Axolotls, Biological Mind, Umami
Constant Wonder - Radio Archive, Episode 277
- Oct 16, 2019 8:00 pm
- 1:41:13 mins
Who wants some snake hugs? Guest: Sara Ruane, Assistant Professor of Evolution at Rutgers University-Newark. There are things to be feared, and then there are things we fear. Not necessarily the same thing. When I first took up hiking a few decades ago I remember feeling very exposed, all sorts of unknowns. We often harbor suspicions about the things we don’t know. Chalk that up to evolution, just like everything else. That’s probably how we got the “better safe than sorry” gene—you know, the BSTS gene. Eh that’s not really a thing. Maybe it’s more BS than BSTS.Better safe than sorry! Adorable Mexican salamanders can potentially unlock limb regeneration in humans. Guest: Jeramiah Smith, Associate Professor in the Department of Biology, University of Kentucky. Today we are talking about adorable, weird, super-powered creatures called axolotls, and how this Mexican salamander’s giant genome can unlock limb regeneration in humans. Mind and Body Guest: Alan Jasanoff, Director of MIT Center for Neurobiological Engineering and author of, “The Biological Mind: How Brain, Body, and Environment Collaborate toMake Us Who We Are.” We have assumptions about the brain which could be both detrimental to the study and damaging to our society. His big, overriding statement is: We are more than our brains. The 5th Basic Taste Guest: Gary Beauchamp, Distinguished Member, Emeritus Director and President, Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia, PA . Umami, the mysterious fifth basic flavor, wasn’t discovered until the early 1900’s. After umami’s discovery and synthesis, it got added to everything from Chinese food to cheese. Now it’s being needlessly taken out of food products everywhere. But why?