Nature Vs Nurture? Blame Your Parents!

It’s 2013 and geneticists are celebrating 60 years since Watson & Crick determined the structure of DNA. I had a chat with Dr Kevin O’Dell about the genetics events on offer at Glasgow Science Festival this year….

Zombie Douglas  Kevin (2)

Dr Kevin O’Dell [right] after a rough night in the lab

Who are you and what do you do?

Kevin O’Dell. I’m a Geneticist, working at the University of Glasgow in the School of Life Sciences and the Zombie Institute of Theoretical Studies. I do a lot of teaching, quite a bit of public engagement, and sometimes find some time for research.

What brings you to Glasgow Science Festival this year?

We have a ‘Blame Your Parents‘ event for schools which is all about nature vs nurture asking why each of us end up as we are (is it genetic or environmental?). This year we also have ‘Genetics: Past Present and Future‘ which is a celebration of all things geneticky with a first class array of speakers from all over the UK.

When you think of Glasgow, what are the first 3 words that come to mind?

Wet, wet, wet (not the music icons).

If there was a zombie apocalypse, where would you hide?

You should never hide from a zombie apocalypse. Simply run or swim away as fast as possible. Lack of speed is one of their greatest weaknesses.

What’s your favourite park or nature spot in Glasgow and why?

Fossil Grove, Victoria Park. If you go to visit you’ll understand why.

Impress us with your favourite science fact

The sperm of the fruit fly Drosophila bifurca are approximately 6cm long!

The ‘Blame Your Parents‘ schools event is completely free and runs on the 11th and 14th June at the University of Glasgow. To book, please call 0141 330 5370.

‘Genetics: Past, Present & Future’ takes place on 8th June at the University of Glasgow. The full programme for the day is now available.  Book your free ticket online.


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