Post List

  • December 2, 2010
  • 05:07 AM

An electric motor made from a single molecule

by Michael Berger in nanowerk

For the visionary goals of nanotechnology, functional and perhaps autonomous molecular motors will play an essential part, just like electric motors can be found in many appliances today. These nanomachines could perform functions similar to the biological molecular motors found in living cells, things like transporting and assembling molecules, or facilitating chemical reactions by pumping protons through membranes. Although applications of molecular motors are still in the future, the results ........ Read more »

Seldenthuis, J., Prins, F., Thijssen, J., & van der Zant, H. (2010) An All-Electric Single-Molecule Motor. ACS Nano, 4(11), 6681-6686. DOI: 10.1021/nn1021499  

  • December 2, 2010
  • 03:17 AM

VEGF-B as a therapeutic intervention for Parkinson's disease

by Ragamuffin in How We Are Hungry

Since it was discovered that the brain had tremendous neuroregenerative potential, growth factors have been highly speculated as therapeutic tools. The vascular endothilial growth factor (VEGF) family, and particularly VEGF-B, has recently been distinguished as having a neuroprotective role in the Parkinsonian brain.

... Read more »

Hagberg, C., Falkevall, A., Wang, X., Larsson, E., Huusko, J., Nilsson, I., van Meeteren, L., Samen, E., Lu, L., Vanwildemeersch, M.... (2010) Vascular endothelial growth factor B controls endothelial fatty acid uptake. Nature, 464(7290), 917-921. DOI: 10.1038/nature08945  

T. A. FALK, X. YUE, S. ZHANG, S. J. SHERMAN. (2010) Evidence for neuroprotection after treatment with Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-B in vivo in the 6-hydroxydopamine rat model of Parkinson’s disease . Society for Neuroscience 2010 Abst. info:/

  • December 2, 2010
  • 03:00 AM

New Podcast – Cure Your Aging Synapses With Diet and Exercise

by Travis Saunders, MSc, CEP in Obesity Panacea

Two weeks ago our good friend Scicurious published a blog post on a very interesting new paper, which examines the impact of both exercise and caloric restriction on the neuromuscular junction in mice. This neuromuscular junction (NMR for short) is the link between our nerves and our muscles. Problems in the NMR mean problems with muscle function, which is a bad thing. This new paper, published in PNAS, suggests that caloric restriction (essentially prolonged under-eating) can dramatically r........ Read more »

Valdez, G., Tapia, J., Kang, H., Clemenson, G., Gage, F., Lichtman, J., & Sanes, J. (2010) Attenuation of age-related changes in mouse neuromuscular synapses by caloric restriction and exercise. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(33), 14863-14868. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1002220107  

  • December 2, 2010
  • 02:00 AM

Gay students suffer under faith schools regime

by SAGE Insight in SAGE Insight

Conflicts of ethos: issues of equity and diversity in faith-based schools From Education Management Administration and Leadership Faith based schools are on the rise in the UK, apparently boosting educational standards. This study investigates the consequences when school values and those of the state diverge, considering whether giving control of a school’s ethos and philosophy [...]... Read more »

  • December 2, 2010
  • 01:00 AM

How Did Primordial Biochemistry Become Established on Earth?

by Michael Long in Phased

The time required for biochemical evolution, regarding very slow reactions in a warm environment, is far less than commonly presumed, and primitive catalytic effects can increase with cooling temperatures. These observations plausibly explain how life may have established itself and evolved on Earth.... Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 08:06 PM

Probing amyloid, one oligomer at a time

by The Curious Wavefunction in The Curious Wavefunction

One of the more important paradigm shifts in our understanding of the Alzheimer’s disease-causing amyloid protein in the last few years has been the recognition of differences between the well known polymer aggregates of amyloid and their smaller, soluble oligomer counterparts. For a long time it was believed that the fully formed 40-42 amino acid protein aggregate found in autopsies was the causative agent in AD, or at least the most toxic one. This understanding has radically changed in the ........ Read more »

Reinke, A., Ung, P., Quintero, J., Carlson, H., & Gestwicki, J. (2010) Chemical Probes That Selectively Recognize the Earliest Aβ Oligomers in Complex Mixtures. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1021/ja106291e  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 08:01 PM

Blood of the Mammoth

by John McKay in Mammoth Tales

Catastrophists love frozen woolly mammoths. It doesn’t matter what their preferred catastrophe is–Atlantis sinking, falling ice moons, the Noachian flood, abrupt changes of the Earth’s axis, or a near miss by a pinballing planet disguised as an ancient Near Eastern god–at some point, they will trot out the frozen mammoths as proof positive of their theory. . . . → Read More: Blood of the Mammoth... Read more »

Campbell, K., Roberts, J., Watson, L., Stetefeld, J., Sloan, A., Signore, A., Howatt, J., Tame, J., Rohland, N., Shen, T.... (2010) Substitutions in woolly mammoth hemoglobin confer biochemical properties adaptive for cold tolerance. Nature Genetics, 42(6), 536-540. DOI: 10.1038/ng.574  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 07:00 PM

Dynamic origins of PBX1 homeodomain allostery

by Michael Clarkson in Conformational Flux

In the Monod-Wyman-Changeux model for cooperative binding, proteins exist in an equilibrium of low-affinity and high-affinity states in solution, absent any ligand. In this view, although it may appear that the binding of a ligand causes a conformational transition, it actually stabilizes one conformation from a pre-existing equilibrium. In the past several years, advanced NMR techniques have yielded increasing evidence that these structural equilibria exist for a number of proteins, suggesting ........ Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 05:56 PM

A latent class analysis of job satisfaction and turnover among practicing pharmacists

by Amir Rashid in Pharmacy Commitment PhD

Read an interesting study by Hardigan & Sangasubana, (2009).The authors elaborate on the versatility of Latent Class Analysis (LCA) in the context of assessing the job satisfaction of practicing pharmacists from Florida. According to the authors LCA has been used with success in other context both related (e.g. other job satisfaction studies) and non related [...]... Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 04:42 PM

How To Fool A Lie Detector Brain Scan

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

Can fMRI scans be used to detect deception?It would be nice, although a little scary, if they could. And there have been several reports of succesful trials under laboratory conditions. However, a new paper in Neuroimage reveals an easy way of tricking the technology: Lying In The Scanner.The authors used a variant of the "guilty knowledge test" which was originally developed for use with EEG. Essentially, you show the subject a series of pictures or other stimui, one of which is somehow special........ Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 03:59 PM

Want a wealth of relationship health? Be Yourself!

by eHarmony Labs in eHarmony Labs Blog

What’s the easiest thing you can do to improve your relationship? BE YOURSELF. Read on to find out why Dr. Seuss’s advice was right all along. ... Read more »

Brunell, A., Kernis, M., Goldman, B., Heppner, W., Davis, P., Cascio, E., & Webster, G. (2010) Dispositional authenticity and romantic relationship functioning. Personality and Individual Differences, 48(8), 900-905. DOI: 10.1016/j.paid.2010.02.018  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 03:30 PM

Productive Workspaces: High Performance vs. Energy Efficient Environments

by Mat Hart in LS3P Knowledge Center

Examines recent research on the impact of efficient and sustainable design on employee productivity and work environments.... Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 03:22 PM

by Bradley Voytek in Oscillatory Thoughts

<Introduction>Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Aliquam elementum iaculis lectus, id placerat diam ultrices scelerisque. Aenean eu varius eros. Maecenas rhoncus odio eu nunc pharetra ut luctus tellus consectetur. Cras venenatis condimentum sollicitudin.<Methods>Duis mollis malesuada ipsum, et interdum felis blandit eu. Vestibulum id purus odio, vitae bibendum mauris. Aliquam tristique, quam et pellentesque commodo, nunc lacus porta nisi, id faucibus urna nisi q........ Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 03:18 PM

Tiny tunicate throws structure to the wind

by Hannah Waters in Culturing Science – biology as relevant to us earthly beings

Today I bring you something extra special: A guest post from Lucas Brouwers of the world-famous blog Thoughtomics.  He loves genomes, I love plankton, and you get a great story involving spaceships, genomic party crashers, and, of course, a planktonic … Continue reading →... Read more »

Denoeud F, Henriet S, Mungpakdee S, Aury JM, Da Silva C, Brinkmann H, Mikhaleva J, Olsen LC, Jubin C, Cañestro C.... (2010) Plasticity of Animal Genome Architecture Unmasked by Rapid Evolution of a Pelagic Tunicate. Science (New York, N.Y.). PMID: 21097902  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 03:15 PM

Placebo effect: now we can see it, but should we believe it?

by Lorimer Moseley in BodyInMind

Placebo effects are a great way to start a conversation, particularly if one is at a Clinical Trials Festival. Rather than being fascinated by the possibilities of the brain’s internal capacities to influence its own outputs, some believe placebo effects are a nuisance and something to either ignored or removed. Well, as you will see [...]... Read more »

[1] Benedetti, F, Mayberg H, Wager T, Stohler C, Zubieta J. (2005) Neurobiological Mechanisms of the Placebo Effect. Journal of Neuroscience, 25(45), 10390-10402. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3458-05.2005  

[2] Kienle GS, & Kiene H. (1997) The powerful placebo effect: fact or fiction?. Journal of clinical epidemiology, 50(12), 1311-8. PMID: 9449934  

[3] Wager TD, Rilling JK, Smith EE, Sokolik A, Casey KL, Davidson RJ, Kosslyn SM, Rose RM, & Cohen JD. (2004) Placebo-induced changes in FMRI in the anticipation and experience of pain. Science (New York, N.Y.), 303(5661), 1162-7. PMID: 14976306  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 02:49 PM

HIV in America—where do we go from here?

by PalMD in White Coat Underground

The HIV pandemic in the US has developed a stable appearance over the last few years, and that appearance is notably non-white and non-wealthy.  When the pandemic was discovered nearly thirty years ago, it was—in the US—primarily a disease of gay men.  In Africa, the disease is everyone’s.  Women make up significantly more than half [...]... Read more »

DiClemente RJ, Wingood GM, Harrington KF, Lang DL, Davies SL, Hook EW 3rd, Oh MK, Crosby RA, Hertzberg VS, Gordon AB.... (2004) Efficacy of an HIV prevention intervention for African American adolescent girls: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA : the journal of the American Medical Association, 292(2), 171-9. PMID: 15249566  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 02:43 PM

Why the obsession with intelligibility in speech processing studies?

by Greg Hickok in Talking Brains

There was a very interesting speech/language session at SfN this year organized by Jonathan Peelle. Talks included presentations Sophie Scott, Jonas Obleser, Sonia Kotz, Matt Davis and others spanning an impressive range of methods and perspectives on auditory language processing. Good stuff and a fun group of people. It felt kind of like a joint lab meeting with lots of discussion. I want to emphasize one of the issues that came up, namely, the brain's response to intelligible speech and wh........ Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 01:09 PM

Coddle me, please: parallel evolution and fishery management in Atlantic cod

by Hannah Waters in Sleeping with the Fishes

Historically, perhaps due to human interest in maximizing fishing activity, we have assumed that there is a great deal of gene flow in marine populations.  This assumption allowed us to maximize fishing efforts without guilt, since a large, ocean-wide population would allow fish from other parts of the world to refill populations that we had reduced by overfishing.  But you know what they say about assumptions: they make an ASS out of U and ME.  Thus marine biologists have taken an interest ........ Read more »

  • December 1, 2010
  • 01:07 PM

Would you eat a brown apple?

by Anastasia Bodnar in Biofortified

Have you ever cut up an apple to take for lunch, or prepared apples for a fresh fruit tray only to have them turn an unappealing shade of brown? You’re not alone. There’s nothing wrong with brown apple slices, but they certainly don’t look nice, which discourages some people from eating as many apples as they should. Apples are a healthy snack and anything that gets people to eat more fruit could be considered Continue reading...... Read more »

Herb Aldwinckle, & Mickael Malnoy. (2009) Plant Regeneration and Transformation in the Rosaceae . Transgenic Plant Journal , 1-39. info:/

Bachem, C., Speckmann, G., van der Linde, P., Verheggen, F., Hunt, M., Steffens, J., & Zabeau, M. (1994) Antisense Expression of Polyphenol Oxidase Genes Inhibits Enzymatic Browning in Potato Tubers. Bio/Technology, 12(11), 1101-1105. DOI: 10.1038/nbt1194-1101  

  • December 1, 2010
  • 12:30 PM

Gratitude: Uniquely Human or Shared with Animals?

by Jason Goldman in The Thoughtful Animal

"Two chimps had been shut out of their shelter by mistake during a cold rain storm. They were standing dejeted, water streaming down their shivering bodies, when Professor Köhler chanced to pass." Upon opening the door for the two chimps, Dr. James Leuba recounts, "instead of scampering in without more ado, as many a child would have done, each of them delayed entering the warm shelter long enough to throw its arms around his benefactor in a frenzy of satisfaction."

"Chimpanzees," primatolog........ Read more »

Krisin E. Bonnie, & Frans B. M. de Waal. (2004) Primate Social Reciprocity and the Origin of Gratitude. in Robert A. Emmons , 213-229. info:/

Fehr, E., & Gächter, S. (2002) Altruistic punishment in humans. Nature, 415(6868), 137-140. DOI: 10.1038/415137a  

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