York hosts 2012 Canada Gairdner award-winner

Michael Rosbash beside a clock

Top medical researcher Dr. Michael Rosbash will draw on his research to deliver the 2012 Canada Gairdner Lecture at York looking at circadian rhythms.

His talk, Circadian rhythms: Molecules, Neurons and Circuits, will take place Wednesday, Oct. 24, from 1:30 to 2:30pm, in the Senate chamber, Ross N920, Keele campus, as part of Gairdner’s National Program lecture series.

Rosbash of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Biology, Brandeis University, is the 2012 Canada Michael Rosbash beside a clockGairdner Award winner. He’ll delve into the mysteries of how the human body’s biological clock works. Despite the fact that it’s been known for centuries that the human body is controlled by a biological clock, it has remained a mystery. Rosbash will look at how this internal clock guides the body through the day.

Michael Rosbash

Circadian clocks are active throughout the body’s cells, where they use a common genetic mechanism to control the rhythmic activities of various tissues. This is important as circadian clocks affect patterns of sleep and wakefulness, metabolism and the body’s response to disease. Understanding how the biological clock works has already allowed scientists to pinpoint irregularities in important sleep disorders.

“The opportunity to learn from the world’s greatest medical minds is one we hope will inspire students across the country to be imaginers, innovators, and ultimately, cultivators of the future of medicine in Canada and around the world,” said Dr. John Dirks, president and scientific director of Gairdner. “Gairdner’s National Program is our way of helping to ensure that Canada continues to grow as a global leader in medical science.”

The Gairdner awards are among the world’s most important biomedical research honours and a major indicator of leading scientific discovery. The Gairdner National Program is a month-long lecture series given by Canada Gairdner Award winners to over 6,000 students at 21 universities from St John’s to Vancouver.

The National Program reaches students across the country, making the superstars of science accessible and inspiring the next generation of researchers. Along with the Canada Gairdner Awards, the National Program is part of Gairdner’s efforts to promote a stronger culture of research and innovation across the country.