Posts

July 29, 2014

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5:52 PM | Plants, polyploidy and producing new species
When I talk about my career and my interest in evolutionary biology, I often get asked, “How do you actually get new species?”. It’s not a stupid question; for people without a background in biology it really is very hard to imagine how the diversity of life we see today has formed from the types […]
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5:49 PM | Validation problem with antibodies – get free samples, report back, help community
Antibodyresource.com is running an interesting validation program over in the UK. They are providing free samples of antibodies, the catch is that they would like to see if the antibody validates. If this is something you are interested in, please contact Christian at christian.booty@antibodyresource.com From Christian: “The antibody comparison program, is designed to greatly reduce […]
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5:48 PM | The Science of Happiness – An Experiment in Gratitude
The Science of Happiness – An Experiment in Gratitude What makes you happy? Have you ever wondered why? Join us as we take an experimental approach on what makes people happier. Behind the Scenes of the episode! http://youtu.be/ufmxRozpxNA Watch The Science of Happiness – Episode 2 here! http://youtu.be/ApoYwEeDNrc Check out the study here! http://www.ppc.sas.upenn.edu/articleseligman.pdf AttachRead More »
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5:46 PM | Tuesday Crustie: Milk or white
To paraphrase Michael Jackson, if you want to be my crayfish, it don’t matter if you’re milk or white.Spotted in the New Orleans airport on my way back from the American Society for Parasitologists conference. New Orleans and Boston are, I think, in competition for the most crustacean proud cities I’ve visited.
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5:46 PM | Could California Go All in On Renewable Energy?
California could be completely powered by renewable energy, according to a plan that uses available technology. Continue reading →
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5:37 PM | Shuffle Your Mind: Short Film Screenings
If you’re around in London Saturday 2nd August I’m curating a showing of short films about psychosis, hallucinations and mental health as part of the fantastic Shuffle Festival. The films include everything from a first-person view of voice hearing, to out-of-step behaviour in the urban sprawl, to a free-diver’s deep sea hallucinations. There will be […]
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5:36 PM | State Department cuts through the acid political environment on oceans and climate
Secretary Kerry hosted a remarkable conference in June called simply Our Ocean. It enlisted international policy makers, scientists, and the private sector to take action to ensure a healthy ocean for the future. The conference laid out the science, impacts, and solutions for three critical ocean problems: sustainable fisheries, ocean pollution, and ocean acidification. A key goal was to alert those at the highest levels of government to the perils facing the ocean and to inspire them to […]
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5:36 PM | Where Do Geysers On Enceladus Erupt From? Probably A Buried Ocean
Enceladus's South Pole. Those things that look like beams of light are actually geysers. Giant, 125-mile-high geysers. NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI A map of more than 100 geysers on the surface of Saturn’s moon Enceladus has helped scientists determine where those water jets are spouting from—and the results are encouraging for scientists who want to look for life there. NASA’s Cassini spacecraft first spotted the 125-mile-high geysers erupting from Enceladus’ south pole […]
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5:32 PM | "You're a Faker & a Pest!"
Faker! Pest! MT @bjkingape: New vocab word: thanatosis, or faking death; seen in a wide variety of #animals  http://t.co/UCg46NLQKR #science— russwilliamsiii (@russwilliamsiii) July 29, 2014
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5:16 PM | This boring-looking grass can occupy an extra 10,000 square miles, thanks to a helpful fungus
Mutualisms, in which two or more species provide each other with services or resources that they can’t produce on their own, are everywhere you find living things. Mutualists offer protection, help transport pollen, and provide key nutrients. Even when a mutualist’s services aren’t absolutely vital, they can help make stressful environments tolerable. That’s the insight […]
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5:15 PM | Can’t Handle the Stress? Blame your Brain
Do you rise to the occasion, or do you fold under the pressure? No matter which side of the fence you’re, you can thank [or blame] your brain. Some people […]

Kumar, S., Hultman, R., Hughes, D., Michel, N., Katz, B. & Dzirasa, K. (2014). Prefrontal cortex reactivity underlies trait vulnerability to chronic social defeat stress, Nature Communications, 5 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5537

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5:09 PM | Development Of Airplanes Is Like Biological Evolution
Airplanes and birds may have followed similar pattern to increase efficiency.  Image credit: Dave Heuts via flickr | http://bit.ly/1nho7q2 Rights information: http://bit.ly/c34Awz The development of passenger aircraft over the past century mirrors the evolution of flying animals, and shows that evolution is not just a biological phenomenon, according to a paper published today in the Journal of Applied Physics. Adrian Bejan, a mechanical engineer at Duke […]
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5:04 PM | Nel grossetano si uccidono i lupi
Sono circa dieci (tra lupi e ibridi) i predatori uccisi a fucilate nella provincia di Grosseto negli ultimi sei mesi. Stando ai primi accertamenti dei carabinieri, l’ultimo in ordine temporale è probabilmente un lupo, colpito a una spalla e lasciato in bella mostra nella piazza principale del paese di Semproniano durante la notte tra sabato e domenica scorsi. Visto che fino ad ora non sono stati individuati i responsabili di questi uccisioni, che come ricorda la Lega Anti […]
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5:04 PM | Busy this morning
But in the meantime, a favorite story from Derek Lowe:There was, the story goes, a pork-pie company over in England that was producing huge numbers of the things. Huge, that is, compared to their number of employees. In fact, on closer inspection, they were cranking out more pork pies than even seemed possible. This began to attract attention, and soon a team of managerial consultants had flown over from the US, eager to learn the secret. "Do you have Pareto chart analysis?", they asked […]
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5:01 PM | Achalasia Esophagus Disease Is Autoimmune
Achalasia is a rare disease, affecting 1 in 100,000 people, characterized by a loss of nerve cells in the esophageal wall and manifested as chest pain during eating, weight loss, and regurgitation of food. When we swallow, a sphincter in the lower esophagus opens, allowing food to enter the stomach. Nerve cells in the esophageal wall control the opening and closing of this sphincter, but in people with achalasia, these nerve cells gradually disappear. Without these cells, the esophageal […]
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5:01 PM | Virtual Water Shortage By 2040
Two new papers postulate that there will be a water crisis by 2040. Not because of population, but because of current energy and power solutions.  And they believe solar and wind power is the only answer.  In most countries, electricity is the biggest source of water consumption because the power plants need cooling cycles in order to function and that is why the scholars from Aarhus University in Denmark, Vermont Law School and CNA Corporation, a federally-funded research center for […]
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4:47 PM | EU to Stop Its Energy Dependence on Russia
The EU imports more than half of the energy it consumes and that can make it vulnerable to external energy suppliers such as Russia. To improve the situation, the European Commission presented a plan to reduce this dependence, which was discussed by Parliament’s industry committee last week.
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4:45 PM | “Authors, please call us. Pretty please? OK, we’re going to retract your paper!”
The title of this post isn’t exactly how the one-sided conversation between the editors of Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment and a group of researchers went. But it seems likely it was pretty close. Here’s an expression of concern for “A cross-sectional study on perception of stigma by Chinese schizophrenia patients:” Concerns were raised about the […]
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4:42 PM | Extramural Activities: Paint and Fossils
Emily Hughes brings us tales of adventure and discovery from the Australian Outback as she and her mother search for unbelievably ancient fossils. Paleontologists learn to do more than just paleontology when necessary; for them, useful skills can include making murals.
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4:41 PM | Jews and Arabs Refuse to Be Enemies: A Compassionate Response to War
Henry David Thoreau said, “It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.” At some point in our development we learn to see others through a lens of fear and hate. Because the brain is so malleable in our younger years these beliefs become that much more ingrained and as we grow older the […]
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4:38 PM | Rising Seas: Will the Outer Banks Survive
Development and climate change are causing the islands to slowly vanish, scientists say. Rising sea levels and beach erosion are threatening houses in the Outer Banks; this one is being moved farther from shore. Photograph by David Alan Harvey, National…The post Rising Seas: Will the Outer Banks Survive appeared first on Just Science.
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4:38 PM | UK's national parks may not be safe from fracking
The UK government has almost ruled out fracking in beauty spots, many of which conceal shale oil and gas reserves, but it has left the door ajar
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4:37 PM | Happy 15th Birthday, Chandra
X-ray data (in red) reveal 160 young stars in the cluster on the right in the Rosette star-forming region. ( (NASA/CXC/SAO/et al 2 of 18 This image of supernova remnant Cassiopeia A shows low-energy X-rays (red), medium-energy ones (green), and the highest-energy…The post Happy 15th Birthday, Chandra appeared first on Just Science.
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4:35 PM | DNews: Worried About Germs? Adopt the Fist Bump Greeting
Always greet people with a firm ... er, fist bump? Finally, science has given people everywhere an excuse for all of the fist-bumping: It's more sanitary!
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4:35 PM | Are Egg Shells a Sun Screen for Birds?
Birds' eggs show pigment and structural adaptations that let just the right amount of sun reach the embryos.
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4:35 PM | New anti-inflammatory drug shows promise for Parkinson's
New anti-inflammatory drug shows promise for Parkinson's 29 July 2014 Researchers in America have discovered a new drug that may be able to protect nerve cells from dying in people with Parkinson's. This post has been generated by Page2RSS
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4:32 PM | Are silly superstitions useful because they are silly?
(Attention warning: massive speculation ahead.) Auguries often seem made up, useless. Is that why they are useful? Dove figured that the birds must be serving as some kind of ecological indicator. Perhaps they gravitated toward good soil, or smaller trees, or some other useful characteristic of a swidden site. After all, the Kantu’ had been […]

Cockburn, J., Collins, A. & Frank, M. (2014). A Reinforcement Learning Mechanism Responsible for the Valuation of Free Choice, Neuron, DOI: 10.1016/j.neuron.2014.06.035

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4:31 PM | 1 PostDoc & 2 PhD Positions, Language & Predictive Coding, University of Frankfurt / Germany
The Cognitive Neuroscience Lab (Prof. Christian Fiebach) at the Department of Psychology of Goethe University Frankfurt offers three research positions as part of an ERC consolidator project that investigates neurophysiological mechanisms of language processing from a predictive coding perspective: Postdoctoral Researcher (German Salary Level E13, 100%) in Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience of LanguageWe seek a colleague with a strong background in EEG/MEG, fMRI, and/or […]
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4:30 PM | Quote Therapy – by Sue Monk Kidd
“We become what we pay attention to.” Sue Monk Kidd
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4:30 PM | Another Massive Hole Appears in Siberia: Photos
A second massive crater has appeared in a remote part of Siberia. It's uncertain yet what's caused the sinkholes, but experts have suggested global warming may play a part.
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