Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences

ECU Burroughs Wellcome Lecturer to Discuss Evolution of the Social Brain

March 28, 2017

By Lacey L. Gray
Director of Marketing and Communications
Thomas Harriot College of Arts & Sciences

Hans Hofmann

East Carolina University’s Department of Biology will host the Burroughs Wellcome Lecturer Thursday, April 13, 2017. Dr. Hans Hofmann, renowned behavioral neuroscientist and professor in the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Texas at Austin, will give two free, public presentations.

Hofmann will discuss the “Evolution of the Social Brain,” at 11 a.m. in the Mendenhall Student Center, Great Room 1.

“The lecture will provide insights as to how the brains of social animals have evolved to cope with an ever complex social environment that require integration of multitude of social signals,” said Dr. Fadi Issa, ECU assistant professor of biology. “[Hofmann] will discuss what we learned from studying the neurobiological bases of social behavior from simple organisms, and what that teaches us about human social behavior and brain function.”

Later in the day, Hofmann will give a lecture aimed towards a more scientific audience. During his second lecture, Hofmann will discuss “Neurobiology of Social Decision-Making,” at 4 p.m. in the Science and Technology Building, room C-309.

In addition to his interests in the evolution of social behavior and neurobiology of social networks, Hofmann also researches the genetics of alternative reproductive tactics. His research has been widely published in premier journals including Nature, Science, PNAS and the Journal of Neuroscience.

Hofmann received his PhD in biology from the University of Leipzig, in Leipzig, Germany, for his work on the neurobiology of aggression in crickets, which he carried out at the Max-Planck Institute for Ornithology, in Seewiesen, Germany.

The Burroughs Wellcome fund allows for influential scientists in biology and chemistry to visit campus and present their research in the areas of basic and applied science.

For additional information about Hofmann’s lectures, contact Issa at 252-328-5446 or Individuals requesting accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) should call 252-737-1016 (voice/TTY) at least 48 hours prior to the events.