Life Science

The theme of this year’s con is “…and how do we GET there”, which means we really should have a session on octopus locomotion.

Low wages certainly impact a person’s health, from where people live to what they eat to how often they can visit a doctor. And low and stagnant wages certainly contribute to poverty, which is a known risk factor for poor health and premature mortality. But should low wages be considered an occupational health hazard?

An Interview with Don Prothero

Ikonokast interviews Don Prothero. Don Prothero is the author of just over 30 books and a gazillion scientific papers covering a wide range of topics in paleontology and skepticism. Mike Haubrich and I spoke with Don about most of these topics, including the recent history of the skeptics movement, the conflict and potentials between DNA…

Researchers trying to find cures for cancer find naked mole rats rather interesting. Not only are these animals long-lived by rodent standards, they are also resistant to the development of cancer. By long-lived, we are talking up to 30 years! A team of researchers from Hokkaido University and Keio University in Japan have now isolated stem cells from…

Skeletal muscle function and structure change as we age. Humans typically experience a loss of muscle mass or muscle weakness which can greatly reduce mobility and stability. While much is known about aging skeletal muscle in humans and rodents, less is known about horses, which are rather athletic animals that are living longer due to advancements in veterinary care…

It takes a fool to deny the obvious

Neil Shubin reports that Bible tracts have begun appearing in copies of his book, Your Inner Fish, in bookstores. He even has photographic evidence. This is remarkable news. We now know how bible tracts are made: they are degenerate forms descended from more complex and sophisticated texts, and they appear spontaneously when two pages, who…

Yes, Finding Dory is right about this. Having multiple hearts isn’t as odd as it might seem. Although one might be advised to keep one’s brain and one’s heart, as well as one or two other organs, separate when making important decisions, a heart and a brain are metaphorical of each other in this regard.…

Heart rate decreases during diving in seals and other animals. Thus the ascending aorta becomes very important during diving as it helps to maintain blood pressure during prolonged dives. A new study published in the American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology was designed to examine the ascending aorta of hooded seals (Cystophora…

Shark week is back!

I LOVE Shark Week on Discovery Channel. I can’t wait to see the bizarre sharks episode. The excitement begins June 26th.