Science Studio

Sundays at 7pm

Science Studio is a fascinating 30-minute look into the ever progressing world of science. For nearly fifteen years, the show has taken in depth looks into all aspects of scientific researches and discoveries. Hosts Dr. Keith Pannell and Dr. Russell Chianelli, discuss their concerns on health and the environment. With two educated science connoisseurs, Science Studio helps you understand the inner workings of today’s science.

Science Studio also features Medical Discovery News, a weekly program that provide insights into a broad range of biomedical science topics. Biomedical science is research that addresses human health – from the study of important molecules, to clinical trials of new drugs and therapies. The story of these areas is a window on the future of medicine. We will also offer important basic information about your health. Our hope is that these episodes stimulate you to think, question and appreciate how science impacts you and your world. Medical Discovery News is produced by the University of Texas Medical Branch. 

  John R. Graef is a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga.  Graef is interested in biological modeling, namely how to mathematically model the spread of antibiotic-resistant disease in hospital ICUs.

Aired May 1, 2016

Alan Bassindale

  

  Alan Bassindale is the retired Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Learning and Teaching, at Open University, a distance & learning university based in Milton Keynes, England.  With a current enrollment of over 200,000, this experiment in open enrollment has expanded opportunities of higher education to a world-wide community.  Bassindale talks about the advantages and challenges to this educational institution which was modeled on American universities.  http://www.open.ac.uk/

Aired April 24, 2016

McMaster University

  Michael A. Brook was the recent recipient of the Frederic Stanley Kipping Award in Silicon Chemistry by the American Chemical Society.  Brook is also a Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.  On this program, host Keith Pannell travels to San Diego to talk with Brook about silicon chemistry.  We're more familiar with silicon chemistry than you might think.  Those products that moisturize our hands, keep our hair soft and our sheets silky are made that way because of silicon.  

http://www.chemistry.mcmaster.ca/silicone/

Aired April 17, 2016

  Geologist Ruth Barrett performs exploration and evaluation work for mining and exploration companies.  She has also worked in gold exploration...she has worked at the Johnson Space Center studying lunar rocks and meteorites...she is a pilot, a member of the 99s, and had previously served in the Civil Air Patrol.  She joins us to talk about her varied career and about why women CAN have it all - a career and family.  Barrett also makes a strong argument as to why women are especially well-suited for careers in science and engineering.

Aired April 10, 2016

https://pasquali.rice.edu/

  Materials scientists are researching fascinating materials that can revolutionize technology. Matteo Pasquali, Professor of Chemistry and Biomolecular Engineering & Chemistry at Rice University, tells us about graphene - a single layer of carbon atoms that can conduct electricity faster than most metals, and it is thin enough that it can even be sewn into clothing as a fiber to create wearable tech! Graphene can also be "painted" on surfaces, and may eventually help repair damaged tissue with no risk of scarring or rejection. https://pasquali.rice.edu/ Aired April 3, 2016

University of Massachusetts Medical School

  Dr. Jean King has a number of impressive titles: Associate Provost for Biomedical Science Research...Professor of Psychiatry, Radiology and Neurology...and Director, Center for Comparative NeuroImaging, University of Massachusetts Medical School.  She talks with us about neuroimaging, which involves looking at the chemistry of the brain in a non-invasive manner.  Research includes having subjects perform specific tasks and performing no tasks at all.  The brain of someone with a psychiatric or neurological disorder will react differently to these experiments than those with no disorder.

Plus, Dr. King will share with us her views on how women can become successful scientists while still raising a family, and why diversity is key in scientific research.

Aired March 27, 2016

    Cisplatin is a commonly used cancer drug, but use its use in children sometimes leads to permanent hearing loss.  Tim Hanson, Professor of Statistics, Department of Statistics, University of South Carolina, joins us to tell us how statistics is making it possible for health professionals to determine whether the drugs are indeed harmful and whether alternative treatment is preferable for these young patients.

Aired March 20, 2016

  

  Susan Richardson is the Arthur Sease Williams Professor of Chemistry and Environmental Science in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of  South Carolina.  Richardson studies drinking water quality.  The water that we drink is treated with agents that kill harmful pathogens, but those agents will often oxidize with organic matter to transform into equally-harmful Disinfection Byproducts (DBPs).  Richardson will discuss the research that goes into controlling these DBPs in our drinking water.

Aired March 13, 2016

Discovery Institute

  Stephen C. Meyer is director of the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture in Seattle.   A former geophysicist and college professor, he has authored the New York Times best seller 'Darwin’s Doubt: The Explosive Origin of Animal Life and the Case for Intelligent Design' (HarperOne, 2013), as well as 'Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design' (HarperOne, 2009).  He joins us on the next Science Studio to talk with Keith Pannell and guest co-host Ricardo Bernal to talk about why he believes Intelligent Design best explains the complexity of life over Darwin’s theory of evolution.  

http://www.discovery.org

Aired March 6, 2016

  Vanadium is a little-known chemical element and a transition metal.  It is also an element that's currently being tested for use in anti-diabetic agents.  Vanadium compounds are shown in clinical trials to normalize blood glucose levels.  Debbie Crans, a Professor of Chemistry at Colorado State University, will join us to tell us more about this common element which can be found in soils, seeds, water, and even your mug of beer.

Aired Feb. 28, 2016

UCLA

  Sarah H. Tolbert is Professor of Chemistry and Materials Science at the University of California, Los Angeles.  She joins us to tell us about her research into building nanoscale materials for use in rapidly-charging batteries.  Most cell phone batteries take a few hours to charge.  Electric vehicles also take several hours to charge.  Tolbert's research would make it easier for ions to travel through these nano-porous networks to deliver a charge at a significantly faster rate.

http://tolbert.chem.ucla.edu/

Aired Feb. 21, 2016

  In a rebroadcast from a June 2011 interview, host Keith Pannell interviews Barry Marrs, Chief Technical Officer with Athena Biotechnologies Inc.  Marrs describes the fascinating ways bacteria reproduce, and how the cost of ethanol can be significantly cut by using bacteria that function under higher temperatures.

Aired Feb 14, 2016

NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

  Dr. Jim Murphy, Associate Professor in New Mexico State University's Astronomy Department will give us a primer on Mars.  What is the composition of the Martian atmosphere, and how do scientists determine that information?  Martian weather has many similarities with Earth's weather: seasons, dust storms, and weather systems.  The Martian day is also very similar to Earth's 24-hour cycle.

Aired Feb. 7, 2016

NASA

  Science Studio continues its exploration of Science Magazine's Top Scientific Breakthroughs of 2015.

Reta Beebe of the New Mexico State University Astronomy Department joins us to tell us about the amazing discoveries the New Horizons spacecraft made about Pluto's nitrogen atmosphere.

Stephen Pate of the NMSU Physics Department untangles Quantum Entanglement, and why particles on an atomic level and smaller appear to follow a different law than Newton's laws of physics.

Aired Jan. 31, 2016

  Science Magazine recently published the Top Scientific Breakthroughs of 2015, and on this program we'll explore 2 of these breakthroughs.

Kyle Johnson of the UTEP Department of Biological Sciences tells us about the development of an Ebola vaccine which could potentially halt the spread of this deadly virus.  The vaccine actually employs the use of another virus to launch an Ebola protein that our immune systems can fight.  This strategy was previously used for small pox.

Aaron Velasco of UTEP's Department of Geological Sciences tells us about the discovery that magma plumes can go as deep down as the core-mantle boundary of the Earth...where the outer liquid core intersects with the rock mantle.

http://www.sciencemag.org

Aired Jan. 24, 2016

Val Altounian, Science Magazine

  Science Magazine recently reported on the Top Scientific Breakthroughs of 2015, and on this episode of Science Studio, we'll learn about two of them: CRISPR Gene Editing Technology, and Reproducibility in Psychology.

Charlotte Vines and Colin Bill of the UTEP Department of Biological Sciences, tell us how CRISPR allows scientists to deliberately edit DNA to stop the expression of a particular protein.  Drs. Vines and Bill are attempting to use this technology to knock out a gene that sends T-cell leukemias into the brains of children where they are virtually undetectable and untreatable with chemotherapy.

Dr. Lawrence Cohn of the UTEP Psychology Department explains the variability of research findings in the field of psychology.  Various research groups often try to replicate the same study, yet there is much variability in their findings.  Dr. Cohn explores the causes behind the variability.

http://www.sciencemag.org

Aired Jan. 17, 2016.

Daniel Dubois/Vanderbilt University

  Robert Scherrer is Professor and Chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Vanderbilt University.  He joins us to talk about cosmology, dark energy, and dark matter.  We'll also take a brief foray into quantum entanglement.  Read his blog at http://www.cosmicyarns.com/, and read his Wall Street Journal editorial "How to Raise a Scientist in the Xbox Age" at http://www.wsj.com/articles/how-to-raise-a-scientist-in-the-xbox-age-1450137781.

Aired Jan. 10, 2016

    Jon Chorover is Professor and Department Head at the Department of Soil, Water, and Environmental Science at the University of Arizona.  He joins us to tell us about the important research he does into discovering how pollutants such as lead find their way into the soil and are released into the environment, whether as dust particles or into our water systems.  Mine tailings are waste materials from hard-rock mining, and Chorover is researching phytostabilization, which allows for a vegetative "cap" on these tailings, keeping them "trapped" in the soil.

Aired Jan. 3, 2016

University of Arizona

  Gregg Garfin is an associate professor in climate, natural resources and policy in the University of Arizona’s School of Natural Resources and the Environment.  He joins us to tell us about the projections for a significantly warmer climate in the Southwestern United States in the next century.  He also explains why a monsoon doesn’t necessarily have to do with precipitation, and how an especially strong El Niño weather system can actually affect the Earth’s rotation.

Aired Dec. 27, 2015

SMU

  Brian Zoltowski is an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Southern Methodist University.  On this program he talks about his interest in circadian rhythms, the natural 24-hour "clock" that governs biological processes in organisms as vast as plants, insects, and humans.  Zoltowski joins us to discuss how circadian rhythms are driven by light - photochemistry - and how even with an absence of light, organisms can still work on a 24-hour system.

Aired Dec. 20, 2015

  Ryan Davison is the Manager of Advocacy at the American Chemical Society (ACS).  In certain circles, he could be considered a lobbyist.  Davison advocates in Washington, D.C., for more basic, fundamental scientific research.  The ACS is the world's largest scientific society, and much of the research done by many scientists can take years...often too long a period of time for many members of Congress to consider worth investing in.

Aired Dec. 13, 2015

  John Peterson is a professor of Anthropology, Assistant Vice President for Graduate Studies, Research & Sponsored Programs at the University of Guam.  He joins us to talk about how his career took him from UTEP to the Philippines, to Hawaii, and to Guam.  Peterson gives us a brief background on Guam, and he explains how rising & falling sea levels have had cultural implications over the centuries on islands in the Pacific.

Aired Dec. 6, 2015

JONATHAN COHEN, Binghamton University Magazine

  M. Stanley Whittingham is a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Materials Science and Engineering at SUNY Binghamton.  Whittingham was a pioneer in the research and development of the lithium battery, which are used to power everything from laptops to tablets to smartphones to electrical medical devices.  He talks about why lithium batteries are so efficient, and why they are sometimes subject to rupture, overheating, or even exploding.

Aired Nov. 29, 2015.

Amity Wilczek

  Frank Wilczek is a theoretical physicist, the Herman Feshbach Professor of Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a Nobel Laureate.  Wilczek will explain how his unrelenting research as a graduate student at Princeton in 1973 led to a Nobel Prize in Physics in 2004.   Wilczek, along with David Gross and H. David Politzer, won the Nobel Prize for their discovery of asymptotic freedom in the theory of strong interaction.  Wilczek will break down for us the forces of nature, including the strong forces that hold nuclei together, and the weak forces that have to do with radioactive decay.  http://frankwilczek.com/

Aired Nov 22, 2015

Northeastern University

  Craig Ferris is a professor in the College of Science, Department of Pharmaceutical Science, Northeastern University.  He joins us on Science Studio to talk about the use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in animal models to study degenerative brain diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.  This kind of imaging can detect biomarkers in the brain prior to any symptoms appearing in the subject.

Aired Nov. 15, 2015.

 

   Jeff Sloan of the United States Geological Survey (USGS) is the UAS (Unmanned Aircraft Systems) Project Lead.  Unmanned Aircraft Systems are more widely known as drones.  The USGS has been using drones for a variety of reasons, including bird census counts, elk surveys, looking for dinosaur prints at White Sands National Monument, and much more.  Keith and Jeff have a not-so-secret desire to map golf courses...

Aired Nov 8, 2015.

USC Dornsife, Peter Zhaoyu Zhou

  Larry Swanson is the Milo Don and Lucille Appleman Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Southern California, Neurobiology Section.  He joins us to talk about connectomes, the circuitry of the brain, and how this area of research began with the unraveling of the human genome.  Computers are having a revolutionary impact on discovering on how the brain works and how different types of dementia affect the brain. 

Aired Nov. 1, 2015

cibercuba.com

  Luis Alberto Montero-Cabrera is a theoretical scientist from the Universidad de La Habana in Cuba.  On this program (which was recorded on the day the U.S. raised an American flag at its new embassy in Havana), Montero-Cabrera explains how Cuba was forced to become self-sufficient in the sciences because of the embargo, and how the fall of the Soviet Union negatively affected the nation.  He also talks about how ancient IBM computer clones helped him stay on top of his research in past decades.  And, Montero-Cabrera explains his interest in researching the retinal molecule, which absorbs light in our eyes.

Aired Oct. 25, 2015.

Photos © 2011 Steven Foster

  Steven Foster is an author, photographer, consultant, and herbalist who has over 4 decades worth of experience in the herbal field.  Foster's books include A Desk Reference to Nature's Medicine, A Field Guide to Western Medicinal Plants & Herbs, and 101 Medicinal Herbs.  Foster joins us on Science Studio to talk about his early interest in medicinal plants, dietary supplements, and about the uncertainty of the effectiveness of such supplements.  http://www.stevenfoster.com/

Aired Oct. 18, 2015.

Harvard Medical School, Kishony Lab

 

   Michael Baym is a Research Fellow in Systems Biology at the Kishony Lab in Harvard Medical School, and he joins us to talk about the evolution and drug-resistance of bacteria.  His research involves using combinations of antibiotics to force and possibly control behaviors of bacteria.  With his background in mathematics, Baym is able to employ algorithms to gain insight from this research.  http://kishony.med.harvard.edu/

Aired Oct. 11, 2015.

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