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Esteemed Harvard Dean returns home to deliver
Margarete Wuensche Memorial Lecture

March 10, 2004

The Dean of the Harvard Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Joseph Martin, is returning home to Alberta to deliver the keynote address in the inaugural Margarete Wuensche Memorial Lecture on Friday, March 12, at 5:30 pm in the Libin Lecture Theatre, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary, 3330 Hospital Drive NW. All media and members of the public are invited to attend.

Margarete Wuensche was born in Graz, Austria in 1935, and moved to Calgary with her husband Rolf Wuensche and daughter Caroline in 1975. She immersed herself in the Calgary community and was soon known as a “silent angel” with an extraordinary optimism, energy, wisdom and humour that helped guide her friends and family through their lives. After her passing on December 31, 2002, her friends and family established the Margarete Wuensche Memorial Lecture in honour of her memory.

Dr. Joseph Martin was appointed Dean of the Harvard Faculty of Medicine seven years ago. Prior to returning to Harvard, Dr. Martin served as Chancellor of the University of California, San Francisco for four years. Born in Bassano, Alberta, Dr. Martin earned his MD degree from the University of Alberta in 1962. He completed his residency in neurology and a fellowship in neuropathology at Case Western Reserve University, and earned his PhD in anatomy from the University of Rochester.

Dr. Martin’s research has focused on hypothalamic regulation of pituitary hormone secretions and on application of neurochemical and molecular genetics to better understand the causes of neurological and neurodegenerative disease. In 1980, he established the National Institute of Health-sponsored Huntington’s Disease Center without walls. Early work in the Center led to a breakthrough in identifying a genetic marker near the gene for Huntington’s disease; this culminated recently in the identification of the gene for the disorder.

5:30 – 5:40 pm Welcome Address
Drs. Sam Weiss and Alastair Buchan

5:40 – 5:45 pm Tribute to Margarete Wuensche
Mr. Rolf Wuensche via videolink

5:45 – 6:45 pm Keynote Address
Proteins, plaques, and prions: toward an understanding of brain disease
Dr. Joseph Martin, Dean, Harvard Medical School

6:45 – 6:50 pm Closing Remarks
Dr. Harvey P. Weingarten, President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Calgary

6:50 - 8:00 pm Wine and Cheese Reception and Research Poster Presentations

This special evening is hosted by the Calgary Brain Institute of the University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine. This institute is dedicated to world-class research including neural stem cell biology, stroke research and patient care, brain tumour and brain imaging. It is a centre of excellence in neuroscience and mental health research, education and discoveries.

For more information:
Jamie Soroka,


Karen Thomas
Director, Media Relations
Faculty of Medicine
University of Calgary