She writes, “While doctors and genetic counselors play an important role in delivering health care and health information, I am an advocate for consumers having more direct access to personalized information so they can take charge of their health”

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This episode of Sparks, FiveThirtyEight’s monthly science podcast, is all about risk: what it is, how we evaluate it in our lives, and why it’s not so simple to study

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Misplaced skepticism of the science. Science is hard. Seeing patterns in noisy data requires statistical expertise, for instance. Climate data is very noisy: we shouldn’t rely on common sense to analyse it. We are instead forced to use the assessment of experts

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What words look like matters — in some cases, a whole lot

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On Menopause

December 15, 2015

There are a few things science doesn’t know about the menopause: what it’s for, how it works and how best to treat it. Approaching her second – yes, second – menopause, Rose George finds herself with more questions than answers

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The story of a 23 year-old woman with terminal brain cancer who chooses cryopreservation raises important questions about our understanding of transition from life to death. Our Peter Young comments

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Cheeseburger Ethics

July 15, 2015

Are professional ethicists good people? According to our research, not especially. So what is the point of learning ethics?

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Descartes thought that the brain was a kind of hydraulic pump, propelling the spirits of the nervous system through the body. Freud compared the brain to a steam engine. Karl Pribram likened it to a holographic storage device. Many neuroscientists today would add to this list of failed comparisons the idea that the brain is a computer — just another analogy without a lot of substance

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