Science Snapshots

Avian Flu Prevention

Norwich based scientists have produced a diagnostic tool to help identify Avian Flu; a contagious disease which can spread globally through infected birds. The device created by Prof. David Russell and Prof. Rob Field will minimise the risk of a UK pandemic by providing rapid and early diagnosis.

Improving Photography

The use of handheld devices to take pictures has grown rapidly. Spectral Edge; a company which began its life at UEA, has developed technology which enhances the quality of pictures taken on mass market devices, such as smartphones. They aim to have the technology embedded into millions of handheld devices by the end of 2019.

Amazon carbon stocks

Did you know Tropical rainforests store over 460 billion tonnes of carbon? Yet researchers at UEA have become concerned about the impact over-hunting is having on tropical forests. Their research shows the hunting of large seeddispersing animals has led to a reduction in forest biomass and subsequently less carbon stores.

Resistance to anti-biotics

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is increasing due to the overuse of the current clinically used antibiotics. Researchers at UEA have looked in unusual places to find new antibiotics including the bodies of fungus growing leaf cutter ants. They have identified a new class of antimicrobials formicamycins which are potent against superbugs like MRSA. 

Changing speech

Currently animation is matched to the audio of a character in a painstakingly long process often taking hours. Now a UEA researcher has developed a way to digitalise the process by using software which will automatically make facial animation directly from the audio. Now with a grant for the work, Dr Sarah Taylor can progress the technology further.  

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Lucy Burrows

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July 2021
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