Posts

November 24, 2014

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1:52 AM | The Turkey
In the United States this week we will be celebrating Thanksgiving, and as its icon is the turkey, I thought I would do a little tracing of the turkey through the history of science. I found some rather old pictures! In case you forgot what a wild one looks like:   When I first began […]

November 23, 2014

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8:12 PM | Texas, Dover, and History
We’re looking at a potentially fascinating (and highly ironic) situation here in Texas. You’ve heard the saying that those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it. Well, this may be coming true… literally. The Texas State Board of Education recently voted to accept textbooks that (they demanded) contain incorrect information. In fact, the […]
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5:23 PM | Whole issues of Genome Biology/Genome Medicine on "Genomics of Infectious Disease"
Wow this has really got some nice papers: BioMed Central | Article collections | Genomics of infectious diseases special issue.  I note - this goes well as a follow up to the series I co-coordinated in PLOS a few years back: Genomics of Emerging Infectious Disease - PLOS CollectionsFrom their site:Infectious diseases are major contributors to global morbidity and mortality, and have a devastating impact on public health. The World Health Organization estimates that 1 in 3 deaths […]
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4:38 PM | Birdbooker Report 348
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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3:14 PM | Our Latest Publication: Genetics studies indicate that neural induction and early neuronal maturation are disturbed in autism
Just this month we published our latest manuscript in the journal, Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience, titled, “Genetics studies indicate that neural induction and early neuronal maturation are disturbed in autism.” […]
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1:45 PM | You Should Know: Dr. Umberto Cannella and Dr. Cinnamon blog
Welcome to the seventeenth installment of You Should Know, where I give my own#ScholarSunday salute to Science Bloggers and the Blogs you may not yet know about.   Introducing Umberto Cannella,... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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12:56 AM | Strangest microbial headline of month: Bacteria on Russian ‘sex satellite’ survive reentry
There is really not much to say other than to point everyone to this article: Bacteria on Russian ‘sex satellite’ survive reentry | Science | The GuardianIt defininely wins the strangest microbial headline of the month.  The article restates some of the silly claims about how what they are finding supports panspermia .. but ignore the article and just enjoy the headline. -------- This is from the "Tree of Life Blog" of Jonathan Eisen, an evolutionary biologist and Open […]

November 22, 2014

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9:09 PM | Moore Foundation: Request for Expressions of Interest: Increasing the Potential of Marine Microeukaryotes as Experimental Model Systems through the Development of Genetic Tools
Got this from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and they said I could post it here.Request for Expressions of Interest: Increasing the Potential of Marine Microeukaryotes as Experimental Model Systems through the Development of Genetic Tools Marine Microbiology Initiative Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation November 21, 2014 The Marine Microbiology Initiative (MMI) at the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation aims to enable scientists to uncover the […]
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6:10 PM | Post-doc w/ me, Jessica Green, Jay Stachowicz, and Jenna Lang on seagrass microbiomes
Postdoctoral Position in Microbial Ecology and EvolutionJessica Green at the University of Oregon Green (http://pages.uoregon.edu/green/) is currently seeking a postdoctoral researcher to explore fundamental questions in microbial ecology and evolution. Applicants should have a PhD in a biological, computational, mathematical, or statistical field with extensive training using theory and/or modeling to understand the ecology and evolution of complex biological communities, and strong writing […]
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4:00 PM | Friday Fabulous Flower - Tea
The best thing about having a glasshouse at your disposal, more or less, is that things are always happening in there plant-wise. The glasshouse plant collection is support of teaching and research, so specimens tend to fall into certain types and one of those categories is plants important by virtue of their importance to humans. Although it isn't very big this little shrub flowers every year although the flower isn't as big or attractive as some of its ornamental relatives. Did you recognize […]
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10:40 AM | Shelf Life: 33 Million Things | @GrrlScientist
Natural history museums are many things, but they are not peopled exclusively with dry, dusty old white men, rooting around in dry, dusty old drawers, examining dry, dusty old dead things.Natural history museums are many things but they are not, as I was sometimes told, peopled exclusively with dry, dusty old white men, rooting around in dry, dusty old drawers, examining dry, dusty old dead things.In fact, most natural history museums are modern research institutions filled with a vast […]
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8:00 AM | A week of links
Links this week: Big ideas are destroying international development. Dream smaller. Appealing to my biases – the skeptics guide to institutions Part 1 and Part 2. Most published results in finance are false. Be mean, look smarter. Constructing illusions. Predicting complex genotypes from genomic data – for those who confuse these two statements: “The brain is complex and […]

November 21, 2014

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8:37 PM | Lucky Find Uncovers a Marvelous Fossil Mammal
Mesozoic mammals were fascinating little beasts. They burrowed, climbed, glided, and swam through the Age of Dinosaurs, not …
Editor's Pick
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5:00 PM | They’ll let anything through peer review these days
… where “they” are the hordes of bogus pay-to-publish journals that seem to be spamming every .edu email address (especially those connected to corresponding authors in real journals) with invitations to submit. Submission spam from the International Journal of Advanced … Continue reading →
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2:59 PM | New books Party: Books that arrived recently | @GrrlScientist
Today I share my first impressions of books about urban birds, materials science and a children’s dystopian novel that was recently adapted into a film.Welcome to Subirdia: Sharing Our Neighborhoods With Wrens, Robins, Woodpeckers, and Other Wildlife by John Marzluff [Yale University Press, 2014; Guardian bookshop; Amazon UK hardcover; Amazon US hardcover/kindle US] Continue reading...
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2:08 PM | Why Cultural Evolution Needs a Distinction Between “Genes” and “Phenotypes”
I’m thinking I’m about to burn out on cultural evolution, so this will be relatively short and informal. * * * * * Ever since I began thinking about a Darwinian process for cultural evolution back in the mid-1990s I’ve insisted on making a distinction between phenotypic entities (which I’m now calling “phantasms”) and genotypic […]
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2:00 PM | Science online, blood and grape salad edition
This week at The Molecular Ecologist: The new genomic story of cat domestication, the evolution of salamander-algae symbiosis, and a recap of The Entomological Society of America meeting. Two steps forward, one step back. The FDA may soon let gay … Continue reading →
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1:30 PM | The latest gadget for the molecular ecologist’s toolkit
Designing a sampling scheme to collect an organism of interest for a population genetic/genomic study can be fraught with difficulty. How best to sample? Randomly? Or, along a grid? How many individuals to sample? Thirty? Or, perhaps, the sample size … Continue reading →
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8:37 AM | Repeated, extremely biased ratio of M:F at meetings from SFB 680 "Evolutionary Innovations" group #YAMMM
Well, this is disappointing, to say the least - there is a conference coming up in July 2015 on "Forecasting Evolution":  SFB 680 | Molecular Basis of Evolutionary Innovations at the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon.Here is the listed lineup of invited speakers:Andersson (Uppsala University), (NOTE I AM ASSUMING THIS IS DAN ANDERSSON)Trevor Bedford (Hutchinson Cancer Research Center), Jesse Bloom (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center), Arup Chakraborty (MIT)Michael Desai […]
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4:35 AM | Wooster’s Fossils of the Week: A trace fossil from the Ordovician of Estonia
The fossils above have been in a previous post as examples of hyolith internal molds from the Middle Ordovician of northern Estonia. I collected them on my first visit to the Baltic countries in 2006. This week I want to recognize them again, but this time for the squiggly trace fossils you can just make […]

November 20, 2014

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11:21 PM | Cricetomyines: the African pouched rats and mice
Sometimes, I pick up Volume II of Walker’s Mammals of the World, go to page 1400 or 1500 or thereabouts and look at all the obscure Old World rats and mice. You might have done the same thing. If you... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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8:42 PM | The differences between fierce and friendly rats
In the early 1970s, a couple of hundred wild rats near the Siberian city of Novosibirsk were rounded up by scientists for an ambitious experiment to understand how animals evolve during domestication. Dimitry Belyaev and his colleagues—known for their related project … Read MoreThe post The differences between fierce and friendly rats appeared first on Genes to Genomes.
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7:43 PM | Gotta get one of these! Starry, starry bike path
TPP often blogs about bicycles; always liked them. But never before has there been a reason to blog about the bike path.  This is just super duper, although it has been years since TPP road a bike at night, this bike path would change my mind. Isn't this just great! Hopefully you didn't need TPP to point out that this glow-in-the-dark bike path has a design based on Van Gogh's famous painting. It's as iconic as art gets. To heck with bikes, TPP wants this for a pathway […]
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5:43 PM | Epigenetics explains how Darwin’s Finches adapt to their environment
http://gbe.oxfordjournals.org/content/6/8/1972.full Interesting article from science paper (see link above) explaining epigenetics as a means of species variation and adaptability. Yes, yet again, we find that all speciation variation is explicable by epigenetic means (operating above the genes, changing their expressionvia environmental cues) and NOT BY DARWINIAN means. I came across this article via the uncommon […]
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3:36 PM | GMO, eugenics, Rockafeller scam
Filed under: A Social perspective on Darwinism Tagged: eugenics, Neo-Darwinism, overpopulation, Rockafeller GMO, seed manupulation, Social engineering
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2:00 PM | Gender-swap the Foundation!
Isaac Asimov’s Foundation novels were among the first grown-up science fiction I read. I still remember picking up the tattered dime-store paperback copy of Foundation in the high school library, opening it up, and getting sucked into the story of … Continue reading →
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2:00 PM | #EntSoc14, a quick review
I have had a wonderful time at my first big bug conference – the annual meeting of the Entomological Society of America, at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. Amid secretive (or not so secretive) break-out sessions to Voodoo Doughnuts, … Continue reading →
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1:00 PM | Now that’s a mouthful
A new study released in the journal Microbiome (it’s open-access!) has concluded that “intimate kissing” that lasts at least 10 seconds can transfer 80,000,000 bacteria between the participants’ mouths. So many microbes sloshing around – it’s a little bit gross, a little bit cool, and 100% science. NPR wrote a short piece about it here.
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11:04 AM | #ScienceAfrica Unconference 2014 – reaching the whole spectrum of society
It was with great pleasure that I ‘virtually’ attended the second Planet Earth Institute #ScienceAfrica Unconference on the 18th November. From following on Twitter it seemed like an excellent day with good discussions and presentations. Since last year’s Unconference I have moved to Mozambique. In 9 months I have seen extreme rural areas and big […]
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12:09 AM | Outliers (2014)
Some of my fondest childhood memories are of muggy Saturday nights on Hungerford Common. Year after year, most summer weekends, my auntie and uncle would drive me, my grandma and my two cousins to a pub just outside Hungerford. The grown-ups would sip shandies on the trestle table, while Jeff, Rich and I would charge […]
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