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UnDisciplined: How this invasive species has made its way across continents

In biology, invasiveness is often thought of as a condition of geography. Something that isn't native to one place somehow shows up there it makes itself at home and it begins to take over. But in this vastly interconnected world, plants and animals from one place are always finding their way somewhere else. So researchers are trying to better understand what makes something more likely to be successful once it arrives in a new habitat.

Carina Donne is a PhD student at Colorado State University where he's studying soil microbiology. He was previously an undergraduate and master's student at the University of Iowa, where he studied the evolution and ecology of New Zealand mud snails.

Maurine Neiman is an evolutionary biologist at the University of Iowa, where much of her labs work is focused on the mud snail.

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Matthew LaPlante has reported on ritual infanticide in Northern Africa, insurgent warfare in the Middle East, the legacy of genocide in Southeast Asia, and gang violence in Central America. But a few years back, something donned on him: Maybe the news doesn't have to be brutally depressing all the time. Today, he balances his continuing work on more heartbreaking subjects by writing books about the intersection of science, human health and society, including the New York Times best-selling <i>Lifespan</i> with geneticist David Sinclair and the Nautilus Award-winning <i>Longevity Plan</i> with cardiologist John Day. His first solo book, <i>Superlative</i>, looks at what scientists are learning by studying organisms that have evolved in record-setting ways, and his is currently at work on another book about embracing the inevitability of human-caused climate change with an optimistic outlook on the future.<br/>