Hindsight is 2020: The year in review

top-down view of the mouse brain

2020 in research images

Feast your eyes on glowing glia and organoids; high-resolution, digital renditions of mouse brains; fluorescent beads passing through zebrafish guts and more.

By Spectrum
23 December 2020 | 1 min read
researcher facing off with the coronavirus.

Rewind: Spectrum’s best from 2020

Our staff picks the stories, podcasts and special reports that stood out from the rest this past year.

By Spectrum
23 December 2020 | 5 min read
Lab scene during COVID 19 pandemic.
Spectrum Microphone

Inside the reporter’s notebook: Dispatches from 2020

Spectrum's staff couldn't report on the ground this year — with no lab visits, sit-down interviews or in-person conferences to attend — but we observed a lot of changes from our computer screens.

By Spectrum
23 December 2020 | 4 min read
Micrograph of nerve cells being targeted by CRISPR enzyme to activate the silenced gene in Angelman syndrome
Spectrum Microphone

Hot topics in autism research, 2020

The Spectrum team highlights five topics that distinguished autism research in 2020: diversity in data, gene therapies, subtyping, social circuitry and the ‘autism gene’ debate.

By Spectrum
23 December 2020 | 8 min read
White lab mouse sitting in a gloved hand.

Notable papers in autism research, 2020

Gene therapies and the factors influencing autism traits top Spectrum’s list of the 10 most notable research findings we covered in 2020.

By Spectrum
23 December 2020 | 4 min read

Explore more from The Transmitter

Portrait of Kaspar Podgorski standing in his lab wearing a helmet with a climbing rope over his shoulder.

Climbing to new heights: Q&A with Kaspar Podgorski

The optical physiologist tracks neural computations inside the lab and scales sheer rock faces outside—even after a life-changing fall.

By Elissa Welle
21 June 2024 | 8 min read
Research illustration groups genes by their effects on brain cell types.

Giant analysis reveals how autism-linked genes affect brain cell types

Genes that predispose people to autism account for a large portion of the neuronal and glial cell changes seen in those with the condition.

By Charles Q. Choi
20 June 2024 | 5 min read

Widely used calcium imaging protocol can lead to spurious results, new paper cautions

The technique, which measures calcium currents as a proxy for neuronal firing, sometimes reports unusual and potentially misleading waves of activity in the hippocampus.

By Angie Voyles Askham
19 June 2024 | 0 min watch