Thursday, December 23, 2004
Depression as a Risk Factor for Mortality in Patients With Coronary Heart Disease: A Meta-analysis -- Barth et al. 66 (6): 802 -- Psychosomatic Medicine: "Depressive symptoms increase the risk of mortality in CHD patients. The risk of depressed patients dying in the 2 years after the initial assessment is two times higher than that of nondepressed patients (OR, 2.24; 1.37 3.60). This negative prognostic effect also remains in the long-term (OR, 1.78; 1.12 2.83) and after adjustment for other risk factors (HR [adj], 1.76; 1.27 2.43). The unfavorable impact of depressive disorders was reported for the most part in the form of crude odds ratios. Within the first 6 months, depressive disorders were found to have no significant effect on mortality (OR, 2.07; CI, 0.82 5.26). However, after 2 years, the risk is more than two times higher for CHD patients with clinical depression (OR, 2.61; 1.53 4.47). Only three studies reported adjusted hazard ratios for clinical depression and supported the results of the bivariate models. CONCLUSIONS: Depressive symptoms and clinical depression have an unfavorable impact on mortality in CHD patients. The results are limited by heterogeneity of the results in the primary studies. There is no clear evidence whether self-report or clinical interview is the more precise predictor. Nevertheless, depression has to be considered a relevant risk factor in patients with CHD. "
Sunday, December 12, 2004
The practical consequences of the emergence of this new field are widely apparent. Identification of the genes responsible for human mendelian diseases, once a herculean task requiring large research teams, many years of hard work, and an uncertain outcome, can now be routinely accomplished in a few weeks by a single graduate student with access to DNA samples and associated phenotypes, an Internet connection to the public genome databases, a thermal cycler and a DNA-sequencing machine. With the recent publication of a draft sequence of the mouse genome11, identification of the mutations underlying a vast number of interesting mouse phenotypes has similarly been greatly simplified. Comparison of the human and mouse sequences shows that the proportion of the mammalian genome under evolutionary selection is more than twice that previously assumed.
When scientists compared the human and mouse genomes, they discovered that more than 90 percent of the mouse genome could be lined up with a region on the human genome.
genome.gov2002 Release The Mouse Genome And The Measure of Man: "Such research will have profound long-term consequences for medicine. It will help elucidate the underlying molecular mechanisms of disease. This in turn will allow researchers to design better drugs and therapies for many illnesses.
'The mouse genome is a great resource for basic and applied medical research, meaning that much of what was done in a lab can now be done through the Web. Researchers can access this information through www.ensembl.org, where all the information is provided with no restriction,' says Ewan Birney, Ph.D., Ensembl coordinator at the European Bioinformatics Institute."
Saturday, November 20, 2004
When viewing their favorite candidate, all showed increased activity in the region implicated in empathy. And when viewing the opposition, all had increased blood flow in the region where humans consciously assert control over emotions � suggesting the volunteers were actively attempting to dislike the opposition.
Nonetheless, some differences appeared between the brain activity of Democrats and Republicans. Take empathy: One Democrat's brain lit up at an image of Kerry 'with a profound sense of connection, like a beautiful sunset,' Freedman said. Brain activity in a Republican shown an image of Bush was 'more interpersonal, such as if you smiled at someone and they smiled back.'"
Wired News: Clear Pictures of How We Think: "functional magnetic-resonance imaging, or fMRI.
This technique allows the measurement of the level of oxygen in the blood, and tells scientists which parts of the brain are most active. It can show, for example, the parts of the brain that operate when we fall in love and when we have food cravings. It has even recently revealed the differences in the brains of Democrats and Republicans.
But the technique also holds out the promise of answering deep questions about our most cherished human characteristics. For example, do we have an inbuilt moral sense, or do we learn what is right and wrong as we grow up? And which is stronger: emotions or logic?
Before fMRI, information about the parts of the brain involved in different tasks could only be gathered by studying people who had suffered brain damage from trauma or stroke, and seeing how their brain function changed. Now, the brains of healthy people can be scanned as they are given different tasks.
'fMRI has provided striking evidence in favor of some theories and against others,' said Joshua Greene, of Princeton University's Department of Psychology. 'But I don't think the real payoff has hit yet. That will come when we have successful computational theories of complex decision-making, ones that describe decision-making at the level of neural circuits.'
Greene, together with Jonathan Cohen, professor of psychology at Princeton, is using fMRI to look at the factors that influence moral judgment. "
Friday, November 19, 2004
The results suggest miR-375 as a possible new avenue for diabetes treatment, according to lead author Markus Stoffel, from Rockefeller University in New York. Of possibly greater immediate significance is a growing belief that microRNAs play other important roles in the pancreas, he said.
'We took an unbiased approach and cloned all of the microRNAs from a pancreatic beta cell line,' Stoffel told The Scientist. His group found more than 60, including novel ones that are highly specific to beta cells, some of which had only previously been described in the central nervous system."
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Sunday, November 07, 2004
Symmetry breaking and genetic assimilation
How do evolutionary novelties arise? The conventional explanation is that the first step is the chance formation of a genetic mutation, which results in a new phenotype, which, if it is favored by selection, may be fixed in a population. No one sensible can seriously argue with this idea�it happens. I�m not going to argue with it at all.
However, there are also additional mechanisms for generating novelties, mechanisms that extend the power of evolutionary biology without contradicting our conventional understanding of it. A paper by A. Richard Palmer in Science describes the evidence for an alternative mode of evolution, genetic assimilation, that can be easily read as a radical, non-Darwinian, and even Lamarckian pattern of evolution (Sennoma at Malice Aforethought has expressed concern about this), but it is nothing of the kind; there is no hocus-pocus, no violation of the Weissmann barrier, no sudden, unexplained leaps of cause-and-effect. Comprehending it only requires a proper appreciation of the importance of environmental influences on development and an understanding that the genome does not constitute a descriptive program of the organism."
Tuesday, November 02, 2004
The proposed research will utilize these techniques on a very refined sample to demonstrate how easily the consciousness of humans can change their own DNA. This direct application will open the door for more direct control and development of specific techniques for creating desired genetic modifications.
Brigham and Women's Division of Genetics - Sunyaev Lab: "Lab: Research Interests
We are a computational biology laboratory. We develop and apply computational methods to pursue various problems in fields of genetics, genomics and proteomics. Our main interest is to analyse the population genetic variation and the genome divergence between species with the major focus on the protein coding regions. The effect of amino acid substitutions on function and structure of proteins can be frequently understood and even predicted via comparative sequence analysis and analysis of the protein structure. We relate the above functional studies to the evolutionary process of natural selection in order to track the evolution of proteins at the molecular level. Large-scale statistical approaches are suitable to study the way new mutations, genetic drift and natural selection shape the population genetic variation and how this variation once becomes a species divergence. The results of structural and evolutionary studies can be further applied to the data on human genetic polymorphisms with the goal to understand the complex mechanisms of inheritance and most importantly the genetic basis of human multifactorial diseases.
Our future effort will be directed towards the development of methods to extract knowledge on functionality and evolution from the novel massive data on closely related genomes and population genetic variants. We are hoping to reveal epistatic interactions between allelic variants and understand their molecular basis, thus getting closer to the understanding of the interplay of genetic variants to give rise to phenotypes. We are planning to utilise the knowledge gained to study the data on genotypes of patients suffering from common complex disorders through the established collaborations with groups involved in large medical genetics research projects. "
Thursday, October 28, 2004
University of California Berkeley
Date: Monday April 12
Place: Engineering 1, 2114
I discuss two probabilistic modeling problems arising in metazoan genomic analysis: identifying motifs and cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) from transcriptional regulatory DNA sequences, and inferring haplotypes from genotypes of single nucleotide polymorphisms. Motif and CRM identification is important for understanding the gene regulatory network underlying metazoan development and functioning. I discuss a modular Bayesian model that captures rich structural characteristics of the transcriptional regulatory sequences and supports a variety of tasks such as learning motif representations, model-based motif and CRM prediction, and de novo motif detection. Haplotype inference is essential for the understanding of genetic variation within and among populations, with important applications to the genetic analysis of disease propensities and other complex traits. I discuss a Bayesian model based on a prior constructed from a Chinese restaurant process -- a nonparametric prior which provides control over the size of the unknown pool of population haplotypes, and on a likelihood that allows statistical errors in the haplotype/genotype relationship. Our models use the 'probabilistic graphical model' formalism, a formalism that exploits the conjoined talents of graph theory and probability theory to build complex models out of simpler pieces. I discuss the mathematical underpinnings for the models, how they formally incorporate biological prior knowledge about the data, and the related computational issues.
Eric Xing received his B.S. with honors in Physics and Biology from Tsinghua University, his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry "
Friday, October 22, 2004
decided to begin supporting biomedical research, he convened experts from six of the country's top medical institutions to suggest the most effective way he could help. Together, the institutions - including the University of Michigan - identified a problem in research funding: because so many scientists are competing for limited grant dollars, most grants go to 'safe' research projects, where success is almost certain. Researchers who come with creative ideas and new ways of thinking often have trouble finding support.
So Wilson established his Ralph C. Wilson Sr. and Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Medical Foundation with a mission of funding innovative research by the nation's top biomedical scientists.
Though they have only been in existence since 2001, Wilson Foundation grants carry enormous weight and prestige. Only six institutions are even eligible to apply, with the U-M among this select group. What's more, only the top researchers and most creative projects at those institutions pass the rigorous peer review process. At each institution, only one to three projects receive funding annually.
One of the U-M's four researchers receiving funding is Dr. Daniel Goldman, a professor of biological chemistry and senior research professor, who is 'almost bursting' with excitement over his Wilson-funded research. Dr. Daniel Goldman works with zebrafish in his lab.Dr. Goldman explores new ways of repairing damage to the central nervous system, such as from strokes or spinal cord injuries. Fish, unlike humans, can recover from similar injuries and regenerate their nervous systems. Studying a lab full of zebrafish, Dr. Goldman hopes he is on the trail of information that could revolutionize treatments for stroke, pa"
Wednesday, October 13, 2004
Monday, October 11, 2004
Opponents of ID, who include the overwhelming majority of the scientific community, claim that this argument is deceptive and has no standing as a scientific hypothesis, i.e. it is considered pseudoscience. They say that ID does not present falsifiable hypotheses, and violates the principle of naturalism within scientific philosophy. They also point to examples of seemingly poor design within biology."
Sunday, October 10, 2004
Symbiosis - Wikipedia:
Editing Talk:Quantum consciousness - Edit this page - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
About Wikimedia - Wikimedia Foundation
Saturday, October 09, 2004
- EVOLUTION: Change in the genetic composition of a population during successive generations, as a result of natural selection acting on the genetic variation among individuals, and resulting in the development of new species.
- PHYLOGENY: a theory that the various types of animals and plants have their origin in other preexisting types and that the distinguishable differences are due to modifications in successive generations.
- DEVELOPMENT: The natural progression from a previous, simpler, or embryonic stage to a later, more complex, or adult stage ; gradual advancement or growth through a series of progressive changes; the doctrine that animals and plants possess the power of passing by slow and successive stages from a lower to a higher state of organization.
- DNA CONSIOUSNESS THEORY
Several features of human consciousness persistently elude scientific explanation.
- Consciousness represents the most advanced natural process of the Earth.
- The DNA Spiral represents the evolution of consciousness. The single level of consciousness of this Earth is called evolution, and the growth of life.
- The Helix of DNA is the record of the evolution cycle for the creation of man.
- Consciousness is all connected.
- We share this conscious form with creation.
- As my consciousness evolves, this is represented in my DNA.
- The DNA in my body can be controlled by my thoughts.
- My thought can change my DNA.
- Evolution I’ve created will appear in all the new babies born.
- Creation has evolved to bring me to know this.
- The Knowing this is Creating it.
The test is to take a picture of my DNA now, determine some neat fix for some disease not in there yet, and explain it to me!
- Take general sample, define existing DNA standards
- Identify a measurable change
- Create a graphic representation
- Learn the change
- Take new general sample.... verify changes.
Identify the changes done already and check the children who all have it and your own DNA that doesn’t have it.
- Take sample of DNA
- Compare to peers sample
- Compare the children’s samples.... current sample will more closely match children’s instead of peers