2009-08-14 Spike activity

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

Why do ethicists steal more books than other people? ABC Radio National’s Philosopher’s Zone talks to Eric Schwitzgebel about his brilliant philosophical research project.

The New York Times has an article on delusions of identity after brain injury. Doesn’t say very much except they exist but an interesting topic nonetheless.

Listen to Ben Goldacre doing a fantastic job of countering Susan Greenfield’s scaremongering over internet addiction on ABC Radio National’s The Science Show.

To wit: Susan ‘digital brain damage / attention span armageddon / generation ADHD’ Greenfield take note. Newsweek reports that teen novels are more popular than ever.

Reuters reports on the University of Pennsylvania’s Neuroscience Boot Camp.

Chocolate consumption increases in people Parkinson’s disease, according to research covered by Dr Shock.

BBC News covers researching finding that people with more symmetrical faces are less likely to suffer mental decline in old age. See an earlier Mind Hacks piece for more on links between face structure and brain function

Dieting could lead to a positive test for cannabis reports New Scientist, but only if you’ve been previously smoking cannabis.

The British Medical Journal has a meta-analysis of 372 (wow) double blind antidepressant RCTs finding that they slightly increase suicide risk in younger people. Furious Seasons has great coverage as always.

Radiotherapy for brain cancer has long-term cognitive effects, reports BBC News.

Bad Science has some excellent coverage of a study on how beliefs flow through science literature.

Would have covered this ourselves if it’d not been picked up by the big boys. If you’ve not read it already, the BPS Research Digest has an excellent piece on how time perception is linked to anger.

Scientific American has an interview with Judith Rich Harris, the influential psychologist who argues that parents have a minimal influence on children’s social development in comparison to their peers.

Facebook reinforces jealousy in jealousy-prone people according to a study covered by PsychCentral.

Optimistic women live for longer, according to BBC News who seem to have raised their game this week.

3 Quarks Daily has a first hand account of sleep paralysis. Some slightly shaky neuroscience but well worth a read.

Anthropologist Richard Wrangham mongers his ‘the invention of cooking as the cause of hominid brain expansion’ theory on Edge.

Dr Petra discusses the American Psychological Association’s recent statement on the futility of ‘gay conversion therapy’.

A project to map every brain connection in five years time has been announced by the American National Institute of Health. An overview and commentary by Neurophilosophy’s Mo Costandi are published in Seed Magazine which brings it down to earth a little.

The Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience has an interesting paper on a neurocomputational model for cocaine addiction (thanks Will!). Only runs in the toilets apparently.

Studying babies can tell us about some of the most challenging philosophical questions according to an article in Salon.

Cognitive Daily finds a wonderful study on how adaptation to distorted faces doesn’t transfer between male and female faces suggesting they may be processed differently.

Congenitally blind people distinguish between living and nonliving things in the <a href="http://sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/46332/title/Brain_doesn%E2%80%99t_sort_by_visual_cues_alone
“>same visual brain areas as sighted people, according to a new study covered by Science News.

The Psychiatric Times has a response by the DSM-V critics accused by the American Psychiatric Association of being motivated by wanting to sell more of their books on the earlier version. It’s the debate that keeps on giving.

A study on the neural cartography of the clitoris is covered (if that’s the right word) by The Neurocritic.

2 Comments

  1. Farzaneh Sarafraz
    Posted August 14, 2009 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

    I was gonna report another broken link on the cannabis test and dieting article, but it seems like it has been removed from the New Scientist.

  2. Kate Orman
    Posted August 18, 2009 at 3:04 am | Permalink

    > covered (if that’s the right word)
    “Touched upon”?


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