What are Zebra Fish Trying to Tell the Scientists?

Good news Dear Readers! Our hard working scientific researchers have done it again!

Well, well!  Thumbing through a copy  of Scientific American in an article entitled  Why Sleep is Good for You, it seems our industrious Scientist Community has been staying up late worrying about going to bed early.

In an unprecedented effort to dig up more work, Scientist’s have been studying the brain’s performance while sleeping and not sleeping by studying see-through fish.

Scientists Have Divided Themselves into Two Camps

The article goes on to say that the question of sleep has divided the Scientific Community into two camps:

  • Scientific researchers who think sleep is good for you
  • And scientific researchers who think sleep is even better for you than scientific researchers who think sleep is good for you.

Scientists Who Stare at Fish

According to the article, a “group” (probably less than 50 but more than 25) of scientific researchers have been staying up late staring at some zebra fish in the aquarium at the lab.

This is the kind of activity that just about any group can do without the need to pre-coordinate; thus making it quite popular among uncoordinated groups of scientific researchers.

An Uncoordinated Group of Scientific  Researchers

Let Sleeping Brains Lie

Basically, all the scientific researchers had to do was show up at the same time, pour themselves some coffee, and shuffle over to the fish tank to “look” at the fish.

In this case, they were shuffling over to “look” at zebra fish because “their larvae are transparent”, which allowed researchers to watch their tiny brains as they slept (the larvae, that is).

Putting the “zzzzzz” in Zebra Fish

For you see, it had been determined at an earlier date that zebra fish are less active at night than they are during the day which the scientific researchers ascertained could only mean one thing.  Zebra fish sleep at night.

After coming to this scientific conclusion, the scientific researchers could have simply gone right home and written about it in their Scientific Journals.

But the scientific researchers wanted to keep going because they just knew they were about to make a genuine Scientific Discovery — plus they could use the hours.

Talk About Dedicated!

So one camp of scientific researchers wrestled a zebra fish to the bottom of the tank while the other camp of scientific researchers held him down and dyed his neuron connections green and black. Ha!

They Could Be Dead, Sure, But Scientists Say They’re Sleeping

Well, wouldn’t you know, the scientific researchers soon found out that zebra fish’s synapse activity was lower during sleep. Who knew?

But how could the researchers tell that the zebra fish was, in fact, asleep?  Because first it started yawning, and then it closed its eyes for about eight hours give or take.

These eyes have been scientifically proven to be closed.

The upshot is that the hard work of the scientific researchers paid off when the results were published in the Journal, Neuron, which is a magazine about neurons that all the scientific researchers subscribe to, thus cementing their status as the very first Scientific Researchers to observe the effects of sleep/wake cycles on the synapses of a living vertebrate!

And if that little bit of scientific good news doesn’t put a spring in your step, nothing will.

Until next time. . . I love you

Nothing Going Yawn In Science

Flipping through my husband, 37’s Scientific American, this quote popped out at me (I don’t think it was trying to hurt me . . .  just overly excited):

“We could be sitting in the midst of a “Galaxy-Wide Web’ of alien chatter, which to us would appear like noise.”  — Grant Hallman Huntsville, Ontario

Grant Hollman, Scientific American Letter to the Editor Writer

SETI  — not a very good acronym for Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence — is trying to discover an extraterrestrial civilization outside our solar system —  right this very minute — by listening with all their might for non-natural radio emissions. So far their findings are zilch.

A picture of zilch (ignore kitty)

But now, we find out that Grant Hallman of Huntsville Ontario,whose credentials are that his letter to the editor was published in Scientific American — thinks that aliens could be chattering away at us right this very minute– blabbing all kinds of juicy secrets, but to us humans it sounds like just your regular, ordinary, household noise, see.

Well thanks a heap Grant! Like we weren’t confused enough already!

Frankly, I think the only reason the Scientists at Seti haven’t heard any alien messages is because — just between you, me and the aliens — I don’t think Scientists, as a whole, are very good listeners.

I mean have you ever seen a scientist on the Science Channel listening?  I haven’t.  They’re always blubbering on about  how we are all made of star stuff (they just can’t get over it!) or blathering about black holes (They’re Black!  They’re Holes!  They’re Black Holes!) or whining about how the sun’s going to burn out someday. (The sun’s going to burn out someday! And they just can’t wait!)

So now we find out, according to Grant’s letter to the editor of Scientific American, the aliens have been talking to us all this time through “noise”  and we didn’t even notice it.  LOL!

All we have to do now is figure out what the aliens are trying to tell us by virtue of random noises such as horns blaring, kitties meowing and balloons popping, and we’ll be just that much further ahead as a civilization as a whole!

Plus, it will give the Science Channel something new to talk about.

YAY! Noise! Finally a new topic!

Until next time . . . I love you

Do Larvae Sleep? Bank on It!

Hard Working Scientists Have Done It Again!

Well, well!  Thumbing through a copy of the January issue of Scientific American in an article entitled:  Why Sleep is Good for You, it seems our industrious Scientist Community has been staying up late worrying about going to bed early.

In an unprecendented effort to dig up more work, Scientist’s have been studying the brain’s performance while sleeping and not sleeping by studying see-through fish.

Divided into Two Camps

The article goes on to say that the question of sleep has divided the Scientific Community into two camps:

Those who think sleep is good for you, and those who think sleep is even better for you than those who think sleep is good for you.

Scientists Who Stare at Fish

According to the article, a “group” (probably less than 50 but more than 25) of Researchers have been staying up late staring at some Zebrafish in the aquarium at the lab.  This is the kind of activity that just about any group can do without the need to pre-coordinate; thus making it quite popular among uncoordinated groups of Researchers.

Not as "co-ordinated" as one might imagine.

Let Sleeping Brains Lie

Basically all the researchers have to do is meet at the same time, pour themselves some coffee and shuffle over to the aquarium tank to “look” at the fish.  In this case they were looking at Zebrafish because “their larvae are transparent, which allowed researchers to watch their brains as they slept.”

Putting the “zzzzzz” in Zebrafish

For you see, it had been determined at an earlier date that Zebrafish are less active at night than they are during the day which could only mean one thing.  They SLEEP at night!
After coming to this scientific conclusion, the Researchers could have simply gone right home and written about it in their Scientific Journals. But the Researchers wanted to keep going because they just knew they were about to make a Scientific Discovery; plus they needed the hours.

Talk About Dedicated!

So one Camp of Researchers wrestled a Zebrafish to the bottom of the tank while the other Camp of Researchers held him down and dyed his neuron connections green and black.

They Could Be Dead, Sure, But Scientists Say They’re Sleeping

Well, wouldn’t you know, the Researchers soon found out that zebrafish’s synapse activity was lower during sleep.  But how could the Researchers tell that the Zebrafish was, in fact, asleep?  Because, first it started yawning and then it closed its eyes for about eight hours give or take.

These eyes have been scientifcally proven to be closed.

The upshot is that the hard work of the Reseachers paid off when the results were published in the Journal, Neuron, and the Researchers become the very first to show the effects of sleep/wake cycles and time of day on the synapses of a living vertebrate!

And if that little bit of scientific good news doesn’t put a spring in your step, nothing will.

Until next time. . . I love you