Posts

September 22, 2014

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10:28 PM | Chin up, grantseekers!
I'm in the middle of a slightly unusual grant reviewing task. It's weird in several ways but all you need to know is that all of the proposals were previously scored VERY highly. As in highly enough to get funded, highly.   You might imagine that these proposals would all be kick ass wonders of […]
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10:23 PM | Your Grant in Review: Longitudinal Human Studies
Man. Reviewing a competing continuation of a longitudinal human subjects study always has a little bit of a whiff of extortion to it. I'm not saying this is intentional but......   The sunk cost fallacy is a monster.
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9:45 PM | Open Post-Pub Peer Review of Cheaters
There is an interesting story over at retraction watch. Last month, PubPeer announced that a scientist had threatened to sue the site for defamation. At the time, all PubPeer would say was that the “prospective plaintiff” is a US researcher” who was “aggrieved at the treatment his papers are getting on our site.” Today, PubPeer […]
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9:30 PM | Faculty Recruitment by Trolling K99 Awards
Remember back in high school (for USians) how you received a deluge of college recruitment literature just after your PSAT and SAT scores hit the streets? Maybe I'm misremembering but it seemed as though colleges (and the Armed Forces) had access to the databases somehow and could target their recruiting. I have heard rumour of […]
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6:56 PM | Multivitamins aren’t Drugs but they are Supplements
Headlines might have you believe vitamin supplements are a wasted investment. How can efforts to achieve recommended nutrient intakes be so distorted? The Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) are nutrient reference values set the by Institute of Medicine of The National Academies. They are intended to serve as a guide for good nutrition. The reality is many, many people are not consuming enough vitamin and mineral -rich foods to meet the DRIs. 
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5:48 PM | Shift work: Marketing medication for symptoms instead of addressing the hazard
That people who work nights have their sleep cycles thrown out of balance has serious consequences but urging a potentially habit-forming, psychoactive drug on an economically stressed, overworked workforce, would seem to be a symptom, at the minimum, of a pharmaceutical industry gone awry. Shouldn’t we instead be figuring out how to reduce the occupational health risks of work schedules?
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2:19 PM | When is Torture Justified?
Imagine that someone close to you was in imminent danger and the only solution involved having police use torture to extract information from someone in custody. Would you agree or not? While torture remains a divisive topic with many countries...            Related StoriesUse and Abuse of Research in the CourtroomCan Childhood Bullying Lead to Suicide?Does Fertility Affect Attractiveness? 
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11:33 AM | Why has the Welsh government approved Sativa for multiple sclerosis and not NICE in England?
Sativa is a nasal spray based on a cannabis extract which is used for painful muscle cramps in multiple sclerosis. There doesn’t seem much doubt that it works, and in its most recent draft guidance on MS, NICE has based it’s decision on cost effectiveness grounds – the benefit came out at £49,300 per QALY ...read more
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5:01 AM | Orthodontic treatment: Does it improve quality of life for patients?
Orthodontic treatment is considered to have an impact on an individuals quality of life. This review focuses on the studies using the Oral Health Impact Profile-14 as a measurement tool. A small number of studies were included in a meta-analysis which identified significant improvement in the OHIP-14 scores. The post Orthodontic treatment: Does it improve quality of life for patients? appeared first on The Dental Elf.
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3:28 AM | Following-Leading In Risk
Following-Leading In Risk – Book Launch Its just been announced that Dr Rob Long will be launching his latest book: Following-Leading in Risk: Friday 21st November Australian Catholic University L18, 8-20 Napier Street, NORTH SYDNEY 3 to 5pm with Drinks and Nibbles provided RSVP: BRAD MARKHAM:  Brad.Markham@acu.edu.au The post Following-Leading In Risk appeared first on Safety Risk.
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12:41 AM | #HackEbola Guinea data has been located! Here's what you need to know
Thanks to the spectacular work of James Freeman, we now have Guinea data! However it is locked in PDF... in French...in irregular tables, so it is not yet digitized. Fear not, I can offer a preview from the most recent situation report, which was published on Sept 17 for data through Sept 16, 2014.The very first sentence says, "The resistance continues in Forest Guinea with respect to awareness of health and administrative authorities on the Ebola virus Wamey in the Health District Nzerekore." […]

September 21, 2014

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10:55 PM | Dumb Down Safety, Wowserism in the 21st Century
Dumb Down Safety, Wowserism in the 21st Century Despite the backlash against ‘elf ‘n safety’ in both the UK and Australia (eg. Brown and Hanlon In The Interests of Safety; Tim Gill , No Fear  and Long, Risk Makes Sense  the Victorian regulator continues to show just why people hate safety. Safety has become the […] The post Dumb Down Safety, Wowserism in the 21st Century appeared first on Safety Risk.
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10:07 PM | Sushi restaurant in Jerusalem closed due to Listeria risk
An immediate closing order was issued on Sunday by the Municipal Court for Local Affairs and the Health Ministry against Sushi Garden, a restaurant at 21 Rehov Yirmiyahu in Jerusalem’s Romema quarter. Ministry inspectors said the restaurant presented an immediate … Continue reading →
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8:57 PM | Public Health in the News – September 21, 2014
Global Induced pluripotent stem cells, also known as iPS cells, are formed when researchers take adult cells and cause them to turn into stem cells. It has long been thought that iPS cells may be useful for new types of therapies, and now for the first time a Japanese group has used these cells in […]
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8:31 PM | Gab & Rob Talking Risk
Gab & Rob Talking Risk Two of our cool authors Gab Carlton from Resilyence and Rob Sams from Dolphyn have put their heads together and started their own series of short video blogs to go along with their regular articles. Gab & Rob are part of the gang who are doing the post graduate program […] The post Gab & Rob Talking Risk appeared first on Safety Risk.
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8:30 PM | Going public: Salmonella, tomatoes (not) and court
Summer 2008 was adventurous for us: Amy was pregnant, we were in Quebec, and I was handling endless media calls about Salmonella in tomatoes that sickened at least 851 people in the U.S., including a sorta creepy middle-of-the-night chat fest … Continue reading →
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7:42 PM | Lizard in food? 350 school children hospitalized in India
Around 350 children of a government-run Urdu Primary School were hospitalised on Friday for suspected food poisoning after partaking mid-day meal. The children with complaints of head ache, stomach ache and vomiting were taken to Dr Ambedkar Medical College Hospital … Continue reading →
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7:02 PM | If ever there were a saint...
Here's an interview with an amazing and brave woman, Cokie van der Velde, on the front lines of the Ebola epidemic--it's scary, sad, hopeful and humbling.Photo:  Nichole Sobecki, BBC News
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6:52 PM | The safety of donkey milk in Italy
There is a growing interest in donkey’s milk as food for sensitive consumers, such as infants with cow’s milk protein allergy and elderly people. The aim of this study was to carry out a survey on the dairy donkeys farming … Continue reading →
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2:23 PM | A Sunday Epiphany: I was due one
You ever notice how epiphanies come  at the weirdest of times, you know, like at six in the morning when you are sitting on the toilet surrounded by six cats of various sizes all meowing and some of them climbing on you? And you're talking to them suggesting that if they weren't climbing their way up your body, you would totally be able to pee quicker and then they'd get fed quicker and it would be a win-win for everyone and then the dogs wander in and wonder where their cat food is?Yeah […]
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12:00 PM | The Jesus Experiment (Part 2 of 2)
Continued from Part I So, how did the three patients react to seeing other people with the same delusion? Their reactioons were recorded through interviews and through careful observatioon while they were in the same ward together. Rokeach interacted with...            Related StoriesThe Jesus Experiment (Part 1of 2)The Judge in the Asylum (Part 2 of 2)WHO Releases New Suicide Report 
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4:18 AM | Whatever. The other title was great before you ate it, Blogger.
“I've crossed some kind of invisible line. I feel as if I've come to a place I never thought I'd have to come to. And I don't know how I got here. It's a strange place. It's a place where a little harmless dreaming and then some sleepy, early-morning talk has led me into considerations of death and annihilation.” ― Raymond Carver, Where I'm Calling From: New and Selected StoriesI was freaking insightful but blogger ate it, so you don't get to appreciate that […]

September 20, 2014

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5:21 PM | #HackEbola 2: A first look at Sierra Leone
If you're just joining the #HackEbola series, check out the introduction, and see the other posts by clicking on the Ebola category. All this data is available at github.com/cmrivers/ebola. Let's skip over to Sierra Leone for a bit. Although there are fewer cases in Sierra Leone, it's still suffering widespread transmission. Kailahun and Kenema counties in particular are hard hit, with 601 and 438 cases respectively, as of Sept 17. However, these counties are relatively populous. Comparing the […]
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4:01 AM | Norovirus chef Heston Blumenthal defends $500 price tag for Fat Duck Australia pop-up
Like I’ve written before, all the hacks are headed to Australia to make a buck (I actually live here, because of my wife’s career). Aging rock stars, actors, and celebrity chefs, they’ve all done, or are doing, the tour of … Continue reading →
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2:23 AM | #HackEbola part I: The basics
Read about my motivation for this series here.The number of Ebola cases is growing. Roughly exponentially, in fact. Cases in Liberia continue to grow exponentially (2,712 as of Sept 17). Sierra Leone is a bit slower, but not slow enough (1,603 cases). Guinea looked like it was getting under control until the last several weeks, when case counts have begun to climb again (861 cases). The World Health Organization produces updates about twice a week, but the data are usually several […]
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12:19 AM | #HACKEBOLA Introduction
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa was first recognized in March of 2014, but it likely crossed over from animals to humans in late 2013. In the intervening months, it has grown to an epidemic of unprecedented severity. It has infected more people than every other known Ebola outbreak combined - around 5,500 recognized cases, as of this writing. This species of Ebola has a case fatality risk of 70-90%, so the number of human lives lost already truly astounding. Despite the severity of […]

September 19, 2014

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10:41 PM | Safety Under Stress
Safety Under Stress Stress is a part of living, the pressure of being a fallible being in a complex world is stressful, but is stress bad? In what ways are humans stressed and how does this affect the discerning of risk and safety? There are four kinds of stress and each affects humans socially, psychologically, […] The post Safety Under Stress appeared first on Safety Risk.
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9:00 PM | New study: Ubiquitous chemicals known as phthalates linked to childhood asthma risk
About one in every 10 U.S. children is living with asthma — that’s closing in on 7 million kids. And while we have a good handle on what triggers asthma attacks and exacerbates respiratory symptoms, exactly what causes asthma in the first place is still somewhat of a mystery. However, new research points to some possible new culprits that are difficult, if not nearly impossible, to avoid.
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8:49 PM | On Paying Postdocs Whatever for Whatevs
There was a discussion on Twitter regarding postdoctoral compensation that veered off into the assertion that it is "easy" for PIs to give a 20% bump to their postdocs if they wanted to. It eventually incorporated some allegation that particular subspecialties (like computer/informatics jockeys) required a bonus bit of pay above normal for postdocs. Eventually […]
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8:36 PM | Just cook it doesn’t cut it, Italian tragic version
After an 18-month child died of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) in Italy, an Italian doctor blamed the eating habits of his family. “You do not understand” – write the family – as such a finding may have relevance in search … Continue reading →
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