Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Discover Magazine Present THE BRAIN: Part 1
April 14, 2010

I have been anticipating this special edition magazine release since February, and it’s finally here, though I had to search for it at twelve different Hudson Booksellers in airport terminals, and pay a hefty price of eight dollars plus tax. Over the next two weeks, I will highlight each article, many of which are excerpts from newly-released pop neuroscience books that way you don’t have to pay eight dollars and/or be subjected to additional impulse buys. The first article, is an excerpt from Extreme Fear: The Science of Your Mind in Danger by Jeff Wise, which dissects the flight, fright, fight,…..and sex syndrome using a water quality specialist’s confrontation with a mountain lion as a realistic (almost extremely realistic) example.

FREEZE/FRIGHT: Breathing and heart rate slow, deeply-rooted, archaic brain structures lying in or within proximity to the brainstem, the periaqueductal grey, superior colliculus, and amygdala are highly active, facilitating immobility, hyperattentiveness, and threat assessment, respectively. This was when the woman noticed a ravenous mountain lion staring at her a few hundred feet away.

FLIGHT: Epinephrine is immediately and globally released (the beauty of the hormonal response), mobilizing energy, desensitizing oneself to pain, and expediting pre-motor planning. This was when the mountain lion attacked.

FIGHT: Activation of the periaqueductal grey dually promotes aggression and analgesia, optimizing performance during pugilism. This was when the woman stabbed the cat with her surgical-steel hemostat.




Happy 09.09.09!
September 9, 2009

Reporting at 9 PM, it’s 09.09.09.

Day 4 of SLEEP: Circadian Rhythms and Antarctic Adventures
June 12, 2009

Today’s meeting was short, well, because it was the last day of the conference. But, it was equally as awesome. I went to a series of talks today on circadian rhythm disorders in human models. One of the talks studied Antarctic explorers who resided there for months at a time. The bottom line is: even in lieu of intense exercise which promotes sleep, particularly restorative sleep, the extreme schedules of light and dark and temperatures greatly disrupt sleep. Perhaps the associated sleep-related deficits in cognition functioning explain Sarah Palin’s unique personality…..

Broadcasting Live From The West Coast
June 8, 2009

For the next three weeks, I will be residing on the West Coast for two scientific meetings and reunions with college friends. Hopefully soon, pictures will accompany these travels, but in the meantime, I provide random tidbits about and current events within the cities I will be traveling to via Amtrak.

June 6th-June 13th; SLEEP 2009. I will be  presenting data at SLEEP 2009, one of the largest sleep/circadian rhythms meetings in the country. During this time, there will be numerous posts about exciting new research. I would love to send my readers free gifts courtesy of the pharmaceutical companies at the exposition hall, but I’m sorry, postage rates increased and I’m a graduate student. Oh, the meeting is in Seattle and hence, it is called SLEEP in Seattle, hahaha.

June 13th-14th; Eugene, Oregon also known as TrackTown, USA. The city is home to the University of Oregon and the legendary Steve Prefontaine, who was a distance runner for the University of Oregon and popularized the sport in the 1970s. His coach, Bill Bowerman, made his spikes from a waffle iron, and within time, started his own running shoe company; Nike. I brought my track spikes just to run on the track, Hayward Field, because this is where the Olympic Trials are held and subsequently, where many American and world records have been broken. Yes, I will be in track heaven.

June 15th-16th; San Francisco. While flying to Chicago Midway, I learned that the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon will take place the day after I arrive. It’s a grueling 1.5 mile swim adjacent to Alcatraz in the treacherous waters of the San Francisco Bay, followed by an 18 mile bike ride and an 8 mile run. Sweet. In the meantime, I hope to visit the de Young Museum and see the traveling exhibit of artifacts recovered from King Tut’s tomb.

June 17th-19th; Hollywood. This journey is particularly anticipated because I see a replicated model of the Chinese Theater and Hollywood Blvd every year when my family and/or friends and I visit MGM Studios in Walt Disney World. Even more awesome, my mom’s friend’s son is establishing himself as an actor and stunt man there. He’s played minor roles in Indiana Jones: Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (horrible movie) and Ironman (fracking awesome movie), and has just found someone to buy his movie script; Scalpel. Perhaps, I will have a non-Disney version tour of the Backstage Lot afterall.

June 19th-June 25th; San Diego. I will be present even more, but different data at the Research Society on Alcoholism in between surfing (!!!) and running a 5K, which I have yet to train for…

Until more love from the West Coast, I leave you with my only and favorite moment of the West Coast thus far; Tupac’s 1995 California Love music video.

Come see me speak!
February 10, 2009

Tomorrow morning, I will be presenting my dissertation work at University Hospital, near Case Western. It begins at 7: 30 AM. I attach the flyer.