588 episodes

The Nature Podcast brings you the best stories from the world of science each week. We cover everything from astronomy to zoology, highlighting the most exciting research from each issue of the Nature journal. We meet the scientists behind the results and provide in-depth analysis from Nature's journalists and editors.
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Nature Podcast Springer Nature Limited

    • Science
    • 4.5 • 630 Ratings

The Nature Podcast brings you the best stories from the world of science each week. We cover everything from astronomy to zoology, highlighting the most exciting research from each issue of the Nature journal. We meet the scientists behind the results and provide in-depth analysis from Nature's journalists and editors.
See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    Massive Facebook study reveals a key to social mobility

    Massive Facebook study reveals a key to social mobility

    00:47 The economic benefits of social connectionsBy looking at data gathered from billions of Facebook friendships, researchers have shown that having more connections with people from higher income groups could increase future incomes by 20%. They also show how such connections can be formed, and how schools and other institutions could help to improve peoples’ opportunities in the future.
    Research Article: Chetty et al.
    Research Article: Chetty et al.
    News and Views: The social connections that shape economic prospects
    Link to the data
    11:06 Research HighlightsHow balloons could help measure quakes on Venus, and the parasitic fungus that tricks flies into mating with fly corpses.
    Research Highlight: Balloon flotilla detects an earthquake from high in the sky
    Research Highlight: The fungus that entices male flies to mate with female corpses

    13:40 Reviving pig organs hours after deathWhen someone dies, tissues start to irreversibly degrade, but recently this irreversibility has been brought into question by studies showing that some organs can be partially revived several hours after death. Now, working in pigs, researchers have shown it is possible to revive the functions of several organs at once. This could pave the way for improved organ transplantation, but ethicists advise caution.
    Research Article: Andrijevic et al.
    News and Views: Improved organ recovery after oxygen deprivation
    News: Pig organs partially revived in dead animals — researchers are stunned
    Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.

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    • 22 min
    Coronapod: the open-science plan to unseat big Pharma and tackle vaccine inequity

    Coronapod: the open-science plan to unseat big Pharma and tackle vaccine inequity

    Inequity has been a central feature of the COVID19 pandemic. From health outcomes to access to vaccines, COVID has pushed long-standing disparities out of the shadows and into the public eye and many of these problems are global. In this episode of Coronapod we dig into a radical new collaboration of 15 countries - co-led by the WHO, and modelled on open-science. The project, called the mRNA vaccine technology transfer hub, aims to create independent vaccine hubs that could supply the global south, and take on the giants of the pharmaceutical industry in the process. But the road ahead is long - the challenges are complex and numerous, and the odds are stacked against them. But at a time when stakes couldn't be higher, momentum is building and if successful, the tantalising possibility of an end to a dangerous legacy of dependence looms. Can it be done? And if so, what needs to change to make it happen? We ask these questions and more.
    News Feature: The radical plan for vaccine equity
    This project was supported by the Pulitzer Center.

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    • 35 min
    How humans adapted to digest lactose — after thousands of years of milk drinking

    How humans adapted to digest lactose — after thousands of years of milk drinking

    00:45 Working out how the ability to digest milk spreadHumans have been drinking milk for thousands of years, but it seems that they were doing so long before the ability to digest it became prevalent. Then around 2000 years ago, this ability became common in Europe, presenting a mystery to researchers – why then? Now by analyzing health data, ancient DNA, and fats residues from thousands of ancient pots, scientists have worked out what caused this trait to suddenly spread throughout Europe.
    Research Article: Evershed et al.
    News and Views: The mystery of early milk consumption in Europe
    08:56 Research HighlightsHow genes stolen from outside the animal kingdom have altered insects’ abilities, and a dormant black hole beyond the Milky Way gives insights into these objects' origins.
    Research Highlight: Genes purloined from across the tree of life give insects a boost
    Research Highlight: A quiet black hole whispers its origin story
    11:21 Assessing the addiction potential for therapeutic ketamineKetamine has shown great promise as a fast-acting antidepressant, but there have been concerns about the risks of addiction relating to this therapeutic use. Now, a team have looked in mice to see whether ketamine causes the behavioural and neuronal changes characteristic of addictive substances. They find that ketamine likely has a low addiction risk, which could inform future prescribing decisions in humans.
    Research article: Simmler et al.
    News and Views: A short burst of reward curbs the addictiveness of ketamine
    17:51 Briefing ChatWe discuss some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This time, a report shows a significant decline in Australia’s environment and ecosystems, and how adding a gene greatly increases rice yield.
    The Conversation: This is Australia’s most important report on the environment’s deteriorating health. We present its grim findings
    Nature News: Supercharged biotech rice yields 40% more grain
    Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.

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    • 27 min
    How researchers have pinpointed the origin of 'warm-blooded' mammals

    How researchers have pinpointed the origin of 'warm-blooded' mammals

    00:46 When did mammals start to regulate their temperature?The evolution of ‘warm bloodedness’ allowed mammals to live in a more diverse range of habitats, but working out when this occurred has been difficult. To try and pin down a date, researchers have studied the fossilised remains of ancient mammals' inner ears, which suggest that this key evolutionary leap appeared around 230 million years ago.
    Research Article: Araujo et al.
    News and Views: Evolution of thermoregulation as told by ear
    07:14 Research HighlightsA new surgical glue that’s both strong and easy to remove, and southern fin whales return to Antarctica after being hunted to near extinction.
    Research Highlight: This adhesive bandage sticks strongly — even to hairy skin
    Research Highlight: A feeding frenzy of 150 whales marks a species’ comeback
    09:47 Structure of an enzyme reveals how its so efficientHydrogen dependent CO2 reductase is an enzyme that can convert CO2 from the air into formic acid that can be used as fuel. It also does this extremely efficiently, but nobody has been quite sure how. Now researchers have an idea based on a detailed structural analysis.
    Research Article: Dietrich et al.
    17:51 Briefing ChatWe discuss some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This time, the findings of some big biodiversity reports, and how woodpeckers don’t end up with headaches from their pecking.
    Nature News: More than dollars: mega-review finds 50 ways to value nature
    Nature News: Major wildlife report struggles to tally humanity’s exploitation of species
    Science: Contrary to popular belief, woodpeckers don’t protect their brains when headbanging trees
    Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.


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    • 29 min
    Ancient mud reveals the longest record of climate from the tropics

    Ancient mud reveals the longest record of climate from the tropics

    00:46 A long-term record of climate in the tropicsTo understand the history of the Earth’s climate, researchers often rely on things like ice cores, which contain layered frozen insights of thousands of years of history. However, in the tropics long-term records like these have been absent. Now researchers have uncovered a sediment core in Peru which reveals around 700,000 years of climatic history.
    Research Article: Rodbell et al.
    News and Views: Sediment study finds the pulse of tropical glaciers
    09:40 Research HighlightsThe biological ‘helmets’ that protect shrimp from themselves, and why the colour of wine bottles matters.
    Research Highlight: ‘Helmets’ shield shrimp from their own supersonic shock waves
    Research Highlight: Why white wine in plain-glass bottles loses its bouquet
    12:38 The James Webb Space Telescope reveals its first imagesAfter more than two decades of development, the James Webb Space Telescope has broadcast its first images in spectacular detail. We discuss how we got here, what’s next and what these images mean for science.
    News: Stunning new Webb images: baby stars, colliding galaxies and hot exoplanets
    21:33 Briefing ChatWe discuss some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This time, we discuss a crystal made out of starfish embryos.
    Video: How starfish embryos become living crystals
    Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.

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    • 28 min
    Higgs boson at 10: a deep dive into the mysterious, mass-giving particle

    Higgs boson at 10: a deep dive into the mysterious, mass-giving particle

    In this Podcast Extra, Nature's Lizzie Gibney and Federico Levi take a deep-dive into the Higgs boson, describing their experiences of its discovery, what the latest run of the Large Hadron Collider might reveal about the particle's properties, and what role it could play in potential physics beyond the standard model.
    Nature News: Happy birthday, Higgs boson! What we do and don’t know about the particle
    Nature Editorial: Particle physics isn’t going to die — even if the LHC finds no new particles

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    • 22 min

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