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Naked Scientists Special Editions Podcast

The Naked Scientists

Special scientific reports and investigations by the Naked Scientists team

06:00 | May 2nd

Before Britain was a nation of shopkeepers we were a nation of farmers; before that, the population were a bunch of hunter gatherers. But farming didn't catch on here until 1000 years after it had in Europe. Why was always a mystery, but now DNA tech...Show More

05:44 | May 1st

Human babies grow inside their mothers for 40 weeks enclosed in a watery bag that expands as they do. And as the clock ticks during pregnancy, various processes kick in to thin the membrane material that surrounds the baby so that the bag ruptures at...Show More

04:51 | Apr 17th

Batteries are in almost everything we use. Our phones, computers, energy storage, even in transport. Typically, to see how well a battery performs, scientists have to charge and discharge them over and over until, ultimately, the battery stops workin...Show More

05:22 | Apr 16th

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (or IPCC) has recently issued a series of so-called "energy transition pathways". These are essentially routes that we as a society need to follow, in order to prevent global warming from exceeding the li...Show More

09:02 | Apr 14th

The multinational team behind the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT), which spans the Earth by linking dishes in 8 different countries, have revealed the first images of the supermassive black hole - that has a mass 6 billion times that of our Sun - sitti...Show More

05:40 | Apr 11th

Astronomers have used a new camera called the HiPERCAM to analyse a type of small, dim star that has proved elusive to standard cameras. The camera has allowed them to make detailed measurements of this cool subdwarf star 1500 light years away, and i...Show More

05:51 | Apr 1st

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is widely regarded as one of humanity's greatest scientific achievements. The 17 km long accelerator smashes particles together at high speeds, and looks at the products to search for new physics. So far we've learned ...Show More

06:50 | Mar 29th

Ever wondered how to get the best wifi reception in your house, given all those floors and walls which can interrupt the signal? Where to position the router and signal boosters, then where people should use their devices to get the best reception? T...Show More

04:49 | Mar 8th

Having an injection is an experience common to us all, and whether you are unfussed by them or they make you feel faint, the actual needle used is the same for everyone and highly standardised. But given different parts of the body are more difficult...Show More

05:21 | Mar 6th

US scientists have engineered into yeast the genes needed to make the key chemicals in cannabis. To find out why and what's involved, Chris Smith looked at the paper with York University's Ian Graham, who wasn't involved in the project but has expert...Show More

04:59 | Mar 1st

The agriculture sector is responsible for about 25% of global warming according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, so rearing livestock for meat is a significant problem. When ruminant animals such as cows and sheep digest food they bu...Show More

04:39 | Feb 25th

Antibiotic resistance is a growing problem that kills hundreds of thousands of people each year, from what should be preventable diseases. Up to date, scientists have been trying to figure out the reasons in each individual case, until now A group...Show More

03:51 | Feb 22nd

Scientists have discovered that some grass species have information in their genes that's not come from their parents, and instead think they're stealing genetic information from neighbouring plants. By genetically enhancing themselves, they gain a c...Show More

04:44 | Feb 18th

About a quarter of a billion people around the world are affected by asthma, when the lungs' airways constrict, making breathing difficult. For decades we've treated the condition with drugs that relax the muscles in the airways and damp down the imm...Show More

04:49 | Feb 12th

Scientists have found a spot in the brain that, when stimulated, triggers laughter and is followed by a sense of calm and happiness that lasts 30 minutes.This discovery has direct implication for tens of thousands of people who undergo open brain sur...Show More

04:00 | Feb 12th

Archaeologists working in the UK and in Germany have come across rare examples of what look like ancient wooden spears that would have been used by our ancestors 400,000 years ago. But scientists were pointedly stuck on whether these weapons were jus...Show More

05:14 | Feb 10th

Scientists have given a dieting drug made for humans to mosquitoes in order to curb their appetite. Researchers at the Rockefeller University in New York have worked through hundreds of thousands of molecule-receptor combinations to find the right on...Show More

06:00 | Feb 7th

If you are a night owl, getting up in the morning is something that you absolutely dread. On the other hand, morning people jump out of bed ready and chatty. Is this something hardwired? The answer's probably got a lot to do with the genes that influ...Show More

03:38 | Feb 6th

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy is a genetic disease which causes the muscle of the heart to thicken. Left untreated, it can lead to heart failure, and it's quite common. But the therapies we have available at the moment treat only the symptoms and don't...Show More

04:19 | Feb 5th

A new way to capture CO2 from factories or the atmosphere has been developed by researchers in the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, located in the United States of America. The new technology uses a different molecule to 'soak up' the CO2 and it is 24%...Show More

05:36 | Feb 4th

There is a mountain located in the middle of a giant crater on Mars, but how it formed is still a bit of a puzzle for scientists. Investigations of the rocks below the surface of the crater have been helping piece together an answer. The Curiosity Ro...Show More

05:50 | Feb 1st

Lack of sleep or poor sleep is a problem that affects 1 in 3 people in the UK and America. Insufficient sleep is not only a health issue, contributing to heart disease, diabetes and obesity, but also an economic one. There's the direct costs of treat...Show More

04:06 | Jan 25th

Nearly every cell in the body contains a part called the nucleus which houses the genetic information needed to function. Muscle cells are the largest cells in the body, so they often need multiple nuclei to meet high power demands. New research from...Show More

04:36 | Jan 21st

It's common knowledge that smoking cigarettes is addictive, and this is because of the nicotine they contain. E-cigarettes are devices that heat up a liquid and produce an aerosol or spray which is then inhaled. If there's nicotine in the e-cigarette...Show More

04:55 | Jan 20th

Brushing our teeth keeps them clean and free from debris, but back in medieval times, dental hygiene wasn't part of your daily routine. This means that scientists can look at the teeth of skeletons to reconstruct what food they might have munched on ...Show More

06:18 | Jan 18th

Every day hundreds of people die when they accidentally overdose on opiate drugs, like heroin or morphine. These agents depress breathing, causing respiratory failure. But, if an opioid antidote is administered sufficiently quickly, then the situatio...Show More

04:07 | Jan 15th

One terrifying prediction is that, by mid-Century, up to 30% of adults will be affected by a form of dementia, chiefly Alzheimer's Disease. This happens when proteins called beta-amyloid, and tau, build up in the brain and damage nerve cells. But sci...Show More

34:20 | Jan 1st

Back in 2001, Dr Chris Smith launched a new show, The Naked Scientists, in the hope of making science accessible. It was one of the first radio programmes to be made into a podcast and is now one of the world's most popular science shows. In the past...Show More

05:07 | Dec 21st, 2018

Biological systems are able to create complex shapes and patterns, like the stripes of a zebra, the shape of your hand or the dynamic displays of a flock of birds. These shapes develop in an emergent and self-organised way, relying on just local inte...Show More

06:08 | Dec 21st, 2018

The Ancient Greeks understood that the liver was one of the most incredible organs humans possess when they wrote the cautionary tale of Zeus' punishment of Prometheus, in which poor Prometheus was tied to a rock where an eagle would eat his liver ev...Show More

05:39 | Dec 20th, 2018

Cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers affecting young women, and it's caused by a virus called Human Papilloma Virus, or HPV, which is spread through sexual contact. The virus causes the cells of the cervix to keeping growing excessively,...Show More

03:31 | Dec 19th, 2018

Christmas is a wonderful time of year, but all of the additional transport and consumption adds up, and we are left with plenty of seasonal rubbish and greenhouse gases. So how can you cut down this Christmas? Georgia Mills is here to spoil all of th...Show More

04:24 | Dec 17th, 2018

Clean water is something that we often take for granted, but making it can be a major technological and energy-intensive process. Now, thanks to a system developed by scientists at York University, Toronto, and MIT, there might be a way to do this mu...Show More

05:24 | Dec 13th, 2018

How can seemingly similar cells behave differently? This is a particularly important question when a small change means that a cell does not function properly and several diseases might be the result of these small changes at the single cell level. B...Show More

04:25 | Dec 7th, 2018

Language is all around us, and good language skills are important for getting on in life. But does being good in one language domain, like spelling, mean you'll be good in another, like grammar? And if your child is doing well with language as a todd...Show More

04:53 | Nov 30th, 2018

When we think of robots we might think of the Terminator, West World, or even something completely different like Big Hero Six - a story about a young boy and his soft medical robot companion Baymax. Doughy and malleable, a robot like Baymax is kind ...Show More

04:15 | Nov 26th, 2018

Antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest threats facing mankind today. A new group in the University of Washington in Seattle, have been working to fight this threat. In their study published September 2018, they looked to poison bacteria using t...Show More

04:32 | Nov 23rd, 2018

Every year, hundreds of millions of people contract malaria; this is a parasitic infection spread by mosquitoes. The parasite does two things when it grows in the body: either it clones itself to make millions more malaria parasites in that infected ...Show More

05:43 | Nov 19th, 2018

When we think of our immune system, most of us will be familiar with the white blood cells that circulate around our body to target and kill the bacteria and viruses that make us sick. But, we actually also have a special type of immune cell sitting ...Show More

04:55 | Nov 19th, 2018

Do you like to lie out on the beach in the summer, or are you more likely to be found hiding in the shade? Well, how you answer might depend on how quickly you seem to get sunburnt. We all know that we should wear sunscreen when out and about in the ...Show More

07:36 | Nov 16th, 2018

We get so many good questions sent to us here at The Naked Scientists, that sadly we can't fit them all into our monthly question and answer shows. So here's an extra slice of science for you from our November 2018 QnA. Roger got in touch to ask whet...Show More

05:37 | Nov 12th, 2018

Today marks 100 years since the end of World War 1. This conflict caused the deaths of around 16 million people, and the new developments in artillery meant that new and nasty injuries were defying our ability to treat them. Ironically, this meant WW...Show More

04:35 | Nov 2nd, 2018

Glioblastoma is an aggressive and often deadly cancer of the brain. Understanding it is vital to improving patient outcomes. In a new study published in Nature Genetics, a group in Cornell University has been sequencing genes to understand which ones...Show More

04:49 | Oct 31st, 2018

Good dental hygiene is crucial in the fight against gum disease, which can lead to a common condition called periodontitis. It comes about when changes to the bacteria in the mouth cause a reaction called inflammation in areas around the teeth, poten...Show More

05:17 | Oct 30th, 2018

Astronomers at the University of Hertfordshire have come up with an explanation for the wobble seen in jets of matter being blasted from regions surrounding some supermassive black holes: Another nearby supermassive black hole! Dr Martin Krause tells...Show More

05:41 | Oct 25th, 2018

Nowadays, tuberculosis takes more lives than any other infectious disease. Cases are on the decline but emerging antibiotic resistance threatens to interrupt that pattern. Tamsin Bell spoke with Professor Francois Balloux from University College Lond...Show More

04:21 | Oct 11th, 2018

We all know that drinking alcohol is bad for us but in the UK we still pay a huge 3.5 billion annually for the National Health Service (NHS) to treat over 60 alcohol induced medical conditions including liver disease, pancreatitis, diabetes, heart d...Show More

05:19 | Oct 9th, 2018

From right here on earth to the furthest visible parts of the universe, NASA has its eye on pretty much everything in between. Professor Andrew Coates from University College London was lead co-investigator in the joint ESA-NASA Cassini-Huygens missi...Show More

07:11 | Oct 3rd, 2018

Mosquitoes spread diseases like malaria, and they are rapidly becoming resistant to the insecticides used to control them. So scientists are looking at the potential of using a genetic technique, called a gene drive, to solve the problem. This involv...Show More

04:31 | Sep 25th, 2018

Imagine going into space. You've got your kit, you're blasted into darkness, you're ready to discover the unknown but then your equipment doesn't quite fit the task required. How can you prepare for that? This is a reality that space engineers and ro...Show More

05:50 | Sep 23rd, 2018

We've all been there at some point - you raise your hand in class, answer the question, and get it utterly, utterly wrong. These school-day humiliations may stay with us many years later, in fact - I'd love to hear yours, but as our kids are all head...Show More

05:11 | Sep 23rd, 2018

You may have heard of graphene, the so called wonder material set to revolutionise electronics but the difficulty to consistently add extra properties and scale up cheaply limits industrial use! Scientists have been looking for easy to make alternati...Show More

04:36 | Sep 20th, 2018

Do you share food or do you bite the hand off anyone who tries? Chimpanzees, one of our closest relatives are in the latter category: they'll gladly share tools, but food's a no no. New research published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B has bee...Show More

05:17 | Sep 5th, 2018

These days, many of us are heavily dependent on our trusty sat navs to get where we want to go, but looking at these devices whilst driving is incredibly dangerous and can lead to car accidents. Psychologists from Anglia Ruskin University are hoping ...Show More

04:36 | Sep 4th, 2018

Goats can tell apart human facial expressions and - what's more - prefer to interact with happy people, according to a new study from scientists at Queen Mary University of London. We knew work animals like dogs and horses could do this, but no-one k...Show More

04:21 | Aug 31st, 2018

Most of the people who develop cancer are adults, although a significant number of children succumb too. The signs are though that childhood cancers could have a different origin than the adult disease, which might also mean they can be treated in a ...Show More

13:29 | Aug 30th, 2018

From artificial photosynthesis to the art of statistics, the Naked Scientists take Jenny Zhang and Richard Samworth, two of St John's College's leading scientists, for a trip down the river to hear all about their work.

05:32 | Aug 15th, 2018

Doctors think that one third of the world's population have been exposed to the bacterial infection TB, or tuberculosis. It can damage any tissue in the body, infect the skeleton and joints, and even cause meningitis, but most people develop chest di...Show More

03:49 | Aug 9th, 2018

Since Darwin's time scientists have been studying the skeleton of a type of fish that lived 400 million years ago called Heterostracans. These fish were covered in a tough exoskeleton, but scientists couldn't decide exactly where it came from. Was it...Show More

04:29 | Aug 7th, 2018

Mixing chemicals together causes reactions and produces new molecules. With so many different chemicals in existence, there are infinite combinations that can be made, and millions of chemical reactions yet to be tried. But doing these tests is very ...Show More

05:02 | Jul 26th, 2018

HIV is a global pandemic. Worldwide, about 37 million people are living with the virus, and there are between 3 and 5 thousand AIDS deaths every day. More worrying is that, despite intensive public health and safe sex campaigns, there are a further 3...Show More

05:02 | Jul 19th, 2018

Vitiligo is an autoimmune condition, in which the immune system attacks the pigment-producing cells of the skin, leaving behind pale white patches. Although not dangerous in itself, vitiligo can be disfiguring, causing a great deal of distress to peo...Show More

05:38 | Jul 9th, 2018

Heart attacks come about when blood vessels in the heart are blocked, and without a supply of oxygen-rich blood, the heart muscle can die. This is called ischemic injury, and can also occur in other places in the body, potentially leading to tissue d...Show More

03:40 | Jul 3rd, 2018

People all around the world are living the high life. That's to say, living their whole lives at high altitude. This lifestyle has an impact on their bodies, including upon how their bones grow. And one adaptation, Cambridge University's Stephanie Pa...Show More

06:18 | Jul 2nd, 2018

Scientists want to raise awareness to protect the Earth from dangerous asteroids. June 30th has now become Asteroid Day where people from around the world come together to learn about asteroids, the impact hazard they may pose, and what we can do to ...Show More

04:54 | Jun 28th, 2018

4 billion years ago, life on earth looked nothing like it does today. In fact, the oceans contained only single-celled microbes. At some point, these single-celled organisms began to work together, forming complex, multi-celled creatures, which then ...Show More

05:22 | Jun 27th, 2018

In recent years, we've woken up to the massive problem that is dementia. This is where people progressively lose their cognitive faculties and Alzheimer's Disease is one well-known example. But scientists are increasingly realising that injury done t...Show More

03:52 | Jun 25th, 2018

Osteoarthritis, a condition which damages the cartilage in joints, is a painful, debilitating condition. Millions suffer every year, and with an ageing population, that number will only increase. Therefore, improving diagnosis is an important goal. A...Show More

04:29 | Jun 24th, 2018

If robots really are the future, then said future is certainly one step closer as of this week. For the first time ever, a robot has been used in surgery on the human eye. To find out more about this incredible feat of engineering, Isabelle Cochrane ...Show More

04:03 | Jun 17th, 2018

CRISPR makes it possible to snip out undesired bits of DNA from our cells. This process holds the potential to cure genetic conditions such as cystic fibrosis. However, it seems that doing this isn't without risk. Marika Ottman went to the University...Show More

04:19 | Jun 7th, 2018

Researchers have found a way to regenerate the enamel - or apatite - that's damaged by tooth decay. Katie Haylor spoke to Alvaro Mata from Queen Mary University of London... Sound effects from www.zapsplat.com

04:40 | Jun 6th, 2018

We know more about the surface of mars than we do about the depths of our own ocean, but scientists from the California Academy of Science created an invention that allows researchers to bring never-before seen species from coral reefs in the deep se...Show More

05:40 | Jun 4th, 2018

Millions suffer from osteoarthritis, a condition that causes joints, especially knee and hip joints, to become stiff and painful. Luckily these joints can be replaced by an implant with usually good results. However, scientists are going one step fur...Show More

04:47 | May 24th, 2018

Any activity on your daily commute, like walking to the bus instead of just hopping in the car, might reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, says a new study from the University of Cambridge, published in the journal Heart...

06:39 | May 23rd, 2018

We all love a good hug, whatever our age! Babies are no different. There's growing evidence that skin-to-skin contact is beneficial for babies, so Katie Haylor spoke with Laura Baird and Kelly Spike from Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge to find out...Show More

06:18 | May 20th, 2018

Hawaii's Big Island has been experiencing a series of volcanic eruptions. What's causing them, and how is it likely to change in the future? To find out, Chris Smith talked to Jessica Johnson, a volcanologist at the University of East Anglia...

04:09 | May 17th, 2018

Exercise is good for us, it's one of the best things you can do to keep your mind and body healthy for a long age. But perhaps not all exercise is equal. A new analysis out in the British Journal of Sports Medecine reports that exercise at work is...Show More

04:30 | May 16th, 2018

Knowing where Earth's freshwater is accumulating, or perhaps more critically, disappearing is of paramount importance. A new study in Nature has analysed changes in freshwater across the entire planet. To learn more Adam Murphy spoke with Matthew Rod...Show More

05:46 | May 3rd, 2018

Neurodegeneration is a process involved in several serious and debilitating diseases, for which there is often no cure. One of the first steps on the journey towards a treatment to stop neurons dying is understanding how and why they do so. Now, scie...Show More

04:49 | May 2nd, 2018

Are you struggling to know what to wear for the weather at the moment? One day in the UK it's freezing, the next rain, the next a veritable heat wave. Apart from playing havoc with BBQ plans, this extreme variation in weather is also affecting local ...Show More

04:32 | Apr 26th, 2018

Tasmanian devils are black, carnivorous, scavenger marsupials that live - perhaps unsurprisingly, on the island of Tasmania. In recent years an intriguing type of cancer has been decimating their numbers, pushing the animals to the brink of extinctio...Show More

05:03 | Apr 22nd, 2018

Every year millions of people contract malaria, which is a blood parasite infection spread by mosquitoes. And part of the reason why the infection spreads so successfully, scientists now know, is because the parasite makes an infected human over-prod...Show More

08:45 | Mar 20th, 2018

Motor neurone disease (MND) is a degenerative disease affecting around 5,000 people in the UK. It attacks people's ability to move, speak and breath, and usually is fatal within two years. At the moment there is no cure, but scientists are trying to ...Show More

20:24 | Mar 7th, 2018

When people take wildlife products over a border that is under the control of CITES. Some of it is illegal, and this is when Border Force step in, confiscating the items in question and when possible, returning them to the wild. But what do people br...Show More

06:11 | Feb 26th, 2018

Multiple Sclerosis, or MS, affects hundreds of thousands of people. It's a condition where the body's own immune system attacks a protective layer around nerve fibres called myelin. This prevents messages being conveyed quickly and faithfully through...Show More

05:51 | Feb 7th, 2018

Scientists in the US have uncovered a surprising potential treatment for strokes: short-term sensory deprivation. Strokes occur when the blood supply to the brain is interrupted; this destroys the affected nerve cells, and robs the victim of the func...Show More

04:21 | Feb 5th, 2018

Was exercising more one of your new year's resolutions? Has it ended up a broken promise at the bottom of your to-do list? Georgia Mills spoke to Catherine Meads from Anglia Ruskin University, who may be able to help.

04:54 | Jan 29th, 2018

Up to a third of women experience debilitatingly heavy periods. This can cause significant disruption. It can also lead to depression; time off work; and, in severe cases, even lead to a low blood count or anaemia. Currently, heavy periods are treate...Show More

05:24 | Jan 22nd, 2018

Scientists have shown that a toothpaste ingredient could be used as an anti-malarial drug. Spread by mosquitoes, malaria is caused by Plasmodium parasites, and kills over half a million people every year, 70% of them children. In recent years the par...Show More

10:00 | Jan 18th, 2018

It's winter time again in the northern hemisphere and the influenza virus - the 'flu - is making its seasonal rounds. The virus infects millions of people every year, and vulnerable individuals with underlying health complaints including heart diseas...Show More

06:10 | Jan 10th, 2018

Around one in ten people have to live with tinnitus, this is a persistent noise ringing in the head when there's nothing external causing it. The severity of tinnitus can range from irritating to completely life-changing, by making it nearly impossib...Show More

05:31 | Dec 21st, 2017

The question of where life began is a difficult one to answer. While many scientists believe that life began on earth, others believe that life, or at least its building blocks, first formed in space. A recent study from the University of Sherbrooke,...Show More

05:08 | Dec 15th, 2017

In the run up to Christmas, shops are bursting at the seams with delicious treats, appealing platters and indulgent morsals, which can make sticking to a healthy diet rather unlikely. And food consumption has consequences for our "waist" in more ways...Show More

05:02 | Dec 11th, 2017

New research shows that peregrine falcons hunt their prey using strategies similar to those used by guided missiles. Could this information be useful in downing drones that are flying where they shouldn't?

05:01 | Dec 8th, 2017

The Great Barrier Reef is a huge system of over 3,800 individual coral reefs - making it the largest coral reef system on earth. Located off the northeastern coast of Australia, it is home to thousands of species. However, in recent years, the Great ...Show More

05:18 | Dec 1st, 2017

December 1st is World AIDS Day. HIV AIDS affects 35 million people worldwide, and although the number of new infections is slowly decreasing, last year it still caused one million deaths. The virus, HIV, attacks the body's immune system by infecting ...Show More

05:59 | Nov 22nd, 2017

This week the UN Climate Change Conference has been happening in Bonn. This meeting is the next step for governments to implement the Paris Climate Change Agreement, which entered into force last November and sets out strategies to try to limit the r...Show More

04:00 | Nov 15th, 2017

Last year, Diabetes UK reported that almost 4 million people in the UK are living with diabetes. Around 90% of these cases are classed as Type 2, which is often linked with obesity. Interestingly, Type 2 diabetes has been reversed in people undergoin...Show More

04:50 | Nov 2nd, 2017

Traditionally, researchers have recognised the importance of sleep in modulating the fear learning response when the sleep occurs after fear learning. To understand how sleep, prior to a fear learning task, may be important; researchers looked at the...Show More

06:08 | Nov 1st, 2017

In 2016, the world champion Lee Sedol was beaten at the ancient boardgame of Go - by a machine. It was part of the AlphaGo programme, which is a series of artificially intelligent systems designed by London-based company DeepMind. AlphaGo Zero, the l...Show More

04:42 | Oct 23rd, 2017

A drug based on a form of cholesterol might be able to reduce the damage done by heart attacks. Working with experimental mice, scientists in Australia have found that so-called good cholesterol, also known as "HDL", if injected into the bloodstream ...Show More

05:02 | Oct 19th, 2017

Imagine it's a Friday night, you're in the pub it's and really noisy. Your friend though is telling a great story, and you really want to hear it. But how do you separate their voice from the din going on around you? This week scientists at Imperial ...Show More

05:39 | Oct 17th, 2017

Scientists in the US have discovered a way to recreate the condition polycystic kidney disease using stem cells in a culture dish. The new culture system means that researchers can now begin to screen thousands of potential drug molecules to find way...Show More

05:12 | Oct 17th, 2017

We all use Wi-fi nearly every day. It is short for wireless fidelity, using microwaves frequencies to transmit data to and from your phone. But, visible light can be used to for the same purpose - with a technology being developed at Edinburgh Univer...Show More

04:13 | Oct 11th, 2017

Astronomers are trying to understand where our solar system came from, how life got started here, and where else in the galaxy life may be lurking. Chemistry is very important in these processes both in terms of providing chemical building blocks fro...Show More

05:13 | Oct 8th, 2017

Three quarters of the world's honey is laced with neonicotinoid insecticides, a new study from scientists in Switzerland has shown this week. The findings are based on an analysis of nearly 200 honey samples collected from around the world with the h...Show More

03:42 | Oct 2nd, 2017

Natural muscle plays an important role in our human ability to control our movements, so could we give this ability to robots? Katie Haylor spoke to Aslan Miriyev from Colombia University in New York, who's developed a soft, synthetic muscle that can...Show More

05:21 | Sep 25th, 2017

By 2050, it is estimated that we will need around a 50% increase in crop yield to feed our rapidly growing population. However, it turns out that algae - the slimy green layer often found on the surface of ponds in summer - may provide a solution to...Show More

05:21 | Sep 24th, 2017

The complex branching patterns seen in the growth of tissues in the lungs, kidneys and pancreas have an elegantly simple mathematical solution...

03:37 | Sep 21st, 2017

From elaborate peacocks to seagulls by the shore, birds are found in a wide range of habitats on every corner of globe and a recent study suggests that the key to their world domination may all be in their heads. Stevie Bain chatted with Arkhat Abzha...Show More

04:13 | Sep 21st, 2017

We never really notice oral hygiene, except when it's bad. The latest research shows that we can't really blame genetics for this, but rather the oral hygiene of everyone else in your household.

05:04 | Sep 19th, 2017

One major goal of scientists has been to measure the strength of tectonic plates. However, laboratory estimates of plate strength vary widely and in general seem to overestimate strength compared to real world observations. Thus, there has been a fun...Show More

05:10 | Sep 15th, 2017

C. diff - or Clostridium difficile - is a superbug that can cause major problems in hospitals. It leads to life-threatening diarrhoea and intestinal inflammation in patients who catch it, it spreads easily, and patients who do recover often relapse m...Show More

15:01 | Sep 14th, 2017

Finding new drugs for our various diseases and ailments is one of the biggest industries in the world. But how does so called big pharma operate - how do they choose what to work on and how does an idea get from the lab to your local chemist? Astr...Show More

04:50 | Sep 14th, 2017

Known as the 'forests of the ocean', coral reefs represent an entire underwater ecosystem, teeming with life. But this ecosystem is under threat. Researchers from The University of Queensland and Colby College in the USA have used old 18th century na...Show More

03:53 | Sep 12th, 2017

It's well known that older mothers have more complicated pregnancies. For a long time scientists thought that old eggs were the reason for this and many women have made the decision to freeze their eggs to circumvent this problem. But new research fr...Show More

04:59 | Aug 31st, 2017

Bacteria produce a molecule that stimulates sexual reproduction in the closest living relatives of animals, according to researchers at UC Berkeley and Harvard Medical School.

04:05 | Aug 25th, 2017

Our hairy insides protect us from the full force of fluids racing through our bodies and may inspire future robotic design

05:26 | Aug 23rd, 2017

Osteoarthritis is a common, painful joint condition that affects about 8 million people in the UK, and many others across the world. It stems from a breakdown of the protective cartilage at the ends of bones causing pain, swelling and movement proble...Show More

11:27 | Aug 22nd, 2017

What kinds of food might you be able to forage in a city green space? Katie Haylor went out to explore what wild food Cambridge in the UK has to offer with lifelong forager Antony Bagott....

05:24 | Aug 13th, 2017

More than half a million people in the UK suffer from Alzheimer's disease. Symptoms of this disease, including memory loss and communication problems, are due to sticky protein build ups within the brain, called amyloid plaques. These plaques cause d...Show More

05:00 | Jul 27th, 2017

Short term memory is incredibly important in day to day life, whether you're driving to work, having a conversation, or reading through the Naked Scientists website. However, scientists from Princeton University have found evidence that exposure ...Show More

05:31 | Jul 20th, 2017

Alzheimer's Disease is one - very common - form of senile dementia. It usually affects older people and progressively robs them of their mental faculties. It occurs because a protein called beta amyloid builds up in the brain forming harmful deposits...Show More

04:37 | Jul 10th, 2017

Scientists now think they can explain why the hypervelocity stars - that's stars going at 600 - 1000 km per second are only spotted in one part of the sky, in the constellation of Leo, and it's down to their explosive origins. Douglas Boubert is a se...Show More

04:42 | Jul 9th, 2017

Millions of people worldwide are affected by Alzheimer's Disease; Terry Pratchett was famously a victim of the condition, which progressively robs sufferers of their mental faculties. At the moment, no therapies are available to halt the disease, but...Show More

05:19 | Jul 6th, 2017

Our coasts are constantly changing. And whilst human impact can have a significant impact Mother Nature also plays her part, tides and storms can change a beach overnight. Continuing with Marine Month, Chris Smith spoke to Oceanographer Simon Boxall...Show More

05:57 | Jun 29th, 2017

If you're up for a bit of practical experimentation, give this a go. Hold your finger out in front of your face, fix your gaze on the tip and then shake your head from side to side, or nodding up and down. Without you having to think about it, your e...Show More

04:32 | Jun 28th, 2017

Many of us enjoy a boiled egg or two for breakfast, but why are hen's eggs round at one end and pointy at the other? Katie Haylor caught up with Mary Stoddard of Princeton University, who's trying to find out why eggs look the way they do.

05:28 | Jun 28th, 2017

The third week of June had everyone searching for the suncream as temperatures reached record breaking heights. But while most of us enjoy fun in the sun, prolonged heatwaves can have significant health risks and can even be life-threatening. Izzie C...Show More

12:33 | May 21st, 2017

In May 2017 hundreds of thousands of computers across the world were hit by a massive ransomware attack called Wannacry. The perpetrators encrypted the contents of users' computers and demanded payment to unscramble their data. What made the threat w...Show More

05:18 | May 16th, 2017

When viruses attack our crops they can wipe them out, and in some parts of the world, this can be a death sentence. So naturally, scientists are keen to find a way to provide protection against these infections. Viruses usually attack by using parts ...Show More

04:25 | May 10th, 2017

Methane is 20 times worse than C02 as a greenhouse gas, so when it's created as a byproduct in oil rigs it's burned. This is better than releasing the methane into the atmosphere but it's not an ideal solution as it creates more C02. Jeroen Van Bokho...Show More

05:57 | Mar 20th, 2017

Looking at biochemical markers found in blood samples of those with autism and those without, researchers are looking to develop a blood test that could serve as a diagnosis tool for autism spectrum disorders.

04:54 | Mar 10th, 2017

How the plaque found on the teeth of Neanderthals sheds light on their diets and lifestyles.

04:54 | Feb 21st, 2017

Promoting social causes online can mobilise millions and raise huge sums of money. But it only leads to long term changes if the campaigns don't fizzle out prematurely. Social psychologist, Sander van der Linden, University of Cambridge, thinks he's ...Show More

04:16 | Feb 16th, 2017

A tiny sensor capable of transmitting information from inside the body and powered by stomach acid has been unveiled by US scientists. The device was tested in a pig over the course of a week wirelessly transmitting its body temperature every twelve ...Show More

04:26 | Feb 8th, 2017

Some viral infections are more lethal in men than in women. This is usually linked to differences between male and female immune systems. However, mathematical modelling of the different ways some viruses can spread in men and women suggests it may, ...Show More

04:41 | Jan 24th, 2017

2016 was another record-breaker in terms of global temperatures, and it's part of a longer-term trend which has seen 15 of the hottest years on record occur since 2001. One victim of this warming is the Artic, where sea ice is steadily retreating, wh...Show More

05:12 | Jan 23rd, 2017

A chemical found in sharks can block the process that leads to Parkinson's Disease, scientists at Cambridge University have found. Know as squalamine, the substance prevents a protein called alpha-synuclein from accumulating on and damaging the membr...Show More

05:17 | Jan 6th, 2017

Us humans boast about our big brains but until now, evidence has been scant to suggest that animals also benefit from having larger brains. Cambridge University's Corina Logan measured the skulls of 1314 red deer from the Isle of Rum to see if the br...Show More

05:33 | Dec 19th, 2016

What's your usual Thursday night out? The cinema maybe, or a gig? Well how about a live cheetah dissection at the Royal Veterinary College in London? Don't worry if that's not quite your cup of tea because we sent Connie Orbach along for you...

04:43 | Dec 15th, 2016

As the saying goes, "if you don't learn from the past you're doomed to repeat it," or words to that effect; which is why understanding what has happened to the Earth's climate in the past is critical if we are to make accurate predictions about our t...Show More

05:51 | Dec 14th, 2016

Carbon monoxide poisoning is the common form of poisoning worldwide. Just in the US tens of thousands of people are killed or hospitalised every year by this odourless and colourless gas, which in is boiler, stove and vehicle exhausts and is also pro...Show More

02:41 | Dec 12th, 2016

An area of rainforest the size of Panama is lost every year to deforestation and we know habitat loss is probably the leading factor driving extinction today. However, another potential problem could be an increase in certain disease-causing organism...Show More

05:16 | Dec 9th, 2016

Dark energy, the mysterious unknown entity which permeates all of space makes up 68% of the universe's total energy. Despite being such a large proportion of existence we still can't directly detect it. An international group of scientists is tryin...Show More

04:38 | Dec 7th, 2016

2D materials are objects that are only one or two atoms thick. Graphene is the most well known of these but many incredibly thin substances exist. These exotic materials are strong, flexible, semi-transparent and great conductors of electricity. Bu...Show More

04:22 | Nov 18th, 2016

We've just come to the end of anti-bullying week and with 25,000 children using Childline's counselling sessions in 2015 to talk about bulling it clearly is still a problem for the UK. This problem appears to go beyond playground trauma with researc...Show More

03:57 | Nov 16th, 2016

Malaria parasites in Cambodia are showing resistance to the front line drug Piperaquine making current treatment useless and putting lives at risk. Dr Roberto Amato, and his team, uncovered the genetic basis for this resistance; he took Liam Messin ...Show More

04:47 | Nov 15th, 2016

When you were little did you ever dream of becoming an astronaut? Well Michael Foale did and he actually made it happen. Born in the UK Foale completed both his undergraduate and doctorate degrees in Cambridge before joining NASA and going on to beco...Show More

05:58 | Nov 11th, 2016

Quantum mechanics describes the properties of light, atoms and the even smaller particles inside atoms, like electrons and protons. On these tiny scales, we observe strange effects that contradict our everyday experience and we are beginning to harne...Show More

04:56 | Nov 10th, 2016

Compared to a lot of the objects in our solar system the Earth's Moon is a bit unusual. A new theory, published in the journal Nature, explains how the Moon got to where it is today. Professor David Rothery, from the Open University, wasn't on the ...Show More

02:50 | Nov 10th, 2016

Plants can be good for the planet, nice to look at and often pretty tasty. But what if they were also high tech sensors that we could harness to detect harmful chemicals and even explosives in groundwater or the air around them? Michael Strano and hi...Show More

04:58 | Nov 9th, 2016

The Paris agreement is an international climate change treaty signed earlier this year by 192 countries and it aims to mitigate man-made global warming. It kicks in from this week. But will its targets be sufficient? Over half of the Arctic sea ice a...Show More

08:01 | Nov 8th, 2016

Now is there anybody out there? Or should I say is there anybody out there? Graihagh Jackson phones home to BBC broadcaster Dallas Campbell

05:50 | Nov 7th, 2016

Conditions like Down's Syndrome, which are caused by babies carrying the wrong numbers of chromosomes in their cells, affect about one pregnancy in every 500. There are also many other inherited disorders that run in families but can't be diagnosed w...Show More

07:23 | Oct 27th, 2016

White lies are widely accepted as an integral part of our everyday lives. And yet history has taught us how a series of small transgressions can snowball with detrimental outcomes. But can we really get desensitised to lying, and if so, what happens ...Show More

05:17 | Oct 26th, 2016

When most people think of dinosaurs they'll likely conjure up images of the stabbing teeth of the T-rex or the cutting claws of a Velociraptor but what about the squishy bits of dinosaurs? To find out more Liam Messin went to the University of Cambr...Show More

04:35 | Oct 24th, 2016

According to the Office for National Statistics, the ONS, in England and Wales deaths involving heroin and morphine have more than double since 2012. The ONS say this is partially driven by a rise in heroin purity and availability over the last three...Show More

06:11 | Oct 23rd, 2016

We all know that men aren't really from Mars and women aren't really from Venus, we are both from Earth and there are more similarities between sexes and genders than there are differences. But, even after many decades of campaigning there are stil...Show More

09:41 | Oct 17th, 2016

On the 13th of October Addenbrooke's hospital in Cambridge turned 250 years old. As an established teaching hospital, it trains hundreds of medical students with the final three years their time spent on clinical placements. Connie Orbach went to mee...Show More

05:18 | Oct 16th, 2016

Over 35 million people worldwide are living with HIV. Treatments cost billions and don't come without significant side effects for the individual. Now, researchers from Emroy University may have found a new drug duo to eliminate the need for debilita...Show More

06:08 | Oct 13th, 2016

Addenbrooke's hospital in Cambridge celebrated its 250th birthday this week. To find out more about the history of the renowned hospital, Georgia Mills was shown around the archives by Hilary Richie, uncovering stories of naughty nurses, torturous me...Show More

05:22 | Oct 9th, 2016

Levels in the atmosphere of the greenhouse gas methane released accidentally by the oil and gas industry might be up to 60% higher than climate scientists had budgeted for. A new method combining long term atmospheric measurements of methane levels w...Show More

05:28 | Oct 6th, 2016

What makes dogs man's - or woman's - best friend? Scientists in Sweden gave a pack of dogs an impossible task to do: pushing along a plate that was actually stuck to the floor. The dogs that sought help from their owners were set up a different way g...Show More

05:17 | Oct 5th, 2016

Now you'd "bee" forgiven for thinking that bees are just simple insects that buzz about collecting nectar and fertilising flowers. But it turns out they have emotions just like us. Chris Smith spoke to Clint Perry, who works at Queen Mary University ...Show More

05:15 | Oct 4th, 2016

There is a centuries old debate about violence between people - is it something we're born with, or a product of our environment? Understanding the causes of violence is important if we want to try and reduce it, and so there have been hundreds of so...Show More

04:11 | Oct 4th, 2016

For this week's mythconception, Kat Arney investigates the many mysteries surrounding the notorious Bermuda Triangle.

05:31 | Oct 3rd, 2016

Since the 1970s scientists have condemned fats - or lipids - as the culprits that cause heart attacks. But while that's certainly true of some fats, it's not the case for all of them. Because one, called palmitoleic acid, can potently protect arterie...Show More

13:20 | Sep 14th, 2016

We live in an increasingly mobile society, with many of us owning cars and driving around the place for all kinds of reasons - work, leisure, or visiting family perhaps. And this doesn't change as we get older, especially if we all have to keep worki...Show More

04:23 | Sep 7th, 2016

Air pollution is a growing problem in many parts of the world, as is an increasing incidence of lung and breathing problems. Although the link is clear, it's not known exactly how air pollution damages our lungs at a molecular level. Kat Arney's been...Show More

06:35 | Sep 6th, 2016

Is this the dawn of a new era? Or, more accurately, epoch? This week scientists internationally have been voting to create a new geological time defined by our human existence. They're dubbing it the Anthropocene and Chris Smith wanted to find out wh...Show More

05:30 | Sep 5th, 2016

How much gold have you got sitting in your desk drawer or up in the attic? Probably more than you think because a surprisingly large amount of the world's gold supply is tied up in old electronics. But getting it back out is chemically very tricky, m...Show More

03:51 | Sep 4th, 2016

NASA's space probe Dawn has been orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres, which sits between Jupiter and Mars, for the past eighteen months. The probe is sending back data on this small body, which we previously knew almost nothing about. Last week, a whole ...Show More

04:49 | Aug 25th, 2016

Scientists often study disease by examining thin sections of biological tissue under a microscope - a bit like watching a film in 2D. That's fine for some, but an organ like the brain is really complex, with neurons crisscrossing left, right and cent...Show More

05:05 | Aug 24th, 2016

Imagine a robot. I'm guessing, after decades of droids and terminators, that the machine you're picturing is something metal, rigid and human-shaped. But this type of robot can only do so much. What we need are soft-skinned robots and this is precise...Show More

04:23 | Aug 22nd, 2016

Although empathy is often associated with traits like helpfulness and generosity, not a lot is known about how helpful behaviour and empathy might be linked in the brain. Now, scientists have pinpointed part of the brain thought to drive us to learn ...Show More

05:11 | Aug 11th, 2016

It's a well-known fact that, as a woman ages, her chances of falling pregnant drop. And this seems to be driven by a fall in the quality of the eggs that she produces. Why this happens though, in an otherwise healthy individual, is a mystery. Now Fra...Show More

04:46 | Aug 10th, 2016

It's summertime and fields are filled with sunflowers, devotedly following the rising sun. But why do they do it? This is a question that scientists at the University of California, Davis, have striven to answer and Dr Stacey Harmer thinks she has th...Show More

05:48 | Aug 9th, 2016

For the first time, scientists have found a type of arthritis in dinosaurs and this is important because these creatures have an amazing ability to heal themselves from diseases that would normally kill you and me. So, if we can look to animals like ...Show More

06:48 | Aug 8th, 2016

Jupiter is the largest planet in our Solar System - a massive 318 times heavier than Earth - and it has been quite the 'hot spot' for news recently. NASA's Juno probe entered into orbit around Jupiter at the beginning of July, while in a new finding...Show More

04:38 | Aug 8th, 2016

Cases of Zika virus infection in Florida are continuing to rise, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued travel advice urging pregnant women not to travel to certain parts of the country. The good news is that scientists testin...Show More

04:26 | Aug 4th, 2016

Childhood pneumonia is the number one killer of children under the age of five worldwide. The disease is a particular challenge for those living in developing countries, where there is a lack of clinical expertise and appropriate equipment to diagno...Show More

04:16 | Aug 3rd, 2016

One in 20 people develop colorectal cancer in their lifetime, making it the second-most common form cancer in Europe. Surgery is an option for treatment, but this can result in incomplete removal of the tumour. Now, researchers from MIT have develope...Show More

04:20 | Jul 20th, 2016

Researchers at the University of Helsinki have developed a chewing robot to study the tie between tooth wear and the dietary patterns of animals. Their shiny stainless-steel chewing machine with 3D printed parts can now show how the paleodiet of the ...Show More

03:43 | Jul 14th, 2016

People who feel well tend to live well. They have a better immunity against infections and lower susceptibility to ill-health. Stress and depression, on the other hand, are linked to poorer functioning of the immune system, weaker responses to vaccin...Show More

05:14 | Jul 11th, 2016

The most sensitive "electronic nose" ever has been built by scientists in Belgium. The portable "E-nose" uses spongy structures called metal-organic frameworks to pick up minute traces of molecules including harmful nerve gases. Lucka Bibic spoke to ...Show More

07:21 | Jul 10th, 2016

It's summertime again and along with ice cream, sunburn and our other favourite British traditions, it's time for the Royal Society's Summer Science Exhibition, in London. We've been to see what's been going on

04:28 | Jul 9th, 2016

A system for growing heart cells on a microscopic silicon grid that can eavesdrop on their electrical behaviour is giving scientists a much clearer picture of how the heart works and providing a way to test new drugs much more safely. Long term it co...Show More

03:42 | Jul 6th, 2016

Days of squeezing the last drop from your shampoo bottles are over! Thanks to researchers from the US, we now have a material which allows sticky liquids to flow freely AND this has big implications for recycling, as Philip Brown explained to Lucka B...Show More

03:20 | Jul 5th, 2016

Helium is the stuff that goes into party balloons and is also an essential ingredient in hospital MRI scanners. Most people have heard of helium but not many realise that we're in danger of running out of it. Luckily, Jon Gluyas from Durham Universi...Show More

04:54 | Jul 4th, 2016

Today, NASA's Juno spacecraft has plunged into uncharted territory, flying closer to Jupiter than we've ever been before. Graihagh Jackson spoke to co-investigator of the Mission, Professor Stan Cowley from Leceister University...

04:46 | Jul 3rd, 2016

Back in February the World Health Organisation declared the zika virus epidemic in Brazil to be a public health emergency of international concern. At the top of the list was the link between Zika infection and babies being born with microcephaly or ...Show More

05:15 | Jun 29th, 2016

Cells collected from the intestines of patients with the disease cystic fibrosis can be grown in the laboratory dish to produce balls of cells that scientists are calling mini guts. These can be used to test a series of new cystic fibrosis drugs that...Show More

05:01 | Jun 29th, 2016

When it comes to making musical instruments, there's as much science in today's violins as there is art. While many manufacturers around the world are still creating wooden violins, others are turning to alternative materials such as carbon fibre. Bu...Show More

05:03 | Jun 29th, 2016

Solar Impulse is a unique plane, powered not by jet fuel, but solar energy and it is currently on a record-breaking tour around the world. But how does that plane work and what is it like to fly? What happens when the sun begins to fade and the nigh ...Show More

05:23 | Jun 21st, 2016

Chronic Heart Failure is the inability of your heart to effectively pump blood around your body and affects over half a million people in the UK alone. So what causes it and could treatments lie in something as simple as iron? Doctor Paul Kalra is a ...Show More

06:11 | Jun 15th, 2016

Sudden cardiac death in the young, that's an apparently healthy person dying unexpectedly from heart-related issues under the age of 35, is rare but devastating. It is also something of a mystery to many scientists. So how can we try to prevent young...Show More

03:47 | Jun 10th, 2016

Carbon dioxide is a problematic greenhouse gas contributing to global warming. Power plants are major emitters of carbon dioxide, but unfortunately, current methods of capturing and storing excess carbon dioxide have not been very effective. Only a s...Show More

04:11 | Jun 7th, 2016

On June the 1st, Switzerland announced the opening of the world's longest tunnel. Called the Gotthard tunnel, it runs under the Alps to link Northern and Southern Europe; and at 57.5 km, it's fair to say, you certainly wouldn't be able to see the li...Show More

04:31 | Jun 6th, 2016

Immune cells are essential to the maintenance and repair in our bodies. However, an over-active immune system can lead to diseases such as arthritis, chronically inflamed wounds and atherosclerosis. Therefore, it is imperative to understand and caref...Show More

03:35 | Jun 6th, 2016

Earlier this year, the US banned microparticle beads from personal care products, but Europe has yet to follow suit. Now, researchers from Uppsala University are increasing the urgency as for the first time, they have been able to show that fish actu...Show More

04:39 | Jun 5th, 2016

A vaccine that can teach the immune system to attack any type of cancer is being developed and tested by scientists in Germany. Cancer affects one person in every three. It's caused by genetic damage to our cells, which leads them to grow in an uncon...Show More

09:21 | May 26th, 2016

As a nation, the UK are above the intake guidelines for salt, which, for an adult, is 6g per day. To put that into perspective, there's about half a gram in a small packet of crisps, or one ham and cheese sandwich. But what does salt do to our inside...Show More

03:51 | May 22nd, 2016

Botox is a popular cosmetic treatment where Botulin toxin-A injections paralyse your facial muscles, which relaxes smile lines and makes your skin appear younger. In comedies, it is often joked about for giving patients frozen expressions. But now, ...Show More

03:47 | May 19th, 2016

This week we're tackling a myth sent in by listener Tim who says, "For many years I heard management gurus talking about the boiling frog syndrome.If you throw a frog into a pot of hot water it will immediately jump out. But If you put it in cold wat...Show More

04:20 | May 18th, 2016

Robots are everywhere, from the machines that work in factories to pop culture icons like the Star Wars droids BB8, R2D2 and C3PO. but this is nothing new. Humans have been creating robots for centuries, and a new exhibition at the Science Museum in ...Show More

06:58 | May 15th, 2016

From maths hacks to poker playing bots, could there be a science to help you win big at the casino? Georgia Mills has been practising her poker face with help from Adam Kucharski...

05:12 | May 15th, 2016

On February 1, 2016, the World Health Organization declared Zika virus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern with the virus' continued spread through the Americas. Zika, which was previously considered to be fairly harmless, has been lin...Show More

03:42 | May 15th, 2016

The origins of life