Nerd Nite San Diego #4 was a fun intro to three super interesting subjects!

Ryon Graf is a medical scientist working in the field of liquid biopsy cancer diagnostics. He did his PhD in Biomedical Sciences between Sanford Burnham Prebys and the UCSD Moores Cancer Center, focusing on how cancer spreads inside cancer patients. Ryon enjoys biostatistics, craft beer, and is really good at banging his head against a wall (essential for scientific progress).

The Future of Cancer Diagnostics: Liquid Biopsy

Cancer is a disease that can develop and evolve over a long time in a patient. Many cancers are difficult to detect at a stage that is easily treatable. For patients living with cancer, current standard of care is not very amendable to monitoring a patient’s cancer. Ryon’s talk discusses the ways that emerging technology is being developed to detect, track, and recommend the most effective treatments for cancer, using a routine blood draw: the “liquid biopsy.”

The next speaker is president and co-founder of Legacy 106, an investigative archaeology firm in southern California, so of course it follows that he will be introducing a wild topic about creating the future from the past … steampunk! It’s a combination of Victorian aesthetics and science fiction technology. Presenter Ron May shares steampunk’s history, its empowerment of women, and his own experiences exploring this strange and beautiful world. Tea battles, anyone? Consider this steampunk 101.

Speaker number three is biologist and physics teacher Tom Hamilton! Tom will be discussing the nature of matter, from atoms to quarks! He’s kind of like a local Carl Sagan. Need we say more?