Post List

  • May 9, 2010
  • 12:20 PM

Circadian Influences on Mood Disorders

by Allison in Dormivigilia

A novel area of circadian research is the influence of clock genes and circadian rhythms on the etiology of mood disorders. This area of research suggests a need for alternative therapeutic interventions, such as chronotherapy (using melatonin, bright light therapy, and adjusted sleep/wake schedules),that do not risk addiction by pharmacological treatments. ... Read more »

  • May 9, 2010
  • 04:03 AM

Neanderthals and humans got fiddly

by Bjørn Østman in Pleiotropy

The big news this week in evolution is of course the sequencing of the Neanderthal genome, and the evidence that humans carry some DNA from our extinct cousins. The paper was published in Science yesterday, and has a total of 56 authors, including team leader Svante Pääbo.... Read more »

Green RE, Krause J, Briggs AW, Maricic T, Stenzel U, Kircher M, Patterson N, Li H, Zhai W, Fritz MH.... (2010) A draft sequence of the Neandertal genome. Science (New York, N.Y.), 328(5979), 710-22. PMID: 20448178  

  • May 8, 2010
  • 09:23 PM

Making Masculinity Visible to Sexual Violence

by Ultimo167 in Strong Silent Types

Cowburn (2010) suggests that to effectively deal with the problem of male sexual violence, we must pay closer attention to the role of masculinity in shaping harmful behaviours and attitudes.... Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 08:08 PM

New Zealand’s productivity paradox: Part V

by Shaun Hendy in A Measure of Science

I am getting towards the end of my discussion of Philip McCann’s paper, “Economic geography, globalisation and New Zealand’s productivity paradox” [1].
In my last post on this topic, I discussed the importance of agglomeration economies for knowledge based production.  Agglomeration in the modern economy is thought to maximise the efficiency and effectiveness of the [...]... Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 07:42 PM

Atlatls to Bows: Those Puzzling Weights

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Most of what we know about prehistoric North American atlatls comes from the many well-preserved examples found by Alfred Kidder and Samuel Guernsey in the early twentieth century in Basketmaker II rockshelters near Kayenta, Arizona.  We know much more about atlatl use in Mesoamerica, where the atlatl was still widely used in the contact era, [...]... Read more »

Bushnell, D. I. Jr. (1905) Two Ancient Mexican Atlatls. American Anthropologist, 7(2), 218-221. DOI: 10.1525/aa.1905.7.2.02a00040  

Howard, C. (1974) The Atlatl: Function and Performance. American Antiquity, 39(1), 102. DOI: 10.2307/279223  

Peets, O. (1960) Experiments in the Use of Atlatl Weights. American Antiquity, 26(1), 108. DOI: 10.2307/277169  

  • May 8, 2010
  • 07:38 PM

Better the metagenome you know than the metagenome you don't...

by Daemios in Rudimenthos

Morgan, J., Darling, A., & Eisen, J. (2010). Metagenomic Sequencing of an In Vitro-Simulated Microbial Community PLoS ONE, 5 (4) DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0010209A new era for the design of metagenomic controls starts! Morgan et al. present the benchmarking of metagenomic tools using artificial "microbial communities" mixed up in the lab.The Hook...Metagenomics is a fancy name for what's actually a large and obscure toolbox of molecular biology procedures and computational algorithms that p........ Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 06:53 PM

Motivating a Cumulative Cognitive Neuroscience

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

Why are large-scale structured databases and meta-analyses important to advance the field of human brain mapping? One reason is that individual functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies can be notoriously unreliable and underpowered (Bennett & Miller, 2010; Fliessbach et al., 2010; Kriegeskorte et al., 2009; Vul et al., 2009). At the recent CNS 2010 Annual Meeting, symposium organizer Dr. Tal Yarkoni gave the first talk in a session on the value of a cumulative cognitive neurosc........ Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 11:57 AM

Catch-All Solution

by Journal Watch Online in Journal Watch Online

Eliminating fishery bycatch isn’t always a good idea

... Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 09:00 AM

How Far Can a Bird Fly Nonstop During Migration?

by John Beetham in A DC Birding Blog

Bar-tailed Godwits / Image: Phil Battley Recent studies using satellite telemetry or geolocators have shown that some bird species are capable of very long nonstop flight during migration, far longer than previously thought. Some of the longest belong to Bar-tailed Godwits, which have been tracked performing nonstop flights of over 11,000 km (or about 7,000 miles). Ruddy Turnstones perform similarly impressive flights. A new study in PLoS Biology tries to measure whether there are any limits to ........ Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 05:21 AM

sex, drugs, and a clinical case of denial

by Greg Fish in weird things

The plagues of the Dark Ages are often considered to be one of the worst epidemics humans ever faced. With no sanitary practices, germ theory, or scientific medicine to speak of, the diseases were unstoppable and the patients’ survival depended solely on their luck and the strength of their immune systems. Today, we’re better off [...]... Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 02:25 AM

The Homosocial Intent of Male Sexual Predation

by Ultimo167 in Strong Silent Types

Prohaska and Gailey (2010) refer to the practice of men who seek 'out women they [those men] perceive as fat or unattractive for sport or sexual gratification’ as 'hogging' (p.13). The big ticket issue, therefore, pivots between men who hate women absolutely and men who love other men for all the wrong reasons. In short, misogyny and homosociality.
... Read more »

  • May 8, 2010
  • 02:12 AM

Where Mormons Thrive

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

Among the great American exports to the rest of the world, there are a bewildering variety of religious cults and sects. Not all have take root, but the most successful - groups like the Mormons, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the Seventh Day Adventists - now number in the millions.

Their success is mostly down to prosyletisation, in addition to any endogenous growth (due to fertility) that was the topic of the previous post.

So why are they so successful, and perhaps more importantly where ar........ Read more »

  • May 7, 2010
  • 08:59 PM

Emergency marketing in just 4 hours!

by sandnsurf in Life in the Fast Lane

Selling patients is sad reality of life as an emergency doctor, will things be worse when the four hour rule is adopted Australia wide?... Read more »

Nugus P, Bridges J, & Braithwaite J. (2009) Selling patients. BMJ (Clinical research ed.). PMID: 20008442  

  • May 7, 2010
  • 06:50 PM

So it turns out that software and living beings are different...

by David Basanta in Cancerevo: Cancer evolution

Mathematical and computational biologists use algorithms to model and understand biological phenomena but as useful as computer systems are to modellers they also represent an example of what biological systems are not: designed. A recent study by researchers in...... Read more »

  • May 7, 2010
  • 05:02 PM

Chemical Espionage, Anti-Aphrodisiacs and Hitchhiking…all in a Day’s Work for a Parasitoid Wasp!

by Dr. Carin Bondar in Dr. Carin Bondar - Biologist With a Twist

Evolution has resulted in a remarkable array of reproductive strategies in the animal kingdom.  After all, if one is unsuccessful in passing on one’s genetic blueprints there was really not much point in being alive in the first place.  Several invertebrate organisms employ a ‘polyandrous’ sexual system, wherein a female mates with several males.  It [...]... Read more »

  • May 7, 2010
  • 03:11 PM

The three layers of the Neandertal cake

by Razib Khan in Gene Expression

I assume by now that everyone has read A Draft Sequence of the Neandertal Genome. It’s free to all, so you should. At least look at the figures. Also, if you haven’t at least skimmed the supplement, you should do that as well. It’s nearly 200 pages, and basically feels more like a collection of [...]... Read more »

Green, R., Krause, J., Briggs, A., Maricic, T., Stenzel, U., Kircher, M., Patterson, N., Li, H., Zhai, W., Fritz, M.... (2010) A Draft Sequence of the Neandertal Genome. Science, 328(5979), 710-722. DOI: 10.1126/science.1188021  

  • May 7, 2010
  • 02:41 PM

Muscle Cramps in Calves when Running in Vibram FiveFingers: what is it, what causes it and what can be done about it?

by mc in begin to dig (b2d)

Runners Cramp - Calves cramping - it's AWFUL. In talking with folks who run in VFF's it seems that one usual side effect initially at least is that, when picking up the pace in VFF's (perhaps especially up hill),  calves may start to cramp up. Guaranteed, if we keep going with this run, once that cramp starts, the calf or calves will turn to unyielding, painful rock.  What can be surprising is ... Read more »

Bertolasi L, De Grandis D, Bongiovanni LG, Zanette GP, & Gasperini M. (1993) The influence of muscular lengthening on cramps. Annals of neurology, 33(2), 176-80. PMID: 8434879  

Caplan N, Rogers R, Parr MK, & Hayes PR. (2009) The effect of proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation and static stretch training on running mechanics. Journal of strength and conditioning research / National Strength , 23(4), 1175-80. PMID: 19528850  

Schwellnus MP. (2007) Muscle cramping in the marathon : aetiology and risk factors. Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.), 37(4-5), 364-7. PMID: 17465609  

  • May 7, 2010
  • 01:55 PM

Different types of synaesthetic experiences involve different brain mechanisms

by Mo in Neurophilosophy

SUBJECTIVE experience poses a major problem for neuroscientists and philosphers alike, and the relationship between them and brain function is particularly puzzling. How can I know that my perception of the colour red is the same as yours, when my experience of the colour occupies a private mental world to which nobody else has access? How is the sensory information from an object transformed into an experience that enters conscious awareness? The neural mechanisms involved are like a black box,........ Read more »

  • May 7, 2010
  • 01:00 PM

Bullying and Emotional Intelligence on the Web

by Krystal D'Costa in Anthropology in Practice

Formspring, a recent entry into the social networking milieu, is finally beginning to attract mainstream  attention as parents and educators have to deal with the fallout from preteens and teens who are confronted with ugly criticism on the site. Formspring allows users to post and answer questions, some of which are rather personal. And as users link the site to Facebook and other popular

... Read more »

  • May 7, 2010
  • 12:53 PM

Spinning ellipses perplex the visual system

by Dave in The Daily Monthly

Take a look at this video (Click on the image to play, QuickTime required):

Which ellipse is rotating faster?
While at first it seems quite obvious that the ellipse on the right is rotating faster, if you download the movie and play in loop mode, by counting rotations you should be able to convince yourself that they [...]... Read more »

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