Tobacco Plant Defence


tobacco-leaf

Wild tobacco plants evolved tobacco as a defense mechanism. Tobacco paralyzes most insects after ingestion which keeps it from being devoured and helps it survive where it grows best, which is in the desert surprisingly. Various insects are immune to the paralysis caused by ingesting tobacco, insects like the hornworm caterpillar. The tobacco plant sends off chemical signals when it is under attack from an insect, signals to nearby tobacco plants to alert those other plants of the predator which is devouring it, but also to nearby insects which want to eat the insect consuming the tobacco plant. Not all plants have developed such a robust mechanism of defense like paralysis but all plants have a chemical S.O.S system, and this mechanism has the scent of fresh flowers and fresh cut grass to human beings. This is why freshly cut flowers and freshly cut grass smells as it does. This biological marker mimics tobacco in that it serves as a warning signal to nearby plants and as a dinner invite for insects to eat other insects. The reason plants are so effective when calling the right predator for reinforcement is because the plant uses the saliva of the insect devouring it, a resource which is left over during consumption. Plants can break down the compounds within the saliva of insects and figure out exactly which insect is eating it so that the correct chemical marker is sent out

Hair Growth

hair-color

Hair grows at a rate of 4.6 yoctometres per 1 femtosecond. The yoctometre is the smallest derivation of the meter within the standard SI unit of measurement. 1 meter is equal to 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (1 septillion or 10^24) yoctometers. 1 femtosecond is nearly the smallest derivation of the second within the standard SI unit of measurement (the smallest being an attosecond which is 10^17). 1 second is equal to 1,000,000,000,000,000 (1 quadrillion or 10^15) femtoseconds

Vision of Toads

toad-eye

If a toad is put into a tank with dead worms, it will starve to death because it won’t recognize the worms as food. Toads have evolved to only see horizontal lines moving as food. This theory was tested in the 1970’s, when scientists put a toad in a glass jar and had a vertical line pass by to which the toad did nothing, almost as if it has no clue of the line in front of it which looked like a worm standing straight up. Once the line was changed to become horizontal, the toad immediately tried to eat the horizontal line which mimicked a wormlike insect. Toads have a very unsophisticated visual spectrum. They basically think that if whatever they’re looking at appears to be a worm, then chances are it is and that it’s safe to ingest. This visual model is flawed because the toad is easily fooled giving it a disadvantage both in catching prey, and in becoming prey

Heterocyclic Amines

steak

When cooking red meat at a high temperature for an extended period of time, chemicals referred to as “heterocyclic amines” are produced. When human beings ingest heterocyclic amines, the cells within the body are penetrated and the heterocyclic amine binds with deoxyribonucleic acid. Heterocyclic amines damage deoxyribonucleic acid and if it occurs where mitosis takes place, it can turn otherwise healthy cells into cancerous cells. During the process of using high heat to cook red meat, amino acids and sugars combine to create free radicals which are precursors to heterocyclic amines. Rosemary and other herbs can help combat free radicals and therefore aide in reducing the the amount of heterocyclic amines absorbed by deoxyribonucleic acid within the body