Populations & Lifelong Health

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Working with Saracens to monitor concussion in rugby

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Saracens players wear patches in games and training

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.

Chemo before surgery benefits patients with advanced ovarian cancer

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Chemotherapy machine

Women with advanced ovarian cancer have fewer side effects and tend to have a better quality of life if given chemotherapy before surgery, according to a Cancer Research UK funded study published in The Lancet.

Missing molecule prevents puberty

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Hormones that trigger puberty in the mouse brain

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.

Unique social structure of hunter-gatherers explained

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Elderly Agta couple, Philippines

Sex equality in residential decision-making explains the unique social structure of hunter-gatherers, a new UCL study reveals.

Smoking induces early signs of cancer in cheek swabs

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Ashtray

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

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Mycobacterium tuberculosis

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

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Magnified image of liver sample from Hepatitis B patient showing suppressor cells (brown) approaching T cells (red)

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.

LDA Design appointed to develop a master plan for new UCL East campus

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QEOP_UCL_East

The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) has today announced that LDA Design has been appointed to develop a master plan for a new 125,000m2 campus for UCL on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. This location will allow new and exciting initiatives to be developed by UCL.

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

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Ovarian cancer under the microscope

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.

Tracking exploding Lithium-ion batteries in real-time

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battery_cell

What happens when lithium-ion batteries overheat and explode has been tracked inside and out for the first time by a UCL-led team using sophisticated 3D imaging.

UniSA and UCL forge new partnership to ignite future industries

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Hawke building UniSA

The University of South Australia (UniSA) and UCL have today signed a partnership agreement committing the two institutions to work together to develop teaching and research in South Australia in fields that include minerals processing, advanced manufacturing, sustainable future energy production and protection, and care of the environment.

Connecting places causes mental maps to merge

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CASA_Tube

Realising how places connect geographically causes local maps in the brain to join, forming one big map which helps with planning future journeys, finds a new UCL study.

Mummified bodies from 18th century Europe found to have multiple tuberculosis infections

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Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Bodies found in a 200 year-old Hungarian crypt have revealed the secrets of how tuberculosis (TB) took hold in 18th century Europe, according to a research team involving UCL scientists.

Emotional problems in schoolgirls rose dramatically over past 5 years

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Young student takes exam

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.

Men donate competitively on women’s fundraising webpages

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runner

Men give more money through fundraising websites after seeing that other men have donated large amounts and when the fundraiser is an attractive woman, according to new UCL and University of Bristol research.

Human immune system can control re-awakened HIV, suggesting ‘kick and kill’ cure is possible

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Scanning electromicrograph of an HIV-infected H9 T cell

The human immune system can handle large bursts of HIV activity and so it should be possible to cure HIV with a ‘kick and kill’ strategy, finds new research led by UCL, University College London Hospitals (UCLH) NHS Foundation Trust, the University of Oxford and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Body’s defences hijacked to make cancers more aggressive

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Lung cancer cells

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.

HIV spreads like internet malware and should be treated earlier

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HIV-1 infected T cell (purple) interacting with an uninfected target T cell (brown) during cell-to-cell spread at the virological synapse

A new model for HIV progression finds that it spreads in a similar way to some computer worms and predicts that early treatment is key to staving off AIDS.

New role uncovered for ‘oldest’ tumour suppressor gene

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Professor Sibylle Mittnacht interviewed by Clare Hastings at The Institute of Cancer Research, London

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.

Teenagers shape each other’s views on how risky a situation is

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Group of teenagers

Young adolescents’ judgements on how risky a situation might be are most influenced by what other teenagers think, while most other age groups are more influenced by adults’ views, finds new UCL research.

Crossing fingers can reduce feelings of pain

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Cold stimulus on the crossed middle finger

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.

Complex genetic ancestry of Americans uncovered

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Approximate geographic sampling location of donor (circles) and recipient (diamonds) populations analyzed.

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.

Weight discrimination has major impact on quality of life

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Man on scales

Weight discrimination is linked to significantly lower quality of life, and accounts for approximately 40% of the negative psychological effects associated with obesity, finds new UCL research funded by Cancer Research UK.

‘Most attractive’ male birds don’t have the best genes

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Peacock

‘Attractive’ male birds that mate with many females aren’t passing on the best genes to their offspring, according to new UCL research which found promiscuity in male birds leads to small, genetic faults in the species’ genome. Although minor, these genetic flaws may limit how well future generations can adapt to changing environments. 

Lack of government data-sharing hindering social mobility research

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Parliament

Better sharing of routinely collected data could accelerate progress towards improving social mobility and reducing child poverty, as well as generate significant financial savings, according to a new UCL report published today.

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