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Latest Human Wellbeing News

UCL awarded £13.5 million to advance medical research facilities

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UCL Quad

As part of the Clinical Research Infrastructure Initiative, UCL has been awarded £13.5 million for a number of projects to help advance clinical research.

Interactive website helps lower-income smokers to stop smoking

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No smoking

People with lower incomes attempting to quit smoking are 36% more likely to succeed if they use a new interactive website called ‘StopAdvisor’ than if they use a static information website, finds a randomised controlled trial led by UCL researchers.

Modest effect of statins on diabetes risk and bodyweight related to mechanism of action

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Statins

The mechanism by which statins increase the risk of type 2 diabetes has been investigated in a large-scale analysis from an international team led by researchers from UCL and the University of Glasgow, using information from genetic studies and clinical trials.

Gene variant that dramatically reduces ‘bad’ lipids

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DNA helix

Research using data collected from around 4,000 healthy people in the UK has enabled scientists from UCL, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and the University of Bristol  to identify a rare genetic variant that dramatically reduces levels of certain types of lipids in the blood.

Dental and nutrition experts call for radical rethink on free sugars intake

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A spoonful of sugar

Sugars in the diet should make up no more than 3% of total energy intake to reduce the significant financial and social burdens of tooth decay, finds new research from UCL and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

‘Fat shaming’ doesn’t encourage weight loss

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Man on scales

Discrimination against overweight and obese people does not help them to lose weight, finds new UCL research funded by Cancer Research UK.

High rates of recreational drug use among HIV-positive gay and bisexual men in the UK strongly linked with condomless sex

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Syringe

New UCL research published in The Lancet HIV shows that polydrug use is common among HIV-positive men who have sex with men (MSM) and is strongly linked to sex without a condom (condomless sex).

Antibiotics do not shorten tuberculosis treatment, finds Phase 3 trial

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Antibiotics

The results of a Phase 3 clinical trial involving UCL researchers, called REMoxTB, has found that replacing one of the drugs with the antibiotic moxifloxacin in the standard six-month treatment regimen did not allow the treatment time for tuberculosis (TB) patients to be shortened to four months.

E-cigarette policies ‘should not be distorted by alarmist commentaries dressed up as evidence’

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E-cigarette user

Public health messages about e-cigarettes should be based on facts and not prejudice, argues a new editorial from UCL public health experts.

Creating brain cells from skin to study Alzheimer’s

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Dr Selina Wray with some of her stem cells

An early-career researcher at UCL has just been awarded £900,000 for a stem cell study to develop new treatments for dementia.

40% of women with severe mental illness are victims of rape or attempted rape

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Depression

Women with severe mental illness are up to five times more likely than the general population to be victims of sexual assault and two to three times more likely to suffer domestic violence, reveals new research led by UCL and King’s College London funded by the Medical Research Council and the Big Lottery.

How to rejuvenate ageing immune cells

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Dr Sian Henson pipettes samples

Researchers from UCL have demonstrated how an interplay between nutrition, metabolism and immunity is involved in the process of ageing.

Toxic proteins implicated in frontotemporal dementia and motor neurone disease

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The brain of a fruit fly used to study neurodegenerative diseases

Scientists at UCL and the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing in Cologne have discovered how a specific genetic mutation may damage nerve cells in frontotemporal dementia and motor neurone disease.

What's the best way to brush teeth? Even dentists and dental associations don't agree

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Toothpaste on toothbrush

Advice on how we should brush our teeth from dental associations and toothpaste companies is ‘unacceptably inconsistent’, finds new UCL research.

Losing weight won’t make you happy

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Man on scales

Weight loss significantly improves physical health but effects on mental health are less straightforward, finds new UCL research funded by Cancer Research UK.

London’s centralised stroke services save 96 extra lives per year

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Ambulance

Every year, London’s centralised stroke services save around 96 stroke patients who would have died under standard hospital treatment, finds UCL-led research.

Goalkeepers prone to ‘gambler’s fallacy’ but penalty takers fail to exploit it

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French penalty against Uraguay in the 2013 U-20 World Cup final

After a string of penalties aimed in the same direction, goalkeepers are more likely to dive in the opposite direction on the next penalty but kickers fail to exploit this pattern, finds new UCL research.

The bit of your brain that signals how bad things could be

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The human habenula (in red, 3 mm diameter), in which activation tracked the degree to which electric shocks were anticipated

An evolutionarily ancient and tiny part of the brain tracks expectations about nasty events, finds new UCL research funded by the Medical Research Council.

Gene variant linked to schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and alcoholism

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Depression

A rare gene variant discovered by UCL scientists is associated with an increased risk of developing schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and alcoholism, confirms new research.

Partners of miscarriage sufferers ‘ignored’

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Partners Too

The partners of women who miscarry often feel invisible, ignored and sidelined during and after miscarriage – and unable to talk about their own feelings of loss and pain – according to new findings from UCL and the Miscarriage Association.

Pre-diabetes label ‘unhelpful and unnecessary’

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Blood tests are used to check for type 2 diabetes

Labelling people with moderately high blood sugar as pre-diabetic is a drastically premature measure with no medical value and huge financial and social costs, say researchers from UCL and the Mayo Clinic, Minnesota.

Drink less for a healthier heart

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Drinking wine

A reduction in alcohol consumption, even for light-to-moderate drinkers, could be linked to improved cardiovascular health, including a reduced risk of coronary heart disease, lower body mass index and blood pressure, according to new research published in the BMJ.

Working with Camden Council to get children active

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Camden Active Spaces playground design for Torriano Infants and Junior School

An initiative to see if playground design can inspire schoolchildren to be more active, Camden Active Spaces, is launched today at the Institute of Sport Exercise and Health (ISEH) in partnership with UCL and Camden Council.

New AHRC grant will fund ‘Museums on Prescription’ research

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Museum objects in the community

A team of researchers led by Dr Helen Chatterjee (UCL Genetics, Evolution & Environment and UCL Public & Cultural Engagement) will begin a new three year project this month, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), to explore the value and role of museums in social prescribing.

Diabetes treatments ‘do more harm than good’ for many people

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Insulin injections for people with type 2 diabetes may cause more harm than good

Treatments to reduce blood sugar levels do more harm than good in many type 2 diabetes patients, particularly older people, finds new research from UCL, the University of Michigan and the Ann Arbor Veterans Affairs Hospital.

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