Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Interview with Dr. Paul Offit about Vaccine Safety

autismsfalseprophets I am including the latest episode of my Books and Ideas Podcast (Episode 25) in the feed for the Brain Science Podcast because I think it may be the most important interview I have ever recorded. My guest was Dr. Paul Offit, author of Autism's False Prophets: Bad Science, Risky Medicine, and the Search for a Cure. This book examines the history of on-going controversy about whether vaccines cause autism.

listen-to-audio Listen to Dr. Offit's Interview

Episode Transcript (Download PDF)

I recommend Dr. Offit’s book Autism’s False Prophets to everyone because of its thorough examination of the vaccine-autism controversy. He examines the evidence from both sides, while showing compassion for why parents are easily confused and frightened by claims that physicians and scientists have dismissed. The book is unlikely to dissuade those who are convinced by the tactics of vaccine opponents, but it will be a valuable resource to parents who want a clear explanation that includes a sober account of the risks of not vaccinating their children. Physicians and scientists will also benefit from reading this book because it provides an important case study in how lack of scientific literacy can threaten public health.

Click here for detailed show notes and to learn more about the Books and Ideas podcast.


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Brain Science Podcast #53: Neuroscience and Free Will

bsp-300-hi Episode 53 of the Brain Science Podcast is a discussion of Did My Neurons Make Me Do It?: Philosophical and Neurobiological Perspectives on Moral Responsibility and Free Will by Nancey Murphy and Warren S. Brown. This book challenges the widespread fear that neuroscience is revealing an explanation of the human mind that concludes that moral responsibility and free will are illusions created by our brains. Instead the authors argue that the problem is the assumption that a physicalist/materialistic model of the mind must also be reductionist (a viewpoint that all causes are bottom-up). In this podcast I discuss their arguments against causal reductionism and for a dynamic systems model. We also discuss why we need to avoid brain-body dualism and recognize that our mind is more than just what our brain does. The key to preserving our intuitive sense of our selves as free agents capable of reason, moral responsibility, and free will is that the dynamic systems approach allows top-down causation, without resorting to any supernatural causes or breaking any of the know laws of the physical universe. This is a complex topic, but I present a concise overview of the book's key ideas.

listen-to-audio Listen to Episode 53

Episode Transcript (Coming Soon)

Visit the Brain Science Podcast website for detailed show notes and links.

Subscribe to the Brain Science Podcast:

itunes-badge-30 zunelogo-70 feed-icon32x32 mail-sticker-tiny

Send email feedback to Ginger Campbell, MD at docartemis at gmail.com

Share your comments on the Discussion Forum

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Books and Ideas #24: Second Interview with Frank Wilczek

wilczek Episode 24 of Books and Ideas is a follow-up interview with Nobel Prize winning physicist. Dr. Frank Wilczek. We discuss the questions that we didn’t get around to in Episode 23, including the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physics, String Theory, and dark matter and dark energy. Dr. Wilczek also answers some questions from listeners and tells us a little about his current work.

listen-to-audio-20Listen to Episode 24

Click here if you missed Dr. Wilczek’s first interview

Subscribe to Books and Ideas Podcast

itunes-badge-30 zunelogo-70 feed-icon32x32 mail-sticker-tiny

Please visit my website for detailed show notes and links.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Brain Science Podcast #52: Annual Review

gin-bud08-100 Brain Science Podcast #52 is our Second Annual Review Episode. We review some of the highlights from 2008. I also discuss the various other on-line resources that I have created for listeners. Then we look ahead to what I have planned for 2009. This episode is aimed at all listeners, including those who are new to the show.

listen-to-audio Listen to Episode 52

itunes-badge-30 Subscribe in iTunes™

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Brain Science Podcast #51: Seth Grant on Synapse Evolution

Episode 51 of the Brain Science Podcast is an interview with Dr. Seth Grant from Cambridge University, UK. Dr. Grant's work focuses on the proteins that make up the receptors within synapses. (Synapses are the key structures by which neurons send and receive signals.) By comparing the proteins that are present in the synapses in different species Dr. Grant has come to some surprising conclusions about the evolution of the synapse and the evolution of the brain. (Read more...)

Play Episode 51

Subscribe via iTunes™

Show notes and Links for Episode 51

Monday, November 24, 2008

Brain Science Podcast #50: Neuroscience 2008

Episode 50 of the Brain Science Podcast is a change of pace from our usual format. In this episode I share a few highlights from this year's Neuroscience 2008, the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, which just concluded in Washington, DC.

Listen to Episode 50

Go to Brain Science Podcast website for links and show notes

Friday, November 7, 2008

Brain Science Podcast #49: Brenda Milner

Brain Science Podcast #49 is an interview with pioneering neuroscientist, Brenda Milner, PhD. Dr. Milner is known for her contributions to understanding memory and her work with split-brain patients. Her work as an experimental psychologist has been fundamental to the emergence of the field of cognitive neuroscience.

This interview is a follow-up of Dr. Milner's recent interview with Dr. Marc Pelletier on Futures in Biotech. I highly recommend listening to both interviews.

Listen to Episode 49 of the Brain Science Podcast

Listen to Dr. Milner on Futures in Biotech (Episode33)

Click here for detailed show notes and links.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

FINAL TAXI: Michael Crichton Writer of "ER & Jurassic Park

Michael Crichton has taken his Final Taxi.

Crichton is best known for his books, penning classics such as The Andromeda Strain, Congo, Sphere, and Jurassic Park among many others. On top of writing these books, he also directed some little-known films in the 70s and early 80s( Westworld, Looker, Coma) and then went on to help write the screenplays for Jurassic Park and Twister and co-create mega-show ER.


FINAL TAXI: Remembering Batman Creator- Bob Kane

Bob Kane was an American comic book artist and writer, credited as the creator of the DC Comics superhero Batman. He died November 3, 1998.


FINAL TAXI: Who is the highest earning dead person?

Who is dead and made the most money in 2007??
The Final Taxi has the answer....

Download :