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  • October 31, 2014
  • 04:05 PM
  • 10 views

New Genetic Editing Technique Offers Novel Treatment of Defects

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

The promises of genetic modifications are endless, longer life, better health, cures for genetic based diseases that would otherwise cause an unimaginable amount of suffering all wiped out. We’ve come a long way in genetic alteration thanks, in part, to the ever faster moving pace of science. While genetic modification is the thing of horror movies, it also can change the world in ways we cannot even imagine — unfortunately getting genome-editing proteins into cells, where they need to be to access the genome, is a major challenge, especially in live animals or human patients.... Read more »

  • October 31, 2014
  • 12:05 PM
  • 18 views

I Need How Many Calories? Caloric Needs in Bulimia Nervosa Patients

by Tetyana in Science of Eating Disorders


In the 1980s, a few studies came out suggesting that patients with bulimia nervosa (BN) require fewer calories for weight maintenance than anorexia nervosa patients (e.g., Newman, Halmi, & Marchi, 1987) and healthy female controls (e.g., Gwirtsman et al., 1989).
Gwirtsman et al. (1989), after finding that patients with bulimia nervosa required few calories for weight maintenance than healthy volunteers, had these suggestions for clinicians:
When bulimic patients are induced to cease their binging and vomiting behavior, we suggest that physicians and dietitians prescribe a diet in which the caloric level is lower than might be expected. Our experience suggests that some patients will tend to gain weight if this is not done, especially when hospitalized. Because patients are often averse to any gain in body weight, this may lead to grave mistrust between patient and physician or dietitian.
Among many things, this ignores the fact that patients with bulimia nervosa, despite being in the so-called “normal” weight range may not be at their healthy weight.
It is not possible to determine at this point whether the abnormality in …

You May Also Like:
Energy Expenditure in Anorexia Nervosa Patients
Hypermetabolism in Anorexia Nervosa
The “Double Life” of Bulimia Nervosa: Patients’ Perspectives



... Read more »

de Zwaan, M., Aslam, Z., & Mitchell, J.E. (2002) Research on energy expenditure in individuals with eating disorders: a review. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 31(4), 361-9. PMID: 11948641  

Gwirtsman, H.E., Kaye, W.H., Obarzanek, E., George, D.T., Jimerson, D.C., & Ebert, M.H. (1989) Decreased caloric intake in normal-weight patients with bulimia: comparison with female volunteers. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 49(1), 86-92. PMID: 2912015  

  • October 31, 2014
  • 11:48 AM
  • 15 views

Halloween Special: The Drosophila Halloween Genes

by Bethany Christmann in Fly on the Wall

In the movies, spooks and phantoms are often undead humans with unfinished business. But would you be afraid of a ghostly fruit fly? In 1995, fruit fly researchers Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard and Eric Wieschaus were awarded a Nobel Prize for their research on development. They were interested in understanding how a fertilized egg develops into a complex […]... Read more »

  • October 31, 2014
  • 11:44 AM
  • 15 views

Tissue-specific genome editing in Ciona embryos by CRISPR/Cas9

by Shashank Gandhi in the Node

Researchers have always been interested in tissue-specific loss of function to probe the role of specific genes in embryonic development, cell physiology and disease conditions. Migration of lateral plate primordial germ cells in zebrafish, border cell migration during oogenesis in drosophila, interaction of T-cells with their target, and numerous other cases have continued to give […]... Read more »

Stolfi, A., Gandhi, S., Salek, F., & Christiaen, L. (2014) Tissue-specific genome editing in Ciona embryos by CRISPR/Cas9. Development, 141(21), 4115-4120. DOI: 10.1242/dev.114488  

  • October 31, 2014
  • 11:15 AM
  • 17 views

Canonical circuits in neuroscience

by neuroecology in Neuroecology

Gary Marcus, Adam Marblestone, and Thomas Dean have a nice perspective piece in Science this week on the atoms of neural computation (gated): One hypothesis is that cortical neurons form a single, massively repeated “canonical” circuit, characterized as a kind of a … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • October 31, 2014
  • 11:14 AM
  • 16 views

NS1: It’s all about location, location, location

by Clay Clark in Biochem Blogs

  Viruses are minimalists when it comes to genomic data. This light packing of genetic information requires that every protein the virus codes for needs to be as versatile as possible. The flavivirus genus is no exception to this; its genome encodes for three structural proteins (capsid, membrane, and envelope) and seven nonstructural proteins (NS1, […]... Read more »

  • October 31, 2014
  • 06:37 AM
  • 21 views

Mind Blowing Brain Cases: The Man With A Hole In His Head

by Elisabeth Buhl Thubron in United Academics

In this series neuroscientist Elisabeth Buhl Thubron takes a closer look at intriguing brain cases that revolutionised the field. Part I: The Man With A Whole In His Head... Read more »

Harlow JM. (1999) Passage of an iron rod through the head. 1848. The Journal of neuropsychiatry and clinical neurosciences, 11(2), 281-3. PMID: 10334003  

Ratiu P, Talos IF, Haker S, Lieberman D, & Everett P. (2004) The tale of Phineas Gage, digitally remastered. Journal of neurotrauma, 21(5), 637-43. PMID: 15165371  

Van Horn JD, Irimia A, Torgerson CM, Chambers MC, Kikinis R, & Toga AW. (2012) Mapping connectivity damage in the case of Phineas Gage. PloS one, 7(5). PMID: 22616011  

  • October 31, 2014
  • 06:22 AM
  • 16 views

TSC1 is required for iNKT cell maturation and function

by Lizzie Perdeaux in BHD Research Blog

Invariant Natural Killer T (iNKT) cell development is highly regulated, starting at stage 0, where DP thermocytes become committed to the iNKT cell lineage, and ending as fully mature stage 3 iNKT cells, which are capable of illiciting an immune … Continue reading →... Read more »

Wu J, Yang J, Yang K, Wang H, Gorentla B, Shin J, Qiu Y, Que LG, Foster WM, Xia Z.... (2014) iNKT cells require TSC1 for terminal maturation and effector lineage fate decisions. The Journal of clinical investigation, 124(4), 1685-98. PMID: 24614103  

  • October 31, 2014
  • 05:06 AM
  • 24 views

Caesarean section births and autism risk?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

It was a familiar story. Big media headlines such as: Caesarean sections 'may increase risk of autism' appearing all over, but when it came to finding the study behind the headlines, the publishing journal seemed to be trailing a little way behind. We've been in a similar situation before."As the flames rose to her Roman nose"Anyhow, the paper by Eileen Curran and colleagues [1] (open-access) has finally made it to the research table and hence is fodder for today's ramblings with the suggestion that the way we make our grand entrance into the world might correlate with some heightened risk for autism spectrum disorder (ASD).I have to say that I was initially quite interested in the Curran findings for quite a few reasons. Primary among them is some curiosity I have about the gut microbiota in relation to quite a few states and diagnoses (see here) and how our mode of entry into the world can seemingly impact on our first exposure to the bacterial passengers which eventually call us home. It is perhaps one of the lesser known observations, that the voyage down our dear mothers birth canal is also a great meet-and-greet opportunity for baby and bacteria. For those who don't get to experience such wonders, there is a suggestion that different types of bacteria might make friends which are then 'programmed' to be accepted by our developing immune systems [2] with onwards possible significance for future health and wellbeing. That being said, there is still a way to go to understanding such a relationship more thoroughly despite some intriguing results specifically with autism and the gut microbiome in mind (see here). I might also add that some of the authors on the Curran paper seemingly have some interest in the whole gut bacteria - behaviour relationship as per another recent paper [3].The Curran paper is a systematic review of the literature which looked at: "mode of delivery on autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)". They concluded that: "Thirteen studies reported an adjusted estimate for CS-ASD [Caesarean section-ASD], producing a pooled odds ratio (OR) of 1.23 (95% CI: 1.07, 1.40)". Said studies were analysed up to February 2014. The population attributable fraction calculated by authors implied that: "5.36% of cases of ASD may be attributable to delivery by CS assuming the observed association is causal".The lead author is rightly cautious about their findings, as per some other comment in the media: “Parents should be reassured that the overall risk of a child developing ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is very small and that Caesarean section is largely a very safe procedure and when medically indicated, it can be lifesaving,”. I wouldn't disagree with those sentiments allowing for the fact that (a) a fair proportion of deliveries these days are by C-section, and (b) not every child diagnosed with autism is delivered via C-section.That being said, there does seem to be more to do in this area of science. Subsequent studies published after the cut-off point set by Curran have reported C-sections as a 'risk factor' for autism. The paper by Salhia and colleagues [4] for example, looking at the epidemiology of autism in [some] Arab Gulf countries found as much, alongside some other quite frequently reported variables potentially influencing autism risk (e.g. advanced maternal and paternal age).I'm going to drop in a few additional papers and then I'm done. Chien and colleagues [5] also talked about C-sections as a risk factor for autism but with the added twist that the use of a general anaesthetic during said procedure might be implicated in any relationship. You might scoff at the suggestion that anaesthetic has anything to do with autism but before you do, perhaps have a read through the paper by DiMaggio and colleagues [6] first and slightly more speculatively, the paper by Johnson and colleagues [7]. The study by Chudal and colleagues [8] - mentioned by Curren et al - looking at various perinatal factors in the context of bipolar disorder is also worthwhile introducing bearing in mind that interest in such comorbidity is increasing in the context of some autism (see here). As with many other variables 'correlated' to autism risk, to shut the door on any association with comorbidity outside of just the diagnosis of autism is foolhardy.Irrespective of your opinion about whether C-sections might be linked to autism risk and the other possible reasoning behind said suggestion [9], the Curran paper joins a growing list of variables potentially associated with autism. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses are consolidating quite a bit of this data, although as always the heterogeneity covered under the label of autism and the important issue of comorbidity need to be kept in mind. As with the growing idea that many small genetic issues might cumulatively be linked to [some] autism further compounded by more recent data [10] (see here for some media), so one might assume that multiple small contributions from the 'environment' might likewise also influence offspring risk of autism too. Determining how and when these genetic and environmental variables come together seems to be to be the next logical step...Music to close: The Specials and Ghost Town. Have a spooky day!----------[1] Curran EA. et al. Research Review: Birth by Caesarean section and development of autism spectrum disorder and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 2014. October 27.[2] Weng M. & Walker WA. The role of gut microbiota in programming the immune phenotype. J Dev Orig Health Dis. 2013 Jun;4(3):203-14.[3] Stilling RM. et al. Friends with social benefits: host-microbe interactions as a driver of brain evolution and development? Front. Cell. Infect. Microbiol. 2014. October 29.[4] Salhia HO. et al. Systemic review of the epidemiology of autism in Arab Gulf countries. Neurosciences (Riyadh). ... Read more »

  • October 30, 2014
  • 03:45 PM
  • 39 views

Zombies: Science Fiction vs. Fact

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

Well in the spirit of Halloween I thought I would make a nice little zombie post. Zombies, those brain loving little guys, [and girls] are everywhere. From shows like The Walking […]... Read more »

Lafferty KD. (2006) Can the common brain parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, influence human culture?. Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society, 273(1602), 2749-55. PMID: 17015323  

Vyas A, Kim SK, Giacomini N, Boothroyd JC, & Sapolsky RM. (2007) Behavioral changes induced by Toxoplasma infection of rodents are highly specific to aversion of cat odors. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104(15), 6442-7. PMID: 17404235  

Thomas, F., Schmidt-Rhaesa, A., Martin, G., Manu, C., Durand, P., & Renaud, F. (2002) Do hairworms (Nematomorpha) manipulate the water seeking behaviour of their terrestrial hosts?. Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 15(3), 356-361. DOI: 10.1046/j.1420-9101.2002.00410.x  

W. Wesołowska T. Wesołowski. (2014) Do Leucochloridium sporocysts manipulate the behaviour of their snail hosts?. Journal of Zoology , 292(3), 151-155. info:/10.1111/jzo.12094

  • October 30, 2014
  • 11:20 AM
  • 33 views

Alcoholism as a Reward System Dysfunction

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Alcoholism and other addictive behaviors often occur together within individual patients.For example, individuals with alcoholism commonly also are smokers and meet criteria for a diagnosis of nicotine dependence.This co-occurrence suggests multiple types of addiction may share genetic and environmental risk factors. Additionally, there might be a common neurobiological mechanism in play for many addictions.Kenneth Blum and other leading alcoholism researchers recently published a review that proposed a theory of addiction they labelled the "Reward Deficiency Solution System".Here are some of my notes on the key points outlined in their literature review:IntroductionThe goal of the review was to find common mechanisms for addictions--both those related to a substance and those not substance related, i.e. obesity or pathological gamblingGenetic studies linking alcoholism to the dopamine 2 receptor (DRD2) date back to 1990Over 3000 studies have been published on the DRD2 receptor and addictions since 1990Studies have not universally supported a DRD2 link to addictions but many do support the linkIs Dopamine Deficit or Over Supply at Fault?Dopamine transporter gene one (DAT1) deficit status has been linked to obesity possibly through a dysregulation in food rewardPolymorphisms that involve D2 and D4 reduce reward response to food and lead to weight gainfMRI research in children and adolescents have shown that an increased dopamine-related neurotransmission in the striatum may be a risk factor for obesitySo, both deficit and oversupply of dopamine may influence addiction risk including risk for obesityIs There a Solution to Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS)?Dopamine antagonists such as naltrexone and acamprosate have had limited successStudies of a newly developed drug KB220Z, a dopamine agonist are promisingKB220Z studies in mice show increased brain enkephalin and reduced alcohol-seeking behavior KB220Z studies in humans has been linked to reduced alcohol withdrawal, lower addiction treatment drop out rates and reduced craving scores across multiple substance types including alcohol, cocaine, heroin and nicotineKB220Z activates the brain reward center known as the nucleus accumbens and increases activation of the prefrontal-cerebellar-occipital brain circuitGenetic and Functional Mechanisms in RDSWe lack understanding of how genes regulate functional networks related to addiction circuitryAddicts do show reduced fMRI resting state network connectivityKB220Z appears to reverse these resting state connectivity deficits in addictsStudying genomic contributions to brain connectivity patterns in reward may be a powerful strategy for addiction drug developmentMy Comments: This review highlights the weakness of our current state of knowledge for understanding how genetics, brain neurochemistry and brain circuitry influence addition. However, I do agree with the reviewers that progress is being made and that brain circuitry imaging may be a valuable tool in future progress.Readers with more interest in this topic can access the free full-text manuscript by clicking on the PMID link in the citation below.Molecular model of dopamine is from a Wikepedia Commons file authored by sbroolsFollow the author on Twitter @WRY999Blum K, Febo M, McLaughlin T, Cronjé FJ, Han D, & Gold SM (2014). Hatching the behavioral addiction egg: Reward Deficiency Solution System (RDSS)™ as a function of dopaminergic neurogenetics and brain functional connectivity linking all addictions under a common rubric. Journal of behavioral addictions, 3 (3), 149-56 PMID: 25317338... Read more »

  • October 30, 2014
  • 09:57 AM
  • 30 views

Resourceful Crustaceans Turn Invasive Seaweed into Homes

by Elizabeth Preston in Inkfish

When a new developer comes to town and starts aggressively building up the empty property around your home, you can get mad—or you can move in. That’s what tiny crustaceans in the Georgia mudflats have done. Facing an invasive Japanese seaweed, they’ve discovered that it makes excellent shelter, protecting them from all kinds of threats. […]The post Resourceful Crustaceans Turn Invasive Seaweed into Homes appeared first on Inkfish.... Read more »

  • October 30, 2014
  • 07:59 AM
  • 44 views

Fright Week: The Stranger in the Mirror

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

In the mirror we see our physical selves as we truly are, even though the image might not live up to what we want, or what we once were. But we recognize the image as “self”. In rare instances, however, this reality breaks down.In Black Swan, Natalie Portman plays Nina Sayers, a ballerina who auditions for the lead in Swan Lake. The role requires her to dance the part of the innocent White Swan (for which she is well-suited), as well as her evil twin the Black Swan — which is initially outside the scope of her personality and technical abilities. Another dancer is favored for the role of the Black Swan. Nina's drive to replace her rival, and her desire for perfection, lead to mental instability (and a breathtaking performance). In her hallucinations she has become the Black Swan.1The symbolic use of mirrors to depict doubling and fractured identity was very apparent in the film:Perhaps Darren Aronofsky [the director's] intentions for the mirror was its power to reveal hidden identities. If you noticed the scenes where Nina saw herself in the mirror, it reflected the illusion of an evil. The mirror presented to her the darkness within herself that metaphorically depicted the evolution into the black swan. How can the recognition of self in a mirror break down?Alterations in mirror self-recognitionThere are at least seven main routes to dissolution or distortion of self-image:psychotic disordersdementiaright parietal-ish or otherwise right posterior cortical strokes and lesionsthe ‘strange-face in the mirror' illusion hypnosisdissociative disorders (e.g., depersonalization, dissociative identity disorderbody image issues (e.g., anorexia, body dysmorphic disorder) Professor Max Coltheart and colleagues have published extensively on the phenomenon of mirrored-self misidentification, defined as “the delusional belief that one’s reflection in the mirror is a stranger.” They have induced this delusion experimentally by hypnotizing highly suggestible participants and planting the suggestion that they would see a stranger in the mirror (Barnier et al., 2011): Following a hypnotic suggestion to see a stranger in the mirror, high hypnotizable subjects described seeing a stranger with physical characteristics different to their own. Whereas subjects' beliefs about seeing a stranger were clearly false, they had no difficulty generating sensible reasons to explain the stranger's presence. The authors tested the resilience of this belief with clinically inspired challenges. Although visual challenges (e.g., the hypnotist appearing in the mirror alongside the subject) were most likely to breach the delusion, some subjects maintained the delusion across all challenges. Ad campaign for the Exelon Patch (rivastigmine, a cholinesterase inhibitor) used to treat Alzheimer's disease. Photographer Tom Hussey did a series of 10 award-winning portraits depicting Alzheimer's patients looking at their younger selves in a mirror (commissioned by Novartis).Mendez et al. (1992) published a retrospective study of 217 patients with Alzheimer's disease. They searched the medical records for caregiver reports of disturbances in person identification of any kind. The most common type was transient confusion of family members that resolved when reminded of the person's identity (found in 33 patients). The charts of five patients contained reports of mirror misidentification, which was always associated with paranoia and delusions. Although not exactly systematic, this fits with other studies reporting that 2–10% of Alzheimer's patients have problems recognizing themselves in a mirror.A very thorough investigation of the topic was actually published 50 years ago, but largely neglected because it was in French. Connors and Coltheart (2011) translated the 1963 paper of Ajuriaguerra, Strejilevitch, & Tissot into English. The Introduction is quite eloquent:The vision of our image in the mirror is a discovery that is perpetually renewed, one in which our being is isolated from the world, from the objects surrounding it, and assumes, despite the fixed quality of reflected images, the significance of multiple personal and potential expressions. The image reflected by the mirror furnishes us not only with that which is, but also how our real image might be changed. It therefore inextricably combines awareness, indulgence and critique.They examined how 30 hospitalized dementia interacted with mirrors in terms of  (1) recognition of their own reflection; (2) use of reflected space; and (3) identifying body parts. The patients sat in front of a mirror and answered the following questions:What is this?Who is that?How old would you say that person is?How do you think you look?Then the experimenter stood behind them and asked questions about himself (e.g., “who is that man?”), and showed them objects in a mirror (e.g., an orange or a pipe – very funny).Eight patients did not recognize themselves in the mirror:Three didn't understand the concept of a mirror. They didn't pay attention to any reflections until directed to do so, and then they became transfixed. They also failed to recognize photos of themselves or their caretakers.Another three eventually admitted it might be themselves when prodded several times.These individuals had severe Alzheimer's disease.The final two recognized themselves the second time, and displayed considerably more anxiety. This sounds terribly frightening:These patients were attentive to their own reflections and those of the researchers, whom they identified. The first patient seemed a bit anxious; she began by touching herself, then laughed, then proclaimed “that is not quite me, it sort of looks like me, but it's not me.” When she was shown her photo head-on and then from the side, she immediately identified herself when the photo was head-on but from the side said “that's not quite me.” These individuals were in an earlier state of dissolution and likely had more awareness of what was happening to them.Other patients with mirrored-self misidentification show greater sparing of cognitive abilities. Chandra and Issac (2014) presented brief case summaries of five mild to moderate dementia patients with “mirror image agnosia, a new observation involving failure to recognize reflected self-images.” This is obviously not a new observation, but the paper includes two videos, one of which is embedded below. Sixty-two-year-old female was brought to the hospital with features of forgetfulness and getting... Read more »

Barnier AJ, Cox RE, Connors M, Langdon R, & Coltheart M. (2011) A stranger in the looking glass: developing and challenging a hypnotic mirrored-self misidentification delusion. The International journal of clinical and experimental hypnosis, 59(1), 1-26. PMID: 21104482  

Chandra SR, & Issac TG. (2014) Mirror image agnosia. Indian journal of psychological medicine, 36(4), 400-3. PMID: 25336773  

Mendez MF, Martin RJ, Smyth KA, & Whitehouse PJ. (1992) Disturbances of person identification in Alzheimer's disease. A retrospective study. The Journal of nervous and mental disease, 180(2), 94-6. PMID: 1737981  

  • October 30, 2014
  • 04:44 AM
  • 37 views

Pain and adolescent Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"We found a higher prevalence of severe pain among adolescents with CFS [Chronic Fatigue Syndrome] and lowered pain thresholds compared with HCs [healthy controls]".That was the headline generated by the study from Anette Winger and colleagues [1] (open-access) looking to describe several parameters tied into experience of pain in the context of CFS. Further: "The total sum of bodily symptoms represented a heavy burden with great functional consequences".Your hokey pokey dragon is out helpin' Santa Claus pull his sled!The Winger paper is open-access, and pretty self-explanatory in terms of the hows and whys of the study (including strengths and limitations) so no need for me to further complicate things. As part of the NorCAPITAL project (The Norwegian Study of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in Adolescents: Pathophysiology and Intervention Trial) (ClinicalTrial.gov entry here) which has already reported on the use of clonidine for CFS [2], the latest publication is an important add-on.There are a few details included in the results which do however merit some additional highlighting. So:"In the present study, almost three-quarters of the adolescents with CFS suffered from weekly pain, and pain on a daily basis was a problem for half of the patients". This was "highly significant" when compared with reports from controls, particularly where two-thirds of CFS participants reported weekly headaches. Muscle and joint pain were also recorded by adolescents with CFS alongside almost half reporting abdominal pain. Indeed, joint pain showed the most disparity between the groups with reports of such pain tipping 70% in the CFS group compared with only 10% of controls reporting this more frequently than once a month.When looking at result examining the pressure pain threshold (PPT) - "the minimum intensity of a stimulus that is perceived as painful" - and examining scores based on completion of the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI), authors concluded that: "At all measure points, PPTs were significantly lower (all p<0.001) among patients with CFS than HCs"."In our study, the adolescents reported that pain interfered with school, general activity and mood; however, we cannot conclude from this study that pain has a causal effect, because it could be the other way around". What's more to say about this research? Well, the very important message that the presentation of CFS might go well beyond just 'chronic fatigue' is paramount. This is not new news to science and practice as per the various reviews on the topic of pain exemplified by Nijs and colleagues [3]. I dare say that some public perceptions of CFS/ME would also change if more people understood that pain is a seemingly important manifestation of the condition. Oh and that CFS and pain sensation might not just be all in the mind...I'm also inclined to introduce the condition fibromyalgia (FM) into proceedings, given the many and varied reports talking about key symptoms overlapping [4]. I'm not altogether sure of the hows and whys of FM and CFS connecting, but certainly the primary FM symptom of widespread pain and extreme sensitivity strikes me as being potentially important. With no medical advice given or intended and perhaps somewhat counter-intuitive to analgesia, the increasing body of work looking at the use of something like low-dose naltrexone (see here for some of my interest in this area) for pain in FM [5] may also very well be something in need of a little more study with pain in CFS in mind, alongside other possible pain relief options.So then, The White Stripes with Ball and Biscuit.----------[1] Winger A. et al. Pain and pressure pain thresholds in adolescents with chronic fatigue syndrome and healthy controls: a cross-sectional study. BMJ Open. 2014; 4(10): e005920.[2] Fagermoen E. et al. Clonidine in the treatment of adolescent chronic fatigue syndrome: a pilot study for the NorCAPITAL trial. BMC Research Notes 2012, 5:418 [3] Nijs J. et al. Pain in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome: time for specific pain treatment? Pain Physician. 2012 Sep-Oct;15(5):E677-86.[4] Aaron LA. et al. Overlapping Conditions Among Patients With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, and Temporomandibular Disorder. Arch Intern Med. 2000;160(2):221-227.[5] Younger J. et al. Low-dose naltrexone for the treatment of fibromyalgia: findings of a small, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, counterbalanced, crossover trial assessing daily pain levels. Arthritis Rheum. 2013 Feb;65(2):529-38.----------Winger, A., Kvarstein, G., Wyller, V., Sulheim, D., Fagermoen, E., Smastuen, M., & Helseth, S. (2014). Pain and pressure pain thresholds in adolescents with chronic fatigue syndrome and healthy controls: a cross-sectional study BMJ Open, 4 (10) DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2014-005920... Read more »

  • October 30, 2014
  • 02:30 AM
  • 17 views

Horror paradox

by Donders in Donders Wonders

Halloween is een feest dat in Nederland steeds populairder lijkt te worden. Deze tijd van het jaar komen er altijd veel horrorfilms uit waar we ons graag bang door laten maken. Maar is dat niet een beetje gek? Bang zijn is toch helemaal niet leuk? Wat vertelt de wetenschap ons over deze paradox? Afbeelding door […]... Read more »

Linda de Voogd. (2014) Horror paradox. Donders Wonders. info:other/

  • October 29, 2014
  • 05:40 PM
  • 42 views

Electron Paramagnetic Resonance of hair!

by mrsitandspin in Sit and Spin

I wanted to switch gears a bit and do a paper on Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR), also know as Electron Spin Resonance (ESR). The paper for this weeks is

Electron spin resonance (ESR/EPR) of free radicals observed in human red hair: a new, simple empirical method of determination of pheomelanin/eumelanin ratio in hair.

by

Chikvaidze EN, Partskhaladze TM and Gogoladze TV... Read more »

  • October 29, 2014
  • 03:19 PM
  • 51 views

More Genetic Links Behind Autism

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

Vaccines do NOT cause autism. One more time, vaccines DO NOT cause autism. So what does cause autism, that problem has been plaguing scientists for awhile now. Thankfully two major genetic studies of autism and involving more than 50 laboratories worldwide, have newly implicated dozens of genes in the disorder. The research shows that rare mutations in these genes affect communication networks in the brain and compromise fundamental biological mechanisms that govern whether, when, and how genes are activated overall.... Read more »

Iossifov, I., O’Roak, B., Sanders, S., Ronemus, M., Krumm, N., Levy, D., Stessman, H., Witherspoon, K., Vives, L., Patterson, K.... (2014) The contribution of de novo coding mutations to autism spectrum disorder. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature13908  

De Rubeis, S., He, X., Goldberg, A., Poultney, C., Samocha, K., Ercument Cicek, A., Kou, Y., Liu, L., Fromer, M., Walker, S.... (2014) Synaptic, transcriptional and chromatin genes disrupted in autism. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature13772  

  • October 29, 2014
  • 01:45 PM
  • 49 views

This Month in Blastocystis Research (OCT 2014) - Trick or Treat Edition

by Christen Rune Stensvold in Blastocystis Parasite Blog

October was mostly about conferences and funding. And why is no one studying endosymbiosis in Blastocystis?... Read more »

Fletcher S, Caprarelli G, Merif J, Andresen D, Hal SV, Stark D, & Ellis J. (2014) Epidemiology and geographical distribution of enteric protozoan infections in sydney, australia. Journal of public health research, 3(2), 298. PMID: 25343139  

Nowack EC, & Melkonian M. (2010) Endosymbiotic associations within protists. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, 365(1541), 699-712. PMID: 20124339  

Prodeus TV, Zelia OP, Khlebnikova TA, & Pikul' DA. (2014) [Extraenteric infection caused by Blastocystis spp. in a female patient with liver abscess]. Meditsinskaia parazitologiia i parazitarnye bolezni, 6-9. PMID: 25296418  

  • October 29, 2014
  • 12:59 PM
  • 42 views

October 28, 2014

by Erin Campbell in HighMag Blog

If you’ve ever tried to get your kids to share a donut, you understand the importance to dividing things equally (and learning crucial lessons…just buy more donuts next time...I mean, seriously!). Cell division is no different—chromosomes and organelles must all get divided equally. Today’s images are from a paper showing how mitochondria are positioned during cell division in order to allow equal segregation.Many years of research have focused on the equal segregation of chromosomes during cell division. Organelles such as mitochondria must also be segregated equally in a dividing cell, and errors in this process can lead to disease. A recent paper identifies the actin motor Myosin-XIX (Myo19) as a key player in mitochondrial partitioning during cell division. Myo19 is localized to mitochondria, and cells depleted of Myo19 have an abnormal distribution of mitochondria. Cells lacking Myo19 experience stochastic division failure, suggesting that mitochondria are physically preventing successful cell division. The images above show dividing cells labeled to visualize mitochondria (green) and the mitotic spindle (red) in control cells (top two rows) and cells depleted of Myo19 (bottom two rows). Without Myo19, mitochondria moved towards spindle poles at the onset of anaphase, causing an asymmetric distribution at division when compared with control cells.BONUS!! Here is a rotating 3D reconstruction of an A549 stained to visualize microtubules (green), mitochondria (red), and DNA (blue). Omar Quintero, HighMag friend and a co-author from today’s paper, loves this image: “I like it because it reminds me of the scenes in StarWars where the Rebels are planning their attack on the Death Star.”Rohn, J., Patel, J., Neumann, B., Bulkescher, J., Mchedlishvili, N., McMullan, R., Quintero, O., Ellenberg, J., & Baum, B. (2014). Myo19 Ensures Symmetric Partitioning of Mitochondria and Coupling of Mitochondrial Segregation to Cell Division Current Biology DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.09.045Copyright ©2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. ... Read more »

  • October 29, 2014
  • 09:46 AM
  • 43 views

Video Tip of the Week: PaleoBioDB, for your paleobiology searches

by Mary in OpenHelix

Yeah, I know, it’s not genomics–but it’s the history of life on this planet–right?  The Paleobiology Database has been keeping records of this ancient biology for a while now, and they have some really nice tools to explore the fossil records and resources that have become available. It’s also interesting to me to see the […]... Read more »

Varela Sara, González-Hernández Javier, Sgarbi Luciano, Marshall Charles, Uhen Mark, Peters Shanan, & McClennen Michael. (2014) paleobioDB: an R package for downloading, visualizing and processing data from the Paleobiology Database. Ecography. DOI: 10.1111/ecog.01154  

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