Post List

  • October 29, 2009
  • 03:31 PM

Want to quit smoking? Crush cigarettes in a video game

by Jacob Aron in Just A Theory

Smokers looking to quit could be helped by a cigarette-crushing video game, according to a study published in the journal CyberPsychology & Behavior. A group of Canadian researchers discovered that smokers placed in a virtual reality environment full of cigarettes to be destroyed showed a significant reduction in nicotine cravings.
The study took 91 regular smokers [...]... Read more »

  • October 29, 2009
  • 02:02 PM

Endless forms: Oral sex by fruit bats

by Jeremy Yoder in Denim and Tweed

One of those scientific papers that seems to have been written with the blogosphere in mind: biologists have just published records of fellatio by the fruit bat Cynopterus sphinx. Apparently C. sphinx females are pretty flexible -- they lick their mate's penis during copulation, which evidently induces him to stay in longer (see the graph below, with drawing). The authors offer a handful of non-mutually-exclusive hypotheses for the adaptive benefit of the behavior, ranging from lubrication to in........ Read more »

Tan, M., Jones, G., Zhu, G., Ye, J., Hong, T., Zhou, S., Zhang, S., & Zhang, L. (2009) Fellatio by fruit bats prolongs copulation time. PLoS ONE, 4(10). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0007595  

  • October 29, 2009
  • 01:55 PM

Unraveling the Biochemistry of Epigenetic Inheritance

by Michael Long in Phased

Amy Rowat, David Weitz (Harvard University), and coworkers have used a microfluidic device to track the propagation of epigenetic changes in single cell lineages over time. This news feature was written on October 29, 2009.... Read more »

Rowat, A. C., Bird, J. C., Agresti, J. J., Rando, O. J., & Weitz, D. A. (2009) Tracking lineages of single cells in lines using a microfluidic device. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(43), 18149-18154. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0903163106  

  • October 29, 2009
  • 01:24 PM

More on the PLoS Special Collection on the Genomic of Emerging Infectious Diseases

by Jonathan Eisen in The Tree of Life

Discussion of new PLoS Series on Genomics of Emerging Infectious Diseases... Read more »

  • October 29, 2009
  • 12:22 PM

The Mammoths in Spain Lived Mainly on the Plains

by Laelaps in Laelaps

As strange as it might seem, the living African and Asian elephants are only the remnants of what was once a very diverse array of proboscideans. In the not-too-distant past elephants and their closest relatives occupied Africa, Europe, Asia, North America, Central America, and South America, but almost all of them had perished by about 10,000 years ago.* Of these recently-extinct forms the most iconic was the woolly mammoth, Mammuthus primigenius, which was covered in long coats of shaggy hai........ Read more »

  • October 29, 2009
  • 11:55 AM

Predicting the Course of Fundamental Carbon-Based Chemical Reactions

by Michael Long in Phased

To form a cation, or not to form a cation: that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer The formation of a cation intermediate, Or to perform the reaction in one step, And by so doing speed up the reaction? This news feature was written on October 29, 2009.... Read more »

Phan, T. B., Nolte, C., Kobayashi, S., Ofial, A. R., & Mayr, H. (2009) Can One Predict Changes from SN1 to SN2 Mechanisms?. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 131(32), 11392-11401. DOI: 10.1021/JA903207B  

  • October 29, 2009
  • 11:20 AM

Universe lets age clue slip

by Greg Laden in Greg Laden's Blog

If you don't know someone's age, over time they may let out clues that tell you when they were born based on what they remember, or things they claim to have done. This can be very inaccurate. My wife said something the other day that would cause anyone to infer that she was at least ten years older than she is, but it turns out the TV show she was referring to came to her home as syndicated re-runs. (My own personal memory of the recently deceased Soupy Sales is a similar example.)

The Uni........ Read more »

Tanvir, N., Fox, D., Levan, A., Berger, E., Wiersema, K., Fynbo, J., Cucchiara, A., Krühler, T., Gehrels, N., Bloom, J.... (2009) A γ-ray burst at a redshift of z ≈ 8.2. Nature, 461(7268), 1254-1257. DOI: 10.1038/nature08459  

  • October 29, 2009
  • 08:17 AM

Should conservation focus on threatened species? The case of Borneo...

by Rob Goldstein in Conservation Maven

Scientists test whether a focus on threatened mammals in Borneo leads to a cost-effective outcome for conservation read more... Read more »

DRUMMOND, S., WILSON, K., MEIJAARD, E., WATTS, M., DENNIS, R., CHRISTY, L., & POSSINGHAM, H. (2009) Influence of a Threatened-Species Focus on Conservation Planning. Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2009.01346.x  

  • October 29, 2009
  • 02:38 AM

A brief history of Neuroscience

by sandygautam in The Mouse Trap

Image via Wikipedia

The Society for Neuroscience(SfN) was formed 40 years ago and to commemorate the occasion, the journal of Neuroscience has made some review articles open-access. They are written by leading luminaries in their filed and are somewhat scholarly- though I found some of them pretty accessible too.
Two articles relate to reviewing memory research in [...]Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)

Related posts:Launching WikiQuest:: A Psychology and Neuroscience Question bank For some........ Read more »

Squire, L. (2009) Memory and Brain Systems: 1969-2009. Journal of Neuroscience, 29(41), 12711-12716. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3575-09.2009  

Raichle, M. (2009) A Paradigm Shift in Functional Brain Imaging. Journal of Neuroscience, 29(41), 12729-12734. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4366-09.2009  

  • October 28, 2009
  • 06:18 PM

Product placements in movies: When they work, and when they don't

by Dave Munger in Cognitive Daily

Product placements in movies and TV shows are becoming so commonplace that my kids now cynically take note of them whenever they appear. It wasn't always that way. In 1982 when I first saw E.T. I had no idea that Elliott's use of Reeses' Pieces to lure E.T. into his home was part of a clever marketing ploy that had been pre-arranged with the multinational conglomerate selling the candy. Now that nearly every household has a DVR allowing viewers to fast-forward through commercials, advertisers ar........ Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 05:01 PM

The inheritance of religion

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

An earlier post looked at the connection in the USA between religion and a high teen pregnancy rate. High fertility and religion often goes together, and whenever this topic comes up the immediate question is: will the religious inexorably 'out-breed' the nonreligious?The answer to that rather depends on how religion (or lack of it) is transmitted through the generations. Luckily enough, there's just been a very nice study on this by Vern Bengston, Professor of Sociology at the University of Sou........ Read more »

Bengtson, V., Copen, C., Putney, N., & Silverstein, M. (2009) A Longitudinal Study of the Intergenerational Transmission of Religion. International Sociology, 24(3), 325-345. DOI: 10.1177/0268580909102911  

  • October 28, 2009
  • 05:00 PM

Eye of the Beholder

by Eric Michael Johnson in The Primate Diaries

As a species we are consumed by love. Ask yourself, how many cultural productions (films, stories, songs, dances, arts) do not have love, the loss of love or the absence of love as their central theme? Would you be satisfied with what was left over? That fact that love has so much power over us is just one reason why evolutionary research is so fascinating.

A well-worn trope of human culture is mens obsession with female infidelity. Othello. Madame Bovary. Desperate Housewives. These are........ Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 03:49 PM

High-Junk Diet

by Journal Watch Online in Journal Watch Online

Some seabirds are eating much more plastic than others

... Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 03:29 PM

Sea Cucumbers: Finding a cure for the eco-plague of the 21st century

by Scott A. in Thriving Oceans

“I found a cure for the plague of the 20th century, and now I’ve lost it!”  Perhaps it was the connotation of the quote itself or a combination of the fervor in Dr. Robert Campbell’s voice that made it stick in my mind after all these years, but in any case that early 90s Sean [...]... Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 02:37 PM

Phantom limbs can contort into impossible configurations

by Mo in Neurophilosophy

FOLLOWING the surgical removal of a body part, amputees often report sensations which seem to originate from the missing limb. This is thought to occur because the brain's model of the body (referred to as the body image) still contains a representation of the limb, and this leads to the experience that their missing limb is still attached to their body. Occasionally, amputees say that they cannot move their phantom limbs. They are perceived to be frozen in space, apparently because they cannot ........ Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 02:34 PM

Valdoxan: The Ideal Anti-Depressant Part 3

by Neuropsych15 in The MacGuffin

You can read my previous posts on this drug here (1, 2).The Research: Part 2The second study published on the efficacy of agomelatine was by Kennedy and Emsley (2006, 3).This was a 6-week, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study involving 212 patients. Dosage ranged from 25-50mg/day (dose adjustment at week 2 for poor responders). No other active comparator (e.g., paroxetine) was used in this study. Similar to the previous study (Loo et al, 2002), the efficacy of agomelatine on a seve........ Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 02:08 PM

Are your muscles dysfunctional? Understanding Neck Pain: Part 1

by Dr. Wayne Button in Sport Injuries and Wellness

Understand why neck pain is such a reoccurring problem in the health care field. Are you treating the pain or the cause?... Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 01:55 PM

Dynamic interactions of proteins in complex networks: a more structured view.

by Nir London in Macromolecular Modeling Blog

This recent mini-review by Stein et al. focuses on the mechanisms that enable dynamic, transient, short lived interactions in cellular networks. Of special interest are the always popular "motif recognition domain"-"short flexible peptide" interactions. However, post translational modifications and regulation by disorder are also discussed. We concise the review further to some basic/interesting/anecdotal/"pondering worthy" points.

... Read more »

  • October 28, 2009
  • 01:50 PM

Pilgrims and H1N1

by Elements Team in Elements

By: Rosemary Stephen, Elements: Environmental Health Intelligence

Every year millions of people go on pilgrimages. Pilgrims are classified into three groups: ‘religious pilgrims’ who visit religious shrines, ‘cultural pilgrims’ who visit places of cultural significance and ‘notable pilgrims’ high ranking individuals and leaders who travel for personal and political reasons [1]. Religious pilgrims, in particular, are [...]... Read more »

Rosemary Stephen. (2009) Pilgrims and H1N1. Elements: Environmental Health Intelligence. info:/

  • October 28, 2009
  • 01:35 PM

Chromophores, a new class of reporters

by 96well in Reportergene

A new Nature letter has the potential to abnormally extend (until extinction) the whole spectrum of reporter genes. So far, "reporters" were those genes coding for an easily detectable product (i.e., those coding for fluorescent or luminescent proteins). Wei Min and other Harvard's colleagues introduced a new technique, namely stimulated emission microscopy, that seems able to turn into mini-lasers any non-fluorescent light-absorbing molecule. It means that several chromophores, such as haemog........ Read more »

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