Jon Hamilton Jon Hamilton is a correspondent for NPR's Science Desk.
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 and health risks.

In 2014, Hamilton went to Liberia as part of the NPR team that covered Ebola. The team received a Peabody Award for its coverage.

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 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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Story Archive

African Americans and other underrepresented minorities make up only about 5% of the people in genetics research studies. janiecbros/Getty Images hide caption

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Neuroscience Has A Whiteness Problem. This Research Project Aims To Fix It

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Scientists used light to control the firing of specific cells to artificially create a rhythm in the brain that acted like the drug ketamine enjoynz/Getty Images hide caption

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Scientists Say A Mind-Bending Rhythm In The Brain Can Act Like Ketamine

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The mouse on the right has been engineered to have four times the muscle mass of a normal lab mouse. A drug to achieve the same effect was recently tested in space. Se-Jin Lee/PLOS One hide caption

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Drug That Bulked Up Mice In Space Might Someday Help Astronauts Make Long Voyages

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Researchers Find A Drug That Could Allow Astronauts Spend Years In Space

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Patients with a fast-progressing form of ALS who got daily doses of an experimental two-drug combination called AMX0035 scored higher on a standard measure of function than patients who didn't get the drug. Zephyr/Science Source hide caption

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Drug Combination Slows Progression Of ALS And Could Mark 'New Era' In Treatment

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Despite the challenges, distance learning can work well for some students with ADHD, researchers say. Some of those who aren't around peers are finding it easier to focus. Imgorthand/Getty Images hide caption

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Remote Learning's Distractions Put Extra Pressure On Students With ADHD

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Distance Learning Presents A Challenge For Students With ADHD

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In 2019, the FDA approved Spravato for patients with major depressive disorder who hadn't responded to other treatments. Now, the agency is adding patients who are having suicidal thoughts or have recently attempted to harm themselves or take their own lives. Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images hide caption

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Nasal Spray Is A New Antidepressant Option For People At High Risk of Suicide

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FDA Approves A Nasal Spray To Treat Patients Who Are Suicidal

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Conner Curran, 9, (right) and his brother Will, 7, at their home in Ridgefield, Conn., this week. The gene therapy treatment that stopped the muscle wasting of Conner's muscular dystrophy two years ago took more than 30 years of research to develop. Kholood Eid for NPR hide caption

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Several lines of evidence now suggest that two common vaccines against respiratory illnesses can help protect against Alzheimer's, too. How much brain protection they offer will require more intensive study to quantify, scientists say. Themba Hadebe/AP hide caption

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Themba Hadebe/AP

Flu Shot And Pneumonia Vaccine Might Reduce Alzheimer's Risk, Research Shows

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Researchers Hope Experimental Gene Therapy Is An Answer To A Fatal Genetic Disorder

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This light micrograph from the brain of someone who died with Alzheimer's disease shows the plaques and neurofibrillary tangles that are typical of the disease. A glitch that prevents healthy cell structures from transitioning from one phase to the next might contribute to the tangles, researchers say. Jose Luis Calvo/ Science Source hide caption

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Jose Luis Calvo/ Science Source

Scientist Makes A Discovery That May Lead To New Drugs For Rare Brain Diseases

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Internationally, scientists now have on file the genomes of more than 47,000 different samples of the virus that causes COVID-19 — up from just one in January. Here's a transmission electron micrograph of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles (orange) isolated from a patient. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/National Institutes of Health hide caption

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This Coronavirus Doesn't Change Quickly, And That's Good News For Vaccine Makers

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