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Explorations in the world of science.

Controlling Pain Feb. 5, 2018

What if your brain could naturally control pain? Professor Irene Tracey and her colleagues are trying to unlock the natural mechanisms in the brain that limit the amount of pain we feel. We hear about how children learning judo are taught special techniques and from ex-marine Chris Shirley who ran a marathon carrying a 45kg rucksack and could ignore the pain of the blisters and torn shoulder muscles. One study found that religious people feel less pain than agnostics by looking at a picture of the Virgin Mary. Neuroscientists and psychologists are beginning to understand how this is possible, how ...


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Older Episodes

Knowing Pain Jan. 29, 2018
Phantom limb pain, babies’ pain, people without pain, help understand the nature of pain.
Seeing Pain Jan. 22, 2018
Why do some people feel more pain than others and what happens in the brain during surgery
Humphry Davy Jan. 15, 2018
The story of how Humphry Davy discovered laughing gas in 1799.
Lise Meitner Jan. 9, 2018
How physicist Lise Meitner unlocked the science of the atom bomb that cost Hitler dearly
How scientists learned the earth’s crust is made up of shifting plates.
Maria Merian Dec. 25, 2017
How a 13-year old girl mapped metamorphosis in the 1600s. Naomi Alderman presents
Alcuin of York Dec. 18, 2017
Philip Ball dives into the Dark Ages to reveal the author of the river crossing riddle
Cheating the Atmosphere Dec. 11, 2017
Dodgy emissions data could fatally undermine the Paris Climate Agreement
Better Brains Dec. 4, 2017
New hope for incurable neurodegenerative conditions such as dementia
What would happen if you fell into a black hole?
Poles and Spin Nov. 20, 2017
What will happen with the Earth’s poles swap? And why do planets spin?
Balloon and Memory Nov. 13, 2017
Could a party balloon reach space? And why can’t we remember being babies
Could a party balloon reach space? And why can’t we remember being babies
How do cats find their way home? Plus, should you scratch an itch?
How much of me is bacteria? And why do we have blood types?
Sydney Brenner talks about his part in the DNA revolution between the 1950s and 1980s
SOS Snail Oct. 16, 2017
Helen Scales reports on the international rescue mission to save the Partula snail
How did British imperialism affect India’s scientific development?
Rediscovering influential Indian ideas on mathematics, metallurgy and engineering