Autoimmune diseases are tough to live with, frankly we don’t really understand the reasons they start at all, how to treat them, or even where to start in forming a cure. Well there might be some good news — as far as a treatment goes anyway — a newly characterized group of pharmacological compounds block both the inflammation and nerve cell damage seen in mouse models of multiple sclerosis.... Read more »
Haines, J., Herbin, O., de la Hera, B., Vidaurre, O., Moy, G., Sun, Q., Fung, H., Albrecht, S., Alexandropoulos, K., McCauley, D.... (2015) Nuclear export inhibitors avert progression in preclinical models of inflammatory demyelination. Nature Neuroscience. DOI: 10.1038/nn.3953
Sure it sounds like something from the book Frankenstein, but Sergio Canavero of the Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group has made it known that he intends to announce at this summer’s American Academy of Neurological and Orthopedic Surgeons meeting, that he believes he has put together a group of techniques that should make it possible to attach a human donor body to a head.... Read more »
Canavero, S. (2015) The "Gemini" spinal cord fusion protocol: Reloaded. Surgical Neurology International, 6(1), 18. DOI: 10.4103/2152-7806.150674
People say to avoid processed foods, while I don’t agree with that fully, a new study suggests that a common food additive may be causing problems. Emulsifiers, which are added to most processed foods to aid texture and extend shelf life, can alter the gut microbiota composition and localization to induce intestinal inflammation that promotes the development of inflammatory bowel disease and metabolic syndrome.... Read more »
Chassaing, B., Koren, O., Goodrich, J., Poole, A., Srinivasan, S., Ley, R., & Gewirtz, A. (2015) Dietary emulsifiers impact the mouse gut microbiota promoting colitis and metabolic syndrome. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature14232
Alternative fuels have a few large problems making them horrible options over oil (which is already a horrible choice). However, researchers may have finally eliminated one of those problems, cost. The team has invented a novel pretreatment technology that could cut the cost of biofuels production by about 30 percent or more by dramatically reducing the amount of enzymes needed to breakdown the raw materials that form biofuels.... Read more »
Nguyen, T., Cai, C., Kumar, R., & Wyman, C. (2015) Co-solvent Pretreatment Reduces Costly Enzyme Requirements for High Sugar and Ethanol Yields from Lignocellulosic Biomass. ChemSusChem. DOI: 10.1002/cssc.201403045
SUMMARY: Instead of travelling to remote locations in faraway countries, scientists sometimes discover a new species by looking a little more closely at an old specimen in a museum drawer. ... Read more... Read more »
Helgen Kristofer M., Roland Kays, Lauren Helgen, Mirian Tsuchiya, Aleta Quinn, Don Wilson, & Jesus Maldonado. (2013) Taxonomic revision of the olingos (Bassaricyon), with description of a new species, the Olinguito. ZooKeys, 1-83. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.324.5827
Our brains generate a constant hum of activity: As neurons fire, they produce brain waves that oscillate at different frequencies. Long thought to be merely a byproduct of neuron activity, recent studies suggest that these waves may play a critical role in communication between different parts of the brain.... Read more »
Brincat, S., & Miller, E. (2015) Frequency-specific hippocampal-prefrontal interactions during associative learning. Nature Neuroscience. DOI: 10.1038/nn.3954
By Ana Breit When people think of nutritional deficiencies, they probably picture women with goiters due to lack of iodine or other newsworthy examples. In reality, the most common nutritional deficiency in the United States is iron deficiency. Iron Deficiency (ID) is especially common in endurance athletes, especially female athletes. Start of 2013 Roy Griak Invitational Cross Country Meet at the University of Minnesota. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Larson.Iron is the metal in humans that ........ Read more »
Auersperger I, Škof B, Leskošek B, Knap B, Jerin A, & Lainscak M. (2013) Exercise-induced changes in iron status and hepcidin response in female runners. PloS one, 8(3). PMID: 23472137
Two years before the United States put men on the moon, William James Popham and colleagues conducted two very interesting—and to a reader in the 21st century, bizarre—education experiments in southern California which were designed to validate a test they had developed to measure what they called "teacher proficiency."... Read more »
Popham, W. (1971) Performance Tests of Teaching Proficiency: Rationale, Development, and Validation. American Educational Research Journal, 8(1), 105-117. DOI: 10.3102/00028312008001105
The discovery that the human brain continues to produce new neurons in adulthood challenged a major dogma in the field of neuroscience, but the role of these neurons in behavior and cognition is still not clear. In a review article researchers synthesize the vast literature on this topic, reviewing environmental factors that influence the birth of new neurons in the adult hippocampus, a region of the brain that plays an important role in memory and learning.... Read more »
Opendak, M., & Gould, E. (2015) Adult neurogenesis: a substrate for experience-dependent change. Trends in Cognitive Sciences. DOI: 10.1016/j.tics.2015.01.001
Droughts have been severe in California and surrounding states, but will they be any worse than previous droughts in Earth's history? A combination of climate models and tree ring analysis provides an answer.... Read more »
Benjamin I. Cook, Toby R. Ault, Jason E. Smerdon. (2015) Unprecedented 21st century drought risk in the American Southwest and Central Plains. Science Advances. info:/
In the relatively new 24 hour, always on the go, digital lifestyle we live — might living a structured life with regularly established mealtimes and early bedtimes lead to a better life and perhaps even prevent the onset of mental illness? Well according to a new study, it might do just that, you could have a better quality of life just by being a little more structured thanks to our circadian rhythm.... Read more »
Blum, I., Zhu, L., Moquin, L., Kokoeva, M., Gratton, A., Giros, B., & Storch, K. (2014) A highly tunable dopaminergic oscillator generates ultradian rhythms of behavioral arousal. eLife. DOI: 10.7554/eLife.05105
What started as an evolutionary protection against starvation has become a biological “bad joke” for people who need to lose weight. The human body doesn’t distinguish between dieting and possible starvation, so when there is a decrease in calories consumed, human metabolism increases its energy efficiency and weight loss is resisted.... Read more »
Koganti, S., Zhu, Z., Subbotina, E., Gao, Z., Sierra, A., Proenza, M., Yang, L., Alekseev, A., Hodgson-Zingman, D., & Zingman, L. (2015) Disruption of KATP channel expression in skeletal muscle by targeted oligonucleotide delivery promotes activity-linked thermogenesis. Molecular Therapy. DOI: 10.1038/mt.2015.21
Cancer vaccines, once they were science fiction and now they are designed to turn the body’s own immune system specifically against tumor cells. Particularly promising are vaccines that are directed against so-called neoantigens — which are proteins that have undergone a genetic mutation in tumor cells and, therefore, differ from their counterparts in healthy cells.... Read more »
Bunse, L., Schumacher, T., Sahm, F., Pusch, S., Oezen, I., Rauschenbach, K., Gonzalez, M., Solecki, G., Osswald, M., Capper, D.... (2015) Proximity ligation assay evaluates IDH1R132H presentation in gliomas. Journal of Clinical Investigation. DOI: 10.1172/JCI77780
Many countries are adding biofuels to their mandates for carbon-free, renewable energy? But does biofuel truly fit the bill? Not so much, contrary to what popular culture hopes to believe. Find out the details here.... Read more »
Horita, M., Kitamoto, H., Kawaide, T., Tachibana, Y., & Shinozaki, Y. (2015) On-farm solid state simultaneous saccharification and fermentation of whole crop forage rice in wrapped round bale for ethanol production. Biotechnology for Biofuels, 8(1). DOI: 10.1186/s13068-014-0192-9
In a new paper, a group of MIT researchers argue that science is producing PhDs in far greater numbers than there are available tenured jobs for them to fill.
The authors, engineers Richard C. Larson, Navid Ghaffarzadegan, and Yi Xue, start out by noting that
The academic job market has become more and more competitive... nowadays, less than 17% of new PhDs in science, engineering and health-related fields find tenure-track positions within 3 years after graduation.
But why? Are we simp... Read more »
Larson RC, Ghaffarzadegan N, & Xue Y. (2014) Too Many PhD Graduates or Too Few Academic Job Openings: The Basic Reproductive Number R 0 in Academia. Systems research and behavioral science, 31(6), 745-750. PMID: 25642132
We may just have found a missing link in the fight towards an HIV vaccine. No, this is not an over-hyped headline, in a remarkable new advance against the virus that causes AIDS, scientists have announced the creation of a novel drug candidate that is so potent and universally effective, it might work as part of an unconventional vaccine.... Read more »
Gardner, M., Kattenhorn, L., Kondur, H., von Schaewen, M., Dorfman, T., Chiang, J., Haworth, K., Decker, J., Alpert, M., Bailey, C.... (2015) AAV-expressed eCD4-Ig provides durable protection from multiple SHIV challenges. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature14264
Ever go shopping when you’re hungry and notice you walked out with a lot more than you were expecting to buy? While most people know that when you are hungry, you typically will buy more food (as illustrated by The Oatmeal above), new research shows that there is a clear link between hunger and buying non-food items. A team of international researchers has released a paper that describes five laboratory and field studies they conducted which showed how people respond to non-food objects when ........ Read more »
Alison Jing Xu, Norbert Schwarz, & Robert S. Wyer, Jr. (2015) Hunger promotes acquisition of nonfood objects. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. info:/10.1073/pnas.1417712112
While most research regarding fat loss focuses on the risks of being overweight, a new study shows that fasting, low-carb diets, or high-intensity exercise have specific health benefits. Specifically, researchers have found that a compound produced by the body when dieting or fasting can block a part of the immune system involved in several inflammatory disorders such as type 2 diabetes, atherosclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease.... Read more »
Youm, Y., Nguyen, K., Grant, R., Goldberg, E., Bodogai, M., Kim, D., D'Agostino, D., Planavsky, N., Lupfer, C., Kanneganti, T.... (2015) The ketone metabolite β-hydroxybutyrate blocks NLRP3 inflammasome–mediated inflammatory disease. Nature Medicine. DOI: 10.1038/nm.3804
Coll, R., Robertson, A., Chae, J., Higgins, S., Muñoz-Planillo, R., Inserra, M., Vetter, I., Dungan, L., Monks, B., Stutz, A.... (2015) A small-molecule inhibitor of the NLRP3 inflammasome for the treatment of inflammatory diseases. Nature Medicine. DOI: 10.1038/nm.3806
We see it everyday in advertising, turn back the clock, reverse aging — look, feel, and be younger. With all these standards, how do you define aging, or more importantly successful aging. Scholars have long debated what successful aging is, how to measure it, and how to promote it. But researchers are now laying the groundwork for building consensus on the topic — while pointing out that the answer may differ among academics and the general public, as well as across populations and demograp........ Read more »
Various. (2015) Successful Aging: Contentious Past, Productive Future. The Gerontologist, 55(1), 1-4. DOI: 10.1093/geront/gnv002
How does your PhD institution affect your chances at a faculty position? Across disciplines, we find steep prestige hierarchies, in which only 9 to 14% of faculty are placed at institutions more prestigious than their doctorate…Under a meritocracy, the observed … Continue reading →... Read more »
Clauset A, Arbesman S, & Larremore DB. (2015) Systematic inequality and hierarchy in faculty hiring networks. Science Advances. info:/
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.