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Foundations of Science

What Is a Virus and What Makes Them Both Fearsome and Useful?

What Is a Virus and What Makes Them Both Fearsome and Useful?

What Is a Virus and What Makes Them Both...

A virus is essentially a bundle of genetic code, either in the form of DNA or RNA, encased in a protein coating, known as a capsid.  But, unlike bacteria, a virus cannot reproduce itself without invading a host cell because it lacks some of the crucial machinery for metabolism and...

Science Fact or Science Fiction? Avoiding Peanuts as an Infant Reduces Allergy Risk

Science Fact or Science Fiction? Avoiding Peanuts as an Infant Reduces Allergy Risk

Science Fact or Science Fiction? Avoiding...

The science behind the way certain food allergies develop has evolved, and that there are new guidelines in place to help navigate these new ideas that suggest that avoiding peanut consumption may not translate to avoiding an allergy.  A 2015 study  published in the New England...

Why Are Some People More Tasty to Mosquitoes Than Others?

Why Are Some People More Tasty to Mosquitoes Than Others?

Why Are Some People More Tasty to Mosquitoes...

Science reveals that a variety of factors make us more palatable to mosquitoes, from the amount of carbon dioxide emitted in our breath to the color of clothing we’re wearing (darker colors attract mosquitoes more than lighter ones). But in the end, much of the variation in mosquito...

Reducing the Pull of Memories to Fight Drug Addiction Relapse

Reducing the Pull of Memories to Fight Drug Addiction Relapse

Reducing the Pull of Memories to Fight Drug...

Sscientific evidence has established that drug addiction is a chronic illness that produces lasting changes to the brain’s chemistry and function. The latest brain research reveals that drug addiction may have such a powerful grip on individuals because it affects our learning and memory...

Decoding Science: Cytokines

Decoding Science: Cytokines

Decoding Science: Cytokines

From the Greek “cyto” for cell and “kinos” for movement, cytokines orchestrate the immune system’s activity, and may be the key to understanding and treating autoimmune disorders.

Coffee Doesn’t Give You the Jitters, Alcohol Makes You Blush: Thank Your Genes

Coffee Doesn’t Give You the Jitters, Alcohol Makes You Blush: Thank Your Genes

Coffee Doesn’t Give You the Jitters, Alcohol...

Genetic differences influence how we respond to certain medicines and chemicals. Ever wonder why certain people turn beet red after a glass of wine or others can drink multiple espresso shots and not feel the least bit jittery? Our genes code for the enzymes that metabolize these substances...

Science Fact or Science Fiction? A Vaccine Only Protects The Person Who Receives It

Science Fact or Science Fiction? A Vaccine Only Protects The Person Who Receives It

Science Fact or Science Fiction? A Vaccine Only...

By receiving a vaccine, there’s a good chance you’re helping more people than just yourself. The reason for that is a phenomenon known as herd immunity, or community immunity. In any given population, not all people are able to receive or benefit from vaccines because their immune systems are not...

Group B Strep: A Dangerous Infection in Infants and Adults

Group B Strep: A Dangerous Infection in Infants and Adults

Group B Strep: A Dangerous Infection in Infants...

Despite advances in treatment and prevention, Group B strep continues to be the leading cause of dangerous infections in newborns, pregnant mothers and adults.  

How Genetically Related Are We to Bananas?

How Genetically Related Are We to Bananas?

How Genetically Related Are We to Bananas?

We’ve long known that we’re closely related to chimpanzees and other primates, but did you know that humans also share more than half of our genetic material with chickens, fruit flies, and bananas?

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