Decision-making is the cognitive process of choosing a preferred option from among a set of options (Wilson and Keil 2001). Decision-making is present through every aspect of life, and making good decisions for every important occasion during lifetime is a human being’s constant endeavor (Garnham 2016). Historically, religion and philosophy have been the only domains […]... Read more »
Pazhoohi, F., & Arantes, J. (2016) How to Live a Life with More Positive Than Negative Feelings? A Review of Menelaos Apostolou, Feeling Good: An Evolutionary Perspective on Life Choices. Evolutionary Psychological Science. DOI: 10.1007/s40806-016-0069-1
A new study describes the mechanism by which caffeine counteracts age-related cognitive deficits in animals. The international teams showed that the abnormal expression of a particular receptor - the adenosine A2A, target for caffeine - in the brain of rats induces an aging-like profile namely memory impairments linked to the loss of stress controlling mechanisms.
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Batalha, V., Ferreira, D., Coelho, J., Valadas, J., Gomes, R., Temido-Ferreira, M., Shmidt, T., Baqi, Y., Buée, L., Müller, C.... (2016) The caffeine-binding adenosine A2A receptor induces age-like HPA-axis dysfunction by targeting glucocorticoid receptor function. Scientific Reports, 31493. DOI: 10.1038/srep31493
Why do some learned behaviors appear more frequently in daughters than in sons? I describe an article that attempts to answer this question by looking at dolphins, and briefly, chimpanzees.... Read more »
Zefferman, M. (2016) Mothers teach daughters because daughters teach granddaughters: the evolution of sex-biased transmission. Behavioral Ecology, 27(4), 1172-1181. DOI: 10.1093/beheco/arw022
Dyslexia or developmental reading disorder is a common learning disorder affecting about 5% of the school age population.Treatment of dyslexia is difficult and typically is focused on special education classes and reading exercises.Medication treatment for dyslexia is nearly unheard of as no FDA-approved drug is available for the condition.However, a recent randomized clinical drug trial found evidence to support the potential use of atomoxetine for dyslexia.Atomoxetine is a drug approved for at........ Read more »
Shaywitz S, Shaywitz B, Wietecha L, Wigal S, McBurnett K, Williams D, Kronenberger WG, & Hooper SR. (2016) Effect of Atomoxetine Treatment on Reading and Phonological Skills in Children with Dyslexia or Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Comorbid Dyslexia in a Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Journal of child and adolescent psychopharmacology. PMID: 27410907
Something smells fishy about corporate governance today... Read more »
Yuliya Ponomareva. (2016) Costs and Benefits of Delegation: Managerial Discretion as a Bridge between Strategic Management and Corporate Governance. Linnaeus University Press. info:other/978-91-88357-09-0
The nature of the solar flare sub-THz emission (Kaufmann, 2012) with a positive spectral slope at 200-400 GHz is still not clear..... Read more »
Yuriy Tsap et al.*. (2016) On the thermal nature of 140 GHz emission from the 4 July 2012 solar flare. Advances in Space Research, 2016, 57, 1449. info:/
'Scientists study link between unhealthy pregnancy diet and ADHD' went one media headline covering the paper by Jolien Rijlaarsdam and colleagues .The name of the research game was again to draw on data derived from ALSPAC (Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children) (yes, again) to look-see "the degree to which prenatal high-fat and -sugar diet might relate to ADHD [attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder] symptoms via IGF2 DNA methylation for early-onset persistent (EOP........ Read more »
Rijlaarsdam J, Cecil CA, Walton E, Mesirow MS, Relton CL, Gaunt TR, McArdle W, & Barker ED. (2016) Prenatal unhealthy diet, insulin-like growth factor 2 gene (IGF2) methylation, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder symptoms in youth with early-onset conduct problems. Journal of child psychology and psychiatry, and allied disciplines. PMID: 27535767
We all know that we can quickly lose cardiovascular endurance if we stop exercising for a few weeks, but what impact does the cessation of exercise have on our brains? New research examined cerebral blood flow in healthy, physically fit older adults (ages 50-80 years) before and after a 10-day period during which they stopped all exercise.
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Alfini, A., Weiss, L., Leitner, B., Smith, T., Hagberg, J., & Smith, J. (2016) Hippocampal and Cerebral Blood Flow after Exercise Cessation in Master Athletes. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience. DOI: 10.3389/fnagi.2016.00184
The evidence for a beneficial effect of a Mediterranean style diet (MedDiet) on brain health grows on a regular basis.For those interested in a good summary of the effects of the MedDiet on cognition, I recommend reading the free full text review recently published in Frontiers in Neuroscience.In this review, Roy Hardman and colleagues searched for research studies on cognition and the Mediterranean diet published between 2000 and 2015.A figure in the review proposed several mechanisms where com........ Read more »
Hardman RJ, Kennedy G, Macpherson H, Scholey AB, & Pipingas A. (2016) Adherence to a Mediterranean-Style Diet and Effects on Cognition in Adults: A Qualitative Evaluation and Systematic Review of Longitudinal and Prospective Trials. Frontiers in nutrition, 22. PMID: 27500135
After the recent discovery of extensive fossilised riverbeds on Mars, the idea that the Red Planet could have been habitable 4 billion years ago has gained more traction.... Read more »
Davis, J., Balme, M., Grindrod, P., Williams, R., & Gupta, S. (2016) Extensive Noachian fluvial systems in Arabia Terra: Implications for early Martian climate. Geology. DOI: 10.1130/G38247.1
In the previous post in this miniseries I’ve used the example of Brexit referendum to explore how allowing lies to be systematically upheld in public discourse is poisonous for democracy itself. The bleak conclusion was that people voted Brexit on…Read more ›... Read more »
Aktipis, C.A., & Kurzban, R.O. (2004) Is Homo Economicus extinct? Vernon Smith, Daniel Kahneman and the evolutionary perspective. Advances in Austrian Economics, 135-153. info:/
Neblo, M. (2003) Choices, Values, and Frames, edited by Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky, New York: Cambridge University Press. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 22(3), 491-493. DOI: 10.1002/pam.10145
Former elite athletes with osteoarthritis are more likely to have symptoms of common mental disorders (distress, sleep problems, adverse alcohol use) compared to those without osteoarthritis.... Read more »
Schuring N, Aoki H, Gray J, Kerkhoffs GM, Lambert M, & Gouttebarge V. (2016) Osteoarthritis is associated with symptoms of common mental disorders among former elite athletes. Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy. PMID: 27488101
I was rather interested to read the findings reported by Richelle Mychasiuk & Jong Rho  suggesting that the expression of certain genes might be affected by adoption of a ketogenic diet in one of the more familiar mouse models of autism (the BTBRT+Tf/J 'dangermouse').The ketogenic diet (KD), consisting of "a high-fat low-carbohydrate anti-seizure and neuroprotective diet" has been of some interest to autism research over the years (see here). Its potential usefulness has also been explore........ Read more »
Mychasiuk R, & Rho JM. (2016) Genetic modifications associated with ketogenic diet treatment in the BTBRT Tf/J mouse model of autism spectrum disorder. Autism research : official journal of the International Society for Autism Research. PMID: 27529337
Contrary to the popularly held belief, biofuels increase carbon emissions. ... Read more »
DeCicco, J., Liu, D., Heo, J., Krishnan, R., Kurthen, A., & Wang, L. (2016) Carbon balance effects of U.S. biofuel production and use. Climatic Change. DOI: 10.1007/s10584-016-1764-4
Activity of the medial prefrontal cortex after psycho-spiritual healing (Baldwin et al., 2016).Everything we do and feel and experience changes the brain. Psychotherapy, juggling, taxi driving, poverty, reading, drugs, art, music, anger, love. If it didn't we'd be dead. Why should prayer be any different? The trick is to accurately determine the structural or physiological changes that are unique to a specific activity. And when assessing the effectiveness of clinical interventions, how the chan........ Read more »
Baldwin, P., Velasquez, K., Koenig, H., Salas, R., & Boelens, P. (2016) Neural correlates of healing prayers, depression and traumatic memories: A preliminary study. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 123-129. DOI: 10.1016/j.ctim.2016.07.002
Interfering with your vision makes it harder to describe what you know about the appearance of even common objects, according to researchers. This connection between visual knowledge and visual perception challenges widely held theories that visual information about the world -- that alligators are green and have long tails, for example -- is stored abstractly, as a list of facts, divorced from the visual experience of seeing an alligator.... Read more »
Edmiston, P., & Lupyan, G. (2015) Visual interference disrupts visual and only visual knowledge. Journal of Vision, 15(12), 10. DOI: 10.1167/15.12.10
Recently published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, scientists have revisited the field of rainbow research and all the possible applications it provides.... Read more »
Haußmann, A. (2016) Rainbows in nature: recent advances in observation and theory. European Journal of Physics, 37(6), 63001. DOI: 10.1088/0143-0807/37/6/063001
Scientists, in a recent study, tested the saliva of five primates (including humans) for the MUC7 gene, which could give us deep insights into evolutionary paths.... Read more »
Taxonomy is an important aspect of microbiome research. Whether we are studying communities of bacteria, viruses, or other microbes, there are benefits to labeling microbes. Taxonomic names immediately give us information about their relationships to each other, such as similar bacteria being grouped into the same genus...... Read more »
Krupovic, M., Dutilh, B., Adriaenssens, E., Wittmann, J., Vogensen, F., Sullivan, M., Rumnieks, J., Prangishvili, D., Lavigne, R., Kropinski, A.... (2016) Taxonomy of prokaryotic viruses: update from the ICTV bacterial and archaeal viruses subcommittee. Archives of Virology, 161(4), 1095-1099. DOI: 10.1007/s00705-015-2728-0
Thompson, C., Amaral, G., Campeão, M., Edwards, R., Polz, M., Dutilh, B., Ussery, D., Sawabe, T., Swings, J., & Thompson, F. (2014) Microbial taxonomy in the post-genomic era: Rebuilding from scratch?. Archives of Microbiology, 197(3), 359-370. DOI: 10.1007/s00203-014-1071-2
If zika didn't seem scary enough in the media, there is new data showing that there could be a new neurological complication of infection with the Zika virus.
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