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Evolution and Medicine Workshop

Institute of Zoology, London, 3 November 2004


  • Centre for Ecology and Evolution
  • Hygiene Centre, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Evolutionary thinking has underwritten the biological sciences since Darwin's time. More recently it has also had an impact on a range of other disciplines, including Medicine. The field of 'evolutionary medicine' which views illnesses as adaptive responses to disease challenge, is now established through a burgeoning literature. However, a more g eneral relationship between the medicine and evolutionary sciences exist in which the outcomes of evolutionary thinking have had a direct bearing on health.

This workshop will examine some key aspects of this broader relationship, including evidence for natural selection on health related genes and pathogens, the evolution of aging and cancer, foetal programming of genetic susceptibilities and reproductive potential, and the evolution of motive and emotion.

Speakers will include Gillian Bentley (Anthropology, UCL), David Conway (Infectious Diseases, LSHTM), Val Curtis (Hygiene Centre, LSHTM), Amanda Drake (Medical School, University of Edinburgh), David Goldstein (Biology, UCL), Mel Greaves (Institute of Cancer Research), David Nettle (Psychology, University of Newcastle), Linda Partridge (Biology, UCL), Michael Stumpf (Biological Sciences, Imperial College London), and Dallas Swallow (Biology, UCL).

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