February 3rd, 2008

Malibu headshot

And the flour beetle shall inherit the earth

My husband, Robert A. Desharnais, Ph.D. (pictured in the avatar), is a population biologist who uses the flour beetle, tribolium, as an animal model to study neat things like chaos theory. Hubby received an e-mail from a colleague over the weekend which mentioned that the show Mythbusters on The Discovery Channel had sponsored a study to see whether the myth about cockroaches was true--namely, that they'd be the only living thing to survive a nuclear holocaust. (Apparently, the study did not test the urban legend I'd heard, that cockroaches and Cher would be the only living things to survive. ;-) )

Anyhoo, in this study they also included fruit flies and flour beetles, and, according to Bob's colleague, it turns out that the lowly little tribolium was the champion, even over the cockroaches, withstanding doses of 100,000 rads.

Such passes for exciting news at our house. ;-)