"We aimed to investigate the risk of substance use-related problems in ASD [autism spectrum disorder]."Findings: "The risk of substance use-related problems was the highest among individuals with ASD and ADHD [attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder]."So said the findings reported by Agnieszka Butwicka and colleagues  (open-access) looking again at an important but slightly uncomfortable topic: substance use-related problems or substance use disorder (SUD) with autism in ........ Read more »
Butwicka, A., Långström, N., Larsson, H., Lundström, S., Serlachius, E., Almqvist, C., Frisén, L., & Lichtenstein, P. (2016) Increased Risk for Substance Use-Related Problems in Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Population-Based Cohort Study. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. DOI: 10.1007/s10803-016-2914-2
Inspired by an Instagram photo of polar bears playfighting, I decided to find out more about this strange behavior and learned many interesting things about polar bear reproduction.... Read more »
"Alternative medicine treatment put four-year-old boy in A&E [accident & emergency / emergency room]" went the recent BBC headline talking about the case report published by Drs Catriona Boyd and Abdul Moodambail .Describing the experiences of a 4-year old boy who attended A&E (the emergency room) following an extended period of "vomiting, loss of appetite, constipation, polyuria, polydipsia and loss of 3kg in weight" in previous weeks, the authors report how after an unremar........ Read more »
Boyd, C., & Moodambail, A. (2016) Severe hypercalcaemia in a child secondary to use of alternative therapies. BMJ Case Reports. DOI: 10.1136/bcr-2016-215849
New research reveals that certain alterations in the brain may be present in pedophiles, with differences between hands-on offenders and those who have not sexually offended against children.
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Kärgel, C., Massau, C., Weiß, S., Walter, M., Borchardt, V., Krueger, T., Tenbergen, G., Kneer, J., Wittfoth, M., Pohl, A.... (2016) Evidence for superior neurobiological and behavioral inhibitory control abilities in non-offending as compared to offending pedophiles. Human Brain Mapping. DOI: 10.1002/hbm.23443
There is significant interest in activities that may boost academic achievement in the classroom.I previously posted on evidence that exercise prior to a learning task improved reading comprehension scores.You can access that post by clicking HERE.Now a study has compared two types of activities after a memorization task in male students.In this study, 60 male students completed a learning task and then were randomized into one of three activities for one hour. The three activities were playing ........ Read more »
Kindermann, H., Javor, A., & Reuter, M. (2016) Playing counter-strike versus running: The impact of leisure time activities and cortisol on intermediate-term memory in male students. Cognitive Systems Research, 1-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.cogsys.2016.01.002
It is yet another installment of things you want to know for voir dire, your personal appearance and choices, and how our country rates on caring for others. Sit back, educate yourself, and return to the fray with tidbits that will heighten your reputation among your co-workers for useful and inspirational pieces of information. “Need […]
Empathy: Paving the road to preferential treatment with good intentions
Men: Exude confidence, masculinity, authority, and power!
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Chopik, W., OBrien, E., & Konrath, S. (2016) Differences in Empathic Concern and Perspective Taking Across 63 Countries. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology. DOI: 10.1177/0022022116673910
McElroy T, Dickinson DL, Stroh N, & Dickinson CA. (2016) The physical sacrifice of thinking: Investigating the relationship between thinking and physical activity in everyday life. Journal of Health Psychology, 21(8), 1750-7. PMID: 25609406
In a previous post on this blog I talked about an important paper by Vannucchi and colleagues  summarising the state of the peer-reviewed research (up to 2014) on bipolar disorder and Asperger syndrome (AS). Today, I'm adding to the conversation on this important topic by introducing two papers to the discussions: the first by Xenia Borue and colleagues  and the second by Ahmad Abu-Akel and colleagues  covering the longitudinal course of bipolar disorder (BD) in rela........ Read more »
Borue, X., Mazefsky, C., Rooks, B., Strober, M., Keller, M., Hower, H., Yen, S., Gill, M., Diler, R., Axelson, D.... (2016) Longitudinal Course of Bipolar Disorder in Youth With High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of the American Academy of Child . DOI: 10.1016/j.jaac.2016.08.011
Abu-Akel, A., Clark, J., Perry, A., Wood, S., Forty, L., Craddock, N., Jones, I., Gordon-Smith, K., & Jones, L. (2016) Autistic and Schizotypal Traits and Global Functioning in Bipolar I Disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders. DOI: 10.1016/j.jad.2016.09.059
People with persistent complaints 6 to 12 months after an ankle sprain walk differently than those without persistent complaints.... Read more »
Kros, W., Keijsers, N., van Ochten, J., Bierma-Zeinstra, S., & van Middelkoop, M. (2016) Center of pressure during stance and gait in subjects with or without persistent complaints after a lateral ankle sprain. Gait , 24-29. DOI: 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2016.04.022
There are plenty of reasons it's important to maintain a healthy weight, and now you can add one more to the list: It may be good for your brain. Researchers have found that having a higher body mass index, or BMI, can negatively impact cognitive functioning in older adults.
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Bourassa, K., & Sbarra, D. (2016) Body mass and cognitive decline are indirectly associated via inflammation among aging adults. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity. DOI: 10.1016/j.bbi.2016.09.023
Neu5Gc, a non-human sialic acid sugar molecule common in red meat that increases the risk of tumor formation in humans, is also prevalent in pig organs, with concentrations increasing as the organs are cooked, a study has found. The research suggests that Neu5Gc may pose a significant health hazard among those who regularly consume organ meats from pigs.
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Ji, S., Wang, F., Chen, Y., Yang, C., Zhang, P., Zhang, X., Troy, F., & Wang, B. (2016) Developmental changes in the level of free and conjugated sialic acids, Neu5Ac, Neu5Gc and KDN in different organs of pig: a LC-MS/MS quantitative analyses. Glycoconjugate Journal. DOI: 10.1007/s10719-016-9724-9
fMRI researchers should care about (and report) the size of the effects that they study, according to a new Neuroimage paper from NIMH researchers Gang Chen and colleagues. It's called Is the statistic value all we should care about in neuroimaging?. The authors include Robert W. Cox, creator of the popular fMRI analysis software AFNI.
Chen et al. explain the purpose of their paper:
Here we address an important issue that has been embedded within the neuroimaging community for a long tim... Read more »
Chen G, Taylor PA, & Cox RW. (2016) Is the Statistic Value All We Should Care about in Neuroimaging?. NeuroImage. PMID: 27729277
A fairly quick post for your reading delight today as I bring the paper by Miller and colleagues  to your attention suggesting that: "Early intervention targeting language and motor skills may improve later achievement in this population."'This population' referred to a small cohort (N=26) of children diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who were examined "at the approximate ages of two, four, and ten" years with regards to their academic achievement and the variables that might b........ Read more »
Miller LE, Burke JD, Troyb E, Knoch K, Herlihy LE, & Fein DA. (2016) Preschool predictors of school-age academic achievement in autism spectrum disorder. The Clinical neuropsychologist, 1-22. PMID: 27705180
Pathogen epitopes are fragments of bacterial or viral proteins. Attached to the surface structure of cells, they prompt the body's immune system to mount a response against foreign substances. Researchers have determined that nearly a third of all existing human epitopes consist of two different fragments. Known as 'spliced epitopes', these types of epitopes have long been regarded as rare. The fact that they are so highly prevalent might, among other things, explain why the immun........ Read more »
Liepe, J., Marino, F., Sidney, J., Jeko, A., Bunting, D., Sette, A., Kloetzel, P., Stumpf, M., Heck, A., & Mishto, M. (2016) A large fraction of HLA class I ligands are proteasome-generated spliced peptides. Science, 354(6310), 354-358. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf4384
Patients that present with a spontaneous pneumothorax (SP) without a known medical history of lung disease are usually diagnosed as primary spontaneous pneumothorax - a pneumothorax that occurs without underlying diseases. However, underlying diffuse cystic lung diseases such as Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome (BHD), lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) and pulmonary Langerhans cell histiocytosis (PLCH) may have a spontaneous pneumothorax as their first symptom. In their new study, Gupta et al. (2016) evaluat........ Read more »
Gupta N, Langenderfer D, McCormack FX, Schauer DP, & Eckman MH. (2016) Chest Computed Tomographic Image Screening for Cystic Lung Diseases in Patients with Spontaneous Pneumothorax is Cost-effective. Annals of the American Thoracic Society. PMID: 27737563
by Piter Kehoma Boll Last week I introduced a cyanobacteria that reminds me of my childhood and that is commonly known as witch’s jelly or witch’s butter. But witch’s butter is also the common name of fungus, so I thought … Continue reading →... Read more »
Lo, H., Tsai, F., Wasser, S., Yang, J., & Huang, B. (2006) Effects of ingested fruiting bodies, submerged culture biomass, and acidic polysaccharide glucuronoxylomannan of Tremella mesenterica Retz.:Fr. on glycemic responses in normal and diabetic rats. Life Sciences, 78(17), 1957-1966. DOI: 10.1016/j.lfs.2005.08.033
I'm actually getting a little bored of talking about the various peer-reviewed research looking at a possible connection between asthma and autism on this blog. It's not that it isn't an interesting topic but rather that the data is coming in thick and fast suggesting that behaviour and physiology are not completely separate anymore.I did however want to direct you to the paper by Alessandro Tonacci and colleagues  who, following a systematic review "according to the PRISMA guidelines" s........ Read more »
Tonacci A, Billeci L, Ruta L, Tartarisco G, Pioggia G, & Gangemi S. (2016) A systematic review of the association between allergic asthma and autism. Minerva pediatrica. PMID: 27706122
There are three kinds of glial cells in the brain, oligodendrocyte, astrocyte and microglia. Oligodendrocytes myelinate neuronal axons to increase conduction velocity of neuronal impulses. A Japanese research team found a characteristic feature of oligodendrocytes that selectively myelinate a particular set of neuronal axons.
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Osanai, Y., Shimizu, T., Mori, T., Yoshimura, Y., Hatanaka, N., Nambu, A., Kimori, Y., Koyama, S., Kobayashi, K., & Ikenaka, K. (2016) Rabies virus-mediated oligodendrocyte labeling reveals a single oligodendrocyte myelinates axons from distinct brain regions. Glia. DOI: 10.1002/glia.23076
A lack of scrutiny of articles published in peer-reviewed journals on the basis of a belief that pre-publication peer-review provides sufficient scrutiny, may well add to the relatively high number of articles in which results are presented that cannot be replicated. … Read More →... Read more »
A quote to begin: "... in this small trial of children with non-syndromic ASD [autism spectrum disorder] and language impairment, treatment with high-dose folinic acid for 12 weeks resulted in improvement in verbal communication as compared with placebo, particularly in those participants who were positive for FRAAs [folate receptor-α autoantibody]."Those were the findings reported by Richard Frye and colleagues  (open-access) continuing a research theme from this group l........ Read more »
Frye, R., Slattery, J., Delhey, L., Furgerson, B., Strickland, T., Tippett, M., Sailey, A., Wynne, R., Rose, S., Melnyk, S.... (2016) Folinic acid improves verbal communication in children with autism and language impairment: a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Molecular Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1038/mp.2016.168
In 1962, the Nobel Prize of Medicine was given to Watson, Crick and Wilkins, for their finding of the double-helical structure of the DNA molecule. But who were the scientists overshadowed by the names of Watson and Crick?... Read more »
Leslie Pray. (2008) Discovery of DNA structure and function: Watson and Crick. Nature Education, 1(1). info:other/
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