Today's Medical Fact
Eating breakfast helps to burn calories throughout the day.
Researchers at the University of Bath, one of the top universities in England, have found a connection between the length of children's index and ring fingers and SAT test scores.
Their findings claim that you can predict whether kids will have a higher verbal score or a higher math score by comparing the length of the ring fingers to the length of the index fingers. Kids with longer ring fingers than index fingers tend to score higher on the math portion of the college entrance exam, while kids with longer index fingers than ring fingers are more likely to score higher on the reading, writing, and verbal portion of the exam.
The connection is attributed to the amount of estrogen and testosterone that a baby is exposed to while in the womb. Scientists have known that differing levels of these hormones affect finger length, which reflects the areas of the brain that are more highly developed than others. Exposure to testosterone in the womb promotes areas of brain development associated with math and spatial skills; it also lengthens the ring finger. Exposure to estrogen increases development in areas of the brain associated with verbal ability and tends to make the index finger longer than the ring finger.
The researcher who led the study, Mark Brosnan, explains that the finger length ratio can provide us with all kinds of interesting insights into our natural cognitive abilities. In addition to predicting SAT test scores, research will continue to determine the connection between other behavioral and cognitive issues, such as temperament and career choices.
Two rare genetic disorders leave those affected with no fingerprints. Scientists now believe they have discovered the cause behind the inherited condition.
Researchers at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa and Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia report that defects in the protein keratin 14 could be responsible for Naegeli syndrome and dermatopathia pigmentosa reticularis (DPR).
Those afflicted often experience employment problems. Military, law enforcement, airlines, and other security sensitive sectors require fingerprints for standard background checks as a condition of employment.