NPR Health and Science Podcast
Scientists Discover That Drunk Birds Sing Like Drunks12/29/14
The songs of zebra finches, long used as a model for how humans learn to use speech, get a little sloppy after a few drinks, a new study finds. Future research will look at how it affects learning.
From One Man's Damaged Brain, A Treasure Trove Of Research On Memory
When Kent Cochrane survived a motorcycle accident in 1981, he emerged with types of amnesia so rare that his brain became one of the most studied in history. He died this year at 62.
An Aspiring Martian Continues To Pursue The Red Planet
Heidi Beemer has dreamed of going to Mars since she was 8 years old. In January, NPR talked to her about her application to Mars One, which is still pending — now she explains she has a plan B, too.
One More Reason To Reach For A Paper Book Before Bed
Using an E-Reader before trying to nod off may disrupt sleep more than reading a paper book, a study suggests. Scientists suspect the screen's blue light is messing with a sleep-inducing hormone.
Do Fish Have Fingers?
Of course they don't, but they do have the genetic machinery to make fingers — something that shows how similar fish are to modern mammals.
Solving The Mystery Of Why Rock Ants Avoid Right Turns
Ants that live in a rocky maze-like setting prefer to turn left when they enter a space. Ants aren't as symmetrical as they appear. Their left eye may be better than the right for detecting predators.
Unexpected Life Found In The Ocean's Deepest Trench
An expedition to the Pacific's Mariana Trench has found evidence that life exists miles below the surface. But it's not life as we know it.
Research Suggests Generosity Is Hardwired Into Our Brains
If generosity makes us happy, and lots of research suggests that it does, why do many of us find it difficult to be generous?
Obama Administration Downplays Court Challenge To Health Law
With this year's enrollment in Obamacare brisk, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell says she's not worried that the U.S. Supreme Court may yet overturn a key provision of the law.
Costly Hepatitis C Drugs Threaten To Bust Prison Budgets
Inmates in the U.S. have a high rate of infection with chronic hepatitis C — up to 35 percent or more by some estimates. New drugs introduced this year can cure the disease quickly, but at a cost.
A Vanished Jetliner Still Haunts Families Of The Missing
Months after Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 disappeared from radar screens, families of the lost passengers and crew struggle to cope. Many are unwilling to declare their loved ones dead.
Could Glitter Help Solve NASA's Giant Telescope Problem?
NASA's next big space telescope costs $8 billion and is very heavy. New York scientists think they may have found the makings of a cheaper, lighter answer for future space scopes — in a crafts store.
Baby Thrives Once 3D-Printed Windpipe Helps Him Breathe
Michigan doctors used 3D printing to custom make a splint to prop open Garrett Peterson's defective windpipe last January. He's home with his parents this Christmas, as "normal life" begins.
What Motivates People To Give?
The holiday season is a big time of year for charitable giving. Host Audie Cornish speaks with NPR's Shankar Vedantam about a study that says portion of charitable giving is driven by social pressure.
Staff Picks: An Evangelical Christian Who Believes In Climate Change
Weekend Edition staff have been picking their favorite interviews from 2014. Editor Natalie Winston talks with NPR's Rachel Martin about an interview with an evangelical Christian climate scientist.
In The Deep Ocean, Ghostfish Breaks Records
NPR's Rachel Martin takes a moment to talk about a new fish discovered in one of the deepest places on Earth.
Want To Enhance The Flavor Of Your Food? Put On The Right Music
Researchers at the University of Oxford have discovered a link between what you taste and what you hear.
A Snail So Hardcore It's Named After A Punk Rocker
Inspired by the snails' spiky shells and acid-loving nature, researchers named the new species Alviniconcha strummeri, after Clash frontman Joe Strummer.
3-D Scanning Sonar Brings Light To Deep Ocean Shipwrecks
In the San Francisco Bay, researchers are using new technology to investigate shipwrecks. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with James Delgado, director of Maritime Heritage at NOAA, about what they've found.
From monkeys to microbes, TED speakers in this playlist cover all different realms of the scientific world.
- Washington, DC