Study Looks at Delirium Outcome and Do Flies See in Slow Motion? News Round-Up October 2013 1st Edition (Updated 12.10.13)

Researchers have developed three tracer compounds to help image the pathology in Alzheimer’s Disease. Thee are two write-ups of the studies (here and here) which discuss PBB3, THK’s and a third compound. With the PBB3 tau ligand the researchers suggest that it will bind many forms of tau aggregate that occur in different diseases including Frontotemporal Dementia.

In this Finnish study a healthy diet which included vegetables and fruits was associated with less Depression. 2000 men were followed up for 13-20 years.

Researchers in this study looked at people over the age of 65 with Dementia who developed Delirium while in hospital and found 25% mortality over 30 days. However there were 139 subjects in the study and it will be useful to see further replication studies.

In this study, automated calls to go to clinic for a blood pressure check were linked to better controlled Hypertension (n=64773).

Researchers in this study found that after watching videos of experience narratives, patients were more confident in the decisions they made.

A PLOS One study shows that e-readers set to show a few words per line can facilitate reading in some people with Dyslexia.


brain.1In a PLOS One paper, researchers suggest a new taxonomy of smell with 10 types.

Do flies see in slow motion? Researchers in this study found evidence for this and the general conclusion that smaller species see events more slowly. The researchers suggest a phenomenon known as critical flicker fusion frequency may account for this and therefore relates specifically to the perception of time. There is a write-up here as well.

The researchers in this study suggests on the basis of their findings that fingers can sense tiny structures with 760 nanometre grooves with 13 nanometer amplitude.

The SIRP-Alpha protein may be involved in forming memories as well as protecting against an autoimmune response. In this study, researchers found that when two neurons communicated with each other frequently, the SIRP protein would be released in increasing quantities.

Computer science Professor hypothesises that online browsing leads to ‘information overload‘. However this hypothesis needs to be tested against the data as the contradictory hypothesis that online browsing does not lead to information overload can also be stated.

Age at fatherhood was correlated with likelihood of autism in the second generation in this study.

A brain fertility switch was clarified in this study in which Kisspeptin-Gpr54 acts on Gonadotrophin releasing hormone neurons.

Evolutionary Psychiatry, Evolution & Culture

Neanderthaler_FundResearchers have found evidence of hominins in Kent hunting giant elephants with stone tools approximately 420,000 years ago (interestingly there were also Barbary Macaque specimens there also). The stone tools were of the Clactonian type so called because tools of this type were first found in Clacton-on-sea in Essex, UK although the species responsible is unclear and suggested as Homo Erectus*. In the layers above these specimens were tools of the Acheulian type and it was not clear if there had been a transition between the two cultures. In Indonesia meanwhile other researchers have found evidence that hominins were hunting a relative of the modern elephant with stones. This relative was known as Stegodon.

Mysteries of the 400 million year old fish that came back – the Coelacanth. There are estimated to be only a few hundred in existence. Researchers analysing several specimens have determined the parentage and some generalisations.

* If we look at the Acheulian period then this is associated with Swanscombe woman (from the Hoxnian Interglacial 300 KYA) who is typically thought of as Homo Heidelbergensis, preceding Neanderthals. Nevertheless Homo Heidelbergensis specimens in Spain were recently reclassified by Professor Chris Stringer as Neanderthals. However this is all theoretical as the Acheulian and Clactonian cultures have been described as distinct e.g. the former exhibiting bifacial hand axes.


News Round-Up 2008-2011

News Round-Up 2012

Index: There are indices for the TAWOP site here and here Twitter: You can follow ‘The Amazing World of Psychiatry’ Twitter by clicking on this link. Podcast: You can listen to this post on Odiogo by clicking on this link (there may be a small delay between publishing of the blog article and the availability of the podcast). It is available for a limited period. TAWOP Channel: You can follow the TAWOP Channel on YouTube by clicking on this link. Responses: If you have any comments, you can leave them below or alternatively e-mail Disclaimer: The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.

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