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  • March 15, 2011
  • 02:55 PM

My Allergy Gene: Cool. And Wut?

by Mary in OpenHelix

Wherein I #FAIL personal genomics….
One of the medical issues of personal interest to me is allergy. It’s something I pay attention to all the time because I have an allergy that can really cause me problems–peanuts. But I come from a family with a whole host of additional allergy issues too. All of my siblings have had serious problems with eczema. Their cracked and raw winter hands can be significantly painful, and I feel for them. Sometimes I felt like the peanut allergy was........ Read more »

Brown, S., Asai, Y., Cordell, H., Campbell, L., Zhao, Y., Liao, H., Northstone, K., Henderson, J., Alizadehfar, R., & Ben-Shoshan, M. (2011) Loss-of-function variants in the filaggrin gene are a significant risk factor for peanut allergy. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 127(3), 661-667. DOI: 10.1016/j.jaci.2011.01.031  

  • March 15, 2011
  • 02:53 PM

The False Dichotomy Of the Nature-Nurture Debate

by Nature Education in Student Voices

Every few months, scientific press releases with headlines more eye-catching tha...... Read more »

  • March 15, 2011
  • 01:00 PM

State of the Field: First World or Third World?

by Bluegrass Blue Crab in Southern Fried Science

Ever stop to think what divides the first from the third world? Why don’t we ever hear about the second and why don’t countries move between categories as they develop? Well, because the categories are historical – the second world is reserved for post-soviet countries attempting to rebuild governance. The first world is [...]... Read more »

  • March 15, 2011
  • 12:30 PM

Classics: demography versus genetics

by CJA Bradshaw in ConservationBytes

Here’s another short, but sweet Conservation Classic highlighted in our upcoming book chapter (see previous entries on this book). Today’s entry comes from long-time quantitative ecology guru, Russ Lande, who is now based at the Silwood Park Campus (Imperial College London). – In an influential review, Lande (1988) argued that “…demography may usually be of more [...]... Read more »

  • March 15, 2011
  • 11:35 AM

Not All Medicinal Honey is Alike

by Michelle Ziegler in Contagions

Honey has been used in medicine since antiquity. It has been used in everything from wound dressings to hot tea to sooth a colicky bowel. Modern medicine is finally beginning to investigate the basis for these folk remedies.... Read more »

  • March 15, 2011
  • 09:09 AM

Sunday Protist – Trimastix marina

by Psi Wavefunction in Skeptic Wonder

Before we begin, two things about [current] Trimastix marina – it has four flagella (not three) and is found in freshwater. The taxonomic author, Saville-Kent, is a bit notorious for some rather sketchy descriptions, and Trimastix is one of his 'trophies'. That said, it may be that Kent did actually see a three-flagellated and/or marine thing like this and it just hasn't been found or published yet. But for the time being, feel free to point and laugh at the double misnomer.This past fall I du........ Read more »

  • March 15, 2011
  • 07:43 AM

The Tick and the Blood Pool

by zoonotica in zoonotica

I don’t like spiders. I don’t kill them because I appreciate they keep the flies down etc. etc. but I really don’t like them.  Actually, it isn’t them per se, but their legs… So why I started looking at another paper on eight-legged critters I have no idea!  But it’s a very interesting paper, and [...]... Read more »

Anisuzzaman, ., Islam, M., Alim, M., Miyoshi, T., Hatta, T., Yamaji, K., Matsumoto, Y., Fujisaki, K., & Tsuji, N. (2011) Longistatin, a Plasminogen Activator, Is Key to the Availability of Blood-Meals for Ixodid Ticks. PLoS Pathogens, 7(3). DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1001312  

  • March 15, 2011
  • 06:30 AM

Frontier living with lipids

by Becky in It Takes 30

The completion of stage 1 of the human genome project a bit over 10 years ago marked the beginning, not the end, of an era.  It didn’t mean that we can stop hunting for the molecular components involved in biological behavior, or in disease; there’s still plenty to do.  But now that we believe we [...]... Read more »

Gallego O, Betts MJ, Gvozdenovic-Jeremic J, Maeda K, Matetzki C, Aguilar-Gurrieri C, Beltran-Alvarez P, Bonn S, Fernández-Tornero C, Jensen LJ.... (2010) A systematic screen for protein-lipid interactions in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Molecular systems biology, 430. PMID: 21119626  

  • March 15, 2011
  • 04:09 AM

Neural Correlates of 80s Hip Hop

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

A ground-breaking new study reveals the neurological basis of seminal East Coast hip-hop pioneers Run-D.M.C.The study is Diffusion tensor imaging of the hippocampus and verbal memory performance: The RUN DMC Study, and it actually has nothing to do with hip-hop, but it does have one of the best study acronyms I have ever seen.RUN DMC stands for the "Radboud University Nijmegen Diffusion tensor and Magnetic resonance imaging Cohort study".Or maybe it does relate to rapping. Because the paper is a........ Read more »

van Norden AG, de Laat KF, Fick I, van Uden IW, van Oudheusden LJ, Gons RA, Norris DG, Zwiers MP, Kessels RP, & de Leeuw FE. (2011) Diffusion tensor imaging of the hippocampus and verbal memory performance: The RUN DMC Study. Human brain mapping. PMID: 21391278  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 11:19 PM

My Cochlodinium Conundrum

by John Carroll in Chronicles of Zostera

Or – What do I do when field observations don’t match lab results.  This is a philosophical debate that has plagued ecologists for decades and it brings up all sorts of issues – relevant scale, extrapolation, replication and pseudoreplication, variable control, realism, and the list can go on and on.  How did I arrive at the . . . → Read More: My Cochlodinium Conundrum... Read more »

  • March 14, 2011
  • 08:40 PM

Bad Science: Idiots and Ecstasy

by Neurobonkers in Neurobonkers

do_sud_thumb("","Bad Science: Idiots and Ecstasy")... Read more »

Halpern JH, Sherwood AR, Hudson JI, Gruber S, Kozin D, & Pope HG Jr. (2011) Residual neurocognitive features of long-term ecstasy users with minimal exposure to other drugs. Addiction (Abingdon, England), 106(4), 777-86. PMID: 21205042  

Insel TR, Battaglia G, Johannessen JN, Marra S, & De Souza EB. (1989) 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine ("ecstasy") selectively destroys brain serotonin terminals in rhesus monkeys. The Journal of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics, 249(3), 713-20. PMID: 2471824  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 08:39 PM

The Lost Cowbird of Térapa

by Laelaps in Laelaps

“One of the penalties of an ecological education,” the conservationist Aldo Leopold once wrote, “is that one lives alone in a world of wounds.” This is true for the students of prehistory as much as ecologists. Nature has never been in a static balance – change is the overwhelming theme – and the scars of [...]... Read more »

Oswald, J., & Steadman, D. (2011) Late pleistocene passerine birds from Sonora, Mexico. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 301(1-4), 56-63. DOI: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2010.12.020  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 05:11 PM

Measuring Nanoparticles

by in Beaker

One of the problems with nanoparticles is that, well, they’re just so small, making them difficult to study. Researchers may have solved that problem by building an instrument that can detect nanoparticles as small as tens of nanometers (billionths of a meter).... Read more »

Fraikin JL, Teesalu T, McKenney CM, Ruoslahti E, & Cleland AN. (2011) A high-throughput label-free nanoparticle analyser. Nature nanotechnology. PMID: 21378975  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 01:00 PM

Targeting an Achilles' Heel of Plasmodium

by S. Marvin Friedman in Small Things Considered

Plasmodium falciparum accounts for 85% of all cases of malaria, and thus is the most deadly of the many species in this genus. About 250 million people are infected annually, of which about one million die. Of these deaths, 90% occur south of the Sahara desert in Africa, and most of the victims are children under the age of five. Malaria also occurs in southern Asia, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and the Middle East. Plasmodium, an apicomplexan protozoan, is also famous for its compl........ Read more »

Istvan ES, Dharia NV, Bopp SE, Gluzman I, Winzeler EA, & Goldberg DE. (2011) Validation of isoleucine utilization targets in Plasmodium falciparum. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 108(4), 1627-32. PMID: 21205898  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 11:12 AM

The relationship between radioactivity, leukemias and lymphomas

by Sally Church in Pharma Strategy Blog

Ohayo gozaimasu!  Like many people this weekend, I have been following the twin earthquake and tsunami disaster in Northern Japan with a great sense of sadness after hearing that thousnads of people have died.  If you haven’t already seen it, … Continue reading →
... Read more »

Watson GM. (1991) Leukaemia and paternal radiation exposure. The Medical journal of Australia, 154(7), 483-7. PMID: 2005848  

Draper GJ, Little MP, Sorahan T, Kinlen LJ, Bunch KJ, Conquest AJ, Kendall GM, Kneale GW, Lancashire RJ, Muirhead CR.... (1997) Cancer in the offspring of radiation workers: a record linkage study. BMJ (Clinical research ed.), 315(7117), 1181-8. PMID: 9393219  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 07:00 AM

March 14, 2011

by Erin Campbell in HighMag Blog

Actin is as essential to a cell’s function as Girl Scout cookies are to mine. With all of the biologists sorting out the many different functions and regulators of actin, it’s easy to get a little overwhelmed as a reader and actin admirer. Thankfully, a recent paper delves into the world of RhoA to clarify exactly what it is doing in our skin cells. RhoA is an actin small GTPase, which means it serves as a molecular switch to regulate actin cytoskeleton organization. RhoA is important in m........ Read more »

Jackson, B., Peyrollier, K., Pedersen, E., Basse, A., Karlsson, R., Wang, Z., Lefever, T., Ochsenbein, A., Schmidt, G., Aktories, K.... (2011) RhoA is dispensable for skin development, but crucial for contraction and directed migration of keratinocytes. Molecular Biology of the Cell, 22(5), 593-605. DOI: 10.1091/mbc.E09-10-0859  

  • March 14, 2011
  • 02:04 AM

Science in Film

by Paige Brown in From The Lab Bench

Name Best and Worst Science-Based Movies Read more »

  • March 13, 2011
  • 10:45 AM

Moving on up – Vertical migrations of Nautilus

by Mike Mike in Cephalove

If you like nature documentaries, you’ve probably seen the following clip (from the BBC’s “Planet Earth“): Nautiluses are really cool – they’re misfits among cephalopods, having many tentacles and external shells while their fellow squids and octopodes are squishy and eight- or ten-armed. In this clip, at least, they come across as sort of mysterious, [...]... Read more »

BRUCE A. CARLSON, JAMES N. McKIBBEN, AND MICHAEL V. DEGRuy. (1984) Telemetric Investigation of Vertical Migration of Nautilus belauensis in Palau. Pacific Science. info:/

  • March 13, 2011
  • 12:32 AM

How Bacteria Swim in Your Stomach

by Lorax in Angry by Choice

We started our Microbiology Journal Club of the new year, technically a new decade. We started off with a bang, well a bang from a physics perspective, more of a whimper from a microbiology perspective.

The paper under discussion was:

Helicobacter pylori moves through mucus by reducing mucin viscoelasticity. by Celli JP et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Aug 25;106(34):14321-6.

The basic premise is that H. pylori, a spiral shaped bacteria is thought to burrow its wa........ Read more »

Celli, J., Turner, B., Afdhal, N., Keates, S., Ghiran, I., Kelly, C., Ewoldt, R., McKinley, G., So, P., Erramilli, S.... (2009) Helicobacter pylori moves through mucus by reducing mucin viscoelasticity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(34), 14321-14326. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0903438106  

  • March 12, 2011
  • 08:45 AM

The evolution of female intentionality

by Vahid Motlagh in Ideas for a deeper sense of life

One of the critical aspects regarding the “evolution itself evolving” is the emergence of the female expressed and not simply silent intentionality.In my recent article about the alternative futures of Asia in the year 2060 I highlighted the rise and contribution of female consciousness as a mega trend which will continue to reshape our world in the coming decades. Even a critical question that is raised today after the domino revolutions across the Middle East and North Africa is that if an........ Read more »

Motlagh VV. (2010) Asia's Exotic Futures in the Far beyond the Present. Journal of Futures Studies, 15(2), 1-16. info:/

Gur RC, Gunning-Dixon F, Bilker WB, & Gur RE. (2002) Sex differences in temporo-limbic and frontal brain volumes of healthy adults. Cerebral cortex (New York, N.Y. : 1991), 12(9), 998-1003. PMID: 12183399  

Acevedo BP, Aron A, Fisher HE, & Brown LL. (2011) Neural correlates of long-term intense romantic love. Social cognitive and affective neuroscience. PMID: 21208991  

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