San Diego, CA; April 13, 2012 — Sometimes it’s stinky; sometimes it’s crusty; and sometimes it’s slimy. Explore why your body produces mushy, oozy, crusty, scaly and stinky gunk at “GROSSOLOGY: The (Impolite) Science of the Human Body” during its appearance at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center. Based on the best-selling book Grossology, this exhibition uses sophisticated animatronics and imaginative exhibits to tell you the good, the bad and the downright ugly about runny noses, body odor and much more. “GROSSOLOGY,” which was our most popular exhibit ever in its 2007 visit, returns to the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center on Saturday, May 26, and runs through January 1, 2013!

At the Gallery Entrance, you meet “Her Grossness”, an animated character that towers over the original book, introducing you to “GROSSOLOGY.” Then animatronic “Nigel Nose-It-All” allows visitors to activate him by pressing buttons to learn about how their nose functions including allergies, sinuses, snot trivia, runny noses and more. Watch out for the special snot ball dripping out of his faucet nose!

The “Skin Climbing Wall” allows you to scale a large-scale replica of human skin featuring pimples, warts, wounds, hair, moles and other blemishes. “Burp Man” drinks from a huge pop can pumped by visitors, mimicking the build-up of acid indigestion - his stomach pressure increases until he releases a giant belch. A second interactive exhibit shows how the sphincter works.

Visitors learn their body parts at “Patients Please!,” styled a la the old famous game “Operation”. Visitors have fun attempting to remove body parts without touching the sides of the table’s holes. In “Look Inside,” watch how food is digested passing through the gastrointestinal system. Explore how the kidneys remove waste from the blood in a virtual reality experience in “Urine: The Game.” The Rube Goldbergesque “Vomit Center” traces the structure of the digestive system, exploring the many causes of vomiting.

“Y U Stink” challenges visitors to correctly match body odors with the area they come from: armpits, lower intestines, mouth & feet - lighting up the bacteria model if answered correctly. And every little boy’s favorite subject “Toot Toot” provides rubber tubing and air to learn about the physics of tooting – a very noisy exhibit!

Visitors can also check out pages styled after the actual book with human models and endoscopy videos of the human digestive gastrointestinal system, to discover other mysterious ways the body’s biology does what it needs to do to keep you healthy. Finish your day with “Let’s Play GROSSOLOGY!” a multiple choice trivia game testing how much you know about the gross things your body does and what you may have learned from visiting “GROSSOLOGY.”

“GROSSOLOGY” is a collaboration between Science World, Advanced Exhibits, and Grossology author Sylvia Branzei. As a teacher, writer, curriculum designer and microbiologist Branzei explains the concept of “GROSSOLOGY” as a learning tool. “This is science in disguise,” she says. “If we teach students in their own words, they’ll understand better and actually learn something.” See what words you can learn about!

For more information call (619) 238-1233 or visit the “GROSSOLOGY” tour Web site at or The Reuben H. Fleet Science Center is located at 1875 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101. Gallery admission, which includes access to all seven exhibit galleries: Adults $11.75; Children $9.75; Seniors $9.75. The Fleet’s normal hours are Monday – Thursday 10AM – 5PM, Friday & Saturday: 10AM – 8PM, and Sunday 10AM – 6PM.

“GROSSOLOGY” is made possible, in part, by a generous grant from Takeda California, a subsidiary of Takeda Pharmaceutical Limited.

Grossology Trivia

The Grossology exhibition, based on a popular series of books by science teacher Sylvia Branzei, is an educational experience grounded in the theory that the best way to get kids interested in science is to present it in terms they find most appealing. Let’s face it, topics such as snot, vomit, gas and scabs are completely fascinating for your average six to 14 year old. By physically stepping into the Grossology book, these subjects have become an interactive, larger-than-life biology lesson that harnesses kid’s natural curiosity about themselves and teaches them about how the human organism functions. Following are some fun facts associated with many of the entertaining and educational displays and games at Grossology: The (Impolite) Science of the Human Body Exhibition.

Hydrochloric acid in your stomach is so strong that it can eat up stainless steel razor blades. Seventy out of 100 people admit to picking their nose. Three out of those seventy admit to eating their boogers. Thomas Crapper was an Englishman who invented the shut-off for clean water entering the toilet tank in the 1800’s. The word “crap” comes from Crapper. Your large intestine is about five feet long. In a study of people who do not speak English, researchers read a list of words and asked the people to choose which words they thought sounded pretty. Diarrhea was one word that most people chose. Fresh urine is cleaner than spit or the skin on your face because healthy pee is not home to bacteria. The lineup at men’s and women’s washrooms vary because of the length of time it takes us to pee: men average 45 seconds; women spend about 79 seconds. Every day you make four to eight cups of urine. The amount depends on how hot it is outside, what you eat and how much you drink. You make about one quart of saliva each day. Every day about one liter of saliva enters your mouth. If you were a hay-eating cow, it would be about 190 liters every day. You swallow about one quart of snot every day. Ear wax naturally dries up and forms little balls that drop out when we yawn, chew or swallow. Ear wax coats the inside of the ear canal to trap any nasty stuff like dirt, dust and bugs that get into your ear. People who live in big cities make more ear wax. The skin is the largest organ of the body. You shed skin every day to produce a whole new layer of skin every 28 days. About ten billion tiny scales of skin rub off your body every day. In a lifetime, you could fill eight five-pound flour bags with dead skin. Your mouth is the most unsanitary part of your whole body. More than 100,000,000 micro-creatures live there at any one time. Feet sweat because there are about 250,000 pores on their soles that squirt a quarter cup of liquid each day. At birth you have 350 bones in your body. You now have 206 bones. What happened to the rest? They fused to other bones to make larger bones. Normal breathing sucks air into the nose at 4 mph (6 kph). A good sensory sniff is 20 mph (32 kph). A sneeze will shoot out of the nose at 100 mph (160 kph). Vomiting removes liquid from your body, so it’s important that you replace the lost liquid by sipping on water, tea, juice or bouillon. Many cultures still use urine to tan leather. Your bladder can hold about two cups of urine comfortably. Your nostrils take turns inhaling. You breathe through one nostril for three to four hours and then switch to the other one. It is better to breathe through your nose than your mouth. Only air going through the nose is cleaned, warmed and moistened before it reaches your lungs. Your nose can sense smell best when you are 10 years old. That’s probably why kids notice gross smells faster than adults. Carrying your skin around can be a lot of work. The average adult’s skin weighs about seven pounds (about 3.2 kilograms).

*Trivia facts from Grossology, by Sylvia Branzei, published by Planet Dexter.