New research giving insight into the persistence of highly contagious foot-and-mouth disease virus features on front cover of Science Magazine
A major new study, featured on the cover of Science Magazine today (1 October 2021), undertaken by Dr Erin Gorsich and colleagues at The Pirbright Institute, Oregon State University, Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute and SANParks, Veterinary Wildlife Services, Kruger National Park explores the mechanisms at play that enable the persistence of highly infectious pathogens in their host populations, a major problem in endemic disease ecology.
Press release (1 October 2021)
Researcher on fast track thanks to dementia charity founded by F1 legend
Dr Emily Hill, a School of Life Sciences researcher investigating Alzheimer’s disease, has been named as one of four new Race Against Dementia Fellows, with the opportunity to receive support from not only leading scientists studying dementia, but also experts in innovation and problem solving from the world of Formula 1.
Press release (23 September 2021)
SLS academic recognised in Queen's birthday honours
Professor Matt Keeling has been recognised in the 2021 Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services as an advisor to the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) with an OBE.
Commenting on his being awarded an OBE, Professor Keeling said:
“I'm absolutely thrilled by this award. This is great recognition of all the hard work of the entire Warwick group and the wider Juniper team over the last 15 months."
Press Release (15 June 2021)
Pint of science - join the free online festival
Pint of Science is back for 2021 as a free online festival packed with fun science related talks, debates and demonstrations. The international festival will see 68 events running online over 4 nights from Monday 17-Thursday 20 May. Life Sciences researchers are involved in the events below:
Tuesday 18 May 7-8pm Chemicals, Cocktails and Creativity – from molecules to masterpieces Join us for a discussion from four perspectives on the subject of botanical medicine with researchers from Chemistry, Life Sciences, WMS and Liberal Arts!
Find out more and register
Creative Reactions is the science-meets-arts branch of Pint of Science to showcase research creatively. This can range from drawings, paintings to poetry, sculptures and video.
This year you can view all the Creative Reactions artworks in the form of a virtual gallery during May and June 2021. The School of Life Sciences’ Dr Ellie Jameson has four pieces of art included in the exhibition, where she re-imagines the Phages that she discovers in her vital research that uses these microbes to prevent bacterial infections.
Ellie explains, “I use art to communicate my research to a wider audience who would not normally read scientific papers. My artwork has grown from general art to a focus on microbes and science when I started posting ink drawings on Twitter as part of #Inktober. I love to explore ideas and insights from my own work and the work of other scientists”
Starving Tuberculosis (TB) of sugars may be a new way to fight it
Tuberculosis is a devastating disease that claims over 1.5 million lives each year. The increase in TB cases that are resistant to the current antibiotics means that novel drugs to kill Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) are urgently needed. Dr Elizabeth Fullam and colleagues have successfully discovered how Mycobacterium tuberculosis uses an essential sugar called trehalose, which provides a platform to design new and improved TB drugs and diagnostic agents.
Press Release (15 April 2021)
Associate Professor/ Professor of Infection Microbiology position available
Applications are invited for an Associate Professor or Professor of Infection Microbiology to join the School of Life Sciences at the University of Warwick.
The School of Life Sciences has an international presence in microbiology, particularly within the global research priority of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). We aim to appoint an outstanding new academic staff member to strengthen research in cross-disciplinary approaches, complementing existing strengths in the School and leading a laboratory based research group in one or more of the following areas: antimicrobial resistance, anti-infective discovery, host-pathogen interactions and immunology including the microbiome, microbial genetics, virology and structural and chemical biology approaches to address human and animal infection.
Closing date: 30 April 2021
Construction completed on “world-class” biomedical research building
Our impressive new IBRB biomedical research building has been completed. The new state-of-the-art lab spaces will support our interdisciplinary world-class research in neuroscience, microbiology and infection, and cell biology.
Press Release (24 March 2021)
Recruitment for 30 new PhD pandemic research scholarships opens today at University of Warwick thanks to over £3 million in donations
The search for 30 people to take up new PhD pandemic research scholarships begins today (Friday 19 March 2021) thanks to philanthropists donating to the University of Warwick’s newly created Institute for Global Pandemic Planning. The 30 new doctoral students will research the best ways for global leaders to respond to pandemics.
Mathematical epidemiologist Dr Mike Tildesley is among the academics who will be supervising the new PhD scholars.
Press Release (19 March 2021)
How bacterial traffic jams lead to antibiotic-resistant, multilayer biofilms
New insight on the physical interactions that take place between swarming bacteria when exposed to antibiotics could lead to novel approaches for treating infections in patients. The bacterial equivalent of a traffic jam causes multilayered biofilms to form in the presence of antibiotics, shows a study by Dr Munehiro Asally and colleagues.
Press Release (16 March 2021)
Hunting for life-saving phage in sewage
Dr Eleanor Townsend and Dr Ellie Jameson were part of a documentary on the ‘Secret Science of Sewage', aired on Thursday 18 March. The researchers were filmed collecting samples from Minworth Sewage works and characterising the phages they contain, as a possible solution in the fight against antimicrobial resistant bacteria. Dr Eleanor Townsend was filmed in the School of Life Sciences imaging suite, imaging the phages on the Transmission Electron Microscope. Dr Ellie Jameson discussed the results with Dr George McGavin.
The Jameson laboratory, at the University of Warwick, is developing phage cocktails to prevent the most common UTI infections (Enterobacteriaceae) that can lead to severe complications. Findings have recently been published on the use of phages to prevent catheter biofilms: Townsend, E. M., Moat, J., & Jameson, E. (2020). CAUTI’s Next Top Model–model dependent Klebsiella biofilm inhibition by bacteriophages and antimicrobials. Biofilm, 2, 100038. This involves hunting for novel, diverse phages in sewage and characterising them.
The Jameson laboratory has also supplied their rigorously characterised phages for compassionate use in patients with no other treatment options. This work was recently peer reviewed and accepted in the journal; Phage - Townsend, E., Kelly, L., Gannon, L., Muscatt, G., Dunstan, R., Michniewski, S., ... & Jameson, E. (2020). Isolation and characterisation of Klebsiella phages for phage therapy. bioRxiv.
Work is currently being expanded to design phage cocktails to treat pneumonia, bloodstream infections and inflammatory bowel disease in collaboration with Professor Trevor Lithgow at Monash University.
New research finds no evidence that schools are playing a significant role in driving spread of the Covid-19 virus in the community
New research by epidemiologist Dr Mike Tildesley and colleagues has found that there is no significant evidence that schools are playing a significant role in driving the spread of the Covid-19 disease in the community, particularly in primary schools. However, careful continued monitoring may be required as schools re-open to stay well informed about the effect they have upon community incidence.
Press Release (15 February 2021)
Warwick named as one of the world's Most International universities
The University of Warwick has been named as one of the world’s top 20 Most International universities by the Times Higher Education (THE) – ranked 20th overall and 10th in the UK.
Press Release (2 Feb 2021)
Warwick scientists design model to predict cellular drug targets against Covid-19
A computational model of a human lung cell has been used to understand how SARS-CoV-2 draws on human host cell metabolism to reproduce by Dr Hadrien Delattre and Professor Orkun Soyer. This study helps understand how the virus uses the host to survive, and enable drug predictions for treating the virus to be made.
Press Release (25 November 2020)
Diabetic drug could slow the progression of Parkinson’s disease
A hallmark of Parkinson's disease is the degeneration of a group of neurons in the brain that release the neurotransmitter dopamine (dopaminergic neurons). By introducing low concentrations of structurally-defined aggregates of alpha synuclein, a key toxic species in Parkinson’s disease, into single dopaminergic neurons, Emily Hill and Dr Mark Wall have shown these protein aggregates open a specific channel in the cell membrane, reducing neuronal excitability.
Press Release (24 November 2020)
Breakthrough in studying the enzyme that ultimately produces fish odour syndrome
Fish odour syndrome (trimethylaminuria) is a debilitating disease, in which the liver cannot break down the smelly chemical trimethylamine which is produced by enzymes from bacteria residing in the gut leaving people with a fish like odour. Dr Mussa Quareshy and colleagues are paving the way to prevent the syndrome after a breakthrough in studying the enzyme in the gut which produces trimethylamine.
Press Release (23 November 2020)
Understanding lung infections in patients with cystic fibrosis
For young people with cystic fibrosis, lung infection with Staphylococcus aureus, MRSA, is common and is treated with antibiotics in the hope that this will prevent a decline in lung function. However there has recently been debate over the role S. aureus plays in CF lung disease. Dr Esther Sweeney, Dr Freya Harrison and colleagues have used a new model of CF lungs which could be used to make better decisions about future use of antibiotics.
Press Release (19 November 2020)
Precautionary Breaks: planned, limited duration circuit breaks to control the prevalence of COVID-19
Cases of COVID-19 are rising exponentially in almost all regions of the country, with some areas experiencing extremely high levels of infection - new research involving University of Warwick researchers has found. Against this backdrop of rising cases, their paper examines the impact of a short 2-week period of intense control.
Press Release (14 October 2020)