biology

Why do we search for life on other planets

Sponsors & Collaborators: 

Lahore Astronomical Society

Registration: 
Registration is required.
Date: 
3 August, 2016
Time: 
5 pm
Venue: 
Lahore University of Management Sciences
Abstract: 

Close to 5000 planets and counting orbiting other stars have been discovered so far, yet we have no evidence of a planet similar to Earth.  But this will likely to change as the astronomers have a good possibility that they will detect signatures of life on some of these worlds in future. What will such a discovery mean for humans on Earth and meaning we will derive from it? Why do we even care about life on other planets? Dr. Salman Hameed will discuss these topics and will try to discuss the techniques currently in use to detect life on other planets.

Resource People: 
Speaker
Dr. Salman Hammed
Associate Professor, Hampshire College, USA
Internal References: 

Science Festival in Swat

Sponsors & Collaborators: 

Alif Ailaan and Pakistan Innovative Foundation

Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
21 June, 2016
Time: 
10 am
Venue: 
Govt. High School Shagai, Saidu Sharif, Swat
Abstract: 

This science mela is part of Khwarizmi Science Society's National Science Movement 2016 and Beyond.

Resource People: 
Presenter
Muhammad Sabieh Anwar
Lahore University of Management Science (LUMS), Lahore
Presenter
Syed Kumail Abbas
University of the Punjab, Lahore
Presenter
Ahmed Waqas Zubairi
Institute of Space Technology, Islamabad
Supplementary Documents: 

Biomaterials for Bone Tissue Engineering

Sponsors & Collaborators: 

F.C. College University

Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
18 April, 2016
Time: 
12:30 pm
Venue: 
S-009, Auditorium, Forman Chiristian College University
Abstract: 

Resource People: 
Presenter
Prof. Saadat Anwar Siddiqi
COMSATS, Lahore.

Exploring Mars and Discovering Earth

Family Fair and Science Exhibition at the World Space Week 2013
Sponsors & Collaborators: 

SUPARCO

Lahore Astronomical Society

Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
5 October, 2013
Time: 
3 pm to 6 pm
Venue: 
Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park, Lahore, Pakistan
Date: 
6 October, 2013
Time: 
3 pm to 6 pm
Venue: 
Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park, Lahore, Pakistan
Abstract: 

World Space Week (WSW) is declared by the United Nations Organization (UNO) and is celebrated every year from October 4 to October 10 to celebrate the contribution that space science and technology make to the betterment of the mankind.

 

Khwarizmi Science Society, as before, also celebrating the World Space Week 2013. In convention with the theme of the year 2013 "Exploring Mars - Discovering Earth" KSS is presenting some experiments for students, teachers and the general public at a family fair organized by SUPARCO, Pakistan's National Space Agency.

 

Experiments will include:

  • Martian Surface
  • Water Currents on Mars
  • Crators on Earth, Moon and Mars
  • Creating your own Earthquakes
  • Microscopic World
  • Models of Telescope

For directions to the Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park, see the map here.

 


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Resource People: 
Presenter
Ahmed Waqas Zubairi
LUMS
Presenter
Kumail Abbas
University of the Punjab
Presenter
Arifa Mirza
University of the Punjab
Presenter
Murtaza Saleem
LUMS
Activities: 

Reconstruction of the Corneal Surface using Stem Cell Biology

Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
22 July, 2013
Time: 
10 am
Venue: 
IRCBM, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Raiwind Road, Lahore.
Abstract: 

The cornea is the clear front of the eye and its clarity is important for the transmission of light to the retina for visual perception. The corneal surface is composed of an epithelium that is renewed by stem cells located at the periphery of the cornea, in a region known as the limbus. These so-called limbal stem cells can become deficient or dysfunctional as a result of many causes including chemical and thermal burns to the eye, hereditary causes such as Aniridia and Ectodermal Dysplasia, inflammatory diseases such as StevensJohnson Syndrome and Mucous Membrane Pemphigoid, and iatrogenic causes such as radiation therapy and topical chemotherapy. In the resulting disease of of Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency the corneal epithelium cannot be maintained resulting in chronic epithelial defects and the surface becomes replaced by the conjunctival epithelium and its blood vessels which surrounds the cornea and limbus resulting in visual loss. Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency is therefore a painful and blinding disease. It is difficult to manage at the best of times.

 

Dr. Sajad Ahmad has developed an animal free culture method for limbal stem cells that has been used to successfully regenerate the corneal epithelium in patients with unilateral chemical burns and restore their vision. He is currently collaborating with centres in Edinburgh (UK), Oslo (Norway), Harvard University (Boston, USA) and Dublin (Ireland) to develop this technique in those centers for future mulitcenter clinical trials. He will outline this method. He was also the first to differentiate human embryonic stem cells into the corneal epithelial lineage and he will discuss this approach and the opportunities this presents.

Resource People: 
Speaker
Dr. Sajad Ahmad
MB BS, FRCOphth, PhD, Moorfields Eye Hospital, London

Investigating Multiscale Tumorigenesis by using agent based modelling approach

Sponsors & Collaborators: 

Journal Club at IRCBM, COMSATS.

Registration: 
Registration is required.
Date: 
2 July, 2013
Time: 
10 am
Venue: 
Interdisciplnary Research Center in Biomedical Materials (IRCBM), COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Raiwind Road, Lahore, Pakistan.
Abstract: 

The complexity of biological system urgently demands computational models which can produce new understanding and new medicine. Keeping in view Khwarizmi Science society and  Journal Club at IRCBMCOMSATS jointly presents a seminar on agent based modeling approach in Investigating Multiscale Tumorigenesis in the Warburg Effect.

Early stage tumorigenesis includes the formation of glycolytic cells in the tissue. However, the precise multi-scale processes underlying this transformation of healthy epithelial cells into tumorigenic glycolytic phenotypes, continues to be a matter of debate. In this work, we investigate this cellular transformation by using an agent based modeling approach and decode a multifactorial mechanism which upon triggering may lead to the onset of tumorigenesis

Resource People: 
Speaker
Dr. SafeeUllah Chaudhary
Department of Computer Science, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Lahore, Pakistan
Internal References: 

Video Lecture Series on Diabetes

Video Lectures
Registration: 
Open to all.
Venue: 
Lahore
Abstract: 

Out of a total Pakistani population of 180 million, almost 18 million Pakistanis are suffering from diabetes. This alarming situation urges Dr. Wajih Bukhari to apprise the Pakistani population of the ins and outs of this deadly disease.

Dr. Wajih Bukhari is a medical doctor and working as a Clinical research fellow at Griffith University, Queensland, Australia. He explains the causes of diabetes, its medical treatment and precautions. Different types of diagnostic tests are also discussed. This 60 minutes long series of digital board based lectures are a must watch for every Pakistani who wishes to know more about diabetes.

 

 

Lecture 1:     

 

Facebook Link:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=546596402038188&set=vb.161225413908624&type=2&theater

Lecture 2:

Facebook Link:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=546613832036445&set=vb.161225413908624&type=2&theater

 

 

 Lecture 3:

 

Facebook Link:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=548654908499004&set=vb.161225413908624&type=2&theater

 

 

 Lecture 4:

Facebook Link:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=550188865012275&set=vb.161225413908624&type=2&theater

 

 Lecture 5:

Facebook Link:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=550215785009583&set=vb.161225413908624&type=2&theater

Resource People: 
Dr. Wajih Bukhari
Griffith University, Australia
Supplementary Documents: 

Epigenetic cellular memory

Polycomb group and Trithorax group paradigm in development
Sponsors & Collaborators: 

Dr. Waheed Akhtar and Dr. Shakoori, School of Biological Sciences, Punjab University.

Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
30 December, 2010
Time: 
11:00 am
Venue: 
School of Biological Sciences, University of the Punjab, Quaid-e-Azam Campus, Lahore
Abstract: 

How cell fates are established and how identities of different cell types are maintained during development of multi-cellular eukaryotes are questions of extreme biological significance at the heart of development. A single-celled zygote undergoes many rounds of mitotic divisions which ultimately lead to generation of over 200 different specialized cell types in human body during development. Although, each cell type contains same basic genetic information (DNA), yet their identity is different from one another which are maintained throughout development. It is known that differential gene expression programs lead to different cell lineages and each cell type remembers its identity due to maintenance of cell type specific gene expression program referred to as transcriptional cellular memory. Transcriptional memory involves changes in the chromatin state of lineage specific genes; changes that can persist through DNA replication and mitosis, which means they are inherited from mother to daughter cells. Such heritable changes are called epigenetic modifications and can be covalent marks on DNA and/or histones, and therefore would not alter the basic genetic information in a cell. However, epigenetic changes may either activate or silence the expression of lineage specific genes and set the stage for differential gene expression among different cell type. This explains how cells with same DNA can acquire different identity which is maintained through epigenetic inheritance during development. In Drosophila melanogaster (fruit flies), genetic analyses have uncovered two groups of genes, the Polycomb Group (PcG) and the trithorax Group (trxG), responsible for maintaining gene expression patterns stably and heritably. Importantly, PcG and trxG proteins are evolutionary conserved and most of our knowledge about their function was pioneered from studies in Drosophila. Molecular analysis showed that many of the proteins encoded by the PcG and trxG act in large complexes, and modify the local properties of chromatin to maintain transcriptional repression (PcG) or activation (TrxG) of their target genes. My lecture will primarily focus on introducing epigenetics, transcriptional cellular memory and how they affect our development.

Resource People: 
Speaker
Dr. Muhammad Tariq
Department of Biology, School of Science and Engineering, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Lahore

Understanding Cell Matrix Interactions

From Fundamental Thermodynamics to Applications in Tumor Metastasis
Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
05 August 2008
Time: 
11:00 am
Venue: 
Institute of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, University of the Punjab, Quaid-e-Azam Campus, Lahore
Abstract: 

Cells reside and operate in a complex and dynamic extra-cellular matrix. The mechanical, structural and chemical properties of the matrix regulate a variety of cellular functions including signaling, adhesion, migration as well as invasion and metastasis in tumor systems. Unfortunately cell-matrix interactions have traditionally been studied in the context of artificial 2D environments, which are far from in vivo conditions. As a result, our understanding of the complex interactions at the cell-matrix interface has been quite limited. In particular, the mechano-chemical effects of the matrix, the proteolytic pathways and surface receptor dynamics on a 3D surface that are critical in invasion and tumor metastasis, and can not be fully studied in a 2D environment. In order to overcome the limited powers of observation in 2D, we utilize a combination of high resolution and high throughput confocal microscopy, bulk and micro-rheological measurements and multi-scale simulations rooted in statistical and continuum mechanics. Using an interdisciplinary approach allows us to understand and quantify the mechanical and chemical roles of the matrix in regulating signaling, adhesion and motility. Our results demonstrate that both cell structure and cell function are strikingly different in 3D than in 2D and that cellular response to minor mechanical changes in its extra-cellular environment is amplified in 3D than in 2D environments. Our experimental results are complemented by multi-scale simulations, that probe the physical foundations of cell-matrix interactions from the nano to the macro level. Our hybrid approach, combining high-resolution experimental and computational techniques demonstrates how a balance of cellular parameters (e.g. integrin expression and MMP activity) co-operate with matrix properties (e.g. composition, stiffness and porosity) to regulate adhesion, invasion and motility of tumor cells in native like environments.

Resource People: 
Speaker
Dr. Muhammad Hamid Zaman
The University of Texas at Austin, USA

DNA Hybridization on Surfaces

Registration: 
Open to all.
Date: 
28 July 2008
Time: 
11:00 am
Venue: 
Centre for Solid State Physics, University of the Punjab, Quaid-e-Azam Campus, Lahore
Abstract: 

The controlled arrangement of DNA molecules on surfaces represents one challenging contribution of nanotechnology to biology and medicine. In particular, one of the open issues in the field of DNA-based sensors is detecting the hybridization process with high precision in a real-life biological environment. Towards this end, we have studied the hybridization of single stranded (ss)-DNA anchored on a gold surface using the increase in height of the molecules upon hybridization with a label free target which is due to the much larger rigidity of ds- vs. ss-DNA. Nano-scale ss-DNA patches are assembled within oligo-ethylene-glycol terminated alkylthiol self-assembled monolayer on a gold substrate using nanografting (an atomic force microscopy-based nanolithography technique). Differential height measurements indicate that ss-DNA nano-patches do not show significant increase in height upon hybridization with complementary strands in high density regime. Moreover, the advantage of this system for biosensors and genomics applications will be discussed briefly in the end.

Resource People: 
Speaker
Fouzia Bano
SISSA International School of Advanced Studies, Trieste, Italy