How do our genes work?
Thursday, February 16 2017 at 7:30PM
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North End Social Club
60 Roff Avenue
Bedford MK41 7TW
Dr Kat Arney
What's the talk about?
The language of genes has become common in the media. We know they make your eyes blue, your hair curly or your nose straight. We're told that genes control the risk of cancer, heart disease, alcoholism or Alzheimer's. The cost of DNA sequencing has plummeted from billions of pounds to a few hundred, and gene-based advances in medicine hold huge promise.
There are 2.2 metres of DNA inside every one of your cells, encoding roughly 20,000 genes. These are the 'recipes' that tell our cells how to make the building blocks of life, along with all the control switches ensuring they're turned on and off at the right time and in the right place. But rather than a static string of genetic code, this is a dynamic, writhing biological library.
With the help of cats with thumbs, fish with hips and wobbly worms, Kat will unpack some of the mysteries in our DNA and explain the latest thinking about how our genes work.
Dr Kat Arney holds a degree in natural sciences and a PhD in developmental biology from Cambridge University, followed by a post-doc at Imperial College, London.
For her day-job Kat is a professional science communicator, media spokesperson, award-winning blogger, podcaster and general comms dogsbody for Cancer Research UK. She counts among her achievements saying the word “boobs” and discussing oral sex on the Today programme, the infamous “drink it down your face” interview, and likening part of the cell division machinery to something out of Star Wars.