Finding Alien Life: On Earth, on Mars, and Throughout the Cosmos

Presenter: Steven Benner, Foundation for Applied Molecular Evolution
When: May 22, 2014 7PM PDT

How do we define “life”? This fundamental question has remained largely philosophical, because it has been asked for so long, by so many, and with so few concrete conclusions.

In this talk, Dr. Benner will take a different tack. He will show how laboratory studies to create a second example of life help us develop a firmer scientific understanding of what life is. The challenge of “synthetic biology” is on! Dr. Benner will discuss how we are hitchhiking on rockets, rovers, and telescopes to find life elsewhere in the Solar System, and will describe how his research team is working to develop that second example of life in laboratories here on Earth, one step at a time.

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