(Nov. 5, 2009)--The UTSA Neurosciences Institute will present two lectures Nov. 10-11 by sibling scholars Alice Wexler and Nancy Wexler, who are researching different aspects of Huntington's disease, which also has directly affected their family. The evening lectures are free and open to the public.
UCLA historian Alice Wexler will speak on "Stigma, Secrecy and Medical History: What Can We Learn from Huntington's Disease?" at 5 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 10 in the University Center Retama Auditorium (2.02.02) on the Main Campus. Free and open to the public, a reception will precede the lecture at 4:30 p.m.
Columbia University Professor Nancy Wexler will speak on "Expansions on a Dream: From Cause to Cure of Huntington's Disease" at 6 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 11 in the Main Building Auditorium (0.104) on the Main Campus. Free and open to the public, a 5:30 p.m. reception will precede the lecture.
The joint lectures highlight two academic perspectives on Huntington's disease from gifted scholars who have had excruciatingly personal experience with the malady. Sisters Nancy Wexler and Alice Wexler are at risk of Huntington's disease, a degenerative disorder of the nervous system that took their mother's life.
Subsequently, both women have committed their personal and professional lives to advocacy and study of the fatal disease. Alice's work pursues the disease from historical and sociological perspectives; Nancy's work focuses on its biological basis and developing a cure.
In a compelling twist, Nancy Wexler's scientific quest led her to a remote jungle region of Venezuela, where she had the opportunity to live among and study the genes of a large, isolated family with a high instance of Huntington's disease. This seminal work led to the 1983 discovery of a genetic marker for Huntington's disease and to the 1993 discovery of the gene that causes the disease.
Alice Wexler, who is a fellow at the UCLA Center for the Study of Women accompanied her sister on this mission and wrote about it in her memoir, "Mapping Fate: A Memoir of Family, Risk and Genetic Research." Her subsequent work has focused on detailing the history and lived experience of the disease in the context of expanding medical knowledge.
The lecture by Alice Wexler is sponsored by the UTSA Neurosciences Institute in the College of Sciences, the UTSA American Studies Program and the UTSA Honors College. The lecture by Nancy Wexler is part of the UTSA Neurosciences Institute Distinguished Public Lecture Series.
For more information, contact Salma Quraishi at (210) 458-7493.
About the speakers
Nancy Wexler, president of the Hereditary Disease Foundation, is the Higgins Professor of Neuropsychology in the Departments of Neurology and Psychology at Columbia University's School of Physicians and Surgeons. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Albert Lasker Public Service Award in 1993. Her research has led to the development of a pre-symptomatic test for Huntington's disease and ultimately to the identification of the gene that causes the disease.
Historian Alice Wexler is the author of "Mapping Fate: A Memoir of Family, Risk and Genetic Research" and "The Woman Who Walked into the Sea: Huntington's and the Making of a Genetic Disease," both historical texts about Huntington's disease. For the latter, she won the 2009 American Medical Writers Association Medical Book Award. She is a research scholar at the UCLA Center for the Study of Women.
About the UTSA Neurosciences Institute
The UTSA Neurosciences Institute is a multidisciplinary research organization for integrated brain studies. The institute's mission is to foster a collaborative community of scientists committed to studying the biological basis of human experience and behavior, and the origin and treatment of nervous system diseases. Its areas of focus include nervous system development; neuronal and network computation; sensory, motor and cognitive function; learning and memory and the disease processes that impact them; implementing mathematical and computational tools in experimental neurobiology; and mathematical theory of neurons and nervous systems. Learn more or make a gift at the UTSA Neurosciences Institute Web site.
The Office of International Programs will host a Study Abroad Fair for students interested in taking their academics abroad.
University Center main corridor, Main Campus
The UTSA Institute for P-20 Initiatives and the Texas Mentoring Partnership hosts the 5th Annual Texas Mentoring Summit. The theme Mentoring: A Pathway To and Through College & Career will focus on the positive impact mentoring can have on student success from k-12 through college and beyond.
Wyndham Riverwalk Hotel, Downtown San Antonio
The UTSA Political Science and Geography Department hosts a panel discussion called "Forecasting the Trump Presidency" on the eve of Inauguration Day.
H-E-B University Center, Bexar Room (HUC 1.102), Main Campus
The UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy invites everyone to its monthly lecture and stargazing at the Curtis Vaughan Jr. Observatory.
Flawn Science Building (FLN 2.02.02), Main Campus
The UTSA Music Department presents Miller-Porfiris Duo (violin/viola) in a performance of period appropriate music as accompaniment to the silent films, "The Great Train Robbery," "The Violinmaker of Cremona," and "Ballet Mecanique."
Arts Building, Recital Hall (ARTS 2.03.02), Main Campus
The CACP 2016-2017 Speaker Series continues with architect and writer Jason Griffiths of the University of Arizona and Jason Griffiths Architecture. His practice is based on a multidisciplinary approach.
Buena Vista Building, Aula Canaria Auditorium (BVB 1.328), Downtown Campus
UTSA's Department of Music hosts Dr. David Huron from Ohio State University as part of the Donald Hodges lecture series. Huron is a Canadian arts and humanities distinguished professor at Ohio State University.
John Peace Library, UTSA Faculty Center, (JPL 4.04.22), Main Campus
The UTSA community is encouraged to donate blood and save a life. Donors will also receive a free t-shirt.
H-E-B University Center parking lot, Main Campus
Dr. Stephanie Westney (violin) presents a concert of Mozart compositions as performed by herself and other talented musicians from the university and surrounding area. This concert is free and open to the public.
Arts Building, Recital Hall (ARTS 2.03.02), Main Campus
The Student Center for Community Engagement and Inclusion annually hosts a Volunteer Opportunities Fair to allow students, faculty and staff to learn about volunteer and service-learning opportunities in the San Antonio area.
University Center, 1st floor corridor, Main Campus
Join the conversation about the experiences of military-connected families in transition. Free parking in the Cattleman Square (along Buena Vista Street). The event is free and open to the public.
Frio Street Building, Riklin Auditorium (FS 1.406), Downtown Campus
School district superintendents and other district leaders responsible for bilingual and ESL programs' administration and accountability learn about cultural literacy, language, and diversity in the community.
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.