blood

Are you sure about that Voglio?

58.jpg

Cruentation was one of the medieval methods of finding proof against a suspected murderer. The common belief was that the body of the victim would spontaneously bleed in the presence of the murderer.

Cruentation was part of the Germanic Laws, and it was used in Germany, Poland, Bohemia, Scotland and the North-Americans colonies. In Germany it was used as a method to find proof of guilt until the middle of the 18th. century.

The accused was brought before the corpse of the murder victim and was made to put his or her hands on it. If the wounds of the corpse then began to bleed, or if other unusual visual signs appeared, that was regarded as God’s verdict (judicium Dei) announcing that the accused was guilty.

{ Wikipedia | Continue reading }

He was, I understand, at one time a first class misdemeanant in Glencree reformatory

245.jpg

One prerequisite for being a vampire is that you have a taste for blood. […] Almost every culture consumes blood. Many people eat cooked blood. The Poles eat blood soup (czernina), and the Brits love their blood pudding as much as the Chinese love their fried blood tofu. The next time you go to a French restaurant for the coq au vin, remember that the sauce is made with rooster blood.

There are also those cultures that drink blood. The inuit peoples drink fresh seal blood, and the Maasi in Africa rely on a mixture of cow’s milk and cow’s blood as a staple of their diet. And why not, blood is a decent source of nutrition.

Blood has a lot of protein and is a good source of lipids. Of course it is iron rich, and is a source of fluid and salt if you happen to be caught in the desert. If a vampire happens to pick out an uncontrolled diabetic, a drink of blood could also be a good source of carbohydrates.

[…]

Congenital Erythropoietic Porphyria (CEP) is by far the disease most often associated with vampirism. […] The symptoms of the porphyrias do make you think of vampires: sun sensitivity with extreme burning, white skin, bloodshot eyes, sensitive eyes, anemia (low number and therefore a need for red blood cells), reddish tears, reddish urine, red pigment in the enamel of the teeth (erythrodontia). […] Porphyrias also bring increased body and facial hair (hirsutism), so they may contribute to the werewolf legend as well.

{ As Many Exceptions As Rules | Continue reading }

photo { Janine Antoni }

Extraordinary the interest they take in a corpse

7542.jpg

Mummies were stolen from Egyptian tombs, and skulls were taken from Irish burial sites. Gravediggers robbed and sold body parts.

“The question was not, ‘Should you eat human flesh?’ but, ‘What sort of flesh should you eat?’ ” says Sugg. […]

Blood was procured as fresh as possible, while it was still thought to contain the vitality of the body. This requirement made it challenging to acquire. The 16th century German-Swiss physician Paracelsus believed blood was good for drinking, and one of his followers even suggested taking blood from a living body. […]

As science strode forward, however, cannibal remedies died out. The practice dwindled in the 18th century, around the time Europeans began regularly using forks for eating and soap for bathing. But Sugg found some late examples of corpse medicine: In 1847, an Englishman was advised to mix the skull of a young woman with treacle (molasses) and feed it to his daughter to cure her epilepsy. (He obtained the compound and administered it, as Sugg writes, but “allegedly without effect.”)

{ Smithsonian | Continue reading }

photo { Volgareva Irina }

So a fellow coming in late can see what turn is on and what turns are over

557.jpg

If you don’t die from an accident, a serious infection or a cancer, you’ll live as long as your arteries let you. And how long they let you is all in your hands. I know this sounds over-simplified, but it’s biomedical knowledge in a nutshell. Let’s look at what happens in and to your arteries and what that means for keeping them in mint condition. 

You may have thought about your arteries as elastic tubes, which transport blood to where its oxygen and nutrient load is needed. But there is more to it. For example, there is this very thin lining which separates the muscular elastic wall of the arteries from the blood stream. This lining is called the endothelium, and it is where the difference is made between lifestyle and death style.

{ Chronic Health | Continue reading }

photo { Nick Meek }

Psychological Aspects of the Mother Archetype

552.jpg

When it comes to diagnosing depression in teens, differentiating mental illness from normal mood swings can be difficult. But it can be a crucial diagnosis, given that untreated depression in youth makes them more vulnerable to later substance abuse, social maladjustment, physical illness and suicide.

“Depression in adolescents affects basically every component of their thinking and makes everything very difficult psychologically and socially,” says Eva Redei, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

Currently, a depression diagnosis in teens relies on their descriptions of symptoms and their physician’s subjective observations. But now a new study suggests there may be a surer, more objective way: a blood test that identifies major depression by looking for a specific set of genetic markers in the blood.

{ Time | Continue reading }

photo { Pina Bausch, Blaubart, 1977 | performance still }

First stop, Uranus

42.jpg

The inside of the human body is a bacteria-free zone. Bacteria are certainly within you, but they exist only in areas that have a direct channel to the outside world, such as the mouth, intestines and the surface of the skin. These areas are well protected by a layer of cells (epithilial cells) which form a protective barrier to keep away the nasties of the outside world. That’s why there are healthy stomach bacteria, but no healthy liver bacteria. From a certain point of view your lungs and digestive tract still are the outside world, which is why bacteria can get in and live there, sometimes perfectly happily without causing any trouble at all.

Major problems start to happen, however, once bacteria get through that epithelial barrier and into the tissues of your body. Which is why the first bacteria of the new year is the oral bacteria Fusobacterium nucleatum, which has a trick to open up little doors in blood vessels. These aren’t massive holes, not big enough to cause bleeding but large enough to let it and other bacteria into the bloodstream.

This is a big issue, because once the bacteria get into the blood-stream they can travel around anywhere within the body. It’s not  just the blood-vessels in the mouth that the F. nucleatum can get into, it can also bypass a lot of other cellular barriers such as the blood-brain barrier that keeps bacteria out of your brain, and the placental barrier that guards the passage of substances between a pregnant mother and the foetus.

{ Scientific American | Continue reading }

photo { Heike Aumüller }

If you love movies, you’ll love this one

222.jpg

Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) is a severe form of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), afflicting 3% to 8% of women. It is a diagnosis associated primarily with the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. Up to one-third of women diagnosed with PMDD report residual symptoms into the first 2 or 3 days of the follicular phase.

{ Wikipedia | Continue reading }

Glamours hath moidered’s lieb and herefore Coldours must leap no more

49.jpg

How does inheritance of blood types work?

There are three blood genes: A, B, and O. (I’m going to ignore the + and - part of this.) A and B are dominant, and O is recessive. You inherit one blood gene from your mother and one from your father. The combination of genes determines your blood type. There are four possibilities: A, B, AB, and O.  Here’s how it works:

A + A = A

A + O = A
A + B = AB

B + B = B
B + O = B

O + O = O

{ The Straight Dope | Continue reading }

The Rh (Rhesus) blood group system (including the Rh factor) is one of the currently 30 human blood group systems. It is clinically the most important blood group system after ABO. The Rh blood group system currently consists of 50 defined blood-group antigens, among which the 5 antigens D, C, c, E, and e are the most important ones. The commonly-used terms Rh factor, Rh positive and Rh negative refer to the D antigen only.

An individual either has, or does not have, the “Rhesus factor” on the surface of their red blood cells. This term strictly refers only to the most immunogenic D antigen of the Rh blood group system, or the Rh- blood group system. The status is usually indicated by Rh positive (Rh+, does have the D antigen) or Rh negative (Rh-, does not have the D antigen) suffix to the ABO blood type.

{ Wikipedia | Continue reading }

There’s rosemary, that’s for remembrance. Pray you, love, remember. And there is pansies, that’s for thoughts.

48.jpg

I’m going to tell you a little story about a menstruating nurse.

Dr. Bela Schick, a doctor in the 1920s, was a very popular doctor and received flowers from his patients all the time. One day he received one of his usual bouquets from a patient. The way the story goes, he asked one of his nurses to put the bouquet in some water. The nurse politely declined. Dr. Schick asked the nurse again, and again she refused to handle the flowers. When Dr. Schick questioned his nurse why she would not put the flowers in water, she explained that she had her period. When he asked why that mattered, she confessed that when she menstruated, she made flowers wilt at her touch.

Dr. Schick decided to run a test. Gently place flowers in water on the one hand… and have a menstruating woman roughly handle another bunch in order to really get her dirty hands on them.

The flowers that were not handled thrived, while the flowers that were handled by a menstruating woman wilted.

This was the beginning of the study of the menstrual toxin, or menotoxin, a substance secreted in the sweat of menstruating women.

{ Scientific American | Continue reading }

photo { Andres Marroquin Winkelmann }