Jewel Wasps (Ampulex compressa) are amazing creatures and their form of parental care has received quite some attention not onkly by scientists but also from the general media, and rightfully so. This parasitoid wasp serves for its young by hunting cockroaches as food. But it doesn't serve the cockroach to the offspring in pieces. No, it first performs brain surgery on the 'roaches to render them docile and then lays an egg onto the pacified animal from which a larva will hatch which then burr........ Read more »
Gal, R., & Libersat, F. (2010) A Wasp Manipulates Neuronal Activity in the Sub-Esophageal Ganglion to Decrease the Drive for Walking in Its Cockroach Prey. PLoS ONE, 5(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0010019
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Joseph R. Benjamin and Colden V. Baxter. (2010) Do Nonnative Salmonines Exhibit Greater Density and Production than the Natives They Replace? A Comparison of Nonnative Brook Trout with Native Cutthroat Trout. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society. info:/10.1577/T09-102.1
What are the cognitive and neural systems that allow us to build buildings, play checkers, do multivariate statistics, receive DVDs by mail, follow Dr. Isis's pesto recipe, or navigate the tangled LA freeways?
You may ask: what can studying children and non-human animals tell us about the complexity of the human experience? Only educated human adults engage with formal mathematics, cooking, or map reading. Right?
This is a reasonable question to ask. But when human adults show complex, possi........ Read more »
Hauser, Marc D., & Spelke, Elizabeth. (2004) Evolutionary and Developmental Foundations of Human Knowledge. The Cognitive Neurosciences III (Ed. M. Gazzaniga). info:/
Researchers have developed a framework to help managers identify and prioritize actions that will reduce human wildlife conflict. They tested the approach in the Sundarbans of Bangledash where people are killing tigers and tigers are killing people...... Read more »
BARLOW, A., GREENWOOD, C., AHMAD, I., & SMITH, J. (2010) Use of an Action-Selection Framework for Human-Carnivore Conflict in the Bangladesh Sundarbans. Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2010.01496.x
Empathy or the ability to appreciate someone else’s emotions and express this emotional awareness is a capacity that differs amongst individuals.
Cognitive empathy refers to imaginatively understanding another person’s thoughts, feelings and actions. Emotional empathy is feeling the emotion of another person, but maintaining a compassionate, other-focused perspective
Cognitive empathy can be tested with facial expression recognition. [...]
Related posts:Patient Doctor Relationship: Ca........ Read more »
Besel, L., & Yuille, J. (2010) Individual differences in empathy: The role of facial expression recognition. Personality and Individual Differences. DOI: 10.1016/j.paid.2010.03.013
Lee, S., Guajardo, N., Short, S., & King, W. (2010) Individual differences in ocular level empathic accuracy ability: The predictive power of fantasy empathy. Personality and Individual Differences. DOI: 10.1016/j.paid.2010.03.016
You all may remember that Sci's recent posts have focused on eating, overeating, and dopamine. Today, Sci continues this trend. Honestly, she couldn't stop thinking about it. How is overeating like addiction? How is it different? And so she began to look up a bunch of papers on binge eating and dopamine.
I was particularly interesting in the changes in food intake and reward associated responses in people with eating disorders like bulimia nervosa and anorexia nervosa. There are many hy........ Read more »
Schienle, A., Schäfer, A., Hermann, A., & Vaitl, D. (2009) Binge-Eating Disorder: Reward Sensitivity and Brain Activation to Images of Food. Biological Psychiatry, 65(8), 654-661. DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2008.09.028
He has not lived badly whose birth and death has been unnoticed by the world-Horace
It is good to carry some powered rouge in one’s sleeve. It may happen that when one is sobering up or waking from sleep, his complexion may be poor. At such a time it is good to take out and apply [...]... Read more »
Danovaro, R., Dell'Anno, A., Pusceddu, A., Gambi, C., Heiner, I., & Kristensen, R. (2010) The first metazoa living in permanently anoxic conditions. BMC Biology, 8(1), 30. DOI: 10.1186/1741-7007-8-30
Image by jef safi via Flickr
Creativity is certainly different from intelligence; it is usually gauged as the ability to make novel and useful unique contributions to a field. Creativity itself is not a unified construct but can be broken into convergent creativity (involving more focused approach) and divergent creativity (involving more widening and loosening of More >Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)
Related posts:Creativity-psychosis linkage via reduced white matter /myelination I........ Read more »
Chermahini SA, & Hommel B. (2010) The (b)link between creativity and dopamine: Spontaneous eye blink rates predict and dissociate divergent and convergent thinking. Cognition. PMID: 20334856
A red panda (Ailurus fulgens, left, photographed at the Bronx Zoo) and a giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca, right, photographed at the National Zoo).
As the paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould so astutely pointed out in one of his most famous essays, the thumbs of giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) are nothing at all like the large digits on our own hands. Their accessory "thumbs", visible on the surface as a differentiated part of the pad on the "palm" of the hand, are modified sesamoid........ Read more »
Salesa, M. (2006) Evidence of a false thumb in a fossil carnivore clarifies the evolution of pandas. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 103(2), 379-382. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0504899102
Although we are most familiar with the circadian rhythm from its effects on our physiological state, the roots of the phenomenon lie in the molecular biology of individual cells. The circadian rhythm is the result of a transcriptional control system that regulates the levels of many different proteins in the cell with the passing of time. Not all of the proteins subject to this control have yet been catalogued, and as a result some surprising effects are still being discovered. A recent article ........ Read more »
Kang, T., Lindsey-Boltz, L., Reardon, J., & Sancar, A. (2010) Circadian control of XPA and excision repair of cisplatin-DNA damage by cryptochrome and HERC2 ubiquitin ligase. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(11), 4890-4895. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0915085107
Signs of illegal whale meat trade found at sushi restaurants
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Baker, C.S. et al. (2010) Genetic evidence of illegal trade in protected whales links Japan with the US and South Korea. Biology Letters. info:/10.1098/rsbl.2010.0239
Can environmental conditions during early development shape individuals phenotypes so they become more adaptive to the conditions they are likely to encounter later in life? Such phenotypic plasticity could provide organisms with the potential to respond effectively to environmental change. One area where such plasticity would be important would be in an animals sensory capabilities. Animals extract information from the environment using a number of sensory systems, and this information guides t........ Read more »
Chapman, B., Morrell, L., Tosh, C., & Krause, J. (2010) Behavioural consequences of sensory plasticity in guppies. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 277(1686), 1395-1401. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2009.2055
Even though their preferred range places them in proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, the conquest of marine ecosystems by the cottonmouths has been - as it has with most aquatically inclined reptiles - blockaded. The physiological demands of maintaining adequate hydration in a high-saline environment has constrained the Agkistrodon genus to a landward life. But things could change. ... Read more »
Lillywhite, H., Sheehy, C., & Zaidan, F. (2008) Pitviper Scavenging at the Intertidal Zone: An Evolutionary Scenario for Invasion of the Sea. BioScience, 58(10), 947. DOI: 10.1641/B581008
by Vincent Racaniello in virology blog
Deep sequencing – which identified a viral contaminant of the rotavirus vaccine Rotarix - could have revealed the presence of simian virus 40 (SV40) in the poliovirus vaccine, had the technique been available in the 1950s. Exposure of over 100 million Americans to SV40, and many more worldwide, could have been avoided, as well as the debate [...]... Read more »
López-Ríos F, Illei PB, Rusch V, & Ladanyi M. (2004) Evidence against a role for SV40 infection in human mesotheliomas and high risk of false-positive PCR results owing to presence of SV40 sequences in common laboratory plasmids. Lancet, 364(9440), 1157-66. PMID: 15451223
PEDEN, K. (2008) Recovery of strains of the polyomavirus SV40 from rhesus monkey kidney cells dating from the 1950s to the early 1960s. Virology, 370(1), 63-76. DOI: 10.1016/j.virol.2007.06.045
WILLIAMS Syndrome (WS) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder caused by the deletion of about 28 genes from the long arm of chromosome 7. It is characterized by mild to moderate mental retardation and "elfin" facial features. Most strikingly, individuals with WS exhibit highly gregarious social behaviour: they approach strangers readily and indiscriminately, behaving as if everybody were their friend. And, according to a study published today in the journal Current Biology, they are the only know........ Read more »
Santos, A., Meyer-Lindenberg, A., & Deruelle, C. (2010) Absence of racial, but not gender, stereotyping in Williams syndrome children. Current Biology, 20(7). DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2010.02.009
It seems like there is no institution that is more criticized in science than that of the peer-review system — an no one that is less mutable. While published paper evaluation metrics are being revised (such as the recently introduced PLoS article level metrics, or the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council abandonment of [...]... Read more »
Friedberg, E. (2010) Peer review of scientific papers—A never-ending conumdrum. DNA Repair. DOI: 10.1016/j.dnarep.2010.03.003
One of the difficulties doctors face when prescribing antidepressants is that they're unpredictable.One person might do well on a certain drug, but the next person might get no benefit from the exact same pills. Finding the right drug for each patient is often a matter of trying different ones until one works.So a genetic test to work out whether a certain drug will help a particular person would be really useful. Not to mention really profitable for whoever patented it. Three recent papers, pub........ Read more »
Binder EB, Owens MJ, Liu W, Deveau TC, Rush AJ, Trivedi MH, Fava M, Bradley B, Ressler KJ, & Nemeroff CB. (2010) Association of polymorphisms in genes regulating the corticotropin-releasing factor system with antidepressant treatment response. Archives of general psychiatry, 67(4), 369-79. PMID: 20368512
Uher, R., Perroud, N., Ng, M., Hauser, J., Henigsberg, N., Maier, W., Mors, O., Placentino, A., Rietschel, M., Souery, D.... (2010) Genome-Wide Pharmacogenetics of Antidepressant Response in the GENDEP Project. American Journal of Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2009.09070932
Garriock, H., Kraft, J., Shyn, S., Peters, E., Yokoyama, J., Jenkins, G., Reinalda, M., Slager, S., McGrath, P., & Hamilton, S. (2010) A Genomewide Association Study of Citalopram Response in Major Depressive Disorder. Biological Psychiatry, 67(2), 133-138. DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2009.08.029
Many studies have reported that socioeconomic status is a predictor of morbidity and mortality. Now, a large-scale, longitudinal study asserts that the association may be more related to health behaviors than socioeconomic status. The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), reports that assessment of health behaviors over time lessens the [...]... Read more »
Goldfarb-Rumyantzev, A., Rout, P., Sandhu, G., Khattak, M., Tang, H., & Barenbaum, A. (2010) Association between social adaptability index and survival of patients with chronic kidney disease. Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation. DOI: 10.1093/ndt/gfq177
Singh, T., Givertz, M., Semigran, M., DeNofrio, D., Costantino, F., & Gauvreau, K. (2010) Socioeconomic Position, Ethnicity, and Outcomes in Heart Transplant Recipients. The American Journal of Cardiology, 105(7), 1024-1029. DOI: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2009.11.015
Stringhini, S., Sabia, S., Shipley, M., Brunner, E., Nabi, H., Kivimaki, M., & Singh-Manoux, A. (2010) Association of Socioeconomic Position With Health Behaviors and Mortality. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 303(12), 1159-1166. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2010.297
Turrell, G., Kavanagh, A., Draper, G., & Subramanian, S. (2007) Do places affect the probability of death in Australia? A multilevel study of area-level disadvantage, individual-level socioeconomic position and all-cause mortality, 1998-2000. Journal of Epidemiology , 61(1), 13-19. DOI: 10.1136/jech.2006.046094
Warner, E., & Gomez, S. (2010) Impact of Neighborhood Racial Composition and Metropolitan Residential Segregation on Disparities in Breast Cancer Stage at Diagnosis and Survival Between Black and White Women in California. Journal of Community Health. DOI: 10.1007/s10900-010-9265-2
Each week, Research Bloggers Kevin Zelnio, Razib Khan, and I will choose a journal article to discuss in podcast form. We’ll make sure it’s an article that we or someone else has covered on their blog, so ideally, you’ll read the blog post first to get a general understanding of the research, then listen to [...]... Read more »
Malmstrom, H., Linderholm, A., Liden, K., Stora, J., Molnar, P., Holmlund, G., Jakobsson, M., & Gotherstrom, A. (2010) High frequency of lactose intolerance in a prehistoric hunter-gatherer population in northern Europe. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 10(1), 89. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2148-10-89
While it might sound science fiction or comic book fodder, scientists have actually developed a kind of wearable protective cloth from T-shirts that contains the same ultra-strong material used to armor tanks. Read the rest of this post... | Read the comments on this post...... Read more »
Tao, X., Dong, L., Wang, X., Zhang, W., Nelson, B., & Li, X. (2010) B C-Nanowires/Carbon-Microfiber Hybrid Structures and Composites from Cotton T-shirts . Advanced Materials. DOI: 10.1002/adma.200903071
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