Thomas Kirkwood, one of Britain's top researchers on the science of aging, has accepted an invitation to present the keynote address this November at The Gerontological Society of America's 59th Annual Scientific Meeting in Dallas, TX.
Kirkwood is currently the co-director of the Institute for Ageing and Health at the University of Newcastle in England. He first became known in gerontology circles nearly thirty years ago after introducing the "disposable soma" theory, which states that people age because evolution has caused humans to use energy to get food, produce offspring and survive danger - not to repair and maintain cells.
One of Kirkwood's most widely read publications is 1999's Time of Our Lives: The Science of Human Aging. In 2001 he was chosen to present the annual entry in BBC's distinguished and long-running Reith Lecture series. His five talks on the topic of aging were later published in a book titled The End of Age.
These and other media appearances have proven Kirkwood's unique ability to communicate developments in aging research to the greater public. Three years ago he even collaborated with a theater company for young actors, bringing ideas about gerontology to the dramatic stage.
Prior to his appointment at Newcastle, Kirkwood held positions at the University of Manchester and the National Institute for Medical Research in London. He received his PhD in Biology from the University of Cambridge in 1983.