Post List

  • February 18, 2011
  • 08:00 PM

Y chromosome reveals more about the Filipinos

by nath in Imprints of Philippine Science

“There is a great difference of opinion among ethnologists who have seen these Negritos, as to the race to which they belong”, S. Kneeland writing in 1883 for Science [1]. He further adds that “they are not far above such an ape as might have been the ancestors of man, with the cerebral convolutions of the orang, [...]... Read more »

Delfin F, Salvador JM, Calacal GC, Perdigon HB, Tabbada KA, Villamor LP, Halos SC, Gunnarsdóttir E, Myles S, Hughes DA.... (2010) The Y-chromosome landscape of the Philippines: extensive heterogeneity and varying genetic affinities of Negrito and non-Negrito groups. European journal of human genetics : EJHG. PMID: 20877414  

Reich D, Green RE, Kircher M, Krause J, Patterson N, Durand EY, Viola B, Briggs AW, Stenzel U, Johnson PL.... (2010) Genetic history of an archaic hominin group from Denisova Cave in Siberia. Nature, 468(7327), 1053-60. PMID: 21179161  

  • February 18, 2011
  • 05:14 PM

The religious hypochondriacs of Nairobi

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

In 2006, the African Population and Health Research Center began a 5-year study into the health of older people (50 years and up) living in two Nairobi 'informal settlements' (aka slums, as pictured). Among other things, they wanted to know how healthy the people living there felt.

So, one of  the questions they asked was simply this: "In general, how would you rate your health today?"

They found that non-Catholic Christians were the most likely to rate their health highly, and Muslims th........ Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 05:00 PM

Neury Thursday: Basic Sleep Mechanisms

by Allison in Dormivigilia

Neuroscientists have better characterized neurotransmitter signaling during specific stages of sleep. Though this information is certainly not ground-breaking, we should, nonetheless, be grateful that there are still scientists out-there that are proponents for strengthening our current data set rather than always aspiring for some radical, scientific finding.... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 01:18 PM

Do people follow trains, or do trains follow people? London’s Underground solves a riddle

by Tim De Chant in Per Square Mile

Transit oriented development is all the rage in urban planning these days. Proponents claim new transit coupled with mixed-use zoning will ignite growth in otherwise struggling areas. Detractors claim running new lines to low-density neighborhoods will leave cities burdened with white elephants. Overall, reality is probably somewhere in between, but transit and population density is [...]... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 01:00 PM

“Did You Pack Your Own Bags?” and other pointless airport security questions…

by Stuart Farrimond in Dr Stu's Science Blog

Perhaps it’s the jet lag setting in; maybe it’s the boredom – but my wife and I have decided that airport security questions such as “Have you packed these bags yourself, sir?” are pretty pointless and should be replaced with some far more interesting alternatives… ... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 11:53 AM

Atypical scrapie – is it more difficult to find than we thought?

by zoonotica in zoonotica

A look at new research into atypical scrapie in sheep suggesting that it may be present in peripheral tissues.... Read more »

Andréoletti, O., Orge, L., Benestad, S., Beringue, V., Litaise, C., Simon, S., Le Dur, A., Laude, H., Simmons, H., Lugan, S.... (2011) Atypical/Nor98 Scrapie Infectivity in Sheep Peripheral Tissues. PLoS Pathogens, 7(2). DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1001285  

  • February 18, 2011
  • 10:40 AM

Giant club-winged pigeons and ninja ibises: clubs, spurs, spikes and claws on the hands of birds (part III)

by Darren Naish in Tetrapod Zoology

Time to finish one of those long-running series of Tet Zoo articles: at last, the long-awaited, much anticipated third and final instalment in the series on the clubs, spurs, spikes and claws present on the hands of numerous neornithine bird species. If you haven't done so already, do check out the previous parts here (on hand claws in general, and carpal spurs and knobs in waterfowl) and here (on carpal spurs in charadriiforms).

Those previous instalments looked at claws (widely present i........ Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 10:14 AM

Did Dinosaurs Die Out Because Males Couldn’t Find a Date?

by Brian Switek in Dinosaur Tracking

What caused the end-Cretaceous mass extinction is one of the greatest mysteries of all time. Paleontologists have racked up a long list of victims—including the non-avian dinosaurs—and geologists have confirmed that a massive asteroid that struck the earth near the modern-day Yucatan peninsula was probably the extinction trigger, but just how that impact translated into [...]... Read more »

Clark, J.M., Norell, M.A., . (1999) An oviraptorid skeleton from the Late Cretaceous of Ukhaa Tolgod, Mongolia, preserved in an avianlike brooding position over an oviraptorid nest. American Museum Novitates, 1-36. info:/

  • February 18, 2011
  • 10:12 AM

New breast cancer ‘accelerator’ gene tracked down

by Cancer Research UK in Cancer Research UK - Science Update

Genes are the ‘instruction manual’ that tell our cells what to do, encoded within the DNA found in virtually every single cell in the body.  Some genes tell cells to start multiplying – essential for replacing dead or damaged cells – while others tell them to stop. The ‘go’ genes are known as oncogenes and, [...]... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 09:29 AM

why we rule the land of the blind robots

by Greg Fish in weird things

We might not be able to beat a natural language search engine or a supercomputer able to crunch every last possible move in a game of chess, but there’s one area where we easily leave just about any machine in the dust. That area? Visual recognition of course. As we saw once before, no computer [...]... Read more »

Carlson, E., Rasquinha, R., Zhang, K., & Connor, C. (2011) A Sparse Object Coding Scheme in Area V4. Current Biology. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2011.01.013  

  • February 18, 2011
  • 09:18 AM

Writing Your Worries Away

by mperr in Promega Connections

Experiencing sweaty palms, a rapid heart rate and nausea shouldn’t be the standard response before taking an important exam. However, for many students this has become a debilitating reaction when the pressure to perform academically affects their test scores. I became more aware of this situation when my 13-year- old niece started “choking under pressure” [...]... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 09:00 AM

There Are Four Kinds of Social Media Users

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

There are four general classifications of social media users, according to recently published research: introvert, novel, versatile, and expert-communicator.

Some related articles on Neo-Academic:Surprise: Social People Use Facebook
Faculty Apparently Use Social Media
Call for Participants in NSF Proposal to Integrate Social Media in Undergraduate Education
... Read more »

Alarcón-del-Amo, M., Lorenzo-Romero, C., & Gómez-Borja, M. (2011) Classifying and Profiling Social Networking Site Users: A Latent Segmentation Approach. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1089/cyber.2010.0346  

  • February 18, 2011
  • 08:43 AM

Ashtekar and the BKL conjecture

by Marco Frasca in The Gauge Connection

Abhay Ashtekar is a well-known Indian physicist working at Pennsylvania State University. He has produced a fundamental paper in general relativity that has been the cornerstone of all the field of research of loop quantum gravity. Beyond the possible value that loop quantum gravity may have, we will see in the future, this result of [...]... Read more »

Abhay Ashtekar, Adam Henderson, & David Sloan. (2011) A Hamiltonian Formulation of the BKL Conjecture. arxiv. arXiv: 1102.3474v1

Marco Frasca. (2005) Strong coupling expansion for general relativity. Int.J.Mod.Phys. D15 (2006) 1373-1386. arXiv: hep-th/0508246v3

  • February 18, 2011
  • 08:00 AM

Eating More Calories Increases Weight (In Some People - Sometimes - Maybe)

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

According to the laws of physics when [calories in] exceed [calories out] people gain weight.
Unfortunately, when you actually deal with people (read: biological systems), this simple law is anything but simple. This is because, thanks to complex biological feedback mechanisms, designed by nature to keep us alive and thriving, changing caloric intake in turn affects [...]... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 06:51 AM

The ‘anti-laser’

by Joerg Heber in All That Matters

I don’t have much time this week and next to blog, but yesterday Science published an interesting paper by Hui Cao and colleagues at Yale that is hard to ignore. It is the ‘anti-laser’. In short, this anti-laser does exactly the same what a laser does, just with time reversed. You can do that because the [...]... Read more »

Wan, W., Chong, Y., Ge, L., Noh, H., Stone, A., & Cao, H. (2011) Time-Reversed Lasing and Interferometric Control of Absorption. Science, 331(6019), 889-892. DOI: 10.1126/science.1200735  

  • February 18, 2011
  • 06:34 AM

Animals with MRSA – a health problem crossing the species barrier

by Jennifer Appleton in Elements Science

Animals can catch MRSA from people and is a serious problem in veterinary surgeries. Jen Appleton reports on this widespread but often overlooked issue

Related posts:Pensioners defend their health and welfare state
Europe: towards sharing skills of health systems?
... Read more »

  • February 18, 2011
  • 03:37 AM

Friday Weird Science: Rats in PANTS

by Scicurious in Neurotic Physiology

Today’s Friday Weird Science comes to us courtesy of ProfLike Substance, who passed on this truly GLORIOUS paper to Sci many weeks ago. I’ve been dying to blog it for ages, but other things (like whale penises) seemed to always come up (you see what I did there) and required immediate blogging before someone else [...]... Read more »

  • February 17, 2011
  • 10:15 PM

Super Flop: Why did Groupon’s joke fall short?

by PsychBusyBee in ionpsych

Right before, during, and after the Super Bowl, Groupon ran three different ads for their online coupon site.

Watch this one and see what you think.

Immediately after these aired, twitter and other news sites were abuzz with disdain for the tasteless nature of the ads.  Why did these ads fall short? Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 17, 2011
  • 09:40 PM

When a standard candle flickers: What happened when the Crab Nebula had a fit?

by mithy in The Enlightenment Junkie

I’ve previously blogged about extreme particle acceleration producing gamma-rays in many different astrophysical contexts, including galactic binary systems & blazars, but I haven’t talked in any great depth about another source of extremely high energy particles: supernova remnants. The Crab Nebula: a typical supernova remnant (Image: NASA/STScI) A supernova remnant is the remains of a [...]... Read more »

Balbo, M., Walter, R., Ferrigno, C., & Bordas, P. (2011) Twelve-hour spikes from the Crab Pevatron. Astronomy . DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201015980  

  • February 17, 2011
  • 09:03 PM

Possible Mechanical Forces Underlying Cancer Metastasis

by Michael Long in Phased

Mechanical forces, e.g. by extracellular matrix remodeling, may be important to cancer metastasis.... Read more »

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