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Science Magazine Podcast

Updated 2 months ago

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Weekly podcasts from Science Magazine, the world's leading journal of original scientific research, global news, and commentary.

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Weekly podcasts from Science Magazine, the world's leading journal of original scientific research, global news, and commentary.

iTunes Ratings

507 Ratings
Average Ratings
330
78
40
37
22

In depth and fascinating science news

By sarahgoldy - May 10 2020
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This is a great podcast that goes in depth into science and explains stories in detail. Topics include covid19 and also lots of other interesting areas from ecology to anorexia, ancient societies and neurology.

The Best

By gilledfreak - Mar 08 2018
Read more
Sarah is amazing. Love this podcast

iTunes Ratings

507 Ratings
Average Ratings
330
78
40
37
22

In depth and fascinating science news

By sarahgoldy - May 10 2020
Read more
This is a great podcast that goes in depth into science and explains stories in detail. Topics include covid19 and also lots of other interesting areas from ecology to anorexia, ancient societies and neurology.

The Best

By gilledfreak - Mar 08 2018
Read more
Sarah is amazing. Love this podcast
Cover image of Science Magazine Podcast

Science Magazine Podcast

Latest release on Aug 13, 2020

All 345 episodes from oldest to newest

A call for quick coronavirus testing, and building bonds with sports

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Staff Writer Robert Service talks with host Sarah Crespi about a different approach to COVID-19 testing that might be useful in response to the high numbers of cases in the United States. To break chains of transmission and community spread, the new strategy would replace highly accurate but slow polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests with cheaper, faster tests that are less accurate but can be administered frequently. Such tests cost between $1 and $3 compared with more than $100 for diagnostic PCR tests and give results in less than 30 minutes instead of days.

Read all of our coronavirus coverage here.

Also this week, Salma Mousa, a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University, joins Sarah to talk about an experiment that added Muslim players to teams in a Christian soccer league in northern Iraq. The goal of the study was to see whether this type of social contact would change how the Christians—a threatened minority in the region—behaved toward Muslims, on and off the field.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

[Image: Kate Brady/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Aug 13 2020

27mins

Play

Why COVID-19 poses a special risk during pregnancy, and how hair can split steel

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Staff Writer Meredith Wadman joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss the risk of the novel coronavirus infection to pregnant women. Early data suggest expectant women are more likely to get severe forms of the infection and require hospitalization. Meredith describes how the biology of pregnancy—such as changes to the maternal immune system and added stress on the heart and lungs—might explain the harsher effects of the virus.

Also this week, Sarah talks with Gianluca Roscioli about his experiments with commercial razor blades and real human hair. By using a scanning electron microscope, he was able to show how something relatively soft like hair is able to damage something 50 times harder like stainless steel.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

Aug 06 2020

27mins

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Fighting COVID-19 vaccine fears, tracking the pandemic’s origin, and a new technique for peering under paint

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Science Editor-in-Chief Holden Thorp joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss his editorial on preventing vaccine hesitancy during the coronavirus pandemic. Even before the current crisis, fear of vaccines had become a global problem, with the World Health Organization naming it as one of the top 10 worldwide health threats in 2019. Now, it seems increasingly possible that many people will refuse to get vaccinated. What can public health officials and researchers do to get ahead of this issue?

Also this week, Sarah talks with Science Senior Correspondent Jon Cohen about his story on Chinese scientist Shi Zhengli, the bat researcher at the center of the COVID-19 origins controversy—and why she thinks President Donald Trump owes her an apology.

Read all of our coronavirus news coverage. 

Finally, Geert Van der Snickt, a professor in the conservation-restoration department at the University of Antwerp, talks with Sarah about his Science Advances paper on a new process for peering into the past of paintings. His team used a combination of techniques to look beneath an overpainting on the Ghent Altarpiece by Hubert and Jan Van Eyck—a pivotal piece that showed the potential of oil paints and even included an early example of painting from an aerial view.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

Jul 30 2020

35mins

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How Hiroshima survivors helped form radiation safety rules, and a path to stop plastic pollution

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Contributing Correspondent Dennis Normile talks about a long-term study involving the survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. Seventy-five years after the United States dropped nuclear bombs on the two cities in Japan, survivors are still helping scientists learn about the effects of radiation exposure.

Also this week, Sarah talks with Winnie Lau, senior manager for preventing ocean plastics at Pew Charitable Trusts about her group’s paper about what it would take to seriously fight the flow of plastics into the environment.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

Jul 23 2020

25mins

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Reopening schools during the COVID-19 pandemic, and taking the heat out of crude oil separation

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Contributing Correspondent Gretchen Vogel talks about what can be learned from schools around the world that have reopened during the coronavirus pandemic. Unfortunately, few systematic studies have been done, but observations of outbreaks in schools in places such as France or Israel do offer a few lessons for countries looking to send children back to school soon. The United Kingdom and Germany have started studies of how the virus spreads in children and at school, but results are months away. In the meantime, Gretchen’s reporting suggests small class sizes, masks, and social distancing among adults at schools are particularly important measures.

Read all our coronavirus news coverage.

Also this week, Sarah talks with Kirstie Thompson, a Ph.D. student in the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, about increasing the efficiency of petroleum processing. If all—or even some—petroleum processing goes heat free, it would mean big energy savings. Around the world, about 1% of all energy use goes to heating up petroleum in order to get useful things such as gas for cars or polymers for plastics. These days, this separation is done through distillation, heating, and separating by boiling point. Kirstie describes a heat-free way of getting this separation—by using a special membrane instead.

Read a related Insight.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

[Image: Kurt Bauschardt/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Jul 16 2020

25mins

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A fast moving megatrial for coronavirus treatments, and transferring the benefits of exercise by transferring blood

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Contributing correspondent Kai Kupferschmidt talks with host Sarah Crespi about the success of a fast moving megatrial for coronavirus treatments. The United Kingdom’s Recovery (Randomized Evaluation of COVID-19 Therapy) trial has enrolled more than 12,000 hospitalized coronavirus patients since early March and has released important recommendations that were quickly taken up by doctors and scientists around the world. Kupferschmidt discusses why such a large study is necessary and why other large drug trials like the World Health Organization’s Solidarity trial are lagging behind.

Read Science’s coronavirus coverage.

Also this week, producer Meagan Cantwell talks with Saul Villeda, a professor in the Department of Anatomy at the University of California, San Francisco, about transferring the beneficial effects of exercise on the brain from an active mouse to a sedentary mouse by transferring their blood.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF)

Jul 09 2020

24mins

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An oasis of biodiversity a Mexican desert, and making sound from heat

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First up this week, News Intern Rodrigo Pérez-Ortega talks with host Meagan Cantwell about an oasis of biodiversity in the striking blue pools of Cuatro Ciénegas, a basin in northern Mexico. Researchers have published dozens of papers exploring the unique microorganisms that thrive in this area, while at the same time fighting large agricultural industries draining the precious water from the pools.

David Tatnell, a postgraduate researcher at the University of Exeter, talks with host Sarah Crespi about using heat to make sound, a phenomenon known as thermoacoustics. Just like the sound of fire or thunder, sudden changes in temperature can create sound waves. In his team’s paper in Science Advances, Tatnell and colleagues describe a thermoacoustic speaker that uses thin, heated films to make sound. This approach cuts out the crosstalk seen in mechanical speakers and allows for extreme miniaturization of sound production. In the ultrasound range, arrays of thermoacoustic speakers could improve acoustic levitation and ultrasound imaging. In the hearing range, the speakers could be made extremely small, flexible, and even transparent.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF)

[Image: David Jaramillo; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Jul 02 2020

20mins

Play

Stopping the spread of COVID-19, and arctic adaptations in sled dogs

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Kimberly Prather, an atmospheric chemist at the University of California, San Diego, who studies how ocean waves disperse virus-laden aerosols, joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about how she became an outspoken advocate for using masks to prevent coronavirus transmission. A related insight she wrote for Science has been downloaded more than 1 million times.

Read Science’s coronavirus coverage.

Mikkel Sinding, a postdoctoral fellow at Trinity College Dublin, talks sled dog genes with Sarah. After comparing the genomes of modern dogs, Greenland sled dogs, and an ancient dog jaw bone found on a remote Siberian island where dogs may have pulled sleds some 9500 years ago, they found that modern Greenland dogs—which are still used to pull sleds today—have much in common with this ancient Siberian ancestor. Those similarities include genes related to eating high-fat diets and cold-sensing genes previously identified in woolly mammoths.

In this month’s book segment, Kiki Sanford talks with Rutger Bregman about his book, Humankind: A Hopeful History, which outlines a shift in the thinking of many social scientists to a view of humans as more peaceful than warlike.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

Jun 25 2020

40mins

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Coronavirus spreads financial turmoil to universities, and a drone that fights mosquito-borne illnesses

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Senior Correspondent Jeffrey Mervis joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about how universities are dealing with the financial crunch brought on by the coronavirus. Jeff discusses how big research universities are balancing their budgets as federal grants continue to flow, but endowments are down and so is the promise of state funding.

Read all our coronavirus coverage.

Mosquito-borne infections like Zika, dengue, malaria, and chikungunya cause millions of deaths each year. Nicole Culbert and colleges write this week in Science Robotics about a new way to deal with deadly mosquitoes—using drones. The drones are designed to drop hundreds of thousands of sterile male mosquitoes in areas with high risk of mosquito-borne illness. The idea is that sterile male mosquitoes will mate with females and the females then lay infertile eggs, which causes the population to decline. They found this drone-based approach is cheaper and more efficient than other methods of releasing sterile mosquitoes and does not have the problems associated with pesticide-based eradication efforts such as resistance and off-target effects.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

Jun 18 2020

24mins

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The facts on COVID-19 contact tracing apps, and benefits of returning sea otters to the wild

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Staff Writer Kelly Servick joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about the ins and outs of coronavirus contact tracing apps—what they do, how they work, and how to calculate whether they are crushing the curve.

Read all our coronavirus coverage.

Edward Gregr, a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Resources, Environment, and Sustainability at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, talks with Sarah about the controversial reintroduction of sea otters to the Northern Pacific Ocean—their home for centuries, before the fur trade nearly wiped out the apex predator in the late 1800s. Gregr brings a unique cost-benefit perspective to his analysis, and finds many trade-offs with economic implications for fisheries For example, sea otters eat shellfish like urchins and crabs, depressing the shellfishing industry; but their diet encourages the growth of kelp forests, which in turn provide a habitat for economically important finfish, like salmon and rockfish. Read a related commentary article.

This week’s episode was produced with help from Podigy.

Listen to previous podcasts.

About the Science Podcast

Download a transcript (PDF).

Jun 11 2020

25mins

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