Applications of Biotech & Challenges of Science Communication on Social Media || DR. KATHLEEN HEFFERON

Applications of Biotech & Challenges of Science Communication on Social Media || DR. KATHLEEN HEFFERON

In this informative episode, we discuss why we have many discrepancies and issues between science and the public interpretation of science through modern social media while talking about applications of biotech in the modern world, especially pertaining to human health outcomes and improving agriculture.


Kathleen Hefferon received her Ph.D. from the Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto and completed her postdoctoral fellowship at Cornell University. Kathleen has published multiple research papers, chapters, and reviews, and has written three books. Kathleen is the Fulbright Canada Research Chair of Global Food Security and has been a visiting professor at the University of Toronto over the past year. Her research interests include virus expression vectors, food security agricultural biotechnology and global health. Kathleen lives in New York with her husband and two children.


0:15: Ketogeek mindset, updates, and product information

9:45: Dr. Kathleen’s story

11:46: Traveling abroad and her recent educational trip to Botswana

14:38: Issues with lack of women in livestock farming in Botswana

15:45: Traditional healing in Botswana

18:58: Potential applications of GMOs and drought-resistant plants in Africa

21:36: What challenges do you face when applying new technology in a developing country?

25:53: How did you end up engaging people on social media on scientific and controversial topics such as GMOs and glyphosate

38:04: Ambiguity in science and problems with establishing causality with certain chemicals

42:52: Why don’t many scientists engage with the public through social media and podcasting

50:49: What’s the biggest anti-GMO argument you hear?

55:50: Problem with science communication in the modern world

58:02: Kathleen’s research on using transgenic plants to produce vaccines

1:03:36: What are “plant virus nanoparticles”?

1:07:50: What are the potentials and limitations of transgenic derived vaccines?

1:10:31: Where did chemophobia originate from in the modern world?

1:18:33 Concerns with food wastage in developed and developing countries

1:21:50: Potential applications of GM crops for sequestering carbon and help with climate change

1:25:25: Given a billion dollars, what study would you do?

1:27:17: Final message and plugs



Fahad is the founder of Ketogeek and hosts the Ketogeek Podcast, a world class health show about food, nutrition and health. He is into resistance training, Ashtanga yoga, calisthenics and various forms of training styles. Armed with a idealistic goals distilled in a world of realism, his goal is to help the world make a better place. He leads a life of extreme generalism or as he describes it, 'The Renaissance Lifestyle'.