147 episodes

Science Vs

Gimlet Media Science
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Episodic
Dec 10, 2020

Magic Mushrooms: Trip Through the Science

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Magic mushrooms have hit the headlines, with people saying that shrooms cured their depression and anxiety. But is this for real? How can taking a trip on psychedelics fix your brain? Today, magic mushrooms ditch their tie dye for a lab coat as we go on a magical journey into the science. We talk to clinical psychologists Dr. Alan Davis and Dr. Albert Garcia-Romeu, and neuropsychologist Dr. Katrin Preller.

Here’s a link to our transcript: https://bit.ly/37Th8QX

This episode does deal with depression. Here are some crisis hotlines: 

United States: US National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (2755) (Online chat available); US Crisis Text Line Text “GO” to 741741

Australia: Lifeline 13 11 14 (Online chat available)

Canada: Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (See link for phone numbers listed by province)

United Kingdom: Samaritans 116 123 (UK and ROI)

Full list of international hotlines here 

This episode was produced by Meryl Horn and Michelle Dang with help from Wendy Zukerman, Nick DelRose, Rose Rimler and Hannah Harris Green. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Fact checking by Diane Kelly. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music written by Peter Leonard, Marcus Bagala, Emma Munger, and Bobby Lord. A huge thanks to all the researchers we got in touch with for this episode, including Prof. David Nichols, Dr. James Rucker, Prof. Bryan Roth, Dr. Erika Dyck, Dr. Daniel Wacker, Mary Cosimano, Dr. Fred Barrett, Dr. Natalie Gukasyan, Dr. Jeff Guss, Dr. Suresh Muthukumaraswamy, Prof. Harriet de Wit, Dr. Nadia Hutten, Dr. Vince Polito, Dr. Kim Kuypers and Dr. Matt Kasson. Thanks to all the clinical trial participants and ‘psychonauts’ who spoke to us. And special thanks to Lexi Krupp, the Zukerman family and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.

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Dec 07, 2020

Coronavirus: More Scared or Less Scared?

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MINI EPISODE! Tons of new science means fresh answers on a few things that really freaked us out at the start of the pandemic: coronavirus on surfaces; ibuprofen and Covid-19; and getting Covid twice. 

Link to transcript: https://bit.ly/3lXu6Ca

This episode was produced by Rose Rimler, Nick DelRose, and Wendy Zukerman with help from Michelle Dang and Hannah Harris Green. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell with help from Caitlin Kenney. Fact checking by Diane Kelly. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music written by Peter Leonard, Marcus Bagala, Emma Munger, and Bobby Lord. Thanks to everyone we got in touch with for this episode, and special thanks to the Zukerman family and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.

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Dec 03, 2020

Coronavirus: Shots! Shots! Shots!

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There’s a ton of hoopla over these new coronavirus vaccines. But given that they’ve been produced at warp speed — can we trust them? We also find out what’s going on with “long haulers.” How common is it to be sick for months from Covid-19? Plus, fresh new science about why some young people land in the hospital. We talk to Dr. Katy Stephenson, Dr. Alexander Hoischen, Dr. Jeffrey Siegelman, and Prof. Tim Spector. 

Link to transcript: https://bit.ly/37vYvT3

This episode was produced by Rose Rimler, NickDelRose, and Wendy Zukerman with help from Michelle Dang, and Hannah Harris Green. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell with help from Caitlin Kenney. Fact checking by Diane Kelly. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music written by Peter Leonard, Marcus Bagala, Emma Munger, and Bobby Lord. Thanks to everyone we got in touch with for this episode including Dr. Cleo Anastassopoulou, Dr. Cas van der Made, Prof. Joel Ray, Dr. Nicholas Tatonetti, Michael Zietz, Prof. Torben Barrington, Dr. Emma Pierson, Professor Peter Wark, Dr. Jennifer Dan, Dr. Natalie Lambert, Dr. Benjamin Abramoff and others. And special thanks to the Zukerman family and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.

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Nov 19, 2020

Did the CIA do it? Part II

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When a deadly pig virus hit Cuba in 1971, some claimed the CIA was behind it all. But could it be true? In part two of our investigation into the outbreak, we finally hear directly from the CIA — and get to the bottom of what happened. 
In this episode: ex-CIA Brian Latell, journalist Drew Fetherston, Professor Mary-Louise Penrith and Professor José Manuel Sánchez-Vizcaíno. 

Please fill out our Science Vs survey! Link here: https://blythet.typeform.com/to/Z7YOM2QM 

New to the show? Some of our fave episodes are …
Hunting an Invisible Killer: https://gimletmedia.com/shows/science-vs/brhv724 
The Mystery of the Man Who Died Twice: https://gimletmedia.com/shows/science-vs/brhod5  
Placebo: Can the Mind Cure You? https://gimletmedia.com/shows/science-vs/5whgzd 
5G: Welcome to the Revolution? https://gimletmedia.com/shows/science-vs/j4h39x 

Here’s a link to our transcript: https://bit.ly/2Kn0iSv

A huge thanks to Dan Guillemette, Rebecca Ibarra and the team at WNYC’s Scattered. This episode was produced by Wendy Zukerman, with help from Nick DelRose, Mathilde Urfalino, Hannah Harris Green, Rose Rimler and Michelle Dang. It was edited by Blythe Terrell and Caitlin Kenney, with help from PJ Vogt. Fact checking by Diane Kelly. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music written by Peter Leonard, Emma Munger, Bobby Lord and Marcus Bagala. Interpreting by Carmen Graterol and Julia Kaplan. Translation by Silvina Baldermann. Thanks to everyone we got in touch with for this episode including Peter Kornbluh, Professor Piero Gleijeses, Professor Armanda Bastos, Dr. Alexis Albion, Dr. David Williams, Professor Hugh Wilford, Dr. James Lockhart, Professor Louis A. Pérez, Dr. Megan Niederwerder, Steven Aftergood, and Vicki J. Huddleston. And thank you to the Cuban exiles and those who fought in the bay of pigs for speaking to us. A special thanks to the Zukerman family, and Joseph Lavelle Wilson. 

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Nov 13, 2020

Did the CIA Plant a Virus in Cuba?

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When the Cuban government rounded up and killed thousands of pigs in 1971, people were angry and confused. Castro claimed they were trying to stop an outbreak. But then rumours started spreading that something much bigger was behind it all. The CIA. 
To find out more, we speak to Professor Virgil Suarez, journalist Drew Fetherston, Professor Mary Louise Penrith, ex-CIA Carol “Rollie” Flynn and Professor Loch Johnson.

Here’s a link to our transcript: https://bit.ly/3ksSP0o

A huge thanks to Dan Guillemette, Rebeca Ibarra and the team at WNYC’s Scattered. This episode was produced by Wendy Zukerman, with help from Nick DelRose, Mathilde Urfalino, Hannah Harris Green, Rose Rimler and Michelle Dang. It was edited by Blythe Terrell and Caitlin Kenney, with help from PJ Vogt. Fact checking by Diane Kelly. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music written by Peter Leonard, Emma Munger, Bobby Lord and Marcus Bagala. Interpreting by Carmen Graterol and Julia Kaplan. Translation by Silvina Baldermann. Thanks to everyone we got in touch with for this episode including Peter Kornbluh, Professor Piero Gleijeses, Professor Armanda Bastos, Dr. Alexis Albion, Dr David Williams, Professor Hugh Wilford, Professor Jose Sánchez-Vizcaíno, Dr James Lockhart, Professor Louis A. Pérez, Dr Megan Niederwerder,Steven Aftergood, and Vicki J. Huddleston. And thank you to the Cuban exiles and those who fought in the bay of pigs for speaking to us. A special thanks to the Zukerman family, and Joseph Lavelle Wilson. 

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Nov 06, 2020

Platypuses Get a Glow Up

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The eccentric platypus has always turned heads, and now it’s got something else up its sleeve. We talked with mammalogist Dr. Paula Anich to get the scoop.

Here’s a link to our transcript: https://bit.ly/34YfHR4

This episode was produced by Nick DelRose with help from Wendy Zukerman, Rose Rimler, Michelle Dang, and Hannah Harris Green. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Mix and sound design by Bumi Hidaka. Music written by Peter Leonard. And special thanks to the Zukerman family and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.

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Oct 30, 2020

Reparations: How Could It Work?

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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. 
UPDATE 10/30/20: An earlier version of this episode said that the average White person who didn’t finish high school makes more money than the average Black person who graduated from college. The actual statistic is about net worth, rather than income, so we removed this reference. We’ve updated the episode.
Check out the transcript here: https://bit.ly/3kSFe3q
Selected resources:

Leah’s book, Farming While Black

Sandy’s book, From Here to Equality

This Time article about Rosewood

This episode was produced by Rose Rimler and Anoa Changa with help from Wendy Zukerman, Hannah Harris Green, Michelle Dang, and Nick DelRose. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Fact checking by Erica Akiko Howard. Mix and sound design by Sam Bair. Music written by Peter Leonard, Emma Munger, Bobby Lord and Marcus Bagala. Baby sounds provided by Hunter and Lyric. Thanks to everyone we got in touch with for this episode including Sophia Clark, Dr. Dania Francis, Dr. Dionissi Alliprantis, Prof. Kristen Broady, Prof. Rashawn Ray, Dr. Rhonda Vonshay Sharpe, Prof. Henry Thompson, Prof. Richard Edwards, and Prof. Steve Greenlaw. A special thanks to the Zukerman family, Walter Rimler, and Joseph Lavelle Wilson. 

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Oct 22, 2020

Supervolcanoes: Is Yellowstone Gonna Blow?

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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. 

Here’s a link to our transcript: https://bit.ly/3kliFV6

Check out Yellowstone Volcano Observatory’s weekly blog the “Caldera Chronicles”: https://www.usgs.gov/volcanoes/yellowstone/caldera-chronicles

This episode was produced by Michelle Dang and Nicholas DelRose, with help from Wendy Zukerman, Rose Rimler and Hannah Harris Green. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Fact checking by Barbra Rodriguez. Mix and sound design by Sam Bair. Music written by Peter Leonard, Marcus Bagala, Emma Munger and Bobby Lord. A huge thanks to all the researchers we got in touch with for this episode, including Brian Wilcox, Dr. Mike Rampino, Dr. Jazmin Scarlett, Dr. Joe McConnell, Dr. Rosaly Lopes and Dr. Thor Thordarson. And special thanks to the Zukerman family and Joseph Lavelle Wilson.

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There are a lot of fads, blogs and strong opinions, but then there’s SCIENCE. Science Vs is the show from Gimlet that finds out what’s fact, what’s not, and what’s somewhere in between. We do the hard work of sifting through all the science so you don’t have to and cover everything from 5G and Pandemics, to Vaping and Fasting Diets.