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‘Science diplomacy’ focus of Nobel laureate Agre’s Discovery Lecture

Jan. 14, 2016, 9:19 AM

Peter Agre, M.D., a Nobel laureate who advocates the use of medical science to advance international diplomacy, will deliver the next Flexner Discovery Lecture at 4 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 21, in room 208 Light Hall.

Peter Agre, M.D.

A former president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and former chair of the National Academies Committee on Human Rights, Agre currently directs the Johns Hopkins Malaria Research Institute in Baltimore, Maryland.

His talk, titled “Opening Doors Worldwide through Medical Science,” is hosted by members of the Biochemistry Student Association, supported by the co-sponsorship of the Department of Biochemistry Hnilica Lectureship, the Vanderbilt Institute of Chemical Biology, and the Office of Sponsored Research. The Hnilica Lectureship is named for the famed Vanderbilt biochemist Lubomir, Hnilica, Ph.D.

Agre shared the 2003 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovering aquaporins, proteins that facilitate the movement of water across cell membranes, and which have been implicated in a wide range of clinical disorders, from cataracts and obesity to malaria and other infectious diseases.

He also is a strong proponent of “science diplomacy,” and has led or participated in science diplomatic visits to Cuba, Iran, Myanmar Burma and North Korea. The goal is to advance global health while improving international relations.

For a complete schedule of the Flexner Discovery Lecture series and archived video of previous lectures, go to

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