Posts

September 05, 2014

+
10:28 PM | Breaking research: A recent study in fruit flies suggests that sleep loss during childhood could lead to abnormal brain development
Discussions about whether schools for children should start later have been making headlines recently, highlighting the importance of getting enough sleep at night. We all know how important sleep is for day-to-day performance—you’ve likely experienced firsthand how hard it can be to think and focus after a bad night’s sleep. Luckily, these effects are reversible: […]

Kayser M.S. & A. Sehgal (2014). A Critical Period of Sleep for Development of Courtship Circuitry and Behavior in Drosophila, Science, 344 (6181) 269-274. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1250553

Citation
+
5:56 PM | Artificial Cells: They’re alive!!
Frankenstein’s monster was (in the story) a scientific marvel that could not be matched. Growing up with the story, the idea of creating life where there was none was a […]

Keber, F., Loiseau, E., Sanchez, T., DeCamp, S., Giomi, L., Bowick, M., Marchetti, M., Dogic, Z. & Bausch, A. (2014). Topology and dynamics of active nematic vesicles, Science, 345 (6201) 1135-1139. DOI: 10.1126/science.1254784

Citation
+
2:58 PM | Corals Engineer Their Own Currents
There are few more monastic lives in the animal kingdom than a coral’s. In adulthood it gives up swimming to settle on the ocean floor, surround its spineless body with clones, and become a rock. Mouth facing the ocean, it waits passively for whatever drifts by—or maybe not so passively. Taking a closer look at […]The post Corals Engineer Their Own Currents appeared first on Inkfish.

Orr H. Shapiro, Vicente I. Fernandez, Melissa Garren, Jeffrey S. Guasto, François P. Debaillon-Vesque, Esti Kramarsky-Winter, Assaf Vardi & Roman Stocker (2014). Vortical ciliary flows actively enhance mass transport in reef corals., PNAS, Other:

Citation
+
9:04 AM | Extremes of a self-limiting diet in autism
I'll draw your attention to three papers in today's post which represent the extremes of where self-imposed dietary restrictions can potentially lead in relation to the autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Issues with diet - outside of use of diet as an intervention measure - are something which have been talked about quite a bit in the autism research literature (see here)."You look like a gangster"The first paper by Baird & Ravindranath [1] describes a case report of an 11-year old with […]

Baird JS & Ravindranath TM (2014). Vitamin B Deficiencies in a Critically Ill Autistic Child With a Restricted Diet., Nutrition in clinical practice : official publication of the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25112945

Gulko E, Collins LK, Murphy RC, Thornhill BA & Taragin BH (2014). MRI findings in pediatric patients with scurvy., Skeletal radiology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25109378

Keown K, Bothwell J & Jain S (2014). Nutritional implications of selective eating in a child with autism spectrum disorder., BMJ case reports, 2014 PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24654242

Citation
+
8:32 AM | Strange Deep Sea Mushroom-Shaped Animals Discovered
Photos of the newly discovered, mushroom-shapedDendrogramma enigmaticaIn a paper that appeared this week on PlosOne, researchers from the University of Copenhagen announced the discovery of two new strange, deep sea and mushroom-shaped animals. The two species were identified from a collection of specimens that were collected back in 1986.The authors assigned the newly described Dendrogramma enigmatica and Dendrogramma discoides under the animal kingdom, however they couldn't classify them into […]

Just J, Kristensen RM & Olesen J (2014). Dendrogramma, New Genus, with Two New Non-Bilaterian Species from the Marine Bathyal of Southeastern Australia (Animalia, Metazoa incertae sedis) - with Similarities to Some Medusoids from the Precambrian Ediacara., PloS one, 9 (9) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25184248

Citation
+
12:09 AM | How sex-engineered prawns can fight deadly parasites
Worms. Having them can be as embarrassing as it is irritating, but for most, the worst they can do is force us to take a frantic and furtive scratch when we’re sure nobody’s looking. But sadly, some parasitic worms can cause far more problems: Schistosoma (blood flukes) can infect the urinary tract and intestines, with unpleasant…

Savaya Alkalay, A., Rosen, O., Sokolow, S., Faye, Y., Faye, D., Aflalo, E., Jouanard, N., Zilberg, D., Huttinger, E. & Sagi, A. & (2014). The Prawn Macrobrachium vollenhovenii in the Senegal River Basin: Towards Sustainable Restocking of All-Male Populations for Biological Control of Schistosomiasis, PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 8 (8) DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003060

Citation

September 04, 2014

+
9:45 PM | Hole no more: New perovskite solar cell design removes hole conducting layer to improve stability and decrease costs
More news on the perovskite solar cell front!  I’ve written a bit about these a bit in the past – they are the exciting newcomers to the photovoltaic scene.  At an early stage of development, they already show up to 17% efficiency, … Continue reading →

Mei, A., Li, X., Liu, L., Ku, Z., Liu, T., Rong, Y., Xu, M., Hu, M., Chen, J., Yang, Y. & Gratzel, M. (2014). A hole-conductor-free, fully printable mesoscopic perovskite solar cell with high stability, Science, 345 (6194) 295-298. DOI: 10.1126/science.1254763

Citation
+
5:34 PM | Total Recall: How the Brain Processes Color and Motion
Despite the barrage of visual information the brain receives almost constantly, it retains a remarkable ability to focus on important and relevant items. This fall, for example, NFL quarterbacks will […]

Guilhem Ibosemail & David J. Freedman (2014). Dynamic Integration of Task-Relevant Visual Features in Posterior Parietal Cortex, Neuron, Other:

Citation
+
5:00 PM | Performing Funerals in Mycenaean Greece (1600-1100 BCE)
I’ve been spending the last few days learning about grave goods found with the dead during the Early Anglo-Saxon period. Grave goods are an interesting artifact- as it isn’t something […]

Boyd, Michael (2014). The materiality of performance in Mycenaean funerary practices, World Archaeology,

Citation
+
10:59 AM | Syringammina fragilissima: World's largest unicellular organism
Syringammina fragilissimaCredit:  Andy GoodayKingdom: RhizariaPhylum: ForaminiferaClass: XenophyophoreaOrder: PsamminidaFamily: SyringamminidaeGenus: SyringamminaSpecies: Syringammina fragilissimaCommon name: NoneHard to imagine that the sponge-like thing in the photo is actually comprised of just one cell, right? Meet Syringammina fragilissima, the world's largest unicellular organism, with a maximum diameter of at least 20 cm (~8 in)!Discovery & HistoryThe species was first […]

Laureillard, J., Méjanelle, L. & Sibuet, M. (2004). Use of lipids to study the trophic ecology of deep-sea xenophyophores, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 270 129-140. DOI: 10.3354/meps270129

Hughes, J. & Gooday, A. (2004). Associations between living benthic foraminifera and dead tests of Syringammina fragilissima (Xenophyophorea) in the Darwin Mounds region (NE Atlantic), Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 51 (11) 1741-1758. DOI: 10.1016/j.dsr.2004.06.004

Pawlowski J, Holzmann M, Fahrni J & Richardson SL (2003). Small subunit ribosomal DNA suggests that the xenophyophorean Syringammina corbicula is a foraminiferan., The Journal of eukaryotic microbiology, 50 (6) 483-7. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14733441

Hopwood, J., Mann, S. & Gooday, A. (2009). The Crystallography and Possible Origin of Barium Sulphate in Deep Sea Rhizopod Protists (Xenophyophorea), Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 77 (04) 969. DOI: 10.1017/S002531540003856X

Richardson, S. (2001). Syringaminna Corbicula Sp. Nov. (XENOPHYOPHOREA) From the Cape Verde plateau, E. Atlantic, The Journal of Foraminiferal Research, 31 (3) 201-209. DOI: 10.2113/31.3.201

Citation
+
8:51 AM | Epigenetic processes and autism: focusing on immune function?
Although the title of this post talks about the science of epigenetics in autism, I'm actually going to be talking about two papers today, one of which also covers exposure to prenatal immune activation and what effect that might have on epigenetic processes in the mouse brain. This may also be relevant to at least some autism..."Beneath this mask there is an idea, Mr. Creedy. And ideas are bulletproof"First off we have the paper from Nardone and colleagues [1] (open-access) which, following […]

Nardone, S., Sharan Sams, D., Reuveni, E., Getselter, D., Oron, O., Karpuj, M. & Elliott, E. (2014). DNA methylation analysis of the autistic brain reveals multiple dysregulated biological pathways, Translational Psychiatry, 4 (9) DOI: 10.1038/tp.2014.70

Basil, P., Li, Q., Dempster, E., Mill, J., Sham, P., Wong, C. & McAlonan, G. (2014). Prenatal maternal immune activation causes epigenetic differences in adolescent mouse brain, Translational Psychiatry, 4 (9) DOI: 10.1038/tp.2014.80

Citation

September 03, 2014

+
8:25 PM | HIV and Dementia
With the introduction of combination antiretroviral therapy (or cART) during the mid-90s, the life expectancy of HIV patients has significantly improved. An unfortunate side effect of this is that long-term complications are […]

Faissner S, Ambrosius B, Schanzmann I, Grewe B, Potthoff A, Münch J, Sure U, Gramberg T, Wittmann S, Brockmeyer N & Uberla K (2014). Cytoplasmic HIV-RNA in monocytes determines microglial activation and neuronal cell death in HIV-associated neurodegeneration., Experimental neurology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25150097

Citation
+
5:22 PM | Adopting Shelter Dogs: Should Fido Lie Down or Play?
 If you go down to the shelter today, will you bring home a dog? A new study by Alexandra Protopopova and Clive Wynne (2014) finds that interactions between dogs and potential adopters predict the likelihood of adoption.Photo: Alexey Shinkevich / ShutterstockEvery year in the USA, 3-4 million healthy, potentially-adoptable, homeless animals are euthanized (AHA and PetSmart 2012). Many would be saved if there was a better understanding of how to increase adoptions from animal shelters. […]

Protopopova, A. & Wynne, C. (2014). Adopter-dog interactions at the shelter: Behavioral and contextual predictors of adoption, Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 157 109-116. DOI: 10.1016/j.applanim.2014.04.007

Citation
+
1:46 PM | Video Tip of the Week: NIH 3D Print Exchange
The other day I was joking about how I was 3D-printing a baby sweater–the old way, with yarn and knitting needles. And I also mentioned that I assumed my niece-in-law was 3D-printing the baby separately. I’ve been musing (and reading) about 3D printing a lot lately–sometimes the plastic model part, sometimes the bioprinting of tissues […]

Murphy S.V. (2014). 3D bioprinting of tissues and organs, Nature Biotechnology, 32 (8) 773-785. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nbt.2958

Citation
+
12:00 PM | Bacteria Are Intelligent Designers
Biology concepts – nature of science, flagella, intelligent design, irreducible complexity, motility, Gram+, Gram -, ion gradient You don’t believe it now, but in the weeks ahead we’re going to discuss how bacterial motility, plant reproduction, intelligence, and the location of your heart are all related to whips and eyelashes. Sounds preposterous, but give me a few posts and a little leeway and you’ll be amazed.Cheetahs can cover about 25 body lengths in a second, but […]

Eisele NA, Ruby T, Jacobson A, Manzanillo PS, Cox JS, Lam L, Mukundan L, Chawla A & Monack DM (2013). Salmonella require the fatty acid regulator PPARδ for the establishment of a metabolic environment essential for long-term persistence., Cell host & microbe, 14 (2) 171-82. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23954156

Lee LK, Ginsburg MA, Crovace C, Donohoe M & Stock D (2010). Structure of the torque ring of the flagellar motor and the molecular basis for rotational switching., Nature, 466 (7309) 996-1000. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20676082

Minamino T, Imada K, Kinoshita M, Nakamura S, Morimoto YV & Namba K (2011). Structural insight into the rotational switching mechanism of the bacterial flagellar motor., PLoS biology, 9 (5) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21572987

Carsiotis M, Weinstein DL, Karch H, Holder IA & O'Brien AD (1984). Flagella of Salmonella typhimurium are a virulence factor in infected C57BL/6J mice., Infection and immunity, 46 (3) 814-8. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6389363

Citation
+
9:08 AM | Want people to care about the environment? Don't overplay the power of science
When people are presented with a picture of rapid scientific progress, they are less likely to engage in environmentally friendly behaviours. This is the conclusion reached across a series of experiments in which students were presented with a short newspaper article on science's achievements and future prospects.The news article came in two flavours. Participants in the "progress" condition read a uniformly positive perspective, lauding medical advances and new technologies to combat climate […]

Meijers, M. & Rutjens, B. (2014). Affirming belief in scientific progress reduces environmentally friendly behaviour, European Journal of Social Psychology, 44 (5) 487-495. DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.2009

Citation
Editor's Pick
+
8:36 AM | An observation-based classifier for rapid detection of autism risk
"Keep clear of the moors"Among the many researchers and research groups admired on this blog for their contribution to the world of autism research, the name Dennis Wall is fast becoming a real favourite. Aside from mention of the words 'systems biology' in his profile at Stanford University, I'm particularly interested in the way the Wall research group are looking at trying to apply machine-learning approaches to things like autism assessment.I've covered a few of their past research reports […]

M Duda, J A Kosmicki & D P Wall (2014). Testing the accuracy of an observation-based classifier for rapid detection of autism risk, Translational Psychiatry, 4 Other:

Citation

September 02, 2014

+
4:52 PM | Epigenetics: Taking Control of the Music
When I try to explain epigenetics to someone, I like to use the musician metaphor. Your genes are the sheet music and how your body reads those genes, that is your […]

Müller-Ott K, Erdel F, Matveeva A, Mallm JP, Rademacher A, Hahn M, Bauer C, Zhang Q, Kaltofen S, Schotta G & Höfer T (2014). Specificity, propagation, and memory of pericentric heterochromatin., Molecular systems biology, 10 (8) 746. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25134515

Citation
+
2:41 PM | Pigeon Gamblers Treat Risk Just Like Humans Do
If you watch poker coverage on television, you probably won’t hear the commentators compare players to pigeons. Maybe they should. The birds don’t play a great game of hold ‘em, but the way they think about risk might be strikingly similar to the way we do. Researchers discovered this by putting humans and birds through […]The post Pigeon Gamblers Treat Risk Just Like Humans Do appeared first on Inkfish.

Ludvig EA, Madan CR, Pisklak JM & Spetch ML (2014). Reward context determines risky choice in pigeons and humans., Biology letters, 10 (8) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25165453

Citation
+
8:33 AM | The epigenetics of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
"These data are consistent with evidence of multisystem dysregulation in CFS [Chronic Fatigue Syndrome] and implicate the involvement of DNA modifications in CFS pathology". So said the paper by Wilfred de Vega and colleagues [1] (open-access here) which, I think, represents a bit of a first for CFS with their examination of the possible role of epigenetic modifications in relation to the condition(s) [2].Ladies first @ Wikipedia I have to say that I was really quite excited […]

de Vega WC, Vernon SD & McGowan PO (2014). DNA Methylation Modifications Associated with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome., PloS one, 9 (8) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25111603

Citation
+
3:46 AM | Unpacking Recovery Part 4: Are We All on the Same Page?
Another issue in defining and understanding recovery is that patients and clinicians may have different opinions about what recovery looks like and how to get there. Certainly, there is a body of literature from the critical feminist tradition in particular that explores how at times, patients can “follow the rules” of treatment systems to achieve a semblance of “recovery,” from a weight restoration and nutrition stabilization perspective, but feels nothing like a full […]

Noordenbos, G. & Seubring, A. (2006). Criteria for Recovery from Eating Disorders According to Patients and Therapists, Eating Disorders, 14 (1) 41-54. DOI: 10.1080/10640260500296756

Citation
+
3:15 AM | Falsifiability and Gandy’s variant of the Church-Turing thesis
In 1936, two years after Karl Popper published the first German version of The Logic of Scientific Discovery and introduced falsifiability; Alonzo Church, Alan Turing, and Emil Post each published independent papers on the Entscheidungsproblem and introducing the lambda calculus, Turing machines, and Post-Turing machines as mathematical models of computation. The years after saw many […]

Gandy, R. (1980). Church's thesis and principles for mechanisms., Studies in Logic and the Foundations of Mathematics, (101) 123-148. DOI: 10.1016/S0049-237X(08)71257-6

Citation

September 01, 2014

+
7:09 PM | The hope behind climate change: adaptation strategies for coastal regions
Happy Labor Day!  In honor of a day traditionally taken off (except for retail employees, unfortunately) to enjoy grilling and relaxing outside, I thought I’d discuss something a bit more upbeat.  Climate change research can often be gloomy.  It is … Continue reading →

Brown, S., Nicholls, R., Hanson, S., Brundrit, G., Dearing, J., Dickson, M., Gallop, S., Gao, S., Haigh, I., Hinkel, J. & Jiménez, J. (2014). Shifting perspectives on coastal impacts and adaptation, Nature Climate Change, 4 (9) 752-755. DOI: 10.1038/nclimate2344

Citation
+
6:12 PM | Assemblages: 50 Years Later, We Know Nothing About Them
You would think we learn about every part of a cell in biology, but we really don’t. Case in point, about 50 years ago, electron microscopy revealed the presence of […]

Toretsky, J. & Wright, P. (2014). Assemblages: Functional units formed by cellular phase separation, The Journal of Cell Biology, 206 (5) 579-588. DOI: 10.1083/jcb.201404124

Citation
+
12:28 PM | Tracking the Daily Microbiome
Humans are essentially 90% bacteria. These bacteria pepper our skin and hang out in our digestive tracts, helping to break down complex carbohydrates and keeping bad bugs in check. We know how the human microbiome (our collection of bacteria) gets … Continue reading →

David LA, Materna AC, Friedman J, Campos-Baptista MI, Blackburn MC, Perrotta A, Erdman SE & Alm EJ (2014). Host lifestyle affects human microbiota on daily timescales., Genome biology, 15 (7) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25146375

Citation
+
11:56 AM | New Clues Revealed about the Longevity of Naked Mole Rats
Naked Mole RatCredit: UT Health Science Center at San AntonioThe hairless, odd-looking creature in the photo is a naked mole rat (Heterocephalus glaber).Among many weird traits, the species also holds the record for longest living rodent. For comparison, the house mouse (Mus musculus) has a maximum lifespan of just 2-3 years, whereas naked mole rats have been recorded to live as much as 32 years!The exact mechanisms behind the species remarkable longevity have yet to be clearly unveiled, […]

Rodriguez KA, Osmulski PA, Pierce A, Weintraub ST, Gaczynska M & Buffenstein R (2014). A cytosolic protein factor from the naked mole-rat activates proteasomes of other species and protects these from inhibition., Biochimica et biophysica acta, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25018089

Citation
+
8:34 AM | Students with more autistic traits make fewer altruistic choices
Most people with autism have difficulties socialising and connecting with others. It's generally agreed that part of this has to do with an impairment in taking other people's perspective. More specifically, an emerging consensus suggests that autism is associated with having normal feelings for other people, but an impaired understanding of them. Little explored before now is how this affects the behaviour of people with autism towards others who need help.Leila Jameel and her colleagues […]

Jameel L, Vyas K, Bellesi G, Roberts V & Channon S (2014). Going 'Above and Beyond': Are Those High in Autistic Traits Less Pro-social?, Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 44 (8) 1846-58. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24522968

Citation
+
7:32 AM | Lithium for mood disorder symptoms in autism?
Modern classroom? @ Wikipedia The paper published by Matthew Siegel and colleagues [1] talking about some preliminary observations on the use of lithium where symptoms of mood disorder might be present in cases of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) caught my eye recently. Concluding that: "lithium may be a medication of interest for those who exhibit two or more mood disorder symptoms, particularly mania or euphoria/elevated mood" the sentiments of more research-to-do in this area […]

Siegel M, Beresford CA, Bunker M, Verdi M, Vishnevetsky D, Karlsson C, Teer O, Stedman A & Smith KA (2014). Preliminary Investigation of Lithium for Mood Disorder Symptoms in Children and Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder., Journal of child and adolescent psychopharmacology, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25093602

Citation
+
3:25 AM | August lives up to its definition: respected and impressive
The things we noticed in and around canine science over the past two weeks, Storified in one neat location for your convenience:[View the story "Do You Believe in Dog? [16-31 August 2014]" on Storify] Further reading:Feuerbacher E.N. (2014). Shut up and pet me! Domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) prefer petting to vocal praise in concurrent and single-alternative choice procedures, Behavioural Processes, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.beproc.2014.08.019 Gygax L. (2014). The A to Z of […]

Gygax L. (2014). The A to Z of statistics for testing cognitive judgement bias, Animal Behaviour, 95 59-69. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2014.06.013

Arnott E.R., Claire M. Wade & Paul D. McGreevy (2014). Environmental Factors Associated with Success Rates of Australian Stock Herding Dogs, PLoS ONE, 9 (8) e104457. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0104457

Citation

August 31, 2014

+
10:18 PM | Whitman Was Not a Neuroscientist
Do I contradict myself?Very well then I contradict myself,(I am large, I contain multitudes.)-Walt Whitman, "Song of Myself" (from Leaves of Grass)Science is the search for objective truth based on physical laws of the universe. Scientific theories try to explain the consistent and predictable behavior of natural systems. They are generally reductionist, meaning that complex systems are reduced to simpler and more fundamental elements. The principles of physics, for instance, are expressed in […]

Chen, C., Huang, M., Yen, J., Chen, C., Liu, G., Yen, C. & Ko, C. (2014). Brain correlates of response inhibition in Internet gaming disorder, Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, DOI: 10.1111/pcn.12224

Daniel Z. Freedman (1994). Some beautiful equations of mathematical physics, CERN-TH.7367/94, arXiv: http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/9408175v1

Ko, C., Hsieh, T., Chen, C., Yen, C., Chen, C., Yen, J., Wang, P. & Liu, G. (2014). Altered brain activation during response inhibition and error processing in subjects with Internet gaming disorder: a functional magnetic imaging study, European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience, DOI: 10.1007/s00406-013-0483-3

Zeki, S., Romaya, J., Benincasa, D. & Atiyah, M. (2014). The experience of mathematical beauty and its neural correlates, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8 DOI: 10.3389/fnhum.2014.00068

Citation
123456
154 Results