What Does a Public Health Scientist Do?

How do you introduce yourself, scientifically?  My name is Daniel Arias and I am a public health scientist specializing in health systems and health financing. I think the inclusion of ‘scientist’ after public health is valuable—our work is grounded in theory, relies on systematic observation of the world, and is conducted with methodological rigor, yet many researchers who work in public health have to push … Continue reading What Does a Public Health Scientist Do?

What Does a Geomicrobiologist Do?

How do you introduce yourself, scientifically?  My name is Brandon Enalls and I am a geomicrobiologist. I’m interested in how energy moves between geological and biological processes in several different environments on Earth. More specifically I’m interested in microbes, which are microscopic organisms like bacteria, living at deep sea hydrothermal vents (Figure 1).  I study microbes that can conduct electricity, taking electrons from minerals like … Continue reading What Does a Geomicrobiologist Do?

What Does a Cognitive Neuroscientist Do?

How do you introduce yourself, scientifically?  My name is Dana Boebinger, and I’m an auditory cognitive neuroscientist. I study how the brain understands sound; I specifically study humans, and how the brain understands the kinds of sounds that are particularly relevant for humans, like speech and music.  What are the implications or broader impacts of your work?  I do basic science, which aims to advance fundamental … Continue reading What Does a Cognitive Neuroscientist Do?

What Does an Evolutionary Biologist Do?

How do you introduce yourself, scientifically? My name is Michael Miyagi, and I’m an evolutionary biologist, which means that I study how the process of evolution works and how that process has generated the incredible biodiversity that we have today. More specifically, I’m a theoretical population geneticist. Population genetics is how we think about evolution and variation across entire populations. In other words, how individuals … Continue reading What Does an Evolutionary Biologist Do?

Racism and Exploitation in Phase I Clinical Trials

By Mary May Many people regard participating in clinical trials as an altruistic act that could help save lives. Most people, however, are unaware of who actually participates in the earliest stage of trials performed in humans. The healthy people who participate in Phase I clinical trials for the majority of drugs in the United States are most likely low income, Black or Hispanic, and … Continue reading Racism and Exploitation in Phase I Clinical Trials

Racial Disparities in COVID-19

by Wei Lifigures by Olivia Foster Rhoades The United States has the highest number COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world, with over six million confirmed cases and over 189,000 total deaths in the country as of September 9, 2020. Within the US, the pandemic is impacting racial groups differently, disproportionately affecting Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities. As the country is slowly … Continue reading Racial Disparities in COVID-19

Racism, Toxic Stress, and Education Policy

by Valentina Lagomarsinofigures by Olivia K. Foster Rhoades Brain development takes a long time. In fact, the human brain isn’t considered fully developed until after 25 years of life! To ultimately develop a healthy brain architecture, the foundation has to be sturdy. Scientists have found that events that happen during childhood are the most indicative of how one’s brain develops. There are many childhood events … Continue reading Racism, Toxic Stress, and Education Policy

Racial Discrimination in Face Recognition Technology

By Alex Najibi We unlock our iPhones with a glance and wonder how Facebook knew to tag us in that photo. But face recognition, the technology behind these features, is more than just a gimmick. It is employed for law enforcement surveillance, airport passenger screening, and employment and housing decisions. Despite widespread adoption, face recognition was recently banned for use by police and local agencies … Continue reading Racial Discrimination in Face Recognition Technology

It’s Worth a Shot: Preventing vaccine-preventable diseases during the COVID-19 pandemic

by Mahaa Ahmedfigures by Tal Scully The COVID-19 pandemic has brought many corners of the world to a standstill. While researchers and scientists race to develop and distribute a vaccine, many places are still subject to a host of restrictions on daily life designed to keep people safe. Unfortunately, this may actually lead to endangerment of children’s health in other critical ways. More than just … Continue reading It’s Worth a Shot: Preventing vaccine-preventable diseases during the COVID-19 pandemic

An Introduction to Ribosomes: Nature’s busiest molecular machines

by Francesca Tomasifigures by Jovana Andrejevic  Right now, the world is eagerly awaiting clinical trial data for two candidate COVID-19 vaccines known as mRNA vaccines. mRNA stands for “messenger RNA,” referring to the molecule that the vaccine delivers to our bodies. Once the vaccine enters our cells, the mRNA tells them exactly how to build a piece of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The vaccine itself cannot … Continue reading An Introduction to Ribosomes: Nature’s busiest molecular machines