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This Week in Evolution

This Week in Evolution is a podcast on the biology behind what makes us tick.
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Now displaying: Category: science
Aug 3, 2021

Carl Zimmer joins Nels to talk about science writing, science communication, viruses, and his new book, On Life’s Edge.

Host: Nels Elde

Guest: Carl Zimmer

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Science Picks

Nels Remembrance of Dick Lewontin
CarlFrom telomere to telomere: the transcriptional and epigenetic state of human repeat elements

Music on TWiEVO is performed by Trampled by Turtles

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Jun 30, 2021

Nels and Vincent discuss the identification of novel bat coronaviruses that shed light on the evolution of SARS-CoV-2, dating the first cases of COVID-19 to mid-November 2019, and recovery of deleted genome sequences from early in the Wuhan outbreak.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels The Last—And Only—Foreign Scientist in the Wuhan Lab Speaks Out
Vincent Human Behavior During the Pandemic Is More Important Than Any Covid Variant

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May 29, 2021

Nels and Vincent explain a new method for calculating the most recent common ancestor of SARS-CoV-2, which concludes that the ancestral virus was circulating in October/November 2019, before its first detection in China.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels Ed Yong pandemic trauma and We’re Not Ready for the Next Pandemic
VincentFurin cleavage site is not a smoking gun

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Mar 25, 2021

Nels and Vincent review a preprint demonstrating that changes in the genomes of the SARS-CoV-2 variants B1.351 and P.1 allow the viruses to reproduce in mouse cells in culture and in laboratory mice.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

NelsBillion years of plate tectonics
VincentSapiens a Graphic History by Yuval Noah Harari

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Feb 25, 2021

Nels and Vincent review evidence that a single amino acid change in the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein has driven adaptation to humans, followed by an update on the status of variants of concern.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

NelsRadio Garden
VincentOur World in Data – Coronavirus

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Jan 22, 2021

Nels and Vincent consider evolution of antibody immunity to SARS-CoV-2, and update the situation on novel virus variants of concern with potentially altered fitness and reactivity with antibodies.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

NelsBiden Administration PCAST and The Hill We Climb
Vincent – Four inaugural quotations – Lincoln, Roosevelt, Kennedy, Biden

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Dec 7, 2020

Daniel joins Nels and Vincent to discuss his new book on army ants, the wickedest insects ever to roam the planet, and his research on them and clonal raider ants.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guest: Daniel Kronauer

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Science Picks

DanielDesert Navigator by Rüdiger Wehner and Insects of Suriname by Maria Sibylla Merian
Nels NPR Scicommers
Vincent The Vintage Beauty Of Soviet Control Rooms

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Oct 31, 2020

Nels and Vincent discuss an opinion piece on 12 evolutionary insights into how the COVID-19 pandemic is shaping human nature, and prolonged SARS-CoV-2 reproduction in an immunosuppressed patient.

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Science Picks

Nels Scott Edwards bikes across US; support diversity in evolution
Vincent30 computers sculpture project

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Sep 25, 2020

On the fifth anniversary of TWiEVO, Nels and Vincent invite 12 evolutionary biologists to describe exciting future directions for the field and their laboratory in the next five years.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guests: Lillian Fritz Laylin, Talia Karasov, Andrew Kern, Sarah Tishkoff, Dmitri Petrov, Nancy Chen, Amanda Larracuente, John McCutcheon, Ambika Kamath, Chip Aquadro, Rebekah Rogers, Yaniv Braindvain, and Harmit Malik

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Science Picks

Nels - Science Mill Virtual Tour and Benefit
Vincent - Das Coronavirus summaries

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Aug 28, 2020

Nels and Vincent answer listener questions and discuss a newly discovered virus of amoeba with a nearly complete ORFan genome: none of the proteins encoded in the viral genome look like any other proteins.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels - Blog by Ambika Kamath
Vincent - TWiVerse

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Aug 13, 2020

Simon and Heather join TWiEVO to discuss their analysis of the evolutionary history of ACE2 usage by coronaviruses in the Sarbecovirus genus.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guests: Simon Anthony and Heather Wells

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Jun 24, 2020

Jessie, Allie and Tyler join Nels and Vincent to describe their work on deep mutational scanning of the SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guests: Jesse Bloom, Allie Greaney, and Tyler Starr

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May 6, 2020

Nels and Vincent continue their discussion of SARS-CoV-2 evolution, with a report that the coronavirus proofreading enzyme stimulates RNA recombination, and debunking the conclusion that a change in the viral spike glycoprotein is associated with increased human to human transmission.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels - In Memoriam: Gordon Lark
Vincent - John Oliver Discussion of Antibody Tests

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Apr 25, 2020

Nels and Vincent continue their discussion of SARS-CoV-2 from an evolutionary viewpoint, including function of the furin cleavage site, whether Vervet cells are an informative system, another bat isolate, and a nomenclature to assist genomic epidemiology.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels - EvoEco seminars
Vincent - Coronavirus book for children

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Jan 22, 2020

Nels and Vincent dive deep into evolution and consider how new proteins emerged billions of years ago, when there were no other proteins to serve as starting material.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels - Universal principled review
Vincent - Hostile Planet by National Geographic

Listener Pick

Courtney - Nightwish Endless Forms Most Beautiful and Shudder Before The Beautiful

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Sep 19, 2019

Nels and Vincent trace the origins of Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains used to make beer, and find that ales and lagers are made with yeasts that were derived from those used to make European grape wine and Asian rice wine.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels - Population fluctuations in 10 biggest cities
Vincent - 1.7 million year old rhino tooth (original Nature paper)

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Jul 29, 2019

At ASM Microbe in San Francisco, Nels and Vincent meet up with Talia Karasov who reveals that in contrast to agriculture, wild plants are colonized by multiple lineages of pathogenic bacteria.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guest: Talia Karasov

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May 25, 2019

Dustin Rubinstein joins Nels and Vincent to discuss coevolution of genome architecture and social behavior, and studying social transitions in sponge-dwelling snapping shrimp.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guest: Dustin Rubinstein

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Science Picks

Dustin- Genesis: The Deep Origin of Societies 1 by E.O. Wilson, and The Human Swarm by Mark O. Moffett

NelsFor Love of Insects by Thomas Eisner

Vincent- Quacks blamed for Pakistan HIV-1 outbreak

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Mar 20, 2019

Nels and Vincent explore the evolution of new protein-coding genes de novo from nocoding DNA sequences, using the antifreeze protein of northern codfish as a model.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

NelsScience at Sundance reviews

Vincent- The Rise and Fall of Scientific Authority

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Feb 15, 2019

Nels and Vincent move back to reproductive isolation - this time, pre-zygotic, in the charismatic orchid bee where the males make chemically distinct perfumes to attract mates of the same species.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

NelsNature Zen: Orchid Bees Are Shiny
Vincent- What You Believe About Science Denial May Be All Wrong

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Jan 26, 2019

Nels and Vincent look at the intracellular bacteria Legionella from an evolutionary perspective: the role of gene acquisition and reshuffling from plants, animals, fungi, and archaea in the emergence of human pathogens.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks 

Music on TWiEVO is performed by Trampled by Turtles
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Dec 24, 2018

Nels and Vincent reveal a highly conserved protein that acts as an evolvability factor, increasing mutation and the ability of bacteria to become resistant to antibiotics.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels- Science/nature illustrator/artist Rachel Ignotofsky (website, Etsy shop)
Vincent- Life Ascending by Nick Lane

 Music on TWiEVO is performed by Trampled by Turtles

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Nov 17, 2018

David Quammen joins Nels and Vincent to talk about his new book, A Tangled Tree, including evolutionary trees, Carl Woese, Lynn Margulis, horizontal gene transfer, and much more.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guest: David Quammen

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Music on TWiEVO is performed by Trampled by Turtles

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Oct 24, 2018

Mia joins Nels and Vincent to unravel their finding that the transposons that maintain the ends of chromosomes in Drosophilahave evolved in conflict with the genome.

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

Guest: Mia Levine

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Science Picks

Nels - Cinema Science podcast
Vincent - Mastodon bones unearthed (Instagram, Grand Rapids News)

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Sep 21, 2018

Nels and Vincent reveal that female-specific DNA associated with sex in strawberries has repeatedly changed its genomic location, possibly linking new genes with sex. 

Hosts: Nels Elde and Vincent Racaniello

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Science Picks

Nels - New snailfish and Cloned crayfish
Vincent - A PhD Lab Coat Ceremony

Listener Picks

Steve - Diversity in simple blobs
Justin - On Growth and Forms by D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson

Music on TWiEVO is performed by Trampled by Turtles

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