Post List

  • April 20, 2010
  • 09:25 AM
  • 892 views

Of pigs, people and porcine polygenism

by Razib Khan in Gene Expression

Jared Diamond famously argued in Guns, Germs and Steel that only a small set of organisms have the characteristics which make them viable domesticates. Diamond’s thesis is that the distribution of these organisms congenial to a mutualistic relationship with man shaped the arc of our species’ history and the variation in wealth that we see [...]... Read more »

Larson, G., Liu, R., Zhao, X., Yuan, J., Fuller, D., Barton, L., Dobney, K., Fan, Q., Gu, Z., Liu, X.... (2010) Patterns of East Asian pig domestication, migration, and turnover revealed by modern and ancient DNA. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0912264107  

  • April 20, 2010
  • 09:00 AM
  • 1,147 views

Methylation to the max!

by stajich in The Hyphal Tip

A new paper from the Zilberman lab at UC Berkeley shows the application of high throughput sequencing to the study of DNA methylation in eukaryotes . They generate an huge data set of whole genome methylation patterns in several plants, animals, and five fungi including early diverging Zygomycete. [...]... Read more »

  • April 20, 2010
  • 07:49 AM
  • 708 views

Drink? - Mines 1.5 Litres Of Your Finest H2O

by Michael Ash in Nutri-Link Ltd - Clinical Education

Water as an essential nutrient: the physiological basis of hydration

There are many times when the decision to say we need ‘8 glasses of water’ a day just pops out. But what is the evidence for this, do we need more or less? Obviously climate, activity, age and availability of fluids are all going to have an effect, and what about if we drink too much and suffer hyperhydration leading to hyponatraemia (a disturbance of the salts in the blood) in which the sodium (Natrium in Latin)........ Read more »

Jéquier E, & Constant F. (2010) Water as an essential nutrient: the physiological basis of hydration. European journal of clinical nutrition, 64(2), 115-23. PMID: 19724292  

  • April 20, 2010
  • 06:00 AM
  • 1,396 views

Using DNA barcoding to conserve tropical freshwater fish

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

... Read more »

  • April 20, 2010
  • 06:00 AM
  • 984 views

Does self awareness make for quicker decisions?

by David Winter in Careers - in Theory

Stimulating self-awareness can lead to reduced conflict in decisions, but does it lead to better choices?... Read more »

Nakao, T., Mitsumoto, M., Nashiwa, H., Takamura, M., Tokunaga, S., Miyatani, M., Ohira, H., Katayama, K., Okamoto, A., & Watanabe, Y. (2010) Self-Knowledge Reduces Conflict by Biasing One of Plural Possible Answers. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 36(4), 455-469. DOI: 10.1177/0146167210363403  

  • April 20, 2010
  • 05:04 AM
  • 1,022 views

'My son could be the next prime minister': How indirect bragging backfires

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

You want to impress but you realise that bold-faced bragging can backfire. So instead you highlight the achievements of those close to you - perhaps your son or daughter's success, or even a colleague's - with the hope of basking in the reflected glory. 'I'm a lecturer at Neverland University,' you say, 'our head of department just won a Nobel Prize.' Bad move. According to Nurit Tal-Or's latest research on the psychology of boasting, this form of indirect self-promotion, known as 'burnishing', ........ Read more »

  • April 20, 2010
  • 01:55 AM
  • 1,194 views

Is Memory for Music Special?

by Dr Shock in Dr Shock MD PhD


Unfortunately not. After reviewing the literature the author of the review: Is Memory for Music Special, hesitantly had to admit that memory for music is not special. Popular music is not better remembered than other kinds of stimuli learned in young adult hood. Setting text or lists to music is not a better way to [...]


Related posts:How does short-term memory work in relation to long-term memory?
The Neuroscience of Music Enjoyment and Depression
Memory psychology for a general audience
... Read more »

Schulkind, M. (2009) Is Memory for Music Special?. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1169(1), 216-224. DOI: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04546.x  

  • April 20, 2010
  • 01:55 AM
  • 795 views

Is Memory for Music Special?

by Dr Shock in Dr Shock MD PhD


Unfortunately not. After reviewing the literature the author of the review: Is Memory for Music Special, hesitantly had to admit that memory for music is not special. Popular music is not better remembered than other kinds of stimuli learned in young adult hood. Setting text or lists to music is not a better way to [...]


Related posts:How does short-term memory work in relation to long-term memory?
The Neuroscience of Music Enjoyment and Depression
Memory psychology for a general audience
... Read more »

Schulkind, M. (2009) Is Memory for Music Special?. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1169(1), 216-224. DOI: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04546.x  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 10:44 PM
  • 854 views

City dwellers of the future: Urban heat island warming may be as large as doubling CO2

by Phil Camill in Global Change: Intersection of Nature and Culture


In 1990, I remember driving on a freeway in Phoenix after midnight.  The temperature was a cool 102 degrees F after breaking the all time heat record of 126 F that day.  Deserts are good at cooling off at night.  But with all of the built environment in Phoenix storing heat from the day, the [...]... Read more »

Mark McCarthy, Martin Best, and Richard Betts. (2010) Climate change in cities due to global warming and urban effects. Geophysical Research Letters. info:/10.1029/2010GL042845

  • April 19, 2010
  • 07:44 PM
  • 502 views

In the Red

by Journal Watch Online in Journal Watch Online

Ecolabelling may not be worth it for Maine lobster fishery

... Read more »

  • April 19, 2010
  • 06:08 PM
  • 979 views

Gloomy Octopii LOVE their HDTV!

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

I’ve got a special place in my heart for the Cephalopods.  These invertebrates have brought the spineless into the realm of charismatic megafauna, and this is not just because of their size.  Cephalopods, and octopii in particular, have large brains and complex visual capabilities.  Although the octopus eye evolved independently of the human eye, [...]... Read more »

Pronk, R., Wilson, D., & Harcourt, R. (2010) Video playback demonstrates episodic personality in the gloomy octopus. Journal of Experimental Biology, 213(7), 1035-1041. DOI: 10.1242/jeb.040675  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 06:01 PM
  • 781 views

Biodiversity, globalization and shifting disease ecologies

by DeLene Beeland in Wild Muse

As I was researching a story for the Observer, I had to go poking through the December 2009 issue of BioScience, and I stumbled across an interesting article reviewing biodiversity declines and global disease ecology. The authors assert that multiple factors working synergistically are leaving humans more at risk of contracting infectious diseases — [...]... Read more »

Pongsiri, M., Roman, J., Ezenwa, V., Goldberg, T., Koren, H., Newbold, S., Ostfeld, R., Pattanayak, S., & Salkeld, D. (2009) Biodiversity Loss Affects Global Disease Ecology. BioScience, 59(11), 945-954. DOI: 10.1525/bio.2009.59.11.6  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 05:30 PM
  • 959 views

Faulty input makes you feel funny, but doesn’t hurt

by Lorimer Moseley in BodyInMind


There is a really attractive theory that has been used to explain why some people have chronic ongoing pain even though there is nothing wrong in the body part that hurts.  The theory suggests that the pain occurs because motor commands don’t match proprioceptive feedback from the body.  The name often given to this theory [...]... Read more »

  • April 19, 2010
  • 03:53 PM
  • 1,183 views

How giant anteaters duke it out

by Laelaps in Laelaps



Two giant anteaters fight it out. On the left, the individuals lash out at each other with their enormous claws, and on the right they posture at each other (with the dominant animal, with the upright and puffed-out tail, on the right). From Kruetz et al 2009.




In the northern state of Roraima in Brazil, small plantations of the black wattle tree (Acacia mangium) serve up plenty of food to carpenter ants and other insects, and the variety of six-legged pests has attracted numerous giant ant........ Read more »

  • April 19, 2010
  • 02:27 PM
  • 753 views

Aspirin Endorsed as Effective Agent in Migraine

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Migraine headaches are a common type of severe headache that can cause significant episodic disability. The one-year prevalence for migraine is estimated to be 18% for women and 6% for men in the U.S. Headaches typically last from four to 72 hours and can interfere with work and interpersonal function.A recent Cochrane Review examined the effectiveness of aspirin. The review included a comparison between aspirin and more recently developed triptan drugs such as sumatriptin (Imitrex). Thirtee........ Read more »

Kirthi V, Derry S, Moore RA, & McQuay HJ. (2010) Aspirin with or without an antiemetic for acute migraine headaches in adults. Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online). PMID: 20393963  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 02:14 PM
  • 613 views

ResearchBlogCast: Can changing diet improve real-world health?

by Dave Munger in ResearchBlogging.org News

Each week, Research Bloggers Kevin Zelnio, Razib Khan, and I will choose a journal article to discuss in podcast form. We’ll make sure it’s an article that we or someone else has covered on their blog, so ideally, you’ll read the blog post first to get a general understanding of the research, then listen to [...]... Read more »

Fung, T., Chiuve, S., McCullough, M., Rexrode, K., Logroscino, G., & Hu, F. (2008) Adherence to a DASH-Style Diet and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease and Stroke in Women. Archives of Internal Medicine, 168(7), 713-720. DOI: 10.1001/archinte.168.7.713  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 01:10 PM
  • 1,281 views

Rapidly mobilizing ecological research after natural disasters

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Unexpected natural disturbances like forest fires, tsunamis, and volcanoes can provide unparalleled research opportunities for gaining resource management and ecological insights. Yet these research opportunities create a formidable challenge. Natural disturbances generally occur without much warning...... Read more »

Lindenmayer, D., Likens, G., & Franklin, J. (2010) Rapid responses to facilitate ecological discoveries from major disturbances. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1890/090184  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 01:00 PM
  • 1,143 views

Autumn Leaves

by Merry Youle in Small Things Considered

Each autumn, as the leaves on the apple trees in the Loire Valley turn from green to gold, observant orchardists notice islands of healthy green within the otherwise yellow leaves. These islands coincide with the site of leaf mines created by the larvae of a small moth, the apple leafminer Phyllonorycter blancardella. A group of French researchers have been taking a closer look at this for some years, and they have recently struck gold.

First a little background. Each apple leafminer begins ........ Read more »

Kaiser W, Huguet E, Casas J, Commin C, & Giron D. (2010) Plant green-island phenotype induced by leaf-miners is mediated by bacterial symbionts. Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society. PMID: 20356892  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 11:12 AM
  • 1,312 views

Cape Coloureds: an instance of a generality

by Razib Khan in Gene Expression

Several months ago I put up a post which reviewed the geographical connections within the total genome content of the Cape Coloureds of South Africa. These peoples (plural because distinctive ethnic groups such as the Griqua were subsumed into this category in the 20th century) are of diverse origin, though generally their African and European [...]... Read more »

Quintana-Murci, L., Harmant, C., Quach, H., Balanovsky, O., Zaporozhchenko, V., Bormans, C., van Helden, P., Hoal, E., & Behar, D. (2010) Strong Maternal Khoisan Contribution to the South African Coloured Population: A Case of Gender-Biased Admixture. The American Journal of Human Genetics, 86(4), 611-620. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2010.02.014  

  • April 19, 2010
  • 10:00 AM
  • 1,363 views

Is That A T. rex Up Your Nose? New Species of Nose-dwelling Leech Discovered

by GrrlScientist in Living the Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted)

tags: evolutionary biology, evolutionary biogeography, molecular biology, medicine, ectoparasite, orificial hirudiniasis, mucosal leech infestation, hirudinoids, leech, Tyrannobdella rex, public health, zoology, PLoS ONE, anatomy, phylogenetic analysis, taxonomy, bpr3.org/?p=52,peer-reviewed research, journal club






Figure 1. Mucosally invasive hirudinoid leeches. Known from a wide variety of anatomical sites including eyes (A) as in this case involving Dinobdella ferox (B), mucosal leech sp........ Read more »

Phillips, A., Arauco-Brown, R., Oceguera-Figueroa, A., Gomez, G., Beltrán, M., Lai, Y., & Siddall, M. (2010) Tyrannobdella rex N. Gen. N. Sp. and the Evolutionary Origins of Mucosal Leech Infestations. PLoS ONE, 5(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0010057  

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