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Sea Mammal Research Unit

Sea Mammal Research Unit: Past seminars

28 Sep 2016
3:00 PM
Mathematical Institute
Lecture Theatre C

IDIR Talk: Biology Network Alignment Comes of Age
Dr Wayne Haynes
University of California Irvine, School of Information and Computer Science

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Biological network alignment has the potential to be as useful as sequence alignment has in relation to learning about biology, evolution, and disease.  Although about two dozen network alignment algorithms have been proposed, none as yet have proven to fulfill this potential, due to many shortcomings.  Some of these shortcomings include: lack of knowledge about how to best use network topology to recover biological information (EC? S3? Graphlets? Spectral?); how to balance biological information such as sequence against topological information; confusion in the literature between an alignment algorithm and the objective function used to guide the alignment, as well as confusion between how to produce the alignment vs. how to measure it's quality post-alignment; lack of a good multiple network alignment algorithm; lack of an effective method to eliminate the 1-to-1 nature of global network alignment, since 1-to-1 mappings are not faithful to the evolutionary relationship between proteins; and finally, due to the NP-complete nature of the problem, a lack of knowledge about how far we are from producing the best alignments possible?

In this talk, Dr Hayes will introduce a novel method that already solves some of these problems and for which there is a clear path towards solving all of the others listed above, and more. We clearly delineate the measure(s) M that measure the quality of an alignment, from the algorithm S that searches the space of all alignments looking for good ones according to M. This allows us to directly compare many measures M. We also demonstrate that our new algorithm S outperforms all existing algorithms by all the various measures M that we've tried.

https://www.ics.uci.edu/faculty/profiles/view_faculty.php?ucinetid=whayes

host: Dr V Anne Smith

refID: 1833

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28 Sep 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar: It’s the little things that make a difference – towards an understanding of the replication of FMDV
Professor Nicola Stonehouse
University of Leeds, Faculty of Biological Sciences

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22 Sep 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Learning from unlabeled calls and how to organize and preserve information about calls once you have identified them
Marie Roch
SMRU

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refID: 1817

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20 Sep 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Complex vocal sequences in animals: information, intelligence, or irrelevant?
Arik Kershenbaum

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Many mammal and bird species produce long, complex sequences of vocalisations, made up of a combination of multiple discrete sound types. Much has been written about the complexity of these sequences and what they might tell us about the evolution of human language. Recently, non-trivial statistical dependencies have been found in the vocalisations of many species, from humpback whales to Titi monkeys. Such statistical dependencies are often called “syntactic structure”. What is the relationship – if any – of animal syntax to the evolution of human language? Indeed, do these syntactic structure even have any relevance to animal communication? Authors have variously postulated that complex vocal sequences could encode individual information (i.e. act as honest index signals), encode more general environmental information (i.e. act as an intentional information channel), or perhaps be no more than arbitrary artefacts of the sound production mechanism. Answering these questions without being privy to the actual semantic content of the messages seems like an impossible task. However, I will present some statistical techniques that attempt to distinguish between complexity for its own sake, and complexity for the sake of communicative power. Furthermore, there may be models of sequence complexity that help to explain why human language appears to be unique, without the presence of any evolutionarily intermediate steps.

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refID: 1823

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08 Sep 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Pacific Walruses in Ecological-Societal Systems. Do They Matter?
G. Carelton Ray
University of Virginia

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See: Ray G.C. et al. 2016. Decadal Bering Sea seascape change: consequences for Pacific walruses and indigenous hunters. Ecological Applications, 26(1): 24-41/

host: plt@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1815

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25 Aug 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI Seminar: Challenges of activity recognition in fish using accelerometer sensors
Dr Franziska Broell
Dalhousie University, Dept. of Oceanography

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Micro-accelerometer tags are a novel technology used to remotely monitor (aquatic) animals in the wild and provide data that can link physiological and ecological processes in the context of movement. One of the challenges with this technology is how accelerometer data can be linked to complex information on fish locomotion and behaviour that are relevant for advancing the management of commercially and recreationally valued species. This talk will offer an introduction on accelerometer sensors and the types of data that can be collected and their respective limitations. Based on a series of controlled-environment and field experiments we developed a library of automated signal-processing algorithms that relate acceleration signals to rates of activity, swimming speed, size-at-time and behavioural states in a variety of fish species. The algorithms are efficient in extracting behaviour (feeding, escape, swimming) relevant to energy budgets as well as behaviour associated with spawning and courtship and parasite dislodging while being independent of animal size or tag placement. This presentation will further outline how acceleration data can be compromised due to low rates of tag sampling frequency currently employed as well as significant behavioural changes caused by tagging and handling stress. The results can be applied to various animal species to advance ecological and physiological theory.
 

http://www.dal.ca/faculty/science/oceanography/people/students/franziska-broell.html

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refID: 1807

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11 Aug 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

SOI Seminar: Data deficient: using ancient DNA to fill gaps in marine mammal science
Morten Olsen, Assistant Professor and Curator of Marine Mammals
Natural History Museum of Denmark and University of Copenhagen

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10 Aug 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Acoustical Behaviour of Guiana Dolphins (Sotalia guianensis)
Dr Alice de Moura Lima
University of Rennes

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28 Jul 2016
4:00 PM
BSRC
Annex seminar room

BSRC Seminar: Structural and functional characterization of class I Aureochrome- a natural optogenetic module
Dr Ankan Banerjee
LMU Munich

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19 Jul 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Social communication in humpback whales
Dr. Rebecca Dunlop University of Queensland
University of Queensland

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Humpback whales, though renowned for their song, also produce a complex repertoire of other communication signals, known as social sounds. These signals encompass both vocal, and surface-generated signals (i.e. sounds produced by breaching or slapping the surface of the water), and are directed at other members within their group as well as other groups in the area. Noise in the ocean can be from natural sources (e.g. wind causing surface waves) or from anthropogenic sources (e.g. vessels). In response to increases in wind noise, humpback whales tend to use more surface-generated sounds and increase their vocal source level. These changes are not evident in response to increased vessel noise. However, humpback whales also change their communication behaviour depending on the ‘audience’, resulting in a complex interplay between the intended receiver of the signal, the noise, and the audience.

http://www.uq.edu.au/whale/rebecca-dunlop

host: ecg5@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1797

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13 Jul 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre D

A quantum needle for the avian magnetic compass
Prof. Peter Hore
University of Oxford

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Prof. Hore made seminal contributions to the fields of NMR, EPR and spin chemistry. He was just awarded the RSC Interdisciplinary Pprize “Awarded for his outstanding contributions to understanding biological structure and function using the phenomenon of spin”. A major research theme in recent years has been sensing the earth’s magnetic field by the field dependent recombination yield of a photo-chemically generated radical pair in blue light photoreceptor proteins.

http://hore.chem.ox.ac.uk/

host: Dr Bela Bode

refID: 1799

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07 Jul 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

MASTS Update Seminar
Prof David Paterson (MASTS Executive Director) and Dr Mark James (MASTS Operations Director)
MASTS

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Come along and find out how successful MASTS has been so far, how St Andrews has played an integral part in its accomplishments, and how you can all help in its future success as we enter MASTS Phase II. Whether you are new to MASTS, or an old hand, everyone is welcome.

http://www.masts.ac.uk/

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refID: 1791

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29 Jun 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: How to make a broad spectrum antiviral: Focusing on ER alpha glucosidase II
Professor Nicole Zitzmann
Department of Biochemistry, University of Oxford

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28 Jun 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: How archaea swim, and how viruses catch them
Dr Tessa Quax
University of Freiburg

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21 Jun 2016
4:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Functional links between splicing, transcription and chromatin
Prof Jean Begg, Royal Society Darwin Trust Professor
University of Edinburgh, Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology

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15 Jun 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

BSRC Seminar Series: Harnessing plant metabolic diversity
Professor Anne Osbourn
Director, Norwich Research Park Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy Alliance John Innes Centre

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08 Jun 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Cytomegalovirus: a tale of corruption and evasion
Professor Gavin Wilkinson
Cardiff University, Institute of Infection and Immunity

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03 Jun 2016
11:00 AM
SOI
LT

Zooplankton ID in a nutshell
Dave Conway
SAHFOS

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01 Jun 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

BSRC Seminar Series: Stand-alone and hybrid structural characterization of proteins using EPR spectroscopy on spin label
Professor Dr Gunnar Jeschke
ETH Zurich, Dept of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences

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31 May 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar
Claire Garrigue

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refID: 1760

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25 May 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Metabolic Vulnerabilities of Cancer
Professor Eyal Gottlieb
Head of the Beatson Institute for Cancer Research, Glasgow

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24 May 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Evolution: the Quaternary tale
Keith Bennett
University of St Andrews

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Darwin's "On the origin of species" has lead to a theory of evolution with a mass of practical detail on population genetics below species level together with heated debate on the details of macro-evolutionary patterns above species level. Most of the main principles are generally accepted, notably that life originated once, and has evolved over time by descent with modification. On Quaternary timescales, organisms respond to environmental changes by movement, extinction and evolution, but movement appears to be the most frequent. The connection between environmental change and evolution appears to be weak, which is not the result that might have been expected from Darwin’s original hypothesis.
The explanation of this result lies at least in part with the non-linear dynamics of the relationship between genotype and phenotype. `The origin of species' becomes essentially unpredictable, but is nevertheless an inevitable consequence of the way that organisms reproduce through time by a process that is `chaotic', but not `random'. The diversity of life should thus (i) be in a state of continuous increase, and (ii) show continuous discrepancies between genetic and morphological data in time and space.

https://risweb.st-andrews.ac.uk/portal/en/persons/keith-david-bennett%283e034b07-2bc5-4bb6-b9a4-09027069132b%29.html

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1758

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19 May 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Ocean circulation, nutrients, and climate
James Rae
St Andrews

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Ocean circulation at high latitudes exerts a first order control on nutrient concentrations, heat transport, and CO2, with impacts on regional ecosystems and global climate.  The most recent time that circulation was notably different was the last ice age and deglaciation.  At this time conditions in the Southern Ocean were more stratified and deep water formation in the North Atlantic shoaled to intermediate depths.  However the behaviour of the North Pacific under different climate regimes is a major unknown.  Based on reduced export productivity, some authors have argued for more stratified conditions.  However other records indicate that overturning circulation was enhanced.  Here we present data and model results that reconcile the nutrient and circulation data, and provide a new model for the behaviour of the Pacific during past cold climates.  More generally, we discuss the role of overturning circulation in setting nutrient regimes and climate at high latitudes, and suggest that an enhanced overturning circulation in the Pacific may have aided early human migration to North America.

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refID: 1765

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18 May 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: In-cell EPR spectroscopy of membrane transporters in E. coli
Dr Benesh Joseph
Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Frankfurt

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17 May 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Inbreeding depression in a social context.
Per Terje Smiseth

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Inbreeding depression is the reduction in fitness of offspring produced from mating of relatives. There is substantial variation in estimates of the severity of inbreeding depression, which may be caused by variation the physical and/or social environment. In this seminar, I present results from laboratory experiments on the burying beetle Nicrophorus vespilloides showing that the social environment can have a strong and sometimes surprising impact on the severity inbreeding depression.

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refID: 1771

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16 May 2016
4:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Paramyxovirus entry into cells: a nano machine at work
Prof Robert Lamb
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Evanston, United States

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12 May 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Scientific Listening: Representing and exploring dynamic animal vocalisation soundscapes
Dr Ann Warde
University of York

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11 May 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

EaStCHEM colloquia series: Transmembrane Anion Carriers for Biological Applications
Prof. Anthony Davis
University of Bristol, School of Chemistry

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Prof. Anthony Davis (University of Bristol) is visiting Edinburgh this week.  His talk will be broadcast from Edinburgh on Wednesday 11 May 2016 in Purdie Theatre C at 3.30 pm.

http://www.bris.ac.uk/chemistry/people/anthony-p-davis/

host: cmb20

refID: 1772

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11 May 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: A Chemical Biology Perspective on RNA-Binding Proteins and the 5' Cap
Professor Dr Andrea Rentmeister
University of Muenster, Institute of Biochemistry, Germany

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10 May 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar:Landscape genetics of a North American songbird, the black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)
Rachael Adams
University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada

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Understanding the influence of landscapes on the spatial distribution of genetic variation in species is necessary for their successful conservation and preservation.  Physical barriers (e.g. mountains, geographic distance) often restrict population connectivity and dispersal causing a reduction in gene flow and the occurrence of genetically isolated populations.  Dispersal barriers can also be non-physical (e.g. behaviour) and occur at smaller geographic scales (e.g. changes in vegetation). 

Although birds have high dispersal potential, evidence suggests dispersal is restricted by barriers.  One major concern lies with the increasing susceptibility of birds to changes in the environment through land use change and subsequent habitat fragmentation. 

Assessment of the geographical area or landscape is therefore critical when measuring gene flow and making inferences about barriers, as cryptic barriers may exist.  The black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) is a common, resident songbird to North America whose range encompasses a number of dispersal barriers. 

Here, microsatellite markers were used to assess allelic variation and population differentiation in this species, and consequently, a reduction in gene flow is evident at both large and small geographical scales.  Our sampling regime allowed us to test for breaks in the genetic structure and to determine whether the discontinuities identified correspond to changes in habitat, vegetation, physical barriers or other factors. 

http://nussey.bio.ed.ac.uk/rachael

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1770

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05 May 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

SPECIAL CBD SEMINAR: Whither the Red Knot? Mapping and Modelling the Distribution of an Arctic shorebird at Landscape and Regional Scales
Prof. Richard G. Lathrop
Rutgers University Ecological Preserve

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The Western Atlantic population of Red Knot (Calidris canutus rufa) has undergone dramatic declines in recent decades and conservation biologists have sought to improve knowledge about the species’ ecology in an effort to address these declines.  One major information gap has been the lack of good information to describe range and habitat use during the breeding season, when the species is distributed sparsely across the Canadian Arctic. Airborne radio-telemetry surveys and intensive field surveys were conducted across the central Canadian Arctic to locate breeding Red Knots and record characteristics of their nesting habitat. Maximum entropy modeling (MaxEnt) and geographic information system (GIS) data on environmental characteristics were used to predict Red Knot habitat suitability at two spatial scales: of nesting site location suitability at the landscape scale across Southampton Island, and of breeding habitat suitability (i.e., both nesting and foraging habitat) at a broader, regional scale across the central Canadian Arctic. I will examine the relative influence of different environmental characteristics on the predictions of this model of habitat suitability, comment on the bias inherent in such efforts for a sparsely distributed and difficult-to-study species like the Red Knot, and discuss the implications of the results for conservation and future status assessments of other low density shorebird species.

http://crssa.rutgers.edu/people/lathrop/lathrop.html

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refID: 1761

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04 May 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: mRNA capping in pluripotency and differentiation
Dr Vicky Cowling
University of Dundee, School of Life Sciences

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27 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Cell-cell synapses for Hedgehog signalling
Prof. Isabel Guerrero
Centro de Biologia Molecular, Madrid

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26 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Evaluation of model predictions under autocorrelation
Volker Bahn
Wright State University

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Evaluating predictions from models is a key to advancement in science. Ecological research often produces messy data that necessitates flexible and complex models. However, complex models and model selection strategies can overfit data, leading to a decoupling between goodness-of-fit and predictive power of the model, making goodness-of-fit an unsuitable evaluation measure. The alternative is to hold out test data for evaluation. However, when autocorrelation is present in the response variable, training and test data lack independence and model evaluations will be overly optimistic. I discuss strategies for decoupling training and test data in the context of species distribution models. While these strategies can reduce the underestimation of model error, they can introduce over-estimation of error by introducing extrapolation in explanatory variable space. This problem can be addressed by explicitly testing for analog conditions between training and test data, leading to realistic error estimates.

http://people.wright.edu/volker.bahn

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refID: 1740

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25 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
Irvine Building
Seminar room 310

DEES Seminar: Deciphering the geochemical fingerprints of sulfate reducing bacteria
Dr Alex Bradley
Washington University-St Louis

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Alex Bradley is an Assistant Professor at Washington University-St Louis who specialises in organic geochemistry and geobiology.

Microbial sulfate reduction is a critical biogeochemical process that plays a key role tying together the sulfur and carbon cycles. Sulfate reducing microorganisms catalyze this process, and produce chemical traces that can be preserved in the geochemical record. I will present recent results that combine approaches from microbiology, biochemistry, and genetics to try to better understand the information contained in the organic and inorganic geochemical signals produced by these microorganisms.

https://eps.wustl.edu/people/alexander_bradley

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refID: 1763

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25 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Designs for novel protein-based materials and supramolecular assemblies
Prof Lynne Regan
Yale University, Yale School of Medicine

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21 Apr 2016
5:15 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Carnegie Public Lecture in Astronomy: Robust Emergence of Diverse Planetary Systems and the Prospects of Life around Other Stars
Prof Douglas Lin
University of California in Santa Cruz

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20 Apr 2016
6:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

St Andrews Prize Lecture: Reaching Beyond Barriers to Restore Nature and Hope
Dr. Axel Moehrenschlager
Calgary Zoological Society, Director of Conservation & Science

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As part of The St Andrews Prize for the Environment final we are delighted to be welcoming Dr Axel Moehrenschlager from Calgary Zoological Society to give a public lecture on Wednesday 20 April at 6pm in the Medical and Biological Sciences Lecture Theatre. There is more information on the Prize website.

In this talk, Dr Axel Moehrenschlager will examine the impact of rising human
populations and the unprecedented pressures on nature as well as humanity
itself. He will discuss how the science and practice of conservation has been
developing to combat these issues. He will look at whether our response is
enough and how we can attract the support needed to confront these global
challenges for the good of nature and humanity.
 

http://www.thestandrewsprize.com/news-articles/reaching-beyond-barriers-to-restore-nature-and-hope

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refID: 1746

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20 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Understanding the function of proteins in membranes by multiscale simulation
Dr Carmen Domene
King's College London, Department of Chemistry

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19 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
Bute
Lecture Theatre D

CBD Seminar: An ethnography of cultural diversity in chimpanzees
Prof. Dr. Christophe Boesch
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig

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A joint seminar with Psychology by Christophe Boesch, winner of the St Andrews Prize 2015, who will talk about "An ethnography of cultural diversity in chimpanzees”

All our present knowledge about chimpanzee culture is based on a maximum
of 6 to 10 different chimpanzee groups. This is extremely low compared
to the huge diversity of different human societies we can use to base
our knowledge on human culture. Not surprising due to this bias,
chimpanzee culture seems to possess much lower diversity, less traits
within populations and to show little evidence of imitation or
cumulative cultural evolution. Could this all just be due to our small
chimpanzee sample size? I will present our project "Pan-African Project:
The Cultured Chimpanzee" which main goal was to document behavioral
diversity in a larger sample of unknown chimpanzee communities
throughout the natural range of this species in Africa. First, results
from video-traps confirm the bias, introduced by working with a small
sample of long-term research project, to understand the width and
diversity of cultural diversity in chimpanzees.

 

http://www.eva.mpg.de/primat/staff/boesch/

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refID: 1720

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14 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Pilot whale group coordination and underlying sensory mechanisms
Frantz Jensen
Aarhus University

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host: plt@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1744

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13 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Mitochondrial Uncoupling Protein 1 and thymus function
Professor Richard Porter
Trinity College, Dublin

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07 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Do bottlenose dolphins recognise themselves in a mirror?
Alina Loth
Sea Mammal Research Unit

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host: al75@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1743

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06 Apr 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

EaStCHEM colloquia series: Redox-active Early Metal Phthalocyanines and Golden Pc Errors
Prof Daniel Leznoff
Simon Fraser University, Canada

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06 Apr 2016
2:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Latency of human cytomegalovirus in the myeloid lineage - can the latent reservoir be targeted therapeutically?
Prof. John Sinclair
University of Cambridge, Department of Medicine

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04 Apr 2016
1:00 PM
BMS

BSRC Seminar Series: Genomics-Enabled Natural Product Discovery
Prof Douglas Mitchell
University of Illinois, Department of Chemistry

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30 Mar 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

EaStCHEM colloquia series: Predicting structure and function in porous molecular materials
Dr Kim Jelfs
Imperial College London

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Dr Kim Jelfs is visiting Edinburgh this week as part of the EaStCHEM colloquia series.  Her talk will be broadcast from Edinburgh on Wednesday 30th March at 15.30 in Purdie Theatre C.
 

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/people/k.jelfs

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refID: 1745

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30 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Two-way communication between SecY and SecA suggests a Brownian ratchet mechanism for protein translation
Professor Ian Collinson
Bristol University, Professor of Biochemistry and Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator

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29 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Far from the deafening crowd: The effects of noise pollution on songbirds
John P. Swaddle
Institute for Integrative Bird Behavior Studies, College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA, USA

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Humans are changing the environment at unprecedented rates, which can put intense ecological and evolutionary pressures on wildlife. One of the most prevalent yet relatively understudied forms of anthropogenic change is noise pollution. Here I will give an overview of the effects of noise pollution on birds, focusing on our group’s studies of zebra finches’ and eastern bluebirds’ communication strategies in the face of noisy conditions. These studies indicate that individual birds show substantial flexibility in their vocal strategies, but that withstanding noisy environmental conditions carries developmental and fitness costs. As noise imposes costs, I will also discuss our emerging line of research whereby we are deliberately deploying spatially-controlled “nets” of masking sound, which make it hard for birds to hear each other or predators, to displace nuisance birds from sites of economic importance—such as farms and airports, where birds can cause tremendous damages. Initial studies indicate we can decrease the presence of pest birds by more than 80% for prolonged periods of time while not harming the birds nor degrading surrounding habitat.

 

John P. Swaddle Short Bio

John Swaddle has been at the College of William & Mary since 2001 and is a professor of biology. He studies how human alterations of the environment impact wildlife and, in turn, how these changes affect human society. In a rapidly changing world, these multi- and interdisciplinary questions are increasingly important. John has been awarded several prizes by his international academic societies, such as the Young Investigator Prize by the American Society of Naturalists and the Most Outstanding New Investigator Prize by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour. He’s also a previous Royal Society of London University Research Fellow and NERC postdoctoral fellow. He teaches courses in introductory biology, evolution, and environmental science. At William & Mary he has also served as the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research and was the Director (Chair) of the interdisciplinary Environmental Science & Policy program. This year, John is on sabbatical at the Cornwall campus of the University of Exeter collaborating with colleagues in Centre for Ecology and Conservation.

http://jpswad.people.wm.edu/

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1716

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22 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar:Impact prediction of invasive species: old challenges and new approaches
Dr Mhairi Alexander
University of the West of Scotland

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Invasion biology has faced a number of challenges concerning the impacts of invasive alien species.  One such challenge is the development of predictive methodologies that can reliably forecast the ecological impacts of existing, emerging and potential invasive species. These challenges need to be addressed to advance both the fundamental science of invasion ecology and provide practical methodologies that can mitigate invasions.

Consequently, the comparison of the classical ‘functional response’ (relationship between resource use and availability) between invasive and trophically analogous native species may allow prediction of invader ecological impact. Indeed it has now been shown that a range of damaging invasive species have consistently higher functional responses than comparator native species. Importantly is has been shown that such heightened responses correlate to a high degree with known field impacts. Ecological impact of new and emerging invaders may therefore be predicted by the magnitude of difference in such functional responses.

In this seminar, a review of this work to date will be presented, demonstrating how comparisons between invasive and native species allow for testing of the likely population-level outcomes of invasion events for affected species. The methodology, already supported by a number of studies, is highly transferable and discussion will be made on its applicability across a range of systems. It thereby provides a tool that will aid in filling in gaps that exist in theory and application for the prediction of impact by invasive species.

http://www.uws.ac.uk/staff-profiles/science/mhairi-alexander/

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17 Mar 2016
1:45 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Xelect Ltd - Genetic solutions for aquaculture
Aubrie Onoufriou
Xelect Ltd

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16 Mar 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

The role of heme in biology: from catalysis to regulation
Prof Emma Raven
University of Leicester, School of Chemistry

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16 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Lessons in viral pathogenesis in the barnyard
Professor Massimo Palmarini
University of Glasgow, Centre for Virus Research

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15 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar:Complex effects of reducing cognitive dissonance on student learning about evolution
Dr Luc Bussiere
University of Stirling

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In spite of its importance to the life sciences, many students remain resistant to evolutionary theory, which impairs their understanding of biological processes and their academic advancement. To combat this resistance, the US National Center for Science Education (NCSE), suggests that evolution lecturers precede course material with a short statement explaining that many scientists and religious leaders see no conflict between evolution and religious belief. Such a statement is designed to reduce the perceived threat of evolutionary principles, but presenting it is controversial for many reasons, including the lack of direct evidence for improved student learning outcomes in response to this statement. To fill this gap in the evidence, we have experimentally manipulated the exposure of 2nd year Evolution and Genetics students at the University of Stirling to the NCSE statement in a pre-module survey designed to assess opinions and knowledge about evolution. We then reassessed knowledge and opinions using a similar survey (but without the manipulation) at the end of the course. In my seminar I will present some surprising and complex effects of reducing cognitive dissonance (e.g., through the NCSE statement) on attitudes and learning, including important interactions with the student’s prior level of resistance to the course content.

http://rms.stir.ac.uk/converis-stirling/person/11652

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1726

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10 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Insight of the hunting behaviour of female Southern Elephant Seals.
Joffrey Jouma’a
Centre d'Etudes Biologiques de Chizé

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09 Mar 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

When do particles of the same charge attract?
Prof Elena Besley
University of Nottingham

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09 Mar 2016
2:00 PM
The Observatory
Seminar Room

Charles Cunningham, University of Bath - Investigating the effect of climate on UK grey partridge numbers
Charles Cunningham
University of Bath

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I will be discussing my placement project undertaken with the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust in which I carried out a preliminary investigation into the effects of weather on the grey partridge.
The UK population has decreased significantly from the early part of the 20th century, and is reflective of a much wider European decline in farmland birds. Weather has a part to play in fluctuations in grey partridge numbers but it is not known how they will be affected by the long-term changes expected to the UK climate.
         To investigate this, models were fitted by comparing local weather data to grey partridge population parameters from count sites across the UK. Additionally, predictions of population parameters in 2080 were calculated using UKCP09 climate change projections to see how grey partridges would be affected.
         Temperature had a positive effect on grey partridge productivity and rainfall a negative effect, as might be expected. However, in addition to this, weather variables included in the model from the previous year had the opposite effect, and may be due to the weather influencing the numbers of chick-food insects the following year. Although the demographic predictions are not conclusive, they provide an important insight into the ways in which the changing climate will impact upon grey partridge numbers.

host: Dr Louise Burt

refID: 1723

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08 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Punctuated and gradual changes in speciation
Patrik Nosil
University of Sheffield

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Whether speciation is gradual or sudden remains debated. Darwin’s view of gradual speciation predicts slight changes in polygenic traits, genome-wide differentiation, and an interconnected speciation continuum. In contrast, modern theory predicts that speciation can be a more punctuated process involving genome re-arrangements, heterogeneous genomic differentiation, and ephemeral intermediate forms. I will present our recent theoretical and empirical work that helps to unify these extreme views.

http://nosil-lab.group.shef.ac.uk/

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1719

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03 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

Development of New ligands of the nuclear transcriptional factors TEAD for the treatment of colorectal cancer
Professor Philippe Cotelle
Université du Droit et de la Santé Lille 2, France

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02 Mar 2016
2:00 PM
The Observatory
Seminar Room

Postponed - Using seismic data to study fin whales in offshore waters off southwest Portugal. Speaker: Andreia Pereira
Andreia Pereira
Instituto Dom Luis,Faculty of Sciences, University of Lisbon, Portugal

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Instruments used for seismic monitoring have been recording baleen whales along with the target data. These long-term datasets, some in offshore waters, provide valuable information for the study of large cetaceans that would otherwise be difficult to obtain due to economic and logistic reasons. Fin whales are classified as ‘Endangered’ and therefore knowledge of stock structure, population size and spatial and temporal distribution patterns is essential for good management strategies. In Portugal, sightings of fin whales off mainland waters are rare and are insufficient to assess any kind of trend. Therefore, acoustic data, even collected from opportunistic sources such as seismic surveys, are useful for monitoring this species. An array of 24 ocean bottom seismometers (OBS) was deployed between August 2007 and July 2008 in offshore waters southwest of Portugal to study potential tsunami sources. Calls of fin whales were also recorded during this deployment. The aim of this study was to develop a spectrogram cross correlation automatic detection routine to: 1) analyse the occurrence of 20 Hz calls; 2) characterize the main two calls produced by fin whales (20 Hz and back-beats); and 3) assess movement patterns. The occurrence of the 20 Hz call was seasonal, with a peak in the winter months (Dec-Feb). The two main calls could be clearly distinguished by the median frequency, frequency bandwidth and inter-call interval and they seem to show seasonal differences. Movement patterns were assessed considering the presence of a seamount in the study area, the Gorringe Bank, which has been proposed for a new marine protected area, and the proximity with the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea. These results provide baseline knowledge about this endangered species in offshore waters off Portugal and contribute to our understanding of fin whale occurrence and seasonal movements in relation to areas of conservation interest.

host: Dr Louise Burt

refID: 1690

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01 Mar 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar:Environmental stressors and their role in shaping animal behavior
Professor Victoria Braithwaite
Penn State University

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Animals that experience adverse events in early life often have life-long changes to their physiology and behavior. Although long-term effects of environmental challenges during early life have been studied extensively, relatively less attention has been given to the consequences of negative experiences solely during the adolescent phase. Adolescence is a particularly sensitive period of life when regulation of the glucocorticoid “stress” hormone response matures and specific regions in the brain undergo considerable change. Aversive experiences during this time may, therefore, have long-term consequences for the adult phenotype. I will describe some recent experiments where we investigated the long-term effects of exposure during adolescence to chronic, unpredictable stress (using a combination of social, physical and predation stressors). The data show that the experience of environmental challenges in adolescence affects multiple aspects of the adult behavioural phenotype; including decision-making, coping responses, cognitive bias as well as exploratory and foraging behavior.

http://bio.psu.edu/directory/vab12

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1725

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25 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Bottlenose dolphin population structure and evolutionary history in the North-East Atlantic
Marie Louis (new postdoc in Oscar Gaggiotti’s group)

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Despite no obvious barrier to gene flow, environmental variation and ecological specializations can lead to genetic differentiation in the marine environment. Bottlenose dolphins are highly mobile social marine mammals that show fine-scale genetic structure and ecological and morphological variations across their range. We investigated the genetic structure of this species in the North-East Atlantic (NEA) through analyses of 381 biopsied or stranded animals using 25 microsatellite markers and a portion of the mitochondrial control region. Clustering analyses based on multilocus genotypes showed a clear genetic differentiation in two ecotypes, i.e. coastal and pelagic, each of them being further divided in two populations. We then investigated the possible drivers of this ecotype differentiation using an innovative multi-disciplinary approach combining evolutionary and ecological tools. Reconstruction of the past demographic history of the species in the NEA showed that coastal bottlenose dolphins were founded by pelagic dolphins after the Last Glacial Maxima (~10 000 years ago) likely as a result of the colonization of coastal habitats that became available after sea ice retreated. As dolphins are highly mobile, the opening of new coastal niches is not sufficient to explain the maintenance of genetic divergence between ecotypes. Skin stable isotope values and stomach content analyses indicated that coastal and pelagic bottlenose dolphins were feeding on different prey in distinct habitats. Ecological specializations, strengthened by social behavior, thus likely reduced genetic exchanges between ecotypes. The morphology of the two ecotypes was not significantly different, in contrast to other parts of the world such as in the North-West Atlantic. This might be due to a relatively recent genetic divergence or less contrasted coastal and pelagic habitats. To conclude, the results suggest that ecological opportunity to specialize is a major driver of genetic and morphological divergence. This work highlighted that combining genetic, ecological and morphological approaches is essential to understand the population structure of mobile species.

host:

refID: 1717

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24 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Trinucleotide repeat instability: from basic mechanisms to translation
Dr Vincent Dion
Center for Integrative Genomics, Lausanne, Switzerland

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18 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

SMRU data management
Clint Blight and Matt Donnelly
SMRU and BODC

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host:

refID: 1684

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18 Feb 2016
12:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Everyone's favorite binding partner; exploring the cell-ECM interactome using the Collagen Toolkits
Prof. Richard Farndale
University of Cambridge

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17 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Data management best practice
Matthew Donnelly
BODC

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A presentation about general marine data management which should be relevant to most staff and students within the SOI. The talk will consider the importance of a data legacy and the changing world of data and cover topics such as scientific data, data security, metadata, vocabularies and open data.

host: cjb22@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1724

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16 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar:
Christina Hicks
Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment

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16 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar:Incorporating diverse values into small-scale fisheries management
Christina Hicks
Lancaster University, Environment Centre

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Fisheries management often results in trade-offs that influence who benefits, or what they benefit from. Effective and equitable fisheries management can be informed by an understanding of when and why these trade-offs occur. Ecosystem services are the benefits people receive from nature and as a concept are gaining attention in natural resource and fisheries management. Using examples from coral reef fisheries in the western Indian Ocean, I ask: 1) what are the common trade-offs that emerge among people and among ecosystem services? And, 2) what enables or constrains different people from benefitting from these ecosystem services? I found that trade-offs often occur across scale (local vs national benefits), across category (cultural vs provisioning), and that resource users perceive more trade-offs than scientists; but managers can potentially mediate these differences. Further, I found that key access mechanisms influence who is able to benefit from ecosystem services and what benefits they perceive. In particular, social, institutional, and knowledge mechanisms (rather than rights or economic mechanisms) have the greatest influence on the number and diversity of benefits that people perceive. However, local context strongly determines whether specific access mechanisms enable or constrain perceived benefits. For example, local ecological knowledge enables people to perceive a habitat benefit in Kenya, but constrains people from perceiving the same benefit in Madagascar. Ecosystem service assessments, and their resultant policies, need to take into consideration the broad suite of access mechanisms that enable different people to benefit from a supply of ecosystem services.

 

Please let me know if you would like to meet Christina during her visit

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1714

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11 Feb 2016
1:30 PM
SOI
LT

Bellhop, Bayes and Behaviour-- Using Passive Acoustics to assess Bottlenose Dolphin Behaviour on the Eastern Scottish Coast
Kaitlin Palmer
SMRU

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host: kp37@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1689

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11 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Preliminary results from a computational multi agent modelling approach to study humpback whale song cultural transmission
Luca Lamoni
SMRU

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host: ll42@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1688

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09 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Missing links in macroecology: the young and the small
Sally Ann Keith

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After 200 years of scientific endeavor, the factors that drive species diversity and distributions on Earth remain unresolved. My research has identified two areas of limited understanding that if targeted could help fill in the story of the generation and maintenance of biodiversity patterns: (1) early life stages, and (2) biotic interactions. With new approaches and unique data, I am beginning to reveal the relative importance of these factors, using Indo-Pacific coral reefs as a model system. Here I present tests of the extent to which reproduction, establishment and competition can influence species distributions and diversity. From this work, it is clear that local processes and those that occur early in an organism’s life cycle, can influence the biogeographic patterns we see today, and that the next essential step for macroecology to progress as a discipline is to produce a framework that can link small scale processes to global biodiversity patterns.

http://sallykeith.weebly.com/

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1713

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04 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Humpback whale winter songs in the sub-arctic
Edda Magnusdottir
University of Iceland

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host: pm29@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1708

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03 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

POSTPONED/BSRC Seminar Series: Lessons in viral pathogenesis in the barnyard
Professor Massimo Palmarini
University of Glasgow, Centre for Virus Research

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02 Feb 2016
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Culture and the Evolution of Swamp Sparrow Song
Dr Robert Lachlan
Queen Mary University of London

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While cultural transmission is widespread the stable, the kind of population-wide, stable traditions that form the basis of human culture are rare among non-human animals. One explanation for this apparent discrepancy is that cultural transmission must be very precise for traditions to be maintained. In the swamp sparrow (Melospiza georgiana), however, stable, population-wide traditions exist, based on learned song. I will discuss several recent studies investigating this phenomenon. First, I will describe a method, based on cultural evolutionary models, to estimate the precision of vocal learning. This demonstrates that cultural transmission of song is exceptionally precise with an error rate of 0.001 or lower. This invites the question of why vocal learning has evolved to become so precise in the swamp sparrow. I will describe playback experiments on males and females that suggest that precisely-learned songs are more attractive. 

Finally, I will argue that the psychological process of categorization has played a surprisingly critical role in the evolution of precise transmission in the swamp sparrow. With categorical perception and precise learning in place, hierarchically structured cultural traditions could arise, built on note type categories that are strikingly similar to human phonemes. 

http://www.sbcs.qmul.ac.uk/staff/robertlachlan.html

host: maadd@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1712

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28 Jan 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Valuation of coastal and marine ecosystem services. An overview from a management perspective
Cati Torres
MASTS Visiting Research Fellow

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As long claimed by the scientific community, both the design of local and national strategies and the need for international cooperation aimed at preserving coastal and marine ecosystems are of high priority.

 

The EU water policy serves as a basis for the development of such strategies. Indeed, the EU has developed a series of Directives serving as a framework for the EU water policy which aim to give guidance to the Member States on the protection of inland, transitional, coastal as well as ground waters, and of marine environments. In this context, the development of decision-making tools helping to assess the trade-offs in marine and coastal environments can play an important role. Economic Valuation and Cost-Benefit Analysis are key methods in this regard. They can provide decision makers with information about the social benefits and costs associated with alternative management practices, thus contributing to measure their social profitability. Consequently, these methods allow policy makers to prioritize policies on the basis of welfare-maximization issues, thus helping to make the decision-making process more efficient. This is of special relevance in a framework where environmental policies increasingly call for a balancing of benefits and costs of regulations, as required by regulatory impact assessments.

 

The talk will be directed to present the first draft of a report which aims to provide, through an extensive literature review, a comprehensive overview of the knowledge base regarding valuation of coastal and marine ecosystem services. The report puts emphasis on the analysis of both the policy implications of the reviewed studies as well as the existing challenges. This way, it wants to contribute to examine the role that economic valuation can play in the management of these ecosystems. Even more importantly, it pursues to promote discussion among social and ecological researchers about which the further research needs are in order to identify the collaborative work necessary for a better management of coastal and marine ecosystems. In other words, it wants to serve as a basis to build a common language between both disciplines, which is crucial to ensure sustainability of natural resources.

host: Dr Andrew Blight

refID: 1681

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27 Jan 2016
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

BSRC Seminar Series: Chemistry for regenerative medicine: discovery of small molecules to manipulate stem cell fate
Professor Angela Russell
Department of Pharmacology, University of Oxford

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27 Jan 2016
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Mechanism and evolution in vertebrate limb regeneration
Professor Jeremy Brockes
University College London

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26 Jan 2016
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae seminar room

CBD Seminar Series: The Genetic Basis of Sexual Antagonism
Max Reuter,
University College London

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21 Jan 2016
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

The visual cognitive behaviour of fish: Can fish solve complex tasks with 'simple' brains?
Dr Cait Newport
University of Oxford

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12 Jan 2016
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Monitoring forest habitats: Projects and tools from local to global scales
Dr. Peter Vogt
European Commission, Joint Research Centre

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As the European Commission's in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre conducts a variety of activities to provide EU policies with scientific and technical support. Concerning land-use/landcover the research focus is mainly on large-scale monitoring and assessment, including natural disasters and modelling climate change scenarios. The results of these activities are datasets and operational services provided to the EC Directorates, Member States, and national agencies. Certain research products, for example a collection of software methodologies to analyse digital data, is made available for free to the general public and public Institutions.
Dr Vogt will  present a brief overview on projects and products related to the monitoring, analysis, and evaluation of forested landscapes including species data, sample applications from a variety of end-users, targeting different thematic topics at a different spatial scales.

Dr Vogt will be also delivering a workshop on the 13th on the GUIDOS Toolbox, which will show how JRC research and analysis products can be used for forest monitoring and assessment. For more details contact Sandra Luque: sl208@st-andrews.ac.uk or visit the JRC ScienceHub web site.
 

http://forest.jrc.ec.europa.eu/team/person/8/detail/

host:

refID: 1685

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14 Dec 2015
3:30 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Discovery, biosynthesis and bioengineering of novel polyketide antibiotics
Prof. Greg Challis
University of Warwick

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09 Dec 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Mechanisms that control the intensity and location of Wnt signalling
Dr Jean-Paul Vincent
Francis Crick Institute in London

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02 Dec 2015
1:30 PM
The Observatory
Seminar Room

CREEM Seminar: The Use of Expert Elicitation in Modelling and Decision Making
Tony O'Hagan
University of Sheffield

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Ever wanted to know how individual experts come up with their informed opinions? How they generate quantitative answers to difficult and uncertain problems? If so, then join CREEM on Wednesday December 2nd, from 1330-1600 when we host one the world’s leading experts on expert elicitation – Professor Tony O’Hagan from the University of Sheffield. Professor O’Hagan has consulted and instructed government, academia, and many corporations on the successful use of expert elicitation.

Ahead of Professor O’Hagan’s seminar, we will have two shorter presentations of case studies led by members of CREEM. Professor John Harwood (Biology, CREEM) will present work he has led on the use of expert elicitation to help inform policy and provide guidance on the possible impact of sound on marine mammals. Dr Rob Schick (CREEM) will present on the use of expert elicitation to help discern movements of North Atlantic right whales.

Schedule for the afternoon:

  • 1330 Introduction
  • 1335-1400: John Harwood – EE, marine mammals, and conservation policy
  • 1400-1430: Rob Schick – EE, right whales, and the mid-Atlantic migratory corridor
  • 1430-1500: Tea & coffee
  • 1500-1600: Tony O’Hagan seminar

Location: Seminar Room, CREEM, The Observatory

Abstracts

Harwood: There is growing evidence that individuals of many marine mammal species show a marked change in behaviour when they are exposed to noise from activities such as pile driving and navy exercises.  However, the biological significance of this disturbance is unclear.  Together with other members of a working group funded by the US Office of Naval Research, we have developed a conceptual framework that can be used to forecast the potential population-level consequences of disturbance. Unfortunately, for most marine mammal populations there are insufficient empirical data to parameterise the mathematical functions that underpin this framework.  However, there are a number of situations where regulators urgently require scientific advice on the potential effects of a particular development on specific marine mammal populations.  In order to provide this advice, we have used expert elicitation to obtain estimates of the relevant parameters and the uncertainty associated with these estimates.  In this talk I will describe how we have designed the expert elicitation process and how we have used the results from that process.

Schick: Approximately 500 North Atlantic right whales remain in the world, and despite decades of protection, their recovery continues to be slow. The migratory corridor in the mid-Atlantic ocean links the calving grounds off the southeastern United States with feeding grounds in and around the Gulf of Maine, yet is one of the most highly industrialised stretches of ocean in the world. Movements of animals through this area are poorly documented. We used expert elicitation to poll experts about two sources of information: 1) the seasonal distribution of right whales in the mid-Atlantic; and 2) certain movement transitions from/to the mid-Atlantic. Here we present results from the elicitation, and document how we will use information from # as priors in a statistical model for movement and health. We highlight important lessons learned - both in terms of how to conduct the elicitation, as well as what types of movement related information remains poorly known. In particular, movements of adult male right whales remains very uncertain. And in general, many experts have little idea of what is happening for right whales in the mid-Atlantic.

O’Hagan: There is no single, accepted state-of-the-art method for eliciting expert knowledge.  Different practitioners advocate different methods.  This talk will begin by outlining some leading approaches and highlighting the factors which might favour one method over others.  I will then concentrate on my own preferred approach, presenting some recent developments.

host: Dr Rob Schick

refID: 1660

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02 Dec 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Structural insights into Hunter Syndrome
Professor Randy Read FRS
Cambridge Institute for Medical Research at the University of Cambridge

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25 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Sensing intracellular DNA as a 'stranger' and 'danger' signal
Dr Leonie Unterholzner
School of Life Sciences, University of Dundee

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24 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Hybridisation and polyploidy in invasive monkeyflowers
Mario Vallejo-Marin
University of Stirling

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Global trade and travel are breaking down geographic and ecological barriers isolating closely related plant species. An unintended consequence of this secondary contact is hybridisation. In this seminar I will present a case study of the evolutionary implications of recent hybridisation between species of monkeyflowers (Mimulus spp.). Monkeyflowers were introduced to the United Kingdom in the early 1800s and have since become widespread in the UK, particularly in Scotland. Some of these monkeyflowers have hybridised and produced ecologically persistent, but sterile populations. We have recently discovered that a few sterile populations have managed to escape this evolutionarily blind-alley, and give rise to one of the youngest species in the planet, the Scottish endemicMimulus peregrinus. This polyploid species, was first found in 2011 in southern Scotland, and has since been identified in Orkney. Using a combination of classical glasshouse work, field surveys, artificial crosses, and genomic analysis, we are beginning to understand the origin of M. peregrinus. I will present unpublished work demonstrating that this species and related hybrids were formed asymmetrically, with a diploid mother and a tetraploid father. The directionality of this asymmetry is puzzling as it goes against patterns observed in model systems (Arabidopsis). In conjunction with other instances of rapid polyploid speciation, UK monkeyflowers may be used to illuminate the mechanisms and processes involved in the birth and death of evolutionary lineages.

http://www.plant-evolution.org/wp/

host: Dr Nathan Bailey

refID: 1674

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24 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Medicine Seminar Series: Genetic studies of type 2 diabetes and kidney function in diverse populations
Professor Andrew Morris
University of Liverpool

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Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been successful in identifying loci contributing to a wide range of complex human diseases.  However, despite this success, there has been relatively limited progress in identifying the causal variants and transcripts within these loci, and the mechanisms through which their effects on disease are mediated. In this presentation, I will describe methods for “trans-ethnic” meta-analysis, and show their application to fine-mapping of GWAS loci for type 2 diabetes and kidney function.

host: medsem

refID: 1651

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20 Nov 2015
2:30 PM
MBS
Seminar Room 2

"The Ebola Outbreak Response in Kenema District, Sierra Leone - a personal account" , Andy Ramsay, WHO Field Coordinator, Kenema District (September - November 2014)
Dr Andrew Ramsay
WHO

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20 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Controlling the cell cycle
Professor Sir Paul Nurse
Nobel Laureate & President of the Royal Society

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Paul Nurse was appointed Director and Cheif Executive of the Francis Crick Institute in January 2011 following seven years as President of Rockefeller University in New York. He is also President of the Royal Society. Before moving to the US, Paul spent more than three decades as a research scientist in the UK. His senior positions included Chair of Microbiology at the University of Oxford and Director General of the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (ICRF). He played a major role in ICRF's merger with the Cancer Research Campaign in 2002 to form Cancer Research UK - which he led as Chief Executive. Along with Tim Hunt and Lee Hartwell, Paul Nurse was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2001. He also won the US Albert Lasker Award along with numerous other awards and medals. His current research focuses on the molecular machinery that drives cell division and controls cell shape.

http://www.crick.ac.uk/research/a-z-researchers/researchers-k-o/paul-nurse/

host: Dr Stuart MacNeill

refID: 1665

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19 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Antibiotics Awareness Talk
Stephen Gillespie, Matt Holden and Katarina Oravcova
School of Medicine

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The Infection Group is marking World Antibiotic Awareness Week by organising a special event aimed at raising awareness around Antibiotic Resistance.

St Andrews Medical students will have the opportunity to discover some of the work of the Infection Group thanks to a poster display that will take place at the entrance of the School (just outside the lecture theatre).

Then, three members of the group are going to give presentations:

  • Stephen Gillespie: Better Diagnosis to Prevent Resistance
  • Matt Holden: Bad bugs and drugs, how has our overuse of antibiotics created the pathogens we face?
  • Katarina Oravcova: Antimicrobial resistance – examples from the laboratory and clinical practice

http://infection.st-andrews.ac.uk/2015/11/18/antibiotic-awareness-session/

host: Ms Marion Ponthus

refID: 1673

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18 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: In and out of the host cells: the Apicomplexa way
Dr Dominique Soldati
Department of Microbiology and Molecular Medicine Faculty of Medicine at the University of Geneva

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17 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Seminar Series: Drug Discovery in an Academic Environment
Dr Anthony Hope
Dundee Drug Discovery Unit

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Further details to follow

host: medsem

refID: 1650

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17 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar: Minimising the Climate Change Risk to Biodiversity: A Multiscale Framework
Dr Christopher Ellis
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

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Risk has three elements: hazard, exposure, and vulnerability. These elements are applied to Scotland’s lichen epiphytes used as a conservation-relevant model, to address the impact of and strategic response to climate change as a hazard. Bioclimatic modelling is used to estimate the exposure of species to climate change, and this is downscaled in two ways. First, biologically, to show that distribution patterns relate to growth rates. Second, ecologically, to show that a species’ occurrence in the landscape depends on the interaction of climate suitability and habitat quality. Finally, these attributes (climate suitability, growth rates, and habitat quality) are combined into a population model, to understand how individual habitat patches can be managed to reduce local vulnerability and offset the negative consequences of climate change.

http://rbg-web2.rbge.org.uk/lichen/staff_profiles/ellis/ellis_page.html

host: Dr Nathan Bailey

refID: 1672

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11 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

CANCELLED/BSRC Seminar Series: mRNA capping in pluripotency and differentiation
Dr Vicky Cowling
College of Life Sciences, University of Dundee

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05 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Using high throughput approaches for understanding Ebola virus biology: from patients to cells
Professor Julian Hiscox
Institute of Infection & Global Health, University of Liverpool

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04 Nov 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar: Using high throughput approaches for understanding Ebola virus biology: from patients to cells
Professor Julian Hiscox
University of St Andrews

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29 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

SOI Seminar: 'Safe' limits for deep sea fishing
Joanne Clarke
University of Glasgow

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28 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Performing under stress: Holliday junction resolvase Yen1 makes the cut for Dna2 to safeguard chromosome segregation
Dr Ulrich Rass
Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research Basel, Switzerland

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host:

refID: 1636

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27 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD seminar: Are we overestimating landscape resistance to movement? Insights from bears and lynx in the Iberian Peninsula
Prof. Santiago Saura
Department of Natural Systems and Resources Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain

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Connectivity is crucial for species persistence and is largely dependent on landscape resistance, i.e. on the degree to which different land covers or features hinder species movements through the landscape. It remains however controversial which methods and empirical data are best for estimating landscape resistance. We focus on two endangered and flagship Iberian species, the brown bear and the Iberian lynx, each with less than 350 individuals in all the Iberian Peninsula. We analyze and compare the predictions from landscape genetics (brown bears), telemetry (GPS-collared Iberian lynx) and habitat suitability models (both species). We found that landscape resistance may have been considerably overestimated in most of previous connectivity assessments, particularly when movement through non-optimal habitat areas is considered, because of several reasons that may also apply to other species: (i) using habitat suitability as a surrogate for landscape permeability, (ii) not accounting for demographic determinants of dispersal, (iii) a priori assumptions on the lack of permeability of some cover types, (iv) changes in sources of mortality and in human attitudes towards mammalian carnivores, (v) technological limitations in tracking species movements (vi) not differentiating species behavioural states. Species dispersal abilities and population connectivity in heterogeneous landscapes may have been underestimated, with the risk of misleading related conservation strategies.
 
For more information regarding the software package developed by Santiago Saura visit: http://www.conefor.org/  Conefor is a software package that allows quantifying the importance of habitat areas and links for the maintenance or improvement of landscape connectivity. It is conceived as a tool for decision-making support in landscape planning and habitat conservation, through the identification and prioritization of critical sites for ecological connectivity. Previous versions of Conefor were known as Conefor Sensinode.

http://www2.montes.upm.es/personales/saura/index_en.html

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1655

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21 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Evolutionary ecology of bacterial adaptive immune systems
Dr Edze Westra
University of Exeter, Environment and Sustainability Institute

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20 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD seminar: Biological Diversity in a Rapidly Changing World
Prof Anne Magurran
University of St Andrews, School of Biology, Centre for Biological Diversity

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The unprecedented impact that humans are having on the natural world means that the biodiversity crisis is headline news. This impact is often presented in terms of biodiversity loss but our research is showing that change in the structure and composition of ecological communities may be a more pressing, but as yet underappreciated, threat. Our recent investigation of a Scottish marine fish assemblage highlights rapid temporal turnover in community diversity, and uncovers a link between biotic homogenization and climate change. The consequences of these changes for ecosystem functioning, and for policy, remain to be resolved.

http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/contact/staffProfile.aspx?sunid=aem1

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1654

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14 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Enzymatic Thiol Dioxygenation: Substrate Specificity and Reactive Intermediates
Dr Guy N L Jameson
University of Otago, New Zealand

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08 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD seminar: Environmental transcriptomics of thermal adaptation
Dr Rhonda Snook
University of Sheffield, Dept. Animal and Plant Sciences

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Understanding adaptive evolution is critical to predicting how organisms will respond to changes in abiotic and biotic conditions. Phenotypic and genotypic clinal variation is a hallmark of local adaptation in response to some spatial environmental gradient, typically temperature. The increasingly wide use of next generation sequencing has resulted in greater understanding of how both gene sequences and gene expression can change under different conditions across geographic scales, however, such studies typically have been restricted to the clinal ends, and/or not performed in situ (e.g. performed in the laboratory on lab adapted populations), and/or not on populations from their original distribution. Here we combat these issues by testing for signatures of local adaptation in gene expression in both a common garden controlled laboratory experiment and the use of caged in situ populations of male Drosophila subobscura from six populations across its native European latitudinal cline to identify signatures of local adaptation to spatially varying thermal selection. We identify genetic, cellular and tissue targets of selection, finding that southern and northern populations specialize in different responses.

https://www.shef.ac.uk/aps/staff-and-students/acadstaff/snook

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1645

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08 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Stock-taking at the IWC – an assessment of the current whaling situation
Mark Simmonds OBE

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refID: 1625

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07 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Cancer and diabetes as disorders of the signal multiplexing systems that shaped evolution of the vertebrates
Professor Carol Mackintosh
College of Life Sciences, University of Dundee

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06 Oct 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Medicine Seminar Series: Getting to grips with a slippery modification: why we should all care about adding fats to proteins
Dr Will Fuller
University of Dundee

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Dr Fuller will deliver a talk entitled:

"Getting to grips with a slippery modification: why we should all care about adding fats to proteins"

Abstract: Reversible post-translational modifications are the key to acutely changing cellular behaviour. While the role of protein phosphorylation in cell biology is well-established, protein S-palmitoylation (the reversible conjugation of the fatty acid palmitate to protein cysteines) has only recently emerged as a common and functionally important reversible post-translational modification in a variety of tissues. Protein S-palmitoylation is catalysed by a family of protein acyltransferases, reversed by protein thioesterases, and occurs dynamically and reversibly throughout the secretory pathway in a manner analogous to protein phosphorylation.

In cardiac muscle the generation of force is linked to tissue excitability by the movement of sodium and calcium ions across cell surface and intracellular membranes. We find every quantitatively significant route by which these ions cross membranes is palmitoylated in the heart. In this seminar I will describe the regulation of cardiac ion transporters by palmitoylation, the molecular control of protein palmitoylation in the heart, and discuss how this may be relevant in cardiac diseases.

Biography: Dr Fuller completed a BA and PhD in Pharmacology at the University of Cambridge.  He then moved to King's College London where he worked on regulation of the cardiac sodium pump in the laboratory of Professor Michael Shattock. During 8 years in this lab Dr Fuller developed interests in the regulation of cardiac ion transport and post-translational modifications - working first on the sodium pump, and later on its cardiac accessory protein phospholemman.

He established his own lab in Dundee in 2006.
The overall research theme in the Fuller laboratory is the organisation and dynamic regulation of signalling complexes in cardiac muscle during health and disease, with particular reference to regulation of cardiac ion transporters. They employ a variety of subcellular fractionation, imaging, affinity purification, biochemical and cell and organ physiological techniques to investigate molecular, macromolecular, whole cell and whole organ behaviours.
 

http://medicine.dundee.ac.uk/staff-member/dr-william-fuller

host: Dr Samantha Pitt

refID: 1640

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02 Oct 2015
11:00 AM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Mte1/ZGRF1 - a novel link between replication stress and telomere maintenance
Prof Michael Lisby
University of Copenhagen, Department of Biology, Functional Genomics

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Michael has made some seminal discoveries in understanding the DNA damage response and more recently has been using genome-wide approaches and functional genomics to study cellular responses to stress.
http://ccs.ku.dk/research/michael-lisby-research/

http://research.ku.dk/search/profil/?id=280629

host: Dr Helder Ferreira

refID: 1638

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29 Sep 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD seminar: What can amphioxus tell us about the evolution of developmental mechanisms?
Jr-Kai Sky Yu
Academica Sinica (Taiwan)

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Amphioxus is a basal chordate and occupies a key position for understanding the possible characters in the proximate invertebrate ancestor of the vertebrates. In recent years, studies of amphioxus have contributed fascinating insights into the anatomical and genetic changes involved in the evolutionary transition from invertebrates to vertebrates. In this talk, I will first review some recent advances in comparative developmental studies between amphioxus and vertebrates, and their implications for the evolutionary origin of vertebrate novel characteristics. Then, I will talk about some amphioxus peculiarities, including its left-right asymmetric development and germ cell determination mechanism, and their implications to the evolution of the chordate body plan.

http://icob.sinica.edu.tw/pilab/SuYuLab/Su_and_Yu_Lab/People.html

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1639

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24 Sep 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Jellyfish research in Qingdao, China
Dr Zhang Fang
Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences

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Prof. Song Sun and his Pelagic Ecology research Group are involved in a variety of jellyfish research. Since the beginning of the 21st century, the Chinese coastal sea has suffered from jellyfish blooms, which are considered to be among the most serious ecological disasters.  Together with the harmful algae blooms (HABs), jellyfish blooms impact the marine ecosystem, environmental safety, and the development of the maritime economy.  This presentation will include case studies of giant jellyfish (Nemopilema nomurai) and moon jellyfish (Aurelia sp.) blooms affecting beaches and coastal power production, which originally sparked interest in this field.  Since this time, we have carried out various research cruises in the Yellow Sea and East China Sea to study population dynamics and life cycle ofN. nomurai and Aurelia.  To understand the reproduction strategy of these jellyfish blooms, we also studied how environmental factors affect the population reproduction by undertaking a series of controlled laboratory incubations and in situ simulation experiments on the benthic (polyp) stages of these species.  Polyps of N. nomurai tended to sprout medusae when temperatures were about 10–19 °C (mainly 10-13 °C), while Aurelia sp. prefer to sprout at temperature 10-15°C.  In order to predict jellyfish blooms in the future, we will develop further parameters into an index correlating with jellyfish biomass in the Yellow Sea and East China Sea.

host: Prof Andrew Brierley

refID: 1614

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23 Sep 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BETting on epigenetic targets - from phenotypic screening to first time in man
Dr Chun-wa Chung
UK Head Biophysics and Structural Biology, GlaxoSmithKline

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17 Sep 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Targeting the Pathogenic Interactions of Lyssaviruses
Dr. Gregory Mosely
University of Melbourne

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16 Sep 2015
2:00 PM
The Observatory
Seminar Room

A cost-benefit analysis of prey selection in deep-diving pilot whales: choosing from a broad menu with kid options. Natacha Aguilar de Soto, CREEM-SOI
Natacha Aguilar de Soto, CREEM-SOI
CREEM - SOI

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A cost-benefit analysis of prey selection in deep-diving pilot whales: choosing from a broad menu with kid options.

The survival of a social group depends on the foraging decisions of each individual and of a balance in sharing foraging resources among group members. Data from multisensor DTAGs attached to 80 short-finned pilot whales show that they perform different foraging tactics: their “cheetash of the deep sea” tactic: sprinting at depth to target few rewarding prey; and less energetic night-time hunting of more prey per dive in the shallow and deep scattering layers. The fact that pilot whales perform foraging dives during day and night to different depths and at different swimming speeds, results in high differences in the transport cost of the dives. Our hypothesys is that whales may target different prey types in these dives. This is because many species of deep water fauna perform daily vertical migrations, meaning that not all prey types are available 24 hrs at all depths. Also, we expect that the relative caloric value of  prey targeted in different dives is indicated by how much energy whales are prepared to invest in a dive to perform so many prey capture attempts.

Here, we explore how a Random Forest classification method supports  dividing the dives in classes that seem to correspond to broad prey types with variable cost-benefit trade-offs, and perform a cost-benefit analysis to estimate the relative caloric value of these prey, and the reliance of the whales on the different prey types. For this we use: i) independent estimates of relative hunting energetic costs per dive from indirect respirometry and from movement indicators, comparing the performance of different indicators such as Overall and Vectorial Dynamic Body Acceleration (ODBA and VeDBA), acceleration rate (jerk) and speed-dependent hydrodynamic drag to predict oxygen uptake after dives; ii) estimations of abundance and depth-distribution of prey derived from the echolocation activity of the whales (buzzes indicating prey capture attempts).

Results show that there are cheap and expensive foraging tactics and the post-dive oxygen uptake is well predicted by the depth and the speed reached during each dive. Diving capabilities are related to body mass, however, large adult males and smaller females/sub-adult males reach similar maximum depths and speeds. In contrast, juveniles perform “cheap” dives, foraging shallower/slower than adults, probably because of the higher mass-specific metabolic rate and lower oxygen stores of young. This apparent ontogenetic partial niche segregation and the broad diet-breadth of short-finned pilot whales may be essential to sustain the large and cohesive social groups of this top-predator in the deep ocean. Knowing about the foraging requirements of deep-water top-predators is essential to predict the potential impacts of expanding mesopelagic fisheries. Overfishing in coastal areas has affected local populations of birds and other taxa; it is timely to manage fisheries to prevent these effects on top-predators inhabiting the deep ocean. Also, learning about the energetic balance of the species informs transfer functions to predict effects of human disturbance, e.g. from anthropogenic noise.

 

This seminar reports findings of papers in preparation with the following coauthors: Mark Johnson (SMRU), Jacobo Marrero (Univ. La Laguna, Canary Islands), Peter Madsen (Univ. Aarhus, Denmark), Lucía Martín (SMRU), Jeanne Shearer (Univ. St. Andrews).

 

host: Dr Louise Burt

refID: 1606

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03 Sep 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Frills and Spills: the interplay of body size, shape and oxygen in aquatic organisms.
Dr Andrew Hirst
Queen Mary University of London

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18 Aug 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD seminar: The Evolution of Body Plans and Body Parts: Perspectives from Studying the Evolution of Developmental Regulation in Spiders and Flies
Alistair McGregor
Oxford Brookes University

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10 Aug 2015
12:30 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

Relative sea level change scenarios for regional Scottish coastlines
Prof William Ritchie

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This presentation is not an assessment of the various climatic change scenarios that are currently available for Scotland. Irrespective of the veracity of any model, the possible/probable effects on different sectors of the coastline of Scotland need to be considered in the wider context of existing regional changes that are caused by other factors than purported (climatic change) rises in sea level. Predications and therefore consequential managerial/planning/risk assessments should also recognise the complexity of regional and local coastal changes. Arguably, there are coastal situations where these changes can be related to causal factors that are an order of magnitude greater than “climatic change” driven relative rises in sea level. Moreover, the well-established knowledge of the post-glacial isostatic emergence – submergence isopleths divide Scotland into two zones - the periphery where submergence is additional, and the remainder where emergence prevails – so that the relative change in the land/sea boundary for any particular area of Scotland is the arithmetic sum of both isostatic and eustatic factors. Finally, as a codicil, the current and correct planning option of ADAPTATION needs to continue to use a risk/cost-benefit approach to applying effort and resources to future managerial decision-making procedures.
 

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refID: 1609

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13 Jul 2015
11:00 AM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

Centre for Biological Diversity: When to care for and when to kill another female’s offspring
Dieter Lukas
University of Cambridge, Department of Zoology

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Female relationships across mammals range from highly supportive to intensively aggressive, often within the same species. While differences in the structure of female relationships may have played a major role in the evolution of mammalian sociality, only few studies have investigated why and how female interactions differ across species. In this presentation, I will show that competition between females is frequently as intense as what has been reported for males, and that variation in the intensity of female competition is linked to female reproductive investment. Finally, I will discuss how competition influences cooperation between females.

Dieter Lukas is interested in why animal species differ so widely in their social and mating behaviour. He is currently a Postdoc at the University of Cambridge, where he compares which aspects of the environment are shared between mammals with similar behaviour.
 

http://www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/directory/dr-dieter-lukas

host: Dr Christian Rutz

refID: 1604

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10 Jul 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: T-cell immunity: The good the bad and the ugly
Professor Jamie Rossjohn
Monash University, Dept of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Australia

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10 Jul 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

Centre for Biological Diversity: Behavioral flexibility is not predicted by innovation or brain size in great-tailed grackles, New Caledonian crows, and Western scrub jays
Corina Logan
University of Cambridge, Department of Zoology, Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow

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Many cross-species studies attest that innovation frequency (novel food types eaten and foraging techniques used) is a measure of behavioral flexibility and show that it positively correlates with relative brain size (corrected for body size). I investigated behavioral flexibility directly in three bird species that vary in innovation frequency and relative brain size, and found that it does not correlate with either variable. These results challenge long-standing assumptions and question the use of proxies for behavioral flexibility.
 
Corina Logan is a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge. She studies behavioral flexibility in birds: their ability to adapt their behavior to changing circumstances; and the social, genetic, and environmental factors that correlate with brain size variation in red deer.

http://corinalogan.com/

host: Dr Christian Rutz

refID: 1603

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06 Jul 2015
5:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Keynote Speech: International Environmental Omics Synthesis Conference: Genomics and Inheritance
Professor Elizabeth A. Thompson
University of Washington, School of Statistics

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More details about the 4-day International Environmental Omics Synthesis Conference in St Andrews, as well as speakers and programme, can be found on the iEOS web site.

Genetic diversity in a species is key to its success in a changing environment, and a key determinant of genetic diversity is the ancestral history of the population.  Classically such ancestral structure was considered in terms of population demography and pedigree-based relationships.  Analyses were often constrained by the assumed pedigree structures, and by the assumption that individuals not specified as related have independent genetic data.  In reality, extended multi-generation pedigrees cannot be validated from genetic data on extant individuals, and any given pedigree can give rise to a wide variation of genetic descent patterns.
 
Modern genetic data allow for the detection of this co-ancestry at specific genome locations, and it is this co-ancestry of DNA that provides a direct measure of genomic diversity. Recently, primarily in human genetics, numerous methods for the detection of segments of genome sharing between pairs of individuals have been developed.   However, combining these inferences into realized structures of the changing genome sharing across a chromosome jointly among multiple individuals has proven challenging.  I will discuss a new approach to this problem, and show how, even if only pairwise estimates are desired, joint inference provides improved estimates.

http://www.stat.washington.edu/thompson/

host: Prof Thomas Meagher

refID: 1600

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06 Jul 2015
2:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Looking at telemetry data from above and below: some technological and methodological thoughts of an animal movement ecologist
Dr Theoni Photopoulou
University of Cape Town

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Telemetry (the remote collection of data via communications systems) allows us to study animals that we would otherwise be unable to observe, in environments we don't have easy access to. The collection of such data is racing ahead of the analytical techniques we have available to understand the data and the systems under study. The type of information we can or should collect both determines, and is determined by, the questions we are able to address regarding the ecology, life-history and behaviour of animals. Challenging systems are often the most interesting, and sometimes the most important to study, but they present us with special practical and analytical challenges. Even though we now have the capacity to collect data in more detail and greater quantities than ever before, we often still have to make do with whatever we can get, or conversely, end up with data in large volumes or with more complexity than we know how to analyse. I will present examples of the data types and study systems I work with, including seals and black eagles, the importance of knowing how data are collected, and some of the methods I use to try to get the most out of these data.

http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Theoni_Photopoulou

host: Dr Emma Defew

refID: 1601

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25 Jun 2015
4:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Virology Public Lecture: The continuing threat of influenza
Sir John Skehel & Professor Rob Webster

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19 Jun 2015
11:00 AM
SOI
LT

Seaweeds of the UK: Biology, Culture and Uses
Esther Hughes
Marine Biological Association of the UK

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19 Jun 2015
9:30 AM
SOI
East Sands

St Andrews Bioblitz 2015

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The St Andrews Bioblitz 2015 starts at 9.30am on Friday 19 June and runs through Saturday afternoonn 20 June. Tonight, starting at 7pm there will be a Forage Walk, at 22:15 Moth Traps and at 22:30 a Bat Walk! Tomorrow morning's events start at 4.30am with a Dawn Chorus Bird Walk and ends with a Beach Seine at 16:00. Activities will be presented by St Andrews Scottish Oceans Institute, RSPB, Scottish Badgers, Cupar Dive Club, Marine Conservation Societhy and Transition St Andrews.

The microscope lab will also be open all day for sample sorting and species identification.

A full timetable and map are available here. Happy hunting!

http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/bioResources/BIOLOGY/2530.pdf

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refID: 1599

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18 Jun 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

SOI Seminar: Studies of wild, semi-captive and captive marine mammals in northern Norway: Ongoing work and opportunities for collaboration
Martin Biuw

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refID: 1596

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18 Jun 2015
12:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Carnegie Trust Visiting Professor Seminar: The role of the microbiota in asthma
Professor Brett Finlay
University of British Columbia

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As part of the Carnegie Trust’s scheme of Visiting Professorships, Professor Brett Finlay is going to give a talk on Thursday 18 June at 12noon in the MSB Lecture Theatre.

Professor Brett Finlay is a Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Microbiology and Immunology, at the University of British Columbia. His lab conducts research in the fields of E. coli, Salmonella, Innate Immunity, and Microbiota.
 
A full biography is available here. For more information on his research activities, please visit http://finlaylab.msl.ubc.ca/.

Abstract: Asthma is an inflammatory disease of the lungs whose incidence is increasing rapidly, making it a major problem worldwide.  Although the exact cause is not known, environmental conditions such as the use of antibiotics, mode of delivery, etc. impact on asthma.  Using an experimental murine asthma system, we demonstrated that shifts in microbiota triggered by antibiotics affected asthma outcome.  We were able to show that this shift needs to occur very early in life, and that certain microbes are associated with it.  We also found that intestinal Treg cells were affected, but not lung Tregs.  Using a clinical cohort of children (CHILD) we analyzed feces from 3 month old and one year old children.  Remarkably, we found that certain microbiota species from the 3 month old population were associated with protection from asthma.  Additionally, there were significant metabolic changes mediated by microbiota in those at risk for asthma.  By transplanting these particular microbiota, along with feces from an asthmatic child, we found that these microbiota decreased lung inflammation in the murine asthma model.  Collectively, we have found that microbiota play a profound impact on the host very early in life, which has later effects in asthma susceptibility.
 

http://finlaylab.msl.ubc.ca/

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refID: 1598

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17 Jun 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: The compound that you find may not be from the source you thought you used...
Dr David Newman
National Cancer Institute, Maryland, United States

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30 May 2015
11:00 AM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Research in China:Top-down Design, Layout and Achievements
Professor Chunli Bai
Institute of Chemistry, Beijing and the Chinese Academy of Science

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Professor Chunli Bai is an exceptionally distinguished chemist who is the President of the Chinese Academy of Science (CAS), Professor of Chemistry, CAS Key Laboratory of Molecular Nanostructure and Nanotechnology, Institute of Chemistry, Beijing and who is a pioneer in Scanning Tunneling Microscopy. Prof Chunli Bai is also being honoured by the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

He will present his work but will also have something to say about the Chinese Academy of Science and partnerships with the UK. This is the only day he is free and we have very lucky to have Professor Bai visiting.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bai_Chunli

host: Prof Jim Naismith

refID: 1590

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26 May 2015
3:00 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre B

BSRC Seminar Series: Molecular mechanism of entry of hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD) virus
Professor Zihe Rao

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Rao (as he is known) has been given a special Fellowship by the Royal Society of Edinburgh for his distinguished research career, is one of the world's leading structural virologists, and is an engaging speaker with an exciting story to tell.

host: Prof Jim Naismith

refID: 1589

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21 May 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

“Studying sea mammals and sea birds in the Southern Ocean” – Science stories from our recent Biology Student Antarctic Expedition
Honours students

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In March 2015 six Senior Honours and six Masters students from Biology embarked on a hands-on educational expedition to the southern tip of Argentina and the Antarctic Peninsula (as part of BL4301 and BL5124 modules).
During this lunch time seminar the students will share some of their scientific findings, expedition highlights and WOW moments in form of short presentations and a slide show.
All students and staff are invited to join the 2015 polar expedition team for some first-hand tales of this incredible Southern Ocean adventure.
For further info and visual impressions see the student expedition blog: http://synergy.st-andrews.ac.uk/antarctic/.
 

http://synergy.st-andrews.ac.uk/antarctic/

host:

refID: 1564

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20 May 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Energy and lipid metabolism in apicomplexan parasites - routes for drug therapy
Dr James MacRae
NIMR, Mill Hill, London

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15 May 2015
3:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

Candida albicans phosphatidylserine synthase: Roles in virulence and antifungal drug targetingBSRC Seminar Series:
Dr Todd Reynolds
Department of Microbiology, University of Tennessee

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13 May 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: In vivo enzymology allows direct identification of mechanism of action of antibiotics
Dr Luiz Pedro de Carvalho
National Institute for Medical Research, London.

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12 May 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Macroalgal-driven feedbacks and the dynamics of coral reefs
Andrew S Hoey
ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University, Australia

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Coral reefs are in global decline with many being overgrown by large fleshy macroalgae. Once established, such phase-shifts are difficult to reverse. Theoretical models have suggested that the stability of these states arises from interactions among elements that form positive feedbacks; reinforcing and maintaining the state. Despite their potential importance there is a current lack of empirical evidence for feedbacks, and hence our understanding of how feedbacks build or erode the resilience of reef systems is limited. In this seminar I will outline my recent research examining how herbivory, a key ecosystem process on coral reefs, is influenced by changes in the composition and biomass of macroalgae. Specifically, I will show how the physical and chemical properties of both individual macroalgae and macroalgal stands shape the foraging decisions, and functional impact of key herbivorous fishes, and in doing so, form feedbacks that may lead to the expansion and maintenance of macroalgal-dominated reefs.

http://www.coralcoe.org.au/researchers/andrew-hoey

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1587

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07 May 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Identification of Sound Scattering Layers in acoustic survey data
Roland Proud

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host:

refID: 1575

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30 Apr 2015
1:30 PM
SOI
LT

Current correction(s) of horizontal movement tracks
Sam Gordine
SMRU

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host:

refID: 1565

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29 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: The Ebola Virus Outbreak in Sierra Leone : a first-hand account
Dr Marian Killip
University of Oxford

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28 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Sex, death & immunity in the bed bug
Michael Siva-Jothy
University of Sheffield, Dept. of Animal and Plant Sciences

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Bed bugs have a unique mode of copulation - so called ’traumatic insemination’ -  which drives several aspects of their behaviour and physiology. In this seminar I will outline bedbug natural history and describe the results of experiments designed to better understand their unique ecology, behaviour, anatomy and immunology.

https://www.shef.ac.uk/aps/staff-and-students/acadstaff/siva-jothy

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1583

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22 Apr 2015
6:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

St Andrews Prize for the Environment Public Lecture: Ocean Extinction Averted! What will it take ?
Professor Callum Roberts
Marine Conservation Biologist, Environment Department, York University

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Human impacts on the oceans have increased dramatically in the last half century.  The intensity and breadth of these changes is imperilling marine life and biodiversity is dwindling at an alarming rate.
 
In our favour in addressing this challenge is the fact that human impacts in the sea lag those on land by a hundred years or more and while many terrestrial species have gone extinct, most marine species are still with us.  There is still hope of changing course and saving them but we face stiff headwinds in this effort.  How do we protect species when we don’t know where they are or even that they exist?  How do we protect life in a realm that is hostile to most of the conservation methods used on land?  In this talk, drawing on thirty years’ experience studying the sea and its protection, Callum Roberts will try to answer these questions.
 
FREE ENTRY – NO PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED

http://www.york.ac.uk/environment/our-staff/callum-roberts/

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refID: 1562

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22 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Thermostabilisation of G protein-coupled receptors for structural studies and drug discovery
Dr Fiona Marshall
Founder, Director and CSO of Heptares

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Dr Fiona Marshall is a vibrant scientist, winner of the 2012 Women of
Outstanding Achievement Award for Innovation and Entrepreneurship -
Celebrating women who are creating significant change, making
discoveries, innovating processes, establishing new ventures and helping
the UK excel in science, engineering and technology.

Fiona set up her own drug discovery company with Malcolm Weir in 2006 to
develop new medicines for diseases of the brain and metabolism. She leads
a team of 60 scientists, has invented 7 patents, has authored over 50
scientific papers and Heptares has become one of the UK¹s brightest
start-ups, raising over $40m in venture capital.

http://www.heptares.com

host: Dr Rona Ramsay

refID: 1556

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17 Apr 2015
2:30 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Signal integration in the control of shoot branching
Prof. Ottoline Leyser
Director, SLCU Sainsbury Laboratory University of Cambridge

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16 Apr 2015
1:30 PM
SOI
LT

Studies of bottlenose dolphin ecology and behaviour along the Slovenian coast
Tilen Genov

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host:

refID: 1574

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16 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Homeobox genes in the regeneration of Spirobranchus lamarcki and Branchiostoma lanceolatum
Tom Barton-Owen

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refID: 1554

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14 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Cultural transmission of humpback whale song across the western and central South Pacific
Ellen Garland
Newton International Fellow, School of Biology, University of St Andrews

click for details

Cultural transmission, the social learning of information or behaviours from conspecifics, is believed to occur in a number of groups of animals, including primates, cetaceans, and birds. Cultural traits can be passed vertically (from parents to offspring), obliquely (from the previous generation via a nonparent model to younger individuals), or horizontally (between unrelated individuals from similar age classes or within generations). Male humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) have a highly stereotyped, repetitive, and progressively evolving vocal sexual display or ‘‘song’’ that functions in sexual selection (through mate attraction and/or male social sorting). All males within a population conform to the current version of the display (song type), and similarities may exist among the songs of populations within an ocean basin. I will present a striking pattern of horizontal transmission: multiple song types spread rapidly and repeatedly in a unidirectional manner, like cultural ripples, eastward through the populations in the western and central South Pacific over an 11-year period. This is the first documentation of a repeated, dynamic cultural change occurring across multiple populations at such a large geographic scale.
 

http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/contact/staffProfile.aspx?sunid=ecg5

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1566

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09 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

The context-dependency of multiple stressor effects on estuarine sediment communities: a cross continental study
Joseph Kenworthy

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refID: 1552

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08 Apr 2015
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

EaStCHEM/BSRC lecture series: Molecular recognition in chemical and biological systems
Prof François Diederich
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich

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We pursue a multi-dimensional approach towards deciphering and quantifying weak intermolecular interactions in chemical and biological systems.  Experimental study in this research involves the investigation of protein-ligand interactions, synthetic host-guest complexation, and dynamic processes in designed unimolecular model systems, such as molecular torsional balances.  It is complemented by computational analysis and exhaustive data base mining in the Cambridge Crystallographic Database (CSD) and the Protein Data Bank (PDB).  Examples of intermolecular interactions quantified by this approach are orthogonal dipolar interactions, organofluorine interactions, stacking on peptide bonds, and halogen bonding.  We also investigate the energetics of the replacement of conserved water molecules in protein co-crystal structures by ligand parts.  This multi-dimensional approach is illustrated in examples taken from a variety of structure-based drug design projects.  Lessons learned are directly applicable to ligand design and optimization in drug discovery and crop protection research, but equally to the assembly of synthetic supramolecular systems.
 Specific examples will include the replacement of water clusters in protein-ligand complexes of tRNA-guanine transglycosylase (TGT), a target against bacterial shigellosis dysenteriae.  Ligand development against novel targets for antimalarials is illustrated by the inhibition of the enzyme IspD from the non-mevalonate pathway of isoprenoid biosynthesis, which is used by plasmodium and other parasites but not by humans, and of serine hydroxymethyl transferase (SHMT), a key enzyme from the folate cycle for which ligands had surprisingly not been reported previously.

http://www.diederich.chem.ethz.ch/

host: ezc

refID: 1561

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02 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
SOI/Gatty Lecture Theatre

Ganges river dolphin: Population status, conservation issues and research in Nepal.
Prof Shambhu Paudel (Assistant Professor for Wildlife/GIS/RS)
Kathmandu Forestry College, Nepal

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01 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Molecular genetics of mesoderm layer formation in Drosophila gastrulation
Dr Arno Muller
College of Life Sciences, University of Dundee

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01 Apr 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Toothed whales and tooth fish: depredation by marine mammals on fisheries around the Southern Ocean Islands of Kerguelen and Crozet
Christope Guine
Centre d'Études Biologiques de Chizé (CEBC)

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He will be discussing the depredation by sperm whales and killer whales on fisheries in the Crozet  and Kerguelen area that he and Paul Tixier have been doing over the last 10 years.

http://www.cebc.cnrs.fr/Fidentite/guinet/guinet.htm

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refID: 1537

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28 Mar 2015
6:00 PM
Other
Dalhousie Building • Old Hawkhill • DD1 5EN

The risks to society of unrestricted antibiotic use
Professor Dame Sally Davies

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The development of effective antibiotics revolutionised healthcare in the second half of the 20th Century, leading to massive falls in the threat to the public from a range of major diseases. However, the widespread use of these
agents has led to problems of resistance, so that the prospect of resurgence of illnesses such as tuberculosis is now a reality. How society tackles this is now an urgent problem that requires concerted international action.
Dame Sally Davies is the Chief Medical Officer for England.
This lecture is the inaugural Margaret Fairlie Lecture which is part of the School of Medicine Athena SWAN award celebrations, recognising commitment to advancing women’s careers in science and highlighting some of our successful females.

Please note: events will be filmed for use on the School of Medicine website and overflow theatres will be in operation.

Dalhousie Building, University of Dundee, DD1 5EN

Tickets are free, but booking essential.
For booking tickets or further information contact:
events@dundee.ac.uk
01382 385108 / 388154
www.dundee.ac.uk/sels

www.dundee.ac.uk/sels

host: events@dundee.ac.uk

refID: 1529

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19 Mar 2015
1:30 PM
SOI
LT

Japanese sea bass repeated short excursion to fresh water around salt wedge: foraging behavior under constraint of salinity adaptation
Naoyuki Miyata

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19 Mar 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
LT

Diverse body fluid regulation among vertebrates
Prof Yoshio Takei

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18 Mar 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

CANCELLED/BSRC Seminar Series: Fragment-based drug discovery- a decade of thinking small
Dr Harren Jhoti
Astex Pharmaceuticals

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17 Mar 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae seminar room

CBD Seminar series: Parallel evolution in adaptive radiations
Dr Kathryn Elmer
University of Glasgow, Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine

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The relative roles of stochastic and selective forces in the origins of biodiversity have long been a fascination for biologists. Looking at this in the context of parallel (or convergent) evolution, I will discuss a recent line of research focusing on a complex of cichlid fishes that rapidly diversify within and among neotropical crater lakes. We conducted a range of genetic and genomic analyses, in combination with ecomorphological assessments such as body shape, trophic apparatus, and niche use, in and across adaptive radiations. Surprisingly we found strong evidence for parallel phenotypic evolution yet associated with non-parallel evolutionary genetic patterns.
All welcome!

http://www.gla.ac.uk/researchinstitutes/bahcm/staff/kathrynelmer/

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1545

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12 Mar 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Comparative diving eco-physiology: a tool to assess environmental change
Dr Andreas Fahlman
Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi, USA

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http://sci.tamucc.edu/member.php?who=afahlman&program=lsci

host: Dr Sascha Hooker

refID: 1484

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11 Mar 2015
3:30 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre C

EaStCHEM/BSRC Colloquium Series: The use of enzymes for C-C bond formation and chiral amine synthesis
Prof Helen C Hailes
University College London, Organic Chemistry and Chemical Biology

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Biocatalysis offers a powerful sustainable strategy for the production of pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals. We have been investigating the use of transketolases, transaminases and norcoclaurine synthases for C-C bond formation and chiral amine synthesis, including reaction cascades. The seminar will present recent studies using these enzymes and other selected reactions in water.

http://www.ucl.ac.uk/chemistry/staff/academic_pages/helen_hailes

host: eli.zysman-colman

refID: 1540

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05 Mar 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Using data-driven models to explore sea louse infestations on wild and farmed salmon
Prof Crawford Revie and Dr Maya Groner
University of Prince Edward Island, Canada

click for details

http://healthmgt.upei.ca/crawford-revie

 

The relationships in any ecological system are affected by many, often interacting, factors and this is certainly true of farmed and wild salmon hosts, and the sea louse species which are amongst the most important of their natural parasites. In particular L. salmonis have been the most significant health threat to Atlantic salmon farming for the past two decades, while the impact of spill-over from these concentrated loci of infestation to wild populations has been a concern in many regions. These health threats and concerns have led to the collection of large data sets some spanning many years, and a range of questions arise as to the best way to model and interpret the relationship that may be present in such data. This talk will present a range of statistical and mathematical modelling approaches that the presenters have explored over the past decade address these challenges.  

 

 

Dr. Crawford Revie

Crawford holds the Canada Research Chair in Epi-Informatics at the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island, Canada. The main focus of his research involves novel methods to extract and organize knowledge that exists in large/complex epidemiological data sets. He has extensive experience in designing and delivering distributed database solutions in the domains of human and veterinary health. He leads a team of researchers who use epi-informatics approaches to tackle a range of tasks; from the development of web-based fish health databases, through network modelling of zoonotic pathogen spread, to the application of mobile phones in assisting animal health assistants in sub-Saharan Africa.

 

Dr. Maya Groner

Maya is a postdoctoral fellow at the Atlantic Veterinary College in Prince Edward Island. Maya's research focuses on ecological and evolutionary consequences of infectious disease in aquatic systems including sea louse parasites of salmon, wasting disease in seagrasses and chytridiomycosis in amphibians. Her research employs a range of approaches, from field surveys, to experiments, to theoretical models. Dr. Groner is also a member of the National Science Foundation supported Research Coordination Network on the Ecology of Infectious Marine Diseases.

 

host: Dr Dave Ferrier

refID: 1483

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04 Mar 2015
2:00 PM
The Observatory
Seminar Eoom

Eavesdropping on whales: working on the challenges of estimating cetacean abundance using passive acoustic data - Danielle Harris - CREEM
Danielle Harris
CREEM

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“Eavesdropping on whales: working on the challenges of estimating cetacean abundance using passive acoustic data”

 

Acoustic data are increasingly being used to infer cetacean abundance or density.  Recordings of the vocalisations of many species are being collected from both dedicated and opportunistic surveys.  In some circumstances, standard abundance estimation methods can be used to analyse the acoustic data.  However, abundance estimation methods may need to be adapted or novel methods created, especially for use with opportunistic datasets.  In this seminar, I aim to (a) give a general overview of abundance estimation using passive acoustic data and (b) highlight some of the current research areas by focusing on two specific examples.  The first example involves adapting distance sampling methodology to deal with marine mammals at depth.  The motivation for this work came from two sources: monitoring deep diving beaked whales using acoustic equipment towed by ships, and a recently completed project that investigated the potential to monitor fin whales using Ocean Bottom Seismometers.  The second example involves the development of an abundance estimation approach where only the direction to a calling animal is known.  This work is part of a new project that is utilising the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty network of instruments (primarily designed to detect nuclear weapons testing) to monitor blue and fin whales. 

 

host: Dr Janine Illian

refID: 1522

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03 Mar 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Negative social information, mate-choice copying and species diversity
Dr Susana Verala
University of Aveiro, Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies

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Numerous field and laboratory experiments have shown that many species have the capacity for social learning, including mate-choice decisions that can be influenced by witnessing the mating decisions of others. This phenomenon, known as mate-choice copying, is a type of non-genetic information than can increase behavioural plasticity and cause genetic changes across generations.
 
The impact of mate-choice copying to species evolutionary changes is still controversial, however, with theory predicting faster evolution and mathematical models finding frequency dependent effects that may cancel out the fixation of an allele via the process of copying.
 
Here I will present a new numerical model of mate-choice copying that follows the population genetics tradition, consisting in tracking allele frequencies in a population over time under scenarios with and without copying. In contrast to previous evolutionary models, my co-authors and I considered both positive and negative social information because many mating systems are driven by males in pursuit of a mate, and female refusal of copulation may provide negative social information.
 
The inclusion of negative social information to mate-choice copying helps the spread of a novel trait, thus contributing to species diversification, even if female innate mate-choice preference is biased towards the common male-type. I will argue that the presence or absence of copying might simply mirror the associated cost-benefit relationship of the mating system of a given species, and suggest how to test this prediction.
 
All Welcome!

http://www.cesam.ua.pt/index.php?tabela=pessoaldetail&menu=95&user=664

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1539

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26 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Why do penguins inhale before dives?
Prof Katsufumi Sato
Atmosphere and Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo

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25 Feb 2015
2:00 PM
The Observatory
Buchanan Gardens, Seminar room

Additive smooth models in general
Prof Simon Wood
University of Bath, Mathematical Sciences

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Coffee & biscuits at 1.45pm in the resource area.

Abstract:
Regression models for independent exponential family responses built using random effects and penalized reduced rank spline smoothers are popular, with the link between smoothers and random effects providing a reliable computational and inferential framework for their practical use. This talk will discuss a framework for more general models built in terms of smooth functions. Examples includes Tweedie (with unknown power parameter), negative binomial (with unknown 'theta'), beta, scaled t and ordered categorical additive smooth regression, as well as additive Cox proportional hazard models, GAMLSS models such as zero inflated Poisson and Gaussian location scale models, and multivariate Gaussian additive models. Methods for smoothing parameter selection, and model selection will be covered along with example applications.

http://www.maths.bath.ac.uk/~sw283/

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refID: 1534

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25 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Quantitative Temporal Viromics : a new approach to investigate host-pathogen interaction
Dr Michael Weekes
University of Cambridge, Cambridge Immunology Network

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24 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Scaling up: Understanding Landscape Patterns into processes in answer to conservation needs
Dr Sandra Luque
University of St Andrews

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Safeguarding biodiversity has been one of the most important issues on the environmental and habitat policies agenda since 1990's. The problem remains in terms of decisions and knowledge on where to set appropriate conservation targets.  Hence, we need detailed and reliable spatial information about habitat structure and composition and methods for estimating this information over the whole spatio-temporal domain. In answer to this target, Dr Luque will provide examples of different species distribution models and coupled methods using remote sensing techniques. She will also introduce the services of THEIA Land Data Centre in France to discuss on potential cooperation strategies.
 
All welcome!

http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/contact/staffProfile.aspx?sunid=sl208

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1535

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24 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Medicine Seminar Series: The ABAD enzyme as a therapeutic target in Alzheimer's disease AND A new approach on Mycoplasma amphoriforme genome
Patrick Guest and Miguel Pinheiro
School of Medicine

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 Patrick Guest: The ABAD enzyme as a therapeutic target in Alzheimer's disease
 
Miguel Pinheiro: A new approach on Mycoplasma amphoriforme genome
 

host: medsem@st-andrews.ac.uk

refID: 1506

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20 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Sleepers creepers? Evidence of Pacific sleeper shark predation on Steller sea lions and implications for Alaskan fisheries
Dr Markus Horning
Marine Mammal Institute, Oregon State University

click for details

http://mmi.oregonstate.edu/markus-horning

host: Dr Bernie McConnell

refID: 1481

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19 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: The perception of hydrodynamic stimuli
Dr Wolf Hanke
University of Rostock

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17 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae seminar room

CBD Seminar series: Use and misuse of comparative methods in the study of adaptation
Thomas F Hansen
University of Oslo, Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis

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13 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: How elephants grow old
Dr Virpi Lummaa
University of Sheffield, Dept. of Animal and Plant Sciences

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Dr Lummaa investigates the ecological causes and evolutionary consequences of variation in reproductive success, longevity and life-history strategies within and between different human populations.

Ageing involves reduced fertility, mobility and ability to combat disease, but some individuals cope with growing old better than others. Such between-individual differences in ageing pattern and their underlying causes are rarely studied in long-lived species. One of the longest-lived terrestrial mammals with detailed life-long records available to them are Asian elephants employed in logging industry in Myanmar during the last 100 years. This population constitutes the largest (~5,000) remaining population of captive elephants in the world. Half of the elephants are captive-born, and half are caught from wild at around 5 years of age.
The elephants live in forest camps, and are used during the day as riding, transport and draught animals. At night they forage in their family groups unsupervised and encounter tame and wild conspecifics in forests; breeding rates are natural with most calves thought to be sired by wild bulls. Using detailed records maintained by the Myanmar Timber Industry for 5 generations of such working elephants, I will investigate (1) How long do females live and reproduce for? (2) Does reproduction cost in the short and long-term? (3) Do the costs depend on age? (4) What are the proximate causes? The persistence of wild elephants in Myanmar is tightly linked to the success of the captive population, since the current mortality and birth rates do not meet the needs of the timber industry and elephants must be captured from the wild to augment the workforce. Our research aims to determine factors affecting health, fertility and mortality rates in the captive population and devising strategies to improve them.

http://myanmar-timber-elephant.group.shef.ac.uk/

All welcome!

https://www.shef.ac.uk/aps/staff-and-students/acadstaff/lummaa

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1527

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12 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: The interplay between social structure and culture among sperm whales AND TBA
Mauricio Cantor AND Joseph Kenworthy

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06 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Antimicrobial Resistance - a threat to humanity
Professor Dame Sally Davies, FMedSci, DBE, FRS
UK Chief Medical Officer

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04 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: On growth and proliferation - growth control in animal cells
Dr. Mikael Björklund
University of Dundee, College of Life Sciences

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03 Feb 2015
1:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

School of Medicine Research Seminar Series: Inflammation as a cause of myocardial infarction
Professor David Crossman
University of St Andrews, Dean of Medicine

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refID: 1519

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31 Jan 2015
3:00 PM
Other
Byre Theatre

A Celebration of Oceania Cultures & Marine Environments: Pitcairn Marine Reserve
Jacqui Christian
Pitcairn Island Government

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In 2013, the Pitcairn Islands Government invited the National Geographic & Pew Conservation to undertake an expedition to look at Pitcairn’s' coral reefs - which resulted in the discovery of pristine reefs - http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/explore/pristine-seas/pitcairn/ and an initiative to create what would be the world's largest marine park and sustainable tourism. Ms Jacqui Christian from the Pitcairn Island Government will be visiting St Andrews, January 30th - 31st, to discuss life on Pitcairn, the current status of the marine park initiative, and to discuss the Pitcairn's interest in oceanographic and sustainability research.
 
Ms Jacqui Christian will be giving a public talk at the Byre Theatre on Saturday January 31st. All staff and families are warmly invited to attend.
 

http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/explore/pristine-seas/pitcairn/

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refID: 1518

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29 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Osmolytes and osmoregulation in euryhaline teleosts AND Field measurements of the detection function of Blainville's beaked whale (Mesoplodon densirostris) using passive acoustics
Clare Degan AND Kalliopi-Charitomeni (Popi) Gkikopoulou
St Andrews University

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29 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
Irvine Building
Seminar Room 310

Environmental Change Research Group Seminar Series: The largest peatland complex in Amazonia: carbon, vegetation and long-term ecosystem dynamics
Freddie Draper
University of Leeds

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Freddie Draper is a 3rd year PhD student from the University of Leeds.
 
The Pastaza Marañon foreland basin in North-east Peru has recently been found to harbour extensive peatlands that are known to store large quantities of carbon and contain a diverse range of ecosystem types. However, much uncertainty remains regarding the quantity of carbon stored within the basin, and very little is known of the vegetation found in the peatlands. In this seminar I will present two things: Firstly, a new quantification of the peatland above- and below-ground carbon stock that uses a novel data fusion approach, encompassing both optical and radar remote sensing products alongside extensive field measurements. Secondly, I will present contemporary and historical vegetation (pollen) data from over 80 forest plots and four peat cores, providing new insights into vegetation dynamics through both space and time in these peatland ecosystems.
 
If you are interested in the carbon part of this work, you can find more information here:
http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/9/12/124017/article
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-30448519
 
The part about contemporary and historical vegetation is new and exciting and not yet published… so you’ll have to come along and hear about it!

http://www.geog.leeds.ac.uk/people/f.draper

host: Dr Katy Roucoux

refID: 1485

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27 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Understanding why migrant birds are declining
Dr Will Cresswell
University of St Andrews, Centre for Biological Diversity

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One third of European breeding bird species winter in Africa and most of these species are showing declines in the breeding populations relative to species that do not migrate. The suggestion is clearly that some aspect of migration or wintering ecology is contributing to the decline of migrants. I will discuss what we know and what we don’t know about migrant ecology and in particular their connectivity (linkage between breeding and wintering areas) and site fidelity (reuse of wintering sites). From what we do know, these aspects suggest that variation in the population dynamics of any migrant species is inevitable because they are pre-adapted to climate change, but this actually leads to population resilience. These pre-adaptions to climate change, however, make them more susceptible to anthropogenic habitat change leading to overall lower population resilience and the observed declines.

All welcome!

http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/contact/staffProfile.aspx?sunid=wrlc

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1492

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22 Jan 2015
6:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

Climate Change and Global Food Security
Professor David Battisti
University of Washington

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Professor David Battisti
Visiting Carnegie Professor
Tamaki Endowed Chair of Atmospheric Sciences
University of Washington

‘Climate Change and Global Food Security’
 
Introduced by the Principal of the University of St Andrews

Thursday January 22nd 18:00 - 19:00

Medical & Biological Sciences Building, North Haugh

By the end of the century, the season averaged growing temperature will very likely exceed the highest temperature ever recorded throughout the tropics and subtropics. By 2050, the increase in temperature alone is projected to cause a 20% reduction in the yield of all of the major grains (maize, wheat, rice and soybeans). The breadbasket countries in the midlatitudes will experience marked increases in year-to-year volatility in crop production. Increasing stresses on the major crops due to climate change, coupled with the increasing demand for food due to increasing population and development, present significant challenges to achieving global food security.

Drinks reception to follow

http://www.atmos.washington.edu/~david/

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refID: 1477

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21 Jan 2015
9:00 AM
Other

Linux for Genomics Course at the University of Edinburgh

University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Genomics

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LINUX FOR GENOMICS COURSE
Wednesday 21 January 2015, 09:00 - 17:00, University of Edinburgh

This 1-day workshop is specifically aimed at people without any command-line experience.

The following topics will be covered: - Introduction to Linux - Getting out of trouble - File system - File manipulation - Accessing files - Pipes and redirects - Filtering / manipulating file content - Shell scripts - Process management - BEDTools - bioawk - seqtk - SAMtools - tabix

More information about this workshop, including how to register, can be found at here.

Daniel Barker

https://genomics.ed.ac.uk/linux-genomics

host: Dr Daniel Barker

refID: 1446

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20 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Chemical and enzymatic methods for the synthesis of complex modules
Dr Alison R H Narayan
University of Michigan, Life Sciences Institute

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19 Jan 2015
9:30 AM
Other
LTA, Physics Building

Postgraduate Conference

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POSTGRADUATE CONFERENCE

19 and 20 JANUARY 2015

LECTURE THEATRE A, PHYSICS BUILDING, NORTH HAUGH

 

An invitation is extended to all academic staff and supervisors of postgraduate students in the School of Biology.  This is a great opportunity for both staff and students to hear about what your colleagues are doing and to support them!

 

All postgraduate students are required to attend the conference.

 

First year students will produce one slide and talk for one minute on their research project.

 

Second year students will present their research work as a poster presentation.

 

Third year students will present their research work as a talk.

 

The conference will be followed by a ceilidh on the Tuesday evening which is free to all attendees.  Tickets will be available from the registration desk during the conference.

host: Mrs Joyce Haynes

refID: 1203

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16 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

CANCELLED/SOI seminar: Passionate about plankton and why you should be too
Prof Nicholas Owens
University of Plymouth, Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science

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Professor Owens is the Director of the Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science (SAHFOS) based in Plymouth and Professor of Ocean Science at the University of Plymouth.

http://www.sahfos.ac.uk/about-us/staff-profiles.aspx

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refID: 1468

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15 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

SOI seminar: Observing the Southern Ocean with instrumented seals
Dr Fabien Roquet
Stockholm University, Dept of Meteorology

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Abstract: Southern Ocean seals instrumented with CTD sensors have become an invaluable source of data in the last decade, providing year-round hydrographic observations in the remote Antarctic areas that are usually difficult, if not impossible, to reach. In this talk, I will discuss some of the latest scientific results that have been made possible only thanks to the seal contribution.
 
Fabien Roquet from the Department of Meteorology at the Stockholm University, formerly of the  Department of Earth Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is here at SMRU until Thursday in case you want to have a chat with him.

http://www.misu.su.se/about-us/contact/staff/fabien-roquet-1.139123

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refID: 1472

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12 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
Bute
Lecture Theatre D

PhD Research Student Lunchtime Chat: FIRE SAFETY
Dr Christine Milford Linton
University of St Andrews, Environmental Health and Safety Services

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09 Jan 2015
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Evolution by duplication - mechanistic analysis of recombination in poliovirus
Prof. David Evans
University of Warwick, School of Life Science

click for details

16 Dec 2014
9:45 AM
MBS

Launch of Global Health Implementation Programme
Various
School of Medicine

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09.45 – 12.30 -   Session 1: Scottish Funded Initiatives at the College of Medicine, Blantyre, Malawi -  Seminar Room 1

14.00 – 16.45     Session  2: Faculty of Medicine and Student Engagement; Lecture Theatre, School of Medicine

17.15                 Session 3: Professor Will Stones, Ann Gloag Chair of Global Health Implementation, will deliver his Inaugural Lecture "“Delivering Women’s Health in the Developing World”   in the Lecture Theatre, Medical and Biological Sciences Building.    The Principal will take the Chair and the Dean of Medicine will give the vote of thanks.

The full programme can be found at the link below:

http://medicine.st-andrews.ac.uk/documents/Global_Health_Implementation_event_16_Dec.pdf 

 

host: Miss Karen Ross

refID: 1460

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15 Dec 2014
1:00 PM
Bute
Computer Suite

CANCELLED/PhD Research Student Lunchtime Chat: ELECTRONIC RESOURCES, DATABASES AND JOURNALS
Ms Vicki Cormie, Senior Academic Liaison Librarian (Science & Medicine)
University of St Andrews

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This session previously formed part of the induction programme and is particularly relevant to students in their first year of postgraduate studies.  However, postgraduate students in all years are invited to contribute to this discussion.

host: Mrs Joyce Haynes

refID: 1462

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09 Dec 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: The functional significance of problem solving performance in the wild
Dr John Quinn
University College Cork, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences

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Studying the evolutionary ecology of cognitive traits among individuals in the wild is in its infancy and many challenges remain to be overcome. Here I will discuss some of these challenges and offer an overview of work in my group on innovative problem solving performance in the great tit as a measure of “candidate" cognitive variation. Despite the challenges that this approach faces, it has the potential to shed light on the kinds of evolutionary and ecological processes that act on cognitive variation.

http://research.ucc.ie/profiles/D026/jquinn

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1459

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08 Dec 2014
12:30 PM
Bute
Lecture Theatre A

Joint meeting of NEXTGEN BIOINFORMATICS USER GROUP and SCOTTISH PHYLOGENY DISCUSSION GROUP
Dr Jo Dicks and various

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Attendance is free, but please register in advance!

https://genomics.ed.ac.uk/ngbug/next-meeting-st-andrews

Monday 8 December, 2014 12.30 to 16.40 (lunch from 12.30 to 13.30)

Invited speaker - Dr Jo DICKS (National Collection of Yeast Cultures http://www.ncyc.co.uk , Institute of Food Research): "Estimating and exploiting yeast NGS-based phylogenies for industrial biotechnology".

Contributed talks -
Emma CARROLL: "Assessing the influence of migratory culture on connectivity in the southern right whale"
Deepali BASOYA: "Viral/host gene expression profiles in lymphoid and feather follicle epithelial (FFE) cells infected with Marek's disease virus"
Miguel PINHEIRO: "Determine dimorphic nature of the zoonotic parasite Plasmodium knowlesi".
Georgios KOUTSOVOULOS: "Reconstructing the phylogenetic relationships of nematodes using draft genomes and transcriptomes".
Joanne TAYLOR: "Environment and host genotype influence on fungal endophyte assemblages of Scots Pine".

Attendance is free, but please register in advance.

DETAILS AND REGISTRATION:

https://genomics.ed.ac.uk/ngbug/next-meeting-st-andrews

--
Daniel Barker
http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/staff/db60
The University of St Andrews is a charity registered in Scotland :
No SC013532

https://genomics.ed.ac.uk/ngbug/next-meeting-st-andrews

host: Dr Daniel Barker

refID: 1458

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03 Dec 2014
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: High-throughput decoding of drug-resistance and virulence mechanisms in African trypanosomes
Prof. David Horn
College of Life Sciences, University of Dundee

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02 Dec 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Expert on conservation conflict management, particularly the politics of predators
Prof Steve Redpath
University of Aberdeen, Biological and Environmental Sciences

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01 Dec 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae seminar room 2

PhD Research Student Lunchtime Chat: How Grants and Fellowships are Reviewed
Prof Mike Ritchie
University of St Andrews, Centre for Biological Diversity

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All postgraduate students in the School of Biology are invited to attend.
Although attendance is not compulsory, a register of attendance will be taken to monitor the uptake of sessions and supervisors are encouraged to allow their students to attend.

host: Mrs Joyce Haynes

refID: 1455

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27 Nov 2014
3:00 PM
Other
United College, School 1

I-POWER Lecture Series: Evolution: the Quaternary tale
Professor Keith Bennett
Queens University Belfast

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This lecture series and will be followed by a reception in room 310 of the Irvine Building.

Timing: 3-4.30pm, Thursday 27th November 2014
Place: School 1 lecture theatre

Darwin’s On the Origin of Species has led to a theory of evolution with
a mass of empirical detail on population genetics below species level,
together with heated debate on the details of macroevolutionary patterns
above species level. Most of the main principles are clear and generally
accepted, notably that life originated once and has evolved over time by
descent with modification.
However, the last two million years (Quaternary period) have been a
period of especially high amplitude environmental change across the
Earth, culminating in continental-scale glaciation in the northern
hemisphere. The periodicity of this change is much higher frequency
(20-40[-100] thousand years) than the intervals between lineage splits
for most multicellular taxa (often millions of years or longer), and
much higher amplitude than earlier in Earth history. Yet environmental
change of the Quaternary is typical used to 'explain' speciation events
and higher order lineage splits.
The fossil and molecular phylogenetic records of the response of life on
Earth to Quaternary climatic changes indicate that the evolution of
diversity can best understood in terms of nonlinear dynamics of the
relationship between genotype and phenotype, and between climate and
environments. The Earth’s biodiversity is in a state of continuous
increase and shows, continuously, discrepancies between genetic and
morphological data in time and space. The high amplitude and high
frequency changes of the Quaternary have surprisingly little impact on
this pattern.

Biography: Keith Bennett has been Professor of Late-Quaternary Environmental Change
at Queen’s University Belfast since 2007, following eight years as
Professor of Quaternary Geology at Uppsala University. He has been
working on the spread of trees on continental scales for many years,
with fieldwork experience across the world. He is interested in all
aspects of the interplay of evolutionary and ecological factors in
controlling the distribution of organisms, using ancient DNA and pollen
data. He received a Royal Society - Wolfson Research Merit Award in
2007, and was elected Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2011.
 

http://www.qub.ac.uk/schools/gap/Staff/AcademicStaff/ProfKeithBennett/

host: Dr Katy Roucoux

refID: 1452

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27 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
Irvine Building
Forbes Room (room 409)

Environmental Change Research Group: Bogs and woodlands at the uttermost part of the Earth
Professor Keith Bennett
Queens University Belfast

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Keith Bennett has been Professor of Late-Quaternary Environmental Change
at Queen’s University Belfast since 2007, following eight years as
Professor of Quaternary Geology at Uppsala University. He has been
working on the spread of trees on continental scales for many years,
with fieldwork experience across the world. He is interested in all
aspects of the interplay of evolutionary and ecological factors in
controlling the distribution of organisms, using ancient DNA and pollen
data. He received a Royal Society - Wolfson Research Merit Award in
2007, and was elected Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2011.

http://www.qub.ac.uk/schools/gap/Staff/AcademicStaff/ProfKeithBennett/

host: Dr Katy Roucoux

refID: 1451

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27 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: From local habitat to global climate change: the scale of influences on the ecology of coastal marine communities.
Prof Michael Burrows
SAMS - The Scottish Association for Marine Science

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26 Nov 2014
1:30 PM
Other
Lecture Theatre G10, Ground Floor, Darwin Building

10th Scottish Chromatin Group Meeting at University of Edinburgh
Various

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Scottish Chromatin Group Meeting
Rm G10, Darwin Building, King's Buildings, Edinburgh
26th November 2014


The next Scottish Chromatin Group Meeting is on Wednesday 26th November. We will provide coffee and biscuits during the afternoon and there will be drinks afterwards. If you arrive early there is lunch available in the Swann building canteen (on 7th floor).

Some people have mentioned that my emails are not being widely distributed (possibly due to email list restrictions), so please forward the email across you lab / department.

10th Scottish Chromatin Group meeting
Wed 26th November 2014
Lecture Theatre G10, Ground Floor, Darwin Building, King’s Buildings, University of Edinburgh

Programme
1.30      Shaun Cowley (University of Leicester)
Histone Deacetylase (HDAC) 1 and 2 are essential for pluripotency and cell division in mouse embryonic stem cells
2.10      Steven Pollard (University of Edinburgh)
Epigenetic programming and reprogramming of glioblastoma stem cells
2.40      Nicola Wiechens (University of Dundee)
Chromatin Remodelling at Boundary Elements
3.10      Coffee
3.50      Taranjit Singh Rai (University of the West of Scotland)
Histone chaperone HIRA orchestrates a dynamic chromatin landscape in senescence and is required for suppression of neoplasia
4.20      Jessica Downs (University of Sussex)
Chromatin remodelling enzymes and the DNA damage response
5.00      Drinks

We are updating our mailing list; if there are new people in your group please let us know.
 
Best wishes
Adam West (The University of Glasgow)
Nick Gilbert (The University of Edinburgh)
Andrew Wood (The University of Edinburgh)
 
Online: www.chromatingroup.org
Twitter: @chromatingroup  #epigenetics
 
Nick Gilbert, Professor of Chromatin Biology
MRC Human Genetics Unit, Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine
The University of Edinburgh
 
Telephone +44 (0) 131 332 2471 x2414, Fax +44 (0) 131 467 8456, Nick.Gilbert@ed.ac.uk
www.chromatinlab.org @chromatinlab

www.chromatingroup.org

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refID: 1453

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25 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Evolutionary ecology of life-histories in the wild: from polyandry to migration
Prof Jane Reid
University of Aberdeen, School of Biological Sciences

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Overarching objectives in evolutionary ecology are to understand the genetic and environmental causes of variation in life-history among individual population members, and to understand the consequences of such variation for population dynamics and persistence. The causes of variation in reproductive strategies, dispersal and migration are of particular interest, because these life-history components shape the dynamics of alleles and individual organisms in time and space.
 
In her talk, Prof Reid will illustrate how she use long-term studies of wild bird populations to quantify the causes and consequences of individual variation in reproductive and movement strategies. First, she will use quantitative genetic approaches to estimate genetic (co)variances underlying extra-pair reproduction in song sparrows, thereby quantifying forces that might maintain female multiple mating (polyandry). Second, she will illustrate relationships between migration, reproductive success and survival in European shags, thereby investigating the processes that might maintain variation in migration strategy.

https://www.abdn.ac.uk/sbs/people/profiles/jane.reid

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1450

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25 Nov 2014
9:30 AM
Other
Lower College Hall

Distinguished Lecture Series: Systems Biology: Morphisms of Reaction Networks that Couple Structure to Function
Luca Cardelli
Microsoft Research and University of Oxford

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The mech­an­isms under­ly­ing com­plex bio­lo­gical sys­tems are routinely rep­res­en­ted as net­works. Net­work kin­et­ics is widely stud­ied, and so is the con­nec­tion between net­work struc­ture and beha­vior. But it is the rela­tion­ships between net­work struc­tures that can reveal sim­il­ar­ity of mechanism.

We define morph­isms (map­pings) between reac­tion net­works that estab­lish struc­tural con­nec­tions between them. Some morph­isms imply kin­etic sim­il­ar­ity, and yet their prop­er­ties can be checked stat­ic­ally on the struc­ture of the net­works. In par­tic­u­lar we can determ­ine stat­ic­ally that a com­plex net­work will emu­late a sim­pler net­work: it will repro­duce its kin­et­ics for all cor­res­pond­ing choices of reac­tion rates and ini­tial con­di­tions. We use this prop­erty to relate the kin­et­ics of many com­mon bio­lo­gical net­works of dif­fer­ent sizes, also relat­ing them to a fun­da­mental pop­u­la­tion algorithm. Thus, struc­tural sim­il­ar­ity between reac­tion net­works can be revealed by net­work morph­isms, elu­cid­at­ing mech­an­istic and func­tional aspects of com­plex net­works in terms of sim­pler networks.

http://lucacardelli.name

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refID: 1449

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24 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
Purdie Building
Lecture Theatre D

CANCELLED/BSRC Seminar Series: Tracking the proton pathways in respiratory enzymes of the heme-copper oxidase superfamily: Insights from the structure-based simulations
Dr Andrei Pisliakov
University of Dundee

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21 Nov 2014
4:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

American Medical Alumni Lecture: Medicine in the Information Age
Professor Andrew Morris, FRSE, FMedSci
Chief Scientist Health, Scottish Government

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20 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: The tale of amphioxus: Gaining insight into the evolution of chordate tail development and regeneration. AND Statistical methods for estimating population connectivity of marine species.
Simon Dailey AND Zoe Allcock

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19 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

CBD Seminar series: Structural basis for antibacterial peptide transport across membranes
Dr Konstaninos Beis
Imperial College London Membrane Protein Lab

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18 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
BMS
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Regional mixing and local sorting: how coastal currents and and steep environmental gradients shape the genotypic structure of salt marsh plants
Prof Alistair Jump
University of Stirling

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Historic reclamation of salt marshes for urban development, agriculture and grazing led to a dramatic reduction of this habitat around the UK coasts while modern flood embankments act in combination with rising sea level to further reduce salt marsh area.  Given their high importance for ecosystem service provision and biodiversity conservation, there are now efforts to reverse this decline and restore salt marshes throughout the UK.  Work at the species level has identified that colonisation of restored marshes is rapid, but that a ‘complete’ community is slow to develop.  However, there is little understanding of recovery of diversity with species, despite demonstrated links between genetic diversity and function in other costal systems.  

Prof Jump will present findings from a current project looking at the development of intraspecific diversity over time and space during salt marsh restoration. I will discuss how the patterns that we observe can provide us with important information on how these systems function and consequently, implications for landscape scale management of restored and natural marshes.

http://rms.stir.ac.uk/converis-stirling/person/11070

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1445

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14 Nov 2014
10:00 AM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

New Opportunities in IMI(Innovative Medicines Initiative)2
Dr Hugh Laverty
Innovative Medicines Initiative [IMI] Executive Office

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13 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: Carrying a tag, what a drag - Impacts of animal-borne sensors on swimming behaviour of seals.
Chris McKnight

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12 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Lecture Theatre

Assessing and predicting the impacts of underwater noise on marine mammals to help inform marine spatial planning
Rachel Shucksmith
NAFC Marine Centre, University of the Highlands and Islands

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12 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Functional analysis of the mechanisms of plant parasitism in nematodes
Dr John Jones
The James Hutton Institute

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11 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Ecological speciation across altitudinal gradients
Prof Richard Abbott
University of St Andrews, Centre for Biological Diversity

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About one quarter of Earth’s land surface is mountainous and hosts at least one-third of terrestrial plant species’ diversity. In these areas altitudinal gradients are common and are characterized by steep changes of the physical and biotic environment over relatively short distances. Such changes pose recurrent challenges to successful plant adaptation.

Prof Abbott will summarize recent work conducted on the genetic basis of local adaptation and reproductive isolation between two sister species of ragwort (Senecio) that grow at high and low altitudes, respectively, on Mount Etna, Sicily, and which diverged from each other very recently. The results provide an insight into the genetic basis of ecological speciation across an altitudinal gradient.

http://biology.st-andrews.ac.uk/contact/staffProfile.aspx?sunID=rja

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1438

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06 Nov 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: What have we learnt about ocean acidification and what is the way forward?
Prof Jean-Pierre Gattuso
Laboratoire d'Océanographie de Villefranche, France

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30 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: Ecosystem approach to fisheries
Prof Simon Jennings
Chief Science Advisor at the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), Lowestoft

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Simon Jennings is a Chief Science Advisor at the Centre for 
Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), Lowestoft. Through Cefas, he advises national and international bodies on marine environmental management, with a focus on issues relating to biodiversity and fishery-environment interactions. He is a former Chair of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, Advisory Committee on Ecosystems. Simon is also active as a research scientist, and works with colleagues to understand the structure and function of marine systems, to assess human and environmental impacts on populations, communities and ecosystems and to develop and apply tools to support marine environmental and fisheries management. This research is not strongly tied to specific approaches, scales or systems and spans the continuum from fundamental to applied. Research outputs have led to new methods of marine monitoring, assessment and management. Simon also holds a Chair of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia, where he works for one day each week to develop and facilitate research collaborations between the University of East Anglia and Cefas; a contribution to the strategic alliance signed by these institutions in 2008.

host: Dr Dave Ferrier

refID: 1394

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28 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
Bute
Lecture Theatre D

CBD Seminar Series: Social and antisocial behaviour in parasitic wasps
Dr Ian Hardy
University of Nottingham, School of Biosciences

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After introducing parasitic, or ‘parasitoid’, wasps  of which there are many thousands of species worldwide, Dr Hardy will discuss species in which adult wasps fight each other directly for vital resources and outline what determines which contestant wins. He will then discuss some very unusual parasitoids that do not fight, but several mothers look after broods of offspring communally (termed quasi-sociality). He will offer an explanation for this behaviour.  Both fighting and non-fighting wasps tend to produce mainly females in their offspring groups. The reasons for biased sex ratios in fighting wasps are well understood but the sex ratios of quasi-social wasps require explanations that are novel among parasitoids.

http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/biosciences/people/ian.hardy

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1430

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28 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
BMS
Lecture Theatre

Practical and Research Skills in Life Sciences – numbers and cost versus quality
Professor Richard J Reece
University of Manchester, Gene Regulation and Cellular Biotechnology

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Professor Reece is currently the Associate Vice-President for Teaching, Learning and Students for The University of Manchester. This role encompasses a variety wide-raging cross-Faculty institutional issues

The major roles of the Associate Vice-President for Teaching, Learning and Students are to devise and implement teaching and learning strategy, co-ordinate and so add value to the teaching and learning priorities of the University, set the highest international standards for our teaching and learning, and co-ordinate the strategic development of the Manchester Learning Environment.

Prof Reece will give an overview of the restructuring of the Biology-related degrees and practical skills at Manchester.

http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/Richard.reece/

host: Dr Jacqueline Nairn

refID: 1431

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24 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
Dyers Brae
Seminar Room

Transcriptome assembly and other computational adventures in biology
Dr Martyn Winn,
STFC Daresbury Laboratory

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All welcome.

host: Dr Daniel Barker

refID: 1426

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23 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar:Peralkaline Igneous Complexes: The Frontier of Rare-Earth Deposits AND Abundance and habitat use of bottlenose dolphins in St Andrews Bay – increasing the knowledge outside the Moray Firth SAC
Emma Hunt AND Monica Arso Civil

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16 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: Biological influences on Sediment Dynamics: an interdisciplinary study. AND Carrying a tag, what a drag - Impacts of animal-borne sensors on swimming behaviour of seals.
Julie Hope AND Chris McKnight

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15 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
Bute
Lecture Theatre D

CBD Seminar Series: Genomic and transcriptomic analysis of plant parasitism by nematodes
John Jones
The James Hutton Institute

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14 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Responses to climate change in birds: Bergmann's rule and the role of evolutionary constraints
Celine Teplitsky
CESCO - Centre d'Ecologie et des Sciences de la Conservation

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14 Oct 2014
11:00 AM
SOI
Gatty Lecture Theatre

Disentangling the Value of Water Quality Improvements Across Different Ecosystem Services
Prof Robert J Johnston
Clark University

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Disentangling the Value of Water Quality Improvements Across Different Ecosystem Services
Join us for a Webinar on October 14

Space is limited.      Reserve your Webinar seat now at:    https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/432053943
Ecosystem service valuation is complicated by the many direct and indirect ways that ecological processes can affect people.  Lack of attention to these multiple and sometimes overlapping effects can lead to value estimates that omit, double count, or otherwise incorrectly estimate ecosystem service values. For example, analyses used to value ecosystem services often confuse final ecosystem services with ecological functions that provide indirect benefit. These problems can be exacerbated by inadequate coordination between economic and ecological science. This seminar discusses the approaches and challenges involved in disentangling aquatic ecosystem services and estimating valid and defensible economic values. Methods, data and results are illustrated using a case study of riparian land restoration and aquatic ecosystem improvement in south coastal Maine, USA. Economic values are estimated using an application of discrete choice experiments coupled with targeted ecological data and modeling. All approaches were developed through coordinated efforts of natural and social scientists. Among other issues, the presentation emphasizes the use of coordinated approaches to identify and disentangle the unique contributions of different ecosystem services to human well-being, quantify changes in services resulting from alternative policy interventions, and estimate valid and consistent economic values.  Results demonstrate the different ways that riparian land contributes to aquatic ecosystem services valued by the public and the coordinated use of economic and ecological models to estimate these values.

Robert J. Johnston is Director of the George Perkins Marsh Institute and Professor of Economics at Clark University. Dr. Johnston is an environmental economist whose research addresses economic valuation, benefit transfer and ecosystem services, with an emphasis on aquatic, riparian and coastal systems.  His recent work has focused on the economics of coastal vulnerability and adaptation.
Title:
Disentangling the Value of Water Quality Improvements Across Different Ecosystem Services
Date:
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Time:
11:00 AM - 1:00 PM BST
After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.
System Requirements
PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 8, 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Mac®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.6 or newer
Mobile attendees
Required: iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phone or Android tablet

http://www.clarku.edu/faculty/facultybio.cfm?id=738

host: Dr Emma Defew

refID: 1425

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09 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: Cellular processes in marine protists: from evolution of excitability to phytoplankton responses to a changing ocean
Prof Colin Brownlee
Marine Biology Association, Plymouth and The University of Southampton

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07 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
Harold Mitchell
Dyers Brae Seminar Room

CBD Seminar Series: Eco-evolutionary feedback and the rediscovery of soft selection
Tim Coulson
Oxford University

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Eco-evolution is currently a hot topic in biology – it has recently been described as ‘the newest synthesis’.  But is it really anything new, or are we reinventing the wheel?  In this talk I shall argue that ideas underpinning eco-evolution have been around for close to a century.  I will then argue that, despite this, there is a need for better theory linking ecological and evolutionary dynamics.  I will then present novel theory and demonstrate how it can be applied to gain new understanding of the frequently reported patterns of ecological and evolutionary change occurring simultaneously in the field and the lab.
 

http://www.zoo.ox.ac.uk/people/view/coulson_t.htm

host: Dr Maria Dornelas

refID: 1413

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03 Oct 2014
11:00 AM
Bute
Lecture Theatre D

CBD Seminar series: Gender, Science and Myths of Merit
Prof Marlene Zuk
University of Minnesota, College of Biological Sciences

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02 Oct 2014
1:00 PM
SOI
Gatty Lecture theatre

SOI seminar: Project overview on social associations, relatedness, and group level sound production of killer whales (Orcinus orca) in Iceland AND Effects of ecological scaling on biodiversity patterns
Sara Tavares AND Laura Henriques Antao

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01 Oct 2014
4:00 PM
MBS
Lecture Theatre

BSRC Seminar Series: Genomes, genes and technology
Prof Ed Southern, FRS (Oxford University, Professor of Biochemistry Emeritus)
Oxford University, Professor of Biochemistry Emeritus

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The focus of this lecture will be discussing technology development for genomic and functional genomics analyses.

In the mid-1970s, Ed Southern developed a technique for transferring DNA from gels onto nitrocellulose paper; the Southern blotting. It quickly became a widespread technique and provided a template for mapping the human genome. The following Northern and Western blotting procedures have made a huge impact on the study of genes and proteins, significantly advancing biomedical research.

Later on, Ed made another crucial contribution with the development of microarray technology which allows parallelising large screening of biological material. Microarrays are widely used both in basic research as well as in clinical diagnostic settings.

Ed Southern, who is a Fellow of the Royal Society, has received the Royal Medal of the Royal Society of London in 1998, was made a Knight Bachelor in the June 2003 and was awarded the Lasker Award in 2005. Currently, Ed Southern is the Founder, Chairman and Chief Science Advisor of Oxford Gene Technology.

http://www.ogt.co.uk/about/company/management/board_members/professor_sir_edwin_southern

host: Dr Silvia Paracchini

refID: