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  • June 22, 2015
  • 02:54 AM
  • 103 views

Office workers of the world stand up!

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

A quote to begin: "for those occupations which are predominantly desk based, workers should aim to initially progress towards accumulating 2 h/day of standing and light activity (light walking) during working hours, eventually progressing to a total accumulation of 4 h/day (prorated to part-time hours)."That was the recommendation made in the consensus statement published by John Buckley and colleagues [1] aiming to: "provide guidance for employers and staff working in office environments to........ Read more »

John P Buckley, Alan Hedge, Thomas Yates, Robert J Copeland, Michael Loosemore, Mark Hamer, Gavin Bradley, & David W Dunstan. (2015) The sedentary office: a growing case for change towards better health and productivity. Expert statement commissioned by Public Health England and the Active Working Community Interest Company. British Journal of Sports Medicine. info:/10.1136/bjsports-2015-094618

  • June 20, 2015
  • 02:47 PM
  • 117 views

Liar, Liar: Children with good memories are better liars

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Children who benefit from a good memory are much better at covering up lies, researchers from the University of Sheffield have discovered. Experts found a link between verbal memory and covering up lies following a study which investigated the role of working memory in verbal deception amongst children.... Read more »

  • June 19, 2015
  • 04:00 PM
  • 120 views

Study links heartbeat to female libido

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Sexual dysfunction in women can be linked to low resting heart rate variability, a finding that could help clinicians treat the condition, according to a study by psychologists from The University of Texas at Austin.... Read more »

Stanton, A., Lorenz, T., Pulverman, C., & Meston, C. (2015) Heart Rate Variability: A Risk Factor for Female Sexual Dysfunction. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback. DOI: 10.1007/s10484-015-9286-9  

  • June 19, 2015
  • 04:27 AM
  • 140 views

Autoimmune disease or anti-nuclear antibodies and non-coeliac wheat sensitivity

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Higher proportions of patients with NCWS [wheat sensitivity among people without celiac disease] or celiac disease develop autoimmune disorders, are ANA [anti-nuclear antibodies] positive, and showed DQ2/DQ8 haplotypes compared to patients with IBS [irritable bowel syndrome]."Those were the conclusions reached in the paper by Antonio Carroccio and colleagues [1] who sought to evaluate: "the prevalence of autoimmune diseases among patients with NCWS, and investigate........ Read more »

  • June 18, 2015
  • 01:22 PM
  • 150 views

Musicians don’t just hear in tune, they also see in tune

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Musicians don’t just hear in tune, they also see in tune. That is the conclusion of the latest scientific experiment designed to puzzle out how the brain creates an apparently seamless view of the external world based on the information it receives from the eyes.... Read more »

  • June 18, 2015
  • 01:02 PM
  • 151 views

How ‘science popularizers’ influence public opinion on religion

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Two prominent scientists with drastically different views on the relationship of science and religion – Richard Dawkins and Francis Collins – have an equally different influence on these views among people who are unfamiliar with their work, according to new research from Rice University and West Virginia University.... Read more »

  • June 18, 2015
  • 12:59 PM
  • 136 views

Not-so-guilty pleasure: Viewing cat videos boosts energy and positive emotions

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

If you get a warm, fuzzy feeling after watching cute cat videos online, the effect may be more profound than you think. The Internet phenomenon of watching cat videos, from Lil Bub to Grumpy Cat, does more than simply entertain; it boosts viewers’ energy and positive emotions and decreases negative feelings, according to a new study by an Indiana University Media School researcher.... Read more »

  • June 18, 2015
  • 04:43 AM
  • 156 views

Atypical enterovirus encephalitis and 'autism-like' (again)

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"The autism spectrum disorder or autism-like clinical symptoms are extremely rare, but they may be a clear manifestations of enterovirus encephalitis."That was the finding reported in a poster by Akcakaya and colleagues [1] submitted as part of the 11th European Paediatric Neurology Society Congress 2015. In it, they detail a case report of an adolescent young woman "who developed behavioural changes and autistic features such as impairment of communication, mutism and lack of eye contact" ........ Read more »

  • June 17, 2015
  • 01:54 PM
  • 95 views

Emergency Planning Is For Pets Too

by CAPB in Companion Animal Psychology Blog

Failure to include pets in emergency planning puts human lives at risk.“There is no other factor contributing as much to human evacuation failure in disasters that is under the control of emergency management when a threat is imminent as pet ownership.” So say Sebastian Heath(FEMA) and Robert Linnabary(University of Tennessee) in a review of the ways in which pets should be included in emergency planning. Emergency management has five stages: planning, preparedness, mitigation, ........ Read more »

  • June 17, 2015
  • 07:02 AM
  • 34 views

Did Caitlyn Jenner feel “morally tainted”? 

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

Caitlyn Jenner has been in the headlines pretty continuously since the publication of her Vanity Fair cover photo. And many of us have heard the voiceover quote from her about the number of years she has been in hiding, protecting secrets, and feeling imprisoned. “Bruce always had to tell a lie. He was always living […]

Related posts:
Got morals?
I’m disgusted (until I wash my hands and feel purified)
What’s a moral issue for us these days?


... Read more »

  • June 17, 2015
  • 05:02 AM
  • 137 views

Antipsychotic drugs as epigenetic modifiers?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The paper by Blaga Rukova and colleagues [1] (open-access available here) published last year (2014) caught my eye recently and their observations of: "major differences in methylation profiles between male schizophrenia patients in complete remission before and after treatment and healthy controls" as potential evidence that: "antipsychotic drugs may play a role in epigenetic modifications."The process of methylation, as in DNA methylation where methyl groups are added to specific segments........ Read more »

Rukova B, Staneva R, Hadjidekova S, Stamenov G, Milanova V, & Toncheva D. (2014) Whole genome methylation analyses of schizophrenia patients before and after treatment. Biotechnology, biotechnological equipment, 28(3), 518-524. PMID: 26019538  

  • June 16, 2015
  • 10:23 PM
  • 117 views

Know your brain: Default mode network

by neurosci in Neuroscientifically Challenged

Where is the default mode network?The default mode network (sometimes called simply the default network) refers to an interconnected group of brain structures that are hypothesized to be part of a functional system. The default network is a relatively recent concept, and because of this there is not yet a complete consensus on which brain regions should be included in a definition of it. Regardless, some structures that are generally included are the medial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate........ Read more »

Buckner RL, Andrews-Hanna JR, & Schacter DL. (2008) The brain's default network: anatomy, function, and relevance to disease. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1-38. PMID: 18400922  

  • June 16, 2015
  • 04:46 AM
  • 136 views

Gut bacteria and toddler temperament

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The 'terrible twos'. Y'know, that special time in a child's development when the words 'mine' and 'no' are much more than a daily occurrence and visions of supermarket / restaurant meltdowns complete with scathing looks from strangers still linger in the rose-tinted memories of parenting.There's still quite a bit of debate about the hows and whys of the terrible twos but new research by Lisa Christian and colleagues [1] implicates a hitherto unappreciated system potentially at work: our gut........ Read more »

Christian LM, Galley JD, Hade EM, Schoppe-Sullivan S, Kamp Dush C, & Bailey MT. (2015) Gut microbiome composition is associated with temperament during early childhood. Brain, behavior, and immunity, 118-27. PMID: 25449582  

  • June 16, 2015
  • 04:46 AM
  • 113 views

Gut bacteria and toddler temperament

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The 'terrible twos'. Y'know, that special time in a child's development when the words 'mine' and 'no' are much more than a daily occurrence and visions of supermarket / restaurant meltdowns complete with scathing looks from strangers still linger in the rose-tinted memories of parenting.There's still quite a bit of debate about the hows and whys of the terrible twos but new research by Lisa Christian and colleagues [1] implicates a hitherto unappreciated system potentially at work: our gut........ Read more »

Christian LM, Galley JD, Hade EM, Schoppe-Sullivan S, Kamp Dush C, & Bailey MT. (2015) Gut microbiome composition is associated with temperament during early childhood. Brain, behavior, and immunity, 118-27. PMID: 25449582  

  • June 16, 2015
  • 04:02 AM
  • 1 view

What your favourite Harry Potter House says about your personality

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Harry Potter fans strongly self-identify with the different Houses within Hogwarts, the story’s magical school. Now new research shows that a fan’s preferred House tells us something about their personality.Laura Crysel and colleagues used an online Harry Potter community to get access to the more committed fans found there, and asked them to complete a personality test. Each fan reported their favoured House, and the results showed that significant average personality differences existed be........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2015
  • 07:24 AM
  • 108 views

When these people look in the mirror they see a monster staring back

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

One of the participants in an upsetting series of new interviews says she once stared into the mirror for eleven hours straight. She was looking, searching, trying to find a perspective where she felt good enough about herself to be able to go outside.The woman in question, Louise, has Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD), which is defined by psychiatrists as a disabling and distressing preoccupation with what she sees as her perceived physical flaw or flaws.For their study, Joanna Silver and Jacqui F........ Read more »

  • June 15, 2015
  • 07:02 AM
  • 84 views

Feeling biased? Just go to sleep and wake up bias-free! 

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

At least that’s what the headlines say. But the quieter truth of what the research says is enough for me: the intervention reduced implicit bias and the results held when re-measured one week later. Wow. This is pretty amazing stuff that needs to be used for good and not evil. Can you imagine? This means […]

Related posts:
Biased hearts, biased cameras and biased verdicts
Jury Selection: Art? Science? Or just a ‘gut’ feeling?
How ‘myside bias’ is related to your intelligence
........ Read more »

Hu X, Antony JW, Creery JD, Vargas IM, Bodenhausen GV, & Paller KA. (2015) Unlearning implicit social biases during sleep. Science (New York, N.Y.), 348(6238), 1013-5. PMID: 26023137  

  • June 15, 2015
  • 04:53 AM
  • 129 views

Seeking out autism medical comorbidity clusters

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I was rather interested in the findings reported by Kimberly Aldinger and colleagues [1] (open-access here) recently and an intriguing attempt to find out whether "there are predictive patterns of medical conditions that co-occur with ASD [autism spectrum disorder], which could inform medical evaluation and treatment in ASD, as well as potentially identify etiologically meaningful subgroups."Comorbidity (if I can still call it that) is of great interest to this blog and the idea that a........ Read more »

  • June 14, 2015
  • 11:00 PM
  • 130 views

The Pre-Testing Effect (and Posterizing)

by Joshua Fisher in Text Savvy

In their book Make It Stick, authors Peter Brown, Henry Roediger III, and Mark McDaniel have this to say as an introduction to the study we'll look at in this post (along with a few other studies about the benefits of generating solutions [emphasis mine]):... Read more »

Richland, L., Kornell, N., & Kao, L. (2009) The pretesting effect: Do unsuccessful retrieval attempts enhance learning?. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 15(3), 243-257. DOI: 10.1037/a0016496  

  • June 14, 2015
  • 03:23 PM
  • 104 views

Power of the media’s impact on medicine use revealed

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

More than 60,000 Australians are estimated to have reduced or discontinued their use of prescribed cholesterol-lowering statin medications following the airing of a two-part series critical of statins by ABC TV’s science program, Catalyst, a University of Sydney study reveals. The analysis of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme medication records of 191,000 people revealed that there was an immediate impact after Catalyst was aired in October 2013, with 14,000 fewer people dispensed statins per........ Read more »

Schaffer, A., Buckley, N., Dobbins, T., Banks, E., & Pearson, S. (2015) The crux of the matter: Did the ABC's Catalyst program change statin use in Australia?. The Medical Journal of Australia, 202(11), 591-594. DOI: 10.5694/mja15.00103  

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