Why do some people get lost in buildings and others always know north from south? Differences in spatial skills, experience, and preferred strategies for finding our way are part of ... Read more »
Carlson, L.A., Hölscher, C., Shipley, T.F., & Dalton, R.C. (2010) Getting Lost in Buildings. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 19(5). info:/
I’ve been browsing the databases for information on clinical encounters. I do this because while I’m well aware of many papers produced on the topic of patient-related predictors of outcome, the swing towards considering clinician characteristics as predictors of outcome means I hope to see more published on this incredibly important topic. A wee while … Read more... Read more »
Cvengros, J., Christensen, A., Cunningham, C., Hillis, S., & Kaboli, P. (2009) Patient preference for and reports of provider behavior: Impact of symmetry on patient outcomes. Health Psychology, 28(6), 660-667. DOI: 10.1037/a0016087
Stomski, N., Mackintosh, S., & Stanley, M. (2010) Patient Self-report Measures of Chronic Pain Consultation Measures: A Systematic Review. The Clinical Journal of Pain, 26(3), 235-243. DOI: 10.1097/AJP.0b013e3181c84e76
It's been interesting to watch as microbiology's own cold fusion debate has been raging. It began with an extraordinary claim about bacteria using arsenate as a replacement when phosphate concentrations are low (1).
It progressed when at least two scientist / bloggers ( here, and here) (not bloggers! the horrror! how uncivil!) gave public "journal club" presentations on blogs (envision dripping slime).
It continued with the science journalists lamenting about having swallowed the hype......... Read more »
Wolfe-Simon, F., Blum, J., Kulp, T., Gordon, G., Hoeft, S., Pett-Ridge, J., Stolz, J., Webb, S., Weber, P., Davies, P.... (2010) A Bacterium That Can Grow by Using Arsenic Instead of Phosphorus. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.1197258
Touw, D., Nordman, C., Stuckey, J., & Pecoraro, V. (2007) Identifying important structural characteristics of arsenic resistance proteins by using designed three-stranded coiled coils. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 104(29), 11969-11974. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0701979104
Bystrom, C., Pettigrew, D., Branchaud, B., O'Brien, P., & Remington, S. (1999) Crystal Structures of Glycerol Kinase Variant S58→W in Complex with Nonhydrolyzable ATP Analogues Reveal a Putative Active Conformation of the Enzyme as a Result of Domain Motion . Biochemistry, 38(12), 3508-3518. DOI: 10.1021/bi982460z
Hazel, P., Parkinson, G., & Neidle, S. (2006) Topology Variation and Loop Structural Homology in Crystal and Simulated Structures of a Bimolecular DNA Quadruplex. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 128(16), 5480-5487. DOI: 10.1021/ja058577
Stem cells are ‘starter’ cells that produce all the organs and tissues of the body. As a baby grows in the womb, its stem cells churn out brand new specialised cells that will form an entire body, from lungs, liver and brain to head, shoulders, knees and toes. And as adults, we still have stem [...]... Read more »
Yeung, J., Esposito, M., Gandillet, A., Zeisig, B., Griessinger, E., Bonnet, D., & So, C. (2010) β-Catenin Mediates the Establishment and Drug Resistance of MLL Leukemic Stem Cells. Cancer Cell, 18(6), 606-618. DOI: 10.1016/j.ccr.2010.10.032
Non-traditional medical treatments in the news always perk my ears. And if the rearchers were looking for, and found, no difference between the traditional and non-traditional treatments, I get a little suspicious (1). And when I see that a reviewer for a popular medical website calls the research sound, I see that as a challenge. Such is the case with Zhao et al. (2010). Researchers compared standard treatment of lazy eye, a patch over the sound eye and daily near vision exercises, with acu........ Read more »
Jianhao Zhao, MD; Dennis S. C. Lam, MD, FRCOphth; Li Jia Chen, PhD; Yunxiu Wang, BMed; Chongren Zheng, DEpid; Qiaoer Lin, DN; Srinivas K. Rao, FRCS; Dorothy S. P. Fan, FRCS; Mingzhi Zhang, MD; Ping Chung Leung, MD; Robert Ritch, MD, FRCOphth. (2010) Randomized Controlled Trial of Patching vs Acupunct Children Aged 7 to 12 Years. Archives of Opthalmology, 128(10), 1510-1517. info:/10.1001/archophthalmol.2010.306
When I was a kid, Spinosaurus was one of my favorite dinosaurs. There was something so wonderfully odd about a massive predator with a sail on its back, but the trouble was that no one had a good idea what this animal looked like. Spinosaurs have been known to paleontologists since 1820. The trouble was [...]... Read more »
Bertin, Tor. (2010) A Catalogue of Material and Review of the Spinosauridae. PalArch's Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 7(4), 1-39. info:/
Scientists love it when the real world validates our more theoretical predictions. It helps, of course, if those predictions are rooted in the real world to begin with. This is more or less what happened in my own research, with results reported in two just-published scientific papers. In the first, which I discussed last week, my coauthor and I showed that some kinds of species interactions can reduce the diversity of the interacting species [PDF]. Today, I'm turning to the second, in which my ........ Read more »
Godsoe, W., Yoder, J.B., Smith, C.I, Drummond, C., & Pellmyr, O. (2010) Absence of population-level phenotype matching in an obligate pollination mutualism. Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 23(12), 2739-46. DOI: 10.1111/j.1420-9101.2010.02120.x
Is it just me or is the CMBR becoming more like a Rorschach test for some theoretical physicists as of late? I mean, first we have Roger Penrose seeing traces of past Big Bangs and assembling them into a somewhat shaky and dubious model of cyclical cosmology, and now we have a team of astronomers [...]... Read more »
So we are coming very close to the W4A Paper deadline for the 2011 edition, indeed, it is on the 10-Jan-2011.... Read more »
Vigo, Markel and Arrue, Myriam and Brajnik, Giorgio and Lomuscio, Raffaella and Abascal, Julio. (2007) Quantitative metrics for measuring web accessibility. Proceedings of the 2007 international cross-disciplinary conference on Web accessibility, 1(1), 99-107. info:/10.1145/1243441.1243465
Bigham, Jeffrey P. and Ladner, Richard E. (2007) Accessmonkey: a collaborative scripting framework for web users and developers. Proceedings of the 2007 international cross-disciplinary conference on Web accessibility , 1(1), 25-34. info:/10.1145/1243441.1243452
If you haven't heard of RNA interference yet, rest assured. You will the next 5-10 years to come. The Pharmaceutical industry is already hailing it as the next big thing in medicine since the advent of antibiotics. However, with all it's promise, there's still heaps we don't know about it. It's like exploring the "new world" looking for resources. ... Read more »
Lee, R. (1993) The C. elegans heterochronic gene lin-4 encodes small RNAs with antisense complementarity to lin-14. Cell, 75(5), 843-854. DOI: 10.1016/0092-8674(93)90529-Y
Fire A, Xu S, Montgomery MK, Kostas SA, Driver SE, & Mello CC. (1998) Potent and specific genetic interference by double-stranded RNA in Caenorhabditis elegans. Nature, 391(6669), 806-11. PMID: 9486653
Napoli, C. (1990) Introduction of a Chimeric Chalcone Synthase Gene into Petunia Results in Reversible Co-Suppression of Homologous Genes in trans. THE PLANT CELL ONLINE, 2(4), 279-289. DOI: 10.1105/tpc.2.4.279
Mattick, J. (2003) Challenging the dogma: the hidden layer of non-protein-coding RNAs in complex organisms. BioEssays, 25(10), 930-939. DOI: 10.1002/bies.10332
Bell’s palsy or idiopathic facial nerve palsy is the commonest cause of facial nerve paralysis. It is sudden in onset and unilateral. The cause of Bell’s palsy remains controversial.... Read more »
Danielides, V., Skevas, A., & Cauwenberge, P. (1996) A comparison of electroneuronography with facial nerve latency testing for prognostic accuracy in patients with Bell's palsy. European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, 253(1-2). DOI: 10.1007/BF00176700
Strategic misrepresentation in online dating: The effects of gender, self-monitoring, and personality traits From Journal of Social and Personal Relationships Internet dating is a growing trend, but can we trust the information that people provide about themselves via online dating services? The researchers in this study investigated over 5000 individuals dating online, using surveys [...]... Read more »
Hall, J., Park, N., Song, H., & Cody, M. (2010) Strategic misrepresentation in online dating: The effects of gender, self-monitoring, and personality traits. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 27(1), 117-135. DOI: 10.1177/0265407509349633
Obesity is a growing global health problem, and we all know why, don't we? It's the fault of corporations that sell corn syrup, and a starkly unequal society (why would you want to quit smoking if you're trapped below the poverty level?) Or, if you prefer a different flavor of self-righteousness ...Read More
... Read more »
Klimentidis, Y., Beasley, T., Lin, H., Murati, G., Glass, G., Guyton, M., Newton, W., Jorgensen, M., Heymsfield, S., Kemnitz, J.... (2010) Canaries in the coal mine: a cross-species analysis of the plurality of obesity epidemics. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2010.1890
Keith, S., Redden, D., Katzmarzyk, P., Boggiano, M., Hanlon, E., Benca, R., Ruden, D., Pietrobelli, A., Barger, J., Fontaine, K.... (2006) Putative contributors to the secular increase in obesity: exploring the roads less traveled. International Journal of Obesity, 30(11), 1585-1594. DOI: 10.1038/sj.ijo.0803326
All this talking I've been doing about those nasty ol' sperm whales hunting down and devouring poor defenseless squid (okay, they're not quite defenseless, but still) might make you think I'm a whale-hater. Not so! In fact, I harbor (heh heh) considerable sympathy for the cetaceans of the world, especially with regard to their tragic toxic burden.
read more... Read more »
Godard-Codding, C., Clark, R., Fossi, M., Marsili, L., Maltese, S., West, A., Valenzuela, L., Rowntree, V., Polyak, I., Cannon, J.... (2010) Pacific Ocean–wide Profile of CYP1A1 Expression, Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Ratios, and Organic Contaminant Burden in Sperm Whale Skin Biopsies. Environmental Health Perspectives. DOI: 10.1289/ehp.0901809
People who minimize or deny the threat of climate change (or ocean acidification, as in part IV of Dr. Everett’s testimony) will often demand that the change be “unprecedented” – that nothing like it has ever happened before in Earth history. (eg, here) The reasoning seems to be that if there have been ecological events like [...]... Read more »
Ridgwell, A., & Schmidt, D. (2010) Past constraints on the vulnerability of marine calcifiers to massive carbon dioxide release. Nature Geoscience, 3(3), 196-200. DOI: 10.1038/ngeo755
It's hard to imagine that knowledge could be lost today. Technology seems to have put the ability to know almost everything within our grasp. So when researchers announced that they had "found" a previously unknown Peruvian language earlier this year, it was strangely tantalizing. Here was knowledge that we couldn't Google. We could plumb the archives and look for clues that might offer answers, but true understanding would not be easily attainable. And in all likelihood, we would have to resign........ Read more »
Quilter, J., Zender, M., Spalding, K., Jordán, R., Mora, C., & Murga, J. (2010) RESEARCH ARTICLES: Traces of a Lost Language and Number System Discovered on the North Coast of Peru. American Anthropologist, 112(3), 357-369. DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1433.2010.01245.x
Congratulations to Walid D. Fakhouri, Joseph L. Nuñez, and Frances Trail for their recently published work on reduction of growth hormone production by the herbicide Atrazine. Growth hormone is important, as will sound obvious, because it plays a key role in growth (cell proliferation) but also because it influences production of many other hormones including those important in sexual development and reproduction. Changes in growth hormone produce a range of effects that extend far b........ Read more »
Fakhouri, W., Nuñez, J., & Trail, F. (2010) Atrazine Binds to the Growth Hormone–Releasing Hormone Receptor and Affects Growth Hormone Gene Expression. Environmental Health Perspectives, 118(10), 1400-1405. DOI: 10.1289/ehp.0900738
My latest story for Wired Playbook highlights new research that investigates whether the common asthma medication, salbutamol/albuterol, could enhance athletic performance when taken in extremely large doses. A research team led by Jimmi Elers at the Respiratory Research Unit at Bispebjerg Hospital in Copenhagen was curious: Although taking a few puffs of salbutamol hasn’t shown [...]... Read more »
Elers, J., Mørkeberg, J., Jansen, T., Belhage, B., & Backer, V. (2010) High-dose inhaled salbutamol has no acute effects on aerobic capacity or oxygen uptake kinetics in healthy trained men. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine . DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0838.2010.01251.x
In conversation, we often imitate each other’s speech style and may even change our accent to fit that of the person we’re talking to. A recent study in Psychological Science, ... Read more »
There have been several attempts to develop a standardised approach to self management – one of the most popular in New Zealand is the Flinders Program (TM). This is a programme developed in Australia from the 1990 Australian Coordinated Care Trials. It’s based on cognitive behavioural therapy, includes problem solving and motivational interviewing techniques, and … Read more... Read more »
M Horsburgh, J Bycroft, F Goodyear-Smith, D Roy, F Mahony, E Donnell, D Miller. (2010) The Flinders Program of Chronic Condition Self-Management in New Zealand: Survey findings. Journal of Primary Health Care, 2(4), 288-293. info:/
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