Listen to the Ask A Biologist Podcast

A Biology Podcast for Everyone

You have been reading about the biologists behind the Ask A Biologist website. Now you can listen to them in our popular biology podcast show. Dr. Biology has been speaking with many of the biologists that are discovering new worlds and exploring new frontiers in biology. There are over 100 episodes and we continue to add more interviews. Each show includes a full written transcript and content log.

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Photograph of Athena Aktipis

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 93
Guest: Athena Aktipis

Cooperation is something that humans and animals are known to do. It turns out that the 30 trillion cells in our body also need to cooperate. Like some humans, there are cells that are cheaters when it comes to cooperation. They do not do their share of the work and cause a lot of other problems. These are cancer cells. Cooperation theorist Athena Aktipis talks with Dr. Biology about her research and how it might help us learn more about cancer cells.
Max Tegmark

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 92
Guest: Max Tegmark

Life in the year 2050, what will it look like? Will it be the age of intelligent computers? Could this happen even sooner? Physicist and author Max Tegmark talks about the future of artificial intelligence and how it might impact biological life on this planet. Dr. Biology learns about the future of smart computers. Will they become too smart for humankind? What precautions should we put in place to secure our place on Earth and our future?
Klaus Lackner

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 91
Guest: Klaus Lackner

Hacking is a word that is often tied to something bad. However, there are times when hacking can be for something good. Think of it as a tool that can be put to use for good or bad. We also think of hacking as something only done with computers, but can we hack other things? Dr. Biology has the opportunity to sit down with scientist Klaus Lackner to talk about how he is hacking the environment in order to pull carbon dioxide (CO2) out of the air. If he succeeds, it could help reduce CO2 in the atmosphere and redirect it towards better uses.

Catyana Falsetti

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 90
Guest: Catyana Falsetti

Television portrays the lives and work of forensic artists, but what is it like to really be a forensic artist? Are the tools you see on the big and little screen really used by the people who recreate the face of someone when there might only be a skull or parts of a scull to use as a starting point. Dr. Biology visits with forensic artist and author Catyana Falsetti to learn the answers to these questions and a lot more.

Nick Lane

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 89
Guest: Nick Lane

What would life be like on other planets? This is just one of many questions that Biochemist and author Nick Lane talks about while visiting with Dr. Biology. Listen in as Nick explores not only life on our Earth, but also what it might be like on other planets. Nick also reads from his book, The Vital Question, and weighs in on the question of viruses - are they living or non-living?

Melissa Wilson

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 88
Guest: Melissa Wilson

In the tiny world of DNA, we might call genomes monsters. These huge sets of information include all the codes for all the genes present in an organism. From genomes, we can learn about the traits, diseases, and evolution of a species, and that’s just a start. What might such a monster set of data do for us if it was about our very own North American monster – the Gila monster? Computational biologist Melissa Wilson tells Dr. Biology about the Gila monster, the life-saving venom in its saliva, and what we might learn from the monster genome.

Joellen Russell

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 87
Guest: Joellen Russell

Did you know the westerly winds in the Southern Ocean have been helping to keep our planet livable? Yes, they have been responsible for soaking up half of the human-made carbon dioxide (CO2) along with a whole lot of excess heat. Dr. Biology has the opportunity to talk with geoscientist Joellen Russell about the research she and a group of scientists have been doing in the southern hemisphere that tells us how important these winds and the oceans are for regulating the temperature of the planet.

Tony Falsetti

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 86
Guest: Tony Falsetti

Dead men tell no tales, but their bones can. It just takes a particular kind of scientist to read the clues that tell the story. Dr. Biology sits down with guest Tony Falsetti, a forensic anthropologist who knows his way around a skeleton. They talk about the role of forensic anthropology and some of the mysteries of history Tony has helped to solve.

Gail Morris

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 85
Guest: Gail Morris

These fluttering icons of North America are a favorite of many people across the world, but they may be having some population problems. Don’t worry though, there are ways you can help. Conservation specialist Gail Morris talks with our student guest host Kayna Lantz about these colorful insects, their identification, migration, and the many groups that are working to better understand them.

Andrea Graham

Ask A Biologist Podcast, Vol. 84
Guest: Andrea Graham

Around 4,000 years ago, on the wind-swept island of St. Kilda, Scotland, people started creating a food storage of sorts. They moved a population of sheep to the island, likely as a backup food resource for when times were tough. Little did they know that their actions would affect 21st-century science. Today, rather than ending up as a meal, sheep from this isolated population are the subjects of research on immune function. Ecologist Andrea Graham takes Dr. Biology on a trip of exploration through the dangerous cliffs, windy conditions, and wormy world that the Soay sheep deal with on St. Kilda.


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