The science & history podcast all about PANDEMICS
Series 1: Join the ‘disease detectives’ Mark Honigsbaum and Hannah Mawdsley as they investigate the most devastating pandemic of all time: the 1918 Spanish influenza. Part scientific detective story, part historical inquiry, 'Going Viral' takes listeners to the scene of a viral crime and in the process recovers the experience of the world’s deadliest virus, which is 100 years old.
Series 2: The Covid Files, 100 years after the deadly Spanish Flu, Mark and guests discuss the many faces of the Covid-19 pandemic. What lessons can we learn from history?
Series 3: It’s the science story of the century - how successful vaccines against Covid-19 have been created in under a year, and in 'Vaxx and the Facts', Mark takes a deep dive into the history and science of vaccinations – exploring how they work; where they come from and where they may be going.
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Today Mark and Hannah visit the ‘National Covid Memorial Wall’ on the South Bank of the Thames in London, opposite the Houses of Parliament. Stretching 500 metres along Albert Embankment, the wall is an audacious work of guerrilla art comprising of 150,000 hand-drawn hearts – one for every British victim of the coronavirus. To find out more, Mark speaks to the founders of the group ‘Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice’ - Jo Goodman, Matt Fowler and Nathan Oswin, who dreamt up the memorial.
Reporting the Pandemic
In this special episode, supported by the Department of Journalism at City, University of London, Mark speaks to three UK-based health and science reporters about the highs and lows covering the Covid-19 pandemic: Sarah Boseley, The Guardian’s Health Editor; Victoria Macdonald, Health and Social Care Editor at Channel 4 News and Shaun Lintern, the Independent’s Health Correspondent. What’s it been like being on the front line of the story of the century?
Vaxx and the Facts: The House that Jenner Built
Today Mark explores the discovery of the first vaccine, against Smallpox in 1796, by the English country doctor Edward Jenner. With Owen Gower, General Manager of Dr. Jenner’s House Museum. Meanwhile, Melissa catches up with Mark’s progress in the Novavax Covid-19 vaccine trial, the very latest in vaccine science. From Smallpox to Covid-19: this is the house that Jenner built.
Vaxx and the Facts: The Godfather of Vaccines
This is not the first time scientists have raced to develop vaccines against a new disease. In the 1960s, scientists faced a similar crisis over rubella, also known as German measles. Today Mark explores the race to create the rubella vaccine with Dr. Stanley Plotkin, dubbed ‘The Godfather of Vaccines’. He developed the rubella vaccine in 1964 — the “R” in MMR. And Melissa speaks to science writer Meredith Wadman about the ethics of creating the rubella vaccine.
Vaxx and the Facts: Premonitions of the Pandemic
It’s the science story of the century - how successful vaccines against Covid-19 have been created in under a year. Mark explores the back-story on how they did it so quickly with Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the NIAID and Sarah Gilbert from the Jenner Institute, Oxford. He gets the low down on the vaccine science from scientist Rob Swanda and he talks vaccines vs. variants with Wendy Barclay from Imperial College London.
Vaxx and the Facts: Operation Warp Speed
It’s the science story of the century - how successful vaccines against Covid-19 have been created in under a year. Mark explores how they did it so quickly with Adrian Hill, Director of the Jenner Institute in Oxford behind the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. And against the backdrop of global vaccine hesitancy, and as Covid-19 cases surge in Britain’s second wave, Mark speaks to Peter Openshaw from Imperial College London about the magic of vaccines.
So glad it’s back
I was hoping Going Viral would return for COVID-19 (actually was hoping it’d return sooner). The first series on the 1918-19 flu pandemic was outstanding: well researched, good guest interviews, overall good treatment of topic. The approach to our current pandemic has also shown breadth and intriguing guests; despite this not being a current event, Mark brings a historical perspective, including policy and politics as well as the disease itself. There’s no shortage of COVID-19 podcasts; this is one of the few for which I make time. Hoping Dr. Mawdsley makes an appearance on a future episode.
Absolutely a must.
This is such an incredible podcast. And so very timely given what is happening around the world. Everyone should listen
Interesting and informative
Great podcast, give it a listen!