Favourite quotes from F1000 recommendations in 2014

Our Faculty write really engaging and interesting articles - here are the best lines from 2014.

Christmas tree of books
Another year, another great set of recommendations from our Faculty Members. To round off 2014 and showcase the brilliant writing of our Faculty, we’ve put together a list of our favourite quotes from F1000 recommendations this year – we hope you enjoy.

From all of us at F1000, we hope you have a fantastic Christmas and a very happy new year! We’ll be back in 2015 with many new updates and features.

“I have seldom felt as stupid as I did after reading this paper.”

Lauri Oksanen on 100,000-year glacial cycles. The long cycle could be due to the impact of the glaciers on the underlying bedrocks.

“Dengue virology is now resorting to the arts of alchemy”.

How to transform a dengue-3 virus into dengue-4. Scott Halstead highlights a study that could have implications for vaccine design.

“Assuming mice tell true stories, pregnant mums may need to eat carrots!”

Barry Rouse reports on experimental studies showing that maternal intake levels of vitamin A during pregnancy have a major effect on postnatal immunocompetence.

“Ever look a horse in the mouth? It’s a good idea … to assess the hedonic palatability or ‘liking’ for what the horse is eating.”

Horses’ responses to sweet and bitter tastes are similar to ours, according to Kent Berridge, providing support for the taxonomically widespread expression of hedonic responses to sweet and bitter.

“Beards are so attractive these days. Is it all Hollywood and social media …?”

What makes beards attractive? The fact that they’re rare, apparently, say Bryan Neff and Tim Hain, aka negative frequency-dependent selection.

“This investigation illustrates the microbial equivalent of ’50 ways to leave your lover’…”

Joseph Heitman on abandoning sex: frequent independent losses of sexual potential have occurred in diverse species of Tetrahymena.

“This article makes me want to grab the desk lamp from my office, run to the nearest hood and try the chemistry – today.”

Robert Garbaccio thinks this protocol, a merger of photoredox catalysis and nickel catalysis allowing the direct cross-coupling of sp3-sp2 centres without the need for pre-activated partners, opens up a chemist’s toolbox considerably.

“Caenorhabditis elegans worms can cut themselves in two – and survive!”

Bob Goldstein tells a tale of C. elegans; bacteria can stick them together by the tails, BUT they can self-sever.

“What insights can we learn from studying obesity-related variables as they relate to sexual orientation?”

David Allison reminds us that when we study outside of the usual range of our observations, we often learn new things. Studying persons of diverse sexual orientations is important for delivering the best health information and care possible.

“Physics is the alphabet, chemistry is the dictionary, biology is literature.”

Nando Boero‘s take on the article “A theoretical physicist’s journey into biology: from quarks and strings to cells and whales.

“Baldies reading this may get quite excited but, unfortunately, this approach is not going to work for androgenic alopecia (or male pattern baldness) … perhaps good news for their partners who find their bald-headed men sexy… “

Ali Mobasheri highlights a mouse model of alopecia areata in which hair loss driven by cytotoxic T lymphocytes may be reversed by Janus kinase protein tyrosine kinase inhibition. Three patients achieved near-complete hair regrowth within five months of treatment.

We’ve reserved a section for quotes from Faculty Member David Triggle, who has a special talent for making articles come alive with his quirky writing style!

“We need a new discipline – perhaps termed ‘Zombie Pharmacology’ – offering potential for new neuroactive drugs.”

Talking on a study in which fungal parasites manipulate ant brains to control behavior, David Triggle further comments, “parasites have been aptly referred to as ‘evolution’s neurobiologists’ – high praise indeed!”

“Will “bacteria-a-day”, as the 21st century equivalent of “an apple a day”, keep the doctor and the weight away?”

A study in which bacteria engineered to secrete anorexigenic lipids were shown to reduce murine obesity. David says, “Given that diet, drug and exercise regimes for obese humans have not proven to be very effective, a microbiome-based approach may be a real alternative.”

“Dr Spock’s vocal gesture “live long and prosper” and suffer no pain would appear to be a recipe for a good life. At least it appears so for mice – and perhaps for humans too.”

Mice lacking capsaicin receptors (TRPV1 pain receptors) not only show impaired nociception but also increased longevity, living 15% longer than control mice, and a more youthful profile.

“You smell like a goat” is not a turn on for human beings but, perhaps not surprisingly, it is for goats.”

A group in Japan have found the magic pheromone molecule that turns on female goats. David comments, “There are fascinating potential implications from this work for human sexual attractiveness.”

“The late Bob Marley once observed that “with good music you feel no pain”. However, many people with or without good music do feel pain and pain constitutes a major public health problem.”

David Triggle on the mechanisms of pain sensitivity. There may be link between epigenetic DNA methylation and differential pain sensitivity. This could lead to potential clues to better clinical control of pain and the possible role of epigenetics in the abuse of pain medications.

Here’s to more great writing and recommended articles in 2015!

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F1000 Specialist of the Year 2014

This is a cross-post from F1000Research, written by Eva Amsen.

Specialist badge

For the past few weeks, the F1000 Outreach Directors have looked at lists of all of your past activities to figure out who deserved to be crowned this year’s F1000 Specialist of the Year.

The decision was much harder than last year because so many of you have done so much this past year! You gave talks at your institutes, brought flyers to conferences, talked to your labmates, sent emails, gave us feedback, tweeted, blogged, and found your own unique ways to spread the word about F1000 and help us develop our products. All our Specialists are amazing, but we wanted to award those that went above and beyond.

We noticed early on that two of our specialists were really excelling, but we couldn’t narrow it down to one final winner. That’s why we decided to ward the 2015 F1000 Specialist of the Year title to two people!

Congratulations to Fiona Russell (King’s College London) and Brandt Wiskur (University of Oklahoma HSC)

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Changing science culture: Nuffield Council on Bioethics

Last week, F1000Research’s managing director, Rebecca Lawrence, attended a meeting with the Nuffield Council on Bioethics to discuss the culture of science research and the drivers behind it. Rebecca represented science publishers, alongside Dame Nancy Rothwell (President and Vice-Chancellor, Uni of Manchester) who represented UK research institutions, and Steven Hill (Head of Research Policy, Higher Education Funding Council for England) who represented funders. Andrew Miller, Chair of the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, hosted the event.

Rebecca summarises the points she made during the meeting in an blog published in LSE Impact, highlighting many of the problems researchers face during the publishing process.

Plant Biology Section Head Ottoline Leyser was also present as Deputy Chair of Council; she chaired the Steering Group for the project. Ottoline has also blogged her thoughts, on the Nuffield Bioethics blog (originally published on The Conversation).

F1000 Publisher Kathleen Wets took some pictures:

Ottoline Leyser

Plant Biology Section Head Ottoline Leyser

Rebecca Lawrence

F1000Research’s Managing director Rebecca Lawrence

Read Nature News’ coverage of the event.

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Mice and museums

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Dame Kay Davies on her lifetime’s work in Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Recently, F1000 Publisher Kathleen Wets visited Dame Kay Davies in Oxford soon after she won the WISE Lifetime Achievement Award. The award celebrated her outstanding career in science, which inspired other women to follow in her footsteps.

In Kathleen’s video, Dame Kay, an F1000 International Advisory Board Member, tells us about her almost 3 decades of work in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a disease of muscle wastage. She was part of a team who, in the early 1980s, were the first people to identify the gene – dystrophin –that causes the disease. She hopes to produce an effective treatment for Duchenne’s, and in fact, has clinical trials in place testing a protein called utrophin in human Duchenne’s sufferers. She describes this as an “amazing time in genetics.”

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Physics is the alphabet, chemistry is the dictionary, biology is literature.

This week's most popular tweets on the @F1000 feed this week, as well as other interesting picks from Twitter.

Our most popular and favourite tweets from Twitter this week. Have a great weekend!

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#F1000Talks: Personalized medicine tweet chat

We'll be hosting another #F1000Talks live chat on Wednesday 3rd December, 1pm EST/6PM GMT. Join us to talk about personalized medicine! We'll be tweeting from @F1000 , using the #F1000Talks hashtag.

SnowflakesNo two snowflakes are the same – and the same goes for humans. We’re a sum of our genetics, our environment and experiences. These play a role in how well we respond to a certain treatment, so it stands to reason that healthcare should be tailored to each individual. Personalized medicine aims to do just that, using molecular analysis such as genome sequencing to tailor treatments to individuals and highlight disease risks with the aim of prevention.

Specific genes and gene mutations warn of a predisposition to a disease. For example, the BRCA1 and -2 genes indicate a high risk of breast cancer. Angelina Jolie’s high profile case brought the issue into the public eye when she took the brave step to sidestep possible cancer by having a double mastectomy. Genetic screening will also indicate whether you will be receptive to certain drugs. The breast cancer drug Trastuzumab (Herclon, Herceptin) will only be given to Her2+ patients, i.e. those who overexpress the HER2/neu receptor. Screening can also tell you whether you are predisposed to type 2 diabetes in later life and, on a lighter note, whether you can smell asparagus in your wee (asparagus anosmia).

At this early stage of its existence, personalized medicine has raised more questions than answers. What are the risks, ethics and costs involved, and how risky is it to hand over your genetic data to the growing number of private companies offering genetic risk screening? Will this affect your health insurance in the future?

This Wednesday 3rd December, join our Personalized Medicine #F1000Talks live chat on Twitter. My special guests Jeffrey Hannah (@J_hannah81) and James Flory (@JamFlo2k) will be discussing these issues and we welcome your participation and questions. Jeff Hannah is an F1000 Associate Faculty Member who works with FM Pengbo Zhou to review the literature. He won an AFM travel grant earlier this year and used the money to attend the Companion Diagnostics Conference at the New York Academy of Sciences at the end of April this year. My second guest, James Flory, is a research fellow at Weill Cornell Medical College’s Department of Healthcare Policy and Research whose research is in epidemiology and comparative effectiveness research on diabetes therapies, with an emphasis on understanding how to personalize which medications to select for which patient.

Join us!
When: Wednesday 3rd December, 1pm EST/6PM GMT
Where: Twitter!
How: We will be tweeting from @F1000 (follow us, and follow our guests!), using the #F1000Talks hashtag.

The live chat will start, as usual, with a 15-minute Q&A session, after which our guests will answer questions from the audience. We look forward to talking personalized medicine with you! In the meantime, check out the personalized medicine recommended papers on F1000!

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Sleep, cleanliness and order in disorder

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Featured F1000Prime Report: developing tools for malaria surveillance.

From this month’s batch of F1000Prime Reports, the peer-reviewed open-access review series on emerging themes in biology and medicine, we thought we’d feature a report dealing with one of the deadliest killers in human history: malaria.

Anopheles stephensi full of blood Credit: Hugh Sturrock. Wellcome Images

Anopheles stephensi full of blood
Credit: Hugh Sturrock. Wellcome Images

In “Research priorities for the development and implementation of serological tools for malaria surveillance“, James Beeson and colleagues take a look the challenges and opportunities facing governments and NGOs in monitoring this complex disease.

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SfN 2014 highlights

So that’s it! SfN is over and done with for another year. We’ve loved meeting all of you who visited our booth, we’ve given away F1000 and F1000Research #SfNswag and we had a fantastic time at #SfNBanter, which we sponsored this year.
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