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2013 Ig Nobel Prize Winners Announced

The 2013 Ig Nobel Prize winners were announced and awarded on September 12, 2013, at the Ig Nobel Ceremony. The event was webcast live.

MEDICINE PRIZE: Masateru Uchiyama [JAPAN], Xiangyuan Jin [CHINA, JAPAN], Qi Zhang [JAPAN], Toshihito Hirai [JAPAN], Atsushi Amano [JAPAN], Hisashi Bashuda [JAPAN] and Masanori Niimi [JAPAN, UK], for assessing the effect of listening to opera, on heart transplant patients who are mice.

REFERENCE: Auditory stimulation of opera music induced prolongation of murine cardiac allograft survival and maintained generation of regulatory CD4+CD25+ cells, Masateru Uchiyama, Xiangyuan Jin, Qi Zhang, Toshihito Hirai, Atsushi Amano, Hisashi Bashuda and Masanori Niimi, Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery, vol. 7, no. 26, epub. March 23, 2012.

PSYCHOLOGY PRIZE: Laurent Bgue [FRANCE], Brad Bushman [USA, UK, the NETHERLANDS, POLAND], Oulmann Zerhouni [FRANCE], Baptiste Subra [FRANCE], and Medhi Ourabah [FRANCE], for confirming, by experiment, that people who think they are drunk also think they are attractive.

REFERENCE: 'Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beer Holder': People Who Think They Are Drunk Also Think They Are Attractive, Laurent Bgue, Brad J. Bushman, Oulmann Zerhouni, Baptiste Subra, Medhi Ourabah, British Journal of Psychology, epub May 15, 2012.

JOINT PRIZE IN BIOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY: Marie Dacke [SWEDEN, AUSTRALIA], Emily Baird [SWEDEN, AUSTRALIA, GERMANY], Marcus Byrne [SOUTH AFRICA, UK], Clarke Scholtz [SOUTH AFRICA], and Eric J. Warrant [SWEDEN, AUSTRALIA, GERMANY], for discovering that when dung beetles get lost, they can navigate their way home by looking at the Milky Way.

REFERENCE: Dung Beetles Use the Milky Way for Orientation, Marie Dacke, Emily Baird, Marcus Byrne, Clarke H. Scholtz, Eric J. Warrant, Current Biology, epub January 24, 2013. The authors, at Lund University, Sweden, the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa, and the University of Pretoria.

SAFETY ENGINEERING PRIZE: The late Gustano Pizzo [USA], for inventing an electro-mechanical system to trap airplane hijackers - the system drops a hijacker through trap doors, seals him into a package, then drops the encapsulated hijacker through the airplane's specially-installed bomb bay doors, whence he parachutes to earth, where police, having been alerted by radio, await his arrival.

US Patent #3811643, Gustano A. Pizzo, "Anti hijacking system for aircraft," May 21, 1972.

PHYSICS PRIZE: Alberto Minetti [ITALY, UK, DENMARK, SWITZERLAND], Yuri Ivanenko [ITALY, RUSSIA, FRANCE], Germana Cappellini [ITALY], Nadia Dominici [ITALY, SWITZERLAND], and Francesco Lacquaniti [ITALY], for discovering that some people would be physically capable of running across the surface of a pond - if those people and that pond were on the moon.

REFERENCE: Humans Running in Place on Water at Simulated Reduced Gravity, Alberto E. Minetti, Yuri P. Ivanenko, Germana Cappellini, Nadia Dominici, Francesco Lacquaniti, PLoS ONE, vol. 7, no. 7, 2012, e37300.

CHEMISTRY PRIZE: Shinsuke Imai [JAPAN], Nobuaki Tsuge [JAPAN], Muneaki Tomotake [JAPAN], Yoshiaki Nagatome [JAPAN], Toshiyuki Nagata [JAPAN, GERMANY], and Hidehiko Kumgai [JAPAN], for discovering that the biochemical process by which onions make people cry is even more complicated than scientists previously realized.

REFERENCE: Plant Biochemistry: An Onion Enzyme that Makes the Eyes Water, S. Imai, N. Tsuge, M. Tomotake, Y. Nagatome, H. Sawada, T. Nagata and H. Kumagai, Nature, vol. 419, no. 6908, October 2002, p. 685.

ARCHAEOLOGY PRIZE: Brian Crandall [USA] and Peter Stahl [CANADA, USA], for parboiling a dead shrew, and then swallowing the shrew without chewing, and then carefully examining everything excreted during subsequent days - all so they could see which bones would dissolve inside the human digestive system, and which bones would not.

REFERENCE: Human Digestive Effects on a Micromammalian Skeleton, Peter W. Stahl and Brian D. Crandall, Journal of Archaeological Science, vol. 22, November 1995, pp. 789?97.

PEACE PRIZE: Alexander Lukashenko, president of Belarus, for making it illegal to applaud in public, AND to the Belarus State Police, for arresting a one-armed man for applauding.

PROBABILITY PRIZE: Bert Tolkamp [UK, the NETHERLANDS], Marie Haskell [UK], Fritha Langford [UK, CANADA], David Roberts [UK], and Colin Morgan [UK], for making two related discoveries: First, that the longer a cow has been lying down, the more likely that cow will soon stand up; and Second, that once a cow stands up, you cannot easily predict how soon that cow will lie down again.

REFERENCE: Are Cows More Likely to Lie Down the Longer They Stand? Bert J. Tolkamp, Marie J. Haskell, Fritha M. Langford, David J. Roberts, Colin A. Morgan, Applied Animal Behaviour Science, vol. 124, nos. 1-2, 2010, pp. 1?10.

PUBLIC HEALTH PRIZE: Kasian Bhanganada, Tu Chayavatana, Chumporn Pongnumkul, Anunt Tonmukayakul, Piyasakol Sakolsatayadorn, Krit Komaratal, and Henry Wilde, for the medical techniques described in their report "Surgical Management of an Epidemic of Penile Amputations in Siam" - techniques which they recommend, except in cases where the amputated penis had been partially eaten by a duck. [THAILAND]

REFERENCE: Surgical Management of an Epidemic of Penile Amputations in Siam, by Kasian Bhanganada, Tu Chayavatana, Chumporn Pongnumkul, Anunt Tonmukayakul, Piyasakol Sakolsatayadorn, Krit Komaratal, and Henry Wilde, American Journal of Surgery, 1983, no. 146, pp. 376-382.

Sep 23, 2013 | Categories: News | msholinb

PeerJ memberships now sponsored by UCB Libraries

PeerJ

The Fong Optometry and Health Sciences Library and the Koshland Bioscience & Natural Resources Library are now sponsoring basic lifetime memberships for Berkeley researchers to PeerJ, a peer-reviewed open access biological, medical and health sciences journal. When an article has been accepted for publication in PeerJ, the basic lifetime membership fees for all Berkeley authors will be paid automatically by the Libraries.

For more information, please see:

This was originally posted in the Science & Engineering Libraries News blog

Sep 17, 2013 | Categories: Events and Workshops | msholinb

Does childhood lead exposure cause violence in adulthood?

I recently came across this article: The urban rise and fall of air lead (Pb) and the latent surge and retreat of societal violence. In it, the authors evaluate air lead levels and latent aggravated assault behavior at a city scale for 6 US cities.They conclude that, "a 1% increase in tonnages of air Pb released 22 years prior raises the present period aggravated assault rate by 0.46%." They quote from research that shows that exposure to lead alters neurotransmitter and hormonal systems and may thereby generate aggressive and violent behavior, especially impulsive violence.

What do you think?

Sep 13, 2013 | Categories: News | msholinb

Interested in disseminating a public health innovation, program or research finding?

Looking for a tool to that can help?

The six-step Dissemination Planning Tool guides the reader through the creation of a dissemination plan. With prompting questions and tables, this easy-to-use handbook helps identify relevant issues needed to develop a comprehensive dissemination workplan.

The guidelines provided in this tool can be used to support the dissemination of public health innovations. The tool is designed to help users think about the processes they would use to disseminate findings or products so that they have "real world" impact in practice.

This planning tool was developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a division of the Department of Health and Human Services. More details available on the AHRQ Advances in Patient Safety: From Research to Implementation website.

Aug 22, 2013 | Categories: New Resources, Tips and Updates | msholinb

How Does Work Affect the Health of the U.S. Population? Free Data from the 2010 NHIS-OHS Provides the Answers

from the CDC NIOSH Science Blog

You may have some hypotheses about how work affects the health of the U.S. population, but collecting data from a nationally representative sample is expensive and time-consuming. What if there was free data available at your fingertips? You're in luck!
NIOSH sponsored an Occupational Health Supplement (OHS) to the 2010 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), and the data is publicly available. See the NIOSH Topic Page for more information. Over 17 thousand current and recent U.S. workers supplied information on their industry, occupation, and workplace health conditions and exposures.

More information is on the original post: http://blogs.cdc.gov/niosh-science-blog/2013/06/24/nhis/.

Aug 22, 2013 | Categories: News, New Resources | msholinb

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