Stem Cell Science // Decoding Science

Stem-Cell

Stem cell science v. hype (start time: 00:57) Clinics offering stem cell therapies and other forms of so-called regenerative medicine are cropping up in many states, including Colorado. Practitioners of stem cells, are touting them as repairing damaged cartilage, tendons and joints, and even treating diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. While the science looks promising, it seriously lags the marketing of stem cell therapies. Last year the FDA, which has yet to regulate the clinics, issued a warning about stem cell therapies.
Laura Beil, a science journalist and producer of the podcast Bad Batch, recently wrote a cover article in Science News about the hype and the latest science of stem cells. She talks with host Susan Moran about her reporting. (For more info, check out this new BBC program on stem cell “hope and hype.”)

cover image Craft of Science WritingScience for the Rest of Us (start time: 16:38)  At a time our own government leaders vilify science and reinvent facts, it seems as important as ever that journalists and the public at large grasp and  translate scientific research. A new book, The Craft of Science Writing, offers tips on how to find credible experts (whether on the corona virus or vaccines or climate change), separate truth from spurious assertions, and make sense of scientific studies. The book is aimed at science writers, but it can be a guidepost for anyone who wants to make science more accessible.   Alex Witze, a science writer who co-authored the book Island On Fire: The Extraordinary Story of a Forgotten Volcano, is a contributor to the new book. She discusses the art of decoding and appreciating science with hosts Susan Moran and Joel Parker.

 

Hosts: Susan Moran, Joel Parker
Producer: Susan Moran
Engineer: Joel Parker
Executive Producer: Beth Bennet

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The Science of Hearing and Hearing Aids

Volume Control

Volume Control

This week Beth and Angele talk with David Owen about his book, Volume Control, in which he explores the surprising science of hearing and the remarkable technologies that can help us hear better. In the book, he argues that failing to take care of our hearing comes with a huge social cost. He demystifies the science of hearing while encouraging readers to get the treatment they need for hearing loss and protect the hearing they still have.

Executive Producer: Beth Bennett
Producer: Beth Bennett & Angele Sjong
Headlines: Beth Bennett & Angele Sjong
Engineer: Beth Bennett

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Who Pays for Climate Change?

merlin_166536642_24b1e96c-327a-4b9c-9979-f87ed8a0b502-articleLargeThis week, Beth and Angele speak with with Brenda Ekwurzel in the studio. Brenda is the director of climate science for the Union of Concerned Scientists. She was in Boulder for a panel on Air Quality and Climate Change. She spoke about some Colorado issues e.g. wildfire and drought, and assigning responsibility for specific events to fossil fuel producers. She is a widely quoted expert on climate change, and co-authored the UCS guide Cooler Smarter: Practical Steps for Low-Carbon Living. For more information you can visit her website.

Hosts: Angele Sjong and Beth Bennett
Producers: Angele Sjong and Beth Bennett
Engineer: Beth Bennett
Executive Producer: Beth Bennett

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Ketogenic Diet and Muscle and Memory

Fat MouseThis week on How on Earth, we speak with Dr John Newman, geriatrician and geoscientist at the Buck Institute. He describes his recent research in mice, showing that both memory and muscle improve in animals eating a high fat diet. To see more details on these experiments, you can visit the lab website.
To register for the Air Quality and Climate Conference, send an email to sstrife@bouldercounty.org

Hosts: Angele Sjong & Beth Bennett
Producer: Beth Bennett
Engineer: Maeve Conran
Executive Producer : Beth Bennett

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Climate Watch // Extreme Conservation

Today’s show features the following interviews, by How On Earth’s Susan Moran and guest host Ted Wood.

Photo credit: Mike Fernandez/Audubon

Photo credit: Mike Fernandez/Audubon

Audubon’s Climate Watch (start time: 4:03) Starting on Jan. 14, the Audubon Society will launch a month-long citizen science program to better understand how birds are responding to climate change. This comes at a time when, according to a 2019 Audubon report, up to two-thirds of North American birds are vulnerable to extinction due to climate change. But the Climate Watch program is one of many opportunities to protect birds.  Alison Holloran, executive director of Audubon Rockies, discusses the program and how you can get involved.

cover image U ChicConservation on the Edges (start time: 13:26) Charismatic predators like polar bears, grizzlies, and tigers, get lots of attention, and for good reason. But many lesser known species, particularly those living in extreme environments–including muskoxen, wild yaks, takins and saigas–are also important species. They have been the research focus of Joel Berger, a professor of wildlife conservation at Colorado State University. He’s also senior scientist at Wildlife Conservation Society.  Berger’s latest book is Extreme Conservation: Life at the Edges of the World. 

Hosts: Susan Moran, Ted Wood
Producer: Susan Moran
Engineer: Maeve Conran
Executive Producer: Beth Bennett
Additional Contributor: Beth Bennett

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Top Stories of the Decade

Black Hole Image from New Scientist

Black Hole Image from New Scientist

This week on How on Earth, Angele and Beth distill some of the top science news of the past year and decade, ranging from the first image of a black hole, as seen here, to DNA sequencing of ancient genomes, some new hominid ancestors, advances in AI, and more!

Hosts: Beth Bennett & Angele Sjong
Producer: Beth Bennett & Angele Sjong
Engineer: Beth Bennett
Executive Producer: Joel Parker

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Climate (COP25) Summit Review

At COP25, Tashiana Osborne (far right), Sarah Whipple (2nd from right), CSU Prof. Gillian Bowser (2nd from left) and colleagues. Photo credit: Adewale Adesanya

At COP25, Tashiana Osborne (far right), Sarah Whipple (2nd from right), CSU Prof. Gillian Bowser (2nd from left) and colleagues. Photo credit: Adewale Adesanya

COP25 Postmortem (start time: 3:35) Earlier this month many nation’s leaders, as well as scientists, environmental activists, companies and others gathered in Madrid for a two-week United Nations climate summit. The conference, called COP25, is rooted in the 2015 Paris Agreement, which is a blend of pledges from about 200 nations to dramatically slash their planet-warming emissions. Next year’s meeting is when signatory nations will update their actual commitments. So, what happened at the recent climate summit, and what’s next? How On Earth host Susan Moran today interviews two scientists who attended COP25.  Tashiana Osborne is a PhD candidate in atmospheric and oceanic science at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, at UC San Diego. And Sarah Whipple is a PhD candidate in ecology at Colorado State University.

Hosts: Susan Moran, Joel Parker
Producer: Susan Moran
Engineer: Joel Parker
Executive Producer: Joel Parker

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Cognitive Brain Development in Adolescents, Part 2

Prof Marie Banich

Prof Marie Banich

Four years ago Beth interviewed Professor Marie Banich, a neuroscience researcher at the University of Colorado here in Boulder. She had just received a major grant from NIH to characterize how brain regions involved in decision making and judgment change as children grow up. In the past four years she has assembled a multi-site team of neuroscientists and experts in developmental psychology who have begun testing the 11,000+ 8-10 year olds enrolled in the massive study. To find more detail, see her lab website (https://www.colorado.edu/faculty/banich/research/research-interests).
Hosts: Beth Bennett & Angele Sjong
Producer: Beth Bennett
Engineer: Beth Bennett
Executive Producer: Joel Parker
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Voyager Passes Heliopause//Xmas Bird Count

Heliopause

The Heliopause

Voyager Passes Through the Heliopause   (Starts 1:00) LASP scientist Fran Bagenol explains how the over 40 year old Voyager Mission, that launched in the 1970s is still providing incredible surprises, including passing through the border between the solar system and “outer space.”  As part of making that journey, the Voyager spacecraft have passed through cosmic plasma that has temperatures of 60,000 F.  Bagenol will explain how that’s possible . . . and why Voyager could pass through that incredible heat unscathed.   Fiske Planetarium will present a special show about Voyager in March.

courtesy audubon.org

courtesy audubon.org

Boulder Xmas Bird Count  (Starts 13:45)  Naturalists Steve Jones and Scott Seevers   explain how  to join Boulder’s December 15th Xmas bird countand why the scientific data gathered by citizens during this event is so important.  All ages are welcome , and all regions have these counts, from Boulder to beyond.  For more info, go here.

 

Host/Producer/Engineer: Shelley Schlender
Additional Contributions:  Joel Parker
Executive Producer: Joel Parker

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COP25 Global Climate Summit

Field_Work_Weather_Balloon-Osborne

Tashiana Osborne launching weather balloons in Ukiah, Calif. Photo credit: Maryam Asgari-Lamjiri

COP25 & Climate Change (start time: 1:07): Next month (Dec. 2-13), the United Nations global climate change summit, known as COP25, will take place in Madrid. Many scientists, environmental nonprofits, students, activists will also attend side events related to the UN sustainable development goals (SDG). The goal of COP over the years has been to reduce emissions of planet-warming gases. The talks stem from the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement, which essentially is a mix of pledges from about 200 nations to dramatically cut their greenhouse emissions. The countries are not legally bound to meet their targets, but they are supposed to report their progress to the UN. Under the Obama administration, the U.S. vowed to reduce emissions about 28 percent below 2005 levels, by 2025. But earlier this month, the Trump administration announced that it will begin a year-long process to withdraw the U.S. from the international accord. The stakes are extremely high.

How On Earth’s Susan Moran and guest-host Tom Yulsman discuss COP25 and what’s at stake with Gillian Bowser, an ecologist and research scientist at Colorado State University who has studied international climate and biodiversity conventions and has attended several COP summits; and Tashiana Osborne, a PhD candidate at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, who is studying the effects of atmospheric rivers, and who will attend COP25. Tom Yulsman, a CU Boulder journalism professor and blogger, offers his expertise as a climate-focused science journalist.

Hosts: Susan Moran, Tom Yulsman
Producer: Susan Moran
Engineer: Joel Parker
Executive Producer: Joel Parker

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