University of Dundee

"Environmental stress, antagonistic pleiotropy and the evolution of somatic cell differentiation"

Event Date: 
Thursday, May 26, 2016 - 13:00
Event Location: 
MSI Small Lecture Theatre
Professor Pauline Schaap FRSE FRSB
Event Speaker: 
Professor Aurora M. Nedelcu
Department of Biology, University of New Brunswick
Event Type: 

Aurora M. Nedelcu

Aurora Nedelcu received a BSc from “Babes-Bolyai” University (Romania; 1988), a PhD from Dalhousie University (Canada; 1998), and postdoctoral training at the Université de Montréal and the University of Arizona (1998-2002). In 2002, she joined the Department of Biology at the University of New Brunswick (Canada), where she is now a Professor. She also holds an Adjunct position in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Arizona, and is an External Faculty in the Center for Evolution and Cancer at the University of California, San Francisco. Most of her current research is rooted in the framework of transitions in individuality and complexity (at a conceptual level), and of cellular responses to stress (at a more mechanistic level). More specifically, she is interested in the evolution of complexity, multicellularity, development, cell differentiation, cancer, sex, programmed death, and altruism. Her lab is using experimental and theoretical approaches spanning various fields (genetics and genomics, molecular, cell and developmental biology, ecology and evolution) to address both “how” and “why” questions. The experimental model-system she has been using for the last 15 years is the volvocine green algal group, which contains unicellular and multicellular species with different levels of complexity and life-history traits. Recently, she has also started to develop experimental evolution approaches (using several cancer cell lines in vitro) to expose cancer’s evolutionary vulnerabilities.