See our Latest Journal Publications
Digging for Britain - DNA testing
On 5 January Professor Robin Allaby featured in the BBC's Digging for Britain programme. He discussed the DNA testing of sediment from a Mesolithic settlement located on the seabed of the Solent. The analysis determined what was being eaten by the Mesolithic people. The appearance of wheat, 2000 years earlier than previously accepted was a major revelation.
Watch on iPlayer (from 46:10)
Arctic Drift: A Year in the Ice - watch the documentary on 16 October
In September 2019, the icebreaker RV Polarstern left her home port in Bremerhaven to sail north. Her goal was to act as the Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate (MOSAiC), the largest Arctic Research Expedition ever undertaken, with the collaboration of over 80 institutions from 20 countries, to study both winter and summer processes and relationships between ocean, ice and atmosphere.
University of Warwick SLS scientists Dr Alison Webb, Professor Hendrik Schaefer and Professor Yin Chen, undertook the 'Sea Ice Microbiology and the Role in Cycling of Sulfur' (SIMbRICS) Project during the second half of MOSAiC. Overall, this project, in collaboration with the University of Groningen (NL) and the University of East Anglia (UK), aimed to study the in-situ production of the climate-relevant biogenic gas dimethylsulfide (DMS) and to link this with the diversity of the microbial community.
As the sea ice transitioned from the long Arctic winter, through a short spring to summer of 24 hours of daylight, ice melt created a highly variable environment of meltponds and a stratified surface ocean, which changed again through the onset of autumn. These changes create a high stress environment for the microbiome and the SIMbRICS project is investigating how these changing conditions affect the production of climate-relevant trace gases such as DMS.
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)
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.
Six Months of Coronavirus: What Have We Learned?
Professor Andrew Easton discusses the last six months on TRT World:
Dr Tildesley talks to BBC News about plans to ease lockdown
Dr Mike Tildesley talks to BBC News about the UK government's plans to ease the lockdown, the need to maintain social distancing and the importance of the R number to stopping the spread of Covid-19.
(BBC News Channel - 10.05.2020)
Professor Andrew Easton discusses the potential development of Covid-19
Andrew Easton, Emeritus Professor of virology from the University of Warwick's School of Life Sciences, discusses the potential development of COVID-19 (coronavirus) vaccines live on anews (19 March 2020).
Dr Mike Tildesley discusses the coronavirus pandemic
Dr Mike Tildesley, Associate Professor of Life Sciences, discusses the coronavirus pandemic and what lessons can be learned from previous outbreaks of flu (TRT World Now, 18 March 2020).
Dr Mike Tildesley answers viewers' questions about coronavirus on the BBC News Channel (Broadcast 09.03.2020).
Professor Andrew Easton comments on the Coronavirus outbreak
Professor Andrew Easton talks live to Sky News about the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak:
Seed collection conserves genetic diversity of vegetables
Listen to Dr Charlotte Allender discuss the need to conserve the genetic diversity of vegetables, and how this is being done at the University of Warwick's seed bank facility.
Radio discussion (28 Sept 2019)
The Warwick Genetic Resources Unit houses the UK Vegetable Genebank, a globally significant collection of around 14,000 seed samples of a range of vegetable crops.
A cure for the common cold?
Listen as Professor Nigel Dimmock discusses his career and his new antiviral research on the BBC.
Download or listen online bbc.in/2GA7W74
On Monday 18 December, Dr Guy Barker spoke on BBC Midlands Today on how Warwick Crop Centre are improving sprouts through traditional plant breeding. Watch www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b09jg8fl/midlands-today-evening-news-18122017 (from 23 minutes)
Dr Barker also spoke with Phil Upton on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire, describing how researchers are utilising genetic diversity from the UK Vegetable Genebank to enhance the appearance, quality and resistance of sprouts. Listen at www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05nlj64 (1:41-1:45)
BBC Coventry and Warwickshire interview Crop Centre about vegetable research
On Monday 27th May BBC Coventry and Warwickshire interviewed academics from Warwick Crop Centre to find out about the vegetable research taking place on the Wellesbourne site.
Dr Rosemary Collier, Director of Warwick Crop Centre, describes the establishment of crop research at Wellesbourne in response to post-war pressure for food production and the changes that have taken place leading to the development of the Centre as it is today.
Dr Graham Teakle, a plant geneticist, gives an insight into some of the research projects currently being undertaken to improve crop yields.
Listen to the interview on iPlayer at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p018syq0 (The Crop Centre item is 1hr 22 mins into the programme).