Saturday Physics for Everyone

Add to Calendar 12/7/2019 10:15 am 12/7/2019 America/Chicago Saturday Physics for Everyone DESCRIPTION:

The invention of the optical microscope 500 years ago allowed scientists to see objects smaller than a hair’s width—or, in scientific jargon, about 250 nanometers—but no smaller because of the laws of optics; this limit is called the diffraction limit. Only recently have scientists developed a way to "break" the diffraction limit and "see" even smaller objects. My lab has applied and tested this technique on two biological puzzles with tremendous clinical possibilities:

1) Each cell in your body is like a little city that has cars and trucks moving proteins around. In this talk I’ll describe how these "cargo trucks" (motor proteins) move— is it by walking, sliding, or some other motion?

2) We’ve also applied this technique to more deeply understand communication among nerve cells and the processes involved when humans think, remember, and forget. Being able to see little "memory proteins" move into place at the nanometer scale is critical for making progress on devastating diseases like Alzheimer’s disease.

What is a Physicist Doing Studying Biology?

\n\nSPEAKER:

Prof. Paul Selvin

141 Loomis Laboratory

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Title What is a Physicist Doing Studying Biology?
Speaker Prof. Paul Selvin
Date: 12/7/2019
Time: 10:15 a.m.
Location:

141 Loomis Laboratory

Sponsor:

Physics Department

Contact: Patrick J Snyder
psnyder@illinois.edu
Originating Calendar: Physics - Saturday Physics for Everyone
Abstract:

The invention of the optical microscope 500 years ago allowed scientists to see objects smaller than a hair’s width—or, in scientific jargon, about 250 nanometers—but no smaller because of the laws of optics; this limit is called the diffraction limit. Only recently have scientists developed a way to "break" the diffraction limit and "see" even smaller objects. My lab has applied and tested this technique on two biological puzzles with tremendous clinical possibilities:

1) Each cell in your body is like a little city that has cars and trucks moving proteins around. In this talk I’ll describe how these "cargo trucks" (motor proteins) move— is it by walking, sliding, or some other motion?

2) We’ve also applied this technique to more deeply understand communication among nerve cells and the processes involved when humans think, remember, and forget. Being able to see little "memory proteins" move into place at the nanometer scale is critical for making progress on devastating diseases like Alzheimer’s disease.

What is a Physicist Doing Studying Biology?

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