The Evolutionary Medicine Summer Institute (EMSI)

We invite students, faculty, public health practitioners, physicians and veterinarians to the first annual Evolutionary Medicine Summer Institute (EMSI) at Duke University from June 3 to June 9, 2018, organized by the Triangle Center for Evolutionary Medicine (TriCEM, We also encourage applications from advanced undergraduates interested in evolutionary medicine, and graduate students in organismal biology who wish to apply an evolutionary perspective to human or animal health.

Evolution is largely absent from medical and public health training, yet it is vital to tackling our most urgent health challenges, including emerging infectious diseases, the evolution of microbial resistance, increasing prevalence of autoimmune diseases, the obesity epidemic, threats to food safety, neurodegenerative disease, and cancer.

The goal of EMSI is to introduce core evolutionary perspectives to a wide range of topics in human health and disease, and to train physicians and medical scientists in computational methods used in evolutionary and ecological research. EMSI will bring together internationally recognized experts in evolutionary biology with students and health practitioners who want to apply these perspectives rigorously to cancer, infectious disease, antibiotic resistance, brain sciences, autoimmune disease, the microbiome, and more. Mornings will feature lectures to instill a foundational understanding of core concepts in evolutionary medicine and evolutionary biology. In the afternoons, we will break into subgroups for training on specific evolutionary methods, including phylogenetics, molecular evolution, the microbiome, and epidemiology.

EMSI will also offer an opportunity for scientists and practitioners across disciplines to network and build collaborations. To facilitate networking, interested participants will form teams to write short papers that present evolutionary perspectives on specific diseases, which will be submitted as Clinical Briefs to the journal Evolution, Medicine and Public Health (

Applications are due by March 1, 2018. For more information, and to submit an application, please go to the EMSI website: Please direct questions to Melissa Manus ( or Charles Nunn (