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December 7, 2008

06:49
A Virtual Brainstorming Session for You to Give Obama Health-care Reform Input at Pharma Marketing Blog

Associate PressTom Daschle wants you to party like it’s 1992. What will be the main topic of conversation at your holiday party this year? If you take the advice of former Sen. Tom Daschle, President-elect Barack Obamas choice for Health and Human Services

Daschle Suggests Decking Halls With Health Reform at WSJ.com: Health Blog : Associate PressTom Daschle wants you to party like it’s 1992. What will be the main topic of conversation at your holiday party this year? If you take the advice of former Sen. Tom Daschle, President-elect Barack Obamas choice for Health and Human Services

06:42
Twelve Months of A Blog Around The Clock at A Blog Around The Clock

It's that time of the year again, the time to complete the end of year blog meme. Here is last year's entry. Rules are simple - post the first line of the first post for every month. I've omitted my Monday Mustelid, Today In Science and Friday Poem (semi-)regular

Twelve months of Terra Sig (2008) at Terra Sigillata : Brothers Bora and Drug reminded me that it is time for the early December traditional meme of recording one's first sentence of each month's first post.Just as an aside, on my visit with this week with Anton and Bora to Ernie Hood's Radio In Vivo show to promote

End of Year Roundup at Stranger Fruit : It's that time of the year again, the time to complete the end of year blog meme. Here is last year's entry. Rules are simple - post the first line of the first post for every month. I've omitted my Monday Mustelid, Today In Science and Friday Poem (semi-)regular

05:38
The HHMI Bulletin: New Frontiers at The Evilutionary Biologist

Founded by eccentric airplane magnate, Howard Hughes, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute is one of the largest private funding organizations for science research in the world. Its endowment,... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links,

Single cancer cell can develop into tumour at Stem Cell Research Blog : In a recent study, US researchers have found just one skin cancer cell was often enough to generate a whole new tumour. The result undermines hopes that only certain types of cancer cell could fuel the spread of the disease. The cancer studied by the team from

04:21
If you want to know why our public schools are screwed up, here's one reason at RichardDawkins.net : The Latest Updates

Cynthia Dunbar has written a book. It's typical wingnut nonsense: it "refers to public education as 'a subtly deceptive tool of perversion' and calls the establishment of public schools unconstitutional and 'tyrannical.'"

If you want to know why our public schools are screwed up, here's one reason at Pharyngula : Cynthia Dunbar has written a book. It's typical wingnut nonsense: it "refers to public education as 'a subtly deceptive tool of perversion' and calls the establishment of public schools unconstitutional and 'tyrannical.'" It goes further and says that……she

04:12
CNN supports America-as-Christian-nation stance at Dr. Joan Bushwell's Chimpanzee Refuge

...by delivering a bouncing controversy in the middle of the marketplace of ideas.A protest, several counter-signs and a news conference are the latest in a flurry of activity spurred by a sign put up Monday by an atheist group in the Capitol building in Olympia.Members

The most wonderful time of the year! at Science, Shrimp, and Grits : You can’t get very far into December without hearing it. No, I’m not talking about Mannheim Steamroller. I’m talking about the opening shots of the WAR ON CHRISTMAS!Alongside a Nativity scene at the Legislative Building in Olympia, Washington,

free speech begets free speech at decorabilia : ...by delivering a bouncing controversy in the middle of the marketplace of ideas.A protest, several counter-signs and a news conference are the latest in a flurry of activity spurred by a sign put up Monday by an atheist group in the Capitol building in Olympia.Members

03:00
Science: 3.8% Notable at Uncertain Principles

Last year, around this time, I posted a rant about the lack of science books in the New York Times's "Notable Books of 2007." While I was out of town last week, they posted this year's list. So, have things improved?Yes and no. They do, in fact, have two books

Publishers Weekly Snubs Science at Uncertain Principles : Carl Zimmer sent me a message via Facebook, which made me think I might owe the New York Times an apology for last week's ranting. Publishers Weekly has come out with their list of the best books of the year, and they do even worse than the Times: not one of

Where's the science? at Laelaps : Around this time last year the New York Times listed 100 "Notable Books of 2007." Chad was upset that there were no science books on the list, and so was I. I penned a rant about this sad state of affairs, but Carl Zimmer (an occasional contributor to the NYT)

02:30
Bailouts Explained at Uncertain Principles

As always, if you want penetrating analysis of the news, you need to go to a comedian. Jon Stewart explains why Congress is willing to bail out Wall Street, but not Detroit: .cc_box a:hover .cc_home{background:url('http://www.comedycentral.com/comedycentral/video/assets/syndicated-logo-over.png')

Jon Stewart on the Detroit bailout at Respectful Insolence : As usual, he nails it, at least a significant part of it: .cc_box a:hover .cc_home{background:url('http://www.comedycentral.com/comedycentral/video/assets/syndicated-logo-over.png') !important;}.cc_links a{color:#b9b9b9;text-decoration:none;}.cc_show a{color:#707070;text-decoration:none;}.cc_title

Colbert and Buttars at Pharyngula : The war on Christmas is heating up. Look: here's Colbert mocking atheists. He sneers at our atheist Christmas cards, and even laughs at our letters to our families..cc_box a:hover .cc_home{background:url('http://www.comedycentral.com/comedycentral/video/assets/syndicated-logo-over.png')

Gun Safety Notes at Uncertain Principles : The Daily Show nails the lessons of the Plaxico Burress fiasco: .cc_box a:hover .cc_home{background:url('http://www.comedycentral.com/comedycentral/video/assets/syndicated-logo-over.png') !important;}.cc_links a{color:#b9b9b9;text-decoration:none;}.cc_show

December 6, 2008

21:14
RIP Patient H.M. at Pure Pedantry

The famous amnesic patient H.M. has died. From Dr. Suzanne Corkin (MIT):Henry G. Molaison, 82, of Windsor Locks, CT died on Tuesday. He is known in the medical and scientific literatures as "the amnesic patient, H.M." He was born in Manchester, CT and graduated

Seeya H.M.! at Retrospectacle: A Neuroscience Blog : Arguably the most important and certainly the most famous single case study patient in Psychology and Neuroscience passed away on Tuesday December 2nd. H.M. as he was known to probably every student of Psychology can now be revealed as Henry G. Molaison, 82,

The Unforgettable Amnesiac at Slashdot: Science : jamie found an account in the NYTimes of the life and death of one of the most important figures in modern neuroscience, Henry Gustav Molaison — a man who could not form memories. Molaison became an amnesiac after a brain operation in 1953. Known worldwide

We'll remember H.M. even if he could not remember us at A Blog Around The Clock : Everyone who's ever taken a Neuroscience class in college remembers the strange case of H.M.H.M. suffered from epilepsy. Back in 1953, his brain was operated on - some large chunks (the hippocampi) were removed. Epilepsy was gone. So was his memory.He could

H. M. dies after helping build the science of memory at John Hawks Anthropology Weblog : A man known to most psychologists only as H. M. has died. Benedict Carey has the story. After a brain operation to relieve profound seizures, H. M. was left with a complete inability to form new declarative memories. And his condition led to a revolution in

Death of H.M. at Neuroethics & Law Blog : The famous research subject, H.M., has died at age 82. Here is an excerpt from the NYT:In 1953, he underwent an experimental brain operation in Hartford to correct a seizure disorder, only to emerge from it fundamentally and irreparably changed. He developed

We Won't Forget You at The Neurocritic : The famous amnesic patient H.M. has died. From Dr. Suzanne Corkin (MIT):Henry G. Molaison, 82, of Windsor Locks, CT died on Tuesday. He is known in the medical and scientific literatures as "the amnesic patient, H.M." He was born in Manchester, CT and graduated

19:35
Genetic Map of East Asia at Gene Expression

Check out the the charts over at Steve Hsu's site. The author of a forthcoming paper sent him a draft. Since around 2/3 of the population of East Asia resides in China, there would be some value-add in getting many disparate samples from Han groups from all

Genetic structure in East Asia using 200K SNPs at Dienekes' Anthropology Blog : The table of paired Fst values for East Asian populations is here. The PCA plots are seen on the left.PLoS ONE 3(12): e3862. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0003862Analysis of East Asia Genetic Substructure Using Genome-Wide SNP ArraysChao Tian et al.AbstractAccounting

East Asian genetic substructure at Gene Expression : Check out the the charts over at Steve Hsu's site. The author of a forthcoming paper sent him a draft. Since around 2/3 of the population of East Asia resides in China, there would be some value-add in getting many disparate samples from Han groups from all

16:26
Slides from presentation at Online Information: "Latest developments in Open Access" at BioMed Central

The presentation below, given at the annual Online Information exhibition and conference which took place at Olympia, London, from Dec 2-4 2008, highlights some of the developments in the world of open access publishing in the last 12 monthsView SlideShare

Presentation on recent developments in OA at Open Access News : Matthew Cockerill, Latest Developments in Open Access, presented at Online Information (London, December 2-4, 2008).

15:40
Twelve Months of A Blog Around The Clock at A Blog Around The Clock

Thanks to DrugMonkey for the reminder. We do this meme every year in December - the only rule is to "post the link and first sentence from the first blog entry for each month of the past year." Here we go (ClockQuotes are usually the first post of the day and

Twelve months of Terra Sig (2008) at Terra Sigillata : Brothers Bora and Drug reminded me that it is time for the early December traditional meme of recording one's first sentence of each month's first post.Just as an aside, on my visit with this week with Anton and Bora to Ernie Hood's Radio In Vivo show to promote

14:38
Where No Bear Has Gone Before at The Speculist

I've often thought about trying something like this:Out of this world: British teddy bears strapped to helium weather balloon reach the edge of spaceIt's not often that Britain can claim a win in the space race. But these teddy bears drifting nearly 20 miles

British schoolkids' teddies win space race at Evolving Thoughts : I just love this: Cambridge University's Space Flight club got local school children to make space suits for these teddy bears, which were attached to a helium balloon that rose to 30km, enough to see the curvature of the earth. All teds were recovered safely.

13:39
Who says Java is not fast?!? at chem-bla-ics

Yesterday's blog about Who says Java is not fast?!? caused quite some feedback (thanx to all commenters!) with several good points. Of course, a table like that in the cinfony paper (see also the comments in the blogs by Noel (the author) and Rich). Many things

Open Benchmarks for Cheminformatics at Depth-First : Yesterday's post on cheminformatics benchmarking generated a number of interesting comments, both here and on a similar article posted to Egon Willighagen's blog.One thing the discussion highlights is the need for a suite of benchmarks specifically aimed at

Choose Java for Speed at Depth-First : O'Boyle and Hutchison offer some interesting comparisons between Open Source cheminformatics toolkits in a recent Chemistry Central article. One of them is contained in the table above, in which the Java cheminformatics library CDK outperforms both the natively-compiled

Github and Cheminformatics at business|bytes|genes|molecules : Egon and Rich are really using Github and pushing it in the cheminformatics community. The cool part about it all is how they are using Github, not just for open source code projects, but also to host benchmarks. Rich also has a great blog post about why Github

Cheminformatics Benchmark Project #1 at chem-bla-ics : Yesterday's blog about Who says Java is not fast?!? caused quite some feedback (thanx to all commenters!) with several good points. Of course, a table like that in the cinfony paper (see also the comments in the blogs by Noel (the author) and Rich). Many things

11:20
Amazon Launches Public Data Sets To Spur Research at Slashdot: Science

turnkeylinux writes "Amazon just launched its Public Data Sets service (home). The project encourages developers, researchers, universities, and businesses to upload large (non-confidential) data sets to Amazon — things like census data, genomes, etc.

Public data sets on AWS (Amazon Web Services) at Mining Drug Space : "AWS hopes to provide researchers across a variety of disciplines and industries with tools to enable more innovation, more quickly" [Public data on AWS]If you are interested in cloud computing and storage then you will be delighted that Amazon offers support

09:36
AARP Disclosures on Health Insurance Draw Scrutiny at WSJ.com: Health Blog

AARP’s handling of insurance endorsed by the advocacy group for older Americans is back in the headlines. Last month AARP and UnitedHealth voluntarily suspended the sale of a limited benefit that had caps on coverage for care including surgery. They are

BLOGSCAN - Insuring the Right to Buy Health Insurance at Health Care Renewal : On the Covert Rationing Blog, DrRich discussed the latest amazing product from our friends at UnitedHealth. Called Continuity, it allows people who are currently healthy to buy the right to buy health insurance in the future, presumably at a time when they

09:36
UnitedHealth Will Now Sell You Insurance for Insurance at WSJ.com: Health Blog

I told you so, again.A story from NPR (via WhiteCoat) validates what medical blogs have been discussing over the past year:Health care reform in Massachusetts has led to a dramatic increase in the number of people with health insurance. But there's an unintended

BLOGSCAN - Insuring the Right to Buy Health Insurance at Health Care Renewal : On the Covert Rationing Blog, DrRich discussed the latest amazing product from our friends at UnitedHealth. Called Continuity, it allows people who are currently healthy to buy the right to buy health insurance in the future, presumably at a time when they

Ease ER overload - Opinion - USATODAY.com at GruntDoc : Ease ER overload - Opinion - USATODAY.com Reforms needed to improve doctor accessBy Kevin PhoEmblematic of soaring health care costs, which are projected to reach $3 trillion by 2011,is the nationwide crisis of emergency department overcrowding. More than $18

USA Today op-ed: Poor physician access worsens emergency department crowding at Kevin, M.D. - Medical Weblog : My latest USA Today op-ed was published this morning: Ease ER overload I take a look at emergency department crowding from a primary care perspective, and explain why the lack of physician access drives more people to use emergency services, which subsequently

Problems in Primary Care Drive ER Crowding at WSJ.com: Health Blog : The conventional wisdom is that it’s Americas 46 million uninsured who are clogging up the nations E.R. departments. Fiddlesticks says Kevin Pho, a primary care physician in Nashua, New Hampshire, in an op-ed piece for USA Today. Its the lack of access

Massachusetts learns about the primary care shortage the hard way at Kevin, M.D. - Medical Weblog : I told you so, again.A story from NPR (via WhiteCoat) validates what medical blogs have been discussing over the past year:Health care reform in Massachusetts has led to a dramatic increase in the number of people with health insurance. But there's an unintended

09:25
BLOGSCAN - Direct-to-Consumer Device Advertising on YouTube Sans Adverse Effects Information at Health Care Renewal

There are concerns that pressures on regulators to approve new drugs more quickly have reduced the focus on patient safety, and this problem is exacerbated by new efficiencies in drug marketing which can quickly expose large numbers of patients to unknown risks,

Chemistry World's weekly round-up of money and molecules at Chemistry World blog : In this weeks Chemistry World business round-up, we cover pleas by UK biotechs for financial aid, spending cuts across the chemical industry and job losses at DuPont.PHARMACEUTICALSBiotechs call for aid The UKs beleaguered biotechnology sector has joined the

Is faster better? at PharmaGossip : There are concerns that pressures on regulators to approve new drugs more quickly have reduced the focus on patient safety, and this problem is exacerbated by new efficiencies in drug marketing which can quickly expose large numbers of patients to unknown risks,

09:25
Medical Device Ads on YouTube Violate FDA Rules, Group Says at WSJ.com: Health Blog

Add medical device ads to the list of Internet videos that need a good traffic cop, an advocacy group says.The Prescription Project says YouTube videos for medical devices made by Abbott, Medtronic and Stryker violate federal rules because they dont contain

BLOGSCAN - Direct-to-Consumer Device Advertising on YouTube Sans Adverse Effects Information at Health Care Renewal : On the PostScript blog, the Prescription Project announced the discovery of direct-to-consumer marketing videos released on YouTube by three device companies. The video from Abbott advertised the XIENCE-V drug eluting stent. That from Medtronic advertised the

Abbott - Xience: safety first! at PharmaGossip : Abbott Laboratories said it will embed safety information about its Xience heart device into a YouTube video spot, a disclosure made hours after a consumer group complained the spots ran afoul of U.S. Food and Drug Administration rules on product marketing."Abbott's

08:49
Food crisis almost over, people starving as usual at Agricultural Biodiversity Weblog

As noted earlier there seems to be an ongoing collapse of climate related journalism perhaps due in part to the collapse of energy prices as some predict gasoline prices as low as $1.00 a gallon. Food prices are falling as well but there doesn't yet seem to

Food Deflation at Muck and Mystery : As noted earlier there seems to be an ongoing collapse of climate related journalism perhaps due in part to the collapse of energy prices as some predict gasoline prices as low as $1.00 a gallon. Food prices are falling as well but there doesn't yet seem to

07:59
Go Peter Go! at PharmaGossip

Former Pfizer VP Rost finds support for jobBy Lee HowardPublished on 12/6/2008The Day, CTIf Pfizer Inc. were to describe its worst nightmare, it might very well be seeing former company whistleblower Peter Rost become commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug

Key Congressman Pushes for New Blood at FDA at WSJ.com: Health Blog : Dear Barack, Congrats on the win! While you were out campaigning, I was on Capitol Hill digging into a heap of problems at the FDA. If I learned one thing in the 16 hearings I held, it’s that FDA needs some new leaders. So, Barack, not that you asked