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Join us for a Weeknights at the Wagner illustrated presentation:
Un-Leeched: The History and Science of Leeches
Robert Hicks, Mütter Museum and Daniel Shain, Rutgers University
Slimy, bloodsucking creatures with three jaws are taking over our hospitals. No, it’s not the plot of a horror movie—it’s the story of medicinal leeches. For thousands of years, healers promoted the use of these tiny annelids to treat everything from infections to flatulence. Today, leeches play a huge role in transplants, reattachments, and other complicated surgical procedures. Join us to hear from both a medical historian and contemporary biologist who will teach you to love leeches instead of fearing them—we’ll have some real, live leeches on hand so you can profess your love after the talk!
The Wagner's historic natural history museum will remain open until the talk begins at 6pm.
About the speakers:
Daniel Shain, PhD, has traveled the world to sample and study leeches and worms, from glaciers in Alaska to the heart of the Amazon. Interesting finds include his discovery of a rare, foot-long terrestrial leech that makes New Jersey its home. Daniel is a professor of zoology and chairman of the biology department at Rutgers the State University of New Jersey, Camden campus. A graduate of the University of New Hampshire, he earned his doctorate from Colorado State University and held a postdoctoral fellowship through the National Institute of Health at UC Berkeley. When not in the lab or out in the field, he likes to kayak and build tree houses.
Robert D. Hicks, PhD, is the director of the Mütter Museum and Historical Medical Library of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia. He has worked with museum-based education and exhibits for over three decades, primarily as a consultant to historic sites and museums. Robert has a doctorate in maritime history from the University of Exeter, United Kingdom, and degrees in anthropology and archaeology from the University of Arizona. He shares his office with his medicinal leech, Horatio.