Spotlight On: The Immune System

Credit: iStock “Alert! Alert! Foreign invader detected! Recruit additional support! Destroy the target!” This could be the radio chatter of a battle scene in the latest blockbuster action film, or it could also be what our immune system would sound like if it could talk. As our body’s form of defense, the immune system helps … Continue reading Spotlight On: The Immune System

Probiotics for Gout, New Therapies for Heart Disease and More Discussed at APS Research Conference

The number of people who develop long-term health problems such as obesity, high blood pressure and kidney disease increases every year. Because these chronic conditions affect so many, it is important to better understand what causes them. International scientists who study the kidneys, heart, blood vessels and other organs recently gathered to discuss the relationship … Continue reading Probiotics for Gout, New Therapies for Heart Disease and More Discussed at APS Research Conference

How Is the Nobel Prize Chosen?

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine will be awarded on October 7, kicking off a weeklong celebration of groundbreaking achievement in medicine or physiology, physics, chemistry, literature, global peace and economics. We at the American Physiological Society (APS) eagerly await this time of the year too. Physiologists have been well-represented in the long list … Continue reading How Is the Nobel Prize Chosen?

Spotlight On: The Nervous System

Credit: iStock Of all the organs in our bodies, the brain is the most complex and deeply tied to what makes us human. Billions of nerve cells (neurons) in the nervous system make trillions of connections that are the basis of our thoughts, feelings and actions. Our genes make sure our nervous system is generally … Continue reading Spotlight On: The Nervous System

How Math Is Leading to Breakthroughs in Cancer, Breath Tests and Understanding of Glaucoma

What do you get when you put mathematicians and physiologists in a room together? The question may sound like the beginning of a joke, but the answer is not a punchline. Last week, math modelers and experts who study the body’s smallest blood vessels—called the microcirculation—met in Scottsdale, Ariz. This group of elite scientists explored … Continue reading How Math Is Leading to Breakthroughs in Cancer, Breath Tests and Understanding of Glaucoma

Breathe Deep to Explore the Heart’s Physiology

Credit: iStock Breathe in, breathe out. You may have heard that deep breathing techniques are good for your health because they can help you relax and manage stress. You may not know that they are also useful teaching tools for learning about cardiovascular physiology—the study of how the heart and blood vessels work. Breathing—particularly deep … Continue reading Breathe Deep to Explore the Heart’s Physiology

A ‘Holy Grail’ for Exercise Recovery?

Credit: iStock When you start a new fitness routine—whether you are training for a marathon, planning to walk a 5K or committing to swimming more laps—choosing a plan can help you get started and keep you on track. You can find a lot of information about the best way to recover after exercising. However, whether … Continue reading A ‘Holy Grail’ for Exercise Recovery?

The Triple Threat: Diet, Diabetes and Fatty Liver Disease

Credit: iStock Fatty liver disease is a group of disorders that occur when too much fat builds up in the liver. Many people may have heard of alcohol-related fatty liver disease, a condition in which moderate to heavy consumption of alcohol leads to fat buildup and scarring in the liver. However, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease … Continue reading The Triple Threat: Diet, Diabetes and Fatty Liver Disease

Spotlight On: Oxidative Stress

Credit: iStock Oxidative stress is a term that many of us have heard or seen on food and vitamin labels for quite some time, but few people understand what this is. Oxidative stress is the imbalance of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which is a byproduct of metabolism that is made up of different compounds, including … Continue reading Spotlight On: Oxidative Stress

Heff Peff: When Filling the Heart Fails

Credit: iStock Heart failure is a common disease in which the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the demands of the body. Many people may have heard of heart failure that prevents the heart from contracting properly or pumping enough blood. The measure most commonly used to calculate how well the heart contracts is … Continue reading Heff Peff: When Filling the Heart Fails