The Science of Sustainability

Health

Getting the genie back in the (water) bottle

Getting the genie back in the (water) bottle

original image from flickr user "Nemo's great uncle" Three years ago, I joined a small group at the Academy of Sciences named the Greenteam. Little did I know that green issues would be such a hot topic today because of global warming. Many people feel that little to nothing can be done about turning back […]

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What's for Lunch

What's for Lunch

We've all heard the latest health advice: Avoid transfats. Eat more fruits and vegetables. You may notice those changes on grocery store shelves, but for many school children, their cafeteria lunch menus haven't caught up. This year, an effort to get healthy foods to the school lunch table is tied up in a much larger […]

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What's for Lunch

What's for Lunch

We've all heard the latest health advice: avoid transfats. Eat more fruits and vegetables. But for many school children, their cafeteria lunch menus haven't caught up. This year, an effort to get healthy foods to the school lunch table is tied up in a much larger debate– national farm policy.

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To catch a sneak

To catch a sneak

Would a gene doper get an asterisk?The last few blogs I have been talking about people adding genes to their DNA to make them better athletes. The reason they're considering this sort of gene doping instead of just taking a designer steroid or two is that a DNA change will supposedly be more permanent, safer, […]

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Second Life: Big Avatar on Campus

Second Life: Big Avatar on Campus

It's a virtual world, but the transactions are real. Go inside Second Life, an online game where millions of people are creating digital personalities called avatars and are living virtual lives– meeting other avatars, going to events, and even buying property with real money.

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Producer's Notes for Big Avatar on Campus

Producer's Notes for Big Avatar on Campus

It's a virtual world, but the transactions are real. Go inside Second Life, an online game where millions of people are creating digital personalities called avatars and are living virtual lives– meeting other avatars, going to events, and even buying property with real money. You may view the "Second Life: Big Avatar on Campus" TV […]

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Perilous Diesel

Perilous Diesel

Much of what we eat and buy comes through the Port of Oakland, the fourth busiest port in the country. But at what cost? Nearby residents have some of the highest asthma rates in the state. Now, local community groups are working with the Port and local regulators to change that. You may listen to […]

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Perilous Diesel (radio)

Perilous Diesel (radio)

Your tennis shoes. That radio you're listening to. If it wasn't made in the U.S., chances are it passed through the Port of Oakland, the fourth busiest Port in the country. But there's a downside to that convenience and those affordable prices, as Amy Standen reports.

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Watching the Brain at Work: MRIs and Beyond

Watching the Brain at Work: MRIs and Beyond

The human brain was once a black box, but scientists are finding ways to peer inside and explore some of our most complicated thought processes. Using MRI scanners in innovative ways, Stanford scientists are learning how children's brains process words when they read.

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Watching the Brain at Work: MRIs and Beyond

Watching the Brain at Work: MRIs and Beyond

The human brain was once a black box, but scientists are finding ways to peer inside and explore some of our most complicated thought processes. Using MRI scanners in innovative ways, Stanford scientists are learning how children's brains process words when they read. You may view the "Watching the Brain at Work" TV story online, […]

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The 6-Billion-Base Athlete

The 6-Billion-Base Athlete

"We can rebuild him. We have the technology." Remember that opening line from the Six Million Dollar Man? Soon we'll be able to genetically rebuild people. Or at least add some cool new features… Let’s say we wanted to make an athlete stronger or able to run for a longer amount of time. One way […]

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Eat Less, Live Longer?

Eat Less, Live Longer?

Have we found the fountain of youth? Scientists are discovering ways to make animals live dramatically longer through calorie restriction — a diet that requires eating at least 30 percent fewer calories than normal. QUEST investigates why we age and what the societal costs are for living well beyond 100.

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Eat Less, Live Longer?

Eat Less, Live Longer?

Have we found the fountain of youth? Scientists are discovering ways to make animals live dramatically longer through calorie restriction – a diet that requires eating at least 30 percent fewer calories than normal. While the technique has attracted a small, but devout following, skepticism abounds. QUEST investigates why we age and what the societal […]

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Building a Better Athlete

Building a Better Athlete

Someday genes may "pump you up." Lots of athletes are using performance enhancing drugs to, well, enhance their performance. Examples include steroids to increase strength and EPO to increase endurance. Of course these methods have their drawbacks (even beyond the murky ethical ones). They're dangerous and the penalties can be pretty severe if the athlete […]

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Perilous Diesel

Perilous Diesel

Diesel engines are the durable workhorses of transportation, but as they get older, they spew unhealthy soot. Communities with the highest diesel smog levels, like West Oakland, California, are working hard to reduce the pollution.

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Perilous diesel

Perilous diesel

What's the most harmful kind of air pollution? It's soot generated by diesel engines found in trucks, buses and ships. Diesel engines are the durable workhorses of transportation, but as they get older, they spew unhealthy soot. They are now challenging community activists and government officials to find creative solutions for at-risk areas like West […]

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A Level Playing Field

A Level Playing Field

Living in the bay area with two school-aged sons, you'd think the news that Barry Bonds broke the all-time home run record would have been a big deal in our house. It wasn't. My kids focused on the steroids instead of home run number 755. This got me to thinking about fair and unfair advantages […]

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Genetic Tells

Genetic Tells

There is no perfect genetic tell. In poker, a tell is something you do that gives away the fact that you're bluffing. Maybe you itch your nose every time you have a bad hand. So now when you make a big bet and itch your nose, you'll lose to the players who have caught on. […]

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Quest for Longevity

Quest for Longevity

Americans have made an enormous leap in life expectancy over the past century. Now, Bay Area scientists are looking to extend lifespan, and "healthspan" to 100 years and beyond.

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Quest for Longevity

Quest for Longevity

One of the biggest challenges for medicine in the 21st century is understanding more about the diseases that come with aging like Alzheimer's, cancer and Parkinson's. Americans have made an enormous leap in life expectancy over the past century. Now, Bay Area scientists are looking to extend lifespan, and "healthspan" to 100 years and beyond. […]

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