Closing schools will not help with the prevention of swine flu.

Because malls, and public transit pose just as much of a threat for contracting swine flu; experts and health officials are saying that closing schools would not bring down the percentage of those getting sick, enough to actually take action in doing so. Schools COULD consider cancellations of classes or school closures if close to 30% of students and staff were out sick.

Instead, the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) suggests that we do what we can to prevent it as much as possible by sticking to the basics like everyone else :

  • Stay home when sick.
  • Wash your hands often for at least 15 seconds with soap and water. Use hand sanitizer if you can't wash.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Sneeze and cough into your upper sleeve, not your hands.
  • Keep cleaning supplies and dispensers well stocked.
  • Wash surfaces like keyboards, doorknobs and toys twice a day.
  • Isolate students who develop flu symptoms.

I know you're all wondering how many cases we've got floating around. Well here's a map that gives you all the confirmed cases WORLDWIDE! It includes countries, provinces, states, etc.

  • 94 512 confirmed cases worldwide, including 438 deaths.
  • 9,855 confirmed cases in Canada.
  • 33 confirmed cases in New Brunswick.


How Swine Flu Spreads


<<CBC NEWS (2009, September 3). Swine Flu Precautions go to School. Retrieved from >>

cbcnewsdotca (2009, July 15). Swine flu - 94,512 cases, including 438 deaths. Retrieved from,23.203125&spn=160.072598,360&z=1&source=embed >>

AmRedCross (2009, April 30). Swine Flu, How the Influenza Virus Spreads. Retrieved from >>

Camouflage Text Generator at


A bruise happens when a part of the body is struck and the muscle fibers and connective tissue underneath are crushed but the skin doesn't break. When this occurs, blood from the ruptured capillaries (small blood vessels) near the skin's surface escapes by leaking out under the skin. With no place to go, the blood gets trapped, forming a red or purplish mark that hurts to touch — a bruise.


A bruise changes color over time, that's your body fixing the bruise by breaking down and reabsorbing the blood, which causes the bruise to slowly change colors before it eventually disappears. You can pretty much guess the age of a bruise just by looking at its color:

  • When you first get a bruise, it's kind of reddish as the blood appears under the skin.
  • Within 1 or 2 days, the hemoglobin (an iron-containing substance that carries oxygen) in the blood changes and your bruise turns
bluish - purple or even blackish.
  • After 5 to 10 days, the bruise turns greenish or yellowish.
  • Then, after 10 or 14 days, it turns yellowish-brown or light brown.
Finally after 2 weeks your bruise fades away.

bruise1.JPGbruise22.JPG bruise3.JPG

<<Steven Dowshen, MD, . (2009, May). Bruises. Retrieved from>>

Tricia Ellis-Christensen, Initials. (2003-2009). What is a Bruise?. Retrieved from>>

Benjamin W. Van Voorhees, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Pediatrics and Psychiatry, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network., . (2007, May 17). Bruise Healing - series. Retrieved from>>

Dynamic Blinkie Text Generator at

Murder investigators are learning more and more about the use of insulin for cause of death in their victims.

Injectable insulin was first used in 1922 to lower the bodies blood sugar and has saved the lives of millions of diabetics since then; however, in a large enough dose insulin can be a deadly poison. Just one-tenth of a millilitre is enough to make you shaky, sweaty, and unable to concentrate. Although you will soon recover, an injection of 10 millilitres will almost certainly be fatal.
The brain works solely on glucose as its energy source, unlike the rest of the body. Meaning if your bodies blood sugar levels are too low for too long, your brain dies. This is one way insulin kills, yet your own body fighting low blood sugar is probably the most common form of insulin-induced death. When your blood glucose reaches a dangerous low your body begins to creata massive amounts of adrenaline and other hormones that convert stored glycogen in the liver back into glucose. This sudden, intense burst can cause heart attacks, especially in elderly or weak people. A fatal dose of insulin is about 20 syringes and even then all you need for a complete recovery is sugar.

Insulin murders are incredibly hard to prove. Because our individual cells continue metabolising glucose for hours and even days after death, all corpses will have low blood sugar levels.

Some of the first documented insulin murder cases :

  • Yorkshire, UK, May 1957, nurse Kenneth Barlow injected his wife with around 0.8 millilitres of insulin to incapacitate her, before drowing her in the bath.
  • California hospital attendant William Dale Archerd was found guilty in March 1968 of using insulin to murder his nephew and two of his seven wives.
  • British nurse Beverly Allitt used insulin to murder at least four children in her care in 1991.

There have been more than 50 documented cases in which insulin has been used by murderers - mostly involving victimes too weak to resist injection or cry for help.

If insulin is sounding like a useful murder weapon, beware. Porensic teams are increasingly alert to its use, and methods to test for it in corpses are better than ever, including immunoassays and mass spectrometry.

Glycogen : A polysaccharide, (C6H10O5)n, that is the main form of carbohydrate storage in animals and occurs primarily in the liver and muscle tissue. It is readily converted to glucose as needed by the body to satisfy its energy needs. Also called animal starch.

Immunoassays : Any laboratory method for detecting a substance by using an antibody reactive with it.

Spectrometry : The observation and measurement of wavelengths of light or other electromagnetic radiation.

This article caught my attention because people were using something that saved lives to take them away. Ms. Holyoke is always giving us mini lessons here and there about insulin and diabetes so it was kind of cool to read about exactly what it could do to the body. It was also really cool to watch the video and see how the receptors and energy we've been learning about really works. After the article and the video it definetly helped me recognize the cells and how the energy works with them and what happens when you don't get enough of what you need. We should definetly watch more youtube videos in class!

<<Horrell, S. (2007, June 23). Insulin Murder. 48.>>
(n.d.). Retrieved from >>
<<Goinsulin, . (2009, April 17). Insulin, Glucose and You. Retrieved from >>

"Obese People Can
Misjudge Body Size"
Survey finds that many overweight individuals consider their body size normal and healthy.
external image 1999-04-10.gif

Despite the fact of high blood pressure and diabetes, a new study still shows that 10 % of people medically classified as obese believe they are healthy and do not need to lose weight. Six thousand participants were asked to classify their body as "below normal", "normal", and "above normal"; the researchers found that about one of every eight people who were obese rated his body size as normal and healthy; eventhough 35% of those who misjudged their body size had high blood pressure, 15% had high cholesterol and 14% had diabetes.
These perceptions can affect how well these people take care of themselves. 44% of the participants had not gone to see a physician in the last year and only 26% of the obese participants knew they needed to lose weight.

To read the full article go to :

Video :

<Mark Parisi, . (n.d.). Retrieved from>
<Laura Beil , . (2009, November 19). Obese people can misjudge body size . Retrieved from>


The wind and dust could make snowflakes become more triangular instead of the crazy unique designs we're used to!

Snowflakes are usually hexagon shaped because of the arrangement of hydrogen bonds within their water molecules, but recently triangle shape snowflakes are more common. Tiny impurities like dust can make one side of the snowflake tilt up as it falls. All the water on the other sides grow faster with the wind and turn into a triangular shape. Once it freezes like this there's no way to change it back despite the wind and/or other disturbances in its fall.

Researchers are creating snowflakes in the lab to find out exactly how many triangle snowflakes are common. They're finding that it's more then they thought.

Read the whole article:

<Laura Saunders, . (2009, December 1). Elusive triangular snowflakes explained . Retrieved from >

water ... ON THE MOON!

In October scientists purposely smashed a rocket into a dark crater on the moon to see if, like a rock plunking into a pond, it would send up a "splash", so to speak, of water. When the rocket crashed it sent up just that...well kind of. It sent up what is called a "plume", which is a cloud of derbis and dust. So when this "dust splash" came up another rocket used a device called a spectrometer which uses light or radiation to identify the chemical makeup of the particules in the air. It turns out there was close to 25 gallons of water and ice particles in that plume alone!



<Stephen Ornes, . (2009, December 2). For Kids: moon crash, splash . Retrieved from >

7 000 year old cannibals

Researcher stumbled across what is now south Germany and found that around 7 000 years ago it may have been where hundreds
of people had been butchered and eaten. Their hypothesis is that people from all over Europe had brought their slaves there for ritual sacrifice purposes. They were then butchered like animals and eaten. At the site they found several trenches and once the bones were analyzed they turned out to be human. One of the trenches actually had human skull caps throughout it. The researchers suspect that a social and political crisis triggered various formas of violence such as this one throughout that time.


<Bruce Bower, . (2009, December 3). Contested signs of mass cannibalism . Retrieved from>

Contagious Cancer in Tasmanian Devils

Named "the devil facial tumor disease" new studies show that this cancer stems from insulating nerve tissue. Researchers first assumed that the disease that was wiping out 70% of the Tasmanian Devil population so far was a virus and were later proved wrong and discovered the cells were cancerous. Not only has this animal contracted a cancer, but it has been realized that it came from one infected host. Meaning the cancer has the ability to pass from devil to devil. Researchers say that at this rate the Tasmanian Devil could be extinct in a mere 30 to 50 years, but 10 y
ears might be enough time for them to find a vaccine.

Average Tasmanian Devil


Tasmanian Devil Facial Tumor Disease




<Tina Hesman Saey , . (2009, December 31). Cancer plaguing tasmanian devils began in one animal's nerve cells . Retrieved from >


Researchers have found that fruit flies have stem cells in there gut. These stem cells created a daughter cell which wraps aroundexternal image 2006-11-24.gif its mother and siblings to prevent them from becoming specialized tissue. During the fly's larval stage the cells are protected by the cell wrapped around them. When the fly enters metamorphosis the bunch of cells break down and most begin to form the gut. However, some cells manage to retain their identity and remain stem cells where they sit and wait to replace cells that are damaged or have died off.

The research and findings from the study of these fruit flies could help scientists understand how stem cells remain stem cells during developement. This could help a lot with cancers and regenerative medicine. Scientists might also use the idea of bunched stem cells to keep cells in an indifferentiated state in the lab.

The red shown in the picture are the cells protecting the undifferentiated
cells, which is the green shown in the picture, from being specialized.



<Tina Hesman Saey , . (2010, January 7). Fruit fly bodies bank stem cells . Retrieved from >


Ketorpofen is a lot like ibprofen, it relieves pain. Farmers often give it to their cattle or other farm animals when they are hurting. In the farm life vultures are considered "the janitors". Farmers don't have to worry about a dead animal because a pack of vultures can get rid of a carcus in under 20 minutes. However, zoologists have found that even a dose of ketoprofen one-millionth the weight of the vulture is enough to kill it. These "cow advils" are poisoning the birds that feed off their dead bodies. 20 years ago the drug diclofenac had the same affect on both cows and vultures. Pain relief for the cattle and death for the vulture. Because of these drugs there are now three different species of vultures on the verge of extiction.

external image vulture.jpg



< >

< Stephen Ornes , . (2010, January 4). For Kids: watching out for vultures . Retrieved from >