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Packed Lunch podcast


Packed Lunch is a series of lunchtime talks at Wellcome Collection. You can feed your curiosity by dropping in to eat your lunch and hear local scientists in conversation about their latest experiments, life in the lab and why science matters to everyone. It all happens in the space of a lunch hour. To listen to individual episodes online, choose from the list below, or find the very latest on Soundcloud.

Packed Lunch: Monkey Microbiomes

Biologist Catie Williams looks for patterns in the composition of gut bacteria in related primate species and investigates the differences.

Packed Lunch: Microplastics

Environmental scientist Stephanie Wright investigates the under-researched area of what microplastics mean for human health.

Packed Lunch: Habits

Social psychologist Benjamin Gardner discusses how habit formation can be used as a technique to change behaviour.

Packed Lunch: HIV

Join Fiona Burns to hear more about her extensive research experience of sexual health, HIV and migrant communities within the UK.

Packed Lunch: Child Health

Can public health messages really make a difference to children's health? Join Simon Cousens to hear how his work is going in West Africa.

Packed Lunch: Causes of Diseases

Liam Smeeth tells us about his findings on the causes of diseases, from cancer in the UK to cardiovascular diseases in low-income countries.

Packed Lunch: Side-effects

Laurie Tomlinson is a practising clinician and kidney expert who is researching whether commonly prescribed drugs do us more harm than good.

Seif Shaheen on asthma

The last half-century has seen an epidemic of asthma in the UK. Despite years of study, science is still unable to fully explain its rise.

Tim Smith on cinema

Film directors are entertainers, artists, auteurs… and natural psychologists.

Katharina Wulff on Body Clocks

City life, with its shift work, artificially lit offices and bright computer screens may be disrupting our natural rhythms.

Kate Jones on bats

Bats are cool. From echolocation to a surprisingly long lifespan, they possess fascinating special skills and characteristics.

Malcolm Finlay on the heart

Can you die of a broken heart? Perhaps not, but heart attacks have been known to be triggered by intense emotion and mental stress.

Sarah Bell on sewers

Hosepipe bans, torrential rain, flooding - water was constantly in the news in 2012.

Stephen McMahon on pain

Pain is an important warning signal, but for people living with prolonged, chronic pain it can have devastating consequences.

Mary Morrell on sleep apnoea

Up to 4 per cent of adults, and as many as one-third of older people, suffer from sleep apnoea, or interrupted breathing during sleep.

Chris French on parapsychology

The powerful psychological factors at work that may explain why people continue to passionately believe in supernatural forces.

Zarinah Agnew on mirror neurons

Mirror neurons are thought to be the key to human mimicry, allowing us to ape the actions of others and maybe even empathise.

Ifat Yasin on hearing

We hear by amplifying the sounds that go into our ear. But our ears can be tricked using auditory illusions.

Kevin Fong on Space

Space flight wreaks havoc on the body, but its effects will have to be overcome to investigate the far reaches of our solar system.

Chris Bakal on cells

How understanding the shapeshifting properties of cells is the key to fighting cancer.

Eleanor Stride on bubbles

How pioneering work on microbubbles has the potential to transform ultrasound imaging and drug delivery.

Nick Lane on complexity

What drove the shift from simple bacteria to the current vast diversity of plants and animals?

Isabel Jones on skin

Few people have as intimate a knowledge of the delicate layers of the skin than those who try to repair it after trauma.

Lewis Dartnell on Mars

The possibility of life on Mars has long fascinated scientists, science fiction writers and David Bowie.

Jane Wardle on Food

Why do some people always reach for that extra chocolate biscuit, while others seem to have no problem holding back?

John Hutchinson on dinosaurs

Was Tyrannosaurus rex a fast runner? Were dinosaurs warm-blooded? How can answering questions such as these help captive elephants?

Viren Swami on physical attraction

The secrets of physical attraction, how body image differs across cultures and why who you fancy can change depending on how hungry you are.