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Tag Archives: journal club

SSCJC: Real World Depression Measurement

The largest non-pharma antidepressant trial ever conducted just confirmed what we already knew: scientists love naming things after pandas. We already had PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcus) and PANDA (Proton ANnhilator At DArmstadt). But the latest in … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: MacIntyre On Cloth Masks

[Content warning: this is a complicated analysis of something people care about a lot right now. I’m not confident in my analysis, the post comes to no clear conclusion and there are no easy answers about how to proceed. If … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: Relaxed Beliefs Under Psychedelics And The Anarchic Brain

[Thanks to Sarah H. and the people at her house for help understanding this paper] The predictive coding theory argues that the brain uses Bayesian calculations to make sense of the noisy and complex world around it. It relies heavily … Continue reading

Maybe Your Zoloft Stopped Working Because A Liver Fluke Tried To Turn Your Nth-Great-Grandmother Into A Zombie

Or at least this is the theory proposed in Brain Evolution Through The Lens Of Parasite Manipulation by Marco del Giudice. The paper starts with an overview of parasite manipulation of host behavior. These are the stories you hear about … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: Dissolving The Fermi Paradox

I’m late to posting this, but it’s important enough to be worth sharing anyway: Sandberg, Drexler, and Ord on Dissolving the Fermi Paradox. (You may recognize these names: Toby Ord founded the effective altruism movement; Eric Drexler kindled interest in … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: Cipriani On Antidepressants

I. The big news in psychiatry this month is Cipriani et al’s Comparative efficacy and acceptability of 21 antidepressant drugs for the acute treatment of adults with major depressive disorder: a systematic review and network meta-analysis. It purports to be … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: Serotonin Receptors

Pop science likes to dub dopamine “the reward chemical” and serotonin “the happiness chemical”. God only knows what norepinephrine is, but I’m sure it’s cutesy. In real life, all of this is much more complicated. Dopamine might be “the surprisal … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: AI Timelines

I. A few years ago, Muller and Bostrom et al surveyed AI researchers to assess their opinion on AI progress and superintelligence. Since then, deep learning took off, AlphaGo beat human Go champions, and the field has generally progressed. I’ve … Continue reading

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SSC Journal Club: Childhood Trauma And Cognition

This month’s American Journal of Psychiatry includes Danese et al, Origins Of Cognitive Deficits In Victimized Children. Previous studies had found that abused children had lower IQ. They concluded that the severe stress of being abused must decrease brain function. … Continue reading

SSC Journal Club: Analytical Thinking Style And Religion

[Content warning: religious people might feel kind of like this objectifies them and treats them as weird phenomena to be explained away.] A major theme of this blog is: why do people disagree so intractably? And what can we do … Continue reading