Posts

May 03, 2015

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7:54 PM | Procrastinate much? Science offers a way to stop
Procrastination is the thief of time that derails New Year’s resolutions and delays saving for college or retirement, but researchers have found a way to collar it. The trick? Think of the future as now. “The simplified message that we learned in these studies is if the future doesn’t feel imminent, then, even if it’s […]

Lewis, N. & Oyserman, D. (2015). When Does the Future Begin? Time Metrics Matter, Connecting Present and Future Selves, Psychological Science, DOI: 10.1177/0956797615572231

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1:25 PM | TWiV 335: Ebola lite
On episode #335 of the science show This Week in Virology, the TWiVumvirate discusses a whole Ebolavirus vaccine that protects primates, the finding that Ebolavirus is not undergoing rapid evolution, and a proposal to increase the pool of life science researchers by cutting money and time from grants. You can find TWiV #335 at www.twiv.tv.
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12:19 PM | This Week in Chemistry – Bombardier Beetle Spray, & Cutting Food Salt Levels
Here’s the weekly summary of both new chemistry research and studies that have been in the news. This week features how leafcutter ants combat parasites using chemistry, the development of a new emulsion which could help cut salt levels in food, and more. As always, links to further articles and original research papers are provided below, as […]

May 02, 2015

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10:43 PM | Morsels For The Mind – 01/05/2015
Every day we provide you with Six Incredible Things Before Breakfast to nibble away at. Here you can fill your brain with the most intellectually stimulating “amuse bouches” from the past week – a veritable smorgasbord for the cranium. They’re all here for you to load up your plate – this week’s “Morsels for the mind”. Enjoy! If you do nothing else, make sure to check out the “Reads / views / listens of the week”. **** Feather, fur […]
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10:43 PM | Morsels For The Mind – 01/05/2015
Every day we provide you with Six Incredible Things Before Breakfast to nibble away at. Here you can fill your brain with the most intellectually stimulating “amuse bouches” from the past week – a veritable smorgasbord for the cranium. They’re all here for you to load up your plate – this week’s “Morsels for the mind”. Enjoy! If you do nothing else, make sure to check out the “Reads / views / listens of the week”. **** Feather, fur […]
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7:48 PM | Walking an extra two minutes each hour may offset hazards of sitting too long
Eat less, workout more, these are the messages we are being sent almost on a daily basis. But how do we quantify “more” and who really should listen to that advice? Well a new study suggests that engaging in low intensity activities such as standing may not be enough to offset the health hazards of […]

Beddhu, S., Wei, G., Marcus, R., Chonchol, M. & Greene, T. (2015). Light-Intensity Physical Activities and Mortality in the United States General Population and CKD Subpopulation, Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, DOI: 10.2215/CJN.08410814

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7:48 PM | Walking an extra two minutes each hour may offset hazards of sitting too long
Eat less, workout more, these are the messages we are being sent almost on a daily basis. But how do we quantify “more” and who really should listen to that advice? Well a new study suggests that engaging in low intensity activities such as standing may not be enough to offset the health hazards of […]

Beddhu, S., Wei, G., Marcus, R., Chonchol, M. & Greene, T. (2015). Light-Intensity Physical Activities and Mortality in the United States General Population and CKD Subpopulation, Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, DOI: 10.2215/CJN.08410814

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10:30 AM | Psychology Around the Net: May 2, 2015
Learn about mindfulness and depression, how to gauge your emotional intelligence, ways to become happier, and more in this week’s Psychology Around the Net. Mindfulness May Be as Good as Meds for Staving Off Depression: One study suggests mindfulness may be as good as depression […]
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9:28 AM | The Quest for the “Number 12″
  For a while I was a panel member of a University Ethics Committee (I know, how cool is that!).   Our specific panel dealt with studies at the fringes of social sciences, medicine/epidemiology and psychology, and as a result many of the studies we had to deal with were qualitative in design. Now this […]
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5:19 AM | Discovering genetic variants from de novo assembly of high-throughput sequencing
High-throughput sequencing is dominating genetics research (and a lot of biotech) because of its speed, low cost, and the resulting abundance of data.  But it still has some major shortcomings.  One big problem is that analysis of this data usually … Continue reading →
Editor's Pick

May 01, 2015

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7:05 PM | US clinics avoiding government oversight of ‘stem cell’ treatments
Clinics across the United States are advertising stem cell treatments that attempt to take advantage of what they perceive as exceptions in FDA regulations.The therapies in question are adipose-derived autologous stem cell treatments, in which fat cells are removed from a patient, broken down to separate components that purportedly contain stem cells, and are then […]

Turner, L. (2015). Federal Regulatory Oversight of US Clinics Marketing Adipose-Derived Autologous Stem Cell Interventions: Insights From 3 New FDA Draft Guidance Documents, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, 90 (5) 567-571. DOI: 10.1016/j.mayocp.2015.02.003

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7:05 PM | US clinics avoiding government oversight of ‘stem cell’ treatments
Clinics across the United States are advertising stem cell treatments that attempt to take advantage of what they perceive as exceptions in FDA regulations.The therapies in question are adipose-derived autologous stem cell treatments, in which fat cells are removed from a patient, broken down to separate components that purportedly contain stem cells, and are then […]

Turner, L. (2015). Federal Regulatory Oversight of US Clinics Marketing Adipose-Derived Autologous Stem Cell Interventions: Insights From 3 New FDA Draft Guidance Documents, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, 90 (5) 567-571. DOI: 10.1016/j.mayocp.2015.02.003

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7:05 PM | US clinics avoiding government oversight of ‘stem cell’ treatments
Clinics across the United States are advertising stem cell treatments that attempt to take advantage of what they perceive as exceptions in FDA regulations.The therapies in question are adipose-derived autologous stem cell treatments, in which fat cells are removed from a patient, broken down to separate components that purportedly contain stem cells, and are then […]

Turner, L. (2015). Federal Regulatory Oversight of US Clinics Marketing Adipose-Derived Autologous Stem Cell Interventions: Insights From 3 New FDA Draft Guidance Documents, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, 90 (5) 567-571. DOI: 10.1016/j.mayocp.2015.02.003

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4:10 PM | What is Renosterveld?
Botanising at Haarwegskloof Renosterveld Reserve during the launch ofthe research centreAspalathus nigraPreviously Notes from a Cape Town Botanist introduced fynbos, the most widespread vegetation of South Africa's Cape Floristic Region (CFR). This week I will be writing about renosterveld vegetation, the neglected and little known sister of fynbos and one of the world's most species diverse Mediterranean type shrublands.Renosterveld is also part of South Africa's Fynbos Biome and the CFR. […]
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8:16 AM | Neuroblastoma may arise from problems with embryonic nerve development
Neuroblastoma is a tumour derived from the peripheral nervous system and is the most common cancer diagnosed within the first year of life. Although is a fairly rare disease, it does account for 15% of all pediatric cancer deaths. However, neuroblastoma is quite unique in that some, particularly very young, patients spontaneously regress requiring only […]
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8:02 AM | No, the *other* one!
With the teaching portion of the University of St Andrews semester over, I’ve come south again to work at ISIS for a bit. No, not that ISIS: I am of course referring to the ISIS Neutron & Muon Facility located at the Rutherford Appleton Labs on the Harwell Campus in Oxfordshire. (Genuinely a little concerned […]
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4:05 AM | Eyes on Environment: the search for artificial photosynthesis
“Natural selection is not a master engineer, but a tinkerer. It doesn’t produce the absolute perfection achievable by a designer starting from scratch, but merely the best it can do with what it has to work with.” – Jerry Coyne … Continue reading →

Sun, K., Saadi, F., Lichterman, M., Hale, W., Wang, H., Zhou, X., Plymale, N., Omelchenko, S., He, J., Papadantonakis, K. & Brunschwig, B. (2015). Stable solar-driven oxidation of water by semiconducting photoanodes protected by transparent catalytic nickel oxide films, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201423034. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1423034112

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April 30, 2015

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8:26 PM | Pesticides alter bees’ brains, making them unable to live and reproduce adequately
A new report suggests that a particular class of pesticides called “neonicotinoids” wreaks havoc on the bee populations, ultimately putting some crops that rely on pollination in jeopardy. Specifically, these pesticides kill bee brain cells, rendering them unable to learn, gather food and reproduce. The report, however, also suggests that the effects of these pesticides on […]

Moffat, C., Pacheco, J., Sharp, S., Samson, A., Bollan, K., Huang, J., Buckland, S. & Connolly, C. (2015). Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris), The FASEB Journal, DOI: 10.1096/fj.14-267179

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8:26 PM | Pesticides alter bees’ brains, making them unable to live and reproduce adequately
A new report suggests that a particular class of pesticides called “neonicotinoids” wreaks havoc on the bee populations, ultimately putting some crops that rely on pollination in jeopardy. Specifically, these pesticides kill bee brain cells, rendering them unable to learn, gather food and reproduce. The report, however, also suggests that the effects of these pesticides on […]

Moffat, C., Pacheco, J., Sharp, S., Samson, A., Bollan, K., Huang, J., Buckland, S. & Connolly, C. (2015). Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris), The FASEB Journal, DOI: 10.1096/fj.14-267179

Citation
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8:26 PM | Pesticides alter bees’ brains, making them unable to live and reproduce adequately
A new report suggests that a particular class of pesticides called “neonicotinoids” wreaks havoc on the bee populations, ultimately putting some crops that rely on pollination in jeopardy. Specifically, these pesticides kill bee brain cells, rendering them unable to learn, gather food and reproduce. The report, however, also suggests that the effects of these pesticides on […]

Moffat, C., Pacheco, J., Sharp, S., Samson, A., Bollan, K., Huang, J., Buckland, S. & Connolly, C. (2015). Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris), The FASEB Journal, DOI: 10.1096/fj.14-267179

Citation
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8:26 PM | Pesticides alter bees’ brains, making them unable to live and reproduce adequately
A new report suggests that a particular class of pesticides called “neonicotinoids” wreaks havoc on the bee populations, ultimately putting some crops that rely on pollination in jeopardy. Specifically, these pesticides kill bee brain cells, rendering them unable to learn, gather food and reproduce. The report, however, also suggests that the effects of these pesticides on […]

Moffat, C., Pacheco, J., Sharp, S., Samson, A., Bollan, K., Huang, J., Buckland, S. & Connolly, C. (2015). Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris), The FASEB Journal, DOI: 10.1096/fj.14-267179

Citation
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7:25 PM | You might be an engineer if…
I know engineers have quirky personalities.  There are these things that most people take for granted that drives other people nuts…and vice versa.  The engineer will spend hours fixing something so it works just perfectly while others don’t care as long as it’s functional. I realized lately that one of my big pet peeves has […]
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2:30 PM | Altering Genetic Material: A Line That Must Not Be Crossed
In my work as a bioethicist, I have very rarely taken an “absolutist” position regarding the use of a biomedical technology. But when I read an article titled “Chinese Scientists Edit Genes of Human Embryos, Raising Concerns,” my reaction was that this should not be done. I am not alone. The technique mentioned enables genes [...]
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11:00 AM | Bare Bones...
The Belle II detector and the upgraded accelerator SuperKEKB make up Japan’s new B factory for studying flavor physics and CP violation. Following some delays, the accelerator is set to start up next January, and full data-taking will begin in 2018.KEKCitation: Phys. Today 68, 4, 18 (2015); http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/PT.3.2743Topics: Fukushima Daiichi, Economy, Nuclear Physics, Nuclear Power, Research, Quantum MechanicsUnfortunately, scientific advances costs money, along with the […]
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4:05 AM | Carbon Dioxide and Climate
A recent, lengthy, exchange with a climate denier and several more after the California governor’s announcement has given me a…

April 29, 2015

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9:45 PM | New Research: Building Better Skull Models For Ancient Carnivores
When paleontologists put together a life history for a long-extinct animal, they try to understand its diet by looking at modern animals with similar skull shapes and tooth patterns. But this practice is far from foolproof. New modeling and tests based on living species conducted by scientists at the American Museum of Natural History show that the link between animal diets and skull biomechanics is complex, with a stronger influence from ancestry than previously thought.“Traditionally, […]
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9:43 PM | Study: Families struggling with financial burden of dental care costs
The association between financial hardship and medical care isn’t new. Even in wealthy countries such as the U.S., medical bills contribute to a large percentage of personal bankruptcies. Now, a new global study finds that dental care can also contribute to families falling into poverty and being left with fewer financial resources for basic necessities.
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9:43 PM | Study: Families struggling with financial burden of dental care costs
The association between financial hardship and medical care isn’t new. Even in wealthy countries such as the U.S., medical bills contribute to a large percentage of personal bankruptcies. Now, a new global study finds that dental care can also contribute to families falling into poverty and being left with fewer financial resources for basic necessities.
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7:12 PM | Psychologists share the three secrets to healthier eating
You don’t need a crazy diet to lose weight. In fact, your typical fad diet won’t help you keep weight off long term and could be harming your health. If you want to know the secrets of healthier eating, think of the kitchen fruit bowl. A fruit bowl makes fruit more convenient, attractive, and normal […]

Wansink B (2013). Convenient, attractive, and normative: the CAN approach to making children slim by design., Childhood obesity (Print), 9 (4) 277-8. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23865529

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7:12 PM | Psychologists share the three secrets to healthier eating
You don’t need a crazy diet to lose weight. In fact, your typical fad diet won’t help you keep weight off long term and could be harming your health. If you want to know the secrets of healthier eating, think of the kitchen fruit bowl. A fruit bowl makes fruit more convenient, attractive, and normal […]

Wansink B (2013). Convenient, attractive, and normative: the CAN approach to making children slim by design., Childhood obesity (Print), 9 (4) 277-8. PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23865529

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