ISEMPH 2nd Annual Meeting in Durham, North Carolina

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Registration is now open for the ISEMPH 2nd Annual Meeting in Durham, North Carolina. The meeting will be held June 22-25, 2016. Deadline for Abstract submission and early registration is January 30, 2016. Plenary speakers for the 2016 ISEMPH Meeting are Andrea Graham (Princeton University), Carl Zimmer (New York Times), Helen Ball (Durham University, UK),Joshua Schiffman (University of Utah), Marion Koopmans (Erasmus University, Rotterdam), and Martin Blaser (New York University).

The program committee welcomes your abstracts for oral or poster presentations on all topics in the field of evolution, medicine, and public health. Deadline for abstract submission is January 30, 2016.

The Use of Pathogen Genetic Data for Informing the Spread of Infectious Diseases Within and Between Individuals.

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We are delighted to invite you to a 2 day meeting on “The Use of Pathogen Genetic Data for Informing the Spread of Infectious Diseases Within and Between Individuals.” The meeting is sponsored by TriCEM (the Triangle Center for Evolutionary Medicine), and will be held on Nov. 17 and Nov. 18 at The Solution Center in Research Triangle Park. A full agenda can be found at  Epidemiologists, virologists, and infectious disease researchers are increasingly considering pathogen sequence data to address their research questions. With an increased reliance on this type of data, many of these researchers seek a more in-depth understanding of evolutionary biology, phylogenetic inference, and population genetics. In turn, evolutionary biologists with an interest or experience in analyzing pathogen sequence data often would benefit from an improved understanding of epidemiological and virological issues such as selection bias and confounding, as well as the research questions that are of greatest interest to infectious disease researchers. The purpose of this 2 day meeting is to bring together experts in infectious disease with experts in phylogenetics/population genetics from across the Triangle. The primary aim in this “meeting of the minds” is for both sets of researchers to develop a more in-depth appreciation of the complexities and issues surrounding the use of pathogen genetic data in infectious disease research. A second aim is for this meeting is to spur productive collaborative interactions between these two sets of researchers.

If you are interested, please RSVP by October 28, 2015 at the following website: There are multiple RSVP options, so if you are interested but not available on those dates, or available for only a portion of the meeting, you can indicate this on the RSVP page.

Also, the meeting is intended to be inclusive. If you know of post-doctoral researchers or graduate students who are interested in attending, please forward them this email and have them RSVP.


Corbin Jones, UNC

Katia Koelle, Duke

Steve Meshnick, UNC

Jeff Thorne, NCSU

Meeting Organizing Committee

Mechanisms of social behavior: implications for human health

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The Triangle Center for Evolutionary Medicine (TriCEM) and the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center (NESCent) are please to announce the symposium Mechanisms of social behavior: implications for human health.

This symposium will bring together scientists working on the mechanisms underlying social behavior at multiple levels (genetic, physiological, cognitive and behavioral) in a variety of vertebrate species, including frogs, mice, non-human primates and humans. Presentations will focus on the relevance of these mechanisms to an enhanced understanding of health and disease, both in humans and non-human animals. In addition to the presentations, there will be ample opportunity for interactions and discussion between the presenters and attendees, including a poster session. Friday, Sept. 4th 2015, 8:00am – 6:00pm Semans Center Great Hall, Duke University.

Lunch will be provided. Attendees are asked to RSVP through an online form


8:00 am – Begin Symposium (Welcome, introductory remarks, etc.)

8:30 am – Kyle Summers (ECU) – Comparative perspectives on the mechanisms underlying behavior in the context of health and disease

9:00 am – Lauren O’Connell (Harvard University) – Neural control of parental behavior: from fish to frogs to mice

9:30 am – Sabrina Burmeister (UNC Chapel Hill) – Cognitive consequences of parental care: lessons from amphibians

10:00 am – Break

10:30 am – Lisa McGraw (NC State University) – Neurogenomics of social behavior in rodents

11:00 am – Christine Drea (Duke University) – Costs of female masculinization

11:30 pm – Anne Pusey (Duke University) – Social relationships among chimpanzees, a male-philopatric species

12:00 pm – Break for lunch and poster session

2:30 pm – Carson Murray (George Washington University) – Maternal influence on offspring behavioral and physiological development in wild chimpanzees.

3:00 pm – James Rilling (Emory University) – Biological correlates of individual variation in human paternal behavior

3:30 pm – Break

4:00 pm – Aysenil Belger (UNC Chapel Hill) – Neuroanatomy and Evolution of Fronto-limbic circuits for social/affective cognition and Autism

4:30 pm – Linmarie Sikich (UNC Chapel Hill) – Neuropeptides and autism

5:00 pm – Question and answer session with all speakers

6:00 pm – Finish


  • Steffen Foerster (Postdoc, Duke): Determinants of social preferences among female chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) at Gombe National Park, Tanzania
  • Kara Walker (Postdoc, Duke): Inbreeding avoidance in chimpanzees
  • Maggie Stanton (Postdoc, GW): Interactions between adult males and subadults in chimpanzees
  • Yuxiang Liu (Graduate Student, UNC): Hippocampal transcriptomes are associated with spatial learning ability in frogs
  • Robert Burger (Postdoc, UNC): Comparative social systems, cognition, and life histories
  • Andrea Vogel (Graduate Student, NCSU): Characterizing the role of mammalian seminal fluids on female reproductive behavior
  • Bevin Blake (Graduate Student, UNC): Prenatal exposure to elevated testosterone metabolites induces autism-like behavior in rats: Evidence for the extreme male brain and implications for human health
  • Matthew Louder (Postdoc, ECU): Neural mechanisms for behavioral innovation in avian brood parasites
  • Tessa Holland (Graduate Student, ECU): Modulation by cannabinoids of the effects of psychological stress on zebra finch song
  • Elizabeth Andersen (Graduate Student, UNC): Electrophysiological Correlates of Attentional and Affective Processing Disparities in Schizophrenia Patients and First-Degree Relatives
  • Katie Clements, Tom Miller (Graduate Students, ECU): Social status-dependent regulation of an identified brain circuit in zebrafish (Danio rerio)
  • Kendra Smyth (Graduate Student, Duke): The burly ‘kat gets the worm: androgens and gastrointestinal parasites in meerkats