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UCL Staff News

Commonly prescribed drugs affect decisions to harm oneself and others

2015-07-03 : Harry C Dayantis

Healthy people given the serotonin-enhancing antidepressant citalopram were willing to pay almost twice as much to prevent harm to themselves or others than those given placebo drugs in a moral decision-making experiment at UCL.

Research reveals how the human brain might reconstruct past events

2015-07-02 : Harry C Dayantis

When remembering something from our past, we often vividly re-experience the whole episode in which it occurred. New UCL research funded by the Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust has now revealed how this might happen in the brain.

Rats 'dream' paths to a brighter future

2015-06-26 : Harry C Dayantis

When rats rest, their brains simulate journeys to a desired future such as a tasty treat, finds new UCL research funded by the Wellcome Trust and Royal Society.

UCL Academy students become environmental engineers

2015-06-25 : Ruth Metcalfe

144 Year 7 students at UCL Academy have been learning about the waste-energy-food cycle as part of a six-week environmental engineering educational programme led by Dr Aiduan Borrion (UCL Civil, Environmental & Geomatic Engineering), in the first major collaboration between UCL Engineering and UCL Academy.

Climate change threatens to undermine the last half century of health gains

2015-06-23 : Harry C Dayantis

The threat to human health from climate change is so great that it could undermine the last fifty years of gains in development and global health, according to a major new UCL-led Commission, published in The Lancet.

Queen’s Birthday Honours for the UCL community

2015-06-17 : Siobhan Pipa

Congratulations to the members of the UCL community who have been recognised in the 2015 Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

‘Core’ immune cells reduce symptoms and spread of flu

2015-06-16 : Harry C Dayantis

A four-year study of 1,414 unvaccinated people across England found that 43% of them had immune cells that protected them from symptoms of both seasonal and pandemic influenza, and reduced their chances of shedding the virus by two thirds. The work led by researchers from UCL, Oxford University and Public Health England was funded by the Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust.

UCL Awards for Enterprise 2015

2015-06-11 : Ruth Metcalfe

Winners of the eighth annual UCL Awards for Enterprise were announced on Wednesday 10 June, at a ceremony held at UCL Advances’ new incubator space for product and creative businesses at King’s Cross, BASE KX.

Natural genetic variation gives complete resistance in prion diseases

2015-06-11 : Harry C Dayantis

Researchers at the Medical Research Council’s Prion Unit at UCL have identified a naturally occurring variant of the human prion protein that produces resistance to prion diseases such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). The findings, published in Nature , could give important insight into other human brain diseases that lead to dementia.

New treatment for polycystic kidney disease

2015-06-03 : Harry C Dayantis

A new technique for treating polycystic kidney disease has been identified by researchers based at the UCL Institute of Child Health. Published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, the treatment, which involves targeting tiny blood and lymphatic vessels inside the kidneys, is shown to improve renal function and slow progression of disease in mice.

Starting HIV treatment early improves patient outcomes

2015-05-27 : Harry C Dayantis

A major international randomised clinical trial has found that HIV-infected individuals have a considerably lower risk of developing AIDS or other serious illnesses if they start taking antiretroviral drugs sooner, when their CD4+ T-cell count—a key measure of immune system health—is higher, instead of waiting until the CD4+ cell count drops to lower levels.

UCL launches UK’s first fully Open Access university press

2015-05-27 : Siobhan Pipa

UCL is pleased to announce the launch of UCL Press, the University’s in house publishing arm. UCL Press will be the first fully Open Access university press in the UK with all books, journals and monographs freely available online, creating a diverse and accessible global knowledge resource.

Working with Saracens to monitor concussion in rugby

2015-05-21 : Harry C Dayantis

A team of UCL researchers have joined the ongoing Saracens study for the 2015/16 season, which combines impact sensors with blood samples to determine the effects of concussion on rugby players.

Missing molecule prevents puberty

2015-05-19 : Harry C Dayantis

A molecule important in blood vessel formation and brain wiring is also essential for the onset of puberty, finds new research led by UCL and the University of Milan.

Smoking induces early signs of cancer in cheek swabs

2015-05-14 : Harry C Dayantis

DNA damage caused by smoking can be detected in cheek swabs, finds research published today in JAMA Oncology. The study provides evidence that smoking induces a general cancer program that is also present in cancers which aren’t usually associated with it – including breast and gynaecological cancers.

New test could identify resistant tuberculosis faster in London

2015-05-13 : Harry C Dayantis

Tuberculosis (TB) disease rates in some parts of London are as high as in Sub-Saharan Africa, and drug-resistant strains are becoming increasingly common. These require specific treatments, and if doctors know that a bug is resistant they can start therapy earlier, often leading to better outcomes.

Starved T cells allow hepatitis B to silently infect liver

2015-05-11 : Harry C Dayantis

Hepatitis B stimulates processes that deprive the body’s immune cells of key nutrients that they need to function, finds new UCL-led research funded by the Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust.

New screening technique could pick up twice as many ovarian cancer cases

2015-05-05 : Harry C Dayantis

A new screening method can detect twice as many women with ovarian cancer as conventional strategies, according to the latest results from the largest trial of its kind led by UCL.

Emotional problems in schoolgirls rose dramatically over past 5 years

2015-04-20 : Harry C Dayantis

Emotional problems in girls aged 11-13 in England increased by 55% between 2009 and 2014, finds new research from UCL and the Anna Freud Centre. On average, this means that a mixed classroom of 30 children today is likely to contain one more girl with emotional difficulties than a comparable class 5 years ago.

Body’s defences hijacked to make cancers more aggressive

2015-04-08 : Harry C Dayantis

UCL scientists have discovered that a vital self-destruct switch in cells is hijacked - making some pancreatic and non small cell lung cancers more aggressive, according to research published in Cancer Cell .

New role uncovered for ‘oldest’ tumour suppressor gene

2015-03-27 : Harry C Dayantis

Scientists have revealed a brand new function for one of the first cancer genes ever discovered – the retinoblastoma gene – in a finding that could open up exciting new approaches to treatment.

Crossing fingers can reduce feelings of pain

2015-03-26 : Harry C Dayantis

How you feel pain is affected by where sources of pain are in relation to each other, and so crossing your fingers can change what you feel on a single finger, finds new UCL research.

UCL allocated £171m by HEFCE for 2015/16

2015-03-26 : Siobhan Pipa

UCL is to receive a funding allocation of £171m for teaching and research from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) for the academic year 2015/16, the largest overall total allocated to any English institution.

Complex genetic ancestry of Americans uncovered

2015-03-24 : Harry C Dayantis

By comparing the genes of current-day North and South Americans with African and European populations, a new study has found the genetic fingerprints of the slave trade and colonisation that shaped migrations to the Americas hundreds of years ago.

The first fine-scale genetic map of the British Isles

2015-03-19 : Harry C Dayantis

Many people in the UK feel a strong sense of regional identity, and it now appears that there may be a scientific basis to this feeling, according to a landmark new study into the genetic makeup of the British Isles.