University of Leicester scientists explore the latest developments in brain research with a free event as part of Brain Awareness Day

Posted by ap507 at Mar 08, 2016 12:02 PM |
Free event is being held on Wednesday 16 March

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 8 March 2016

  • Psychiatric disorders, taste perception and pain are all subjects being explored in a series of talks
  • The event is part of Brain Awareness Week – a global initiative run by the Dana Foundation

The University of Leicester is to host a free event which coincides with a global initiative aimed at raising awareness of neurological research.

Academics will mark Brain Awareness Week 2016 for a fifth year with a programme of events on Wednesday 16 March.

Professor Dave Lambert, Dr Claire Gibson and Dr Andrew Young will give lectures between 6pm and 8pm, in the Peter Williams Lecture Theatre, Fielding Johnson Building South Wing.

The trio will talk about the progress and benefits of brain research, including understanding strokes and schizophrenia and how the brain perceives pain.

Dr Young, senior lecturer in the Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour, said: “Around 0.5 per cent of the population suffer from schizophrenia or a related disorder, but because of the nature of the behaviours seen in schizophrenia, it is very difficult to study their causes directly.

“So, research in model systems aims to understand the changes in brain function which lead to the behavioural changes seen in schizophrenia.

“The research here in Leicester is looking at changes in brain activity and neurochemistry associated with schizophrenia and with sub-clinical, schizophrenia-like behaviour.”

This will be followed by demonstrations, all delivered by University neuroscience researchers.

They will be:

  • Dr Liz Maratos - Changing your point of view
  • Dr Will Norton – Fishing for the basis of psychiatric disorders
  • Dr Jaime McCutcheon – The molecular basis of taste perception
  • Dr Frank Proudlock – The developing eye: using light to explore the retina
  • Dr Volko Straub – Invertebrates in neuroscience: snails as model systems
  • Dr Tom Matheson – Listening to a locust looking at you: responses of visual nerve cells in an insect

There will also be posters related to current brain research at the University of Leicester, with a chance to talk to brain scientists at the University.  Refreshments will be provided.

The University has played a part in Brain Awareness Week, a worldwide event, since 2011.

The global initiative is organised by the Dana Foundation – a philanthropic organisation based in New York, which supports brain research through grants, publications and educational programmes.

To register for the event, visit: and follow the 'events' link.

For more information, contact: Emma Gisborn



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