Anomaly: Stories about rare diseases

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It's almost unbelievable that a change in something as small as a cell or a gene can lead to such big consequences. In this week’s episode, our stories are about rare childhood illnesses from different perspectives.

Part 1: As a kid, Lauren Soares can’t understand why her parents are making such a big deal out her brain tumour.

Part 2: Gerry Downes sees his research in a new light when his daughter is diagnosed with a rare genetic disease.

Lauren Soares is an artist and musician based in Brooklyn, New York. Lauren creates ethereal dark pop music under her artist name, laur. She recently directed and produced a music video for her new single 'hades' and is gearing up to release her debut album in the fall of 2022. While not working on art, Lauren directs her energy toward helping artists and organizations achieve their business goals through digital media, storytelling, and strategic planning. She has a BFA in Fine Arts and Writing.

Gerry Downes is an Associate Professor in Biology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He received a BS in Biology from Johnson C Smith University, a PhD in Neuroscience from Washington University, and postdoctoral training from the University of Pennsylvania. His laboratory studies tiny fish to investigate how genes and brains control movement. He is passionate about science teaching and outreach, as well as shifting perceptions on who can be a scientist.

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