Anonymous cell phone data can quantify behavioral changes for flu-like illnesses, study finds28 January 2021Being prepared for a pandemic, like COVID-19, depends on the ability to predict the course of the pandemic and the human behaviour that drives spread in the event of an outbreak. Cell phone metadata that is routinely collected by telecommunications providers can reveal changes of behavior in people who are diagnosed with a flu-like illness, while also protecting their anonymity, a new study has found. The research, led by Emory University and devised by the University of Bristol, is based on data drawn from a 2009 outbreak of H1N1 influenza in Iceland and published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
New study unravels Darwin’s ‘abominable mystery’ surrounding origin of flowering plants 28 January 2021The origin of flowering plants famously puzzled Charles Darwin, who described their sudden appearance in the fossil record from relatively recent geological times as an “abominable mystery”. This mystery has further deepened with an inexplicable discrepancy between the relatively recent fossil record and a much older time of origin of flowering plants estimated using genome data.
How vitamins, steroids and potential antivirals might affect SARS-CoV-228 January 2021Evidence is emerging that vitamin D – and possibly vitamins K and A – might help combat COVID-19. A new study from the University of Bristol published in the journal of the German Chemical Society Angewandte Chemie has shown how they – and other antiviral drugs – might work. The research indicates that these dietary supplements and compounds could bind to the viral spike protein and so might reduce SARS-CoV-2 infectivity. In contrast, cholesterol may increase infectivity, which could explain why having high cholesterol is considered a risk factor for serious disease.
Cell death shines a light on the origins of complex life27 January 2021Organelles continue to thrive after the cells within which they exist die, a team of University of Bristol scientists have found, overturning previous assumptions that organelles decay too quickly to be fossilised.
Common pesticides stop bees and flies from getting a good night’s sleep21 January 2021Just like us, many insects need a decent night’s sleep to function properly, but this might not be possible if they have been exposed to neonicotinoid insecticides, the most common form of insecticide used worldwide, suggests research by academics at the University of Bristol.
Why are around a third of pregnant women not vaccinated against whooping cough?20 January 2021Whooping cough is widespread, highly contagious and serious for new-born babies. However, 30 per cent of pregnant women in the UK do not receive the whooping cough vaccine, leading to avoidable illness and death and the Covid-19 pandemic appears to be having a negative impact on these numbers. New research led by the University of Bristol aims to understand why pregnant women are not being vaccinated against whooping cough and how to improve delivery by maternity services and mothers’ uptake of vaccines.
National consortium to study the threats of new SARS-CoV-2 variants 15 January 2021A new national research project to study the effects of emerging mutations in SARS-CoV-2 is launched today [15 January]. The £2.5 million UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)-funded 'G2P-UK' National Virology Consortium will study how mutations in the virus affect key outcomes such as how transmissible it is, the severity of COVID-19 it causes, and the effectiveness of vaccines and treatments.
Science finds simple way to make lamb leaner14 January 2021Scientists based at Rothamsted and the University of Bristol Veterinary School have found a clear link between the weight of lambs early in their life and meat quality – which is good news for consumers, farmers, and the environment.
Project provide entrepreneurship and business support to non-EU migrants7 January 2021Refugees, migrants and newly arrived communities have long been at the forefront of new enterprise but often left behind when it comes to support. However, that is all about to change through a major new project led by ACH and with partners from Bristol's School for Policy Studies and the West of England Combined Authority.