Oxford University Scientific Society - Michaelmas Term 2010

Viral Oncology

Professor Chris Boshoff, University College London - First Week - 13th October 2010

Chris Boshoff is a Professor of Cancer Medicine and the Director of both University College London Cancer Institute and the Cancer Research UK Viral Oncology Group. His research is focused on mechanisms by which viruses can induce malignancy. Professor Boshoff is a world leader in understanding Kaposi sarcoma, a type of cancer caused by the virus Kaposi sarcoma herpesvirus (KSHV).

The Age of Stupid

Film Night (Popcorn supplied!) - Second Week - 20th October 2010

The climate blockbuster stars Oscar-nominated Pete Postlethwaite as a man living in the devastated future world of 2055, looking at old footage and asking: why didn't we stop climate change when we had the chance? The film became one of the most talked-about films of the year and spawned the hugely-successful 10:10 campaign.

Adapted from: www.spannerfilms.net.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Dr Michael Chappell, University of Oxford - Third Week - 27th October 2010

Dr Chappell is a Deputy Group Leader within the PUMMA (Physiological Understanding through Modelling, Monitoring and Analysis) group, Institute of Biomedical Engineering in Oxford. In addition, he is also an Associate of the Centre for Functional MRI of the Brain. His research is on MRI methods that measure the brain health, with special focus on the integrity of the blood supply.

Kisspeptin (novel hormone)

Dr Waljit Dhillo, Imperial College London - Fourth Week - 3rd November 2010

Dr Dhillo is a Reader in Endocrinology & Metabolism and Consultant Endocrinologist, Imperial College London. He has been awarded the Royal College of Physicians Linacre Medal. More recently, Dr Dhillo has also won the American Endocrine Society Award for Excellence in Clinical Research, the British Society for Neuroscience Young Investigator Prize, and Royal College of Physicians Goulstonian Lectureship for his discovery on the novel hormone kisspeptin. Kisspeptin has received widespread media coverage due to its potential to be a novel therapy for infertility.

Females in Science (In association with Women's Initiative, Oxford Union)

Professor Dame Athene Donald, University of Cambridge - Fifth Week - 10th November 2010

Dame Athene Donald is a Professor of Experimental Physics and Fellow of Robinson College, Cambridge University. She has won numerous prizes and honours within her span as a distinguished scientist in Soft Matter and Biological Physics, for example the Founders Prize of the IOP Polymer Physics group and the Faraday Medal of the Institute of Physics, to name but a few. Professor Dame Donald's contributions to science have not only been recognised by her field of research. In 2009, she was the winner of L'Oreal/UNESCO's 'For Women in Science Laureate (Europe)' and Appointed Dame Commander of the British Empire for services to Physics. She will be speaking about her experiences as an eminent female scientist.

Hepatitis B Virus (HBV)

Professor Jean-Pierre Allain, University of Cambridge - Sixth Week - 17th November 2010

Professor Allain is the Principal Investigator and Head of Transfusion Medicine at Cambridge University, as well as an Honorary Professor at the Medical University of South China. His research is devoted to studying blood borne viruses, in particular HBV. This has not only a great impact on blood and transplant safety here in the UK, but also world-wide. Professor Allain chairs the transfusion committee in the University Hospital Blood Centre in Kumasi, Ghana.

Child Health in South-East Asia

Dr Elspeth Graham, University of St Andrews - Seventh Week - 24th November 2010

Dr Graham is currently Reader in Geography at St Andrews. Previously, she was Head of the School of Geography and Geosciences at the University and concurrently a Senior Research Fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore. The dual appointments allowed Dr Graham to research population and health geography. She is currently leading a large project investigating the important issue of child health and migrant parents in South-East Asia (CHAMPSEA).

Psychiatric Disorder of Depression (In association with the Psychology Society) [CANCELLED]

Professor Jonathan Flint, University of Oxford - Eighth Week - 1st December 2010

Professor Flint is Head of the Psychiatric Genetics Group at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics and was also the Michael Davys Professor of Neuroscience. His research is focused on genetic basis of psychiatric disorders, especially on origins of stress related conditions, such as anxiety and depression. The aim is to establish a starting point for developing better and more efficient therapies for anxiety and depression.

"What does a computational neuroscientist do in the philosophy department?"

Dr Anders Sandberg, James Martin research fellow, Oxford University - Eighth Week - 1st December 2010

Dr Sandberg is a researcher in the Future of Humanity Institute and focuses on societal and ethical issues surrounding human enhancement and new technology, as well as estimating the capabilities and underlying science of future technologies.

If that sounds a little bit too complicated ('human enhancement!') then come along to the talk and gain enlightenment.