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Posts Tagged "vaginal flora"

Context and Variation

AAAS Happenings: Ladyparts and Roller Derby Shenanigans

I’m attending the AAAS Meetings in Chicago this year in both my capacities as a scientist: as someone who does reproductive physiology research and as a science communicator. And it all happens tomorrow! Check out the press briefing today for the Building Babies session. Katie Hinde is the symposium organizer, and fellow session speakers are [...]

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Context and Variation

Roller Derby Teammates Give Each Other Bacterial Hugs

The Twin City Derby Girls 2012 Travel Team

My team does a lot together. We work out. We practice and scrimmage. We swap recipes and cook food together. We watch footage and we hold meetings. We try to listen and then talk all over each other. We squabble. We love. Roller derby is the most brutal, yet most fun, sport I have ever [...]

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Context and Variation

Under the Influence: Naomi Wolf, Biology, and Why We Are More Than Our Vaginas

A women's symbol with a fist inside, a classic feminist symbol.

Readers of this blog are likely already aware of Naomi Wolf’s book Vagina: A New Biography. I’m late to the party, because it just seemed wrong to pile on a feminist more senior to me who, though misguided, is at least working towards equality for women. But the more I read, the harder it has [...]

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Context and Variation

What do you post after you have achieved the trifecta? Summer reading!

Yesterday: I submitted an NSF CAREER proposal on the reproductive ecology and life history of peri-menarcheal girls I submitted a manuscript on transvaginal ultrasounds and stress to a gynecology journal, and I submitted an IRB (Human Subjects Committee) proposal. Since I may never be that productive in a single day ever again, I figured I [...]

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Context and Variation

Vaginal pH Redux: Primate Vaginal Microbial Communities and Your Health

ecoli sq

In parts 1 and 2 of the vaginal pH redux, I have of course spent the majority of my time discussing vaginal acidity. You might have noticed a layer of the conversation beginning to assert itself, though, concerning vaginal microbial communities, or vaginal flora. The interplay between the composition of the vaginal microbial community and [...]

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Context and Variation

Vaginal pH Redux: Broader Perspectives on Douching, Race… and Lime Juice

Image of cut limes by Smabs Sputzer

In my last post I covered the safety and efficacy of acid-promoting tampons. Marc Abrahams, of Annals of Improbable Research and Ig Nobel fame, sent me an article about the intravaginal use of lime juice to prevent HIV by Nigerian women. The particular paper he sent me (Mauck et al. 2008) provided a fairly rigorous [...]

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Context and Variation

Vaginal pH Redux: Acidic Tampons, Coming to a Store Near You

emergency tampon sq

Readers of this blog are already aware that their vaginas are at their best when they are on the acidic side. Vaginal flora is healthy, bacterial overgrowth is at a minimum, and any foreign bodies that want to pass through are firmly discouraged. Semen and douching can increase pH, douching especially so since the liquid [...]

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Context and Variation

Vaginas should smell like vaginas, not flowers: my 24/7 Ig Nobel talk

Last Thursday, a number of dreams I didn’t even know I had were fulfilled: talking about vaginas in front of over a thousand people at Sanders Theatre at Harvard University, singing the Elements Song with Nobel Laureates and Amanda Palmer (I KNOW!!!), making jokes about the effects of coffee as a diuretic as I, aforementioned [...]

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Context and Variation

Where can you find me this fall?

Kathedrale balloon, i.e., not how I am traveling this semester

This is my first semester as an academic where I have a significant travel component. I realized that some of you might want to know where and when I’m traveling or speaking, in case you live in the area and want to hear me speak or organize a tweetup. So here is my tentative schedule [...]

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Context and Variation

SciAmChem: Don’t douche, she declares acidly

Frucht der Edelkastanie

In high school, I enjoyed participating in the science fair. I chose fairly random topics each year, but I do remember the year I studied the pH of soil and its impact on the color of flower petals. I grew a small set of African violets for a few weeks, then ground up their petals [...]

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