Jon Hamilton Jon Hamilton is a correspondent for NPR's Science Desk. Currently he focuses on neuroscience, health risks, and extreme weather.
Jon Hamilton 2010
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Jon Hamilton

Doby Photography/NPR
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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Person undergoing a CAT scan in hospital with PET scan equipment. Emerging studies report findings of brain deterioration in females to be slower than that of males'. Johnny Greig/Getty Images hide caption

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Johnny Greig/Getty Images

Scans Show Female Brains Remain Youthful As Male Brains Wind Down

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Ariel Davis for NPR

From Fruit Fly To Stink Eye: Searching For Anger's Animal Roots

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Cleanup workers rake oil-soaked hay along a Santa Barbara beach in 1969, after an oil spill that was then the largest in U.S. history. Bettmann/Getty Images hide caption

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How California's Worst Oil Spill Turned Beaches Black And The Nation Green

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A colorized image of a brain cell from an Alzheimer's patient shows a neurofibrillary tangle (red) inside the cytoplasm (yellow) of the cell. The tangles consist primarily of a protein called tau. SPL/Science Source hide caption

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SPL/Science Source

Alzheimer's Disease May Develop Differently In African-Americans, Study Suggests

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Researchers say human brains can become overwhelmed by cute traits, such as large eyes and small noses, embodied by movie characters like Bambi. Disney Junior/Disney Channel via Getty Images hide caption

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Disney Junior/Disney Channel via Getty Images

When Too Cute Is Too Much, The Brain Can Get Aggressive

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Research inspired by soccer headers has led to fresh insights into how the brain weathers hits to the head. Photo illustration by David Madison/Getty Images hide caption

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Photo illustration by David Madison/Getty Images

Bad Vibes: How Hits To The Head Are Transferred To The Brain

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Before light reaches these rods and cones in the retina, it passes through some specialized cells that send signals to brain areas that affect whether you feel happy or sad. Omikron /Getty Images/Science Source hide caption

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Omikron /Getty Images/Science Source

Scientists Find A Brain Circuit That Could Explain Seasonal Depression

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In experiments involving people with epilepsy, targeted zaps of the lateral orbitofrontal cortex region of the brain helped ease depressive symptoms. Getty Images hide caption

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Getty Images

Scientists Improve Mood By Stimulating A Brain Area Above The Eyes

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Patients awaiting epilepsy surgery agreed to keep a running log of their mood while researchers used tiny wires to monitor electrical activity in their brains. The combination revealed a circuit for sadness. Stuart Kinlough/Ikon Images/Getty Images hide caption

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Stuart Kinlough/Ikon Images/Getty Images

Researchers Uncover A Circuit For Sadness In The Human Brain

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How does the brain's working memory actually work? Jon Berkeley/Ikon Images/Getty Images hide caption

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Jon Berkeley/Ikon Images/Getty Images

Neuroscientists Debate A Simple Question: How Does The Brain Store A Phone Number?

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The cerebellum, a brain structure humans share with fish and lizards, appears to control the quality of many functions in the brain, according to a team of researchers. Science Source hide caption

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Science Source

The Underestimated Cerebellum Gains New Respect From Brain Scientists

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"We have only begun to scratch the surface of the complex problems inherent in figuring out ... the brain's inner workings," said Paul Allen in 2012. Kum Kulish/Corbis/Getty Images hide caption

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Kum Kulish/Corbis/Getty Images

A 291-day-old retina. Our ability to see colors develops in the womb. Now scientists have replicated that process, which could help accelerate efforts to cure colorblindness and lead to new treatments for diseases. Johns Hopkins University hide caption

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Johns Hopkins University

Human Retinas Grown In A Dish Reveal Origin Of Color Vision

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If you like sudoku, go ahead and play. But staying sharp means using many parts of your brain. Yasuyoshi Chiba/Getty Images hide caption

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Yasuyoshi Chiba/Getty Images

A Brain Scientist Who Studies Alzheimer's Explains How She Stays Mentally Fit

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