When a stranger can gain access to someone's entire genetic code by picking up a used coffee cup, it presents a whole new thicket of concerns about privacy and security.
Actually, we're already there, though we're still in the early stages of what's shaping up, after all the years of hype, as a genuine revolution. Just take a look at Rob Stein's recent series on the $1,000 genome to see how far we've come and where we're headed.
Originally published on Thu October 11, 2012 11:09 am
Yesterday I sat in the presence of a spiritual leader and felt the power of a mind that practices contemplative Buddhism and embraces modern science.
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Buddhist monk and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, spoke Wednesday to a crowd of 8,000 students, faculty, staff and members of the community at an arena at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. His central message, about the transformational strength of human compassion, was straightforward yet profound.
Originally published on Thu October 11, 2012 10:49 am
OK, Grease lyrics aside, when it comes to gastronomy, certain foods just belong together: red wine and red meat, sushi and ginger, tea and biscuits, beer and pretzels. But, ever wonder why your favorite cabernet goes so well with a nice filet mignon? What makes two flavors jibe?
Two Americans have won the 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Robert Lefkowitz and Brian Koblika were awarded the prize for their work on protein receptors that tell cells what's going on around the human body. Their research has allowed drug makers to develop medication with fewer side effects. The pair with share the $1.2 million award.
Look at this map, and notice that deep, deep in the Republican South, there's a thin blue band stretching from the Carolinas through Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi. These are the counties that went for Obama in the last election. A blue crescent in a sea of red.
Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 3:21 pm
Doctors use liquid nitrogen — a substance registering a wickedly cold 321 degrees below zero Fahrenheit — to freeze warts so they dry up and fall off. Yes, folks, this stuff kills tissue. So imagine what it might do to your stomach if you drink some.
If I were rich, I might hire a sous chef. But for now, I'm learning to cheat time. And here's a new way I've stumbled upon to save a minute or two every time I use garlic.
Toss it in the microwave. I put the whole bulb in — 15 to 20 seconds will do the trick. It makes peeling much easier. The cloves practically slide -– or pop — out of their skins, though I won't make any promises about stickiness.
But, since I'm on the science desk, I have to ask, how does it work?
Within the perennial debate between science and religion, something that tends to irritate scientists — especially those who declare themselves atheists or agnostics — is the insistence in the existence of a parallel reality, inaccessible to reason. To explore this clash of world views, playing itself out in countless debates, conversations and confrontations, here is a fictitious dialogue between an atheist scientist and a religious person well-versed in the current state of science.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. It was the sort of report card that could crush a budding young talent. In 1949, a teacher at Eton belittled John Gurdon's dreams of becoming a scientist as quite ridiculous. If he can't learn simple biological facts, the teacher sniffed, pursuing science would be a waste of time. Gurdon eventually did go on to study zoology. And this week his breakthrough in reprogramming cells received the Nobel Prize for Medicine. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.