• Question: What is the weirdest thing you know about the human body? (Doesn't have to be in your line of work)

    Asked by alicja123 to Alexandra, Alex, Ashley, Millie, Claire, Claudia, Damian, Daniel, Dave, Donna, Eóghan, Hannah, Helen, Jason, Jo, Joaquin, Joey, Laura, Lauren, Laurent, Leo, Liza, Marion, Nathan, Beccy on 14 Jun 2018.
    • Photo: Nathan Clarke

      Nathan Clarke answered on 14 Jun 2018:

      Great question! This is probably pretty mild compared to other scientists here, but I remember being genuinely surprised and finding it a little weird that the skin on your eardrum grows outward (like a conveyor belt) to shift earwax. People have drawn on eardrums and taken pictures over time of the dot moving along the ear canal! Don’t try at home 😉

    • Photo: Claire Donald

      Claire Donald answered on 14 Jun 2018:

      The human body is amazing and there are loads of werid things about it. I think the weridest one I have heard is that we are bioluminescent (we produce light!) but its so weak our eyes can’t see it. How cool would that be if we could be a literal human torch!

    • Photo: Joanne Sharpe

      Joanne Sharpe answered on 14 Jun 2018:

      We have more bacterial cells in our body than we have our own cells! Kinda gross, but actually these bacteria are really important for a variety of reasons, to keep our gut healthy for example!

    • Photo: Alex Haragan

      Alex Haragan answered on 15 Jun 2018:

      Ooh thats a good question. And I love the answers so far!
      My favourite is this:
      Almost every cell in your body contains a nucleus – and this holds all your genetic material, your DNA etc. Now cells vary in size but are around 1-5 microns (0.001 of a mm). Each cell contains the entire DNA of your body, and it is curled up super tight.
      But if you were to unwind the DNA all the way out and lay it out in a straight line – it would be over a metre long. (I’ve read anywhere between 130cm to 200cm). Every cell – so small you can’t even see them, has DNA long enough to stretch over a metre!
      And if that wasn’t crazy enough if you took all the DNA in your body and stretched it out you’d have enough to stretch outside the solar system!
      I never, ever, get tired of thinking about how amazing that is, how amazing our bodies our and how amazing life is.

    • Photo: Joey Shepherd

      Joey Shepherd answered on 15 Jun 2018:

      My favourite fact is the same as Joanne’s – there are about ten times as many bacterial cells in and on your body as human cells – in fact bacteria make up 3-6% of your body weight!

    • Photo: Camille Parsons

      Camille Parsons answered on 18 Jun 2018:

      Great question, I think one of the weirdest facts I learnt is that you are born with more bones than you will have as an adult. A baby has around 300 bones at both, but this total decreases to 206 bones by adulthood! What is your strangest fact?