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Scientists secure funding to push the boundaries of bioscience research


Two researchers in the Faculty of Biological Sciences, Dr Juan Fontana and Professor Frank Sobott, are to receive a share of £12 million to pursue visionary bioscience research.

The projects, which have been funded by Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) will explore early-stage ideas at the frontiers of bioscience and will use state of the art technology at the Astbury Centre.

By drawing upon unconventional thinking and approaches, researchers hope to make exciting discoveries with the potential to transform our understanding of the rules of life.

Dr Juan Fontana will be leading on a £200,000 project to understand the molecular mechanisms that result in influenza virus pandemics, also known as ‘reassortment’.

To generate infectious virions (particles) the influenza virus genome, the instructions on how to make new viruses, travels from the nucleus (where it is produced) to the plasma membrane (where the viral particles are generated). When co-infection between two different influenza virus strains occur, differing combinations of genomes from the parent viruses can be produced, potentially generating influenza virus pandemics with devastating consequences.

Read the full press release on the Faculty of Biological Science website.