subject: involution

The Many Lives of Fat Cells

The Many Lives of Fat Cells

People obsess about fat. Many have much more fat than they need deposited in various locations in the body and it threatens both health and fashion. Fat has now developed a bad reputation. In times gone by, a bit of extra fat meant a lifesaving energy reserve in times of food scarcity. Indeed, the metabolism we have inherited from our ancestors was originally fine-tuned to suit the feast or famine lifestyle of the past; however, it is not suitable for most people in today’s world where food abundance is the norm. Fat is a simple thing, or so we thought. There have been several surprises of late. Read More...

Evolution Solves a Problem of Premature Milk Loss

Evolution Solves a Problem of Premature Milk Loss

The mammary gland is an amazing example of a dynamic tissue capable of undergoing major changes to match the infant's need for milk. Hormonal regulation during pregnancy causes the growth of new mammary cells, and the gland enlarges to prepare for milk production. We know a lot about signals that are reset following birth to coincide with lactation, but exactly what tells the mammary gland to stop producing milk is less clear. Read More...