The Third Degree

Test your reading of this issue of MichiganScience

Students in grades six through 12 can compete for a $100 gift certificate from Edmund Science Kit. The winner will be determined by a random drawing from entries with all the correct answers. Please send entries to


1. How long does it take for a blastocyst to form following fertilization of an egg?

A. 2-4 days.
B. 5-10 days.
C. 6 weeks.
D. 3 months.

2. How many cells does a typical blastocyst contain?

A. 100-150.
B. 10.
C. 50-100.
D. 25-50.

3. How many embryos have been frozen and stored by fertility clinics since the 1970s?

A. 1 million.
B. 750,000.
C. 400,000.
D. 50,000.

4. How much funding for stem cell research has the federal government provided each year, on average, since 2003?

A. $600 million.
B. None. Federal funding for stem cell research is prohibited by law.
C. $5 million.
D. $1 billion.

5. In what year was the first public opinion poll conducted?

A. 1910.
B. 1776.
C. 1960.
D. 1824.

6. Which presidential candidate did the Gallup organization predict would win the 1948 election?

A. Theodore Roosevelt.
B. Thomas Dewey.
C. Franklin Roosevelt.
D. Alfred Landon.

7. How many wings are in a dendrite snowflake?

A. 5.
B. 8.
C. 6.
D. 10.

8. What percentage of the brain does a typical person use?

A. 25 percent.
B. 10 percent.
C. 100 percent.
D. 50 percent.

9. How much does hair grow after death?

A. One-quarter inch.
B. One centimeter.
C. Not at all.
D. One-half inch.

10. How much is awarded to the winner of the MichiganScience essay contest?

A. $50.
B. $1,000.
C. $100.
D. $500.

MichiganScience salutes the six Michigan students who have been named as semifinalists in the 67th Intel Science Talent Search, often regarded as the "junior Nobel Prize." A total of 1,602 students from 45 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands entered this year’s contest to compete for $1.25 million in scholarships. Each of the 300 semifinalists receives $1,000, with an additional $1,000 for their school. The semifinalists from Michigan are:

Hari Senthil Arul, Age 17
Detroit Country Day School
Project: Synthesis and Replenishment of Silver Nanoparticle-enabled Membranes for Biofouling Mitigation

Pavel Vladimirovich Chvykov, Age 17
Washtenaw Technical Middle College
Project: Development of a Novel Ultra-Fast Laser Pulse Contrast Improving System

Philip Zhangfan Hu, Age 17
Troy High School
Project: Connectivity of Unidirectional Hyper-stars

Ana Marie Lyons, Age 17
Morley Stanwood High School
Project: The Effects of Imidacloprid Soil-Drenching on Terrestrial Tardigrada of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee: Bio-Monitoring Insecticide Persistence

Shravani Mikkilineni, Age 17
Detroit Country Day School
Project: Continued Fractions and Orbits of a Linear Fractional Transformation

Harrison Phu Nguyen, Age 16
Detroit Catholic Central High School
Project: Combating Muscle Atrophy: A Novel Study of Myofibril Turnover in Sternopygus macrurus