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From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine & Industry

By April 14, 2016September 16th, 2023No Comments
From DNA to Beer Exhibit

From DNA to Beer Exhibit

The Wangensteen Historical Library of Biology and Medicine is hosting the National Library of Medicine’s traveling exhibit, “From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine & Industry,” now through May 13.

“From DNA to Beer” is being presented in conjunction the Wangensteen Historical Library’s current exhibit, “Bodies and Spirits: Health and the History of Fermentation and Distillation.”

About the Exhibit

From DNA to Beer” explores some of the processes, problems, and potential inherent in technologies that use microorganisms for health and commercial purposes. Over the past two centuries, scientists, in partnership with industry, have developed techniques using and modifying life forms like yeast, molds, and bacteria, to create a host of new therapies and produce better foods and beverages. The exhibition illustrates the history of this dynamic relationship among microbes, medicine, technology, and industry, which has spanned centuries.

Exhibit details

What: From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine & Industry
When: April 9 through May 13, 2016
Where: 2nd Floor,  Bio-Medical Library, Diehl Hall

Learn more at the Bodies and Spirits Exhibit

Visitors to “From DNA to Beer” can also explore the larger “Bodies and Spirits” exhibit at the Wangensteen Historical Library on the 5th floor of Diehl Hall which features rare books and artifacts from the collections.

This exhibit showcases over 400 years of medical, scientific, and recipe books from the library’s collection, including records of 16th century women distilling alcohol for medicines at home, 19th century microscopic investigations of the science of fermentation, and 20th century medical and social debates about alcohol.

By tapping into the intriguing history of fermenting and distilling, the exhibit sparks discussions around the role of alcohol in health and society. Why have some doctors recommended giving babies wine? Why did hops originally become a popular addition to beer? How did alcoholic beverages, once considered food and medical items, become symbols of dangerous behavior? Learn more at this exhibit on fermentation, distillation and medicine throughout history.

Erinn Aspinall

Author Erinn Aspinall

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