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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Oct. 1: Nobel Laureate Peter Agre to Deliver Ford Lecture; Event free to public

Agre to speak at 7:30 p.m. on "Opening Doors Worldwide through Medical Science."

Minnesota State University, Mankato Media Relations Office News Release, 9-24-2014

Mankato, Minn. – Peter Agre, a Nobel Laureate and director of Johns Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health, will deliver two lectures at Minnesota State University, Mankato on Wednesday, Oct. 1 as part of the 25th annual Leonard A. Ford Lectureship.

Both lectures are free and open to the public. Agre will give a general talk at 7:30 p.m. in Centennial Student Union’s Ostrander Auditorium titled “Opening Doors Worldwide through Medical Science.”

In his 7:30 p.m. lecture, Agre will talk about how his research with other faculty members discovered the aquaporin water channels, known as “the plumbing system for cells,” that facilitate the movement of water across cell membranes. He will describe that while the practical value of these discoveries is just emerging, valuable new preventive strategies and treatments for multiple disorders are anticipated, including renal failure, brain edema, blindness, wound healing and infectious diseases.

Prior to his Oct. 1 evening lecture, Agre will give a technical talk at 9 a.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom that is titled “Aquaporin Water Channels: From Atomic Structure to Malaria.”

Agre received a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Augsburg College in 1970 and a medical doctorate from Johns Hopkins University in 1974. He completed his medical residency at Case Western Reserve University Hospital and oncology fellowship at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Agre joined the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine faculty in 1981 and rose to the rank of professor of biological chemistry and medicine.

In 2003, Agre shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovery of the aquaporins, a family of water channel proteins found throughout nature. Referred to as “the plumbing system for cells,” aquaporins are involved in numerous physiological processes in humans and are implicated in multiple clinical disorders including malaria. Since 2008, Agre has served as director of the Johns Hopkins Malaria Research Institute at the Bloomberg School of Public Health. He oversees 20 faculty research groups as well as field activities in Zimbabwe and Zambia.

The annual Ford Lectureship is being sponsored by the Chemistry and Geology Department in Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Science, Engineering & Technology.

For more information, contact Christine Cords at 507-389-1963 or send an email to

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university with 15,409 students, is part of the Minnesota State Colleges & Universities system, which comprises 31 state institutions.

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