Richard Harris Award-winning journalist Richard Harris reports on biomedical research for NPR's newsmagazines, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

It's a good start when experimental compounds stop the proliferation of cancer cells in the lab. But, as many researchers have learned the hard way, that's just an early step toward creating a worthwhile treatment. Science Source hide caption

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Science Source

A Biological Quest Leads To A New Kind Of Breast Cancer Drug

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Tobacco smokers are more likely than nonsmokers to die from infection, kidney disease and, maybe, breast cancer. iStockphoto hide caption

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iStockphoto

Smoking's Death Toll May Be Higher Than Anyone Knew

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Dr. Margaret Hamburg will have served almost six years as FDA commissioner by the time she leaves, far longer than the recent tenure for chiefs of the agency. J. David Ake/AP hide caption

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J. David Ake/AP

FDA Commissioner Hamburg Grappled With Global Challenges

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A nurse administers an experimental Ebola vaccine Monday at Redemption Hospital in Monrovia, Liberia. Researchers aim to give shots to 27,000 people during the large trial. John Moore/Getty Images hide caption

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John Moore/Getty Images

Lack Of Patients Hampers Ebola Drug And Vaccine Testing

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Harvard University student Elana Simon introduces President Obama before he spoke at the White House Friday about an initiative to encourage research into more precise medicine. Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Augustine Goba (right) heads the laboratory at Kenema Government Hospital in Sierra Leone. He and colleagues analyzed the viral genetics in blood samples from 78 Ebola patients early in the epidemic. Stephen Gire/AP hide caption

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Stephen Gire/AP

Could This Virus Be Good For You?

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Scientists reprogrammed the common bacterium E. coli so it requires a synthetic amino acid to live. BSIP/UIG via Getty Images hide caption

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BSIP/UIG via Getty Images

Scientists Give Genetically Modified Organisms A Safety Switch

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Dr. Stephen Teach helps Jeffery Ulmer listen to his daughter Alauna's asthmatic breathing at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. Alauna's mother, Farisa, holds her. The District has one of the highest rates of pediatric asthma in the country. Jahi Chikwendiu/Washington Post hide caption

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Jahi Chikwendiu/Washington Post

The City Might Not Be To Blame For High Asthma Rates

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U.S. funding for medical research by source, 1994-2012. (Data were adjusted to 2012 dollars using the Biomedical Research and Development Price Index.) American Medical Association hide caption

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American Medical Association

You don't want to run into methicillin-resistantStaphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria. A potential new antibiotic could help fight this bug. CDC hide caption

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CDC

Scientists Hit Antibiotic Pay Dirt Growing Finicky Bacteria In Lab

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Dr. Richard Schlegel and postdoctoral fellow Nancy Palechor-Ceron use a microscope to look at human epithelial cells growing on mouse fibroblasts at Georgetown University Medical Center. Lauren Wolkoff/Georgetown University hide caption

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Lauren Wolkoff/Georgetown University

A Bed Of Mouse Cells Helps Human Cells Thrive In The Lab

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Postdoctoral researcher Jennifer Foulke-Abel holds the gut-on-a-chip inside the lab at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Richard Harris/NPR hide caption

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Researchers Create Artificial Organs That Fit In Your Hand

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Solving The Mystery Of Why Rock Ants Avoid Right Turns

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