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PLoS ONE News and Blog Round-Up: 2011 in Review

In this round-up, we would like to share with you some of the PLoS ONE articles covered by the media in 2011.  It was really difficult to narrow it down since we had over 450 manuscripts in the news, but here are a few of the papers the media found newsworthy.  The list begins in December and then works backward through the year.

In the manuscript, Dancing for Food in the Deep Sea: Bacterial Farming by a New Species of Yeti Crab, researchers discovered that the “Yeti Crab” (Kiwa puravida), which lives off the coast of Costa Rica, consumes the nutrient-rich bacteria it cultivates on its claws.  Wired, National Geographic and Scientific American covered the article.

On average, Twitter users tend to be the happiest on Saturdays. This trend, along with others, was reported in a study called, Temporal Patterns of Happiness and Information in a Global Social Network: Hedonometrics and Twitter.  It received media coverage from The Daily Dose, Gawker, and National Geographic. This is just for spacing

In the study, Suicidal Behavior and Depression in Smoking Cessation Treatments, researchers collected and analyzed data from the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System (AERS) database, spanning 1998 through September 2010. The results indicated that of 3,249 reported cases of suicidal/self-injurious behavior or depression, 90% reported use of varenicline, an anti-smoking drug sold under the brand name Chantix. The article was covered by CNN, ABC News, and TIME.

According to the paper, The Network of Global Corporate Control, 147 companies control 40% of the world’s economy. Swiss researchers have produced a map of the global economic structure, showing the intricate, interconnectedness among companies, similar to the relationships found in nature. This image highlights some of the major transnational corporations in the financial sector.  Media outlets that covered this paper included The Huffington Post, NewScientist, and Forbes.

The T-rex is heavier than previously thought according to the paper, A Computational Analysis of Limb and Body Dimensions in Tyrannosaurus rex with Implications for Locomotion, Ontogeny, and Growth. Researchers used computer models of four T-rex fossil specimens to assess its body mass. The results indicate that the adult dino was 30% heavier than formerly estimated. Xinhua, The Christian Science Monitor, and Slashdot are a few of the media outlets that covered this article.

Children as young as 15 months may have a basic understanding of fairness according to the research presented in the manuscript, Fairness Expectations and Altruistic Sharing in 15-Month-Old Human Infants.  Science 2.0, Scientific American, and WFAA-TV covered this article. This is just for spacin This is just for spacing.This is just for spacing.g.

In August, the Centers for Disease Control announced the results of its first multi-year analysis of HIV incidence in the United States from 2006 to 2009. The paper, which published in PLoS ONE, found that though the rate of HIV infection remained steady; it disproportionately affected several racial and ethnic populations in the United States. The paper received a lot of media attention and was covered by: NPR, The New York Times, CNN, Huffington Post, Washington Post, and the San Francisco Chronicle among others.

The paper, Functional Tooth Regeneration Using a Bioengineered Tooth Unit as a Mature Organ Replacement Regenerative Therapy received global media attention. Some of the media outlets that covered the paper include: Reuters, Times of India, and ABC News 24. This is just for spacing.This is just for spacing.This is just for spacing.This is just for spacing.

Researchers at MIT developed an antiviral therapy that could be used to treat variety of viruses. The drug, called Double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) Activated Caspase Oligomerizer (DRACO) enters mammalian cells and selectively kills cells containing viral dsRNA, without harming uninfected cells.  Details of the study can be found in the paper entitled, Broad-Spectrum Antiviral Therapeutics. News coverage on this article included articles by Voice of America, LA Times, and Forbes.

A science career affects the life satisfaction of science faculty according to the article, Scientists Want More Children. The Wall Street Journal and TIME’s Ecocentric blog covered this article.

In the paper, Epigenetic Predictor of Age, researchers from UCLA discovered that they could predict someone’s age using the DNA from their saliva.  There were many articles written on the paper. Some of these media outlets included Time, 80 beats, and CNET.

For Emperor penguins, huddling is essential to surviving the cold Antarctic winter. In the paper, Coordinated Movements Prevent Jamming in an Emperor Penguin Huddle, researchers show that penguins avoid jamming using coordinated movements. Media coverage of this article included pieces by The New York Times, News for Your Neurons and LiveScience.

Lisa Cosgrove et al. published an article entitled, Antidepressants and Breast and Ovarian Cancer Risk: A Review of the Literature and Researchers’ Financial Associations with Industry. The paper received media attention from CTV, Bloomberg Businessweek, and The Boston Globe.

The paper, Stalking the Fourth Domain in Metagenomic Data: Searching for, Discovering, and Interpreting Novel, Deep Branches in Marker Gene Phylogenetic Trees, received coverage from The Loom, The Economist, The Telegraph, and New Scientist.   To read the story behind this paper, check out Eisen’s blog, Phylogenomics.

Dr. David Hughes and colleagues published a paper about the Hidden Diversity Behind the Zombie-Ant Fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis: Four New Species Described from Carpenter Ants in Minas Gerais, Brazil.  Their paper received media coverage from: CNN, Wired, National Geographic, and 80 Beats. This is just for spacing. This is just for spacing.

In February, researchers described their recent findings of three ancient skull cups found with skeletal remains from Gough’s Cave in England. The paper, Earliest Directly-Dated Human Skull-Cups, received coverage from NPR, BBC, New York Times, Time, CNN and Not Exactly Rocket Science.

According to the paper, Dietary Fat Intake and the Risk of Depression: The SUN Project, those who had an increased consumption of trans-fat also had an increased risk of developing depression. The study by Almudena Sánchez-Villegas et al. received a lot of media attention in January.  Some of the coverage includes: TIME, Xinhua, Times of India and la Repubblica.

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