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  • August 11, 2014
  • 07:04 AM
  • 85 views

Do infant dummies (pacifiers) impede the emotional connection between adult and baby?

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Dummies (known as pacifiers in the US) can calm a crying baby in seconds, so their appeal is obvious. However, a new study warns there could be a price to pay. Magdalena Rychlowska and her colleagues claim that because dummies obscure babies' faces, they interfere with the way that adults respond to babies' emotions.The researchers used electrodes to record the facial muscles of 29 women (average age 21; two of them were mothers) while they looked at photographs of two young babies expressing ha........ Read more »

Rychlowska, M., Korb, S., Brauer, M., Droit-Volet, S., Augustinova, M., Zinner, L., & Niedenthal, P. (2014) Pacifiers Disrupt Adults’ Responses to Infants’ Emotions. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 36(4), 299-308. DOI: 10.1080/01973533.2014.915217  

  • August 11, 2014
  • 07:02 AM
  • 77 views

Simple Jury Persuasion: When your Muslim female client wears a head-covering

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

We’ve written a number of times about bias against Muslims. But here’s a nice article with an easy to incorporate finding on how to reduce bias against your female client who wears a Muslim head-covering. (In case you have forgotten, we’ve already written about head-coverings for the Muslim man.) The graphic illustrating this post shows […]

Related posts:
Simple Jury Persuasion: Tilt your head. (no kidding)
Simple Jury Persuasion: In the face of ambiguity, we just make stuff up!
S........ Read more »

  • August 11, 2014
  • 03:43 AM
  • 98 views

Risk of neurodevelopmental disorder in cases of hypospadias

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"This is the first study to identify an increased risk for neurodevelopmental disorders in patients with hypospadias, as well as an increased risk for ASD [autism spectrum disorders] in their brothers, suggesting a common familial (genetic and/or environmental) liability".Rainy days and Mondays... @ Wikipedia That was the conclusion reached in the study by Agnieszka Butwicka and colleagues [1] looking at various neurodevelopmental outcomes associated with a diagnosis of ........ Read more »

Butwicka A, Lichtenstein P, Landén M, Nordenvall AS, Nordenström A, Nordenskjöld A, & Frisén L. (2014) Hypospadias and increased risk for neurodevelopmental disorders. Journal of child psychology and psychiatry, and allied disciplines. PMID: 25048198  

  • August 10, 2014
  • 05:18 AM
  • 119 views

Canine Science Forum 2014 - we come full circle!

by Cobb & Hecht in Do You Believe In Dog?

Aw - it's Us @ CSF2014! Thanks Tamás Faragó :)Dear Julie,while you've been off enjoying the fjords of Norway and I've been recovering from six legs of long haul flying with a three year old as hand luggage, I thought I'd put up a quick post to recap the wonderful week in Lincoln, UK that was the (Feline and) Canine Science Forum 2014.Such a fun, stimulating, inspiring week comprising the Feline Science day (Monday), public lecture by James Serpell (rhymes with purple) on Monday ........ Read more »

  • August 9, 2014
  • 01:45 PM
  • 371 views

Marijuana and the Developing Brain

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

You can’t get away from it, the big marijuana debate here in the US. Is it good? Is it bad? What are other countries doing? There are also a lot of claims made about marijuana, most of which aren’t true, namely the big medical claims. Then there is the other side of that fence, what about some of the health issues that are claimed, where does science sit on that?[…]... Read more »

Giedd JN, Blumenthal J, Jeffries NO, Rajapakse JC, Vaituzis AC, Liu H, Berry YC, Tobin M, Nelson J, & Castellanos FX. (1999) Development of the human corpus callosum during childhood and adolescence: a longitudinal MRI study. Progress in neuro-psychopharmacology , 23(4), 571-88. PMID: 10390717  

Giedd, J. N. (2004) Structural magnetic resonance imaging of the adolescent brain. Adolescent Brain Development: Vulnerabilities and Opportunities. info:/

Choo EK, Benz M, Zaller N, Warren O, Rising KL, & McConnell KJ. (2014) The impact of state medical marijuana legislation on adolescent marijuana use. The Journal of adolescent health : official publication of the Society for Adolescent Medicine, 55(2), 160-6. PMID: 24742758  

Joffe A, American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Substance Abuse, & American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Adolescence. (2004) Legalization of marijuana: potential impact on youth. Pediatrics, 113(6), 1825-6. PMID: 15173518  

  • August 9, 2014
  • 12:46 PM
  • 121 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
  • 99 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
  • 108 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
  • 101 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) […]

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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
  • 47 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
  • 132 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
  • 55 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
  • 100 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
  • 121 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
  • 04:40 AM
  • 50 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
  • 144 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
  • 155 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
  • 238 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
  • 50 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
  • 118 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  

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