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[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com] The best defense against pathogens is to never let them gain access to our delicious, gooey insides. Our skin is pretty good for this purpose: it’s pretty tough and mostly impermeable, and the only way most of our surface tissues can get infected is if that skin barrier…

I love video games (repost)

[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com] I’ve played video games most of my life. Starting with Tom Sawyer’s Island and Matterhorn Screamer (both released in 1988), the early Final Fantasies and Secret of Mana  on Super Nintendo in middleschool, games like Starcraft and Half-life (Counter-Strike, Day of Defeat etc) in high school, and Halo…

[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com] A while back I heard an NPR story about bacteria growing in reusable grocery bags, and now there’s a piece from WaPo’s health blog about bacteria fround on 3-D glasses you get at movie theaters: In its July issue, Good Housekeeping magazine tested seven pairs of 3-D glasses,…

Baby’s First Bacteria (repost)

[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com on] As I’ve noted before, our bodies are riddled with microbes – there are more of them than there are of us (if you go by shear number). But where do they come from? Each individual has a complex ecosystem of commensal (harmless) microbes that live on our…

[This post was originally published at webeasties.wordpress.com] A recent paper published online in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B (I have no idea what the B means, but maybe one of you can clarify with a comment) draws an enticing connection between whale excrement and climate change.  Because this study involved whale poop, it…