Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is by far the most common type of kidney cancer and it can be caused by genetic conditions such as BHD (Randall et al., 2014). BHD patients can develop multiple kidney tumours. In most cases these tumours can be surgically removed. However, surgery and traditional chemotherapies can leave patients with reduced renal function and at risk of relapse. In addition, advanced or metastatic RCC is difficult to treat with surgery. Therefore, the development and improvement o........ Read more »
Randall, J., Millard, F., & Kurzrock, R. (2014) Molecular aberrations, targeted therapy, and renal cell carcinoma: current state-of-the-art. Cancer and Metastasis Reviews, 33(4), 1109-1124. DOI: 10.1007/s10555-014-9533-1
by Piter Kehoma Boll Most of you likely know what diatoms are, microscopic algae with a silica shell that are very abundant in the world’s oceans and one of the main oxygen producers. You may have seen images like the … Continue reading →... Read more »
Ianora, A., Poulet, S., Miralto, A., & Grottoli, R. (1996) The diatom Thalassiosira rotula affects reproductive success in the copepod Acartia clausi. Marine Biology, 125(2), 279-286. DOI: 10.1007/BF00346308
Krawiec, R. (1982) Autecology and clonal variability of the marine centric diatom Thalassiosira rotula (Bacillariophyceae) in response to light, temperature and salinity. Marine Biology, 69(1), 79-89. DOI: 10.1007/BF00396964
The important Doctor-Patient relationshipIn a slight departure from the typical material discussed on this blog, I want to briefly direct readers to the paper by (Prof) Paul Aveyard and colleagues  and results suggesting that: "A behaviourally-informed, very brief, physician-delivered opportunistic intervention is acceptable to patients and an effective way to reduce population mean weight."The title of this post comes from some of the media coverage of the Aveyard study summarising how ........ Read more »
Aveyard, P., Lewis, A., Tearne, S., Hood, K., Christian-Brown, A., Adab, P., Begh, R., Jolly, K., Daley, A., Farley, A.... (2016) Screening and brief intervention for obesity in primary care: a parallel, two-arm, randomised trial. The Lancet. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(16)31893-1
Highlights of the month include a Special Issue on Blastocystis appearing in Parasitology International, a study of mitochondrial genomes, relationships between gut parasites and gut bacteria, and a announcement of an EMBO anaerobic protist conference next year in the UK.... Read more »
Dogruman-Al F, Stensvold CR, & Yoshikawa H. (2016) Editorial - PAR INT - special issue on Blastocystis. Parasitology international, 65(6 Pt B), 749. PMID: 27742000
Jacob AS, Andersen LO, Pavinski Bitar P, Richards VP, Shah S, Stanhope MJ, Stensvold CR, & Clark CG. (2016) Blastocystis mitochondrial genomes appear to show multiple independent gains and losses of start and stop codons. Genome biology and evolution. PMID: 27811175
Iebba V, Santangelo F, Totino V, Pantanella F, Monsia A, Di Cristanziano V, Di Cave D, Schippa S, Berrilli F, & D'Alfonso R. (2016) Gut microbiota related to Giardia duodenalis, Entamoeba spp. and Blastocystis hominis infections in humans from Côte d'Ivoire. Journal of infection in developing countries, 10(9), 1035-1041. PMID: 27694739
Smith DR. (2016) The past, present and future of mitochondrial genomics: have we sequenced enough mtDNAs?. Briefings in functional genomics, 15(1), 47-54. PMID: 26117139
In a year of impossible things...I was rather interested to read the recent paper by Renee Goodwin and colleagues  observing that: "Atopy appears to be associated with increased vulnerability to affective and anxiety problems, compared to youth without atopy."Atopy, referring to a predisposition to developing allergic diseases such as eczema, asthma and/or hayfever, is something on the 'up' in research terms when it comes to aspects of psychiatry and/or developmental outcomes (see here f........ Read more »
Goodwin RD, Robinson M, Sly PD, & Holt PG. (2016) Childhood atopy and mental health: a prospective, longitudinal investigation. Psychological medicine, 1-9. PMID: 27762174
I am weathering the US election in Tampa, Florida. For this week, I am back at the Moffitt Cancer Center to participate in the 6th annual IMO Workshop. The 2016 theme is one of the biggest challenges to current cancer treatment: therapy resistance. All five teams participating this year are comfortable with the evolutionary view […]... Read more »
Ball M, List AF, & Padron E. (2016) When clinical heterogeneity exceeds genetic heterogeneity: thinking outside the genomic box in chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. Blood. PMID: 27707735
"Many individuals with ASD [autism spectrum disorder] have a distinctive behavioral presentation that is recognizable within moments, a phenomenon we call "frank" ASD." So said the paper by Ashley de Marchena & Judith Miller  who carried out an "empirical study of frank ASD" and by the looks of my Twitter feed when I initially posted about this study, there are quite a few varied opinions about the concept of 'frank' autism.Although 'frank autism' makes up a significant portion ........ Read more »
de Marchena, A., & Miller, J. (2016) “Frank” presentations as a novel research construct and element of diagnostic decision-making in autism spectrum disorder. Autism Research. DOI: 10.1002/aur.1706
Do you find gruyère gross? Are you repelled by roquefort?
Neuroscientists are now investigating why this might be. A new paper claims to reveal The Neural Bases of Disgust for Cheese.
French (heh) researchers Jean-Pierre Royet and colleagues used fMRI to scan 15 people who liked cheese and 15 who "hated" it. During the scan, the participants were shown images of cheese and were exposed to cheese odors.
The six neuro-cheeses were blue cheese, cheddar, goat cheese, gruyère, parmesan, ... Read more »
Royet JP, Meunier D, Torquet N, Mouly AM, & Jiang T. (2016) The Neural Bases of Disgust for Cheese: An fMRI Study. Frontiers in human neuroscience, 511. PMID: 27799903
Spawning time and location are important factors affecting the reproductive cycle for migratory fish by potentially affecting offspring survival and growth. We examine this relationships by using a drift model for early life stages (eggs to age 1) of the Northeast Arctic cod combined with empirical estimates of spatial variation in mortality at two different life stages (Langangen
et al. 2016).
... Read more »
Langangen, Ø., Ottersen, G., Ciannelli, L., Vikebø, F., & Stige, L. (2016) Reproductive strategy of a migratory fish stock: implications of spatial variations in natural mortality. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 1-8. DOI: 10.1139/cjfas-2015-0321
Opdal, A., Vikebø, F., & Fiksen, Ø. (2011) Parental migration, climate and thermal exposure of larvae: spawning in southern regions gives Northeast Arctic cod a warm start. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 255-262. DOI: 10.3354/meps09335
Langangen, Ø., Stige, L., Yaragina, N., Ottersen, G., Vikebø, F., & Stenseth, N. (2014) Spatial variations in mortality in pelagic early life stages of a marine fish (Gadus morhua). Progress in Oceanography, 96-107. DOI: 10.1016/j.pocean.2014.06.003
Ciannelli, L., Dingsør, G., Bogstad, B., Ottersen, G., Chan, K., Gjøsæter, H., Stiansen, J., & Stenseth, N. (2007) Spatial anatomy of species survival: Effects of predation and climate -driven environmental variability. Ecology, 88(3), 635-646. DOI: 10.1890/05-2035
Contrary to Murphy's Law - 'never repeat a successful experiment' - replication or reproducibility is a cornerstone of good science. Today, I'm blogging about a piece of research that aimed to do just that as per the findings reported by Stephen Walker and colleagues  (open-access).The title of this post has been borrowed from the title of the Walker paper to illustrate how moving on from the quite widely known 'fact' that functional gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms are over-represented wh........ Read more »
Walker SJ, Beavers DP, Fortunato J, & Krigsman A. (2016) A Putative Blood-Based Biomarker for Autism Spectrum Disorder-Associated Ileocolitis. Scientific reports, 35820. PMID: 27767057
Superman donned glasses to disguise himself and blend in with other people. One snake hides its identity using a similar trick: when threatened, it changes the shape of its pupils. This makes it resemble a much more dangerous animal.
The mock viper (Psammodynastes pulverulentus) is mild-mannered, not superpowered. It's common across much of Asia, and—as you might have guessed from its name—looks a lot like a viper. Actual vipers are a widespread family of venomous snakes. Like true v........ Read more »
Silva, I., Crane, M., Artchawakom, T., Suwanwaree, P., & Strine, C. (2016) More than meets the eye: change in pupil shape by a mock viper. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 14(8), 453-454. DOI: 10.1002/fee.1420
In humans, the most common infectious neuroteratogenic agents are summarised by the mnemonic “TORCH(S)” (Toxoplasmosis, Others, Rubella, (Human) Cytomegalovirus, Herpes Simplex, Syphilis) with ZIKV either classified as “Others” or by expanding the mnemonic to TORCHSZ and indeed health authorities in affected countries regularly test cases of microcephaly suspected to be associated with neurological infections not only for ZIKV but also for the presence of TORCH(S). Microc........ Read more »
Yockey LJ, Varela L, Rakib T, Khoury-Hanold W, Fink SL, Stutz B, Szigeti-Buck K, Van den Pol A, Lindenbach BD, Horvath TL.... (2016) Vaginal Exposure to Zika Virus during Pregnancy Leads to Fetal Brain Infection. Cell, 166(5), 1247-12560000. PMID: 27565347
Bayless NL, Greenberg RS, Swigut T, Wysocka J, & Blish CA. (2016) Zika Virus Infection Induces Cranial Neural Crest Cells to Produce Cytokines at Levels Detrimental for Neurogenesis. Cell host , 20(4), 423-428. PMID: 27693308
El Costa H, Gouilly J, Mansuy JM, Chen Q, Levy C, Cartron G, Veas F, Al-Daccak R, Izopet J, & Jabrane-Ferrat N. (2016) ZIKA virus reveals broad tissue and cell tropism during the first trimester of pregnancy. Scientific reports, 35296. PMID: 27759009
Tabata T, Petitt M, Puerta-Guardo H, Michlmayr D, Wang C, Fang-Hoover J, Harris E, & Pereira L. (2016) Zika Virus Targets Different Primary Human Placental Cells, Suggesting Two Routes for Vertical Transmission. Cell host , 20(2), 155-66. PMID: 27443522
Quicke KM, Bowen JR, Johnson EL, McDonald CE, Ma H, O'Neal JT, Rajakumar A, Wrammert J, Rimawi BH, Pulendran B.... (2016) Zika Virus Infects Human Placental Macrophages. Cell host , 20(1), 83-90. PMID: 27247001
Bayer A, Lennemann NJ, Ouyang Y, Bramley JC, Morosky S, Marques ET Jr, Cherry S, Sadovsky Y, & Coyne CB. (2016) Type III Interferons Produced by Human Placental Trophoblasts Confer Protection against Zika Virus Infection. Cell host , 19(5), 705-12. PMID: 27066743
Ning F, Liu H, & Lash GE. (2016) The Role of Decidual Macrophages During Normal and Pathological Pregnancy. American journal of reproductive immunology (New York, N.Y. : 1989), 75(3), 298-309. PMID: 26750089
Lash GE, Pitman H, Morgan HL, Innes BA, Agwu CN, & Bulmer JN. (2016) Decidual macrophages: key regulators of vascular remodeling in human pregnancy. Journal of leukocyte biology, 100(2), 315-25. PMID: 26819320
Salamonsen LA, Hannan NJ, & Dimitriadis E. (2007) Cytokines and chemokines during human embryo implantation: roles in implantation and early placentation. Seminars in reproductive medicine, 25(6), 437-44. PMID: 17960528
Olagnier D, Amatore D, Castiello L, Ferrari M, Palermo E, Diamond MS, Palamara AT, & Hiscott J. (2016) Dengue Virus Immunopathogenesis: Lessons Applicable to the Emergence of Zika Virus. Journal of molecular biology, 428(17), 3429-48. PMID: 27130436
"Epilepsy was reported to co-occur in 8.6 % of ASD [autism spectrum disorder] cases."That was the headline conclusion reported by Shiny Thomas and colleagues  as they drew on data from "the most recent U.S. National Survey of Children's Health, 2011-2012" to add to the extensive literature looking at how common epilepsy is when it comes to autism.Including some 1600 children/young adults diagnosed with autism - equivalent to a prevalence of 1.8% of the entire 85,000-strong co........ Read more »
Thomas S, Hovinga ME, Rai D, & Lee BK. (2016) Brief Report: Prevalence of Co-occurring Epilepsy and Autism Spectrum Disorder: The U.S. National Survey of Children's Health 2011-2012. Journal of autism and developmental disorders. PMID: 27752862
by Piter Kehoma Boll This information was known by me and some other people for quite a while, but only recently has caught attention of the general public. Obama is the newest threat in Europe. No, I’m not talking about the … Continue reading →... Read more »
Álvarez-Presas, M., Mateos, E., Tudó, À., Jones, H., & Riutort, M. (2014) Diversity of introduced terrestrial flatworms in the Iberian Peninsula: a cautionary tale. PeerJ. DOI: 10.7717/peerj.430
Boll, P., & Leal-Zanchet, A. (2016) Preference for different prey allows the coexistence of several land planarians in areas of the Atlantic Forest. Zoology, 119(3), 162-168. DOI: 10.1016/j.zool.2016.04.002
Carbayo, F., Álvarez-Presas, M., Jones, H., & Riutort, M. (2016) The true identity of Obama (Platyhelminthes: Geoplanidae) flatworm spreading across Europe. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 177(1), 5-28. DOI: 10.1111/zoj.12358
"This is the first study to identify the existence of sensory subtypes among older children and adolescents with ASD [autism spectrum disorder] and explore their association with anxiety levels."Far be it from me to question the above quote provided in the paper by Mirko Uljarević and colleagues  but I'm inclined to suggest that there has already been some research published on the link between sensory issues and anxiety in the context of the autism spectrum before (see here and se........ Read more »
Uljarević M, Lane A, Kelly A, & Leekam S. (2016) Sensory subtypes and anxiety in older children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder. Autism research : official journal of the International Society for Autism Research, 9(10), 1073-1078. PMID: 26765165
Furuya et al. (2016) present a new study describing genetic, epidemiologic and clinicopathologic features of 312 Asian individuals with BHD manifestations based on data from 120 probands from different families (119 Japanese and 1 Taiwanese), 36 siblingss with genetic testing and 156 siblings without genetic testing.... Read more »
Furuya M, Yao M, Tanaka R, Nagashima Y, Kuroda N, Hasumi H, Baba M, Matsushima J, Nomura F, & Nakatani Y. (2016) Genetic, epidemiologic and clinicopathologic studies of Japanese Asian patients with Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome. Clinical genetics, 90(5), 403-412. PMID: 27220747
by Piter Kehoma Boll Found throughout most of the world, you probably have encountered this fellow many times in your life, but did not pay any attention. After all, it is just a moss! Scientifically known as Bryum argenteum and popularly … Continue reading →... Read more »
Shaw, A., & Albright, D. (1990) Potential for the Evolution of Heavy Metal Tolerance in Bryum argenteum, a Moss. II. Generalized Tolerances among Diverse Populations. The Bryologist, 93(2), 187. DOI: 10.2307/3243622
The findings reported by Naushad Shaik Mohammad and colleagues  provide some blogging fodder today and the suggestion of a link between some of the genetics of the folate pathway and the finding of elevated levels of homocysteine with [some] autism in mind.OK, from the start, the genetics of folate metabolism mentioned in the context of autism typically means reference to the quite well replicated finding of issues with the gene methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) (see ........ Read more »
Shaik Mohammad N, Sai Shruti P, Bharathi V, Krishna Prasad C, Hussain T, Alrokayan SA, Naik U, & Radha Rama Devi A. (2016) Clinical utility of folate pathway genetic polymorphisms in the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders. Psychiatric genetics. PMID: 27755291
A new paper could prompt a rethink of a basic tenet of neuroscience. It is widely believed that the motor cortex, a region of the cerebral cortex, is responsible for producing movements, by sending instructions to other brain regions and ultimately to the spinal cord. But according to neuroscientists Christian Laut Ebbesen and colleagues, the truth may be the opposite: the motor cortex may equally well suppress movements.
Ebbesen et al. studied the vibrissa motor cortex (VMC) of the rat, ... Read more »
Ebbesen CL, Doron G, Lenschow C, & Brecht M. (2016) Vibrissa motor cortex activity suppresses contralateral whisking behavior. Nature Neuroscience. PMID: 27798633
"This study demonstrates an association between antibiotic use in the first year of life and subsequent neurocognitive outcomes in childhood."So said the findings reported by Slykerman and colleagues  who relied on data from the Auckland Birthweight Collaborative Study (an initiative set up to determine whether "internationally recognized risk factors for small-for-gestational-age (SGA) term babies were applicable in New Zealand") to examine the suggestion that early life antib........ Read more »
Slykerman RF, Thompson J, Waldie KE, Murphy R, Wall C, & Mitchell EA. (2016) Antibiotics in the first year of life and subsequent neurocognitive outcomes. Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992). PMID: 27701771
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