Fun Facts about Plants from Your Friendly Botany Major

• Cacti are some of the only plants to photosynthesize from their stems. Their needles are really just modified leaves.

• Avocados are only around because people pollinate and disperse them by hand. The large seed is indigestible to small mammals now. It was originally eaten by giant sloths who would poop them out far away from the parent tree so they can grow. This is called an evolutionary anachronism.

• Banana candy does not taste like bananas because it was designed to taste like the Gros Michel banana which was eaten in the pre-1950s. It was wiped out by a fungus called panama disease. Since bananas are asexual all of them are genetically identical making it easy to wipe them all out at once. However fungus is sexual so it evolves more quickly. This means eventually we may lose the modern banana, the Cavendish, to it as well.

• There are actually three different types of photosynthesis: C3, C4, and CAM. Which type is used depends on the aridness of the environment, and are increasingly more efficient as listed.

• Moss is amazing. The fuzzy part of the moss is called the gametophyte stage and it is haploid meaning it has one set of chromosomes like a sperm or an egg cell in humans. If you look closely, sometimes you will what look like little tiny seeds on stems coming out of the main body. This is the sporophyte stage and it’s diploid, or has two sets of chromosomes, like our body cells. Moss is the oldest type of plant.

• You can usually tell what animal pollinates a plant by the color and shape of its flowers. Red flowers are hardly ever pollinated by bees because bees cannot see red well. Butterfly flowers have long deep centers. Bird pollinated plants can bear weight and are wide and open. Bat pollinated plants usually smell strongly and are darkly colored.

• Almost all American native elms and chestnut trees are extinct because of fungi. Asian chestnut and elm have replaced them, because they are resistant to the strains.

• There is a type of fern that has over 1200 chromosomes. For reference, humans have 46.

• If you shine consistent low level red light on a plant it will grow extremely tall, because red light tells the plant it is being shaded by and competing with other plants. If you shine consistent green light on a plant it will not sprout or die (if already sprouted) because plants absorb red and blue light to use. This is also why plants are green, because the unused green light is reflected back out.

TLDR; Plants are frickin cool and should get as much love as our animal friends.
Scientists turn spinach leaf into working heart tissue

by Helena Horton 

Researchers have managed to turn a spinach leaf into working heart tissue and are on the way to solving the problem of recreating the tiny, branching networks of blood vessels in human tissue.

Until now, scientists have unsuccessfully tried to use 3D printing to recreate these intricate networks.

Now, with this breakthrough, it seems turning plants with their delicate veins into human tissue could be the key to delivering via a vascular system into the new tissue.

Scientists have managed in the past to create small-scale artificial samples of human tissue, but they have struggled to create it on a large scale, which is what would be needed to treat injury.

Researchers have suggested that eventually this technique could be used to grow layers of healthy heart muscle to treat patients who have suffered a heart attack.

In order to create the artificial heart, the scientists stripped the plant cells from the spinach leaves, sending fluids and microbeads similar to human blood cells through the spinach vessels and then ‘seeded’ the human cells which are used to line blood vessels into it.

Okay yesterday I posted an article about a miracle procedure for growing human tissue using pigs which is going to save countless lives and allow us to grow organs with our own DNA. Magic. Tumblr was unimpressed. Now here is a technique to grow tissue and organs using PLANTS and literally transforming them into human tissue. Plants.


How to build a human cell atlas

Aviv Regev likes to work at the edge of what is possible. In 2011, the computational biologist was collaborating with molecular geneticist Joshua Levin to test a handful of methods for sequencing RNA. The scientists were aiming to push the technologies to the brink of failure and see which performed the best. They processed samples with degraded RNA or vanishingly small amounts of the molecule. Eventually, Levin pointed out that they were sequencing less RNA than appears in a single cell.

To Regev, that sounded like an opportunity. The cell is the basic unit of life and she had long been looking for ways to explore how complex networks of genes operate in individual cells, how those networks can differ and, ultimately, how diverse cell populations work together. The answers to such questions would reveal, in essence, how complex organisms such as humans are built. “So, we’re like, ‘OK, time to give it a try’,” she says. Regev and Levin, who both work at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in Cambridge, Massachusetts, sequenced the RNA of 18 seemingly identical immune cells from mouse bone marrow, and found that some produced starkly different patterns of gene expression from the rest1. They were acting like two different cell subtypes.

That made Regev want to push even further: to use single-cell sequencing to understand how many different cell types there are in the human body, where they reside and what they do. Her lab has gone from looking at 18 cells at a time to sequencing RNA from hundreds of thousands — and combining single-cell analyses with genome editing to see what happens when key regulatory genes are shut down.

The results are already widening the spectrum of known cell types — identifying, for example, two new forms of retinal neuron2 — and Regev is eager to find more. In late 2016, she helped to launch the International Human Cell Atlas, an ambitious effort to classify and map all of the estimated 37 trillion cells in the human body (see ’To build an atlas’). It is part of a growing interest in characterizing individual cells in many different ways, says Mathias Uhlén, a microbiologist at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm: “I actually think it’s one of the most important life-science projects in history, probably more important than the human genome.”

Nature 547, 24–26 (06 July 2017) doi:10.1038/547024a

Shino Aburame: blew a kids arms off during the first Chunin exams, beat Kankuro in combat, beat a rogue Jonin in hand to hand combat to protect his friends, is smart enough he faked out the White and Black Zetsu in order to defeat him, created his own hybrid bugs that expand and explode and another that absorb and adapt to poison that eats away at human cells, “do you think that i am that weak?” A line used from a kid who lost like maybe 2 fights ever, was a key figure in the Ninja war, deals with complex abandonment issues stemming isolation and being treated like a fucking freak for his powers and quiet demeanor and overcame it enough to rely on his friends and show emotions such as concern and love for others, is one of the strongest ninjas in konoha easily

The writers for Boruto: lmao wouldnt it be funny if he cries bc he gets bullied by a bunch of 7 year olds

Cardiac Stem Cell Experiment

Zero gravity stem cell media exchange! The pink fluid is media – I’m removing a bit of old media and replacing it with new, little by little. There are human stem cells (early cardiovascular cells) in that little rectangular chamber. The clear part is a thin film of special plastic that keeps liquid in, but allows air to pass through so the cells can breathe!

To learn more about this experiment, please visit

Does a tiny sea creature hold the key to heart regeneration?

When Mark Martindale decided to trace the evolutionary origin of muscle cells, like the ones that form our hearts, he looked in an unlikely place: the genes of animals without hearts or muscles.

In a new study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the University of Florida scientist and colleagues found genes known to form hearts cells in humans and other animals in the gut of a muscle-less and heartless sea anemone. But the sea anemone isn’t just any sea creature. It has superpower-like abilities: Cut it into many pieces and each piece will regenerate into a new animal.

Keep reading

On Prompto being a “clone”

…..what kind of clone? Because theres three different kinds of clones.

You can clone for human tissues (therapeutic), Gene cloning (little fragment) and reproduction cloning. Since Prompto is in fact an entire human, and not a tissue, and Besithia states Prompto is *his* clone, I’m going to say hes a  full-reproduction.

Which brings up several questions and implications. Firstly, there still needs to be a “mother” involved – that is to say a human egg cell. To clone a mammal you need to have an egg cell that’s been emptied of its nucleus DNA and then “re-filled” with the DNA that the scientist wishes to clone. So to make a Prompto, you need a human egg cell, a somantic cell from Besithia , and a whole lot of funding. (more on that in a second) The embryo develops in a tet tube and is then implanted into a human female.  Or I suppose in the case of fantasy – those test tubes things? The closet thing to that IRL is a Biobag which incubated several sheep.  The baby born/unsealed is a clone.

Now for the funding issues, In real life clones are unstable, unpredictable and can have a myriad of health problems.  Back when Dolly the Sheep was a thing, she was the first of around 300 organisms cloned that actually lived. Clones are known to have defects in liver, brain and heart, as well as issues with their immune systems and premature aging. The Premature aging thing is interesting because  Besithia was already older when Prompto was born.  So a bit of back ground: as cells go through their normal rounds of division for growning and remaining, ya know, alive, the tips of their chromosomes (telemeres) shrink. Aging happens because over time the telemeres become so short that the cells can no longer divide and thus, cell death. Issue being with clones, their chromosomes are already shorter. If you clone from a  cell taken from an adult you condemn the clones’ cells to a shorter life span. Dolly the sheep for instance,had chromosomes that were shorter than those of other sheep her age and died at half the life span of a normal sheep.

As I said in my previous post, Prompto isn’t made to live long.

Edit to add that you CAN technically get a clone from a non-human primate via splitting of embryos. But that brings the question of Who is the Mother? Unless they were harvesting women for eggs/incubation and then turning into a Daemon?

Humans Are Weird: Anxiety

Human Sadie singing lightly to herself that they’re going to fly into a black hole and die when they’re nowhere around one. Explaining that their singing is a coping skill and they know it’s irrational.

Human Jake having a panic attack when the alarm goes off in a test, and aliens trying desperately to comfort the human. Eventually he starts talking to himself, and they’re wondering if he’s splitting into two beings like his cells do.

Human Alby complaining about their tight throat and being dragged to the nurses room even though they’re complaining that they don’t even have any allergies they have anxiety.

Human Lena having to take anxiety meds for the first time in space and trudging around the ship mumbling cusses because their body is so tired and they’ll ‘fight’ anyone who says that they’re freaking out.

Human Zack sitting down in the middle of the control room after an attack is announced because he needs to meditate for a couple minutes and ‘it’s not like he’s needed for combat anyways.’

Human Eva carrying around a bubble blower because she gets angry and anxious at the same time and blowing bubbles angrily at the object/alien causing her anxiety then running around trying to pop them. Sometimes accompanied with yelling like ‘This is your face in my mind’, which only confuses the others. They carry around bubble blowers to give to other humans too, which looked really awkward when they gave it as a gift to the Vice President because his hair was graying.

Quick fact. Ready?
Our very mitochondria, the power houses of our cells, have its own specific set of DNA known as mtDNA. This genetic material is different from all other cells in which it is only inherited from our mothers, not our fathers.

How very strange.

not to judge people who dont know shit about biology etc but plant-derived stem cells arent gonna do jack shit for your Human stem cells so if ur paying a premium for Stem Cell Skincare: ur a sucker

Henrietta Lacks

Though she died of cervical cancer in 1951, her cells were discovered to have unique properties. These immortal “HeLa” cells were instrumental in developing the polio vaccine as well as other key scientific landmarks including cloning, gene mapping, and in vitro fertilization. Yet, her story has raised controversial questions about the ethics surrounding privacy & patient consent. Who was this unrecognized woman?

Keep reading

Like Beef, Insects Are A Good Source Of Iron

As a greater number of people enter the middle class around the globe, many will turn away from plant-based diets in favor of meat-based diets. This could be a cause for concern, as meat production requires the input of substantially more resources, such as water and energy. The question of how to feed a growing world in a time when wealth is spreading and personal tastes are changing is the subject of some sustainability research.

Outside of the Western world, insect consumption is common. The Chinese, for instance, will eat just about anything that crawls on six (or more) legs. Centipedes and fried scorpions appear on the menu.

Keep reading

Discovery: Matt meets a Paladin

Rating: T - gore

Pairings: None

Tags: Angst, Hurt & Comfort, Matt, Rescue Attempt

Matt stood up too fast, heart pounding wildly. He had to bend over quickly to prevent his head rush and hunger from making him pass out. He breathed once, twice, and rose again, making his way to the far side of the pit.

Another human in the general population cell. Another human… It had been months since his father had been taken to the infirmary, feverish and sick from the regular horrors the Druids inflicted on them, hoping for one of them to crack.

Matt was a pragmatist and hadn’t really expected to see his father alive again. He chose to listen to their guards, the other prisoners, for any scrap of information, really, hoping for something that would help him escape from this hell, and even rescue his friends.

His thoughts flickered to black hair, calm eyes, unwavering friendship. The last he had heard of Shiro was of him succeeding in the horrific games, a source of Galran pride and mockery. But then the news stopped trickling in and Matt had just thought his friend had been killed. Could he be back? His heart squeezed in his chest and he beat back any feeling of hope. This was the Galran army… Surprises were never pleasant or hopeful.

As he neared the cell door, he heard the familiar low moaning of a wounded animal. The other aliens had gathered around, bringing cloth and water to help clean the human off, just as they had done for Matt and Commander Holt when they had first been dumped here.

Matt smiled at that, some last shred of love in his heart clenching in gratitude at the goodness of his prison family. Some looked like leeches, others had tentacles, some had two heads, others nothing more than an orb of light. All victims of evil and bound together by the hope that this torture would end someday.

He edged his way through the circle and tears sprung up. A human… here… Younger than him, only a teenager. Not his dad. Not Shiro. Just a boy. How much more cruelty existed in Zarkon and his invaders?

The teen lay on his side, dressed in some strange white armor Matt had never seen before. His right leg was broken and lay stretched out oddly on the floor. He bled profusely from his mouth.

An Arusian, a new addition, shook Matt’s sleeve. “The human is leaking much from his face.. He cannot talk… We are thinking they removed some part and that is why we cannot stop it easily.”

Matt’s stomach turned at the thought of a Galra cutting out this kid’s tongue. What could he have possibly done? How could they find him? Had they begun invading Earth? His mom, his sister… Were they even alive? Matt shifted his thoughts to the kid, wondering how to help him.

The teen turned his head towards him, dark skin pale from his wounds, his blue gaze bright even in the gloom of the pit. His eyes widened as if recognizing him and, reaching for the other human, he lost his balance and fell. Matt had to stop himself from stepping back, still afraid of touch after all the pain. Instead he steadied the kid with a hand around his shoulder and told him he’d be ok (a bald-faced lie if ever one was spoken).

The boy’s hand shook as pressed his fingers to the floor and, to Matt’s disgust, started drawing letters in his own blood. P-I-D

“Pidge? What’s that? Is that your name?” Matt turned to look at the boy, who despite everything looked like he wanted to laugh, even as he groaned and tears glittered in his eyes.

He tried again, hands shaking, and wrote faster and messier, as if it hurt him. V-O-L-

“Voltron is coming? That doesn’t make any sense?” But as he spoke, he heard shocked gasps from the other prisoners, excitement in their whispers. He didn’t understand it but it was important. He tried to pull the kid away so they could treat his wounds but he jerked away, face wild.

The boy kept writing, shifting to get to a new patch of floor. He wrote until he passed out, Matt just pulling him closer, needing the human touch as never before, even as the aliens tried to staunch the blood from the kid’s mouth. And as he stared at the words written in blood, Matt felt hot tears fall for the first time in forever. Felt hope in his heart.