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Dr. Charles Weissmann to Speak at Premiere of Scripps Florida Science Discussion Series

World Renowned Biomedical Pioneer Will Discuss the Body's Immune Response to Viral and Bacterial Attack

JUPITER, FL, December 4, 2008—Dr. Charles Weissmann, one of the world's preeminent scientists in the field of infection, will be the featured speaker at the premiere of a new Scripps Florida discussion series, "At the Front Lines of Hope."

The event will take place on Wednesday, January 7, 2009 from 5 to 7 PM in Building B at 120 Scripps Way on the Scripps Florida campus in Jupiter.

"We are thrilled to have Dr. Weissmann as our opening speaker for this series, which highlights the latest advances in biomedical research and their impact on tomorrow's health care solutions," said Will Melton, vice president for philanthropy at Scripps Florida. "His expertise and commitment to the kind of leading-edge research being conducted at Scripps Florida makes him the perfect choice for this event."

Dr. Weissmann, who is professor and chair of the Scripps Florida Department of Infectology, will speak on "The War within Us: Infectious Agents and the Body's Defenses."

"This is a great opportunity to offer some insights into the phenomenon of infection and explain a little bit of what we do at Scripps Florida," Weissmann said.  "I'll be describing what viruses, bacteria, and fungi are, how they multiply, and how they interact with their human hosts."
Seating for the At the Front Lines of Hope discussion is limited and pre-registration is required. Anyone wishing to attend must RSVP by Friday, January 2, 2009, by contacting Lisa L. Huertas at 561-228-2015 or by emailing her at lhuertas@scripps.edu .

About Dr. Charles Weissmann

Dr. Weissmann, who earned doctoral degrees in both medicine and organic chemistry from Zurich University, launched his career in the field of molecular biology, where he was later recognized as one of the most creative investigators over several decades, contributing to several major areas of study. In recent years, he has made breakthroughs in the investigation of diseases induced by prions (small infectious particles that induce abnormal protein folding in the brain), which cause conditions such as mad cow disease in cattle and Creutzfeld-Jacob disease in humans.

Dr. Weissmann has been internationally recognized for his work, including memberships in the Royal Society (United Kingdom) and National Academy of Sciences (USA). He has been awarded six honorary doctoral degrees and many prestigious scientific prizes.

Dr. Weissmann, a native of Switzerland, was senior research scientist in the Department of Neurodegenerative Diseases at the University College, London, before becoming chairman of the Scripps Florida Department of Infectology in 2004.

The second discussion in the series, which will feature Dr. Roy Smith, chair of Scripps Florida's Department of Metabolism and Aging, is scheduled for February 4, 2009.

About The Scripps Research Institute

The Scripps Research Institute is one of the world's largest independent, non-profit biomedical research organizations. Scripps Research is internationally recognized for its discoveries in immunology, molecular and cellular biology, chemistry, neuroscience, and vaccine development, as well as for its insights into autoimmune, cardiovascular, and infectious disease. Headquartered in La Jolla, California, the institute also includes a campus in Jupiter, Florida, where scientists focus on drug discovery and technology development in addition to basic biomedical science. Scripps Research currently employs about 3,000 scientists, staff, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students on its two campuses. The institute's graduate program, which awards Ph.D. degrees in biology and chemistry, is ranked among the top ten such programs in the nation. For more information, see www.scripps.edu.

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