• A Gut-Wrenching Question

    Every week, about 20 people visit the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pennsylvania to be evaluated for weight-loss surgery. They tell a...

  • Arrested Development

    Richard Walker has been trying to conquer ageing since he was a 26-year-old free-loving hippie. It was the 1960s, an era marked by...

  • Stop Looking for “Hardwired” Differences in Male and Female Brains

    In December, a highly publicized study declared that distinctive wiring in the brain explains different skill sets in men and women. After scanning...

  • The Sins of the Father

    When Brian Dias became a father last October, he was, like any new parent, mindful of the enormous responsibility that lay before him....

  • Sound and Touch Collide

    Tony Ro’s research on the brain’s mixing of sound and touch began, appropriately enough, at a mixer. It was the spring of 2000...

  • safecracking

    Safecracking the Brain

    It’s hard to imagine an encryption machine more sophisticated than the human brain. This three-pound blob of tissue holds an estimated 86 billion...

  • 1381503295.jpg.CROP.promovar-mediumlarge

    The Big Sell

    In his State of the Union address in February, President Obama made a nod to an emerging federal science project with an incredibly...

  • sperm

    23 and You

    Cheryl Whittle tried her best to fall asleep, but her mind kept racing. Tomorrow was going to be the culmination of three years of...

  • Child-on-cot

    On Scientific Detachment

    We drove to the orphanage on a pleasant December morning, under a sky that seemed too blue. It was a short ride through...

  • muzzle

    The Big Fat Truth

    Late in the morning on 20 February, more than 200 people packed an auditorium at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston,...

  • brainz

    How Damaged Are NFL Players’ Brains?

    In November of 2010, a few dozen retired players from the National Football League gathered with their wives in a large living room....

  • syringe-doc2

    The Disease Olympics

    In August of last year, molecular biologist Keith Yamamoto wrote a letter of concern to the chairs of the US House Committee on...

  • Brain Fixes

    For years, large clinical trials have treated people with epilepsy using so-called deep-brain stimulation: surgically implanted electrodes that can detect a seizure and...

  • exc-51afd517e4b0693e1a9f4dcb

    Fish-Bowl Neuroscience

    A recently hatched zebrafish is swimming upriver for the first time. Its big round eyes, bulging on the front of its eyelash-sized body,...

  • It’s Time To Stop Obsessing About the Dangers of Genetic Information

    I’m sick of reading about the dangers of the genome. There are lots of popular articles I could point to, but let’s start...

  • Why Does Music Move Us So?

    Why does a lullaby soothe a newborn, a dirge console the grieving, and a KoRn song make you want to rip your ears...

  • awakenings-990x660

    Re-Awakenings

    Anna Sumner’s craving for sleep began when she was an 18-year-old high school senior. She thought nothing of it. When it followed her...

  • elizabeth

    The Roots of Resilience

    On a chilly, January night in 1986, Elizabeth Ebaugh carried a bag of groceries across the quiet car park of a shopping plaza...

  • dori_adultbrain_microglia

    Microglia: The Constant Gardeners

    The work required the mind of an engineer and the hands of a surgeon. Axel Nimmerjahn had both. It was 2002 when Nimmerjahn,...

  • baby

    Ovary Banks: Freezing the Biological Clock

    The clock started ticking for T. Wilson in 2008, when she turned 36. She had been divorced for seven years, and as a...

  • animat

    Body Conscious

    In January, Max Versace and Heather Ames were busy with two newborns: their son Gabriel and Animat, a virtual rat. Like all babies,...

  • feethands

    Our Body the Ecosystem

    My first feature for Popular Science hits newsstands this month. It’s called ‘Our Body the Ecosystem’, and in it I profile microbiologists who...

  • dugan

    Science in Court: Head Case

    Brian Dugan, dressed in an orange jumpsuit and shackles, shuffled to the door of Northwestern Memorial Hospital in downtown Chicago, accompanied by four...

  • p55

    An Ear for Poetry

    As a young boy, Frank Gallimore lived on 33 acres of forestland in rural Oregon. His father was a social worker; his mother...