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Results

Regulation of fibroblast growth factor signalling in the mammalian inner ear. 27 Feb 2006

Fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) have multiple and complex roles in vertebrate development. One of these factors, Fgf3, is required for normal development of the mammalian inner ear. How this growth factor or the additional FGFs required for inner ear development are integrated into the other established signalling and transcription factor pathways directing ear development is not yet known. We previously defined a minimal enhancer from mouse Fgf3, containing regulatory elements governing most aspects of the dynamic and complex spatio-temporal pattern of normal expression. Binding sites for transcription factors from a number of the already characterised pathways directing inner ear development are located in the minimal enhancer. In this project, we will use mouse transgenesis to test these candidates, and define those factors that directly regulate the different domains of inner-ear Fgf3 expression. We have also detected regions of conserved DNA sequence in introns 1 and 2, which may contain the DNA elements controlling the late domains of inner-ear expression. We will test the regulatory activity of these introns, and their relationship with the minimal enhancer in controlling Fgf3 expression. Together, these data will precisely position Fgf3 in the molecular programme of inner ear development.

Amount: £259,042
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Impact of DNA non homologous end joining on stem cell function in vivo. 30 Apr 2008

DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) arise from oxidative damage and following radiation treatment. Their impact on development and particularly on stem cells is unclear but is topical and important. As a result of basic research, an exquisitely sensitive technique to monitor DSB repair in vivo has been recently developed. Additionally, we recently characterised a mouse mutated in DNA ligase IV (LigIVY288C), a component of DNA non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ), the major DSB repair pathway. We showed that haematopoietic stem cell (HSC) numbers and function are diminished in LigIVY288C mice demonstrating that unrepaired DSBs impact on stem cells. Here, we will pursue our analysis by monitoring radiation-induced DSB repair in three stem cell compartments, the HSCs, the ventricular and sub-ventricular zone of the developing embryonic brain, and the intestinal crypt. For this we will use normal mice. We will also exploit LigIVY288C mice to examine the impact of impaired NHEJ in the embryonic br ain and intestinal crypt, where stem cells can be readily identified. Our major focus will be on embryonic neuronal development since microcephaly is a feature of LIG4 syndrome, a disorder caused by mutations in LigIV, and since our preliminary studies have shown abnormalities in the LigIVY288C embryonic brain.

Amount: £246,628
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Vacation Scholarships 2008. 27 May 2008

Not available

Amount: £5,760
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Mapping the influence of patient groups' attitudes towards the scientific regulation of and access to new anti-cancer drugs in the US, the UK and the EU 19 Jul 2007

Before patients can access new chemical or biological medicinal products to treat specific diseases or conditions, these products must undergo extensive preclinical and clinical testing, and their risks and benefits must be evaluated by expert scientists in national and supra-national drug regulatory agencies. Patient organisations may view the practices, standards and 'expectations' of regulatory science either as facilitating patients# demands to optimal drug treatment, or as obstructing their access to needed medicines. Through an in-depth, international comparative study of 13 cancer patient organisations in the US, UK and EU, this research seeks to develop a social scientific understanding of the influences on patient organizations' attitudes towards the scientific regulation of new cancer therapies and their response to various proposals to speed patient access to treatment through the acceleration (or by-passing) of specific stages of drug testing and/ or regulatory review. The study would seek to understand how attitudes towards, and modes of engagement with this aspect of biomedical science have formed and changed over time. The research would also attempt to understand how and why different patient organizations come to adopt divergent protection from toxic or minimally effective medicines and patients' interests in accessing potentially life-extending drugs.

Amount: £161,469
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Value in People award. 18 Jul 2007

Not available

Amount: £150,000
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Biomedical vacation scholarship. 29 May 2009

Not available

Amount: £12,600
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Biomedical Vacation Scholarship 14 Jun 2010

Not available

Amount: £10,080
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Resituating abortion: Bio-politics, Global Health and Rights in Neo-liberal Times. 15 Sep 2014

The aim of the meeting is to bring together an international group of senior and junior researchers, practitioners and policy makers to deliberate upon the relationship between abortion, globalisation and neo-liberal reform. The meeting will especially address the transformation occurring in medical and legal cultures, its effect on practitioners and on the lived experience of abortion across the global north and south. Do new forms of health governance and rights based development paradigms pre sent new opportunities or limit abortion provision conceptually and on-the-ground? The workshop will also serve as a platform to launch a reproduction, technologies and health network, co-ordinated by the centre for Centre for Cultures of Reproduction, Technologies and Health at the University of Sussex. Graduate researchers will play a key role in co-organising the event. For wider dissemination, the papers presented will be brought together in the form of a special issue of a journal (such as Global Public Health).

Amount: £4,990
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Beyond Birth Weight Workshop: Measuring Early Life Health Past, Present and Future. 15 Sep 2014

Recent findings highlighting the long-term consequences of poor early life development demand that health conditions in utero be incorporated into a broader understanding of public health today and in the past. Children exposed to poor conditions in utero are at higher risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes in later life and have lower educational attainment, earnings and greater disability than those experiencing good conditions. Unfortunately, measuring early life health conditions is dif ficult and the current favoured proxy, birth weight, is problematic. This workshop aims to bring together researchers with varied expertise related to early life health to discuss the strengths, weaknesses and complexities of various proxies for early life health conditions. We will focus on two crucial questions: (1) Which early life health proxies could scholars collect and analyse in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries to understand changes in health? and (2) Which early life health proxie s could be adopted around the world today in order to assess and monitor the profile of early life health? The workshop will encourage interdisciplinary collaboration among the participants and will produce a statement with recommendations for incorporating early life health indicators into a broader understanding of public health past and present.

Amount: £5,000
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

The Production And Self-Production Of Model Patients Through Health Information Technology (IT). 23 Jun 2014

The Department of Health report 'The Power of Information: Putting us all in control of the health and care information we need' (2012) heralded a new policy intended to place patients at the centre of managing of their health, and to promote a culture of 'no decision about me without me'. This policy assumes that health information belongs to patients and that patients are willing and able to use health IT (e.g. electronic interfaces or health applications) to manage their care. Through the use of IT, patients will be able to access their medical records online, and interact with healthcare professionals. They will also become knowledgeable about available treatments, and empowered to make informed choices. The portrayal of patients in health policy shapes decisions about what technologies are developed and this, in turn, influences the nature, processes and the quality of healthcare delivery. We propose a scoping study, which aims to explore how IT is involved in the attainment o f patients' self-management in the context of the current and alternative policy. The study will gather information from interviews with relevant stakeholders (NHS Commissioning Board, health ICT providers and patient associations) and from relevant documents.

Amount: £4,245
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Cryo-EM of multiprotein complexes 09 Feb 2015

The Hsp90 molecular chaperone plays an essential role in the stabilisation andactivation of a wide range of client' proteins, including some of the most important proteins required for cell maintenance and regulation in eukaryotic organisms from yeast to humans. Hsp90 itself is regulated by a plethora of co-chaperone proteins that modulate its essential ATPase coupled conformational cycle, and/or act as adaptors facilitating recruitment of specific client proteins to the Hsp90 machinery. Involvement of Hsp90-dependent clients in the development and progression of cancer, has led to enormous interest in Hsp90 as a drug target, and an emerging realisation of Hsp90 involvement in viral and and parasitic infections, suggests that Hsp90 is important in many other diseases. Although much of the biochemistry of the Hsp90 system has been unravelled in recent years, central questions of Hsp90 biology remain unanswered. To address this, we propose to define at the structural level the molecular mechanisms by which the Hsp90 molecular chaperone system contributes to the activation, stabilization and regulation of its selected client' proteins in eukaryotic cells

Amount: £274,320
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Dedicated MR equipment for optimised imaging of the structure and function of the human brain. 11 Jun 2015

We seek funding for a research-dedicated high gradient strength 3T-MRI scanner to expand our MRI capabilities at the Clinical Imaging Sciences Centre (CISC). This equipment will support the implementation of sophisticated neurochemical, microstructural, and functional imaging techniques that will extend our existing capacity to provide deep insights into human brain function and neuropathology for translational benefit. Our vision is to become a truly world-class centre for clinically-oriented human imaging neuroscience. To this end, our objectives are to: 1) optimise advanced microstructural MRI techniques sensitive to subtle brain abnormalities; 2) integrate functional neuroimaging with detailed multi-axis measurement of bodily physiology; 3) develop advanced functional connectivity analyses for causal characterisation of inter-regional neural interactions; 4) apply these methods to the mechanistic understanding of specific neurological and psychiatric disorders, and adaptive brain processes in healthy individuals, and; 4) disseminate these techniques and research findings. The centre is currently equipped with 1.5T MRI scanner which is nearing the end of its operational lifetime. The new scanner will launch a new era for CISC and enable us to pursue our objectives for the next 10 years.

Amount: £568,000
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Open access award 2015/16. 21 Sep 2015

Not available

Amount: £21,256
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Next generation anti-epileptic drugs: Indentification of chemical starting points for the discovery of novel GluK negative allosteric modifications 25 Aug 2015

Epilepsy is a chronic neurological condition characterised by recurrent, unprovoked seizures. It is the 41h most common neurological disorder estimated to affect -50 million patients globally. Despite a variety of anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) in clinical use, -30% of patients are not effectively managed by current therapies and are termed 'intractable' or 'refractory' epilepsy patients. Additionally current AEDs exhibit significant side effects resulting in early treatment discontinuation in up to 1 in 4 patients. This award will fund Professors Martin Gosling, John Atack and Simon Ward in the Drug Discovery Centre at the University of Sussex to identify chemical starting points for the development of novel AEDs. These molecules, which will negatively modulate kainate (GiuK) receptor subtypes, would represent a novel class of pharmacological agents for utility as AEDs with the potential to deliver benefit in refractory patients by virtue of their differentiated pharmacological mechanism. Additionally the optimisation of both the selectivity and CNS exposure profiles is expected to equate to reduced side effects and improved tolerability. The group will use Pathfinder funding to undertake a combination of screening and structural approaches to identify candidate lead structures.

Amount: £133,294
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Graphic Medicine: Ethics and Society. 18 Dec 2012

BSMS in collaboration with Brighton and Sussex University Hospital Trust and Graphic Medicine wishes to host the fourth international conference of Graphic Medicine. Previous meetings have been held in London, Chicago and Toronto. The meeting will be entitled Ethics Under Cover: Comics, Medicine and Society to reflect the theme of the meeting - the use of graphic narrative to convey ethical complexities in illness experience and healthcare. Under this broad banner there will be sessions addre ssing neurodegenerative disease, elderly medicine, practitioner experience, carer experience, the ever expanding cancer narrative and the ethics of genetic inheritance and disease. We expect around two hundred participants from the UK, North America and mainland Europe ranging from graphic artists through medical practitioners, students, stakeholder groups and academic scholars. The meeting will be a mix of peer reviewed academic papers, symposia and workshops. There will also be an exhibitio n displaying participants' work. The event will be widely advertised and then disseminated through social media and pod casting. Brighton is a vibrant hub for artistic activity and the conference will make best use of facilities and opportunities beyond the medical school by working in partnership with local publishers, cinemas, libraries and local media.

Amount: £11,400
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Epidemiological mapping of podoconiosis in Ethiopia . 06 Dec 2012

This Training Fellowship will enable documentation of the overall prevalence and distribution of podoconiosis in Ethiopia. Podoconiosis is a non-infectious Neglected Tropical Disease that affects an estimated 4 million people across tropical Africa, but no nationwide map is available in any endemic country. The Training Fellow will develop a nationwide mapping technique drawing on the expertise of the KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Malaria Public Health & Epidemiology group and the School of Public Health , Addis Ababa University. Following training in Spatial Epidemiology in Public Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the Training Fellow will plan and carry out a nationwide survey, through which a representative sample of individuals will be selected for clinical examination, rapid antigen testing and (in a subsample) antifilarial antibody testing to exclude filarial lymphoedema. Information on topographic and environmental factors will also be collected, and GIS modeling used to identify factors associated with disease and (in a validation subset) predict disease presence. Information on podoconiosis prevalence and distribution will enable podoconiosis control policy to be generated in Ethiopia. The mapping technique developed will make possible control-orientated mapping of podoconiosis in other endemic tropical countries.

Amount: £272,808
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Alpha-GABa receptor modulators for the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with Huntington’s disease 22 Oct 2015

Huntington's disease (HD) is a fatal genetic disease characterised by a movement disorder that is accompanied by a decline in cognitive function and changes in mood and behaviour. The decline in cognitive function may precede the movement disorder by a decade or more and is a very important component of the functional disability associated with HD. There is, however, no effective treatment for enhancing cognitive performance in HD. The Professor John Atack from the University of Sussex aims to identify novel drugs that can enhance cognitive performance in subjects with HD and thereby address a large unmet medical need.

Amount: £1,478,688
Funder: The Wellcome Trust
Recipient: University of Sussex

Grant awarded to Retired and Senior Volunteer Programme of CSV (North East) 10 Apr 2001

Towards a worker for the North East to recruit older volunteers.

LifeLines 20 Apr 2016

This is the expansion of a project supporting volunteers aged 50 plus to run activities for vulnerable older people to improve health and well-being. These have previously included art classes, creative writing, yoga and computer club. The group will expand across the city, recruiting more volunteers, supporting more than 800 new people and establishing a Men’s Network to encourage older men to socialise regularly. It will also extend its HealthLink scheme to help older people get to medical appointments.