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Toxicology Unit returns to Cambridge Festival

27 March 2024

Researchers from the MRC Toxicology Unit were involved in the Cambridge Festival 2024 last weekend to engage families with our research. The Cambridge Festival is an annual event coordinated by the University of Cambridge’s Public Engagement team. It is a multi-disciplinary festival with a mixture of online, on-demand and...

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Tox student receives 2024 Mary Amdur Student Award

14 March 2024

David O'Loughlin, PhD student in the MacFarlane lab at the MRC Toxicology Unit, has been awarded the 2024 Mary Amdur Student Award by the Society of Toxicology (SOT) at their Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah. The prize, named in honour of a pioneer in air pollution toxicology who overcame gender, political and...

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Gut microbiome remains stable after COVID-19 vaccination

5 March 2024

Our gut microbiome is home to a diverse mix of microorganisms that are delicately balanced to preserve many aspects of our health including digestion, immunity and even our mental wellbeing. There are known factors that can impact our microscopic companions such as diet, lifestyle, antibiotic use and environmental...

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Unit joins Norwich Science Festival for the first time

4 March 2024

Researchers from the Unit participated in this year's Norwich Science Festival on 24th February. It was the first time that the Unit has taken part in this event sharing our research to a wider audience. We set up our temporary tattoo parlour in The Forum in Norwich as part of our Tattoo My Science activity. We chatted to...

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Unit researchers Talking Together with the local community

26 January 2024

Towards the end of 2023, six of our researchers took part in the Talking Together programme hosted by Cambridgeshire Older People's Enterprise (COPE). Talking Together is a unique initiative that was started during the pandemic to combat isolation in the local community by bringing older adults together for stimulating...

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Researchers uncover an unexpected job for the ancient family of chaperone proteins

23 January 2024

We all go through times when we are not on track, feeling a little blue and out of our usual form. These are the times when we need a little warmth from those close to us – some extra support, a helping hand. The same goes for the proteins in our cells. Proteins are the workhorses in our cells and have numerous tasks to...

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Unit celebrates achievements all round at Annual Science Day

7 December 2023

Earlier this week, the Unit came together to share some of the latest research updates from all of our lab groups and facilities, as well as celebrating some of our research adjacent successes from 2023. This year we launched the MRC Toxicology Unit Research Lecture Award. This is to recognise the contribution of a...

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"mRNA vaccines could be fine tuned": Latest research from Willis and Thaventhiran groups covered in national and international media

7 December 2023

Work published by Prof Anne Willis and Dr James Thaventhiran, alongside collaborators in Kent, Oxford and Liverpool, describing how mRNA therapeutics may cause an unintended immune response and need fine-tuning for the future was reported across multiple national and international media outlets. You can read the Unit's...

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Researchers redesign future mRNA therapeutics to prevent potentially harmful immune responses

6 December 2023

Researchers from the Willis and Thaventhiran labs have discovered that misreading of therapeutic mRNAs by the cell’s decoding machinery can cause an unintended immune response in the body. They have identified the sequence within the mRNA that causes this to occur and found a way to prevent ‘off-target’ immune responses to...

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£1 million boost for the Aitken lab

4 December 2023

Dr Sarah Aitken, one of our Group Leaders at the Unit, has received a prestigious Clinician Scientist Fellowship. The award, granted by Cancer Research UK (CRUK), provides £1.1 million in funding to support her lab’s research over a five-year period. CRUK Fellowships are highly sought-after prizes awarded biannually to...

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