YorkTalks Session Two

11.30am, National Science Learning Centre 

Taking on the tobacco giants when Kamran Siddiqi came to Britain to become a clinician specialising in chest diseases, he still had a strong desire to help the poor in his native Pakistan. Returning home he quickly realised he could do more good as a research scientist in Britain than as a physician in Islamabad. He tells us about his pioneering work to improve the life chances of TB sufferers by effective anti-tobacco control measures, which have been tested and implemented in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. It is a story of personal and intellectual dedication and shows how work here in York is transforming healthcare in some of the poorest countries in the world.

Sleep talk - Lisa Henderson and her team of cognitive neuroscientists have discovered that sleep plays a critical role in the development of our vocabulary. With one of the most sophisticated sleep labs in the country here at York, Lisa and her colleagues have been able to show how certain sleep patterns in young children facilitate the transfer of information from a temporary to a more permanent storage area in the brain. Parents will be especially interested in what this could mean for the education of their children and the implications for those children who are vocabulary rich and those who are vocabulary poor. 

Identifying events driving dementiaNeuroscientist Sean Sweeney explains the groundbreaking work he and his team are carrying out to investigate the role specific cellular events play in the development of a type of early onset dementia. It is very likely that proteins identified, such as POSH, hold keys to the onset of the disease and this work sets the platform needed to build early warning systems for its detection and eventual treatment. 

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