The similarity between the physiology of rabbits and humans makes the rabbit a good model for research into human disease. The most prevalent types of rabbits are cottontails and European rabbits. Domestic rabbits are tame assortments of European rabbits. The Californian, Florida White, and New Zealand White are the most common breeds used in research.
Until 1912 rabbits were classified as rodents. Scientists discovered that the two types of animals differed in several distinct anatomical ways. Rabbits, for instance, have a second pair of upper incisors, known as "peg teeth," that are found behind the two main visible incisors in the upper jaw. Rabbits have ...view middle of the document...
Drug metabolism: Rabbits have been used to study the effects of marijuana on the central nervous system.
Presently a woman who wants to find out if she's pregnant need only make a quick trip to the local drug, grocery, or convenience store; purchase an over-the-counter home pregnancy test kit; perform a simple test; and she'll know the results within a matter of minutes.
Not so long ago, however, it was not nearly as quick or easy: Awomawho thought she might be with child had to schedule an appointment with her doctor, make a trip to his office, give a urine sample, go home, then spend an anxious couple of days waiting for the office to telephone with the test results.
In the movies and television, a positive result was usually revealed by having a character burst into a scene and announce dramatically, "The rabbit died ”. But why a rabbit? And why did it die if the woman was pregnant?
The origins of the "rabbit test" lie with the discovery in the 1920s that a woman starts producing a hormone known as human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) shortly after a fertilized egg implants itself in the uterine wall. It was later discovered that the presence of hCG causes the placenta to produce progesterone after implantation. Production of...