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  • October 5, 2010
  • 04:56 PM

Risk Factors in Children with a Bipolar Parent

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Dr. Audie Henin presented the October 2010 lecture for the Warren Frontiers of Neuroscience series on October 5, 2010.  Her presentation “Familial, Neurobiological and Cognitive Risk Factors for Bipolar Disorder in Youth” will be summarized in my notes below.  Dr. Henin is an associate professor at Harvard University and is affiliated with Massachussetts General Hospital.Dr. Henin and her research team have been involved in a series of studies in high-risk children focusing on a va........ Read more »

Henin A, Biederman J, Mick E, Sachs GS, Hirshfeld-Becker DR, Siegel RS, McMurrich S, Grandin L, & Nierenberg AA. (2005) Psychopathology in the offspring of parents with bipolar disorder: a controlled study. Biological psychiatry, 58(7), 554-61. PMID: 16112654  

Henin A, Mick E, Biederman J, Fried R, Wozniak J, Faraone SV, Harrington K, Davis S, & Doyle AE. (2007) Can bipolar disorder-specific neuropsychological impairments in children be identified?. Journal of consulting and clinical psychology, 75(2), 210-20. PMID: 17469879  

  • October 5, 2010
  • 02:14 PM

What the Presence of Attractive Young Women can do to Men

by Psychothalamus in Psychothalamus

Much has been said about the female preference for resources and the male preference for physical attractiveness, but at the time of James R. Roney's (2003) writing little had been done to tease out cognitive mechanisms that underlie this adaptive preference.Roney thus set out to ascertain the ability of ecological cues to prime and activate psychological constructs related to mate attraction and establish linkages between human mating and social cognition.In his first study, participants - youn........ Read more »

  • October 5, 2010
  • 10:18 AM

A New Gold Standard for Anorexia Treatment

by Rob Mitchum in ScienceLife

It’s great to have a treatment that’s proven to work in a difficult psychiatric condition such as anorexia nervosa. It’s even better to have two treatments for such a disorder. But having multiple options also creates a quandary for psychiatrists: with a new patient, which treatment do you try first? Creatures of habit like the [...]... Read more »

  • October 5, 2010
  • 09:51 AM

Family and Culture Affect Whether Intelligence Leads to Education

by APS Daily Observations in Daily Observations

Intelligence isn’t the only thing that affects your education: family, culture, and other factors are important, too. A new study published in Psychological Science, compared identical and fraternal twins in ... Read more »

Johnson, W., Deary, I.J., Silventoinen, K., Tynelius, P., & Rasmussen, F. (2010) Family background buys an education in Minnesota but not in Sweden. Psychological science : a journal of the Association for Psychological Science / APS. PMID: 20679521  

  • October 5, 2010
  • 03:50 AM

The reality of a universal language faculty?

by melodye in Child's Play

An argument is often made that similarities between languages (so-called “linguistic universals“) provide strong evidence for the existence of an innate, universal grammar (UG) that is shared by all humans, regardless of language spoken.  If language were not underpinned by such a grammar, it is argued, there would be endless (and extreme) variation, of the [...]... Read more »

  • October 5, 2010
  • 03:19 AM

British Colonialism & Medicine

by John Wayland in The Darwin Tribune

During the colonisation of various territories in tropical climates, illness and disease was a common problem. To some extent, the life of an officer posted to such places could be measured in months. As well as diseases that affected people there were animal diseases such as Rhinderpest, and plant diseases too. One way an individual could over come such harsh climates was to carry with him his trusty medicine chest.Johnson (2008) states that in 1912, the Burroughs Wellcome & Co. felt t........ Read more »

  • October 4, 2010
  • 11:37 PM

The Ignobel Prizes – A computational study of the Peter Principle

by Croor Singh in Learning to be Terse

This year’s Ignobel Prizes have been announced. Among the winners are an engineering solution to the problem of collecting whale snot, a prize in Medicine for the people who discovered that asthma can be treated by putting the patient on a roller coaster (I’m having a hard time imagining clinical trials for this!), a Peace [...]... Read more »

Pluchino, A., Rapisarda, A., & Garofalo, C. (2010) The Peter principle revisited: A computational study. Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, 389(3), 467-472. DOI: 10.1016/j.physa.2009.09.045  

  • October 4, 2010
  • 09:43 PM

Economists and psychologists battle over what makes us happy

by Phil Camill in Global Change: Intersection of Nature and Culture

There has been a lot published recently on the source of happiness and what constitutes the good life, with many articles focusing on levels of personal income that mark tipping points, such as the recent claim that we need $75,000 to be happy.
In this week’s Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of [...]... Read more »

Headey, B., R. Muffels, and G.G. Wagner. (2010) Long-running German panel survey shows that personal and economic choices, not just genes, matter for happiness . Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. info:/10.1073/pnas.1008612107

  • October 4, 2010
  • 04:36 PM

Choosing mates: do we REALLY want what we say we want?

by Casey Rentz in The Lay Scientist

"Study shows real partners are no match for ideal mates," says a Sheffield University press release I read last week. So, sometimes we settle for less than George Clooney or Heidi Klum.

read more... Read more »

Alexandre Courtiol1, Sandrine Picq, Bernard Godelle1, Michel Raymond, Jean-Baptiste Ferdy. (2010) From Preferred to Actual Mate Characteristics: The Case of Human Body Shape. PLoS ONE. info:/

  • October 4, 2010
  • 12:03 PM

Cycloserine Speeds Therapy Effects in OCD

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

There is considerable interest in methods to speed up the effects of treatments for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).  Exposure and response prevention are key therapy interventions for OCD and these treatments have significant evidence-based support for effectiveness.  A recent study examined whether the drug d-cycloserine can boost the effect of standard behavior therapy in OCD.D-cycloserine (DCS) is an antibiotic that appears to have cognitive effects that "facilitates fear extin........ Read more »

Chasson GS, Buhlmann U, Tolin DF, Rao SR, Reese HE, Rowley T, Welsh KS, & Wilhelm S. (2010) Need for speed: evaluating slopes of OCD recovery in behavior therapy enhanced with d-cycloserine. Behaviour research and therapy, 48(7), 675-9. PMID: 20362975  

  • October 4, 2010
  • 10:00 AM

Can Video Games Be Used in Health Care? (VG Series Part 5/10)

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

Part 5 of my series examining research evidence for the value of video games. This time: video games that have been made for patient care and training doctors.... Read more »

Kato, P. (2010) Video games in health care: Closing the gap. Review of General Psychology, 14(2), 113-121. DOI: 10.1037/a0019441  

  • October 4, 2010
  • 09:36 AM

To Catch A Cat, You Need To Fry A Chicken

by Jason Goldman in The Thoughtful Animal

Whether you're a dog, a cat, or a grad student who hasn't been home to shower for a few days, fleas are a major problem. They make skin itch. And NOTHING is worse than itchy skin.


Do you know WHERE the fleas are? Where they like to hang out and guard their little flea eggs? Where's the best place for a flea to get a decent night's sleep, or a delicious snack? These are important questions. Lucky for us, Hsu, Hsu, and Wu of the Department of Entomology at National Taiwan University ha........ Read more »

Hsu MH, Hsu TC, & Wu WJ. (2002) Distribution of cat fleas (Siphonaptera: Pulicidae) on the cat. Journal of medical entomology, 39(4), 685-8. PMID: 12144305  

  • October 4, 2010
  • 09:07 AM

Choices Shape Preferences

by APS Daily Observations in Daily Observations

It been proven that after you make a choice, you adjust your opinion to think better of the option you chose. Now a study published in Psychological Science has found ... Read more »

Sharot, T., Velasquez, C.M., & Dolan, R.J. (2010) Do decisions shape preference?: evidence from blind choice. Psychological science : a journal of the Association for Psychological Science/APS. PMID: 20679522  

  • October 4, 2010
  • 08:52 AM

Is daycare good for my child? Daycare effects on school performance.

by Nestor Lopez-Duran PhD in Child-Psych

Monday’s briefs: Quick musing on child related research. One drawback of our culture of individualism is that it perpetuates the myth that we all have equal opportunities for success and that the only thing that is needed to achieve our goals is personal effort. The research on environmental contributions to academic and professional success strongly [...]... Read more »

Geoffroy, M., Côté, S., Giguère, C., Dionne, G., Zelazo, P., Tremblay, R., Boivin, M., & Séguin, J. (2010) Closing the gap in academic readiness and achievement: the role of early childcare. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2010.02316.x  

  • October 4, 2010
  • 04:20 AM

The allure of the lady (and man) in red

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

When female chimps are nearing ovulation they display red on their bodies. Male chimps respond by masturbating and attempting to mount them. A new study claims we humans have moved on from this, but not a lot. Daniela Kayser's team found that when a lady wears red it prompts men to ask her more intimate questions and to sit closer to her. Surprisingly, this is the first time that the effect of colour on human sexual attraction behaviour has been studied. Past research has relied on asking partic........ Read more »

Niesta Kayser, D., Elliot, A., & Feltman, R. (2010) Red and romantic behavior in men viewing women. European Journal of Social Psychology. DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.757  

  • October 3, 2010
  • 05:58 PM

Psycasm - Being Blonde. Natural or otherwise...

by Rift in Psycasm

[Wherein our Hero considers the consequences of being Blonde. Notes for femme fatale bank-robbers...]
So this was a topic I received via twitter, or perhaps I was being alerted to a finding via twitter... in any event I've decided to run with it.
The tweet was referencing the degree of eye-contact men make with women who have different coloured hair. Though I couldn't find an article; (read more)

Source: Rift - Discipline: Psychology... Read more »

  • October 3, 2010
  • 03:34 PM

Marijuana and Memory

by Dirk Hanson in Addiction Inbox

Do certain strains make you more forgetful?
Cannabis snobs have been known to argue endlessly about the quality of the highs produced by their favorite varietals: Northern Lights, Hawaiian Haze, White Widow, etc. Among dedicated potheads, debates about the effects of specific cannabis strains are often overheated, and, ultimately, kind of boring. It's a bit like listening to a discussion of whether the wine in question evinces a woody aftertaste or is, instead, redolent of elderberries. For mos........ Read more »

  • October 3, 2010
  • 05:16 AM

Young Men Exposed to the Abortion Experience

by Ultimo167 in Strong Silent Types

Using a narrative interview approach, Hallden and Christensson (2010)document the lived experiences of 10 young men in Sweden, whose girlfriends had procured an abortion. Central to how those young men reacted to that abortion process, was a strong desire to be as supportive as they possibly could be of their girlfriends. ... Read more »

  • October 3, 2010
  • 04:13 AM

Physiognomy of Statesmen

by John Wayland in The Darwin Tribune

Physiognomy is a debunked pseudo-science which claimed to describe characterisics solely from the face. The Illusrated Annuals of Phrenology & Physiognomy (1866) define Physiognomy as the "science of external forms in their relation to internal organisation and character,"  In 1886, Samuel Wells edited a paper suggesting characteristics of statesmen at the time, and what characteristics a statesman would need in order to be an effective man of the people. Wells (1889) initially maintains that ........ Read more »

Highfield R, Wiseman R, & Jenkins R. (2009) In Your Face. New Scientist, 201(2695), 28-32. info:/

  • October 2, 2010
  • 05:32 AM

Inhabitiveness: Its Definition, Location, and Adaptation, Together with the Importance of the having a Home

by John Wayland in The Darwin Tribune

At this time of year, as the weather turns colder and the nights become longer, one can't help but be thankful for our home. Some people never leave home, and some miss it terribly so. In contrast some don't, and do not care about their home, why is this? Today's article is concerned with the home, the importance of owning a home, and characteristics, even animal characteristics, that can be given to homeowners in order to understand what kind of home they might build and where. A........ Read more »

O.S. Fowler. (1818) Inhabitiveness: Its Definition, Location, and Adaptation, Together with the Importance of the having a Home. American Phrenological Journal and Miscellany, 55-61. info:/

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