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A Landmark Study on the Origins of Alcoholism - The Atlantic
That is exactly what the team did next. They compared the alcohol-preferring and sugar-preferring rats and looked for differences in the genes that were active in their brains. They focused on six regions that are thought to be involved in addiction, and found no differences in five. “But in the sixth, we did,” says Heilig. “And it made me smile because I started out doing my Ph.D. on the amygdala.”

The amygdala is an almond-shaped region that sits deep within the brain, and is heavily involved in processing emotions. When Augier looked at the amygdala of alcoholic rats, he found signs of unusually low activity in several genes, all of which are linked to a chemical called GABA.

GABA is a molecular red light: Certain neurons make and release it to stop their neighbors from firing. Once that’s done, the GABA-making neurons use an enzyme called GAT3 to pump the molecule back into themselves, so they can reuse it. But in the amygdala of alcohol-preferring rats, the gene that makes GAT3 is much less active, and makes just half the usual levels of the pump. GABA accumulates around the neighboring neurons, making them abnormally inactive.
science  medical  health  biology  rationalthinker  rational 
yesterday by dstelow
Ecological “law” turns out to just be the result of us fishing | Ars Technica
Mature fish are found deep not because of age, climate, or prey, but because of us.
fish  fishing  ecology  biology  BazQux  from  IFTTT  items  ocean  Pocket 
2 days ago by xer0x
Statistics for Biologists
A collection of articles from the publisher of Nature that discusses statistical issues biologists should be aware of and provides practical advice to improve the statistical rigor and reproducibility of their work.
statistics  biology  article  list  tutorial  blog  learning  omics  science  dash  dashdone 
4 days ago by wwwald
Dinosaurs after "Jurassic Park:" Paleontologists on what’s changed, 25 years later | Newsweek | June 17, 2018
Twenty-five years ago, on June 11, 1993, "Jurassic Park" premiered in theaters across the United States. A whole generation of paleontologists can describe just where they were when they first saw the film and just what it meant to them, including Biology and Geology professor Kristi Curry Rogers who was quoted and pictured in this article.
macnews  Biology  dinosaurs  JurassicPark  paleontology  geology  piper 
5 days ago by macalestercollege
Life after mankind: What animals might look like if humans went extinct -
biology  science  from twitter
6 days ago by rdr

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