Post List

  • August 12, 2010
  • 04:44 PM

Praying for abstinence

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

Religious people are less likely to drink heavily. However, there's a chicken-and-egg problem here. Is it that turning to god help people stay off the demon drink, or is it that hard-core party animals are less likely to be religious?

These questions crop up a lot in studies of religion, but there are a couple of ways round them. Basically, you can look at what happens over time (does being religious at the start of the year predict alcohol consumption at the end), or you can encourage people t........ Read more »

Lambert, N., Fincham, F., Marks, L., & Stillman, T. (2010) Invocations and intoxication: Does prayer decrease alcohol consumption?. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 24(2), 209-219. DOI: 10.1037/a0018746  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 02:15 PM

A Safe, Cheap, and Stable Aqueous Lithium-Ion Battery

by Michael Long in Phased

Yong-Yao Xia (Fudan University, China) and coworkers' aqueous lithium-ion batteries exhibit excellent recharge capability, and with further technical development will become commercially viable. This news feature was written on August 12, 2010.... Read more »

  • August 12, 2010
  • 02:03 PM

Good news for cyclists

by Ashartus in exposure/effect

Several researchers in the Netherlands recently looked at the effects of riding a bike vs. driving a car on health – more specifically mortality and life expectancy. After considering the health benefits of increased physical activity vs. the effects of increased air pollution exposure and increase in traffic accidents, they concluded that on average people [...]... Read more »

Johan de Hartog, J., Boogaard, H., Nijland, H., & Hoek, G. (2010) Do the Health Benefits of Cycling Outweigh the Risks?. Environmental Health Perspectives, 118(8), 1109-1116. DOI: 10.1289/ehp.0901747  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 01:41 PM

Dung Gone

by Journal Watch Online in Journal Watch Online

Scat. Dung. Droppings. Feces. Call it what you will, excrement is often treasured by wildlife biologists. It can tell scientists what an animal is eating, if it is healthy or sick, and each load carries a trove of identifying DNA. Tracking turds is also a longstanding, non-invasive method for monitoring rare, secretive species, such as […] Read More »... Read more »

  • August 12, 2010
  • 01:32 PM

Left hemisphere already specialised for language by two months of age

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

It's widely known that in the majority of people the left hemisphere is dominant for language. But how early does this lateralisation of function emerge? An obvious way to find out is to put babies in a brain scanner and see if their brains show the same left-sided preference for language, compared with other auditory stimuli, as is observed in adults. Of course, from a practical perspective, that's easier said than done.

Ghislaine Dehaene-Lambertz and her colleagues scanned the brains of ........ Read more »

Dehaene-Lambertz, G., Montavont, A., Jobert, A., Allirol, L., Dubois, J., Hertz-Pannier, L., & Dehaene, S. (2010) Language or music, mother or Mozart? Structural and environmental influences on infants’ language networks. Brain and Language, 114(2), 53-65. DOI: 10.1016/j.bandl.2009.09.003  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 01:15 PM

The Eyes Have It - sometimes: using eye position to enhance strength

by mc in begin to dig (b2d)

I was fascinated by Geoff Neupert's article in the latest Power by Pavel Newsletter about his experience using eye position in the kettlebell press. Absolutely awesome to see eye position highlighted in relation to how that action can support movement practice, but also how that support is variable depending on rather a lot else going on in our sensory-motor system, or where the issues are in a complex movement. So let's look at eye position and postural reflexes and how they support m........ Read more »

  • August 12, 2010
  • 01:12 PM

Mixture Models for Ordinal Data

by Christopher Winship in SMR Blog

Richard Breen and Ruud Luijkx, Mixture Models for Ordinal Data, Sociological Methods & Research 2010 39: 3-24. Cumulative probability models are widely used for the analysis of ordinal data. In this article the authors propose cumulative probability mixture models that allow the assumptions of the cumulative probability model to hold within subsamples of the data. The subsamples are defined [...]... Read more »

Breen, R., & Luijkx, R. (2010) Mixture Models for Ordinal Data. Sociological Methods , 39(1), 3-24. DOI: 10.1177/0049124110366240  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 01:00 PM

Biofilms Over Troubled Waters

by Moselio Schaechter in Small Things Considered

by Mark O. Martin

The old saying “pouring oil on troubled waters” is a metaphor for bringing peace to a turbulent situation. Recent events in the Gulf of Mexico have proved the contrary, that oil poured (or spilled) upon seawater can produce the very antithesis of calm. After many weeks of concern, and with the long term threat of possible subsurface oil still strong, recent reports note that the oil slicks at the surface have become more difficult to find. What is happening? To be sure, di........ Read more »

Cunliffe M, & Murrell JC. (2009) The sea-surface microlayer is a gelatinous biofilm. The ISME journal, 3(9), 1001-3. PMID: 19554040  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 11:35 AM

Chemoprevention in Prostate Cancer - do 5alpha-reductase inhibitors make things worse?

by Sally Church in Pharma Strategy Blog

There's a lot of media coverage today surrounding use of 5alpha-reductase inhibitors such as finasteride (Merck) and dutasteride (GSK) and their generic equivalents for chemoprevention of prostate cancer following publication of a study on finasteride by the American Association of...... Read more »

Andriole, G., Bostwick, D., Brawley, O., Gomella, L., Marberger, M., Montorsi, F., Pettaway, C., Tammela, T., Teloken, C., Tindall, D.... (2010) Effect of Dutasteride on the Risk of Prostate Cancer. New England Journal of Medicine, 362(13), 1192-1202. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa0908127  

Walsh, P. (2010) Chemoprevention of Prostate Cancer. New England Journal of Medicine, 362(13), 1237-1238. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMe1001045  

Thompson IM, Goodman PJ, Tangen CM, Lucia MS, Miller GJ, Ford LG, Lieber MM, Cespedes RD, Atkins JN, Lippman SM.... (2003) The influence of finasteride on the development of prostate cancer. The New England journal of medicine, 349(3), 215-24. PMID: 12824459  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 11:27 AM

Marine protected areas: do they work?

by CJA Bradshaw in ConservationBytes

“One measure that often meets great resistance from fishermen, but is beloved by conservationists, is the establishment of marine protected or ‘no take’ areas.” Stephen J. Hall (1998) I’m going to qualify this particular post with a few disclaimers; first, I am not involved in the planning of any marine protected areas (henceforth referred to [...]... Read more »

Stewart, G., Kaiser, M., Côté, I., Halpern, B., Lester, S., Bayliss, H., & Pullin, A. (2009) Temperate marine reserves: global ecological effects and guidelines for future networks. Conservation Letters, 2(6), 243-253. DOI: 10.1111/j.1755-263X.2009.00074.x  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 10:24 AM

Smells From the Past: The Fulton Fish Market

by Krystal D'Costa in The Urban Ethnographer

It’s been a very hot summer here in New York City. And the city smells. It’s more than the smell of baking asphalt, exhaust fumes, and lack of deodorant—these smells are around all year. The heat has awakened older smells. Around midday, if you happen to stroll down by the South Street Seaport you can [...]... Read more »

Cann A, & Ross DA. (1989) Olfactory stimuli as context cues in human memory. The American journal of psychology, 102(1), 91-102. PMID: 2929788  

Djordjevic J, Zatorre RJ, Petrides M, & Jones-Gotman M. (2004) The mind's nose: Effects of odor and visual imagery on odor detection. Psychological science : a journal of the American Psychological Society / APS, 15(3), 143-8. PMID: 15016284  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 10:21 AM

The Eyes Have It - sometimes: using eye position to enhance strength

by mc in begin to dig (b2d)

I was fascinated by Geoff Neupert's article in the latest Power by Pavel Newsletter (issue 209, 08/09/10) about his experience using eye position in the press. Geoff is the author of Kettlebell Muscle. Absolutely awesome to see eye position highlighted in relation to how that action can support movement practice. That support is rather dependent on where and how in a compound move it's being used, and also what else may be happening in our somato-sensory systems. So let's look at eye position an........ Read more »

  • August 12, 2010
  • 09:37 AM

Literally, flying lemurs (and not dermopterans)

by Darren Naish in Tetrapod Zoology

I'm away right now, and haven't had time to prepare new stuff. So, here's something from the archives again: by which I mean, something written in 2006. It's still pretty interesting (in my humble opinion), but I would definitely do some things differently were I to re-write it today [gliding sifaka below from Demes et al. (1991): read on].

Mention 'flying primate' and most zoologists will think you're referring to the well known, controversial theory of John Pettigrew of the University of ........ Read more »

Demes B, Forchap E, & Herwig H. (1991) They seem to glide. Are there aerodynamic effects in leaping prosimian primates?. Zeitschrift fur Morphologie und Anthropologie, 78(3), 373-85. PMID: 1909482  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

Genetic predisposition to chronic pain

by Lorimer Moseley in BodyInMind

Tim Vaughan pretty much suggested that we comment on this paper which concerns a mouse study in which the scientists inflicted a neural injury and looked at a specific genetic marker in the mice who did and didn’t develop chronic symptoms consistent with pain. They also looked at the marker in post-surgical humans who developed [...]... Read more »

Nissenbaum, J., Devor, M., Seltzer, Z., Gebauer, M., Michaelis, M., Tal, M., Dorfman, R., Abitbul-Yarkoni, M., Lu, Y., Elahipanah, T.... (2010) Susceptibility to chronic pain following nerve injury is genetically affected by CACNG2. Genome Research. DOI: 10.1101/gr.104976.110  

McGowan PO, Sasaki A, D'Alessio AC, Dymov S, Labonté B, Szyf M, Turecki G, & Meaney MJ. (2009) Epigenetic regulation of the glucocorticoid receptor in human brain associates with childhood abuse. Nature neuroscience, 12(3), 342-8. PMID: 19234457  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

Who on Earth uses Flickr?

by David Bradley in Sciencetext, in case you didn’t know, is an online photo repository, it’s now part of Yahoo, but nevertheless remains an incredibly popular site for sharing photos and creating galleries. It also acts as a neat resource for finding Creative Commons images for use on blogs and other sites. Flickr describes itself thus: You take photos. [...]Post from: David Bradley's Sciencetext Tech TalkWho on Earth uses Flickr?
... Read more »

Amir Dotan, & Panayiotis Zaphiris. (2010) A cross-cultural analysis of Flickr users from Peru, Israel, Iran, Taiwan and the UK. Int. J. Web Based Communities, 6(3), 284-302. info:/

  • August 12, 2010
  • 07:43 AM

Social Cognition in Polar Bears

by Jason Goldman in The Thoughtful Animal

In most zoos and animal parks, polar bears (ursus maritimus) attract such a disproportionate amount of attention that they are referred to in the industry as "charismatic megafauna," or in other words, "really cool animals." Perhaps it is because it is especially rare for the average zoo-goer to happen upon a polar bear in the wild, or because they live in such an inhospitable environment. Perhaps it's just because polar bears are so damn cute.

Maybe we should just blame Coca-Cola.

Whatever........ Read more »

  • August 12, 2010
  • 06:52 AM

Very Severely Stupid About Depression

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

An unassuming little paper in the latest Journal of Affective Disorders may change everything in the debate over antidepressants: Not as golden as standards should be: Interpretation of the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression.Bear with me and I'll explain. It's less boring than it looks, trust me.The Hamilton Scale (HAMD) is the most common system for rating the severity of depression. If you're only a bit down you get a low score, if you're extremely ill you get a high one. The maximum score's........ Read more »

Kearns, N., Cruickshank, C., McGuigan, K., Riley, S., Shaw, S., & Snaith, R. (1982) A comparison of depression rating scales. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 141(1), 45-49. DOI: 10.1192/bjp.141.1.45  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 03:00 AM

Homeoprophylaxis: An idea whose time has come—and gone

by Peter Lipson in Science-Based Medicine

One of the strengths of modern medical education is its emphasis on basic science.  Conversely, the basic weakness of so-called alternative medicine is its profound ignorance of science and its reliance on magical thinking.  Nowhere is this more apparent than in the attempts of altmed cults to conduct and publish research.  From “quantum water memory” [...]... Read more »

Bracho, G., Varela, E., Fernández, R., Ordaz, B., Marzoa, N., Menéndez, J., García, L., Gilling, E., Leyva, R., & Rufín, R. (2010) Large-scale application of highly-diluted bacteria for Leptospirosis epidemic control. Homeopathy, 99(3), 156-166. DOI: 10.1016/j.homp.2010.05.009  

  • August 12, 2010
  • 01:36 AM

The heart of an octopus is a fickle thing…

by Mike Mike in Cephalove

Cephalopods have quite a neat circulatory system (file that away under “dorkiest things to say at a party”.)  I’m not joking, though; they do!  They have a closed circulatory system, meaning that their blood is contained within blood vessels, instead of just filling their body cavity.  All other molluscs have an open circulatory system, where [...]... Read more »

W.R.A. Muntz, & U. Raj. (1984) On the visual system of Nautilus Pompilus. Journal of Experimental Biology, 253-263. info:/

  • August 11, 2010
  • 09:49 PM

Science Bloggers: Diversifying the news

by Colin Schultz in CMBR

So you know that old, sorry debate about science journalism versus science blogging? The one where the mainstream media are the legitimate suppliers of news about the world, and bloggers are resigned to being snarky commentators? Or how about the one where blogging creates an echo chamber, where the diversity of sources withers, leaving people [...]... Read more »

Walejko, G., & Ksiazek, T. (2010) BLOGGING FROM THE NICHES. Journalism Studies, 11(3), 412-427. DOI: 10.1080/14616700903407429  

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