How reasoning and evidence are used to understand human evolution.
Genetic evidence shows that humans evolved in Africa and continue to evolve.
Stone tools are well-preserved evidence of past human activity.
The hominid fossil record of the past six million years gives us surprising insights into the path of human evolution.
How humans perceive bitter taste, and the evolution of taste perception.
Second discussion in the 2011 Holiday Lectures on human evolution, on how to effectively report scientific results to the general public.
How Darwin came to publish The Origin of Species, and examples of how quickly evolution can change a population.
Comparing the artificial selection of dogs and corn with the natural selection of the stickleback fish.
The genetic mechanisms by which evolution occurs, and an overview of the evidence for evolutionary theory.
How and why butterflies and fruit flies got their spots, and the fossil record for human evolution.
A discussion on reconciling religion and science with students, the lecturers, and guest speakers.
Leading evolution educator Ken Miller discusses the controversy surrounding the teaching of evolution.
Learn about research aimed at thwarting dengue fever in the lab and in communities.
New technologies like the Virochip harness DNA's properties to identify and fight new viruses.
Understanding the immune response is essential to developing safe vaccines for dengue and other diseases.
The SARS epidemic was successfully halted by a global research effort to identify a new virus.
This discussion from the 2010 Holiday Lectures on Science explores the ethics of genetically-modified organisms and other topics.
The genesis of AIDS, identifying HIV as the virus that causes AIDS, and the modern global epidemic.
The HIV life cycle, and how the virus destroys the immune system's ability to respond to infection.
Treating HIV infection with antiretroviral therapy, and HIV's ability to develop drug resistance.
The search for an effective HIV vaccine, and advances in genomics that may lead to a breakthrough.
A discussion with three students who are helping in the global fight against HIV and AIDS.
Three HIV-positive individuals share their personal experiences about living with HIV.
Dr. Donald Ganem describes how epidemiologists, physicians, and microbiologists work together to identify and study pathogens.
Dr. Brett Finlay explains why bacterial diseases continue to be a major health problem worldwide, causing a third of the world's deaths every year.
Dr. Finlay showcases three types of bacteria to illustrate how molecular biology is allowing researchers to probe the molecular workings of bacterial infections.
Dr. Ganem analyses the complex causes of epidemics—how changes in the environment and in human social behavior can give rise to new infectious diseases.
Venomous carniverous cone snails are a rich source of molecules for scientific research and potential drug development.
Bacteria are capable of communicating and coordinating their activities with a molecular signaling system called quorum sensing.
Cone snails have evolved many different toxins for different uses. Total molecular biodiversity may number in the millions.
The quorum sensing system is a target for a new class of drugs that interfere with virulence without killing bacteria.
A discussion on biodiversity, endangered habitats, and how best to preserve the Earth's ecosystems, presented by the lecturers along with Dr. E.O. Wilson and Dr. Eric Chivian.
In this 13-minute Q&A session, Dr. Bonnie Bassler answers questions on quorum sensing and other topics related to bacteria.
In this ten-minute Q&A session, Dr. Olivera answers questions on cone snail behavior, venoms, and biodiversity.
The history of localization of function in the brain, and research that led to the understanding of localization of memory.
How a nerve cell gets its identity, sends axons, and makes connections with other cells.
Understanding the neural circuits in the spinal cord that control movement.
The cellular and molecular nature of learning and memory, investigated in simpler sea slugs and more-complex mice.
The lecturers, joined by Dr. Kay Jamison of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Dr. Gerald Fischbach of the Simons Foundation, answer questions concerning autism, manic depression, and other mental illnesses.
Although there are numerous kinds of cancer, all stem from alterations that allow cell division to outstrip cell demise.
The identification of hundreds of genes involved in the formation and spread of cancer is leading to promising new methods for diagnosis, prevention, and treatment.
Mutations in key genes can lay waste to the nervous system. By studying large families predisposed to developing these genetic disorders, scientists can identify the responsible altered gene.
Girls with Rett syndrome develop normally for about 18 months and then begin to regress. With the help of affected girls and their families, Dr. Zoghbi and her collaborators searched for the gene responsible for this neurological disorder.
Genetic research benefits health, but also raises thorny ethical issues.
Dr. Hudspeth will begin by discussing how simple organisms—such as bacteria—have the capacity to detect and react to a stimulus.
Dr. Nathans will discuss how the visual process involves the detection of light by photo-receptors in the retina.
Dr. Hudspeth will explain the basis for the ear’s remarkable ability to detect sound through the hair cell, the sensory receptor found in the inner ear.
Dr. Nathans will complete the lecture series by clarifying what is known about the brain’s ability to process and integrate various elements of the visual system, such as color, motion, and depth.
An overview of embryonic development, the progressive differentiation of cells, and properties of embryonic stem cells.
The role of stem cells in regeneration, and ongoing research to improve mammalian regeneration potency.