Disease, Invisibility, Social Smoking, Aspirin Misuse
Top of Mind with Julie Rose - Radio Archive, Episode 56
- May 5, 2015 9:00 pm
- 1:44:57 mins
Global Health (1:11) Guest: Michael Gerson, the President's Malaria Initiative (PMI). Gerson serves as senior adviser at One, a bipartisan organization dedicated to the fight against extreme poverty and preventable diseases Disaster relief groups working in Nepal say funding and supplies are needed to prevent an outbreak of cholera or dysentery in the earthquake-stricken nation. While disease outbreaks are always a risk when housing, sanitation and water supplies are disrupted, the word "outbreak" feels a little more ominous thanks to Ebola. The largest outbreak of Ebola in history gripped West Africa for much of last year, killing more than 10,000 people. In the next few days, one of the hardest-hit countries -- Liberia -- will be officially Ebola-free, though Guinea and Sierra Leone are not. During a recent visit to BYU as a guest of the Kennedy Center, global-health expert Michael Gerson called the Ebola outbreak a "wake up call" for the international community. Invisibility Stickers (26:38) Guest: Alon Gorodetsky, professor of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at the University of California, Irvine and co-researcher in the study that was published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry C and presented at 2015 American Chemical Society national meeting Humans have long taken a page from Mother Nature's survival strategy handbook in the form of camouflage. Insects, reptiles and fish are particularly adept at changing their appearance to blend in with the background and avoid detection. Soldiers and hunters mimic the technique with all kinds of elaborate camouflage gear. But when the light changes or the enemy puts on infrared goggles, the mottled green and brown field uniform of a soldier is of no help. Researchers at the University of California-Irvine have been studying the incredible skin of squid -- a master of disguise -- for inspiration to create what they're calling "invisibility stickers" that could help ground troops avoid infrared detection. Apple Seed (43:50) Guest: Sam Payne, Host of the Apple Seed Hear the story behind John McCutcheon's song "1913 Massacre." Social Smoking in College (52:28) Guest: Mimi Nichter, professor of sociology at the University of Arizona. She's the author of Lighting Up: The Rise of Social Smoking on College Campuses, now available on Amazon and other booksellers Smoking has fallen out of style among adults since the haze-filled restaurant and board-room days of the 1960s. Seeing all those stylish Mad Men characters light one cigarette from the tip of the last seems almost quaint. But as adult smoking has dropped significantly in the last 40 years, young adults have risen to the top of the pack, smoking more than any other age group. They're lighting up, even as more and more college campuses go "smoke-free" and many college students themselves think smoking is "disgusting." University of Arizona sociologist Mimi Nichter gets to the bottom of this disconnect in a new book called "Lighting Up: The Rise of Social Smoking on College Campuses." Climate Change (1:22:06) Guest: James McCann, a history professor at Boston University The seasons deterimine the rhythm of life. In the medium to long-range future, shifts in temperature and rain will adjust what and when farmers around the world can plant. Understanding this instability is critical to planning for the future. Aspirin Misuse (1:30:34) Guest: Craig Williams, a clinical professor and pharmacotherapy specialist at Oregon State University There is one medication that over half of older Americans take every day, even though many, many of those people should not be taking it, based on recommendations by the Food and Drug Administration. It's aspirin and over the years, Americans and their doctors have come to treat it more and more as a preventative pill -- almost like taking a vitamin -- to head off future heart attack or stroke. This widespread misunderstanding, and misuse, of aspirin in older Americans is documented in a recent article by Oregon State University pharmacology professor Craig Williams. It appears in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine.