In Western countries, scores on IQ tests have been rising for several decades - the Flynn effect, named after the political scientist James Flynn. Now Sallie Baxendale at the Institute of Neurology has provided evidence that a similar effect has occurred for the standardised memory tests that are used by clinical neuropsychologists, a finding with implications for the diagnosis of memory problems in contemporary patients.
Baxendale focused on the Adult Memory and Information Processing Battery ........ Read more »
The bullwhip effect in supply chains has been around for some time now. The term "bullwhip effect" originated at Procter & Gamble, and is defined as: demand amplification across echelons within a supply chain. This describes the effect that end customer demand may be very static (as for "Pampers" by Procter & Gamble), but the demand experienced by the manufacturer or supplier shows amplified demand variations. (Fransoo and Wouters (2000))
Causes of the Bullwhip Effect
Lee et al. (1........ Read more »
Lee, H., Padmanabhan, V., & Whang, S. (1997) Information Distortion in a Supply Chain: The Bullwhip Effect. Management Science, 43(4), 546-558. DOI: 10.1287/mnsc.43.4.546
Describes research analyzing 2002-2004 autism prevalence data cross-referenced with socioeconomic data from the 2000 census on the geographic areas under surveillance in the autism-prevalence studies. My post also addresses to what extent these results show a link between autism and SES independent of wealthier families' greater access to health-care services.... Read more »
Durkin, M., Maenner, M., Meaney, F., Levy, S., DiGuiseppi, C., Nicholas, J., Kirby, R., Pinto-Martin, J., & Schieve, L. (2010) Socioeconomic Inequality in the Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder: Evidence from a U.S. Cross-Sectional Study. PLoS ONE, 5(7). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0011551
Recently Will over at Bomai Cruz posed the question, “what determines a species?“ This is a relevant question for spiny dogfish research, since much of what is currently known about Squalus acanthias comes from work on the very well-studied north … Continue reading →... Read more »
Veríssimo A, McDowell JR, & Graves JE. (2010) Global population structure of the spiny dogfish Squalus acanthias, a temperate shark with an antitropical distribution. Molecular ecology, 19(8), 1651-62. PMID: 20345677
Robert Palmer may have already known what researchers now claim: Love can be an addiction. In a new study published in the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, investigators examined and compared the clinical, psychological and biological details of love, passion, gambling, and substance dependence. It turns out that an addiction to love is [...]... Read more »
Fisher HE, Aron A, & Brown LL. (2006) Romantic love: a mammalian brain system for mate choice. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, 361(1476), 2173-86. PMID: 17118931
Fisher HE, Brown LL, Aron A, Strong G, & Mashek D. (2010) Reward, addiction, and emotion regulation systems associated with rejection in love. Journal of neurophysiology, 104(1), 51-60. PMID: 20445032
Koob GF. (2006) The neurobiology of addiction: a neuroadaptational view relevant for diagnosis. Addiction (Abingdon, England), 23-30. PMID: 16930158
Sophia EC, Tavares H, Berti MP, Pereira AP, Lorena A, Mello C, Gorenstein C, & Zilberman ML. (2009) Pathological love: impulsivity, personality, and romantic relationship. CNS spectrums, 14(5), 268-74. PMID: 19407726
Timmreck TC. (1990) Overcoming the loss of a love: preventing love addiction and promoting positive emotional health. Psychological reports, 66(2), 515-28. PMID: 2190254
MRSA, the antibiotic resistant form of Staphylococcus aureus is a major problem in hospitals. The antibiotic resistance makes it hard to erradicate, not just from patients, but in the surounding environment, on surfaces, on medical equipment, on the walls of the hospital. In order to minimise the numbers of dangerous bacteria found in hospital surroundings, quite a lot of research has gone into creating antibacterial coverings or coatings that would reduce the number of bacteria p. Currently how........ Read more »
Pangule RC, Brooks SJ, Dinu CZ, Bale SS, Salmon SL, Zhu G, Metzger DW, Kane RS, & Dordick JS. (2010) Antistaphylococcal nanocomposite films based on enzyme-nanotube conjugates. ACS nano, 4(7), 3993-4000. PMID: 20604574
Acute sinusitis—a “sinus infection”—is one of the most common problems seen by primary care physicians. The current preferred terminology is “acute rhinosinusitis”, a term which is more descriptive of how the disease works (its “etiology”). In most cases, a patient will first develop cold or allergy symptoms including a runny, congested nose (“rhinitis”). The swelling [...]... Read more »
Hickner JM, Bartlett JG, Besser RE, Gonzales R, Hoffman JR, Sande MA, American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Mediciine, Centers for Disease Control, & Infectious Diseases Society of America. (2001) Principles of appropriate antibiotic use for acute rhinosinusitis in adults: background. Annals of internal medicine, 134(6), 498-505. PMID: 11255528
Snow V, Mottur-Pilson C, Hickner JM, American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine, Centers for Disease Control, & Infectious Diseases Society of America. (2001) Principles of appropriate antibiotic use for acute sinusitis in adults. Annals of internal medicine, 134(6), 495-7. PMID: 11255527
ZABOLOTNYI, D., KNEIS, K., RICHARDSON, A., RETTENBERGER, R., HEGER, M., KASZKINBETTAG, M., & HEGER, P. (2007) Efficacy of a Complex Homeopathic Medication (Sinfrontal) in Patients with Acute Maxillary Sinusitis: A Prospective, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Multicenter Clinical Trial. EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing, 3(2), 98-109. DOI: 10.1016/j.explore.2006.12.007
Continuing my series on the Evolution of Colour terms, this post reviews evidence for categorisation constraints on colour perception. For the full dissertation and for references, go here.
This section reviews the conflicting evidence for ability of linguistic categories to affect perception, which is crucial for the Cultural implication. Studies of Embodied Cognition which found evidence . . . → Read More: Evolution of Colour Terms: 6 Categorisation Constraints... Read more »
Aginsky, Michael, V., & Tarr, M. J. (2000) How Are Different Properties of a Scene Encoded in Visual Memory?. Visual Cognition, 7(1-3), 147-162. DOI: 10.1080/135062800394739
Zwaan, R., Stanfield, R., & Yaxley, R. (2002) Language Comprehenders Mentally Represent the Shapes of Objects. Psychological Science, 13(2), 168-171. DOI: 10.1111/1467-9280.00430
Olkkonen, M., Hansen, T., & Gegenfurtner, K. (2010) The structure of color space is largely invariant under illuminant changes. Journal of Vision, 8(6), 574-574. DOI: 10.1167/8.6.574
Connell, L., & Lynott, D. (2009) Is a bear white in the woods? Parallel representation of implied object color during language comprehension. Psychonomic Bulletin , 16(3), 573-577. DOI: 10.3758/PBR.16.3.573
SPALEK, K., & THOMPSONSCHILL, S. (2008) Task-dependent semantic interference in language production: An fMRI study☆. Brain and Language, 107(3), 220-228. DOI: 10.1016/j.bandl.2008.05.005
Claidière, N., Jraissati, Y., & Chevallier, C. (2008) A Colour Sorting Task Reveals the Limits of the Universalist/Relativist Dichotomy: Colour Categories Can Be Both Language Specific and Perceptual. Journal of Cognition and Culture, 8(3), 211-233. DOI: 10.1163/156853708X358155
Winawer, J., Witthoft, N., Frank, M., Wu, L., Wade, A., & Boroditsky, L. (2007) Russian blues reveal effects of language on color discrimination. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 104(19), 7780-7785. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0701644104
Should randomised trials be the only type of evidence accepted for rolling out drug treatments?
If so, then two researchers wrote in the Lancet this week that that we face a problem:
The evidence we have might not be the evidence we need, and the evidence that we need may never become available.
They are writing in response [...]... Read more »
Bang, Y., Van Cutsem, E., Feyereislova, A., Chung, H., Shen, L., Sawaki, A., Lordick, F., Ohtsu, A., Omuro, Y., & Satoh, T. (2010) Trastuzumab in combination with chemotherapy versus chemotherapy alone for treatment of HER2-positive advanced gastric or gastro-oesophageal junction cancer (ToGA): a phase 3, open-label, randomised controlled trial. The Lancet. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(10)61121-X
There are a bunch of “hockey sticks” that calculate past global temps. through the use of proxies when instrumental data is absent. There is a new one out there by McShane and Wyner (2010) that’s creating quite a stir in the blogosphere (here, here, here, here). The main take out being, that the uncertainty is [...]... Read more »
BLAKELEY B. MCSHANE AND ABRAHAM J. WYNER. (2010) A STATISTICAL ANALYSIS OF MULTIPLE TEMPERATURE PROXIES: ARE RECONSTRUCTIONS OF SURFACE TEMPERATURES OVER THE LAST 1000 YEARS RELIABLE?. Annals of Applied Statistics, 4(3). info:/
Mann, M., Zhang, Z., Hughes, M., Bradley, R., Miller, S., Rutherford, S., & Ni, F. (2008) Proxy-based reconstructions of hemispheric and global surface temperature variations over the past two millennia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(36), 13252-13257. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0805721105
Physicians always knew that breath contains clues to diseases. Chemicals in breath often correlate with chemicals in saliva and blood - be it alcohol, anaesthetics or other metabolites (see, for example, this study by Dr Andreas Hengstenberg).As one of my interests is breath-based detection of ovarian cancer, I took note of the recent paper claiming 99% to 100% accuracy of detecting ovarian cancer by metabolites in blood. The authors used customized functional support vector machine-based machin........ Read more »
Zhou M, Guan W, Walker LD, Mezencev R, Benigno BB, Gray A, Fernández FM, & McDonald JF. (2010) Rapid Mass Spectrometric Metabolic Profiling of Blood Sera Detects Ovarian Cancer with High Accuracy. Cancer epidemiology, biomarkers . PMID: 20699376
Mention methane production, and cows or oil companies usually come to mind. But much of the methane in the atmosphere (1-4%) actually escapes from the oceans, some of it produced by microbes known as methanogens (like Methanosarcina acetivorans, above). Some methanogens live in anaerobic – oxygen-free – sediments on the seafloor. Others make their homes in anaerobic fish intestines, the guts of some plankton, or fish and plankton fecal matter. Methanogens live in anaerobic environments. ........ Read more »
Karl, D., & Tilbrook, B. (1994) Production and transport of methane in oceanic particulate organic matter. Nature, 368(6473), 732-734. DOI: 10.1038/368732a0
How what we thought was one great earthquake turned out to be two, or possibly even three, at the same time. Continue reading →... Read more »
Lay, T., Ammon, C., Kanamori, H., Rivera, L., Koper, K., & Hutko, A. (2010) The 2009 Samoa–Tonga great earthquake triggered doublet. Nature, 466(7309), 964-968. DOI: 10.1038/nature09214
Beavan, J., Wang, X., Holden, C., Wilson, K., Power, W., Prasetya, G., Bevis, M., & Kautoke, R. (2010) Near-simultaneous great earthquakes at Tongan megathrust and outer rise in September 2009. Nature, 466(7309), 959-963. DOI: 10.1038/nature09292
Continuing my series on the Evolution of Colour terms, this post reviews studies of cultural constraints on colour naming. For the full dissertation and for references, go here.
This section reviews evidence of cultural constraints on colour terms. Modelling has shown that cultural transmission can cause individual categorisations of colour space to converge on shared categories, . . . → Read More: Evolution of Colour Terms: 5 Cultural Constraints... Read more »
Steels, L., & Belpaeme, T. (2005) Coordinating perceptually grounded categories through language: A case study for colour. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 28(04). DOI: 10.1017/S0140525X05000087
Belpaeme, T., & Bleys, J. (2005) Explaining Universal Color Categories Through a Constrained Acquisition Process. Adaptive Behavior, 13(4), 293-310. DOI: 10.1177/105971230501300404
Kirby, S., Cornish, H., & Smith, K. (2008) Cumulative cultural evolution in the laboratory: An experimental approach to the origins of structure in human language. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(31), 10681-10686. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0707835105
Kirby, S., Dowman, M., & Griffiths, T. (2007) Innateness and culture in the evolution of language. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 104(12), 5241-5245. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0608222104
KOMAROVA, N., JAMESON, K., & NARENS, L. (2007) Evolutionary models of color categorization based on discrimination. Journal of Mathematical Psychology, 51(6), 359-382. DOI: 10.1016/j.jmp.2007.06.001
Brittany Huntington (University of Miami, United States) and coworkers have disentangled the complexity underlying a rigorous evaluation of no-take marine reserve efficacy, demonstrating conservation benefits that are commonly overlooked. This news feature was written on August 21, 2010.... Read more »
Huntington, B. E., Karnauskas, M., Babcock, E. A., & Lirman, D. (2010) Untangling Natural Seascape Variation from Marine Reserve Effects Using a Landscape Approach. PLoS ONE, 5(8). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0012327
How can you conserve a large carnivore when you don’t know how many of them exist? It’s a difficult task, and so a few scientists at the Jaguar Conservation Fund opted to put a number on their target population… only it’s not jaguars they were trying to pinpoint, it was the lesser known maned wolf. [...]... Read more »
Image via Wikipedia Autism is a spectrum disorder , better referred to as ASD, It has been known for some time that differences like autism are, multi-dimensional and not readily reducible to a single set of mechanisms or genetic causes. In the past we have discussed how the disorder may be related to structural differencesRating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)... Read more »
Ecker, C., Marquand, A., Mourao-Miranda, J., Johnston, P., Daly, E., Brammer, M., Maltezos, S., Murphy, C., Robertson, D., Williams, S.... (2010) Describing the Brain in Autism in Five Dimensions--Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Assisted Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder Using a Multiparameter Classification Approach. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(32), 10612-10623. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5413-09.2010
As we grapple to understand why so many men seem to get so depressed but then do nothing positive about it, Fields and Cochran (2010) alternatively challenge health service providers to think more about what they are doing, or not, to assist depressed men.... Read more »
Fields, A., & Cochran, S. (2010) Men and Depression: Current Perspectives for Health Care Professionals. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. DOI: 10.1177/1559827610378347
When I don’t know enough about a subject, I tend to Google and data-mine—obsessively. So it has become with dispersants. In the wake of oil spill, this word has been thrown around, but often without any corresponding depth of information. Kind of like that cousin you always see at family parties but never manage to . . . → Read More: Dispersants! A multi-part series to enlighten your brains.... Read more »
Fingas, M.F. (2008) A Review of Literature Related to Oil Spill Dispersants 1997-2008. Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council (PWSRCAC) Report. info:/
I absolutely adore the theory of evolution. It has a divine predictive, the results so wondrous in and of themselves. During my studies into symbiosis I have seen alot of strange and unusual adaptations, but the deeper I dig they more they keep getting stranger and stranger. The word this week is:
Top: [...]... Read more »
Nelson, X., & Jackson, R. (2007) Complex display behaviour during the intraspecific interactions of myrmecomorphic jumping spiders (Araneae, Salticidae). Journal of Natural History, 41(25), 1659-1678. DOI: 10.1080/00222930701450504
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