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Science at NPR

Thursday, Nov 29

23

Harvard Medical School Dean Weighs In On Ethics Of Gene Editing

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NPR's Mary Louise Kelly talks with George Daley, dean of Harvard Medical School, about this week's international summit on gene editing and how the birth of babies with edited genes was received.

21

Scientists Improve Mood By Stimulating A Brain Area Above The Eyes

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People with symptoms suggesting depression felt better immediately when tiny pulses of electricity reached a brain area called the lateral orbitofrontal cortex.

09

Science Summit Denounces Gene-Edited Babies Claim, But Rejects Moratorium

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The Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing issues a consensus on how scientists might responsibly move forward to create gene-edited babies in the wake of a rogue scientist's claims.

Wednesday, Nov 28

19

'In Search Of The Canary Tree' Highlights The Links Between Nature, Climate And Us

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Conservation scientist Lauren E. Oakes weaves her musings about humans' place in a warming world together with conservation science in a moving and effective way.

09

Facing Backlash, Scientist Defends Gene-Editing Research On Babies

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He Jiankui, who shocked the world by asserting he had genetically edited twin girls, faced growing criticism from other researchers as he spoke at a scientific conference in Hong Kong.

Tuesday, Nov 27

16

Ebola Treatment Trials Launched In Democratic Republic Of The Congo Amid Outbreak

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The virus has killed at least 240 people in the past four months, and it has shown no signs of abating. But the new trials may help end future outbreaks sooner.

12

China Expands Research Funding, Luring U.S. Scientists And Students

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In a quest to rapidly advance its scientific depth and breadth, China is recruiting scientists from around the world. Some from the U.S. say the greater funding for school and research is freeing.

Monday, Nov 26

23

Chinese Scientist Says He's Created First Genetically Modified Babies

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He Jiankui says he undertook the experiment in order to protect the twin baby girls from HIV. The claim is being met with international skepticism and condemnation.

New Probe Lands On Mars For Unprecedented Mission

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NASA's InSight lander arrived on the red planet Monday. Its mission is to explore the interior of the planet in a way no previous probe has been able to do.

18

Thanks To Science, You Can Eat An Apple Every Day

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After harvest, apples can be stored for months in controlled atmosphere storage rooms where the temperature, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and humidity levels are adjusted to put them into hibernation.

17

'Why We Dream' Is A Spirited, Cogent Defense Of Dreams And Dream-Telling

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"If we fail to take the simple steps to remember and understand our dreams, we are throwing away a gift from our brains without bothering to open it," writes Alice Robb.

12

News Brief: Border Closure, Genetically Edited Babies, Climate Report

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The U.S. briefly shut down its largest border crossing with Mexico Sunday. A report from The AP indicates designer babies are more within reach. A comprehensive climate report has been released.

Sunday, Nov 25

00

NASA Probe Lands Safely On Martian Surface

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There's a new probe on Mars. After Monday's tricky landing, NASA's InSight spacecraft is to deploy a sensitive seismometer and temperature probe to let scientists explore the planet's interior.

Saturday, Nov 24

Backed By National Report, Climate Change 'Is Affecting Every Sector Of Our Lives'

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The economy could take a major hit if climate change continues at its current pace, according to the latest National Climate Assessment. NPR's Michel Martin speaks with climate scientist Michael Mann.

14

Twin's Difficult Birth Put A Project Designed To Reduce C-Sections To The Test

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A woman had twins in a hospital south of Boston last summer, right around dinner time. For doctors aiming to reduce cesareans, the second baby's tricky arrival tested the limits of teamwork.

In Iraq, A Race To Protect The Crumbling Bricks Of Ancient Babylon

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A U.S.-funded conservation project is shoring up the brick walls of the ancient city. The hope is that Babylon will qualify for UNESCO World Heritage status.

Friday, Nov 23

23

Understanding The Impacts Of Climate Change

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NPR's Ari Shapiro talks to climate scientist Brenda Ekwurzel about the National Climate Assessment released on Friday and whether the impacts of climate change being felt already are reversible.

21

Climate Change Is Already Hurting U.S. Communities, Federal Report Says

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According to the government's most comprehensive assessment to date, climate change has already damaged American infrastructure and cost both money and lives.

Wednesday, Nov 21

23

Gun Shops Work With Doctors To Prevent Suicide By Firearm

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Of all the deaths by gunfire in Colorado, suicides account for about 80 percent. A coalition of doctors, public health researchers and gun shop owners are working together to prevent that self-harm.

01

Researchers Find 115 Plastic Cups In Dead Whale's Stomach

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The following items were among those found in the animal's stomach: 19 pieces of hard plastic, two sandals, four plastic bottles, 25 plastic bags, and about seven pounds of rope.

Tuesday, Nov 20

23

Chickenpox Outbreak Hits N.C. Private School With Low Vaccination Rates

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Three dozen students have been infected at Asheville Waldorf School — which has among the very highest rates of parents claiming religious exemption from state vaccine requirements.

Monday, Nov 19

11

As Insurers Offer Discounts For Fitness Trackers, Wearers Should Step With Caution

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Millions of Americans use wearable devices to monitor their diet and fitness. Some insurance companies offer incentives to use them, but privacy advocates caution customers not to share too much data.

Sunday, Nov 18

00

An 'Exceptionally Rare' 2-Headed Snake Found In Virginia Has Died

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Two-headed snakes don't live very long in the wild, so when one was found in a Northern Virginia yard, the discovery got the attention of scientists and social media alike.

14

Science, Technology, Math, Engineering And Now Congress

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"Somebody with a technical background might think in a little bit different than the way, for instance, that a lawyer would think," says Chrissy Houlahan, a new lawmaker with a STEM background.

Friday, Nov 16

16

David Baron: Why Should You Experience A Total Solar Eclipse?

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The moment David Baron saw his first total solar eclipse in 1998, he was hooked. He's spent the last 20 years chasing them across the globe—all for a few minutes of joy, wonder and awe.

Ingrid Fetell Lee: How Can We Design More Joy Into Our Surroundings?

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Ingrid Fetell Lee discovered that certain elements--like bright color, abundance, round shapes--are universally joyful. She says designing more joyful spaces can actually change how we feel and act.

Thursday, Nov 15

00

Bringing Up Baby

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This week we focus on the behavior of the youngest members of the human race. We try to translate the mysterious language of babies. And we ask, when should we step back and just let our children be?

16

Startup Offers To Sequence Your Genome Free Of Charge, Then Let You Profit From It

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A full genome sequence costs about $1,000. But Nebula Genomics expects that companies and researchers would defray the cost in exchange for key medical information about the person involved.

Buzz, Buzz: Bitter Tasters Like Coffee Better

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A genetic analysis of samples taken from a large UK health database suggest that people who are more sensitive than their peers to the bitter taste of caffeine tend to drink more coffee — not less.

Wednesday, Nov 14

22

Maybe Neanderthals Weren't Quite So Nasty And Brutish

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New research finds they sustained skull injuries at about the same rate as early modern humans. "I definitely think that it's evidence these guys were not beating each other up," one expert says.