It’s not easy being a scientist these days.
In the age of President Trump where “alternative facts” are doled out daily, researchers find themselves derided.
Climate change? It’s an agenda of these rascally scientists to get grant money.
Life-saving vaccines? Trump believes they may be tied to autism despite ample proof they are not.
So for the Max Planck Institute for Neuroscience in Jupiter, its highly popular science and music presentations are a great way to reach out to the public.
The latest is scheduled for Wednesday at 6:15 p.m. at the Benjamin Upper School in Palm Beach Gardens. It’s free and open to the public but seating is limited so RSVP is required.
“I think many times the public doesn’t understand science so when we do this outreach with music and whatnot we are playing an active role,” said David Fitzpatrick, chief executive officer and scientific director of Florida’s institute.
“With what has happened in this country, there are many people devaluing science.”
The last Science Meets Music event drew more than 400 people in January. The Post previewed the series earlier this month.
The speaker this time around is one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people” Emmanuelle Charpentier – which is saying something since there are like 7.5 billion humans on earth. She will be visiting from Berlin, Germany, where she works for the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology.
For the music portion there will be Emmanuel Ceysson, Principal Harp of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra.
The star, though, is Charpentier whose work involving a bacterial system has the potential to drastically change treatment of cancer and other ailments. It hasn’t been used on humans yet, but experiments on mice have been very encouraging.
The New York Times reported Charpentier’s discovery of being able to add or delete genes in any type of cell “has sparked a scientific revolution with a seemingly endless list of applications.”
It can hypothetically be used to remove the mutated gene in blood cells of people with sickle cell disease and to replace it with a normal gene, thus curing the disease. Or it can be used to make insect pests unable to reproduce and plants to naturally resist disease.
Fitzpatrick said he hopes by mixing music with science, he can convey how researchers at the institute use the scientific method, that these are passionate individuals who work tirelessly to find the truth.
“Musicians and scientists are many ways very much alike,” he said. “They have a dedication to what they are doing. Scientists do an experiment over and over and over. A musician does the same thing.”
For more information on the 2017 series, or to RSVP, call 561-972-9027.