Perkins Library, Rm 217 12:00 PM
As with many “controversial” areas of science, the vaccine/autism story is fundamentally a story of the challenges of effective science communication. But there is a fascinating and surprising chapter in this story that you might not know. Come to the November SciComm Lunch-and-Learn to hear more about this from Duke immunologist William Parker.
Dr. Parker has studied biochemistry, microbiology and immunology at Duke University since 1993. Best known for the discovery of the function of the human vermiform appendix (a safe-house for bacteria), William has spent the last 15 years looking at fundamental causes of inflammation in Western societies. His work on “biota alteration”, a concept which evolved from the “hygiene hypothesis”, has been aimed at evaluating the role of the gut ecosystem in mental health. William’s work covers a variety of mental health issues, and his conclusions regarding causes of autism spectrum disorders have received considerable attention. He has published more than 120 peer reviewed papers, including a paper in 2017 looking at the role of vaccines in the development of autism.