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August 16, 2019
Georgia Mills tackles the feel-good neurotransmitter and hormone behind thrill seeking, addiction and mobile gaming
August 9, 2019
Mike Freemantle finds the connection between Land of Hope and Glory and the noxious, corrosive, flammable gas that stinks of rotten eggs
August 2, 2019
One doctor's battle with alcoholism and self-experimentation with baclofen led to a rush of people desperate to try the drug to curb their addictions. But are we simply replacing one problem with another, asks Enna Guadalupe
July 26, 2019
Microplastics, including polypropylene, are present in our oceans, on our beaches and even in bottled water. Ian Robertson from PerkinElmer investigates the scale and some solutions
July 19, 2019
Lay back in the chair and say 'Ahh', as Mike Freemantle introduces zinc polycarboxylate dental cement
July 12, 2019
The versatile gemstones that give scientists insights into the chemistry of the early Earth, introduced by Brian Clegg
July 5, 2019
Chemistry’s tastiest bonds for an explosive anaesthetic that was as useful as it was dangerous
June 28, 2019
Ben Valsler introduces a class of hallucinogenic phenethylamines, explored by the 'godfather of psychedelics' Alexander Shulgin and sadly implicated in a tragedy at a 2017 music festival
June 21, 2019
The first drug approved in the US to treat Aids required a completely new approach to clinical trials – Frances Addison explores the history of azidothymidine
June 14, 2019
How the compound that ushered in a photographic revolution has taken to the skies to try to control the weather
June 7, 2019
Katrina Krämer investigates how one of the smallest small-molecule drugs around saved Jeanna Giese's life
May 31, 2019
Kat Arney investigates a potent chemical that might explain the brain-bending powers of bacteria
May 24, 2019
Mike Freemantle introduces amber – the valuable organic gemstone that invests unwary insects in a durable tomb
May 17, 2019
Brian Clegg examines the duality that makes beryllium oxide so valuable to the electronics industry
May 10, 2019
Jamie Durrani diverts his attention to the rise of Ritalin, a drug first identified as a way of improving tennis performance
May 3, 2019
Frances Addison takes a look at the discovery that brought horseshoe crabs to the heart of the pharmaceutical industry
April 26, 2019
Kit Chapman investigates the drug that has been one of the top five prescription medications in the UK every year for the last two decades
April 19, 2019
Inspired by a mention of arrowroot in Jane Austen's Emma, Mike Freemantle investigates how subtle differences in composition mean starch can be resistant dietary fibre or easily-digested nourishment.
April 12, 2019
How an early synthetic dye chemical came to play a role in a mysterious disease outbreak in 1980s Spain
April 5, 2019
Coating your naked body with powdered magnesium silicate may sound strange, but it's an important part of many bathtime rituals
March 29, 2019
Mike Freemantle discovers sea buckthorns, also called 'beauty berries' because of their high concentration of tocopherols and tocotrienols, collectively known as vitamin E.
March 22, 2019
If you've ever been unlucky enough to experience 'corked' wine, then 2,4,6-trichloroanisole, or TCA was likely the chemical culprit
March 15, 2019
Kat Arney unearths the story of a truly international effort to develop new drugs for cancer, and the female researcher whose key role went overlooked
March 8, 2019
Kit Chapman on the simple polymer that preserves and protects ancient artifacts, and saved a historical Swedish shipwreck from complete collapse
March 1, 2019
Mike Freemantle on the iron compound that has been turning oak gall extract into indelible ink for centuries, but is now eating though our ancient manuscripts and musical scores
February 22, 2019
The mysterious enzyme that can beat the world’s biggest chemical process when it comes to breaking the dinitrogen triple bond
February 15, 2019
A brilliant rich blue rock, prized in antiquity as a gemstone and a prominent pigment, lazurite is the basis of lapis lazuli, the original ultramarine paint and – as Brian Clegg finds – it even adorns Tutankhamun's death mask.
February 8, 2019
Cases of sleeping sickness – human African trypanosomiasis – are in decline, dropping 86% in Africa between 2000 and 2014. Gege Li explores the role that this toxic, arsenic-based medication has to play.
February 1, 2019
Many consume cod liver oil due to 'a vague sense we should be taking them for something' – but what to the omega-3 fatty acids actually do?
January 25, 2019
It made Robert Bunsen seriously ill, Michael Faraday thought it 'barbaric' to use in battle and even Fritz Haber – the 'father of chemical warfare' – abandoned it after a fatal accident in his lab. This week, Mike Freemantle tells the story of tetramethyldiarsine, otherwise known as cacodyl.
January 18, 2019
Kit Chapman takes us back to the 1904 Olympics in St Louis, via the bronze age and ancient Greece
January 11, 2019
Louise Crane introduces the antioxidant that led to exaggerated claims that 'whisky helps fight cancer'
December 17, 2018
The spice that gives your Christmas eggnog its distinctive taste and aroma is also a toxic narcotic that played an important role in international history. Florence Schechter shares the history of myristicin – the active ingredient in nutmeg
December 7, 2018
Post-nuclear steel is a little bit radioactive, so for some specialist jobs we need to find a source of steel from before the bomb
November 30, 2018
The compounds that put the 'tin' in tin cans and help you to reflect on your appearance
November 23, 2018
Kat Arney’s investigation of the pungent chemical in onions is enough to bring tears to your eyes
November 16, 2018
Epoxies – including hard-wearing resins and strong adhesives – can be found almost everywhere, from your household white goods to the Large Hadron Collider. And the aroma of these compounds cemented their place in Brian Clegg's childhood memories.
November 9, 2018
How one footballer's climate concerns led to the creation of a green chemistry company: Mike Freemantle discovers the story of Mathieu Flamini, GFBiochemicals and levulinic acid.
November 2, 2018
Florence Schechter discovers how a seemingly healthy grapefruit-based breakfast could disrupt your daily drugs
October 26, 2018
Kat Arney gets to the bottom of the story of phenolphthalein – a chemical with two very different uses. If you've measured pH in a classroom or had some trouble in the bathroom, you may have met this compound before.
October 19, 2018
A biologically active compound from the biblical balm of Gilead, said to ‘heal the sin-sick soul’
October 12, 2018
Gege Li on the compound formerly known by the no-nonsense name 'very fast death factor'
October 5, 2018
Florence Schechter introduces an ancient, but effective, treatment for painful attacks of gout
September 28, 2018
What links blue jeans to ancient British warriors? Mike Freemantle discovers the blue dye with a colourful history
September 21, 2018
The latest in an alarming trend of novel psychoactive substances being mis-sold at festivals as traditional street drugs, putting users at risk
September 14, 2018
As hayfever season comes to a close, Katrina Krämer examines antihistamines. From calming down a hyperactive immune system to increasing cognitive abilities, these small molecules have a big impact.
September 7, 2018
Kat Arney finds out about the 'toxic caterpillar' chemical that will make your skin crawl
August 31, 2018
Michael Freemantle introduces a tear gas used by the British army in the first world war, picked, in part, because of our access to seaweed
August 24, 2018
Brian Clegg on the almond flavour compound that gives your taste buds a treat and may help rescue survivors from a disaster
August 17, 2018
How the ‘world’s most wonderful mineral’ became one of the world’s biggest health hazards
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