Science/Nature

Virus Takeover of Host Cell Functions

Paul Ahlquist, Lead Scientist, Virology, Morgridge Institute, UW-Madison, outlines how identifying and studying virus-host interactions provides major insight into both infection and normal cellular functions. Host genes required by viruses also offer opportunities for improved control strategies to provide longer-lasting and potentially broader spectrum antiviral protection.

50 years of Newborn Screening

Charles Brokopp, Director, Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene, offers the history of screening newborns which began 50 years ago with testing for PKU, phenylketonuria. Newborn babies in Wisconsin are now screened for more than 40 disorders with early detection saving lives, improving quality of life and cutting health care costs.

High Throughput DNA Sequencing

Joshua Hyman, Director, UW Biotechnology Center Sequencing Facility, offers an overview of the technologies behind high throughput DNA sequencing and explores the impacts of this knowing this on our health, on environment and the food we eat.

Science is Sexy

Ira Flatow, Host, Science Friday, National Public Radio, explains why science is sexy. New studies show that people get their science education through entertainment, whether that's a trip to the museum or a “Big Bang Theory” marathon. Flatow explores ways science is popping up throughout pop culture, proving that despite what people think, science is, in fact, sexy.

The Neuroscience of Addiction

Brenda del Moral, Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Edgewood College, presents a multi-leveled, systems approach to addiction and how it affects the whole organism--down to the molecular level. Del Moral describes the criteria needed to diagnose a person with the disease of addiction.

IceCube Winterover in the South Pole

Freija Descamps, Postdoctoral Researcher, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, recounts her adventures operating and maintaining the IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole. Descamps spent thirteen months, including a long, dark winter, working at the biggest and strangest telescope in the world.

Fallout: The Making of a Radioactive Exhibit

Micaela Sullivan-Fowler, Curator, Ebling Library, UW-Madison, examines the use of radiation throughout history including: the use of x-rays in diagnosis and treatment, occupational hazards of working with radiation, the military use of x-rays, the history of tanning, a UW connection with Marie Curie, bomb shelters in the 1960s, the bombing of Hiroshima and concerns about nuclear accidents.

Life, Death, and Archaeology at Fort Blue Mounds

Robert Birmingham, Author, offers a glimpse into the lives of the soldiers and settlers who sought refuge at Fort Blue Mounds, strategically located in southwestern Wisconsin, during an 1832 conflict. Fast forwarding to the present; Birmingham along with Wisconsin Historical Society archaeologists and volunteers search for the fort and unearth fascinating details into the lives of the inhabitants.

The Principles of Collective Behavior

Iain Couzin, Professor, Collective Animal Behavior Group, Princeton University, explores ways animal groups such as flocks of birds, schools of fish and insect swarms exhibit complex and coordinated collective behaviors.

Experimental Epistemology

Edward Hubbard, Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Psychology, UW-Madison, explores epistemology, the philosophical study of how we come to have knowledge. Hubbard discusses the focus in the middle of the 20th century on the emerging science of the mind and the questions which still remain.

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