University wins three RSE research awards

Published: 8 August 2001

Dr David Andrew, Dr Marie Claire Parker and Dr Meurig Sage have been awarded research grants by the RSE (Royal Society of Edinburgh) as part of an initative to boost Scotland's well-being.

A total of twenty prizes amounting to over £1 million have been awarded by the RSE in a bid to further research in the areas of healthcare, the environment, the ageing population and communications.

Summaries of the University of Glasgow research projects are as follows:

Dr David Andrew: The central neuroanatomical representation of dental pain (IBLS)

Dental pain is one of the commonest pains experienced, and it is particularly important for Scotland because toothache and dental decay is now the leading cause for hospital admission in under 14-year olds. Although toothache is a serious problem, very little is known about the brain pathways that carry pain signals from the teeth. This project will study the chemicals that are contained in different groups of tooth nerves, which areas of the brain the tooth nerve fibres are connected to and whether different classes of dental pain nerve cells in the brain have different distinguishing features. This approach might lead to the development of pain-killers specifically for toothache.

Dr Marie Claire Parker: Enzyme-coated Microcrystals

Dr Parker 's research is focused on using protein-coated microcrystals in a range of commercial applications such as drug delivery, diagnostics and biocatalysis. Protein-coated microcrystals consist of protein molecules that coat the surface of small inert crystals, such as sugars and amino-acids. Their very small size (in the micron range)makes them ideal in drug delivery applications, particularly for delivering therapeutic proteins and peptides through the lungs to treat diseases such as diabetes, emphysema and osteoporosis. Only particles of a small enough size can penetrate to the bottom of the lung where they can be quickly and effectively absorbed into the bloodstream.

Dr Meurig Sage: Paraglide - mobile computing support for anaesthesia
(Computing Science)

Based on pioneering work done in the EPSRC-funded Paraglide Project in the Computing Science Department at the University of Glasgow, this project is investigating the use of mobile palmtop computers to support anaesthetists in the capture of pre-and post-operative data. Current computerised support for these tasks is very limited. Paraglide technology allows anaesthetists and other medical professionals to improve decision-making and clinical audit by enabling them to enter data rapidly, review it on the palmtop device and to exchange patient and schedule information wirelessly with a variety of hospital information services. This project will develop and commercialise this technology.

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First published: 8 August 2001

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