Sanden Totten

Host, Brains On

Contact Sanden Totten

Sanden Totten is a host and co-producer of American Public Media's Brains On!, a podcast for kids and curious adults about the scientific mysteries of the universe. Prior to that he was KPCC's Science Reporter, where he covered everything from space exploration and medical technology to endangered species and the latest earthquake research.

Before joining KPCC's Science Desk, Sanden was a producer for Take Two and the Madeleine Brand Show. He began his career in journalism at Minnesota Public Radio where he co-created the show "In The Loop," and helped develop the Public Insight Network, a crowd-sourcing tool designed to bring unique perspectives to the news.

Sanden is the winner of several honors, including the Radio and TV News Association’s Golden Mike for “Best Radio Medical and Science Reporting” and the National Entertainment Journalism's award for “Best Radio News Story.” In 2011 he was a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT, he graduated from Oberlin College in 2004 with a BA in Psychology and English.

Sanden has lived in Sweden and Japan and speaks both languages. He's a fan of comics, fast music and movies about time travel.

Stories by Sanden Totten

Santa Ana winds to bring warming to Southern California

Meteorologists say the strongest of the northeast gusts will occur Wednesday and Thursday.

New fossil helps shed light on a monkey mystery

How and when monkeys arrived in South America from Africa remains a mystery, but a recent fossil shows the creatures have been there for 36 million years.

NASA budget calls for mission to Jupiter's moon Europa

The proposed 2016 budget also sets aside funds for a new Mars rover and a plan to capture an asteroid. It also cuts money for the long-lived Mars Opportunity rover.

World's oceans steadily heating up, new study finds

Ocean temperatures are rising about 0.005° C a year. Scientists say the difference may seem small but vast amounts of heat are required for this type of change.

A new potential pesticide found in plants

UC Riverside scientists are part of an international team that has discovered naturally occurring compounds in plants to control problem insects.

How unboiling an egg can help cancer researchers

A new technique to untangle proteins allows researchers to reverse the cooking process of an egg. It could also lead to cheaper materials for cancer research.

Asteroid flyby: How to spot space rock 2004 BL86

While it poses no threat, the asteroid will pass close enough Monday night for sky watchers with binoculars or small telescopes to get a glimpse.

Cancer-hunting 'T cells' used in pioneering new treatment

A promising new cancer therapy is being tested at City of Hope medical center. It involves modifying a patient's white blood cells so they can eliminate cancer.

Mars lander missing since 2003 finally found

A European Space Agency Martian lander that went missing on Christmas Day, 2003 has finally been found thanks to high resolution images from NASA's HiRISE orbiter.

New program offers funds for Angelenos to prepare for quakes

The California Earthquake Authority and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services are offering select homeowners grants of up to $3,000 for earthquake retrofits.

6 things to know about Pluto before NASA's latest mission

Pluto may no longer be a planet, but it is still a fascinating place. Here are some cool facts about this very special dwarf planet.

NASA to track soil moisture from space with SMAP satellite

Later this month NASA will launch a satellite designed to measure global soil moisture. The data will help predict drought and other weather.

SpaceX attempts to make history with risky landing

SpaceX will attempt to launch and land a Falcon 9 rocket after sending a payload to the International Space Station. This could pave the way for reusable rockets.

More quake-vulnerable buildings turning up in Santa Monica

Officials hoped to have a list of all vulnerable "soft story" buildings compiled by the summer of 2014. Initial surveys missed some structures.

JPL's Dawn spacecraft nearing mysterious dwarf planet

The probe seeks to determine whether the largest body in the Asteroid Belt has subterranean oceans of liquid water.