Projects funded through GKE Fund 2017/18

Flexible Fund Projects

George Baillie, Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences
CNS Drug Discovery (£5,000)
It is the researchers’ contention that enhancing the levels of DISC1 protein, which orchestrate brain signalling and development, can help restore the deficit observed in a host of psychiatric diseases, thus restoring normal neuronal function and therefore be of therapeutic benefit. The researchers have discovered peptides which can increase DISC1 levels in neural progenitor cells derived from Schizophrenic patients to demonstrate proof of concept. To bridge the project to investor/corporate engagement readiness, a £500k Wellcome Trust Innovators Award application will be prepared. KE funds were used to engage an industry experienced drug discovery consultant to assist with preparing the application and ensuring a technical plan to deliver a data package sufficient to attract investors and corporate partners.

Roman Biek and Caroline Millins, Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Understanding and Reducing the Risk of Human Lyme Disease on the Outer Hebrides (£4,220)
Researchers uses substantial expertise regarding Lyme disease epidemiology in Scotland to help communities and government agencies, including the NHS, to deal with its threat and to reduce human risk. Funds enabled a sustained relationship with NHS-Western Isles (NHS-WI) who were provided with data on the prevalence of the Borrelia genospecies circulating on Uist by testing ticks. The implications of this data will be discussed with agencies and assistance will be given with developing a survey for collecting data from patients with Lyme disease symptoms at local GP practices.

Minty Donald, Culture and Creative Arts
Watermeets: Kuopio, investigating and shaping perceptions of water in Kuopio, Finland (£2,120)
Watermeets: Kuopio is the latest iteration of Minty Donald’s ongoing practice-based research project, Living, Working, Playing with Water (LWPwW), which uses innovative creative/performance practice to investigate and shape perceptions of water. The project was commissioned by ANTI, an internationally significant contemporary arts festival to create site-specific performances and artworks.

Katherine Forsyth, Humanities
Mapping Gaelic Glasgow (£7,000)
The award funded the secondment of a post-doctoral researcher with a non-academic partner organisation to support the delivery of an online interactive map based on a pilot created by University of Glasgow, the creation of materials for related engagement activity and the creation of a strategy document on future stages of a larger project commissioned by Glasgow Life.

Hadi Heidari, Engineering
Magneto-Optical Air Pollution Monitoring System: Creating a Safe and Healthy Smart Campus (CampuSense) (£15,000)
The project developed a robust magneto-optical air pollution monitoring system able to capture the airborne magnetite pollution nanoparticles in high-polluting environments. The life cycle of multidisciplinary air pollution sensors was studied, generating new knowledge and developing new projects which will contribute to economic growth, social wellbeing and environmental care. Innovation will be transformed to industry by involving key industrial partners in the fields of sensors, electronics and environment monitoring.

Nicholas Kamenos, Geographical and Earth Sciences
Curating the Past for the Future (£16,000)
Museums provide access to digital repositories which contain images and data of curated material, including digital 3D reconstructions of artefacts, geological and biological samples created using 3D scanners. Many of these studies target the DNA contained within historic, museum curated samples. However, X-rays can damage the DNA held in museum samples as they are no longer living. A Glasgow researcher will analysis pairs of marine coral DNA samples at the Natural History Museum to determine the impact of CT (computerised tomography) scanning on those samples. One of the samples will be exposed to X-ray while its pair will remain un-irradiated. A best-practice guide will be produced for other museums detailing how to minimise DNA damage to samples.

Deborah Kinnear and Angela Henderson, Institute of Health and Wellbeing
Translating academic papers through visualisation and filming (£6,800)
The Scottish Learning Disabilities Observatory was set up by researchers at Glasgow to address the significant gaps in research relating to the health and health care of people with intellectual disabilities. Funding enabled a novel method of Knowledge Exchange and Public Engagement, targeting specific resources and developing a collaborative approach which draws on the skills of the research team alongside external partner, Listen, Think, Draw.

Karen Lury, Culture and Creative Arts
Moving Images and Finding Families (£21,100)
The project offered the first opportunity for an interdisciplinary team of researchers to investigate and develop a model of best practice in the use and exhibition of audio visual material for those directly involved in the adoption process (children, foster carers, potential adopters and social workers). Foster carers and social workers were supported in producing moving images of good quality that will be effective in enhancing and accelerating the adoption process, thereby contributing to the general well-being and future of the children concerned.

Christopher Philo and Ebba Hogstrom, Geographical and Earth Sciences
Psychiatric Spaces in Transition (£9,100)
Using Gartnavel Hospital, researchers investigated the diversity of ‘psychiatric spaces’ spread across the site, as occupied and utilised by generations of patients, psychiatrists, nurses, ancillary workers and volunteers. Data from in-depth interviewing of different cohorts of users, past and present, will be used to create a ‘Living Archive’. This will take the form of an exhibition/event and online resource which will act as a vehicle for public/policy engagement.

Elizabeth Reader, Critical Studies
Edinburgh International Book Festival - Creative Writing (£2,500)
A series of events were held at Edinburgh International book Festival 2018, building a profile for Glasgow Creative Writing programme and taking this strand of research beyond academia to reach national and international audiences.


Small Grants Fund Projects

Pasquale Maffia, Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation
Nanomate Science Exhibition (£1,900)
Public engagements events were held at three festivals, highlighting research investigating how nanoparticles can be used to improve the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease.

Fiona Macpherson, Humanities
The Illusions Index (£2,000)
Funding supported an ongoing project being carried out at the Centre for the Study of Perceptual Experience looking at the nature of illusion and hallucination.

Jennifer Smith, Critical Studies
The Scots Linguistic Toolkit in the Classroom (£1,880)
The project trialled a number of methodologies for the analysis of speech data in two Scottish schools, with the aim of rolling out this toolkit more widely throughout Scotland.


Public Engagement Kickstarter Fund Projects

Katherine Heavey, Critical Studies
Finding Meaning in Myth (£540)
Funding supported a public workshop which helped bring research in the field of 16th and 17th English Literature to a wider audience. The workshop, which included talks, readings and a creative writing session, was part of the Finding Glasgow: Hidden secrets and lost meanings. Data gathered from the event on the public’s understanding of mythic stories will help inform how future activities might change or develop this understanding.

Bridget Johnson, Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing
Palliative and End of Life Care (£1,000)