Dr. Jonathan Toner is a Research Assistant Professor in Earth and Space Sciences at the University of Washington. Jon conducts research on planetary surfaces, such as Earth, Mars, and the icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn. He is interested in identifying and better understanding sources and potential of water in these environments. This work has important implications for future exploration endeavors and the search for possible life. In addition, Jon studies how the environmental conditions on Earth and other planetary systems may have contributed to the origins of life. When he’s not working, John enjoys being outdoors, hiking, climbing, mountaineering, traveling, and spending time with his wife and daughter. They recently bought a house in Seattle, and Jon has been dedicating a lot of time to renovating their new home. He received his B.S. degree in Physics from The College of New Jersey and his PhD in Geophysics from the University of Washington. Jon next conducted postdoctoral research in three postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Washington, including a NASA Astrobiology Institute Postdoctoral Fellowship. In 2017, he accepted his current faculty position there. During our interview, Jon tells us more about his life and science.

Direct download: 542_Jonathan_Toner_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Dr. Crystal Marconett is Assistant Professor of Research Surgery in the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California. Crystal’s work centers around understanding the molecular origins of lung cancer. She is interested in how cancer arises in the lungs, what types of cells are involved, what genetic mutations may be happening, and the causes of these mutations. In addition, Crystal’s lab is working to develop new cures for lung cancer and determine which patients will respond best to these treatments. Beyond being a scientist, Crystal loves spending time with her two young children, crocheting, and skiing. Another one of her hobbies is painting houses. For Crystal, painting is a relaxing, rhythmic activity, and she really enjoys how you can step back and enjoy a finished product at the end of just one day. She received her B.S. degree in molecular, cell, and developmental biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Crystal next earned her Ph.D. in molecular and cell biology from the University of California, Berkeley where she was awarded the Chancellor’s Predoctoral Award and the California Breast Cancer Research Program Dissertation Fellowship. Afterwards, Crystal was awarded an American Cancer Society and Canary Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship to conduct research at the University of Southern California before joining the faculty there. In our interview, Crystal tells us more about her life and science.

Direct download: 541_Crystal_Marconett_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Dr. David Weiner is Executive Vice President, Director of the Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center, and the W.W. Smith Charitable Trust Professor in Cancer Research at The Wistar Institute. He is also Emeritus Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. In the lab, David and his colleagues are creating drugs using the same DNA codes and signals that our bodies use naturally. The drugs they are creating are natural compounds that can be given to people to prevent them from getting sick or to help them be healthier. One area of David’s research focuses on developing DNA vaccines to prevent illness. These DNA vaccines are designed to create specific proteins that trigger the immune system to respond to fight particular pathogens. David and his wife enjoy reading and going on walks with their dog Ruby. Ruby is a Shih Tzu Yorkie mix that they rescued after a recent hurricane in Puerto Rico. David received his B.S. in biology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, his M.S. in biology from the University of Cincinnati, and his  Ph.D. in developmental biology from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. Afterwards, David worked as a research fellow in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania before joining the faculty there. He held a joint position as Assistant Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at The Wistar Institute and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine from 1990-1993. David returned to The Wistar Institute in 2016 to accept his current positions. Among his many awards and honors, David has been elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the International Society for Vaccines. He has also received the NIH Director’s Transformative Research Award, the Vaccine Industry Excellence Award for Best Academic Research Team, the prestigious Hilleman Lectureship from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, a Stone Family Award from Abramson Cancer Center for his groundbreaking work on DNA vaccines for cancer immune therapy, and the Scientific Achievement Award from Life Sciences Pennsylvania. In addition, David was named a "Top 20 Translational Researchers" in 2016 by Nature Biotechnology.

Direct download: 540_David_Weiner_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Dr. Ana Spalding is Assistant Professor of Marine and Coastal Policy and Affiliate Faculty at the Pacific Marine Energy Center at Oregon State University. She is also a Research Associate at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama as well as at the Coiba Research Station in Panama. As a social scientist who works in marine and coastal policy, Ana’s research is focused on the intersections of people, the environment, and policies. She is interested in understanding people’s perceptions of the ocean and coast, policy and management frameworks surrounding resource use in these areas, and the major cares, concerns, and conflicts that people have related to coastal areas. Recently, Ana has been having an amazing time participating in the Corvallis Rowing Club. She used to row in college, and it has been fun to get back into the sport with people from a variety of ages and backgrounds. Ana received her B.A. in Economics and International Studies from the University of Richmond, her M.A. in Marine Affairs and Policy from the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami, and her Ph.D. in Environmental Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Afterwards, Ana conducted postdoctoral research at the STRI in Panama before joining the faculty at Oregon State University.

Direct download: 539_Ana_Spalding_Final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am EDT






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