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«Kera» oh my, cleavage
·StellarWind· ...
·StellarWind· This is how much of a geek I am.
·StellarWind· I read 'cleavage' and I wonder following/before which amino acid.

Too many proteases on me. Yup.
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The occipital lobe is the sight-linked area of the brain. It's also the lower-rear area of it. Which is why teachers often say they have eyes in their back. Next, we shall discuss the connection between sound and time travel. Hint, both are related to temporal manipulation.
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Imperfect recognition of Exam Question Sequences induces formation of bullshitosomes on processed cellulose medium.

Results are still inconclusive.
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In our corner "Things that are not yet PokeMon but certainly should be!" we've already discussed the rather Grass-Type-like symbiosis of Salamanders and algae and of the Kleptoplasty phenomenon by which the sea slug Elysia chlorotica yoinks chloroplasts from its prey and utilizes them to photosynthesize. Today we will cover something I never thought I'd hear of - an IRL Steel-type PokeMon.

Crysomallon squamiferum, also known as the scaly-foot gastropod, is a deep-sea snail living at the foot of 'black smokers' in the Kairei hydrothermal vent field in the Indian ocean. Why is it called Scaly-foot? Because... look at it.

The snail's 'foot' is entirely protected by small scales (called sclerites) up to 8mm long. These things are mineralized - they are composed of Iron Sulfide minerals - pyrite and greigite. No other animal uses these materials in its skeleton.

In addition to this, the snail's shell has a three-layered structure: its internal layer is aragonite, a calcium mineral, with a thick intermediate organic layer above it, followed by an external layer of the same iron sulfide mineral.

All this renders this snail's defense stat ridiculously high against whatever predators (including the infamous cone snails) may attack it. The origin of the minerals appears to be from the hydrothermal vents rich in these minerals - and supposedly the military is looking into ways of developing new forms of armor based on this structure.

Dayum, nature, you awesome.


Nov. 24th, 2010 09:45 am
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I am getting sick and tired of people whining about how all the grass starters are reptiles and how uncreative it is.

So when an artist I follow on dA made a whine entry about it, I had to reply.

Why does it get me so? Because, for one, Grass works for reptiles. Many reptiles need to sun themselves to regulate their body heat. Plants need light to initiate photosynthesis and produce more biomass. It's a match made in heaven. Granted, applying that assumption to dinosaurs (who may have been homeothermic like modern birds and mammals) is a bit of a stretch, but yeah.

Also, 'reptiles' is a very broad umbrella term to describe the Grass starters. The Bulbasaur line seems to have traits of Synapsids, a group that fissioned off from reptiles and eventually gave rise to mammals. The Chikorita line are Sauropod dinosaurs, a group that had quite a bit of internal diversity of its own right. Treecko starts off as a leaf-tailed gecko and proceeds to acquire traits of theropods, a large group of dinosaurs that a clade of, the Maniraptora, is believed to have given rise to modern birds. Turtwig starts as a Snapping Turtle and gradually transforms into a strange cross of a turtle and an ankylosaurid dinosaur and the newest critter, Tsutarja/Snivy, is a proto-snake that progresses gradually into full snake form in its final evolution. That is quite a lot of diversity.

In fact, if you're going to whine about how all grass starters are not creative because they fall under a broad umbrella term, take a broader look at all the starters. Notice a trend here? "Reptiles" including non-avian archosaurids (grass starters, Charmander, Squirtle and Totodile), Mammals (Cyndaquil, Chimchar, Pokabu/Tepig and Mijumaru/Oshawott), birds (Torchic and Piplup)and an amphibian (Mudkip).

OH SHIT. THEY ARE ALL TETRAPOD VERTEBRATES! IT'S NOT CREATIVE! In fact, it shows no creativity whatsoever! I call a Grass Elysia chlorotica, a Fire Bombardier Beetle and a Water Hallucigenia for the extinct wtf factor!

You know what, why limit ourselves to Metazoa only? Let's branch out even more! I call a Grass Cyanobacterium, a Fire Hyperthermophilic Archaeon and a Water Rotifer! How's that for diversity? Not just different classes, by three different DOMAINS! Is that creative enough for you?

Third version could be a special Electric Bacteriophage Edition.


The person I posted this rant at deleted the aforementioned journal entry. Bio-pwned, biyatch.
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Two phases in he life cycle of a... barnacle larva. Holy crap. Vortex Queen anyone?
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So. Running through the internets I stumbled upon a bunch of biology (usually) rap parodies by a guy named Tom McFadden. Some of these are fucking brilliant. So I figured I'd share them with the more scientific-humor-inclined of you guys. That's... what. Four of you? xD

3.5 Billion 'til Infinity

A parody of "'93 til Infinity" by Souls of Mischief. Hip-Hop about Charles Darwin and the theory of Evolution? Hell Yes.

Hi, Meiosis!

HI! Meiosis! (One?) Meiosis! (Two?) Meiosis! (CHIKA-CHIKA) MAKES GAMETES! Gregor Mendel on the mic in a parody of Eminem's "Hi, My Name Is".

It's Too Late to Apoptize

Emo Cancer Cells, anyone? A parody of One Republic's "It's Too Late to Apologize".

... Actually I should just link you to the guy's Youtube Profile. The man is a fucking genius.
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This (not quite) just in: Spotted Salamanders are real-life Grass-types.

Algal symbionts. ALGAL FUCKING SYMBIONTS. Well, it was known that the algae have a form of symbiosis with Salamander embryos, but it was thought that it's an external thing. As it turns out - the algae also live INSIDE the salamander and they seem to link up with the Mitochondria, supporting each other like in freaking CELLCRAFT.

Ohmygods. That is so cool.

Another real-life-grass-type-related phenomenon is that of Kleptoplasty, which seems to be common in certain Sacoglossan sea slugs such as Elysia chlorotica.

See, there are quite a few animals that absorb and store toxins from their prey an become poisonous themselves. Sea slugs have been known to go beyond storing the chemicals in their raw form and actually selectively incorporate complete elements from their prey and utilize their functionality. A perfect example would be Glaucus atlanticus, a nudibranch sea slug merely 5-8 cm in length which preys on jellyfish and siphonophores - colonial organisms that are frequently mistaken for jellyfish, the most prominent example of which is Physalia physalis or as it is most commonly known, the Portugese Man O' War.

For the uninitiated, Physalia are pretty big creatures, with tentacles that can reach up to 22 meters (though they commonly reach ten meters. THAT IS STILL FUCKING LONG) ripe with nematocysts capable of delivering very painful (to humans) toxic stings. These things can stay potent even on detached arms or dead specimens for up to a few days.

Glaucus eats them. Whole. And it is capable of selectively incorporating their nematocysts into itself, deliberately choosing only the most potent ones, thus being capable of delivering a more powerful toxic sting than the Physalia in which they originated!

But I digress. Kleptoplasty is kinda like that, but with Chloroplasts. And apparently Elysia chlorotica noms on algae and incorporates their chloroplasts, providing itself with a little photosynthetic boost to its energy supplies.

... See. It's crazy awesome shit like this that made me into the biology freak I am in the first place XD
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"When you hold someone in your arms, the good feeling is you feel the body heat. That's the infra-red radiation, that radiates at about 100 Joules per second. 100 watts. An electric blanket is only 50 watts. So a partner is about twice as effective as an electric blanket. Maybe also more fun."

"If you ever work on your car, make sure that you never drop accidentally the wrench that you're using onto the battery - because if you did then, inside the battery, about 6 kilowatts - 6000 joules per second - are going to be produced in terms of heat, and the sulfuric acid is going to boil, the case may melt, and that's no good. Not only is that stupid, but it's also very dangerous. So let's do it."

"I'm going to short out that battery, and as I do that, you will clearly see that the battery doesn't like it. I will be very careful not to hold on to this wrench too long, because it would weld onto it, actually, it can weld on to it and stay there, the current is so high, it can go up to 600 amperes, that it can weld onto it, and then you can't get it off any more.

In case that happens, I will walk out of here. And I advise you to do the same."

Prof. Walter Lewin FTW.
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If this world makes any fragment of sense, then somewhere out there in the world there's a geneticist with a cat named Valine. Or Val for short.
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Scientists to analyse Ozzy Osbourne's genome to find out why he is still alive.

On a side note, that IS a good question.

On another side note, the creature that Meguroko is based on is flipping adorable. (Caution, huge image in link).
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How can you take entropy seriously when its units are J/K ?
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The first law of thermodynamics is: You don't TALK about thermodynamics!

I am frelling overcalc'd. But I need to practice even more. Exam this Friday. Kill me now. (I'm actually doing pretty well, but still. x-x)


* Edit: Tomorrow?! wtf. I guess I WAS tired and overcalc'd when I wrote this. XD
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Yup. It's official. Nectocaris is no longer a bizarre creature that resembles a fish body with a shrimplike head.

Case of mistaken identity.


which makes one wonder just how exactly does one mistake this:

Nectocaris pteryx a-la 2010.

for this

Nectocaris pteryx a-la 1976.

Man, what about 40 34 years of research do to a creature. Don't get me wrong - being a huge Cephalopod fan, I find the new interpretation adorable as all fuck - but it oddly feels like a downgrade - or at least like the Burgess Shale just royally trolled Science. But then, considering Anomalocaris was considered to be four distinctively different animals before they realized the pieces fit together... Eh.

... Whatever. It's still cute.


May. 23rd, 2010 06:45 pm
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So. Today in Phys Chem, our professor begins his lecture about the Second Law of Thermodynamics - which loosely implies that the Entropy/Chaos/Whatever in the universe continuously rises... And starts it by mentioning a group of American Fundamentalist Christians who actually went to the Supreme Court of the USA with the demand to revoke the Second Law of Thermodynamics, because, as they stated, "We don't like the implications of this law, and we will not rest until it has been reversed in the courts."

Yes. They want to revoke a fucking law of nature because it doesn't settle with their idea of magical creation. But then, these are the same people who attack evolution because it's 'Only a Theory'.

As one Tim Minchin once said, it's a good thing they say that - Evolution IS only a theory, and maybe they feel just as strongly about other theories, such as, say... gravity... And maybe they'll just float the fuck away.

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"Knock knock."
"Who's There?"
"Interrupting coefficient of friction."
"Interrupting coeff-"

I wonder...

Jan. 2nd, 2010 04:13 pm
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If you add an extra oxygen atom to one of the carbon atoms on moronic acid, do you get oxymoronic acid?
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Q: Why does a test tube contains albumin and pepsin?

A: Because it would rather contain that than be trypsin out on cokein.

Incidentally, if a test tube contained an albumin of some sort (as albumins are a vast group of different proteins) and a proteolytic enzyme such as pepsin, the albumin would not have much time to come to terms with its identity as an albumin before it would have to come to terms with not being an albumin anymore.

So I believe your question would be "Why DID the test tube contain albumin and pepsin", which sounds like a setup for a great biology joke - be sure to contact us once you figure out a punchline!

Q: How would you summarize this article? 3-4 sentences. USE UR OWN WORDS!

A: Bored Australian Scientists are bored, they'll make ANYTHING glow these days, GFP variants are amazing, and UR is not a god damn word.

Yup. That about sums it up.

Q: If you compare two protists of equal volume, which would have a higher surface-area-to-volume ratio?
Spherical or Cylindrical?

A: It's more a question of geometry than of biology, isn't it? Nevermind the fact that they generally seem to have more complex forms than just circles or spheres...

And here we thought the time for nonviolent protists was over.

Q: What would happen to a cell if its plasma membrane lost its selective permeability?
I only have one more question to this stupid assignment and i cant find it anywhere in my book. can someone help me with the question above?

A: Simply put, the cell would be [EFF!]ed up beyond all recognition.

There are two ways that a membrane may lose its selective permeability - either becoming completely permeable or not permeable at all.

Let's put this very simply. Let us say that the cell is a house, its assorted organelles and products are the residents, and the cell membrane is its brick walls. It has doors, it has windows, and it has a particularly irate T-cell that fancies itself a guard dog. Its name is fluffykins.

Suppose we take scenario one. The membrane is not permeable at all. Basically we just bricked these poor bastards in the house and boarded over their windows. Family can't go to work, meaning no food, meaning that sooner or later they're going to go crazy and cannibalize each other. You know, sorta like on Big Brother, except it's not on the air.

Point of the matter is, everybody dies.

Now let's take scenario two. We rip the doors and windows open, and, you know what? Just for fun, we rip the damn walls open too and replace them with lovely decorative cardboard. You know, like they build houses in those Earthquake Prone Areas in China.

Now everyone's free to do what they do, Except that anything and anyone can come in. In excess. Think of it as a huge shopping spree, except, it's a shopping spree of [i]doom[/i]. Sooner or later, Important household gadgets suddenly disappear because they decided that the ratio of gadgets in the house to the gadgets outside the house is unequal and there must be balance. And every little drop of rain leaks in until the entire place floods up and explodes. In the extra-cellular space.

Of course, this is a highly simplified explanation, but we believe that if you have at least two and a half working neurons, you could come up with a way to make this sound biological enough for your assignment. The reason it isn't in your book is because, really, when you think of it this way, it's blindingly obvious. ^^


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StellarWind Elsydeon

April 2017



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