Simple blood test could reveal epilepsy risk

It is difficult for doctors to diagnose epilepsy as they usually do not observe the symptoms in a patient, but a blood test could overcome this challenge.

A finger-prick blood test to diagnose epilepsy could be available within five years, according to scientists who are using tell-tale molecules called biomarkers to overcome current diagnostic problems and guide treatment. More than 50 million people are affected by epilepsy worldwide. However, diagnosing the disease remains challenging and treatments are often unsuccessful: only 70% of patients taking … Read more

Map of brain cell activity may help us control when we sleep

Scientists still have much to learn about the underlying circuitry that triggers the onset of sleep.

For many people who struggle to get a good night’s rest, being able to switch on and off the brain circuits that control sleep would be a life-changer. The good news is that’s exactly what scientists hope to do, but first they need to get a better understanding of what’s going on. It’s easy to … Read more

AI is like having a treasure map to find disease-preventing molecules – Dr Nora Khaldi

Dr Nora Khladi hopes that by using peptide molecules we will be able to prevent future chronic diseases.

A cereal bar that keeps diabetes at bay is one example of how we could prevent disease by adding short molecules known as peptides into what we eat, says Dr Nora Khaldi, founder of Nuritas, which is using artificial intelligence (AI) to identify new peptides and create foods with health benefits. What are peptides and why are … Read more

The story of a new skin

Fibrin cultured epidermal sheet - © CMR Unimore_resized985

Decades of scientific research into areas including plant genetics and data science helped doctors successfully carry out an experimental therapy to create a new skin for a seven-year-old boy suffering from a rare genetic disorder. Hassan’s doctors had never seen anything like it: a seven-year-old who had lost almost all of his skin due to … Read more