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information technology [keywords]
- High Incorrect Use of the Standard Error of the Mean (SEM) in Original Articles in Three Cardiovascular Journals Evaluated for 2012. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- PLoS One 2014; 9(10):e110364.
In biomedical journals authors sometimes use the standard error of the mean (SEM) for data description, which has been called inappropriate or incorrect.To assess the frequency of incorrect use of SEM in articles in three selected cardiovascular journals.All original journal articles published in 2012 in Cardiovascular Research, Circulation: Heart Failure and Circulation Research were assessed by two assessors for inappropriate use of SEM when providing descriptive information of empirical data. We also assessed whether the authors state in the methods section that the SEM will be used for data description. Of 441 articles included in this survey, 64% (282 articles) contained at least one instance of incorrect use of the SEM, with two journals having a prevalence above 70% and "Circulation: Heart Failure" having the lowest value (27%). In 81% of articles with incorrect use of SEM, the authors had explicitly stated that they use the SEM for data description and in 89% SEM bars were also used instead of 95% confidence intervals. Basic science studies had a 7.4-fold higher level of inappropriate SEM use (74%) than clinical studies (10%).The selection of the three cardiovascular journals was based on a subjective initial impression of observing inappropriate SEM use. The observed results are not representative for all cardiovascular journals.In three selected cardiovascular journals we found a high level of inappropriate SEM use and explicit methods statements to use it for data description, especially in basic science studies. To improve on this situation, these and other journals should provide clear instructions to authors on how to report descriptive information of empirical data.
- Gender on the Brain: A Case Study of Science Communication in the New Media Environment. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- PLoS One 2014; 9(10):e110830.
Neuroscience research on sex difference is currently a controversial field, frequently accused of purveying a 'neurosexism' that functions to naturalise gender inequalities. However, there has been little empirical investigation of how information about neurobiological sex difference is interpreted within wider society. This paper presents a case study that tracks the journey of one high-profile study of neurobiological sex differences from its scientific publication through various layers of the public domain. A content analysis was performed to ascertain how the study was represented in five domains of communication: the original scientific article, a press release, the traditional news media, online reader comments and blog entries. Analysis suggested that scientific research on sex difference offers an opportunity to rehearse abiding cultural understandings of gender. In both scientific and popular contexts, traditional gender stereotypes were projected onto the novel scientific information, which was harnessed to demonstrate the factual truth and normative legitimacy of these beliefs. Though strains of misogyny were evident within the readers' comments, most discussion of the study took pains to portray the sexes' unique abilities as equal and 'complementary'. However, this content often resembled a form of benevolent sexism, in which praise of women's social-emotional skills compensated for their relegation from more esteemed trait-domains, such as rationality and productivity. The paper suggests that embedding these stereotype patterns in neuroscience may intensify their rhetorical potency by lending them the epistemic authority of science. It argues that the neuroscience of sex difference does not merely reflect, but can actively shape the gender norms of contemporary society.
- Additional morphological information on Dipteropeltis hirundo Calman, 1912, and a description of Dipteropeltis campanaformis n. sp. (Crustacea: Branchiura) from two characiform benthopelagic fish hosts from two Northern rivers of the Brazilian Amazon. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Zootaxa 2014; 3755(2):179-193.
Dipteropeltis is a monotypic genus of the Branchiura and endemic to South America. Twelve specimens of Dipteropeltis sp. and micrographs of a thirteenth specimen were obtained from four institutions. Measurements and light micrographs were taken of all the specimens. The specimens were compared to all known descriptions of D. hirundo and sorted into two groups, those that conformed to the description of D. hirundo; and those that differed morphologically. Two specimens, one from each group¸ were stained with lignin pink and subsequently prepared for Scanning Electron Microscopy. The differences observed in the specimens indicated that a new species exists. Thus, Dipteropeltis campanaformis n. sp. is described from seven specimens collected from two characiform benthopelagic fish species and compared to D. hirundo. Dipteropeltis campanaformis n. sp. differs from D. hirundo in the head shape, the length and shape of the carapace lobes, the membrane composition of the maxillules, the shape of the maxillae, the shape of the mouth, and the shape of the natatory lobes.
- Diversity and Distribution of Freshwater Amphipod Species in Switzerland (Crustacea: Amphipoda). [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- PLoS One 2014; 9(10):e110328.
Amphipods are key organisms in many freshwater systems and contribute substantially to the diversity and functioning of macroinvertebrate communities. Furthermore, they are commonly used as bioindicators and for ecotoxicological tests. For many areas, however, diversity and distribution of amphipods is inadequately known, which limits their use in ecological and ecotoxicological studies and handicaps conservation initiatives. We studied the diversity and distribution of amphipods in Switzerland (Central Europe), covering four major drainage basins, an altitudinal gradient of>2,500 m, and various habitats (rivers, streams, lakes and groundwater). We provide the first provisional checklist and detailed information on the distribution and diversity of all amphipod species from Switzerland. In total, we found 29 amphipod species. This includes 16 native and 13 non-native species, one of the latter (Orchestia cavimana) reported here for the first time for Switzerland. The diversity is compared to neighboring countries. We specifically discuss species of the genus Niphargus, which are often receiving less attention. We also found evidence of an even higher level of hidden diversity, and the potential occurrence of further cryptic species. This diversity reflects the biogeographic past of Switzerland, and suggests that amphipods are ideally suited to address questions on endemism and adaptive radiations, post-glaciation re-colonization and invasion dynamics as well as biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in aquatic systems.
- Multi-Fault Detection of Rolling Element Bearings under Harsh Working Condition Using IMF-Based Adaptive Envelope Order Analysis. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Sensors (Basel) 2014; 14(11):20320-20346.
When operating under harsh condition (e.g., time-varying speed and load, large shocks), the vibration signals of rolling element bearings are always manifested as low signal noise ratio, non-stationary statistical parameters, which cause difficulties for current diagnostic methods. As such, an IMF-based adaptive envelope order analysis (IMF-AEOA) is proposed for bearing fault detection under such conditions. This approach is established through combining the ensemble empirical mode decomposition (EEMD), envelope order tracking and fault sensitive analysis. In this scheme, EEMD provides an effective way to adaptively decompose the raw vibration signal into IMFs with different frequency bands. The envelope order tracking is further employed to transform the envelope of each IMF to angular domain to eliminate the spectral smearing induced by speed variation, which makes the bearing characteristic frequencies more clear and discernible in the envelope order spectrum. Finally, a fault sensitive matrix is established to select the optimal IMF containing the richest diagnostic information for final decision making. The effectiveness of IMF-AEOA is validated by simulated signal and experimental data from locomotive bearings. The result shows that IMF-AEOA could accurately identify both single and multiple faults of bearing even under time-varying rotating speed and large extraneous shocks.
- Motherese by Eye and Ear: Infants Perceive Visual Prosody in Point-Line Displays of Talking Heads. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- PLoS One 2014; 9(10):e111467.
Infant-directed (ID) speech provides exaggerated auditory and visual prosodic cues. Here we investigated if infants were sensitive to the match between the auditory and visual correlates of ID speech prosody. We presented 8-month-old infants with two silent line-joined point-light displays of faces speaking different ID sentences, and a single vocal-only sentence matched to one of the displays. Infants looked longer to the matched than mismatched visual signal when full-spectrum speech was presented; and when the vocal signals contained speech low-pass filtered at 400 Hz. When the visual display was separated into rigid (head only) and non-rigid (face only) motion, the infants looked longer to the visual match in the rigid condition; and to the visual mismatch in the non-rigid condition. Overall, the results suggest 8-month-olds can extract information about the prosodic structure of speech from voice and head kinematics, and are sensitive to their match; and that they are less sensitive to the match between lip and voice information in connected speech.
- Localized nonlinear excitations in diffusive Hindmarsh-Rose neural networks. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys 2014 May; 89(5-1):052919.
We study localized nonlinear excitations in diffusive Hindmarsh-Rose neural networks. We show that the Hindmarsh-Rose model can be reduced to a modified Complex Ginzburg-Landau equation through the application of a perturbation technique. We equally report on the presence of envelop solitons of the nerve impulse in this neural network. From the biological point of view, this result suggests that neurons can participate in a collective processing of information, a relevant part of which is shared over all neurons but not concentrated at the single neuron level. By employing the standard linear stability analysis, the growth rate of the modulational instability is derived as a function of the wave number and systems parameters.
- Synchronization transition in networked chaotic oscillators: The viewpoint from partial synchronization. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys 2014 May; 89(5-1):052908.
Synchronization transition in networks of nonlocally coupled chaotic oscillators is investigated. It is found that in reaching the state of global synchronization the networks can stay in various states of partial synchronization. The stability of the partial synchronization states is analyzed by the method of eigenvalue analysis, in which the important roles of the network topological symmetry on synchronization transition are identified. Moreover, for networks possessing multiple topological symmetries, it is found that the synchronization transition can be divided into different stages, with each stage characterized by a unique synchronous pattern of the oscillators. Synchronization transitions in networks of nonsymmetric topology and nonidentical oscillators are also investigated, where the partial synchronization states, although unstable, are found to be still playing important roles in the transitions.
- Dynamical robustness of coupled heterogeneous oscillators. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys 2014 May; 89(5-1):052906.
We study tolerance of dynamic behavior in networks of coupled heterogeneous oscillators to deterioration of the individual oscillator components. As the deterioration proceeds with reduction in dynamic behavior of the oscillators, an order parameter evaluating the level of global oscillation decreases and then vanishes at a certain critical point. We present a method to analytically derive a general formula for this critical point and an approximate formula for the order parameter in the vicinity of the critical point in networks of coupled Stuart-Landau oscillators. Using the critical point as a measure for dynamical robustness of oscillator networks, we show that the more heterogeneous the oscillator components are, the more robust the oscillatory behavior of the network is to the component deterioration. This property is confirmed also in networks of Morris-Lecar neuron models coupled through electrical synapses. Our approach could provide a useful framework for theoretically understanding the role of population heterogeneity in robustness of biological networks.
- Noise effects on a birhythmic Josephson junction coupled to a resonator. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys 2014 May; 89(5-1):052905.
We study the effect of noise on a Josephson junction that, coupled to a linear RLC resonator, can oscillate at two frequencies. To establish the global stability of the attractors, we estimate the position of the separatrix, essential information to establish the stability of the attractor for this multidimensional system, from the analysis of the mean first passage time. We find that the frequency locked to the resonator is most stable at low bias and less stable at high bias, where the resonator exhibits the largest oscillations. The change in the birhythmic region is dramatic for the effective barrier changes of an order of magnitude and the corresponding lifetime of about seven decades.