Post List

  • February 3, 2011
  • 10:42 AM

Willo the Dinosaur Loses Heart

by Brian Switek in Dinosaur Tracking

At first glance, Willo was not an especially impressive dinosaur. A well-preserved Thescelosaurus, this herbivorous dinosaur was one of the mid-sized ornithischians that lived about 66 million years ago. What made Willo special was its heart. Preserved inside a concretion cradled within the dinosaur’s ribcage were the remains of its major cardiac muscle. But not [...]... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 10:29 AM

Deathstalker v. Nightstalker: Bats take down highly venomous prey without a care in the world

by Matt Soniak in

There are some 1,400 described species of scorpion in the world, and while only 25 of those have proven they can take down a human being with their venom, many more of them can easily injure and kill smaller creatures. Given that, you’d expect scorpions to be important predators in desert food webs, but you [...]... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 10:16 AM

On Prions: Why my British organs are off limit.

by Katie Pratt in

This weekend I renewed my Rhode Island driver’s license. As always, there was a variety of questions to be answered, one of which was “would you like to be an organ donor?” to which I replied: “I’d love to, but I can’t”. As a British citizen who lived in the UK between 1980 (well, I [...]... Read more »

Atarashi, R., Satoh, K., Sano, K., Fuse, T., Yamaguchi, N., Ishibashi, D., Matsubara, T., Nakagaki, T., Yamanaka, H., Shirabe, S.... (2011) Ultrasensitive human prion detection in cerebrospinal fluid by real-time quaking-induced conversion. Nature Medicine. DOI: 10.1038/nm.2294  

  • February 3, 2011
  • 09:50 AM

Jet-lagged? it is in your blood

by Vasili Hauryliuk in stringent response

We, animals, have inbuilt metronomes with roughly 24 hour oscillation period, called circadian clocks. These clocks allow organisms to be in sync with the day / night cycle.And it turnes out that human red blood cells have a circadian clock of their own! And it keeps on ticking when the blood outside the body!Peroxiredoxins comprise a conserved family of antioxidant proteins, and researchers checked for peroxiredoxin SO2/3 oxidation level in human red blood cell samples over ........ Read more »

O'Neill JS, & Reddy AB. (2011) Circadian clocks in human red blood cells. Nature, 469(7331), 498-503. PMID: 21270888  

  • February 3, 2011
  • 09:40 AM

Guest post: Thinking in time

by Wellcome Trust in Wellcome Trust Blog

Where does our sense of time come from? Recent research suggests external factors play a key part in how our brain perceives the passage of time, writes Misha Ahrens. Our sense of time passing is important, and typically assumed to originate from timekeeping circuitry within the brain. But a dedicated ‘brain clock’ has not yet [...]... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 09:33 AM

In the news this month: a roundup of stories from the 217th AAS meeting

by Megan in Rigel

In the news this month we roundup of some highlights from the 217th meeting of the American Astronomical Society held in Seattle during January. The annual meetings of the American Astronomical Society are the largest gatherings of astronomers on the planet, and the presentations cover topics across the whole field of astronomy and astrophysics, including observational results, theoretical studies and simulations. Here are some of the highlights from this year's meeting.Starting big, astronomers........ Read more »

SDSS-III collaboration: Hiroaki Aihara, Carlos Allende Prieto, Deokkeun An, Scott F. Anderson, Éric Aubourg, Eduardo Balbinot, Timothy C. Beers, Andreas A. Berlind, Steven J. Bickerton, Dmitry Bizyaev.... (2011) The Eighth Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey: First Data from SDSS-III. Astrophysical Journal Supplements. arXiv: 1101.1559v1

Sukanya Chakrabarti, Frank Bigiel, Philip Chang, & Leo Blitz. (2011) Finding Dark Galaxies From Their Tidal Imprints. Astrophysical Journal. arXiv: 1101.0815v1

  • February 3, 2011
  • 09:30 AM

Economic Effect of Depression-Related Early Retirement

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

The economic effects of depression and other mental disorders receive limited research attention. One pathway for depression to influence economic status is through early retirement as well as lower rates of employment during the working years.  The effects of early retirement are the focus of a recent Australian study by Schofield et al published in the British Journal of Psychiatry.This study examined adults between the ages of 45 and 64 participating a large survey of the economic impact........ Read more »

Schofield DJ, Shrestha RN, Percival R, Kelly SJ, Passey ME, & Callander EJ. (2011) Quantifying the effect of early retirement on the wealth of individuals with depression or other mental illness. The British journal of psychiatry : the journal of mental science, 123-8. PMID: 21282782  

  • February 3, 2011
  • 09:29 AM

While I was out: Autism, Anxiety Treatments, and how depression affects teen romance.

by Nestor Lopez-Duran PhD in Child-Psych

Hello everyone, I decided to briefly mention three new studies published while I was out and let you suggest which study I should discuss in more detail next week. Make sure you express your preference in the comments section. While I was out: 1. Closely spaced pregnancies increase risk of autism. A study of over [...]... Read more »

Hana M. Vujeva, & Wyndol Furman. (2010) Depressive Symptoms and Romantic Relationship Qualities from Adolescence Through Emerging Adulthood: A Longitudinal Examination of Influence. Journal of Clinical Child . info:/

  • February 3, 2011
  • 09:24 AM

Pickled heads and other scientific heirlooms

by avi_wener in The European Biotechnologist

Did you know that Antonio Scarpa’s head (famous 18th century anatomist) is sitting pickled in a museum in Italy? Quite frankly, neither did I. Why did Scarpa bequeath such a valuable possession to a museum? My guess is that Scarpa loved science so much that he was willing to donate anything to help advance its [...]... Read more »

Editorial. (2011) Preserve the past. Nature, 5-6. info:/

  • February 3, 2011
  • 08:00 AM

Uric acid, not flavonoids increases antioxidant capacity from (apple) juice

by Colby in

In my article on “super”fruits I noted that many flavonoids have poor bioavailability, necessitating in vivo studies when assessing health effects- we cannot extrapolate the antioxidant capacity results of in vitro studies of flavonoid extracts to suggest that they are … Continue reading →... Read more »

Godycki-Cwirko M, Krol M, Krol B, Zwolinska A, Kolodziejczyk K, Kasielski M, Padula G, Grębocki J, Kazimierska P, Miatkowski M.... (2010) Uric acid but not apple polyphenols is responsible for the rise of plasma antioxidant activity after apple juice consumption in healthy subjects. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 29(4), 397-406. PMID: 21041815  

  • February 3, 2011
  • 08:00 AM

General Practice Trainees Remain Unenthusiastic About Managing Obesity

by Arya M. Sharma in Dr. Sharma's Obesity Notes

Given the staggering prevalence of overweight and obesity in most developed countries, there is no other hope than to have general practitioners (and their allied health colleagues) take on the considerable burden of managing obesity in their practices.
In fact, a recent example of a successful weight management program run in primary care just found considerable [...]... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 08:00 AM

Ptarmigans on ptreadmills

by Zen Faulkes in NeuroDojo

You might not want to fly because of the pat-down, but a bird might not want to fly because it’s hard work. As the old joke goes, “I just flew in from New York, and boy are my arms tired.”

Typically, the faster you want to go, the more energy you have to burn. But it’s not a simple relationship. I can walk home from work, or I can run. But if I’m in a hurry, but not too big of a hurry, is it easier to walk fast, or run slow? Have you ever tried walking as fast as you can? It’s hard!........ Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 07:43 AM

Eat proteins read estrogens, said the liver

by 96well in Reportergene

Is the liver a reproductive organ? As you know, I was working with these glowing-in-the-dark mice, in which the reporter luciferase is expressed under estrogen receptor activity. The liver of these animals was always brighter in the morning than in the afternoon: in fact, mice eat during the night, therefore in the morning they were in a fed state and in the afternoon in a relative fasting state. Indeed, after a while, we discovered that some non-identified non-estrogenic food was activating the........ Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 07:33 AM

Seeing the forest for the trees. Thinking about motor imagery in kids with hemiplegia

by Lorimer Moseley in BodyInMind

By Megan Auld In research and in clinical practice, I’m forever finding myself snagged on the details – missing the story by getting caught up with p-values, forgetting that the arm I’m treating is connected to a head.  Which is perhaps why I remember so clearly when Lorimer first persuaded me to focus on treating [...]... Read more »

van Elk, M., Crajé, C., Beeren, M., Steenbergen, B., van Schie, H., & Bekkering, H. (2010) Neural Evidence for Compromised Motor Imagery in Right Hemiparetic Cerebral Palsy. Frontiers in Neurology. DOI: 10.3389/fneur.2010.00150  

  • February 3, 2011
  • 07:21 AM

2010 FDA drug approvals

by Sally Church in Pharma Strategy Blog

The US Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) approved 15 new molecular entities and 6 new biologics in 2010. The total of 21 new products falls below the 25 approved in 2009 and the 24 in 2008. Continue reading →
... Read more »

Mullard, A. (2011) 2010 FDA drug approvals. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, 10(2), 82-85. DOI: 10.1038/nrd3370  

  • February 3, 2011
  • 07:00 AM

February 3, 2011

by Erin Campbell in HighMag Blog

Stereocilia are tiny structures that provide us each with the amazing ability to hear sounds. Next time you are at your favorite band’s concert, be nice to your stereocilia and stand far away from the speakers. Stereocilia are long actin-based structures that are responsible for receiving auditory signals in our inner ears and translating them into electrical signals that our brain will understand. The actin motor myosin XVa and its cargo protein whirlin are important in stereocilia elongat........ Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 06:36 AM

Episode 2 – Time Flies

by Rift in Psycasm

Wherein Rohan, Morgan, Nerisa and James discuss the very nature of time perception. After a brief foray into physics and relativity the discussion finds it way to youtube, detours through the illusion of stationary second hands, and ultimately finishes with our physical passage through time. Is it more useful for us to consider ourselves as... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 05:55 AM

The cosmologist at the end of the universe

by Niall in we are all in the gutter

In a trillion years we will be sitting in a big blob of a galaxy with no extragalactic sources to observe. I know what you are thinking, what about all the unemployed cosmologists in the far future? But don’t start a collection for the hardship fund just yet, luckily a new paper by a researcher at Harvard has come up with a way for astronomers in the far future to measure the parameters of the universe.... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 05:52 AM

why do people blog?

by alison in bioblog

A while ago now I gave a seminar at work called something like The joys of science blogging. (Well, I enjoy it!) It was basically a case for the benefits to scientists and the community of having researchers who also blog about...... Read more »

  • February 3, 2011
  • 05:42 AM

Human (amphibious model): living in and on the water

by Daniel Lende in Neuroanthropology PLoS

At the beginning of the film clip, Bajau fisherman Sulbin sits on the side of a boat on the coast of Borneo, gulping air, handling his speargun.  And then, he drops into the water.  The footage suddenly changes and becomes arresting: silent, dreamy, slow, and so blue.  Sulbin strokes deliberately and descends until he strides along the bottom of the ocean, holding his breath, and hunts for fish through handmade goggles.
Finally, after a couple of minutes, he spears a fish and heads for the su........ Read more »

Bavis, R., Powell, F., Bradford, A., Hsia, C., Peltonen, J., Soliz, J., Zeis, B., Fergusson, E., Fu, Z., Gassmann, M.... (2007) Respiratory plasticity in response to changes in oxygen supply and demand. Integrative and Comparative Biology, 47(4), 532-551. DOI: 10.1093/icb/icm070  

Ferretti, G. (2001) Extreme human breath-hold diving. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 84(4), 254-271. DOI: 10.1007/s004210000377  

Ferretti G, & Costa M. (2003) Diversity in and adaptation to breath-hold diving in humans. Comparative biochemistry and physiology. Part A, Molecular , 136(1), 205-13. PMID: 14527641  

Gislén A, Dacke M, Kröger RH, Abrahamsson M, Nilsson DE, & Warrant EJ. (2003) Superior underwater vision in a human population of sea gypsies. Current biology : CB, 13(10), 833-6. PMID: 12747831  

Gislén A, Warrant EJ, Dacke M, & Kröger RH. (2006) Visual training improves underwater vision in children. Vision research, 46(20), 3443-50. PMID: 16806388  

Parkes, M. (2005) Breath-holding and its breakpoint. Experimental Physiology, 91(1), 1-15. DOI: 10.1113/expphysiol.2005.031625  

Schagatay E, van Kampen M, Emanuelsson S, & Holm B. (2000) Effects of physical and apnea training on apneic time and the diving response in humans. European journal of applied physiology, 82(3), 161-9. PMID: 10929209  

SCHOLANDER PF, HAMMEL HT, LEMESSURIER H, HEMMINGSEN E, & GAREY W. (1962) Circulatory adjustment in pearl divers. Journal of applied physiology, 184-90. PMID: 13909130  

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