For the past 31 years, the Department of Biology has hosted the annual Perspectives in Biology Symposium in early November. This program brings three eminent biologists to Winston-Salem for an intensive and fun series of scholarly presentations for faculty from colleges and universities in the region. The speakers present state of the art information on diverse topics relevant to biology teaching and research. The PIB program is routinely attended by 60-80 biology faculty representing 30-35 institutions from NC, SC, VA, TN and MD, together with Wake Forest University professors and graduate students. So, mark your calendars! We look forward to seeing everyone on November 4-5, 2016. We welcome all new and returning participants!
Featured Speakers for 2016:
Michelle Barton, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Franz Goller, University of Utah
Stuart Pimm, Duke University
Overview of PIB 2016
The Wake Forest University Department of Biology looks forward to welcoming old friends and making new friends at PIB 2016, November 4 & 5, 2016. You’ll find the same basic schedule as in past years. The Friday afternoon seminar begins at 4 PM. The registration fee is $90 per attendee. We think that offering six seminars, a reception, a banquet, and lunch, PLUS Krispy Kreme for less than a hundred dollars means that we are still one of the best values in science.
Dr. Barton studies the basic mechanisms of regulated and aberrant gene expression during development, tissue regeneration and cancer, especially as dictated by chromatin structure modification and the p53-super family. Her laboratory uses a combination of in vitro, biochemical approaches and mouse models of p53 function.The Barton Laboratory is part of the Department of Epigenetics and Molecular Carcinogenesis, the Center for Stem Cell and Developmental Biology, and the Center for Cancer Epigenetics at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Dr. Barton is also Dean of the University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston. Our own Professor Ke Zhang was a graduate student in Dr. Barton’s laboratory. After Dr. Barton gave an outstanding seminar in our departmental series several years ago, we knew that we wanted her to come back for PIB!
Professor Goller studies the behavioral physiology of sound production and song learning in birds. His current projects focus on 1) physical mechanisms of sound production; 2) the motor coordination between all motor systems involved in singing; 3) coordination between vocal and visual displays; 4) motor aspects of vocal development; 5) acoustic models and song syntax; 6) energetics of song production. The integrative aspects of these studies at the interface of neurobiology and behavior provide a unique opportunity to bridge neural control of a complex learned behavior to its evolutionary and ecological relevance in the natural environment. Professor Goller is a friend and research colleague of one of our newest Biology Department professors, Dr. Matt Fuxjager. In addition to his appointment in the Utah Department of Biology, Professor Goller is also a member of the University of Utah Interdepartmental Program in Neuroscience.
Stuart Pimm, Doris Duke Professor of Conservation Ecology, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University
Stuart Pimm is a world leader in the study of present day extinctions and what can be done to prevent them. His research covers the reasons why species become extinct, how fast they do so, the global patterns of habitat loss and species extinction and, importantly, the management consequences of this research. He is the author of over 270 scientific papers and four books. The Institute of Scientific Information has ranked him as one of the most highly cited environmental scientists for over a decade.. His commitment to the interface between science and policy has lead to his testimony to both House and Senate Committees on the re-authorization of the Endangered Species Act. He was worked and taught in Africa on topics that relate to the conservation of wildlife and the ecosystems on which they depend. Other research areas include the Everglades of Florida and tropical forests in South America, especially the Atlantic Coast forest of Brazil and the northern Andes His international honors are numerous but include the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement(2010), the Dr. A.H. Heineken Prize for Environmental Sciences from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (2006), the Society for Conservation Biology’s Edward T. LaRoe III Memorial Award (2006), and the Marsh Award for Conservation Biology, from the Marsh Christian Trust (awarded by the Zoological Society of London in 2004). Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, awarded him the William Proctor Prize for Scientific Achievement in 2007. The PIB organizer, Susan Fahrbach, read his 2001 book titled The World According to Pimm: a Scientist Audits the Earth in 2001, and has wanted to meet this acclaimed scientist ever since!