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A Bay of Botany: Alice Eastwood’s Nine Decades and Three Hundred Thousand Specimens. (Women in Science 61)

April 18, 1906, and Alice Eastwood’s lunch bag hangs casually from a mastodon’s tusk while outside, a proud city burns.  It’s the morning of the great San Francisco earthquake and Eastwood’s first response is not to secure the protection of her own home and valuables, but to run to the …

Gabriele Meyers' Hybolic Crochet Lampshade
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Hyperbolic Crochet

I never took any of the classes in the excellent fiber department at my art school. Maybe I thought it was too 2-dimensional or sedentary or too old fashioned. Visions of acres of granny yarn projects may have turned me off.  I bitterly regret it, because now I know that …

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Capping the Chromosome: Elizabeth Blackburn and the Discovery of Telomerase (Women in Science 59)

Telomerase is one of those enzymes which just won’t let you come to a settled opinion.  When it runs wild, it promotes cancer. But it also protects each and every one of your chromosomes faithfully, ensuring that your cells don’t hurl themselves into an early death.  It can be an evil …

A hole forms in the anastomotic line
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Argonne National Laboratory’s Microbiome Project: Surgery

Shortly after I’d written my last post (let’s not reflect on how long ago that was), I got tapped for a freelance project with Argonne National Laboratories. They have a YouTube series with Dr. Jack Gilbert called The Microbiome Project, and were looking to have a medical animation of what …

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Vibrating Spiders and Waggling Bees: Madeline Girard’s Multi-Modal Menagerie. (Women in Science 57)

It’s not what you say, it’s how you vibrate your opisthosoma while you’re saying it.                                                                         – Ancient Peacock Spider Proverb.              We humans tend to think very highly of our behavioral complexity.  Two people out on a date are a jaunty jamboree of visual, olfactory, and linguistic cues simultaneously …

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Blue Babies with Crossword Puzzle Hearts: The Pediatric Cardiology of Helen Taussig. (Women in Science 56)

It’s sometime in the 1930s, and you’re walking into a ward full of crouching children with blue-tinted lips.  Something is wrong with their hearts, something that is preventing their blood from getting enough oxygen, turning the red fluid a deep, thick black.  At the slightest exertion, the children can pass …