Gene Expression

Archives for April, 2008

Want sons? Eat well!

Mother’s Diet Influences Infant Sex: High Energy Intake Linked To Conception Of Sons: …The study shows a clear link between higher energy intake around the time of conception and the birth of sons. The findings may help explain the falling birth-rate of boys in industrialised countries, including the UK and US. The study focused on…

Obama & McCain & Clinton on autism

Seems like both the Republican nominee and the likely Democratic nominee entertain the autism and vaccination “hypothesis”. I don’t follow politics very closely, this sort of comment really disturbs me…. Via TNR. Update: And Clinton too. Update II: Insolence & Aetiology have more.

Drugs that make you smart?

A follow up to the scientists & drugs topic, Wired‘s current issue is devoted to cranking up your intelligence. Most of the advice is kind of kooky, but there is a neat chart of mind-amping drugs if you are so inclined.

What L. L. Cavalli-Sforza got wrong?

History and Geography of Human Genes is one of my favorite books; it might rank up there in my “top 10″ if I ever wished to enumerate one. But in both Human Evolutionary Genetics, a textbook, and A Genetic and Cultural Odyssey, a biography of L. L. Cavalli-Sforza, it was noted that the PCA maps…

Vitamin D deficiency makes you dumb?

Vitamin D Important In Brain Development And Function: McCann & Ames point out that evidence for vitamin D’s involvement in brain function includes the wide distribution of vitamin D receptors throughout the brain. They also discuss vitamin D’s ability to affect proteins in the brain known to be directly involved in learning and memory, motor…

Racial differences & heart attacks

If you don’t like the word “racial,” just substitute “population.” In any case, Many African-Americans Have A Gene That Prolongs Life After Heart Failure: About 40 percent of African-Americans have a genetic variant that can protect them after heart failure and prolong their lives, according to research conducted at Washington University School of Medicine in…

Expelled, success or not?

Chris Mooney is claiming Expelled is a box office success. Documentaries don’t make a very big splash typically, but whatever you think about the impact of Expelled, the fact that Fahrenheit 9/11 will go down as a much bigger success illustrates the contrast between depth and breadth of feeling from their respective audiences. Michael Moore’s…

Massimo Pigliucci gets married?

Massimo Pigliucci‘s wedding profiled in The New York Times… (did a double-take when I saw that on the front page…but it’s for real)

Expelled was OK…

…as a piece of propaganda. I noticed that the local “art house” theater was screening Expelled, so I decided to check it out. There weren’t many people there. It started off very heavy-handed, a montage of archetypical scenes from the Communist and Nazi regimes, but the production values & execution of the first half of…

Americans are good at murder?

Some debate below about the various parameters which shape social pathologies. One of facts which we are well aware of is that the United States has a lot of homicide compared to other developed countries. But another fact which is also well known is that a disproportionate number of these murders are committed by racial…