Be honest — would you have guessed that red blood cells are mysterious? No, I wouldn’t have either. They’re the simplest cells in our bodies, for goodness sake — they don’t even have DNA. All they do is carry hemoglobin around, picking up oxygen as they pass the lungs and gradually dumping it everywhere else. [...]... Read more »
Higgins, J., & Mahadevan, L. (2010) Physiological and pathological population dynamics of circulating human red blood cells. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1012747107
You're probably familiar with what I call the 'to hell with it' effect. It's when (as demonstrated by lots of research) a bad mood causes us to take risky decisions or engage in risky behaviour. Like when you're feeling down and you drive home dangerously fast or go out and get drunk. Now a team led by Thomas Webb at the University of Sheffield says that we can protect ourselves from this effect by forming 'if-then' implementation decisions in advance. These are self-made plans which state that ........ Read more »
Webb TL, Sheeran P, Totterdell P, Miles E, Mansell W, & Baker S. (2010) Using implementation intentions to overcome the effect of mood on risky behaviour. The British journal of social psychology / the British Psychological Society. PMID: 21050527
Emergency physicians are procedural experts in central venous access. The subclavian vein is the best site for such access, because it has been shown to have the lowest rate of iatrogenic infections and deep venous clots.Bedside ultrasonography has really revolutionized how we obtain vascular access over the past 10 years. Identifying the subclavian vein using ultrasonography, however, is still technically challenging. The vein is located just posterior to the clavicle, which often gets in the w........ Read more »
Mallin, M., Louis, H., & Madsen, T. (2010) A novel technique for ultrasound-guided supraclavicular subclavian cannulation☆☆☆. The American Journal of Emergency Medicine, 28(8), 966-969. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajem.2009.07.019
Even if 36 million patients with tuberculosis were successfully treated, and up to 6 million lives were saved during the past 15 years, tuberculosis remains a major public health problem. More than 9 million cases occur every year. Unfortunately, only a little more that half of the expected cases are identified yearly and receive proper [...]... Read more »
Corbett, E., Bandason, T., Duong, T., Dauya, E., Makamure, B., Churchyard, G., Williams, B., Munyati, S., Butterworth, A., & Mason, P. (2010) Comparison of two active case-finding strategies for community-based diagnosis of symptomatic smear-positive tuberculosis and control of infectious tuberculosis in Harare, Zimbabwe (DETECTB): a cluster-randomised trial. The Lancet, 376(9748), 1244-1253. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(10)61425-0
There are over 200 different types of cancer that affect virtually every organ in the body. They can seem bewilderingly different but all cancers share certain features that make them… well, cancer. In January 2000, US cancer experts Doug Hanahan and Bob Weinberg published a seminal paper called “The Hallmarks of Cancer”, which outlined six [...]... Read more »
According to an oft-cited paper by Marcel LaFollette, a 1926 magazine once introduced an eminent medical researcher as a woman whose mahogany furniture “gleams”. From the same study, but a 1950 magazine, a senior figure in the Atomic Energy Commission was praised for sewing her own clothes. Later, via Dorothy Nelkin, Maria Mayer (Nobel physics [...]... Read more »
Chimba, M., & Kitzinger, J. (2009) Bimbo or boffin? Women in science: An analysis of media representations and how female scientists negotiate cultural contradictions. Public Understanding of Science. DOI: 10.1177/0963662508098580
From ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science Historically scholars have been cautious when discussing links between culture and poverty. The concept of a “culture of poverty” reemerged briefly in the 60’s, but it was a short-lived headline for most as the idea that attitudes and behavior patterns kept people poor was avoided. [...]... Read more »
Mario Luis Small, David J. Harding and Michèle Lamont. (2010) Reconsidering Culture and Poverty. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science , 629(6). info:/10.1177/0002716210362077
Today I finally read one of the most cited articles on subjective risk in general. In 1987 March and Shapira set out to shake up the existing theories on the perception and processing of risks by managers. Accordingly, they aggregated the information from various surveys on this topic.
The article is called "Managerial Perspectives on Risk and Risk Taking" and it can be downloaded here as PDF and I really recommend reading it.
In the first part I will analyze major empirical findings on ho........ Read more »
A paper from 1920 that describes why a class of Indian percussion musical instrument can produce harmonic overtones.... Read more »
In an interesting new article in Climatic Change, Christopher Doughty and colleagues at Stanford consider whether raising crop albedo (reflectivity) could decrease solar absorption at the Earth’s surface and cool regional climates. One might consider this a kind of climate “bio”engineering.
How could you do this, and would it work?
Many desert plants have hair-like projections that [...]... Read more »
Doughty, C., Field, C., & McMillan, A. (2010) Can crop albedo be increased through the modification of leaf trichomes, and could this cool regional climate?. Climatic Change. DOI: 10.1007/s10584-010-9936-0
A small number of cancer disciplines dominate the most prestigious medical journals. Scientists working on other cancer types may be at a professional disadvantage, e.g. for promotion and funding.... Read more »
Glynn, R. W., Chin, J. Z., Kerin, M. J., & Sweeney, K. J. (2010) Representation of Cancer in the Medical Literature - A Bibliometric Analysis. PLoS ONE, 5(11). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0013902
When it comes to the synthesis of genetics and history we live an age of no definitive answers. L. L. Cavalli-Sforza’s Great Human Diasporas would come in for a major rewrite at this point. One of the areas which has been roiled the most within the past ten years has been the origin and propagation [...]... Read more »
Wolfgang Haak, Oleg Balanovsky, Juan J. Sanchez, Sergey Koshel, Valery Zaporozhchenko, Christina J. Adler, Clio S. I. Der Sarkissian, Guido Brandt, Carolin Schwarz, Nicole Nicklisch.... (2010) Ancient DNA from European Early Neolithic Farmers Reveals Their Near Eastern Affinities. PLoS Biology. info:/10.1371/journal.pbio.1000536
Females in the animal kingdom are generally referred to as the ‘choosy’ sex. We produce the expensive gametes (eggs) and we put a good deal of consideration into selection of an appropriate male to fertilize them. The evolution of sexual strategies resulting from choosy females is evident in a multitude of male adornments, dances, songs [...]... Read more »
Muller, M., Thompson, M., Kahlenberg, S., & Wrangham, R. (2010) Sexual coercion by male chimpanzees shows that female choice may be more apparent than real. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology. DOI: 10.1007/s00265-010-1093-y
One of the central tenets of immunology as proposed by Sir Frank Macfarlane Burnet is that each lymphocyte contains an individual and specific receptor that allows it to selection based on the appearance of its specific and individual epitope. This specific interaction allows the immune system to only expand cell populations that can respond to the particular invader and not others, also known as the theory of clonal selection and expansion.... Read more »
Chaudhri, G., Quah, B., Wang, Y., Tan, A., Zhou, J., Karupiah, G., & Parish, C. (2009) T cell receptor sharing by cytotoxic T lymphocytes facilitates efficient virus control. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(35), 14984-14989. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0906554106
Quah, B., Barlow, V., McPhun, V., Matthaei, K., Hulett, M., & Parish, C. (2008) Bystander B cells rapidly acquire antigen receptors from activated B cells by membrane transfer. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(11), 4259-4264. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0800259105
by Mary in OpenHelix
Today I began an exchange on some issues of “In silico research in the era of cloud computing” based on this tweet:
@mndoci: http://bit.ly/bx2xnB …. only thing missing is a service component (cc @mza) #bioinformatics
My first answer was this, but there was a bit more back/forth subsequently:
@OpenHelix: Also missing: end user support | RT @mndoci: http://bit.ly/bx2xnB …. only thing missing is a service component (cc @mza) #bioinformatics
I’m going to explain this a ........ Read more »
Stein, L. (2010) The case for cloud computing in genome informatics. Genome Biology, 11(5), 207. DOI: 10.1186/gb-2010-11-5-207
For life on Earth, the successful transition from sea to land demanded adaptation: notably, legs (or at least the loss of flippers) and air-breathing lungs. It also put selective pressure on the ears. Sound propagates differently through air than it does through water, and it takes a certain kind of ear to detect it. That ear -- the tympanic ear, featuring a membrane (or “eardrum”) that receives airborne vibrations and relays them to the bones of the inner ear -- began to appear in four-legg........ Read more »
Christensen-Dalsgaard, J., Brandt, C., Wilson, M., Wahlberg, M., & Madsen, P. (2010) Hearing in the African lungfish (Protopterus annectens): pre-adaptation to pressure hearing in tetrapods?. Biology Letters. DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2010.0636
A study published in the Journal of Housing for the Elderly examined in some detail the visitation patterns in assisted living environments and the perceptions of residents on the impact have on their well-being. This post examines the architectural implications of that research.... Read more »
Thompson, D., Weber, J., & Juozapavicius, K. (2001) Chapter 2 Residents in Assisted Living Facilities and Visitation Patterns. Journal of Housing For the Elderly, 15(1), 31-42. DOI: 10.1300/J081v15n01_03
As global warming progresses, habitats change in their suitability for various life forms. It may be that moose will not be able to live in Minnesota in the future; Of the two resident moose populations, the one that lives in the area more affected by global warming has pretty much died out probably due indirectly to the effects of increased temperature. There are regions of the rockies where entire forests are dead because of temperature changes. And so on. Read the rest of this post... | Re........ Read more »
Scherrer, D., & Körner, C. (2010) Topographically controlled thermal-habitat differentiation buffers alpine plant diversity against climate warming. Journal of Biogeography. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2699.2010.02407.x
A dash of salt may be just what’s needed for Asia’s beleaguered shorebirds. Salt farms in Thailand provide key habitat for wintering water birds, a new survey finds. Worryingly, however, these shallow “salt pans” are increasingly threatened with conversion to aquaculture ponds that are less appealing to birds.
The Inner Gulf of Thailand, stretching 160 […] Read More »... Read more »
Sripanomyom, S., Round, P., Savini, T., Trisurat, Y., & Gale, G. (2010) Traditional salt-pans hold major concentrations of overwintering shorebirds in Southeast Asia. Biological Conservation. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2010.10.008
It is sad but true that the latest news has not been promising for wild tiger populations. In September, an article published in PLoS Biology (1) estimated that the best hope of saving the wild tiger population would be to shift focus to source sites, which are “…at spatially well-defined priority sites, supported by proven best [...]... Read more »
Walston J, Robinson JG, Bennett EL, Breitenmoser U, da Fonseca GA, Goodrich J, Gumal M, Hunter L, Johnson A, Karanth KU.... (2010) Bringing the tiger back from the brink-the six percent solution. PLoS biology, 8(9). PMID: 20856904
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