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Gene Robinson, January 25

Please join the department of Biology in welcoming Dr. Gene Robinson, Swanlund Chair of Entomology and Director at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, for his talk entitled, "Sociogenomics: The Molecular Biology that Links Nature and Nurture." The talk will be held via Zoom on January 25, 2021 at 4pm EST. For access to the Zoom information, please contact Becca Rohn at (304)293-5201 or at

More on the talk:
The “nature vs. nurture” debate has dominated behavioral research since its inception, sometimes with catastrophic results for human society. Gnomic research with honey bees and other animal models now allows scientists to better understand the relationship between genes and social behavior, which I have explained with the simple conceptual framework of sociogenomics. This lecture will present evidence from my laboratory’s studies of honey bees to support three key principles of sociogenomics: 1) Brain gene expression is closely associated with behavior, in a reciprocal manner; 2) Environmentally induced changes in gene expression influence future behavior by changing neural states; and 3) The relationship between genes and behavior is highly conserved, from animals to humans.