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Psychological Test and Assessment Modeling (formerly Psychologische Beiträge) appeared with the Special Topic "Identifying effective learning environments", Part 1. "Environmental influences can be wide-ranging; studies in this area vary from understanding differences between systems of development and global policies regarding instruction to the manipulation of specific variables in training/practice environments to determine their effectiveness to maximize learning effects," the guesteditors Jörg Schorer et al. note. [more...]
 

The image shows the brain activation pattern which permits ruling out a stimulus as a false memory. In the control group, the activations are much more intense and extensive than in the group of cannabis consumers. (Hospital Sant Pau)
A new study published in the American journal with the highest impact factor in worldwide, Molecular Psychiatry, reveals that consumers of cannabis are more prone to experiencing false memories. The study was conducted by researchers from the Human Neuropsychopharmacology group at the Biomedical Research Institute of Hospital de Sant Pau and from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, in collaboration with the Brain Cognition and Plasticity group of the Bellvitge Institute for Biomedical Research (IDIBELL - University of Barcelona). One of the known consequences of consuming this drug is the memory problems it can cause. Chronic consumers show more difficulties than the general population in retaining new information and recovering memories. The new study also reveals that the chronic use of cannabis causes distortions in memory, making it easier for imaginary or false memories to appear. [more...]
 

Although heavily promoted as a safer cigarette and an aid to quit smoking, electronic cigarettes and the nicotine they deliver pose particular risks to the developing brains and organs of children. Use of electronic cigarettes by school-age children has surpassed traditional cigarette smoking, and it is critical to recognize and understand the risks related to nicotine exposure, addiction, and the poor regulation of these products, as described in the comprehensive Review article "Electronic Cigarettes: Vulnerability of Youth," published in Pediatric Allergy, Immunology, and Pulmonology, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Pediatric Allergy, Immunology, and Pulmonology website until May 21, 2015. [more...]
 

© Sebastian Kaulitzki - Fotolia.com
Patients with End stage chronic heart disease suffer a lot. Characteristic are fluid retention, fatigue and shortness of breath. In addition to these well-known symptoms they often develop renal failure as well. This co-occurrence of heart and kidney diseases has been described as cardiorenal syndrome (CRS). Patients with advanced chronic heart disease and CRS have a poor outcome (1-year-mortality rate of up to 77%), and a poor quality of life due to hospitalizations and low functional status. [more...]
 

© Keo - Fotolia.com
“Pass the message” experiment investigates how people perceive and communicate the risks of a widely used chemical: The world is a risky place. But our subjective fears and anxieties are often at odds with the evidence. New findings by scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and the University of Constance show that subjective fears about potential risks may be amplified in social exchange. Their findings have now been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS). [more...]
 
Today’s data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on yet another dramatic rise in the use of electronic cigarettes by middle and high school students reinforces the long-held position of the American Thoracic Society that e-cigarettes need to be subject to the same marketing and manufacturing restrictions as tobacco products. [more...]
 

Prof. Dr. Bernd Weber (left) and Alexander Niklas Häusler from the Center for Economics and Neuroscience at Bonn University. (c) Photo: Volker Lannert/Uni Bonn
Two players on a team are in front of the opponent's goal with the attacking player having to make an important decision: Is it better to pass the ball to the teammate or to take the shot yourself? What happens in the brain during the course of such situations and upon scoring a goal is very similar to the processes and reward sequence with monetary incentives. This is what researchers at the Center for Economics and Neuroscience (CENs) of the University of Bonn discovered together with their colleagues at the University of Bonn Hospital and the Life&Brain Center. They are now presenting their results in the journal "PLOS ONE". [more...]
 

Is the “supermarket revolution” in developing countries only a symptom of the new lifestyles in these countries, or is the spread of supermarkets causing changes in people’s diets and weights? (Photo: University of Göttingen)
Worldwide, people are getting fatter. This is also true in developing countries, where overnutrition coexists with undernutrition. Overweight and obesity contribute to chronic health issues such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and some forms of cancer. In many developing countries, rates of overweight have increased rapidly, especially in urban areas. This is primarily due to higher consumption of fat and sugar, as well as lower physical exercise during work and leisure. The structure of the food retail sector is also changing – shifting away from traditional outlets towards modern supermarkets. Given the speed of developments, this shift in food retailing is sometimes referred to as a “supermarket revolution”. [more...]
 

© Sven Hoppe - Fotolia.com
The scientific community is facing a 'pollution problem' in academic publishing, one that poses a serious threat to the "trustworthiness, utility, and value of science and medicine," according to one of the country's leading medical ethicists. [more...]
 

© Christian Schwier - Fotolia.com
When children are unmotivated at school, new research suggests their genes may be part of the equation. A study of more than 13,000 twins from six countries found that 40 to 50 percent of the differences in children's motivation to learn could be explained by their genetic inheritance from their parents. The results surprised study co-author Stephen Petrill, who thought before the study that the twins' shared environment - such as the family and teachers that they had in common - would be a larger factor than genetics. Instead, genetics and nonshared environment factors had the largest effect on learning motivation, whereas the shared environment had negligible impact. [more...]
 
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