Ruth Williams

Ruth Williams

Ruth is a freelance journalist and regular correspondent for The Scientist, writing news for the website and monthly Modus Operandi articles for the magazine. Before freelancing, Ruth was a news editor for the Journal of Cell Biology in New York and an assistant editor for Nature Reviews Neuroscience in London. Prior to that, she was a bona fide pipette-wielding, test tube–shaking, lab coat–shirking research scientist. She has a PhD in genetics from King’s College London, and was a postdoc in stem cell biology at Imperial College London. Today she lives and writes in Connecticut.

Articles by Ruth Williams
Accurate Protein Production Promotes Longevity
Accurate Protein Production Promotes Longevity
Ruth Williams | Sep 15, 2021
Worms, flies, and yeast live longer if the fidelity of their protein-making machinery is improved, a study shows.
Signaling Dynamics Fine-Tune Gene Expression
Signaling Dynamics Fine-Tune Gene Expression
Ruth Williams | Sep 3, 2021
The dynamic behavior of a transcriptional activator can be used to specify the activity level of its target gene, a study suggests.
Fat Cells Send Mitochondrial Distress Signals to the Heart
Fat Cells Send Mitochondrial Distress Signals to the Heart
Ruth Williams | Aug 20, 2021
Vesicles containing fragments of the organelles released from stressed adipocytes protect the heart against oxygen deprivation, a study in mice shows.
Discovered: Fossilized Spores Suggestive of Early Land Plants
Discovered: Fossilized Spores Suggestive of Early Land Plants
Ruth Williams | Aug 12, 2021
Spores found in 480 million-year-old rock bring the fossil record in line with molecular estimates of when plants first adapted to life on land.
Retinal Activity Prepares Blind Newborn Mice for Vision
Retinal Activity Prepares Blind Newborn Mice for Vision
Ruth Williams | Jul 22, 2021
Spontaneous waves of nerve impulses flowing across the retina help mouse pups practice motion detection for when they eventually open their eyes.
Microbial Fossils Found in 3.4-Billion-Year-Old Subseafloor Rock
Microbial Fossils Found in 3.4-Billion-Year-Old Subseafloor Rock
Ruth Williams | Jul 14, 2021
The material, now part of an African mountain range, bolsters the idea that hydrothermal veins supported early forms of life.
With video
AI Controls Laser-Guided Robot Worms
AI Controls Laser-Guided Robot Worms
Ruth Williams | Jul 8, 2021
Automated control of light-responsive nematode worms marks the first foray into the development of multicellular, biorobotic organisms.
Human Stem Cell Research Guidelines Updated
Human Stem Cell Research Guidelines Updated
Ruth Williams | May 26, 2021
Removal of the 14-day limit for culturing human embryos is one of the main changes in the revised recommendations from the International Society for Stem Cell Research.
T Cell–Boosting Zika Vaccine Protects Mice from the Virus
T Cell–Boosting Zika Vaccine Protects Mice from the Virus
Ruth Williams | May 12, 2021
By avoiding the production of antibodies, something vaccines ordinarily induce, the immunization sidesteps the problem of antibody-dependent enhancement, which can amplify infection by a similar virus and is known to occur with dengue and Zika.
Whole-Genome Data Point to Four Species of Giraffe
Whole-Genome Data Point to Four Species of Giraffe
Ruth Williams | May 6, 2021
The genome sequences of 51 giraffes from all over Africa contribute to the latest attempt in an ongoing pursuit to pin down a species number.