Using existing infrastructure to transform peer review

A commentary I coauthored with Gary McDowell for the forthcoming ASAPbio conference on the future of preprints in Biology. It was originally published at the ASAPbio commentaries section:

In reforming the culture of peer review and moving towards a system that embraces the use and recognition of pre-print servers, we are cognizant of the need to avoid re-inventing the wheel, by identifying and using existing infrastructure and initiatives that can assist in furthering this goal. Continue reading “Using existing infrastructure to transform peer review”


How to negotiate with publishers: an example of immediate self-archiving despite publisher’s embargo policy

In this post I share a recent experience as an example on how to negotiate with a publisher your right to make your research freely available without having to pay any money. Hope it proves useful to more researchers in a similar position.

In this post I share a recent experience as an example of how to negotiate with a publisher your right to make your research freely available without having to pay any money. Hope it proves useful to more researchers in a similar position. I also offer my personal opinion on how researchers can change the current inefficient and unethical system of scholarly communication by gradually developing an alternative model that will foster collaboration instead of competition. Continue reading “How to negotiate with publishers: an example of immediate self-archiving despite publisher’s embargo policy”

Our new paper about stress in crisis managers published in the Journal of Behavioral Medicine

In this recently published study we compared 30 experienced crisis managers with 30 managers from other disciplines, in terms of self-reported stress, health status and psychophysiological reactivity to crisis-related and non-specific visual and acoustic aversive stimuli and cognitive challenge. Crisis managers reported lower stress levels, a more positive strain-recuperation-balance, greater social resources, reduced physical symptoms, as well as more physical exercise and less alcohol consumption. They exhibited diminished electrodermal and heart rate responses to crisis-related and non-specific stressors.

The results indicate reduced stress and physical complaints, diminished psychophysiological stress reactivity, and a healthier life-style in crisis managers. Improved stress resistance may limit vulnerability to stress-related performance decline and facilitate preparedness for major incidents.

Download the entire article here.

Reconsiderando el asma: ¿es realmente crónico e incurable?

En esta carta se busca revisar las pruebas que demuestren que la definición actual del asma como una inflamación crónica de las vías respiratorias no está corroborada científicamente. Lo más problemático es que esta definición está alejando al mundo científico de intervenciones terapéuticas cuyos resultados positivos han sido corroborados en numerosos ensayos clínicos.

asthmainhalerEn los años 50 se definía el asma como una obstrucción reversible de las vías respiratorias causada por la hiperreactividad del musculo liso bronquial a varios agentes químicos.

En línea con esta definición, gran parte de la investigación que se ha llevado a cabo sobre el asma se ha centrado en identificar los agentes que podían desencadenar una contracción del músculo liso bronquial, fenómeno conocido también como broncoconstricción o broncoespasmo. Es muy destacable que uno de los agentes descubiertos era el dióxido de carbono, gas que nuestro organismo produce en el proceso metabólico y que expulsa por la exhalación. Un gran número de estudios experimentales demostraron que una reducción de los niveles de dióxido de carbono, fenómeno conocido como hipocapnia, causa broncoconstricción, mientras que niveles altos de dióxido de carbono inducen broncodilatación debido a la relajación del músculo liso (referencias de la 9 a la 22 en Bruton and Holgate 2005 y referencias 1-10 en Lindeman, et al. 1998). Ya que la respiración regula los niveles de dióxido de carbono, este descubrimiento dio impulso a una serie de estudios clínicos que buscaban analizar los efectos del entrenamiento respiratorio en los síntomas del asma. La mayoría de estos estudios obtuvieron resultados positivos, representados por una reducción substancial del uso de broncodilatadores y corticosteroides y una mejora en la calidad de vida (para una revisión sistemática léase Burgess et al. 2011). Continue reading “Reconsiderando el asma: ¿es realmente crónico e incurable?”

My new Facebook page on breathing education is launched

This week I launched a new Facebook page on breathing education. The idea is to regularly upload information, images and tips on breathing normalisation. Hopefully it will become a new space for information exchange and debate on respiratory and general health issues.

You can like and follow the page here:

Diapositivas de mi curso de Educación Respiratoria en el Colegio de Psicólogos

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Slides of my 2-day course on Breathing Education for Psychologists. The presentation includes slides on respiratory physiology, acute and chronic hyperventilation, respiratory muscles and breathing modification.

Diapositivas de mi curso de dos días sobre Educación Respiratoria en la sede del Colegio Oficial de Psicólogos. El material incluye diapositivas sobre la fisiología respiratoria, la hiperventilación aguda y crónica, los músculos respiratorios y la modificación de la respiración.

The Laboratory for Network Physiology launches its official website

NetworkPhysiology-logoThe Laboratory for Network Physiology directed by Plamen Ch. Ivanov recently launched its official website. Professor Ivanov, with whom I collaborate closely for the past six years, is leading a unique team of statistical physicists, neuroscientists, applied mathematicians and biomedical engineers that have as their mission to understand how organ systems dynamically interact and collectively behave as a network to produce health or disease. This coordinated effort proposes a new scientific field, Network Physiology, to probe the network of interactions among diverse physiologic systems.

In the website interested readers can find information about the group’s research projects, publications, news, job opportunities and more.

Visit the website here.