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Royal Society GlaxoSmithKline Prize Lecture

Professor Mark Pepys FRS FMedSci, University College London

The normal proteins which circulate in human blood are either known or presumed to have beneficial functions. However normal immunity and inflammation proteins can cause or exacerbate disease in addition to helping to resist infections. Also since evolution is largely blind to survival outcomes after the reproductive age, even conserved characteristics can have harmful roles thereafter. The lecture will illustrate this phenomenon with the highly conserved circulating pentraxin proteins, C‑reactive protein and serum amyloid P component. 

It has lately been shown that they may contribute to diseases, including amyloidosis, Alzheimer's disease, maturity onset diabetes, osteoarthritis and coronary heart disease, which occur in the ageing populations of developed countries. Recognition of the roles of these proteins and elucidation of their structures and functions have enabled design of novel treatments with small molecule drugs and antibodies. These promising new therapeutic approaches are on the verge of clinical development.

The 2007 prize was awarded to Professor Mark Pepys FRS, for his excellent work as a clinical scientist who has identified specific proteins as new therapeutic targets and developed novel drugs with potential use in amyloidosis, Alzheimer's disease and cardiovascular disease.

This lecture is FREE. No advance booking or registration. Seats will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis. Doors will open at 5.45pm