Post List

  • June 20, 2016
  • 11:50 PM
  • 88 views

The “Sun” Temple

by teofilo in Gambler's House

Today is the summer solstice, on which I like to do posts about archaeoastronomy. Today I’d like to discuss a well-known site, Sun Temple at Mesa Verde, which as its name suggests has long been associated with astronomical observations. As we’ll see, however, it appears that some of the early interpretations of the site’s architecture […]... Read more »

Reyman JE. (1977) Solstice Misalignment at Sun Temple: Correcting Fewkes. The Kiva, 281-284. info:/

  • June 20, 2016
  • 04:10 PM
  • 113 views

Fear factor: A new genetic candidate for treating PTSD

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Researchers have identified a new genetic candidate for testing therapies that might affect fear learning in people with PTSD or other conditions. Individuals with trauma- and stress-related disorders can manifest symptoms of these conditions in a variety of ways. Genetic risk factors for these and other psychiatric disorders have been established but do not explain the diversity of symptoms seen in the clinic - why are some individuals affected more severely than others and why do some respond ........ Read more »

Knoll, A., Halladay, L., Holmes, A., & Levitt, P. (2016) Quantitative Trait Loci and a Novel Genetic Candidate for Fear Learning. Journal of Neuroscience, 36(23), 6258-6268. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0177-16.2016  

  • June 20, 2016
  • 10:44 AM
  • 150 views

The Mesh of Civilizations in Cyberspace

by Jalees Rehman in The Next Regeneration

A team of researchers from Stanford University, Cornell University and Yahoo recently decided to evaluate the "connectedness" of the hypothesized Huntington civilizations in cyberspace and published their results in the article "The Mesh of Civilizations in the Global Network of Digital Communication".

The researchers examined Twitter users and the exchange of emails between Yahoo-Mail users in 90 countries with a minimum population of five million. In total, they analyzed........ Read more »

  • June 20, 2016
  • 09:12 AM
  • 99 views

Mosquitoes Don’t Like Parasites Either (A Guest Post)

by Miss Behavior in The Scorpion and the Frog

By Maranda CardielA photograph of Culex pipiens, the species of mosquito that the researchers used in their experiment. Source: David Barillet-Portal at Wikimedia Commons.Everybody hates mosquitoes. They are annoying, persistent, and make us itch like crazy. Sometimes there are so many of them that we are afraid to go outside unless we want to risk getting covered in spots and scratching ourselves all over for the next week. And if that wasn’t enough, they can also carry dangerous diseases wi........ Read more »

Lalubin, F., Bize, P., van Rooyen, J., Christe, P., & Glaizot, O. (2012) Potential evidence of parasite avoidance in an avian malarial vector. Animal Behaviour, 84(3), 539-545. DOI: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2012.06.004  

  • June 20, 2016
  • 08:31 AM
  • 79 views

Using a cocktail of magic and fMRI, psychologists implanted thoughts in people's minds

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

By guest blogger Vaughan BellCan you think a thought which isn’t yours? A remarkable new study, led by psychologist Jay Olson from McGill University in Canada, suggests you can. The research, published in Consciousness and Cognition, used a form of stage magic known as “mentalism” to induce the experience of thoughts being inserted into the minds of volunteers. It is an ingenious study, not only for how it created the experience, but also for how it used the psychology lab as both a stage ........ Read more »

  • June 20, 2016
  • 07:02 AM
  • 84 views

Flushing toilets to sway legislators: Is it a true  delusion or just an “over-valued belief”?

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

I first heard the term “over-valued belief” back in the mid-1990’s when I worked in forensic rehabilitation with a man adjudicated not guilty by reason of insanity. He had been very ill (psychotic) and very violent when unmedicated (and had killed more than once due to delusional beliefs) but had been in treatment and well-medicated […]

Related posts:
“Belief Perseverance”: Correcting false information without inadvertently reinforcing it
The better than average effect ........ Read more »

Rahman T, Resnick PJ, & Harry B. (2016) Anders Breivik: Extreme Beliefs Mistaken for Psychosis. The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 44(1), 28-35. PMID: 26944741  

  • June 20, 2016
  • 04:30 AM
  • 96 views

Athletes Are Open to Genetic Testing and Are Willing to Share Results

by Jane McDevitt in Sports Medicine Research (SMR): In the Lab & In the Field

Despite a number of concerns many athletes responded with substantial interest and little resistance to the idea of genetic testing for the purpose of risk assessment for prolonged concussion recovery and late onset Alzheimer’s disease.... Read more »

  • June 20, 2016
  • 02:49 AM
  • 102 views

Lactobacillus reuteri rescuing [mouse] social behaviours: relevance to autism?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

Continuing a recent 'probiotic theme' on this blog I've decided to talk a little about the study results reported by Shelly Buffington and colleagues [1] on how a "single species of gut bacteria can reverse autism-related social behavior in mice." I say 'talk about' but my conversations on this topic should be viewed in light of what others have also said about this study (see here for example) including the lead author (see here).To summarise the findings: authors started from the idea that mat........ Read more »

  • June 20, 2016
  • 12:26 AM
  • 97 views

The fabulous taxonomic adventure of the genus Geoplana

by Piter Boll in Earthling Nature

by Piter Kehoma Boll Freshwater planarians are relatively well-known as those cute arrow-shaped cockeyed animals. Land planarians are far away from having all the fame of their aquatic cousins and most people do not even know that they exist. Maybe … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • June 19, 2016
  • 12:57 PM
  • 103 views

Ecological representations: a reply to Golonka and Wilson

by Sergio Graziosi in Writing my own user manual - Sergio Graziosi's Blog

This is going to be a very unusual post, it’s an ad-hoc effort, responding directly to Sabrina Golonka and Andrew D Wilson‘s call for feedback: they have recently published a pre-print on bioRxiv, entitled “Ecological Representations“. In the accompanying blog…Read more ›... Read more »

Golonka, S, & Wilson, AD. (2016) Ecological Representations. bioRxiv. DOI: 10.1101/058925  

  • June 18, 2016
  • 04:25 PM
  • 151 views

Mothers with diabetes more likely to have anti-fetal brain autoantibodies

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Mothers of children with autism and were diagnosed with metabolic conditions during pregnancy, particularly gestational and type 2 diabetes, were more likely to have anti-fetal brain autoantibodies in their blood compared to healthy women of children with autism. The presence of these anti-fetal brain autoantibodies has been previously found to be specific to some mothers of children with autism and rare among mothers of children without autism.

... Read more »

  • June 18, 2016
  • 12:05 PM
  • 145 views

A Step Closer To Artificial Human Beings?

by Agnese Mariotti in United Academics

Scientists propose the creation of a synthetic human genome as a follow-up of the Human Genome Project... Read more »

Boeke, J., Church, G., Hessel, A., Kelley, N., Arkin, A., Cai, Y., Carlson, R., Chakravarti, A., Cornish, V., Holt, L.... (2016) The Genome Project-Write. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf6850  

  • June 18, 2016
  • 04:57 AM
  • 135 views

A study to watch... probiotics for autism

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

Happy as a pig in...Assuming that I'm still around as and when published, I'd like to think that the final product of the study protocol from Elisa Santocchi and colleagues [1] will eventually find it's way on to this blog when the peer-reviewed results are finally in.Alongside it's ClinicalTrials.gov entry (see here), authors describe an interesting double-blind, placebo-controlled study where the aim is to "determine the effects of supplementation with a probiotic mixture (Vivomixx®) in ASD&n........ Read more »

  • June 17, 2016
  • 07:11 AM
  • 143 views

Computer Says No: Anti-cancer therapy and Autoimmune disease: Part II

by AG McCluskey in Zongo's Cancer Diaries

Scientists have been investigating the use of cancer therapies to treat Autoimmune disease. And the reasoning behind this? Treat the immune system like a computer program...... Read more »

Dr Harold L Atkins, MDcorrespondenceemail, Marjorie Bowman, MScN, David Allan, MD, Grizel Anstee, MD, Prof Douglas L Arnold, MD, Prof Amit Bar-Or, MD, Isabelle Bence-Bruckler, MD, Paul Birch, MLT, Prof Christopher Bredeson, MD, Jacqueline Chen, PhD, Prof . (2016) Immunoablation and autologous haemopoietic stem-cell transplantation for aggressive multiple sclerosis: a multicentre single-group phase 2 trial. The Lancet. info:/http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)30169-6

AG McCluskey. (2016) Computer Says No. Zongo's Cancer Diaries. info:/

  • June 17, 2016
  • 07:02 AM
  • 91 views

Will checking your DNA for ancestry information make you  more racist?

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

In a word, maybe. Apparently, it all depends on whether your focus is on differences between you and others or similarities when it comes to genetic makeup. The researchers had Jewish and Arab participants read a new articles which (naturally) cited a scientific article reporting either high genetic similarities or high genetic differences between Jews […]

Related posts:
Can you identify racist jurors by asking if they watch local  TV news?
Racist roads not taken and prejudice-based agg........ Read more »

  • June 17, 2016
  • 05:49 AM
  • 175 views

FLCN activates mTORC1 by maintaining lysosomal leucine level

by Joana Guedes in BHD Research Blog

The intracellular amino acid pool within the lysosome has been shown to activate the mTORC1 signaling pathway (Zoncu et al., 2011; Jewell et al., 2013). However, how the sequester of the signaling molecules within the lysosome occurs remains poorly understood. New research from Wu et al. (2016) shows that the suppression of FLCN, a tumour suppressor gene associated with the Birt-Hogg-Dubé (BHD) syndrome, controls mTORC1 activity by modulating the lysosomal leucine levels. FLCN exerts this new f........ Read more »

  • June 17, 2016
  • 04:59 AM
  • 178 views

Do some homophobic men harbour a latent attraction to other men?

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

An example of imagery used in the study by Coeval et alThe idea that homophobia in men is a counter-reaction to their own unwanted attraction to other men has its roots in psychoanalysis – where's it's considered a psychodynamic defence – and is possibly supported by anecdotal evidence, most recently in reports that the perpetrator of the horrific homophobic massacre at an Orlando gay club was himself gay. But it's worth heeding the cautions noted on Science of Us yesterday where journalist ........ Read more »

  • June 17, 2016
  • 03:06 AM
  • 150 views

Epilepsy begets autism?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"Individuals with epilepsy are at increased risk of ASD [autism spectrum disorder], especially if epilepsy appears in childhood. Further, ASD is more common in the siblings and offspring of individuals with epilepsy, suggesting shared etiology."That was the research bottom-line from Heléne Sundelin and colleagues [1] reporting results based on examination of the "Swedish Patient Register" with regards to the "risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in individuals with epilepsy and in t........ Read more »

Sundelin, H., Larsson, H., Lichtenstein, P., Almqvist, C., Hultman, C., Tomson, T., & Ludvigsson, J. (2016) Autism and epilepsy. Neurology, 10. DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000002836  

  • June 16, 2016
  • 03:52 PM
  • 195 views

Postpartum depression least severe form of depression in mothers

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Postpartum depression--a household term since actress Brooke Shields went public in 2005 about her struggle with it--is indeed serious. But depression that begins before or during pregnancy is often more severe because it lasts longer and usually goes undetected until the doctor screens for it after the birth of the baby.

... Read more »

  • June 16, 2016
  • 02:40 PM
  • 184 views

Zika Fast Track

by SciELO in SciELO in Perspective

How can scientific journals assist in the response to Public Health Emergencies? The journal Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz has innovated by creating a fast track for manuscripts submitted on the topic of the Zika Virus. The fast track procedure allows manuscripts to be posted on-line within 24 hours of submission making the data within them available to reader scrutiny and sharing while the manuscripts undergo peer-review. The journal is already reaping some benefits from this approa........ Read more »

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