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Nature Podcast

Podcast Nature Podcast
Podcast Nature Podcast

Nature Podcast


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  • Virtual library of LSD-like drugs could reveal new antidepressants
    In this episode:00:46 A virtual chemical library uncovers potential antidepressantsCertain psychedelic drugs are of interest to researchers due to their promising antidepressant effects. To help speed up the discovery of molecules with useful properties, researchers have built a virtual library of 75 million compounds related to these drugs. This approach yielded two molecules that showed antidepressant properties in mice, but without the hallucinogenic activity of psychedelic drugs.Research article: Kaplan et al.Research Briefing: Bespoke library docking for 5-HT2A receptor agonists with antidepressant activity08:25 Research HighlightsResearch suggests that ancient artificial island settlements were hubs of activity for society’s elite, and astronomers spot possibly the most luminous star ever observed.Research Highlight: Ancient DNA suggests that artificial islands were party spots for the eliteResearch Highlight: Scientists face down ‘Godzilla’, the most luminous star known10:42 Nobel NewsFlora Graham from the Nature Briefing joins us to talk about the winners of this year’s Nobel Prizes.Nature News: Geneticist who unmasked lives of ancient humans wins medicine NobelNature News: ‘Spooky’ quantum-entanglement experiments win physics NobelNature News: Chemists who invented revolutionary 'click' reactions win NobelEnter Nature’s ‘Scientist at Work’ photo competition, full details hereSubscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
  • Nature's Take: How the war in Ukraine is impacting science
    The ongoing war in Ukraine has devastated the global economy, rocked geopolitics, killed thousands of people and displaced millions. Science too has been affected and the impacts on research are being felt more widely than just in Ukraine and Russia.In this episode of Nature's Takes we discuss the war's impact on publishing, international collaborations, climate change and energy, and the destructive impacts on scientists themselves. And as the war continues, we consider the future of science in the face of a new political climate. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
  • Audio long read: What scientists have learnt from COVID lockdowns
    At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries introduced strict lockdowns to help prevent spread of the disease. Since then, researchers have been studying the effects of these measures to help inform responses to future crises.Conclusions suggest that countries that acted swiftly to bring in strict measures did best at preserving lives and their economies, but analysing the competing costs and benefits of lockdowns has been tough, as this work often comes down not to scientific calculations, but value judgements.This is an audio version of our Feature: What scientists have learnt from COVID lockdowns Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
  • A trove of ancient fish fossils helps trace the origin of jaws
    In this episode:00:45 Piecing together the early history of jawed vertebratesA wealth of fossils discovered in southern China shed new light onto the diversity of jawed and jawless fish during the Silurian period, over 400 million years ago. Nature editor Henry Gee explains the finds and what they mean for the history of jawed vertebrates like us.Research article: Zhu et al.Research article: Gai et al.Research article: Andreev et al.Research article: Andreev et al.News and Views: Fossils reveal the deep roots of jawed vertebrates09:09 Research HighlightsMice studies help explain why some people with a rare genetic condition have heightened musical abilities, and high-resolution images reveal how bees build honeycomb.Research Highlight: How a missing gene leads to super-sensitivity to soundResearch Highlight: X-rays reveal how bees achieve an engineering marvel: the honeycomb11:27 A lack of evidence in transgender policy makingAround the world, many laws are being proposed – and passed – regarding the rights of transgender people to participate in various aspects of society. We talk to Paisley Currah, who has written a World View for Nature arguing that these policies are frequently not backed up by data, and that policy affecting trans people’s lives needs to take a more evidence-based approach.World View: To set transgender policy, look to the evidenceWatch our video about research trying to crack the nature of consciousness by dosing volunteers with psychedelic drugs and scanning their brains.Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
  • Huge dataset shows 80% of US professors come from just 20% of institutions
    00:46 Inequalities in US faculty hiringIn the US, where a person gained their PhD can have an outsized influence on their future career. Now, using a decade worth of data, researchers have shown there are stark inequalities in the hiring process, with 80% of US faculty trained at just 20% of institutions.Research article: Wapman et al.09:01 Research HighlightsHow wildlife can influence chocolate production, and the large planets captured by huge stars.Research Highlight: A chocoholic’s best friends are the birds and the batsResearch Highlight: Giant stars turn to theft to snag jumbo planets11:42 Briefing ChatWe discuss some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This time, what science says about grieving for a public figure, and why suburban Australians are sharing increasingly sophisticated measures to prevent cockatoos from opening wheelie bins.Nature News: Millions are mourning the Queen — what’s the science behind public grief?The Guardian: ‘Interspecies innovation arms race’: cockatoos and humans at war over wheelie bin raidsSubscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.

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