CIIE/NERC Symposium on Maternal effects on health and fitness: perspectives from the biomedical and evolutionary sciences

We are pleased to announce that the CIIE/NERC Symposium on Maternal effects on health and fitness: perspectives from the biomedical and evolutionary sciences will be held on Wednesday, 9th May 2012 in Lecture Theatre 3, Ashworth Laboratories, University of Edinburgh.

This will be a one-day symposium designed to connect evolutionary biology to infection research and gain an interdisciplinary perspective on challenges to global health. 

Maternal effects on health arise when the infection status or condition of mothers influences the health or immune responsiveness of offspring. This is an area of much active research, but maternal effects have also been broadly studied outside the context of health, and in particular evolutionary biologists have addressed the possibility of adaptive maternal effects, i.e. when mothers take cues from the environment and resource their offspring to be well-suited to the conditions they will be born into. This symposium will explore the potential for cross-fertilisation between the evolutionary biology and medical perspectives on maternal effects.

  • 09:15-09:45  Welcome coffee in Darwin Dance Hall
  • 09:50 Tom Little (University of Edinburgh) Introduction
  • 10:00 Sylvain Gandon (Montpellier, France) on Evolution of host defenses against pathogens: space, mothers and drugs
  • 10:30 Romain Garnier (Montpellier, France) on Persistence of maternal antibodies: theoretical and experimental approaches
  • 11:00 Per Smiseth (Edinburgh, UK) on Parental Defences against Microbes
  • 11:30-12:00 Coffee/Tea
  • 12:00 Tom Little (University of Edinburgh) Adaptive Maternal Effects in Daphnia
  • 12:30 Ariel Lindner (Paris, France) on Non-genetic Determinants of Life Bacterial Life History
  • 13:00-14:00 Lunch
  • 14:00 Tessa Roseboom (Amsterdam, NL) on Maternal under-nutrition during gestation and health of the (grand)offspring: the Dutch famine birth cohort study
  • 14:30 Sylvia Pedroni (University of Edinburgh) Obesity and pregnancy: effects on maternal metabolism and inflammation
  • 15:00 Phillip Heeb (Toulouse, France) on Reaction norms in differential allocations: Females trade-off male attractiveness with self maintenance
  • 15:30-16:00 Coffee / Tea
  • 16:00 Alasdair Leslie (Oxford, UK) on The Role of HLA in Paediatric HIV infection and Control
  • 16:30 Laura Galloway (Virginia, USA) on Multiple sources of maternal effects contribute to adaptive evolution in plants
  • 17:00-18:30 Drinks, nibbles and discussion.  Speakers and hosts depart .



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