Science Storyteller

Author Deanna Altomara

I’ve always been a person who’s dared to make a difference… and one of my favorite ways is through writing!

I double-majored in Creative Writing and Human Health at Emory University, where I explored the medical humanities through coursework, a literacy group that I founded, and study-abroad opportunities across four continents. To learn more about how to craft content that spurs behavior change, I started Emory’s graduate MPH program in Behavioral Sciences, Health, and Health Education Sciences. Now, I write about a variety of health topics, with special passions for climate, infectious disease, equity, and disability. I publish books, articles, grants, stories, and podcasts for diverse audiences.

Hear My Story: Chrysalis Stars on Heart Podcast

I was recently invited to speak on “Heart to Heart with Anna,” a podcast for the congenital heart defect community. Tune in to hear how Kaley and I shared our story with the world. Transcript Deanna Altomara: 0:00 When my cousin,… Continue Reading →

Bucket List: Iconic Seashells of the Jersey Shore

Ever wondered about the seashells that wash up along the Jersey Shore? I sure have! Follow me into a deep dive of the history of these iconic shells. Thank you for checking out my debut in Jersey Shore Magazine!

No More Miracle Cures: Disability Rep In Middle-Grade Books

Two facts about me: At first, these two facts might seem unrelated. To understand the connection, you have to go back to a quiet spring evening over twenty years ago, to a toddler snuggled in her mother’s lap, pointing to… Continue Reading →

Pathogens in the Permafrost: Part 3

A 46,000-year-old worm has been revived from the Russian permafrost—could deadly germs be next? In 2020, I wrote a series of blog posts about whether ancient microbes could survive millennia in the ice. As it turns out, some can.  This… Continue Reading →

I Calculated My Flight Emissions. Now What?

I hate to admit it: I’m a frequent flier. I wasn’t always this way. Growing up, we took humble vacations at the Jersey Shore, no air travel required. Fast forward to out-of-state college, and the numbers started to add up… Continue Reading →

3D-Printing in Medicine

Another wonderful experience writing with Mary Loftus for Emory Medicine!  I first learned about 3D-printing in middle school science, where my debate team went all-out to argue that it could be a solution to the dubious ethics of organ cloning…. Continue Reading →

KO for TB

Emory’s new Tuberculosis Center paves the way for cutting-edge research and interdisciplinary collaboration. Learn more by reading my latest article in Rollins Magazine.

Domestic Violence Spikes During Pandemic

“Even before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, domestic violence was one of the most common human rights abuses in the world, affecting one in three women. The issue becomes even more pressing during emergencies, which often exacerbate gender inequalities. … Continue Reading →

Dissecting the Human Body, Virtually

Get a sneak peak of my reporting on new virtual reality tools for Emory School of Medicine’s anatomy course! Check out the first section of this article, titled “Dissecting the Human Body, Virtually.”

Elissa and the Coronavirus

Hi all! Elissa and the Coronavirus is now available on iBooks, Kobo, Smashwords (you set the price!), and more! An early chapter book for the beginning reader (ages 7-11), Elissa and the Coronavirus tells a simple and heartfelt story about… Continue Reading →

Pathogens in the Permafrost: Could Melting Ice Unleash Ancient Diseases?

Could climate change trigger the next plague? Check out my two-part analysis of this explosive theory. Pathogens in the Permafrost: Part 1 Pathogens in the Permafrost: Part 2

Can a Vampire Give You HIV?

Find out by reading my article on the Destination HealthEU blog! Photo by Neven Krcmarek on Unsplash

Refugee Healthcare in Clarkston

Learn about the challenges of providing healthcare for a population with diverse needs. https://emoryhumanhealth.org/2019/10/03/refugee-healthcare-in-clarkston/  

Voices

Santa Fe is the city of holy faith, but also the city of straw-speckled adobe fortresses, stream of vendors selling turquoise jewelry and polished cowboy boots, hanging bunches of dried poblano peppers, and the best enchiladas I’ve ever had. My… Continue Reading →

Stories of Buenos Aires

Learn more about my amazing time delving through the history of Buenos Aires! My article is now available on The Culture-ist, an online magazine devoted to socially-conscious travel.    

The Context of Health Disparities in South Africa

Check out my latest blog to learn about the history of health policy in South Africa! The Context of Health Disparities in South Africa

Cảm ơn, thank you, muchas gracias

        Buenos Aires isn’t just a world capital: it is also a world capital of books. Named as the UNESCO World Book Capital 2011, it is the city with the most bookstores per capita in the world…. Continue Reading →

Cape of Storms and Hope

Cape Town is a place of extremes. Balanced between the rugged slopes of Table Mountain and the crashing shores of the Atlantic, the city is marked by dramatic juxtapositions. We’ve spent the last month exploring these juxtapositions between land and… Continue Reading →

A Visit to Vietnam

In Vietnam, I have spent the last month being uncomfortable—and I couldn’t have loved it more. It’s been a time of navigating the winding alleys of Hanoi, hopping on the backs of motorbikes, crossing roads blazing with bikes in every… Continue Reading →

The Hidden Dangers of Florence’s Floods

Unfortunately, the worst isn’t over yet. Learn more by reading my blog post at http://www.destinationhealtheu.org/news-perspectives/the-hidden-dangers-of-florences-floods  

New Blog!

My first post is live on Destination HealthEU, the blog for the Center for the Study of Human Health! Check it out to learn more about my summer! (Hint: it was amazing!) http://www.destinationhealtheu.org/healthemory/summer-at-the-cdc

Check out my first podcast!

Watch the Video Animation here: Did Climate Change Cause the Black Plague? Find the transcript here: Video Animation

My Year in Books!

I always love this Goodreads feature analyzing the books I’ve read this year…what have you been reading? Goodreads Year in Books

A Matter of Life and Death: Can We Explain Near-Death Experiences?

Momento mori. Remember that, you too, will die.    You are going to die. It is a fact. But what is death going to be like? What happens in those final few minutes of life—and the ones that come immediately… Continue Reading →

Everything is Awesome!

My story about a boy with autism, “Everything is Awesome” has won first place in Pen 2 Paper’s writing disability contest! Thank you CTD! Pen 2 Paper

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