Monthly Archives: February 2020

Toucan Play That Game

A blog about life...literally

How Ancient Humans Became Domesticated

Scientists have long theorized that, in addition to domesticating our beloved dogs and cats, humans domesticated themselves. Many point to the changes in our modern facial features and disposition, as compared with Neandertals; humans today have softer facial features and … Keep Reading


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Living in Limbo

Is it possible to pause the aging process? The African turquoise killifish (Nothobranchius furzeri) is able to do just that. The African turquoise killifish is a native African species of fish that is found in and around the ephemeral pools … Keep Reading


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Is “BPA-Free” Good Enough?

Remember the times in the early 2010s when we would go through our cabinet and throw out the old water bottles that had BPA in them.  We were told that the BPA that was in the plastic had negative effects … Keep Reading


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How do Genes Play a Role in Rare Diseases?

There are more than 68,000 rare diseases that have been discovered, affecting between 25 and 30 million Americans. What classifies a diagnosis as a rare disease? A rare disease is a condition that impacts fewer than 200,000 people. It might … Keep Reading


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What is the Cause of Hiccups?

Many people have experienced the feeling of getting hiccups. Many have gotten them and tried lots of different ways to make them go away. For instance drinking a lot of water, trying to get scared, or hanging upside down; but … Keep Reading


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Cor-oh no-a Virus

The coronavirus (2019-nCov) has sparked fear all across the world in a new pandemic coming out of Wuhan, China. Symptoms of this deadly disease include those of the common cold or influenza such as: fever, cough, shortness of breath, running … Keep Reading


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Crispr-Cas9 and Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

DMD, or Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, is a recessive genetic disorder caused by a mutation on the X chromosome, causing it to predominantly affect young males. The mutation, to the DMD gene, affects the production of the protein dystrophin, which is … Keep Reading


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Is Intelligence Inherited?

The nature versus nurture debate continues with the dispute surrounding the origins of human intelligence. This crossover between psychology and biology overlaps in more ways than one would expect. One way to study intelligence and learning is to look at … Keep Reading


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A Mutation Among the Amish

For almost fifteen years, an Amish couple in the eastern United States were living in confusion following the sudden deaths of four of their children over the span of about ten years. On multiple occasions, this couple saw their seemingly … Keep Reading


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What Do We Know About the Coronavirus?

Illustration of the 2019 novel CoronavirusImage from Wikimedia Commons News of the coronavirus has taken over the internet, leading many people to worry about their fate as the disease spreads throughout the world. The specific strain of coronavirus that has … Keep Reading


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Undersleeping & Overeating

Balancing a healthy diet and regular sleep schedule is a difficult task for many, but the strong connection between the two suggests that more people should take a more serious look at their lifestyles. Most people know that eating right … Keep Reading


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Rise in Popularity of CRISPR

Recently in class we have focused on genetics and heredity so I decided it would be fitting to discuss CRISPR/CAS9, a new way to change DNA in humans and animals. Mutations in DNA can cause a variety of diseases including … Keep Reading


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What Doesn’t Kill an Axolotl Makes It Stronger!

Image from Wikimedia Commons Salamanders are perhaps one of the most interesting reptiles as they have abilities that are only exclusive to their kind than any other animal. The Salamander derives from a Greek word that literally means “Fire Lizard”, … Keep Reading


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Gene Linkages Found Connecting Hay Fever, Asthma, and Eczema

Researchers from SciLifeLab at Uppsala University worked with the genetics company 23 and Me in order to determine a linkage between 141 genes and the increased risk for hay fever, asthma, and eczema. By looking at tests of gene positioning, … Keep Reading


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Human Genome Project

The Human Genome Project, finished in 2003, was an international research effort to determine the DNA sequence of the entire human genome and its main goal was to discover what makes us human. After more than a decade, the Human … Keep Reading


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