Posts

December 12, 2014

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6:34 PM | Entrevista a Dª. Laura Gersberg, Directora General en Equipo Argentino de Toxicomanías
Novedades en PsicologíaNovedades en Psicología - Blog de Psicología con actualidad, novedades y artículos. A continuación transcribo entrevista realizada a Dª. Laura Gersberg, quien nos habla sobre su labor contra las Toxicomanías. Entrevista a Dª. Laura Gersberg, Directora General en Equipo Argentino de ToxicomaníasDr. Juan Moisés de la Serna
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4:40 PM | Why Women Don't Run For Political Office
A new study by political science scholars has found one reason why women are less likely to run for political office - they will volunteer to lead but don't like competing to do so.  Prior claims have been that more women lack the confidence to seek and hold office so University of Pittsburgh associate Professors of Political Science Kristin Kanthak and Jonathan Woon enlisted 350 undergraduate college students to participate in laboratory experiments which Kanthak said appeared […]
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4:09 PM | Armchair Socialists More Physically Active Than Armchair Centrists - BMJ Christmas Science
It is often said that the middle of the road is the worst place to drive, yet centrists pride themselves on always arguing the opposite of whatever the conversation is. They believe we should split the difference on all issues, though the actual functioning of the United Nations should have put a stake into the heart of that political vampire by now.  It turns out centrists are endangering their health in other ways, according to BMJ's annual Christmas issue, because by 'sitting on […]
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3:37 PM | Detecting lies with fMRI
In 2006, a company called No Lie MRI began advertising their ability to detect "deception and other information stored in the brain" using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). They were not the first to make this claim. Two years prior, a company called Cephos had been founded on the same principle. Both companies were launched by entrepreneurs who hoped to one day replace the polygraph machine and its recognized shortcomings with a foolproof approach to lie detection.Within several […]
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2:00 PM | 10,000 Year Old Agricultural Wisdom Could Lead To Future Food Security
Why did the earliest farmers in the Fertile Crescent, an arc of land in western Asia from the Mediterranean Sea to the Persian Gulf, domesticate some cereal crops 10,000 years ago and not others?read more
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1:56 PM | Image of the Week: Prof John O’Keefe receives his Nobel Prize
Originally posted on Wellcome Trust Blog:The image of the week is Professor John O’Keefe, being awarded the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, which he shares with Edvard Moser and May-Britt Moser. The Wellcome Trust has supported O’Keefe’s work…
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1:28 PM | The Future Threat of AI
Occasional warnings about artificially intelligent robots taking over the world convulse through the media. There is currently a ripple involving prior interviews with Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk. Their names attract attention, and so the issue will provide a media distraction for a day or two. In an interview with the BBC, Hawking said: “The [...]
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12:41 PM | Do You Know the Benefits of Anxiety?
Though commonly seen as negative, anxiety can yield positive results. The 8 Most Unexpected Advantages of Anxiety Anxiety can be crippling, but psychology studies find it does have some unexpected upsides.PsyBlog.com How can anxiety be positive? Mines the common finding among people who perform for a living (athletes for example) that the right amount of anxiety can influence performance in a positive way.Notes that evolution selected anxiety as a valuable trait for a [...]
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9:00 AM | Why do friendly people usually lead happier lives?
High scorers on the personality trait of agreeableness are eager to please, concerned for others, and compliant to other perspectives. On average, they live happier lives too. A new study suggests a possible reason: when they have the chance, friendly people tend to avoid engaging with negative things.The researchers, Konrad Bresin and Michael Robinson, began by asking participants to view a series of positive and negative images, spending as much time as they wanted on each one. Most people […]

Bresin K & Robinson MD (2014). You Are What You See and Choose: Agreeableness and Situation Selection., Journal of personality, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25109246

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6:36 AM | 6EQUJ5 – The mysterious “Wow!” signal
The formal beginnings of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) The search for life (intelligent or not) “out there” is one of the most intriguing and interesting aspects of modern science. However, it was not always held in such high regard. Prior to the 1960s virtually no astronomer who cared about his or her professional …
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4:15 AM | The Male Idiot Theory
Image credits: bilbypdalgyte.deviantart.com Yes, that’s a thing. According to hospital emergency departments and mortality stats, men are far likelier than women to experience accidental and sporting injuries, as well as...

Ben Alexander, Daniel Lendrem, Dennis William Lendrem, Andy Gray & John Dudley Isaacs (2014). The Darwin Awards: sex differences in idiotic behaviour, BMJ, 349. Other:

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3:04 AM | Culling Kangaroos Could Help The Environment
How many kangaroos is too many? David Jenkins/Flickr, CC BY-NC-SABy Brett Howland, Australian National University; David Lindenmayer, Australian National University, and Iain Gordon, James Hutton Institute read more
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1:43 AM | Atoms to ecosystems: Evolutionary theory vs the coelacanth
Biodiversity: Life ­– a status report “Species are disappearing quickly — but researchers are struggling to assess how bad the problem is.” I want to eliminate some of the researcher’s struggles, but a moderator at Nature has blocked all my...Read more

December 11, 2014

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9:58 PM | A Misplaced Concern About An Arctic Apple
As a consumer and as an agricultural scientist, I’m looking forward to the introduction of the Arctic® apple. It is possibly nearing approval by regulators in the US and Canada which could mean that supplies might finally be available in a few more years. These apples could give consumers the possibility of buying apples that maintain their flavor, appearance and vitamin content after cutting, and which can also be used to make beautiful dried apple slices without the need for […]
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8:55 PM | Low Income Kids Eat Healthier In School - Let's Not Mess That Up
A longitudinal study has found that while higher income children eat worse at school, low-income kids eat healthier than at home. While the political controversy rages over federal efforts to manage local school lunch programs, more data on who has actually been helped by the program over time is needed.  The results in Preventive Medicine showed that fruit and vegetable intake was higher among low income adolescents on days when they consumed meals at school. The opposite was […]
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8:31 PM | Telomeres And The Genetic Impact On Aging
Some people just age better than others and it is isn't due to lifestyle. Most centenarians smoked cigarettes at one point, many were obese and almost all eat red meat.  Perhaps birds can tell us what really matters. read more
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8:22 PM | Take That, Mammals: Birds Don't Need External Ears
For mammals, the outer ears of mammals play an important function in helping identify sounds coming from different elevations. Since birds have no external ears, how do they accomplish the same thing? They utilize their entire head, according to a new paper in PLOS ONE "Because birds have no external ears, it has long been believed that they are unable to differentiate between sounds coming from different elevations," explains Hans A. Schnyder,  Technische Universitaet Muenchen Chair of […]
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7:29 PM | The Neuroscience Of Attachment Part 2
Part 2 Here we again borrow extensively from an excellent article byLinda Graham “How relational learning works John Bowlby, British psychoanalyst, founder of attachment theory, hypothesized that attachment is all about safety and protection and emotional regulation in times of … Continue reading →
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6:47 PM | Chemical Crypsis: Fish Use Camouflage From Diet To Avoid Predators
A species of small fish uses a homemade coral-scented cologne to hide from predators - the first evidence of chemical camouflage from diet in fish. Filefish evade predators by feeding on their home corals and then emitting a similar odor that makes them invisible to the noses of predators. Chemical camouflage from diet has been previously shown in insects, such as caterpillars, which mask themselves by building their exoskeletons with chemicals from their food. If animals don't need an […]
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6:09 PM | The Hydrological Rise And Fall Of The Roman Empire
The Roman empire stretched over three continents, had 70 million people, and had a logistics and infrastructure system that kept them going for centuries. They had smart agricultural practices and an extensive grain-trade network that enabled them to thrive even where water was scarce - but they knew their limits according to a paper in Hydrology and Earth System Sciences.read more
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5:48 PM | Microbiome And Parkinson's Disease Linked
Parkinson's disease sufferers have a different microbiota in their intestines than healthy counterparts, they have less Prevotellaceae bacteria, according to a study conducted at the University of Helsinki and the Helsinki University Central Hospital (HUCH).  read more
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5:35 PM | Poor People Get More Energy Efficient Housing, Then More Asthma
The drive for energy efficient homes is increasing asthma risk, finds a team at the University of Exeter Medical School. People are so concerned about energy savings they end up with homes that are not properly heated or ventilated, which could lead to more people developing asthma. Working with a UK social housing provider, Coastline Housing, the research team assessed data from the residents of 700 properties in Cornwall. They found that people living in more energy efficient homes had a […]
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5:26 PM | That Ginkgo Biloba Won't Help You - And It May Not Even Be Ginkgo Biloba
If you are buying herbal dietary supplements like Ginkgo biloba (G. biloba) to boost cognitive capacity, the first thing you should do is stop spending money on herbal dietary supplements like Ginkgo biloba and the next thing you should do is wonder how, in a completely unregulated market, you can even know if it is real. It might not be. Even the olive oil industry thinks supplement makers need to be more honest. A new study in Genome used DNA barcoding to test the authenticity of Ginkgo […]
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5:08 PM | What makes us fat, OR food vs. physiology
There is a heir of mystery surrounding weight loss and fat in general. Have you ever heard you have all the fat cells you’ll ever have — that’s false by […]

Woeller CF, O'loughlin CW, Pollock SJ, Thatcher TH, Feldon SE & Phipps RP (2014). Thy1 (CD90) controls adipogenesis by regulating activity of the Src family kinase, Fyn., FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25416548

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5:00 PM | Europe May Need To Ban Potatoes, Bread And Coffee Next
The European Food Safety Authority, most famous for declaring that water does not cure thirst, is now thinking about how to ban acrylamide, which is a chemical that can form in some foods during frying, roasting, or baking. No, it is not due to BPA, it has been present for as long as mankind has cooked food, but it was only discovered in 2002 and then in 2010 a paper was written showing it could be harmful to rats in extremely high doses.read more
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3:25 PM | Rapport-building interrogation is more effective than torture
Past research (pdf) suggests that using torture as a way to extract information or confessions from terror suspects isn't just unethical, it's also ineffective. The advantage of rapport-building interrogation strategies (including respect, friendliness and empathy towards suspects) over more coercive techniques is highlighted once again in a new study that involved interviews with law enforcement interrogators and detainees.The research involved 34 interrogators (1 woman) from several […]
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3:05 PM | Giant Salamanders Make Dedicated Dads
Amphibians aren’t usually known for their parental care. When an amphibian does look after its eggs or young, it’s usually the mother’s job. But new research suggests the Japanese giant salamander (Andrias japonicus) is no deadbeat dad. Read about how these salamader fathers care for their eggs in my latest Zoologic post: Japanese Giant Salamanders Make Devoted Dads .
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2:00 PM | Kids With Open Bone Breaks Can Heal Safely Without Surgery
When a broken bone protrudes through the skin, causing a puncture wound, it is called an open break. It is understandably traumatizing for kids and perhaps even more so for parents but there may be good news for those daunted by the prospect of surgery on top of all that - it may not be necessary. Many children who sustain open bone fractures in the forearm or lower leg heal safely without surgery, according to the results of a small study in the Journal of Children's Orthopaedics, if […]
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1:41 PM | Another Terrible Anti-Consumer Health Bill
On the desk of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is a bill that would protect doctors practicing substandard medicine from being investigated by the Office of Professional Medical Conduct. The bill is similar to one unfortunately passed in Connecticut a few years ago – it is meant to protect doctors who prescribe long and recurring [...]
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12:37 PM | Are Poetry and Psychosis Linked?
Is there a relationship between poetry and psychosis? The idea that 'genius' is just one step removed from 'madness' is a venerable one, and psychiatrists and psychologists have spent a great (perhaps an inordinate) amount of time looking for correlations between mental illness and creativity. Now a new British study has examined whether poets exhibit more traits of psychosis than other people. One of the authors is a published poet, Helen Mort. The researchers recruited 294 poets i
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