Post List

  • November 4, 2014
  • 02:28 PM
  • 76 views

How many smells can a smelly person smell? 1 trillion or 10?

by neuroecology in Neuroecology

Earlier this year, a paper in Science attempted to answer the question: how many smells can we actually smell? At least one trillion, they claimed. Recently, Markus Meister posted a paper on arxiv which made the bold claim that we can … Continue reading →... Read more »

Bushdid, C., Magnasco, M., Vosshall, L., & Keller, A. (2014) Humans Can Discriminate More than 1 Trillion Olfactory Stimuli. Science, 343(6177), 1370-1372. DOI: 10.1126/science.1249168  

Meister M. (2014) Can Humans Really Discriminate 1 Trillion Odors?. arXiv. info:/

  • November 4, 2014
  • 10:52 AM
  • 73 views

Anorexia Nervosa: Fasting and Starvation Brain Effects

by William Yates, M.D. in Brain Posts

Brain research in anorexia nervosa presents several challenges.Current knowledge of cognitive function in anorexia supports impairment in set shifting and global brain processing or central coherence.However, there are two issues that complicate understanding the underlying brain effects in anorexia nervosa.First, individuals with anorexia nervosa often have additional anxiety and mood disorders. It can be difficult to tease out the specific effects of anorexia nervosa from the effects of these ........ Read more »

Billingsley-Marshall RL, Basso MR, Lund BC, Hernandez ER, Johnson CL, Drevets WC, McKee PA, & Yates WR. (2013) Executive function in eating disorders: the role of state anxiety. The International journal of eating disorders, 46(4), 316-21. PMID: 23354876  

  • November 4, 2014
  • 08:00 AM
  • 91 views

Where Do All Those Leaves Come From?!

by Mark E. Lasbury in The 'Scope

You rake leaves and lug them to the curb, or you push them into your neighbor’s yard with your blower. Either way, do you know where the matter/mass in all those leaves comes from? You won’t believe the answer. But the leaf may be passé. New research is showing how artificial leaves can produce oxygen for space travel and hydrogen for fuel cells.... Read more »

Pijpers, J., Winkler, M., Surendranath, Y., Buonassisi, T., & Nocera, D. (2011) Light-induced water oxidation at silicon electrodes functionalized with a cobalt oxygen-evolving catalyst. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(25), 10056-10061. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1106545108  

  • November 4, 2014
  • 06:35 AM
  • 87 views

Does dreaming of exam failure affect your real-life chances of success?

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Why do we dream? It's still a scientific mystery. The "Threat Simulation Theory" proposes that we dream as a way to simulate real-life threats and prepare ourselves for dealing with them. "This simulation in an almost-real experiential world would train the brain to perceive dangers and rapidly face them within the safe condition of sleeping," write the authors of a new paper that's put the theory to the test.Isabelle Arnulf and her colleagues reasoned that if dreams help simulate future threats........ Read more »

Arnulf, I., Grosliere, L., Le Corvec, T., Golmard, J., Lascols, O., & Duguet, A. (2014) Will students pass a competitive exam that they failed in their dreams?. Consciousness and Cognition, 36-47. DOI: 10.1016/j.concog.2014.06.010  

  • November 4, 2014
  • 05:01 AM
  • 98 views

Producers and consumers of autism research: never the twain shall meet?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I was interested to read the paper by Elizabeth Pellicano and colleagues [1] (open-access) investigating "the views of community involvement in autism research both from the perspectives of autism researchers and of community members, including autistic adults, family members and practitioners". Quite a few results are reported including the idea that researchers "were skeptical about the possibilities of dramatically increasing community engagement, while community members themselves spoke abou........ Read more »

  • November 4, 2014
  • 04:41 AM
  • 81 views

Can you beat a chicken sexer? Revisiting embryo manipulation of the avian chick.

by hirokin in the Node

Chicken, quail, zebra finch, emu, duck, crow……a simple glimpse and we immediately realize how the Aves have, as a model system left their traces in various fields of biological research. And within the Aves class, the domestic fowl Gallus gallus is no doubt revered highly among the developmental biologists for their certainly distinguished career. Discovery […]... Read more »

  • November 4, 2014
  • 02:42 AM
  • 79 views

RotM: Interview with Prof. Michael Garstang

by Coffee Table Science in CTS






We continue our Researcher of the Month (RotM) series, with an interview with Professor Michael Garstang, Distinguished Investigator and Research Professor at the Department of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virgina. Professor Garstang is also associated with a Simpsons Weather Associates, a private environmental research company and recently published a paper in PLoS One about ... Read more »

  • November 3, 2014
  • 09:48 PM
  • 97 views

Babies can identify the angry person

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Main Point:

Babies, even 15-months-old, can identify the anger of adults. Interestingly, they have the ability to change their behavior in response to anger.

Published in:

Cognitive Development

Study Further:

Psychologists have found that babies not only learn from their own social experiences but also from looking at social interactions of other people. This shows that babies have a good level of emotional intelligence that could be more than we think. They start learning about s........ Read more »

  • November 3, 2014
  • 05:55 PM
  • 114 views

Reshaping the Limits of Synthetic Biology

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

Ever think you could have built something better if you had a hand in the design? Sometimes people just have a desire to make, after all the maker movement is huge for a reason. Well geneticists have a new toy tool to play with —dubbed “the telomerator”—that could redefine the limits of synthetic biology and advance how successfully living things can be engineered or constructed in the laboratory based on an organism’s genetic, chemical base-pair structure. How cool is that?!... Read more »

J. Boeke et al. (2014) Circular permutation of a synthetic eukaryotic chromosome with the telomerator. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. info:/10.1073/pnas.1414399111

  • November 3, 2014
  • 07:31 AM
  • 46 views

For Stress-Free Penguins, Use a Rover

by Elizabeth Preston in Inkfish

The first time a colony of Antarctic penguins sees a towering human striding toward them, it must be like First Contact. They’ve never seen a species our size on land before, or anything that moves like we do. Even after penguins have interacted with researchers, the approach of a human is a physiologically stressful experience. […]The post For Stress-Free Penguins, Use a Rover appeared first on Inkfish.... Read more »

Maho, Y., Whittington, J., Hanuise, N., Pereira, L., Boureau, M., Brucker, M., Chatelain, N., Courtecuisse, J., Crenner, F., Friess, B.... (2014) Rovers minimize human disturbance in research on wild animals. Nature Methods. DOI: 10.1038/nmeth.3173  

  • November 3, 2014
  • 07:02 AM
  • 80 views

Do you smell red or blue? 

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

This post might well fall into the category of “the route to tenure-track publication credits is not always the high road”. We discard lots of dicey research reports (such as this one) because they add nothing to our goal of improving litigation advocacy. But this one was so weird we found it amusing. Enjoy. But […]

Related posts:
“Unpleasant body odor” and people’s desire to help you
Excuse me potential juror: Is your brain red or blue?
Things You Should (Maybe) Know…
........ Read more »

McDermott, R., Tingley, D., & Hatemi, P. (2014) Assortative Mating on Ideology Could Operate Through Olfactory Cues. American Journal of Political Science, 58(4), 997-1005. DOI: 10.1111/ajps.12133  

  • November 3, 2014
  • 05:04 AM
  • 64 views

What can bereavement cards tell us about cultural differences in the expression of sympathy?

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Sympathy towards the suffering is culture-dependent. People from "simpatico" cultures such as Brazil or Costa Rica are more likely to help people in need, as are people from economically poorer nations compared to wealthier counterparts. Now new research explores differences in how sympathy is expressed within two Western countries. Americans encourage sufferers to look for the light at the end of the tunnel, the study finds, while Germans are more comfortable gazing at its dark walls.Birgit Koo........ Read more »

  • November 3, 2014
  • 04:13 AM
  • 116 views

Probiotics to counter heavy metal toxicity?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"In summary, this work has demonstrated the potential value of long-term probiotic-based interventions to counter mercury and arsenic exposure in vulnerable populations, particularly in pregnant women".Sounds like an '80s man to me...That was one of the primary conclusions reported by Jordan Bisanz and colleagues [1] (open-access) examining "at-risk populations of pregnant women and in children in Mwanza, Tanzania". The idea being that alongside the use of metal chelating medicines such as ........ Read more »

Jordan E. Bisanz, Megan K. Enos, Joseph R. Mwanga, John Changalucha, Jeremy P. Burton, Gregory B. Gloor, & Gregor Reid. (2014) Randomized Open-Label Pilot Study of the Influence of Probiotics and the Gut Microbiome on Toxic Metal Levels in Tanzanian Pregnant Women and School Children. mBio. info:/10.1128/mBio.01580-14

  • November 3, 2014
  • 02:53 AM
  • 128 views

Cannabis Use and Psychosis: The Still Difficult Question of Causality

by Scott McGreal in Eye on Psych

Adolescent cannabis use has been linked to risk of psychosis in a number of studies. However, the question of whether cannabis use actually causes some people to become psychotic is a difficult one to answer and the evidence remains inconclusive. Furthermore, long-term studies on cannabis use have generally not considered that personality characteristics that have been linked to mental illness might also prompt a person’s decision to use drugs such as cannabis.... Read more »

McLaren JA, Silins E, Hutchinson D, Mattick RP, & Hall W. (2010) Assessing evidence for a causal link between cannabis and psychosis: a review of cohort studies. The International journal on drug policy, 21(1), 10-9. PMID: 19783132  

  • November 3, 2014
  • 12:05 AM
  • 150 views

See All About It! New Set of Tests to Add to the Concussion Assessment Protocol

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

The vestibular/ocular motor screening (VOMS) is valid assessment to identify young patients with concussions.... Read more »

Mucha A, Collins MW, Elbin RJ, Furman JM, Troutman-Enseki C, DeWolf RM, Marchetti G, & Kontos AP. (2014) A Brief Vestibular/Ocular Motor Screening (VOMS) Assessment to Evaluate Concussions: Preliminary Findings. The American Journal of Sports Medicine, 42(10), 2479-86. PMID: 25106780  

  • November 2, 2014
  • 10:12 PM
  • 78 views

Settling velocity and grain shape of maerl

by Siddhi Joshi in Seabed Habitats

Our recent study on maerl sediment dynamics has found that the settling velocity of maerl is primarily governed by the grain shape properties of maerl. A grain shape parameter known as the convexity has been linked to the settling velocity via the Ferguson and Church model (Ferguson and Church, 2004). Due to the grain shape of maerl and roughness, it experiences a greater drag than the natural quartz grain. Detailed measurements of maërl grain shape using microscopic image analysis confirm ........ Read more »

Ferguson, R., & Church, M. (2004) A Simple Universal Equation for Grain Settling Velocity. Journal of Sedimentary Research, 74(6), 933-937. DOI: 10.1306/051204740933  

Joshi, S., Duffy, G., & Brown, C. (2014) Settling Velocity and Grain Shape of Maerl Biogenic Gravel. Journal of Sedimentary Research, 84(8), 718-727. DOI: 10.2110/jsr.2014.51  

  • November 2, 2014
  • 08:27 PM
  • 102 views

Decision Making - Monkey See, Monkey Do (But Not Like a Human)

by Mark Rubin in The University of Newcastle's School of Psychology Newsline

A great deal is known about how we make simple decisions, right down to the way neurons in our brains connect to translate the things we sense into the responses we make. Some of the most important neural studies of decision-making have used monkeys as an analogue for humans. The broader scope of methodology which can be used with primates has provided information far beyond that obtainable from human experimentation. However, conclusions based on animal experiments may not always translate to h........ Read more »

Cassey, P., Heathcote, A., & Brown, S. (2014) Brain and Behavior in Decision-Making. PLoS Computational Biology, 10(7), 1-7. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1003700  

  • November 2, 2014
  • 02:11 PM
  • 115 views

Boosting Crop Yields via Genetics

by Gabriel in Lunatic Laboratories

Genetic engineering techniques offers many different promises, some of which will obviously come sooner than others. One of those promises was a possible end to famine, while most famine in the world today is in developing countries, that could spread as population increases. To that end scientists have announced a new way to dramatically increase crop yields by improving upon Mother Nature's offerings. The team has discovered a set of gene variations that can boost fruit production in the tomat........ Read more »

Z. Lippman et al. (2014) Optimization of crop productivity in tomato using induced mutations in the florigen pathway. Nature Genetics. info:/10.1038/ng.3131

  • November 2, 2014
  • 12:17 PM
  • 91 views

What is recovery?

by DJMac in Recovery Review

A stumbling block to moving forward with recovery in the UK is lack of agreement about what recovery actually is. Highly specific definitions (e.g. recovery = abstinence) can lead to exclusion and fierce disagreement while non-specific definitions are too woolly to measure in services which are being asked to deliver measurable outcomes. Professionals and recovering people Professionals are [...]
The post What is recovery? appeared first on Recovery Review.
... Read more »

Kaskutas LA, Borkman TJ, Laudet A, Ritter LA, Witbrodt J, Subbaraman MS, Stunz A, & Bond J. (2014) Elements that define recovery: the experiential perspective. Journal of studies on alcohol and drugs, 75(6), 999-1010. PMID: 25343658  

  • November 2, 2014
  • 09:54 AM
  • 110 views

Understanding the past to know more about our future: study finds spikes in carbon dioxide levels correlated with end of last glacial cycle

by Jonathan Trinastic in Goodnight Earth

We've always thought that the last glacial cycle correlated with a slow rise in CO2, however new data from Antarctica shows quick spikes in CO2 and methane lasting under 100 years. This data could provide new insights into the carbon cycles useful for understanding today's CO2 increases.... Read more »

Marcott, S., Bauska, T., Buizert, C., Steig, E., Rosen, J., Cuffey, K., Fudge, T., Severinghaus, J., Ahn, J., Kalk, M.... (2014) Centennial-scale changes in the global carbon cycle during the last deglaciation. Nature, 514(7524), 616-619. DOI: 10.1038/nature13799  

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