Let's see. Now that I'm back from Chicago, having recently attended a major cancer meeting, not to mention having already blogged about the meeting, what to do next? Sure, the whole thing about Andrew Wakefield finding himself just one step away from appearing on Jeff Rense's or Alex Jones's radio show was amusing in the extreme to me, and no doubt there will be much more blogging material to mine in that vein, but if you really want to bring home the crazy there's only one place shy of Whale.to........ Read more »
Rituparna Mukhopadhyay, Sylvain V Costes, Alexey V Bazarov, William C Hines, Mary Helen Barcellos-Hoff, & Paul Yaswen. (2010) Promotion of variant human mammary epithelial cell outgrowth by ionizing radiation: an agent-based model supported by in vitro studies. Breast Cancer Research, 12(1). info:/10.1186/bcr2477
Why does the lay public tend to view hybridization in wild nature as a bastardization of the way things ought to be? Why do we favor “pure” species while rejecting hybrid crosses, or treating them like side-show freaks á la pizzlies, ligers and tiglons? I’ve been thinking a lot about hybridization lately, trying to wrap my head around [...]... Read more »
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Barrett, K., Helms, B., Guyer, C., & Schoonover, J. (2010) Linking process to pattern: Causes of stream-breeding amphibian decline in urbanized watersheds. Biological Conservation. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2010.05.001
I was imitating Jean Chrétien a while ago to tell an anecdote to one of my students.
I could have done the greatest, most perfect, most spot-on, hysterical impersonation of Chrétien ever.* It all would have been lost on this student. An American undergraduate would be unlikely to recognize a Canadian prime minister, no matter how distinctive his speaking style was. (And it was. Oh, how it was.)
That’s the problem with imitation: it only works if both parties recognize what&........ Read more »
Pfennig, D., & Mullen, S. (2010) Mimics without models: causes and consequences of allopatry in Batesian mimicry complexes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2010.0586
Subtitle: Recent research identifies many changes in copy number that may point to genes that cause or are associated with autism.
In order to verify that important information has been conveyed over radio, the sender might ask “how do you copy” or, more briefly, “how copy” asking the receiver to tell the sender the information they [...]... Read more »
Pinto, D., Pagnamenta, A., Klei, L., Anney, R., Merico, D., Regan, R., Conroy, J., Magalhaes, T., Correia, C., Abrahams, B.... (2010) Functional impact of global rare copy number variation in autism spectrum disorders. Nature. DOI: 10.1038/nature09146
One of the issues raised by the recent Sarmiento comments is that of the Miocene apes and the evolution of a short back. All extant apes possess a “short back,” by which we mean a reduction in the lumbar spine combined with an upward elongation of the blades of the pelvis. This back is a nice, [...]... Read more »
McCollum MA, Rosenman BA, Suwa G, Meindl RS, & Lovejoy CO. (2010) The vertebral formula of the last common ancestor of African apes and humans. Journal of experimental zoology. Part B, Molecular and developmental evolution, 314(2), 123-34. PMID: 19688850
Pilbeam, D. (2004) The anthropoid postcranial axial skeleton: Comments on development, variation, and evolution. Journal of Experimental Zoology, 302B(3), 241-267. DOI: 10.1002/jez.b.22
Preuschoft, H., Hayama, S., & Günther, M. (1988) Curvature of the Lumbar Spine as a Consequence of Mechanical Necessities in Japanese Macaques Trained for Bipedalism. Folia Primatologica, 50(1-2), 42-58. DOI: 10.1159/000156333
NAKATSUKASA, M., KUNIMATSU, Y., NAKANO, Y., & ISHIDA, H. (2007) Vertebral morphology of Nacholapithecus kerioi based on KNM-BG 35250. Journal of Human Evolution, 52(4), 347-369. DOI: 10.1016/j.jhevol.2006.08.008
Dr. Aaron Wheeler from the University of Toronto has developed the first microfluidic system for “complete” cell culture (with passaging), powered by digital microfluidics. This system offers the advantage of using only a fraction of reagents usually required in cell culture and of automating and accelerating tedious manual tasks. In a review article published in [...]... Read more »
A recently published study suggests that the Deepwater Horizon oil leak may devastate the endangered Atlantic bluefin population, causing it to completely collapse or possibly go extinct.... Read more »
Steven L. H. Teo, & Barbara A. Block. (2010) Comparative Influence of Ocean Conditions on Yellowfin and Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Catch from Longlines in the Gulf of Mexico. PLoS ONE, 5(5). info:/10.1371/journal.pone.0010756
I’ve been trying to keep up with the Gulf situation, so most of my reading of late has been dominated by those details, and the unread numbers in my RSS folders were a little intimidating, but I finally found some time to read some of the papers I’ve earmarked in the past month or so.
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Louys, J., & Meijaard, E. (2010) Palaeoecology of Southeast Asian megafauna-bearing sites from the Pleistocene and a review of environmental changes in the region. Journal of Biogeography. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2699.2010.02297.x
Marwick, B. (2009) Biogeography of Middle Pleistocene hominins in mainland Southeast Asia: A review of current evidence. Quaternary International, 202(1-2), 51-58. DOI: 10.1016/j.quaint.2008.01.012
by Vincent Racaniello in virology blog
When infection with hepatitis C virus goes from acute to chronic, severe liver disease may occur which requires organ transplantation. Nearly 200 million people are chronically infected with HCV, necessitating approaches to preventing and treating infections. No HCV vaccine is available, and current antiviral therapy consists of administration of interferon plus ribavirin, a combination that [...]... Read more »
Gao M, Nettles RE, Belema M, Snyder LB, Nguyen VN, Fridell RA, Serrano-Wu MH, Langley DR, Sun JH, O'Boyle DR 2nd.... (2010) Chemical genetics strategy identifies an HCV NS5A inhibitor with a potent clinical effect. Nature, 465(7294), 96-100. PMID: 20410884
This post is the last in a special series about four fundamental forces in evolution: natural selection, mutation, genetic drift, and migration.
It's the little differences. I mean, they got the same shit over there that we got here, but it's just—it's just there it's a little different.
— Vincent, Pulp FictionDifferent places are different from each other. This is a truism bordering on tautology, but it also has real implications for the ways in which life evolves and diversifies. The spec........ Read more »
Arnold, M., Hamrick, J., & Bennett, B. (1990) Allozyme variation in Louisiana irises: a test for introgression and hybrid speciation. Heredity, 65(3), 297-306. DOI: 10.1038/hdy.1990.99
Good J.M., Hird S., Reid N., Demboski J.R., Steppan S.J., Martin-Nims T.R., & Sullivan J. (2008) Ancient hybridization and mitochondrial capture between two species of chipmunks. Molecular ecology, 17(5), 1313-27. PMID: 18302691
Martin, N.H., Bouck, A.C., & Arnold, M.L. (2005) Detecting adaptive trait introgression between Iris fulva and I. brevicaulis in highly selective field conditions. Genetics, 172(4), 2481-9. DOI: 10.1534/genetics.105.053538
Martin, N., Sapir, Y., & Arnold, M. (2008) The genetic architecture of reproductive isolation in Louisiana irises: Pollination syndromes and pollinator preferences. Evolution, 62(4), 740-52. DOI: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2008.00342.x
Nosil, P., Egan, S., & Funk, D. (2008) Heterogeneous genomic differentiation between walking-stick ecotypes: "Isolation by adaptation" and multiple roles for divergent selection. Evolution, 62(2), 316-36. DOI: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2007.00299.x
Nosil, P., Vines, T., & Funk, D. (2005) Reproductive isolation caused by natural selection against immigrants from divergent habitats. Evolution, 59(4), 705-19. DOI: 10.1554/04-428
Slatkin, M. (1987) Gene flow and the geographic structure of natural populations. Science, 236(4803), 787-92. DOI: 10.1126/science.3576198
Wang, J. (2004) Application of the one-migrant-per-generation rule to conservation and management. Conservation Biology, 18(2), 332-43. DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2004.00440.x
Wright, S.J. (1943) Isolation by distance. Genetics, 139-56. info:other/PMC1209196
A high-throughput method uses an broad specificity reagent and a specific optical signal to capture a snapshot of signaling mediated phosphorylation in living cells.... Read more »
Grecco, H., Roda-Navarro, P., Girod, A., Hou, J., Frahm, T., Truxius, D., Pepperkok, R., Squire, A., & Bastiaens, P. (2010) In situ analysis of tyrosine phosphorylation networks by FLIM on cell arrays. Nature Methods, 7(6), 467-472. DOI: 10.1038/nmeth.1458
Far Eastern vines Run from the clay banks they are Supposed to keep from eroding. Up telephone poles, Which rear, half out of leafage As though they would shriek, Like things smothered by their own Green, mindless, unkillable ghosts. In Georgia, the legend says That you must close your windows At night to keep it [...]... Read more »
Hickman, J., Wu, S., Mickley, L., & Lerdau, M. (2010) Kudzu (Pueraria montana) invasion doubles emissions of nitric oxide and increases ozone pollution. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0912279107
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Olofsson, M., Vallin, A., Jakobsson, S., & Wiklund, C. (2010) Marginal Eyespots on Butterfly Wings Deflect Bird Attacks Under Low Light Intensities with UV Wavelengths. PLoS ONE, 5(5). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0010798
I can still vaguely recall the horrid hell that was my second year "non-vascular 'plant'" course (valid contender for most polyphyletic course in existence...) - amid the poorly explained phylogenetic clusterfuck, we also had to cram life cycle diagrams from hell. Ever thought red algae looked cute? Not quite so much after realising you get three fundamental life cycle phases to plow through...the night before a final, as it always is. In hindsight, it actually makes a lot of sense, once you gra........ Read more »
Houdan, A., Billard, C., Marie, D., Not, F., Sez, A., Young, J., & Probert, I. (2003) Holococcolithophore-heterococcolithophore (Haptophyta) life cycles: flow cytometric analysis of relative ploidy levels. Systematics and Biodiversity, 1(4), 453-465. DOI: 10.1017/S1477200003001270
Valero, M. (1992) Evolution of alternation of haploid and diploid phases in life cycles. Trends in Ecology , 7(1), 25-29. DOI: 10.1016/0169-5347(92)90195-H
New research shows that interaction with nature, whether actual or imagined, has a significantly positive effect on self-reported levels of mental and physical energy...... Read more »
Ryan, R., Weinstein, N., Bernstein, J., Brown, K., Mistretta, L., & Gagné, M. (2010) Vitalizing effects of being outdoors and in nature. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 30(2), 159-168. DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvp.2009.10.009
I’ve decided to write a couple of articles on a relatively underappreciated area of neuroscience: the study of birds. I hope to demonstrate that although the term “bird brain” is used as an insult in everyday bicker, the tiny brains of birds are more complex than they are perceived to be. Bird brains may even be able to teach us a thing or two about the brightest of human brains. In this first post, I will describe birdsong – a rare example of music production in nonhumans.You’ve proba........ Read more »
Brenowitz EA, Margoliash D, & Nordeen KW. (1997) An introduction to birdsong and the avian song system. Journal of neurobiology, 33(5), 495-500. PMID: 9369455
Brenowitz EA, & Beecher MD. (2005) Song learning in birds: diversity and plasticity, opportunities and challenges. Trends in neurosciences, 28(3), 127-32. PMID: 15749165
MacDougall-Shackleton SA, & Ball GF. (1999) Comparative studies of sex differences in the song-control system of songbirds. Trends in neurosciences, 22(10), 432-6. PMID: 10481186
Teramitsu I, Kudo LC, London SE, Geschwind DH, & White SA. (2004) Parallel FoxP1 and FoxP2 expression in songbird and human brain predicts functional interaction. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 24(13), 3152-63. PMID: 15056695
It’s human nature to think of the big bad animals that eat other animals as powerful and the animals that get eaten as wimpy. Of course, humans are often wrong (see “clusterf**kery”). Copepods get eaten by lots of animals—even by critters like jellyfish and right whales, which are known for their lack of speed—but they’re [...]... Read more »
Kiørboe T, Andersen A, Langlois VJ, & Jakobsen HH. (2010) Unsteady motion: escape jumps in planktonic copepods, their kinematics and energetics. Journal of the Royal Society, Interface / the Royal Society. PMID: 20462876
Fish evolve different body shapes in reservoirs
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Haas, T.C., Blum, M.J., & D.C. Heins. (2010) Morphological responses of a stream fish to water impoundment. Biology Letters. info:/10.1098/rsbl.2010.0401
Sedentary snake populations are dwindling
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Reading, C.J. et al. (2010) Are snake populations in widespread decline?. Biology Letters. info:/10.1098/rsbl.2010.0373
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