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Institute of Bioengineering

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December 2018

21 Dec 18A cytologic smear under the microscopeNew cervical cancer test has 100 per cent detection rate
A new test for cervical cancer was found to detect all of the cancers in a randomised clinical screening trial of 15,744 women, outperforming both the current Pap smear and human papillomavirus (HPV) test at a reduced cost, according to a study led by Queen Mary University of London. The study, ... [more]
7 Dec 18Wolfson-Library-CREDIT-Wilson-MasonBarts Charity funds £6.5m to grow the Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry campus in Charterhouse Square
£6.5 million of funding has been awarded by Barts Charity to Queen Mary University of London to transform the Charterhouse Square campus at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, and provide modern, cutting-edge teaching and medical research facilities. This investment by Barts Charity will underpin a programme of ... [more]
6 Dec 18Professor Mark CaulfieldGenomics project reaches goal of 100,000 genomes sequenced from NHS patients
UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock has today announced that a project involving Queen Mary University of London researchers has reached its goal of sequencing 100,000 whole genomes from NHS patients. The 100,000 Genomes Project, led by Genomics England in partnership with NHS England, is a ground-breaking programme which has been based at ... [more]

November 2018

26 Nov 18The association between smoking and a decreased risk of Parkinson’sSmoking found to reduce risk of developing Parkinson’s disease
People who smoke, or are passively exposed to cigarette smoke, are less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease, according to a study led by Queen Mary University of London of more than 220,000 people. The analysis suggests that people who have smoked are 20 per cent less likely to develop Parkinson’s ... [more]
7 Nov 18Young people are most likely to be stabbed after schoolLondon doctors call for urgent action to tackle legacy of youth violence
Researchers from Queen Mary University of London are calling for a police and community focus during the hours after school, after their research found that young people are most likely to be stabbed after school finishes for the day. They say the findings present the opportunity to precisely target violence ... [more]

October 2018

15 Oct 18New immunotherapy offers potential cureNew immunotherapy offers potential cure for advanced pancreatic cancer
A new approach to treating pancreatic cancer using 'educated killer cells' has shown promise, according to early research by Queen Mary University of London. The new cell-based immunotherapy, which has not yet been tested in humans with pancreatic cancer, led to mice being completely cancer-free, including cancer cells that had ... [more]
8 Oct 18A cytologic smear under microscopeDelays to HPV screening cost £3 million and miss 48 cervical cancer cases every month
A one-year delay in introducing human papillomavirus (HPV) testing as the main test in cervical screening would miss the opportunity to prevent 581 cases of cervical cancer in England at an estimated value of £32 million in lost quality of life, according to a study by researchers at Queen Mary University of ... [more]

September 2018

18 Sep 18Professor Mark CaulfieldStudy of one million people leads to world’s biggest advance in blood pressure genetics
Over 500 new gene regions that influence people’s blood pressure have been discovered in the largest global genetic study of blood pressure to date, led by Queen Mary University of London and Imperial College London. Involving more than one million participants, the results more than triple the number of blood ... [more]

August 2018

16 Aug 18Dr Muy Teck Teh at China-ASEAN Education WeekCancer expert from Queen Mary University of London presents breakthrough oral cancer test at one of China’s largest education exchange conferences
Dr Muy-Teck Teh, Senior Lecturer in Head and Neck Cancer at Queen Mary’s Institute of Dentistry, represented the UK at the 11th China-ASEAN Education Week in Guiyang, China, on 26 July 2018. The first diagnostic test for the early detection of oral cancers Launched in 2012, Dr Teh’s ‘quantitative Malignancy Index ... [more]
6 Aug 18Stem cell transplants to be used to treat Crohn’s diseaseStem cell transplants to be used in treating Crohn’s disease
A clinical trial has begun which will use stem cell transplants to grow a new immune system for people with untreatable Crohn’s disease – a painful and chronic intestinal disease which affects at least 115,000 people in the UK. The study, led by Queen Mary University of London and Barts Health ... [more]
1 Aug 18Prof Marco Falasca (Credit, Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund)Cannabinoid improves survival rates of mice with pancreatic cancer
A new study led by Queen Mary University of London and Curtin University, Australia found that Cannabinoid improves survival rates of mice with pancreatic cancer. The study reported mice with pancreatic cancer that were treated with a naturally occurring constituent of medicinal cannabis alongside chemotherapy, survived almost three times longer ... [more]

July 2018

30 Jul 18Dr Margie Taylor CBE, Chief Dental Officer for Scotland, Professor Cynthia Pine, Professor Sara Hurley, Chief Dental Officer for EnglandQueen Mary researchers contribute to the future of dental research
The International Association for Dental Research (IADR) is a non-profit organisation with over 10,800 individual members worldwide. As part of the conference, Professor Cynthia Pine from Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, was named the 2018 recipient of the IADR E.W. Borrow Memorial Award. The IADR E.W. ... [more]
23 Jul 18Confocal microscopy images showing tendon cells with primary cilia. Top image is a cell within tendon tissue. Bottom image is an isolated tendon cell growing in vitro. Nucleus labelled in blue, primary cilia labelled with acetylated alpha tubulin (red)Mechanical regulation of primary cilia in tendon cells suggests a novel feedback mechanism controlling tendon health and mechanosensitivity.
New research from Prof Martin Knight and Prof Hazel Screen's group at Queen Mary University of London reveals a novel feedback mechanism regulating tendon health and homeostasis during mechanical loading. The study published in Scientific Reports investigates primary cilia in tendon cells subject to physiological and pathological mechanical loading. Primary ... [more]
4 Jul 18Professor Shafi AhmedThe NHS70 Parliamentary Awards
Innovating surgeon wins NHS70 Parliamentary Award Professor Shafi Ahmed from Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, and The Royal London Hospital has won a prestigious award to mark the NHS’s 70th birthday. Nominated by Rushanara Ali, MP for Bethnal Green and ... [more]

June 2018

11 Jun 18Action DuchenneNew lab technology could reveal treatments for muscle-wasting disease Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD)
Researchers from Queen Mary University of London have developed new cell-based technologies which could improve understanding of the muscle-wasting disease Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and test potential drugs for the disease. DMD is a genetic disorder causing muscle degeneration and weakness, caused by an absence of the protein dystrophin. DMD ... [more]
1 Jun 18Growth of apatite nanocrystals at multiple scales - similarly to how these crystals grow when dental enamel developsScientists develop material that could regenerate dental enamel
Researchers at Queen Mary University of London have developed a new way to grow mineralised materials which could regenerate hard tissues such as dental enamel and bone. Enamel, located on the outer part of our teeth, is the hardest tissue in the body and enables our teeth to function for ... [more]

May 2018

29 May 18The instrument will combine two electrochemical imaging techniques which measure cell responses on the top and bottom layerQueen Mary awarded funding to build instrument which will revolutionise monitoring of cellular processes
Queen Mary University of London has been awarded funding to lead a joint project to build an instrument which will revolutionise the monitoring of cellular processes in tissues that line organs. The grant from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has a total value of £823,329 over three years, ... [more]
15 May 18An Organ-on-a-Chip device (Emulate, Inc.)Queen Mary Awarded Funding to Establish Organ-on-a-Chip UK Network
Queen Mary University of London has been awarded funding to establish and lead a UK network in the development of ‘Organ-on-a-chip’ devices. The network will be part of a major new Research Councils UK (RCUK) funding venture, Technology Touching Life [1], which aims to foster interdisciplinary research into innovative technology in ... [more]
1 May 18New animation from the British Heart FoundationNew animation from the British Heart Foundation shows how SEMS research into tiny tech is helping to treat heart failure
Heart failure affects an estimated 920,000 people in the UK. It means that your heart can't pump blood as well as it should do. One of the most common causes of heart failure is a heart attack. After a heart attack the damaged heart muscle can become stiff. This means your ... [more]

April 2018

20 Apr 18Technology network awarded funding to capture musculoskeletal degenerationTechnology network awarded funding to capture musculoskeletal degeneration
Queen Mary University of London - as part of a group of universities, hospitals and research centres - has been awarded funding to create a network seeking to develop new, high energy imaging methods to capture the dynamic biochemical and biophysical processes in biological samples. The human body is highly ... [more]
20 Apr 18Neuron Pod:  architect Professor Will Alsop OBE RAWhat is a Neuron Pod? Find out more about the ‘nerve cell’ in London’s East End
Construction has begun on the Neuron Pod - a striking 23-metre long and 10-metre high free-standing structure which will be used as an informal science learning centre at Queen Mary University of London’s Whitechapel campus. The pod is a new addition to Centre of the Cell – an award-winning science ... [more]
11 Apr 18Dan RowsonDan Rowson passes his PhD on the effect of mechanical loading on tendon cells
Congratulations to Dan Rowson who passed his PhD viva. Dan's PhD thesis investigated the effect of mechanical stimulation on tendon cells in order to better understand the process of tendon injury. In particular, Dan investigated the effect of mechanical forces on tiny hair-like cellular structures structures, known as primary cilia. ... [more]
10 Apr 18Professor Hazel ScreenNew Dunhill Medical Trust grant awarded to Prof Hazel Screen to investigate the development of tendon injury with ageing.
Professor Hazel Screen has been awarded a Dunhill Medical Trust grant of £190,000, to investigate the causes of age-related tendon injury. Tendon injuries are extremely painful and highly debilitating, and become increasingly common as we age, where they can dramatically affect quality-of-life. Developing treatments is of the utmost importance, but scientists ... [more]
5 Apr 18Dr Tina ChowdhuryStorytelling project for engineers and young east Londoners wins funding
A Queen Mary University of London project which aims to give engineers the skills to create digital stories about how their work can improve the world has received funding from the Ingenious Awards. ‘Engineer the Story’ will bring together engineers to work alongside disadvantaged young people from east London who ... [more]

March 2018

22 Mar 18The Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) Institute of Mechanical Engineers confirms accreditation of SEMS programmes
The Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) has confirmed the accreditation details for our programmes following their re-accreditation visit to SEMS in November. Students completing an IMechE accredited degree are deemed to have met part or all of the academic requirements for registration as a Chartered or Incorporated Engineer and are ... [more]
20 Mar 18Measuring gene expression, matrisome proteomics, cytokine and chemokine levels, cellularity, extracellular matrix organizationExciting New Paper on the Tumour Microenvironment
A new paper published in the journal Cancer Discovery, by Prof Martin Knight and colleagues describes, for the first time, an evolving human metastatic microenvironment. The work led by Prof Fran Balkwill measures gene expression, matrisome proteomics, cytokine and chemokine levels, cellularity, extracellular matrix organization, and relates this to changes ... [more]
12 Mar 18Congratulations to Dr Luming Zhao, who has been awarded a two-year H2020 Marie Curie Fellowship Marie Curie Fellowship Award for Dr Luming Zhao
Congratulations to Dr Luming Zhao, who has been awarded a two-year H2020 Marie Curie Fellowship (€200k), supervised by Dr Lei Su, Prof Martin Knight and Dr Manoj Ramachandran. He will develop novel compact optical fibre lasers for clinical imaging and laser surgery. [more]
12 Mar 18Madeleine HartQueen Mary student to take her research to Parliament
Madeleine Hart, a PhD student from Queen Mary University of London, will present her research to the Houses of Parliament as part of a Parliamentary poster competition. Madeleine Hart, from the School of Biological and Chemical Sciences, was shortlisted from hundreds of applicants to take part in STEM for Britain, ... [more]
7 Mar 18Students talking to an alumni visitor about career options after QMULIndustrial Liaison Forum is a Great Success
The Spring School of Engineering and Materials Science Industrial Liaison Forum was a very popular event again this year. In the morning the annual taught student showcase took place in the Octagon which was followed in the afternoon by a wide range of alumni lead panel and networking sessions. There ... [more]
6 Mar 18The Life Sciences Image awards competitionLife Sciences Image Awards
The Life Sciences Image awards competition is open and seeks outstanding and engaging images produced by Queen Mary staff and students. Now in its second year, it focuses on three themes: health and well-being; health and technology; and beauty in medicine. Shortlisted submissions will be shown at 3 public exhibitions and ... [more]

February 2018

22 Feb 18Professor Amrita Ahluwalia and Dr Dan Jones“Beetroot pill” could help save patients from kidney failure after heart x-ray
Beetroot may reduce the risk of kidney failure in patients having a heart x-ray, according to research led by Queen Mary University of London. The new research project funded by national charity Heart Research UK will look into whether dietary inorganic nitrate, found commonly in beetroot, could be used in ... [more]
21 Feb 18Protein Nanosheet Mechanics Controls Cell Adhesion and Expansion on Low-Viscosity LiquidsCells can ‘walk’ on liquids a bit like the way geckos stick to other surfaces
Cells are typically grown on solid materials, such as tissue culture plastic, degradable polymers and bioceramics. It is thought that the strong mechanical properties of these biomaterials are required to allow cell adhesion, an important process often controlling the behaviour of stem cells and promoting implant incorporation by surrounding tissues ... [more]
16 Feb 18Cells spreading on the outside of a scaffoldResearchers from the Institute of Bioengineering and Queen Mary herald in new printing technique using cells and molecules to recreate biological structures
Researchers from Queen Mary University of London have developed a printing technique using cells and molecules normally found in natural tissues to create constructs that resemble biological structures. These structures are embedded in an ink which is similar to their native environment and opens the possibility to make them behave ... [more]
1 Feb 18Virtual Lab project wins prestigious higher education awardVirtual Lab project wins prestigious higher education award
The Virtual Lab, a platform that allows students to learn lab skills in bioengineering and the life sciences, has won the Gold Award at the Life Sciences category. The Awards celebrate innovative higher education pedagogies which enhance learning and employability across the globe. The Virtual Lab uses the latest games ... [more]
1 Feb 18New research grant on bone cancer mechanobiology and primary cilia funded by the EU
 New grant on mechanobiology of bone tumours 1 February 2018
Dr Stefaan Verbruggen has recently joined the bioengineering group at Queen Mary on a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions Individual Fellowship. Stefaan is working in Prof Martin Knight's research group investigating the role of mechanical forces in bone cancer and the involvement of primary cilia. Stefaan's project is entitled 'META-DORM: Mechanobiology of ... [more]

January 2018

29 Jan 18Cardiomyocytes Use Non-myofibrillar Contractions to Apply Tension on the Environment during SpreadingResearchers from the Institute of Bioengineering (IoB) and Queen Mary identify a new mechanism in which adhesive structures within the cells of the heart sense stiffness through muscle contractions and resting tension at the same time
Cells in the heart sense stiffness by measuring contraction forces and resting tension simultaneously. The study, published in 'Developmental Cell', further shows that the resting tension in the heart cells is increased after a heart attack and other heart diseases. This changes the way that heart cells can sense the ... [more]
24 Jan 18Institute of Bioengineering Spring Seminar SeriesInstitute of Bioengineering Spring Seminar Series
The Institute of Bioengineering Spring Seminar Series gets underway today with Professor Francisco Goycoolea, from the University of Leeds. His talk, Oil-core chitosan based nanocapsules and their influence on 'life networks', begins this series of talks that aim to bring you the very latest research findings in the field of ... [more]
10 Jan 18Frequency fluctuations typically around 50 Hz in the UK 
(Fig b details the evening period)Impact of renewables and trading on power grid frequency fluctuations
The researchers also found that splitting a large grid into small microgrids – as a way of integrating additional renewable power generation or creating smaller, mostly independent grids - will lead to larger frequency deviations which can potentially damage sensitive electronic devices. The work was carried out by academics from the ... [more]

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