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Join six leading experts who will be your guide to the rapidly evolving field of genetics

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Join six leading experts who will be your guide to the rapidly evolving field of genetics
9 March 2024
10:00am - 5:00pm
Conway Hall, London

Instant Expert: The Genetics Revolution

Saturday 9 March, 10am - 5pm | Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London, WC1R 4RL

We are on the cusp of a revolution in genetics. The cost of sequencing a genome has tumbled, DNA testing has become routine and new technologies such as CRISPR are allowing us to edit the code of life like never before. But the genetics revolution is only just getting started.

Join six leading experts who will be your guide to the rapidly evolving field of genetics. Since the time of Watson and Crick we’ve learned so much about our genetic code – from reading which genes code for certain proteins to writing our own DNA code to create new microorganisms.


We are always seeking ways to make our events more inclusive and to find new ways to deliver value to you. For 2024 we have reduced the ticket prices and introduced a new ticket option “super early bird” for our Instant Expert events. All our Instant Expert events will be held at Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London. An Instant Expert ticket will no longer included refreshments or lunch, but the agenda includes a lunch break and there are many great eateries close to Conway Hall to choose from. But what doesn’t change is that each event will continue to feature six expert speakers sharing their knowledge and latest research on the event topic. We hope you like the changes we have made to the event format for 2024, and as always we welcome your feedback.

At this Instant Expert, you’ll learn about:

  • Gene editing with CRISPR
  • Whether DNA is destiny, Nature vs Nurture.
  • The science of epigenetics
  • Genome sequencing and consumer DNA testing
  • The ethics of creating new life

Talks and speakers:

The Human Cell Atlas: from Cell Types to Tissues

Kerstin Meyer, Principal Staff Scientist, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

Epigenetics – Why DNA Is Not Your Destiny

Nessa Carey, British biologist, Visiting Professor, Imperial College London

DNA – it’s important, but in all except the simplest organisms it’s nowhere near sufficient as an explanation of biology. How can it be, when two genetically identical “things” can be so different from one another? Something else is at play, and that something is another layer of information called epigenetics. If you’ve ever been curious about why identical twins aren’t indistinguishable, or why the cells in our skin and kidneys are so different even though they use the same DNA code, or even why Californian condors can display virgin birth but humans can’t, epigenetics is the topic for you.

Weeds: Nature’s ultimate survivors

Dana MacGregor, Plant Molecular Geneticist, Rothamsted Research

Even though weeds are arguably the most impactful group of plants, directly reducing crop yields and increase farming expenses, our knowledge about them lags far behind that of crops they affect. Weeds have been shaped by distinct natural and human-driven selection and they evolved have a suite of exceptional traits in response to and to circumvent those pressures. To explore 'weedy' traits, we're bringing these troublesome plants into the molecular laboratory and generating a molecular-level understanding of how they help weeds survive. Exciting breakthroughs, such as methods to temporarily control gene expression guided by fully sequenced and annotated genomes, have already been achieved. Join us for this presentation as we discuss these breakthroughs and explore how understanding the genetic and molecular aspects of agricultural weeds gained in the lab is crucial for developing effective and innovative solutions for tomorrow’s agriculture.

3 more exciting talks to be announced soon...

Who should attend?

Anyone interested in genetics, whatever your age or background. Whether you're a scientist, a student or simply a fascinated human being, Instant Expert: The Genetics Revolution offers the chance to learn directly from the experts at our one-day masterclass.

Benefits of attending:

  • Become an expert in one day
  • Informal set-up, meet like minded people
  • Open your mind, be inspired
  • Unique chance to ask your burning questions to our experts

What's included in your ticket:

  • In-depth and engaging talks from six leading scientists
  • Ask-an-expert Question Time session
  • Your chance to meet our six speakers and New Scientist host
  • Exclusive on-the-day New Scientist subscription deal, book and merchandise offers

Booking information:

The event will be held at the Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

Doors will open at 9:15am, with talks commencing at 10am sharp. The event will finish at 5pm.

We require the name of each person attending - please ensure this is provided at the time of booking. If you need to change the name of an attendee, please notify us as soon as possible:

Eventbrite will email you your ticket(s) immediately after purchase. Please remember to bring your ticket(s) with you as you'll need it to gain entry. We can scan tickets from a print out, or off the screen of a phone / tablet / smartwatch.

The schedule / exact running order for the day will be confirmed closer to the event, and will be emailed to all ticket holders.

Lunch will NOT be provided at this event. Visitors are welcome to bring their own food, or purchase lunch at one of the many establishments around Red Lion Square and the surrounding area.

Should you require details about disabled access, please contact us at:

Tickets are non-transferable to any other New Scientist event.

All tickets are non-refundable.

New Scientist reserves the right to alter the event and its line-up, or cancel the event. In the unlikely event of cancellation, all tickets will be fully refunded. New Scientist Ltd will not be liable for any additional expenses incurred by ticket holders in relation to the event.

Tickets are subject to availability and are only available in advance through Eventbrite.

Join six leading experts who will be your guide to the rapidly evolving field of genetics
9 March 2024
10:00am - 5:00pm
Conway Hall, London