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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8
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1answer
4k views

Can you consider a human as alive, or is it the cells on the body that are alive?

Sorry if this question seems strange, but in the recent time I have been interested in the question of what life is and how you can define life. My question: How long can individual cells live on a ...
35
votes
1answer
33k views

How does laughing gas (N₂O) work?

Laughing gas (N2O), well, makes people laugh. How does just a gas make us do that, there has to be some hormones at work... So, I wanted to know how this works? What is the mechanism?
5
votes
3answers
315 views

Why do human ears have a lower boundary for the lowest energy perceivable signal than eyes?

I am currently hearing a lecture about human machine interaction. The lecturer is not a biologist (neither am I, we are both computer scientists), but he makes some statements about biology which I ...
6
votes
0answers
69 views

How to tell if a beverage will hydrate or dehydrate? [duplicate]

Beverages of any type generally contain some measure of water. However, in the case of some liquids, the non-water components take more water from the human body to filter out than the water contained ...
3
votes
1answer
140 views

Why do haemophillic females $X^hX^h$ die before birth?

I just came across a statement in my book , while reading genetics, that haemophiliac females do not survive till birth (the reason not mentioned here why) . Before posting this question here I ...
8
votes
1answer
626 views

Are bacteria necessary for an individual's life, or, how long could a person live without bacteria? [closed]

Bacteria are essential to life in that they are responsible for breakdown of organic substances, etc. but are bacteria necessary for an individual's life? In other words, how long would a human ...
1
vote
0answers
26 views

how food moves in horizontal coils of small intestines [duplicate]

This is a very very basic question, and I am looking at it more from point of view of physics. The small intestine is a highly coiled structure, which means it has horizontal coils as well. I can ...
2
votes
1answer
68 views

The human organism knows what we have to eat? [closed]

My mother has told that if your organism needs a vitamin, you want fruits include that vitamin. For example you have lack of C-vitamin you would like to eat lemon. Is there any explanation for it, or ...
1
vote
1answer
231 views

How does ANF increase GFR?

ANF as we know reduce the Na+ uptake and K+ removal in the distal tubules and it also functions as a Vasodialator (?) But again it says that ANF increases the Glomerular filtrate ? But if it is acting ...
0
votes
0answers
101 views

With humans, is being transgender innate, or caused by social factors?

In humans, is being transgender something that is innate, or is it caused (or made more likely) by social factors such as their political beliefs, their religious views or their social environment?
1
vote
0answers
23 views

Does the use of a Thiazide diuretic affect the ability of a hair follicle to absorb substances?

Thiazide diuretics are on the World Anti Doping Agency's, as well as the International Olympic Committee, list of banned substances due to it ability to mask illegal substances in urine. The rapid ...
1
vote
2answers
34 views

Can ingesting substances that are produced by the body cause a permanent withering of the organs that produce the substance?

This question is about substances such as insulin and some vitamins that the human body is able to produce on its own. Some substances that are produced by the body are also present in various body ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

How does the Pectoralis Major work when doing a bench press?

Disclaimer, I'm not a biology undergrad and I only know the basics about muscle movement. I know that doing a bench press works the chest, and specifically the Pectoralis Major because, well, I feel ...
3
votes
2answers
129 views

What does it mean to have different “metabolism”?

We hear talk of different body types, and that it is more difficult for certain people to lose weight than others. On the other hand, when my physician recommends that I lose weight, they say that it ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

Superhuman eyesight

My ten year old son was reading car number plates that were too fast, too far away and at the wrong angle for any of us to read or even believe that it was possible for him to read. We thought he was ...
3
votes
1answer
506 views

Perception of distant lights without glasses

I am fairly short-sighted and wear glasses pretty much all the time. Naively, I would expect that when I take my glasses off, the image I see should look very much the same as as a photograph that's ...
4
votes
1answer
264 views

How can we measure cardiac output?

I could find a way which could find it by body oxygen consumption and there is another way to measure it by injecting drugs — measuring cardiac output by the so-called “indicator dilution method,” a ...
3
votes
1answer
466 views

What’s the reason for isovolumic contraction and isovolumic relaxation?

During cardiac cycle, there are two periods in which the heart volume doesn’t change, but there is a change in tension/pressure. It takes about 0.25-0.35 second to achieve this change. I searched in ...
2
votes
0answers
74 views

Is it possible that weak memory is due to interference between signals in the brain?

"Weak memory", as used in this question, refers to the inability to retrieve a memory that a person otherwise knows he has memorized earlier. An example of this is some fact snippet that the ...
2
votes
1answer
165 views

Biphasic T wave caused by digitalis toxicity

Digitalis is a drug that can be used during coronary insufficiency to increase the strength of cardiac muscle contraction. But when overdosages of digitalis are given, depolarization duration in ...
4
votes
1answer
202 views

What actually are thoughts? [closed]

The human brain consists of neurons that transmit impulses like wires that conduct electricity.I am confused about where are our thoughts stored and what really are thoughts? For example if I think ...
3
votes
0answers
196 views

Why are fingerprints different even in identical twins? [duplicate]

Why are fingerprints different from person to person? It can't be genetics. Even identical twins has different sets of fingerprints. What is the deciding factor that form and shape our fingerprints?
2
votes
0answers
37 views

Neural correlates of the function of the cardiovascular system?

Are there any known neural correlates of the function of the cardiovascular system? I'm looking for research results that use standard brain imaging techniques (e.g. electroencephalography, ...
13
votes
0answers
2k views

Why do we experience temperatures below 37 degrees Celsius as 'hot'? [duplicate]

We always prefer to be in 20-25° C, although our core temperature is about 37°? Why is our skin temperature lower than our core temperature?
8
votes
1answer
571 views

Why aren't green eyes more prevalent?

Why aren't green eyes more prevalent, given that the green allele is dominant over the blue one? My understanding is that human eye colour is determined by two genes: 1) HERC2, with alleles Bx, BB ...
3
votes
0answers
74 views

How does estrogen influence collagen synthesis?

Through what mechanisms does estrogen interact with collagen synthesis? Especially in the context of elevated estrogen levels and genesis of purpura simplex .
4
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2answers
85 views

What is overdiagnosis?

What is overdiagnosis ? I have searched this Wiki result but didn't understood at all. Can you please explain the first two line of Wikipedia : Overdiagnosis is the diagnosis of "disease" that ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

Why does uterus have to be prepared every month for fertilization?

I'm just curious why it has to happen every month when the uterus could have been prepared from the beginning and kept that way throughout life or till a certain point. But why make and break it every ...
41
votes
1answer
33k views

Why Does Salt Water Help Sore Throats?

I am having some trouble understanding how salt water, a simple solution, could so effectively remove the pains of a sore throat. I do believe that the answer is closely related to hypo/hyper-tonic ...
-3
votes
1answer
112 views

Human Species of Males/Females [closed]

Why is it that when there is discussion about Race/Subspecies it is never about the genetic/physical differences between males and females. So every argument has been about physical and geographic ...
6
votes
2answers
79 views

SNPs and locations

I am new to reading raw DNA. When comparing two people's raw data, why does one person have a different SNP than the other, at the same location, on specific chromosome? But on a different chromosome ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

Why I have to pee more often in low temperature? [closed]

I realised that I have to pee more often in winter or simply the temperature is low. Is there any scientific explanation, or just simply psychology?
5
votes
3answers
269 views

How does menstruation proceed during one period?

I'm simplifying things here: A. Does a woman bleed constantly, like a drop every 10 minutes? Two hours without pad or tampon and your underwear is dirty? or B. Does a woman bleed suddenly a ...
9
votes
1answer
5k views

What senses are active while sleeping?

During sleep, our body activity decreases. I am wondering on the extent of the lowering of this activity regarding our five senses. Clearly, the sense of touch is still very efficient since shaking a ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

Why did humans become bipedal?

Somewhere in evolutionary history homo started walking upright and became bipedal. You hear these hypotheses that, by walking upright, they could see better across the grassy savannas to escape ...
2
votes
2answers
174 views

Agony, Hydrophobia and viruses in the light of evolutionary principles

I'm undergraduate physics student, but I've always been interested in biology. So I have a couple of questions about an application of the evolutionary principles to practice. Agony as the last ...
3
votes
1answer
810 views

Why are sperm cells not attacked by the female immune system? [duplicate]

Whenever a foreign particle enters into someone's body, it is attacked by the white blood cells. I just want how it is that, when sperms enter the female body, they are not attacked by the the woman's ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Why don't breast enlargements leave any marks of surgery on breasts?

If we get stitches, we get marks left on the skin, but there are no marks for breast enlargements. I saw a YouTube video about a breast enlargement wherein a doctor makes a cut. Where does the cut ...
5
votes
3answers
237 views

Which fruit compounds affect the speed of fructose absorption?

Blood fructose levels are not regulated by insulin in the human body. This means that the body absorbs pure fructose very fast, and it raises the blood fructose levels rapidly. Do fruits/ vegetation ...
1
vote
2answers
445 views

What are the differences between a benign tumor and swelling?

What are the differences between a benign tumor and an injury related swelling? And can swellings due to injury turn into a benign tumor?
1
vote
1answer
131 views

What specific sensory nerves act as receptors for “pins and needles” (neuropathy)?

According to this excellent answer, the difference between "pain" and "pins and needles" (neuropathy) is that different receptors (sensory nerves) trigger in reaction to different stimuli. Different ...
1
vote
1answer
71 views

How and where do nerves share pathways to the brain?

I am interested in understanding how pain receptors send signals to the somatosensory cortex (the part of the brain that registers various nerve signals such as pain, presure, temperatures, etc). ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

Is it possible to estimate how much variation in common phenotypes is predicted by genetics?

Phenotypes such as; skin color, eye color, nose shape, lip size, limb proportions, and skull shape. Im trying to find a source for this quote. "If you ask what percentage of your genes is reflected ...
9
votes
0answers
624 views

Evolutionary reasons why you cannot tickle yourself but masturbate

There are obviously good reasons that explain why you cannot tickle yourself (see e.g. here). This got me thinking why it is possible to masturbate... Wouldn't it make more sense to not being able to ...
5
votes
2answers
603 views

Why do skin and nail go blue in cyanosis?

I have learned that Cyanosis presents with blue skin and nails. What is the reason for the blue coloration of the skin and nails? Why wont the skin and nails turn another color in the visible spectrum ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

Are there any generic (not dependent on symptoms) ways to find parasite infections?

Are there any generic ways to determine if a person is infected with a parasite? With "generic ways" I mean ways that do not rely on symptoms caused by a particular parasite. Also I am mainly ...
1
vote
1answer
227 views

Pituitary giants - is the fusing of growth plates dependent on amount of growth hormone in blood?

I wanted to ask a couple questions related to pituitary giants (people who are giants because of some anomaly, such as a tumor, in their pituitary gland). Some of these giants seem to keep growing ...
1
vote
1answer
98 views

What is the biological basis for tiredness after eating? [duplicate]

I can sometimes feel quite drowsy after some "meals" (e.g. a cold cut & cheese sandwich with juice on the side) and less drowsy (or maybe less often) after others (such as a salad). This ...
6
votes
1answer
97 views

Is the eyes' movement discrete?

When tired and it was dark, I noticed that if I focused on a dim light source and moved my eyes fairly rapidly sideways, the resulting images that lingered for a short while were not smoothly blurred ...
0
votes
2answers
233 views

What triggers programmed cell death in humans (from outside the cell)?

What triggers programmed cell death in humans? Is it decided by the brain (for the entire body)? Or is it a local decision of a cell by its environment? Something else? I realize that there might be ...