Risky Business: The far-reaching consequences of slashing the orphan drug tax credit

by Christopher Gerry The routes that lead to a career in biomedicine are as diverse as they are plentiful, but one of my colleagues has taken a particularly unorthodox path. Sonia had just graduated from law school when she learned of a “typo” in her genetic code that will almost certainly induce a fatal and untreatable brain disorder called prion disease. She and her husband, … Continue reading Risky Business: The far-reaching consequences of slashing the orphan drug tax credit

Vaccination: More than just your health

by Madeleine Jennewein figures by Rebecca Clements Vaccines have dramatically increased life expectancy over the last 100 years, radically reshaping our communities, our economy, and the way we live our lives. As vaccination has become more widespread, the memory of the devastating impacts of infectious disease has faded, and the diseases that vaccines guard against seem less threatening. Misinformation and a lack of understanding about … Continue reading Vaccination: More than just your health

Tax Reform Punches Down

by Christopher Gerry Graduate school teaches you to accept how much you don’t know. Being a liberal arts college graduate and a current Ph.D. student in chemistry, I know—and gratefully accept—that I’m not an expert in federal tax law. So I initially didn’t imagine that I’d be writing about the tax reform bill that was passed through the House of Representatives earlier this month; that’s … Continue reading Tax Reform Punches Down

Hold Artificial Intelligence Accountable

by Chamith Fonseka figures by Rebecca Senft The concept of artificial intelligence (AI) tends to evoke images of self-aware computers and robots – Knight Rider, Wall-E, the Terminator – but for the most part, this technology is, for now, restricted to fiction and film. In that time, however, artificial intelligence has already become embedded in everyday life, playing a role in everything from online shopping … Continue reading Hold Artificial Intelligence Accountable

The right reasons for mistrusting science

by Samantha Wong figures by Daniel Utter “Global warming is based on faulty science and manipulated data which is proven by the emails that were leaked.” Alarming words from the most powerful man in the USA, don’t you think? Unfortunately, a Pew Research report revealed that the American public has increasingly echoed this sort of scientific mistrust over the last 5 years. Some part of … Continue reading The right reasons for mistrusting science

Why Scientists Need to be Better Communicators

by Marina Watanabe I once attended a lecture by a famed physicist, and left convinced that physics was the biggest sham in the universe (or multiverse, if you believe him). At one point, the professor answered an audience member’s question by “clarifying” that if you were on the inside (of what?!) looking out (to where?!), time was time. However, if you were on the outside … Continue reading Why Scientists Need to be Better Communicators

Mixed Emotions on the March for Science and the Consequences of Getting it Wrong

by Dana Boebinger figures by Tito Adhikary I’ve had many conversations over the past several weeks – with scientists and non-scientists alike – about the possible outcomes of this weekend’s March for Science. Some people are excited about this opportunity to make a strong show of support for scientific research and evidence-based policymaking. Others don’t think a march is necessary. But in the days leading … Continue reading Mixed Emotions on the March for Science and the Consequences of Getting it Wrong

How Science and Genetics are Reshaping the Race Debate of the 21st Century

by Vivian Chou figures by Daniel Utter Donald Trump’s election as the 45th President of the United States has been marked by the brewing storms of racial conflicts. A rise in racial incidents ensued in the immediate aftermath of Trump’s victory in November 2016. Since the beginning of 2017, over 100 bomb threats have been made against Jewish community centers and schools. Trump’s travel ban, signed in … Continue reading How Science and Genetics are Reshaping the Race Debate of the 21st Century

Scientists: Why they should run for office and why we should vote for them

by Garrett Dunlap figures by Daniel Utter Two. Two is the number of current members of Congress that hold PhDs in a STEM field. Representative Bill Foster of Illinois holds a PhD in physics and Representative Jerry McNerney of California holds a PhD in math. In comparison, this is dwarfed by the number of congressmembers with law degrees (222) and those holding just high school … Continue reading Scientists: Why they should run for office and why we should vote for them

How to be a Socially Conscious Scientist

by Katherine Wu My freshman year of college, I was given a choice: techie or fuzzy? And, before you ask, no, it wasn’t about creepy role-play. It was worse: my major. At Stanford, there were two kinds of people: those who studied the technical, hard science, and mathematics-based majors were “techie,” and those pursuing the humanities, arts, and social sciences were “fuzzy.” I chose biology … Continue reading How to be a Socially Conscious Scientist