Bethany Brookshire

Staff Writer, Science News for Students, 2013–2021

Bethany Brookshire was the staff writer at Science News for Students from 2013 to 2021. 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. 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.

  2. Neuroscience

    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.

  3. Humans

    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?

  4. Neuroscience

    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.

  5. Psychology

    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?

  6. Tech

    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.

  7. Genetics

    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.

  8. Tech

    50 years ago, West Germany embraced nuclear power

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

  9. Animals

    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.

  10. Science & Society

    On social media, privacy is no longer a personal choice

    Data from the now-defunct social platform Friendster show that even people not on social media have predictable qualities.

  11. Health & Medicine

    50 years ago, antibiotic resistance alarms went unheeded

    Scientists have worried about antibiotic resistance for decades.

  12. Health & Medicine

    Researchers stumble onto a new role for breast cancer drug

    At first, ophthalmologist Xu Wang thought her experiment had failed. But instead, she revealed a new role for the breast cancer drug tamoxifen — protection from eye injury.