Sunday, October 19, 2008

Word of the week

Zoopharmacognosy refers to the process by which animals self-medicate, by selecting and utilizing plants, soils, and insects to treat and prevent disease. Coined by Dr. Eloy Rodriguez, a biochemist and professor at Cornell University, the word is derived from roots zoo ("animal"), pharma ("drug"), and gnosy ("knowing").

Came up when reading this interesting article on human drug-seeking behavior, which came up in the course of another stupid flamewar with an idiot libertarian. My only excuse for doing this is that it leads me down interesting pathways to new words and ideas. Did you know that two of the most important Nobels in biology are partially attributable to the influence of LSD? Kary Mullis everyone knows about, but Francis Crick?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Kary Mullis everyone knows about"

huh? seriously, who is that? i will have to check the wik.

of course crick was dosing. what is so surprising about that? it is frustrating that people would not know that. but when less than 5% of the population knows who crick is, i suppose you're excused from knowing what drugs he did or did not take.