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Programs Sorted by Original Air Date:
(click on titles for air dates and times)
The Diversity of Development: Clockwork Genes: Biological Rhythms in Health and Agriculture
(#13544; 57 minutes; 1/16/2008)
We are all painfully aware of our internal clock when we travel across time zones or undertake shift work. But our clocks also control our blood pressure and fat metabolism, as well as our cognitive abilities. In many animals circadian clocks are responsible for behaviors ranging from courtship to insect pollinators. Plants even grow with daily rhythms and use their clocks to decide the correct seasons to flower. Join UCSD Professor and Dean of Biological Sciences Steve Kay and explore how these clocks are constructed, how they differ, and how systems biology may allow us ultimately to manipulate them to benefit health and agriculture.
The Diversity of Development: Embryos and Evolution
(#13545; 58 minutes; 2/20/2008)
How does variation in genes generate the beautiful diversity of animal body shapes that fill the world? UCSD Biologist William McGinnis explains that all animals, whether fish, fowl, or fly, share similar architectural control genes called Homeobox genes. The discovery and study of these genes has led to an understanding of how subtle changes in Homeobox genes can lead to changes in animal form during evolution.
The Diversity of Development - The Evolution of Complexity: From the Human Brain to the Rainforest
(#13546; 58 minutes; 3/19/2008)
The living world is made up of complex biological systems. At the level of the individual, the most complex of these systems is the human brain. But the process of evolution has produced even more complex systems, such as tropical reefs and rainforests, that are made up of millions of interacting species. UCSD Professor of Ecology Christopher Wills explores how this complexity evolved and what genetic and ecological processes complex systems have in common.
The Diversity of Development: Unraveling the Mysteries of Flower Formation
(#13547; 57 minutes; 4/16/2008)
For thousands of years, people have pondered the mysteries of flower development and how these flowers ultimately give rise to fruit. Martin Yanofsky, professor of biology at UC San Diego, discusses recent studies that have begun to unravel these long-standing mysteries, leading to a detailed understanding of how a handful of genes interact to direct the formation of flowers and fruit. This new-found knowledge offers remarkable opportunities for increasing the yield of agriculturally important crop plants.
The Diversity of Development - The Genetics of Primate Evolution: A Rosetta Stone for Understanding Human Disease
(#13548; 50 minutes; 5/21/2008)
Ajit Varki is Co-Director of the newly established UCSD / Salk Center for Academic Research and Training in Anthropogeny, multidisciplinary approach to understanding human origins, which involves scientists from across San Diego and all over the world. Here he explores the genetic approach to understanding human disease, in the light of genetic changes that occurred during our evolutionary history.



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