Navigation Links
Teaching old genomes new tricks

RIVERSIDE, Calif. What are transposable elements, what role do they play, and what percentage of the genome of organisms do they comprise? Is there an explanation for the genetic diversity we see around us? Why, for example, are corn kernels spotted? What is the genetic basis for this spotted trait?

World-class geneticist Susan Wessler will give a free public lecture at 6 p.m., Thursday, April 14, at the University of California, Riverside that will answer the above questions and, in the process, also discuss the work of Nobel laureate Barbara McClintock and how a seemingly trivial discovery by her started a revolution in biology.

The hour-long lecture, titled "The Dynamic Genome: Unintelligent Design," will take place in Rooms D-E, University Extension Center (UNEX). Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Seating is open.

Wessler's lecture will be introduced by a science teacher from one of the local school districts, and will end with a question-and-answer session. Parking at UNEX will be free for lecture attendees.

Wessler holds a University of California President's Chair and is a distinguished professor of genetics in the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences. She is internationally recognized for her work in plant genome structure and stability. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In February 2011, she was elected home secretary of the NAS. She came to UC Riverside from the University of Georgia in 2010.

"Our genome has 2.5 billion letters that's about 1000 textbooks of 1000 pages each with no pictures," she said. "More than 50 percent of our genome is derived from transposable elements, which are DNA pieces that can move from one genomic location to another. In my talk I will explain how these transposable elements create genetic diversity."

The talk is being hosted by UC Riverside's College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences (CNAS) and the Science Circle, a group of university and community members committed to advancing science at UCR and in Inland Southern California.

The talk is the first of four lectures scheduled this year. The lecture series, titled "Science & Society: Major Issues of the 21st Century," aims to boost the public's awareness and understanding of science and of how scientists work.

"We are facing a number of great challenges in the coming decades, as a state, as a nation, and as a planet," said Thomas Baldwin, the dean of CNAS. "Science has the potential to meet and overcome these challenges, but it is important that citizens understand our options, and their benefits and risks, so that they can make informed decisions. For example, in recent years we have made enormous strides in understanding how genetics works."


Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
University of California - Riverside

Related biology news :

1. Skin color: Handy tool for teaching evolution
2. Radiologists play key role in teaching physiology to medical students
3. Simple, ingenious way to create lab-on-a-chip devices could become a model for teaching and research
4. ASPBs Teaching Tools in Plant Biology receives Gold Award
5. Mississauga teacher awarded prize for excellence in teaching genomics
6. McMaster, NVIDIA establish first CUDA Teaching Centre in Canada
7. Teaching communication and information literacy skills
8. Ethical issues ignored in teaching, research of sustainability
9. American Sociological Association launches first-of-its-kind teaching tool
10. Physical education teaching staff play key role in making you like sport
11. UAB professors book promises solution for teaching evolution without conflict
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/9/2015)... JOSE, Calif. , Nov. 9, 2015  Synaptics ... human interface solutions, today announced broader entry into the ... vehicle-specific solutions that match the pace of consumer electronics ... and biometric sensors are ideal for the automotive industry ... vehicle. Europe , ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... , Oct. 29, 2015   MedNet Solutions ... the entire spectrum of clinical research, is pleased to ... High Tech Association (MHTA) as one of only three ... the "Software – Small and Growing" category. The Tekne Awards ... who have shown superior technology innovation and leadership. ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... 2015  Rubicon Genomics, Inc., today announced an ... its DNA library preparation products, including the ThruPLEX ... Plasma-seq kit. ThruPLEX Plasma-seq has been optimized for ... libraries for liquid biopsies--the analysis of cell-free circulating ... in cancer and other conditions. Eurofins Scientific is ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... Matthew “Tex” ... new post, VerMilyea will oversee all IVF lab procedures as well as ... fertility preservation. , “We traveled 7,305 miles to Auckland, New Zealand to bring home ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... of a new, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) 10000 in the Santiago Marriott. The ... available, and is operated by a world-class team of qualified medical researchers and ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Partnership includes an MPP ... for the u niversity , s Solid ... s cale - up through ... Africa , where licensees based anywhere in the world will have the ... --> Africa , where licensees based anywhere in the world will ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... 30, 2015 Spherix Incorporated (Nasdaq: ... the fostering and monetization of intellectual property, today ... initiatives designed to create shareholder value. ... Spherix. "Based on published reports, the total addressable ... billion and Spherix will seek to secure fair ...
Breaking Biology Technology: