Online news editor David Grimm joins host Sarah Crespi to discuss a controversial new paper that estimates how many rodents are used in research in the United States each year. Although there is no official number, the paper suggests that there may be more than 100 million rats and mice housed in research facilities in the country – doubling or even tripling some previous estimates.
Staff writer Jennifer Couzin-Frankel then talks to Sarah about a new theory behind the cause of irritable bowel syndrome – that it may be a localized allergic reaction in the gut.
Sarah also chats Taline Kazandjian, a postdoctoral research assistant at the Center for Snakebite Research & Interventions in Liverpool, UK, on how the venom from spitting cobras has evolved to cause maximum pain and why these snakes may have developed the same defense mechanism three different times.
This week’s episode was produced with the help of Podigy.
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