Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Extreme Eponyms

Here's your cake, Tissue Factor.  I hope you enjoy it.
There is only one thing in this whole world that is worse than eponyms (seriously only one thing - and it's not genocide or natural disasters, that stuff is mere child's play).  The worst thing in the world is things with more than one name.  You should never have to use "aka" more than once in reference to a single substance.  As if the coagulation cascade (all the many many steps that lead to the formation of a blood clot) isn't complicated enough, all the involved factors have at least two names.  The one that really takes the cake, though, is tissue factor aka thromboplastin aka factor III.  Why oh why must we fill the precious real estate in our brains with so many teeny tiny details?  [You also know it's bad when before a professor introduces a new molecule, such as Gp2b-3a, he prefaces it by saying, "Don't shoot the messenger, I didn't do the naming."]

More curious about where "take the cake" comes from than about the coagulation cascade?  Me too.  Read all about it's origins here.  One clue:

It's a cakewalk...  it's a cakewalk.

Listen to your friend, Billy Zane. He's a cool dude.

1 comment:

  1. Haha, I know what you mean about the "don't shoot the messenger" bit prof's put out there.

    My Neurophys Professor is always going on and on about how ridiculous some names (parts of the brain) are...

    fun stuff