Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Antibiotic resistance roadshow

 Earlier this year, members of Mat Upton's research lab were involved in running a public engagement event showcasing some of the work being carried out on antibiotic discovery. As part of it, we also ran a ‘swab-n-send’ type session, asking the public to swab an environment they found interesting, come back and smear it onto the agar plate ready to be grown in the lab.

We were also recently able to take this event on the road (well to the Barbican, anyway) for the Pirate Weekend, alongside members of Kerry Howell's research group and with some help from the Marine Biological Association. There was lots of interest from both kids and adults alike, was great fun and we were able to chat to members of the public and get the message of antibiotic resistance out there to the masses. We also took pictures of all the plates that were swabbed and posted them to our on-going Facebook page, allowing people to check back and see what grew on their plates, as well as keep up to date with interesting developments in the lab and future events.

As an added bonus we’ve been able to identify a potentially promising antibacterial candidate from one of these plates, and are currently working to characterise it in the lab. So if you’ve ever wondered what kind of horrible (lovely) things might be hiding out there, check out the Facebook and come along to the next event.

Friday, 18 May 2018

Students teach healthcare to children

On Wednesday two Biomedical Science students (Seanain Henry and Clishlyn Portunova) gave up their time to work at the John Bull Building teaching healthcare related activities to 60 local primary school children. The visit was part of our partnership with the Millfields Inspired charity’s Widening Horizons project, aimed at inspiring year 5 students from the Stonehouse area of Plymouth to consider different career pathways. The children took part in a carousel of healthcare related activities facilitated by Medical, Dental and SoBS students and the grip/leg strength competition hosted by Seanain and Clishlyn was a particular favourite amongst the two classes! We are looking forward to similar  events in the final Millfields Inspired session and at our Children’s University Workshops on the 6th June.

Seanain and Clishlyn are both part of Widening Access to Biomedical Science (WABS), which is a student-led group who facilitate a range of activities and attend local school and college careers events in order to raise aspirations, inspire students and make Biomedical and Healthcare courses more accessible to everyone. If you would like to join WABS, or learn more about the School of Biomedical Science’s Widening Participation activities, please contact us at the following address.