Posts

September 16, 2014

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1:03 AM | Some neuroscientists think a mutation led to human language development
Neuroscientists identify key role of language gene Excerpt: “Neuroscientists have found that a gene mutation that arose more than half a million years ago may be key to humans’ unique ability to produce and understand speech.” Excerpt: “…the gene that...Read more
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12:03 AM | Genotype, observed phenotype, and distinctly disordered behaviors
Schizophrenia not a single disease but multiple genetically distinct disorders September 15, 2014 By Jim Dryden News article excerpt: “Genes don’t operate by themselves,” said C. Robert Cloninger, MD, PhD, one of the study’s senior investigators. “They function in concert...Read more

September 15, 2014

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7:04 PM | Is the problem an internet echo or Feierman’s ethics?
Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid. It is found in cold water fatty fish… On 9/19/13, I posted here and to the evolutionary psychology yahoo group  (msg #152240) on the link between Aquatic Ape Theory, dietary DHA, my...Read more
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1:45 PM | Birdbooker Report 338
SUMMARY: Books, books, beautiful books! This is a list of biology, ecology, environment, natural history and animal books that are (or will soon be) available to occupy your bookshelves and your thoughts. “Words in leather and wood”. Bookshelves in the “Long Room” at the old Trinity College Library in Dublin. Image: Nic McPhee from Morris, MN, USA. 2007. (Creative Commons.) Books to the ceiling, Books to the sky, My pile of books is a mile high. How I love them!... Read […]
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1:41 AM | Behavior (3): All responses are RNA-mediated in bees
See: Honey bees as a model for understanding mechanisms of life history transitions. Excerpt: “In this review we discuss the physiological and genetic mechanisms of this behavioral transition, which include large scale changes in hormonal activity, metabolism, flight ability, circadian rhythms,...Read more

September 14, 2014

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11:53 PM | Brain On Drugs
Cartoonist Chato Stewart Notes: With this cartoons I was mixing two cartoons series.  The Over-medicated and a new one I started called Brainstorming.  BraingStorming is just right now about what else-brain and goofy word play.  A Brain “storm” -brains falling … Continue reading →
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5:05 PM | RNA-mediated ecological adaptation is not evolution
Prehistoric Critters Change View of Mammal Evolution Three extinct squirrel-like species were identified from Jurassic-era fossils in China. By Molly Sharlach | September 12, 2014 Excerpt 1): “The fossils suggest that the slender animals spent time in trees, and had...Read more
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3:56 AM | Exploding genomes and chromosomal rearrangements via RNA-mediated events
Gibbon genome and the fast karyotype evolution of small apes This is an open access article reported as: Gibbon genome sequence deepens understanding of primates rapid chromosomal rearrangements Excerpt: The number of chromosomal rearrangements in the gibbons is remarkable, Rogers...Read more

September 13, 2014

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8:59 PM | Behavior (2): All responses are RNA-mediated not genetically-determined
Diana Maria Petrosanu also asked: “who was the author of the article that had stolen your ideas?“ I cannot recall claiming that anyone had stolen our ideas or my ideas. See: Behavior: The first response is RNA-mediated not genetically-determined. In...Read more
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7:13 PM | Behavior: The first response is RNA-mediated not genetically-determined
Diana Maria Petrosanu asked a question in an Evolutionary Psychology News discussion about Evolution’s Random Paths Lead to One Place. I’ve been very vocal in other discussions that tout ridiculous theories that have been repeatedly refuted by biological facts. My...Read more
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1:50 PM | Murmuration over Otmoor
SUMMARY: Tens of thousands of starlings produce spectacular sky shows with their movements at sunset as they gather together every evening during autumn and winter. September has arrived, so you all know what that means: the beginnings of huge bird flocks in autumn and winter! Just as humans spend more time congregating in pubs in autumn and winter, starlings also gather together in large numbers at these times. Every evening as the sun sets, small groups of a dozen or... Read more
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12:44 PM | From the shadows, they come.
Drawn by the scent of their hapless prey. Their victims are powerless to defend themselves… Sweet, delicate flesh is ripped and torn as attacks come from all sides… They shiver with feverish excitement… …as the attack turns into a frenzy of shredding, chewing maws… Some emerge from the writhing mass, their faces slick with gore… […]

September 12, 2014

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9:24 AM | Manchester Dogs Home
You may have seen in the news that last night, Manchester Dogs Home suffered an enormous fire.   The Guardian reports that a 15 year old boy has been arrested on suspicion of arson. So far, 53 dogs have died and … Continue reading →
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4:14 AM | Mechanisms that are not understood increase clarity
Science 12 September 2014: Vol. 345 no. 6202 pp. 1240-1241 DOI: 10.1126/science.1252966 Perspective RNA Function RNA and dynamic nuclear organization John Rinn1,2,3, Mitchell Guttman4 Excerpt: “While the mechanism for how lncRNAs establish these domains is not fully understood, it is...Read more
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2:56 AM | Pattern recognition and conserved receptors (TAARs)
Olfactory Receptor Patterning in a Higher Primate The article links the senior author’s prior works form nutrient-dependent RNA-mediated events to her 2005 coauthored work: Feedback loops link odor and pheromone signaling with reproduction. It is surprising to see Nobel Laureate,...Read more
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2:15 AM | Nutrient-dependent erythropoiesis and anemia
A critical role for mTORC1 in erythropoiesis and anemia Excerpt 1): “Cells must coordinate their rate of growth and proliferation with the availability of nutrients. mTOR , a serine-threonine kinase, is one the key proteins responsible for nutrient signaling in...Read more

September 11, 2014

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5:42 PM | Evolutionary heritage or ecological adaptation? Racism versus reality
Jewish Heritage Written in DNA Fully sequenced genomes of more than 100 Ashkenazi people clarify the group’s history and provide a reference for researchers and physicians trying to pinpoint disease-associated genes. By Kate Yandell | September 9, 2014 Excerpt: These...Read more

September 10, 2014

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5:05 PM | Who’s a Pretty Boy Then?
Working in the world of international animal welfare as I have been doing in the last couple of months, you are confronted by your own innate biases. These are little (or big!) ideas you have about animal welfare that influence … Continue reading →
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4:08 PM | Dolphins and Belugas Squeal With Delight
In a new study, researchers analyzed years of recordings of ‘victory squeals’ – sounds made by dolphins and belugas after they received a fish reward, heard a whistle indicating a reward was forthcoming, or performed a task correctly. The sounds appear to be related to the release of dopamine, indicating they’re related to feelings of pleasure. Read the whole story at Zoologic: Underwater Victory Squeals Signal a Job Well Done .
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3:37 PM | Beepcast, August 2014
In this 1st birthday episode, I find out about some more avian criminals of the animal kingdom. I learn that most birds can’t taste sugar, but hummingbirds can, and I learn how. And in the Scientific Spark, I talk to Marlene Zuk, Professor of behavioural and evolutionary biology at the University of Minnesota. Together with Bill Hamilton, Marlene proposed the good genes hypothesis of sexual selection Download the MP3Quicklinks: Maude Baldwin's Science paper on Hummingbird sweet taste […]
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1:31 PM | New on Weird & Wild: Mite and Ant Preserved Together
Now here’s a headache of historic proportions: An ancient ant with a mite attached to its head has been found preserved in amber, a new study says. The unlucky ant and its likely parasitic hitchhiker were trapped in tree resin, which eventually fossilized into amber, about 45 million years ago. The discovery is the oldest evidence of a mite attacking a social insect. Read the whole story here: Mite Attacking Ant Entombed in Amber; Oldest Fossil of its Kind .
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1:22 PM | Transgenerational germline maintenance
Studying Germline Maintenance from an Environmental Perspective   Excerpt: “…we are using the model system Caenorhabditis elegans. The genetic tools available in the nematode allow the mechanistic dissection of environmentally disrupted germline pathways as well as the comprehensive interrogation of our chemical...Read more
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2:31 AM | Odor preferences are ecological adaptations
Does Singld Out, a gene-based dating service, pass the sniff test? Excerpt: “The evolution of odour preference When we think about the evolutionary threats faced by our ancestors, we like to imagine sabre-tooth tigers and angry, spear-wielding tribesmen. In reality,...Read more

September 09, 2014

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3:26 PM | A relatively young branch of science called epigenetics
Epigenetics: genes, environment and the generation game New research claims that environmental factors affect not just an individual’s genes but those of their offspring too. Diabetes, obesity – even certain phobias – may all be influenced by the behaviour of...Read more
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3:36 AM | Insect homology and diversity attributed to mutations
Ancient homology underlies adaptive mimetic diversity across butterflies Excerpt: “Surprisingly, our results suggest that modulation of this conserved developmental gene has occurred in tandem between these two deeply divergent butterfly lineages, implying an unexpected and remarkable level of predictability in...Read more

September 08, 2014

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9:58 PM | Controlled adaptations of coexisting ecotypes
“Evolution was defined as “changes in gene frequencies in natural populations.” The accumulation of genetic mutations was touted to be enough to change one species to another…. No, it wasn’t dishonesty. I think it was wish fulfillment and social momentum....Read more
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7:58 PM | Ouch: The dangers of sticks as dog toys.
Last week I spent a few hours in a veterinary emergency clinic, providing emotional support for a friend whose dog had gashed his throat on a stick. He’s fine now, but it could have been much worse. One friend’s dog almost died after impaling his chest on a stick. It missed his heart by millimeters. […]
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2:59 PM | Birdbooker Report 337
SUMMARY: Books, books, beautiful books! This is a list of biology, ecology, environment, natural history and animal books that are (or will soon be) available to occupy your bookshelves and your thoughts. “Words in leather and wood”. Bookshelves in the “Long Room” at the old Trinity College Library in Dublin. Image: Nic McPhee from Morris, MN, USA. 2007. (Creative Commons.) Books to the ceiling, Books to the sky, My pile of books is a mile high. How I love them!... Read […]
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2:25 PM | Biophysically constrained beginnings of RNA and DNA
Any anonymous participant in the discussion of: DNA may have had humble beginnings as nutrient carrier (Sep 01, 2014 by Adam Hadhazy) asks: “when are you going to keep quiet?” In a series of responses, I have explained the problem...Read more

September 07, 2014

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6:18 PM | Indirect genetic effects (IGEs), associative effects and extended phenotypes
  Beyond the Blueprint In addition to serving as a set of instructions to build an individual, the genome can influence neighboring organisms and, potentially, entire ecosystems. By Mark A. Genung, Jennifer A. Schweitzer, and Joseph K. Bailey | September...Read more
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