Saturday, 18 December 2010

Necrosis, not just a good name for a death metal band

Hello Zombiology Students,
This week I had the honour of giving a lecture to the fine members of G-Gnomes, the Genetics & Molecular Biology Society at the University of Glasgow. 

A student named Kyle asked me if Necrosis might play a role in Zombieism. Due to a recent feather duster related blow to the head I was unable to provide him with an answer at the time but now, thanks to my third year students, I can.

We're all shedding cells faster than Katie Price sheds blokes, around a 50 - 70 billion are replaced every day. The normal process of cells dying is known as Apoptosis. Certain circumstances, such as infections, cancer and spider bites amongst other things, can bring about the condition Necrosis in our cells.

Necrosis causes our cells to break down in a disorganized manner. It is very different from what happens to our bodies when they normally die.

As you can see in the picture on the right this poor fellow has suffered a rather nasty spider bite. His leg most certainly looks as if it'd waltz through any zombie audition. Actually he wouldn't. His leg was amputated from the knee up shortly after this picture was taken.

My point is that if a zombie did suffer from Necrosis and went untreated he would soon virtually disintegrate. Just as a decomposing one would. Luckily unlike decomposition Necrosis can be treated.

That's the great thing about studying Zombieism, it's always taking us down new avenues. Sure the people in those avenues might try and eat our brains but hey, that's the middle class for you.

Thanks to the G-Gnomes for having me and Kyle for his question.

Doctor Austin ZITS BSz MSz DPep is head of the Zombie Institute for Theoretical Studies and Zombiologist Royal to Her Majesty the Queen

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