29th August 2010

Last updated: 27 August 2010

A forthcoming study by scientists working in Cardiff University's CUBRIC aims to determine how the brain responds to the sense of touch in people with autism. Funded by the Waterloo Foundation, the study is one of the first to be developed in collaboration with the Wales Autism Research Centre and is currently looking for volunteers to take part. Dr David McGonigle joins Adam Walton on Science Cafe to explain the sensory problems that those with autism can have, and how particularly they will be using the latest brain imaging techniques to reveal a clearer picture of how touch is processed.

Chepstow racecourse recently had to call off its planned late Summer meetings due to an infestation of nematodes on its course. These microscopic worms cause instability in the turf, and are becoming an increasing problem for various sports venues. We hear from nematode expert Dr Colin Fleming of Belfast's Agri-food & Biosciences Institute who has been studying the problem.

In the coming decades scientists hope to answer one of the remaining mysteries of the Universe - that of gravitational waves. A major project, which is planned for launch later this decade, is designed to detect these elusive waves. LISA is a space based antenna which will consist of three detectors millions of kilometres apart, designed to pick up incredibly small disturbances caused by gravitational waves. Professor Sathyaprakash of Cardiff University's School Of Physics & Astronomy who is part of the team making the case for the mission, joins the programme to explain how LISA will open up a new window on the Universe and our understanding of it.

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