Five Ways Filmmaking Helped an M.D./Ph.D. Student Become a Better Science Communicator

By Edison Leung

One of my favorite shows to watch as a kid was Edison Leung is a 6th year M.D./Ph.D. student at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He currently is pursuing his Ph.D. in Dr. John Condeelis’ lab where he is studying how breast cancer metastasis occurs.


This post was originally featured on The Doctor’s Tablet, the blog of Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

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‘Cannibalism’ between stars

Stars do not accumulate their final mass steadily, but in a series of violent events manifesting themselves as sharp stellar brightening. Stellar brightening can be caused by fragmentation due to gravitational instabilities in massive gaseous disks surrounding young stars, followed by migration of dense gaseous clumps onto the star, according to a new theory. —> Read More

New Zika Guidelines Will Change How Lots Of Americans Have Sex

Pregnant couples in which a male partner may have been exposed to the mosquito-borne Zika virus should use condoms during vaginal, anal and oral sex or be abstinent in order to prevent sexual transmission of the disease, according to new federal guidelines.

That’s because sexually transmitting Zika virus to a pregnant partner may pose a threat to the fetus’ development in the womb, resulting in birth defects.

If pregnant women or their partners have traveled to an area with active Zika transmission, the guidelines say, they should discuss this potential exposure with an OB/GYN in order to determine if extra testing and evaluation is needed during the pregnancy.

So far the only bodily fluid associated with sex in which Zika has been found is sperm. And it’s currently unknown how long a person who has had Zika virus will be able to transmit the disease sexually, so researchers have yet to be determined how long men need to use condoms during sex to avoid passing the disease to someone else.

These new guidelines were released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday, two days after the agency confirmed that the first-ever local transmission of Zika virus in the U.S. happened through sexual contact. An unnamed patient in Dallas got the virus after sleeping with a partner who had recently traveled from Venezuela.

The Dallas case appears to confirm the likelihood of two initial reports of possible sexual transmission of Zika virus. The first case study, published in 2011, suggests that a man who contracted the disease while working in Senegal went on to sexually transmit it to his wife when he returned to his home in Colorado. The second case study reported that a Tahitian man showed signs of —> Read More

Weekly Space Hangout – Feb. 5, 2016: Dr. Or Graur

Host: Fraser Cain (@fcain)

Special Guest: Dr. Or Graur, Research Associate at the Center for Cosmology and Particle Physics at New York University; Researches what type of star leads to a thermonuclear, or “Type Ia,” supernova.

Carolyn Collins Petersen ( / / @spacewriter )
Morgan Rehnberg ( / @MorganRehnberg )
Kimberly Cartier (@AstroKimCartier )
Dave Dickinson ( / @astroguyz)
Jolene Creighton ( / @futurism)
Paul Sutter ( / @PaulMattSutter)

Their stories this week:

Creating the Moon in a Head-on Collision

Space Chimps

NASA’s shaky plans for Mars

How dense are Saturn’s rings?

67P is fluffy to its core

We’ve had an abundance of news stories for the past few months, and not enough time to get to them all. So we’ve started a new system. Instead of adding all of the stories to the spreadsheet each week, we are now using a tool called Trello to submit and vote on stories we would like to see covered each week, and then Fraser will be selecting the stories from there. Here is the link to the Trello WSH page (, which you can see without logging in. If you’d like to vote, just create a login and help us decide what to cover!

We record the Weekly Space Hangout every Friday at 12:00 pm Pacific / 3:00 pm Eastern. You can watch us live on Google+, Universe Today, or the Universe Today YouTube page.

You can also join in the discussion between episodes over at our Weekly Space Hangout Crew group in G+!

The post Weekly Space Hangout – Feb. 5, 2016: Dr. Or Graur appeared first on Universe Today.

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There’s A New Vegan-Ish Diet That’s Changing The Rules

If you can’t imagine abiding by the laws of veganism, a diet that excludes some of brunch’s best offerings, you might be pleased to know about a new food fad that permits breakfast lovers to have their omelets and eat them, too.

Many not-quite-vegans are including eggs in their otherwise animal product-free regimens, and these so-called “veggans” (clever, right?) are using #veggan on Instagram to prove how much a runny yolk can change a dish.

Elizabeth Ward, a registered dietitian who previously served as a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, points out that eggs are incredibly nutritious and satisfying. She supports adding them to an eating plan.

“Being a vegan can be tricky because you need to be careful about getting enough of some nutrients,” she said.

Vitamin B12 and choline are two essential nutrients that are found in higher amounts in animal foods, and they’re often better absorbed from animal foods, too. According to Ward, eggs can help to fill some of the potential nutrient gaps that vegan diets pose: “They are an excellent source of choline, and provide vitamin B12 and iron, as well as protein and many other nutrients,” she said.

Indeed, eggs have long-been dubbed “the perfect protein,” with one large egg contains six grams of the most readily available protein to the body.

Outdated wisdom suggested eggs could contribute to high cholesterol, but recent studies show that the food’s good cholesterol doesn’t raise a healthy person’s risk. In fact, according to the Mayo Clinic, some studies have shown that moderate egg consumption (about seven a week) can actually help prevent the risk of some heart-related conditions.

What’s more, eggs —> Read More

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