Category Medicine

Ada Lovelace Day: let’s talk about Henrietta Lacks

Hi, everyone! It’s been pretty quiet here recently, as I’ve just started a new job, and I love it, but it also is taking most of my science energy. But I couldn’t skip today: today is Bad News Biology’s one-year “blogiversary” (blogaversary?) and another Ada Lovelace Day! Instead of focusing on a particular woman who […]

Learn with Dr. Brainiac: shingles

No matter how much we know, there is always something new to learn. Here’s what I knew about shingles: – it’s related to the virus that causes chickenpox – varicella – it’s most often seen in older people (usually older than 60 years old) – it’s painful – there’s a vaccine Here’s what I now […]

What’s the deal with the flu?

Today we’re talking about the influenza virus, which we mostly just call the flu. It’s in the news, and based on the questions my mom was asking me recently about flu vaccines and my dad wanting to talk about NY Governor Cuomo’s recent declaration of a state of emergency due to the flu (Hi, Mom! […]

Are bananas really able to protect against cancer?

Today we’re talking about what happens when something sounds awesome and scientific, but isn’t really true. And bananas! BANANAS! News source: uh, not news – a Facebook picture Image text: Full ripe banana with full dark patches on yellow skin produces a substance called TNF (Tumor Necrosis Factor) which has the ability to combat abnormal […]

What does sexism have to do with immunology?

Today we’re talking about gender, sex, biology, and immunology. The immune system in action! Click for more details News source: Real Clear Science, How Do Feminists Explain Immunology? (Spoiler: feminists explain immunology the same way non-feminists do.) The original science: In this case, I’m discussing a blog post that draws on a bunch of stuff, […]

Good op-ed biology: how to make new antibiotics

Today we’re talking about antibiotics, and the scary fact that a lot of germs are resistant to the antibiotics we have. Drugs: big business (click for more info on this picture!) News source: The New York Times opinion section (Casually, an “op-ed” is an article written as an “opinion” – something someone thinks, although that […]