Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

A summer of public engagement kicks off with two groups attending Cheltenham Science Festival

Exploring the Folding Genome through C-Synth

Cheltenham Science Festival is one of the UK's biggest science fairs, offering six days of debate, discovery, experiments, enjoyment and hands on fun that allow the public to explore the latest scientific research. This year two groups from the Medical Sciences Division are attending the Fair to bring their science to the public. 

From the 5-7 June, researchers from the Paediatric Neuroimaging group in the Department of Paediatrics will be running activities around treating and measuring pain in infants, a topic which generates immense public interest and challenges medical assumptions. Using life-size infant and adult brain models, researchers from the group will give the public the opportunity to see how the human infant brain develops and interacts with the outside world and understand the dramatic structural changes that occur in the human brain throughout early development.

FrightNight3.jpg

Paediatric Neuroimaging Group activities at a previous event

A life-size interactive sculpture will also be on display, demonstrating how adults and infants experience pain, and the group will also use virtual reality technology to allow participants to see how our brain responds to events in our external environment. An animated film about infant brain imaging will reveal how you can better understand what happens in a baby’s brain when they are experiencing pain.

Virtual reality technology will also be in evidence as researchers from the Radcliffe Department of Medicine present their Folding Genome activities at the Festival from the 8-10 June. These activities - which debuted at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition last year - reflect research in the department which uses a unique blend of virtual reality and innovative genetic techniques to understand how DNA folds- and how mistakes in this cellular origami can cause diseases such as diabetes and anaemia. The software developed for this - CSynth - is designed to provide an engaging way to explore and understand the complex structure of the genome in 3D, by integrating data from genome sequencing, computer modelling and high powered microscopy. Visitors to the Festival will be able to use this software manipulate DNA in virtual reality, seeing first-hand how changes in DNA folding influence the way our bodies work. A set of interactive touch screens and table top activities will also be at hand to explain and engage the public with this cutting-edge research.

Find out more about how the Medical Sciences Division engages with the public 

Similar stories

PRINCIPLE trial finds antibiotics azithromycin and doxycycline not generally effective treatments for COVID-19

Coronavirus COVID-19 General Research

In March 2020, the UK-wide Platform Randomised trial of INterventions against COVID-19 In older people (PRINCIPLE) trial was established as a flexible, platform randomised clinical trial to test a range of potential treatments for COVID-19 that might be suitable for use in the community to help people recover more quickly and prevent the need for hospital admission. The trial is one of three national platform trials for COVID-19 treatments, and complements the RECOVERY and REMAP-CAP trials that focus on hospitalised patients.

Just over half of British Indians would take COVID vaccine

Coronavirus COVID-19 General Research

University of Oxford researchers from the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics (DPAG) and the Department of Psychiatry, in collaboration with The 1928 Institute, have published a major new study on the impact of COVID-19 on the UK’s largest BME population.

Investigating New Treatment for Schizophrenia

General Innovation Research

A partnership between University of Oxford, the Earlham Institute, and the global pharmaceutical companies Biogen Inc and Boehringer Ingelheim is announced today to investigate a new drug target for the treatment of schizophrenia.

Parental mental health worsens under new national COVID-19 restrictions

Coronavirus COVID-19 General Research

Parental stress, depression and anxiety have again increased since new national restrictions have been introduced, according to the latest report from the Oxford University-led COVID-19 Supporting Parents, Adolescents, and Children in Epidemics (Co-SPACE) study, based on data from over 6000 UK parents.