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  • August 9, 2014
  • 12:46 PM
  • 189 views

Terminal Lucidity: Myth, Mystery or Miracle?

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic_Discover

Can sick people gain mental clarity just before they die? University of Virginia researchers Michael Nahm and Bruce Greyson explore this issue in a gripping (if macabre) paper published in the journal Omega: The death of Anna Katharina Ehmer: a case study in terminal lucidity.The authors discuss the case of Anna Katharina Ehmer, a German […]The post Terminal Lucidity: Myth, Mystery or Miracle? appeared first on Neuroskeptic.... Read more »

  • August 8, 2014
  • 06:00 PM
  • 147 views

Psychiatry and inflammation (again)

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I'd like to bring two papers to your attention in today's very quick post."The Death Star plans are not in the main computer"First up is the article by Kahn & Sommer [1] (open-access) titled: 'The neurobiology and treatment of first-episode schizophrenia'. It's about as good a read as we have so far on the topic of "brain changes in the first phase of schizophrenia" and the various management options for first-episode schizophrenia. Outside of the very important fact that "It is highly unlik........ Read more »

  • August 8, 2014
  • 09:52 AM
  • 163 views

Know your brain: Corpus callosum

by neurosci in Neuroscientifically Challenged







Corpus callosum (in red).CC image courtesy of Life Science Databases(LSDB).






Where is it?The corpus callosum is a large, C-shaped nerve fiber bundle found beneath the cerebral cortex. It stretches across the midline of the brain, connecting the left and right cerebral hemispheres. It makes up the largest collection of white matter tissue found in the brain.What is it and what does it do?To understand the role of the corpus callosum, it is first importan........ Read more »

  • August 8, 2014
  • 07:02 AM
  • 153 views

Do you believe there are Angels and Demons among us?

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

The American Bar Association is seeking nominations until August 8, 2014 [THAT's TODAY!] to help it decide on the Top 100 law blogs (“Blawgs”). We have been in the ABA Top 100 for the past 4 years and would like to make it 5! If you like this blog, please nominate us (it’s fast and free) […]

Related posts:
Keep your eye on this one: A Depravity Scale
The Islamophobia Scale: Measuring our fear of Muslims
Cathedrals, civic buildings and your tolerance for ambiguity


... Read more »

  • August 8, 2014
  • 06:50 AM
  • 84 views

How do you prove that reading boosts IQ?

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

A recent study on whether reading boosts intelligence attracted global media attention: "Reading at a young age makes you smarter," announced the Daily Mail. "Early reading boosts health and intelligence," said The Australian.In the race for eye-catching headlines, this mainstream media coverage arguably missed the more fascinating story of the hunt for cause and effect. Here lead author Dr Stuart Ritchie explains the science:"Causality, it turns out, is really difficult to prove. Correlational ........ Read more »

  • August 7, 2014
  • 08:00 PM
  • 203 views

Do Narcissists Know They’re Narcissists?

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic_Discover

According to a provocative paper just published, it’s possible to accurately determine how narcissistic someone is by asking them just one thing. Here’s the question in full: To what extent do you agree with this statement: I am a narcissist? (Note: The word ‘narcissist’ means egotistical, self-focused, and vain.) Answer on a scale from 1 […]The post Do Narcissists Know They’re Narcissists? appeared first on Neuroskeptic.... Read more »

  • August 7, 2014
  • 06:16 PM
  • 113 views

In it together: Couples' life satisfaction takes a bigger hit when one partner loses their job, than when both do

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

If your partner were to lose their job, you might think keeping your own employment would cushion the psychological blow. In fact new research finds that life satisfaction is higher for couples who share their unemployed predicament, than for couples where only one partner loses their job.Maike Luhmann and her colleagues analysed over ten years of longitudinal data from 3000 co-habiting couples in Germany, where one or both partners had gone through an unemployment. If one partner lost their job........ Read more »

  • August 7, 2014
  • 03:42 AM
  • 143 views

Vitamin D and schizophrenia meta-analysed

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

It's been a few weeks since I last talked about vitamin D on this blog and some finding or other talking about a deficiency of the stuff. Indeed, the last occasion was the publication of the Eva Kočovská study (see here) talking about issues with vitamin D being present across quite a few people on the autism spectrum, continuing a research trend (see here).So as to remedy this vitamin D blogging deficiency, today I'm talking about the systematic review and meta-analysis by Ghazaleh ........ Read more »

  • August 6, 2014
  • 08:30 AM
  • 192 views

Is it Important to Attend Puppy Class?

by CAPB in Companion Animal Psychology Blog

Is a one-off puppy party a suitable alternative to a six-week puppy class? Research says you can’t skip the socialization if you want a well-rounded adult dog.Photo: Zuzule / ShutterstockA study by Ai Kutsumi et al (2013) of the Azabu University Graduate School of Veterinary Science compares four groups of dogs: those who attended a six-week puppy class, those who went to a one-hour puppy party, those who attended a six-week adult dog training class, and those who didn’t attend any pup........ Read more »

KUTSUMI, A., NAGASAWA, M., OHTA, M., & OHTANI, N. (2013) Importance of Puppy Training for Future Behavior of the Dog. Journal of Veterinary Medical Science, 75(2), 141-149. DOI: 10.1292/jvms.12-0008  

  • August 6, 2014
  • 06:36 AM
  • 42 views

Emotions, Trust, and Advice–Important Connections for Lawyers and Clients

by Dan DeFoe in Psycholawlogy

Emotions (anger or gratitude), trust, and advice connect lawyers and their clients.  Sometimes people take your advice.  Sometimes they do not.  The word “complex” describes the advice-giving and advice-taking decision process.  Many factors, including moods and emotions, drive the dynamics of trust in that process.
While the researchers did not study the attorney-client relationship [...]
The post Emotions, Trust, and Advice–Important Connections for Lawyers and Clients appeared f........ Read more »

  • August 6, 2014
  • 04:40 AM
  • 95 views

Welcome to the weird world of weight illusions

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Normally bigger objects weigh more; breaking this rule provokes illusory perceptionsVisual illusions are useful to psychologists because, by tricking the brain, they provide clues about how it works. The same is true for weight illusions, it's just that they're far less well known. Now Gavin Buckingham at Heriot-Watt University has published a handy review of weight illusions, and he explores some of the thinking about their likely causes.Among the most studied is known as the "size-weight illus........ Read more »

  • August 6, 2014
  • 04:39 AM
  • 205 views

Gastrointestinal response to A1 vs A2 milk

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I want to talk about the findings from Ho and colleagues [1] today, and in particular their observation of: "differences in gastrointestinal responses in some adult humans consuming milk containing beta-casein of either the A1 or the A2 beta-casein type". If you're wondering why such a paper finds it's way on to a blog predominantly about autism research, well stay with me on this rather long blogging entry...Start your engines... @ Wikipedia Before progressing, I am going to put a sor........ Read more »

  • August 6, 2014
  • 02:27 AM
  • 218 views

Does AA work for young people?

by DJMac in Recovery Review

Evidence has accumulated over the last couple of decades of the association between attendance at Alcoholics Anonymous and improved drinking outcomes, including abstinence. AA is sometimes seen as an organisation that is better suited to older drinkers seeking sobriety than to folk under thirty, though there are in fact young people’s meetings in various large [...]
The post Does AA work for young people? appeared first on Recovery Review.
... Read more »

  • August 5, 2014
  • 05:29 AM
  • 299 views

Play music and you’ll see more

by Richard Kunert in Brain's Idea

  Check out the video. It is a short demonstration of the so-called attentional blink. Whenever you try to spot the two letters in the rapid sequence you’ll miss the second one. This effect is so robust that generations of Psychology undergraduates learned about it. And then came music and changed everything. Test your own […]... Read more »

  • August 5, 2014
  • 04:25 AM
  • 100 views

Why was Darth Vader so evil? Blame his lack of parental care, say psychologists

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Image: wikipediaWhy was Darth Vader such a bad dude? According to a team of psychologists led by Peter Jonason, it's down to his lack of parental care: the fact he was separated from his mother at age 9, and his father's absence. The researchers believe such circumstances can catalyse the emergence of the Dark Triad of personality traits: Machiavellianism, Narcissism and Psychopathy. These traits are usually seen as negative, but Jonason and his colleagues believe they may be an adaptive respons........ Read more »

Jonason, P., Lyons, M., & Bethell, E. (2014) The making of Darth Vader: Parent–child care and the Dark Triad. Personality and Individual Differences, 30-34. DOI: 10.1016/j.paid.2013.10.006  

  • August 5, 2014
  • 04:05 AM
  • 167 views

Bipolar disorder is frequent in adult Asperger syndrome

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"BD [bipolar disorder] in AS [Asperger syndrome] patients is frequent, usually it onsets during adolescence and is often characterized by atypical presentation, making its correct identification particularly difficult".Maybe I'm better suited as a brunette? @ WikipediaThat was the primary finding reported by Vannucchi and colleagues [1] based on their systematic review of the relevant peer-reviewed research literature in this area. They found that the prevalence of BD ranged ........ Read more »

Vannucchi G, Masi G, Toni C, Dell׳Osso L, Erfurth A, & Perugi G. (2014) Bipolar disorder in adults with Asperger׳s Syndrome: A systematic review. Journal of affective disorders, 151-160. PMID: 25046741  

  • August 4, 2014
  • 02:03 PM
  • 49 views

Nature Helps

by Rodney Steadman in Gravity's Pull

Exposure to scenes of natural beauty increases prosocial behaviours.... Read more »

Zhang, J., Piff, P., Iyer, R., Koleva, S., & Keltner, D. (2014) An occasion for unselfing: Beautiful nature leads to prosociality. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 61-72. DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvp.2013.11.008  

  • August 4, 2014
  • 01:10 PM
  • 31 views

Typical Items Facilitate Fear Learning, Atypical Items Don’t

by amikulak in Daily Observations

Have you ever recoiled at something because it reminds you of something else that you’re genuinely afraid of?  Research indicates that people have a propensity to generalize their fear — […]... Read more »

  • August 4, 2014
  • 07:02 AM
  • 194 views

“Everyday liars” and “Prolific liars”

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

The American Bar Association is seeking nominations until August 8, 2014 to help it decide on the Top 100 law blogs (“Blawgs”). We have been in the ABA Top 100 for the past 4 years and would like to make it 5! If you like this blog, please nominate us (it’s fast and free) here. THANKS! […]

Related posts:
Do great liars know how to tell if you’re lying to them? (Yes, they do!)
Outsmarting liars (five decades of research)
We know liars when we see ‘em


... Read more »

  • August 4, 2014
  • 06:06 AM
  • 187 views

The iPhone Effect - when mobile devices intrude on our face-to-face encounters

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

You've probably experienced this. You're in the middle of telling your friend a story when his eyes flick across to his phone. Perhaps he even picks it up, checks the screen. "Sorry, go on," he says. But your flow is interrupted. And you know his mind is at least half elsewhere.Shalini Misra and her team approached 100 pairs of people (109 women; average age 33) in cafes across Washington DC and neighbouring districts. They asked them to chat for ten minutes at a table in the cafe about a trivia........ Read more »

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