Image of virus

COVID 19: a lesson on why vaccines are so vital

The Coronavirus crisis has highlighted the critical need for families to keep up with vaccinations, according to a Brighton immunologist.

Dr Nadia Terrazzini said: “We are living through the biggest case study of what the world would look like without vaccines – they are the single most effective way to protect us from infections.

“This crisis will be over and we will probably all come out if it feeling different people, on many levels. And it will, hopefully, make us all more aware of the importance of vaccines and the role of immunology research.”

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We’re making waves – around the globe

University of Brighton researchers and academics have been in demand from media around the world in recent weeks on a variety of subjects, but mainly informing the debate about the coronavirus.

Dr Clare Weeden, Principal Lecturer from the Tourism, Hospitality and Events Research and Enterprise Group in the School of Sport and Service Management, was interviewed by The Daily Telegraph and quoted in their article on how tourism is coping in the face of the infection outbreak.

Jennifer Holland, Lecturer in Competitive Marketing in the same school, wrote an article on how the cruise liner industry has been disrupted in The Conversation. Holland was interviewed by BBC radio and the feature was broadcast by more than 50 BBC stations around the UK.

And Dr Sarah Pitt, Principal Lecturer in the University’s School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences and diagnostic virologist with the Institute of Biomedical Science, was interviewed by BBC South East Today and also BBC Radio Stoke about the coronavirus and invited to explain how people in contact with those with the infection are being traced and what precautions people should take.

Meanwhile, Professor Richard Faragher, Professor of Professor of Biogerontology from the Centre for Stress and Age-Related Disease, also featured in The Conversation on the subject of ‘How to add five healthy years to UK life expectancy’. His article was reprinted by a number of publications worldwide including the Metro newspaper in the UK, the Paris Guardian, the Shanghai Sun and the Nigeria Sun.

Paul Levy’s The Conversation article on ‘Why laptops could be facing the end of the line’ garnered over 133,000 reads and was one of the most widely read on the website for February. The Senior Lecturer in our Brighton Business School saw his article go viral – it was republished by a number of media including CNA (Asia, Australia and Middle East),  Knowridge Science Report and EconoTimes.

City Nature Challenge photo with logos

Competing against the world to discover wildlife

This World Wildlife Day, the University of Brighton is calling on everyone to take part in April’s City Nature Challenge to see who can find the most nature.

Dr Rachel White, senior lecturer in Ecology & Conservation, will be leading The Brighton & Lewes Downs Biosphere’s (The Living Coast) entry into the challenge, which aims to connect people with nature by discovering and recording as much wildlife as possible between 24-27 April 2020. Read More

Launch Nature 2020 team

University kicks off involvement in Nature2020

MPs have helped launch a year-long celebration of biodiversity within the Brighton and Lewes Downs UNESCO World Biosphere Region.

The calendar of events marks the end of the UN Decade on Biodiversity, with the University of Brighton leading on the area’s involvement in the 5th global City Nature Challenge in April. The Nature2020 programme aims to raise awareness of – and connect people to – the environment we live and work in.

Local MPs Caroline Lucas and Lloyd Russell-Moyle joined the deputy Mayor of Brighton & Hove, Councillor Alan Robins, at a packed programme on Friday 31 January, which included speeches and a Healthwalk led by the University’s Becky Walton and Dr Rachel White to observe bird and plant species which make their home along the Undercliff walk.

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Photo of trout swimming in river

Are superfoods damaging fish communities?

Brown trout in our rivers are in danger of being poisoned by a toxin produced in the watercress farming industry, according to new research at the University of Brighton.

Penethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC) potentially is leaching into water courses and researchers are concerned the toxin can kill trout embryos and cause deformities.

Dr Neil Crooks, from the University’s Centre for Aquatic Environments, who led the research said: “Results show the need to accurately quantify and monitor environmental levels of PEITC in the environment.”

Dr Crooks, with Asa White, a PhD student, and Centre colleagues Dr Angelo Pernetta and Professor Chris Joyce, Professor of Ecology, looked into the sources of PEITC.

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It’s students v staff in Radio 4 quiz

Students and staff from our school are some of the challengers going head-to-head on BBC Radio 4 quiz show The 3rd Degree on Monday.

The show, hosted by writer, comedian and actor Steve Punt, was recorded in front of an audience at the University’s Sallis Benney Theatre in January.

The University of Brighton episode is the fifth in a series of six and goes out on Monday at 3pm. It is repeated on Saturday, August 24 at 11pm. The show will remain on the BBC iPlayer for a week after its first broadcast.

After a rigorous selection process, students Sara Letham (Biomedical Science), Vincent Kane (Marketing Management) and Rachael Baylis (Globalisation: History, Politics, Culture) were chosen to represent the student team.

Dr Sarah Pitt (School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences) Dr Jon Watson (School of Humanities) and Phil Holden (Brighton Business School) made up the academic panel. Read More

Explore your options through Clearing

Good luck to everyone getting their A-Level results today!

If it doesn’t go to plan or you’ve had a change of heart about what you want do next, Clearing is a chance to change direction and make new plans.

If you need help navigating your way through the Clearing process, check out our handy online guide and see which courses you can still apply for. You can also call our Clearing hotline on 01273 644000 which is open now, and has extended hours from 7am to 7pm on results day.

If you’ve not yet visited the University of Brighton we have Clearing open days on Saturday 17th and Tuesday 20th August. You’ll be able to take a tour of the campus where you will be studying, get advice about accommodation, take part in a Q&A with academic staff and chat to students. Find out more about visiting us.

If you’re navigating big choices and big changes, we say: stay curious, explore, and trust yourself. The best journeys don’t always follow a map.

World-first study into microplastics in crustacean brains

University of Brighton researchers have carried out the world’s first study into microplastics in the brain of a crustacean species.

The research – conducted by University graduate Hannah Parker, Dr Neil Crooks, Dr Angelo Pernetta – showed that ingested microplastics remained in the brain of the velvet swimming crab at more consistent levels than in other areas such as the stomach and gills.

The presence of microplastics in the brain has possible implications for a range of behaviours in the crab, including predator avoidance, foraging and reproduction. Read More