CONTACT: JANE HOSHI
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0017; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Aug. 20, 1999
UI College of Medicine features Mini Medical School
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Gene therapy, cloning, in vitro fertilization
and ethics will be among topics discussed at this years Mini Medical
School, "Dollys Genes: The Future of Genetics Research and Medicine,"
sponsored by the University of Iowa College of Medicine.
Registration is now open for the public to attend this
free, three-part program on Sept. 14, 21, and 28 from 7-9 p.m. in Medical
Alumni Auditorium. College of Medicine faculty members will explore many facets
of genetics, reproductive sciences and ethical issues that surface as the
"human blueprint" is drawn.
On Sept. 14, Paul McCray, M.D. and Beverly Davidson,
Ph.D. will give the first of three presentations, "Trading Genes."
They will explain how some diseases are being treated using gene therapy and
gene transfer techniques. Davidson is associate professor, internal medicine
and director of the Gene Transfer Vector Core Facility and researches gene
transfer in the study and treatment of Battens Disease. McCray is associate
professor of pediatrics and researches potential uses of gene therapy to treat
The Sept. 21 program, "Designer Genes,"
will explore in vitro fertilization, stem cell research and the history of
cloning technology with Roger Williamson, M.D. and Amy Sparks, Ph.D. Williamson
is professor and head of the obstetrics division, department of obstetrics
and gynecology. Sparks is a research scientist in the departments of urology
and obstetrics and gynecology and director of the In Vitro Fertilization and
Reproductive Testing Laboratories, University of Iowa Health Care.
On Sept. 28, "Genetic Fingerprinting" will
feature Val Sheffield, M.D., Ph.D., who will discuss the impact of human genome
research and disease gene identification and Robert Weir, M.D., who will lead
discussion on ethical issues of genetic research. Sheffield is professor of
pediatrics and an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and
director of the UI Interdepartmental Research Program in Human Molecular Genetics.
Weir is professor of pediatrics and director of the Program in Biomedical
Ethics and Medical Humanities.
Dr. Allyn Mark, associate dean for research and graduate
programs in the college and director of the Mini-Medical School project, says
the program should appeal to persons who have been curious about medical science
"Mini-Medical School programs offer the public a
brief, but intense look into the science behind medical research and discoveries.
Participation in these programs makes for better-informed citizens and patients,"
More than two dozen institutions nationwide offer mini-medical
school programs. The University of Iowa College of Medicine has sponsored
mini-medical school since 1996.
Pre-registration for all three sessions is required. Call
384-9988 or 1-800-691-2323 or register by Internet at http://www.uiowa.edu/~hsr/index.html.
All sessions are free and open to the public.
Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend
all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability
who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please
contact the University of Iowa College of Medicine in advance at 335-8030.