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University of Washington’s Friday Harbor Laboratories invites the community to attend a presentation by Dr. Garrett Odell, on Thursday, June 9th, at 7:30 pm at the San Juan Community Theater.

The title of Garry’s talk is “How do biological cells build complex structures and move purposefully without any foreman making decisions or giving instructions?”

This free presentation is part of UW-Friday Harbor Laboratories’ Centennial Celebration.

Garrett M. Odell grew up in East Orange New Jersey. Garry’s grandmother used to talk to him about two of their famous ancestors, Sir Frances Drake and Sir Isaac Newton and thus at a fairly early age Garry felt compelled to choose between a life of piracy and a life filled with differential equations; he chose the latter.

Garry received his B.S. from Johns Hopkins University in Engineering Science and his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University in Theoretical Mechanics. He began his academic career as an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematical Sciences at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). He quickly moved through the ranks to become a full professor at RPI within 8 years of his initial appointment. During this time he was named a Guggenheim Fellow and had sabbatical visiting professorships at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Oxford, England. In 1986 Dr. Odell was appointed Professor of Biology at the University of Washington. He has over 25 peer-reviewed publications and has several published works of software.

Dr. Odell is currently the Director of the Center for Cell Dynamics, a NIH-funded Center of Excellence in Systems Biology on the campus of the Friday Harbor Laboratories. The Center’s mandate is to cross-train scientists in bench biology and mathematics/computational modeling techniques while working on complex problems that require both approaches. Research at the CCD focuses on understanding the mechanisms that underlie the process of cell division, the gene networks that govern embryonic development, and those networks that endow cells with motility and contractility.