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Episodes List

Coffee and Cigarettes #274

July 18, 2014

This week we're learning about some of the legal chemicals that regulate the moods of millions of people every day. Journalist Murray Carpenter joins us to talk about his book "Caffeinated - How Our Daily Habit Helps, Hurts and Hooks Us." And science blogger Dr. David Gorski explains the state of research on the effects of e-cigarettes. Read More
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The V-Word #273

July 11, 2014

This week, we're looking at the social and biological science of female sex organs. We'll talk to Dr. Anthony Atala, director of the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Institute for Regenerative Medicine, about the creation and use of lab-grown vaginas. Biology professor Marie Herberstein exposes the bias against female genitalia in scientific studies. And science writer Emily Anthes tells us about the history and promising future of female condoms.  Read More
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Science and the Death Penalty #272

July 04, 2014

This week, we're looking at the science of the ultimate criminal punishment. Pharmacologist and science writer David Kroll joins us to discuss the chemistry of the drugs used in lethal injections. We'll talk to law professor Samuel Gross, editor of the National Registry of Exonerations, about the rates of false convictions in death penalty cases. And we'll speak to Johns Hopkins University psychiatrist Dr. James Harris about the complex issues at the intersection of capital punishment and intellectual disability. Read More
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Mother Nature is Trying to Kill You #271

June 27, 2014

This week, we're learning how deadly and delightful our planet and its ecosystem can be. We're joined by biologist Dan Riskin, co-host of Discovery Canada's Daily Planet, to talk about his book "Mother Nature Is Trying to Kill You: a Lively Tour Through the Dark Side of the Natural World." And we'll talk to astronomer and author Phil Plait about Science Getaways, his company that offers educational vacation experiences for science lovers. Read More
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Environmental Debt #270

June 20, 2014

This week, we're looking at how worldwide environmental challenges interact with our increasingly global economy. We'll speak to Amy Larkin, founder of Nature Means Business, about her book "Environmental Debt: The Hidden Costs of a Changing Global Economy." Journalist Ken Silverstein joins us to explain the way climate change is dividing the insurance and energy industries. And we'll talk to Arjen Hoekstra, professor of Water Management at the University of Twente, about the effects of water scarcity on business. Read More
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Sonic Wonderland #269

June 13, 2014

This week, we're exploring the science of sound and hearing. We'll talk to Trevor Cox, Professor of Acoustic Engineering at the University of Salford, about his book "Sonic Wonderland: A Scientific Odyssey of Sound." And we'll speak to Andrew Wise, Senior Research Fellow at Bionics Institute, about a gene therapy technique to enhance the function of cochlear implants. Read More
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Extreme Medicine #268

June 06, 2014

This week, we're on the frontiers of medicine, from the fabulous to the foolhardy. We'll talk to Dr. Kevin Fong, co-director of the Centre for Aviation Space and Extreme Environment Medicine at University College London, about his book "Extreme Medicine: How Exploration Transformed Medicine in the Twentieth Century." And we're joined by Dr. Sydnee and Justin McElroy, hosts of the podcast "Sawbones: A Marital Tour of Misguided Medicine." Read More
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Ephemeral Particles #267

May 30, 2014

This week we're learning about some of the many invisible particles that surround us. We'll speak to astrophysicist Ray Jayawardhana about his book "Neutrino Hunters: The Thrilling Chase for a Ghostly Particle to Unlock the Secrets of the Universe." And we'll talk to ecology professor Donald Canfield about his book "Oxygen: A Four Billion Year History." Read More
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Always More Health Controversies #266

May 23, 2014

This week, we're tackling more controversial topics in the realm of healthcare. We'll speak to Edward Archer, post-doctoral fellow in the Nutrition and Obesity Research Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, about the tendency toward psuedoscience in nutrition data gathering. And Dr. Keith Norris, editor-in-chief of the journal Ethnicity & Disease, joins us to talk about the intersection of race and medicine. Read More
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An Epidemic of Rumors #265

May 16, 2014

This week, we're looking at the power of stories and innuendo to shape the public perception of science. We'll speak to author Jon Lee about his book "An Epidemic of Rumors: How Stories Shape Our Perceptions of Disease." And we're joined by Dr. Paul A. Offit, Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases and the Director of the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, to get the scientific perspective of the safety and effectiveness of vaccinations. Read More
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