100 episodes

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

Science Magazine Podcast Science Magazine

    • Science
    • 4.4 • 73 Ratings

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

    The ethics of small COVID-19 trials, and visiting an erupting volcano

    The ethics of small COVID-19 trials, and visiting an erupting volcano

    There has been so much research during the pandemic—an avalanche of preprints, papers, and data—but how much of it is any good? Contributing Correspondent Cathleen O’Grady joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss the value of poorly designed research on COVID-19 and more generally. 

    In September, the volcano Cumbre Vieja on Spain’s Canary Islands began to erupt. It is still happening. The last time it erupted was back in 1971, so we don’t know much about the features of the past eruption or the signs it was coming. Marc-Antoine Longpré, a volcanologist and associate professor at Queens College, City University of New York, discusses the ongoing eruption with Sarah and what today’s sensors tell us about what happens when this volcano wakes up.

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

    [Image: Eduardo Robaina; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

    [alt: The eruption of Cumbre Vieja, September 2021]

    Authors: Sarah Crespi; Cathleen O’Grady

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 24 min
    Why trees are making extra nuts this year, human genetics and viral infections, and a seminal book on racism and identity

    Why trees are making extra nuts this year, human genetics and viral infections, and a seminal book on racism and identity

    Have you noticed the trees around you lately—maybe they seem extra nutty? It turns out this is a “masting” year, when trees make more nuts, seeds, and pinecones than usual. Science Staff Writer Elizabeth Pennisi joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss the many mysteries of masting years. 

    Next, Producer Meagan Cantwell talks with Jean-Laurent Casanova, a professor at Rockefeller University and an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, about his review article on why some people are more vulnerable to severe disease from viral infections. This is part of a special issue on inflammation in Science.

    Finally, in this month’s book segment on race and science, host Angela Saini talks with author Beverly Daniel Tatum about her seminal 2003 book, Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?: And Other Conversations About Race.

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

    [Image: LensOfDan/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

    [Alt text: Pile of acorns]

    Authors: Sarah Crespi; Meagan Cantwell; Angela Saini

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 42 min
    Wildfires could threaten ozone layer, and vaccinating against tick bites

    Wildfires could threaten ozone layer, and vaccinating against tick bites

    Could wildfires be depleting the ozone all over again? Staff Writer Paul Voosen talks with host Sarah Crespi about the evidence from the Polarstern research ship for wildfire smoke lofting itself high into the stratosphere, and how it can affect the ozone layer once it gets there.

    Next, we talk ticks—the ones that bite, take blood, and can leave you with a nasty infection. Andaleeb Sajid, a staff scientist at the National Cancer Institute, joins Sarah to talk about her Science Translational Medicine paper describing an mRNA vaccine intended to reduce the length of tick bites to before the pests can transmit diseases to a host.

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

    [Image: Janice Haney Carr/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

    [Alt text: digitally colorized scanning electron microscopic image of a grouping of Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria, the causative agent of Lyme disease]

    Authors: Sarah Crespi; Paul Voosen

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 19 min
    The long road to launching the James Webb Space Telescope, and genes for a longer life span

    The long road to launching the James Webb Space Telescope, and genes for a longer life span

    The James Webb Space Telescope was first conceived in the late 1980s. Now, more than 30 years later, it’s finally set to launch in December. After such a long a road, anticipation over what the telescope will contribute to astronomy is intense. Daniel Clery, a staff writer for Science, joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about what took so long and what we can expect after launch.

    You might have heard that Greenland sharks may live up to 400 years. But did you know that some Pacific rockfish can live to be more than 100? That’s true, even though other rockfish species only live about 10 years. Why such a range in life span? Greg Owens, assistant professor of biology at the University of Victoria, discusses his work looking for genes linked with longer life spans.

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

    [Image: Tyson Rininger; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

    [Alt text: Sebastes caurinus, the copper rockfish ]

    Authors: Sarah Crespi; Daniel Clery

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 23 min
    The folate debate, and rewriting the radiocarbon curve

    The folate debate, and rewriting the radiocarbon curve

    Some 80 countries around the world add folic acid to their food supply to prevent birth defects that might happen because of a lack of the B vitamin—even among people too early in their pregnancies to know they are pregnant. This year, the United Kingdom decided to add the supplement to white flour. But it took almost 10 years of debate, and no countries in the European Union joined them in the change. Staff Writer Meredith Wadman joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss the ongoing folate debate.

    Last year, a highly anticipated tool for dating ancient materials was released: a new updated radiocarbon calibration curve. The curve, which describes how much carbon-14 was in the atmosphere at different times in the past 55,000 years, is essential to figuring out the age of organic materials such as wood or leather. Sarah talks with Tim Heaton, senior lecturer in the School of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Sheffield, and Edouard Bard, a professor at the College of France, about how the curve was redrawn and what it means, both for archaeology and for our understanding of the processes that create radiocarbon in the first place—like solar flares and Earth’s magnetic fields.

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

    [Image: Andrew Shiva/Wikipedia; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

    [Alt text: close-up photograph of layers in volcanic tephra]

    Authors: Sarah Crespi; Meredith Wadman

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 28 min
    Sleeping without a brain, tracking alien invasions, and algorithms of oppression

    Sleeping without a brain, tracking alien invasions, and algorithms of oppression

    Simple animals like jellyfish and hydra, even roundworms, sleep. Without brains. Why do they sleep? How can we tell a jellyfish is sleeping? Staff Writer Liz Pennisi joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about what can be learned about sleep from these simple sleepers. The feature is part of a special issue on sleep this week in Science.

    Next is a look at centuries of alien invasions—or rather, invasive insects moving from place to place as humans trade across continents. Sarah talks with Matthew MacLachlan, a research economist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service, about his Science Advances paper on why insect invasions don’t always increase when trade does.

    Finally, a book on racism and the search algorithms. Books host Angela Saini for our series of interviews on race and science talks with Safiya Umoja Noble, a professor in the African American Studies and Information Studies departments at the University of California, Los Angeles, about her book: Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism. 

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

    [Image:  marcouliana/iStock; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

    [Alt text: brown marmorated stink bug pattern]

    Authors: Sarah Crespi; Liz Pennisi, Angela Saini

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 39 min

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5
73 Ratings

73 Ratings

vvmike ,

One of a few

There are no shortage of science podcasts but I quite enjoy this one. Informational enough that it doesn't feel like poppy fluff or forced-excitement while still not being overly dry or technical either :) Hosts are warm as well which is always great.

NOTE: To make the podcast easier to find, consider making the name of the show (and/or publisher) match the thumbnail. By this, I mean that searching for "Science AAAS" does not work terribly well within iTunes and may hamper referrals to a small (but still notable) effect.

Dl3141 ,

Awesome

This is a great way to keep abreast of the latest and most important scientific findings. I'm a professional neuroscientist and I tend to read papers that are exclusively in my field. So it's nice to listen to a podcast that gives me a general perspective on the latest and best science.

Nuna- ,

Interesting

I like the content but I find the presenters and the format are kind of false or flat at times. Also, they repeat the announcements of the events which is tiring and unnecessary. The advertisements are the worst, I will drop this series because of them.

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