body fat hardens arteries after middle age. Imperial College of London. info:/
by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room
We have likely all heard the saying “Don’t shoot the messenger”. According to new research, we are more likely to shoot that unlucky messenger when they are an outgroup rather than ingroup member. While that makes sense (sort of) it’s an intriguing article. And likely a depressing article for those who would like to promote [...]
The “hoodie effect”: A domestic variant of the turban effect
The hypercorrection effect: Correcting misinformation and false belie........ Read more »
Esposo SR, Hornsey MJ, & Spoor JR. (2013) Shooting the messenger: Outsiders critical of your group are rejected regardless of argument quality. The British Journal of Social Psychology. PMID: 23316747
When cells suffer too much DNA damage, they are usually forced to undergo programmed cell death, or apoptosis. However, cancer cells often ignore these signals, flourishing even after chemotherapy drugs have ravaged their DNA.
A new finding from MIT researchers may offer a way to overcome that resistance: The team has identified a key protein involved in an alternative death pathway known as programmed necrosis. Drugs that mimic the effects of this protein could push cancer cells that are res........ Read more »
Anne Trafton. (2013) Study IDs key protein for cell death. MIT News Office. info:/
Posted by Kasra Doctors and scientists in the field of clinical research are well acquainted to systematic reviews and their importance in clinical research. The important difference between a normal review and a systematic review is that in the latter the authors make sure (or at least try very hard) to include and cover all the […]... Read more »
Bos, L., Sterk, P., & Schultz, M. (2013) Volatile Metabolites of Pathogens: A Systematic Review. PLoS Pathogens, 9(5). DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1003311
by Romain Savary in genome ecology evolution etc
In this paper Richard E. Lenski and colleague are showing an example of how efficient adaptation by natural selection is. During 20 year they have been growing twelve populations of Escherichia coli in glucose medium containing also abundant citrate, this … Continuer la lecture →... Read more »
Blount, Z., Barrick, J., Davidson, C., & Lenski, R. (2012) Genomic analysis of a key innovation in an experimental Escherichia coli population. Nature, 489(7417), 513-518. DOI: 10.1038/nature11514
Take Home Message: Elite soccer athletes may be at an increased risk for knee and ankle osteoarthritis compared with the general population. This group should be identified as high risk and preventative measures should be taken.
While participation in elite-level sports is often viewed as a good thing, there is an established increased risk of short-term injuries (e.g., sprains, strains). This increased injury risk may leave athletes at an increased risk for long-term disability (e.g., oste........ Read more »
Kuijt, M., Inklaar, H., Gouttebarge, V., & Frings-Dresen, M. (2012) Knee and ankle osteoarthritis in former elite soccer players: A systematic review of the recent literature. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 15(6), 480-487. DOI: 10.1016/j.jsams.2012.02.008
For over twenty-three hundred years, at least since the publication of Euclid’s Elements, the conjecture and proof of new theorems has been the sine qua non of mathematics. The method of proof is at “the heart of mathematics, the royal road to creating analytical tools and catalyzing growth” (Rav, 1999; pg 6). Proofs are not […]... Read more »
The Irish poet Brendan Behan is, I think, credited with the phrase: "There's no bad publicity except an obituary". One wonders how appropriate this phrase might be to the 'diagnostic Bible' (except that it isn't) which is DSM-V which is poised to make its entrance into the World in the coming days.The real Homer @ Wikipedia Indeed, the story of DSM-V even before it hits the diagnostic shelves of all good psychiatric bookshops, has the makings of an epic piece of poetry or literature, o........ Read more »
Ian B Hickie1, Jan Scott, Daniel F Hermens, Elizabeth M Scott, Sharon L Naismith, Adam J Guastella, Nick Glozier, & Patrick D McGorry. (2013) Clinical classification in mental health at the cross-roads: which direction next?. BMC Medicine, 126. info:/
Super-resolution microscopy can potentially allow imaging of single protein molecules. A new paper now tracks single Pol and Lig proteins in E. coli, as they repair DNA damage. The researchers replaced the endogenous proteins with proteins tagged with a photoactivatable mCherry (PAmCherry). … Continue reading →... Read more »
A new joint innovation by the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and the University of Cambridge could pave the way for redefining the ampere in terms of fundamental constants of physics. The world’s first graphene single-electron pump (SEP) provides the speed of electron flow needed to create a new standard for electrical current based on electron charge.... Read more »
Connolly, M., Chiu, K., Giblin, S., Kataoka, M., Fletcher, J., Chua, C., Griffiths, J., Jones, G., Fal'ko, V., Smith, C.... (2013) Gigahertz quantized charge pumping in graphene quantum dots. Nature Nanotechnology. DOI: 10.1038/nnano.2013.73
Unlike most vertebrates which can replace lost teeth through their entire lives, humans come with only two sets, baby teeth and adult teeth, then they simply lose the ability for tooth renewal.. However, a new study on alligators by researchers at the Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California (USC) may someday allow doctors to stimulate tooth regeneration in humans as well.Read More... Read more »
Wu, P., Wu, X., Jiang, T., Elsey, R., Temple, B., Divers, S., Glenn, T., Yuan, K., Chen, M., Widelitz, R.... (2013) Specialized stem cell niche enables repetitive renewal of alligator teeth. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1213202110
Coffee can bug or de-bug you - in many different ways.It can actually energize your gut bugs. Nestlé researchers showed that for sixteen healthy adult volunteers consuming a daily dose of 3 cups of coffee during 3 weeks. This led to an increase of the metabolic activity and/or numbers of Bifidobacterium species, important probiotics in the food industry. Bifidobacteria has been long suggested to be therapeutic for the relief of intestinal disorders, including Irritable Bowel Syndrome ........ Read more »
Jaquet M, Rochat I, Moulin J, Cavin C, & Bibiloni R. (2009) Impact of coffee consumption on the gut microbiota: a human volunteer study. International journal of food microbiology, 130(2), 117-21. PMID: 19217682
Researchers have found that the size of the frontal lobes of the brain is not the only crucial factor of human intelligence.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS)
Frontal lobes, as the name suggest, are present at the front of each cerebral hemisphere - either of the two symmetrical halves of the front part of the brain.
Researchers have reported in the new study that size of the brain’s frontal lobe is not the onl........ Read more »
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