Puffa Fish

Now, for some breathtaking research on puffer fish! This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Puffer fish famously inflate into spiky spheres that are difficult for predators to eat. To do so, they swallow huge amounts of water. Their super-stretchy stomachs expand like water balloons. It’s

Anti-Smoking Trip

Can magic mushrooms… help you quit smoking? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying: Go ask Alice! Or ask Matthew Johnson, of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His study enrolled 15 volunteers who had been smokers for an average of 30 years. All had

Cutest Study Ever

Ah, nature! Trees, rivers… hamster wheels? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Running wheels aren’t just for pet hamsters. They’re lab tools—used, say, to study exercise in mice. But running literally in circles seems nutty. Indeed, many consider the behavior a neurotic byproduct of captivity.

Egg Unboiled

Can you UN-BOIL an egg? And why would you want to? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying: Biochemists at the University of California, Irvine, can. As to why—? One word: Proteins. Nowadays, proteins made in labs are used for everything from making cheese to

Whoa There, Raindrops!

A scientific storm is brewing … about the speed of rain. This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying: According to physics, everything that falls has a terminal velocity. Apples, rain, people. Terminal velocity is a steady speed, where gravity and air resistance balance out. For

Cocoa Cure

Improve your memory by… drinking hot chocolate? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. Our memory declines with age. Neurologists at New York’s Columbia University may now know why—and what to do about it. They studied a specific brain area, the dentate gyrus, or DG. As

Super Spinach

Spinach! Excellent source of vitamins, minerals — bomb detection? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, and with the latest twist on your favorite superfood. Plants are constantly taking in information from their surroundings. Their roots act like telephone wires that communicate and receive signals from

Ticklish Rats

Who enjoys a tickle—toddlers, babies, rats?!? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. We often link laughter to joy, humor, and happiness – emotions typically felt by humans. But do animals also gleefully giggle during play? Scientists at Humboldt University in Berlin gave the question a

Musical Me

Could you be a musical genius and not even know it? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science. We all know the names: Beethoven, Elvis, Brittney Spears. What is it that makes these artists so gifted? Could it be some innate personality trait? Scientists at the

Life Before Tequila

Before there was Tequila, there was … pulque? This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, and possibly the earliest alcohol of Mesoamerica: Pulque. Like Tequila, pulque is distilled from the sap of agave plants. The Aztecs drank it in the 1400s. And it’s still consumed in