Around 15 years ago, researchers discovered that the adult rodent brain contains discrete populations of stem cells which continue to divide and generate new cells throughout life. This discovery was an important one, as it overturned a persistent dogma in neuroscience which held that the adult mammalian brain cannot regenerate.
Since then, neural stem cells have been the subject of intensive investigation, in large part because of their potential uses in treating neurological conditions such a........ Read more »
Itaru Imayoshi, Masayuki Sakamoto, Toshiyuki Ohtsuka, Keizo Takao, Tsuyoshi Miyakawa, Masahiro Yamaguchi, Kensaku Mori, Toshio Ikeda, Shigeyoshi Itohara, & Ryoichiro Kageyama. (2008) Roles of continuous neurogenesis in the structural and functional integrity of the adult forebrain. Nature Neuroscience, 11(10), 1153-1161. DOI: 10.1038/nn.2185
The file drawer effect works like this: Numerous studies are done and the results are random. But because they are random, a small number have, randomly, strong effects that are interesting and that in isolation support some interesting hypothesis. All the results that fail to confirm the interesting (or fund able) expectation are filed away .... in the file drawer. Only the results that seem to show what the researchers want to show are made public.
In areas where research is cheap and o........ Read more »
Kirby Lee, Peter Bacchetti, Ida Sim, & Mike Clarke. (2008) Publication of Clinical Trials Supporting Successful New Drug Applications: A Literature Analysis. PLoS Medicine, 5(9). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0050191
I think the best part about this weird Friday is that I don't have to write it! A good thing too, I have a life outside the blog (crazy, I know), and that life has been nothing short of insane. Today's is courtesy of my friend Claire, who found it over at Mind Hacks.
Portenoy, et al. "Compulsive thalamic self-stimulation: a case with metabolic, electrophysiologic, and behavioral correlates" Pain, V 27, 1986.
Well, ok, maybe I'll talk about it a LITTLE... Read the rest of this post... | Rea........ Read more »
Portenoy RK, Jarden JO, Sidtis JJ, Lipton RB, Foley KM, Rottenberg DA. (1986) Compulsive thalamic self-stimulation: a case with metabolic, electrophysiologic, and behavioral correlates. Pain.
From A History of British Fish (William Yarrell, 1835)
Antibodies bind to their target antigens because the bumps and crannies in an antibody’s binding site complement the crannies and bumps in the antigen.
Antibodies were invented by vertebrates; sharks and all their progeny have antibodies, while lampreys and hagfish, which have a common ancestor with sharks some [...]... Read more »
B. W. Han, B. R. Herrin, M. D. Cooper, & I. A. Wilson. (2008) Antigen Recognition by Variable Lymphocyte Receptors. Science, 321(5897), 1834-1837. DOI: 10.1126/science.1162484
If you knew that your husband was twice as likely to be unfaithful in your marriage than another man, would you still marry him? Scientists have discovered a gene that may be able to tell just that. The question is: would you want to know if he had the gene?
We know strong emotional relationships are [...]... Read more »
M LIM, & L YOUNG. (2006) Neuropeptidergic regulation of affiliative behavior and social bonding in animals. Hormones and Behavior, 50(4), 506-517. DOI: 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2006.06.028
H. Walum, L. Westberg, S. Henningsson, J. M. Neiderhiser, D. Reiss, W. Igl, J. M. Ganiban, E. L. Spotts, N. L. Pedersen, E. Eriksson.... (2008) Genetic variation in the vasopressin receptor 1a gene (AVPR1A) associates with pair-bonding behavior in humans. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(37), 14153-14156. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0803081105
Dear Oyster’s Garter,
I am an attractive male sea squirt (a Styela plicata, in case you were wondering) in the prime of life. I live alone on the underside of a nice dock, I’ve got plenty of tasty phytoplankton to eat, and my siphons have extremely handsome pleats. But I’m worried, because every time I [...]... Read more »
A. J. Crean, & D. J. Marshall. (2008) Gamete plasticity in a broadcast spawning marine invertebrate. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(36), 13508-13513. DOI/10.1073/pnas.0806590105
Gossip and rumours, they are the life force of cultural interaction. Just ask Guy Kawasaki, whose Truemors.com website took off last year, the hundreds of hacks who peddle the minutiae of celebrity lifestyles complete with the Photoshopped products of the paparazzi, or Perez Hilton. But, there is a serious side to rumours. In the midst [...]... Read more »
In a recent commentary in the Journal of Chemical Education W.B. Jensen questions certain claims made by Wang et al. in their 2007 publication on the detection of the elusive molecule mercury(IV) fluoride. Also in 2008 Rooms et al. report they were unable to repeat a similar feat. About time to shelve mercury(IV).... Read more »
John F. Rooms, Antony V. Wilson, Ian Harvey, Adam J. Bridgeman, & Nigel A. Young. (2008) Mercury–fluorine interactions: a matrix isolation investigation of Hg⋯F2, HgF2 and HgF4 in argon matrices. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 10(31), 4594. DOI: 10.1039/b805608k
Richard L. Deming, A. L. Allred, Alan R. Dahl, Albert W. Herlinger, & Mark O. Kestner. (1976) Tripositive mercury. Low temperature electrochemical oxidation of 1,4,8,11-tetraazacyclotetradecanemercury(II) tetrafluoroborate . Journal of the American Chemical Society, 98(14), 4132-4137. DOI: 10.1021/ja00430a020
Individuals with profiles on social networking websites have greater risk taking attitudes than those who do not.
Greater risk taking attitudes exist among men than women.
Facebook has a greater sense of trust than MySpace.
General privacy concerns and identity information disclosure concerns are of greater concern to women than men.
Greater percentages of men than women display their [...]... Read more »
J FOGEL, & E NEHMAD. (2008) Internet social network communities: Risk taking, trust, and privacy concerns. Computers in Human Behavior. DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2008.08.006
Human memory capacity is many orders of magnitude more impressive than previously realised, psychologists have shown (the study can be accessed for free).Timothy Brady and colleagues presented 14 participants with 2,500 mundane objects, presented one at a time for three seconds each. The whole study phase took over five and a half hours. The participants' motivation was maintained by asking them to look out for repeats. Ten minutes after the study phase, the participants showed astonishing accur........ Read more »
T. F. Brady, T. Konkle, G. A. Alvarez, & A. Oliva. (2008) Visual long-term memory has a massive storage capacity for object details. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0803390105
A neat study in Educational Studies in Mathematics (Link) points to a familiar yet disturbing characteristic of mathematics textbooks.
In the study, samples from eighteen different elementary mathematics texts used in the UK were analyzed. Researchers were interested in how often the texts provided "reasons" for the mathematics they presented—that is, how often the texts explained a mathematical idea (or solicited an explanation from students) in terms of purposes and causes:... Read more »
Douglas P. Newton, & Lynn D. Newton. (2006) Could Elementary Mathematics Textbooks Help Give Attention to Reasons in the Classroom?. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 64(1), 69-84. DOI: 10.1007/s10649-005-9015-z
The study I summarized here found that eliminating inference calls in a text significantly improved college students' free recall of the content.
But keep in mind that the free recall test in the experiment simply asked students to write down everything they could remember. Would we find improvements if students were asked to write a summary of the ideas in the text or to generalize from the information obtained? Is it possible that making a text less coherent might actually improve learning?........ Read more »
Danielle McNamara, Eileen Kintsch, Nancy Butler Songer, & Walter Kintsch. (1996) Are Good Texts Always Better? Interactions of Text Coherence, Background Knowledge, and Levels of Understanding in Learning From Text. Cognition and Instruction, 14(1), 1-43. DOI: 10.1207/s1532690xci1401_1
Britton and Giilgoz (1991) conducted a study to test whether removing "inference calls" from text would improve retention of the material.
In brief, inference calls are locations in text that demand inference from the reader. One simple example from the text used in the study is below:... Read more »
Bruce K. Britton, & Sami Gülgöz. (1991) Using Kintsch's computational model to improve instructional text: Effects of repairing inference calls on recall and cognitive structures. Journal of Educational Psychology, 83(3), 329-345. DOI: 10.1037//0022-06126.96.36.1999
Aaron Beck, considered the Father of Cognitive Therapy, is an American psychiatrist and a professor emeritus at the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania. He is President of the Beck Institute for Cognitive Therapy and Research that is directed by his daughter, Judith S. Beck, Ph.D.. He is noted for his research in psychotherapy, psychopathology, suicide, and psychometrics, and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), one of the most widely used instruments for measuring depress........ Read more »
Beck, Aaron. (2008) The Evolution of the Cognitive Model of Depression it's Neurobiological Correlates. American Journal of Psychiatry, 969-977. DOI: http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/content/full/165/8/969
Lots of bloggers in the DNA network have been busy these past few days writing about Google's co-founder Sergey Brin, his blog, his wife's company (23andme), and his mutation in the LRRK2 gene.
I was a little surprised to see that while other bloggers (here, here, here, and here) have been arguing about whether or not the mutation really increases the risk to the degree (20-80%) mentioned by Brin, no one has really looked into the structure and biochemistry of the LRRK2 protein to see if ther........ Read more »
B. Luzon-Toro, E. R. de la Torre, A. Delgado, J. Perez-Tur, & S. Hilfiker. (2007) Mechanistic insight into the dominant mode of the Parkinson's disease-associated G2019S LRRK2 mutation. Human Molecular Genetics, 16(17), 2031-2039. DOI: 10.1093/hmg/ddm151
J. Deng, P. A. Lewis, E. Greggio, E. Sluch, A. Beilina, & M. R. Cookson. (2008) Structure of the ROC domain from the Parkinson's disease-associated leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 reveals a dimeric GTPase. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(5), 1499-1504. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0709098105
Nematodes are small wormlike creatures that live almost everywhere. Many of them are parasites but there are thousands of species that live in the soil. "... it is said that if everything on the earth were to disappear except the nematodes, the outlines of everything would still be visible: the mountains, lakes and oceans, the plants and the animals would all be outlined by the nematodes... Read more »
Christoph Dieterich, Sandra W Clifton, Lisa N Schuster, Asif Chinwalla, Kimberly Delehaunty, Iris Dinkelacker, Lucinda Fulton, Robert Fulton, Jennifer Godfrey, Pat Minx.... (2008) The Pristionchus pacificus genome provides a unique perspective on nematode lifestyle and parasitism. Nature Genetics. DOI: 10.1038/ng.227
B. ROWSON & W. 0. C. SYMONDSON (2008). Selenochlamys ysbryda sp. nov. from Wales, UK: a Testacella-like slug new to western Europe (Stylommatophora: Trigonochlamydidae) Journal of Conchology, 39, 537-552Back in July, the discovery of a bizarre carnivorous slug in Wales was in the news. The formal description of Selenochlamys ysbryda got published in the June issue of the Journal of Conchology that I received a couple of days ago and read this morning.Selenochlamys ysbryda. Picture from Natio........ Read more »
B. ROWSON . (2008) Selenochlamys ysbryda sp. nov. from Wales, UK: a Testacella-like slug new to western Europe (Stylommatophora: Trigonochlamydidae). Journal of Conchology, 537-552. DOI: http://www.conchsoc.org/resources/show-abstract-39.php?id
Notwithstanding the cute pictures from yesterday's post, Jim is now nearly seventeen years old. He's taller than me, has a beard, and is much less interested in having his photo taken, so I don't have any recent pictures. He also plays a mean bass guitar, and he's in a band, which means -- you guessed it -- girls have started taking an interest in him.
Of course we've explained to him the basics of sex, including contraception and preventing sexually transmitted diseases, but we always wonder w........ Read more »
Pepijn Empelen, & Gerjo Kok. (2008) Action-specific Cognitions of Planned and Preparatory Behaviors of Condom Use among Dutch Adolescents. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 37(4), 626-640. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-007-9286-9
tags: bpr3.org/?p=52, Seychelles magpie-robin, Copsychus sechellarum, behavioral ecology, conservation biology, endangered species, population dynamics, ornithology, birds
Seychelles magpie-robin, Copsychus sechellarum.
Image: Tony Randell (Wikipedia) [larger view].
Every once in awhile, I read a paper that surprises me. Today, I read one of those papers, and it surprised me because it analyzes a phenomenon that is so obvious that I wonder why no one ever thought of studying it in a systemati........ Read more »
Andrés López-Sepulcre, Ken Norris, & Hanna Kokko. (2008) Reproductive conflict delays the recovery of an endangered social species. Journal of Animal Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2656.2008.01475.x
Broca's area shows a "sentence complexity" effect. It responds more during the comprehension of object relative (OR) constructions than easier to process subject relative (SR) constructions:OR: The man that the boy pushes is wearing a red shirtSR: The man that pushes the boy is wearing a red shirtWhat is driving the complexity effect? Presumably it is some form of working memory. In the case of OR sentences, you have to hold two items in memory -- the man, the boy -- before you get to the ver........ Read more »
David Caplan, Nathaniel Alpert, Gloria Waters, & Anthony Olivieri. (2000) Activation of Broca's area by syntactic processing under conditions of concurrent articulation. Human Brain Mapping, 9(2), 65-71. DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1097-0193(200002)9:23.0.CO;2-4
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