This tag is for questions about the general biological features of human beings (as opposed to the biology of non-humans).

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7
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3answers
3k views

Can a human smell through the ears?

The title does, prima facie, appear absurd. Performing a swallowing action whilst pinching the nostrils shut gives the impression of listening through a bucket filled with water around the head; ...
8
votes
2answers
797 views

How much weight/volume do microbes occupy within the human body?

Microorganisms constitute the bulk of all the biomass on Earth. I weighed myself yesterday, and wondered how much less I would weigh if I were completely free of bacteria and microbes, inside and out. ...
4
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2answers
119 views

Ultrasound during pregnancy

In a hospital I can see a long queue of pregnant women waiting for their turn for ultrasound. Is it safe to go through the ultrasound during pregnancy, especially during last few weeks? Is ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

Is nicotine toxic to humans?

More specifically, is nicotine in the concentrations that smokers receive when smoking cigarettes toxic? I know that in great enough concentrations it can be toxic (but then, so can just about ...
7
votes
1answer
105 views

What happens when we know that there is something that we forgot but we can't remember what it was?

I think it happens for everyone that sometimes we go to a room and forget why we went there. Is there any research or article on this?
2
votes
1answer
60 views

Is it more likely to develop a throat-ache at night?

I have noticed that I rarely develop phlemmy throat-aches in the daytime, but often notice them after I have been sleeping. Is this a recognised phenomenon? Could it be because viruses or bacteria ...
1
vote
1answer
63 views

In a human, what non-germline cells have the highest/lowest mass?

I'm just curious which cells are largest/smallest in the human body other than sperm/ova.
3
votes
1answer
420 views

Do adipose cells divide in adults?

I have a dim recollection of having heard that when humans gain weight, adipose cells just get larger, rather than dividing. True?
6
votes
1answer
7k views

Will a bone marrow transplant change one's blood type?

Will a bone marrow transplant change one's blood type? Or is the donor blood type matched with the person before transplant?
2
votes
3answers
511 views

Is there such thing as “half-life” of dopamine?

If a dopamine is released at T=0 and binds to receptor D2, what determines the time when the concentration of this neurotransmitter bound to the receptor reaches half of the original concentration? In ...
9
votes
2answers
322 views

How is human biological clock modelled in modern science?

Im an engineer by education and i program a lot, so the question sounds weird to people from other disciplines. Im trying to better understand the human biological clock. Yet i do not really know ...
4
votes
1answer
343 views

Do effects of caffeine on human body change with habitual use?

I've been reading about homeostatic nature of a lot of neurobiological processes - the brain is trying to maintain a balance by desensitizing receptors, re-uptaking and breaking down ...
4
votes
2answers
671 views

Does the brain and the body use the same energy source (glucose/ATP)?

I've heard that the brain consumes quite a lot of oxygen and energy, compared to the rest of the body. What I'm interested in is if this is the kind of energy and oxygen that the rest of the body ...
2
votes
0answers
173 views

Virucides - Herbal and otherwise, for HHV6 type virus or any inner-cell virus

Does anyone know where I can find a reliable list of virucides (not anti-virus) that can be used by humans? This virucide must be able to affect viruses that are already inside the cells. St John's ...
8
votes
1answer
4k views

How does sodium in one's diet affect blood pressure?

Due to high blood pressure, my doctor has recommended I go on a low-sodium diet. So, that got me wondering what it is about sodium that drives this recommendation? What does sodium do to a body ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

PGC-1β Sod2 limiters/blockers

I'd like to block a percentage of PGC-1β or Sod2 expression. According to the following paper's figure beta-blockers inhibit some expression of PGC-1α. Are there any medicines/chemicals which safely ...
2
votes
2answers
116 views

Is there some branch of biology that deals with the entire organism?

I'm reading about various parts of the human body and brain and started to wander if there's a branch of biology that deals with the entire human? I know that there are branches various -biologies, ...
10
votes
1answer
176 views

Does stress physically age our body?

Going by the assumption that stress eventually triggers a flight/fight response, and the subsequent realization that flight/fight puts the body in a system of readiness to use it's available resources ...
3
votes
2answers
141 views

What is the biological basis for a human's ability to think clearly and be aware while “fighting/competing”?

I'm interested in learning more about the biological systems or hormones or parts of the brain that affect short term (<15 minutes) ability to concentrate attention on the task and be aware of the ...
4
votes
1answer
251 views

What is the molecular basis of hangovers?

Well, most of us have experienced the wonderful feeling of the dreaded hangover. How does it work exactly? I imagine it has something to do with dehydration but what are the underlying mechanisms? ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

Does Dorsal Raphe Nuclei firing pattern change in response to voluntary breathing?

I'm reading this paper, which discusses how Serotonin may be involved in motor functions of mammals: 5-HT and motor control: a hypothesis . The paper includes the following diagram of the Dorsal ...
4
votes
2answers
60 views

Is there a circadian component to hunger?

I'm wondering what produces the feeling of hunger in humans. Checking Wikipedia revealed that leptin and ghrelin are two hormones involved. I've also read that the digestive system produces its own ...
21
votes
5answers
393 views

Are there any substance that are more dangerous at low dose than at higher dose?

It is commonly admitted that The dose makes the poison which means as a person, the more I take a substance, the more risk I take for my health. There is even an indicator called LD50 (see ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Slow-oxidative fibres vs fast-glycotic fibres

Why do slow oxidative muscle fibres contain more mitochondria compared to fast-glycolytic muscle fibres?
5
votes
1answer
224 views

How quickly can the human heart rate rise and fall?

How quickly can the human heart rate rise and lower? For example lets say a human heart rate is rested and is at 60BPM and that person is suddenly scared to trigger their fight or flight reaction. ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

What determines testosterone exposure in womb, baby's genetics or mom's body?

I read this article which has the following quote: The ratio between index and ring finger is believed to be linked to exposure to the male hormone testosterone in the womb. And I wonder what ...
8
votes
1answer
519 views

What conditions are necessary for HPL (human pancreatic lipase) to activate?

What conditions are necessary for human pancreatic lipase to activate? Is there an optimal temperature or pH? How quickly does it take effect?
2
votes
0answers
21 views

How to seek information on the duration of biological entrainment processes in mammals? [closed]

This is a question that is a little bit hard to define for me. I'm interested in learning more about times of "attractor/entrainment" processes that may take place in the body/brain of mammals, and ...
-1
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1answer
5k views

Ramifications and possibility of a diet consuming exclusively of human semen

Semen is a thick, nutritious liquid, rich in vitamins (such as C, B12), amino acids, lipids, monosaccharides (fructose), et cetera. Can semen's ability to fulfill the needs of human organism provide ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

Where are -HCl supplements absorbed in the human digestive system?

I see that quite a lot of drugs and dietary supplements sold in the USA have -HCl(hydrochloride) added to their name. For example pyridoxine hydrochloride for Vitamin B6. I'm interested in knowing ...
0
votes
1answer
254 views

Why is offspring of identical twins not identical?

When identical twins marry identical twins, the children of the couples will be full genetic siblings but why are they not genetically identical?
9
votes
3answers
122 views

Adipocyte Density

People who are overweight and wish to lose weight, often do so because they are concerned about looking too big. Their increased size is attributed to an increased volume of fat. When people try to ...
8
votes
1answer
88 views

Which aspects of renal physiology are standing in the way of an artificial (mechanical) kidney?

Scientists have been able to create artificial organs with varying degrees of success. The mechanical heart (in its various forms, e.g. ventricular assist) is able to sustain life for some period of ...
8
votes
1answer
194 views

Does the oxygen concentration equilibrate between red blood cells in the liver sinusoids?

In the sinusoids of the liver, venous blood from the hepatic portal system mixes with arterial blood from the hepatic arteries. Do oxygen molecules move between oxygenated RBCs and non-oxygenated ...
4
votes
1answer
156 views

Is a raised baseline between T and QRS normal in any ECG lead?

Here are excerpts from an unknown ECG lead. I find it weird that the "baseline" changes after the T wave and doesn't return until after the following QRS complex. Is that normal/expected for any lead? ...
9
votes
1answer
190 views

What are the clotting factors' effect on avascular necrosis development?

Do clotting factors tpa and pai-1 lead to degenerative osteoarthritis in the same way that lupus anticoagulant and prothrombin might? Is one of these pathways particularly detrimental during formation ...
18
votes
2answers
329 views

Can an adult without genetic lactase persistence still develop a tolerance for dairy foods?

While investigating the rise of adult lactose tolerance, I came across the news that China has been encouraging its citizens to drink more milk, even though most of the Asian population lacks the SNP ...
4
votes
1answer
5k views

Does mixing alcoholic drinks really make you more drunk?

There is plenty of anecdotal evidence ("beer after wine and you'll feel fine, wine after beer will make you feel queer") that mixing alcoholic drink types leads to a stronger effect, but I can't find ...
3
votes
1answer
160 views

Can a person die instantaneously from internal damage to the brain?

Given the human heart is autonomous, can a person die instantly from internal damage to the head/brain? I would expect the heart to continue to pulse until it ran out of energy ... My contention is ...
8
votes
2answers
347 views

Where do the bacteria within the vagina originate from?

I understand that it's feasible the bacteria within the gastrointestinal tract originate from the food we eat and air we breath, but where does this population of microbes originate from?
1
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0answers
41 views

Can we make any judgements about sleep or readiness to sleep from a heart rate metric and/or pulse oxymetry?

I'm looking at inexpensive and un-intrusive ways to quantify the state of human body/mind . One of these is Actigraphy, which is a study of human motion over time. This can be done with an iPhone ...
2
votes
0answers
306 views

Can the sleep/wake cycle be influenced by non-visible spectrum electro-magnetic radiation?

I've been reading a few papers on Melanopsin and Suprachiasmatic Nucleus (SCN), and see that the sleep/wake transition is ...
4
votes
1answer
308 views

In the vacuum of space would death be instantaneous?

I was arguing with my colleague about this matter (I'm not going to mention which side I fall on). Would death be immediate in the vacuum of space? For example, if I was suddenly teleported into the ...
3
votes
1answer
297 views

How are melatonin levels measured in humans?

I'm wondering how it is possible to measure diurnal variations of melatonin levels in humans. I keep reading that there should be a large difference in amplitude between melatonin levels measured at ...
4
votes
1answer
49 views

Are there yearly variations in HIOMT (HydroxyIndole-O-MethylTransferase) availability?

I'm reading a booklet on melatonin published in 1996, titled "Melatonin and the Biological Clock". And see the following statement: HIOMT (HydroxyIndole-O-MethylTransferase), one of enzymes of ...
4
votes
1answer
568 views

Is there a relationship between Melatonin, Norepinephrine and depression in humans?

I'm reading a booklet on melatonin published in 1996, titled "Melatonin and the Biological Clock". This particular paragraph caught my attention and I would like to better understand what it means: ...
12
votes
2answers
435 views

Could an “overactive” brain increase the chances of Alzheimer's Disease?

From Raichle ME. 2010. Two views of brain function. Trends in cognitive sciences 14: 180–90: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common cause of progressive cognitive decline and dementia in ...
16
votes
2answers
368 views

Why would diffusion be faster across a non-specialised tissue?

The standard protocol for a person experiencing chest pains is to chew a 300mg aspirin tablet, the argument being that chewing rather than swallowing the tablet results in the aspirin entering the ...
4
votes
2answers
130 views

Does age affect the frequency of flatus?

Is there any relation between age and the frequency of flatus? I often have this feeling that older people f*** more often than younger ones. Is this feeling scientifically correct?
3
votes
1answer
185 views

What is the relationship between Homocysteine and Norepinephrine metabolic cycles?

I've been researching neuromodulators and have taken a look at the Norepinephrine/Noradrenaline system. The diagram of biosynthesis of Norepinephrine is presented in the wikipedia article: ...