Biology Stories

Explore the world of biology and meet some of our biologists. Here you can learn about the living world and find out what is so cool about biology that someone would do it for a living. Pick a story to read or listen to one of our podcast shows filled with guest scientists who share their experiences and passion for discovery.

Did you ever think the search for the “fountain of youth” would end up inside of our very own cells? There are some scientists that have found that parts of our cells might hold the answer to aging and diseases like cancer.

David Pearson is a research professor in Arizona State University's School of Life Sciences. A speaker of five languages and capable of getting into trouble in maybe three or four other languages, he's traveled the world studying tiger beetles and recently published the book, A Field Guide to Tiger Beetles in the United States and Canada.

How careful are you with your words? Scientists are figuring out how to choose words more wisely to have a better chance to stop certain diseases.

What is cloning and do we have clones living among us today? The answers might surprise you or maybe we should say ewe.

Imagine you want to pull a long cylinder-shaped piece of soil (called a core) out of the ground in your backyard. What kind of tools would you need? Find out how researchers collect cores in the Frozen Arctic.

Peruvian poison frogs mimic, or look like, other poison frogs that live in the same area. But they don't just look like one other species. Depending on the location, frogs of this species may mimic one of many other species of poison frog.  

The career path for biologist Kevin McGraw was set by a chance sighting through a window of a Costa Rican coffee shop.

Our daily life depends on the ability to see, hear, feel, and smell at the same time, a skill that develops during childhood. In this article scientists studied how the brain develops the ability to combine sensory information. 

The majority of life in the ocean is found near the shore, in the coastal biome.

Almost all of our cells contain identical copies of DNA. But wait...with the same instructions, shouldn't all cells look and function the same? Learn how our bodies use the same instructions to make all kinds of different cells.

We study cooperation in humans a lot, but what about cooperation in... cancer? Learn how researchers are applying the same behavioral dilemmas experienced by people to the outcomes of cell cooperation.

How do wild animals defend themselves against infections? Biologists studied a wild population of sheep to work out whether being tolerant of infections could be as good a strategy as killing infections.

Look closely at John Alcock's critter littered yard and you'll be bug-eyed. He decorates the front with cow patties, spends hours watching sleeping bees and occasionally wolfs down a cricket or mealworm to amuse or horrify his guests. "I'm just considered a mildly eccentric person," admits the Arizona State University biology professor.

Climate is a hot topic in the news and on internet websites and blogs. But what exactly is climate? And how do we know it is changing? 

Professor Ferran Garcia-Pichel sweats the small stuff. The really, really small stuff to be exact. The easygoing Arizona State University-based microbiologist loves to look beyond the surface to explain what is happening in the tiny world of microbes.
Also in: Español

They might be colorful. They might be cute to some people. But don’t let that fool you. These bright colored frogs are poisonous. Dr. Biology talks with biologist Molly Cummings to learn about her work with some frogs that advertise to predators to stay away and other frogs that take advantage of this signal by copying the colors of their poisonous cousins.

The race is on. It is one where biologists and citizen scientists are working as quickly as possible to find and identify all the species on Earth before some go extinct. It might not seem like an important race, but we learn from entomologist Kelly Miller that not knowing what species we are losing might be more important than we think. To speed up the search scientists are using traditional and newer tools that are part of the world of cybertaxonomy.

An imaginary conversation between two great thinkers, Charles Darwin and Gregor Mendel. While the monk, Mendel, had read Darwin’s publications - Mendel's work only came to be known later. We can only imagine what the two might have talked about.

If aliens were to contact us, what would you say? How would you say it? These are just a few of the questions that Dr. Biology talks about with guest Lucy Hawking. The two have fun with these ideas and more as part of the Dear Aliens essay contest.

Signals from the brain have been used to help scientists understand how people see, move, and make decisions. In this experiment scientists tested whether they could also use these signals to record a person's emotional state. Would they be able to detect fear, surprise, sadness, and more by looking inside the brain?

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