DELVING IN: Barry Krakow on Common Misconceptions About the Relationship Between Sleep and Mental Health
Stuart Kelter interviews Barry Krakow, MD, a board certified internist, sleep medicine specialist, and professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Mercer University School of Medicine in Savannah, Georgia, having earlier established a sleep clinic in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In his 30+ years in the field, he has pioneered innovative techniques for the treatment of chronic nightmares, chronic and complex insomnia, upper airway resistance syndrome, obstructive and central sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome and periodic limb movement disorder. He is the author four books on sleep disorders, including the just published Life-Saving Sleep: New Horizons in Mental Health Treatment.
DELVING IN: Fyodor Urnov on the Awesome Benefits and Potential Dangers of Recent Advances in Gene-Editing Technology
Fyodor Urnov is a Professor of Molecular Therapeutics at UC Berkeley and a Scientific Director at its Innovative Genomics Institute. He co-developed the toolbox of human genome and epigenome editing and led the team that developed a strategy for genome editing in the hemoglobinopathies, sickle cell disease and beta-thalassemia, that has yielded sustained clinical benefit for subjects in several ongoing clinical trials. At the IGI Fyodor directs efforts to develop scalable CRISPR-based approaches to treat diseases of the immune system, sickle cell disease, neurodegeneration, and neuroinflammation. His recent op-ed in the New York Times describes a major goal for the field of genome editing, and a key focus of Fyodor's work at the IGI - expanding access to CRISPR therapies for N=1 genetic disease.
Stuart Kelter interviews “Jack” Wright (legal name “John Wright”), a Regents Professor in the Department of Geography at New Mexico State University (NMSU), whose research encompasses land conservation, cultural geography, and environmental planning. He helped found and served as Chair of the New Mexico Land Conservancy (NMLC) from 2003-2012 and recently returned to it is board. He is the co-author of Saving the Ranch: Conservation Easement Design in the American West (2004) and has published widely on conservation easements and other land protection techniques.
Stuart Kelter interviews Karen Cheung, a writer and journalist from Hong Kong. She has written about politics, music, and books for The New York Times, Foreign Policy, The Rumpus, This American Life, The Offing, and others. She was formerly a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press, and currently works as an editor at an arts archive. Her first book, The Impossible City: A Hong Kong Memoir, published in 2021, is the subject of today’s interview.
Stuart Kelter interviews Katie Engelhart, a writer and producer based in Toronto and New York, whose recent work has focused on healthcare and bioethics. She has been interviewed on major television networks and produced documentaries for NBC News. Katie has won awards for her magazine stories, including one that documented a months-long investigation into the first COVID outbreak in an American nursing home — with broad implications about the for-profit nursing home industry. She is the author of the book, The Inevitable: Dispatches on the Right to Die, published in 2021, which is the subject of today's interview.
DELVING IN: Neuroscientist Peter Sterling Challenges the Prevailing Model of Physiological Regulation
Stuart Kelter interviews Peter Sterling, a senior professor of neuroscience at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, whose research focused on the three-dimensional microanatomy of the retina. He has also developed an alternative conceptual understanding of physiological regulation and behavior, with implications for the practice of medicine as well as social justice issues. Together with Joseph Eyer, he coined the term allostasis, meaning “stability through change.” Unlike the concept of physiological homeostasis, allostasis takes into account how the brain predicts and prepares the body in advance for situational demands and needs. He is the author of the recent book, What Is Health? Allostasis and the Evolution of Human Design, published in 2020.
DELVING IN: Bethany Brookshire on Human-Wildlife Conflict: Ill-Fated Attempts at Control vs. Cultivating an Attitude of Coexistence
Bethany Brookshire is a science writer and a host of the podcast, Science for the People. From 2013 to 2021, she was a staff writer with Science News magazine and Science News for Students, a digital magazine covering the latest in scientific research for young audiences. She loves to write about neuroscience, pharmacology, environmental science, science fiction, and the practice and pressures of the scientific life. Her writing has appeared in The Atlantic and The Washington Post, among other places, and her voice heard on NPR and the CBC. She is the author of the recently published book, Pests: How Humans Create Animal Villains.
Stuart Kelter interviews Kelly Drew, a professor in the department of chemistry and biochemistry at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks and the Director for Transformative Research in Metabolism, whose lab focuses on hibernation biology. Inspired by the hibernation talents of the arctic ground squirrel, Kelly studies how its biology protects the brain as it goes in and out of hibernation. The work, as documented by extensive publications in professional research journals, has potential practical applications in extending the protection of the brains of patients in in medically-induced comas. And, further in the future, Kelly’s work is relevant to the necessity of hibernation — or suspended animation — in astronauts traveling to Mars.
Jorge Contreras is a law professor at the University of Utah, specializing in the areas of intellectual property law, technical standardization, and antitrust and science policy. In 2020 he received the University of Utah's Distinguished Research Award and is an elected member of the American Law Institute. He has testified before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Intellectual Property and has served on several national counsels pertaining to intellectual property, anti-trust laws, and the intersection between law and science, especially medicine. In addition to his scholarly articles, which have appeared in leading scientific, legal and policy journals, he has also been interviewed by both U.S. and foreign major media outlets and was awarded the Rossman Memorial Award by the Patent & Trademark Office Society in 2022. His recent, widely acclaimed book, The Genome Defense: Inside the Epic Legal Battle to Determine Who Owns Your DNA, is the subject of today’s interview.
DELVING IN: Giulio Boccaletti on the History and Implications of the Relationship Between Human Civilization and Water
Stuart Kelter interviews Giulio Boccaletti, one of the world’s foremost experts on the interface between geophysical and ecological science, world history, and economics as they pertain to water security. As a global consultant at McKinsey and Company, he worked on dozens of private, not-for-profit, and public sector projects across multiple industries, especially health and finance, producing several public reports on key sustainability issues. Giulio later joined the Nature Conservancy, one of the largest conservation organizations in the world, first as its Global Managing Director for Water, then as its Chief Strategy Officer. For his work on water, the World Economic Forum nominated him as a Young Global Leader in 2014. He is the author of Water: A Biography, which has been translated into 8 languages and was rated by the Economist as one of the best books of 2021. The book, which explores the 5000+ year history of the relationship between society and the management of water on five continents, is the subject of today’s interview.
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