Tag: human health

  • Fantastic Fellows (and a final comment on Tim Hunt and sexism in the lab)

    Uncategorized | Jackie Hunter

    I really enjoyed my visit to the biennial BBSRC Fellows Conference in York last week. Unfortunately, I couldn’t attend all of day one as I was in Cambridge first thing discussing the potential for further development of Agri-Tech East with a number of other of key stakeholders but I did manage to arrive before the dinner and had the chance to talk to some of the fellows both before dinner and during the meal. The range of research that is supported through our fellowship schemes is truly breath-taking. This was highlighted further the next day when a number of Future Leader Fellows presented their research in the form of short ‘elevator pitches’ which was a master class in conveying information succinctly and clearly. […]

  • Back to blogging! New Bioscience for Health strategic publications

    Uncategorized | Jackie Hunter

    Well it’s good to be back blogging after purdah and holidays – I can definitely recommend the beaches of Brittany although perhaps not in May if you want to be guaranteed perfect weather! Just before purdah started BBSRC published two important documents in Bioscience for Health. The first was a strategic research framework in Bioscience for Health, 2015-2020 (PDF). This framework will be a living document, responsive to emerging opportunities for excellent research and innovation but does provide a set of long term goals for our research portfolio in this area. It links with our ambitions for the new centre for food and health at Norwich where we plan some very exciting science in many areas including the microbiome and its role in health and disease. Within the Bioscience for Health Strategy there are four challenge areas: lifelong health, nutrition for health, one health and biotechnology for health. […]

  • Tackling resistance is far from futile

    Uncategorized | Jackie Hunter

    One of the ways BBSRC seeks input from our research community and other stakeholder groups is through our Research Advisory Panel (RAP). The panel helps with assessing our strategic thinking across the range of our activities and we had our first meeting of the year last week. One of the areas we discussed was anti-microbial resistance (AMR). Of course this has been an issue that has been very much to the fore in the past couple of years since the publication of Dame Sally Davies’s report on the subject and a report last year by RAND showed that the economic burden of AMR globally in the future will place a substantial burden on the world economy. The report concludes that it is this future burden that renders AMR a “challenge of utmost importance”.  There is also a UK government 5-year strategy for tackling anti-microbial resistance covering both human and animal AMR which was published in 2013 with the first annual progress report published in December 2014. There is still a need to increase understanding of AMR and its implications among non-scientists.  For example an informal, and yes very random, trawl of people I met last year from taxi drivers to friends and family showed that many people still think it is the person that is resistant to the antibiotic rather than the bug! I am pleased to see that Dame Sally will be taking her message about the threat from AMR to the AAAS Annual Meeting in the United States next month, where the Research Councils will also have a strong presence emphasising the importance of global collaboration to tackle this and other major challenges facing us. […]

  • A coming year of reviews and a personal perspective on dementia

    Uncategorized | Jackie Hunter

    A Happy New Year to everybody. Clearly a year that contains a General Election, a spending review and a review of the Research Councils will not be dull!

    I hope the review of the Research Councils will give more opportunities to exemplify the impacts arising from the Research Councils’ investments in research, how we invest collaboratively and dynamically to respond to new challenges and changing priorities and how we are striving to be more efficient. It will also, of course, identify ways in which the Research Councils could be more effective, efficient and innovative in their operations, as indeed all organisations should strive to do. […]

  • Engage, inform and inspire – bioscience takes over in East London this weekend

    Uncategorized | Jackie Hunter

    Regular readers will be very aware that a theme I return to regularly is the absolutely critical need for science to engage with wider society. We work with some of the most exciting and potentially far-reaching areas of research in bioscience. Communicating this excitement, as well as being realistic about the potential of this research, to the public and other stakeholders is important to address both concerns and aspirations for the future. So I am thrilled that one of the highlights of BBSRC’s 20th anniversary year is our Great British Bioscience Festival – taking over Museum Gardens in Bethnal Green, East London from Friday 14th to Sunday 16th November. […]