2010-02-12 Spike activity

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

Literary critic Marco Roth discusses the ‘rise of the neuronovel‘ on ABC Radio National’s Bookshow. Good discussion except he seems to think all reference to the brain is necessarily reductionist.

PsyBlog looks at research on why the media seems biased when you care about the issue – examining a study finding Pro-Israelis and Pro-Palestinians both report an identical news report is biased against them.

Why won‚Äôt the University of Washington release the data showing that ‘Baby Einstein’ DVDs slowed language development in children? BrainSpin investigates.

New Scientist reports that damage to the back part of the posterior lobe is more likely to lead to feelings of transcendence and spiritual experiences.

More draft DSM-V coverage: an excellent summary of the proposed changes at PsychCentral. Some more comments from New Scientist. It’s for psychiatrists only! says a debate in Psychiatric Times. Good coverage on the legal aspects from In the News.

The Washington Post discusses whether ‘learning styles‘ are scientifically supported or a convenient myth.

To the bunkers! Can battlefield robots take the place of soldiers? asks BBC News.

Neurotopia has some excellent coverage of a recent study on the ‘cocaine vaccine‘.

Can the power of thought stop you ageing? asks BBC News who cover Ellen Langer’s famous experiments in an old folks’ home. Also tackled briefly in a recent Horizon documentary on ageing *cough*torrent*cough*

The Frontal Cortex has a wonderfully lucid piece on a new study finding that the amygdala may be involved in loss aversion – the effect where we put more energy into avoiding losses than acquiring gains.

The older the age of parents at conception, the greater the risk of autism, according to a new study discussed in The New York Times. Although it’s worth saying that even in older patients the chances of your baby developing autism are still very small.

New Scientist reports on a new campaign to get neuroscientists to sign a peace pledge against the militarisation of brain science.

The clean smelling Ed Yong reports on research finding that clean smells promote generosity and fair play while dark rooms and sunglasses promote deceit and selfishness over at Not Exactly Rocket Science.

The Times previews research suggesting that Autism and Asperger’s may be underdiagnosed or wrongly diagnosed in women.

Amnesic shellfish poisoning is memory loss that can be caused by a toxin found in shellfish. Neuroskeptic investigates the curious memory baffling poison.

Dr Petra has a great analysis of the changes to sexual disorders proposed in the draft DSM-V.

There’s an excellent report on NPR on the history of ‘child bipolar disorder’ and its slap down in the draft DSM-V by the brilliant Alix Spiegel.

Terra Sigillata has some excellent background on one of the legislation avoiding ‘synthetic marijuana’ products recently to hit the market.

Bolivia launches Coca Colla, a remake of the popular soft-drink that puts genuine coca-leaf extract back in the recipe, according to The Telegraph.

Slate has an article on how an irrational fear of baby-snatching on maternity wards is driving extreme security measures.

We know you got flow. The BPS Research Digest covers a study on ‘social flow’, when you’re in the zone with your social life.

NHS Choices has a fantastic video where Ben Goldacre explains the placebo effect.

The first prototype of light controlled brain implants for humans is sort-of-announced by a neurodevice company, according to the EE Times.

Neuroanthropology rounds-up a special issue of Psychiatric Times on cross-cultural psychiatry.

Jared Diamond discusses the ‘natural experiments’ of human history in the ABC Radio National Book Show.

The Chronicle of Higher Education has a striking article about the experience of being a university professor during psychosis.

A worry study on the influence on US ‘war on drugs’ aid in Colombia is discussed over at Slate.

“There is no such thing as sexual intercourse”. Pascal Boyer has a stinging critique of post-modern ‘de-constructions’ in the social sciences over at Culture and Cognition.

BBC News covers the research on time perception and enjoyment.

One Comment

  1. rita
    Posted February 12, 2010 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

    Just so about the baby-snatching – but ” aided by the FBI, analysts at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children have thoroughly profiled the 267 criminals in their database. Some clear patterns emerge: The thief is almost always a woman of child-bearing age, usually in a relationship with a boyfriend or husband”. Would these be the same profilers recently listed on Cracked.com, (through Rationally Speaking link) as being amongst the 6 most s**t-filled non-expert expert professions around?


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