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Warpy's Journal
Warpy's Journal
December 15, 2020

Liquid e-cigarette flavorings measurably injure lungs

Known for their appetizing flavors, such as bubblegum, banana and strawberry, e-cigarettes continue to grow in popularity around the world. Promoted by makers as a "healthy" alternative to regular tobacco cigarettes, researchers are finding e-cigarettes, or vaping, still result in injury to the lungs.
Combined, the researchers said the data suggests people who use flavored e-cigarettes are damaging their lungs every time they vape. Among the most toxic: chemical profiles for some chocolate and banana flavors.


Posting for information on flavorings, mostly.

One big caveat: this study detected inflammatory proteins, not gross physical damage. The proteins signaled that damage would lilely occur over time. Also, no comparison was done to the nasty shit in smoke, so the question of relative harm was ignored.

So for now, vape 'em if you must, just consider eating bananas and chocolates instead of inhaling them.

December 14, 2020

A Landmark Study on the Origins of Alcoholism

Many lab studies treat animals as if they were identical, and any variation in their behavior is just unhelpful noise. But in Augier’s work, the variation is the important bit. It’s what points to the interesting underlying biology. “This is a really good study,” says Michael Taffe, a neuroscientist at the Scripps Research Institute who studies drug addiction. “Since only a minority of humans experience a transition to addiction, [an approach] such as this is most likely to identify the specific genetic variants that convey risk.”

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.”


This is a well written article, well worth the read. It explains what is certainly one biochemical difference contributing to addiction and will possibly apply to other addictions.

I've always thought four things about true addiction: it's hard wired, it's rare, most of it stems from self medication, and it's different from dependency.

December 12, 2020

Polarization increases with economic decline, becoming cripplingly contagious

(If you wanted to know just where those 70 million stupid people came from)

The rise of populist movements is changing political systems around the world. As support for these "anti-elite" movements intensifies, many are scrambling to understand whether economic decline and intensifying inter-group conflict are playing a role.

A model developed by a team of researchers—including Nolan McCarty of Princeton University—shows how group polarization, rising inequality, and economic decline may be strongly connected.

The model develops a theory that group polarization tends to soar in times of economic duress and rising inequality. Yet, even after financial conditions improve, these divisions may remain deeply rooted.
"Rather than continue the unproductive debate over whether 'economic anxiety' or group conflict is most responsible for our deeply divided politics, scholars should spend more effort considering the debilitating feedback between economics and identity," said McCarty.


Medium sized article, 3 videos, and a link to the original paper.
December 9, 2020

Men with COVID-19 three times more likely to need intensive care: study

Researchers analyzed over three million confirmed coronavirus cases from 46 countries and 44 states in the US between January 1 and June 1, 2020.

They found that the risk of SARS-Cov-2 infection was the same for women and men, as "exactly half" of the confirmed cases were male patients.

But men are almost three times more likely than women to be hospitalized in an intensive care unit and are 39 percent more likely to die from the virus, the study said.


This is a large scale study that confirmed the results of sporadic, small studies in late spring.
December 1, 2020

New from KKK-Tel, the GOP Christmas Album

November 23, 2020

Song for 2020: "THIS IS SHIT"

NSFW, obviously.

November 11, 2020

They'll scream about fraud in Chicago. This is what it's based on and they're wrong

Massive nerd alert, it's about numbers.

November 11, 2020

Biden's strategy to avoid the transition trap

(Sorry if this has been posted before, I did look but my eyes are shit)

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