Rob Stein

Rob Stein is a correspondent and senior editor on NPR's science desk.

In his reporting, Stein focuses on the intersection of science, health, politics, social trends, ethics, and federal science policy. He tracks genetics, stem cells, cancer research, the obesity epidemic, and other science, medical, and health policy news.

Before NPR, Stein served as The Washington Post's science editor and national health reporter for 16 years, editing and then covering stories nationally and internationally.

Earlier in his career, Stein spent about four years at NPR's science desk. Before that, he served as a science reporter for United Press International in Boston and the science editor of the international wire service in Washington.

Stein is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. He completed a journalism fellowship at the Harvard School of Public Health, a program in science and religion at the University of Cambridge, and a summer science writer's workshop at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass.

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4:57pm

Wed November 14, 2012
Shots - Health News

Lawmakers Clash With FDA Over Meningitis Outbreak

Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 6:17 pm

New England Compounding Center co-owner Barry Cadden went to Capitol Hill for a congressional hearing Wednesday on the fungal meningitis outbreak. Choosing to take the Fifth Amendment, Cadden did not testify.
Susan Walsh AP

Members of a House subcommittee clashed repeatedly Wednesday with U.S. Food and Drug Commissioner Margaret Hamburg over the outbreak of meningitis caused by contaminated steroid injections.

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4:58am

Thu November 1, 2012
Shots - Health News

Sandy Leaves Long List Of Health Threats

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 5:36 pm

People look at homes and businesses destroyed during Superstorm Sandy on Tuesday in the Rockaway section of Queens, N.Y.
Spencer Plat Getty Images

Public health officials are warning that people in areas devastated by Superstorm Sandy face many risks in the aftermath and are urging people to protect themselves from health threats in the water, air and even their refrigerators.

As millions of people try to put their lives back together, the most obvious threat is the floodwaters themselves. In many places, the water could be a toxic stew.

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3:17am

Mon October 29, 2012
Shots - Health News

Pricey New Prostate Cancer Therapy Raises Questions About Safety, Cost

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 9:42 am

Radiation therapist Jean Etienne holds a range compensator, which shapes the depth to which the proton beam enters a patient's body to target a tumor.
Rebecca Davis NPR

Bill Sneddon had a feeling he was in trouble when his doctor called with his latest test results.

"I just had a premonition that something's not right," said Sneddon, 68, of Ocean Township, N.J.

And, sure enough, Sneddon's instincts were right. He had prostate cancer.

"Well, it's an eye-opener, you know. I didn't know if I had to buy a yard sale sign, you know," he said. "It's a shocking thing ... It always happens to someone else."

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1:05pm

Wed October 24, 2012
Shots - Health News

Geneticists Breach Ethical Taboo By Changing Genes Across Generations

Originally published on Thu October 25, 2012 1:21 pm

An image of researchers at Oregon Health & Science University removing the nucleus from the mother's cell before it's inserted into the donor's egg cell.
Courtesty of Oregon Health & Science University

Geneticist reported Wednesday that they had crossed a threshold long considered off-limits: They have made changes in human DNA that can be passed down from one generation to the next.

The researchers at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland say they took the step to try to prevent women from giving birth to babies with genetic diseases. But the research is raising a host of ethical, social and moral questions.

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4:00am

Fri October 19, 2012
Shots - Health News

Freezing Eggs To Make Babies Later Moves Toward Mainstream

Originally published on Tue October 23, 2012 12:03 pm

Human embryos under a microscope at an IVF clinic in La Jolla, Calif.
Sandy Huffaker Getty Images

Doctors who specialize in treating infertility are making a big change in their position on a controversial practice. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) has concluded that freezing women's eggs to treat infertility should no longer be considered "experimental."

The group plans to officially announce the change on Monday.

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