Welcome back to our first BioBites of 2009! Read up on what you missed in the science world while you were busy opening presents and eating lots of junk food (if your break was anything like mine).
1.) Are you good at remembering faces? Maybe you have a high level of oxytocin.
2.) Do you find yourself dating the same types of people all the time? Turns out that we humans have a tendency to date people like ourselves, leading to a surprising lack of genetic variation.
3.) As I often realize when making dinner, cooking is a lot like following a protocol in the lab. It could be because there’s a lot of science behind your recipes, as the NY Times explains.
4.) You might think that if your best friend accidentally punches you and your worst enemy punches you on purpose with the same amount of force, that you’d feel the same amount of pain. But that’s not quite true, according to a study described in Science magazine.
5.) Being a stay-at-home dad is pretty cool – just ask the dinosaurs.
6.) Geneticists have found a mutation that leads to greater risk of having high cholesterol.
7.) It’s not just humans who can recognize their friends’ voices – horses can too!
8.) Our facial expressions are genetically programmed, not socially learned! Read more about how scientists figured this out by studying blind and sighted athletes in e! Science News.
9.) Have a sick friend? Sending them flowers really may help them recover.
10.) And finally, Science magazine lists its top ten stories of 2008, including topics like free will and worm grunting.
Photo provided by TallCJ.