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coked up mouse mice

Coked-Up Mice

What does a coked-up mouse act like? Professor of Medical Microbiology & Immunology Vanessa Sperandio tells us.

Then, Rep Robyn Vining joins to talk about some of the bills being voted on in the legislature next week that aren’t getting to the root of the labor shortage problem.

Guests: Robyn Vining, Vanessa Sperandio

Check out this episode on Spotify and Apple Podcasts!

Do They Wear Sunglasses Indoors and Huff On Parliaments?

When you think of addiction, conventional wisdom tells us that it has to do with the addictiveness of the drug and our brain chemistry. But what if it has to do with our microbiome and what bacteria we have in our gut?

We talked to Vanessa Sperandio, professor and chair of medical microbiology and immunology in UW Madison’s School of Medicine and Public Health, about the research she and her team are doing around cocaine addiction.  Their study in mice has shed light on the biochemistry of cocaine addiction and suggested a possible way to keep humans from getting hooked.

Apparently, Cocaine disrupts the balance of microbes in the guts of mice. It increases levels of a hormone called norepinephrine in their intestines, and this triggers an increase in proteobacteria, a family of microbes that includes the common and sometimes harmful E. coli.

The researchers administered cocaine to a group of mice infected with proteobacteria and found that they experienced more cocaine-seeking behavior than mice without the proteobacteria in their guts. They then infected another group of mice with a strain of E. coli lacking genes that allow the bacteria to eat glycine. When those mice encountered cocaine, they were less affected by the drug.

But we also asked the professor the obvious question: what are coked-up mice like?


Money Heist But In Canada

Police announced that nearly $15 million in gold and other valuable items were stolen from a cargo holding facility at Toronto’s Pearson Airport on Monday, and the perps didn’t even say they were sorry about it. Pearson is Canada’s busiest airport, and gold mined in northern Ontario typically flows through it. The heist is one of the largest in Canada’s history.

Should Netflix reboot Money Heist with Canadian accents?


Rep Robyn Vining

Rep. Robyn Vining joins the show to talk about some of the bills being voted on in the Assembly next week and how, despite what Republicans think, they will not be getting people “back to work”. 
Wisconsin is at its lowest unemployment rate on record (2.5%) but these bills think getting people off of unemployment and BadgerCare will fix the labor shortage. When what they really should be looking at is paid leave and child care so that parents who could be working but can’t afford to can work.

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