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Medicine has come a long way since the times of Gladiators and Romans. Join us as we explore the past and future of medicine from ancient prosthetics to robotic limbs and synthetic blood (no, not the kind you use liberally on Halloween!). Pint of Science goodies to be won too, if you fancy a go at our quiz! Follow Pint of Science signs through the bar to the ticket desk. Please note this event takes place upstairs - however disabled access can be arranged with prior warning.
Warfare, Amputation and Prostheses in Ancient Greece and Rome
Dr Jane Draycott (Lord Kelvin Adam Smith Research Fellow in Classics: Ancient Science & Technology)
Ancient warfare was not kind to the bodies of soldiers. Whether injured in battle by a blade, a spear, or a missile, or in camp by frostbite or trench foot, soldiers' fingers and toes, hands and feet, arms and legs were incredibly vulnerable. Jane will explore the experiences of soldiers from injury to amputation to prosthesis, and examine the links between the development of surgical techniques and the creation of prosthetic technology in classical antiquity.
Nanoscale Control of Bone Forming Stem Cells
Professor Matt Dalby (Professor of Cell Engineering)
We are an ageing population and as well as focussing on lifespan we also need to consider health span. To maintain health and wellbeing, the musculoskeletal system is critical. However, technology has not moved on much in terms of implant design. In this talk we will consider how new nanotechnologies can help - nanoscale topography (cell braille), ultralow-dose delivery of powerful biological signalling molecules and use of nano-vibrations (nanokicking). Together, these could provide much longer-lasting implants and hence musculoskeletal support into very old age.
Brewing Your Pint (of Blood)...
Dr Jo Mountford (Reader (Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences))
The global need for blood transfusion is increasing, at the moment supplies are taken from altruistic donors. Jo will describe some of the novel ways the problem of maintaining a sufficient blood supply is being addressed and how these concepts might be extended to provide other types of cells to treat degenerative diseases in the future.
Restoring Feelings Through Electronic Skin
Dr Ravinder Dahiya (Reader (Electronic and Nanoscale Engineering))
Loss of limbs has a devastating impact on the lives of amputees as they lose the capacity to handle or manage objects as well as the capacity to feel them through touch. Many attempts over past centuries have focussed on developing artificial limbs, which were largely cosmetic. However, the real change will come when the artificial limbs allow amputees to regain lost sensory feelings. Ravinder will talk about how far we've come with prosthetics technology, and how we plan to bring about the change through our electronic or tactile skin research.