Author Archives: José Ramón Alonso

José Ramón Alonso
José R. Alonso has a PhD in Neurobiology and is professor of Cell Biology at the University of Salamanca. He has been researcher and visiting professor at the University of Frankfurt/Main and the University of Kiel, in Germany, and the University of California, Davis and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, in the United States. He has authored more than 145 articles in peer-reviewed journals and written 20 books including university textbooks and popular science for both adults and children.

Predation is a biological interaction between a hunting organism, the predator, and another organism that is hunted, the prey. Predators may hunt actively for prey in pursuit predation, or sit and wait for prey as in ambush predators. In all […]

Pigmentations are among the clearest examples of phenotypic variation in many species. Hair, skin and eye colors are highly heritable and visible traits in humans. Blond hair is most commonly found in Northern and Central Europeans and their descendants. Nowadays […]

Many women mention to have memory lapses, cognitive impairment and difficulties to focus associated to pregnancy and motherhood. It is called «baby brain», «brain pregnancy» or «momnesia». In surveys, up to four-fifths of pregnant women report slight mental troubles such […]

Researchers do not know what influences have the stereotypical images of scientists, if any, on children’s perception of science. The most common technique for assessing children’s perceptions of scientists is the Draw-a-Scientist Test (DAST). David Wade Chambers firstly proposed it […]

Flavor is a brain construction: we have olfactory and taste receptors and our central nervous system combines both types of information in what we call flavor. Malaria is an infectious disease affecting humans and other animals caused by parasitic protozoans […]

Group activities like dancing, laughing, and singing, release endorphins in the brain. These endogenous opioid neuropeptides produce a feel-good sensation, increase pain tolerance acting as analgesics, and presumably help to form stronger bonds between members of the group. One […]

Autism spectrum disorders are a group of developmental disorders that cause lifelong disabilities. They affect people’s ability to communicate, to interact with others and to understand social cues. Affected persons have difficulties recognizing body language, making eye contact, and […]

Cataglyphis, the desert ant, is a genus in the subamily Formicinae. The most famous species is C. bicolor, the Sahara Desert ant. There, the midday sun is so hot that even the permanent residents, sand lizards, insects and a few […]

Whiskers or vibrissae are a type of mammalian hair characterized, anatomically, by their larger, thicker and stiffer morphology, large and well-innervated hair follicle and by having a definite projection in the somatosensory cortex of the brain, forming the so-called […]

Cuscuta (dodder) is a genus of about 200 species of obligate parasitic plants. They use airborne volatile organic compound cues to locate their host plants and then, they produce feeding structures named haustoria that penetrate into the vascular system of […]