2019 President's Distinguished Lecturers
Y.M. Dennis Lo, FRS
Thursday, March 14
8:10 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.
President's Distinguished Lecture I: Plasma Nucleic Acids in Health and Disease
Dennis Lo is the Associate Dean (Research) of the Faculty of Medicine, the Director of the Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences and Chairman of the Department of Chemical Pathology of The Chinese University of Hong Kong. He received his undergraduate education from the University of Cambridge, and his Doctor of Medicine and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the University of Oxford. He discovered the presence of cell-free fetal DNA in maternal plasma in 1997 and is a key driver of non-invasive prenatal diagnostics. He has also pioneered many non-invasive approaches for detecting cancer-associated molecular aberrations in blood. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society (UK) and a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences, and has been awarded the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine in 2014 and the Future Science Prize in 2016.
Edith Heard, PhD
Friday, March 15
8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.
President's Distinguished Lecture II: Exploring Epigenetic Dynamics During Mammalian Development Using X-chromosome Inactivation
Edith Heard leads the Mammalian Developmental Epigenetics team at the Institut Curie and is director of the Unit of Genetics and Developmental Biology Department. From January 2019, she will be Director General of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL). She studied Natural Sciences at Cambridge University, graduating in genetics, and then carried out her PhD at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (London), working on gene amplification in cancer. During her post doc at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, she began her work on the epigenetic process of X-chromosome inactivation. She has made many important contributions and several groundbreaking discoveries in the field of epigenetics and chromosome organisation, in the context of early mammalian development, through her work on the classic example of X-chromosome inactivation. She has been awarded several prizes and honours, including the Silver Medal of the CNRS in 2008, the Grand Prix of INSERM in 2017, and two ERC Advanced Investigator Awards in 2010 and 2015. She was elected as EMBO member in 2005 and a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2013. In 2012, she was appointed Professor of the Collège de France.