Research Highlights

You could fit ten thousand microbubbles into a single full stop. But now a team of researchers at Leeds is hoping to use these tiny bubbles as a drug delivery device to treat cancer and other serious diseases. Read more on the Leeds Microbubble Consortium website
A new vaccine that could spell the end of polio has been produced using a genetically modified “drug factory” plant. The leaves of the plant, a close relative of tobacco, contain virus-like particles (VLPs) that mimic the polio pathogen but are incapable of causing a harmful disease. In animal tests, the viral particle vaccine tricked…
Scientists have developed a new biological tool for examining molecules – the building blocks of life. It could provide new insights and benefits such as reducing numbers of animals used in research. The University is working in collaboration with Avacta Life Sciences, a Leeds spin-out company, and has developed a tool called Affimer technology. The…
A major new insight into how Hepatitis B Virus works could pave the way for new drug treatments for the infection which is the major cause of liver cancer worldwide. The team at the Universities of Leeds and York identified an ‘assembly code’ in the genetic material of Hepatitis B Virus that allows it to…
Scientists have created a new method to structure peptides, which they say will be cheaper and make the process of using stapled peptides in drug discovery much more widely available. The method developed by the nine-strong University of Leeds team, and exploiting synthetic chemistry developed at University College London, is more versatile, cheaper, completely reversible…
Scientists have uncovered why the Zika virus may specifically target neural stem cells in the developing brain, potentially leading to microcephaly. The study shows that the Zika virus hijacks a human protein called Musashi-1 (MSI1) to allow it to replicate in, and kill, neural stem cells. Almost all MSI1 protein in the developing embryo is…
Biopharma and food businesses working with proteins now have access to better information about how a type of fluid flow used in manufacturing processes can affect the quality of their products. This process which can be highly damaging to bio-molecules, such as protein-based biopharmaceutical therapeutics, dissolved in the fluid, is known as ‘extensional flow’ and…
Scientists at the Universities of Leeds, York and Helsinki say they are a step closer to cracking what researchers have called the ‘Enigma code’ of the common cold virus. The research findings revealed the workings of a ‘hidden code’ within the genome of Human Parechovirus, a member of the Picornavirus family that includes the common…
Over 50,000 people in Yorkshire and the Humber carry a faulty gene putting them at high risk of developing heart disease or sudden death, according to new estimates by the British Heart Foundation. Of these, nearly 11,000 people in the University’s region are living with the specific faulty gene which causes hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). University…
Scientists have identified new ways to provide vaccines against polio, which do not require the growth of live virus for their manufacture. Despite the success of vaccines produced from “virus-like particles” (VLPs) for hepatitis B and human papilloma viruses, poliovirus VLPs have proved to be too unstable to make practical vaccines. Now, a research team…