A black and white headshot

Natalia Mesa, PhD

As she was completing her graduate thesis on the neuroscience of vision, Natalia found that she loved to talk to other people about how science impacts them. This passion led Natalia to take up writing and science communication, and she has contributed to outlets including Scientific American and the Broad Institute. Natalia completed her PhD in neuroscience at the University of Washington and graduated from Cornell University with a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences. She was previously an intern at The Scientist, and currently freelances from her home in Seattle. 

Articles by Natalia Mesa, PhD
Illustration of talking AI
What Can ChatGPT-like Language Models Tell Us About the Brain?
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Sep 8, 2023 | 8 min read
A renaissance in natural language modeling may help researchers explore how the brain extracts and organizes meaning.
landscape of frozen river
Worms Frozen for 46,000 Years are the Oldest Known Living Animals
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Aug 15, 2023 | 5 min read
Nematodes buried in Siberian permafrost may be able to stay in a state of suspended animation indefinitely, according to recent findings.
Close-up of women’s hands using lancet on finger.
A Noninvasive Glucose Monitor for Managing Diabetes
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jul 20, 2023 | 3 min read
A new, invisible fluorescent patch continuously monitors blood glucose levels in mice.
Patient with skin blisters being swabbed by gloved hand
Delivering Gene Therapies in Utero 
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jul 18, 2023 | 3 min read
By delivering mRNA to the skin of mice in utero, researchers showed a proof-of-concept for shuttling gene therapies to skin cells before birth.
Mouse running on wheel
An Exercise-induced Liver Enzyme Boosts Metabolism
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jul 7, 2023 | 3 min read
Exercise drives the liver to produce the CES2 enzyme, which circulates in blood and delivers some of the benefits of exercise in mice. 
Cheese wheels with moldy rinds on a wooden plank
Deleting a Gene Quells a Pesky Cheese-Destroying Fungus
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jun 30, 2023 | 3 min read
Fungi disrupt microbial communities on cheese by making antibiotics. 
Tasmanian devil wrapped in blanket
Tasmanian Devils Face Threats from Rapidly Evolving Facial Cancers 
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jun 30, 2023 | 3 min read
A genetic study tracked the evolution of two transmissible cancers currently ravaging populations of Tasmanian devils.
Istiophorus spp
Fishermen and Hobbyists Provide Scientists with Invaluable Data
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jun 1, 2023 | 5 min read
In Los Cabos, Mexico, a panga boat captain and a deep sea fishing enthusiast support researchers working to explain declines in Pacific fish populations.
fMRI scan of two brains
New Brain Network Connecting Mind and Body Discovered
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Apr 19, 2023 | 4 min read
A new brain network responsible for complex movements may upend what we know about neural maps in primary motor areas
Bear paw dusted in snow
Hibernating Bears Provide Clue to Preventing Serious Clots in Humans
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Apr 13, 2023 | 3 min read
Low levels of the clotting factor HSP47 protect the sleeping giants from blood clots, and the same may be possible for humans and other mammals.