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Local Experts to Discuss Stem Cell Research at Symposium

February 21, 2008
EVANSTON, Ill. --- Northwestern University experts on stem cell research and related ethical issues will take part in the Chicagoland Stem Cell Science Education Symposium, a forum for discussing innovative approaches to teaching stem cell research in middle and high school.

More than 140 science teachers, educators, and leading scientists, most of them from the Chicago area, will attend the Feb. 22 program at the James Allen Center, Tribune Center, 2169 Campus Drive, Evanston campus.

The symposium is sponsored by the Office of STEM Education Partnerships and Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in partnership with The Biotechnology Institute, the National Academy of Sciences and members of the Illinois education and biotechnology communities. It will address the underlying scientific foundations and realistic promise of stem cell research, ethical and societal considerations, and approaches to teaching the science to Illinois students.

The program will feature these experts from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine:

John A. Kessler, M.D., professor and chair of the department of Neurology and director of the Center of Excellence in Translational Human Stem Cell Research

Douglas Losordo, M.D., professor of medicine and director of the Feinberg Cardiovascular Research Institute and Program in Cardiovascular Regenerative Medicine

Laurie Zoloth, professor of medical humanities and religion and director of the Center for Bioethics, Science and Society

Scott Stern, associate professor of management and strategy at the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management, will also take part in the symposium.

The Chicagoland Stem Cell Education Symposium will include presentations and panel discussions led by scientists, ethicists, policy analysts and top educators regarding interdisciplinary approaches for teachers, policy makers and scientists to collaborate and develop ways to educate students and inspire greater involvement in the future of stem cell technology. The symposium is one of four stem cell education forums that will be conducted nationally in 2008 by the Biotechnology Institute and the National Academy of Sciences.

"Our goal is to educate students about this ground-breaking and sometimes controversial science by engaging the scientific community with educators in a conversation about advances in stem cell science and how to convey them to the classroom," says Paul A. Hanle, president of the Biotechnology Institute. "As educators we are always looking for opportunities to interest students in current science. Stem cell research is a topic that has the potential to galvanize students' interest because it engages them with issues that are very relevant to their lives and society."

Sponsors of the Chicagoland Stem Cell Science Education Symposium include Northwestern University, Astellas USA Foundation, Baxter Healthcare, Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST), iBIO Institute, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Illinois State Board of Education, The University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Chicago Biomedical Consortium.

About the Biotechnology Institute
The Biotechnology Institute is an independent, national nonprofit organization dedicated to education about the present and future impact of biotechnology. Its mission is to engage, excite and educate the public, particularly students and teachers, about biotechnology and its immense potential for solving human health, food and environmental problems. For more information, visit www.biotechinstitute.org.
Topics: Campus Life