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Gavin Hubbard
895 followers -
Beard enthusiast
Beard enthusiast

895 followers
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'Bone eating snot flowers' confirmed to have dined on the bones of fallen marine reptiles from about 252 - 66 million years ago.

As illustrated by the excellent Gareth Monger.

My friend Gareth illustrated just this for a blog post I did back in 2013, when it was far more speculative, but now new research has it confirmed. The same creatures that 'drill' into whale bones at the bottom of the ocean to feast on their nutrients also did the same for marine reptiles.

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Pitch for a Guide to the Bacteria and Archaea:

https://coastalpathogens.wordpress.com/2015/01/22/pitch-a-guide-to-the-bacteria-and-archaea/

A friend wants to make a book, can you help make it happen? 

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When you think about treating cancer, the herpes virus is probably not the first thing you'd consider. Yet it turns out that that is exactly what a number of researchers are doing.

The trick is finding, or making, a virus which can infect tumour cells while leaving normal 'healthy' cells alone. Sounds hard, but it's not impossible.

But there are problems. For example, the immune system is primed to tackle viruses, it doesn't know the viruses intent and always assumes it's nefarious. Also, keeping the virus where it's needed could be a problem, and that's what the researchers this blog post looks at tried to solve.

http://2bscientific.wordpress.com/2014/05/30/herpes-on-the-brain-could-be-a-good-thing/

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When you think about treating cancer, herpes is probably not the first thing you'd think about. Yet it turns out that that is exactly what a number of researchers are doing.

The trick is finding, or making, a virus which can infect tumour cells while leaving normal 'healthy' cells alone. Sounds hard but it's not impossible. Though there are still problems. For example, the immune system is primed to tackle viruses, it doesn't know the viruses intent and always assumes it's nefarious. Also, keeping the virus where it's needed could be a problem, and thats what the researchers this blog post looks at tried to solve.

http://2bscientific.wordpress.com/2014/05/30/herpes-on-the-brain-could-be-a-good-thing/

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When it comes to viruses like flu, we have very few weapons. Vaccines take time to create and, in the event of a new strain of flu burning through a population, we have very few drugs. And the effectiveness of the drugs we do have looks somewhat questionable at the moment.... This blog post looks at a paper which examined how flu and its host interact on a molecular level. They found a molecule -- called 'NS1' -- which drugs (if we can find them) may be able to target in the future and stop flu infections, and therefore epidemics, in their tracks.

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When it comes to viruses like flu, we have very few weapons. Vaccines take time to create and, in the event of a new strain of flu burning through a population, we have very few drugs. And the effectiveness of the drugs we do have looks somewhat questionable at the moment.... This blog post looks at a paper which examined how flu and its host interact on a molecular level. They found a molecule -- called 'NS1' -- which drugs (if we can find them) may be able to target in the future and stop flu infections, and therefore epidemics, in their tracks.

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Came across this and thought some here might find it interesting:

"Most scientists agree that interacting with the public is a worthwhile endeavor, but participation in science outreach remains fairly low among biologists. Furthermore, current practices in science outreach remain largely based on ineffective communication models that may undermine public trust and interest. I argue that, in trying to improve both participation rates and the effectiveness of science outreach, we must take a more scientific approach, and we must practice outreach with the same rigor as the science that we share with the public. Here, I describe common misconceptions that can undermine the value of science communication with the public at many scales. I then describe an evidence-based, iterative, evaluative framework for biologists at all career stages to pursue public engagement in the biological sciences. These guidelines can also inform formal outreach training for scientists, specifically in promoting dialogue and engagement."

http://bioscience.oxfordjournals.org/content/64/4/333.abstract

Non-immaculate perception: "Around 0.5% of women consistently affirmed their status as virgins and did not use assisted reproductive technology, yet reported virgin births."

Also, an interesting bit about “born again virgins”.

http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f7102

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Does public engagement really work? 

"We conclude that public engagement through tailored lectures can have significant impact in the moderate term with the potential to leave a lasting impression over a longer period." 

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0080928

I came across this earlier this morning, and, again, thought some of this community might find it interesting

This paper is based on the Royal Institution Christmas lecture, given by Bruce Hood in 2011. Here's the lecture too, if you're interested: http://richannel.org/christmas-lectures/2011/meet-your-brain

I've always loved the Christmas lectures...
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