Sea Monsters, mythical beasts of legend and lore that ply the world’s oceans, sinking ships, terrifying sailors, swallowing entire crews whole. Sea monsters occupy a special place in our imagination. The ocean is huge, unfathomable. Of course mighty beast could dwell within, undetected.
Every once in a long while, the myths, the legends, the stories, turn [...]... Read more »
ANDREA D. MARSHALL1, LEONARD J.V. COMPAGNO, & MICHAEL B. BENNETT1. (2009) Redescription of the genus Manta with resurrection of Manta alfredi (Krefft, 1868) (Chondrichthyes; Myliobatoidei; Mobulidae). Zootaxa. info:/
Migraine headaches affect 1 in 6 women and 1 in 12 men, and can be triggered by any number of seemingly innocuous events, from eating cheese, to taking birth control pills, to exercising. In 2009, people worldwide spent $2.6 billion on preventative drugs, trying treatments from beta-blockers to anticonvulsants.1 Yet, despite being considered the most expensive brain disorder in the European Union and United States, the source of migraines has remained elusive . . . until now.... Read more »
Anttila, V., Stefansson, H., Kallela, M., Todt, U., Terwindt, G., Calafato, M., Nyholt, D., Dimas, A., Freilinger, T., Müller-Myhsok, B.... (2010) Genome-wide association study of migraine implicates a common susceptibility variant on 8q22.1. Nature Genetics. DOI: 10.1038/ng.652
Pow DV, & Cook DG. (2009) Neuronal expression of splice variants of "glial" glutamate transporters in brains afflicted by Alzheimer's disease: unmasking an intrinsic neuronal property. Neurochemical research, 34(10), 1748-57. PMID: 19319679
Hassel, B., Tessler, S., Faull, R., & Emson, P. (2007) Glutamate Uptake is Reduced in Prefrontal Cortex in Huntington’s Disease. Neurochemical Research, 33(2), 232-237. DOI: 10.1007/s11064-007-9463-1
Boston-Howes, W. (2006) Caspase-3 Cleaves and Inactivates the Glutamate Transporter EAAT2. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 281(20), 14076-14084. DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M600653200
Maybe sewage could offer salvation. Wetlands built to filter sewage and polluted runoff have become essential habitat for some of the world’s endangered waterbirds, but pose disease risks and other problems. Now, two recent studies offer some insight into the potential conservation promise – and peril – of artificial swamps.
One of the studies, published […] Read More »... Read more »
Vymazal, J. (2010) Constructed Wetlands for Wastewater Treatment: Five Decades of Experience . Environmental Science , 2147483647. DOI: 10.1021/es101403q
Murray, C., & Hamilton, A. (2010) REVIEW: Perspectives on wastewater treatment wetlands and waterbird conservation. Journal of Applied Ecology, 47(5), 976-985. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2664.2010.01853.x
Last week I blogged about a Nature paper on graphene transistors with a self-aligned nanowire gate. Well, as I gather from a blog post by Doug Natelson, largely the same UCLA researchers have now published a paper in Nano Letters that uses a rather similar idea, even though in the latest paper the nanowire gate is [...]... Read more »
Liao, L., Lin, Y., Bao, M., Cheng, R., Bai, J., Liu, Y., Qu, Y., Wang, K., Huang, Y., & Duan, X. (2010) High-speed graphene transistors with a self-aligned nanowire gate. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature09405
In 1954 and 1957 Gordon and Schaefer respectively described the idea of maximum sustainable yield (MSY) – that is, the amount of fish that could be taken by commercial fishing operations to maximize reproduction by the system year after year. Since then, it has been heralded as the mathematical panacea to fisheries management.
Gordon and Schaefer [...]... Read more »
Gordon, H. (1954) The Economic Theory of a Common-Property Resource: The Fishery. Journal of Political Economy, 62(2), 124. DOI: 10.1086/257497
One of the often cited causes for ships that mysteriously and quickly disappear are methane bubbles, released from sub-seafloor gas pockets. The story goes that as methane rises to the surface, the bubbles cause the density of seawater to drop, and any ships in the area suddenly lose buoyancy and spontaneously sink. This effect has [...]... Read more »
Is oxytocin responsible for gender differences in parenting styles?... Read more »
Gordon, I., Zagoory-Sharon, O., Leckman, J., & Feldman, R. (2010) Oxytocin and the Development of Parenting in Humans. Biological Psychiatry, 68(4), 377-382. DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2010.02.005
In April at the AACR annual meeting, Bert Vogelstein talked about 12 critically aberrant pathways in cancer and we have talked about a few of these on this blog this year. Today, I want to take a look at another...... Read more »
Morris JP 4th, Wang SC, & Hebrok M. (2010) KRAS, Hedgehog, Wnt and the twisted developmental biology of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. Nature reviews. Cancer. PMID: 20814421
Giuliani, N., Morandi, F., Tagliaferri, S., Lazzaretti, M., Donofrio, G., Bonomini, S., Sala, R., Mangoni, M., & Rizzoli, V. (2007) Production of Wnt Inhibitors by Myeloma Cells: Potential Effects on Canonical Wnt Pathway in the Bone Microenvironment. Cancer Research, 67(16), 7665-7674. DOI: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-06-4666
Hezel, A. (2006) Genetics and biology of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. Genes , 20(10), 1218-1249. DOI: 10.1101/gad.1415606
Huang, S., Mishina, Y., Liu, S., Cheung, A., Stegmeier, F., Michaud, G., Charlat, O., Wiellette, E., Zhang, Y., Wiessner, S.... (2009) Tankyrase inhibition stabilizes axin and antagonizes Wnt signalling. Nature, 461(7264), 614-620. DOI: 10.1038/nature08356
by Mary in OpenHelix
For this week’s Tip of the Week I’ll introduce Varietas, a resource that integrates human variation information such as SNP and CNV data, and offers a handy tabular output with links to additional databases that will enable researchers to quickly explore other sources of information about the variations or regions of interest.
I think this is the first resource I’ve used from Finland. And it’s definitely the first resource I have used that is plaid. But it struck me that........ Read more »
Most evolutionary biologists believe that the easiest means for two populations to become reproductively isolated—a first step to splitting into different species—is a physical barrier to movement. Mountain ranges, deep river valleys, or the sheer distance between an island and the mainland—the opportunities for allopatric speciation are all over the place. Unless, of course, you remember that the planet's largest habitat is the ocean, and there aren't such obvious physical barriers out at........ Read more »
Ingram, T. (2010) Speciation along a depth gradient in a marine adaptive radiation. Proc. Royal Soc. B. info:/10.1098/rspb.2010.1127
Young children with autism prefer looking at geometric patterns over looking at other people. At least, some of them do. That's according to a new study - Preference for Geometric Patterns Early in Life As a Risk Factor for Autism.Pierce et al took 110 toddlers (age 14 to 42 months). Some of them had autism, some had "developmental delay" but not autism, and some were normally developing.The kids were shown a one-minute video clip. One half of the screen showed some kids doing yoga, while the ot........ Read more »
Pierce K, Conant D, Hazin R, Stoner R, & Desmond J. (2010) Preference for Geometric Patterns Early in Life As a Risk Factor for Autism. Archives of general psychiatry. PMID: 20819977
by Nestor Lopez-Duran PhD in Child-Psych
The New York Times recently released two interesting reports about mental health issues in young children. The first examined the concept of preschool depression (see also here for one of our previous reviews about depression in young children). The second examined the practice of prescribing antipsychotic medications in young children. Both articles touched on an [...]... Read more »
Keenan, K., Boeldt, D., Chen, D., Coyne, C., Donald, R., Duax, J., Hart, K., Perrott, J., Strickland, J., Danis, B.... (2010) Predictive validity of DSM-IV oppositional defiant and conduct disorders in clinically referred preschoolers. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2010.02290.x
This week, I am hosting Matthias Blüher, Professor of Endocrinology from the University of Leipzig, Germany, who yesterday, presented a seminar on the topic of “Insulin Sensitive Obesity” at the Alberta Diabetes Institute.
As most readers will know, excess weight is typically associated with insulin resistance, which has been suggested to be a major underlying factor [...]... Read more »
Ionizing radiation exists as either subatomic particles (alpha and beta particles, and neutrons) or photons (electromagnetic waves at X-ray and gamma ray wavelengths, i.e. energies of a few electron volts). The energy from such radiation can strip electrons from atoms or molecules, thus ionizing them, but it has to have an energy above a certain [...]Phantom radiation protection is a post from: Sciencebase Science Blog
... Read more »
Mauro Valente, Francisco Malano, & Germán Tirao. (2010) A computational tool for evaluating the exposure risk in nuclear medicine treatments. Int. J. Low Radiation, 7(4), 333-346. info:/
Darwin never knew what a mutation was. He inferred that the hereditary material of a species could change, and that changes could be positively or negatively selected, but he knew nothing of the “central dogma” of molecular biology: genes make RNA make protein. Until Watson and Crick came along with their coy but memorable statement, [...]... Read more »
Wild-type is the term geneticists use to refer to non-mutants. It literally means organisms that are the same, genetically, as those in the wild, compared to ones that have been grown under coddled conditions in the lab for generations, going soft in the absence of natural selection, or that are specifically mutant at some gene or other. There are no wild-type humans. Well, maybe there are a few, somewhere, but even they are not really non-mutants. We all carry millions of mutations in our g........ Read more »
Ng, S., Turner, E., Robertson, P., Flygare, S., Bigham, A., Lee, C., Shaffer, T., Wong, M., Bhattacharjee, A., Eichler, E.... (2009) Targeted capture and massively parallel sequencing of 12 human exomes. Nature, 461(7261), 272-276. DOI: 10.1038/nature08250
Roach, J., Glusman, G., Smit, A., Huff, C., Hubley, R., Shannon, P., Rowen, L., Pant, K., Goodman, N., Bamshad, M.... (2010) Analysis of Genetic Inheritance in a Family Quartet by Whole-Genome Sequencing. Science, 328(5978), 636-639. DOI: 10.1126/science.1186802
Sexual selection is, for lack of a better term, a sexy concept. Charles Darwin elaborated on the specific phenomenon of sexual selection in The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex. In The Third Chimpanzee Jared Diamond endorsed Darwin’s thesis that sexual selection could explain the origin of human races, as each isolated [...]... Read more »
Venner S, Bernstein C, Dray S, & Bel-Venner MC. (2010) Make love not war: when should less competitive males choose low-quality but defendable females?. The American naturalist, 175(6), 650-61. PMID: 20415532
For a while I've been contemplating on considering to con someone into making a clickable tree for me, allowing one to zoom in and click genus names leading to further info/pictures/whatever. Of course, I'd be far too lazy to actually execute such a project, especially given my lack of programming skills, and lack of faith in the stability of current phylogenies... luckily, I recently discovered some nice people already took care of that, and produced a really awesome tree:The genus names lead t........ Read more »
Parfrey, L., Barbero, E., Lasser, E., Dunthorn, M., Bhattacharya, D., Patterson, D., & Katz, L. (2006) Evaluating Support for the Current Classification of Eukaryotic Diversity. PLoS Genetics, 2(12). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.0020220
Parfrey, L., Grant, J., Tekle, Y., Lasek-Nesselquist, E., Morrison, H., Sogin, M., Patterson, D., & Katz, L. (2010) Broadly Sampled Multigene Analyses Yield a Well-Resolved Eukaryotic Tree of Life. Systematic Biology. DOI: 10.1093/sysbio/syq037
by Peter Janiszewski, Ph.D. in Obesity Panacea
Well, in fairness, Jesus’ twelve Apostles should also share in the blame.
An incredibly quirky and yet fascinating study was published in the International Journal of Obesity which investigated the size of the food and plates that have been depicted in paintings of Jesus’ Last Supper over the last 1000 years.
The trend of gradually increasing portion sizes is well documented; just go to your local McDonalds and order a large drink and fries and drive yourself directly to the nearby ........ Read more »
Wansink, B., & Wansink, C. (2010) The largest Last Supper: depictions of food portions and plate size increased over the millennium. International Journal of Obesity. DOI: 10.1038/ijo.2010.37
From Economic Development Quarterly The state of Michigan has had an aggressive program of environmental cleanup efforts targeted at contaminated properties since the early 1970s. Following legislative changes brownfield redevelopment was made a top economic and environmental priority. This article examines the impact of the initiative. The findings present mixed results, identifying that 15% to 20% [...]... Read more »
Hula, R.C., & Bromley-Trujillo, R. (2010) Cleaning up the mess: redevelopment of urban brownfields. Economic Development Quarterly. info:/10.1177/0891242410365711
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