The Evolution within us: Statistics of Immunity

May 5, 2020Livestream Brussels
Immunity
Doors open: 19:30
Start programme: 20:30
Livestream
Directly into your lazy chair
Brussels

Science & Cocktails is back with a special home edition! We'll provide the science & music, live streamed into your lazy chair. All you have to do is mix your own cocktails and tune into our Youtube channel. Fortunately, cocktail recipe and mixing tutorial will be provided.

How can our immune system protect us against a wide variety of diseases? How many immune receptors do we have? And how different are our immune systems? Do you share many immune receptors with your neighbours? With your mother? Or with Angèle or Stromae? What do statistics have to do with immunity?

Our adaptive immune system protects us against a large variety of different pathogens — many of which where not around when we were born. How can our immune system be prepared for the many unknown pathogens that we will encounter throughout our life?

To make the job harder, the pathogens keep changing and evolving, forcing the immune system to change too. In this talk professor Aleksandra Walczak will explore how nature uses statistics to generate diversity and withstand this life-long struggle.

After the talk, you can test you receptiveness to homemade cocktails as we'll air an exclusive cocktail tutorial by the one and only Science & Cocktails mixologist. We'll then switch to the living room of Elisa Erka to enjoy her beautiful chansons on the piano.

Immunity

Aleksandra Walczak

The evolution within us

How can our immune system protect us against a wide variety of diseases? How many immune receptors do we have? And how different are our immune systems? Do you share many immune receptors with your neighbours? With your mother? Or with Angèle or Stromae? What do statistics have to do with immunity?

Live drawings

During the livestream, Dominika Šulcová created live drawings from the comfort of her cozy chair. Follow the link to see them all!

SC warmup

Talk by

Aleksandra Walczak

Aleksandra Walczak received her PhD in physics at the University of California (UCSD), working on models of stochastic gene expression. After a graduate fellowship at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (California), she worked at the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science (US). Currently based at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris, she studies the effects of selection on population genealogies, collective behaviour of bird flocks and statistical descriptions of the immune system. Dr Walczak was awarded the “Grand Prix Jacques Herbrand de l’Académie des sciences" in 2014 and the bronze medal of CNRS in 2016. She is the recipient of three prestigious ERC Grants.

Aleksandra Walczak

Music by

Elisa Erka

In addition to her acting career, French singer ELISA ERKA has decided to put her music in the spotlight. Each of her songs has a simple base: the piano and her voices. She creates loops, experiments with tones or voice effects and puts great emphasis on words and narration. Emotions go through the sounds and the energy that she wants to transmit through her voice. Deeply influenced by the lyrics of Françoise Hardy, Barbara or Jacqueline Taieb, and wanting her words to make sense, ELISA ERKA does not see herself solely as a traditional heir to the great ladies of French song. Because her ears are also attracted by the round sounds of electronic pop from Polo & Pan, Jain, Angèle or Clara Luciani. Her 2nd EP finds its equilibrium point in a harmonious mix between her expressive songs, sensitive lyrics and the modern backdrop around them. Recorded in London in the studio of the Englishman Matthew Ker, this EP is a bouquet of heady perfume songs that often have their bodies close to the dance floor and the silhouette crossed by the thrill of discoveries.

Elisa Erka