Since at least the beginning of the written record, epidemics of infectious disease have swept through plant and animal populations, including humans, and altered the course of history. The unexpected, diverse, and seemingly sophisticated composition and behavior of these naturally-occurring epidemic agents has prompted many to proclaim Mother Nature to be a far more effective bioterrorist than Man could ever be. Yet, recent developments in the ongoing biology and biotechnology "revolution" may force us to reconsider this conclusion. New insights and capabilities in the life sciences, as illustrated by the recent creation of novel transmissible and virulent bird flu viruses in the laboratory, suggest that humans might rival Mother Nature for this dubious distinction.
WHAT: Is Nature or Man the Most Effective Bioterrorist?
WHO: Stanley Falkow, Professor of Microbiology & Immunology, Stanford, AND David Relman, Professor of Medicine, Stanford
WHEN: 6:00-7:45 PM, Sunday, September 23, 2012
WHERE: Namaste Hall, California Institute of Integral Studies, 1453 Mission Street ('tween 10th & 11th), San Francisco
HOW: A FREE science dialogue from Wonderfest & Ask a Scientist; $10 donation recommended; complimentary cheese and grapes will be served.
WHY: Because we're curious creatures
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A Wonderfest dialogue co-sponsored with Ask a Scientist (http://www.askascientistsf.com).