Being Left (Handed) Is All Right

"There's something I ought to tell you. I'm not left-handed either." - Westley, The Princess Bride Throughout history, left-handedness has both fascinated and frightened people. Maybe it is because only about 15 percent of the population is left-handed. Or maybe it is because the reasons for left-handedness remain somewhat of a mystery. What makes a person left- … Continue reading Being Left (Handed) Is All Right

Like Father, Like Son (and Daughter): How Your Dad’s Past Affects Your Future

What makes your father the best dad in the world? Maybe it’s his sense of humor or the times he has taken you to the movies or played catch in the yard. Or maybe it’s the fact that he made healthy lifestyle choices before you were born. Recent research suggests that your father’s health before … Continue reading Like Father, Like Son (and Daughter): How Your Dad’s Past Affects Your Future

When You Can’t ‘Spy’ with Your Eye Anymore

Many of us take our ability to read this blog or see the faces of our families and friends for granted. For the 10–15 million Americans with a disease called age-related macular degeneration (AMD), however, the loss of this ability is a daily and devastating reality. AMD is the most common cause of blindness in … Continue reading When You Can’t ‘Spy’ with Your Eye Anymore

To Play Better, Skip the Post-Game Drink

Sports and alcohol are a famous pair. Whether you’re a fan or an athlete, it’s common to follow up a great game with a drink or two. But does that drink affect your recovery after your workout? Researchers at California Polytechnic State University think that it might. Rafael Jimenez, Amy Engel and a team of … Continue reading To Play Better, Skip the Post-Game Drink

Bee-ware the Cause of Childhood Asthma

Childhood asthma has reached epidemic proportions across the globe for unknown reasons. Maternal smoking is associated with childhood asthma, but a study published in 2005 suggested that if your grandmother smoked, you were at greater risk of developing asthma than if your mother smoked. How could this happen?   Your genes determine the traits you … Continue reading Bee-ware the Cause of Childhood Asthma

A New Meaning for ‘Food Baby’: How the Burmese Python Digests Big Meals

Thanksgiving dinner can leave the stomach feeling and looking stuffed beyond capacity. The Burmese python goes beyond the post-meal bulge: Its intestines and other organs grow too, and these changes happen within days of eating. A recent study in Physiological Genomics examined how the organs can grow so much so soon. The Burmese python takes … Continue reading A New Meaning for ‘Food Baby’: How the Burmese Python Digests Big Meals

A Berry Interesting Experiment, Indeed!

Physiology Understanding (PhUn Week) takes physiology to the classroom through scientist-student outreach. Each year, more than 14,000 students learn about physiological concepts led through interactive lab experiments, such as this one as described by middle school science teacher Anne Joy: As part of our PhUn Week activities, we talk to the students about genetics and … Continue reading A Berry Interesting Experiment, Indeed!

Why the Y Difference in High Blood Pressure?

One in three adults in the U.S. has high blood pressure (hypertension). Although men and women are just as likely to develop hypertension during their lifetimes, men younger than 45 have hypertension more often than women that age do. Scientists wondered if this difference is because the male hormone testosterone affects physiological processes differently than … Continue reading Why the Y Difference in High Blood Pressure?