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Wellcome News 64

Wellcome News 64

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Published by Wellcome Trust
This issue of our quarterly magazine includes articles on comics and medicine, the dual-use dilemma, a giant trypanosome in Glasgow and malaria-carrying lizards.
This issue of our quarterly magazine includes articles on comics and medicine, the dual-use dilemma, a giant trypanosome in Glasgow and malaria-carrying lizards.

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Published by: Wellcome Trust on Sep 22, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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At the heart o our Strategic Plan are the veresearch challenges that will shape mucho our work over the coming decade. Eachchallenge is a theme that brings togetherthe many dierent activities o the Trust –including research in biology and medicine,the translation o research into healthcareproducts, public engagement, history o medicine and the ethics o research.For both our Strategic Awards andInvestigator Awards, we are askingapplicants to consider how their researchwill address one or more o these challenges.This is particularly important because eachchallenge comes with intent – that the workwe und should make a dierence. Forexample, ‘maximising the health benets o genetics and genomics’ makes clear that i we and our partners are to be successul,genetics research must eed through intoimportant improvements in the lives andhealth o patients and others.The last ew months have seen the launchor unding o a number o projects thataddress our challenges directly. In the eldo genetics, alongside the celebration o thehuman genome sequencing’s ten-yearanniversary in June came the launch o theambitious UK10K project. As its namesuggests, UK10K will decode the genomes o 10 000 people over the next three years andis expected to uncover many rare geneticvariants that are important in humandisease. The project will studying 4000people rom TwinsUK and the AvonLongitudinal Study o Parents and Children– two extremely ruitul studies that theTrust supports – as well as 6000 people withextreme obesity, neurodevelopmentaldisease and other conditions.In our challenge area o ‘understandingthe brain’, two projects looking at stroke– the leading cause o adult disability in theUK – aim to help us to understand andreduce the devastating eects it can have onthe lives o those aected. At the Universityo Oxord, Dr Heidi Johansen-Berg hasrecently had her Senior Research Fellowshiprenewed; she is looking at how the structureo the brain changes when we learn newskills and when the brain recovers romdamage such as stroke. Meanwhile, DrParashkev Nachev at University CollegeLondon has been unded to produce asystem that marries automated brainimaging, to capture patterns o braindamage, with computers that can iner therelationship between the damage and theoutcome in the patient. This will helpdoctors to determine the best treatment orthe patient.In our challenge on ‘combating inectiousdisease’, a Strategic Translation Award toProessor Andrew Pollard at the University o Oxord will help to take a new vaccineagainst meningitis B rom preclinical studiesto phase I clinical trials in humans.Meningitis B is the leading cause o bacterialmeningitis in the UK, causing 1500–2500cases each year, and is also a major inectiouscause o death in childhood. Meanwhile,Proessor Kaspar Althoeer at King’s CollegeLondon and colleagues are developing a wayto combat the emerging problem o countereit medicines. In low-to-middle-income countries, 10–30 per cent o medicines are ake, placing patients atextreme risk. Proessor Althoeer’s systemuses radio waves to detect signals rommedicines (or their imposters), even throughpackaging.Under our challenge on ‘investigatingdevelopment, ageing and chronic disease’we have awarded £3.8 million to a team atthe University o Bristol to develop a newpainkiller or the severe chronic painassociated with diabetes, or which there arecurrently limited eective treatments. Thenew analgesic is based on galanin, a smallprotein that is made by nerve cells and thatcan reduce neuropathic pain.Finally, in our challenge on ‘connectingenvironment, nutrition and health’, I wasvery pleased that we could announce £10mo unding, through the Insect PollinatorsInitiative, or nine projects investigating thedecline o honeybees and other pollinatinginsects in recent years. These projects will beexploring the causes and consequences o threats to these insect populations.
News | Issue 64
Sir Mark WalportDirector o the Wellcome Trust
Wellcome News
is published our timesa year and is available ree o charge. To subscribe, contact:
Publishing Department
+44 (0)20 7611 8651
+44 (0)20 7611 8242
Ideas, comments, suggestions?Get in touch and let us know.Please contact: The Editor
Wellcome News
Wellcome TrustGibbs Building215 Euston RoadLondon NW1 2BE
Chrissie Giles
Craig Brierley, Chrissie Giles,Mun-Keat Looi, Jen Middleton
James Stride, Luis Olmos
 Assistant Editor
Tom Freeman
David Sayer
Hugh Blackbourn
 All images, unless otherwise stated, are rom theWellcome Library. Copies o images can be obtainedthrough Wellcome Images (images.wellcome.ac.uk).
The Wellcome Trust
We are a global charity dedicated to achievingextraordinary improvements in human and animalhealth. We support the brightest minds inbiomedical research and the medical humanities.Our breadth o support includes publicengagement, education and the application o research to improve health. We are independento both political and commercial interests.
 This is an open access publication and, with theexception o images and illustrations, the contentmay, unless otherwise stated, be reproduced reeo charge in any ormat or medium, subject to theollowing constraints: content must be reproducedaccurately; content must not be used in amisleading context; the Wellcome Trust must beattributed as the original author and the title o thedocument specied in the attribution. The viewsand opinions expressed by writers within
do not necessarily refect those o theWellcome Trust or Editor. No responsibility isassumed by the publisher or any injury and/ordamage to persons or property as a matter o products liability, negligence or otherwise, or romany use or operation o any methods, products,instructions or ideas contained in the materialherein. ISSN 1356-9112. First published by theWellcome Trust, 2010. © The trustee o theWellcome Trust. The Wellcome Trust is a charityregistered in England and Wales, no. 210183. Itssole trustee is The Wellcome Trust Limited, acompany registered in England and Wales, no.2711000 (whose registered oce is at 215 EustonRoad, London NW1 2BE, UK).
PU-4737.3/14.5K/09-2010/JSCover: Playing cards o Sir Henry Wellcome PostdoctoralFellows. See page 4.
EditorialWellcome News
 This document was printed on materialmade rom 25 per cent post-consumer waste & 25 per cent pre-consumer waste. 

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