photographs by Paul Fetters

Exploring Biodiversity: The Search for New Medicines

Glow-in-the-dark bacteria and poisonous sea snails took center stage at the 2009 Holiday Lectures.

HHMI investigator Bonnie Bassler (bottom left) and HHMI professor Baldomero Olivera (top right) introduced 180 D.C.-area high school students to the creatures through lectures and hands-on projects that explained how the organisms are helping identify potential medicines. The two researchers were joined in a panel discussion about biodiversity by (top left, l–r) HHMI President Robert Tjian, biologist E.O. Wilson, and physician-environmentalist Eric Chivian.

Scientist Profile

Princeton University
Microbiology, Genetics
HHMI Professor
University of Utah
Biochemistry, Chemical Biology, Neuroscience