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The Science of Water

Stay Hydrated!

Well I thought I’d kick this off with a little basic science first. We all know we need to drink water, need to stay hydrated, especially on a hot sunny day, or need to ‘replenish our fluids’ (I’m a bit of an Office fan so I had to throw that in). But I wanted to get into the actual science of it. I think if we have a basic understanding of whats going on in our bodies, we can better appreciate what a simple thing like drinking water can do for us. It also helps you to feel like your doing something great for your body, even if you can’t feel it having a direct effect. It feels healthy! 

Okay, lets get down to it. 

Our bodies are made of up to 50 to 70% water. Its in permeates every each of our bodies, from the cells, to organs to…

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The Molecules of Food and Nutrition

scienceandfooducla

Nutrition specialist Dr. Dena Herman introduced UCLA students to the molecules of food and nutrition as part of our 2013 Science and Food course. We learned all about essential nutrients, were introduced to the exciting new world of phytonutrients, and even got to make smoothies! Check out the highlights:


Vince ReyesAbout the author: Vince C Reyes earned his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering at UCLA. Vince loves to explore the deliciousness of all things edible.

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Who or What is Astrobiology?

The Silent Astronomer

What is Astrobiology?

“Astrobiology, the study of life as planetary phenomenon, aims to understand the fundamental nature of life on Earth and the possibility of life elsewhere. To achieve this goal, astrobiologists initiated unprecedented communications among the disciplines of astronomy biology, chemistry, and geology. . . . “
(1)

Who is an Astrobiologist?

Perhaps, an Astrobiologist is best described as a scientist whose primary roles fall within three definite areas:

  • Concerned about how life began and evolved
  • Concerned about questions of life beyond Earth
  • Concerned about the future of life (on Earth and beyond)

Beyond the major roles in Astrobiology, the scientist acknowledges the need for an interdisciplinary and collaborative effort among the disciplines. Perhaps it is best stated in the following manner—”it is not a practice of a lone scientist, but the interdependence between all parties.”

Otherwise, I take the following quotation from (Workshop on the Societal Implications of…

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1 year in…

I remember the year when I had no results, the bad part about it was that i was receiving a weekly paycheck.

Evolution 101

Absolutely zero results. Absolutely zero results. These three words are often mutterings of a hysteric PhD student other symptoms including: PhD wrinkle onset, grey hair infiltration and insane caffeine levels in bloodstream. Their diagnosis: stress induced delirium. Their medication: a good ould glass of suck it up.

I think it’s quite usual for first year PhD students to become daunted by the transition from undergraduate to postgraduate level studies – I was no exception. The spoon feeding stops, the memorization of  facts ceases which allows one to explore unchartered scientific terrain. I found this fact exciting but undeniably frightening. For me, coming from a wet bench genetics undergrad to a computational dry bench PhD was difficult. The amount I had to learn was staggering – from evolutionary theory and graph theory to phylogenetics and programming langauges. More importantly I had to deal with feeling stupid EVERY day, something that an undergrad definitely doesn’t prepare you for…

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Why Mosquitoes Love You

Draper's Den

Barb Darrow of GigaOmsummarizes a Smithsonian Magazine report on mosquitoes.

*Mosquitoes have favorite blood types. They’re more likely to dine out (on you) if you’re Type O than if you’re type A. Type B folks lay somewhere in the middle.

*85 percent of people secrete a chemical through their skin that telegraphs which blood type they have and mosquitoes prefer secretors to nonsecretors even if they have a non-preferred blood type.

*Mosquitoes love heavy breathers — they’re carbon dioxide-seeking creatures so if you’re big or if you’ve just exercised you’re one great poo-poo platter to them.So there you have it. Oh one more thing, if you don’t want to draw mosquitoes, skip that cocktail.

*Clothes color matters — People dressed in black, navy blue, dark red stand out to mosquitoes which use vision as well as smell to find meals.

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