Health & Science

The Sunday Conversation
10:13 am
Sun July 20, 2014

Astronaut Who Walked On The Moon: 'It Was Science Fiction To Us'

During the Apollo 12 mission, astronaut Alan Bean holds a container of lunar soil. The astronaut Charles "Pete" Conrad, who took the photograph, is reflected in Bean's faceshield. Bean says he used to think that in his lifetime, we'd build a base on the moon and start preparing to travel to Mars.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Sun July 20, 2014 1:20 pm

In November of 1969, astronaut Alan Bean became the fourth man to walk on the moon. His mission, Apollo 12, arrived at the moon a few months after Apollo 11 made the first moon landing. That historic event celebrates its 45th anniversary Sunday.

Apollo 12 got off to a dramatic start: A storm rolled in as the rocket was scheduled to launch. Bean, with fellow astronauts Pete Conrad and Dick Gordon, sat inside the spacecraft while the bad weather threatened the operation.

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Global Health
9:37 am
Sun July 20, 2014

As Polar Icebox Shrinks, Infectious Pathogens Move North

Originally published on Sun July 20, 2014 11:08 am

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

Infectious diseases may be spreading more quickly, thanks to global warming. Viruses that were kept in check by the polar ice box are being released. And as some animals move north to keep cool, they're bringing all sorts of parasites with them, from microbes to ticks. Christopher Solomon has written about this in the August issue of "Scientific American." And he joins me now from Montana Public Radio in Missoula. Welcome.

CHRISTOPHER SOLOMON: Good to be here, Arun.

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Health
9:37 am
Sun July 20, 2014

A Nasty Weed May Have Helped Ancient Humans Keep Their Teeth

Originally published on Sun July 20, 2014 11:08 am

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

A story now about scientists who are looking into the distant past. Archaeologists studying a prehistoric site in Sudan have used an ingenious technique to learn about the early human diet. NPR's Rae Ellen Bichell tells us what they found.

RAE ELLEN BICHELL, BYLINE: Karen Hardy is an archaeologist of the Autonomous University of Barcelona. She started to think about dental plaque.

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Africa
9:37 am
Sun July 20, 2014

Facility Sets Up Extreme Precautions To Treat Ebola Patients

Originally published on Sun July 20, 2014 11:08 am

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Arun Rath. The worst Ebola outbreak ever recorded continues to spread in West Africa. And medical workers in Sierra Leone have responded by expanding an extraordinary field hospital. It opened less than a month ago, but it now has the largest Ebola isolation unit ever built, with 64 beds. NPR's Jason Beaubien visited and describes for us the infection control measures that go into treating this highly contagious disease.

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Shots - Health News
4:05 am
Sun July 20, 2014

A YouTube Video Is Doctor's Secret Weapon Against Back Pain

Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 1:45 pm

A woman in her late 20s came to see me recently because her back hurt. She works at a child care center in town where she picks up babies and small children all day long.

She felt a twinge in her lower back when hoisting a fussy kid. The pain was bad enough that she went home from work early and was laid out on the couch until she came to see me the next day.

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All Tech Considered
4:15 pm
Sat July 19, 2014

The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Remixed And Retweeted

A Hamas supporter holds her mobile phone during a public rally in Gaza City in March.
Said Khatib AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 10:13 am

The deadly war in the Gaza Strip and Israel is being fought with rockets and guns. It's also being fought with tweets and viral videos.

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Science
4:05 pm
Sat July 19, 2014

With Malaysia Airlines Crash, A Loss For AIDS Research

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 5:18 pm

Transcript

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

Malaysia Airlines has released the manifest of passengers who were on that plane that crashed in Eastern Ukraine. We know that many of them were bound for the world's largest AIDS conference in Australia. At the opening of the conference yesterday there was a moment of silence to remember those who had died. Diane Anderson-Minshall is the editor-in-chief of HIV Plus Magazine and asked her about one of the most prominent AIDS researchers who was killed, Dutch scientist Jope Lange.

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Shots - Health News
9:30 am
Sat July 19, 2014

As New York Embraces HIV-Preventing Pill, Some Voice Doubts

Truvada has been around for a decade as a treatment for people who are already HIV-positive. In the last few years, it has also been shown to prevent new infections, and New York officials are embracing the pill as a way to prevent the spread of AIDS.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Sun July 20, 2014 10:22 pm

AIDS researchers and policymakers from around the globe are gathering in Melbourne, Australia, for a major international conference that starts this Monday. They'll be mourning dozens of colleagues who died in the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.

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The Two-Way
9:28 am
Sat July 19, 2014

400,000+ Sign Petition To Move 'Sad Bear' To Better Life In Canada

Arturo, the only polar bear in Argentina, lives in captivity at a zoo in Mendoza. The plight of the "sad bear" has spawned more than 400,000 signatures on a petition to get him moved to a "better life" in Canada.
AFP Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 12:33 pm

Updated at 1:20 p.m. ET.

Social media has dubbed Arturo, a polar bear living in an Argentinian zoo, the "world's saddest animal," and more than 400,000 people have signed an online petition asking that he be moved to a "better life" in Canada.

Photos of Arturo, 29, looking distressed and lying flat out on his stomach that have circulated online prompted the petition. The bear's enclosure mate, Pelusa, died two years ago, the BBC says.

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Space
7:11 am
Sat July 19, 2014

People Share Moon Landing Memories On YouTube Channel

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 7:36 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Tomorrow is the 45th anniversary of man leaving Earth to land on the moon.

NEIL ARMSTRONG: That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.

SIMON: Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin took the first steps on the surface of a world that used to be just a light in our sky.

BUZZ ALDRIN: Beautiful view.

ARMSTRONG: Isn't that something? Magnificent sight out here.

ALDRIN: Magnificent desolation.

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