FEB 16, 2017 2:39 PM PST

For This Researcher, Genitalia Isn't Taboo, it's Basic Science

WRITTEN BY: Carmen Leitch

In this video, evolutionary biologist Patty Brennan discusses her research, which focuses on understanding the myriad genital structures of a wide variety of animals. While some might find it curious that someone studies that topic, her work has focused on areas where very little or nothing is known.

She and her team model the genital structure of animals, and investigate the characteristics of the tissues that compose the organs. One aim of the work is to reveal the evolutionary pressures that created the physiology and architecture. In the video you can see the molds of some of the animal genitalia she studies, like that of the mako shark and several different snakes including the timber rattlesnake.

Brennan has also written a commentary on why such basic science is important, for a variety of reasons. She reminds us that it has the potential to engage and inspire the public, it can help us to understand more about the success of various species over others in an evolutionary sense, and can reveal the biology behind sexual behaviors. In a more general sense, this kind of research can be fun and engaging to the general public.
About the Author
  • Experienced research scientist and technical expert with authorships on over 30 peer-reviewed publications, traveler to over 70 countries, published photographer and internationally-exhibited painter, volunteer trained in disaster-response, CPR and DV counseling.
You May Also Like
JUL 07, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Should We Fly By Venus on the Way to Mars?
JUL 07, 2020
Should We Fly By Venus on the Way to Mars?
After landing on the Moon, heading to Mars became the next logical step for space exploration. Some suggest that flying ...
JUL 19, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Scientists Engineer Human Cartilage in Space
JUL 19, 2020
Scientists Engineer Human Cartilage in Space
Russian cosmonaut, Oleg Kononenko, has successfully carried out an experiment to engineer human cartilage in microgravit ...
AUG 06, 2020
Plants & Animals
Swine Fever Threatens Critically Endangered Indian Hogs
AUG 06, 2020
Swine Fever Threatens Critically Endangered Indian Hogs
The Associated Press reports that the world's smallest and rarest wild pig species is undergoing its own virus lockd ...
AUG 11, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
High THC Cannabis Linked to Anxiety
AUG 11, 2020
High THC Cannabis Linked to Anxiety
Researchers have found that people who use strains of cannabis high in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive comp ...
SEP 24, 2020
Health & Medicine
Extreme Isolation can Cause Physical Brain Changes
SEP 24, 2020
Extreme Isolation can Cause Physical Brain Changes
By this point in the year, you’ve either heard or uttered the phrase “quarantine brain.” While the act ...
NOV 07, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Scientists Discover Planet with Atmosphere of Vaporized Rock
NOV 07, 2020
Scientists Discover Planet with Atmosphere of Vaporized Rock
Researchers have identified an exoplanet that appears to have an atmosphere composed of vaporized rock and oceans runnin ...
Loading Comments...