Post List

  • December 27, 2010
  • 10:15 AM

Are the old folks holding us back?

by Christina Pikas in Christina's LIS Rant

We’ve been hearing a lot about how hard it is to get a tenure track job – arguably harder even than it was during other economic recessions. We’ve also been hearing about how the age of NIH PIs is going up. I guess the age at first award is going up as well as the [...]... Read more »

  • December 27, 2010
  • 09:37 AM

explaining the origins of dark matter. or not.

by Greg Fish in weird things

Ordinary baryonic matter, the stuff from which living things, planets, stars, and galaxies are composed, is just a bit player in the grand scale of things. Accounting for about 4.6% of the universe’s mass and energy content, it’s easily overshadowed by dark matter, the invisible clumps of something which creates gravitational lenses and lets spiral [...]... Read more »

  • December 27, 2010
  • 08:48 AM

Double life of bacterial elongation factor EF-Tu

by Vasili Hauryliuk in stringent response

Protein biosyntheses is performed by the ribosome and is assisted by a large number of accessory molecules, with several of them belonging to the GTPase class. EF-Tu is a GTPase which is responsible for bringing the amynoacyl-tRNA to the ribosome, and it is one of the most abundant proteins in bacteria.So abundant, in fact, that it is impossible to explain this abundance by EF-Tu's role in translation. And indeed, recent microscopy investigations has shown how EF-Tu works as a part of bacterial ........ Read more »

Defeu Soufo HJ, Reimold C, Linne U, Knust T, Gescher J, & Graumann PL. (2010) Bacterial translation elongation factor EF-Tu interacts and colocalizes with actin-like MreB protein. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 107(7), 3163-8. PMID: 20133608  

Vats P, & Rothfield L. (2007) Duplication and segregation of the actin (MreB) cytoskeleton during the prokaryotic cell cycle. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104(45), 17795-800. PMID: 17978175  

  • December 27, 2010
  • 07:19 AM

2010 – twelve months of great science

by Joerg Heber in All That Matters

The past year has been a great year for science with major advances in several areas. Too many exciting results to mention here. Instead, to reflect about the past year I have chosen a representative paper for each month of the year that I hope can serve as an example of the great science going [...]... Read more »

Chuang, T., Allan, M., Lee, J., Xie, Y., Ni, N., Bud'ko, S., Boebinger, G., Canfield, P., & Davis, J. (2010) Nematic Electronic Structure in the "Parent" State of the Iron-Based Superconductor Ca(Fe1-xCox)2As2. Science, 327(5962), 181-184. DOI: 10.1126/science.1181083  

Lin, Y., Dimitrakopoulos, C., Jenkins, K., Farmer, D., Chiu, H., Grill, A., & Avouris, P. (2010) 100-GHz Transistors from Wafer-Scale Epitaxial Graphene. Science, 327(5966), 662-662. DOI: 10.1126/science.1184289  

Kelzenberg, M., Boettcher, S., Petykiewicz, J., Turner-Evans, D., Putnam, M., Warren, E., Spurgeon, J., Briggs, R., Lewis, N., & Atwater, H. (2010) Enhanced absorption and carrier collection in Si wire arrays for photovoltaic applications. Nature Materials. DOI: 10.1038/nmat2635  

Ergin, T., Stenger, N., Brenner, P., Pendry, J., & Wegener, M. (2010) Three-Dimensional Invisibility Cloak at Optical Wavelengths. Science, 328(5976), 337-339. DOI: 10.1126/science.1186351  

Yu, X., Onose, Y., Kanazawa, N., Park, J., Han, J., Matsui, Y., Nagaosa, N., & Tokura, Y. (2010) Real-space observation of a two-dimensional skyrmion crystal. Nature, 465(7300), 901-904. DOI: 10.1038/nature09124  

Chadov, S., Qi, X., Kübler, J., Fecher, G., Felser, C., & Zhang, S. (2010) Tunable multifunctional topological insulators in ternary Heusler compounds. Nature Materials, 9(7), 541-545. DOI: 10.1038/nmat2770  

Bae, S., Kim, H., Lee, Y., Xu, X., Park, J., Zheng, Y., Balakrishnan, J., Lei, T., Ri Kim, H., Song, Y.... (2010) Roll-to-roll production of 30-inch graphene films for transparent electrodes. Nature Nanotechnology, 5(8), 574-578. DOI: 10.1038/NNANO.2010.132  

MAIMAN, T. (1960) Stimulated Optical Radiation in Ruby. Nature, 187(4736), 493-494. DOI: 10.1038/187493a0  

Kim, R., Kim, D., Xiao, J., Kim, B., Park, S., Panilaitis, B., Ghaffari, R., Yao, J., Li, M., Liu, Z.... (2010) Waterproof AlInGaP optoelectronics on stretchable substrates with applications in biomedicine and robotics. Nature Materials, 9(11), 929-937. DOI: 10.1038/nmat2879  

Wunderlich, J., Park, B., Irvine, A., Zarbo, L., Rozkotova, E., Nemec, P., Novak, V., Sinova, J., & Jungwirth, T. (2010) Spin Hall Effect Transistor. Science, 330(6012), 1801-1804. DOI: 10.1126/science.1195816  

  • December 27, 2010
  • 07:02 AM

Mistrials due to lawyers making faces, internet misconduct & more

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

Even though we have been hearing about (and writing about) jurors and the internet for a several years now—it was still something of a shock to see the ABA piece identifying 90 verdicts challenged due to jurors’ alleged internet misconduct. We wrote an article on Jurors and the Internet in The Jury Expert back in November [...]

Related posts:It’s not just jurors who are doing it
Educating Jurors: How NOT to start deliberations
Deliberations & the role of the presiding juror
... Read more »

CATHERINE C. ECKEL, ENRIQUE FATAS, & RICK WILSON. (2010) Cooperation and Status in Organizations. Journal of Public Economic Theory, 12(4). info:/

  • December 27, 2010
  • 07:00 AM

Defining pandemic

by Michelle Ziegler in Contagions

Defining a pandemic is not an easy thing to do. It turns out that there has never really been much consensus about what constitutes a pandemic. The term pandemic has been used almost interchangeably with epidemic since the beginning of its usage. In the midst of responding to last year’s H1N1 influenza outbreak public health [...]... Read more »

Morens, D., Folkers, G., & Fauci, A. (2009) What Is a Pandemic?. The Journal of Infectious Diseases, 200(7), 1018-1021. DOI: 10.1086/644537  

  • December 27, 2010
  • 06:35 AM

Does Peer Review Work?

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

Scientific peer review is based on the idea that some papers deserve to get published and others don't.By asking a hand-picked team of 3 or 4 experts in the field (the "peers"), journals hope to accept the good stuff, filter out the rubbish, and improve the not-quite-good-enough papers.This all assumes that the reviewers, being experts, are able to make a more or less objective judgement. In other words, when a reviewer says that a paper's good or bad, they're reporting something about the paper........ Read more »

  • December 27, 2010
  • 05:00 AM

The Doctors who cried “Cure!”

by Nsikan Akpan in That's Basic Science

One man's cure for HIV... Read more »

Allers K, Hütter G, Hofmann J, Loddenkemper C, Rieger K, Thiel E, & Schneider T. (2011) Evidence for the cure of HIV infection by CCR5Δ32/Δ32 stem cell transplantation. Blood, 117(10), 2791-9. PMID: 21148083  

  • December 27, 2010
  • 01:49 AM

Women in Surgery

by Dr Shock in Dr Shock MD PhD

About two third of medical students I am teaching is female. Nevertheless, only few surgeons are women. Especially in general surgery, female physicians are clearly underrepresented. This is in The Netherlands but also in Switzerland and probably in your country too. Why is it, doesn’t surgery appeal to women, is it the male-dominated culture [...]

Related posts:What is being taught in the operating room?
Surgery’s past, present and robotic future
Speciality Choice of Medical Stu........ Read more »

  • December 27, 2010
  • 12:39 AM

Don’t like angry faces? We have oxytocin for that.

by Scicurious in Neurotic Physiology

I’m sure anyone who reads this blog is by now well aware of the many roles of oxytocin: In men, women, in sex, and especially in emotionally related things like pair bonding, trust, and facial recognition related to emotional states. People who just call oxytocin the “love molecule” don’t get the HALF of it. Oxytocin [...]... Read more »

Evans S, Shergill SS, & Averbeck BB. (2010) Oxytocin decreases aversion to angry faces in an associative learning task. Neuropsychopharmacology : official publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, 35(13), 2502-9. PMID: 20844475  

  • December 26, 2010
  • 10:03 PM

England, Prepare to be Brainwashed

by Neurobonkers in Neurobonkers

A review of a study on the correlation between FOX news consumption and levels of misinformation in light of news that the owner of FOX news is planning to by the SKY news agency in the UK.... Read more »

CLAY RAMSAY, STEVEN KULL, EVAN LEWIS, & STEFAN SUBIA. (2010) Misinformation and the 2010 Election. WORLDPUBLICOPINION.ORG. info:/

  • December 26, 2010
  • 09:39 PM

What Happened at Cowboy Wash?

by teofilo in Gambler's House

In comments to the previous post, Graham King raises an important question: assuming that the assemblages of broken, burned, and otherwise unusually treated bones at sites like 5MT10010 at Cowboy Wash represent incidents of cannibalism, what does this mean culturally and historically?  After all, cannibalism has occurred in various contexts in many societies, including our [...]... Read more »

  • December 26, 2010
  • 09:25 PM

This Week in the Universe: December 20th – December 27th

by S.C. Kavassalis in The Language of Bad Physics

Since I’m in the Rockies soaking up my last few days of vacation, I haven’t actually looked at much this week, but there were two papers I thought were worth noting.
Astrophysics and Gravitation:
Reconstructing Histories with Good Statistics
Tracy Holsclaw, Ujjaini Alam, Bruno Sanso, Herbert Lee, Katrin Heitmann, Salman Habib, & David Higdon (2010). Nonparametric Dark Energy Reconstruction from Supernova Data Phys. Rev. Lett. arXiv: 1011.3079v1
The abstract:
Understanding the ori........ Read more »

Tracy Holsclaw, Ujjaini Alam, Bruno Sanso, Herbert Lee, Katrin Heitmann, Salman Habib, & David Higdon. (2010) Nonparametric Dark Energy Reconstruction from Supernova Data. Phys. Rev. Lett. arXiv: 1011.3079v1

Valeri P. Frolov, & Shinji Mukohyama. (2010) Brane Holes. arXiv. arXiv: 1012.4541v1

  • December 26, 2010
  • 06:34 PM

Weekend Review: All about the Gut - Diet and Immunity

by Kevin Bonham in Food Matters

As Boston gets buried under a layer of snow (wooo! blizzard!), the the Weekend Review makes a return with one of my favorite topics: gut microbes.

The fields of immunology, microbiology, nutrition and metabolism are rapidly converging. Here we expand on a diet-microbiota model as the basis for the greater incidence of asthma and autoimmunity in developed countries.

Two important advances in the fields of immunology and gut microbiology have emerged in recent years. First, it has been clearly ........ Read more »

Maslowski, K., & Mackay, C. (2011) Diet, gut microbiota and immune responses. Nature Immunology, 12(1), 5-9. DOI: 10.1038/ni0111-5  

  • December 26, 2010
  • 12:57 PM

My picks for the top studies of 2010

by Michelle Greene in NeurRealism

Presented in no particular order, here are the ten studies of 2010 that I found the most interesting. Enjoy!1. A Wandering Mind is an Unhappy MindI wrote about this study here. Authors used an iPhone app to obtain "what are you doing?", "what are you thinking about?" and "how happy are you right now?" data. It turns out that we are thinking about something other than what we are doing about half of the time, and these are the times we are least happy.2. Electrical Enhancement of Mathematical Abi........ Read more »

Killingsworth MA, & Gilbert DT. (2010) A wandering mind is an unhappy mind. Science (New York, N.Y.), 330(6006), 932. PMID: 21071660  

Job V, Dweck CS, & Walton GM. (2010) Ego depletion--is it all in your head?: implicit theories about willpower affect self-regulation. Psychological science : a journal of the American Psychological Society / APS, 21(11), 1686-93. PMID: 20876879  

Loetscher, T., Bockisch, C., Nicholls, M., & Brugger, P. (2010) Eye position predicts what number you have in mind. Current Biology, 20(6). DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2010.01.015  

Monti, M., Vanhaudenhuyse, A., Coleman, M., Boly, M., Pickard, J., Tshibanda, L., Owen, A., & Laureys, S. (2010) Willful Modulation of Brain Activity in Disorders of Consciousness. New England Journal of Medicine, 362(7), 579-589. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa0905370  

Owen, A., Hampshire, A., Grahn, J., Stenton, R., Dajani, S., Burns, A., Howard, R., & Ballard, C. (2010) Putting brain training to the test. Nature, 465(7299), 775-778. DOI: 10.1038/nature09042  

Bourgeois FT, Murthy S, & Mandl KD. (2010) Outcome reporting among drug trials registered in Annals of internal medicine, 153(3), 158-66. PMID: 20679560  

Dosenbach NU, Nardos B, Cohen AL, Fair DA, Power JD, Church JA, Nelson SM, Wig GS, Vogel AC, Lessov-Schlaggar CN.... (2010) Prediction of individual brain maturity using fMRI. Science (New York, N.Y.), 329(5997), 1358-61. PMID: 20829489  

  • December 26, 2010
  • 10:37 AM

Oscar: training data, models, etc

by egonw in Chem-bla-ics

Oscar uses a Maximum Entropy Markov Model (MEMM) based on n-grams. Peter Corbett has written this up (doi:10.1186/1471-2105-9-S11-S4). So, it basically is statistics once more. If you really want a proper bioinformatics education, so do your PhD at a (proteo)chemometrics department.

N-grams are word parts of n characters. For example, the trigrams of acetic acid include ace, cid, tic, eti, and aci. N-grams of length four include acid, etic, and acet. The MEMM assigns weights to these n-grams, a........ Read more »

  • December 25, 2010
  • 11:51 PM

HeLa, telomeres, and the death of my free time

by Casey Rentz in Natural Selections

I haven't posted much lately. It's because I'm obsessively reading Rebecca Skloot's new book The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, and spending all my free time this week curled up with it (my husband is jealous.) Crazy wild events keep unfolding, and I can't put it down.
I'm about 3/4 of the way through, just past a chapter that wonders why the cells derived from Henrietta's cervical cancer won't die. What makes them 'immortal', thriving in research labs for decades? The answer might be in thei........ Read more »

Jaskelioff M, Muller FL, Paik JH, Thomas E, Jiang S, Adams AC, Sahin E, Kost-Alimova M, Protopopov A, Cadiñanos J.... (2010) Telomerase reactivation reverses tissue degeneration in aged telomerase-deficient mice. Nature. PMID: 21113150  

  • December 25, 2010
  • 06:41 PM

Cannibal Coprolite Christmas Continues

by teofilo in Gambler's House

In their critique of the article reporting evidence for alleged cannibalism at site 5MT10100 near Cowboy Wash on the southern piedmont of Sleeping Ute Mountain, Kurt Dongoske, Debra Martin, and T. J. Ferguson challenged many of the conclusions and lines of evidence presented in the article.  Among these was the evidence of consumption of human [...]... Read more »

  • December 25, 2010
  • 03:14 PM

Platypus: The duck-billed, egg-laying mammal

by beredim in Strange Animals

The platypus is surely one of the world strangest and most bizarre animals. For example, other than the Echidna, its the only mammal to lay eggs. It's also one of the few known mammals with electroreception, or the ability to sense electrical fields produced by other animals. Want more? The platypus is also one of the very few animals that produce venom!... Read more »

Hall, B. (1999) The Paradoxical Platypus. BioScience, 49(3), 211. DOI: 10.2307/1313511  

Bethge, P., Munks, S., Otley, H., & Nicol, S. (2003) Diving behaviour, dive cycles and aerobic dive limit in the platypus Ornithorhynchus anatinus. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A: Molecular , 136(4), 799-809. DOI: 10.1016/S1095-6433(03)00198-3  

Leon Hughes, R., & Hall, L. (1998) Early development and embryology of the platypus. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 353(1372), 1101-1114. DOI: 10.1098/rstb.1998.0269  

Manger PR, Hall LS, & Pettigrew JD. (1998) The development of the external features of the platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus). Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, 353(1372), 1115-25. PMID: 9720109  

  • December 25, 2010
  • 02:40 AM

The C Word

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Near the very end of his report on the excavations at Pueblo Bonito by the Hyde Expedition in the 1890s, George Pepper wrote the following: The finding of cracked and calcined bones in some of the rooms brings up the question of the eating of human flesh by the people of this pueblo.  There was [...]... Read more »

Dongoske, K., Martin, D., & Ferguson, T. (2000) Critique of the Claim of Cannibalism at Cowboy Wash. American Antiquity, 65(1), 179. DOI: 10.2307/2694813  

Lambert, P., Leonard, B., Billman, B., Marlar, R., Newman, M., & Reinhard, K. (2000) Response to Critique of the Claim of Cannibalism at Cowboy Wash. American Antiquity, 65(2), 397. DOI: 10.2307/2694066  

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