Festival of Postgraduate Research - Preview no.3

Posted by mjs76 at Jun 10, 2011 10:40 AM |
Postgraduate posters from the.College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology.

Next week is our annual Festival of Postgraduate Research. A chance for some of our best postgrads to present posters of their work. In the run-up to the Festival, we’ll be summarising the presentations on Newsblog, grouped into slightly arbitrary bundles. Today we’re taking a look at some of the research in Psychology, Medical and Social Care Education, Cancer Studies and Molecular Medicine and Health Sciences.

How the Brain Recognises Words: Evidence from Arabic

Abubaker AA Almabruk (School of Psychology)

There has been a lot of research into how people read words off a page but most of this research is done on languages such as English or German which use the Latin alphabet. The second most widely used alphabet in the world is Arabic, which is very different: not only does it run from right to left, it is also a cursive script without gaps between the letters. Abubaker’s research, which has already generated papers in journals such as Cortex, Perception and PLoS One, examines how the right and left sides of the brain recognise words in Arabic.

Motion Processing and the Aging Visual System

Amanda Arena (School of Psychology)

Crossing the road or catching a frisbee, everyone needs to be able to judge the speed and direction of moving objects. But studies have shown that motion perception declines in older people. Amanda’s research into this decline has shown that it usually only starts to occur above the age of 70 and it is limited to certain situations. She presented a poster on this topic last December at the First French/British Conference on Visual Perception in Paris (PDF).

Branches of tissue banking: how cancer tissues get used (or not) for research in a teaching hospital

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Jessica Wright

Jessica Wright (Department of Health Sciences)

Jessica Wright is investigating the social, organisational and professional factors which prevent cancer tissue banks from co-operating internationally. She has conducted in-depth social research in hospitals, companies and other organisations to identify these barriers, which create problems for researchers, especially those studying the rarer forms of cancer.

A sleeping tumour? Breast cancer markers are detected in blood years after surgery to remove the tumour

Kevin Blighe (Department of Cancer Studies and Molecular Medicine)

Breast cancer is the commonest cancer among women in the UK with more than 40,000 new cases diagnosed each year. Even after complete removal of a tumour, it is possible for the cancer to sometimes return. Kevin’s research involves blood markers which indicate the presence of breast cancer but which sometimes remain in the blood of patients who have had surgery and are now free of the disease. Could these markers provide advance warning of recurrence?

The Psychological Impact of Hospital Acquired Clostridium difficile Infections

Nicola Parker (School of Psychology)

Hospital acquired infections such as ‘CDiff’ are on the decline but that’s little comfort for patients who contract an infection while in hospital, or their relatives. There has been a great deal of research into MRSA and CDiff from a medical point of view but the psychological effects have been largely glossed over. Nicola’s research involves interviews with patient who acquired such infections during hospital stays, examining not just retrospective opinions but also canvassing how their experiences affect their views on possible future healthcare.

Virtual patients may make hospitals safer for 'real' patients

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A screen shot from a ‘Virtual Patient’.

Rakesh Patel (Department of Medical and Social Care Education)

Rakesh is principal investigator on BADGER (Browser-based Assessment of Decision-making using virtual patients Generated by Expert peer Review), a project to create 15 ‘virtual patients’, hosted by our Beyond Distance Research Alliance. Virtual patients allow trainee doctors to make - and learn from – mistakes without endangering the lives of real patients. Rakesh’s PhD looks at how these ‘VPs’ could improve practice and reduce clinical errors.

Healing your brain non-invasively

Nor Azila Noh (School of Psychology)

Nor is researching transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in which a coil containing an alternating current creates a magnetic field as it is passed over the outside of the skull, stimulating or inhibiting parts of the brain. First devised in 1985, TMS is still a largely unexplored process but it has the potential to contribute towards the treatment of serious conditions such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and epilepsy. Nor presented a poster on this subject at the 1st Workshop on Synaptic Plasticity in Naxos, Greece last year.

Visit the Festival of Postgraduate Research

The Festival of Postgraduate Research 2011 will be held in the Belvoir Suite on the Second Floor of the Charles Wilson Building between 11.00am and 1.00pm on Thursday 16 June. Entry is free so come along, browse the posters and talk with some of Britain’s brightest young postgrads.

See also:

  • Preview no.1: Physics and Astronomy, Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
  • Preview no.2: English, Archaeology and Ancient History, Education, Economics and Sociology
  • Preview no.4: Geology, Geography and Chemistry
  • Preview no.5: Cell Physiology and Pharmacology, Infection Immunity and Inflammation, Biology and Biochemistry
  • Preview no.6: Cardiovascular Sciences