Post List

  • February 11, 2011
  • 11:11 AM

The Arched Metatarsal of Australopithecus afarensis

by Kambiz Kamrani in

Carol Ward1, William Kimbel, and Donald Johanson have published a paper in Science on the arch seen in a newly discovered fourth metatarsal of Australopithecus afarensis (AL 333-160). A lot of the popular press are publishing misleading headlines that this … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 10:46 AM

Scientists Uncover One of the Smallest Dinosaurs Ever

by Brian Switek in Dinosaur Tracking

Another month, another alvarezsaur. In January, paleontologists announced the discovery of a small, one-fingered dinosaur from Inner Mongolia named Linhenykus, and another team of paleontologists has just published the description of a related, slightly older creature in the latest Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. They named it Albinykus baatar, and it was one of the smallest [...]... Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 10:27 AM

Quantum Field Theory (QFT), General Relativity (GR), and Other Exciting Diversions (OED)

by Christine Corbett Moran in Cosmic Rays

QFT I’m lucky to have a job in which I can take two weeks of mornings of work to study a nominally tangential subject in greater depth. These past two weeks I attended a series of  lectures at the ETH on physics beyond the standard model, the first week was very technical but exciting to [...]... Read more »

M. Robinson, K. Bland, G. Cleaver, & J. Dittmann. (2008) A Simple Introduction to Particle Physics. ArXiv. arXiv: 0810.3328v1

  • February 11, 2011
  • 10:05 AM

HIV & Measles – double hit pathogenesis?

by Connor Bamford in The Rule of 6ix

Despite ongoing worldwide eradication efforts, measles infection still results in significant morbidity and mortality. Although, throughout most of the developed world measles infection has been considerably reduced there still exists massive (and deadly) outbreaks in areas such as Africa and South-East Asia. Investigation of the reasons why this disparity occurs therefore  is of major medical, [...]... Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 10:05 AM

HIV & Measles - double hit pathogenesis?

by Connor Bamford in The Rule of 6ix

Despite ongoing worldwide eradication efforts, measles infection still results in significant morbidity and mortality. Although, throughout most of the developed world measles infection has been considerably reduced there still exists massive (and deadly) outbreaks in areas such as Africa and South-East Asia. Investigation of the reasons why this disparity occurs therefore  is of major medical, political and social interest.
Many factors are likely to be behind this major difference - and ........ Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 09:27 AM

The Search for New Antibiotics: Looking for Achilles’ Heel (Again)

by Isobel in Promega Connections

Some of the first available doses of penicillin were used to treat allied soldiers wounded on D-Day. It was the end of one war, but just the beginning of another–one that has gone on for a long time. The story of the development of antibiotics, and the emergence of resistant bacteria, followed by the renewed [...]... Read more »

Smith CL, Ghosh J, Elam JS, Pinkner JS, Hultgren SJ, Caparon MG, & Ellenberger T. (2011) Structural Basis of Streptococcus pyogenes Immunity to Its NAD( ) Glycohydrolase Toxin. Structure (London, England : 1993), 19(2), 192-202. PMID: 21300288  

  • February 11, 2011
  • 09:26 AM

Second-rates and saboteurs: possible consequences of employee of the month schemes?

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

As the BPS' newest employee, I'm thinking about how to make a good impression on my peers and managers. Perhaps I could even make it to Employee of the Month! "EOM" schemes are highly popular across companies, and considered by many to be best practice, so I was fascinated to find a paper by Johnson and Dickinson that starts to explore the motivational consequences of such schemes.The studies described in the article seem to me preliminary, with a small student sample and favouring eyeballing o........ Read more »

Johnson, D., & Dickinson, A. (2010) Employee-of-the-Month Programs: Do They Really Work?. Journal of Organizational Behavior Management, 30(4), 308-324. DOI: 10.1080/01608061.2010.520144  

  • February 11, 2011
  • 06:00 AM

Mitochondrial membrane alpha-tocopherol/homologues: super scavengers or peroxidase inhibitors?

by Colby in

I love research that alters established dogma with new technology (hence Nutritional Blogma), so I felt compelled to highlight this one. Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are structurally important in cell and some organelle membranes.  For simplicity’s sake, we are often … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 06:00 AM

Paucis Verbis: First-Line Treatment for Hypertension

by Michelle Lin in Academic Life In Emergency Medicine

A 50 year-old woman, who presented to the ENT clinic for followup check of a facial fracture, has a blood pressure of 210/100. She is asymptomatic and in no pain. She gets referred immediately to the ED for care.Now you see her in your ED. What next? There is a lot of controversy whether you should treat or not treat asymptomatic hypertension in the ED. The ACEP Clinical Policy says that there is no need to immediately reduce an asymptomatic patient's blood pressure. With "close followup", ........ Read more »

Quynh Bui. (2010) Cochrane for clinicians. First-line treatment for hypertension. American Family Physician, 81(11), 1333-1335. info:/

  • February 11, 2011
  • 05:30 AM

The birth and death of stem cells

by Becky in It Takes 30

Jeremy Gunawardena suggested that it would be appropriate to write about one of Ernest McCulloch’s papers, given the news that he passed away last week.  McCulloch, together with James Till, was responsible for the original demonstration that stem cells actually exist.  He was 84 when he died, two weeks short of the 50th anniversary of [...]... Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 03:01 AM

Transportation Resilience

by Jan Husdal in

Resilience is related to three overarching concepts: 1) the vulnerability to unpredictable shocks, 2) the resources or wealth available to a system to help it change, and 3) the internal controllability of relationships in a system, i.e. its rigidity or flexibility. [ ... ]... Read more »

  • February 11, 2011
  • 01:37 AM

Why Lucy, what sweet kicks you had

by zacharoo in Lawn Chair Anthropology

For decades people have debated whether Australopithecus afarensis was an obligate biped like us, or whether our ancestor was a little less lithe in life on land. They asked, sort of, "Would Lucy have rocked some sweet Air Jordans, or would she have put some flat-foot orthotics in her new kicks?"
Carol Ward and colleagues report on a new fourth metatarsal of Australopithecus afarensis from Hadar in Ethiopia, over 3.2 million years old. The foot bone shows that A. afarensis had the two foot arche........ Read more »

  • February 10, 2011
  • 11:45 PM

Resource Partitioning in Sharks – How Predators Get Along

by Chuck in Ya Like Dags?

I’ve reached a point in the analysis and writing of my thesis where I can start exploring the ecological concepts behind my results, which inspired me to put up this little post here.  In the marine environment, there is often … Continue reading →... Read more »

Laptikhovsky, V.V., Arkhipkin, A.I., & Henderson, A.C. (2001) Feeding habits and dietary overlap in spiny dogfish Squalus acanthias (Squalidae) and narrowmouth catshark Schroederichthys bivius (Scyliorhinidae). Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 1015-1018. info:/

  • February 10, 2011
  • 10:00 PM

The Galactic Centre black hole in close-up

by sarah in One Small Step

he research into the nature and properties of the black hole at the centre of the Milky Way galaxy is one of the highlights of astronomical discovery of the last two decades. Using the biggest telescopes on the planet and state of the art observing technology, we’ve been able to track the young massive stars that are whizzing around the black hole in a dense cluster, and shown with a high level of certainty that the galaxy’s central object really is a supermassive black hole, referre........ Read more »

F. H. Vincent, T. Paumard, G. Perrin, L. Mugnier, F. Eisenhauer, & S. Gillessen. (2011) Performance of astrometric detection of a hotspot orbiting on the innermost stable circular orbit of the galactic centre black hole. MNRAS. arXiv: 1011.5439v1

  • February 10, 2011
  • 08:14 PM

A good idea gone horribly awry

by PalMD in White Coat Underground

In most scientific disciplines, medicine included, hypotheses start with observations.  When John Snow became curious about a London cholera outbreak, he looked for patterns and found that many cases centered around a local well.  While he didn’t have a clear idea what caused cholera, he suspected the water as a source, and tested his hypothesis [...]... Read more »

  • February 10, 2011
  • 08:05 PM

Labels and Logos? Looks like you’re powerless.

by Melanie Tannenbaum in ionpsych

Imagine a woman who wanders into your local coffee shop with this bag thrown over her shoulder. What would you think of her? Well, you might think a lot of things — but more specifically, what would you think about … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 10, 2011
  • 04:51 PM

Neury Thursday: Gating of Alcohol Reward by Lyn Kinase

by Allison in Dormivigilia

Reseachers have shown that the knockdown or overexpression of Lyn kinase increases or decreases alcohol seeking, respectively, by means of modulating dopamine signaling between areas of the central reward circuit. The numerous research observing the gating of alcohol dependence by signaling cascades could yield great therapeutic potential given that these cascades have broad and amplified effects on physiology and behavior.... Read more »

Stuart L. Gibb, * Jerome Jeanblanc, * Segev Barak, Quinn V. Yowell, Rami Yaka, and Dorit Ron. (2011) Lyn Kinase Regulates Mesolimbic Dopamine Release: Implication for Alcohol Reward. Journal of Neuroscience, 31(6), 2180-2187. info:/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5540-10.2011

  • February 10, 2011
  • 04:49 PM

Folk Myth : Can shoe size predict penile length?

by Hel in Substantia Innominata

A folk myth really popular says: (imagine the voice of an old old old old man telling an old old old old legend) “To know the size of the penis of a guy, see his Feet/Nose/Hand/Thumb/Toe/Hair/Dog/Cat/Goat/Number-of-porn-movie-in-his-computer*”. Some scientific have decided to verify this folk myth. There are a kind of MythBusters** of sex. These 3 [...]... Read more »

Park JS, Woo JC, Park NC,. (1999) Body Predictive Index of Penile Size. The Korean Journal of Andrology. info:/

Siminoski, K., & Bain, J. (1993) The Relationships Among Height, Penile Length, and Foot Size. Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, 6(3), 231-235. DOI: 10.1177/107906329300600305  

Shah J, & Christopher N. (2002) Can shoe size predict penile length?. BJU international, 90(6), 586-7. PMID: 12230622  

Chen J, Gefen A, Greenstein A, Matzkin H, & Elad D. (2000) Predicting penile size during erection. International journal of impotence research, 12(6), 328-33. PMID: 11416836  

  • February 10, 2011
  • 04:37 PM

Swedes not so homogeneous?

by Razib Khan in Gene Expression

Credit: David Shankbone
The more and more I see fine-scale genomic analyses of population structure across the world the more and more I believe that the “stylized” models which were in vogue in the early 2000s which explained how the world was re-populated after the last Ice Age (and before) were wrong in deep ways. I’m talking about the grand narratives outlined in works such as Bryan Sykes’ The Seven Daughters of Eve, the subtitle of which was “The Science That ........ Read more »

Salmela E, Lappalainen T, Liu J, Sistonen P, & Andersen PM. (2011) Swedish Population Substructure Revealed by Genome-Wide Single Nucleotide Polymorphism Data. PLoS ONE . info:/10.1371/journal.pone.0016747

  • February 10, 2011
  • 02:56 PM

Digiti quinti sign for hemiparesis

by Robert Badgett in ClinDx

The digiti quinti sign may be more sensitive than the pronator drift test.... Read more »

Maranhão ET, Maranhão-Filho P, Lima MA, & Vincent MB. (2010) Can clinical tests detect early signs of monohemispheric brain tumors?. Journal of neurologic physical therapy : JNPT, 34(3), 145-9. PMID: 20799429  

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