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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1answer
6k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of being ambidextrous?

Most of us have one dominant hand. We find it nigh on impossible to do very delicate or dextrous activities with our other-hand. This seems like an apparent weakness, and a rather odd one when you ...
8
votes
1answer
8k views

Why is fructose not glucose the main energy source of sperm?

The seminal fluid contains fructose as the main energy source for the sperm and not glucose. Why is fructose and not glucose the primary energy source for these sperm, since glucose is the ...
2
votes
1answer
255 views

Scrotal temperature and vascularization

The testes (at least in human males) are vascular organs, the vascularization extending even o the interstitial spaces of the seminiferous tubules. The function of the scrotal sac, is to isolate the ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Is the Michael Jackson skin pigmentation disease realistic?

Quoting wikipedia: Jackson's skin had been a medium-brown color for the entire duration of his youth, but starting in the mid-1980s, it gradually grew paler. The change gained widespread media ...
1
vote
1answer
101 views

Body's decomposition

Does a human body decompose in a completely sterile environment ? If yes, what decomposes it ? And how fast ? What happens in vacuum ? Can it remain exactly the same ? Thanks
4
votes
2answers
8k views

Does bright environment strain eyes more than dim?

I'm trying to figure out how to modify my working conditions so that I can program longer without harming my eyes. Because doing so experimentally hasn't given conclusive results so far, I decided to ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

Does the eye image interval refresh? [closed]

It's known the human eye takes 24 images per second. But does this refresh? For example after sleeping. Or will it always be the same interval? I talk about when the eye takes the images. So it are ...
7
votes
2answers
209 views

Does knowing the sex of each of a couple’s first N children have any marginal value in predicting the sex of child N+1?

Does knowing the sex of each of a couple’s first N children have any marginal value in predicting the sex of child N+1? By “marginal” I mean predictive power beyond other known effects, e.g., the race ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Transfer of antibodies in breast milk of humans

Why isn't the IgA secreted in breast milk digested due to proteases of the digestive system in the baby? Wikipedia says: The secretory component of sIgA protects the immunoglobulin from being ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Transfer of antibodies from mother to fetus

My questions: When does fetus begins to acquire antibodies from mother? Does it continue throughout the pregnancy? From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passive_immunity This occurs around ...
15
votes
3answers
4k views

In Japan, the official average body temperature is 36.0 °C. Why so different from that of Europe?

The Japanese Wikipedia states that the average human body temperature is 36.0 °C (here,"ヒト"). The statement references the data from the Japanese government. Actually all of my Japanese friends think ...
3
votes
2answers
171 views

How far into a pregnancy is it before visible signs of it is apparent and risk of physical trauma increases

I'm doing research for a series I'm writing. in it the main character is pregnant however goes off to fight a criminal organization who have been killing her friends and i want her appearance to show ...
3
votes
2answers
597 views

How does Humira work when injected into patients with rheumatoid arthritis?

OK, I have rheumatoid arthritis and I've been injecting Humira 2 times a month for the last 8 months. As far as I know rheumatoid arthritis is simply an immune system disorder which makes the immune ...
0
votes
1answer
282 views

What is meant by 73 hour birth [closed]

I was reading an article, when I read a sentence saying, His mother ... nearly died less than three years later during Mathers' 73-hour birth. What does mean by 73-hour birth?
2
votes
1answer
66 views

Antibody production in secondary immune response

Can IgG antibodies be produced in the secondary immune response without the help of T cells? Is the affinity of antibody for antigens higher during secondary immune response?
3
votes
2answers
5k views

Presence of MHC on red blood cells

Do red blood cells have no MHC? (I have often heard that they do not.) If so why are they not destroyed by immune cells?
3
votes
1answer
78 views

Alternating Ovulation

I have often heard that right and left ovaries alternate in releasing ovum. Is it always true? What controls this rhythm? Is it simply because the other ovary is unresponsive to LH or FSH? If so, ...
2
votes
0answers
112 views

What to do with a DNA sequencer? [closed]

My school is very fortunate to have a DNA sequencer, and I want to find an opportunity to learn how to use it. I'm currently taking AP Biology this year, and I hope to do an independent study in ...
-7
votes
2answers
354 views

Is love biologically useful? [closed]

I thought about this statement a while ago: Natural selection sucks, it says those who love too much (or too many) will die the easiest and fastest. Sad but true. Only family (biologically of ...
24
votes
1answer
907 views

Extremely rare occurence of Heart cancer?

The occurrence of Heart cancer (similar, but not the same as Rhabdomyosarcoma) is extremely rare, about 1 per year according to MayoClinic. The reason for this rarity is explained to be the ...
1
vote
1answer
174 views

The probability of indirect human fertilization (follow-up)

This question is a follow-up to this one. I've been wondering how small that probability is. As we all know, "safe" sex, that is (correctly) using a condom and all that, isn't perfectly safe. So, in ...
-2
votes
1answer
106 views

Would I still exist if [closed]

I've been wondering for some time, but say that my mother's egg chose another sperm cell, and a baby was eventually produced. Would I still be born, but end up with different characteristics/features? ...
3
votes
1answer
292 views

Need of Creatinine Phosphate

In muscle cells most of the ATP's phosphate is with creatinine phosphate. So why is the displacement of the phosphate group done ? Is it because creatinine phosphate would give it's phosphate more ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

How are non-glucose sugars metabolized in the body?

In my biology book's section on disaccharide metabolism and glycolysis, it states that sugars other than glucose must be acted upon to enter glycolysis. Let's take sucrose as an example. Sucrose is ...
1
vote
1answer
177 views

What are the effects of muscle and fat mass on survivability?

If we have humans A, B and C who are different: A is thin (skinny) without significant muscle or fat mass. B is muscular C is fat Which one of them has the best body for survival in accidents like ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Why does shaving dehydrate the skin? Is there an hormonal effect involved?

I want to understand why the face becomes dry after shaving and if shaving affects hormones? I've heard that after shaving, hair grows back faster, why? Shaving damages hair follicles and they become ...
6
votes
2answers
17k views

Which human cells have the longest and shortest lifespan?

Which cells in a human have the longest lifespan? Which cell has the shortest lifespan?
2
votes
1answer
899 views

How many consecutive cell divisions are required to form the adult human body from the single cell zygote?

The preferred question would have been what is the total number of cells in a full term human foetus and how many cell divisions are required to reach that number. However estimates of total cell ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

What did we learn with Nazi human experimentation?

Was there actually any useful knowledge gained from the Nazi experiments on human test subjects? Wikipedia cites freezing and phosphine gas reactions, but I would like to know other potential results ...
1
vote
1answer
493 views

Calcium for Humans: Supplements vs Fortified Sources

I am intolerant to meat and milk products, but purely natural foods don't contain enough calcium for the Recommended Daily Intake. Links 2 to 4 (but NOT 1) avouch a correlation between calcium ...
2
votes
1answer
103 views

How correlated are proximally related CpG sites in human DNA?

Cytosine residues in DNA that can be methylated (i.e. CpG sites) are likely to be in the same methylation state if they are geographically (proximally) close together. I can only find one paper that ...
3
votes
1answer
94 views

What's the mechanism for pain-induced swoon?

Is it true that people will pass out when subject to pain too much to bear, or there's no such threshold? What's the reason for passing out under acute pain, even if no physical injuries occur (e.g, ...
2
votes
2answers
155 views

How precise is EEG?

Imagine we want to read impulses within single neurons in the brain. Can we do that now for a single region within the brain? If not, what is the smallest region that can be monitored for an activity ...
1
vote
1answer
101 views

What stops the coagulation process?

Whenever there are minor/major injury to blood vessels, the platelets, fibrin, thrombin, etc. are recruited. They then seal the wound and block bleeding. What tells them that their job is done?
3
votes
1answer
125 views

Other than Acetylcarnitine what other orally-bioavailable Acetyl donors exist to assist in the conversion of CoA to acetyl-CoA?

I asked a question on bio stackexchange a few days from which I was hoping to be able to arrive at an answer for this question myself but I have had no such luck so now I am going to just ask ...
14
votes
4answers
10k views

Why we have no enzyme to digest cellulose?

As we know, cellulose is the most abundant polysaccharide in nature. Why don't we have any enzyme to digest cellulose?
2
votes
0answers
131 views

Are simple esters like those used as flavouring agents metabolised into their constituent carboxylic acids and alcohols in the human body?

By this I mean to ask whether say ethyl butanoate is hydrolysed in humans into ethanol and butyric (butanoic) acid. This is of interest to me as a pharmacology researcher because butyric acid, for ...
2
votes
2answers
316 views

Eating rarely but a lot, or often but little

I wonder if it matters if an average person eats the same amount of food distributed between a few (2-3) meals during the day, or constantly having small snacks. I'm interested in several aspects of ...
4
votes
1answer
87 views

How can fresh cavities form at the margins of sliver amalgam fillings on teeth?

Silver amalgam fillings predominantly contain silver a known bactericidal agent and mercury which a known toxin and has bactericidal property. So how is it that the plaque bacteria survive near the ...
-3
votes
4answers
265 views

Are biological systems engineered? They are often reverse engineered at a molecular level!! [closed]

Understanding biological systems, molecular biologists need to “reverse engineer” them. Is this evidence that the systems were engineered to begin with?
4
votes
1answer
3k views

What is a “mechanistic study”?

I believe a "mechanistic study" means a study where a medicinal product is being used but the purpose of the study is to investigate the patient or disease, not the medicinal product. How does this ...
2
votes
0answers
227 views

What tests can be performed to test the purity and quality of the raw peptide HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin)

What tests could be run to test the purity and type of HCG? We are looking to purchase HCG from China but the purity and quality varies between labs, we are able to receive samples of the raw peptide ...
3
votes
2answers
322 views

Why do our eyes “wrap” hue from UV to IR?

On the high-wavelength side of things, we see almost-infrared as reddish, with a slight tinge of magenta. On the low side, we see violet fading into the same magenta color. Why is that? You can see ...
4
votes
1answer
99 views

What is an explanation of the dual role of calcium hydroxide in teeth?

Calcium hydroxide induces dentine formation in permanent teeth, while it causes resorption of tooth in deciduous teeth. How is this dual role explained?
2
votes
2answers
70 views

Can we identify an individual from their palm lines

Can we identify an individual from their palm lines. Is there any uniqueness for palm lines among family members ?
2
votes
2answers
102 views

Can the colour of skin change with age

Can the colour of skin change with age? Can a dark skinned person become fair or vice versa? Can Melanocyte production vary?
2
votes
1answer
92 views

The difference between “Hunger” and “Appetite”

When I am "hungry", I need something to eat physically. But what about "appetite"? I think it is a psychological phenomenon. Is that correct?
2
votes
2answers
125 views

Why does the mixture of infant formula with saliva provide an ideal breeding ground for disease-causing micro-organisms?

From: http://www.nal.usda.gov/wicworks/Topics/FG/Chapter4_InfantFormulaFeeding.pdf Discard any infant formula remaining after a feeding. The mixture of infant formula with saliva provides an ideal ...
0
votes
1answer
691 views

Why is the liver the only internal organ of the human body to regrow?

Related to my earlier question, "How does the human liver regrow?", am curious as to why the liver is the only major organ that has this capability? Why is it that other major organs, such as the ...
3
votes
1answer
389 views

When was the purpose of bone marrow discovered?

I'm currently reading William Cheselden's book Osteographia or The Anatomy of the Bones, which was published in 1733 (for the pretty pictures, naturally; not up to date anatomy). When he addresses the ...