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Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition

Testing whether essential oils are useful antimicrobials; New techniques for detecting liver disease; Treating lazy eye with Tetris; Making replacement body parts with a 3D printer

Antimicrobial Agents
With antibiotic resistance on the increase, students at Boroughbridge High School, in the North of England, are testing essential oils like rosemary and thyme to see how effective they are at stopping bacteria from growing. They are also looking at whether bacteria have the capability to become resistant to the antimicrobial effects of these oils. Working with academics from Harrogate Hospital, they are being led by their biology teacher Colin Inglis.

Scarred Liver
Liver disease is on the increase worldwide, due to the rise in hepatitis C in some countries and increasing alcohol use in others. Researchers from the University of Nottingham are exhibiting how new tests, including a technique borrowed from the cheese industry and the use of unique MRI protocols, are being used to diagnose liver disease at an earlier stage. Dr Neil Guha, a liver specialist, and Dr Susan Francis, a physicist, are from the NIHR Nottingham Digestive Diseases Biomedical Research Unit in the UK.

Tetris for Lazy Eye
The computer game Tetris is now being used to treat the condition commonly known as 'lazy eye', where one eye is weaker than the other. The medical name is amblyopia and it affects one in fifty children. The international team from Canada and New Zealand is using Tetris to train the eyes to work together. BBC reporter Simon Morton watched the technique at the Centre for Brain Research, at the University of Auckland.

Biology Builders
Extraordinary new ways of making human bones using 3D printing are being showcased at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition. Professor Kevin Shakesheff and Dr Glen Kirkham, are from the School of Pharmacy at the University of Nottingham.

(Image: Boroughbridge High School's microtiter experiments with essential oils and bacteria.)

Available now

29 minutes

Last on

Thu 4 Jul 2013 15:32GMT


  • Antimicrobial agents

    Could essential oils be replacements for antibiotics?

    Duration: 04:48

  • Borrowing from the cheese industry

    New techniques for detecting liver disease early

    Duration: 07:06

  • Video game therapy

    Treating lazy eye with Tetris

    Duration: 06:57

  • Biology builders

    Attempts to create replacement body parts using 3D printing

    Duration: 07:06