News Archive

News Archive

Professor Sharon Peacock to be awarded the 2018 Microbiology Society Unilever Colworth Prize

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Professor Sharon Peacock to be awarded the 2018 Microbiology Society Unilever Colworth Prize

This Prize is awarded for significant contributions in the field of microbiology

Professor Peacock uses whole genome sequencing technology in public health, helping to increase the speed of outbreak analysis. She has been working with local hospitals and regional microbiology services to implement sequence-based approaches to clinical microbiology. Her latest study showed that routine genomic surveillance of MRSA can detect unsuspected outbreaks.

Study shows routine genomic surveillance of MRSA can detect unsuspected outbreaks

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Study shows routine genomic surveillance of MRSA can detect unsuspected outbreaks

Catching outbreaks early could prevent further spread and reduce the number of people involved

Genomic surveillance has revealed the first complete picture of MRSA spread across the east of England. By tracking all MRSA-positive people in the area, researchers saw the transmission within and between hospitals, and in GPs surgeries and communities. The study showed that routine genomic surveillance could catch outbreaks earlier, which could help prevent further transmission.

Five new malaria targets that could lead to an effective vaccine

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Five new malaria targets that could lead to an effective vaccine

Scientists have identified five targets that reduce the parasite’s ability to invade red blood cells

In the largest study of its kind, five new malaria vaccine targets have been discovered by scientists at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and their collaborators. Researchers studied the malaria parasite at its most vulnerable stage – when invading human red blood cells – and identified five targets that lead to a reduction in the parasite’s ability to enter red blood cells.

Thermo Fisher Scientific and Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute Announce the Axiom Africa Array for Medical and Population Genomics

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Thermo Fisher Scientific and Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute Announce the Axiom Africa Array for Medical and Population Genomics

The array tags at least 90 per cent of common genetic variation in 12 diverse African populations

The AGR whole-genome sequencing effort encompassed populations from across Africa, including from Ethiopia (Gumuz, Wolayta, Amhara, Oromo, Somali), Egypt, Namibia (Nama/Khoesan) and South Africa (Zulu). The genomes of 2,000 individuals from Uganda (Baganda, Banyarwanda, Barundi and others) were also included. The AGR resource now contains 94.5M SNPs of which 21.7M are unique to AGR.

1 to 10 mutations are needed to drive cancer, scientists find

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1 to 10 mutations are needed to drive cancer, scientists find

The results show the number of mutations driving cancer varies considerably across different cancer types

For the first time, scientists have provided unbiased estimates of the number of mutations needed for cancers to develop, in a study of more than 7,500 tumours across 29 cancer types. Researchers from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and their collaborators adapted a technique from the field of evolution to confirm that, on average, 1 to 10 driver mutations are needed for cancer to emerge. The results are published today (19th October) in Cell.

The international Human Cell Atlas publishes strategic blueprint; announces data from first one million cells

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The international Human Cell Atlas publishes strategic blueprint; announces data from first one million cells

Blueprint describes path forward for cataloging every cell in the human body; cell data release to be available to research community

The Human Cell Atlas (HCA) Consortium has released a blueprint for the international initiative’s efforts to create a comprehensive reference map of all human cells, a project that will form the basis for a deeper understanding of human health and for diagnosing, monitoring, and treating disease.

Yeast spotlights genetic variation’s link to drug resistance

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Yeast spotlights genetic variation’s link to drug resistance

Study shows that genetic diversity influences which adaptive mutations cause antimicrobial resistance

Researchers have shown that high genetic diversity plays a key role in the evolution of drug resistance, by priming new mutations. The study could help scientists understand the evolution of resistance to antimicrobial and anticancer drugs.

Genomics reveals how competition between bacteria affects the impact of vaccination

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Genomics reveals how competition between bacteria affects the impact of vaccination

Study identifies the consequences of fierce competition between bacterial strains surviving after vaccine introduction.

After a few years of routine use of the two vaccines many strains of S. pneumoniae, including the most prevalent disease-causing ones, had been eliminated. Yet, the bacteria has not become less common, instead the vaccine-targeted strains had been replaced by others that less frequently cause disease in children. The latest research, published in Nature Ecology & Evolution, provides a new explanation for how this may occur.

Helping apprentices lead the field in big data

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Helping apprentices lead the field in big data

Anglia Ruskin and Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute team up to deliver new training

Anglia Ruskin University and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute have received funding to launch a new degree apprenticeship to help address the acute shortage of skilled professionals in a big data sector which is growing by 56,000 jobs a year.

New drug hope for patients with rare bone cancer

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New drug hope for patients with rare bone cancer

Patients with a rare bone cancer of the skull and spine – chordoma – could be helped by existing PI3K inhibitor drugs, researchers suggest

Patients with a rare bone cancer of the skull and spine – chordoma – could be helped by existing drugs, suggest scientists from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, University College London Cancer Institute and the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust. In the largest genomics study of chordoma to date, published today (12 October) in Nature Communications, scientists show that a group of chordoma patients have mutations in genes that are the target of existing drugs, known as PI3K inhibitors.

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