Links!All kinds of cool stuff today.
First off is a link to an article at Newsweek about a startling discovery that radically alters our understanding of what happens during heart attacks. Here's an excerpt:
Consider someone who has just died of a heart attack. His organs are intact, he hasn't lost blood. All that's happened is his heart has stopped beating—the definition of "clinical death"—and his brain has shut down to conserve oxygen. But what has actually died?
...the conventional answer was that it was his cells that had died. The patient couldn't be revived because the tissues of his brain and heart had suffered irreversible damage from lack of oxygen. This process was understood to begin after just four or five minutes. If the patient doesn't receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation within that time, and if his heart can't be restarted soon thereafter, he is unlikely to recover. That dogma went unquestioned until researchers actually looked at oxygen-starved heart cells under a microscope. What they saw amazed them, according to Dr. Lance Becker, an authority on emergency medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. "After one hour," he says, "we couldn't see evidence the cells had died. We thought we'd done something wrong." In fact, cells cut off from their blood supply died only hours later.
But if the cells are still alive, why can't doctors revive someone who has been dead for an hour? Because once the cells have been without oxygen for more than five minutes, they die when their oxygen supply is resumed.
It's an amazing story, and you can read it here.
Meg McReynolds sent in a link to a story in the New York Times about dogs and their tails--and how they wag them. Here's an excerpt:
...there is another, newly discovered, feature of dog body language that may surprise attentive pet owners and experts in canine behavior. When dogs feel fundamentally positive about something or someone, their tails wag more to the right side of their rumps. When they have negative feelings, their tail wagging is biased to the left.
Read about it here.
Mark sent in a link to a Rooster Teeth comic about Guitar Hero II, and it's a sad depiction of how I'd be acting if I was still single. See it here.
Finally, Sirius sent me a very interesting link to an MSNBC story about the evolution of language. Here's an excerpt:
Our closest primate relatives, the bonobos and chimps, are more versatile when communicating with their hands, feet and limbs than with their facial expressions and voices.
The finding, detailed online Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, supports the notion that humans were communicating with sign language long before they were speaking, an idea known as the “gestural hypothesis.”
Read about it here.