Bethany Brookshire

Bethany Brookshire

Staff Writer, Science News for Students

Bethany Brookshire is the staff writer at Science News for Students. She has a B.S. in biology and a B.A. in philosophy from The College of William and Mary, and a Ph.D. in physiology and pharmacology from Wake Forest University School of Medicine. She is also a host on the podcast Science for the People, and a 2019-2020 MIT Knight Science Journalism Fellow.

All Stories by Bethany Brookshire

  1. illustration of a dragon breathing fire

    Want to build a dragon? Science is here for you

    Fire-breathing dragons can’t live anywhere outside of a book or TV. But nature provides some guidance as to how they might get their flames. If they existed, anyway.

  2. transplant cooler
    Health & Medicine

    50 years ago, early organ transplants brought triumph and tragedy

    In 1968, the liver transplant field had its first small successes. Now, more than 30,000 patients in the U.S. receive a donated liver each year.

  3. Wikipedia entry on hydrastine
    Science & Society

    Wikipedia has become a science reference source even though scientists don’t cite it

    Wikipedia is everyone’s go-to source. Even scientists. A new study shows how science on Wikipedia may end up forwarding science itself.

  4. IUD
    Health & Medicine

    50 years ago, IUDs were deemed safe and effective

    50 year ago, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration declared intrauterine devices safe and effective, though officials didn’t know how the IUDs worked.

  5. MRI images of brains

    Even brain images can be biased

    Brain scan studies that are drawn from rich and well-educated groups could lead to biased ideas of how our brains develop.

  6. food

    50 years ago, folate deficiency was linked to birth defects

    50 years ago, scientists found that a lack of folic acid in pregnant women could cause birth defects. But now, how much is too much?

  7. astrocyte

    The brain’s helper cells have a hand in learning fear

    After a traumatic experience, rat brains release inflammatory signals that come from astrocytes, suggesting a new role for the brain’s “helper” cells.

  8. man in superhero costume striking a power pose

    Whether psychology research is improving depends on whom you ask

    Psychologists are pessimistic about the state of their field but want to improve, a survey shows. But are new measures working?

  9. S-3 Viking aircraft

    50 years ago, engineers tried catching commercial planes in nets

    Fifty years ago, aviation experts tried helping commercial aircraft come to a stop during landing by catching them in massive nets. The idea crash-landed for commercial flights, but it’s still used in the military.

  10. container of artificial sweetener

    Two artificial sweeteners together take the bitter out of bittersweet

    Some artificial sweeteners are well known for their bitter aftertastes. But saccharin and cyclamate are better together, and now scientists know why.

  11. nuclear power plant in Stade, Germany

    50 years ago, West Germany embraced nuclear power

    In 1967, Germany gave nuclear power a try. Today, the country is trading nukes for renewables.

  12. yellow sea snake

    This sea snake looks like a banana and hunts like a Slinky

    A newly identified sea snake subspecies is known to live in a single gulf off the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.