Menopause May Be the Evolutionary Origin of Romantic Relationships -- And Cheating

Menopause is one of the oddest features of human reproductive biology. Not the hot flashes or the forgetfulness, but the fact that older women lose the ability to have babies. Now researchers say that once it appeared, menopause may have had a ripple effect on human mating that helped create the human pair-bond. »9/08/15 8:45pm9/08/15 8:45pm

Older Ovaries, Not Older Eggs, May Reduce Fertility With Aging

Women who are over 40 have a notoriously hard time getting pregnant by in-vitro fertilization (IVF), and it’s long been assumed that their problem stems from “old eggs”. But a preprint now available online at the Journal of Endocrinology suggests that the real problem might be the aging of the cells that surround the… »8/13/15 2:50pm8/13/15 2:50pm

One Person, Two Sets of DNA: The Strange Case of the Human Chimera

In 1953 a woman known only as "Mrs. McK" entered a blood clinic in northern England. She was there to donate: it was a routine trip, a common gesture of goodwill, but the act would permanently alter Mrs. McK's perception of herself as well as genetic knowledge of what constitutes an individual body. After Mrs. McK… »3/10/15 5:10pm3/10/15 5:10pm

One Weird Trick Female Animals Use to Control Who Gets Them Pregnant

Much like the United States Congress, the history of science is overwhelmingly white and male, and unsurprisingly, this has led to a pretty significant lag time in scientific understanding of things that relate to women. When it comes to animal sexual selection, we know a lot about how and why males compete for female… »2/19/15 2:10pm2/19/15 2:10pm

Cool Pope to Catholics: Don't Be Selfish, Breed Like Rabbits!

Last month, Pope Francis won the hearts and minds of many nonbelievers when he told reporters that having too many children is an irresponsible choice and that just because humans could breed like rabbits, they probably shouldn't. Now, after he's come under fire from Catholics around the world, he's changed his mind. »2/11/15 12:50pm2/11/15 12:50pm

Educational Video Remix Makes Fertilization Look Like a Video Game

If more of the educational videos kids watched about a sperm's magical luge ride through the Fallopian tubes looked and sounded like this, you can bet someone would have made a "Journey of the Sperm" video game by now. It could still be a great game, but only if it were an ongoing MMO tournament that restarted every… »12/29/13 5:00pm12/29/13 5:00pm

Albuquerque Voters Say 'Hell No' To Abortion Ban

Yesterday, a proposed ban on abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy was rejected by voters of Albuquerque. We're not talking a polite "it's not you, it's me" kind of rejection. We're talking changing your phone number-level rejection. We're talking Moving To Another City Without Telling You kind of rejection. Here's… »11/20/13 11:40am11/20/13 11:40am

Poll Reveals America Thinks Women Should Have Babies By Age 26

Sometimes, as a woman, I find myself adrift on a rudderless sea of indecision bereft of the opinions of others weighing in on my conduct. How should I dress? Should I be thin or what? Should I do anything to my face to make it look different? How should I conduct myself sexually? How should I age? When should I talk?… »11/11/13 6:00pm11/11/13 6:00pm

Teens Are Having Fewer Babies Than Ever. Chill Out About Twerking.

Freaking out about teen girls having teen sex is as American an institution as packing one's overtaxed colon full of heavily processed meats during football games. But reality paints a different picture than the pearl-clutching; for the severalth year in a row, all that sex teens are supposedly having due to TWERKING… »9/06/13 5:00pm9/06/13 5:00pm

New research suggests women can make sperm, and men can make eggs

What started as an investigation into developmental mouse biology has become a lot more than that. Biologist Katsuhiko Hayashi discovered a way to turn mouse skin cells into sperm and egg cells — and actually used these modified cells to create a living baby mouse. The question is, can it work in humans? »8/21/13 9:59pm8/21/13 9:59pm

Teach Your Kid to Love Herself and Others Through Children's Books

The children's literature market has come a long way since (the ever wonderful and important) Pat the Bunny. These days, kid's tales tackle topics from adoption to egg donation — and they do it in giant books with adorable, full-color illustrations. Basically, if you're looking for something to explain to your… »4/10/13 10:00am4/10/13 10:00am

When Did Our Early Ancestors Figure Out Sex Makes Babies?

The most popular question of 2012 on Slate's "The Explainer" was "Why do rich ladies sunbathe topless?" After that important exercise in investigative journalism was completed, Slate doubled back to answer another high-ranked question that's a modicum more interesting, although the interested parties could probably… »1/12/13 4:30pm1/12/13 4:30pm