2018 International Day of Women and Girls in Science public lecture

To celebrate the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, we welcome you to a public lecture by Professor Eleanor Riley:


Combatting Malaria: Using the Immune System for Prevention, Treatments and Control


Friday 23 February, 1pm at the Byre Theatre

Malaria is a deadly infectious disease caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium. The latest estimates from the World Health Organisation indicate that there were over 200 million cases of malaria, and up to half a million deaths from malaria in 2015. Intensive efforts to control malaria over the last 15 years have reduced deaths by about half and have allowed the infection to be eliminated from some countries, but progress has stalled in many areas suggesting that the currently available tools are insufficient. Our ability to control malaria depends on a detailed understanding of the biology of the parasite, its vector (mosquitos), and its human host. Biological insights have underpinned vector control measures and drug development and are informing the development of malaria vaccines. Yet it is often hard for scientists at the “discovery” end of the research pipeline – for example, biochemists, geneticists and immunologists – to appreciate or demonstrate how their work might eventually save lives. In her lecture, Professor Riley will show how fundamental immunological research has helped to shape our understanding of the disease we call “malaria”, its epidemiology, treatment and prevention.

Professor Eleanor Riley is the Director of the Roslin Institute and Dean of Research at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies of the University of Edinburgh, and a world leader in malaria immunology. Professor Riley is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences with a background in veterinary medicine, human infectious diseases and global health, and more than 30 years’ research experience in the UK and Africa.

The talk is free, but ticketed. Tickets are available from the Byre Box Office online, via telephone (01334 475000) or email (byreboxoffice@st-andrews.ac.uk), or from admin staff in the Harold Mitchell/Dyers Brae (Lianne Baker), SOI (Jane Williamson) and the Biology Hive (Andy Cole) buildings. All university students and staff, as well as members of the public, are invited to attend.


The talk will be introduced by the Master of the United College, Professor Garry Taylor, and celebrates the United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Each year, the School of Biology’s Equality and Diversity Committee hosts a public lecture that highlights the work of an eminent biologist to celebrate some of the outstanding science being done by women.


Tea and coffee will be served after the talk, then at 3:30pm early career researchers are invited to meet with Professor Riley for an informal Careers in Science Q&A. Please contact Natalie Sinclair (ncs4@st-andrews.ac.uk) if interested.