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REF2021: Research Excellence

The REF results, released on Thursday 12 May 2022, show 90% of research in the School of Life Sciences has been rated as 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent'. This shows the outstanding quality of our research and we are very proud of all the hard work put in by our researchers and postgraduate students.

Find out more about our research

University of Warwick recognised as international centre of research excellence by leading experts
(Press Release 12 May 2022)

About REF 2021
The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the UK’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions.
The REF is undertaken by the four UK higher education funding bodies: Research England, the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW), and the Department for the Economy, Northern Ireland (DfE).


Bad bugs, no drugs: A world without antibiotics

It was announced last month that two new antibiotics may be available on the NHS. Professor Chris Dowson explains why there is an urgent need to develop new antimicrobials and protect the drugs we have.

Knowledge Centre article (12 April 2022)

Fri 06 May 2022, 16:20 | Tags: Biomedical Science Interview

Study estimates death toll of antibiotic-resistant bacteria - Warwick experts comment

A new Lancet study shows that over a million people died in 2019 from infections caused by bacteria resistant to antibiotics. Dr Freya Harrison and Dr Antonia Sagona comment on the importance of this new evidence and the need to tackle the issue of antibiotic resistance urgently.

Expert Comment (20 January 2022)

Thu 20 Jan 2022, 12:23 | Tags: Expert comment Biomedical Science Faculty of Science

Poolbeg Pharma licences first-in-class broad spectrum RNA-based immunotherapy for respiratory virus infections from the University of Warwick

Poolbeg Pharma, a clinical stage infectious disease pharmaceutical company, has in-licenced a novel, first-in-class RNA-based immunotherapy for respiratory virus infections.

Poolbeg has secured an exclusive licence to this dual antiviral prophylactic and therapeutic candidate, which is at a late-pre-clinical development stage. The candidate, which will be developed by Poolbeg as POLB 002, was developed at the University of Warwick and derived from twenty years of research with world class virologists, Professor Andrew Easton and Professor Nigel Dimmock.

Press release (17 January 2022)

Mon 17 Jan 2022, 12:09 | Tags: Biomedical Science Press Release Faculty of Science

New health economic framework to help assess what might be required to eliminate African sleeping sickness by 2030

An international group of researchers have created a new health economic framework that supports decision makers and funders in understanding the resources required to achieve the World Health Organization’s (WHO) goal of eliminating sleeping sickness by 2030.

Press release (13 December 2021)

Mon 13 Dec 2021, 14:38 | Tags: Biomedical Science Press Release Faculty of Science

Vacancies - Assistant or Associate Professor in Life Sciences

Two female scientists in the labWe have three positions available for Assistant or Associate Professor to join the School of Life Sciences (SLS). We are looking for individuals who are capable of developing innovative and original research programmes that address current and future challenges in life science, such as environmental change, sustainable intensification, biology of disease, neuroscience, understanding whole organism dynamics or engineering biology.

Closing date: Sunday 16 January 2022.

Find out more


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)

Read the paper


SLS researcher named as Turing Fellow

Mike TildesleyCongratulations to Professor Mike Tildesley on being named as a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute this year.

Press release (30 September)

Mon 04 Oct 2021, 11:48 | Tags: Biomedical Science Press Release Faculty of Science

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

Matt KeelingProfessor 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)

Wed 16 Jun 2021, 10:29 | Tags: Biomedical Science Press Release Award Faculty of Science

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

Phage art by Ellie Jameson 2021Creative Reactions Digital Gallery

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.

You can explore the online gallery now at www.creativereactions.com and view the exhibition catalogue.

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”

Fri 14 May 2021, 16:14 | Tags: Biomedical Science Outreach Faculty of Science

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

Find out more


Construction completed on “world-class” biomedical research building

IBRB 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)

Fri 19 Mar 2021, 16:15 | Tags: Biomedical Science Scholarships Faculty of Science

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)

Wed 17 Mar 2021, 11:12 | Tags: Biomedical Science Press Release Faculty of Science

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.

Watch 'The Secret Science of Sewage' 

Tue 16 Mar 2021, 09:00 | Tags: Biomedical Science TV/Radio Research Faculty of Science

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)

Mon 15 Feb 2021, 16:31 | Tags: Biomedical Science Press Release Faculty of Science

Soil bacteria hormone discovery provides fertile ground for new antibiotics

StreptomycesResearch by Dr Chris Corre and colleagues could lead to improved manufacturing of existing antibiotics, and open up opportunities to discover new ones.

Press Release (3 Feb 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)


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