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Recipients:
University of Oxford
Amounts:
£1,000 - £5,000

Results

Slippery slopes in the history of in vitro fertilisation and therapeutic cloning: the influence of ethical argument on the development of law and policy. 26 Apr 2006

IVF and embryo research have been the subject of controversy for more than thirty years and have been attacked on the basis that allowing them is the beginning of a 'slippery slope' towards eugenics, state control of reproduction and reproductive cloning. Debates about these technologies have been characterised by fears of the 'uncontrollability' of science and the consequences of uncontrolled scientific development Robin Henig argues in her history of the reproductive revolution that many of the slipper slope ethical arguments initially raised against IVF are now being used against human cloning and genetic engineering. However, she points out that many of the predictions made in arguments have not occurred. This project will test this conclusion by examining the influence of slippery slope ethical arguments on the historical development of legislation regulating IVF - a technology that is now widely accepted - and therapeutic cloning technologies. The project will: Produce empirical findings on the influence of slippery slope arguments on policy development; Examine how slippery slope concerns in public and academic ethical discourses affect policy development; Compare the outcomes predicted in these arguments, with the actual outcomes of the development of these technologies to examine the concept of fallacy within slippery slope arguments; and Consider the ethical validity of resulting legislative measures given the actual outcomes.

Amount: £3,700
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Student Elective Prize for Mr Adam Handel 29 Aug 2008

Magnetoencephalographic (MEG) study of facial pain

Amount: £1,000
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Oxford Forum for Medical Humanities Symposium 'Neuroethics'. 18 Apr 2007

Neuroethics The symposium will have three sessions, arranged around the ethical implications of the rapidly advancing field of neuroscience, addressing key areas of brain imaging, pharmacological cognitive enhancement and artificial intelligence. We shall also discuss the extent to which new definitions of biological abnormalities within neuroscience may exempt individuals from prosecution or potentially identify them as genetic markers of violence. The first session will consider recent advances in 'SMART drugs' the ethical implications of cognitive enhancement and the social and philosophical issues of recent advances in artificial intelligence. Secondly we shall discuss the ethics of brain reading and the controversy of the spiritual influence of the soul over conscious action. We shall conclude by addressing the responsibilities of individuals in society, the influence of genetic abnormalities versus personal choice and the legal determination of criminal responsibility. Often conferences are focused within one field, although there are clearly many conferences that draw together researchers from law and bioethics. This gathering, held by the Oxford Forum for Medial Humanities will broaden the dialogue beyond this approach, and actively bring into the conversation these other fields - medical anthropology, history of medicine and theology. Similarly, while there are many conferences that cover issues raised by the ethical implications of drug enhancement of intelligence or the influence of genetics over spiritual control, legal implications of psychiatric disease but these usually targeted at ethicists, clinicians and lawyers. This gathering is needed, as it will invite speakers from these other disciplines, to engage in discussion on these issues about life and life choices.

Amount: £3,500
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Autonomy and Solidarity two conflicting values in bioethics? British and French perspectives on two core values in health care and medicine . 15 Sep 2014

We would like to hold a one and a half day workshop with scholars from Great Britain (n=5) and France (n=5). Our aim is to deepen the analysis of two core values in bioethics debates that are sometimes seen as contrasting: respect for autonomy and solidarity. Whereas respect for autonomy is the leading principle of British as well as wider Anglo-American health care ethics, solidarity is dominant in the French and broader continental European discourse. By exploring the culture-specific meaning and use of normative concepts we will improve synergies between bioethical discussions and scholarships between countries. This, in turn, will inform the development of ethical frameworks that respond to the social and cultural variety of different countries, hence contribute to the internationalisation of bioethics. More precisely, we suggest exploring the role of both concepts in health care law and politics, as well as in the professional, and academic discourse in each country. Furthermore , we examine how the different approaches are reflected in health care practices. Invited speakers are from different disciplinary backgrounds including law, bioethics, philosophy, history, and sociology.

Amount: £3,070
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Transnational trauma: Taiwanese psychiatry and the construction of 'psychological trauma', 1945-1995 15 Feb 2010

This project aims to investigate into the historical transformation of psychiatric knowledge with reference to a psychological subject, trauma, which was transformed by a number of individuals and institutions in cross-cultural contexts. From shell-shock to PTSD, the conceptualization of trauma has undergone a 'paradigm shift' in the course of 20th Century history. However, it was primarily considered within military and Anglo-American model. In the course of history, trauma has acquired different names and features under various social and cultural circumstances. In a non-western setting, trauma developed a completely different picture from what it initially meant in western psychiatry. The fields I target are Taiwan National University psychiatric department, which contributed the main inputs in the activities of psychiatric development at the international level, and the early projects developed by the World Health Organization Mental Health Section (later renamed as Unit), World Federation for Mental Health, and other post-war health organizations.

Amount: £1,083
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Genome-wide DNase 1-hypersensitive sites ins byprofile in different mouse strains by DNase-sequencing. 15 Feb 2010

1. Construct massively parallel sequencing libraries from DNAse treated DNA obtained from erythroblasts from the reference strain, C57BL6/J. A library with the correct size distribution and validated by qPCR, will be used as the basis for comparison with data from other strains and as validation with array-based methods for DNAse hypersensitivity sites detection. 2. Construction of libraries from eight strains (A/J, AKR/J, C3H/HeJ, BALBc/J, CBA/J, DBA2/J and LP/J) previously used in a genome-wide mapping experiment of multiple phenotypes (included full blood count) 3. Mapping of hypersensitivity sites onto the whole genome sequences of these strains (obtained from the Sanger institute) 4. Validation of the functional involvement of sequence variants and comparison with the position of quantitative trait loci contributing to haematopoietic phenotypes

Amount: £1,736
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Identification of interferon-stimulated antiviral genes that contribute to the HIV-1 transmission bottleneck 01 Apr 2016

Identification of immune mechanisms of HIV-1 control at mucosal transmission sites is of importance to facilitate the development of strategies to block infection prior to systemic virus spread. My host lab have shown that HIV-1 transmitted founder viruses are relatively resistant to type I interferon (IFN)-mediated antiviral activity (as compared to viruses replicating in chronic infection), suggesting that type I IFNs make an important contribution to the HIV-1 transmission bottleneck. This project will contribute to ongoing work aiming to identify the IFN-stimulated antiviral genes that drive the IFN-resistance of founder viruses. My first aim will be to confirm preliminary results indicating that high concentrations of type II and III IFNs also inhibit HIV replication and that founder viruses are relatively resistant to their activity; and to test the effects of lower IFN concentrations. Findings from these experiments together with results from the lab’s microarray and qPCR-based analysis of common/differential gene up-regulation by high/low concentrations of type I, II and III IFNs will then be employed to identify genes to which founder viruses may be preferentially resistant. My second aim will be to use siRNA knockdown to test the role of 1-2 selected genes in founder virus IFN-resistance.

Amount: £2,000
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Modelling the evolutionary epidemiology of chronic viral infections: Incorporating host heterogeneity into nested models of virus evolution 01 Apr 2016

One of the principal challenges in epidemiology is using mathematical models to plan disease control. This is made more challenging by pathogen evolution, which increases the complexity of disease dynamics, acting as a barrier to effective control. Chronic viruses such as HIV exhibit evolution over significantly shorter timescales than the long duration of infection. Understanding pathogen evolution and including it in models is therefore a key challenge for mathematical biologists. This project will explore how heterogeneity between hosts affects evolutionary dynamics at the population scale, building on a model in an existing paper that assumes that all hosts are identical. In this project, the model will be extended to include the heterogeneous immune responses to infection observed in different individuals. The dynamics of this new model will then be compared with the model in which all individuals are identical. Mathematical techniques required for this project include analysis of integro-differential equations (such as calculation of equilibria) and examination of the behaviour of integro-differential equations via numerical solution. The key goal is to develop a model of virus evolution that includes heterogeneous host types, and to investigate the evolutionary behaviour predicted by the model with different extents of host heterogeneity.

Amount: £1,750
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Food across the ages - a generational look at relationships with food 25 Nov 2014

Using case studies, we will examine changes in attitudes and practise to food in Vietnam. Inter-generational pairing of community members offers a fun means of creating community-led stories about the similarities and differencesthat young and old may have in their attitudes and behaviour around food. These stories will complement stories gathered from other WT sites in Asia andAfrica and feed into the WT's Food & Drink Initiative.

Amount: £3,000
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Phenomenology and Health: An Interdisciplinary Symposium. 30 Jan 2015

'Phenomenology and Health: An Interdisciplinary Symposium' will take place 27-28 March 2015 at The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH). This meeting will explore and assess the role of phenomenology in health-related research and practice. We aim to stimulate cross-disciplinary discussions between scholars of science and humanities and those engaged in phenomenological practice outside of academia. Phenomenology's concept of bodily consciousness is informing research into the li ved experience of health conditions, enabling explorations of the subjective aspects of illness not always accounted for by more naturalistic approaches. Its emphasis on the social dimensions of selfhood is proving valuable for psychotherapists, nurses, GPs, and others who work closely with clients and patients. Humanities researchers are using phenomenology to think through representations of health, illness, and disability in literature, art, film, and other forms of historical and contemporar y media, and to consider the experience of ill people from ethical and ontological perspectives. From Merleau-Ponty's body-subject and Sartre's thoughts on pain to important works such as Fredrik Svenaeus' The Hermeneutics of Medicine and the Phenomenology of Health (2000) and Havi Carel's Illness: The Cry of the Flesh (2008), phenomenology provides multiple frameworks for the study and practice of healthcare.

Amount: £3,029
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford
Amount: £1,996
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Tropical Tensions: British ideas of medicine, hygiene and sanitation in warm climates, 1870-1914. 27 Oct 2006

The historiography of tropical medicine and hygiene is dominated by its evolution from a marginalized and diffuse body of knowledge at the periphery, towards a consolidated metropolitan discourse empowering a 'new' imperialism. Such histories typically narrate the role of practitioners, tropical colonies, colonial administrations, and parasitic diseases in the development of a modern, and institutionalized discipline. Important as these approaches are, the discourses they describe were neither as stable, nor straightforward. This thesis argues that ideas of British tropical medicine, hygiene and sanitation during the period of 1870 to 1914 are best understood by examining local tensions they experienced both at home and abroad. Throughout Western discourse the tropics have been subject to tension - a 'tropical alterity' - paradisiacal and pestilential, luxuriant abundance set amidst violence and destruction. The 'otherness' of the tropics was neither inherent nor stable, but was continuously maintained and defined. The right to define and maintain 'tropical' identities was a source of great tension. Interactions between British and indigenous medicine and science created and established a hybrid of identities and knowledge, blurring distinctions between centre and periphery. Several 'central peripheries' created and disseminated knowledge between what Chambers and Gillespie have identified as a 'polycentric communications network'. However, the distributed power between these 'centres' was not equal, precipitating various points of tension. The outline is as follows: Chapter - I: The London Livingston Exhibitions: 'tabloids', flannel binders and the preservation of health in tropical climates; Chapter - II: Netley School of Medicine; Chapter - III: Tropical Surgeons; Chapter - IV: Tropical Medical Missionaries; Chapter - V: 'Tropical' Plague; Chapter - VI: Tropical Waste Management. The majority of my research material is found at Oxford and the Wellcome Library at UCL. Since the first half of my thesis is primarily concerned with lay and popular perceptions of tropical medicine, hygiene and sanitation, the majority of my sources are found at British institutions. However, once I consider the movement of ideas into various local tropical settings - through medical missionaries and tropical surgeons - I will be required to travel to such locations to gain access to a range of primary sources, as well as considering the context first hand.

Amount: £1,500
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford
Amount: £1,500
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Campath-1H therapy: the impact of depletion resistent memory T cells on rejection and tolerance. 19 Feb 2007

The future of transplantation lies in the development of strategies that result in donor-specific unresponsiveness or tolerance to the transplant whilst maintaining protection against foreign pathogens. Current drug therapy involves long-term treatment with globally immunosuppressive drugs that are associated with a spectrum of unwanted effects. Campath-1H, a powerful leucocyte depleting monoclonal antibody, has been shown to be able to reduce the dose of immunosuppressives used post-transplant, and in selective cases, cause donor-specific unresponsiveness. These findings, however, remain controversial, as long-term follow-up studies assessing the immune status of recipients have not been performed. The key goals of this study are to investigate the phenotype and function of leucocytes that repopulate the immune system after depletion, and to correlate the presence of certain lymphocyte subsets with rejection and donor-specific unresponsiveness. Preliminary data suggests that memory T cells (TM) are resistant to depletion and are uniquely present at the time of rejection. Therefore, the impact of these depletion resistant cells on rejection and established tolerance inducing protocols will be assessed in vivo in mice. This data will be used to design a strategy to control alloantigen-specific memory cells to allow for long-term graft survival.

Amount: £4,854
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Symposium: an introduction for those medical and science graduates consideringpursuing a career in tropical medicine research. 23 Jan 2006

Training in the Tropics The meeting will allow the directors of the major UK sponsored tropical medicine research groups to give brief presentations about the work of these units and about the opportunities that exist for gaining research experience and training in tropical medicine. This is crucial to bring in "new blood" for the research community. It allows junior staff who are working out with the main UK based centres to be able to interact with frontline staff in various disciplines. The meeting also allows discussion of funding opportunities with the main funders in the UK and allows an introduction to the fellowship programmes. The final part is a representative from the Royal College of Physicians specialist advisor committee who advise on the implications for training and promotion within the UK system.

Amount: £1,650
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Experience as Evidence: The Sciences of Subjectivity in Healthcare, Policy and Practice. 23 Jun 2014

The patient experience has long been regarded as a valuable source of knowledge in healthcare. Traditionally framed as the 'subjective' counterpart to 'objective' biomedical knowledge, experiential knowledge has been used to critique biomedical reductionism and promote patient-centred care. Bolstered by patient activism, health consumerism, and concerns over standards of care, over the last fifty years a range of technologies that collate patient experiences, such as customer satisfaction survey s and Patient Experience Trackers (PET), have moved into the medical mainstream. More recently, internet technologies are enabling the large-scale collection, aggregation and quantification of different forms of experiential data, enhancing and transforming these pre-existing technologies of experience. Despite the ubiquity and prominence of technologies for turning subjective experience into portable forms of knowledge, their history, assumptions and practical implications are rarely examin ed. This symposium will bring together a leading interdisciplinary group of scholars and practitioners to explore the new forms of knowledge being produced through the codification and quantification of patient experiences, and the consequences this has for the future of healthcare. It will encourage innovative, cross-disciplinary, dialogue, tackling emergent themes, such as the quantified-self movement and the neurosciences, which stretch the boundaries of traditional research on the patient ex perience.

Amount: £4,725
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford

Unseen City: Travelling Psychoanalysis and the Urban Poor. 14 Apr 2014

Unseen City: Travelling Psychoanalysis and the Urban Poor examines the institution of psychoanalysis and its underdeveloped relationship with race and urban poverty, as seen in the context of Mumbai, London, and New York. The outcome will be a monograph, which draws on a range of literature, cinema, art, and image archives to explore the following: prevalent psychoanalytic practices in global cities; state policy on poverty and mental disease (and viable alternatives); the dialogue between cultu ral and social discourses and medical initiatives on poverty. This multidisciplinary project requires knowledge-sharing. I will use the grant money to conduct scoping exercises and field research in India in July-August 2014: 1. I will conduct interviews at a) The Association of the Mentally Challenged and b) The All India Institute of Mental Health (current NIMHANS), based in Bangalore. Both run mental health clinics for the poor. 2. I will interview members of the Indian Psychoan alytical Society, Kolkata, and also conduct interviews with Professors Santanu Biswas and Josodhara Bagchi, who work in social welfare collectives. 3. I will gather video and audio data in the Dharavi slum of Mumbai. I will be collaborating with URBZ, an urban research and action collective in Mumbai, for this work.

Amount: £4,940
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Oxford