Scientists have developed a new way to grow hematite as an electrode in solar water-splitting devices to greatly improve efficiency!... Read more »
Jang, J., Du, C., Ye, Y., Lin, Y., Yao, X., Thorne, J., Liu, E., McMahon, G., Zhu, J., Javey, A.... (2015) Enabling unassisted solar water splitting by iron oxide and silicon. Nature Communications, 7447. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8447
by Gegentuul Baioud in Language on the Move
Last week when I saw in my friends’ Wechat group an advertisement for delicately made Mongolian yurts, I thought of an article I had read earlier written by Mongolian scholar Naran Bilik. In his paper about urbanized Mongolians Bilik writes: … Continue reading →... Read more »
Brox, T. (2015) Tibetan minzu market: the intersection of ethnicity and commodity . Asian Ethnicity, 1-21. DOI: 10.1080/14631369.2015.1013175
Most of the fancy words used by life science folks are dry but effective. However, every once in a while a researcher will discover a new gene or small molecule and decide to gift it with a fun and creative name.The bacterium Photorhabdus luminescens has a gene called makes caterpillars floppy (mcf), which encodes a toxin that causes caterpillars to go all floppy like before it kills them. P. luminescens is a super interesting little bug. It hangs out in the gut of a worm that infects insects, h........ Read more »
Caro I, & Low JA. (2010) The role of the hedgehog signaling pathway in the development of basal cell carcinoma and opportunities for treatment. Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, 16(13), 3335-9. PMID: 20439455
Daborn, P., Waterfield, N., Silva, C., Au, C., Sharma, S., & ffrench-Constant, R. (2002) A single Photorhabdus gene, makes caterpillars floppy (mcf), allows Escherichia coli to persist within and kill insects. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 99(16), 10742-10747. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.102068099
Previous studies have shown that men find female faces more attractive when the women are ovulating, but the visual clues that allow this are unclear. Now, new research investigating whether it might be to do with subtle changes in skin colour has shown that women’s faces do increase in redness during ovulation, but the levels of change are just under the detectable range of the human eye.... Read more »
Hannah Rowland, & Robert Burriss. (2015) Women’s faces get redder at ovulation, but human eyes can’t pick up on it. PLOS ONE. info:/
This is the second post reviewing recent novel trials for the treatment of bipolar disorder.Again, for my sources I am using are clinicaltrials.gov and PubMed.Clicking on the study title will take you to the clinicaltrials.gov site for more detailed protocol information.Allopurinol Maintenance Study for Bipolar DisorderThis completed study examined the effect of 300 to 600 mg per day of allopurinol on mania prevention. Allopurinol is a drug used primarily for the treatment of gout or kidney ston........ Read more »
Jahangard, L., Soroush, S., Haghighi, M., Ghaleiha, A., Bajoghli, H., Holsboer-Trachsler, E., & Brand, S. (2013) In a double-blind, randomized and placebo-controlled trial, adjuvant allopurinol improved symptoms of mania in in-patients suffering from bipolar disorder. Pharmacopsychiatry, 46(06). DOI: 10.1055/s-0033-1353345
Lauder S, Chester A, Castle D, Dodd S, Gliddon E, Berk L, Chamberlain J, Klein B, Gilbert M, Austin DW.... (2015) A randomized head to head trial of MoodSwings.net.au: an Internet based self-help program for bipolar disorder. Journal of affective disorders, 13-21. PMID: 25282145
Rapinesi C, Bersani FS, Kotzalidis GD, Imperatori C, Del Casale A, Di Pietro S, Ferri VR, Serata D, Raccah RN, Zangen A.... (2015) Maintenance Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Sessions are Associated with Reduced Depressive Relapses in Patients with Unipolar or Bipolar Depression. Frontiers in neurology, 16. PMID: 25709596
Here’s more evidence that fish oil supplementation and antioxidants might be beneficial for at least some people facing Alzheimer’s disease. A new report describes the findings of a very small study in which people with mild clinical impairment, such as those in the very early stages of the disease, saw clearance of the hallmark amyloid-beta protein and reduced inflammation in neurological tissues. Although the findings involved just 12 patients over the course of 4 to 17 months, the finding........ Read more »
Fiala M, Halder RC, Sagong B, Ross O, Sayre J, Porter V, & Bredesen DE. (2015) ω-3 Supplementation increases amyloid-β phagocytosis and resolvin D1 in patients with minor cognitive impairment. FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. PMID: 25805829
Image: Photograph by Jack Wilgus ofa daguerreotype of Phineas Gagein the collection of Jack and Beverly Wilgus.It's a remarkable, mythical tale with lashings of gore – no wonder it's a favourite of psychology students the world over. I'm talking about Phineas Gage, the nineteenth century railway worker who somehow survived the passing of a three-foot long tamping iron through the front of his brain and out the top of his head. What happened to him next?If you turn to many of the leading introd........ Read more »
Griggs, R. (2015) Coverage of the Phineas Gage Story in Introductory Psychology Textbooks: Was Gage No Longer Gage?. Teaching of Psychology, 42(3), 195-202. DOI: 10.1177/0098628315587614
With gravitational lensing, researchers have located population III stars in far galaxies.... Read more »
Rydberg, C., Zackrisson, E., Zitrin, A., Guaita, L., Melinder, J., Asadi, S., Gonzalez, J., Östlin, G., & Ström, T. (2015) A SEARCH FOR POPULATION III GALAXIES IN CLASH. I. SINGLY IMAGED CANDIDATES AT HIGH REDSHIFT. The Astrophysical Journal, 804(1), 13. DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/804/1/13
A new paper from a group of American neurologists makes the case that Hitler suffered from Parkinson's disease for much of his life, and that some of his most fateful decisions were influenced by the neurological disorder.
The article is by Raghav Gupta and colleagues and it appears in World Neurosurgery - a journal with an interesting political history of its own.
Gupta et al. note that
The possibility of Hitler suffering from Parkinson's has long been the subject of debate... [a res... Read more »
Gupta R, Kim C, Agarwal N, Lieber B, & Monaco EA 3rd. (2015) Understanding the Influence of Parkinson's Disease on Adolf Hitler's Decision-Making during World War II. World neurosurgery. PMID: 26093359
A quote to begin: "Overall, the manuscript supports the idea that ASD [autism spectrum disorder] results from gene–environment interactions and that in the presence of a genetic predisposition to ASD, diet can make a large difference in the expression of the condition."The manuscript in question was by Antonio Currais and colleagues  reporting some rather interesting results based on the 'dangermouse' that is the BTBR mouse model of autism. Researchers from the Salk Inst........ Read more »
Currais A, Farrokhi C, Dargusch R, Goujon-Svrzic M, & Maher P. (2015) Dietary glycemic index modulates the behavioral and biochemical abnormalities associated with autism spectrum disorder. Molecular psychiatry. PMID: 26055422
A look at living with disease close at hand, using a couple different papers. Living with Risk.... Read more »
Foxman EF, Storer JA, Fitzgerald ME, Wasik BR, Hou L, Zhao H, Turner PE, Pyle AM, & Iwasaki A. (2015) Temperature-dependent innate defense against the common cold virus limits viral replication at warm temperature in mouse airway cells. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 112(3), 827-32. PMID: 25561542
Martincorena I, Roshan A, Gerstung M, Ellis P, Van Loo P, McLaren S, Wedge DC, Fullam A, Alexandrov LB, Tubio JM.... (2015) Tumor evolution. High burden and pervasive positive selection of somatic mutations in normal human skin. Science (New York, N.Y.), 348(6237), 880-6. PMID: 25999502
Cherry, J., Liu, B., Frost, J., Lemere, C., Williams, J., Olschowka, J., & O’Banion, M. (2012) Galactic Cosmic Radiation Leads to Cognitive Impairment and Increased Aβ Plaque Accumulation in a Mouse Model of Alzheimer’s Disease. PLoS ONE, 7(12). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0053275
Researchers led by Toru Takumi at the RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan have discovered a key mechanism underlying how animals keep track of the seasons. The study shows how circadian clock machinery in the brain encodes seasonal changes in daylight duration through GABA activity along with changes in the amount of chloride located inside certain neurons.... Read more »
Myung J, Hong S, DeWoskin D, Schutter E, Forger, DB, and Takumi T. (2015) GABA-mediated repulsive coupling between circadian clock neurons in the SCN encodes seasonal time. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. info:/10.1073/pnas.1421200112
With the advent of video games, a frequently asked question has been whether we get as engrossed in them emotionally as we do when we see a scary movie. The answer is yes and many game players enjoy the fear caused by the zombies, disfigured humans and darkness they often encounter, the researchers found.... Read more »
Lynch, T., & Martins, N. (2015) Nothing to Fear? An Analysis of College Students' Fear Experiences With Video Games. Journal of Broadcasting , 59(2), 298-317. DOI: 10.1080/08838151.2015.1029128
Did you see the post from ScienceDaily a couple of months ago? As it turns out, we think better when we’re on our feet. Maybe more importantly though, given how much we tend to sit throughout the day, standing is a good way to … Continue reading →... Read more »
Dornhecker, M., Blake, J., Benden, M., Zhao, H., & Wendel, M. (2015) The effect of stand-biased desks on academic engagement: an exploratory study. International Journal of Health Promotion and Education, 1-10. DOI: 10.1080/14635240.2015.1029641
CIVO tests cancer drugs in human lymphomas in only 72 hours.... Read more »
Klinghoffer, R., Bahrami, S., Hatton, B., Frazier, J., Moreno-Gonzalez, A., Strand, A., Kerwin, W., Casalini, J., Thirstrup, D., You, S.... (2015) A technology platform to assess multiple cancer agents simultaneously within a patient's tumor. Science Translational Medicine, 7(284), 284-284. DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aaa7489
Stumbling across a headline that reads: 'Study Finds Decreased Social Anxiety Among Young Adults Who Eat Fermented Foods' was bound to pique my blogging interest. When I eventually tracked down the source paper behind the headline I became more and more intrigued as today I bring to your attention the study findings reported by Matthew Hilimire and colleagues .Implementing "a cross-sectional approach to determine whether consumption of fermented foods likely to contain probiotics interac........ Read more »
Hilimire MR, DeVylder JE, & Forestell CA. (2015) Fermented foods, neuroticism, and social anxiety: An interaction model. Psychiatry research, 228(2), 203-8. PMID: 25998000
Imagine spending your school half-term week with a forgetful relative who always leaves money scattered around the house. Would you pinch any? If so, when, and why? A new paper suggests that we are most likely to “cheat at the end”, and uses a neat method to find out why.A number of theories predict we are likelier to cheat later than earlier. Perhaps we award ourselves moral credits for being good earlier, and later spend them like Catholic indulgences for guilt-free sin. Or maybe the strug........ Read more »
The Nuremberg Code was drafted in 1947 following the appalling revelations of human experimentation committed in Nazi concentration camps. The overarching goal of the Code was to establish a set of rules for the ethical conduct of research using human subjects, guaranteeing that the rights and welfare of such participants would be protected. Two important principles guide and define this Code: the concept of voluntary, informed consent and that no experiment shall be conducted in which "there i........ Read more »
WHEAT RP, ZUCKERMAN A, & RANTZ LA. (1951) Infection due to chromobacteria; report of 11 cases. A.M.A. archives of internal medicine, 88(4), 461-6. PMID: 14867953
A misleading piece of statistical rhetoric has appeared in a paper about an experimental antidepressant treatment. The study is published in the Journal of Affective Disorders. JAD is a respectable mid-ranked psychiatry journal - yet on this occasion they seem to have dropped the ball badly.
The study examined whether the drug armodafinil (Nuvigil) improved mood in people with bipolar disorder who were in a depressive episode. In a double-blind trial, 462 patients were randomized to treat... Read more »
Ketter TA, Yang R, & Frye MA. (2015) Adjunctive armodafinil for major depressive episodes associated with bipolar I disorder. Journal of affective disorders, 87-91. PMID: 25933099
Behavioral flexibility — the ability to change strategy when the rules change — is controlled by specific neurons in the brain, Researchers have confirmed. Cholinergic interneurons are rare — they make up just one to two percent of the neurons in the striatum, a key part of the brain involved with higher-level decision-making. Scientists have suspected they play a role in changing strategies, and researchers at OIST recently confirmed this with experiments.... Read more »
Aoki, S., Liu, A., Zucca, A., Zucca, S., & Wickens, J. (2015) Role of Striatal Cholinergic Interneurons in Set-Shifting in the Rat. Journal of Neuroscience, 35(25), 9424-9431. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0490-15.2015
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