Mark Johnson

Washington, D.C.

National reporter covering science.

Education: University of Toronto BA English Literature

As a 2016-2017 O'Brien Fellow at Marquette University, he reported on infectious diseases in Kenya, Uganda and Brazil. He covered small-town government and corruption at The Providence Journal-Bulletin from 1994 to 2000, serving for two years as the newspaper's Massachusetts Bureau Manager. Before coming to Providence, he worked at The Rockford Register Star, The Haverhill (Mass.) Gazette and the weekly Provincetown (Mass.) Advocate. A University of Toronto graduate, his first novel, Though The Earth Gives Way, was published in January 2022.
Latest from Mark Johnson

Claim of ancient burials shakes up human evolution story, sparks debate

Controversial evidence suggests that our relative Homo naledi was capable of complex behavior despite its much smaller brain.

June 5, 2023

New AI tool searches genetic haystacks to find disease-causing variants

PrimateAI-3D was trained on the genetic blueprints of 233 primate species to help scientists sift through millions of variants and find ones that can cause harm.

June 1, 2023

Eli Lilly settles insulin suit for $13.5 million, agrees to keep price cap

The money will go into a fund that insulin users can tap into if they don’t qualify for the $35-a-month cap.

May 27, 2023

The earliest recorded kiss goes back at least 4,500 years to Mesopotamia

A Danish husband and wife duo give kissing the scholarly treatment, pushing back the earliest records of the act by about 1,000 years

May 18, 2023

A new, more diverse human genome offers hope for rare genetic diseases

The first pangenome is based on the full genetic blueprints of 47 people from around the world.

May 16, 2023

Gene-edited cells move science closer to repairing damaged hearts

New research offers a path toward transplants that can fix damage from a heart attack without causing life-threatening arrhythmias.

April 28, 2023

A genome project cracks mysteries of evolution — and Balto the superdog

The Zoonomia Project analyzed the genomes of 240 mammals, offering insights into evolution, extinction, the human brain and a famous sled dog.

April 27, 2023

After decades under a virus’s shadow, he now lives free of HIV

Paul Edmonds was diagnosed with HIV in 1988 and didn’t expect to survive. Now in full remission, he's telling his story of a medical breakthrough to offer hope.

April 3, 2023

Biden signs bill to declassify intelligence about coronavirus origins

The bill requires the declassification of as much information as possible on potential links between the Wuhan Institute of Virology and the origin of covid-19.

March 21, 2023

Genetic data links raccoon dogs to covid origin; WHO seeks China cooperation

A sample taken in a Wuhan market in early 2020 holds genetic traces of both the coronavirus and a small canid known as a raccoon dog, scientists report

March 17, 2023