Marshall to host 900 scientists next week at Association of Southeastern Biologists meeting

Marshall University will host the 74th Annual Meeting of the Association of Southeastern Biologists next week in Charleston.

The meeting will bring 900 researchers, university faculty members and students from 20 states and Washington, D.C., to the Charleston Civic Center April 10-13.

Dr. Chuck Somerville, dean of the College of Science, is a member of Marshall’s planning group and will welcome participants at the opening session. He said hosting the conference is a good opportunity to showcase Marshall and West Virginia.

“It’s very exciting that Marshall is the host institution for this year’s meeting,” he said. “This is a high-quality scientific conference with close to 1,000 attendees. We are excited about welcoming our colleagues to West Virginia and are looking forward to both the scientific sessions and showing our visitors some of the beautiful natural attractions in our region.”

Somerville said presentations will focus on the latest research conducted by association members and will cover a wide range of topics.

“Biology is a diverse field. We’ll have presentations about everything from a study of efforts to restore the American chestnut tree in central Appalachia to elk habitat use in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to crayfish and centipedes in West Virginia,” he added. “We’ve also got people who will present cutting-edge genetics and cancer research.”

In addition to learning about current research, Somerville said meeting attendees will participate in field trips to Kanawha State Forest, New River Gorge, the Huntington Museum of Art plant conservatory, West Virginia State University’s microbiology fermentation facility and Carter Caves.

Conference planners estimate the regional economic impact of the conference at $900,000.

The Association of Southeastern Biologists membership includes 1,400 members from 42 states and 13 countries.

For more information about next week’s meeting, visit www.sebiologists.org or contact Somerville at ext.6-2424 or somervil@marshall.edu.