MAS October Monthly Meeting

Astrobiology: OHLALA Project (Origins of Life, Artificial Life, & Astrobiology)

Lena Vincent

Description: OoLALA was created to bring together scientists and engineers who are working to solve some of the deepest mysteries associated with life’s origins and distribution in the universe, as well as inspire others to join the effort. In this presentation, I will talk about the launch of this new initiative and discuss examples of OoLALA research being conducted right here in Madison, including my own on the chemical origins of life on Earth.

About the Speaker: Lena Vincent obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Molecular & Cell Biology from California State University, Long Beach and was then awarded a research fellowship by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine at City of Hope Cancer Hospital to study the role of stem cells in cancer drug resistance. She then got a Master’s degree in Biology from California State University-Northridge, where she worked on “hacking” normally harmful bacteria to act a beneficial drug delivery systems instead. She is currently a graduate student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she is pursuing an interdisciplinary PhD in Astrobiology and Prebiotic Chemistry. As a member of David Baum’s research group, she is using laboratory experiments to reconstruct the earliest stages in the origins and evolution of life.