Local woman to visit University of Leicester to find out more about meningitis

Posted by pt91 at Jan 10, 2012 10:15 AM |
Meningitis Research Foundation members to see latest research firsthand

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 10 January 2012

Local woman, Valerie Smith from Kibworth is visiting University of Leicester this week with national charity Meningitis Research Foundation (MRF) to find out more about meningitis and septicaemia, diseases which affect more than 3,400 people each year in the UK.

Valerie (69) is joining other regional MRF members to see firsthand research funded by the charity into the disease. She said: “I have been involved with MRF since I first contracted Mollaret’s meningitis back in 1992 and have had a huge amount of support from them especially as I have recurrent episodes of the disease. I am a befriender for the charity which means I support and help other people who have been affected. I’m really excited about this opportunity to find out more about MRF’s research to eradicate meningitis”

MRF Head of Research and Medical Information Linda Glennie said: “We set up visits to our projects for members to learn about the research they help fund every year. Dr Chris Bayliss, of University of Leicester’s Genetics Department is hosting this visit. He leads an MRF-funded project to investigate the potential of two components of meningitis-causing bacteria as part of a MenB vaccine. This is crucially important work since there is currently no vaccine available against MenB disease and MenB vaccines in development may not cover all strains. MenB bacteria are the leading cause of meningitis today and can leave survivors with long term after effects such as amputations, deafness and memory problems.”

Members will also have the opportunity to tour the GENIE facility (Genetics Education Networking for Innovation and Excellence), which is the UK's Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Genetics and is based at Leicester University.

Media contact: To find out more about the visit or to speak to Valerie Smith please contact Becky Pierce-Jones, PR Manager on 01454 280416 or email: beckypj@meningitis.org.

Notes to Editors:

• Meningitis Research Foundation is currently funding 19 research projects into the prevention, detection and treatment of meningitis and septicaemia. The Foundation has spent over £16.5 million on research since its inception in 1989

• Meningitis Research Foundation operates a freefone 24 hour helpline – 080 8800 3344 – providing information on meningitis and septicaemia to the general public and health professionals

• Information on meningitis and septicaemia is also available on the Foundation’s world-renowned website www.meningitis.org in 22 languages. An interpretation service in 150 languages is available through the 24-hour helpline

• The Foundation offers support for those affected by meningitis and septicaemia. Trained helpline staff is available 365 days a year. A befriending service links people with experience of meningitis and septicaemia to share their experiences and counsel each other

Share this page: