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30 May 2009
Cardiff University scientists will be bringing groundbreaking research to life for members of the public at this year’s Cheltenham Science Festival.
Dr Kelly BéruBé, School of Biosciences, will be taking to the stage as part of a panel of experts exploring the future of alternatives to animal research (4 June 2009). She will be joined by New Scientist editor Roger Highfield, Steven Manos from the Centre for Computational Science at University College London and science fiction writer Paul McAuley.
The panel will examine the current status of human tissue engineering research, as well as discussing future developments in the field. Dr BéruBé will be show-casing her research on replacement test-beds for lung research, using lung tissue from post-surgical medical waste and micro-fluidic technology.
Dr BéruBé said: "Microfluidics is the manipulation of small volumes of liquid for micro-chemical reactions and analysis. It enables us to have precise control over formation of growth supports.
"Developing intelligent cell growth scaffolds like this is the new era of cell culture. By recreating tissue environments, we will improve understanding of many aspects of cell behaviour including wound healing and responses to therapeutic drugs without the use of animal models".
Dr BéruBé‘s research is carried out in partnership with Q-Chip, a University spin-out company, and PhD student, Claire Gibson.
‘Beyond Animal Research’ is supported by the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs), in association with New Scientist. It is part of the Centre’s programme of activities to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the concept of ‘the 3Rs’ (Replacement, Reduction and Refinement).
Dr Vicky Robinson, chief executive of the NC3Rs, said: "Our event shows the amazing technologies that are already starting to replace the use of animals and explores what developments, perhaps not previously imagined, will help in the future. Dr BéruBé’s work is an outstanding example of the creative ways that scientists are pushing the boundaries of science."
The Cheltenham Science Festival runs from 3-7 June 2009. It will also host the launch (3 June 2009) of a new interactive engineering show from the award-winning University spinout, science made simple. More information and tickets for shows are available from the festival box office on 08445768970 or through the festival website.
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