What it Takes to Make a Brain: Cellular diversity in cortical development

by Olubusola Olukoyafigures by Corena Loeb Our ability to take in information from the world around us, make inferences, and execute appropriate reactions is generated by our brains. The brain, which weighs about 1.5 kilograms in the average adult, takes up 20% of our body’s energy expenditure to power a network of roughly 86 billion cells. Ongoing research in the field of neuroscience utilizes various … Continue reading What it Takes to Make a Brain: Cellular diversity in cortical development

Dissecting cancer complexity across space and time

by Jackson Weirfigures by Jasmin Joseph-Chazan Why is cancer so difficult to cure? Why do available treatments only help a subset of patients? Why are some cancers more aggressive than others? These are questions that clinicians, scientists, and the public have pondered for generations. As it turns out, the answers are complicated because cancer biology is complicated. Luckily, new tools and technologies are helping us … Continue reading Dissecting cancer complexity across space and time

Solving Scientific Problems by Asking Diverse Questions

by Piyush Nandafigures by Shreya Mantri Gravity has been apparent for thousands of years: Aristotle, for example, proposed that objects fall to settle into their natural place in 4th century BC. But it was not until around 1900, when Issac Newton explained gravity using mathematical equations, that we really understood the phenomenon. Why didn’t thinkers before Newton think about gravity the way he did? Scientific … Continue reading Solving Scientific Problems by Asking Diverse Questions

Cooperation vs. Competition: Microbiome Diversity and Interactions

by Wei Lifigures by MacKenzie Mauger Microbial communities, known as microbiomes, are everywhere—on our bodies, in our food, and in the environment—and they are as important as they are prevalent. The gut microbiome interacts with our body and influences our health, the bacteria composition in cheese and other fermented products shapes their taste, and the bacteria in the soil helps plants grow faster.  These microbial … Continue reading Cooperation vs. Competition: Microbiome Diversity and Interactions

Biodiversity Loss Can Increase the Spread of Zoonotic Diseases

by Sanjana Kulkarni SARS-CoV-2 may have spread to humans from an animal host, but it is not the only disease-causing agent (i.e. pathogen) to have done so. Lyme disease, Ebola virus, influenza, HIV, the plague, and rabies virus are just some examples of zoonotic diseases, meaning that they originated in animals and spread (i.e spilled over) to humans.  Many human activities, such as deforestation and … Continue reading Biodiversity Loss Can Increase the Spread of Zoonotic Diseases

Special Edition: Diversity

The world we live in is full of both seen and unseen wonders, filled with unique human beings, organisms, and communities. From the hundreds and thousands of bacteria that make up the microbiomes we interact with on a daily basis, to the efforts made to conserve and increase biodiversity, to saving endangered species, scientific research has enabled us to uncover and preserve more and more … Continue reading Special Edition: Diversity