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From Deadly Venom to Delightful Drugs in the Predatory Sea Snail

Morbid Anatomy Museum 424A 3rd Ave, Gowanus, Brooklyn, NY, USA

An Illustrated Lecture with Dr. Mande Holdford, Assistant Professor in Chemistry at Hunter College

Date: Thursday, March 31
Time: 8pm
Admission: $8
Location: Morbid Anatomy Museum, 424 Third Avenue, 11215 Brooklyn NY

Snakes, centipedes, glia monsters, and sea snails are not what come to mind when thinking of the products that stock a doctor’s office or your local drug store. However, these deadly creatures produce a staggering amount of compounds in their venom with direct application to the development of new drugs including analgesics and anti-tumor agents.

Tonight, join chemist Dr. Mandë Holford for the fascinating story about the ways in which the deadly venom of predatory marine snails--similar to that of poisonous snakes and scorpions, and with millions of unexplored compounds--can be transformed into life saving drugs.

Dr. Mandë Holford is as an Assistant Professor in Chemistry at Hunter College and CUNY-Graduate Center, with a scientific appointment at the American Museum of Natural History. Herdual appointment reflects her interdisciplinary research, which combines chemistry and biology to discover, characterize, and deliver novel neuropeptides from venomous marine snails (cones snails, terebrids, and turrids) as tools for manipulating cell signaling in the nervous system. She has received funds from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Alfred P. Sloan and Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundations to support herindependent research. She was recently named a New Champion Young Scientist by the World Economic Forum. In 2013 she was awarded the prestigious Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award. In 2011 she was awarded an NSF CAREER Award, and named a 21st Century Chemist in the NBC-Learn, Chemistry Now series. Dr. Holford has a sustained and active involvement in science education and advancing the public understanding of science. She has developed several educational outreach programs for high school students at informal education venues such as the American Museum of Natural History and the Utah Museum of Natural History. She is co-founder of KillerSnails.com a digital education company and RAISEW.org, an NSF project focused on increasing the retention of women in science. In the area of International Science Policy, she is a AAAS Science & Technology Fellow, an inaugural member of the World Academy of Young Scientist (WAYS), and served on the Advisory Committee for Term Members of the Council on Foreign Relations, she has been profiled (*) in policy journal SciDevNet. Dr. Holford is also a member of the Educational Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees at The Rockefeller University. Dr. Holford received her PhD in Synthetic Protein Chemistry from The Rockefeller University.

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il 1 April 2015



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