MIT: Microverse

10th March 2017 (7pm)

On Friday the 10th of March at 7pm, we are going to explore the giant, complex cosmos that is the human body – made visible by ever developing technologies – and we will expand our perspective to a world of tiny creatures the maintain the biodiversity needed within us and in different environments from cities to the Arctic. We owe our on-going survival to microscopic single-celled creatures without whom we would not be able to digest food, feel healthy, live in a diverse ecosystem or even breath air. We tend to be oblivious to the never ending life-giving work of microbes but what can understanding and studying the ‘microverse’ both in, on and all around us tell us about ourselves? How does understanding these delicate wonderful microscopic communities help us to live better and more respectfully of others?

In her talk The forgotten organ: Environmental cues and health implications of the human microbiome, Ana Gr (UCL Centre for Advanced Biomedical ImagingUCL) will describe her research into one of the most indispensable and under-appreciated creatures of all: the community of gut bacteria that live within us.

From the microbiome to an entire human, Dr Arash Latifoltojar (UCL Medical Imaging Department) will describe how his research is – Extending the Field of View. Arash researches qualitative and quantitative whole-body MRI in cancer imaging. His work includes major breakthroughs in software, hardware and sequence programming, thereby advancing how we investigate and understand the entire body.

Echoing the diverse cosmos described by Ana and Arash, descending back into the microscopic scale, Dr Anne Jungblut (Natural History Museum, London department for Life Sciences) will discuss Arctic cyanobacteria and their role in supporting the Arctic ecosystem and their potential role in having formed our oxygen rich atmosphere.

Words, metaphors and imagery are as vital in science communication as they are in ancient mythology and for this evening’s workshop you will create your own MICROVERSE poems and metaphors with Agnes Marton, Arctic Circle Residency Member 2016. Come join us! Discover the Microverse!

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THECUBE London offers a series of free events that are curated under the themes of design, art, science, and technology. This is the second residency by artist and physicists Jennifer Crouch, who is exploring how people navigate through complex and challenging environments.