Post List

  • December 12, 2010
  • 02:17 PM

The pain system is so complicated!

by Bronwyn Thompson in Healthskills: Skills for Healthy Living

There are a couple of ways to approach the problem of pain – the one I grew up with is the medical one: diagnose the problem, fix the problem, life returns to normal.  The person’s role in this is to be open about what is wrong, let the treatment provider know the information (and only … Read more... Read more »

Neugebauer, V., Galhardo, V., Maione, S., & Mackey, S. (2009) Forebrain pain mechanisms. Brain Research Reviews, 60(1), 226-242. DOI: 10.1016/j.brainresrev.2008.12.014  

  • December 12, 2010
  • 02:05 PM

The painful legacy of torture

by Lorimer Moseley in BodyInMind

Torture has received a great deal of deserved media attention in recent years. In large part this is due to people who should know better somewhat shamelessly jumping through legal hoops in attempts to distinguish which ways of abusing their fellow humans are acceptable and distinct from torture. This should be surprising in the current [...]... Read more »

Williams AC, Peña CR, & Rice AS. (2010) Persistent pain in survivors of torture: a cohort study. Journal of pain and symptom management, 40(5), 715-22. PMID: 20678891  

  • December 12, 2010
  • 02:02 PM

Why is ecology important to agriculture? Ask the Plataspids.

by Joe Ballenger in Biofortified

Before moving to the southern US, I lived in Iowa. If there’s one thing Iowa’s known for, it’s known for our row crops. Everywhere in the summer is green and pretty and filled with all sorts of farmland and not much visible biodiversity outside of that. If you live in certain areas of the south, it’s really actually very similar. There are lots of rowcrops… peanuts and soybeans instead of corn and soybeans but Continue reading...... Read more »

D. R. Suiter,1 J. E. Eger, Jr.,2 W. A. Gardner, R. C. Kemerait,3 J. N. All,4 P. M. Roberts,5 J. K. Greene,6 L. M. Ames,, & G. D. Buntin, T. M. Jenkins, and G. K. Douce5. (2010) Discovery and Distribution of Megacopta cribraria (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Plataspidae) in Northeast Georgia. Journal of Integrated Pest Management. info:/

  • December 12, 2010
  • 02:00 PM

Optics & stereopsis: how 3D vision is affected by retinal image quality?

by Pablo Artal in Optics confidential

Stereo (3D) vision is affected by the quality of the images in the retina. An adaptive optics instrument allows the testing of 3D vision and more...... Read more »

  • December 12, 2010
  • 11:28 AM

A new aspirin preparation: Possibility in prevention of colorectal cancer?

by Debajyoti Datta in Medicine...Life

A recently published study in The Lancet has shown that low dose aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) intake reduces the incidence and mortality of colorectal cancer. The study followed participants of four randomized controlled trials of aspirin against control and one trial of different doses of aspirin with a median follow-up period of 18.3 years. The risk reduction was greatest in case of proximal colon cancers and this is important as they are difficult to detect by screening colonoscopy. It may ........ Read more »

  • December 12, 2010
  • 07:00 AM

Preventing HIV Before Exposure

by Shaheen Lakhan in Brain Blogger

Currently, more than 33 million people worldwide are living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Each year, there are nearly 3 million new infections. The growing worldwide burden of this infection, which causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), has prompted researchers to investigate novel approaches to infection control and prevention. A recent investigation published by [...]... Read more »

Abdool Karim Q, Abdool Karim SS, Frohlich JA, Grobler AC, Baxter C, Mansoor LE, Kharsany AB, Sibeko S, Mlisana KP, Omar Z.... (2010) Effectiveness and safety of tenofovir gel, an antiretroviral microbicide, for the prevention of HIV infection in women. Science (New York, N.Y.), 329(5996), 1168-74. PMID: 20643915  

Golub SA, Kowalczyk W, Weinberger CL, & Parsons JT. (2010) Preexposure prophylaxis and predicted condom use among high-risk men who have sex with men. Journal of acquired immune deficiency syndromes (1999), 54(5), 548-55. PMID: 20512046  

Johnson WD, Diaz RM, Flanders WD, Goodman M, Hill AN, Holtgrave D, Malow R, & McClellan WM. (2008) Behavioral interventions to reduce risk for sexual transmission of HIV among men who have sex with men. Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online). PMID: 18646068  

Oster AM Md, Dorell CG Md Mph, Mena LA Md Mph, Thomas PE Phd, Toledo CA Phd, & Heffelfinger JD Md Mph. (2010) HIV Risk Among Young African American Men Who Have Sex With Men: A Case-Control Study in Mississippi. American journal of public health. PMID: 21088266  

Supervie V, García-Lerma JG, Heneine W, & Blower S. (2010) HIV, transmitted drug resistance, and the paradox of preexposure prophylaxis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 107(27), 12381-6. PMID: 20616092  

Grant, R., Lama, J., Anderson, P., McMahan, V., Liu, A., Vargas, L., Goicochea, P., Casapía, M., Guanira-Carranza, J., Ramirez-Cardich, M.... (2010) Preexposure Chemoprophylaxis for HIV Prevention in Men Who Have Sex with Men. New England Journal of Medicine, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1011205  

  • December 12, 2010
  • 04:00 AM

Ketogenic Diet for Alzheimer’s Disease?

by Steve Parker, M.D. in Diabetic Mediterranean Diet Blog

Ketogenic diets have seen a resurgence in the last two decades as a treatment for childhood epilepsy, particularly difficult-to-control cases not responding to drug therapy.  It works, even in adults.  That’s why some brain experts are wondering if ketogenic diets … Continue reading →... Read more »

Gasior M, Rogawski MA, & Hartman AL. (2006) Neuroprotective and disease-modifying effects of the ketogenic diet. Behavioural pharmacology, 17(5-6), 431-9. PMID: 16940764  

  • December 11, 2010
  • 05:30 PM

The transcendant temporal lobe

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

The temporal lobe of the brain - the bit just above where your ear is - keeps cropping up in studies of spirituality.

In this latest one, Peter Van Schuerbeek and colleagues from the University of Brussels have looked at the volume of grey matter in different parts of the brain in young women.

They were interested to see how the volumes of different parts of the brain correlate with personality, and in particular testing a particular model of personality called the Cloninger personality model......... Read more »

  • December 11, 2010
  • 04:39 PM

The Heightened Effects of Social Defeat on Dopamine Signaling

by Allison in Dormivigilia

Neuroscientists have found that social defeat is linked to heightened firing of dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmental area: a major constituent of the reward circuitry. Does this mean that you can become physiologically addicted to defeat???... Read more »

Jun-Li Cao,1,2 Herbert E. Covington III,3 Allyson K. Friedman,4 Matthew B. Wilkinson,3 Jessica J. Walsh,4, & Donald C. Cooper,1 Eric J. Nestler,3,4 and Ming-Hu Han1,3,4. (2010) Mesolimbic Dopamine Neurons in the Brain Reward Circuit Mediate Susceptibility to Social Defeat and Antidepressant Action. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(49), 16453-16458. info:/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3177-10.2010

  • December 11, 2010
  • 03:21 PM

Supramolecular chemistry

by egonw in Chem-bla-ics

Some smart software developer once said to not optimize your code too early. However, not caring about it at all does not help either. Some basic knowledge of memory management can keep you going. That is, I just ran into the limits of Oscar and ChemicalTagger. As I blogged earlier today, I am analyzing the BJOC literature, but Lezan and I are running into a reproducible out-of-memory exception. At first I thought it was a memory leak, as it was the 95th paper if fell over on, but after we optim........ Read more »

Buijnsters, P. J. J. A.; García-Rodríguez, C. L.; Willighagen, E. L.; Sommerdijk, N. A. J. M.; Kremer, A.; Camilleri, P.; Feiters, M. C.; Nolte, R. J. M.; Zwanenburg, B. (2002) Cationic Gemini Surfactants Based on Tartaric Acid: Synthesis, Aggregation, Monolayer Behaviour, and Interaction with DNA. European Journal of Organic Chemistry, 2002(8), 1397-1406. info:/10.1002/1099-0690(200204)2002:83.0.CO;2-6

  • December 11, 2010
  • 01:16 PM

Perspectives on Psychological Science: Blogs Don't Exist

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

The Seductive Allure of Neuroscience ExplanationsThe previous post, Voodoo Correlations: Two Years Later, was a retrospective on the neuroimaging methods paper that was widely discussed in the blogosphere before it was considered "officially" published (Vul et al., 2009). The article, a controversial critique of the statistical analyses used by fMRI investigators in social neuroscience, made its initial appearance on Ed Vul's website once it was accepted by Perspectives in Psychological Sciences........ Read more »

Beck, D. (2010) The Appeal of the Brain in the Popular Press. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 5(6), 762-766. DOI: 10.1177/1745691610388779  

  • December 11, 2010
  • 11:57 AM

The Newly Discovered Giant Flores Stork

by Greg Laden in Greg Laden's Blog

A new species of stork has been identified from Flores, which is the Indonesian island on which the famous "hobbit" fossils have been found. The "hobbit" is a form of hominid (human relative) that seems to be a diminutive form of Homo erectus but different enough from that widespread species to give it a distinct taxonomic status, Homo floresiensis. The Flores hominids were probably about 120 centimeters in height, and the new stork was probably about 180 centimeters in height. The following ........ Read more »

  • December 11, 2010
  • 11:11 AM

Motor bias

by Janet Kwasniak in Thoughts on thoughts

Eagleman and Sejnowski report a series of experiments that go a long way to pinning down the nature of our conscious perception of movement. A number of illusions were used in experiments showing that they shared a common process: flash-lag (moving object aligned with flash is offset), flash-drag (flash is offset as result of nearby [...]... Read more »

  • December 11, 2010
  • 10:53 AM

roger penrose’s cyclical cosmology revisited

by Greg Fish in weird things

A little while ago, we looked at the cyclical cosmology resurrected by Roger Penrose and his colleague Vahe Gurzadyan, and discussed the major problems it left unaddressed. Now, physicists have tried to replicate a cosmic map with wispy concentric circles of radiation and took to arXiv with their rebuttals. Yes, they could find the circles [...]... Read more »

V.G.Gurzadyan, & R.Penrose. (2010) More on the low variance circles in CMB sky. n/a. info:/1012.1486v1

Adam Moss, Douglas Scott, & James P. Zibin. (2010) No evidence for anomalously low variance circles on the sky. n/a. arXiv: 1012.1305v1

  • December 10, 2010
  • 09:24 PM

Fatal Familial Insomnia and CJD – Dying to sleep

by Thomas Tu in Disease of the week!

In mid-1980 Italy, a 52 year old man complains of insomnia, waking easily when he does get sleep, and loss of libido. He knows it’s close to the end for him; he has seen this in his sisters. Within a … Continue reading →... Read more »

Lugaresi E, Medori R, Montagna P, Baruzzi A, Cortelli P, Lugaresi A, Tinuper P, Zucconi M, & Gambetti P. (1986) Fatal familial insomnia and dysautonomia with selective degeneration of thalamic nuclei. The New England journal of medicine, 315(16), 997-1003. PMID: 3762620  

  • December 10, 2010
  • 07:31 PM

Ep 138: The health benefits of breakfast

by westius in Mr Science Show

A world first study conducted by Menzies Research Institute Tasmania has shown that skipping breakfast over a long period of time may increase your risk of heart disease and diabetes.

The study, Skipping breakfast: longitudinal associations with cardiometabolic risk factors in the Childhood Determinants of Adult Health Study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, followed up a 1985 national sample of 9–15 year old Australian children. The original work looked at whether ........ Read more »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 05:46 PM

Mucous Cancer - The mess of Pseudomyxoma peritonei

by James Byrne in Disease Prone

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This post is very important to me for two reasons. First of it’s my very first proper post at my new home here at Disease Prone. Secondly it is a post I have been in the process of putting together for a while after it was suggested to me by my lovely wife, a ........ Read more »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 05:18 PM

When Your Powers Combine...

by Dan in The Endolymph

Atlantic bluefin tuna Thunnus thynnus are a highly migratory, pelagic, marine fish species.  Although I have never personally indulged myself by eating this fish, I have little doubt they are delicious.  How can I make such an assessment?  Well, Atlantic bluefin tuna are one of the most endangered animals on the planet and most assessments suggest they are on the brink of extinction.  The obvious solution to this problem would be to close down the Atlantic bluefin tuna fisher........ Read more »

Block BA, Teo SL, Walli A, Boustany A, Stokesbury MJ, Farwell CJ, Weng KC, Dewar H, & Williams TD. (2005) Electronic tagging and population structure of Atlantic bluefin tuna. Nature, 434(7037), 1121-7. PMID: 15858572  

Rooker, J.R., D.H. Secor, V.S. Zdanowicz, G. De Metrio, & L. Orsi Relini. (2003) Identification of Atlantic bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus) stocks from putative nurseries using otolith chemistry. Fisheries Oceanography, 12(2), 75-84. info:/

  • December 10, 2010
  • 05:18 PM

Fetal Testosterone and Autistic Traits - Part II: Eye Contact

by Lindsay in Autist's Corner

Part of an ongoing series examining the empirical support for Simon Baron-Cohen's "extreme male brain" theory of autism... Read more »

Lutchmaya, S., Baron-Cohen, S., & Raggatt, P. (2002) Foetal testosterone and eye contact in 12-month-old human infants. Infant Behavior and Development, 25(3), 327-335. DOI: 10.1016/S0163-6383(02)00094-2  

  • December 10, 2010
  • 04:35 PM

Microsatellite loci for Symbiodinium A3 Identified using next-generation sequencing

by epibio in EpiCentral

Microsatellites, or simple sequence repeats (SSRs), are molecular markers that can be readily investigated for population genetic studies. Microsatellites contain tandem repeats of 1-6 bases and are usually highly polymorphic, displaying a large number of alleles. The high degree of polymorphism makes microsatellites an ideal tool for studying gene-flow.

A recent study by Pinzon et al. developed ten polymorphic microsatellite loci for a common algae (Symbiodinium fitti, type A3) to study coral-........ Read more »

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