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A DNA computer, the koala genome, and the invisibility of LGBTQ+ researchers

This week, investigating the koala genome, the issues facing LGBTQ+ researchers, and a DNA-based neural network.

Astronomy Cast: On Hiatus until September 2018

Astronomy Cast will be on hiatus until September, 2018.  When we return, we'll be gearing up for the 500th Episode!  

498: Dwarf Galaxy Update

498: Dwarf Galaxy Update Astronomy Cast 498: Dwarf Galaxy Update by Fraser Cain & Dr. Pamela Gay

Ep. 498: Dwarf Galaxy Update

The Milky Way has gobbled up dozens of dwarf galaxies and added them to its structure. Today we're going to look at the ongoing hunt for the wreckage of past mergers. And what we've discovered about dwarf galaxies in general.

Astronomy Cast: On Hiatus until September 2018

Astronomy Cast will be on hiatus for July and August. Don't worry, we'll be back in September, and will be gearing up for our 500th episode!

Backchat June 2018: Lab health, email briefings, and CRISPR

In this month’s roundtable, we discuss lab health, email briefings, and how science stories can affect the stock market.

Increasing transparency in animal research to sway public opinion, and a reaching a plateau in human mortality

Public opinion on the morality of animal research is on the downswing in the United States. But some researchers think letting the public know more about how animals are used in experiments might turn things around. Online News Editor David Grimm joins Sarah Crespi to talk about these efforts. Sarah also talks Ken Wachter of the University of California, Berkeley about his group’s careful analysis of data from all living Italians born 105 or more years before the study. It turns out the risk of dying does not continue to accelerate with age, but actually plateaus around the age of 105. What does this mean for attempts to increase human lifespan? In this month’s book segment, Jen Golbeck talks with Simon Winchester about his book The Perfectionists: How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World. Read more book reviews at our books blog, Books et al. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Listen to previous podcasts. [Image: Chris Jones/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

27 June 2018: Air pollution, sick plants, and stress

This week, the relationship between air pollution and infant death in Africa, stressed brains, and diagnosing sick plants from afar.

497: Update on Globular Clusters

497: Update on Globular Clusters Astronomy Cast 497: Update on Globular Clusters by Fraser Cain & Dr. Pamela Gay

Ep. 497: Update on Globular Clusters

Is it globular clusters or is it globeular clusters? It doesn't matter, they're awesome and we're here to update you on them.

New evidence in Cuba’s ‘sonic attacks,’ and finding an extinct gibbon—in a royal Chinese tomb

Since the 2016 reports of a mysterious assault on U.S. embassy staff in Cuba, researchers have struggled to find evidence of injury or weapon. Now, new research has discovered inner-ear damage in some of the personnel complaining of symptoms. Former International News Editor Rich Stone talks to host Sarah Crespi about the case, including new reports of a similar incident in China, and what kind of weapon—if any—might have been involved. Sarah also talks with Staff Writer Gretchen Vogel about the bones of an extinct gibbon found in a 2200- to 2300-year-old tomb in China. Although gibbons were often featured in historical poetry and paintings, these bones confirm their presence and the fact that they were distinct from today’s species.   Read the research. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Listen to previous podcasts. [Image: Pedro Szekely; Music: Jeffrey Cook] 

21 June 2018: Pancreatic cancer, silica cages, and AI bias

This week, pancreatic cancer-related weight loss, tiny silica cages, and bias in Artificial Intelligence algorithms.

496: Update on Stellar Populations (I, II, & III)

496: Update on Stellar Populations (I, II, & III) Astronomy Cast 496: Update on Stellar Populations (I, II, & III) by Fraser Cain & Dr. Pamela Gay

Ep. 496: Update on Stellar Populations I, II, and III

Another update show, this time on the various generations of stars, let's get into it.

The places where HIV shows no sign of ending, and the parts of the human brain that are bigger—in bigger brains

Nigeria, Russia, and Florida seem like an odd set, but they all have one thing in common: growing caseloads of HIV. Science Staff Writer Jon Cohen joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about this week’s big read on how the fight against HIV/AIDS is evolving in these diverse locations. Sarah also talks with Armin Raznahan of the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, Maryland, about his group’s work measuring which parts of the human brain are bigger in bigger brains. Adult human brains can vary as much as two times in size—and until now this expansion was thought to be evenly distributed. However, the team found that highly integrative regions are overrepresented in bigger brains, whereas regions related to processing incoming sensory information such as sight and sound tend to be underrepresented.  This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Listen to previous podcasts. [Image: Misha Friedman; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

14 June 2018: Baobab tree death, zebrafish stem cells, and ice in Antarctica

This week, the mysterious death of African baobab trees, Antarctica’s past, present, and future, and how zebrafish protect their stem cells.

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