You may have noticed some news around these weird sounding devices that measure “arousal”. They don’t. But they do measure changes in penile shape, and as such, can give users a rough estimate – in a non-invasive way – of how much blood is flowing into the penis during erection. »
One of the biggest challenges for scientists studying the anatomy and physiology of genitalia is the fact that much of the real functional action happens deep inside females. It’s hard to see what’s going on in there. That’s why I love studies that rise to the challenge of giving us a peek inside. »
Crab lice (Pthirus pubis) aren’t crabs at all—they’re parasitic insects that feed exclusively on human blood, and their bites can cause intense itching in their hosts. Often, this itching happens in the pubic area, which is why they’re also known as “pubic lice”—which, it turns out, is actually a misnomer. »
Nearly 100 years ago, there was no drug to help with erectile dysfunction, but Bernard Scheinkman came up with an alternative. It’s not clear whether this nightmarish penile splint was ever manufactured — but you have to love the baroque logic of combining a cock ring, an open condom, and a shelf. »
Viagra. Levitra. Cialis. Stendra. For millions of men with erectile dysfunction, these drugs are the action heroes of the bedroom, breaking down the barriers that keep them from a normal sex life. Here’s how they work. »
Every spring, male red-sided garter snakes enter the mother of all meat-markets. While mature males can breed every year, females are only fertile once every three years, which puts them in very short supply. The result? Snake orgy, obviously. But for male snakes, this sexual free-for-all comes at a surprisingly high… »
Yes, you read that right. A unicorn. Not one that’s alive, mind. A stuffed unicorn! But still: a unicorn. NSFW warning.
That dopey face your cat makes—its mouth half-open, its lips curled awkwardly away from its teeth—has a name. It’s called the flehmen response, and yes, it looks ridiculous. But for many mammals, it’s a critical part of their sex life. »
The Y chromosome, a chunk of genetic code that is unique to male mammals, isn’t just physically smaller than the X. It also contains far fewer genes. The X has more than 1000 genes, while the Y has fewer than 200 —and most of them don’t even work. Why do men have this odd, stunted chromosome in their genomes? »
To a female sand goby fish, this little guy could be everything she’s looking for. He has great dancing moves, good rhythm, and a fantastic burrow that looks like a fine place to leave some eggs. But before she commits to spawning, she’ll need to give his bachelor pad a sniff. »
Sex is awesome, but getting a urinary tract infection (UTI) from sex is not. And thanks to the really short passage between their bladders and the bacteria-rich outside world, one in five women will have a UTI sometime during their lives.
When it’s time for sex, many plants literally tap into animal appetites, attracting them with the promise of sugar and smearing them with pollen while they eat. But if you’re going to rely on a third party for sex, you need some really good advertising. One recent study has identified a plant that makes a beacon out… »
American attitudes about sex continue to change, from one generation to the next. A new study from San Diego State University using data from the General Social Survey, published today in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, shows that Millennials are more likely to think premarital sex is OK than their Boomer or Gen-X… »
Talking about sex doesn’t have to be X-rated – and in some cases, it shouldn’t be. That’s why I love this video from Wired’s Data Attack team, which illustrates facts and statistics about women’s orgasms using classic elementary school experiments. You’ll never look at the egg-in-a-bottle experiment the same way again.
Welcome to Throb, a new site exploring the intersection of science and sex. Here you’ll find news and explainers on sex and romance, touching on neuroscience, chemistry, physiology, ecology, anthropology and culture, physics, and medicine. (You’ll also find gear and book reviews!) »