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Evolutionary Medicine:
Contributions to the Study
of Disease and Immunity

Frank and Yolande Fowler Endowment
in Modern Molecular Biology

FSU College of Medicine

William H. and Lucyle T.
Werkmeister Endowment Fund

25-26 February 2011
Friday: FSU College of Medicine
Saturday: King Building 1024
Florida State University

Evolutionary medicine is a growing discipline that applies evolutionary reasoning to medical problems including the nature of disease and the efficacy of immune response. Evolution has informed medical science about such diverse issues as the way the interaction between disease organisms and host response shape the nature of symptoms, and the causes of disease resistance and virulence and how to manage medical care to minimize them. This symposium will feature Dr. Randolph Nesse and Dr. Peter Gluckman, authors of the leading books on the topic. Speakers will consider how best to incorporate evolutionary thinking into medical school curricula, and the everyday thought process of medical practitioners. Speakers include M.D.s, evolutionary biologists, and historians and philosophers of science.

Partial funding is generously provided by the Frank and Yolande Fowler Endowment in Modern Molecular Biology, which has provided the Department of Biological Science of Florida State University with the opportunity to host a series of symposia featuring eminent investigators in important areas of modern biological science with relevance to cancer research. We envision these events as an opportunity to introduce the university community to the excitement of the field, to assess how building this area of research would complement and enhance current strengths in life-science research at FSU, and to take the initial step in filling the Fowler Chair in Biological Science.

Registration (FREE)

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Friday, February 25, 2011
FSU College of Medicine Auditorium

8:30 Dean John Fogarty, FSU College of Medicine
8:40 Paul Ewald "Evolutionary insights into the causes and prevention of cancer"
9:30 Michael Worobey "The tree of death: understanding and exploiting the evolutionary dynamics of human pathogens"
10:15 Coffee break
10:45 Jacob Koella "Evolutionary epidemiology of malaria and mosquitoes"
11:30 Keynote Address: Randolph Nesse "Medicine without evolution is like engineering without physics"
12:35 Lunch at nearby restaurants
2:00 Kathleen Barnes "The Hygiene Hypothesis and Vulnerability to Asthma"
2:45 Howard Kushner "Is There a Selective Advantage for Left-Handedness?"
3:30 Coffee break
4:00 Mark Schwartz "Teaching Evolution to Accelerate Translation in Medicine"
4:45 Reception, College of Medicine atrium

Saturday, February 26, 2011
Department of Biological Science, 1024 King Life Sciences Building

9:30 Welcome from Bryant Chase, Chair of the Department of Biological Science
9:35 David Houle "Phenomics: a shared challenge for medicine and evolutionary biology"
10:20 William Aird "Proximate and evolutionary mechanisms in endothelial biomedicine"
11:05 Coffee break
11:30 Keynote Address: Sir Peter Gluckman "The primary principles of evolutionary medicine: how an evolutionary perspective adds to medicine and public health."  Sir Peter Gluckman has been delayed by the recent earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand. We hope that he will join us on Saturday at 11:30. If he does not, we will have a Discussion by the speakers and attendees.
12:35 Lunch at nearby restaurants
2:00 Richard Nowakowski "Development Algorithms and the Evolution of the Cerebral Cortex"
2:45 Fabio Zampieri "Before the Dawn of Evolutionary Medicine: Darwinism and Medical Sciences between 1880 and 1940"
3:30 Coffee break
4:00 Michael Ruse "Should sick philosophers turn to evolutionary medicine for help?"
4:45 Discussion
5:15 Break
7:00 Dinner at the Ruse residence. All are welcome.


List with detailed information

Organizing Committee

  • David Houle, Department of Biological Science
  • Joseph Gabriel, College of Medicine
  • Michael Ruse, Department of Philosophy
  • Sarah Whylly, Department of Philosophy

Information For Attendees

Practical Arrangements

Conference Poster: print your own if you like!

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