Fighting antibiotic resistance takes guts

As a kid, Dr Lara Malins loved playing with Lego. Now she is using those same skills to build new drug leads in the fight against antibiotic resistance.

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As a kid, Dr Lara Malins loved playing with Lego. Now she is using those same skills to build new drug leads in the fight against antibiotic resistance.

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A false-colour composite of the remnant of N132D. Shows stars on blue, black, green and pink background.

14 May 2021

Alien radioactive element prompts creation rethink

The first-ever discovery of an extraterrestrial radioactive isotope on Earth has scientists rethinking the origins of the elements on our planet.

Night sky showing meteor shooting through sky.

6 May 2021

Meteor shower to light up the sky

Australians will be treated to a spectacular show of streaking lights with shooting stars on display from early morning this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

4.30pm 3 June 2021

Modelling the Global Ocean Circulation

The oceans have absorbed >90% of the heat energy and ~40% of the carbon dioxide added to Earth’s climate system over the industrial era. This heat and carbon is pulled around by the ocean circulation, which can act to push water from the surface to the deep ocean and back, or from Equator to poles. Ocean circulation occurs on planetary scales, but also depends on fluid processes that can be as small as millimetres. In this talk I will show how we use our knowledge of fluid mechanics to formulate global ocean and sea ice models which can be used to investigate the behaviour of ocean circulation and predict future climate states. The advent of high-performance computing has allowed us to simulate the ocean with ever-increasing resolution, revealing new dynamics into how turbulence and mixing alter the ocean circulation and Earth’s climate.

Master of Earth SciencesEarth & Marine SciencesEngineeringEnvironment & Sustainability

4.30pm 4 June 2021

The economics of evolution: sons or daughters?

One of the most commonly asked question when a woman is pregnant is whether the parents know if it is a boy or a girl. In humans you have an (almost) 50% chance of guessing the answer correctly. But why is this? Can you correctly explain why there are as many sons as daughters born in humans? I will discuss the evolutionary principles that underlie the evolution of offspring sex ratios in animals. You might be intrigued to learn that offspring sex ratios can vary hugely across different species. Using basic economics ideas about costs and benefits, combined with game theory, evolutionary biologists can predict the conditions under which male-biased or female-biased offspring sex ratios will evolve. Even better, we can then test these theory-based predictions and show that they are surprisingly accurate. These findings provide some of the best evidence for a ’selfish gene’ approach to the study of evolution. This talk will highlight the world class theory-driven research conducted at the Australian National University. And if your goal is to carry out applied science to become a millionaire, I will suggest a way in which you could apply this seemingly esoteric sex ratio theory to food production.

Master of Science in Biological SciencesMaster of BiotechnologyMaster of Science in Quantitative Biology & BioinformaticsBiologyHealth