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Presentations | Aspen Xchange


There’s been a growing industry effort to explore the use of psychedelics for their medicinal benefits. While much of these efforts have looked to these drugs to treat a range of psychiatric conditions, Eleusis sees a broader potential for them. While the company is pursuing psychedelics as potential treatments for major depressive disorder, it also is developing psychedelic candidate in other indications because of their anti-inflammatory properties. We spoke to Shlomi Raz, CEO of Eleusis, about of the case for psychedelics as treatments for inflammatory conditions, how they work, and what challenges the development of these drugs pose.
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On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Chuck Nice, and cosmochemist and author Dr. Natalie Starkey answer fan-submitted Cosmic Queries about ‘Oumuamua, the first detected interstellar object that passed through the solar system. To start, Chuck wonders why we even study space rocks if they’re all the “same.” Natalie tells us how studying space rocks helps us understand our solar system when studying Earth only tells us so much. You’ll learn why asteroids might be the leftover building blocks from planets. We ponder what might be hiding in the Oort Cloud and why ‘Oumuamua is basically an interstellar vagabond. 
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First, we discuss the implications of Johnson & Johnson’s any-day-now data on a one-shot vaccine for Covid-19. Then, Kevin Davies, executive editor of the CRISPR Journal, joins us to talk about the strange boom in genome editing stocks and the future of the revolutionary technology. Finally, we talk to Megan Ranney, an emergency room physician and Brown University professor, about the challenges of Covid-19 science communication.
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If you think Necco Wafers are the most disgusting candy on the planet, you are not alone. But it turns out there’s a rich history behind those chalky discs that make them fascinating, if horrible. 
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Regulatory T cell therapies have been pursued as treatment for cancers, but Sonoma Biotherapeutics believes these cells can be harnessed to delivery lasting and potential curative treatments for autoimmune and degenerative diseases. We spoke to Jeff Bluestone, CEO of Sonoma, about regulatory T cell therapies, why they may have broad application in a range of conditions, and what challenges will need to be overcome to usher in an area of cell therapies beyond cancer.
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Dr. Javitt has played leadership roles in seven successful healthcare IT and biopharma startups with public exits. He has additionally led drug-development engagements for Merck, Allergan, Pharmacia, Novartis, and Pfizer. He was appointed to healthcare leadership roles under Presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Clinton, and George W. Bush. In the latter role he was commissioned to lead the White House policy for universal adoption of Health IT and establishment of the Office of the National Coordinator. He is a graduate of Princeton University, Cornell University Medical College, Harvard School of Public Health, the Wills Eye Hospital, and Johns Hopkins Medical School. 
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Spanning centuries of human history, the iconic bonsai tree is a widely recognized example of Japanese mastery. Each miniature tree speaks to the beauty of cultivated nature and the immutability of all things. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the history of bonsai, its cultural meaning and the underlying science.
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What are the key considerations when designing your process for the Protein A capture step? Gunnar Malmquist shares the key parameters for both fed-batch and perfusion upstream processes.
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Their fossils date back 450 million years and their copper-rich blue blood continues to benefit various medical applications. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the science and history of horseshoe crabs.
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David Solbach, M.Sc., Scientific Communications Manager at Eppendorf AG BioProcess Center, recently spoke with BioPharm International about the advantages of changing from shake flasks to stirred-tank bioreactors, the problems that can occur, and aspects to consider to ensure proper cell growth.
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In this episode, guest Kevin Bittorf, founder of the Advancing Drug Development Forum and Don Dickerson sat down with host Alok Tayi to discuss trends in modern manufacturing and pharmaceutical environments. Kevin Bittorf is an accomplished Senior Executive and Consultant with demonstrated success and a proven track record in pharmaceutical development, technical Innovation, and IoT.
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The lock and key are such a central part of modern life, both technologically and metaphorically, but when and how did this technological advancement take place? In this Invention-themed episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe dive into the ancient history of security technology.
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Andy Protter, PhD. joined Auransa in January 2017 as Chief Scientific Officer with 35 years of pharmaceutical industry research and development experience. At Auransa, Dr. Protter has led preclinical R&D which uses AI technology to discover novel drug candidates. Auransa’s lead project for hepatocellular carcinoma has completed all IND-supporting preclinical safety studies. Prior to joining Auransa, Dr. Protter was a Vice President at Medivation where he was responsible for preclinical pharmacology and toxicology of Enzalutamide, a prostate cancer drug that was approved by the FDA.
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It was America's most famous family feud, but the history of the Hatfields vs the McCoys is fraught with bias and inaccuracies. Dig into a disagreement in 19th-century Appalachia that became a very big deal around the world, in this classic episode.
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There are many reasons why the sharing of medical data that could be used to gain new insight into diseases can be hampered. Privacy concern, regulatory burdens, and the need to manage security risks are among the significant impediments. Syntegra believes it can solve these problems through its artificial intelligence technology that creates synthetic datasets designed to mirror the statistical properties of real datasets while removing all links to the original patients behind the data. We spoke to Michael Lesh, co-founder and CEO of Syntegra, about the obstacles to data-sharing, how synthetic datasets are developed, and why they might accelerate the pace and lower the cost of research.
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Dr. Matthew Bio is President & CEO at Snapdragon Chemistry. Matthew began his career in chemistry more than 20 years ago developing continuous processes for the manufacture and purification of acrylates at the former Rohm & Haas company. Matthew then moved to Columbia University and earned a PhD in Chemistry. Upon graduating, Matthew returned to industry as a process development chemist at Merck Research Laboratories. In 2006 Matthew moved to Amgen where he worked on the development of both batch and continuous processes, and drove innovation in technologies for the manufacture of synthetic – biologic hybrid molecules. In 2015, Matthew joined Snapdragon Chemistry, Inc., a contract development firm specialized in the design of continuous manufacturing technology. 
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Grohl spoke to All Things Considered host Melissa Block about the making of the film, Sound City: Reel to Reel, which serves as a love letter to both a recording environment and the human element of music in the digital age.
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Alexander Titus is the Founder of Bioeconomy.XYZ and the Chief Strategy Officer (CSO) at the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute (ARMI), where his career focuses on the intersection of technology and public benefit, with experience spanning the private and public sectors, as well as non-profits and academia.
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Rabies may have gotten a lot of attention in the U.S. in the 70s and 80s, but it's still an issue in developing countries. Learn all about this nasty virus in this classic episode. 
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While checkpoint inhibitors represent a class of promising new therapies to treat cancer, the efficacy of these immunotherapies have been limited because of the ability of cancers to develop resistance. In part, that’s because of the multiple mechanisms cancers have to evade the immune system. Compugen is using a computational discovery platform to identify proteins and pathways that drive immune resistance mechanisms to checkpoint inhibitors. We spoke to Anat Cohen-Dayag, CEO of Compugen, about the company’s discovery platform, its efforts to develop new treatments that address patients who don’t respond to current checkpoint inhibitors, and its clinical pipeline in development.
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What was science like before the shift to big data technology? How did biologists learn about cells before we could do high throughput gene analysis? What can we learn about how to problem solve from those who helped get us to where we are today? In this Science Commune episode, Dr. Rik Derynck helps us answer those questions by sharing his stories as a young scientist in the “primitive” early days of cell biology.
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When you think Middle Ages, does scientific advancement pop into your head? In this episode of StarTalk Radio, they explore the science and history of medieval times as Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Matt Kirshen answer fan-submitted Cosmic Queries with Seb Falk, Cambridge Historian of Science and author of The Light Ages: The Surprising Story of Medieval Science.
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Baseball Historian presents - Babe Ruth. George Herman Ruth, also popularly known as "Babe", "The Bambino", and "The Sultan of Swat", was an American Major League baseball player from 1914-1935. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest baseball players in history. Many polls place him as the number one player of all time.
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The raging pandemic defined 2020, but it was a big year for biotech as the industry saw soaring stocks, record investment, and an impressive number of new drug approvals despite disruptions from COVID-19. We continue our annual tradition of sitting down with Adam Feuerstein, senior writer for Stat and the publication’s national biotech columnist, to discuss the year that was in biotech, the trends that drove the numbers, and what’s ahead in 2021.
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There are many approved or experimental therapies in development for a range of indications that, because of their mechanisms of action, have been pursued as potential therapies to treat patients with COVID-19. One of the most advanced candidates in this category is lenzilumab, an experimental monoclonal antibody that’s in development for certain cancers and other conditions. The antibody has the potential to neutralize a cytokine known as GM-CSF, which can trigger a severe immune reaction and cause hyperinflammation as a result of a cytokine storm. It is this immune response that underlies the most serious cases of COVID-19 virus. We spoke to Cameron Durrant, chairman and CEO of Humanigen, about lenzilumab, how it was recognized as a potential treatment for COVID-19, and the path forward for the therapy.
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According to Russian folklore, ancient, beastial spirits guard the depths of the forest, raging with each other and punishing any human who might break the law of the forest.
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A gatekeeper of cellular metabolism known as mTORC1 underlies a wide range of age-related diseases. Navitor Pharmaceuticals is developing therapies that can modulate the mTORC1 complex and allow for a new approach to treating a wide range of diseases including autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease and major depressive disorders. We spoke to Tom Hughes, president and CEO of Navitor, about mTORC1, the company’s platform technology, and why it has implications for a wide range of seemingly unrelated conditions.
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During qualifying for the 1990 World Cup, Chile’s national team felt that it needed to be “more bandits than the bandits.” Driven by an intense desire to eliminate rival Brazil, goalkeeper Roberto “Condor” Rojas pushed his team past the brink. Reported by Jody Avirgan.
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One of the challenges of conducting clinical trials is finding enough patient to include in a control arm of a study. This can slow the pace of drug development and increase its costs. Unlearn.AI is seeking to change that by using its artificial intelligence platform to create digital twins of trial participants that can serve as control arms in studies. We spoke to Charles Fisher, founder and CEO of Unlearn, about the concept of digital twins, the potential to accelerate clinical trials with their use, and why the company is focusing on the area of complex neurologic diseases.
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Whether it is cells engineered to provide therapeutic benefits or biomanufacturing processes to replace energy-intensive and toxic chemical byproducts of industrial manufacturing, getting the right cell for the job is essential. Berkeley Lights has developed platform technologies that allow researchers to rapidly screen large numbers of cells and analyze them to identify the best cells for their purposes. We spoke to Eric Hobbs, CEO of Berkeley Lights, about the company’s platform technology, how it works, and how it can help accelerate the emergence of the new bioeconomy.
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Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian and writer Sara Pascoe, biological anthropologist Alice Roberts and space archaeologist Sarah Parcak. They look at how archaeology today looks far more Star Wars than Indiana Jones, as an archaeologist's list of kit can now include satellites and lasers. They discover how searching for clues from space has led to the discovery of several ancient lost Egyptian cities and how the study of ancient DNA and artefacts reveals our similarities, not differences, with our ancient forebears.
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While immunotherapies carry great promise for improving outcomes for people with cancer, the ability of cancers to evade the immune system and develop resistance limits their benefits as monotherapies. BioEclipse Therapeutics is developing therapies that marry activated immune cells with oncolytic viruses. Together, they provide a synergistic effect that attacks cancers while providing protection against relapse and recurrence. We spoke to Pamela Contag, co-founder and CEO of BioEclipse, about the ability of cancers to return after treatment with immunotherapies, BioEclipse’s efforts to develop a multi-mechanistic immunotherapy to overcome that challenge, and why its approach may have broad application across a range of cancers.
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For Diana Taurasi and Sue Bird, life in the WNBA paled in comparison to the lavish treatment they received in Russian professional basketball, courtesy of their team owner and benefactor, Shabtai Kalmanovich. Kalmanovich spoiled his stars, showering them with expensive gifts, luxury hotels, and private concerts — but eventually the two stars would have to confront his shadowy past.
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CAR-T therapies are an area of great promise for improving outcomes for cancer patients, but the process of preparing cells taken from a patient and genetically modifying them is time consuming and costly. Exuma Biotech believes it can address the cost and time involved in the preparation of these products with its rapid, point-of-care platform technology. We spoke to Greg Frost, chairman and CEO Exuma Biotech, about CAR-T therapies, how its technology works, and how it is working to cut the cost, and speed the delivery of these immunotherapies to patients.
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The administration of biologics can be challenging because of the sheer volume of product needed to deliver a dose to a patient. It is for this reason that many of these therapies must be infused into a patient, a process that is disruptive, costly, and can take several hours. Halozyme’s Enhanze drug delivery technology has been used by a number of biologics producers to take a therapy that would otherwise need to be infused to allow it to be administered with a subcutaneous injection. We spoke to Renee Tannenbaum, vice president of global partnering for Halozyme , about the company’s Enhanze drug delivery technology, how it works, and the company’s reorganization to focus on partnerships around it..
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The spectacular eruptions of steam and water we call geysers are only the tip of the proverbial iceberg, the result of thousands of years of specific natural conditions and physical processes.
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The emergence of immunotherapies has represented a powerful addition to the cancer arsenal, but frequently they fail to deliver benefits to patients. Understanding what therapies will benefit which patients remains a challenge because of the complexity of the immune system. Immunai is applying artificial intelligence to map the immune system and understand its complexities at a granular level to better understand its role in health and disease. It is applying what it learns to avoid clinical trial failures, improve combinations of immunotherapies, and guiding future therapeutic development in cancer and a broad range of other conditions. We spoke to Danny Wells, scientific founder of Immunai, about the company’s efforts to map the immune system, the challenges in doing so, and how this has the potential to improve drug development.
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Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by a stellar panel of space travellers as they get tips on surviving isolation from a group with a truly unique insight. They are joined by astronauts Helen Sharman, Chris Hadfield, Nicole Stott and Apollo 9's Rusty Schweickart to talk Space X, the future of space travel and how a trip to Mars will be the ultimate test of our ability to survive isolation.
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Much of our success in life comes down to our ability to identify the things we’re passionate about, pursue them with consistency, and keep going when things get tough. Anyone can be passionate and productive for a few days, or when things are easy. But to keep going day after day when the weather gets rough? That’s when we need grit.
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Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by Dr Jane Goodall DBE, comedian Bill Bailey and primatologist Dr Cat Hobaiter to find out what we've learnt in the 60 years since Jane first discovered the chimpanzees of Gombe. From tool use, to language and even to culture, her revolutionary work has transformed our understanding of our great ape cousins, and ourselves. The panel chat about how far our understanding has come in that time, and talk about their own unique close-up experiences of chimpanzees, macaques and baboons, and Bill gets a masterclass in how to speak Chimp from a true expert!
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Zea Biosciences is not a typical contract manufacturing organization. The company uses plants to grow recombinant proteins for biologic therapies. To produce a consistent and predictable product, Zea uses a data-intensive approach and grows plants in clean rooms. The end result is a high-scalable platform that is cost-efficient. We spoke to Jim Wilson, CEO of Zea Biosciences, about the company’s approach to producing biologics in plants, why it is a data-intensive process, and the advantages it provides over traditional biomanufacturing.
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Artificial intelligence is working its way into all aspects of pharmaceutical companies’ operations. While much attention has been given to the role these systems can play in drug discovery, IQVIA sees a significant opportunity to use them to transform the area of regulatory compliance. We spoke to Ronan Brown, senior vice president and head of IQVIA Integrated Global Compliance, about the role AI system can play in improving flagging returns on investment in R&D by allowing regulatory departments to operate more efficiently, breakdown data silos within pharmaceutical companies that hamper performance, and allow companies to focus less on rote work and more on regulatory strategies.
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Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by actor and writer Mark Gatiss, theoretical physicists Carlo Rovelli and Fay Dowker to ask timely questions about time. Is time real, does it exist in the fundamental laws of physics, and if it doesn't, why do we experience the sensation of time passing? They look at the idea of the block universe, where our future is as real as our past, which worryingly leads to Robin's favourite question about free will...is that an illusion too? A timely look at the question of time and hopefully just in time...
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Bacteriophages have long been used to treat infections. These naturally occurring virus are capable of killing bacteria, but each strain of phage is highly specific. Because of their unique mechanism of action, they provide a potential to address the growing threat posed by multidrug-resistant bacteria, but to treat someone, the right phage must be matched to each patient’s infection. Adaptive Phage Therapeutics believes it’s found a way to create phage therapies suited to treat patients with drug-resistant infections by building a bank of targeted and genomically-screened bacteriophage and testing individual patient’s bacterial colony against that to determine the appropriate phage to treat them. We spoke to Greg Merril, co-founder and CEO of Adaptive Phage Therapeutics, about the origins of the company, how its technology works, and the regulatory hurdles for producing customized therapies to treat individual patients.
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There’s science in everything, even when you don’t realize it. On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson sits down with Grammy-award winning composer Eric Whitacre to explore the hidden science of music. Joined by comic co-host Chuck Nice, neuroscientist Heather Berlin, PhD, and mathematician and concert pianist Eugenia Cheng, PhD, we’re investigating how science and mathematics can influence and shape music.
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Have you ever wondered why we do so much scientific testing on fruit flies? Turns out they make better models for humans than you’d think.
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Delivering biologics orally rather than through injection has been an intriguing goal but has proven difficult. Most efforts have focused on finding ways to turn these large protein molecules into formulations where they would not breakdown in the along the digestive tract before they can be absorbed and provide a therapeutic benefit. Rani Therapeutics has taken an unusual tact. Rather than reconceiving the biologic, Rani has reconceived the pill itself. The company has developed what it calls a “robotic” pill that carries the therapeutic to the gut where it injects the drug into the wall of the intestines. We spoke to Mir Imran, chairman and CEO Rani Therapeutics, about how the Rani Pill delivers biologics orally, the technology underlying it, and how the company thinks about the opportunities it will pursue. Learn More

When Fort Knox was built in the 1930s to house America’s gold supply, it was billed as an impenetrable, impregnable, don’t-even-think-of-trying vault. But as the world has moved further away from gold, the stockpile’s lost a bit of its luster. Learn More

How has COVID-19 impacted athletes? We all want sports to continue competition, but at what cost? On this episode of StarTalk Sports Edition, Neil deGrasse Tyson and co-hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice are investigating the impact of COVID-19 on athletes with Dr. Saurabh Rajpal, MD, cardiovascular disease specialist and Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and Dr. James Borchers, MD, Head Team Physician for The Ohio State University and Medical Director for the Athletic Department at OSU. Learn More

For centuries North American tribes have told stories of a hairy wild giant in the wilderness, and once Europeans arrived they claimed to see it, too. Chuck and Josh examine the claims of believers and the rebuttals of skeptics in this evenhanded episode from the SYSK archives. Learn More

If you want to control the masses, control what they read. After all, books are seeds that germinate new points of view. As a result, the struggle against banning books is contentious and continual. Learn More

We keep hearing that a Yellowstone supervolcano could blow at any moment — and possibly wipe us all out. So is Yellowstone overdue for the BIG ONE, and if it happens, how bad could it be? To find out, we talk to paleoecologist Dr. Gill Plunkett, Yellowstone Volcano Observatory Scientist-in-Charge Dr. Mike Poland and Washington resident Christian Jacobsen.  Learn More

The idea of paying Black Americans reparations for slavery has been around for a long time, but it’s starting to get more support than ever. So we ask: If the country does agree to pay up, how do you calculate the bill? And how could the U.S. come up with that kind of cash? To find out, we talk to historian and farmer Leah Penniman, economist Prof. William Darity Jr., public policy scholar Assistant Prof. Naomi Zewde, and Ebony Pickett. Learn More

Have you ever had the feeling that someone or something is watching you? Perhaps you even feel a tingle on the back of your neck. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore this creepy feeling, research into its perception and what it means to meet another being’s gaze. Learn More

Sushi grew out of a way to ferment fish a couple thousand years ago and in the late 20th century began to take the world by storm. What began as traditional, rigid food has come to evolve with new delicious innovations being added to the original canon. Learn More

For at least sixty years a mysterious person (or persons) showed up at Edgar Allen Poe’s grave to toast the master on his birthday. No one ever found out who this legendary figure was. Learn More

Without wind tunnels we may not have airplanes right now. Early aviationists built them to puzzle out how to get and stay airborne. But wind tunnels are used for so much more than flight - from microchips to wind turbines. Learn More

Sweepstakes were invented as marketing tools to drum up interest for a product or sales. But winning them can be fun and as they've proliferated an entire subculture of people who enter hundreds of them a day. Learn More

Are sharks the super-predators we think they are? Or have we been baited with great white lies? To find out, we interviewed shark researchers Dr. Taylor Chapple, Dr. Tricia Meredith and Dr. Chris Pepin-Neff, along with surfer Mike Wells. Learn More

When a race car hits the wall at 200 mph, how much force is involved? How much energy is behind a punch to the face? On this episode of StarTalk Sports Edition, Neil deGrasse Tyson and co-hosts Chuck Nice and Gary O'Reilly are investigating the physics of all the hard hits you love in sports. Learn More

Silicon Valley seems to be constantly pumping out "solutions" to fix our broken food system. The latest and greatest: cell-cultured meat - meat that's grown in vats, without needing to kill animals. Companies say their new techy meat will be safe and better for the planet than what we have now. We join forces with Chase Purdy, author of "Billion Dollar Burger," to find out if this stuff is all it's cracked up to be. Learn More

For centuries, people have been looking to the stars to tell us all kinds of things - what our future holds, who we should date. So what does the science say about astrology? It turns out, there's some surprising stuff here. We speak to astronomer Prof. Caty Pilachowski, Prof. Dave Henningsen and astrology lover Natalie Norman. Learn More

An adventuring Swedish doctor takes on a decades-long medical mystery: What exactly was the 1918 flu? We talk to Dr. Johan Hultin, Eileen Hultin, Dr. Jeffery Taubenberger, Ann Reid, Rita Olanna and Annie Conger. Learn More

The creation of atomic weaponry changed human civilization forever, but it also left its mark on the Earth itself -- in both obvious and subtle ways. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss some of the ways in which the world would not be the same. Learn More

There are so many ways to fall-in love, asleep, even flat on your face. This hour, Radiolab dives into stories of great falls. We jump into a black hole, take a trip over Niagara Falls, upend some myths about falling cats, and plunge into our favorite songs about falling. Learn More

In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe consider the cognitive effects of driving. How does it alter our perceptions of self? How might driving prevent cognitive decline? What are the benefits of automotive ergonomics and how do we avoid the risks of road rage is aggressive? Learn More

Rabies may have gotten a lot of attention in the U.S. in the 70s and 80s, but it's still an issue in developing countries. Learn all about this nasty virus in this classic episode. And stay away from raccoons and bats. Learn More

It's actually really strange that scratching your head is a widely understood sign that you're puzzling over something. No one's exactly sure why we do that, so interesting theories abound! Learn More

The story of how a chant and a shirt came to dominate one of baseball's biggest rivalries, thanks to a group of hardcore punks from Boston. Starting in 1999, a group of kids infiltrated Fenway Park with one of the most popular bootleg t-shirts in sports history - a shirt that became the emblem of the moment the Red Sox and Yankees rivalry was turned on its head. Learn More

Is there life on Venus? On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Paul Mecurio, and astrobiologist David Grinspoon, aka Dr. FunkySpoon, are investigating the discovery of phosphine gas in the atmosphere of Venus. Learn More

When you vote in an American presidential election, you're not voting for your candidate - you're voting for a group of people you hope will in turn vote for your candidate. Listen in to learn more about the strange process for electing the president, in this classic episode. Learn More

It's time to get jazzed up for some Earth science of the waterlogged variety. Join Chuck and Josh as they tour some of the most interesting ecosystems on the planet and learn why we need to stop destroying them post haste. Learn More

Is a COVID-19 vaccine likely in the near future? On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Paul Mecurio answer your fan-submitted Cosmic Queries about vaccines for COVID-19 with the help of their guest, Dr. Paul Offit, MD, Director of the Vaccine Education Center and an attending physician in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Learn More

By longstanding listener request, we look at how Hawaii was basically stolen by the United States in the 19th century. Rather than reverse this bit of geopolitical fraud, the US ended up making Hawaii a state instead. Learn More

In 2012, poker star Phil Ivey pulled off an elaborate baccarat scheme that won him over $20 million and landed him in court. But Ivey had another card up his sleeve - a secretive mastermind named "Kelly" Cheung Yin Sun, who crafted the scheme to get revenge. A Queen of Sorts dives into the world of high stakes gambling, and what happens when a casino underestimates an Asian woman. Learn More

Twenty years ago, hundreds of women answered a classified ad seeking intrepid adventurers for an all-women trek to the North Pole - no expedition experience necessary. On the ice, 20 of those women came face to face with just how deadly the Arctic can be, along with the supreme beauty of the top of our planet. They also discovered something in themselves that changed their lives forever. Learn More

Throughout his hall of fame career, John Madden's passion wasn't just for playing and coaching football- he was driven to bring the nuances of the game to the masses. In the late 1980s, a golden opportunity fell into his lap via an upstart company called Electronic Arts. Will Wheaton narrates the story of how Madden built a video game empire - and pushed the limits of gaming. Learn More

The 2003 World Series of Poker should not have been a success. Its host casino teetered on the edge of bankruptcy, internet qualifiers knocked out the most marketable stars, and the production company tasked with showing the event on TV knew nothing about the game. All In explores how the 2003 tournament overcame the odds to spark a poker boom and forever change poker's place in America. Reported by Keith Romer. Learn More

White-collar crime often involves fraud and other nonviolent acts. For most people, the term "white-collar crime" conjures up images of CEOs conniving their way to fortune. But what is it, really? Learn More

The 1992 Olympic Summer Games in Barcelona produced a great many heroes, but in the months leading up to the Games, television viewers were led to believe that they were all about decathletes Dan O'Brien and Dave Johnson - who were competing not only for the United States but for Reebok, as well. The ad campaign cost some $25 million and made them stars. 25 years later, we revisit the hype, how the campaign went bust - and Dan O'Brien's path to redemption. Learn More

According to local legend, the Louisiana Superdome was always a haunted place. First plagued by construction problems, then years of bad luck for the host Saints team - by 2005 those Saints were prepared to abandon the stadium in favor of a dreaded move to San Antonio. Then Hurricane Katrina hit, and somehow the dome became a symbol for a city's rebirth. This is the story of New Orleans, through the story of its dome. Narrated by Tarriona "Tank" Ball of Tank and the Bangas. Learn More

The 1999 Women's World Cup transformed Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy, and the National Team into celebrities overnight. They used their newfound fame to launch the world's first women's professional soccer league: WUSA, the Women's United Soccer Association. But mismanagement and tension with the U.S. Soccer Federation put the league's future in jeopardy. This is the story about how the stars of the '99 World Cup Team built a league from scratch and fought to keep it alive. Learn More

Lichen are incredibly widespread and easy to take for granted, but these composite organisms are some of the most fascinating lifeforms on the planet. Learn More

In the middle of the Cold War, Romanian gymnastics coaches Bela and Martha Karolyi turn Nadia Comaneci, a 14-year-old gymnast from a Communist country, into a global symbol of excellence at the 1976 Olympics when she scores the first perfect 10. But Romania becomes too controlled for Bela's ambitions, and the Karolyis set their sights on the freedom of the United States. Learn More

Browse the libraries of the world and you'll find nothing stranger and perplexing than the so-called Voynich Manuscript, a 15th century tome that has perplexed linguists and codebreakers for hundreds of years -- and remains a mystery. Learn More

Six years ago, a new infection began popping up in four different hospitals on three different continents, all around the same time. It wasn't a bacteria, or a virus. It was ... a killer fungus. No one knew where it came from, or why. Today, the story of an ancient showdown between fungus and mammals that started when dinosaurs disappeared from the earth. Back then, the battle swung in our favor (spoiler alert!) and we've been hanging onto that win ever since. But one scientist suggests that the rise of this new infectious fungus indicates our edge is slipping, degree by increasing degree. Learn More

Browse the libraries of the world and you'll find nothing stranger and perplexing than the so-called Voynich Manuscript, a 15th century tome that has perplexed linguists and codebreakers for hundreds of years -- and remains a mystery. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss just why we can't stop looking to its weird pages. Learn More

Masks. Since the early days of the pandemic, it's been tough to nail down how much they can really do to slow down the spread of the virus. We speak to industrial hygienist Dr. Rachael Jones and share some new science that puts the final nail in the coffin of this debate. Learn More

Entire TV shows are dedicated to them and Americans love to watch a live one, but police chases aren't as routine as they seem. While police assert chases are important tools, critics say cops engage in chases too often and too easily. Learn all about the what, how, and why in this classic episode. Learn More

Probiotic-crammed foods and pills are marketed as charmers of the human microbiome - and the key to immune, gut and brain health. But how much does the microbiome actually matter, and do probiotics live up to the hype? To learn more we talked with biomedical engineering professor Ilana Brito, immunologist Dr. Yasmine Belkaid, psychiatry professor Ted Dinan, and microbiologist Dr. Namrata Iyer. Learn More

In 1962, three ordinary criminals transcended into folk heroes when they crawled out of their cells in Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary took to the water in a homemade raft and were never heard from again. Could they have possibly survived? Learn More

Almost three percent of Americans suffer from a debilitating disorder that causes them to suffer intense fear seemingly without reason and science hasn't yet figured out what causes it. Join Josh and Chuck in this classic episode as they get to the bottom of panic attacks. Learn More

On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice are exploring grit. What is grit? You've heard the term, you probably have a vague understanding of what it means, but what does it really mean? What better way to find out than with Cosmic Queries? Learn More