Post List

  • March 25, 2014
  • 02:31 PM


by Amy Swanston in Antisense Science

With the Council for Science and Technology advising that we need to rethink our stance on GM food, we decided to look into some of the science behind genetic engineering to see what all the fuss is about.

Every year the world population increases, as does our need to find new sources of food. Globally malnutrition affects 34 million children across the world- but could GM crops be the cure? A huge proportion of land is simply not good enough to grow food or has problems with pests, but if we........ Read more »

Eamens A, Wang MB, Smith NA, & Waterhouse PM. (2008) RNA silencing in plants: yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Plant physiology, 147(2), 456-68. PMID: 18524877  

Funke T, Han H, Healy-Fried ML, Fischer M, & Schönbrunn E. (2006) Molecular basis for the herbicide resistance of Roundup Ready crops. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 103(35), 13010-5. PMID: 16916934  

Paine JA, Shipton CA, Chaggar S, Howells RM, Kennedy MJ, Vernon G, Wright SY, Hinchliffe E, Adams JL, Silverstone AL.... (2005) Improving the nutritional value of Golden Rice through increased pro-vitamin A content. Nature biotechnology, 23(4), 482-7. PMID: 15793573  

  • March 25, 2014
  • 11:08 AM

When Sleeping Pills Don't Work

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Hypnotics or sleeping pills typically are effective and indicated as an option for the short-term relief of transient insomnia.However, a minority of individuals report persistent insomnia and lack of sleep despite use of a hypnotic.When drugs that typically treat a disorder fail to work, it is important to reconsider the accuracy of the diagnosis.Yun Li and colleagues from China recently published a case report illustrating this issue in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.They reported on a........ Read more »

Li Y, Li Z, Lei F, Du L, & Tang X. (2013) Persistent insomnia despite long-term nightly use of sleeping pills. Journal of clinical sleep medicine : JCSM : official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, 9(8), 834-6. PMID: 23946716  

  • March 25, 2014
  • 10:24 AM

Spent Nuclear Fuel Could Be Used as Energy Source

by dailyfusion in The Daily Fusion

Lawrence Livermore scientists have modeled actinide-based alloys, such as spent nuclear fuel (SNF), in an effort to predict the impact of evolving fuel chemistry on material performance.... Read more »

  • March 25, 2014
  • 07:52 AM

Pigs on the pyre- solving cremation mysteries

by Katy Meyers in Bones Don't Lie

There is a mystery in archaeology that numerous regions and eras have to deal with- where are the infants? Deceased infants are potentially treated differently when they die- the argument […]... Read more »

Jæger, J, & Johanson, V. (2013) The cremation of infants/small children: An archaeological experiment concerning the effects of fire on bone weight. Cadernos do GEEvH, 2(2), 13-26. info:/

  • March 25, 2014
  • 07:12 AM

Never the earner, always the bride: How male breadwinners view women in the workplace

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Across a series of studies, a new article demonstrates that married men who have a more traditional 'breadwinner role' at home tend to have more negative views on women in the workplace. Across their studies, Sreedhari Desai, Dolly Chugh and Arthur Brief defined traditional marriages as those where the wife was not employed, contrasted with couples that were dual-earning.  Firstly they employed data from US national surveys. In the first data set - 282 married men in 1996 - those in more tr........ Read more »

  • March 25, 2014
  • 05:22 AM

New method to generate mesenchymal stem cellls from human embryonic stem cells

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

Advanced Cell Technology (ACT), reported today that it has discovered a new method to generate a potent and replenishable population of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from human embryonic stem cells. This new and proprietary population of embryonic stem cell-derived MSCs displays potent immunomodulatory and therapeutic properties and has a greater than 30,000 fold proliferative capacity, relative to ordinary bone marrow-derived MSCs, the most commonly used source for MSCs in clinical trials.Read ........ Read more »

  • March 25, 2014
  • 05:09 AM

Adjustable scaffolds promote stem cell growth

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

A new scaffold material based on a biocompatible silk-alginate hydrogel, which can be made soft or stiff, could provide the just right environment to culture stem cells for regenerative medicine, say researchers at the Stanford University and Queen’s University in Canada.Widespread clinical application of stem cells  requires a robust and reliable culture system that mimics the natural microenvironment of the cell. This microenvironment provides crucial direction to the function and viability........ Read more »

Ziv K, Nuhn H, Ben-Haim Y, Sasportas LS, Kempen PJ, Niedringhaus TP, Hrynyk M, Sinclair R, Barron AE, & Gambhir SS. (2014) A tunable silk-alginate hydrogel scaffold for stem cell culture and transplantation. Biomaterials, 35(12), 3736-43. PMID: 24484675  

  • March 25, 2014
  • 04:41 AM

How You Understand What Your Pet Is Saying

by Chiara Civardi in United Academics

If you are used to have a pet, it is even likely for you to understand what your non- human friend is telling you. This ability to correctly identify the feelings of other people or other animals is called voice- induced emotional recognition.... Read more »

  • March 25, 2014
  • 12:02 AM

“I am Working-Class”: Self-Identification as a Measure of Social Class in Educational Research

by Mark Rubin in Mark Rubin's Social Psychology Research Blog

Governments around the world are trying to open up higher education to working-class people. For example, in January this year, the White House released a report titled: "Increasing college opportunity for low-income students: Promising models and a call to action." In the context of this general push towards widening participation in higher education, my colleagues and I have been developing a research project that aims to investigate social class differences in social integration among student........ Read more »

  • March 24, 2014
  • 08:00 PM

(Not yet) a blood test to detect preclinical Alzheimer’s disease

by Aurelie in Coffee break Science

A team of US researchers recently reported in Nature Medicine having identified a panel of ten molecules whose concentration in blood could predict whether someone in the group of people studied would go on to develop signs of Alzheimer’s disease … Continue reading →... Read more »

Mapstone M, Cheema AK, Fiandaca MS, Zhong X, Mhyre TR, Macarthur LH, Hall WJ, Fisher SG, Peterson DR, Haley JM.... (2014) Plasma phospholipids identify antecedent memory impairment in older adults. Nature medicine. PMID: 24608097  

  • March 24, 2014
  • 05:29 PM

GenoCAD webinar this Thursday, March 27

by Mary in OpenHelix

Although it’s already posted in our news feed, I just wanted to add a reminder about our upcoming webinar on GenoCAD: open-source computer-assisted design software for synthetic biology. You can see the time and registration details here: Free “Introduction to GenoCAD” Webinar presented March 27th If you want to download the slides beforehand (so you […]... Read more »

  • March 24, 2014
  • 04:30 PM

Molecular aspects of Ebola and other Filoviruses

by thelonevirologist in Virology Tidbits

In the last few days news organizations reported an outbreak of Ebola in West Africa, leading (as of March 24th) to a death of 59 out of 80 infected people. The Ebola virus and its variant Marburg virus are known to be one the most lethal viruses infecting humans. Once infected patients die of hemorrhagic fever, a painful and agonizing death characterized by fever, excessive blood loss and diarrhea. There is no effective therapy, except replacing fluids, blood, coagualnts as well as relativ........ Read more »

Mühlberger E. (2007) Filovirus replication and transcription. Future virology, 2(2), 205-215. PMID: 24093048  

Kiley MP, Bowen ET, Eddy GA, Isaäcson M, Johnson KM, McCormick JB, Murphy FA, Pattyn SR, Peters D, Prozesky OW.... (1982) Filoviridae: a taxonomic home for Marburg and Ebola viruses?. Intervirology, 18(1-2), 24-32. PMID: 7118520  

Hoenen T, Shabman RS, Groseth A, Herwig A, Weber M, Schudt G, Dolnik O, Basler CF, Becker S, & Feldmann H. (2012) Inclusion bodies are a site of ebolavirus replication. Journal of virology, 86(21), 11779-88. PMID: 22915810  

Iwasa A, Halfmann P, Noda T, Oyama M, Kozuka-Hata H, Watanabe S, Shimojima M, Watanabe T, & Kawaoka Y. (2011) Contribution of Sec61α to the life cycle of Ebola virus. The Journal of infectious diseases. PMID: 21987770  

  • March 24, 2014
  • 12:25 PM

Researchers Find Possible Way to Make Superconducting Graphene

by dailyfusion in The Daily Fusion

Scientists at the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University have discovered a potential way to make superconducting graphene.... Read more »

Yang, S., Sobota, J., Howard, C., Pickard, C., Hashimoto, M., Lu, D., Mo, S., Kirchmann, P., & Shen, Z. (2014) Superconducting graphene sheets in CaC6 enabled by phonon-mediated interband interactions. Nature Communications. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms4493  

  • March 24, 2014
  • 09:49 AM

Forget suppressed memories

by Janet Kwasniak in Neuro-patch

A recent paper (see citation) has put a hole in another remnant of Freud’s influence, that suppressed memories are still active. Freud noticed that we can suppress unwelcome memories. He theorized that the suppressed memories continued to exist in the unconscious mind and could unconsciously affect behaviour. Uncovering these memories and their influence was a […]... Read more »

  • March 24, 2014
  • 09:43 AM

Oral Health Status among 12 Year Old Children in a Rural Kenyan Community

by JDOH in JScholar Publishers

Dental caries remains a common disease among school-aged children and is thought to be increasing worldwide, especially in developing countries. The Oral Health Country/Area Profile Project reported that the Decayed, Missing and Filled Teeth (DMFT) index, a standard indicator of oral health, increased steadily from 1.15 in 2004 to 1.19 in 2011 in 12-year-old children living in African countries [1]. In contrast, a systematic review of information published from 1967 to 1997 concluded that the DM........ Read more »

Yoshihiko Hayashi, Cyril N. Ogada, Eunice Kihara, Evelyn G. Wagaiyu, Hideki Fukuda*. (2014) Oral Health Status among 12 Year Old Children in a Rural Kenyan Community. JOURNAL OF DENTISTRY AND ORAL HEALTH, 2(1), 1-5. info:/JDOH 2: 101

  • March 24, 2014
  • 09:01 AM

New Magnetic Mechanism Could Advance Fusion Power

by dailyfusion in The Daily Fusion

A team of researchers from the University of Michigan and Princeton has uncovered a new kind of magnetic mechanism that could help make nuclear fusion reactions easier to start.... Read more »

  • March 24, 2014
  • 08:19 AM

Gene Editing As A Treatment for HIV

by Rebekah Morrow in United Academics

The term ’gene editing’ sounds like something out of a science fiction movie. It seems like something that would be used in a plot to create a master race or defeat alien attackers. In reality, scientists are using this technique to treat diseases that currently have no cure. Earlier this month, a group from the University of Pennsylvania published an article in the New England Journal of Medicine in which they used gene editing to treat patients with human immunodeficiency virus (H........ Read more »

Tebas P, Stein D, Tang WW, Frank I, Wang SQ, Lee G, Spratt SK, Surosky RT, Giedlin MA, Nichol G.... (2014) Gene editing of CCR5 in autologous CD4 T cells of persons infected with HIV. The New England journal of medicine, 370(10), 901-10. PMID: 24597865  

  • March 24, 2014
  • 07:02 AM

Think conspiracy theorists live on the fringes? Think again!

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

Amazingly, a study published in a highly respected medical journal (as opposed to, say, a Bigfoot site) found that 49% of those living in the United States believe at least one medical conspiracy theory. That’s only where it starts–18% believe in three or more. Wow.  The researchers wondered if US residents believe the public health […]

Related posts:
Conspiracy theorists and survey design
Conspiracy theories that haven’t come up in pretrial research (yet)
Osama bin Laden is de........ Read more »

  • March 24, 2014
  • 05:30 AM

A specific female ASD phenotype is emerging...

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The title of this brief post is a quote taken from the abstract of the paper by Frazier and colleagues [1] who, following an analysis of participants included in the Simons Simplex Collection, concluded that autism research and practice might well consider looking at differences in the presentation of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) between the sexes.The Lady of Shalott @ Wikipedia Including nearly 2500 people with autism including over 2100 males and 304 females, examining ........ Read more »

Frazier TW, Georgiades S, Bishop SL, & Hardan AY. (2014) Behavioral and cognitive characteristics of females and males with autism in the simons simplex collection. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 53(3), 329-340000. PMID: 24565360  

  • March 24, 2014
  • 04:00 AM

Earliest Evidence of Gigantism-Like Disease Found in 3,800-Year-Old California Skeleton

by Blake de Pastino in Western Digs

The remains of a man buried 3,800 years ago in a richly decorated California grave bear some unusual but unmistakable features — signs of acromegaly, a rare disorder of the endocrine system that’s similar to gigantism.... Read more »

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