Monthly Archives: January 2016

Liver On The Edge

When thinking of the consequences of a diet high in fats, sugars, and cholesterol, many will think of weight gain and heart disease, but it may be the liver that suffers the most in the end. Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) affects as many as 35% of Americans and is caused by fat abnormally being stored in the liver. This disease can lead to irreversible scarring, inflammation, cancer, and even liver failure.

Healthy Mouse Liver

Healthy Mouse Liver

Currently, there is no known cure, but Kelli Lytle, RD, a Ph. D. student of Donald Jump in the department of Nutrition is looking for an answer; not with drugs, but with diet. If we change our diet to one that is low in fats, sugars, and cholesterol, can we nurse our livers back to health? By using a two-pronged approach with a mouse model and a cell culture model, she can better understand not only if restoration is possible, but how it works.

Diseased Mouse Liver. White circles indicate pockets of fat

Diseased Mouse Liver. White circles are pockets of fat

In this episode of our show, we will find out how Kelli found her passion for nutrition. We follow her journey from her beginnings studying Art History in Portland Community College, to becoming a registered dietician, and on to her five years at Oregon State University where she has not only published her work, but also communicated it to broad audiences in the three minute thesis competition.

So, tune in to hear Kelli’s passion for Science, Nutrition, and Science Communication on Sunday, January 31st at 7PM PST on 88.7FM or stream it live at

Photo credit: Kelli Lytle

The Earliest X-file: Mysterious Killer of the Tudor Era

Edwin, Ed, Wollert hails from the History of Science Department in Oregon State’s School of History, Philosophy, and Religion. Ed is a third year PhD student and is currently preparing his dissertation. His topic? A mysterious disease that affected Europe during the reign of House Tudor. Symptoms include: an intense episode of chills, giddiness, and pain followed by a stage of perceived heat, sweating, headache, delirium, unquenchable thirst, and exhaustion. Fatalities from this disease were swift with many deaths occurring within twenty-four hours. The unknown killer still evades historians today and is known as Sweating Sickness.

After pouring over documents at the British Library and National Archives last summer, Ed visited The George and Pilgrims Inn in Glastonbury. This is the site where the local abbot had to face the wrath of Henry VIII during the dissolution of the monasteries in the 1530s...

After pouring over documents at the British Library and National Archives last summer, Ed visited The George and Pilgrims Inn in Glastonbury. This is the site where the local abbot had to face the wrath of Henry VIII during the dissolution of the monasteries in the 1530s…

Imagine the challenge of studying a disease that has not affected Europe since its last outbreak in 1551. In his research, Ed works as a detective slowly uncovering clues about Sweating Sickness amid thousands of legal documents. Late fifteenth and early sixteenth century documents were constructed before a published unified code of grammar. Ed sifts through handwritten documents sometimes with a rough guidebook for deciphering vague descriptions of symptoms piecing together a possible agent or vector in retrospect.

Ed has dabbled in just about every field and his academic journey has lead him to many different locations around the United States and Internationally. He describes his pursuit of history as obeying an annoying curiosity. Originally trained in Philosophy with Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from midwestern universities, Ed has served the past 13 years as an adjunct professor in Philosophy at the University of Alaska, Anchorage. That’s not all, he has a second Master’s in Medieval History from American Public History, and has authored two novels. When applying to Oregon State for his PhD, Ed came prepared with a proposal to ignite the curiosity of his major advisor Paul Kopperman. And the rest… is history.

Tune in to KBVR Corvallis 88.7 FM this Sunday at 7PM PST to hear from a true detective or stream the show live.

No Show This Week

We will not have a show on January 17th, 2016 due to the broadcast of OSU Women’s basketball game. Tune in on January 24th as we interview History of Science Ph. D. student, Edwin Wollert.

Orange you glad you have scientists?

Although many students know the Linus Pauling building, few know of the ridicule he faced towards the end of his career for pursing the effects of high dose Vitamin C on the human body and its implications for cancer treatment. Fast-forward a few decades and the tune has changed in scientists around the world as we begin uncovering the mechanisms of how Vitamin C influences cancer cell propagation. One of these projects is led by our guest this week Matt Kaiser who began this research project as an undergraduate which has helped make sense of why these pharmacological dosing levels of Vitamin C aid in targeting tumor cells while simultaneously allow the functioning of normal cells to remain uninhibited.

OSU 2015 Commencement Address
Matt has already presented at a professional conference in Boston, was an invited speaker at OSU’s TEDx event in 2015, helped start a philanthropy to donate money to OHSU, and pursued a six-month internship with one of the largest medical institutions in the country.. and he’s not done yet!

Currently Matt is working under Nancy Kerkvliet in the department of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology on a new project that can have breakthrough immunotherapy applications to help treat individuals with autoimmune diseases such as diabetes or multiple sclerosis.

You can see some of Matt’s photography work that helped contribute to Phil Knight’s Cancer Challenge by finding him on Instagram @backyard_oregon or on his website.

2015 TEDxOregonStateU


Join us Sunday, January 10th at 7PM to hear more about Matt’s research and his astonishing undergraduate career that has launched him to fame on the TED stage. Tune in to KBVR Corvallis 88.7FM or stream the show live!