Better than Murder
While working to uncover a hidden acrostic in the list of bodily organ systems,
I strung out the first letters of the 10 and immediately picked out MURDER,
but had the letters N, I, C, I left over and did not want to suggest MURDER
NICI because NICKI is also the name of my favorite ex-girlfriend. Then, I
wrote out the first three letter of each and managed to create two phrases
which are easy to recall and make remembering the ten systems a cinch! Ergo:
Sir: I'm nervous about reproducing with the rest. Uri must dig into the end.
The organ system names buried within the phrases are (in order): circulatory, immune, nervous, reproduction, respiratory, urinary, muscle, digestive, integumentary,
and endocrine. Easy now?
Carolus Linnaeus (1707-1778) named and classified the various forms of life
as a way of seeking order in diversity. He created taxonomy to do this, thus
giving headaches to many generations of students. His system of kingdom (plant
or animal), phylum (backbone?), class (mammal?), order (carnivore?), family
(cat, dog, ape), genus (orangutan or human), species and variety is still
used today, only slightly modified from the original. One easy sentence used
is King Philip Conquers Our Fifty Grateful States. Two others: King Phillip's
Class Of Family Geniuses Specializes in Variety and Kind Phillip's
Class Orders Family-sized Gino's Special.
Finally, Zoe Lindo offers this hockey mnemonic: Kings Play Calgary On
Friday. Gretzky Scores! Take your pick.
The 5 kingdoms (used to be only 2 or 3) are protoctista, plantae, fungi,
monera, animalia. I embedded them into neurons by: Protecting Plants is
Fun, Mon Ami, which sounds like a slogan for a French environmental activist
Keep Perverts Cleverly Occupied, For Gosh Sake!!
(Hallie Ray, Science Department, Rappahannock Community College Warsaw,
Alimentary and Digestion
The 5 sphincters found in the Alimentary Canal spell APE OIL: Anal, Pyloric, Lower Esophageal, Oddi,
and Ileocecum. Also, try An Odd Pile Lowers the Ileocecum.
Cars, Piles, and the Bay of Fundy
"The CAR is FUN `til the BODY PILES" I remember
the 5 layers of the GI stomach: Cardiac, Fundus, Body, and Pylorus. The fundus looks
like the Bay of Fundy (to me, anyway), and the pylorus is where the
food piles waiting for the sphincter to open.
Some are Ugly
The 4 lobes of the liver -- quadrate, left & right, caudate -- bring
to mind the newspaper headline of the wheelchair-bound fellow who left a
party right after his ugly girlfriend departed: QUAD LEFT RIGHT after
Dow Jones and the Cannibal
We are supposed to remember the lengths of the first 3 parts of the digestive
system after the stomach, so I came up with the story of a cannibal who consumes
a dozen people, including an ailing stock market analyst. It goes: One
Ate 12, including an Ill Dow Jones referring of course to 1, 8,
12-feet lengths for the Ileum, Duodenum, Jejunum.
A really good device for recalling the bowels is to remember the market
news: Dow Jones Industrial Averages Closing Stock Report whose initial
letters also identify the Duodenum, Jejunum, Ileum, Appendix, Colon, Sigmoid,
and Rectum. It misses the cecum but is otherwise unforgettable.
Quick Peritoneum Facts
The idea is to relate key letters of related parts. E.g., stomach and omentum
(which lays over the stomach) share the letters OM.
- The bacterium E. coli is found in Everybody's Colon
- The Omentum covers the stomach
- The Lesser Omentum holds the Liver and stomach
- The Mesentery holds the small intestine
- The mesoCOLON attaches the large intestine (colon) to the
posterior abdominal wall
- The PERITONEUM, holds PERson's Intestines To
Oh! Curling turns my Stomach Inside Out
This is what a housewife might say in reaction to her husband's sports selection,
but it is a student's way of knowing the 3 layers of muscle around the stomach.
The layers are: Oblique, Circular, Longitudinal from
inside to outside.
People (PPL for short) have 3 tonsils: Pharyngeal, Palatine, and Lingual.
Bile Breaks fat into Blobs.
Chief stomach enzyme is Pepsin ... remember Geronimo drinking Pepsi
to help his digestion.
Parietal cells Produce Acid, Release Intrinsic
factor, ET AL.
Causes of blood in the urine:
Given to me a few years back when I was in paramedic school, the six causes
of blood in the urine: SHITTT -- Stones, Hematological Disorder, Infection, Tumor, Tuberculosis, Trauma.
(thanks to Jason Cerovac <email@example.com>)
Charlie Foster and the Hot Blooded Whore
I learned the 8 functions of blood by the acrostic Old Charlie Foster
Hates Women Having Dull Clothes for Oxygen, Carbon dioxide, Food, Heat,
Waste, Hormones, Disease, and Clotting but I thought it would be easier
to recall if I used the first few letters of each word to make a new sentence.
Thus: Waste Ox Cart Food Disease makes Clot in Heated Whore. Of
course, I related the hormones to "the whore moans".
Quick Blood / Cardio facts
- Tricuspid valve is in The Right Inside part
of the heart.
- Mitral is on Left side.
- B Cells Bite virus, T Cells Torpedo
- You need more white blood cells after an immemorable weekend right? Then
remember Lying Nude in Basement Early Monday has every white blood
cell mentioned: Lymphocytes, Neutrophils, Basophils, Eosinophils, and Monocytes.
Centrioles are useful organelles which play a key role in cell division,
namely pulling the chromosomes apart. Centrioles are ropes made of 9 groups
of 3 fibres, a 9+3 arrangement. How to remember this? Count the number
of letters in "centriole", then count the syllables. You should
get 9 and 3.
Insulin gets sugar Into cells. Without insulin, a person can
die from lack of sugar. Romans noticed bees attracted to the urine of diabetics
and coined the term "diabetes" to describe the overflow of sugar.
There are actually two forms of diabetes: insipidus and mellitus,
and are not related. D. insipidus is characterized by excessive and watery
urine production and is due to low anti-diuretic hormone level, often caused
by a tumor at the hypothalamus. D. mellitus is characterized by high volumes
of sugary urine caused by low levels of insulin due to faulty pancreas. Physicians
used to tell the difference between the two types of diabetes by dipping
a finger into the patient's urine and tasting it -- if it was sweet, he had
Tubules & Filaments
Eukaryotic cells are held together by microtubules, microfilaments, and
intermediate filaments. I find it easy to remember what each does by matching
key letters in each term with their respective duties. For example, Microfilaments are
made of Actin, Move Food into MICROvilli, are responsible
for Amoebal Movement, Cytoplasmic Streaming,
and Muscular Contraction, and they Move Fast.
Microtubules on the other hand, are made of TUBulin, Move Slowly, and make
the Chromosome fibres.
La Jeune Fils & cell junctions
A Frenchman gawking at a young lady dressed in form-fitting jeans might
say Des Tight Gaps and REALLY be thinking about the three types of
cell junctions: Desmosome, Tight, and Gap. Desmosome
junctions, like good blue jeans, will stretch and are found in the lungs
amongst other sites. Tight junctions are useful for containing liquids and
make up much of the GI tract. Gap junctions allow cytoplasm exchange between
cells and help smooth muscle fibres contract in sequence.
"Meiosis" comes from the Greek "to reduce". Meiosis
is the process of reducing the number of chromosomes by half. Without this
crucial step in the formation of gametes, our cells would burst with DNA.
The goal of meiosis is to make egg and sperm cells with half the number of
chromosomes (23 instead of 46) so the egg and sperm can produce a zygote
with 46 chromosomes instead of 92. Meiosis appears to be mitosis happening
twice without the G1, S1, G2 phases, thereby splitting the chromosomes in
half before they replicate. The reduced number of chromosomes is called the
In human sperm and egg manufacture, meiosis occurs much as mitosis, but
instead of entering interphase after the cell splits, it swings back into
prophase and runs through the process again and ends with two daughter cells,
each holding 23 chromosomes (the haploid state). Ovum production is slightly
different, producing only one ovum, whereas spermatogenesis makes four sperm
cells. The difference occurs in telophase I, where the ovum shoves 23 chromosomes
into a bud and gets rid of it (women, they hate competition!).
Skin and Tissues
I made up a mnemonic for the layers of the epidermis that worked
for me. I started on the outside and worked my way in. This one uses the
first 3 letters method: Cora Lucille's Granny Spins Baseballs are Corneum,
Lucidum, Granulosum, Spinosum, Basele. Of course, you have to know that "Stratum" goes
before each of the words. That part is easy.
Using the 3 first letter method for cranial bones: Ethel, the Parakeet,
is Temporarily Occupied in Front of the Sphinx. Ethmoid, Parietal, Temporal,
Occipital, Frontal, Sphenoid.
Another 3 first letter method for the cranial sutures: Saggy Lambs
Squash the Coroner. Sagittal, Lambdoid, Squamous and Coronal.
Keep up the good work and the great page!
Students reciting College Lunch is Best or College boys Love Breasts know
that 50% of cancers arise in three organs: Colon, Lungs, Breast.
4 Cancer Types
An easy way to relate four types of cancer to their cells of origin:
- Sarcoma means cancer of the muscle, and is found in Connective
and Muscle tissues. (C, M are letters in sarCoMa)
- Carcinoma is cancer of epithelial tissue, and found in
stomach and Intestines
- Lymphoma & Leukemia are cancers of
blood Leukocytes and Lymphocytes
Anna has Large Breasts
I recall the mitotic phases of a cell easily by reciting "I Proposed
Marriage to Anna by Telephone before I Sighted her Cleavage".
That of course indicates the mitotic phases: Interphase, Prophase, Metaphase,
Anaphase, and Telophase, and includes Cytokinesis (sighted) and cell Cleavage.
Although DNA and RNA are both nucleic acids, they do different jobs in the
cell. Just remember that DNA Delivers the blueprint, RNA Reads it. Also,
transfer RNA (tRNA) molecule is shaped like the letter T.
Mitosis & Meiosis
Easy way to tell the difference between the two types of reproduction at
the cell level: mitosis makes Identical Twins, meiosis makes Egg
Memories of Girls' Bodily Parts
If you remember girls by their limbs, hip & the anus, hip & pussy,
and ass, then you have the four memory centres: limbic, hypothalamus,
hippocampus, association areas. BTW, memories are encoded at the neural
synapses, usually by acetylcholine. The three key neurotransmitters of the limbic
system are dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin ...
remembered as Limb Donors.
Proprioception, the ability to discern feedback from exertion, is located
in the Post-Parietal Sensory cortex. (see how the sounds of proprioception
are in post-parietal sensory?)
Brain is a Mystery
The six parts of the brain are a mystery -- murder mystery -- with clues
hidden all over, some backwards, some misspelt. We have murder spelt
backwards (cerebrum) and skeletons in the celler (CEREbeLLum controls skeletal
coordination). There's a detective PONdering M.O. (pons, medulla oblonga),
poisoned mulleb wine (in cerebellum), and someone will die before long (Diencephalon),
probably some dyslexic dim-brain (mid-brain). Furthermore, forensics have
discovered "brain stem" is made up of letters from midBRAIN, pons,
and Medulla oblonga. As well, C+D+E=F because Cerebrum + Diencephalon = Forebrain.
In reality, the 6 parts of the brain are: cerebrum, diencephalon, midbrain,
pons, medulla oblongata, cerebellum. The major groups are forebrain (the
most visible part), the brain stem (three parts piled atop the spinal cord
and within the centre of the brain), and the cerebellum hanging off the back.
Maybe Cleopatra had No Brain?
Brain Cells Defended by ASP means the six valiant defenders of the
cephalon are Blood-brain barrier, Cerebral spinal fluid, Dura mater, Arachnoid
layer, Skull, and Pia mater.
Miscellaneous Brain Facts
- Groups of nerve cell bodies are nuclei if they're in the CNS,
and ganglia if in the peripheral nervous system. I remember the nuclei are
in the CNS because they both have the letter C.
- Grey matter is central to white matter in the spinal cord, because the
white stuff is fat wrapped around and protecting the grey nerves.
- What's the significance of glial cells? They nourish neurons, keep them
from falling down, and provide tunnels for axons to route. In another perspective:
Albert Einstein's brain had 30% more glial cells than average.
- Four types of glial cells are ependymal, astrocytes, oligodendrocytes,
and microglia. The mnemonic phrase is Every Asshole Owes Money.
Horny Office Temps
Six factors triggering smooth muscle contraction are oxygen, temperature,
ions, hormones, stretch, and acid level (pH). The acronym is "SHIP TO" but
the mnemonic phrase is much better: Office Temp's Eye On Whore Stretching
Ass. Notice ion is encoded as eye on in this example.
The most basic part of the functional muscle is the cross bridge site where
muscular contractions occur. The process of myosin heads attaching to actin,
bending, then releasing takes four steps: ready, coupling, bending, letting
go. A different chemical triggers each step thusly: hydrolysis makes Ready; Calcium
ions cause the Coupling; ADP bends the myosin head; ATP lets go. Sounds
like a new dance to me.
Calico Cats' Calm Milk
"Calico Cats' Calm Milk" is the pathway of smooth muscle contraction:
Calcium Cation attaches to Calmodulin, which binds to Myosin Light
Eye and Vision
- The sclera, choroid layer, retina and vitreous humor (SCRV) + eyeballs
+ outer layer add up to: SCREW your eyes out
- The lens, iris, pupil, cornea, aqueous humor, and ciliary body can be summed
up in Len and Iris Acquire Puppies in the Corn Silk ... which is an
old-fashioned way of saying they're screwing like dogs in the cornfield.
- Fovea, the part of the retina most densely packed with cones, is
almost an acronym FOr Very Acute vision
- The cells of the retina -- rods, cones, ganglion, polar bodies -- are illustrated
by Rods protected by a Gang of Lions and Polar Bears
Quick Auditory Senses
- The four outer ear parts -- pinna, lobe, helix, meatus -- are easily expressed
by a phrase of a lover turning on his girl He licks her helix like a lover
pining for meaning
- Middle ear parts -- tympanic membrane, ossicles, eustachian tube, oval
and round windows -- are best compiled as Tim Observed Eunice's Tube from
- Inner ear pieces -- cochlea, sacculus, utriculus, semi-circular canals,
8th cranial nerve -- are summed up in the phrase 8th Nervember, I dropped
my cock, my sack, and uterus into the semi-circular canal
- Cochlea sections -- vestibular, tympanic & cochlear canals, basilar
membrane, organ of Corti -- might be remembered by thinking of Organ of
Corti plays Bass Notes on CTV channel if you admit that channel is
another word for canal ... CTV (Canadian Television) are the cochlea,
tympanic and vestibular canals, bass notes is basilar membrane, and the organ
is the organ of Corti of course.
- 8 major hormones from the pituitary gland spell GOAT-FLAP: gonadotropic,
oxytocin, anti-diuretic, thyroid stimulating, follicle stimulating, leuteinizing,
- The pituitary gland has two lobes: anterior and posterior. 6 of the preceding
hormones come from the anterior lobe; oxytocin and anti-diuretic are secreted
from the posterior one.
- The adrenal CORTex produces CORTisol, as well as androgens
- The adrenal Medulla secretes stress hormones Epinephrine and Norepinephrine
and, as all women know, men are a source of stress, so it is no surprise
that medulla-epinephrine-norepinephrine make the acronym MEN.
- Adrenal Cortex hormones start with either of letters A, C -- just
like adrenal cortex. They are: androgen, aldosterone, cortisol.
- Ovaries are RIPE with hormones: relaxin, inhibin, progesterone,
estrogen make the acronym RIPE.
- Testes make TIM strong: "t.i.m." is acronym for the 3
hormones secreted by testes: testosterone, inhibin, and Mullerian-inhibiting
- Pancreas makes PIGS: Pancreatic polypeptide, Insulin, Glucagon,
and Somatostatin hormones.
- Some secret gasses choke gipsy represent the 5 hormones of the (where
do you think gas comes from?) gastrointestinal tract: somatostatin, secretin,
gastrin, cholecystokinin, glucose-dependent insulinotropic peptide (GIP).
- Melatonin makes penis pineal? Melatonin secreted from pineal gland
represses sex drive.
- A Hypocritical Gun-Running Hero goes to Pit to release Long Hard Fish,
but is turned off the the smell of Estrogen. That was the story of
the hypothalamus secreting GnRH (Gun-running hero) to stimulate the Pituitary
gland into releasing LH and FSH. This process is regulated by the levels
- Products of the adrenal cortex, from outer to inner layer: "Salt,
sugar, sex; the deeper you go, the sweeter it gets." (Salt=aldosterone,
sugar=glucocorticoids, sex=sex hormones)
- To remember how osmosis works, remember that "Particles suck." Thus,
tonicity (hypertonic, hypotonic) refers to concentration of particles, and
water always goes toward the area of more particles. (thanks to Hallie
Ray, Science Department, Rappahannock Community College Warsaw, VA)
I came up with a rhyming verse that helps me remember how our bodies get
warm.When we feel cold, the hypothalamus reacts by sending TRH to the pituitary
gland, which sends TSH to the thyroid, which secretes T3Tr to reach the mitochondria,
wherein the glycolytic pathway consumes more energy and consequently the
Electron Transport System consumes more oxygen ... and we get warmer. A more
easy way to remember:
O Cold Hippo in the Pit
Thy Sugar Eats
Makes Carbon and Heats
Keywords: Hippo (hypothalamus), Pit (pituitary), Thy (thyroid), Sugar
(glycolytic pathway), Eats (ETS), Carbon (carbon dioxide).