One day a successful cancer researcher named Jonathan Brody gave a talk at his alma mater, about how people in his field need to think outside the box if they're going to find a cure. Afterward Jonathan's old music teacher Anthony Holland shared an idea that was way out of the box: Killing cancer cells with electromagnetic waves. Gabriel Rhodes tells what happened next.
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Nubar Alexanian was forced to give up one thing—and then gave up another thing by choice. This story was put together by Nubar and his daughter Abby, with help from Jay Allison, for Transom.org, with funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
In Malawi, in southeast Africa, not gossiping can be worse than gossiping. Sarah interviews a young Malawian woman named Hazel Namandingo, who explains that because so many people have HIV and AIDS in Malawi, they often rely on gossip to figure out who's safe to date or marry.
Producer Sarah Koenig continues the story Terry Engelder and Dan Volz, their rival calculations about natural gas in Pennsylvania, and how each was treated by his university. She explains how Pennsylvania's universities, politicans and industry have united to develop natural gas.
One night on stage, comedian Julian McCullough had an intense pain in his stomach, which he assumed was food poisoning. But it turned out to be a much more serious internal battle.
In a small west Texas town called Kermit, two nurses were accused of harassment after they complained to the medical board that a doctor was putting patients in danger. The nurses were fired and then arrested, facing ten years in prison.
Planet Money's Chana Joffe-Walt explains why prescription drug coupons could actually be increasing how much we pay, and prevent us from even telling how much drugs cost.
In the wake of the tsunami and nuclear disaster at Fukushima, some people suspected that Japanese government officials have not been forthcoming about the actual level of danger from radiation. No one, however, is suggesting a cover-up as extreme as what happened in the Soviet Union after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
Nancy Updike follows up on a Haaretz newspaper story about a sting operation against a medical marijuana supplier in Israel—a case where being giving was not the best idea.
Ira Glass explains that, like the rest of America, we at This American Life are not tired of those stories of women who have no idea they're pregnant and then—poof—one day a baby pops out. Ira and several of our producers speak with Jennifer Lyne, who found out just a few days before giving birth and even appeared on the TV show I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant.
"Slow to react" is usually an insult. But in this case the things that are slow...are cancer cells.