Feb 28, 2019
Dr Krystal, Dr Ailie, and Dr Ray join Dr Shane in the
First guest (on the phone) is Dr Simon
Clulow from Macquarie University.
Cane toads are picking up some shady habits, Toads in
Western Australia have been spotted awake and active during the day
in deeply shaded habitats, despite the species usually being
nocturnal in Australia and other parts of the world. However nearby
cane toad populations at more exposed sites remained only
active at night. This suggests that cane toads are particularly
good at changing their behaviour in response to their
environment, something known as behavioural plasticity, which might
assist their invasive spread into new environments.
Second guest (in the studio) is Dr Shalin Naik
from the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical
A cutting-edge technique called cellular barcoding has been
used to tag, track and pinpoint cells responsible for
the spread of breast cancer from the main tumour into the
blood and other organs. The technique also revealed
how chemotherapy temporarily shrinks the number of harmful
cells, rather than eliminating them, explaining how the cancer
could eventually relapse.
Final guest is Dr Ashlea Wainwright, Senior
Technical Officer, School of Earth, Atmosphere &
Environment at Monash University.
Zircons are incredibly resilient and it takes a lot to destroy
them. Which means that the oldest pieces of Earth we have are
zircons from the Jack Hills in Western Australia, some of which
have been dated at 4.4 billion years old (the Earth is 4.5
billion years old). So they are the only clues we have to the very
beginning of Earth's history.