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Wheel of Fortune

Scott LaFee on

Caged mice provided with a running wheel will partake for hours on end, enough to perhaps run a marathon every few days (26.1 miles), which is quite an accomplishment given their tiny legs. All that running keeps them fit, physically and cognitively, boosting blood flow to the brain, growing more neurons and improving navigation skills and memory.

And when scientists transfuse well-exercised mouse blood into a sedentary rodent, the latter gets the same brain boost.

Researchers have identified a single protein that seems to drive the cognitive benefits of regular exercise. It's called clusterin. They think that, besides making mice brainier (and maybe humans, too), clusterin might have anti-inflammatory properties that could be used for treating neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's.

No (Birth) Place Like Home

In the most recent data available, there were 45,646 home births in 2020, an increase of 19% over 2019.

Body of Knowledge

 

The human body sheds approximately 200 million skin cells per hour. These discarded cells may actually decrease air pollution.

When shed, the skin cells take with them skin oils, such as cholesterol and squalene.

Studies have shown that squalene can reduce levels of ozone, a harmful pollutant that can irritate your eyes, nose and throat and exacerbate asthma symptoms. In fact, the squalene in settled dust containing skin cells can reduce ozone in indoor spaces, reducing indoor pollution levels by up to 15%.

Get Me That, Stat!

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