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Podcast title Life Lines - The Podcast of The American Physiological Society
Website URL http://lifelines.tv
Description Life Lines is a general interest monthly science podcast of The American Physiological Society. Visit us online at www.lifelines.tv.
Updated Fri, 02 Aug 2019 11:25:13 +0000
Image Life Lines Logo
Category Science & Medicine

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Link to this podcast Life Lines - The Podcast of The American Physiological Society


1. Episode 29: Outtakes
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Description: From the cutting room floor, here are some of the outtakes about physiology that we thought were just too interesting not to use:
1.    Dusty Sarazan describes one way that physiological research helped advance cardiac surgery, and also how research led to the development of the modern treadmill
2.    David Linden talks about our imperfect memories
3.    David Kraus tells us why we are so sensitive to the odor of hydrogen sulfide gas (what is hydrogen sulfide gas? where does it come from and what does it do?).

2. Episode 28: 'Tis the Season That's Hard on Your Heart
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Heart attacks peak during the winter months and cold weather has been thought to be the primary culprit. But cardiologist Robert Kloner of the Keck School of Medicine and Good Samaritan Hospital found that heart attack deaths peak on Christmas and New Year's in the mild climate of Los Angeles County. Could it be that the weather is not the most important factor behind the seasonal increase in heart attacks?

The show's second segment, the Buzz in Physiology, features research on how a probiotic treatment alleviated colitis in mice and how five exercises helped women office workers suffering from repetitive strain injury. (Begins at 10:55)

From the American Heart Association, Heart Attack/Stroke Warning Signs. Click here.

Total Time: 13:28

3. Episode 27: When the Sense of Smell Fails
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What would it be like to live without being able to detect any odors? For one thing, Thanksgiving would be much less enjoyable, perhaps disturbingly so. In this episode, we talk to Robert I. Henkin of the Taste and Smell Clinic in Washington, D.C., who will tell us why people lose their sense of smell and how his research can help some people restore it. (Begins at: 02:03)

The Buzz in Physiology features studies on a simple test that may determine arterial stiffness in adults older than 40, and a look at a 1950s program that tested the fitness of women to become astronauts. (Begins at: 00:43)

4. Episode 26: Invention and Impact of Ultrasound
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Dean Franklin developed the first instruments to measure blood flow and the changes in diameter of the pulsating heart in conscious animals. He also pioneered the use of radio waves to measure heart and blood vessel function without wiring the body to the instrument. Dusty Sarazan, a former student of Dean Franklin, explains how these inventions led to the non-invasive cardiovascular monitoring instruments we have today. You can find the full article on Dean Franklin here and a press release here. (Begins at 02:22)

A program note: We misspoke when we mentioned that physiologists made an important discovery after a giraffe frightened an instrumented baboon. In fact, a leopard had frightened the baboon.

The Buzz in Physiology

(Begins at 00:52) A study on how exercise helps prevent weight regain after dieting finds that exercise reduces the drive to overeat, causes the body to burn fat before burning carbohydrates and prevents an increase in the number of fat cells during weight regain.

A study on how alcohol can disrupt circadian rhythm finds that chronic drinking blunts the biological clock's ability to synchronize daily activities to light, disrupts natural activity patterns and continues to affect the body's clock even days after the drinking ends.

5. Episode 25: EleComm
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You've heard the word telecomm? In this episode, we are going to coin a new word: elecomm, shorthand for elephant communication. Caitlin O'Connell-Rodwell is a Stanford University professor and the author of The Elephant's Secret Sense, published by the University of Chicago Press. Dr. O'Connell-Rodwell discovered that elephant vocalizations travel through the ground, sometimes for great distances. Other elephants pick up these seismic communications and understand them. There are links to videos of three of Dr. O'Connell-Rodwell's elephant communication experiments on her website, www.utopiascientific.org or by clicking here, here and here. (Begins at 2:44)

From the Buzz in Physiology (Begins at 1:13):

Divers who held their breath for several minutes had elevated levels of S100B (a protein found after cell injury) in their bloodstream, which suggests that holding one's breath for a long time disrupts the blood-brain barrier. However, the appearance of the protein was transient and leaves open the question of whether lengthy breath holding can damage the brain over the long term, according to the Lund University researchers.

And drinking beetroot juice boosts stamina and could help you exercise for up to 16% longer, according to a study from the University of Exeter. The study shows how the nitrate contained in the juice leads to a reduction in oxygen uptake, making exercise less tiring.

You can read the press releases on these studies:


6. Episode 24: Pregnancy and Exercise
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Episode 24: Pregnancy and Exercise

When a pregnant woman exercises, is it good for her fetus? That is the question that researchers Linda May of the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences and Kathleen Gustafson of the University of Kansas Medical Center are trying to answer. Their work is ongoing, but it is good news, so far, for pregnant women who like to exercise. (Begins at 01:59)

Buzz in Physiology (Begins at 00:47)

Estrogen can halt the damage caused by a stroke by inactivating the protein, p53. 

Researchers have found a way to diagnose overtraining syndrome in horses by measuring the secretion of nocturnal growth hormone. 

7. Episode 23: Cool Water
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Three physiologists tell us why the prescription "drink when you are thirsty" is usually the best guideline for deciding when and how much to drink. We will talk to Heinz Valtin of Dartmouth Medical School (retired); Mark Knepper, the chief of the Laboratory of Kidney & Electrolyte Metabolism of the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute; and Samuel Cheuvront, of the Thermal and Mountain Medicine Division of the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine about water consumption. They will answer the question: "Must I drink 64 ounces of water each day?" (Begins at 3:47)

To read the review of the eight-by-eight rule by Heinz Valtin, click here:

In the Buzz in Physiology, we look at studies involving a prosthetic device known as the Cheetah Flex Foot and whether it gives a runner who is a bilateral amputee an unfair advantage over limb-intact runners. We also summarize a study in mice in which adult bone marrow stem cells were used as a non-invasive therapy to repair cardiac tissue. And finally, we'll look at a study that finds that electro-acupuncture successfully reduced sympathetic nerve activity, normalized menstrual cycles and reduced testosterone in women with polycystic ovarian syndrome. (Begins at 1:05)

8. Episode 22: Laughter: Good Medicine?
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There is nothing like a good laugh, is there? It not only feels great to laugh, it can feel great to hear other people laugh. Beyond brightening the mood, can laughter provide tangible health benefits?

Lee Berk of Loma Linda University in California has done a series of studies on laughter and its possible physiological effects. We will talk to him about his latest study, done over the course of a year with diabetic patients. (Begins at 3:50)

In this month’s Buzz in Physiology (begins at 0:51), we look at studies that provide possible explanations for:

Why pregnant Andean give birth to larger babies at high altitude, compared to European women How certain side effects in some medical procedures may trace back to a solvent found in plastic tubing

Total Time: 9:47

9. Episode 21: Blood Pressure and the Brain
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Did you know that there is a sensor in the nerve endings in the carotid artery that rapidly lowers blood pressure when stimulated? This discovery may one day allow people who are hypertensive to lower their blood pressure by using a pacemaker-like device that stimulates the nerve endings in the blood vessels.

In this edition of Life Lines, we talk to Francois Abboud, of the Carver College of Medicine at the University of Iowa whose research identified this sensor. We’ll also talk to him about his recent research looking at the genes that regulate ion channels, microscopic gates that move chemicals in and out of cells, and that play a role in the signaling between the brain and the blood vessels. In experiments with animals, Dr. Abboud and his colleagues deleted one specific ion channel and found that the animals developed high blood pressure. (Begins at 03:51)

We'll also talk to Ann M. Schreihofer, of the Medical College of Georgia, who focuses on the role the brain plays in increasing sympathetic nervous activity, which contributes to many forms of hypertension (high blood pressure). Among the questions her research seeks to answer is why people who are obese become hypertensive.

The Schreihofer laboratory has also been looking at sleep apnea and whether it is possible to improve respiratory function as a way to reduce the sympathetic activity that leads to obesity and hypertension. (Begins at 09:43)

In the Buzz in Physiology (begins at 1:24), we have studies on:

resistance training and octogenarians muscle atrophy during lengthy space missions belly fat, inflammation and exercise

The photo in our logo is a neuron from the rostral ventral lateral medulla of the brain stem and was provided by Dr. Schreihofer.

Total running time: 16:45.

10. Episode 20: Celiac Research Update
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Celiac Update. Celiac disease is an uncontrolled immune response to wheat gluten and similar proteins of rye and barley. In those who have celiac disease, gluten can damage the small intestine, inhibit nutritional uptake and lead to malnutrition. Among the symptoms are diarrhea, stomach pain, fatigue, weight loss and slow growth. One study estimated that 1 in 133 people in the U.S. population have celiac disease. Many people do not know they have it, sometimes because there are no symptoms. Because celiac disease has a genetic component, there can be a much higher prevalence of the disease within families.

Three years ago, a group of Dutch researchers led by Frits Koning of the Leiden University Medical Center published a study on an enzyme that showed promise as a treatment for celiac disease. The enzyme, prolyl endoprotease, or PEP, could quickly break down gluten in the stomach before it ever reached the small intestine, where it causes damage. In this episode, we ask Frits Koning to update us on his research. (Begins at 2:45)

Total Time:  11:20

11. Episode 19: The Genetics of Exercise
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Have you ever had an experience like this: You and a friend start jogging together. Neither of you have been exercising much, but after a few days, your friend is easily striding along as you wheeze, gasp and hold onto your aching side. Do not feel bad about your performance; it may be your genes.

Scientists have identified about 200 genes that play a role in our body's ability to become fitter, referred to as "adaptation to exercise." In this episode, we talk to Mark Olfert of the University of California at San Diego and Claude Bouchard of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. They have organized a symposium on the genetics of adaptation to exercise, to take place at the Experimental Biology conference in New Orleans in April. They will give us a flavor for the research in this field by telling us a bit about their own work. (Begins at 3:51)

In the Buzz in Physiology (Begins at 1:21) University of Illinois researchers are developing a program to train people to avoid falls. This research could be particularly valuable for the elderly, for whom falling can be an especially dangerous proposition. And a study from the University College London Medical School sheds light on why patients with cirrhosis may have a more regular heart rhythm than is normal, and why they develop hepatic encephalopathy, a neurological disorder. The body's inflammatory response may be the common thread behind the development of these conditions. 

12. Episode 18: Where Love Begins: In the Brain
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Lucy Brown, a neuroscientist at the Albert Einstein School of Medicine, has studied romantic love using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Dr. Brown will talk about her studies on what happens in our brains at different stages of love: falling in love, being rejected by a lover, and longterm love. 

Obstructive sleep apnea is the most commonly diagnosed condition among sleep-related breathing disorders and can lead to debilitating and sometimes fatal consequences for the 18 million Americans who have been diagnosed with the disorder. 

13. Episode 17: Environmental Cardiology
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Accumulating evidence indicates that an increase in particulate air pollution is associated with an increase in heart attacks and deaths. In this episode, we'll talk to Aruni Bhatnagar of the University of Louisville and Robert Brook of the University of Michigan about research in the relatively new field of environmental cardiology. This field examines the relationship between air pollution and heart disease. (Begins at 2:58)

Research update: Dr. Brook published his study in the September, 2009 issue of the journal Hypertension, a publication of the American Heart Association.  

Why was the man known in scientific literature only as "H.M." so important to neuroscience? David Linden of Johns Hopkins University explains why in the wake of H.M.'s recent death. (Begins at 14:54)

The Buzz in Physiology: (Begins at 1:14)

A new study with rats could help uncover how we get hooked on sugary food.  

The heart's beat is not a simple in-and-out movement, but has a bit of a twist to it. Researchers have created images showing the connection between the configuration of the heart's muscular layer and how the heart contracts. The study is available here. Be sure to click on the supplemental video to see how it works.

14. Episode 16: Circadian Rhythm & Jet Lag; Exercise and Appetite
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We’ll start this episode by talking about clocks, but not the type of clock that ticks away on your wall. Instead, we’ll talk about the biological clocks that tick inside us. Clifford Saper of the Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center in Boston will explain some of the research on circadian rhythm and will share his theory about the best way to deal with the disruption of the biological clock caused by jet travel. If you’re traveling this holiday season, or anytime in the near future, give a listen. (Begins at 3:14)

Do you have a tendency to overeat during the holidays? A new study finds that exercise affects the release of two hormones that help regulate appetite, ghrelin and peptide YY. This may help explain why exercise is often, even if only briefly, associated with suppression of appetite. David Stensel of Loughborough University in the United Kingdom will talk about his study, which appears in the American Journal of Physiology-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology. (Begins at 11:54)

Total Time: 20:27

15. Episode 15: Can Turkey Make You Sleepy?
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Why do we feel sleepy after a big Thanksgiving meal? Is there something in the turkey? Are cranberries good for our kidneys? These are some of the questions our experts will explore. Chris I. Cheeseman of the University of Alberta will talk about tryptophan in turkey. (Begins at 3:17.) L. Lee Hamm of Tulane University School of Medicine will discuss what the research shows about cranberries and kidney health. (Begins at 8:58)

Kevin Heffernan (13:26) will talk about his study, aimed at trying to uncover why African-American men have a higher rate of hypertension than white men. The research team from the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign, found some early signs of vascular damage in young, healthy African-American men and found that measuring central blood pressure may be a better way of identifying those at risk.

Physiology in the News: (1:25)

Beta agonist drugs

Total time: 21:13

16. Episode 14: Halloween Science
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Halloween is the theme for October, so we'll talk about sleep paralysis, a condition that has been associated with stories of demon attacks during the night. We'll talk to Allan Cheyne of the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Canada about this spooky phenomenon. (Begins at 3:46)

We'll also talk to Alexandra Shapiro and Phillip Scarpace of the University of Florida in Gainesville about their study on fructose-induced leptin resistance and obesity. This study is a bit scary if you have a sweet tooth. The study appears in the American Journal of Physiology-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology. (Begins at 11:40)

Buzz in Physiology: What is a 'Halloween" gene and how did it get its name? Lawrence I. Gilbert explains. And Bret H. Goodpaster will discuss his study that found that older people who diet without exercising lose more lean muscle mass than those who exercise without dieting. The study is important because older people tend to lose muscle mass as they age, and too much muscle loss may interfere with activities of daily living. (Begins at 1:46)

Total time: (23:06)

17. Episode 13: Is Quercetin a Flu Fighter?
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Mice are less susceptible to the flu when they eat quercetin, a substance that occurs in fruits and vegetables. Researcher J. Mark Davis will talk about his study on stressful exercise, quercetin and the flu. Click here for the study. (Begins at 3:55)

In the wake of the summer Olympics, we asked Rick Lieber, of the University of California San Diego and the VA Medical Center San Diego, if the muscles of highly trained athletes could get much stronger and whether gene therapy, which is being developed for medical applications, could be used by to enhance performance in the future. (Begins at 12:56)

The Buzz in Physiology gives a quick look at a study that finds a possible link between your genes and activity level. And we detail a study on the benefits of hydrogen sulfide gas. We also talk to APS member Jim Hicks of the University of California Irvine about his involvement with the film, Wall-E. (Begins at 1:20)

18. Episode 12: The Brain and Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
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The Buzz in Physiology: (Starts at 2:01) A quick look at studies from APS journals that have been in the news.

The Accidental Mind: (Starts at 4:17) How is your brain like an ice cream cone? David Linden, author of "The Accidental Mind" explains. Dr. Linden is the editor of the Journal of Neurophysiology and is a researcher and teacher at Johns Hopkins University.

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome: (Starts at 17:04) Research in sheep shows promise for understanding how maternal drinking causes cerebellar damage to the developing fetus. Timothy Cudd and Jay Ramadoss explain their study, which appears in the American Journal of Physiology. Dr. Cudd is at Texas A&M University, while Dr. Ramadoss is at the University of Wisconsin. Click here for the study. The link brings you to the abstract. Click on "Full Text (PDF)" in the right column for the full study.

Related Press Releases:

Young at Heart

The music that you hear at the beginning and end of the program is Body Notes, composed by scientist-musician (and APS member) Hector Rasgado-Flores. The San Diego Chamber Orchestra performs.

Running Time: 27:40

19. Episode 11: Athletic Performance and Caffeine
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The Buzz in Physiology: (Begins at 1:34) A quick look at studies from APS journals that have been in the news.

Athletic Performance and Caffeine: (Begins at 3:05) Taking caffeine and carbohydrates together following exercise refuels the muscles more rapidly, according to a study from the Journal of Applied Physiology done by Australian researcher John Hawley of the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia.

Drinking It In: (Begins at 12:55) The discovery of how sugar is absorbed into the small intestine led to oral rehydration therapy and the development of rehydrating sports drinks such as Gatorade. A conversation with the man who made that discovery: Stanley Schultz of the University of Texas Medical School.

You can read Dr. Schultz's historical perspectives paper "From a pump handle to oral rehydration therapy: a model of translational research" by clicking here.

The music that you hear at the beginning and end of the program is Body Notes, composed by scientist-musician (and APS member) Hector Rasgado-Flores. The San Diego Chamber Orchestra performs.

Running Time: 24:01

Related Press Releases:

Sweet tooth and GLUT2 Gene
Aging and Caloric Restriction
High-intensity Exercise

20. Episode 10: Hydrogen Sulfide - What a Gas
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Segment 1: What a Gas.  University of Alabama – Birmingham researchers Jeannette Doeller and David Kraus talk about the amazing properties of hydrogen sulfide gas. Although it’s lethal in even minute quantities, our bodies produce it and use it to good effect. Episode 10 graphic courtesy of David Kraus. Begins at 1:15.

Segment 2: Research Progress on Colon Cancer.  John Carethers of the University of California San Diego explains his research findings on colon cancer and the role that the DNA mismatch repair system plays. Begins at 15:24.

Total time: 25:10

Body Notes, the theme music at the beginning and end of the show, was composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and was performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

21. Episode 9: Physiology of Marine Animals
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Two segments, total time: 25:48. The second segment 14:40.

Segment 1: Warm body, cold heart: Barbara Block of Stanford University talks about her research with the bluefin tuna, one of the few fish species to have a warm body. You can see how marine animals are being tracked by going to www.topp.org.

Segment 2: Longer, deeper: Andreas Fahlman of the University of British Columbia Marine Mammal Research Unit in Vancouver and Global Diving Research in Ontario explains the physiology that allows mammals such as sea lions to dive so much deeper and for such a long time, compared to humans. You can find a video showing the work of Dr. Fahlman and his colleagues at www.marinemammal.org/2007/fahlman.php and more is available at www.marinemammal.org/MMRU/.

The theme music you hear at the beginning and end of the show, Body Notes, was composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and was performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

22. Episode 8: World War II Aviation Physiology
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Jay B. Dean, a professor at the University of South Florida, discusses the aviation research that physiologists did during World War II. This research helped the Allies win the Air War. Dr. Dean has prepared a presentation on this topic for the Experimental Biology conference taking place in San Diego, April 5-9.

The theme music you hear at the beginning and end of the show, Body Notes, was composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and was performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

23. Episode 7: Nanoparticles and Disease
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This is a re-issue of Episode 7!

Nanoparticles, which are 1,000 times smaller than a bacterium, are being manufactured and incorporated into some commercial products such as cosmetics and clothing. While nanotechnology holds promise, there is little understanding of how these super small particles might affect us if they get inside our bodies.

Two researchers from the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine will tell us about their research investigating the role these particles might play in disease. John Lieske will talk about his research on the role one nanoparticle may play in the development of kidney stones. And Virginia Miller will tell us about her work on a nanoparticle that may play a role in hardening of the arteries.

Drs. Lieske and Miller will lead a symposium on this topic at the Experimental Biology Conference on Wednesday, April 8.

The theme music you hear at the beginning and end of the show, Body Notes, was composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and was performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

24. Episode 6: The Mystery of Serotonin & Hypertension
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We continue our coverage of Experimental Biology 2008 with an interview with Michigan State University Professor Stephanie W. Watts, who has been investigating whether serotonin plays a role in high blood pressure.

The APS has awarded Dr. Watts the Henry Pickering Bowditch Memorial Award for early-career achievement. The award goes to a scientist younger than 42 years whose accomplishments are original and outstanding. It is the Society's second-highest award.

The theme music that you hear at the beginning and end of the program, Body Notes, was composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

25. Episode 5: Research on Heart Hormones and Cancer
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Description: In this episode of Life Lines, we talk to David Vesely, a professor at the University of South Florida and chief of endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism at the James A. Haley Veterans Hospital in Tampa. Dr. Vesely talks about his research investigating the use of heart hormones as a treatment for cancer. He has just finished trials with mice and hopes to begin human trials this year.

Dr. Vesely will present his research during a symposium at the Experimental Biology conference, which will take place in April in San Diego.

The music you hear at the beginning and end of Life Lines is from Body Notes, composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

26. Episode 4: Severe Asthma, Video Games, 'One Physiology'
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In this episode, we'll talk to Ronald Sorkness (1:29) about his study on severe asthma that appears in the Journal of Applied Physiology. We'll also ask David Spierer (13:23) whether there might be physiological benefits in playing an interactive video game. And APS President Hannah Carey (21:13) will explain how physiological research can help preserve the health of the planet.

You can find a summary of the asthma study here.

27. Special Edition: Hillary's Contribution to Physiology
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In this special episode of Life Lines, we talk to John West, a professor of medicine at the University of California, who shares his memories of the late Sir Edmund Hillary. West accompanied Hillary to Mount Everest in 1960, helping to uncover how the body acclimatizes to the extremes of altitude.

The music you hear at the beginning and end of Life Lines is from Body Notes, composed by APS member Hector Rasgado-Flores and performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.

28. Episode 3: Physiology of the Season
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In this special holiday edition of the podcast, we’ll talk to Perry Barboza of the institute of arctic biology at the university of Alaska in Fairbanks and Lisa Leon of the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine in Natick Massachusetts.

Dr. Barboza explains how a reindeer's physiology allows survival under such frigid winters with so little food and Dr. Leon will look at how humans adapt to extremes of heat and cold. They will also give us some pointers on how to help Santa, Rudolph and the gang as they circumnavigate the globe.

Thanks for listening to Life Lines and thanks to the good folks at soundsnap.com, especially "Radio Mall" and "Filmhits" who shared the Christmas music and sleigh bell sound effects we used in the show.

29. Episode 2: Prosthetic Arms, Frozen Frogs and Alligator Hearts
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In this episode of Life Lines, we speak with Todd Kuiken, a doctor at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and a professor at Northwestern University, about his efforts to develop a prosthetic arm that responds directly to signals from the brain. He will describe his latest research, which appears in the Journal of Neurophysiology, published by the American Physiological Society. This segment begins at 1:41.

In our 'Ask a Physiologist' section, we'll talk to Ken Storey of Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, who will answer the question 'Can an animal freeze, then thaw out and live?' This segment begins at 9:23.

In our final segment, APS Executive Director Martin Frank will talk to Jim Hicks of the University of California at Irvine about the uniquely structured alligator heart and the role it plays in digestion. This final segment begins at 18:34.

Photo Credit: Journal of Neurophysiology

To read a summary of the prosthetics study in the Journal of Neurophysiology, please click here.

30. Episode 1: Snorkeling Elephants
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In this episode, APS Executive Director Martin Frank talks with University of California physiologist John West about snorkeling elephants, galloping race horses and flying pigeons.

Marshall Montrose tells us why the stomach doesn't digest itself.

And finally, Greg Atkinson describes the benefits the afternoon nap may have for your heart. For the study abstract click here.

The intro and outro music for the Life Lines podcast is from Body Notes, composed by Hector Rasgado-Flores and performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra.