Human Body Curiosities

first_imgThings you didn’t know about your ambulatory vessel, and things you may have wondered about.Why do we get hiccups?  Once in a rare while, a scientific paper will actually explore something everybody wants to know: what are hiccups, and why do we get them? In PLoS One, the word jumps out of the jargon: “Analysis of factors associated with hiccups based on the Japanese Adverse Drug Event Report database.” This paper by Japanese scientists is primarily concerned about medications that induce hiccups, especially during chemotherapy. For some reason, males tend to get hiccups more than females, the paper says.A lay article in Medical Xpress came out about the same time. The scientific name is “singultus,” an expert on hiccups tells us. It’s not a disease, but a symptom of some other cause, he says. “And we all have them, even before we are born.” They are described as “an involuntary contraction of the diaphragm (the muscle that separates your chest from your abdomen ), followed by the sudden closure of the vocal chords, which produces the ‘hic’ sound.” In rare cases they can be chronic; most cases last just a few minutes. Unfortunately, there is no cure, but some of the home remedies actually might help if they stimulate the vagus nerve. Neither source mentions whether hiccups have a function. Perhaps they are just warning calls of some underlying condition.How old can couples have a baby?  This article on Live Science begins with a photo of George (age 55) and Amal (age 39) Clooney, expecting twins this summer. Having children later in life is a trend in America, Rachael Rettner says; fortunately, she has some good news. If the science is correct, older mothers may live longer and have reduced risk of cancer; the children of older fathers may live longer. Older couples seem to have a greater chance of bearing twins. However, there are risks, too: possible higher risk of Down syndrome, autism, or psychiatric problems in the children, and problems with pregnancy. These kinds of studies are often overturned, so none of them should be taken as definitive findings of science. The average age for parents’ first children are in the mid-twenties.How does a baby in the womb grow tubes?  From a single zygote, a baby grows a digestive tract with many feet of tubular processes. How does that happen? A partial answer is published in PNAS. Some of it has to do with signals from BMPs (bone morphogenetic proteins), that control buckling forces as loops in the intestine grow and push on each other. At least it happens that way in chicks (baby birds, that is). “The present work identifies BMP signaling as a key pathway in controlling looping of the small intestine, a process driven by mechanical buckling due to elongation of the intestine against the constraint of a neighboring tissue, the dorsal mesentery.” Surely there is much more going on than that. How does a clump of cells start growing tubes? This paper doesn’t say.Why are we right or left handed?  Certainly our handedness is one of the most distinctive things about us, with southpaws having to compensate in a predominantly right-handed world. A fundamental change in understanding about handedness is coming, says Science Daily. Biophysicists “have demonstrated that gene activity in the spinal cord is asymmetrical already in the womb.” The decision in the 8th week of gestation appears to come from epigenetic influences based on environmental factors. So far, this sounds like only a very paltry, preliminary answer to the question. Speaking of pregnancy, this opening paragraph in “Secrets of Life in a Spoonful of Blood” by Claire Ainsworth in Nature deserves a pulpit and a microphone:Life starts with a puzzle. Out of sight in a mother’s womb, 3 billion letters of DNA code somehow turn into 3D bodies, all in the space of a mere 40 weeks. Fetuses form eyes, brains, hearts, fingers and toes — in processes that are meticulously coordinated in both time and space. Biologists have pieced together parts of this puzzle, but many gaps remain.Why do we have smell receptors in the heart?  That’s right; we have olfactory receptors in our hearts, believe it or not. Why? Science Daily says, “Researchers have for the first time identified the function of olfactory receptors in the human heart muscle, such as are also present in the nose.” We’re all dying to know. Well, at least one of the receptor types attaches to fatty acids in the bloodstream. When triggered, “the heart rate and the force of muscular contraction are reduced.” There must be a reason for this. What they’re finding may have treatment implications for diabetes patients, the article says.How does tooth enamel grow?  The growth of minerals in teeth is poorly understood, PNAS says, but the process involves “intrinsically disordered proteins.” Researchers found that a particular protein motif “is shown to be essential for organization of the enamel organic matrix and for proper organization of hydroxyapatite crystallites into the compact bundles that determine the structure and mechanical resistance of enamel.” Whatever is going on “involves a short linear amino acid motif that is evolutionarily conserved from the first tetrapods to man.”How does an eye develop?  Scientists are studying the development of eyes in zebrafish to learn about the amazing sequence of events in an egg or womb that result in vision. Words fail to describe what goes on. Here’s just a quick glimpse from Phys.org, as Sarah Wong writes on “Seeing the world through fresh eyes” –There are many different structures in our eyes that work in conjunction to allow us to see. These structures are strikingly similar between different species, from zebrafish to humans. The growth of ocular tissues must be tightly controlled in order to maintain the correct eye size and shape that allow us to see. This tight regulation has intrigued developmental biologists for decades.The lens of the eye focuses incoming light on the retina, which then converts the light into electrical signals allowing us to see. Two distinct cell types comprise the lens: epithelial cells, which cover the front, or anterior, portion of the lens, and fiber cells, which populate the back, or posterior, portion. It has been shown that epithelial cells proliferate in the anterior half of the lens and move towards the posterior half, differentiating, or transforming, into fiber cells when they reach the equator between the two halves….Why do we get sore after exercise?  Muscle soreness may be a protective response, telling you to slow down. That’s the upshot of an article in Medical Xpress, “Research uncovers mechanism, protective purpose of muscle soreness following exercise.” Physiologists knew what happened before, but nobody knew why. “The soreness a person feels is the body saying it is fatigued, that the muscles are vulnerable, and it’s time to rest.”Is stress all bad?  We usually hear that stress kills, but Science Daily invites curiosity with this headline: “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger: Research identifies cellular recycling process linked to beneficial effects of enduring mild stress.” Further reading, though, shows that research involved roundworms. Those worms subjected to temporary heat stress seemed to become more resilient to later stresses. The researchers at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute think that the same principles apply to human cells.Why do men go bald?  Most middle-aged and senior men would like to fight the fate of the fading pate. A study reported by Science Daily examined genetic markers that seem to predispose some men to ‘male pattern baldness’ more than others. Unfortunately, science is still a long way off from answers or treatments.Can older adults still exercise? The old principle “Use it or lose it” seems sound. The American Geriatrics Society says that “Older Adults Who Exercise Regularly May Lower their Chances for Developing Severe Mobility Problems.” A study of 1,635 seniors aged 70 to 89 at risk of disability showed that the group that walked and practiced balance training suffered fewer severe mobility problems, although time did take its toll.Why don’t animals write poetry?  Language is perhaps the greatest human distinctive. Medical Xpress asks, “Is the human brain hardwired to appreciate poetry?” This seems to be a matter beyond the capabilities of science. Researchers publishing in Frontiers of Psychology found the obvious: people seem to have a liking for rhymes and meter. The brain seems able to connect with the thoughts of a poem even before understanding it, but that’s about it. What the blinking lights mean on the brain electrodes is anyone’s guess.Update 2/24/17: How do butterflies get in our stomach? (The Conversation). It’s a figure of speech, of course, but Bradley Elliott proposes to explain the fluttery semi-nauseous feeling we get when nervous, such as when rising to give a speech. It has to do with “clever body systems,” he says. Our autonomic nervous system helps to prepare us for what it thinks is about to happen. It shunts blood to the muscles and away from the digestive system, causing the fluttery feeling. Whether this provides us with an “evolutionary advantage” as Elliott claims is a topic for debate.There’s more going on under our skins than we can possibly imagine. It’s a terrible shame to waste a body and mind on vain things. It’s insulting to our Maker to mistreat this great gift we have. Your body may not be working perfectly, but the parts that do work are worthy of protecting and nourishing. Is there any pleasure, any joy? Give thanks to the Creator for even the little things. Think of those ALS patients who have lost all movement yet still say they are happy (2/05/17). We so often take health for granted. Even Christians at prayer meetings often spend more time requesting prayer about sickness than praising God for health. “Does anyone have a prayer request?” the leader asks, and like Pavlov dogs, out comes the sick list. Let’s get out of that habit and spend more time in thanksgiving. By all means, pray about major things, but not every cold and itch needs to be brought up. Be humble, and surround your physical request with joyful thanks. Those who trust in the Lord Jesus have an amazing upgrade – Body 2.0 — coming in heaven. If God can make a body work this good in a fallen, disobedient world, just imagine how beautiful and perfect our dwellings can be in the new heavens and new earth. (Visited 99 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

10 months agoMan City attacker Sterling: Victory a massive step for us

first_imgMan City attacker Sterling: Victory a massive step for usby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester City attacker Raheem Sterling says victory at Southampton has them back on track.After two successive losses over the festive period, it was vital City bounced back and to a man the Blues delivered an impressive all-round display on the South Coast.“It’s a massive step and what we needed to do. We had two poor games and we knew we needed to win here today to give ourselves a chance,” said Sterling. “But we were really motivated to give ourselves a chance and that’s what we did.“We had to bring that level that we know we can bring – we had a bit of luck but we played some great football and controlled the game which we know we can do.“Now its down to us to keep this focus and go onto the next one.“ About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Photo: FSU’s Rashad Greene Trolled Notre Dame With A “Happy St. Patrick’s Day” Instagram Post

first_imgFSU's Rashad Greene celebrates after beating Notre Dame.IG/_rg80_Today is St. Patrick’s Day, so we’ve had plenty of college athletes and teams send out celebratory tweets and Instagram posts. Florida State wide receiver Rashad Greene took a slightly different tone for the holiday. Greene, who racked up 1,365 yards and seven touchdowns this season, posted a screenshot from Florida State’s dramatic 31-27 win over Notre Dame, a clear dig at the Fighting Irish.Greene caught eight passes for 108 yards and a touchdown against Notre Dame, and caught two big passes on what would prove to be the winning drive for the Seminoles. Well played, Rashad.last_img

Womens Volleyball No 24 Ohio State splits homeandhome with Notre Dame

The OSU women’s volleyball team celebrates after a win against Michigan State on Oct. 22, 2016. The Buckeyes won the match 3-0. Credit: Luke Swartz | For The LanternNo. 24 Ohio State (5-3) played two matches against Notre Dame this weekend, one at St. John Arena Friday night, then in South Bend, Indiana, on Sunday. Although the Buckeyes beat the Fighting Irish, 3-0, at home, they were not as successful in Notre Dame territory as they dropped the match, 3-1.During Sunday’s loss to Notre Dame, freshman libero Hannah Gruensfelder set an Ohio State record for most digs in a four-set match with 38.In winning the first game of the two-match series, which was scheduled because of the cancellation of the Coastal Carolina Classic due to Hurricane Irma, Ohio State handed Notre Dame its first loss of the season, ending the Fighting Irish’s 6-0 winning streak.“Notre Dame, they’re undefeated for a reason. They’re a very good team.” Carlston said.Ohio State started off its first set Friday evening strong and was able to maintain the lead through most of the set. Its defensive line proved successful in the first set with four blocks and 24 digs.The Buckeyes established their rhythm quickly and won the first set 25-20.The second set was no different for the Buckeyes as they took the lead early once again.Outside hitter Luisa Schirmer and setter Taylor Hughes contributed four kills each, adding to their team’s total of 18 kills and leading Ohio State to a 25-21 victory.The Fighting Irish matched the Buckeyes point for point early in the third set, even taking the lead a 6-4 lead at one point. They stayed neck and neck with the Buckeyes all match long.As tensions rose, Ohio State called a timeout with the scored tied at 23. The Buckeyes were able to pick up the pace and win the set 25-23 with two final kills by Hughes and middle blocker Lauren Witte.Although the Buckeyes won the match 3-0, coach Geoff Carlston thought neither team played as well as they could have.“I have a feeling there are going to be some adjustments by both of us since we play them on Sunday, “ Carlston said. “I would say that was an ugly win, but a win over a really good team.”Outside hitter Ashley Wenz also thought the Buckeyes could have played a stronger game against Notre Dame.“I think that we have a lot that we can work on,” Wenz said. “[We could work on] having better eyes on defense, being able to kind of read the hitters a lot better and play balls that should be easier than they were tonight.”Coming off the 3-0 sweep of the Notre Dame Friday, the Buckeyes said they expected the Fighting Irish to be more difficult to put away in their match Sunday.“Both teams will play harder, it’ll be a lot closer,” Wenz said. “I definitely think they’re going to try and play against our strengths and we’re going to try to do the same.”After a full day of preparation, the Buckeyes traveled to Indiana Sunday for their second match against Notre Dame.Ohio State was able to lead for most of the first set, but Notre Dame came back to take the lead near the end of the set, winning 25-22.The Buckeyes picked up the pace in the second set and played a close game throughout most of the set. Wenz was responsible for nine kills of the set, leading the Buckeyes to a 25-21 victory.Ohio State proceeded to drop its final two sets in convincing fashion, losing the third set 25-14 and dropping the fourth and final set 25-17 to close out the game. Although Ohio State racked up 61 kills and 109 digs, its .141 hitting percentage paled in comparison to the Fighting Irish’s .244 hitting percentage. The Buckeyes will be back at St. John Arena Friday to begin the Buckeye Invitational. They host Western Kentucky at noon and Northern Illinois at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday, they will go against Dayton at Capital Center in Bexley, Ohio. read more

Guardiola says Aguero will be ready for the World Cup

first_imgManchester City star striker Sergio Aguero’s recovery process has been going really well after undergoing a knee surgery and he will most likely be joining his team for the World Cup, according to Guardiola.Aguero underwent a keyhole surgery on his right knee after sustaining an injury, which stopped him from participating in his team’s final games of the Premier League season. However, he will be fit enough to help his teammates in the Argentina international team in the World Cup in Russia during the summer.Even though the injury stopped him from playing in the last bit of the campaign, Aguero still managed to score 30 goals across all tournaments for the Citizens and helped them win the Premier League.norwich city, manchester city, premier leagueReport: City are stunned by Norwich George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Manchester City was stunned by Norwich City in todays Premier League clash.Much has been made in recent days of the potential impact of Aymeric…“Yes, he will arrive okay [for the World Cup],” Guardiola said prior to their game with Huddersfield, according to FourFourTwo.“I have the information from Dr Cugat in Barcelona and Sergio’s recovery is doing great.”last_img read more

Sweden captain hints at retirement

first_imgSweden captain Andreas Granqvist has hinted that he will be retiring from international football at the end of the World Cup after suggesting that their game against Mexico today may be his “last”Janne Andersson’s side were denied a draw against Germany last weekend after Toni Kroos’ injury-time winner secured the defending champions all three points and demoted Sweden to third place in Group F.Heading into today’s game against group leaders Mexico, the Blue-Yellow need a victory to retain any hope of securing a spot in the knockout stages with Germany currently ahead on a head-to-head basis in the remaining qualification spot.Quiz: How much do you know about Hirving Lozano? Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 6, 2019 Time for you to tell us everything you can answer about Hirving Lozano. We will ask you 10 questions about the Mexican forward. Have…Granqvist, who will earn his 74th cap for Sweden today, has now hinted that the encounter at the Central Stadium may be the final time he dons the blue and yellow shirt.“This could be my last match for the national team, but right now we only think about the upcoming game and we’ll discuss everything else later,” said the 33-year-old, according to the New Indian Express.Granqvist is currently playing in his first ever World Cup tournament for Sweden and has already announced his return to Swedish club Helsingborgs from Russian side Krasnodar as he enters the twilight phase of his playing career.last_img read more

We want to do better than last season Southampton boss

first_imgThe team aims for the first win of their season after tying 0-0 against Burnley last Sunday, but their rival is powerful EvertonLast season Southampton Football Club finished eight in the Premier League table.That’s not so bad, but the team missed the opportunity to qualify for the Europa League third qualifying round, by at least 15 points.Now after starting the 2018-2019 season with a 0-0 tie against Burnley FC, the club is aiming for a better objective.“We want to do much better than last year. That was a setback, but more like a lump in the road on the path the club is on,” coach Mark Hughes said on Thursday on the team’s official website.“We want to be back in the top half competing for European places.”But Southampton will have a very difficult rival on Saturday when they visit Everton.Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedSolskjaer praises Harry Maguire after Man United’s 1-0 win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer singled out Harry Maguire for praise after helping Manchester United keep a clean sheet in their 1-0 win over Leicester City.“They’ve made a big investment in the team and in the manager. It could be that now is the best time to play them,” he commented.“I’m pleased to say I’ve had some input into every player brought into this club. Players moving between different clubs, leagues, and countries can react in different ways to the same thing – there’s a period of transition.”“We played well last year under really difficult circumstances. We were unfortunate to concede so late – it could’ve been a fatal blow, but we proved our character,” he explained.“We’ve discussed that, and informed everybody that unless we feel we want to do business, the door is closed. We could potentially explore loan opportunities for people to get game time.”Watch LIVE as #SaintsFC boss Mark Hughes addresses the media ahead of the #PL trip to #EFC: https://t.co/uXMIvFn4OJ— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) August 16, 2018last_img read more

Saville on the verge of becoming alltime most expensive Northern Ireland

first_imgIn all the players that have ever played for Northern Ireland, none will be rated as high as George Saville at a worth of £8m, that is, if his loan deal to Middlesbrough becomes a permanent signing as planned by January.The 25-year-old midfielder is relaxed about whatever pressure this record breaking deal will put on him.Actually, Neil Lennon, who was signed at £5.75m from Leicester to Celtic in 2000 could as well hold this record, considering the worth of that rate in today’s market.IBARAKI, JAPAN - JUNE 02: FUSSBALL: WM 2002 in JAPAN und KOREA, Ibaraki, 02.06.02/Match 7, GRUPPE F/ARGENTINIEN - NIGERIA (ARG - NGA) 1:0, Gabriel BATISTUTA/ARG (Photo by Martin Rose/Bongarts/Getty Images)REPORT: Batistuta might coach Middlesbrough Manuel R. Medina – May 21, 2019 The Argentinean legend could debut as a manager in the English Championship after completing his coaching diploma in Italy.However, from his comment as reported by The Irish News, Saville does not seem to be concerned by all this: “To me it is just a figure. In this day and age football is growing and transfers are becoming more expensive. For me it is just a positive move and an opportunity to go and progress in my career.“I am a London boy so that [moving to Middlesbrough] will be a challenge in itself, but the family I have and friends I have, I’ll be fine. The move is one I’m ready for. I’m 25 now and I’m looking forward to it.”last_img read more

Messi loves competition in La Liga

first_imgAccording to the Argentinean superstar, the Spanish tournament is now more competitive than ever and he loves thatLionel Messi just collected the Trofeo Di Stefano for La Liga’s best player in 2017-2018.And after that, the Argentinean superstar talked to the press and praised the competition in the Spanish tournament.“It’s good that the league is like this,” Messi was quoted by Goal.David Villa, FC BarcelonaTop 10 players who played for both Barcelona and Valencia Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Time to talk about the best players who represented both Barcelona and Valencia, prior to their La Liga encounter at Camp Nou this evening.“It’s more competitive than ever, anyone beats anybody, it’s good for the spectators.”“I hope it stays that way for a long time,” he added.“At the beginning, I was a bit scared, because I had not had much contact,” he admitted about playing after his injury.“I let go a little more as the game went on and I was fine.”last_img read more

El Shaarawy proud of Romas hardfought win

first_imgStephan El Shaarawy has urged his teammates to continue their fight for a top-four finish after beating Torino 3-2.Roma went 2-0 up thanks to strikes from Nicolò Zaniolo and an Aleksandar Kolarov penalty but Toro levelled back to 2-2 before El Shaarawy’s decisive finish.The win continued a three-game winning streak as they continued the march towards the Champions League spots.“It was an important and hard-fought victory. We had done well in the first half, it’s a pity that we conceded those two goals, but always tried to push for the win,” the Little Pharaoh told Roma TV and Football Italia.Chris Smalling open to a permanent AS Roma deal Andrew Smyth – September 6, 2019 Chris Smalling can “definitely see a longer-term future” for himself at AS Roma should things work out on his loan spell from Manchester United.“It was a win we earned with heart. Torino had never lost away from home this season, so we knew it was going to be tough, but we created numerous scoring opportunities.”El Shaarawy was a substitute after just six minutes, as Cengiz Under pulled up with a thigh strain.“I had no time to warm up, so it wasn’t easy and I had cramp towards the end, but with help from the team we were able to bring home the points.“We hope Cengiz Under can recover as quickly as possible.”last_img read more