Wednesday, April 8, 2015

UNO Hosts Screening of "The Essence of Life"

Award-winning documentary director, screenwriter and journalist Anna Ferens visits the University of New Orleans this month with her new film on the life and work of prominent geneticist Waclaw Szybalski.

Join Us!

The free public screening and post-film discussion with director Anna Ferens will take place at the University of New Orleans Kirschman Hall, Room 122 (Bellsouth Auditorium.) from
4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 23, 2015.

Szybalski, who is professor emeritus of oncology at the University of Wisconsin - Madison, is regarded as "the Father of Synthetic Biology." Synthetic biology involves the application of engineering principles to fundamental components of biology and involves interdisciplinary research in the biology disciplines including biotechnology, evolutionary biology, molecular biology, systems biology, biophysics, electrical engineering and genetic engineering. The aim of synthetic biology research is typically to redesign existing, natural biological systems for useful purposes, especially preserving or advancing life.

Szybalski conducted pioneer research in the field and three times was shortlisted as a winner for the Nobel Prize and a number of scientists who followed his scientific path have since been awarded the honor.

The documentary is "a tale about enjoying life, work and the pleasure of thinking."

Ferens will attend this month's screening and participate in a question and answer session. The screening and post-film discussion are hosted by the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago, the University of New Orleans College of Sciences and the University of New Orleans Division of International Education.

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