Bio: I'm a science reporter for The Washington Post, where I cover...science, all of it. Previously, I spent six years as a freelancer, writing for many publications. I've also been a staff reporter at Science News and JAMA.
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…out of my home office and into the newsroom of the Washington Post. For the next six months I’ll be on the general science beat at the paper, which lost most of its science reporters during the past three years of brutal buy-outs and downsizing. I’m thrilled for the opportunity to bring more science to the Post. Look for my stories online and in the *gasp* print paper too.
Invasive insects, like this emerald ash borer, have destroyed tens of millions of trees in the United States. In a piece for the Washington Post, I track the bugs and call into question USDA regulations meant to stem the tide of tiny invaders.
I appeared live on the BBC World Service (twice) in the wee hours (UK time) of Aug. 23, to discuss the ebola virus. Researchers at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases have made progress on an anti-ebola drug. It would be the first such drug if human trials prove successful. In 2004, I wrote in JAMA about the same researchers’ efforts to produce an ebola vaccine – efforts that continue. The bottom line with ebola is that it’s very tough to treat, and because it causes so few deaths worldwide, there’s no drug company invested in it. So most ebola research is conducted by the U.S. military, which is concerned that the virus could be weaponized and used by bioterrorists.
Call it the brain fixer: A potent growth factor that could reverse stroke, interrupt addiction, and halt Parkinson’s disease. But getting it into the brain has proved challenging. In this feature for Nature I explore new technology for sneaking this growth factor, GDNF, into the brain. [Read Story]
I recently attended psychedelic medicine’s coming out party - a meeting of 1100 researchers and enthusiasts in San Jose, Calif. – and found the early data on MDMA (‘Ecstasy’) as an adjunct to talk therapy for post-traumatic stress disorder pretty compelling. Scientific American ran my piece on the study, which features a vet who says the therapy eliminated his PTSD symptoms. [Read Story]
My first publication in the New York Times doesn’t have my name on it – but I’m proud of it nonetheless. It’s an Op-Ed about the dangers of P.S.A. testing that I penned for Dr. Richard Ablin, who discovered prostate specific antigen in 1970. The piece made it to the top of the “most e-mailed” list at the Times. Read it here.
I discuss stem cell tourism with BBC superstar Matt McGrath. My yapping starts about halfway in. From Feb. 19, 2010, San Diego.
The snows of Kilimanjaro are rapidly disappearing and will be gone by 2033, predicts the most detailed analysis yet of the iconic glaciers gracing Africa’s highest peak.
”They’re being decapitated,” says study leader Lonnie Thompson. “In fact, they’re probably not really glaciers anymore. They’re remnants of another climate.”
Published in Nature. [Link]