Archived Lectures

 

Allison McGeer, University of Toronto & Mt. Sinai Hospital

Despite the evidence that vaccines save lives and prevent illness, many remain willing to believe that vaccines are dangerous and at least two Canadian universities have defended courses that suggest that children should not be vaccinated.

 

Spencer C.H. Barrett, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto

Plants exhibit unrivalled diversity in the ways they reproduce, including clonal propagation, self-fertilization, and mating with numerous partners simultaneously. Understanding plant biodiversity is of importance for both basic and applied research.

 

Jane Heffernan, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, York University

Mathematical models can be used to describe the spread of infectious diseases and how infections affect the immune system. Explore how diseases such as influenza, measles, pertussis and HIV spread.

Bryan Gaensler, Director, Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics

Some of the biggest questions about our universe are as yet unsolved. how did the first stars form? What is the mysterious "dark energy" that is pushing the universe apart? Are there other planets that harbour life?

 

Michael Strong, Dean Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University

In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease), motor neurons die through a wide range of pathological processes. Explore an emerging idea that alternations in RNA metabolism play a critical role in these processes and that, for the majority of cases, ALS is a disorder of RNA metabolism.

Charles Despres, Brock University

Microbes responsible for crop disease are becoming resistant to conventional pesticides akin to antibiotic resistance in human disease. Explore non-GMO approaches, conceptually similar to vaccines, to enhance crop immunity.

 

Eric Poisson, Dept. of Physics, University of Guelph

General relativity, Einstein's greatest scientific achievement turned 100 in 2015. Among this theory's predictions is the mysterious Black Hole. Explore how a companion body can create tides on a black hole, much as the Moon raises a tide on Earth.

Chris Fletcher, Department of Geography and Environmental Management, University of Waterloo

Human activities are changing Earth's climate, making it imperative to determine the impact on climate if we continue to use fossil fuels. I will explore computer models of the climate system which allow us to gaze into the future by making projections of how Earth's climate could evolve over the coming century.