By Stewart MacInnis
Spectrum Volume 20 Issue 33 - June 18, 1998
A scientist involved in cloning "Dolly" the sheep and the Nobel Laureate who invented the PCR made famous in the O.J. Simpson trial will be among the presenters at Virginia Tech's Biotechnology 2001 Conference on June 26 in Squires.
On June 27 the conference will turn to 20 workshops with an array of innovative activities for the high-school and community-college educators to take back to their classrooms and laboratories.
The event is organized by the university's Fralin Biotechnology Center and Division of Continuing Education, in collaboration with the National Association of Biology Teachers. It is designed to help science educators keep abreast of scientific discoveries and related developments in biotechnology. High-school and community-college faculty members, as well as other interested persons, are encouraged to attend.
Keith Campbell, a researcher with PPL Pharmaceuticals in Edinburgh, Scotland, will discuss the cloning of Dolly and the potential benefits that may flow from that event.
Kary Mullis, who invented the polymerase chain reaction--the PCR that makes possible much of biotechnology, including the DNA fingerprinting in criminal investigations--will make a presentation on "Enigmas of Science and Enigmas in the Public Funding of Science."
Friday's program also offers several other outstanding scientists.
Carole Cramer, Virginia Tech professor of plant pathology, physiology and weed science and vice president of research with Croptech Development Corporation of Blacksburg, will talk about "Transgenic Plants for Human Pharmaceutical and Vaccine Production."
"Gene Therapy and Gene Repair" is the topic of a talk by Ken Culver, director of gene-therapy research at Codon Pharmaceuticals of Gaithersburg, Md.
Terry Sharrer, curator of health sciences at the Smithsonian, will talk about "Cancer History and Gene Therapy Trials."
David Magnus of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania will address "Bioethical Implications of Mammalian Cloning."
And Paula Gregory, with the Division of Human Cancer Genetics at Ohio State University, will talk about "The Human Genome Project and Its Impact on Medicine."
The registration fee for the conference is $140. This fee includes refreshment breaks, lunch and barbecue on Friday, handouts, lectures and workshops (for high-school and community-college faculty members and subject to workshop size limits). The full-time student fee is $25 for Friday speakers only (lunch not included). Other members of the university community may attend the conference without charge; however, no lunch will be provided.
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