Posts

October 21, 2014

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4:46 PM | Tuesday Crustie: Welcome wagon
It’s always polite to welcome a new family to town! Nicolai Roterman tweeted about his new paper:If you like fossils and yeti crabs, then this is definitely for you!It’s like he knows me!Nicolai’s new paper in Scripta Geologica erects a new family, Pristinaspinidae, to accomodate the fossil Pristinaspina gelasina, shown as a line drawing in the upper left corner here. The other four pictures are its living relatives, yeti crabs, which remain in the family Kiwaidae.And yes, […]
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4:24 PM | RISE program at NMSU, highlighting success
We at NIF were very fortunate to have hosted the director of the RISE program from NMSU, Elba Serrano this summer attempting to develop coursework and improve outreach to students and faculty at New Mexico State. We believe that the scientific workforce in the coming decade will need to be aware of computational problems, statistics […]
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4:17 PM | More on the definition of consciousness
In my last post, I said that the phrase “subjective mental states”, used by Mark Conard, was without meaning. I did not explain why I find it meaningless, so I will now. You can read Conard’s review of my last post (here). First, subjective – what can it mean? A thing, an event, a process […]
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4:01 PM | Data Transmission Gets A New World Record
Fewer cords, smaller antennas and quicker video is the goal of a microwave circuit that has set a new world record for data transmission. read more
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3:51 PM | The Employee Dogs and Asymmetric Facial Hair of SparkFun’s New Building
After a visit to the new SparkFun mothership, engineering seems perfectly possible. (And the dogs are really cool.) Continue reading → The post The Employee Dogs and Asymmetric Facial Hair of SparkFun’s New Building appeared first on Author Garth Sundem.
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3:25 PM | Sleep Problems in Alcoholism Treatment
In a previous post, I summarized a research study six month outcome of insomnia in a group of subjects treated for alcoholism.This study found a high persistence of insomnia despite reduction, and in many cases abstinence, from alcohol.A second study recently published by investigators at the National Institute of Health provides some additional insight into this topic.Gwenyth Wallen and colleagues studied a series of 164 participants admitted to a 4-6 week inpatient program for alcohol […]
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3:14 PM | Hunters Unite: Global Warming Implicated In Animal Size
Alpine goats appear to be shrinking in size, according to scholars at Durham University, and that is due to global warming over the past 30 years, they say.   Young Chamois now weigh about 25 percent less than animals of the same age in the 1980s, they found, and note that in recent years, decreases in body size have been identified in a variety of animal species and have frequently been linked by other scholars to changing climate. read more
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3:05 PM | Great Earthquakes Doubled In The Most Recent 10 Year Period - What That Means
Since December 2004 there have been 18 quakes of 8.0 or greater on the moment magnitude (Mw) scale – a rate more than twice that seen from 1900 to mid-2004. Some of that difference could be due to unprecedented advances in technological and scientific capacity to detect earthquakes. Like the distance of Babe Ruth's homeruns, anecdotes about past earthquakes have the mist of legend shrouding them, but modern earthquakes have a variety of ways they can be understood - and that […]
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2:54 PM | Viral Mutation: Why You May Be More Susceptible To Last Year's Flu
Why were so many middle-aged adults hit especially hard by the H1N1 influenza virus during the 2013-2014 influenza season?  Vaccines work by stimulating the immune system to produce antibody proteins against particles (called antigens) from an infectious agent, such as bacteria or a virus. The immune system saves the cells that produce effective antibodies, which then provide immunity against future attacks by the same or similar infectious agents. Seasonal influenza typically kills 36,000 […]
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2:49 PM | Academics, learning, and outreach
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2:46 PM | Egg Donors: Do Parents Prefer Beauty, Brains Or Health?
Sperm donation for fertility issues has been common for some time and ovum donation has become increasingly accepted by women as well.That leads to sociological questions about selection; everyone says they will love their kids no matter what, but given a book to choose from, what traits in a donor do people consider most important, beauty, intelligence or health?read more
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2:29 PM | Children Who Drink Milk Substitutes Have Lower Vitamin D - But Why?
Some children are allergic to milk, so they drink milk substitutes such as soy or rice. And almond milk has become a well-marketed fad to due health claims.But there may be negatives: though many of those products are fortified, children who drink them have lower levels of Vitamin D in their blood than those who drink cow's milk, according to a paper in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.  read more
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1:56 PM | The Optimism Of Depressed People
Even depressed people are essentially optimistic - they believe that tomorrow will be better, even though that belief probably won't lead to better outcomes. That is true optimism. A paper in Clinical Psychological Science says that middle-aged adults who had a history of depression evaluated their past and current lives in more negative terms than adults without depression - but the future was just as rosy in both groups.read more
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12:20 PM | Graphene Neuro-electrode
This news item combines two technologies that I have been eagerly following, graphene and brain-machine interface. Researchers have developed a 1-molecule thick graphene electrode that is transparent and can be used for high-resolution electrophysiological recordings of brain cell activity. Before I explain why this is such a cool advance, I will quickly review these technologies. [...]
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10:53 AM | Interview with Ms. Adriana Terradez, Business Development in BioSequence.
Interview with Ms. Adriana Terradez, Business Development in BioSequence. Interview with Ms. Adriana Terradez, who talks about the function they perform in BioSequence.     -Co-founder & Business Development at BioSequence S.L. -Degree in biotechnology from the Polytechnic University of Valencia -Master in biomedical biotechnology at the Polytechnic University of Valencia -I started my career […]
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8:29 AM | Five-year-olds can see through your bravado
Imagine you wanted to lie to a five-year-old. "The toy shop is closed Billy," you say, "it always closes at 2pm on a Monday." You reason that if you make this announcement with confidence, then Billy is sure to believe you.It's not a bad strategy. In a new study involving nearly a hundred kids aged four to five, they were more likely to believe statements made by a woman who spoke and gestured with confidence, than those made by a woman who was hesitant and uncertain. In this case, the women's […]

Brosseau-Liard, P., Cassels, T. & Birch, S. (2014). You Seem Certain but You Were Wrong Before: Developmental Change in Preschoolers’ Relative Trust in Accurate versus Confident Speakers, PLoS ONE, 9 (9) DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0108308

Citation
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7:39 AM | Getting out of “self” via Prayer and meditation
Originally posted on The Alcoholics Guide to Alcoholism:When I first came into recovery I constantly heard the refrain about “getting out of self” – in fact steps 10-12 help one do so. Step 12, by helping others in recovery and step 11 which encourages prayer and mediation. Can we get out of “self” by…
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7:06 AM | Government Math: More Will Lose Health Insurance Than Gained It If ACA Subsidies Are Eliminated
Eliminating subsidies that help low- and moderate-income people purchase coverage through government-run health insurance marketplaces would sharply boost costs for consumers and cause more than 11 million Americans to lose their health insurance, according to a new paper by the section of the RAND Corporation devoted to nationalizing health care.read more
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6:26 AM | Photo
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2:52 AM | #Brain article of interest: 5 Ways To Upgrade Your Brain Before Lunch
From Leadership - Fast CompanyRead the full article here-> http://ift.tt/1t2eXkJ
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2:23 AM | Are evolutionary theorists ‘nob ends’?
Interview – Prof Brian Cox and Robin Ince Robin Ince “Am I wrong to sometimes be scared of science idiots?” Brian Cox  “…my favoured response would be: ‘you bunch of utter nob ends’.  See also:  “The problem with today’s world...Read more
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12:30 AM | Moderate Pot Use By Adolescents Doesn't Hurt IQ
A paper presented at the annual congress of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ECNP) in Berlin says that moderate cannabis use by adolescents does not lead to educational or intellectual decline, but that heavy cannabis use is associated with slightly poorer exam results at age 16. read more
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12:00 AM | Seasonal Affective Disorder - Depression Linked To Serotonin
Some people suffer from 'winter blues' while others have no issue. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) affects people as daylight levels drop in autumn. At Northern European latitudes (for example all of Scandinavia, Glasgow and Moscow) around 1 person in 6 suffers from SAD.  Psychologists have searched for reasons why. A small longitudinal study concluded that people with Seasonal Affective Disorder show significant seasonal differences in the way they regulate the neurotransmitter […]

October 20, 2014

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11:30 PM | Fecal Transplant Might Mitigate Lupus
Can probiotic yogurt help with lupus? While most of science disagrees, corporate marketing departments have embraced every chance to imply their product helps with digestion and whatever else can sell product. A new paper in  Applied and Environmental Microbiology adds to that, finding that Lactobacillus species, commonly seen in yogurt cultures, correlate in the guts of mouse models, with mitigation of lupus symptoms, while Lachnospiraceae, a type of Clostridia, correlate with […]
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10:18 PM | Dopamine Receptor Agonist Drugs Linked To Gambling And Hypersexuality
Unusual and severe impulse control disorders, including pathological gambling, hypersexuality and compulsive shopping, have been reported in patients taking dopamine receptor agonist drugs. Dopamine receptor agonist drugs, which activate the dopamine receptors, are commonly prescribed and there were 2.1 million dispensed outpatient prescriptions in the fourth quarter of 2012. To find answers, the authors analyzed adverse drug event reports for six dopamine receptor agonist drugs marketed in […]
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10:01 PM | HPV Vaccine Does Not Cause Multiple Sclerosis
Vaccines have been associated with autism and various other conditions and diseases. Most recently, the hepatitis B (HepB) and human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine has been linked to increased risk of multiple sclerosis (MS) and other acquired central nervous system demyelinating syndromes (CNS ADS). A study to seek answers found no long-term association of vaccines with disease and short-term increased risk in younger patients was likely resulted from existing disease, write authors Annette […]
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9:30 PM | Finding Fracking Fluids In The Environment
New geochemical tracers can identify any hydraulic fracturing flowback fluids that could have spilled into the environment, according to field tests at a spill site in West Virginia and downstream from an oil and gas brine wastewater treatment plant in Pennsylvania. read more
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9:25 PM | CDC: Mississippi Leads US In Vaccination Coverage Among Kindergarten Children
State and local vaccination requirements for school entry seek to protect schoolchildren from vaccine-preventable diseases.  But not all parents agree medicine is a good thing and the newest CDC results show what states are leading and what states are lagging in protection for kids.read more
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9:00 PM | Superspreaders: How Disease Propagates In Infected Animals - And Antibiotics Help
Some people infected with pathogens spread their germs to others while remaining symptom-free - a new study may answer why. When researchers in a new study gave oral antibiotics to mice infected with Salmonella typhimurium, a bacterial cause of food poisoning, a small minority — so called "superspreaders" that had been shedding high numbers of salmonella in their feces for weeks — remained healthy; they were unaffected by either the disease or the antibiotic. The rest of the mice […]
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8:58 PM | Reading Novels Increases Connectivity of Areas in the Brain
Immersing yourself in reading a good novel is an excellent way to take a break from the stresses of daily life. By seeing things from the protagonists’ point of view while you are reading those few hundred pages, not only do you feel as if you have access to another world, but you may also [...]
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