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
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.
Sewage Sampling Robots Speed SARS-CoV-2 Detection
Sewage Sampling Robots Speed SARS-CoV-2 Detection
Ruth Williams | May 1, 2021
An automated wastewater monitoring technique could enable researchers to predict outbreaks of the virus up to a week in advance.
Infographic: How to Ferret Out SARS-CoV-2 in Sewage
Infographic: How to Ferret Out SARS-CoV-2 in Sewage
Ruth Williams | May 1, 2021
Researchers use magnetic nanoparticles and liquid-handling robots in an effort to detect COVID-19 outbreaks early.
Spleen-to-Liver Signals Control Systemic Inflammation
Spleen-to-Liver Signals Control Systemic Inflammation
Ruth Williams | Apr 29, 2021
In rats, the spleen directs a cytokine surge that drives system-wide inflammation, but it is not, as once believed, the main producer of the chemical messenger.
Dietary Spermidine Boosts Cognition in Insects and Rodents
Dietary Spermidine Boosts Cognition in Insects and Rodents
Ruth Williams | Apr 15, 2021
Mice and flies given the polyamine in their diet have increased brain cell metabolism and cognitive function, and epidemiological data hints at a similar benefit in humans.
Concerns over Efficacy and Cost of Muscle Wasting Treatments
Concerns over Efficacy and Cost of Muscle Wasting Treatments
Ruth Williams | Nov 11, 2020
Two new medications for treating a rare and deadly neuromuscular disease have high prices and questionable efficacies, say scientists.
Lipid Droplets Are Intracellular Bacteria-Fighting Machines
Lipid Droplets Are Intracellular Bacteria-Fighting Machines
Ruth Williams | Oct 15, 2020
Far from being inert fat-storage depots within cells, these lipid-loaded organelles recruit immune proteins and block bacterial growth.
Fecal Transfer from Moms to Babies After C-Section: Trial Results
Fecal Transfer from Moms to Babies After C-Section: Trial Results
Ruth Williams | Oct 1, 2020
Tiny doses of maternal poo mixed with breast milk and given to Cesarean-born infants makes their gut microbiota resemble those of babies born vaginally.