Short Films

Coming Home
Coming Home

The Journey of a Puerto Rican Scientist

Dr. Mónica Feliú Mójer heads home to Puerto Rico to explore how her culture, community, and identities have shaped her work as a scientist and science communicator.
Decoding Ancestral Knowledge
Decoding Ancestral Knowledge

Nitrogen cycling by microbes in Native Hawaiian culture

Hawaiian microbiologist Kiana Frank takes us to a sacred fish pond and explains how traditional knowledge and microbiology can work together to help us understand how to care for and manage the land.
Electric Microbes
Electric Microbes

How Geobacter microbes produce electricity

Educator ResourcesShort FilmsMicrobes
Trailblazing microbiologist Gemma Reguera introduces us to her favorite microbe, the electricity-producing Geobacter, and describes how her research opened the door to a new field of study: Electromicrobiology.
How to Kill a Superbug
How to Kill a Superbug

Fighting antibiotic resistance with phage therapy

Evolutionary biologist Paul Turner researches how phages can be used against drug resistant bacteria. He offers a glimpse into a future where we can outsmart and ultimately overcome the resilient superbugs that threaten public health.
Good Chemistry
Good Chemistry

Jennifer Doudna & Emmanuelle Charpentier's historic Nobel Prize for CRISPR

Charpentier and Doudna transformed science with their groundbreaking research on CRISPR. This film highlights their collaboration, the innovative experiments, and the inspiring process of scientific discovery.
The Most Beautiful Experiment
The Most Beautiful Experiment

Matt Meselson and Frank Stahl share the story of their groundbreaking experiment

Matt Meselson and Frank Stahl share how they devised the groundbreaking experiment that proved semiconservative DNA replication, what it was like to see the results for the first time, and how it felt to be at the forefront of molecular biology research in the 1950s.
The First Entanglement
The First Entanglement

Did we domesticate plants or did they domesticate us?

Scientists at a Neolithic dig site explore how the desire for innovation collided with a random mutation in wild wheat thousands of years ago — with consequences that rippled through history in ways early humans could have never imagined.
The CRISPR Apostle
The CRISPR Apostle

Rodolphe Barrangou tells the story of his discovery that laid the groundwork for the gene editing revolution

The discovery that CRISPR functions as an immune system to protect bacteria against viral infection was made at Danisco, a company looking to improve yogurt production. Rodolphe Barrangou tells the story of his discovery, which laid the groundwork for the gene editing revolution.
Tinkering with Nature’s Tools
Tinkering with Nature’s Tools

Feng Zhang shares why CRISPR-Cas9 was such a groundbreaking tool.

What makes CRISPR-Cas9 such a groundbreaking genome editing tool? Hear from CRISPR-Cas9 pioneer Feng Zhang, Ph.D., who shares not only what makes the tool so unique but also his personal journey into science.
Homology-Directed Repair
Homology-Directed Repair

How the cell edits DNA after a CRISPR-induced break

How can DNA repair itself after it’s broken? Learn about the homology-directed repair mechanism in this animated clip taken from the CRISPR-Cas9 documentary, Human Nature.
Finding Faith in Science
Finding Faith in Science

Finding Faith in Science

Dr. Tshaka Cunningham is a molecular biologist and a Black man of faith. This short film explores Dr. Cunningham’s personal and professional identities, and how they unite to help him promote community health through personal genomics.
Fire Among Giants
Fire Among Giants

What happened after the redwoods burned?

Fire is a force for destruction, but also of rebirth. This lesson is at the heart of Fire Among Giants, an intimate and cinematic look at a world famous redwood forest in the wake of the most destructive inferno on record.
Corals: On the Brink
Corals: On the Brink

Can we save coral reefs from extinction?

Climate change is the biggest threat to coral reefs. Can we use modern genetic tools as one method to help us understand coral biology and perhaps make corals more adaptive to climate change?
A Walk in the Woods
A Walk in the Woods

What does a redwood forest look like, and sound like, in the wake of a devastating fire?

What does a redwood forest look like, and sound like, in the wake of a devastating fire? Walk through a fire-ravaged redwood forest with experts Beatrix Jiménez, Ian Bornarth, and Alex Jones. Their observations make visible the forces of destruction and regrowth throughout the redwoods ecosystem.
Century of Biology
Century of Biology

CRISPR ethics and how it will impact our future

In The Century of Biology, noted bioethicist R. Alta Charo ponders the ever-shifting interrelationship between humans and nature. The power of CRISPR and genome editing fundamentally reshapes the realm of the possible, as humans can manipulate life with precision on the molecular level. What we will do with this power is a question that far exceeds the limits of biology and touches on what kind of future we hope for, or fear.
Pieces of a Puzzle
Pieces of a Puzzle

Christopher Rudd's seminal experiments on T-Cell Activation

Researchers are harnessing the power of the human immune system to create new treatments for diseases such as cancer. In this video, meet Christopher Rudd, Ph.D., a scientist whose seminal immunology experiments led to the development of cancer immunotherapies.
The Future of Forests
The Future of Forests

Will they survive the threats of climate change?

We introduce the essential services forests provide to humans and the planet, and the many ways in which climate change is threatening the health and productivity of our forests. The researchers in the film present a few solutions that stakeholders are considering to make forests more resilient to these threats, including the use of biotechnology.
Saving The American Chestnut
Saving The American Chestnut

A case study in genetic engineering

We look to the story of the American Chestnut as an example of how scientists are trying to bring a once-abundant tree back from near extinction through genetic engineering. We also consider the budding genome-editing technology CRISPR Cas-9 as a more precise tool with great promise but also great uncertainty.
Archaea and The Tree of Life
Archaea and The Tree of Life

These Microbes Changed Evolutionary Biology Forever

Educator ResourcesShort FilmsEvolutionMicrobes
Dipti Nayak, Ph.D., explains how the mysterious microbes known as archaea are helping scientists rewrite the Tree of Life.
A Winding Life Through Science
A Winding Life Through Science

Virginia Man-Yee Lee recounts her inspiring journey into becoming a lead researcher of Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases

Neuropathologist Virginia Man-Yee Lee, Ph.D., challenged prevailing stereotypes about what a Chinese woman could accomplish to become a leader in Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative disease research. Learn about her journey in this short film.
Gregor Mendel’s Famous Genetics Experiment
Gregor Mendel’s Famous Genetics Experiment

Shirley Tilghman tells the story of Mendel’s studies and how his data led to an understanding of how the information within genes is passed from generation to generation.

Gregor Mendel’s experiments with pea plants laid the foundation for our understanding of genetic inheritance. In this video, Shirley Tilghman tells the story of Mendel’s studies and how his data led to an understanding of how the information within genes is passed from generation to generation.
Studying Coronaviruses
Studying Coronaviruses

The steps taken once an outbreak hits and the ways in which this process could change for the better

When an infectious disease outbreak happens, medical workers and public health officials mobilize, but there are also teams of researchers that snap into action. Dr. Tracey Goldstein and Dr. Koen Van Rompay are both actively involved in different initiatives to find answers surrounding the COVID-19 epidemic.
Scientific Curiosity: Finding Sublime in the Mundane
Scientific Curiosity: Finding Sublime in the Mundane

Finding Sublime in the Mundane

Manu Prakash always yearned to know the why and the how of things. As a boy in India, he spent endless hours playing outside with animals and making flammable artifacts in an abandoned lab in the basement of his home. Having the chance to explore his surroundings with open-ended curiosity, he learned to find the sublime in the mundane. Today, as a world-renowned researcher and inventor at Stanford University, he continues to be inspired by these childhood lessons, and is creating low-cost tools to empower people around the globe to go on their own journey of science and discovery.
Charting an Original Path
Charting an Original Path

Charting an Original Path

Rebecca Calisi Rodríguez’s research on pigeons, like her life, is one of charting an original path. Her experiences as a Mexican-Italian-American woman, professor, artist and mother have provided her with fascinating and unusual perspectives to study the biology of parental behavior. And in so doing, she is redefining what it means to be a scientist.
Talking about Race and Medicine
Talking about Race and Medicine

Importance of Improving Diversity and Inclusion in Science

There is ample evidence that race can be a major factor in health outcomes. But racial and ethnic minorities are underrepresented in clinical and biomedical research. In this series, Dr. Esteban Burchard talks about the consequences of this underrepresentation and what does it mean for equity in research and medicine.
The Discovery of Lung Surfactant
The Discovery of Lung Surfactant

John Clements details his groundbreaking discovery which has saved millions of neonatal lives

The expansion of lungs for oxygen exchange is facilitated by lung surfactant. The groundbreaking discovery of this substance was made by Dr. John Clements. In this video, Clements details his scientific journey, touching on his early research, the resistance he encountered in the field, and the discovery of lung surfactant, which has saved millions of neonatal lives.
The SOS Response in Bacteria
The SOS Response in Bacteria

Evelyn Witkin shares her journey to the discovery of the SOS DNA damage response in bacteria.

Evelyn Witkin provides a historical perspective on how working at Cold Spring Harbor (CSH) shaped her scientific career and led to the discovery of the SOS DNA damage response in bacteria.