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Biology Explained

What a Porcupine Quill Can Teach Us About Making Better Needles

What a Porcupine Quill Can Teach Us About Making Better Needles

What a Porcupine Quill Can Teach Us About...

Taking a design cue from the animal world, mimicking a porcupine quill might help make a more effective—and less painful—needle.

Hungry, Hungry Macrophages (video)

Hungry, Hungry Macrophages (video)

Hungry, Hungry Macrophages (video)

Macrophages, the human immune system’s horde of cells that clear the body’s detritus by eating it, may be induced to gorge — in the name of helping combat Alzheimer’s and other diseases. ...

Your Blood Up Close: 5 Vein’s-Eye Views

Your Blood Up Close: 5 Vein’s-Eye Views

Your Blood Up Close: 5 Vein’s-Eye Views

Get up close and personal with blood — the key to your body’s oxygen transport and immunity — with five peeks inside your veins, featuring molecules seen at thousands of times their actual size.

Flashback: Spanish Flu Mask

Flashback: Spanish Flu Mask

Flashback: Spanish Flu Mask

At the close of WWI, an estimated 50 million people died from the Spanish flu. Masks were the uninfected’s main line of defense.

What We Can Learn from a Giraffe’s Neck

What We Can Learn from a Giraffe’s Neck

What We Can Learn from a Giraffe’s Neck

With a distance of 6 feet between heart and brain, giraffes should seemingly suffer the symptoms of hypertension as a result of their blood’s relentless uphill climb. They don’t.

Cold Wars: Why Women Feel The Chill More

Cold Wars: Why Women Feel The Chill More

Cold Wars: Why Women Feel The Chill More

Research explains why most women feel cold more intensely than men. 

The Fantastic Formation of Crystals (video)

The Fantastic Formation of Crystals (video)

The Fantastic Formation of Crystals (video)

Crystallography — the study of the arrangement of crystals to uncover the form and function of molecules, all the way down to atomic structure — is a driving force in our understanding of how biological processes work. 

Meet Your Body’s Energy Thermostat

Meet Your Body’s Energy Thermostat

Meet Your Body’s Energy Thermostat

AMPK, a major metabolic enzyme, controls hunger, helps burn calories and fat, and may help treat diabetes and cancer.

Your Body Up Close. Really Close.

Your Body Up Close. Really Close.

Your Body Up Close. Really Close.

Seen at thousands of times their normal size through the lens of a scanning electron microscope, the intricate structures of the human body seem almost like fantastical landscapes.

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