In blog posts and comments I’ve seen a few people arguing that the Mexico H1N1 influenza virus must have been around for a while — 10 years? 11 years? — because it doesn’t have any really close neighbours based on sequence. I’m not sure where this is coming from, but the precision of the “11 [...]... Read more »
Jian, J., Chen, G., Lai, C., Hsu, L., Chen, P., Kuo, S., Wu, H., & Shih, S. (2008) Genetic and Epidemiological Analysis of Influenza Virus Epidemics in Taiwan during 2003 to 2006. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 46(4), 1426-1434. DOI: 10.1128/JCM.01560-07
Last year, the British Academy and Royal Society held a two-day discussion meeting called "Autism and Talent" which became the basis for a recently published wide-ranging special issue of the journal Philosophical Transactions B. Francesca Happé and Uta Frith, who organized the discussion meeting, write in the special issue's editorial that although "the association of autism with special talent, sometimes at the highest level, cannot be denied" it remains true that "special talents are still l........ Read more »
Heaton, P. (2009) Assessing musical skills in autistic children who are not savants. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 364(1522), 1443-1447. DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2008.0327
Howlin, P., Goode, S., Hutton, J., & Rutter, M. (2009) Savant skills in autism: psychometric approaches and parental reports. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 364(1522), 1359-1367. DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2008.0328
The region of the Middle East referred to as “Levant” includes modern day Israel, Palestine and Jordon, and there are few places on earth more intensely studied by archaeologists than the birthplace of monotheistic religion. In addition to yielding a vast record of human occupation, culture and war, the archaeological sites within this region also document the decimation of several mammalian species. A couple of days ago (April 29), several Israeli scientists published an article in PLoS One........ Read more »
Tsahar, E., Izhaki, I., Lev-Yadun, S., & Bar-Oz, G. (2009) Distribution and Extinction of Ungulates during the Holocene of the Southern Levant. PLoS ONE, 4(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0005316
Albatrosses and petrels (both considered soaring birds) have long, narrow, aerodynamically efficient wings. Albatrosses can fly thousands of kilometers over the span of a few days. They spend most of their life foraging at sea and return to the place they were born about every eighteen months to mate. 'A combination of the long, narrow, aerodynamically efficient wings and the anatomical capability to lock their wings in a stretched position permits albatrosses to travel with the lowest ener........ Read more »
Sato K, Kentaro Q, Sakamoto, Watanuki Y, Takahashi A, Katsumata1 N, Bost C-A, & Weimerskirch H. (2009) Scaling of Soaring Seabirds and Implications for Flight Abilities of Giant Pterosaurs. PLoS one. DOI: http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0005400/trackback
Sato K, Kentaro Q, Sakamoto, Watanuki Y, Takahashi A, Katsumata1 N, Bost C-A, & Weimerskirch H. (2009) Scaling of Soaring Seabirds and Implications for Flight Abilities of Giant Pterosaurs . PLoS one. DOI: http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0005400
Sato, K., Sakamoto, K., Watanuki, Y., Takahashi, A., Katsumata, N., Bost, C., & Weimerskirch, H. (2009) Scaling of Soaring Seabirds and Implications for Flight Abilities of Giant Pterosaurs. PLoS ONE, 4(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0005400
PEER-REVIEWEDAUTHORS: Mühlberger, A., Bülthoff, H.H., Wiedemann, G., Pauli, P. JOURNAL: Psychological Assessment 2007; 19: 340-346. ABSTRACT: "An overall assessment of phobic fear requires not only a verbal self-report of fear but also an assessment of behavioral and physiological responses. Virtual reality can be used to simulate realistic (phobic) situations and therefore should be useful for inducing emotions in a controlled, standardized way. Verbal and physiological fear reactions were ex........ Read more »
Mühlberger, A., Bülthoff, H., Wiedemann, G., & Pauli, P. (2007) Virtual reality for the psychophysiological assessment of phobic fear: Responses during virtual tunnel driving. Psychological Assessment, 19(3), 340-346. DOI: 10.1037/1040-3518.104.22.1680
AUTHORS: Cahour, BJOURNAL: Proceedings of the 15th European conference on Cognitive ergonomics: the ergonomics of cool interaction, 2008 ABSTRACT: "Psychological comfort/discomfort is a global feeling constructed from the affective states which are lived by the users during the activity. This empirical study is about discomfort and emotions lived during all sorts of driving situations, and it is based on "explicitation interviews" and questionnaires. The analysis allowed us to specify the catego........ Read more »
Béatrice Cahour. (2008) Discomfort, affects and coping strategies in driving activity. ACM International Conference Proceeding Series. DOI: http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1473018.1473046
Most scientific publications today are accessed online. That is why Johan Bollen and colleagues used nearly 1 billion user interactions recorded by the scholarly web portals of some of the most significant publishers, aggregators and institutional consortia to create a high-resolution map of science in an article published on PLoS One. A first-order Markov chain was extracted from the sequence of user interactions recorded and the model was visualized as shown below to describe the relationships........ Read more »
Bollen, J., Van de Sompel, H., Hagberg, A., Bettencourt, L., Chute, R., Rodriguez, M., & Balakireva, L. (2009) Clickstream Data Yields High-Resolution Maps of Science. PLoS ONE, 4(3). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0004803
I have a handful of comments, mostly about how what you are seeing on the news is unimportant, and one comment about why you actually should worry. Within reason.
The new Swine Flu has now been verified in nineteen US states, with 141 cases. Technically there is 1 death, but since the young girl who died actually caught the flu in Mexico (and came to Texas for treatment) it is hard to say how that should be counted.
WHO characterizes the global spread of the flu as a "rapidly evolving" sit........ Read more »
Taubenberger, Jeffery, & Morens, David. (2006) 1918 Influenza: the Mother of All Pandemics. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 12(1).
So here we have a virus, with 911 protein coding genes -- more than some bacteria -- a nucleus, genome duplication, tRNA, proofreading mechanisms and best of all, this virus has its own virus. Makes you wonder where being a virus stops and where life starts...... Read more »
La Scola, B., Desnues, C., Pagnier, I., Robert, C., Barrassi, L., Fournous, G., Merchat, M., Suzan-Monti, M., Forterre, P., Koonin, E.... (2008) The virophage as a unique parasite of the giant mimivirus. Nature, 455(7209), 100-104. DOI: 10.1038/nature07218
Xiao, C., Kuznetsov, Y., Sun, S., Hafenstein, S., Kostyuchenko, V., Chipman, P., Suzan-Monti, M., Raoult, D., McPherson, A., & Rossmann, M. (2009) Structural Studies of the Giant Mimivirus. PLoS Biology, 7(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1000092
Zauberman, N., Mutsafi, Y., Halevy, D., Shimoni, E., Klein, E., Xiao, C., Sun, S., & Minsky, A. (2008) Distinct DNA Exit and Packaging Portals in the Virus Acanthamoeba polyphaga mimivirus. PLoS Biology, 6(5). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0060114
Didier Raoult. (2005) The Journey from Rikettsia to Mimivirus. ASM News, 278-285. DOI: www.asm.org/ASM/files/ccLibraryFiles/FILENAME/000000001583/znw00605000278.pdf
Residency training in the United States has historically been a period of abusive hours and intense training. Until recently, there was no limit to the number of hours per week a resident could work. In fact, that has something to do with why they’re called “residents” in the first place: they practically lived in the [...]... Read more »
E. Ray Dorsey, David Jarjoura, & Gregory W. Rutecki. (2003) Influence of Controllable Lifestyle on Recent Trends in Specialty Choice by US Medical Students. JAMA, 290(9), 1173-1178.
The association between physical activity levels, abdominal fat, and erectile dysfunction is investigated in 3,941 adult men from the 2001–2004 National Health and Nutrition. Examination Survey... Read more »
Janiszewski, P., Janssen, I., & Ross, R. (2009) Abdominal Obesity and Physical Inactivity Are Associated with Erectile Dysfunction Independent of Body Mass Index. Journal of Sexual Medicine. DOI: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2009.01302.x
Although not all birds mate for life, many do, and often mated pairs will stay together at least for the duration of a reproductive season. Birds are sneaky, however, and some “sneaker” males will often try to stealthily mate with females within pairs. Behavioral ecologists have many theories about why females engage in these extra-pair [...]... Read more »
Magrath, M., Vedder, O., van der Velde, M., & Komdeur, J. (2009) Maternal Effects Contribute to the Superior Performance of Extra-Pair Offspring. Current Biology. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2009.03.068
by Nestor L. Lopez-Duran PhD in Child-Psych
Last week I reviewed a study that suggested that exposure to smoking in movies increased the risk of becoming a habitual smoker. Although that study showed that movie smoking was the stronger predictor of habitual smoking, a close second was whether the child was exposed to smoking at home. This is consistent with previous research showing that exposure to smoking at home increases the risk of smoking in children and teenagers. Yet, there is little research on the factors that predict exposure ........ Read more »
King, K., Martynenko, M., Bergman, M., Liu, Y., Winickoff, J., & Weitzman, M. (2009) Family Composition and Children's Exposure to Adult Smokers in Their Homes. PEDIATRICS, 123(4). DOI: 10.1542/peds.2008-2317
by Seth Bell in Just A Theory
Good news for the appearance-conscious this week, as it is announced that an ‘anti-ageing’ cream produced by Boots, ‘No 7 Protect & Perfect Intense Beauty Serum’, really does reduce wrinkles. And it is not just Boots who are claiming this, but qualified scientists from The University of Manchester who have given their seal of approval [...]... Read more »
Watson, R., Ogden, S., Cotterell, L., Bowden, J., Bastrilles, J., Long, S., & Griffiths, C. (2009) A cosmetic ‘anti-ageing’ product improves photoaged skin: a double-blind, randomized controlled trial. British Journal of Dermatology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2133.2009.09216.x
The BMJ has just published an interesting paper on the factors that determine whether family agree to donate the organs of a brain dead relative.
According to the meta-analysis by researchers at the University of Oxford, careful timing and having a transplant coordinator make the request are key factors in whether relatives consent to organ donation.
This [...]... Read more »
Simpkin, A., Robertson, L., Barber, V., & Young, J. (2009) Modifiable factors influencing relatives' decision to offer organ donation: systematic review. BMJ, 338(apr21 2). DOI: 10.1136/bmj.b991
On Wednesday, the CDC reported that influenza A H1N1 viruses from 13 patients with confirmed diagnoses of swine flu had been tested for resistance to a variety of antiviral drugs. The good news was that all of the isolates were susceptible to the antiviral drugs oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza). However, all 13 were resistant to adamantane-based drugs (amantadine and rimantadine). Resistance to adamantane drugs (which were developed first) has actually become quite widespread amo........ Read more »
Schnell, J., & Chou, J. (2008) Structure and mechanism of the M2 proton channel of influenza A virus. Nature, 451(7178), 591-595. DOI: 10.1038/nature06531
Pielak, R., Schnell, J., & Chou, J. (2009) Mechanism of drug inhibition and drug resistance of influenza A M2 channel. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0902548106
Stouffer, A., Acharya, R., Salom, D., Levine, A., Di Costanzo, L., Soto, C., Tereshko, V., Nanda, V., Stayrook, S., & DeGrado, W. (2008) Structural basis for the function and inhibition of an influenza virus proton channel. Nature, 451(7178), 596-599. DOI: 10.1038/nature06528
Stouffer, A., Ma, C., Cristian, L., Ohigashi, Y., Lamb, R., Lear, J., Pinto, L., & DeGrado, W. (2008) The Interplay of Functional Tuning, Drug Resistance, and Thermodynamic Stability in the Evolution of the M2 Proton Channel from the Influenza A Virus. Structure, 16(7), 1067-1076. DOI: 10.1016/j.str.2008.04.011
Update 5. I compared the amino acids in the putative protective antibody binding sites, and tentatively conclude that while there may be a little cross-protection between the vaccine H1N1 and the epidemic H1N1, there’s not likely to be a lot.
Update 4.5: This is getting way past tl;dr territory, so I’m going to show my work [...]... Read more »
CATON, A. (1982) The antigenic structure of the influenza virus A/PR/8/34 hemagglutinin (H1 subtype). Cell, 31(2), 417-427. DOI: 10.1016/0092-8674(82)90135-0
Like many people with autism, the celebrated artist Stephen Wiltshire has an incredible ability to focus on small details, as evidenced by his beautifully intricate art-work (see image). However, in the lab, psychologists have struggled to pin down this feature of autism.Some studies have revealed a global-processing deficit, some haven't. Others have shown a local-processing bias, some haven't. The very latest findings suggest that some, but not all, children with autism specifically show an ex........ Read more »
Every few years, a group based at Hertford College at Oxford puts together a statistical analysis of all the studies conducted to date that have looked at whether praying for sick people helps them get better (or at least stay alive).
The latest has just been published, and it contains something pretty radically new in their conclusions: the evidence is now so clear cut that they think that no more studies should be done. The book is shut. Praying for sick people simply doesn't work.
Now, ........ Read more »
Every few years, a group based at Hertford College at Oxford puts together a statistical analysis of all the studies conducted to date that have looked at whether praying for sick people helps them get better (or at least stay alive).The latest has just been published, and it contains something pretty radically new in their conclusions: the evidence is now so clear cut that they think that no more studies should be done. The book is shut. Praying for sick people simply doesn't work.Now, the odd ........ Read more »
Do you write about peer-reviewed research in your blog? Use ResearchBlogging.org to make it easy for your readers — and others from around the world — to find your serious posts about academic research.
If you don't have a blog, you can still use our site to learn about fascinating developments in cutting-edge research from around the world.
Research Blogging is powered by SMG Technology.
To learn more, visit seedmediagroup.com.