Life Sciences News
Life Sciences academics, Prof Andrew Easton and Dr Keith Leppard, comment on the use of experimental drug therapies to treat the Ebola virus.
A BBSRC-funded team led by Prof Orkun Soyer is investigating how to use methane-producing microbes, known as methanogens, to generate renewable biofuels.
In a study published in Nature this week, Professor Matt Keeling and fellow researchers have produced the first national model to investigate the bovine TB spread.
The results derived from the model in the Nature paper, entitled “A dynamic model of bovine tuberculosis spread and control in Great Britain”, demonstrated that the majority of herd outbreaks are caused by multiple transmissions routes - including failed cattle infection tests, cattle movement and reinfection from environmental reservoirs (infected pastures and wildlife). The study suggests that improved testing, vaccination of cattle and culling all cattle on infected farms would be the most effective strategies for controlling the disease.
A study led by Professor David Evans has discovered how a bloodsucking parasite has transformed Deformed Wing Virus (DWV) into one of the biggest threats facing UK honeybees.
The paper "A Virulent Strain of Deformed Wing Virus (DWV) of Honeybees (Apis mellifera) Prevails after Varroa destructor-Mediated, or In Vitro, Transmission" is published in PLoS Pathogens.
The project is part of the Insect Pollinators Initiative, jointly funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Defra, the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), the Scottish Government and the Wellcome Trust under the auspices of the Living with Environmental Change (LWEC) partnership.
Professor Charles Sheppard awarded OBE in Queen's Birthday Honours List 2014
The well-deserved award recognizes nearly 40 years of research in the Chagos Archipelago. During this time, Charles has facilitated studies by over 100 scientists and generated a large volume of publications. This scientific input led to the creation of the world's largest marine reserve, totaling more than 640,000 square kilometres (397,678 square miles), an area more than twice the size of the UK. The Chagos Archipelago has been designated as a fully no-take marine reserve and is of huge value to the Indian Ocean and its people.
In addition to working in the School of Life Sciences, Charles is Chairman of the Chagos Conservation Trust, and works for a range of UN, Governmental and aid agencies in tropical marine and coastal development issues. He advises several governments on marine and coastal management and science, including the UK Government on its tropical Overseas Territories. For 10 years he was also science adviser to the Commissioner in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for the archipelago.