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Using evolution to improve our understanding of mental health and illness
Evolution provides the single most compelling and overarching explanatory model in biology. To quote Theodosius Dobzhansky: ‘Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution’.
Despite this, evolution is largely ignored in clinical medicine, psychiatry and psychology. Reasons for this neglect may be related to ambivalence around evolution itself, concerns about historical abuses of evolutionary ideas and a perception that evolutionary applications lack clinical usefulness for patients.
Join us on Wednesday 16th February 19:30 , as our guest lecturer Professor Henry O’Connell draws from the current leading researchers and writers in the field to make the case for the use of evolutionary principles in complementing and enhancing existing models for our understanding of both normal mental phenomena and mental illness.
About the speaker:
Henry O’Connell graduated in Medicine from Trinity College Dublin in 1997 and then embarked on postgraduate training in psychiatry. Since 2008 he has practised at Consultant level as both an Old Age Psychiatrist and General Adult Psychiatrist, most of that time having been spent with Laois Offaly Mental Health Services, based in Portlaoise, Co. Laois, Ireland. There he has taken a leading role in developing and enhancing clinical services.
He has also developed a clinical teaching programme for medical students from the School of Medicine at the University of Limerick and he was appointed as Adjunct Associate Clinical Professor with the university in 2014. He has conducted research on a wide variety of topics, most recently in the area of delirium detection and treatment.