News in 2016

  • Microwave imaging offers promise for knee replacement 15 December 2016 Knee replacement is a common procedure performed in the NHS and around the world. It generally has good outcomes. However, it can leave some patients in persistent pain. Researchers at the University of Bristol are exploring the potential of microwave imaging for assessing patients’ suitability for revision surgery.
  • New smart materials for wound healing 13 December 2016 Wound infection represents a major global health challenge as chronic wounds are particularly susceptible to infection and cause clinical complications. A new technology which could increase protection against bacterial and fungal infection is being developed by researchers at the University of Bristol.
  • Soft robotics offers hope for patients undergoing throat surgery 26 October 2016 Surgical removal of the voice box is a potentially life-saving treatment for laryngeal cancer. It is also a mutilating procedure, which means that patients may no longer be able to speak, swallow or cough. Engineers at the University of Bristol are using new robotics technologies to design devices that could potentially transform post-surgery treatment and recovery of such patients.
  • Slow eating can be good for your health 25 October 2016 What we eat has wide-ranging impacts and long lasting effect on our health: unhealthy eating may lead to obesity diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Eating slowly is thought to reduce how much you consume overall, but how does the speed of eating affect our bodies’ responses to food? A recent research project at the University of Bristol produced some interesting evidence.
  • Smart stem cells home to damaged tissue 17 October 2016 Stem cell-based therapy promises cures for a multitude of diseases and disorders including regeneration of heart tissue, but is severely limited by the ability of stem cells to identify the damaged location and remain there after administration. A new strategy is being developed at the University of Bristol to address this challenge.
  • Engineering the future of cancer treatment 17 October 2016 Of the many new developments in cancer research, one of the most promising comes from nanoscience. Bioengineers are designing nanoparticles that can deliver treatments and diagnostics directly to tumours, raising the prospect of much more precise and effective interventions.
  • ‘Nudging’ clinicians toward better decisions 3 August 2016 Iain Gilchrist is a Professor of Neuropsychology from the School of Experimental Psychology and Director of the University’s interdisciplinary centre for research on ‘making decisions in an unstable world’. A three-month Research for Health Award from the Elizabeth Blackwell Institute allowed Iain and his team to collaborate with Dr Chris Bourdeaux from University Hospitals Bristol. Together they studied the role of information flow in helping intensive care clinicians to make better decisions and achieve better outcomes for patients.
  • I spy with my little eye….peas, chips and pie 25 July 2016 One of the biggest problems in nutrition research is measurement of individual food intake. A novel crowdsourcing approach developed at the University of Bristol allows crowds to identify food groups and portion sizes, from which total meal size and dietary patterns can be computed, in meal photos collected using a smartphone app.
  • Computational neuroscience: from theory to practice 15 July 2016 Dr Conor Houghton is a computational neuroscientist in the Merchant Venturers School of Engineering. His work to date had focused on studying the brain in abstract, but a Senior Fellowship from the Elizabeth Blackwell Institute helped him become more closely involved in experimental neuroscience.
  • Preventing self-harm and suicide in adolescents 19 February 2016 Self-harm is relatively common among adolescents. It causes distress to the young people concerned, as well as to their family and friends, and is associated with poor mental health and future substance abuse. Many young people also experience suicidal thoughts.
  • Towards a better aerosol: targeting treatment of lung disease 18 February 2016 Lung disease is on the rise around the world. Some 300 million people suffer from asthma; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is predicted to become the third-highest cause of death by 2020; and respiratory infections are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality.
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