Open Thread, 11-08-2012

By Razib Khan | November 8, 2012 1:57 am

I’m at ASHG 2012, so tell me what’s going on in the world.

MORE ABOUT: Open Thread
  • Darkseid

    Hasn’t been a lot of good stuff on the webs thus week. Guess all the writers are doing election stuff or something. Its so slow that all I’ve got is going to see Lincoln this weekend and I’m gonna watch Ken Burn’s “The Dust Bowl” soon on PBS.

  • Sandgroper

    Celtic beat Barcelona 2-0. Bit of a shock.

  • Charles Nydorf

    Awaiting the new Ainu paper like everyone else!

  • I_Affe

    Does anyone here do stem cell work? I work with a type of adult stem cell. I’m just curious if any other readers work with any type of stem cell.

  • AG

    This report about China as only country favoring Romney is quite subversive to Romney presidential bid. Most other reports or polls actually show 60% Chinese supporting Obama.

    Media are never fair and balanced.

  • Sandgroper

    #5 – Ah, yeah – that makes more sense.

  • Schrödinger’s Hat

    So how did you make out with all those election wagers, Razib? Was there a net gain or loss? How’s your win/loss record?

  • April Brown

    There are a bunch of very grumpy wealthy people pissed off at Karl Rove right now for not delivering. Also, Nate Silver is probably a witch.

  • Razib Khan

    Was there a net gain or loss? How’s your win/loss record?

    i hedged. so i was going to win $ either way. but near the end i updated and went all in that romney would LOSE, and sucked some people into bets. $300 (would have won $100 the other way).

  • Archwright

    Read this blog about star stacking our banner.

    Y’know. it’s good to start formulating predictions about what our flag will look like if Puerto Rico makes its long-shot bid for statehood.

  • Justin Loe

    I just saw this new paper: Estimating divergence times in large molecular phylogenies. PNAS. Could be promising.

  • toto

    i hedged. so i was going to win $ either way.

    “You keep ragin’, I keep arbitragin’.”

  • Matt

    Ya Sandgroper, I’m surprised at the Barcelona result too – I didn’t watch it in part because I just assumed Barca would win – so I don’t know how deserved it was. By the way, the final score was 2-1, apparently Messi scored in the last minute. I’m going out on a limb and saying Borussia Dortmund wins the Champions League year being impressed with how they played in their matches against Madrid, and knowing they won the Bundisliga last year. It would be surprising, but I like the underdog.

  • Matt

    #4 – I’m curious what you do, where you work, and what level of education you have. I worked with stem cells quite a bit for undergrad projects, and currently I’m just sort of mopping around deciding between job possibilities and grad school. I took a condensed class over winter break 2 years back on which the focus was soley on stem cells, plus lab work. In terms of inspiring an intrest with a topic it was probably my favorite class. So I’m curious about the route you took to a stem cell lab position.

  • ackbark

    We often hear about frozen mammoths found in Siberia, but what about other frozen extinct animals?

    I’ve never heard anything about the mice or birds or sabre toothed frogs or any of the other animals that might be preserved in the tundra.

    Are they just all uninteresting?

  • I_Affe


    I’m a grad student working with adult muscle stem cells. Most of what I do is basic research stuff that doesn’t have too much practical implication, but my lab has done transplantation studies for muscular dystrophy models as well as collaborated with other transplantation labs.

    Are you interested in any particular stem cell or something like iPSCs?

  • Sandgroper

    #13 – Yeah, 2-1. It was reported here as 2-0. Don’t know if you’ve been watching Manchester United’s goalkeeper, but he gives me the horrors. Where/why did they pick him up?

  • Simon

    15 says: I’ve never heard anything about the mice or birds or sabre toothed frogs or any of the other animals that might be preserved in the tundra.

    Holy crap that would be AWESOME

  • Sandgroper

    Kind of old news, I guess, but: data kill punditry – the revelation that the media hate.

  • RafeK

    Ackbark yes there are other frozen animals and they are not all uninteresting Steppe bison

    Whooly Rhino’s


    Thats just what quick google search showed me. I have read about more IIRC in the book “frozen fauna of the mammoth steppe” but can’t remember the details

  • Nathan

    Anyone got 23andMe discount/special offers like their past $99 for kit and $99 subscription per year (or was it $5 per month subscription?) ?

    Soo far the best discount coupon I see from a 3rd party website is $60 off the kit price; kit price is $299 now but no subscription required.


  • ackbark

    20. Thanks. I was wondering about the lack of publicity. The countless articles and tv shows about frozen mammoths never seem to mention anything else.

  • Darkseid
    this was a really great talk by Steve Hsu on the genetics of IQ

  • Dylan
  • Karl Zimmerman

    One thing I’ve wondered with paleogenetics is if anyone could extract and study DNA from Toxodon and/or Macrauchenia. They died out within the last 20,000 years, and it’s still a total mystery which extant clades “South American ungulates” are closest related to, as the Paleocene members of their clade were so unspecialized. It seems like just the sort of thing that genetics would be great at where paleontology is awful (same with mega-groups like Afrotheria, which have been grudgingly supported now, but still don’t have many definable characters.

  • Matt

    #16 – Sounds interesting. I guess I wouldn’t say right now I have a specific route I’ve got mapped out. I am curious about the long term impact that iPSCs will end up playing, if they’ll supercede embryonic stem cells (limited ethical issues and limited possibility of immune rejection), or if the technical hurdles associated with them will prove insurmountable. You probably happened to see that Shinya Yamanaka won the nobel, so it would seem the scientific community is bullish to say the least.

    #17 – Ya, he’s unconvincing. I’ve only caught a game or two of Man U this year (believe it or not, I’m probably one of only a few Americans who follows Wigan) but he seems to flail around a lot out there. I know he was thought of highly when he played for Atletico Madrid. Give me Tim Howard any day of the week (who coincidently enough used to play for United, albeit briefly).

  • AG
    The history of human populations in the Japanese Archipelago inferred from genome-wide SNP data with a special reference to the Ainu and the Ryukyuan populations

  • dave chamberlin

    I won a bet with you, you are supposed to send me a book I would enjoy reading. Don’t bother. Too much time and effort on your part and I know how busy you are. Just keep adding book reviews to Razib on Books and keep on keeping on with the bloging and we will call it even.


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About Razib Khan

I have degrees in biology and biochemistry, a passion for genetics, history, and philosophy, and shrimp is my favorite food. In relation to nationality I'm a American Northwesterner, in politics I'm a reactionary, and as for religion I have none (I'm an atheist). If you want to know more, see the links at


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