Oct 272009
 
Authors: Abel Oshevire

Two CSU students will give a presentation on scientific phenomena behind paranormal activities that have led to beliefs in society about vampires, witches and zombies -/part of the foundation on which Halloween is based.

The presentation, given by biochemistry Ph.D. student Kristopher Hite and junior natural resources major Nick Clark, takes place in room 101 of the Pathology Building from 3 to 4 p.m. and is open to the general public.

Hite said the project, which is not part of his studies, grew out of a series of conversations between Clark and himself a little more than a year ago.

“We realize that many times when a scientist starts talking about his or her technical research in front of the general public it becomes esoteric and inaccessible,” said Hite. “We wanted to seek out a topic to give a public lecture on that would be appealing to a wide audience so we might draw them into a world we find fascinating.”

“Taking them on a tour of enzymes, active sites and competitive inhibition in the context of Halloween just seemed perfect,” Hite said.

The lecture has very little to do with their actual research aside from the fact that they would be talking about a genetic basis of disease, he said.

Clark works with Karolin Luger, a university distinguished professor in biochemistry.

Luger said people had to know there were reasonable explanations for happenings that seemed hard to understand./She said this helped people understand and be tolerant of the behavior of others who seemed to be outside the “norm.”

“For example, people who were thought to be ‘possessed’ by the devil have likely been suffering from epilepsy, a treatable medical condition, or from Huntington’s disease, an inherited syndrome that runs in the family,” said Luger./ “The examples that (Hite) and (Clark) will be talking about are along the same lines.”

Staff writer Abel Oshevire can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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