Originally published on the Scientific American guest blog. Geoscientists can’t say if diamonds are forever, but they can say that some are already billions of years old. They form in a place we’ll never reach: the deep earth, hundreds of … Continue reading →... Read more »
Shirey, S., Cartigny, P., Frost, D., Keshav, S., Nestola, F., Nimis, P., Pearson, D., Sobolev, N., & Walter, M. (2013) Diamonds and the Geology of Mantle Carbon. Reviews in Mineralogy and Geochemistry, 75(1), 355-421. DOI: 10.2138/rmg.2013.75.12
Schulze, D., Harte, B., , ., Page, F., Valley, J., Channer, D., & Jaques, A. (2013) Anticorrelation between low 13C of eclogitic diamonds and high 18O of their coesite and garnet inclusions requires a subduction origin. Geology, 41(4), 455-458. DOI: 10.1130/G33839.1
A new class of tiny, injectable LEDs is illuminating the deep mysteries of the brain.
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Washington University in St. Louis developed ultrathin, flexible optoelectronic devices – including LEDs the size of individual neurons – that are lighting the way for neuroscientists in the field of optogenetics and beyond.... Read more »
Liz Ahlberg. (2013) A bright idea: Tiny injectable LEDs help neuroscientists study the brain. University of Illinois News Bureau. info:/
Kim, T., McCall, J., Jung, Y., Huang, X., Siuda, E., Li, Y., Song, J., Song, Y., Pao, H., Kim, R.... (2013) Injectable, Cellular-Scale Optoelectronics with Applications for Wireless Optogenetics. Science, 340(6129), 211-216. DOI: 10.1126/science.1232437
Electromicrobiology is one of the rising subjects in the field of science. It combines the technology with biology.
In this subject, initially scientists found the transmission of electrical signals between the microbes. On a further note, in this subject, we study about the complex interaction between the microorganisms and technological devices while considering the novel electrical properties of the microorganisms i.e. accepting or donating the electrons from electrodes wi........ Read more »
Weight loss is hard for most people. And there many different factors involved in weight gain. One of the things that differs in people is the ability to taste bitterness. The post Weight loss: does food give some people an “eaters high?” appeared first on WODMasters Stiff Competition.... Read more »
Tomassini Barbarossa I, Carta G, Murru E, Melis M, Zonza A, Vacca C, Muroni P, Di Marzo V, & Banni S. (2013) Taste sensitivity to 6-n-propylthiouracil is associated with endocannabinoid plasma levels in normal-weight individuals. Nutrition (Burbank, Los Angeles County, Calif.), 29(3), 531-6. PMID: 23398921
A group of researchers from the University of Western Australia reported a new type of unknown mechanism by which some plants communicate.... Read more »
Gagliano, M., & Renton, M. (2013) Love thy neighbour: facilitation through an alternative signalling modality in plants. BMC Ecology, 13(1), 19. DOI: 10.1186/1472-6785-13-19
Nodding syndrome.Ever heard of it? Well, up until a few days ago I hadn't. That is before coming across articles on the topic by Richard Idro and colleagues* (open-access) and Angelina Kakooza-Mwesige and colleagues** (open-access). Whilst not specifically my line of expertise or interest, I was intrigued to read about how nodding and other symptoms of the epileptic variety, at least in some cases, seemed to be precipitated by food and showed a potential nutritional angle.Curving spacetime&........ Read more »
Herbert, M., & Buckley, J. (2013) Autism and Dietary Therapy: Case Report and Review of the Literature. Journal of Child Neurology. DOI: 10.1177/0883073813488668
Most people recognise that we don’t speak in “sentences”. Still, speech is analysed and described using the concepts of sentence grammars, even when these writing-based systems must be bent and stretched, or vice versa – isn’t it cheating to “clean up” naturally occurring speech so it fits into a sentence grammar? In a previous post […]... Read more »
Last year, I blogged about a new and very pretty way of displaying the data about the human ‘connectome’ – the wiring between different parts of the brain. But there are many beautiful ways of visualizing the brain’s connections, as neuroscientists Daniel Margulies and colleagues of Leipzig discuss in a colourful paper showcasing these techniques. Here, [...]... Read more »
Jean Jacques Hublin has a commentary  in the current issue of Nature, about making fossils available for scanning, digital replication, and ultimately hopefully open dissemination. As Hublin points out, it's a bit ridiculous that a fossil is a rare enough thing as it is, but even after their discovery, fossils "can become unreachable relics once they are in storage." Fortunately, Hublin goes on to point to online collections that are available to anyone interested. Somewhat ironically, t........ Read more »
Hublin, J. (2013) Palaeontology: Free digital scans of human fossils. Nature, 497(7448), 183-183. DOI: 10.1038/497183a
Skinner MM, Kivell TL, Potze S, & Hublin JJ. (2013) Microtomographic archive of fossil hominin specimens from Kromdraai B, South Africa. Journal of human evolution, 64(5), 434-47. PMID: 23541384
Cooperation is a puzzle because it is not obvious why cooperation, which is good for the group, is so common, despite the fact that defection is often best for the individual. Though we tend to view this issue through the lens of the prisoner’s dilemma, Artem recently pointed me to a paper by Joanna Masel, […]... Read more »
Masel, J. (2007) A Bayesian model of quasi-magical thinking can explain observed cooperation in the public good game. Journal of Economic Behavior , 64(2), 216-231. DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2005.07.003
A new kind of cosmic flash may reveal something never seen before: the birth of a black hole.... Read more »
Marcus Woo. (2013) Birth of a Black Hole. Caltech news . info:/
One of the most valuable ponds in Alabama, if you ask me
was a drive from Auburn University to a conference in the Florida panhandle
that allowed us a short detour to visit one of the most storied wetlands in
Alabama herpetological history. But, I didn’t realize that at the time.
wouldn’t know it by looking at them now, but there are a... Read more »
Willson, J., Winne, C., Dorcas, M., & Gibbons, J. (2006) Post-drought responses of semi-aquatic snakes inhabiting an isolated wetland: Insights on different strategies for persistence in a dynamic habitat. Wetlands, 26(4), 1071-1078. DOI: 10.1672/0277-5212(2006)26[1071:PROSSI]2.0.CO;2
Winne, C., Dorcas, M., & Poppy, S. (2005) Population Structure, Body Size, and Seasonal Activity of Black Swamp Snakes (Seminatrix pygaea). Southeastern Naturalist, 4(1), 1-14. DOI: 10.1656/1528-7092(2005)004[0001:PSBSAS]2.0.CO;2
Dodd Jr., C.K. (1993) Population structure, body mass, activity, and orientation of an aquatic snake during a drought. . Canadian Journal of Zoology, 71(7), 1281-1288. DOI: 10.1139/z93-177
No, I'm not looking for people with lithe limbs to be photographed for money. Much more sexily, I'm referring to a recent paper (Pietak et al., 2013) that's found that the relative length of the segments of human limbs can be modeled with a log-periodic function:Figure 2 from Pietak et al. 2013. Human within-limb proportions are such that the length of each segment (e.g., H1-6) of a limb, from fingertip to shoulder (A) and to to hip (B), can be predicted by a logarithmic periodic function&........ Read more »
Pietak A, Ma S, Beck CW, & Stringer MD. (2013) Fundamental ratios and logarithmic periodicity in human limb bones. Journal of anatomy, 222(5), 526-37. PMID: 23521756
Schultz, A. (1944) Age changes and variability in gibbons. A Morphological study on a population sample of a man-like ape. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 2(1), 1-129. DOI: 10.1002/ajpa.1330020102
Medieval alchemists devoted their lives to the pursuit of the infamous Philosopher's Stone, an elusive substance that was thought to convert base metals into valuable gold. Needless to say, nobody ever discovered the Philosopher’s Stone. Well, perhaps some alchemist did get lucky but was wise enough to keep the discovery secret. Instead of publishing the discovery and receiving the Nobel Prize for Alchemy, the lucky alchemist probably just walked around in junkyards, surreptitiously c........ Read more »
Nam, Y., Song, K., Luo, X., Daniel, E., Lambeth, K., West, K., Hill, J., DiMaio, J., Baker, L., Bassel-Duby, R.... (2013) Reprogramming of human fibroblasts toward a cardiac fate. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 110(14), 5588-5593. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1301019110
This week's Caturday morning video smile is a lovely blend of science, animals and humour all rolled up into a short video.... Read more »
Researchers have found that blood of youngsters can rejuvenate the heart of the old ones - at least in mice.
Previously, researchers found that the blood from the young mice could rejuvenate the brain of the older mice. (Nature, doi:10.1038/nature10357).
In the new study, researchers worked on two mice; one was 2-month-old and the other was 23-month-old having cardiac hypertrophy - a condition in which the heart muscle thickens lead........ Read more »
Loffredo, F., Steinhauser, M., Jay, S., Gannon, J., Pancoast, J., Yalamanchi, P., Sinha, M., Dall’Osso, C., Khong, D., Shadrach, J.... (2013) Growth Differentiation Factor 11 Is a Circulating Factor that Reverses Age-Related Cardiac Hypertrophy. Cell, 153(4), 828-839. DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2013.04.015
In the soft jungle sun, a thick-limbed primate—with heavy fur and a strong grasping tail—is poised for flight. This is Lagothrix poeppigii, or Poeppigi’s woolly monkey, and it is the … Continue reading →... Read more »
Papworth Sarah, Milner-Gulland E. J., Slocombe Katie, & Noë Ronald. (2013) Hunted Woolly Monkeys (Lagothrix poeppigii) Show Threat-Sensitive Responses to Human Presence. PLoS ONE, 8(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062000.s004
In my last post, I mentioned a hypothetical relatively-average psychologist (caveat: the term doesn’t necessarily apply to any specific person, living or dead). I found him to be a bit strange, since he tended to come up with hypotheses that … Continue reading →... Read more »
Cornwell, R., Palmer, C., Guinther, P., & Davis. H. (2005) Introductory Psychology Texts as a View of Sociobiology/Evolutionary Psychology’s Role in Psychology. Evolutionary Psychology, 355-374. info:/
For over a decade, cardiologists have been conducting trials in patients using cells extracted from the bone marrow and infusing them into the blood vessels of the heart in patients who have suffered a heart attack. This type of a procedure is not without risks.... Read more »
Surder, D., Manka, R., Lo Cicero, V., Moccetti, T., Rufibach, K., Soncin, S., Turchetto, L., Radrizzani, M., Astori, G., Schwitter, J.... (2013) Intracoronary Injection of Bone Marrow Derived Mononuclear Cells, Early or Late after Acute Myocardial Infarction: Effects on Global Left Ventricular Function Four months results of the SWISS-AMI trial. Circulation. DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.112.001035
Rehman, J. (2013) Bone Marrow Tinctures for Cardiovascular Disease: Lost in Translation. Circulation. DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.113.002775
A couple of weeks ago, if you randomly woke me in the middle of the night and demanded to know the fundamental difference between evolution and learning as adaptive processes, I would probably respond: “how did you get into my house? and umm… I guess they are mostly the same, it is just a matter […]... Read more »
Brenner, T. (1998) Can evolutionary algorithms describe learning processes?. Journal of Evolutionary Economics, 8(3), 271-283. DOI: 10.1007/s001910050064
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