#45: Vaccine roll out in UK and China; Chris Packham on connectedness; AlphaFold breakthrough
With the UK becoming the first country in the world to approve the roll out of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, the team discusses issues around safety, effectiveness in older people, and who gets it first. They also discuss coronavirus in China and the country’s own vaccination programme, as well as Australia’s remarkable return to normal life. The naturalist and broadcaster Chris Packham makes a guest appearance to discuss global connectivity, the food we eat, Brazil, deforestation and the Cerrado. The team also celebrates the news that the DeepMind artificial intelligence AlphaFold has succeeded in deciphering the secrets of the machinery of life, they explore the discovery of many weird and wonderful volcanoes in our solar system, including those with blue eruptions and ones which shoot plumes of water into space, and they discuss the regenerative power of alligators - and perhaps even dinosaurs! On the pod this week are Rowan Hooper, Cat de Lange, Michael Le Page and Donna Lu. To read more about the stories, subscribe at newscientist.com/podcasts.