Post List

  • 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 »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 03:02 PM

How to get rich fast with batteries

by Joerg Heber in All That Matters

The title of this blog post is a bit tongue in cheek, but the situation isn’t that far from the truth when it comes to rechargeable batteries such as lithium-ion batteries. Ever since lithium-ion batteries were first commercialized in 1991 by Sony, based on work by John Goodenough and others, they have been highly successful in the [...]... Read more »

Padhi, A., Nanjundaswamy, K.S., & Goodenough, J.B. (1997) Phospho-olivines as Positive-Electrode Materials for Rechargeable Lithium Batteries. Journal of The Electrochemical Society, 144(4), 1188. DOI: 10.1149/1.1837571  

Chan, C., Peng, H., Liu, G., McIlwrath, K., Zhang, X., Huggins, R., & Cui, Y. (2007) High-performance lithium battery anodes using silicon nanowires. Nature Nanotechnology, 3(1), 31-35. DOI: 10.1038/nnano.2007.411  

Huang, J., Zhong, L., Wang, C., Sullivan, J., Xu, W., Zhang, L., Mao, S., Hudak, N., Liu, X., Subramanian, A.... (2010) In Situ Observation of the Electrochemical Lithiation of a Single SnO2 Nanowire Electrode. Science, 330(6010), 1515-1520. DOI: 10.1126/science.1195628  

  • December 10, 2010
  • 12:58 PM

Speaking of Plowing

by teofilo in Gambler's House

The postulated connection between plow-based agriculture and a highly inegalitarian system of gender roles that I was talking about in the previous post reminded me of another paper about plowing and gender in a very different context.  This article, by Robin Ganev of the University of Regina, was published in the Journal of the History [...]... Read more »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 12:43 PM

Hypertension Treatment with Renal Nerve Ablation

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

The neuroscience of hypertension covers several important domains.  Untreated hypertension can lead to central nervous complications such as stroke and vascular dementia.  Patients with essential hypertension show hyperactive renal sympathetic nerve outflow.  This produces several effects increasing blood pressure including: stimulation of renin, increased kidney sodium reabsorption and reduced blood flow to the kidney.  The kidney signals the brain areas controlling central ........ Read more »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 12:01 PM

Financial incentives and the brain's reward system

by NeuroKüz in NeuroKüz

Neuroeconomics is a big buzzword.Behavioural economics and the psychology of decision-making have rich histories, but with emerging brain imaging technology, we're now able to peer into some of the intricacies of neural processes as they occur while someone is making an important financial decision. The hope is that studies of brain activity will help guide economic theory and practice.In a study recently published in PNAS, Japanese researchers used functional MRI to examine brain responses to a........ Read more »

Murayama K, Matsumoto M, Izuma K, & Matsumoto K. (2010) From the Cover: Neural basis of the undermining effect of monetary reward on intrinsic motivation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 107(49), 20911-6. PMID: 21078974  

  • December 10, 2010
  • 10:29 AM

Boom: the destruction and rebirth of a marine ecosystem.

by Uncharted Atolls in Uncharted Atolls

In 1883, the world shuddered as the loudest known sound in human history echoed from its epicenter in Indonesia.  The noise generated by Krakatoa, a volcanic island in the Sunda Strait, was heard over 3,000 kilometers aways both to the … Continue reading →... Read more »

C. J. Starger, P. H. Barber, Ambariyanto, & A. C. Baker. (2010) The recovery of coral genetic diversity in the Sunda Strait following the 1883 eruption of Krakatau. Coral Reefs, 547-565. info:/10.1007/s00338-010-0609-2

  • December 10, 2010
  • 09:52 AM

No Substitute for IRL Relationships for Adolescents

by Krystal D'Costa in Anthropology in Practice

Credit: Scott Hampson
It's no secret that the Internet is a black hole when it comes to time. Fifteen minutes on Twitter spirals into an hour or two of witty banter. A quick stop on Facebook to read statuses or water crops becomes three hours looking at photos from someone's vacation or wedding. (And email? Fuggedaboutit!) But it's easy to be online—simple and almost instantaneous access to all your friends and connections, and none of them need to know you're in your pajamas. And you c........ Read more »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 08:24 AM

Friday Weird Science: Stimulating the Brain…and the Rectum

by Scicurious in Neurotic Physiology

I think @vaughanbell described it best with this Tweet: @scicurious @edyong209 One of the few studies where you don’t want to hear the words “We’ve made a breakthrough” And with that…I HAD to blog it. Garvin et al. “Cortical and spinal evoked potential response to electrical stimulation in human rectum.” World Journal of Gastroenterology, 2010. [...]... Read more »

Garvin B, Lovely L, Tsodikov A, Minecan D, Hong S, & Wiley JW. (2010) Cortical and spinal evoked potential response to electrical stimulation in human rectum. World journal of gastroenterology : WJG, 16(43), 5440-6. PMID: 21086561  

  • December 10, 2010
  • 08:20 AM

Feces and phylogeny

by Becky in It Takes 30

A couple of weeks ago I wondered aloud about the question of whether diet-related changes in the nature of gut bacteria could have significant effects in evolution.  The paper I was writing about at the time showed that flies fed different diets quickly began to prefer mates who had been fed the same diet, and [...]... Read more »

  • December 10, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

Unexpected endogenous viruses

by Vincent Racaniello in virology blog

During the replication of retroviruses, a double-stranded DNA copy of the viral RNA genome is synthesized by reverse transcription and integrated into the genomes of the infected cell. When retroviral DNA is integrated into the DNA of germ line cells, it is passed on to future generations in Mendelian fashion as an endogenous provirus. Until [...]... Read more »

Horie M, Honda T, Suzuki Y, Kobayashi Y, Daito T, Oshida T, Ikuta K, Jern P, Gojobori T, Coffin JM.... (2010) Endogenous non-retroviral RNA virus elements in mammalian genomes. Nature, 463(7277), 84-7. PMID: 20054395  

Katzourakis A, & Gifford RJ. (2010) Endogenous viral elements in animal genomes. PLoS genetics, 6(11). PMID: 21124940  

  • December 10, 2010
  • 07:51 AM

Using an eagle to catch and kill a wolf

by Darren Naish in Tetrapod Zoology

No time for anything new (err, just a tad busy at the moment), so here's something else from the Tet Zoo archives. This article originally appeared on ver 1 in April 2006 and appears here in slightly modified form.

In previous articles we've looked at the ability of large eagles - the Golden eagle Aquila chrysaetos in particular - to kill surprisingly large prey. As in adult pronghorn, adult reindeer, juvenile red deer and juvenile domestic cattle etc. (see links below, or Cooper (1969), De........ Read more »

Phillips, R. L., Cummings, J. L., Notah, G., & Mullis, C. (1996) Golden eagle predation on domestic calves. Wildlife Society Bulletin, 468-470. info:/

  • December 10, 2010
  • 07:07 AM

Simple Jury Persuasion: Tilt your head. (no kidding)

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

Evolutionary psychologists do some weird research. But we’re not holding that against them.  I mean, we’re talking about evolution.  Instead, we’ll take what they find and translate it for your use at trial. But this is odd! Australian researchers (Burke & Sulikowski, 2010) looked at tilting heads and attractiveness in the eyes of observers. What [...]

Related posts:Simple Jury Persuasion: Be Powerful in the Courtroom
Simple Jury Persuasion: Got charisma?
Simple Jury Persuasion: Us........ Read more »

Darren Burke, & Danielle Sulikowski. (2010) A New Viewpoint on the Evolution of Sexually Dimorphic Human Faces. Evolutionary Psychology, 8(4). info:/

  • December 10, 2010
  • 07:00 AM

Sedentary Physiology Part 5 – Future Directions

by Travis Saunders, MSc, CEP in Obesity Panacea

Image by kaibara87
Welcome to our 5-part series delving into the fascinating research being performed in the emerging field of sedentary physiology.  In Part 1 we discussed the basics of sedentary physiology, in Part 2 and Part 3 we looked at the association of sedentary time with both death and disease, and in Part 4 we looked at the mechanisms underlying these relationships.  Today we will look at where future work in the field of sedentary physiology is heading.
Given the research that we........ Read more »

Tremblay, MS, Colley, RC, Saunders, TJ, Healy, G, & Owen, N. (2010) Physiological and health implications of a sedentary lifestyle. Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism. info:/

  • December 10, 2010
  • 06:44 AM

Painting the human tree of life

by Razib Khan in Gene Expression

Tishkoff et al.
Reading Peter Bellwood’s First Farmers: The Origins of Agricultural Societies, I’m struck by how much of a difference five years has made. When Bellwood was writing the ‘orthodoxy’ of the nature of the expansion of farming into Europe leaned toward cultural diffusion. Today the paradigm is in flux, as a new generation of [...]... Read more »

Brenna M. Henn, Simon Gravel, Andres Moreno-Estrada, Suehelay Acevedo-Acevedo, & Carlos D. Bustamante. (2010) Fine-scale population structure and the era of next-generation sequencing. Hum. Mol. Genet. . info:/10.1093/hmg/ddq403

  • December 10, 2010
  • 05:17 AM

Meditation vs. Medication for Depression

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

What's the best way to overcome depression? Antidepressant drugs, or Buddhist meditation?A new trial has examined this question: Segal et al. The short answer is that 8 weeks of mindfulness mediation training was just as good as prolonged antidepressant treatment over 18 months. But like all clinical trials, there are some catches.Right mindfulness, sammā-sati, is the 7th step on the Buddha's Nobel Eightfold Path of enlightenment. In its modern therapeutic form, however, it's a secular practi........ Read more »

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