May 15, 2022

Written by Aaliyah Mulla & Illustrated by Angela Lin

While most people recover from concussions within a couple of weeks, about half of concussion patients report symptoms for multiple months, with 10-15% of them reporting symptoms for more than a year after a head injury. When concussion symptoms last for longer than expected, it’s called post-concussion syndrome (PCS).

Apr 1, 2022

Written by Trisha Mahtani & Illustrated by Andreea Furdui

Did you know that there is a Guinness World Record for longest continuously running laboratory experiment? An experiment that started back in 1927 is still running!

Mar 29, 2022

Written by Raisa Razzaque & Illustrated by Carrie He

“Everyone needs at least 8 hours of sleep!” How many times have you heard this phrase growing up? Certainly, we can all attest to hearing this from a parent after staying up binging our favourite show or pulling an all-nighter before a test. But in reality, do we actually need all 8 hours?

Mar 24, 2022

Written by Alejandro Izquierdo Lopez & Illustrated by Juliet Ko

In 2011, researchers came across something puzzling on 3.4-million-year-old fossilized bones: cut marks. Someone had cleaned and cut these bones—possibly using a pointy stone! The culprit? A member of Australopithecus afarensis, Lucy’s species.

Mar 23, 2022

Written by Ersi Zabzuni & Illustrated by Emily Leung

It’s on the wall, it’s on your wrist, it’s built into your laptop, but it’s also within you in the form of a circadian clock. Plants and animals developed this form of time-keeping to adapt their behaviors to the environment in a 24-hour fashion.

Mar 17, 2022

Written by Khaleda Khan & Illustrated by Ziyan Chen

Intelligence, by definition, is the ability to change. And it is as simple as it is complex.

Mar 15, 2022

Written by Quinn Lui & Illustrated by Christine Lancion

Browse through any website with clickbait ads for long enough, and chances are high you’ll eventually see a headline about a nail polish horror story. As it turns out, those pretty bottles of polish can have significant effects on human health and the environment—unassuming as they may seem at first glance. 

Mar 10, 2022

Written by Ava Harrington & Illustrated by Angela Lin

Dr. Marie Maynard Daly was an American biochemist who characterized DNA modulators, identified key breakthroughs in cardiology, and worked to reduce barriers for other Black scientists.

Mar 7, 2022

Written by Maia Dall’Acqua & Illustrated by Ziyan Chen

Scott V. Edwards’s colorful career and lifelong passion for birds began in his backyard in New York City, when his neighbor took him birdwatching for the first time. Unfortunately, his family pushed him towards medicine, a field that seemed like an obvious choice given that his father was a doctor. As a volunteer at the Smithsonian during his undergraduate degree, he learned more about the natural history of life on earth and decided to change his career path.

Mar 5, 2022

Written by Vivian Wang & Illustrated by Prima Zhao

From an architect’s building design to your favourite video game, computer-generated 3D graphics are seamlessly integrated into our daily lives. One notably significant figure in this field is mathematician and computer scientist David R. Hedgley, Jr, who came up with an algorithm to solve the “hidden-line problem” of computer graphics.

Mar 4, 2022

Written by Aaliyah Mulla & Illustrated by Jenny Zhang

Dr. Bath was an American ophthalmologist, researcher, and an advocate for the prevention, treatment, and cure of blindness. Pushing through obstacles of sexism, racism, and poverty, Dr. Bath made innovative contributions to the field of medicine which had long-lasting impacts on the communities she served.

Mar 3, 2022

Written by Khaleda Khan & Illustrated by Fiona Tung

Joan Murrell Owens is known best for her contributions to the discovery and classification of coral in marine biology, as well as for being a life-long educator. However, her path has not always been so straight-forward.

Mar 2, 2022

Written by Trisha Mahtani & Illustrated by Winsy Leung

Black widow spiders are a group of venomous spider species. Their venom contains a dangerous neurotoxin called latrotoxin that, while not fatal, can cause pain, cramps and vomiting in humans. While most of us would be nervous about working with these spiders, Dr. Andrade has been studying them since she obtained her Master of Science (M.Sc.) degree at the University of Toronto Mississauga.

Feb 28, 2022

Written by Alejandro Izquierdo Lopez & Illustrated by Yik Lok Wong

Dr. Laura Estelle Yêyinou Loko, an African researcher based in Benin, aims to secure the country’s agricultural production through a novel approach: merging science and traditional knowledge into effective and sustainable agricultural practices.

Feb 24, 2022

Written by Alexandra Nitoiu & Illustrated by Juliet Ko

We like to think that we’re aware of what we’re putting in our bodies, picking out organic, lactose- and allergen-free food. But what if I told you that we each unknowingly eat a credit card’s weight of plastic every week?

Feb 22, 2022

Written by Iyeh Mohammadi & Illustrated by Jenny Zhang

Hidden within the jungles of Cambodia, just a few kilometres away from bustling city of Siem Reap, you can find the remains of majestic sandstone temples and walled fortresses. These are all that’s left of the magnificent city of Angkor, the lost capital of the Khmer Empire—or so we thought.

Feb 15, 2022

Written by Angie Lo & Illustrated by Prima Zhao

Our world is full of fascinating plant life—and the flower Dendrophylax lindenii, more commonly known as the ghost orchid, is no exception.

Feb 8, 2022

Written by Quinn Lui & Illustrated by Yik Lok Wong

Glue, marshmallows, post-it notes, blue sticky tack, and tape; what do all of these have in common? Make the science stick as we give you the rundown in this article.

Jan 16, 2022

Written by Ava Harrington & Illustrated by Yik Lok Wong

With more than one billion users, TikTok has become one of the widest-reaching social media platforms worldwide. How are science communicators using this platform to reach new audiences? 

Jan 15, 2022

Written by Khaleda Khan & Illustrated by Carrie He

Mona Li is a full-time freelance medical illustrator and visual designer who specializes mostly in human health and anatomy. This interview takes a closer look at how scientific illustrations play a crucial role in communicating science to a broad and diverse audience in visual, artsy ways.

Jan 14, 2022

Written by Angie Lo & Illustrated by Emily Leung

A creator of numerous poems touching on diverse scientific topics, Sam Illingworth is devoted to exploring the intersections between laboratory and lyric. Learn about his process and explore the value and beauty of communicating science through poetry in this Specials Week article.

Jan 13, 2022

Written by Ersi Zabzuni & Illustrated by Andreea Furdui

As a brilliant Medical Illustrator at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the University of Toronto, Stacey Krumholtz has combined her passion for art with her background in science to produce creative and informative graphics. We had the pleasure of interviewing Stacey, who shared with us valuable insights into her journey in Medical Communications and helpful advice on navigating the field.

Jan 12, 2022

Written by Aaliyah Mulla & Illustrated by Christine Lancion

Kendra Brown is a science communicator who has worked in a variety of roles, from teaching a writing course for college students to serving as the editor for Owl magazine and working at the Ontario Science Centre. In this instalment of Specials Week 2021, Kendra talks about her path to sci-comm and gives advice for those looking to break into the field.

Jan 11, 2022

Written by Alejandro Izquierdo Lopez & Illustrated by Jenny Zhang

Once a year, Toronto and 29 other cities across Canada host a massive science communication fair: Science Rendezvous. In this interview, the co-chairs of Science Rendezvous in Toronto for the past three years, Trinh Vo and Surath Gomis, recount their experiences leading the festival and how the festival illustrates their vision for science communication. 

Jan 10, 2022

Written by Syed Hussain Ather & Illustrated by Winsy Leung

To kick off Specials Week 2021, we speak with Dr. Sophie Juliane Veigl and Dr. Lynn Chiu on how the philosophy of science communication can enhance the work of scientists, philosophers, and science communicators alike.

Dec 8, 2021

Written by Trisha Mahtani & Illustrated by Prima Zhao

Captivating colours from red to blue dance across the night sky, creating a ‘light show’ in waves and circles. This spectacle can be seen in Canada, and is better known as the northern lights, or aurora borealis. 

Nov 18, 2021

Written by Alejandro Izquierdo Lopez & Illustrated by Juliet Ko

Imagine being able to time travel back to 4.3 billion years ago, witnessing for yourself the origin of life. Your time machine then takes you through the main episodes of Earth’s history, allowing you to see the planet changing and life evolving. Finally, at 250 million years into the past, just before the start of the age of the dinosaurs, your journey ends.

Nov 16, 2021

Written by Alexandra Nitoiu & Illustrated by Yik Lok Wong

Many of us have heard the lyrics, “You would not believe your eyes / If ten million fireflies / Lit up the world as I fell asleep,” by the musical artist Owl City. But the truth is sometimes stranger than fiction—nature already has millions of bioluminescent organisms scattered across various ecosystems. 

Nov 13, 2021

Written by Charlotte Zhang & Illustrated by Prima Zhao

The diversity of humans and our individual differences is what makes the world so complex yet intriguing. If we embrace and respect these differences, our kindness can make a small yet important step towards an inclusive and diverse society.

Nov 9, 2021

Written by Quinn Lui & Illustrated by Tammy Lee

After the relentless heat of summer, it’s no surprise if you’re looking forward to fall and its cooler weather. Whether your favourite part of this season is bundling up in cozy knitwear, cupping your hands around a delicious hot drink, or taking in the gorgeous sight of changing leaves, your wait is over! Unfortunately for many people, these perks come hand-in-hand with the threat of seasonal affective disorder (SAD).

Nov 4, 2021

Written by Charlotte Zhang & Illustrated by Angela Lin

We all know that maintaining a healthy diet brings many benefits to our lives, but why does it matter so much, and what are the consequences of not doing so? 

Nov 2, 2021

Written by Trisha Mahtani & Illustrated by Fiona Tung

Agriculture and farming to produce meats, such as beef, are large contributors to greenhouse gas emissions that are accelerating climate change. As the population continues to grow, scientists are cooking up alternative ways to meet our increasing food demands. 

Oct 28, 2021

Written by Quinn Lui & Illustrated by Anna Tram

Picture this: it’s Halloween night, long-awaited sweets make their way from goody bags to mouths and the scene devolves into chaos. Common parental wisdom claims that eating sweet treats like candy or soft drinks will lead to a “sugar rush”, but is there truth to these claims? How does sugar really affect our bodies?

Oct 26, 2021

Written by Hayley McKay & Illustrated by Ziyan Chen

Bats are possibly one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented animals of all. For centuries, bats have been and still are associated with darkness, death and the unknown. But bats don’t deserve the scary persona they have been given. If they’re actually good to have around, how can we help them thrive?

Oct 21, 2021

Written by Angie Lo & Illustrated by Angela Lin

The word “antioxidants” has cropped up in many places—it’s on labels and menus advertising the health benefits of foods and drinks, and lots of nutrition recipes name it as one of their perks. But what do antioxidants actually do, and how do they affect our bodies?

Oct 14, 2021

Written by Angie Lo & Illustrated by Fiona Tung

From curry to chili to anything smothered in hot sauce, spicy food is savoured by many. But what is it that gives these foods the zing and heat we love? This article dishes out the science behind tasting and enjoying spice.

Oct 12, 2021

Written by Elakkiya Prabaharan & Illustrated by Ziyan Chen

Agriculture is one of the greatest contributors to global warming, and its environmental impact will only grow as the demand for food increases.

Sep 20, 2021

For Science Literacy Week, we collaborated with the U of T Gerstein Science Information Centre to illustrate all things climate change-related in Canada.

Apr 13, 2021

Written by Trisha Mahtani & Illustrated by Ziyan Chen

Bees actually bite plant foliage to cause damage and accelerate blooming of flowers by up to 30 days earlier!

Apr 8, 2021

Written by Hayley McKay & Illustrated by Sally Kyunga Kim

Spring is in the air—birds are chirping, the weather is warming, and as the proverb goes, ‘April showers bring May flowers.’

Apr 6, 2021

Written by Quinn Lui & Illustrated by Winsy Leung

Plenty of heat comes from inside a house: people and pets generate body heat, and appliances like the oven can warm a whole room!

Apr 1, 2021

Written by Samuel Salamun & Illustrated by Peter Hong

Have your parents ever told you not to eat something growing up?

Mar 30, 2021

Written by Aaliyah Mulla & Illustrated by Angela Lin

The phrase “live in the moment” is a favourite inspirational quote and good advice for most of us. But imagine a life that must be lived almost entirely in the present.

Mar 25, 2021

Written by Hayley McKay & Illustrated by Jenny Zhang

It’s 2020 and you can probably guess the breakthrough that claimed the “Breakthrough of the Year” prize: the rapidly developed SARS-CoV-2 vaccines.

Mar 23, 2021

Written by Peter Hong & Illustrated by Angela Lin

We all know the sudden feeling of drowsiness and an urge to strongly exhale. Yawning happens countless times throughout the human lifespan and often doesn’t warrant a second thought.

Mar 18, 2021

Written by Elakkiya Prabaharan & Illustrated by Tammy Lee

What has an infinite perimeter, but a finite area?

Mar 16, 2021

Written by Samuel Salamun & Illustrated by Winsy Leung

Well, your mother might know best, but her mitochondria might not.

Mar 11, 2021

Written by Aaliyah Mulla & Illustrated by Rebecca Michaels-Walker

What do McDonald’s hamburgers and 3D printing have in common?

Mar 8, 2021

Created by Anna Tram, Shanling Lei, Jenny Zhang, Jerrie Feng, Prima Zhao & Amy Zhang

A set of nine bite-sized infographics on women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields. Originally created for 2020 International Women’s Day.

Mar 5, 2021

Written by Angie Lo & Illustrated by Jenny Zhang

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to know how historical figures sounded when they spoke?

Mar 4, 2021

Written by Trisha Mahtani & Illustrated by Eugenia Yi

When we look up at the night sky, we see many beautiful twinkling stars. One star in particular, Betelgeuse, is part of the Orion constellation and one of the seven brightest stars we can see at night.

Mar 3, 2021

Written by Angie Lo & Illustrated by Fiona Tung

The giant squid is an incredible creature of great interest for researchers. However, the creature has often managed to stay just out of their reach until now.

Mar 2, 2021

Written by Elakkiya Prahabaran & Illustrated by Anna Tram

Last October, Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their work in developing a gene-editing tool called CRISPR-Cas9. This discovery opened up a world of medical possibilities and revolutionized the field of biology!

Feb 25, 2021

Written by Alexandra Nitoiu & Illustrated by Anna Tram

You may only know little, if anything, about the atmosphere, but we have a lot to thank it for. It’s an invisible blanket of air that surrounds Earth, protecting it and allowing for life to exist!

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