A Woman's Best Defense

A maverick scientist contends that menstruation protects against infection

When I first learned about menstruation at age seven," says Margie Profet, "I couldn't believe it! Then when we watched these films when I was 10 or 11 -- remember those cartoons that showed the ovaries and the Fallopian tubes? -- I thought, This is really bizarre. And when they said, 'Well, the body gets rid of the uterine lining because it has nothing to do,' I thought that didn't make sense. It bugged me."

A quarter-century later, Profet, 35, thinks she has finally made sense of it all, and in a startling turnaround, it is her views that are bugging...

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