Post List

  • February 16, 2011
  • 05:35 PM
  • 1,790 views

Brain Stimulation for Parkinson Disease: Expert Opinion

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Parkinson disease is a chronic progressive disease with significant impairment and distress.  A host of pharmacological options are available. Unfortunately, drug treatment often is only partially successful in reducing symptoms and can produce problematic adverse events.  Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has emerged as a potential therapeutic option for those with severe Parkinson disease.  DBS involves a neurosurgical procedure that places an electrode or electrodes into the brain w........ Read more »

Bronstein, J., Tagliati, M., Alterman, R., Lozano, A., Volkmann, J., Stefani, A., Horak, F., Okun, M., Foote, K., Krack, P.... (2010) Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson Disease: An Expert Consensus and Review of Key Issues. Archives of Neurology, 68(2), 165-165. DOI: 10.1001/archneurol.2010.260  

  • February 16, 2011
  • 04:49 PM
  • 1,277 views

Prehistoric Brits made the world’s earliest skull-cups

by Ed Yong in Not Exactly Rocket Science

“The skull of Wynric Lance, failed claimant to the throne of Eirea, does not make as good a wine goblet as Lord Shryke had imagined, the despot revealed Monday. “This damn thing is practically impossible to drink out of,” said Shryke at a banquet celebrating the defeat of the Army Of Light… Shryke concluded that [...]... Read more »

Bello, S., Parfitt, S., & Stringer, C. (2011) Earliest Directly-Dated Human Skull-Cups. PLoS ONE, 6(2). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0017026  

  • February 16, 2011
  • 04:23 PM
  • 1,058 views

Mark Burnett VS Charles Darwin in an Epic Battle of Immunity

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

On this, the eve of the 100th season of Survivor, I have myself contemplating the state of immunity.
Perhaps I’ve also been contemplating it since I’ve spent the last 3.5 weeks dealing with a nasty flu bug that has made its rounds to all members of my family.  This month of fitfull sleep, endless vomit and [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 03:38 PM
  • 1,512 views

Are cows magnetic sensors? Re-examining northern alignment

by Zen Faulkes in NeuroDojo

A couple of years ago, a paper by Begall and colleagues made a big splash by claiming that cows could detect, and align to, earth’s magnetic field. This report took on a life of its own. I heard it within the last week on one of the science podcasts I listen (though I can’t remember which one).

This paper got attention not only because this was an unusual claim, but for the way that they determined this. Instead of generating their own data, they looked at pictures of cows in Google Earth.
........ Read more »

Begall S, Cerveny J, Neef J, Vojtech O, & Burda H. (2008) Magnetic alignment in grazing and resting cattle and deer. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(36), 13451-13455. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0803650105  

Hert J, Jelinek L, Pekarek L, & Pavlicek A. (2011) No alignment of cattle along geomagnetic field lines found. Journal of Comparative Physiology A. DOI: 10.1007/s00359-011-0628-7  

  • February 16, 2011
  • 02:42 PM
  • 1,747 views

Can we feed the world and save its forests?

by Tim De Chant in Per Square Mile

Nine billion is the number that will define the 21st century. That’s the number of people expected to live on this planet by 2045. But 9 billion mouths are a lot to feed, and each of them will hopefully have more than enough to eat. Achieving both goals—feeding 9 billion and feeding them properly—will be a [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 02:03 PM
  • 905 views

Don’t read this article and drive

by Mike Braverman in ionpsych

Does your best friend put on makeup and eat barbecue (weird right) while driving? Do you shake your head, disbelieving and worried, when she tells you, “But I’m great at multitasking! I’ll be fine!” Could she be right? It’s possible. … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 01:14 PM
  • 1,485 views

Abort! Abort!

by Vasili Hauryliuk in stringent response

Sometimes things go so wrong that it is just easier to start all over again. Bacteria have these situations too - it's not just us, humans! - and the central dogma of molecular biology (DNA replication, transcription and translation) is no exception.In essence all the three steps of the central dogma share the very same basic topology: there is a message that gets read, there is a tool that reads it and there is a product. It looks like so:Say, in the case of translation mRNA (the mess........ Read more »

Borukhov S, Sagitov V, & Goldfarb A. (1993) Transcript cleavage factors from E. coli. Cell, 72(3), 459-66. PMID: 8431948  

Orlova M, Newlands J, Das A, Goldfarb A, & Borukhov S. (1995) Intrinsic transcript cleavage activity of RNA polymerase. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 92(10), 4596-600. PMID: 7538676  

Kassavetis GA, & Geiduschek EP. (1993) RNA polymerase marching backward. Science (New York, N.Y.), 259(5097), 944-5. PMID: 7679800  

Richter R, Rorbach J, Pajak A, Smith PM, Wessels HJ, Huynen MA, Smeitink JA, Lightowlers RN, & Chrzanowska-Lightowlers ZM. (2010) A functional peptidyl-tRNA hydrolase, ICT1, has been recruited into the human mitochondrial ribosome. The EMBO journal, 29(6), 1116-25. PMID: 20186120  

Antonicka H, Ostergaard E, Sasarman F, Weraarpachai W, Wibrand F, Pedersen AM, Rodenburg RJ, van der Knaap MS, Smeitink JA, Chrzanowska-Lightowlers ZM.... (2010) Mutations in C12orf65 in patients with encephalomyopathy and a mitochondrial translation defect. American journal of human genetics, 87(1), 115-22. PMID: 20598281  

  • February 16, 2011
  • 01:03 PM
  • 2,142 views

Light bending to the extreme

by Joerg Heber in All That Matters

How does a lens work? Well, as the light arrives at the lens it gets bent towards the focal point of the lens. The denser the lens material is in comparison to the surrounding air, the more it is deflected. The materials property that quantifies this effect is the refractive index. For lenses, the general [...]... Read more »

Choi, M., Lee, S., Kim, Y., Kang, S., Shin, J., Kwak, M., Kang, K., Lee, Y., Park, N., & Min, B. (2011) A terahertz metamaterial with unnaturally high refractive index. Nature, 470(7334), 369-373. DOI: 10.1038/nature09776  

  • February 16, 2011
  • 01:00 PM
  • 1,988 views

An ode to Mike, the headless chicken

by Bradley Voytek in Oscillatory Thoughts

(This post amuses me. This is the strangest juxtaposition of research papers and topics I've written about. You'll see.)An ode to Mike, by Bradley VoytekThere once was a farmer from FruitaWhose chicken caused quite a hoopla.     For what happened next,     Made farmer Olsen quite perplexed!And as for the chicken, no "clucks", just some "ooh-aahs".For that farmer had wanted a snack.So he went and grabbed his old axe.     H........ Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 11:44 AM
  • 2,043 views

Demythologizing Arctotherium, the Biggest Bear Ever

by Laelaps in Laelaps


Quite a few years back, so long ago that I can’t really remember much more than the fact that I once visited it, my parents took me to Space Farms Zoo and Museum. Tucked away in northern New Jersey, the roadside attraction is not so much a zoo or a museum as a throwback to [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 11:37 AM
  • 1,063 views

The most powerful substance known to rat.

by B.F. Hebb in ionpsych

For rats, the most alluring substance isn’t alcohol, heroin, or cocaine: it’s not a drug at all, in fact, it’s an artificial sweetener called saccharin. What’s saccharin? Saccharin is a non-caloric sugar substitute that has been used in many low-calorie … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 11:31 AM
  • 1,085 views

How does the brain pick which neurons to use?

by Jason Snyder in Functional Neurogenesis

Wiring. That’s one answer to this question. We know this from topographic maps in the thalamus and neocortex, where the basic units of sensory information are neatly represented in spatially-arranged populations of neurons – the various body parts are represented in specific locations, as are the different frequencies of sound, the different parts of the retina, and [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 10:23 AM
  • 1,575 views

The Psychology of Killing and the Origins of War

by Dan Bailey in Smells Like Science

Has warfare been handed down to us through millions of years of evolution? Is it part of who we are as a species? At the heart of this question is whether humans have a natural capacity to kill other humans. Some social scientists have concluded that evolution has in fact left us with this unfortunate ability.

Primatologist Richard Wrangham, a major proponent of this idea, developed the “Imbalance of Power Hypothesis” to explain how evolution could produce a propensity for warfare........ Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 09:11 AM
  • 2,134 views

Tip of the Week: Melina II for promoter analysis

by Mary in OpenHelix


One of the most frequently-asked questions we get when we are out doing workshops is: how do I find motifs in promoters, and what can I do with them to find more information? Just last Friday we were asked this again at the workshops we did at USC. So for this week’s tip of the week I’m going to show one of the tools I recommend for that purpose–Melina II.  (I also recommended the MEME Suite and VISTA‘s rVISTA features as well, but for this tip I’ll focus on Melin........ Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 09:05 AM
  • 2,133 views

Principle interviewee: Erica Bree Rosenblum

by Jeremy Yoder in Denim and Tweed

Since her office is just down the hall from mine, I couldn’t very well write about Erica Bree Rosenblum’s latest scientific paper without talking to her about it in person. Rosenblum and her coauthor Luke Harmon weave together the stories of three lizard species’ evolutionary responses to the gypsum dunes of White Sands, New Mexico. As Rosenblum told me in our interview, the study both consummates work she began as a doctoral student and suggests new avenues of study at a striking and beau........ Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 09:00 AM
  • 1,398 views

Surprise: Social People Use Facebook

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

New research reveals that social people tend to use Facebook more often than asocial people. I guess the Internet is not just for nerds anymore.


Some related articles on Neo-Academic:Faculty Apparently Use Social Media
Inappropriate Work-related Facebook Checkups
Montana Job Applications Required FaceBook Password
... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 08:44 AM
  • 1,635 views

No evidence that wine helps chemo, despite the headlines

by Cancer Research UK in Cancer Research UK - Science Update

“A glass of red wine for women with breast cancer could boost the success rate of treatment” according to the papers – but the reality is a long way from what the headlines suggest. The stories come from a scientific paper published in the journal Cancer Letters, looking at research on breast cancer cells grown [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 08:38 AM
  • 1,055 views

Orgasms and women vocalizations during sex

by Hel in Substantia Innominata

Guys, I am sure this post will interest you it is about women vocalizations during sex. Is she faking or not? Whatever she is faking or really enjoys the intercourse, the fact is we are different about vocalizations. Some of us are quiet other scream like or worst than porn movie etc but what that [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 08:00 AM
  • 2,295 views

Obesity Genes And Weight Loss After Gastric Bypass

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

Gastric bypass surgery is often considered the “gold-standard” for bariatric surgery and is now widely recommended for the treatment of severe obesity.
But, as I have often blogged before, no form of bariatric surgery guarantees success and patients are often disappointed with the amount of weight they lose (or that fact that there is some weight [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2011
  • 08:00 AM
  • 1,558 views

Are magicians master mimes?

by Zen Faulkes in NeuroDojo

Research on magic has been getting a lot of attention recently, but most of the focus has been on the psychology of the audience.

But what can we learn by studying the performer?


One of the things you need to be a magician, particularly a close-up magician who works with cards or coins, is dexterity. I tried to learn some basic card tricks once, and failed. It requires some very fine motor control, and I didn’t put in enough work to master it.

Many illusions rely on the magician imitating ........ Read more »

Cavina-Pratesi C., Kuhn G., Ietswaart M., & Milner A. (2011) The magic grasp: motor expertise in deception. PLoS ONE, 6(2). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0016568  

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