Growing up, when you brought home an A on a test, did your parents ever argue over who’s side of the family “the smarts” came from? I can recall complete reconstructions of the family tree based on what subjects my sister and I were excelling in.
In reality, the grades probably had more to do with good study habits and a certain pride in my work, but new research indicates that there may be more of a genetic component than previously realized. In addition to diet, as we learned in my last post, recent work from Dr. Paul Thompson’s team reveals that genetic variations can have measurable impacts on learning and intelligence. I came across his work thanks to a great piece written by Moheb Costandi at ScienceNOW.
If you give a mouse a cookie, he’ll probably ask you for a glass of milk. And then he’ll do a bunch of other stuff, and get thirsty. And if he gets thirsty, he’ll ask you for a glass of milk. And if he asks you for a glass of milk, chances are he’ll want a cookie to go with it.
I remember reading that book so much as a kid. I also remember being obsessed with Taz as well. Unfortunately, the rhyme doesn’t carry over. If you get too cuddly with Taz, he might pass on his contagious facial cancer. Fortunately, work published in Cell last week reveals the sequence of the Tasmanian devil genome and of its cancer to help understand why it may be so transmissible.
“Nobody puts Baby in a corner.” That phrase has followed me my entire life. It is my mother’s favorite movie. It is my wife’s favorite movie. I transferred ownership from one woman to another, and Dirty Dancing followed me.
I can’t complain much, as my wife has to watch Jurassic Park at least annually. Still, I do not look forward to the inevitable night of boredom when she wants to again subject me to the ultimate chick flick.
Nobody argues with baby when she wants to watch Swayze.
Sadly, as you’re all aware, he’s no longer with us, claimed by the horrifying menace that is pancreatic cancer. Luckily, we may have a new tool towards prevention. In a recent issue of the AACR Journal Cancer Discovery, Dr. Alison Klein’s group at Johns Hopkins University reports the discovery of mutations in a gene that may lead to increased risk for developing pancreatic cancer.
Being a lifelong citizen of Texas, I am well versed in all manner of fatty foods…bacon wrapped anything, biscuits and gravy, and Whataburger. Oh Whataburger…no offense, but you are part of the reason I have to force myself to the gym.
We’re all familiar with the variety of delicious flavors our tongues are made to identify, but Dr. Nada Abumrad’s group (Washington University School of Medicine) has reported in the latest Journal of Lipid Researchthat our tongues may have receptors to identify fat itself. Yummy. Continue reading →