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Health - Pharmacology - 03.07.2020
Exploring the sun and targeting cancer: News from the College
Exploring the sun and targeting cancer: News from the College
Here's a batch of fresh news and announcements from across Imperial. From commencing a space study despite COVID-19 challenges, to a new drug and diet combo treatment for cancer, here is some quick-read news from across the College. Operating a spacecraft in lockdown After launching in February , the European Space Agency's (ESA) Solar Orbiter spacecraft has successfully completed four months of technical verification, known as commissioning.

Health - Pharmacology - 02.07.2020
Convalescent blood plasma given to COVID-19 patients
An Imperial researcher discussed a trial giving UK COVID-19 patients blood plasma from people who have recovered from coronavirus, in a recent talk. Professor Anthony Gordon, Chair in Anaesthesia and Critical Care at Imperial College London and a Consultant in Intensive Care Medicine at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, is leading a trial to investigate whether convalescent plasma transfusions improve the speed of recovery and chances of survival for patients with COVID-19.

Health - Pharmacology - 02.07.2020
COVID-19 vaccine technology can be used for future pandemics, says expert
The researcher developing a potential new coronavirus vaccine said the technology behind it could also be used for future pandemics, in a recent talk. Professor Robin Shattock, from the Department of Infectious Diseases at Imperial College London, is leading the development of a candidate vaccine. It is currently being tested in human trials to establish whether it can be well tolerated and produce an effective immune response against COVID-19.

Health - Pharmacology - 29.06.2020
Joint cell discovery offers new hope for people with Rheumatoid Arthritis
The key to swift treatments to cure the pain of rheumatoid arthritis has been found in the joints of people with the condition who are in longterm remission. The study - published today and led by the University of Glasgow in collaboration with Fondazione A.Gemelli IRCCS in Italy and the Versus Arthritis funded Research into Inflammatory Arthritis Centre (RACE) - found that people with arthritis in long-term remission had a difference in cell function which could settle inflammation and 'teach' nearby cells to repair the joint.

Health - Pharmacology - 29.06.2020
Faecal microbial transplantation more effective and less costly than antibiotics to treat C-diff infections
An innovative treatment for patients with Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) which uses transplanted gut bacteria to treat the infection, is a more effective and more cost-efficient treatment than using antibiotics, a new UK study has found. CDI is an infection of the bowel, which commonly affects people who have recently been treated in hospital, those with underlying conditions and patients over 65.

Pharmacology - Health - 29.06.2020
New heart valve could transform open heart surgery for millions of patients globally
New heart valve could transform open heart surgery for millions of patients globally
A new polymeric heart valve with a life span potentially longer than current artificial valves that would also prevent the need for the millions of patients with diseased heart valves to require life-long blood thinning tablets has been developed by scientists at the universities of Bristol and Cambridge.

Life Sciences - Pharmacology - 24.06.2020
On brain swelling in children with cerebral malaria reveals potential new treatment approach
Research on brain swelling in children with cerebral malaria reveals potential new treatment approach Through investigating the causes of brain swelling in cerebral malaria - a devastating parasitic disease that is fatal for one in five children - scientists have found a potential new treatment approach that could be safely used to improve outcome.

Health - Pharmacology - 24.06.2020
Bacterial predator could help reduce COVID-19 deaths
A type of virus that preys on bacteria could be harnessed to combat bacterial infections in patients whose immune systems have been weakened by the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the COVID-19 disease, according to an expert at the University of Birmingham and the Cancer Registry of Norway. Called bacteriophages, these viruses are harmless to humans and can be used to target and eliminate specific bacteria.

Life Sciences - Pharmacology - 24.06.2020
Faulty brain processing of new information underlies psychotic delusions, finds new research
Faulty brain processing of new information underlies psychotic delusions, finds new research
Problems in how the brain recognizes and processes novel information lie at the root of psychosis, researchers from the University of Cambridge and King's College London have found. Their discovery that defective brain signals in patients with psychosis could be altered with medication paves the way for new treatments for the disease.

Health - Pharmacology - 23.06.2020
First volunteers receive Imperial COVID-19 vaccine
The first healthy volunteers have now received a candidate coronavirus vaccine developed by researchers. The clinical team, who delivered a small dose of the vaccine to participants at a West London facility, are closely monitoring the participants and report they are in good health, with no safety concerns.

Pharmacology - Health - 18.06.2020
Simple blood test could one day diagnose motor neurone disease
Scientists at the University of Sussex have identified a potential pattern within blood which signals the presence of motor neuron disease; a discovery which could significantly improve diagnosis. Currently, it can take up to a year for a patient to be diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), more commonly known as motor neuron disease (MND).

Health - Pharmacology - 17.06.2020
Blood test to monitor cancer up to ten times more sensitive than current methods
Blood test to monitor cancer up to ten times more sensitive than current methods
A new method of analysing cancer patients' blood for evidence of the disease could be up to ten times more sensitive than previous methods according to new research led by the University of Cambridge.

Health - Pharmacology - 17.06.2020
’COVID-19 free’ hospitals to end cancer surgery backlog
A 'COVID-19 free cold site', set up to carry out non-emergency cancer surgeries, successfully operated on 500 consecutive patients, resulting in no coronavirus-related deaths at 30 days, reports a large cohort study led by UCL and University College London Hospitals.

Health - Pharmacology - 17.06.2020
Engineering cancer antibody therapies for Covid-19
UCL's Cancer Institute is repurposing a sophisticated antibody engineering approach, funded by the UCL Technology Fund (UCLTF), to research and develop a new treatment against Covid-19. A new project, led by Dr Martin Pule, Senior Lecturer in Haematology and Professor Kerry Chester, Department of Oncology, will investigate pivoting existing research used in the fight against cancer by creating a unique 'cocktail' of recombinant antibodies capable of preventing the virus from entering cells and removing it from circulation.

Health - Pharmacology - 16.06.2020
Dexamethasone reduces death in hospitalised patients with severe respiratory complications of COVID-19
In March 2020, the RECOVERY (Randomised Evaluation of COVid-19 thERapY) trial was established as a randomised clinical trial to test a range of potential treatments for COVID-19, including low-dose dexamethasone (a steroid treatment). Over 11,500 patients have been enrolled from over 175 NHS hospitals in the UK.

Health - Pharmacology - 12.06.2020
LMICs will face ’extreme strain’ on health systems despite younger populations
Developing countries are likely to face extreme demand on health systems from COVID-19, despite having younger populations, according to researchers. Writing , researchers from Imperial's Covid-19 Response Team, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and University of Oxford, looked at the impact of coronavirus on low-middle income countries (LMICs).

Health - Pharmacology - 12.06.2020
Begins to rapidly understand deadly link between Covid-19 and cardiovascular diseases
People with heart and circulatory diseases are disproportionally affected by COVID-19. Data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) has consistently shown heart disease to be among the most common pre-existing health conditions in people who have died with the virus in England and Wales. COVID-19 has also been shown to damage the heart and blood vessels, and increase the risk of blood clotting and inflammation, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

Health - Pharmacology - 11.06.2020
Rescuing mini retinas from eye disease with gene therapy
A new gene therapy approach holds promise for treating a common group of inherited eye disease, according to a new UCL and Trinity College Dublin study in lab-grown 'mini retinas'. The findings, published in Stem Cell Reports , may contribute to new treatments for retinitis pigmentosa (RP), which affects thousands of people worldwide.

Health - Pharmacology - 08.06.2020
Kawasaki-like syndrome linked to COVID-19 in children is a new condition
A study on children suffering from severe inflammatory symptoms shows the condition is new and distinct from Kawasaki disease. In April, researchers in the UK and several European countries with high numbers of COVID-19 cases recognised a new inflammatory syndrome in children that was similar to Kawasaki disease, a rare syndrome known to affect young children.

Health - Pharmacology - 05.06.2020
Bacteria perform mass suicide to defend their colony
Bacteria perform mass suicide to defend their colony
The Diabetes Trial Unit (DTU) in the Radcliffe Department of Medicine is managing the UK sites for a global study testing if either chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine can prevent COVID-19 in vital frontline healthcare workers. Laboratory evidence shows that these well-established drugs might be effective in preventing or treating COVID-19 but there is no conclusive proof.
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