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Event Details

Elizabeth Blackburn: The Telomere Effect

16 Aug 2019
6:30pm – 7:30pm
City Recital Hall
science explosion graphic

Nobel Laureate Elizabeth Blackburn delivers the inaugural Gerald Westheimer Lecture, chaired by UNSW Sydney's Dean of Science, Professor Emma Johnston.

Why does ageing take such different paths for different individuals? Why do some of us remain healthy and active into later life, while others age more rapidly?

Elizabeth Blackburn’s discoveries about telomeres; the protective caps at the end of our chromosomes, and the enzyme telomerase have transformed the way we think about these important questions and earned her a Nobel Prize in 2009.

Although we have long understood the impact of our genetic inheritance on our health, Blackburn’s work has shown us the key role that telomeres and the enzyme telomerase play in the ageing process.

Be part of a special event with Elizabeth Blackburn as she discusses her work in this fascinating space and its implications for the future of ageing.

This event is supported by the Crawford Fund and Science & Technology Australia.


Tickets

General Admission – $35 + booking fees
UNSW Alumni & Staff – $25 + booking fees
UNSW Students & Under 18s – $15 + booking fees

Booking fee per transaction: Online $5.50, Phone/Mail/Email: $6.60. Bookings made over the counter at the City Recital Hall Box Office do not attract a transaction fee. 

UNSW Student tickets are only available to currently enrolled students who are able to produce their UNSW identification (zID). Such identification must be produced at the event.

UNSW Alumni & Staff tickets are only available to individuals who graduated from UNSW or who are currently employed by UNSW. UNSW staff must be able to produce their UNSW identification (zID). Such identification must be produced at the event.


UNSW x SYDNEY SCIENCE FESTIVAL

This talk is part of the program of events UNSW Sydney is presenting for the Sydney Science Festival.

Talks, tours and events revealing the science that blows your mind from an unexpected method to measure dark matter to the science of evil. The full program of events will be available from 17 June.


Gerald Westheimer Lectureship

The Gerald Westheimer Lecture is a new biennial lecture series for UNSW Science thanks to a generous gift from Professor Gerald Westheimer AM FRS. This flagship initiative will invite eminent international researchers to spend time in residence at the University. While in residence, the Westheimer Lecturer will also conduct workshops for students and early career researchers from UNSW Science.


Access

Wheelchair Accessible

City Recital Hall has two main entrances. The Pitt Street entrance has level access from the street leading into the ground floor foyer. There is also lift access at the Ash Street entrance to the ground floor foyer. Wheelchair accessible seating, toilet facilities and parking are available. Visit the City Recital Hall website for further information.

Hearing Loop Available

Hearing Loop Patrons using hearing aids can access the hearing induction loop available in the auditorium. To utilise the loop, please switch your hearing aid to the "T" position. Please note: Seats 51-54 in every row are not serviced by the induction loop. For further information call the Box Office on 02 8256 2222 or email tickets@cityrecitalhall.com

Companion Card

The Centre for Ideas supports the Companion Card program. For patrons who require assistance of a companion or carer, a second ticket is issued at no cost to the Companion Card holder.

Auslan

The Centre for Ideas can provide Auslan interpreting services for selected talks upon request. 

Contact

To discuss your access requirements and to book selected access services (excluding hearing loop – see above section), please call the Centre for Ideas on 02 9385 1000 or email centreforideas@unsw.edu.au

The Centre for Ideas is happy to receive phone calls via the National Relay Service. TTY users, phone 133 677, then ask for 02 9385 1000. Speak and Listen users, phone 1300 555 727 then ask for 02 9385 1000. Internet relay users, visit relayservice.gov.au, then ask for 02 9385 1000.

Speakers
Elizabeth Blackburn portrait

Elizabeth Blackburn

Dr Elizabeth Blackburn has been a leader in the area of telomere and telomerase research, having discovered the molecular nature of telomeres – the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes that serve as protective caps essential for preserving the genetic information – and co-discovered the ribonucleoprotein enzyme, telomerase. She is also known for her championing of diversity and inclusion in the sciences. Blackburn and her research team also collaborate in a range of investigations of the roles of telomere biology in human health and diseases, through clinical and other human studies. Born in Australia, Dr Blackburn earned degrees from the University of Melbourne, University of Cambridge and Yale University. She has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, the Albert Lasker Medical Research Award for Basic Medical Research, and in 2007 was named one of TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People.

Emma Johnston portrait

Emma Johnston

Professor Emma Johnston AO is Dean of Science and Professor of Marine Ecology and Ecotoxicology at UNSW Sydney. A highly awarded scientist and educator, Professor Johnston has published more than 141 peer-reviewed articles and supervised more than 20 successful PhD graduates. Selected prizes include the Australian Academy of Science’s inaugural Nancy Mill’s Medal for Women in Science (2014), and the 2015 Eureka Prize for the public communication of science. In 2018 Emma was awarded the Clarke Medal of the Royal Society of NSW and named an Officer of the Order of Australia for “distinguished service to higher education, particularly to marine ecology and ecotoxicology, as an academic, researcher and administrator, and to scientific institutes”. A strong advocate for equity and diversity in STEM and for sound environmental management, Professor Johnston is President of Science & Technology Australia (STA) and sits on the Board of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) and the Australian Antarctic Foundation (ASF). She consults with industry through the development and implementation of new biomonitoring techniques and environmental monitoring programs and frequently contributes expert opinion to state, federal & international government agencies.

Gerald Westheimer portrait

Gerald Westheimer

The donor who enabled this Lectureship, Professor Westheimer, is an Australian Scientist living in California. At 95, he is still active at the Berkeley School of Optometry where he conducts research on the eye, its optics and how we see details in space and in three dimensions. Professor Westheimer has seen firsthand the benefits of exposure to a diversity of knowledge and culture around the world, and hoped to share this influence with his alma mater. Born in 1924, he migrated to Australia from Germany in 1938 and later enrolled in the professional Optometry program at the Sydney Technical College (UNSW’s precursor institution), graduating in 1943 with Honours and the College Medal. In 1951, he moved to California where he has built a long and successful career in neurobiology. Professor Westheimer ‘still calls Australia home’ and has remained a proud long-time supporter of UNSW. In 2016, the University graduated the third generation of the Westheimer family.

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