Research Communications

Justin Holub to discuss nature’s impact on innovation at Dec. 3 Science Cafe 

By Angela Keane

Dec. 1, 2014

Nature's form and function have inspired countless innovations throughout recorded history, from architecture and engineering, to art and sculpture and even therapeutics and medicines. Justin Holub, an Ohio University assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry, looks for inspiration from nature at the macro-, micro- and nanoscale levels.

He'll talk about the subject, "Bio Mimicry: How Nature Inspires Mankind's Innovation," during the next Science Café, to be held at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 3 in the Baker Center Front Room.

"I think that most people will find the intimate, sometime subtle, connection between the natural world and mankind's innovations particularly interesting. I would like for the audience to be inspired by the surrounding world and get ideas on how to look at the natural world, which can inspire a lot of designs and ideas," Holub said.

His talk will spotlight how innovators are using nature's design rules as an inspiration for advancing next-generation medicines and therapeutics.

"Molecular components of bee venom, scorpion toxins and spider silk are being used to engineer therapeutics that hold promise for the treatments of debilitating diseases such as cancer and autoimmune disorders," he said.

Science Cafés are a venue for students to informally share their interests during a conversational exchange with faculty, staff and the community in a friendly setting. Free coffee is offered to the first 50 attendees, and participants who ask questions will win a free T-shirt.

The program is supported by the Ohio University Office the Vice President for Research and Creative Activity and Sigma Xi.

For a full schedule of 2014-15 speakers, visit: