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Jon Hamilton 2010
Doby Photography/NPR

Jon Hamilton

Correspondent, Science Desk

Jon Hamilton is a correspondent for NPR's Science Desk. Currently he focuses on neuroscience, health risks, and extreme weather.

Following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Hamilton was part of NPR's team of science reporters and editors who went to Japan to cover the crisis at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant.

Hamilton contributed several pieces to the Science Desk series "The Human Edge," which looked at what makes people the most versatile and powerful species on Earth. His reporting explained how humans use stories, how the highly evolved human brain is made from primitive parts, and what autism reveals about humans social brains.

In 2009, Hamilton received the Michael E. DeBakey Journalism Award for his piece on the neuroscience behind treating autism.

Before joining NPR in 1998, Hamilton was a media fellow with the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation studying health policy issues. He reported on states that have improved their Medicaid programs for the poor by enrolling beneficiaries in private HMOs.

From 1995-1997, Hamilton wrote on health and medical topics as a freelance writer, after having been a medical reporter for both The Commercial Appeal and Physician's Weekly.

Hamilton graduated with honors from Oberlin College in Ohio with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. As a student, he was the editor of the Oberlin Review student newspaper. He earned his master's degree in journalism from Columbia University, where he graduated with honors During his time at Columbia, Hamilton was awarded the Baker Prize for magazine writing and earned a Sherwood traveling fellowship.

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On the left, President Trump takes the oath of office at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 20. On the right, protesters attend the Women's March on Washington the next day. Crowd estimates for both events were in the 100,000s but varied considerably. Scott Olson/Getty Images; Mario Tama/Getty Images hide caption

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Scott Olson/Getty Images; Mario Tama/Getty Images

Politics Aside, Counting Crowds Is Tricky

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A mouse with predatory brain circuits switched on is much more likely to attack and kill prey like this cricket. Courtesy of Ivan de Araujo/Cell Press hide caption

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Courtesy of Ivan de Araujo/Cell Press

Flipping A Switch In The Brain Turns Lab Rodents Into Killer Mice

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A child takes a facial recognition test in which he is asked to match the face on the top to one of the faces on the bottom. Jesse Gomez and Kalanit Grill-Spector at the Vision and Perception Neuroscience Lab/Science hide caption

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Jesse Gomez and Kalanit Grill-Spector at the Vision and Perception Neuroscience Lab/Science

Brain Area That Recognizes Faces Gets Busier And Better In Young Adults

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A soldier fires a Carl Gustav recoilless rifle system during weapons practice in Helmand province, Afghanistan. Heavy weapons like these generate a shock wave that may cause brain injuries. Sgt. Benjamin Tuck/CJSOTF-A/DVIDS hide caption

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Sgt. Benjamin Tuck/CJSOTF-A/DVIDS

Pentagon Shelves Blast Gauges Meant To Detect Battlefield Brain Injuries

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Zap! Magnet Study Offers Fresh Insights Into How Memory Works

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In a cluster of glowing human stem cells, one cell divides. The cell membrane is shown in purple, while DNA in the dividing nucleus is blue. The white fibers linking the nucleus are spindles, which aid in cell division. Allen Institute for Cell Science hide caption

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Allen Institute for Cell Science

Comparative psychologist Claudia Fugazza and her dog demonstrate the "Do As I Do" method of exploring canine memory. Mirko Lui/Cell Press hide caption

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Mirko Lui/Cell Press

Your Dog Remembers Every Move You Make

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Heavy Screen Time Rewires Young Brains, For Better And Worse

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This image is from lab-grown brain tissue — a minibrain — infected by Zika virus (white) with neural stem cells in red and neuronal nuclei in green. Courtesy of Xuyu Qian and Guo-li Ming hide caption

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Courtesy of Xuyu Qian and Guo-li Ming

'Minibrains' Could Help Drug Discovery For Zika And For Alzheimer's

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Robert Gaunt tests Nathan Copeland's ability to detect touch by tapping fingers on a robotic hand. UPMC/Pitt Health Sciences hide caption

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UPMC/Pitt Health Sciences

Brain Implant Restores Sense Of Touch To Paralyzed Man

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Brain Game Claims Fail A Big Scientific Test

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Rats are great at remembering where they last sniffed the strawberries. Alexey Krasaven/Flickr hide caption

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Alexey Krasaven/Flickr

Rats That Reminisce May Lead To Better Tests For Alzheimer's Drugs

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Charles Mayer, 30, of San Diego survived an IED attack while serving in Iraq in 2010, but has suffered from complications including PTSD. Stuart Palley for NPR hide caption

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Stuart Palley for NPR

War Studies Suggest A Concussion Leaves The Brain Vulnerable To PTSD

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Simone Biles flies through the air while performing on the balance beam at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Dmitri Lovetsky/AP hide caption

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Dmitri Lovetsky/AP

How A 'Sixth Sense' Helps Simone Biles Fly, And The Rest Of Us Walk

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