The Iron Hypothesis: How algae growing around Antarctica can affect the climate in La Jolla

Jeff McQuaid from the J. Craig Venter Institute will give our next lecture at the La Jolla Riford library on Tuesday May 3rd, 2016 at 6pm.

The Iron Hypothesis How algae growing around Antarctica can affect the climate in La Jolla

Algae absorb more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than any other organism and play an important role in both the carbon cycle and climate dynamics.  This week’s lecture explains how some species of algae have evolved to develop an extraordinary mechanism to harvest iron from the ocean despite the low concentrations of iron found there, resulting in faster growth rates and possibly increased biological carbon sequestration.

After the lecture, there will be a Q+A session with the speaker to address any questions you may have.  Hope to see you there!


Bioinformatics II: Exploring Genomes!


Come to the next workshop April 2, 3pm at the La Jolla Riford Library!  Back due to popular demand! In this workshop we will dive deeper into online databases to explore genetic information from humans and other species in its biological context. No experience or participation in previous workshops necessary, all you need is basic computer skills. Bring a laptop if you have one. We also have a limited number of laptops for participants to use.  Please sign up through

Understanding Alzheimer’s Disease Using Human Stem Cells with Dr. Jessica Young, UCSD/Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine

Understanding Alzheimer's Disease Using Human Stem Cells

The molecular basis of late-onset sporadic Alzheimer’s disease (SAD), the most common form of the disorder, is still poorly understood. We hypothesize that each individual harbors genetic factors that either predispose to or protect from disease. Dr. Jessica Young will discuss her research using human pluripotent stem cells and genome-editing technology to analyze SAD phenotypes in the laboratory where her research is uncovering pathways that can be targeted with novel therapies.  Join us Tuesday April 5 at 6pm at the La Jolla Riford Library to learn more!

Algae Power!


Don’t miss our next workshop, Saturday March 5th at 3pm at the La Jolla Riford Library!  Learn how photosynthetic microalgae harness the power of the sun and form the base earth’s food web. In this hands on workshop we will examine algae under the microscope and make “algae balls” to investigate photosynthesis. You will also learn how to grow your own algae to continue experimenting at home!  Workshops have limited space so please sign up through

I sleep, therefore I am with Dr. Indrani Ganguly-Fitzgerald, USD


There is little argument that without sleep, we are functional basket cases. However, scientists are still hard at work at trying to uncover the mystery of why we NEED to sleep at all. In this lecture, Dr. Indrani Ganguly-Fitzgerald will attempt to shed light on the function of sleep, by diving into the neuro-genetic investigations that reveal a surprising connection between sleep, waking experience, and aging brain health.  Join us on Tuesday March 1 at 6pm in the La Jolla Riford Library!

Probiotics for Crops? How microbes offer sustainable solutions for agriculture with Dr. James Pearce, Monsanto

Citizen Science Jan

Learn how Monsanto is leveraging symbiotic relationships between plants and microorganisms that live in the soil to bring a broad range of solutions to help nourish our growing world. Many of these microbes have distinctive properties that can help the plant control disease, insect pests and weeds. They can also stimulate plant growth and yield by improving access to nutrients. Join us Tuesday, 1/5/2016, 6pm at the La Jolla Riford Library!