Department of Energy Argonne National Laboratory Office of Science NEWTON's Homepage NEWTON's Homepage
NEWTON, Ask A Scientist!
NEWTON Home Page NEWTON Teachers Visit Our Archives Ask A Question How To Ask A Question Question of the Week Our Expert Scientists Volunteer at NEWTON! Frequently Asked Questions Referencing NEWTON About NEWTON About Ask A Scientist Education At Argonne Why do nails grow?
Name: Burbank School
Status: N/A 
Age: N/A
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: N/A 


Question:
Why do nails grow?



Replies:
Just a wild guess... I believe in our earlier days, we probably used our fingernails for things like tearing meat off of bones (eating) or perhaps even in hunting or killing prey. With the development of society and farming, the hunt and gather activity was much reduced. I suspect earlier in the design of nails, it was probably thought that using the nails heavily would cause them to wear down; nail growth would replace those nails which had been overused. Now the growth of nails still does replace broken nails etc, but the function is I suspect a bit less of a maintenance issue.

Ric
Thanks for using NEWTON!



Click here to return to the Biology Archives

NEWTON is an electronic community for Science, Math, and Computer Science K-12 Educators, sponsored and operated by Argonne National Laboratory's Educational Programs, Andrew Skipor, Ph.D., Head of Educational Programs.

For assistance with NEWTON contact a System Operator (help@newton.dep.anl.gov), or at Argonne's Educational Programs

NEWTON AND ASK A SCIENTIST
Educational Programs
Building 360
9700 S. Cass Ave.
Argonne, Illinois
60439-4845, USA
Update: June 2012
Weclome To Newton

Argonne National Laboratory