Episode #207 To Bee or Not to Bee


This week, GradCast continues its interview with students studying eusocial insects, this time exploring the incredible social structures of honeybees. Hosts Roger Hudson and Nick Handfield-Jones interview Anthony Gallow about his research into honeybee genetics. Specifically, he wonders how genes make certain types of bees have ovaries, and some not. Don't miss this episode: you won't Bee-lieve what you hear!

To know more about Anthony's research, you can follow him on instagram @anthonygallo1424 or email him at agallo9@uwo.ca

Producer: Gavin Tolometti

Episode 206: The Eusocialist Revolution

Eusociality is the highest level of social organization found in nature and is one of the reasons behind the evolutionary success of insects like bees and ants, but also termites. This week, biology master's student Anna Chernyshova takes us through the intricacies of termite society and the novel evolutionary adaptations that have allowed these normally-tropical critters to successful invade Canadian cities like Toronto. Join hosts Yimin and Ariel as we wonder: can eusociality work for us too?


Shoutout from Anna: "Much of my knowledge and fascination with eusociality stems from many insightful discussions with my labmates and supervisor Dr. Graham Thompson, who is an expert in the field of sociobiology with global reputation. I am grateful for his mentorship and emphasis on the big ideas with outside-the-box thinking."

You can dig into more research by Anna at.....




Produced by Connor Chato

Episode #205: Vonica Flear

Consider ants. Only the queen ant reproduces and passes on her genetic sequences. The worker ants do not. This creates a great paradox of evolution: if the worker ants don't pass on their genes, then how do they keep popping up? This week, hosts Nick Handfield-Jones and Connor Chato interview Vonica Flear, who is working on a mathematical model to solve this puzzling problem. She tells us about why she's interested in eusocial animals like ants and wasps and how she uses math to model them. Plus, hear about some of the pioneers in this field and how they advanced our understanding of evolution. To find out more from Vonica you can email her at vflear@uwo.ca

Produced by Ariel Frame

Episode #204: The Ethics of Pragmatic Clinical Trials

 In this episode Cory Goldstein, PhD student at Rotman Institute of Philosophy, discusses how clinical trials of different styles need or need not obtain informed consent. Cory tells Ariel Frame and Gavin Tolometti about his work with an interdisciplinary group of professionals and patients. To contact Cory for more information you can find him on Twitter @coryegoldstein or read his most recent work:

GokViXT.jpg?1Produced by Chantal Lemire

Episode #203: The Rock Superstar

Hosts Gregory Robinson and Gavin Tolometti talk with PhD candidate Rebecca Doyle about lake sediments and how their isotopic chemistry provides us a glance on how the lake climate has changed for the last 1000 years. For more info, check out Rebecca's blog https://lakenerd.com/ or twitter account @lake_nerd.

Produced by Nick Handfield-Jones

Episode #202: Why is Jason in the Hospital?

Lily Yosieph is passionate about mental health issues. As an MSc student in Health Promotion, her research seeks to understand the unique challenges that African, Caribbean, and Black (ACB) youth face and how service providers, educators, and families can work to dismantle systemic barriers affecting marginalized communities. Join Yimin and Connor as we learn about the ways in which social and economic issues can impact the health of individuals. 


Produced by Gregory Robinson

Episode #201: The Catcher in the Mind

Hosts Gavin Tolometti and Chantal Lemire dive into the world of post-1945 American literature with english literature PhD candidate Jeremy Johnston. In this episode we look at how adolescent mental health is portrayed in American literature and how it has changed to the modern day.


Produced by Gregory Robinson 

Episode #200: The Land Before the Land Before Time

What did the landscape of Ontario look like over two billion years ago? The answer is hidden in the rocks. On this episode, geologist Carolyn Hill (PhD Candidate) tells hosts Yimin and Greg why the Pre-Cambrian may not be the nicest place for time travellers to visit. Plus, we learn about how oxygen once almost killed off life on Earth!


Produced by Chantal Lemire

Episode # 199 - The Space Magnets Don’t Lie

In the depths of space, there are regions where stars don't form, despite all evidence that they should. This week, our guest Gianfranco Bino tells about how scientists are measuring magnetism in the surrounding area to figure out why the stars aren't being born. Join hosts Nick Handfield-Jones and Connor Chato as they also ask Gianfranco about the intersection between math and outer space, his experiences in grad school, and what he wants to do once he graduates. To get in contact with Gianfranco, check out his instagram @gvb24

Produced by Greg Robino

Episode #198: The Master of Modelling

Bridge the gap between math and biology with Nickolas Goncharenko. This week hosts Nick Handfield-Jones and Connor Chato interview Nickolas about his intriguing research on modelling the interaction between the mosquito's immune system, malaria (Plasmodium sp.), and genetically modified bacterium (Serratio sp. AS1) that could decrease the spread of disease. We also learn about differential equations, and the behaviour of spaghetti sticking out of a tomato. Plus, Nickolas shares his personal tips to become a better scientific communicator. To learn more, email Nickolas here: ngonchar@uwo.ca.

Produced by Gregory Robinson.