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Archive for February, 2012

Petard

Wait, am I about to blow myself up?

A petard is a small bomb, basically a 17th century version of a hand grenade. Used in modern language mostly in conjunction with a phrase that implies falling into one’s own trap.

Though the strategy of letting the Giants score quickly seemed the Patriots best hope, ultimately the team fell on Belichick’s petard. 

 

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Scurrilous

Scurrilous (adj.) – Spreading scandalous claims about someone in order to damage their reputation

The review was negative but not scurrilous. 

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Autophagy

I read “autophagy” in an article about the scientific research investigating aging and exercise. We know that exercise helps you become healthier and live longer, but Why? Researchers found evidence that it encourages autophagy.

autophagy (n.) – a cell eating itself .

Your cells have been extra cannibalistic for 200 years

Or more descriptively, some enzymes eating the proteins, fat, water and other molecules that surround the nucleus of a cell. This means that people who live in near-starvation can actually live longer because of cellular activity which is ridding the body of unhealthy or superfluous protoplasmic material. Exercise encourages similar cellular activity. In future treatments that are designed to make people live longer, it now seems very likely that they will focus on methods to increase autophagy.

The fictitious “Life Extension” scientists were probably masters at authophagy. 

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