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Exploring the Universality of Human Song

It’s often said that music is a universal language. But is it really universal? Some argue that humans are just too culturally complex and their music is far too varied to expect any foundational similarity. Yet some NIH-funded researchers recently decided to take on the challenge, using the tools of computational social science to analyze recordings of human songs and other types of data gathered from more than 300 societies around the globe.

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Giving Thanks for Biomedical Research

This Thanksgiving, Americans have an abundance of reasons to be grateful—loving family and good food often come to mind. Here’s one more to add to the list: exciting progress in biomedical research. To check out some of that progress, I encourage you to watch this short video, produced by NIH’s National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Engineering (NIBIB), that showcases a few cool gadgets and devices now under development.

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Videos

Singing “If Not Now”

What a thrill it was to perform the song, “If Not Now,” with my daughter Margaret Collins. We sang the duet at the conclusion of the Women in Nephrology’s annual Nancy Gary Memorial Luncheon Lecture. Margaret, a nephrologist, and I delivered this year’s lecture titled “Two Generations of Perspective on Women in Medicine.” This song’s message seemed so very appropriate to leave with these leaders and mentors in nephrology. We delivered the lecture on November 9. 2019 at the Walter Washington Convention Center, Washington, D.C., and I share the video to encourage others to take the words of this song “to the next level.” Credit: Diane Baker