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Download the Nature Podcast 07 February 2024

In this episode:

0:46 Borrowing tricks from cancer could help improve immunotherapy

T-cell based immunotherapies have revolutionized the treatment of certain types of cancer. However these therapies — which involve taking someone’s own T cells and reprogramming them to kill cancer cells — have struggled to treat solid tumours, which put up multiple defences. To overcome these, a team has taken mutations found in cancer cells that help them thrive and put them into therapeutic T cells. Their results show these powered-up cells are more efficient at targeting solid tumours, but don’t turn cancerous themselves.

Research article: Garcia et al.

11:39 Research Highlights

How researchers solved a submerged-sprinkler problem named after Richard Feynman, and what climate change is doing to high-altitude environmental records in Switzerland.

Research Highlight: The mystery of Feynman’s sprinkler is solved at last

Research Highlight: A glacier’s ‘memory’ is fading because of climate change

14:28 What might the car batteries of the future look like?

As electric cars become ever more popular around the world, manufacturers are looking to improve the batteries that power them. Although conventional lithium-ion batteries have dominated the electric vehicle market for decades, researchers are developing alternatives that have better performance and safety — we run through some of these options and discuss their pros and cons.

News Feature: The new car batteries that could power the electric vehicle revolution

25:32 Briefing Chat

How a baby’s-eye view of the world helps an AI learn language, and how the recovery of sea otter populations in California slowed rates of coastal erosion.

Nature News: This AI learnt language by seeing the world through a baby’s eyes

Nature News: How do otters protect salt marshes from erosion? Shellfishly

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