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Biology Seminar Series

The Biology department at Saint Francis University is excited to welcome back Dr Stephen O'Brien, class of ‘66, to kick-off the Biology Spring Seminar Series beginning in February. Dr. O’Brien and special guest presenters will be meeting with current and prospective Biology students for seven weeks in a seminar series titled: “Science and Society Through a Genomic Lens.” The seminars will be held Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:15-2:30pm in Science Center 024 (unless otherwise noted). All presentations are open to the public, and community members are encouraged to attend. This event is CES Approved. Please RSVP to help us ensure the venue fits the audience.

    • Bio Seminar Speakers
  • Seminar Agenda

    Feb 19Stephen O’BrienHuman Origins and Adaptation - A fascinating story of human movements, migrations and contacts and adaptations across the world during the silence of Pre-history from DNA studies modern and ancient peoples.
    Feb 21Stephen O’BrienDNA and Evolution: Tracing Phylogenetic Roots - A trip though the development and discoveries of molecular evolutionary biology- how they got here.
    Feb 26Stephen O’BrienHow genomics influences conservation management - How genetics and genomics informs the management of treasured endangered species with stories on cheetahs, Florida panther and Tigers.
    Feb 28Stephen O’BrienDomestication: The Lever that Mediated Human Civilization - Genomic archaeology offers a glimpse of the timing, location, and mechanism by which humankind began to domesticate wild plants and animals for their own provenance.
    Mar 12Stephen O’BrienPlagues and people - This lecture will feature mysterious connections between: SARS and the African cheetahs; HIV-AIDS epidemic and the lions of African savannah, and survivors of Black Death to modern AIDS victims. The thread is in their genes. Note: This lecture will be held in DiSepio 213/214.
    Mar 14Keynote SpeakerLaurie Goodman, Editor, GigaScience, Oxford University Press, presents: A Future for Women Scientists. Note: This lecture will be held in JFK Lounge.
    Mar 19Keynote SpeakerDavid Wildt, Smithsonian's National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute, presents: Reproduction and genetics-small population management - stories of Black footed ferrets and giant pandas. 
    Mar 21Stephen O’BrienBio-prospecting for medicinals. Cone Snails from the Philippines Reefs. An innovative tale of  how marine science informed medical treatment of chronic and painful  disease. Note: This lecture will be held in JFK Lounge.
    Mar 26Stephen O’BrienCure - A science success saga on human gene discovery that led to an HIV AIDS cure and innovative approaches to Incurable HIV AIDS and cancer relief as a bonus. Note: This lecture will be held in DiSepio 213/214.
    Mar 28Stephen O’BrienForensics and Genomics; A change in society and evidence -DNA sleuthing shows critical influence in murder, microbial weaponry and rhino conservation. Note: This lecture will be held in JFK Auditorium.
    Apr 2Keynote SpeakerDr Klaus Peter Koepfli, Smithsonian Conservation  Biology Institute, presents: A Gift for the Future: Genome Scripts for 10,000 Vertebrate Species - The promise of the genome sequencing for all the world’s species.
    Apr 4Keynote SpeakerAnne Schmidt Kuntzel, Cheetah Conservation Fund, presents: Cheetah Conservation in a Genomics world. 
    Apr 9Keynote SpeakerJohn Gearhart, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, presents: Gene Therapies, Interventions, and Enhancement - Controlling our own evolution. Note: This lecture will be held in JFK Lounge.
    Apr 11Stephen O’BrienHuman Genome World Projects - Amazing progress in mining the unabridged patterns of human genetic variation across the world represents one of the greatest exploration projects since the genomics era began.

    Note: Following the events with a keynote speaker will be a reception with light refreshments.


    Download Agenda PDF

  • About Dr. O'Brien

     Dr. Stephen O’Brien ‘66, one of the world’s foremost authorities on human and evolutionary genetics, started his career at Saint Francis University and went on to earn a Ph.D. from Cornell. He later joined the National Cancer Institute where his specialization in the genetics of a more docile feline, the common house cat, has been invaluable in human disease research. Dr. O’Brien is credited with the discovery of CCR5-D32, the first of twenty human AIDS restriction genes, authored or co-authored over 800 scientific articles, and published the following books: “Tears of the Cheetah and Other Tales from the Genetic Frontier” (St. Martin’s Press, 2003), “Atlas of Mammalian Chromosomes” (Wiley, 2006), and “Genetic Maps - Locus Maps of Complex Genomes” (Cold Spring Harbor Press, 1988-1993).