Scripps Research invites audiences to take a ‘front row’ seat to science

Virtual Lecture Series runs through December

Scripps Research is inviting the public to participate in a series of virtual lectures called “Front Row.”

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Susana Tereno Valente, PhD

Scripps Research scientists on the cutting edge of discoveries in their field will present a series of free lectures, sharing their most recent discoveries and interactively answering questions. Once a month, attendees will enjoy compelling presentations, get an inside look at life-changing advancements and get the chance to directly ask leading researchers questions.

The series is taking place entirely online, so guests can join from the comfort of their own homes, either over the phone or on the computer. Advance registration is required and guests may register online at or contact

Each one-hour lecture begins at 4 p.m. ET.

“This is a great opportunity for people interested in science to hear about the life-changing research and graduate education happening right here in their community,” says Doug Bingham, executive vice president at Scripps Research, Florida. “We’re making profound discoveries that have the power to transform people’s lives, and we’re eager to share them, especially during this time.”

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Laura M. Bohn, PhD

The lecture series is free to attend with a reservation.

To register for the Front Row Lecture Series, visit To watch past Front Row lectures, subscribe to the Scripps Research YouTube channel.

Lecture information:
Aug. 12: Opioid Addiction/Pain Therapies — Addiction to opioids, including illicit substances and prescription pain medications, has reached epidemic proportions in the United States. In this Front Row lecture, Scripps Research Professors Laura Bohn and Kim Janda will present the latest research on innovative strategies for addressing opioid addiction and preventing related fatalities, as well as advances in understanding the body’s pain pathways that could lead to improvements in pain therapy.

Sept. 10: Citizen Science: Empowering the Public to Help Solve Biomedical Challenges — Modern scientific research is primarily performed by individuals with specialized training and as their full-time careers. But in recent years, there has also been rapid growth in “Citizen Science” — engaging the general public as partners in research. In this Front Row lecture, Andrew Su, PhD, professor in Scripps Research’s Department of Integrative Structural & Computational Biology, will discuss recent discoveries that were only possible by leveraging the Citizen Scientist community. He will also highlight the many ways in which people can contribute to cutting-edge scientific research, both at Scripps Research and elsewhere.

Oct. 14: Harnessing Chemical Biology for Cancer Drug Discovery — Gene regulation is the study of how cells turn certain genes on or off and plays a central role in the development and treatment of cancer. In this Front Row lecture, Associate Professor Michael Erb will share his research applying chemical tools to study how chromatin, a molecular machine that plays a key role in transcription, becomes disrupted in cancer. He will discuss his research developing small molecule drugs targeting these genetic malfunctions.

Nov. 12: Can Medicines that Alter the Microbiome Prevent Cardiovascular Disease? — Promoting a healthy gut microbiome may be a powerful strategy for lowering cholesterol and other heart attack risk factors. In this Front Row lecture, Professor Reza Ghadiri will present research on molecules that can alter the bacterial population of intestines to a healthier state and how they have shown—through experiments in mice—that this reduces cholesterol levels and strongly inhibits the thickened-artery condition known as atherosclerosis.

Dec. 16: Silencing the HIV Reservoir: The “Block and Lock” Approach — Some viruses avoid immune system antiviral attacks by going into deep sleep until the right moment to reemerge. HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is one of the sneakiest. While anti-retroviral therapy works well to stop the virus, if people with HIV forget to take their medicine, the latent virus awakens and becomes a threat again. Research by Professor Valente suggests it’s possible to block the virus’ ability to reemerge (or wake up), locking it in a long-term dormant state. She is advancing a possible medicine derived from a marine sponge to do just that.

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