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  • January 16, 2014
  • 01:15 AM

There’s a Placebo Effect For Sleep

by Eric Horowitz in peer-reviewed by my neurons

The placebo effect is known far and wide. Give somebody a sugar pill, tell them it’s aspirin, and they’ll feel better. What’s less well-known is that there’s evidence of the placebo effect in domains that go beyond the commonly known medical scenarios. One study (pdf) found that hotel maids who were told their work was good […]... Read more »

Draganich C, & Erdal K. (2014) Placebo Sleep Affects Cognitive Functioning. Journal of experimental psychology. Learning, memory, and cognition. PMID: 24417326  

  • January 15, 2014
  • 09:52 AM

Drug Labeling Influences Effects Of Painkillers

by Agnese Mariotti in United Academics

Researchers discovered surprising placebo effects. For example, properly labeled placebo had a painkilling effect; this observation indicates that the ritual of taking a pill contributes to the treatment’s effect.... Read more »

Kam-Hansen S, Jakubowski M, Kelley JM, Kirsch I, Hoaglin DC, Kaptchuk TJ, & Burstein R. (2014) Altered placebo and drug labeling changes the outcome of episodic migraine attacks. Science translational medicine, 6(218). PMID: 24401940  

Finniss DG, Kaptchuk TJ, Miller F, & Benedetti F. (2010) Biological, clinical, and ethical advances of placebo effects. Lancet, 375(9715), 686-95. PMID: 20171404  

  • January 15, 2014
  • 09:43 AM

Why Me? Perceptions of Justice Influence Pain Experiences

by amikulak in Daily Observations

Life has its many twists and turns – to make sense of all of it, people sometimes take a “just world” approach, reasoning that people get more or less what […]... Read more »

  • January 15, 2014
  • 08:30 AM

Dangerous Dogs: Time for a Rethink?

by CAPB in Companion Animal Psychology Blog

What are the risk factors for aggression in dogs? New research suggests it’s time to stop thinking of dogs as either ‘safe’ or ‘dangerous’. In most cases canine aggression seems to be a learned response to a particular situation, not a personality characteristic, since a dog that growls or bites in one situation may not do so in other contexts. Normal 0 false false false EN-CA X-NONE X-NONE ........ Read more »

Hiby, E.F., Rooney, N.J., & Bradshaw, J.W.S. (2004) Dog training methods: Their use, effectiveness, and interaction with behaviour and welfare. Animal Welfare, 63-69. info:/

  • January 15, 2014
  • 07:29 AM

Systematic evidence of fake crying by a baby

by Christian Jarrett in BPS Research Digest

Image: Tucia / FlickrCrying is an important survival behaviour for babies - the world is informed that they are in distress and need prompt attention. Many parents also describe what looks like fake crying by their infants. It seems as though the child is pretending to be in distress merely as a way to get attention. Some people doubt that babies can really be capable of such deception, but now Hiroko Nakayama in Japan has published the results from six months' intensive study of ........ Read more »

  • January 15, 2014
  • 07:02 AM

Simple Jury Persuasion: Anger Disgust = Moral Outrage

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

We watch for facial expressions and verbal indications of moral outrage when doing pretrial research because it usually means the mock jurors have connected egregious conduct with strongly held beliefs. It is a connection that is nearly impossible to sever, and a development of critical interest to litigants. We’ve seen it when you would expect […]

Related posts:
Choosing to either disgust your jurors or tick them off
Is that quick decision a good indicator of your moral character?
What........ Read more »

  • January 15, 2014
  • 05:51 AM

Differences in rhythmic cognition between human and non-human primates?

by Henkjan Honing in Music Matters

Despite their genetic proximity, human and non-human primates differ in their capacity for beat induction, which is the ability to perceive a regular pulse in music or auditory stimuli and accordingly align motor skills by way of foot-tapping or dancing.... Read more »

Merchant, H., & Honing, H. (2013) Are non-human primates capable of rhythmic entrainment? Evidence for the gradual audiomotor evolution hypothesis. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 7(274). info:/

  • January 15, 2014
  • 04:15 AM

Debunking the sixth sense

by Perikis Livas in Tracing Knowledge

New research led by the University of Melbourne has helped debunk the common belief that a sixth sense, also known as extrasensory perception (ESP), exists.... Read more »

Piers D. L. Howe, & Margaret E. Webb. (2014) Detecting Unidentified Changes. PLoS ONE. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0084490  

  • January 14, 2014
  • 09:48 AM

Religious Infusion Predicts Intergroup Conflict Around the World

by amikulak in Daily Observations

For many people, religion is deeply ingrained in their day-to-day existence. It supports their faith and spirituality, and it provides friendship and a sense of community. But religion can also […]... Read more »

Neuberg, S.L., Warner, C.M., Mistler, S.A., Berlin, A., Hill, E.D., Johnson, J.D., Filip-Crawford, G., .., & Schober, J. (2014) Religion and intergroup conflict: Findings from the Global Group Relations Project. Psychological Science, 25(1), 198-206. DOI: 10.1177/0956797613504303  

  • January 14, 2014
  • 04:44 AM

Gastrointestinal inflammation and immune activation in bipolar disorder

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I want to take you back to a post I published back in April 2012 (see here) on some very interesting work coming out of the Stanley Division of Developmental Neurovirology at Johns Hopkins by Dr Emily Severance.The Railway (Manet) @ Wikipedia It was concerned with the discovery that in cases of schizophrenia, measurement of anti-Saccharomyces cerevisiae antibodies (ASCA) revealed possible (probable?) signs of intestinal inflammation at greater levels than controls*.Alongside,........ Read more »

  • January 13, 2014
  • 08:49 PM

Using Ultrasound to Boost Brain Performance

by Jason Carr in Wired Cosmos

Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute scientists have demonstrated that ultrasound directed to a specific region of the brain can boost performance in sensory discrimination. Whales, bats, and even praying mantises use ultrasound as a sensory guidance system — and now a new study has found that ultrasound can modulate brain activity to heighten sensory perception … Read More →... Read more »

Wynn Legon, Tomokazu F Sato, Alexander Opitz, Jerel Mueller, Aaron Barbour, Amanda Williams, & William J Tyler. (2014) Transcranial focused ultrasound modulates the activity of primary somatosensory cortex in humans. Nature Neuroscience. info:/10.1038/nn.3620

  • January 13, 2014
  • 12:00 PM

It Must Be Love Love Love: The Neurobiology of Love

by Robert Hollis in Antisense Science

Conceptually, romantic and maternal love may be seen as very distinct, but it’s easy to see why humans have evolved these emotions: together, they lead to the production and safe-keeping of children – the foundation of species survival. It’s therefore not surprising that the biology of these two emotions involves similar areas of the brain, whilst also incorporating discrete areas that may account for the perceived difference between the two states. ... Read more »

Esch T, & Stefano GB. (2005) The Neurobiology of Love. Neuro endocrinology letters, 26(3), 175-92. PMID: 15990719  

  • January 13, 2014
  • 11:47 AM

Studies of Asian tribes force a re-think on the psychology of language and smell

by Christian Jarrett in BPS Research Digest

"What does coffee smell like?" "What about lemon?" These questions are tricky for English speakers to answer because we tend to describe smells by referring to their typical source. So, an aroma that smells like coffee is described as, well, smelling like coffee. Ditto for lemon or cinnamon or rotten eggs.The fact is we don't have abstract words to describe the essence of these odorous experiences. This contrasts with our language for other sensory experiences such as colour. For example, the wo........ Read more »

Majid A, & Burenhult N. (2014) Odors are expressible in language, as long as you speak the right language. Cognition. info:/

  • January 13, 2014
  • 10:53 AM

Examining Mandometer(r) Founders’ 10 “Reasons” Why Eating Disorders Are Not Mental Disorders – Part II

by Tetyana in Science of Eating Disorders

This is the last post in my mini-series on the Mandometer® Treatment. (Links to earlier posts here: Part I, Part II, and Part III). In this post I’m going to continue examining Bergh et al.’s reasons for why eating disorders are not mental disorders (#6-10). In my last post I omitted something important: I didn’t define mental disorders, but to avoid repeating myself, please see my comment on the topic here.
Bergh et al.’s reason #6 why EDs are not mental disorder........ Read more »

Bergh C, Callmar M, Danemar S, Hölcke M, Isberg S, Leon M, Lindgren J, Lundqvist A, Niinimaa M, Olofsson B.... (2013) Effective treatment of eating disorders: Results at multiple sites. Behavioral Neuroscience, 127(6), 878-89. PMID: 24341712  

  • January 13, 2014
  • 09:00 AM

Mind your emotions, or they’ll color your perceptions

by Katharine Blackwell in Contemplating Cognition

Sometimes, your emotions rule your actions. It can be as simple as finding yourself unable to gracefully jump from a height, because your hindbrain will not listen to rational arguments about safety harnesses and belay lines, or as dramatic as blowing your top when you know you’re going to regret the scene later. It can also be very, very subtle – so subtle you may not even know it’s happening.... Read more »

  • January 13, 2014
  • 04:38 AM

What does volunteering say about how much your job means to you, and how well you perform in it?

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

What motivates someone to volunteer? This question lies at the heart of Jessica Rodell's dissertation research, now published in the Academy of Management Journal. Rodell looked at two differing perspectives on why we take on meaningful activities outside of a paying job. Are we after something we can't get from our nine to five? Or is it that the meaning we taste in our job makes us hungry - voracious, even - for more?Rodell's first study surveyed 208 people, three quarters of whom were women, ........ Read more »

  • January 12, 2014
  • 12:00 PM

Why does so much research go unpublished?

by Dorothy Bishop in bishopblog

It's been estimated that as much as 85% of funded research is never published. Sometimes it doesn't get done because gremlins get in the way, but often completed research is still not written up. I discuss three reasons for this and suggest solutions that researchers, funders and journals could adopt.... Read more »

Chan, A., Song, F., Vickers, A., Jefferson, T., Dickersin, K., Gotzsche, P., Krumholz, H. M., Ghersi, D., & van der Worp, H. B. (2014) Increasing value and reducing waste: addressing inaccessible research. Lancet. info:/10.1016/S0140-6736(13)62296-5

  • January 12, 2014
  • 06:11 AM

Atopic disease and adolescent psychotic experiences

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I was intrigued to read the paper by Khandaker and colleagues [1] (open-access here) reporting results based on a longitudinal study that suggested: "Childhood atopic disorders increase the risk of psychotic experiences in adolescence".Bish, bash, Bosch @ Wikipedia I've talked about the issue of atopic disease and it's potential overlap with something like neurodevelopment before on this blog (see here) based on the possibility of a neuro-immune interaction (i......... Read more »

  • January 11, 2014
  • 04:29 AM

In-Group Favouritism can be used to Get Even as well as to Get Ahead

by Mark Rubin in Mark Rubin's Social Psychology Research Blog

Social identity theory assumes that we compete with other social groups in order to achieve a relatively high social status. But recent research reveals that in-group favoritism can also be used to achieve equality and fairness between groups.... Read more »

  • January 10, 2014
  • 11:45 PM

Cataloging a year of blogging: from behavior to society and mind

by Artem Kaznatcheev in Evolutionary Games Group

For psychologists, memory and learning are intimately intertwined. In fact, during the years of behaviorism in the early 20th century, the unobservable process of memory was completely replaced in the technical lexicon by learning (Miller, 2003). I want to take this post as an opportunity to remember the year that’s past, and the 83 articles […]... Read more »

Simpson, G.G. (1953) The Baldwin effect. Evolution, 7(2), 110-117. DOI: 10.2307/2405746  

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