anonymous asked:

Reunion Will is sick and can't make it to school. Hannibal comes over and nurses him back to health. When will gets better, hannibal wants Will to repay the favor.

Will opened his eyes in the dimness of his room and jerked back, heart pounding. He’d just seen a vision from his worst dreams: Hannibal Lecter, seated at the foot of his bed! 

But it wasn’t a dream, and it was more as though he were looming over Will; crowding right into his personal space. The shifting shadows from light filtering through the closed blinds nightmarishly warped his features, and Will shuddered. 

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Don’t worry, Cthulhu is still fast asleep and no one has heard from the Kraken for centuries. This nightmarish maw is the beak of a female colossal squid, one that weighed 770 lbs (350 kg), measured nearly 11.5 feet long ( 3.5 m) and was recently dissected by scientists during a live webcast from the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington, New Zealand. The squid was found by Captain John Bennett and his crew in Antarctic waters back in December 2013. She’s only the second intact colossal squid specimen ever recovered, providing an extraordinary opportunity for scientists to learn more about this mysterious species.

The squid’s eyes measured nearly 14 inches in diameter. The better to see you with, my dear. She also had three hearts, all the better to love you to tiny, bite-size pieces.

Click here for additional images, courtesy of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. Learn more about the colossal squid here.

Click here to watch the entire dissection.

[via Business Insider Australia and The Huffington Post]

“Van Gogh gave you an ear? Well I’ll give you my entire skin!”

The skin is the largest organ in the human - and yes, its secretory and absorptive properties mean that it’s an organ!

In the adult human, the surface area of our epidermis (the only exposed layer of the skin) is approximately 1.5-2.0 square meters (16.5-21.5 sq. ft.).

There are six primary functions of the skin (some argue seven, including aesthetics and signalling to other members of our tribe), and two secondary functions:

  1. Physical barrier protecting from pathogens and environmental damage.
  2. Sensory receptor: Nerve endings perceive touch, temperature, pressure, and vibration.
  3. Heat regulation: There are far more blood vessels in the skin than are needed to supply its living cells - when the body is overheated it pumps blood out to the skin to radiate heat away from the body.
  4. Evaporation control: A separate aspect of heat regulation is controlling the sweat output of the skin, allowing evaporative cooling. Because of the way the epidermis is structured, sweat can escape, but can’t be reabsorbed, and removes heat from the skin as it evaporates.
  5. Water resistance: Along with letting water out of the body, it also doesn’t let water into the body! The connective tissue between the epidermal layers creates a membrane with a low enough permeability to allow us to survive away from water.
  6. Storage and Synthesis: Skin is a significant storage site for both water and fats, and synthesizes vitamin D from cholesterol stored near the top layer of the dermis.
  7. (Secondary) Excretion: While water is the primary component of sweat, the skin also secretes urea. However, urine excretes more than 100x more urea, and the urea excretion is secondary to evaporative cooling.
  8. (Secondary) Absorption: The skin is quite good at absorbing fat-soluble molecules, but it did not evolve in order to do this. Rather, it evolved to repel water, which in turn made it very lipophilic. This trait is used in medicine, with patches and creams that are absorbed through the surface of the skin.

Skin is nothing short of a hard-working organ that deserves at least as much credit as your lungs. Blemishes and spots and “discolorations” are no detriment to its functionality - love the skin you’re in! It’s one of the most important reasons why you’re not constantly sick!

Anatomia del corpo humano. Juan Valverde de Amusco, 1560.

Cross-section of a plastinated human head

When bodies are plastinated, a technique pioneered by Gunter von Hagens in 1977, the body is first treated with formaldehyde, similar to an open-casket funeral, but at a higher concentration.The veins and arteries are injected with red and blue plastics.

The body is then dissected in any way required for the planned exhibit or sale piece.

After dissection, the specimen is placed in an acetone bath its temperature is lowered to below the freezing point of water, but above the freezing point of acetone. When the water in the cells expands due to freezing, it’s drawn out of the cells, and it’s replaced by acetone.

When all of the tissues are impregnated with acetone, the body is placed in a bath of polymer or plastic resin, and placed into a vacuum. Because acetone has an already-low boiling point, putting it into a vacuum causes it to boil at room-temperature, while still in the cells. The vaporization of acetone in the tissues leads to a negative pressure, which draws the polymer into the empty spaces.

After the body is fully infused with the polymer, it’s posed as it will be in its final form and cured (with gas, UV light, or heat) according to what it’s infused with, and hardened in place.

Plastination from Gunter von Hagens

Cerebellum and ocular system in the human

In vertebrates, the eyeballs are direct extensions of the brain; that is, they evolved after the brain, and are literally unimpeded access to the cerebellum and cerebrum. Because of this, many ocular tumors or injuries can be far more dangerous to the brain than growths or injuries on any other part of the skull.

Anatome ex omnium veterum recentiorumque observationibus. Thomas Bartholin, 1673.