Tina Hesman Saey

Tina Hesman Saey

Senior Writer, Molecular Biology

Senior writer Tina Hesman Saey is a geneticist-turned-science writer who covers all things microscopic and a few too big to be viewed under a microscope. She is an honors graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where she did research on tobacco plants and ethanol-producing bacteria. She spent a year as a Fulbright scholar at the Georg-August University in Göttingen, Germany, studying microbiology and traveling.  Her work on how yeast turn on and off one gene earned her a Ph.D. in molecular genetics at Washington University in St. Louis. Tina then rounded out her degree collection with a master’s in science journalism from Boston University. She interned at the Dallas Morning News and Science News before returning to St. Louis to cover biotechnology, genetics and medical science for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. After a seven year stint as a newspaper reporter, she returned to Science News. Her work has been honored by the Endocrine Society, the Genetics Society of America and by journalism organizations.

All Stories by Tina Hesman Saey

  1. photo of six or so people in Grand Central Station wearing facemasks. a woman in the center takes a selfie
    Health & Medicine

    Here’s what we know about the risks of serious side effects from COVID-19 vaccines

    Allergic reactions, blood clots and possibly heart problems are rare and their risks don’t outweigh the benefits of getting vaccinated, experts say.

  2. A side view of a man wearing an EEG cap and dark goggles

    A gene-based therapy partially restored a blind man’s vision

    Light-activated proteins inserted in eye nerve cells and special goggles help the man, who lost his sight due to retinitis pigmentosa, see objects.

  3. woman and child at grocery store not wearing masks with man wearing mask
    Health & Medicine

    The CDC’s changes to mask guidelines raised questions. Here are 6 answers

    Experts weigh in on the U.S. CDC’s recommendation fully vaccinated individuals removing masks indoors and what it means for the pandemic’s future.

  4. masked people walking in a train station overpass tunnel
    Health & Medicine

    Cleaning indoor air may prevent COVID-19’s spread. But it’s harder than it looks

    The size and setup of a room and how the room is used make finding simple ventilation and filtration solutions difficult.

  5. woman receiving a covid-19 vaccine dose at Seattle Mariners's stadium
    Health & Medicine

    As the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, we answer 7 lingering vaccine questions

    As U.S. vaccination efforts shift to get shots to the hard-to-reach, we take a look at some big questions about vaccines that still remain.

  6. a 14-year-old girl and 12-year-old boy sitting on a picnic table
    Health & Medicine

    Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine recommended for adolescents by CDC committee

    With the vaccine cleared for high schoolers and many middle schoolers, focus now turns to clinical trials testing COVID-19 vaccines in younger kids.

  7. viruses from the Siphoviridae (left) and Podoviridae (right) families

    Some viruses thwart bacterial defenses with a unique genetic alphabet

    DNA has four building blocks: A, C, T and G. But some bacteriophages swap A for Z, and scientists have figured out how and why they do it.

  8. box packaging for the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine
    Health & Medicine

    FDA and CDC OK resuming J&J COVID-19 shots paused over rare clot concerns

    The single-dose vaccine carries a low risk of rare blood clots in women under 50, but experts say its benefits outweigh that risk.

  9. woman wearing a face mask places her groceries on a checkout counter while an employee in a face mask scans them
    Health & Medicine

    Experts predict U.S. COVID-19 cases will dip in summer but surge in winter

    Masks, vaccines and coronavirus variants could all affect how bad a predicted winter surge gets.

  10. man riding a bicycle in front of cemetery graves in Manaus, Brazil
    Health & Medicine

    The P.1 coronavirus variant is twice as transmissible as earlier strains

    The variant first found in Brazil can evade some immunity from previous COVID-19 infections, making reinfections a possibility.

  11. a dramatic reconstruction of an ancient hominid face with coarse black hair

    New depictions of ancient hominids aim to overcome artistic biases

    Artists’ intuition instead of science drive most facial reconstructions of extinct species. Some researchers hope to change that.

  12. a woman receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a hospital
    Health & Medicine

    Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines may block infection as well as disease

    The mRNA vaccines are about 90 percent effective at blocking coronavirus infection, which could lead to reduced transmission, real-world data suggest.