2007-11-09 Spike activity

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news:

The Neurocritic covers a fascinating study that modelled group interest for new web information. Full text: pdf.

Call for a ban on controversial ‘Dolphin Assisted Therapy’. Controversial or just completely bizarre?

Brain Waves covers the top 10 neuroscience trends of 2007.

Activity is reduced in visual areas to direct activation toward hearing areas when we’re trying to listen to complex sounds, according to a new study covered by BBC News.

The New Republic has an in-depth review of a new book on the biology of altruism.

A study in this month’s British Journal of Psychiatry found that people with schizophrenia can be more logical than people without a psychiatric diagnosis.

The Scientific American Mind Matters blog covers some of the highlights of the Society for Neuroscience annual conference.

The BPS Research Digest looks at a study on psychiatrists who treat themselves for mental illness.

The LA Times has an in-depth and important article entitled ‘Are we too quick to medicate children?’

Van Gogh and the history of manic depression is discussed by The Neurophilosopher.

BBC News reports on an intriguing new genetic study of epilepsy: two genes are known individually to increase the chance of having a seizure, but carrying both makes epilepsy less likely.

A study finds further evidence that genetics has a role in determining sexual orientation in men.

PsyBlog discusses the false consensus bias and why we all stink as intuitive psychologists.

The Guardian reports on a study that suggest love at first sight is just sex and ego. Presumably, only if you do it right though.

Amygdala abnormalities linked to violent aggression in a study covered by Treatment Online.

Developing Intelligence reports that an artificial intelligence model of speech recognition develops what seem to be the equivalent of mirror neurons.

How we understand what doctors say can be quite different, even when they use the same words, depending on how serious we think the illness is. Cognitive Daily covers a fantastic applied psychology study.

2 Comments

  1. Mark(p.s.)
    Posted November 10, 2007 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Nice roundup.

  2. Posted November 10, 2007 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

    The child medication issue is disturbing to me. Coming from a public school perspective, and in line with my work, I see too many children on mind-altering drugs. I attribute this to two things: 1) the work it takes to teach children about boundaries and appropriate social behaviors takes time and effort, and 2) school employees are under the gun to get kids to perform in the standards based, high stakes assessment environments in today’s public schools (thanks to NCLB). If a child can’t sit still and be a productive member of a group (eyes on the teacher during direct instruction + active verbal participation, for example) for more than 30 minutes at at time, the answer is to seek outside help from pediatricians quick to medicate. I experience daily resistance and oftentimes disrespect from educators who are not interested in working on interventions highlighting cognitive-behavioral training, diet analysis or parenting habits.


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