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Beyond pharmacy blog

All posts from: November 2009

Quartz crystals are forever

Posted by: Merlin PJWed, 25 Nov 2009

Merlin’s collection of geological specimens includes some quartz crystals and a small geode of amethyst. Quartz crystals can be made to vibrate at specific frequencies, and this property is used in accurate time keeping. The watch on your wrist is likely to contain a quartz crystal.

Why clockwise, not widdershins?

Posted by: Merlin PJWed, 25 Nov 2009

Recently, Merlin took the opportunity to visit the Bowes Museum at Barnard Castle, Northumberland. One of the great attractions of this museum is its splendid pair of Canalettos, showing scenes on the Grand Canal in Venice in the 1730s.

No to vaccines, yes to woolly long-johns

Posted by: Merlin PJWed, 25 Nov 2009

The refusal of many parents to accept vaccination for their children is an interesting sociological phenomenon as well as a source of great concern to the health services.

Lambeth’s 17th century plant hunters

Posted by: Bystander PJThu, 19 Nov 2009

Across the road from the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s headquarters is the former church of St-Mary-at-Lambeth.

Going bananas over fruit flies

Posted by: Didapper PJWed, 18 Nov 2009

As the old saying goes, “Time flies like an arrow, but fruit flies like a banana.” Today I am going to write about fruit flies, tiny flying insects that do indeed love bananas but are also partial to other fruits and vegetables once they are past their prime and starting to rot.

On the origin of Darwin’s illness

Posted by: Didapper PJWed, 18 Nov 2009

You probably think you have read more than enough about Charles Darwin during his bicentenary year, but you are not getting away that easily because next Tuesday, 24 November (2009), is the sesquicentenary of the publication of his most famous book, ‘On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life’.

Of battered mice and zoophagous men

Posted by: Didapper PJWed, 18 Nov 2009

In February (2009), “Merlin” wrote about “phylum feasts” — celebrations held on Charles Darwin’s birthday at which participants eat meals comprising as many different organisms as possible (PJ, 7 February 2009, p142).

To be able to see clearly into the future

Posted by: Footler PJWed, 11 Nov 2009

My colleague Merlin recently described the way in which finger and palm print records might provide markers for impaired fetal development and how both fingerprint whorls and a narrow palmar angle could be associated with hypertension in later life (PJ, 17 October 2009, p427).

The story of the unique Ossabaw Island pig

Posted by: Footler PJWed, 11 Nov 2009

Importance of diabetes day

Posted by: Footler PJWed, 11 Nov 2009

Today, 14 November, is World Diabetes Day. The date for the primary global awareness campaign for the condition was chosen because it marks the birthday of Frederick Banting who, along with Charles Best, is credited with the discovery of insulin in 1921.

Who wrote that Petronius quote?

Posted by: Bystander PJWed, 4 Nov 2009

The actress and the torpedo

Posted by: Bystander PJWed, 4 Nov 2009

German-speaking nations celebrate Inventors’ Day on 9 November, which is the birthday of actress Hedy Lamarr, the glamorous and seductive star of many Hollywood movies of the 1940s.

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