Inaugural Lecture – Professor Rachel Bearon - A Mathematician’s Journey into Biology

12:00pm - 1:30pm / Wednesday 12th June 2019 / Venue: Lecture Theatre D Central Teaching Hub
Type: Lecture / Category: Department
  • Admission: Free but please email Jackie Parkinson ( if you wish to attend as a sandwich lunch will be served prior to the lecture
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School of Physical Sciences Inaugural Lecture to celebrate the promotion to a Chair of Professor Rachel Bearon,

Mathematics, the queen of the sciences, is at the heart of scientific discovery. I invite you to share my journey as a mathematician into the world of biology; illustrated through examples of my research projects and personal reflections of academic life. A key strand of my research is modelling planktonic (‘drifting’) cells in flow environments. I will demonstrate how mathematics can describe the interaction of fluid dynamics and biology to give insight into a wide range of applications; from bacterial chemotaxis to marine ecology. In many biological systems, such as in tissues, cells are packed tightly together, and a more recent strand of my research has been to study 3D micro-tissue dynamics; using a systems biology approach to scale up behaviour occurring at the cell level to the tissue level. This is relevant for example in studying how drugs are absorbed, in cancer progression, and (of particular surprise to me) the creative process of musical composition.