Post List

  • May 24, 2010
  • 05:30 AM

Sorry Oprah, apparently only white women can work it off.

by Yoni Freedhoff in Weighty Matters

I admit my confirmation bias has exercise being a very minor contributor to a person's overall weight - at least in terms of a direct effect.There's no doubt that exercise plays a major role in weight management, but I feel that it's primary role is to support a healthy living attitude. Anyone who's ever trained hard for anything knows it's a great deal easier to think about healthy eating and healthy habits when you actually feel health than when you don't, and exercise certainly confers a sen........ Read more »

  • May 24, 2010
  • 12:51 AM

On Washing your Fruit: ADHD and Pesticides

by Evil Monkey in Neurotopia

Sci was a little startled recently when she saw "the latest study" on ADHD splashed across the frontpage of Yahoo. You can see it here on Reuters.


(Run for the hills, indeed. Or maybe run AWAY from the hills, since they might have pesticides)

However, the story broke a good TWO DAYS in advance of the paper actually coming out, and so Sci was forced to possess her soul in patience until she had access.

But she's got it now! And let's take a look at this thing.

........ Read more »

  • May 24, 2010
  • 12:00 AM

Genesis 2.0?

by lifeandtechie in Matters of Life and Tech

An analysis of Craig Venter's paper describing the synthesis of a mycobacterial genome and using it to "boot" up a different bacterial cell.... Read more »

Gibson, D., Glass, J., Lartigue, C., Noskov, V., Chuang, R., Algire, M., Benders, G., Montague, M., Ma, L., Moodie, M.... (2010) Creation of a Bacterial Cell Controlled by a Chemically Synthesized Genome. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.1190719  

  • May 23, 2010
  • 10:31 PM

Killer Yeast from South America(?)

by Jennifer Frazer in The Artful Amoeba

It’s not every day you read about suggestions for potential health-related travel advisories to U.S. states. But such is the case for the Pacific Northwest, where an emerging fungal infection has — very unusually for fungi — begun felling otherwise healthy people. A growing number of cases of the potentially fatal disease have been discovered [...]... Read more »

  • May 23, 2010
  • 10:21 PM

Balancing tourists and turtles in Costa Rica

by Paul Spraycar in Coastal EcoVentures

Turtles are often a draw in coastal tourism destinations. As popularity grows, though, pressure to develop more tourist accommodations creates a conflict with the need to protect the turtles’ sensitive beach habitats.A recent paper in Conservation and Society – ‘Tourists and turtles: Searching for a balance in Tortuguero, Costa Rica’ – examines several aspects of ecotourism in Tortuguero, Costa Rica. The results raise some interesting questions about balancing the trade-offs between ac........ Read more »

  • May 23, 2010
  • 04:15 PM

CSI-Silurian: The biological roots of landforms

by Daniel Collins in Crikey Creek

Imagine an episode of CSI-Silurian. The team of detective-scientists are investigating a case of wholescale graffiti in the middle Silurian, and they’re looking for fingerprints. Someone – or something – has taken a knife to the land and carved out a network of rivers and streams.
The usual suspect is quickly identified: the climate. In particular, [...]... Read more »

  • May 23, 2010
  • 02:03 PM

Weight Loss Ups your Power - if you're a competitive cyclist and not going nuts with the CR.

by mc in begin to dig (b2d)

There's been a debate for some time as to whether or not "fasted cardio" is ok. There's a "fasted cardio roundtable" at t-nation discussing this, and good arguments on either side. The title of a recent article made me think "great - a specific study on fasted cardio with elite athletes" Here's the title: "Effects of caloric restriction and overnight fasting on cycling endurance performance." But... Read more »

Aragón-Vargas LF. (1993) Effects of fasting on endurance exercise. Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.), 16(4), 255-65. PMID: 8248683  

Knapik JJ, Meredith CN, Jones BH, Suek L, Young VR, & Evans WJ. (1988) Influence of fasting on carbohydrate and fat metabolism during rest and exercise in men. Journal of applied physiology (Bethesda, Md. : 1985), 64(5), 1923-9. PMID: 3292504  

Ferguson LM, Rossi KA, Ward E, Jadwin E, Miller TA, & Miller WC. (2009) Effects of caloric restriction and overnight fasting on cycling endurance performance. Journal of strength and conditioning research / National Strength , 23(2), 560-70. PMID: 19197210  

  • May 23, 2010
  • 12:00 PM

The Rational Vulcan

by Neuropoly in Neuropoly

Discusses research looking at the neural basis for moral decision making. ... Read more »

  • May 23, 2010
  • 09:51 AM

The hydrogeology of Yellowstone: It's all about the cold water

by Chris Rowan in Highly Allochthonous

The Yellowstone caldera is home to thousands of geothermal springs and 75% of the world's geysers, with kilometers-deep groundwater flow systems that tap magmatic heat sources. As that hot groundwater rises toward the surface, it interacts with shallower, cooler groundwater to produce multi-phase mixing, boiling, and a huge array of different hydrothermal features. While the deep, geothermal water is sexy and merits both the tourist and scientific attention given to it, there's a largely untold ........ Read more »

  • May 23, 2010
  • 07:06 AM

Building & Protecting Bone: Odd Angle Exercise, Resistance, Movement (and shaking) Work

by mc in begin to dig (b2d)

A fear for many women is that as we age, we seem to be more vulnerable to the "Help Help, i've fallen and i can't get up" hip fracture and related. Awhile ago, i wrote about bone building, and what's known about strategies to keep it together and enhance it. Quick review: bone builds in response to demand. Woolf's law is "use it or lose it" - our bone is "remodeling" all the time. So while ... Read more »

Lirani-Galvão, A., & Lazaretti-Castro, M. (2010) Physical approach for prevention and treatment of osteoporosis. Arquivos Brasileiros de Endocrinologia , 54(2). DOI: 10.1590/S0004-27302010000200013  

  • May 23, 2010
  • 06:57 AM

Chess and the illusion of confidence

by Daniel Simons in The Invisible Gorilla

Kruger and Dunning showed that people who are less skilled also overestimate their own abilities more than those who are skilled. Kruger and Dunning showed that this principle applies for domains like senses of humor or logic abilities. It also applies to domains like tournament chess which has a precise measure of skill.... Read more »

  • May 22, 2010
  • 05:43 PM

Lessons from the Indonesian financial crisis of 1998

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

The Indonesian Financial Crisis of 1998 was disastrous for the families caught up in it. The rupiah devalued by 80%, and food prices more than doubled. Worst affected was the price of rice, which rose by 280%.

As a result, the monthly surplus that the average family had to spend on non-food items dropped by two-thirds - from $7.34 to $2.64.

In the period spanning the crisis, the Indonesian Central Statistics Office ran a series of surveys - the Hundred Villages Survey - which followed over 100........ Read more »

  • May 22, 2010
  • 04:22 PM

Sunday Spinelessness - Attack of the Killer Sponge!

by David in The Atavism

Chondrocladia turbiformis, a ruthless carnivore hauled from bottom of the sea off new New Zealand by NIWA scientists, has been named among the top ten new species described last year. This abyssal predator isn't a kraken, a plesiosaur that time forgot or even an improbable (but awesome) hybrid. It's a sponge.
It may come as some surprise that a sponge can be a carnivore, or even that sponges are animals. Sedentary as they are, sponges tick all the boxes for inclusion in the kingdom Anamalia. T........ Read more »

Vacelet, J., Boury-Esnault, N., Fiala-Medioni, A., & Fisher, C. (1995) A methanotrophic carnivorous sponge. Nature, 377(6547), 296-296. DOI: 10.1038/377296a0  

Jean Vacelet,, Michelle Kelly, & Monika Schlacher-Hoenlinger. (2009) Two new species of Chondrocladia (Demospongiae: Cladorhizidae) with a new spicule type from the deep south Pacific, and a discussion of the genus Meliiderma. Zootaxa, 57-68. info:/

  • May 22, 2010
  • 04:04 PM

Anatomy of an ecological catastrophe: what to expect in the deep Gulf of Mexico

by Dr. M in Deep Sea News

The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is now over a month in duration and continues to worsen. Estimates of the total oil flowing from the damaged were estimated initially at 5,000 barrels per day. Now the 26,000 estimate by FSU professor Ian MacDonald looks more plausible. Moreover, the greatest impact of the current spill . . . → Read More: Anatomy of an ecological catastrophe: what to expect in the deep Gulf of Mexico... Read more »

  • May 22, 2010
  • 02:19 PM

Does fast-forwarding through commercials hurt advertisers?

by WhySharksMatter in Southern Fried Science

A few weeks ago, my co-bloggers were doubtful that it is possible to watch 36 hours of television in a week. The main factor that makes television viewing on this scale possible for me is the DVR, which allows
me to tape two shows simultaneously. It also allows me to easily fast-forward through commercials, and  because [...]... Read more »

  • May 22, 2010
  • 10:03 AM

Global warming and malaria

by Bernt Lindtjorn in International Health Research

A recent article by Gething and colleagues in Nature (May 20th, 2010) shows that malaria has declined the past century. The decline has been largest in areas with less malaria transmission.
What is new in this paper is that the malaria decline takes place during global warming. The reasons for decline might be non-climatic factors such [...]... Read more »

Gething, P., Smith, D., Patil, A., Tatem, A., Snow, R., & Hay, S. (2010) Climate change and the global malaria recession. Nature, 465(7296), 342-345. DOI: 10.1038/nature09098  

  • May 22, 2010
  • 09:35 AM

Mitigating Supply Chain Disruptions by using Option Contracts

by Daniel Dumke in SCRM Blog - Supply Chain Risk Management

Assessing the value of Supply Chain Risk Mitigation Strategies... Read more »

  • May 22, 2010
  • 08:58 AM

A close-up look at a Hairy babirusa

by Darren Naish in Tetrapod Zoology

I covered babirusas recently; you might have noticed. As you'll know if you read those articles, Meijaard & Groves (2002a, b) argued a few years ago that Babyrousa babyrussa of tradition should actually be split up into several phylogenetic species. Coincidentally, I published an article on lumping vs splitting in extant mega-mammals only a few weeks before Groves et al. (2010) split white rhinos into two phylogenetic species.

Read the rest of this post... | Read the comments on this post.......... Read more »

Meijaard, E. . (2002) Upgrading three subspecies of babirusa (Babyrousa sp.) to full species level. Asian Wild Pig News, 2(2), 33-39. info:/

  • May 22, 2010
  • 07:52 AM

What is the synthetic cell?

by Captain Skellett in A Schooner of Science

Two days ago scientists at J. Craig Venter announced the creation of the first self-replicating synthetic cell, a bacteria with DNA made in a lab. How did they do it, and what does it mean for us in the future?
First up, the scientists didn’t make life out of nothing, and they didn’t make a new [...]... Read more »

  • May 22, 2010
  • 07:45 AM

Men Prefer Breadwinning to Housework

by Ultimo167 in Strong Silent Types

Oh, the eternal angst of working out why men get home from a hard day at the office and promptly plunk themselves firmly on the sofa! Thebaud(2010) reckons it might be because to the man whose brain has been infiltrated by hegemonic masculinity, breadwinning out there is the only sort of bread that should ever be made.... Read more »

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