Are you searching for great stories to ignite your curiosity, teach you to perform better in life and career, inspire your mind, and make you laugh along the way? In this science podcast, Dr. Marie McNeely introduces you to the brilliant researchers behind the latest scientific discoveries. Join us as they share their greatest failures, most staggering successes, candid career advice, and what drives them forward in life and science.
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Greetings science fans!
We’re elated to welcome you to People Behind the Science where we explore the lives and experiences of the people behind the research and scientific discoveries of today.
People Behind the Science’s mission is to inspire current and future scientists, share the different paths to a successful career in science, educate the general population on what scientists do, and show the human side of science.
In each episode, a different scientist will guide us through their journey by sharing their successes, failures, and passions. We are excited to introduce you to these inspiring academic and industry experts from all fields of science to give you a variety of perspectives on the life and path of a scientist.
Our esteemed guests will tell you:
what motivates them and how they balance their competing responsibilities
how they worked through some of the most challenging times in their careers
advice to help you through your own journey through life and science
People Behind the Science is a podcast focused on the people doing fascinating research through interviews with top scientists. We are proud to have interviewed so many inspiring scientists, including U.S. National Academy scientists like Josh Sanes, Nick Spitzer, Lou Muglia, Jacob Israelachvili, Gene Robinson, Larry Squire, John Dowling, James Berger, and David Spergel, as well as popular scientists in the media like Donna Nelson (science advisor for the TV show Breaking Bad) and Jack Horner (science advisor for the Jurassic park movies). We are honored to have shared their amazing stories with people in all 50 states in the USA and in over 120 countries across the world.
Dedicating His Attention to Cognitive Disorders in the Clinic, the Classroom, and through Conducting Research - Dr. Kenneth Heilman
Dr. Ken Heilman is the James E. Rooks, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Neurology and Health Psychology at the University of Florida College of Medicine. He is also Director of the Memory Disorders Clinics, the Center for Neuropsychological Studies, and the Behavioral Neurology-Neuropsychiatry Fellowship Program there. He studies how the brain works, what is going on when it doesn’t work, and how to fix it. Ken enjoys spending his free time with his family, out on the golf course, and on the treadmill.
Untangling the Mechanisms and Mysteries of Alzheimer’s Disease - Dr. David Holtzman
Dr. David Holtzman is the Jones Professor and Chairman of Neurology, Professor of Developmental Biology, Associate Director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, and Head of the Hope Center for Neurological Disorders at Washington University in St. Louis. Much of his research is dedicated to understanding the mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration, particularly mechanisms and biomarkers of Alzheimer’s disease. In his free time, David loves to play tennis, cycle, hike, visit vineyards, and travel.
Identifying Factors that Contribute to Cognitive Decline to Predict and Prevent Dementia - Dr. Sudha Seshadri
Dr. Sudha Seshadri is a Professor of Neurology at Boston University School of Medicine, Senior Investigator at the Framingham Heart Study, and Co-Director of Medical Education for the Neurology Residency and Clerkship programs. She studies why the brain and cognitive function decline with age, and what modifiable factors determine this decline, with the hope of better predicting and preventing it. Outside work, she love to read, write poetry, go for walks, run, and spend time with her daughter.
A Remarkable Researcher Progressing towards Understanding and Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease - Dr. John Morris
Dr. John Morris is the Friedman Distinguished Professor of Neurology, Professor of Pathology and Immunology, Professor of Physical Therapy, and Professor of Occupational Therapy at Washington University in St. Louis. His work aims to understand the process Alzheimer’s disease development, compared to normal brain aging, to develop therapies to treat and prevent this disease. Outside work, Dr. Morris enjoys spending time with family, reading, and cycling on some of the fantastic bike paths in St. Louis.
576: Changing How We Think About Cancer by Revealing the Critical Role of Context in Tissue Specificity - Dr. Mina Bissell
Dr. Mina Bissell is a Distinguished Scientist in the Life Sciences Division of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Mina is working to understand why the cells in a particular part of your body form the structures they do and not something else. Tissue and organ specificity are fundamentally related to cancer. When cells forget their tissue-specific functions, they can begin to pile up, form tumors, and travel elsewhere in the body. In her free time, Mina loves to exercise, spend time with her family, watch theatre performances, read, go hiking, and work in her garden. She received her B.A. in Chemistry from Radcliffe College and a M.Sc. in Bacteriology and Biochemistry as well as a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics from Harvard University. Afterward, Mina was awarded a Milton Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard University followed by an American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley. She started off at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory to study cell biology and cancer viruses and has dedicated over 40 years of her career to exceptional research there, rising through the ranks to her current position. Mina has received many awards and honors during her career. Just to name a few, she was awarded the highest award of the Department of Energy called the Lawrence Award, the Lifetime Achievement Prize from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the American Cancer Society’s Medal of Honor, the Susan G. Komen Foundation Brinker Award, an Honorary Doctorate from Pierre and Marie Curie University, and many more. In addition, Mina has been elected as a Member of the National Academy of Sciences and a Member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. She is also a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the Royal Society of Chemistry. A few years ago an award in Portugal was created in Mina’s name, and the Mina J. Bissell Award is given every 2 years to a person who has changed our perception of a field. In this interview, Mina shares her journey through life and science.
Conducting Research to Help Communities Better Support People With Disabilities - Dr. Kerri Morgan
Dr. Kerri Morgan is an Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy and Neurology at Washington University in St. Louis and a certified Assistive Technology Professional. In addition, Kerri is an accomplished Paralympic and World Champion athlete. Kerri is working to better understand how to better support people with disabilities in the community. When she’s not doing science, Kerri loves spending time with family, including her twin boys. She also enjoys playing wheelchair rugby and racing.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Voyage through the cosmos. 🌌
Dr. Marie McNeely has a unique approach towards tearing down the walls that society has amongst scientists and the science around us. She introduces scientists and their stories to the public and that’s exactly what we need in this current age, if we want to progress in our innovations.
“Einstein was urging us to tear down the walls around science that have excluded and intimidated so many of us — to translate scientific insights from the jargon of its priesthood into the spoken language shared by us all, so that we may take these insights to heart and be changed by a personal encounter with the wonders they reveal.”
‘COSMOS: Possible Worlds’ by Ann Druyan. 🌌
Excellent episode with Dr. Weiner
The cancer research (and successes!) that you illustrated in your interview has definitely given me hope, as David wished. If I need to wrestle with cancer yet again, I’m glad he and his colleagues have my back.
First experience with science
My daughters 8th birthday, she received a microscope, she is hooked, she enjoys me bringing home dead bugs to magnify. She is keeping a journal of everything she sees at the different magnifications. We have been listening to podcast for years at bed time. This is one that doesn’t put her right to sleep. It is super gratifying watching her as she is excited about the things she is “discovering “ OK so I am not a smart man, you could say I never lived up to my potential. All that being said thank you for this podcast and giving her examples of how to become a scientist and me a direction that I can help her along. You are the best. If possible say hi to Landrey Lyn, last name withheld. Thank you for giving a smart kid with dumb parents an avenue to learn to keep moving forward in science.