After seeing this I thought.... what are the effects of being hit in the "groin" on males???
When a male is hit in the testicles, a male experiences extreme pain, accompanied by several other symptoms. The reason why it is so painful, is because a male's testicle have many nerves on them, which when struck cause pain. Simultaneously, when a male is hit, the violent and involuntary abdominal muscles contract, which causes loss of breath, which is often interpreted as the voice becoming higher. Male's also usually double over because of the muscle contraction and to prevent further damage to the testicles. Males also experience the majority of pain not in the testicles, but in the abdominal cavity, this is because the nerves run to the abdominal cavity, from which the testicles descended so it is where the pain runs. Some males also experience nausea, sometimes leading to vomiting. Often times there can be a persistent pain for anywhere from minuets to hours depending on the severity of the strike. Also, if a male's testicles are struck wit sufficient force, can cause testicular rupture, causing possible infertility and pain.

Infectious mononucleosis aka Mono
The characteristic symptoms of mono include fever, fatigue, malaise, and sore throat. The designation "mononucleosis" refers to an increase in one type of white blood cells (lymphocytes) in the bloodstream relative to the other blood components.
Mono is most often diagnosed in adolescents and young adults, with a peak incidence at 15-17 years of age. However, it is also seen in children. Generally, the illness is less severe in young children and may mimic the symptoms of other common childhood illnesses, which may explain why it is less commonly diagnosed or recognized in this younger age group.
Did you know that most people, by age 40, have antibodies built up in their bodies to fight against mono... Which means in our lives, approximitley 95% of us will be infected with some form of mono!! Wow

Post #7

Pheromones: what are they and how do they work?
A pheromone is a secreted or excreted chemical factor that triggers a social response in members of the same species. Pheromones are chemicals capable of acting outside the body of the secreting individual to impact the behavior of the receiving individual. There are alarm pheromones, food trail pheromones, sex pheromones, and many others that affect behavior or physiology. Their use among insects has been particularly well documented. Some vertebrates and plants communicate by using pheromones.

There are many different types of pheremones, some of them are:


Aggregation pheromones function in defense against predators, mate selection, and overcoming host resistance by mass attack.


Some species release a volatile substance when attacked by a predator that can trigger flight or aggression in members of the same species. Pheromones also exist in plants: certain plants emit alarm pheromones when grazed upon, resulting in tannin production in neighboring plants. These tannins make the plants less appetizing for the herbivore.


Epideictic pheromones are different from territory pheromones, when it comes to insects


Releaser pheromones are pheromones that cause an alteration in the behavior of the recipient. For example, some organisms use powerful attractant molecules to attract mates from a distance of two miles or more. This type of pheromone generally elicits a rapid response, but is quickly degraded.


Laid down in the environment, territorial pheromones mark the boundaries of an organism's territory. In cats and dogs, these hormones are present in the urine, which they deposit on landmarks serving to mark the perimeter of the claimed territory. In social seabirds, the preen gland is used to mark nests, nuptial gifts, and territory boundaries with behavior formerly described as 'displacement activity'.


Trail pheromones are common in social insects. For example, ants mark their paths with these pheromones. Certain ants lay down an initial trail of pheromones as they return to the nest with food.


Information pheromones are indicative of an animal's identity or territory. For example, dogs and cats deposit chemicals in and around their territory, which then serve as an indicator for other members of the species about the presence of the occupant in that territory,


In animals, sex pheromones indicate the availability of the female for breeding. Male animals may also emit pheromones that convey information about their species and genotype


Ebola Virus aka. The Hemorrhagic Fever

We have been talking about viruses in class lately and also discussed the Ebola virus. After reading the excerpt from the novel and talking about it in class I became very interested in the Ebola virus so I decided to research it further.

  • Transmitted by direct contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other body fluids of infected persons
  • Burial ceremonies where mourners have direct contact with the body of the deceased person can play a significant role in the transmission of Ebola
  • The infection of human cases with Ebola virus through the handling of infected chimpanzees, gorillas, and forest antelopes

  • Sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat
  • Often followed by vomiting, diarrhea, rash, impaired kidney and liver function, and in some cases, both internal and external bleeding
  • Laboratory findings show low counts of white blood cells and platelets as well as elevated liver enzymes

  • Specialized laboratory tests on blood specimens detect specific antigens and/or genes of the virus. Antibodies to the virus can be detected, and the virus can be isolated in cell culture. Tests on samples present an extreme biohazard risk and are only conducted under maximum biological containment conditions. New developments in diagnostic techniques include non-invasive methods of diagnosis (testing saliva and urine samples) and testing inactivated samples to provide rapid laboratory diagnosis to support case management during outbreak control activities

  • Severe cases require intensive supportive care, as patients are frequently dehydrated and in need of intravenous fluids or oral re-hydration with solutions containing electrolytes.
  • No specific treatment or vaccine is yet available for Ebola hemorrhagic fever. Several potential vaccines are being tested but it could be several years before any is available. A new drug therapy has shown some promise in laboratory studies and is currently being evaluated. But this too will take several years
  • Experimental studies using hyper-immune sera on animals have shown no protection against the disease

"Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever." World Health Organization, December 2008. Web. 21 Nov 2010. <>.


What is acne? Why does it affect teenagers more than adults? What can we do to prevent, or at least diminish, it?


Most people who get acne start having it in their early teens. This is because it is when the oil glands in the body start making more sebum (oil). Some people also have too many "sticky" skin cells. In people with acne, these cells mix with the oil and plug up the hair follicles in the skin. These plugs trap bacteria (germs) in the follicles, which can cause the follicles to swell. Tender red bumps are the result. In acne, what start as small red bumps can turn into pimples and even cysts.

So asides from "sticky" skin cells, what else plays a role in getting acne/make acne worse if you already have it?
  • Oil-based makeup, suntan oil, hair gels and sprays, and oils from machinerys or cooking
  • Stress and strong feelings like guilt, fear, and being nervous
  • Periods in women
  • Squeezing or picking at pimples
  • Scrubbing the skin hard
  • Your immune system
Another thing that plays a HUGE role in getting acne, if your heredity. If your mother of father had bad acne, your chances of having it are increased.

How can acne be treated?
Acne can be treated in different ways. The main thing to remember is that it will take about two months of any treatment before your skin starts to look better.

Benzoyl peroxide: This clears up acne for many people. You can get benzoyl peroxide without a prescription. It comes in a cream, lotion, gel, soap or in pads. You spread it over the whole area where you have acne (not just dabbing it onto each blemish). Your doctor may tell you to use it once a day at first and then work you up to two times a day.

Antibiotics: They can be very good for acne. They can be taken by mouth, or used in a lotion, cream, or gel on the skin. Again, be sure to apply the lotion, cream or gel over the whole area where you have acne.

Tretinoin: It can be a very good treatment for acne. It is often rubbed onto the skin once a day. Be sure not to get it near the eyes, mouth and area under the nose. It may seem at first that tretinoin is making your acne worse. Give it several weeks to start working. If you use tretinoin, you must avoid the sun or use a strong sunscreen. Tretinoin increases your risk of getting a very bad sunburn.

Isotretinoin: This may be needed to treat severe acne. It is best in treating cystic acne and to prevent scars. It is taken once a day by mouth for 15 to 20 weeks. Isotretinoin can cause serious side effects. It causes serious birth defects and miscarriages. It should never be taken during pregnancy or even one month before pregnancy. All women must use birth control while you take isotretinoin, as well as one month before and one month after you start taking it.

The most important thing to remember if you have acne, or even just a few pimples here and there... DO NOT PICK AT THEM AND DO NOT POP THEM! They can become worse and will leave scars!!!!!!

"Acne In Teens- Ways to control it." Ask your family doctor. The College of Family Physicians of Canada, 2007. Web. 16 Nov 2010. <>.


My personal views on Stem Cell research
In my personal opinion I don't believe that using potential life for research purposes is wrong. I think that all 4 methods of extracting stem cells should be legal. I don't think that existing stem cell lines, stem cells created through IVF for research or stem cells left over from IVF clinics need to controlled. The only method of getting stem cells that should be controlled is somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). I think that this needs to be controlled because it should only be used to create other organs and tissues that the body can use (therapeutic cloning), reproductive cloning should be strong prohibited with an extreme fine and punishment. Another reason I believe that SCNT needs to be controlled is because it is an extremely costly procedure and it is important that we don't use tax payers money to support this kind of thing. SCNT would have to be privately funded. I don't consider an embryo a human being and therefore extracting the cell mass from the blastula shouldn't be considered murder. I think that in this situation, where ending a few potential lives to save the lives of millions, the ends justify the means. In my opinion, you cannot be pro-life and be against stem cell research. Stem cell research has the ability to save lives and nobody should have the right to stand in it's way.


Study Study Study Study Study
With all of this studying going on for the tomorrow's midterm, I got to thinking, is there any foods that will improve my memory and improve my studying? After researching a bit I discovered that there is!

The following foods are foods that have been proven to help students focus and remember what they studied:

Apples- Apples have this particular antioxidant called querceti, which is revealed by certain studies to help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. More so, it is also found out to help boost your memory. While this antioxidant is found in both the skin and the flesh of the apple (the interior part of the apple that we all like to eat) it is more found in the apple's skin. So next time you're eating an apple, skip the peeling!

Spinach- Spinach not only made Popeye very strong but it also probably augmented his brain functions! A study found that laboratory rats regularly fed with spinach prevented and even reversed memory loss, thus they were able to score top at the maze and other tests.

Chocolate – Hooray! Chocolate not only makes people feel like they’re in love because of a serotonin boost, but it also makes them remember things much better.This is because chocolate contains epicatechin, which is found out to help improve blood flow to the brain, thus improving memory function. Aside from that, most chocolate contain caffeine, which makes you alert, making you study more effectively and retain as much information as you can.

Soy Milk – Soy milk is rich in choline, lecithin and isoflavones – potent natural antioxidants that are good for fighting off cancers and improving brain functioning.

Nuts- While studying, munching on cashews, peanuts, walnuts or pecans will help you retain much of what you are reading. This is because nuts are a good source of omega fatty acids, which is the primary component of a normally functioning brain. Also, they are rich in iron, which helps in carrying oxygen in the blood. With sufficient oxygen in the blood, fresh oxygen is supplied to the brain, so you stay alert and your memory is enhanced.

Onions- Onions especially the red variant, contain anthocyanin and quercetin, which is good from preventing Alzheimer’s disease and improve one’s memory.

So there you have it! I hope at least a few of you will see this before tomorrow's midterm and chow down on some chocolate and onions! I know I will!

Tee, George. "How To Study Effectively ." Secrets of Studying. N.p., 2010. Web. 4 Nov 2010. <>.


Is it harmful to crack my knuckles?

Unfortunately, I have a horrible bad habit of cracking and popping my knuckles and my mother is always telling me that if I keep cracking them, that I will get arthritis when I'm older.This got me to thinking, what is the "popping" sound I hear when I crack them and is cracking them really harmful to my health?
According to studies done (to date), there is no connection between cracking knuckles and arthritis. It's a myth told my moms to get their kids to stop making the horrible cracking noises! Although they did not prove a link between knuckle cracking and arthritis, there was some evidence that excessive knuckle cracking could cause a loss of grip strength or swelling around the joints. When you crack your knuckles, or any other body joint for that matter, you are subjecting the tendons and bones to unnatural pressure. Over a long period of time, body tissues do not recover from such manipulations as they once did. This can create the same types of joint pain as professional athletes experience after throwing a football or pitching a baseball for years.
So what is that popping sound anyways? When you crack your knuckles, the popping sound you hear is a gas bubble escaping from between your knuckle joints. The knuckle's bones, ligaments and tendons are surrounded by a thick liquid called synovial fluid. Over time, this fluid becomes filled with tiny bubbles of gas. When you push or pull on the joints to crack your knuckles, the tendons and ligaments become stretched out and the knuckle bones separate slightly. When the synovial fluid tries to fill in this gap, the trapped gas bubbles combine to form one large bubble. This bubble then pops to make room for the fluid to fill in the space between the knuckle bones. For those who are chronic knuckle crackers, after approximately 25-30 minutes, there should be enough gas built up to crack your knuckles again!!!

Pollock, Michael. "Is it harmful to crack my knuckles?." Wise Geek. conjecture corporation, 25 October 2010. Web. 26 Oct 2010. <>.



I recently read the novel Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult. The novel is about a trial of a man in court who has two separate types of DNA. In the novel he has the two different types of DNA because he had a bone marrow transplant. It made me wonder whether or not it was possible or if they just made it up as part of the story; so I decided to research it and find out.

Throughout my research I encountered the term chimera quite a bit. Chimera is defined as an organism composed of two or more genetically distinct tissues. More simply put, a chimera is an organism with two different types of DNA. Chimeras are formed from four parent cells (two fertilized eggs or early embryos fused together). Each population of cells keeps its own character and the resulting animal is a mixture of tissues. It is extremely rare in humans but it has been discovered. The likelihood of offspring being a chimera is increased if it is created via in vitro fertilization. So yes, it is possible for an organism to have two different types of DNA, but is it possible for their DNA to change after a bone marrow transplant?

The answer is yes! A bone marrow transplant turns it's recipient into a chimera. The DNA in their blood cells will be different from the DNA in the rest of their cells. A bone marrow transplant is used to treat a number of illnesses. It can treat people with various blood and bone marrow diseases. It is also used in the treatment of some forms of cancer (for example Leukemia). A doctor first destroys a patient's blood cells or bone marrow. This is often done with chemotherapy or radiation. The doctor then puts in new bone marrow from a matched donor. So why does the bone marrow affect the DNA in the blood cells? Our blood cells are reproducing constantly. They are produced by stem cells, which are found in the bone marrow. So when a transplant recipient receives marrow from a donor, their blood cells are produced by the stem cells found in the donor's marrow and therefore have the DNA of the donor and not the original DNA of the recipient. The DNA in the hair, saliva, tissue, semen, etc will all remain the same but the DNA in the blood will be different from the rest of the body!

Alizadeh, A. (2004). Ask a geneticist. The Tech Museum of Innovation, Retrieved from



This past summer scientists grew the first working replacement lung. The replacement lung which they created was the lung of a rat. The technique of creating the lung follows what's becoming a standard practice in regenerative medicine, but the lung is the most complex organ copied so far. There are 3 steps to remaking the lung; strip it, build the airways, and construct the vessels. Stripping the lung is when scientists fill the lu

ng with a detergent that removes the organ's original cells. Once the cells have been removed they move on to step 2, where they pump cells extracted from the rat that is going to be receiving the replacement lung transplant, and these cells multiply to form the airways int he lungs. Step 3 is similar, they insert more of the cells from the rat who will be receiving the transplant into the replacement lung and this constructs the vessels in the lung. Custom-made human lungs are still years off. Doctor's still can't create a replacement lung that won't be attacked by a human's immune system. Also, figuring out how to produce adult stem cells that will develop into the correct types of lung cells and not form tumors has proved difficult. Scientists think it will take about 20 years before they can rejuvenate a human lung but they intend to make it happen. Scientist Laura Nicklason said "I didn't get into this to make lungs for rats"

Zampana, V. (2010). Made-to-order lungs. Popular Science, 30.