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Episode 42: Goggles Optional’s Guide to the Galaxy

This week, we cover robot swarms – what it takes to get over a thousand robots to behave as one. We explore the origins of the super-athlete gene found in Tibetans. Finally, we cover a cool new way plants and parasites can share messages.

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Episode 40: Apocalypse!

This week on Goggles Optional, Apocalypse! Hosts Diego, Dave, Chelsea, and Nora discuss the terrifying Ebola outbreak, and in this context, why you might want to watch out for Batman. Next, where have all the bees gone, and can we dress Diego in a bee suit to address this issue? Finally, we share tidbits on giant penguins, more of the California drought, and how Google is getting up close and personal with health data in the name of science!

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Episode 39: Phage Noir

This week, we present a film-noir inspired story of a hunt for an elusive phage virus. We also have our steamiest section ever, as our hosts unveil a new steam producing method that can revolutionize clean energy. Finally, is curing HIV Mission Impossible? Maybe not if we harness the genome editing powers of CRISPR.

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Episode 37: GO Add(a)gene!

Want to add a gene to your portfolio? It’s not on Amazon, but it is on Addgene, a non-profit that serves as a marketplace for custom DNA. We speak with Dr. Joanne Kamens, executive director at Addgene, about recombinant DNA, making shipments to Iraq, and the challenges of being a female scientist. We also cover the darkest material ever made, and a food-inspired real-or-fake game show round!

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Episode 35: Facebook: more than meets the (lazy) eye

Diego, Lisl, Emily, and Nora turn their eyes to a report that Facebook altered users’ news feeds for a study on emotional contagion. Speaking of eyes, our hosts discuss a way to treat lazy eyes with exercise, and Nora shares a way to monitor wind patterns. Plus, find out what animal has the strongest bite, and go bananas for a monkey-themed game show round!

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Episode 34: Power to the Cells!

This week, our hosts get powered up on the topic of cells! Were scientists nuts by believing stress can create new cells? Can stress change white blood cell counts? Join our diabolical hosts this week for an electrifying discussion that spans power, immunity, and regenerative medicine. Plus, why in the world would Tesla be releasing their patents, and what is in their patents anyway? Get fired up for all that plus our weekly Hot Start and Game Show!

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Episode 33: The Fault in our Tweets

Trisha, Emily, Greg, and David welcome Dr. Mahalia Miller to discuss her work on monitoring earthquakes using Twitter. Mahalia combines tweets with seismic data to provide better data for first responders and for traffic networks. The group also discusses a clinical test to rule them all (hint: it’s initials are NGS). And don’t miss an awesome new song by Trisha and Emily!

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Episode 30: Measles, Cancer… Fight!

Trisha, Emily, Diego, and David take to the ring to cover the exciting fight between an engineered measles virus and a deadly cancer. If you think that Darwin was a poor, struggling scientist, think again! The hosts discuss the role of philanthropists in science funding, and make some interesting observations about some of our earliest scientists. Next, if we give mice wheels, will they run? An interesting study covers mice running on wheels in the wild. Finally, we share viewer responses on food labeling, and end with a close battle in the game show.

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Episode 26: UCSF versus Stanford! (With Carry The One Radio!)

Lisl, Trisha, Diego, and David are joined by the UCSF students from Carry The One Radio. Team UCSF and team Stanford science-podcast-battle it out in the game categories Weakest Link, Team Real or Fake, and Google’s Optional (not a typo!). The group also discusses which scientists we’d like to interview and the story of the Shavenbaby. (Not a shaven baby!).

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Episode 24: Jeopardy!

We’ll take Goggles Optional for 400 please. “What are we up to this week?” “What is Trisha, Nick, Diego, and Emily battle it out in Jeopardy, and discuss aging and functional genomics?” Correct! This week we highlight how we can light up worms to study aging, the amazing regenerating thymus, and why you might want to stay away from scissors when you’re hungry. Lastly, we bid farewell to our staff member with the most PhDs, Dr. Nick. The poop and sex jokes just won’t be the same without you!