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GEN joins Charles Darwin 2009 celebration

New Rochelle, NY, January 5, 2009Theodosius Dobzhansky, the late great geneticist and evolutionary biologist, said it best: "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution."

This year marks the 200th birthday of Charles Darwin (February 12, 1809) and the 150th anniversary of the publication of the Origin of Species, which laid out the theory of evolution by means of natural selection in exquisite detail. Universities, academic centers, and other scientific organizations all over the globe have a plethora of events planned to honor Darwin's contributions and legacy. Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News (GEN) is taking part in the celebration of Darwin as well.

"If it weren't for Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace, there would probably be no biotechnology industry," says John Sterling, Editor in Chief of GEN. "Every life-science-related discipline is deeply grounded in evolutionary theory. This is particularly the case with genetics and molecular biology, two cornerstones of biotech research."

In the January 1 issue, GEN published excerpts of an interview with Sean Carroll, Ph.D., professor of molecular biology and genetics and an investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the University of Wisconsin. Dr. Carroll's research has centered on the genes that control animal body patterns and play major roles in the evolution of animal diversity. This field of study is known as evolutionary developmental biology, or "Evo Devo." The entire interview with Dr. Carroll can be heard as a podcast at

In addition to providing his insights on the significance of Charles Darwin and the impact and importance of Evo Devo on the foundation of evolutionary theory, Dr. Carroll also discusses how research advances taking place in Evo Devo can be translated into applied biotech applications.

During each subsequent month throughout 2009, GEN will interview a leading researcher, philosopher, or theorist in evolutionary science, including many experts on Darwin. Their thoughts and insights will appear in the print version of GEN and online as podcasts. Dozens of online links to articles, videos, podcasts, commentaries, and various events and conferences around the world celebrating Charles Darwin will also be provided.

We cordially invite you to our year-long Darwin party!


Contact: John Sterling
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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