The University of Exeter is a public research university located in South West England, United Kingdom. The university was founded and received its Royal Charter in 1955, although its predecessor institutions, the Royal Albert Memorial College and the University College of the South West of England, were established in 1900 and 1922 respectively. In post-nominals, the University of Exeter is abbreviated as Exon. , and is the suffix given to honorary and academic degrees from the university.The university has three campuses: Streatham; St Luke's ; and Tremough in Cornwall. The university is centred in the city of Exeter, Devon, where it is the principal higher education institution. Streatham is the largest campus containing many of the university's administrative buildings, and is regarded as one of the most beautiful in the country. The Tremough campus is maintained in conjunction with Falmouth University under the Combined Universities in Cornwall initiative.The University of Exeter was named The Sunday Times University of the Year in 2013 and was the Times Higher Education University of the Year in 2007. Exeter has maintained a top ten position in the National Student Survey since the survey was launched in 2005. In 2011, it was considered as being one of the top 12 elite universities in the United Kingdom, and has been consistently ranked as one of the top 10 UK universities in recent years.According to the Sunday Times University Guide 2015, Exeter ranks at #7, making it the best university in the South West of England.Exeter University is a member of the Russell Group of leading research-intensive UK universities. The university is also a member of Universities UK, the European University Association, and the Association of Commonwealth Universities and is an accredited institution of the Association of MBAs . Wikipedia.
University of Exeter | Date: 2016-08-22
There is provided a NetB epitope polypeptide comprising at least 10 contiguous amino acids from SEQ ID NO:1 and comprising a mutation in at least one position between amino acids 130 and 297 as compared with the equivalent position in SEQ ID NO:3, the mutation preferably being located within a rim domain, the polypeptide being capable of binding an antibody which binds to SEQ ID NO:1 and having reduced toxicity compared with the toxicity of SEQ ID NO:1. The polypeptide is useful to vaccinate a subject against infection by Clostridium perfringens.
ULTRACHIRAL - Ultrasensitive chiral detection by signal-reversing cavity polarimetry: applications to in-situ proteomics, single-molecule chirality, HPLC analysis, medical diagnostics, and atmospheric studies
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: FETOPEN-01-2016-2017 | Award Amount: 4.00M | Year: 2017
Chirality is a fundamental property of life, making chiral sensing and analysis crucial to numerous scientific subfields of biology, chemistry, and medicine, and to the pharmaceutical, chemical, cosmetic, and food industries, constituting a market of 10s of billion , and growing. Despite the tremendous importance of chiral sensing, its application remains very limited, as chiroptical signals are typically very weak, preventing important biological and medical applications. Recently, the project-coordinating FORTH team has introduced a new form of Chiral-Cavity-based Polarimetry (CCP) for chiral sensing, which has three groundbreaking advantages compared to commercial instruments: (a) The chiroptical signals are enhanced by the number of cavity passes (typically ~1000); (b) otherwise limiting birefringent backgrounds are suppressed; (c) rapid signal reversals give absolute polarimetry measurements, not requiring sample removal for a null-sample measurement. Together, these advantages allow improvement in chiral detection sensitivity by 3-6 orders of magnitude (depending on instrument complexity and price). ULTRACHIRAL aims to revolutionize existing applications of chiral sensing, but also to instigate important new domains which require sensitivities beyond current limits, including: (1) measuring protein structure in-situ, in solution, at surfaces, and within cells and membranes, thus realizing the holy-grail of proteomics; (2) coupling to high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) for chiral identification of the components of complex mixtures, creating new standards for the pharmaceutical and chemical analysis industries; (3) chiral analysis of human bodily fluids as a diagnostic tool in medicine; (4) measurement of single-molecule chirality, by adapting CCP to microresonators, which have already demonstrated single-molecule detection; and (5) real-time chiral monitoring of terpene emissions from individual trees and forests, as a probe of forest ecology.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: INFRAIA-01-2016-2017 | Award Amount: 10.01M | Year: 2017
Europe has become a global leader in optical-near infrared astronomy through excellence in space and ground-based experimental and theoretical research. While the major infrastructures are delivered through major national and multi-national agencies (ESO, ESA) their continuing scientific competitiveness requires a strong community of scientists and technologists distributed across Europes nations. OPTICON has a proven record supporting European astrophysical excellence through development of new technologies, through training of new people, through delivering open access to the best infrastructures, and through strategic planning for future requirements in technology, innovative research methodologies, and trans-national coordination. Europes scientific excellence depends on continuing effort developing and supporting the distributed expertise across Europe - this is essential to develop and implement new technologies and ensure instrumentation and infrastructures remain cutting edge. Excellence depends on continuing effort to strengthen and broaden the community, through networking initiatives to include and then consolidate European communities with more limited science expertise. Excellence builds on training actions to qualify scientists from European communities which lack national access to state of the art research infrastructures to compete successfully for use of the best available facilities. Excellence depends on access programmes which enable all European scientists to access the best infrastructures needs-blind, purely on competitive merit. Global competitiveness and the future of the community require early planning of long-term sustainability, awareness of potentially disruptive technologies, and new approaches to the use of national-scale infrastructures under remote or robotic control. OPTICON will continue to promote this excellence, global competitiveness and long-term strategic planning.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERC-STG | Phase: ERC-2016-STG | Award Amount: 1.50M | Year: 2017
Bacteria have a range of immune mechanisms, but it is unclear why this diverse armamentarium evolved. The most important immune mechanisms are (1) Surface Modification (SM) (2) Abortive infection (Abi) (3) Restriction Modification (R-M) (4) CRISPR-Cas and (5) prokaryotic Argonaute (pAgo), all of which can occur as stand-alone mechanisms or in combination. The individual mechanisms differ in key aspects, such as their fitness costs (constitutive versus inducible), specificity (indiscriminate versus specific), the recipient of the benefits (individual versus group), the speed of de novo resistance evolution (rapid versus slow), and heritability of immunity. Here I will take a combined in vitro and in vivo approach to tease apart the variables that drive the evolution of these diverse stand-alone and integrated bacterial immune strategies in nature, and examine their associated co-evolutionary dynamics. I focus on three ecological variables that are consistently important in host-symbiont co-evolution: (1) force of infection (2) spatial structure (3) presence of mutualists (plasmids). First, I will perform in vitro manipulations using Pseudomonas aeruginosa PA14 variants that carry either single or multiple immune mechanisms. Next, I will sequence metagenomes, transcriptomes and viromes of microbial communities from environments that differ in ecological variables that are important in vitro, to examine their importance in vivo. Key ecological mechanisms identified in the first two parts of the project will be used to guide mesocosm experiments to experimentally confirm that these mechanisms are the drivers of the observed patterns of resistance and co-evolution in nature. Finally, I will share my data with mathematical biologists to generate theoretical models to predict and manipulate the evolution of bacterial immune mechanisms, which will facilitate tailored species protection in agriculture and industry.
Harlalka G.V.,University of Exeter
Brain : a journal of neurology | Year: 2013
Glycosphingolipids are ubiquitous constituents of eukaryotic plasma membranes, and their sialylated derivatives, gangliosides, are the major class of glycoconjugates expressed by neurons. Deficiencies in their catabolic pathways give rise to a large and well-studied group of inherited disorders, the lysosomal storage diseases. Although many glycosphingolipid catabolic defects have been defined, only one proven inherited disease arising from a defect in ganglioside biosynthesis is known. This disease, because of defects in the first step of ganglioside biosynthesis (GM3 synthase), results in a severe epileptic disorder found at high frequency amongst the Old Order Amish. Here we investigated an unusual neurodegenerative phenotype, most commonly classified as a complex form of hereditary spastic paraplegia, present in families from Kuwait, Italy and the Old Order Amish. Our genetic studies identified mutations in B4GALNT1 (GM2 synthase), encoding the enzyme that catalyzes the second step in complex ganglioside biosynthesis, as the cause of this neurodegenerative phenotype. Biochemical profiling of glycosphingolipid biosynthesis confirmed a lack of GM2 in affected subjects in association with a predictable increase in levels of its precursor, GM3, a finding that will greatly facilitate diagnosis of this condition. With the description of two neurological human diseases involving defects in two sequentially acting enzymes in ganglioside biosynthesis, there is the real possibility that a previously unidentified family of ganglioside deficiency diseases exist. The study of patients and animal models of these disorders will pave the way for a greater understanding of the role gangliosides play in neuronal structure and function and provide insights into the development of effective treatment therapies.
Jones A.M.,University of Exeter
Sports Medicine | Year: 2014
Dietary nitrate is growing in popularity as a sports nutrition supplement. This article reviews the evidence base for the potential of inorganic nitrate to enhance sports and exercise performance. Inorganic nitrate is present in numerous foodstuffs and is abundant in green leafy vegetables and beetroot. Following ingestion, nitrate is converted in the body to nitrite and stored and circulated in the blood. In conditions of low oxygen availability, nitrite can be converted into nitric oxide, which is known to play a number of important roles in vascular and metabolic control. Dietary nitrate supplementation increases plasma nitrite concentration and reduces resting blood pressure. Intriguingly, nitrate supplementation also reduces the oxygen cost of submaximal exercise and can, in some circumstances, enhance exercise tolerance and performance. The mechanisms that may be responsible for these effects are reviewed and practical guidelines for safe and efficacious dietary nitrate supplementation are provided. © The Author(s) 2014.
Steinberg G.,University of Exeter
Current Opinion in Microbiology | Year: 2014
Hyphal growth of filamentous fungi requires microtubule-based long-distance motility of early endosomes. Since the discovery of this process in Ustilago maydis, our understanding of its molecular basis and biological function has greatly advanced. Studies in U. maydis and Aspergillus nidulans reveal a complex interplay of the motor proteins kinesin-3 and dynein, which co-operate to support bi-directional motion of early endosomes. Genetic screening has shed light on the molecular mechanisms underpinning motor regulation, revealing Hook protein as general motor adapters on early endosomes. Recently, fascinating insight into unexpected roles for endosome motility has emerged. This includes septin filament formation and cellular distribution of the machinery for protein translation. © 2014.
Ffrench-Constant R.H.,University of Exeter
Genetics | Year: 2013
The past 60 years have seen a revolution in our understanding of the molecular genetics of insecticide resistance. While at first the field was split by arguments about the relative importance of mono- vs. polygenic resistance and field- vs. laboratory-based selection, the application of molecular cloning to insecticide targets and to the metabolic enzymes that degrade insecticides before they reach those targets has brought out an exponential growth in our understanding of the mutations involved. Molecular analysis has confirmed the relative importance of single major genes in target-site resistance and has also revealed some interesting surprises about the multi-gene families, such as cytochrome P450s, involved in metabolic resistance. Identification of the mutations involved in resistance has also led to parallel advances in our understanding of the enzymes and receptors involved, often with implications for the role of these receptors in humans. This Review seeks to provide an historical perspective on the impact of molecular biology on our understanding of resistance and to begin to look forward to the likely impact of rapid advances in both sequencing and genome-wide association analysis. © 2013 by the Genetics Society of America.
Screen J.A.,University of Exeter
Nature Climate Change | Year: 2014
Changes in climate variability are arguably more important for society and ecosystems than changes in mean climate, especially if they translate into altered extremes1-3. There is a common perception and growing concern that human-induced climate change will lead to more volatile and extremeweather4. Certain types of extreme weather have increased in frequency and/or severity5-7, in part because of a shift in mean climate but also because of changing variability1-3,8-10. In spite of mean climate warming, an ostensibly large number of high-impact cold extremes have occurred in the Northern Hemisphere mid-latitudes over the past decade 11. One explanation is that Arctic amplification-the greater warming of the Arctic compared with lower latitudes12 associated with diminishing sea ice and snow cover-is altering the polar jet stream and increasing temperature variability13-16. This study shows, however, that subseasonal cold-season temperature variability has significantly decreased over the mid- to high-latitude Northern Hemisphere in recent decades. This is partly because northerly winds and associated cold days are warming more rapidly than southerly winds and warm days, and so Arctic amplification acts to reduce subseasonal temperature variance. Previous hypotheses linking Arctic amplification to increased weather extremes invoke dynamical changes in atmospheric circulation11,13-16, which are hard to detect in present observations17,18 and highly uncertain in the future19,20. In contrast, decreases in subseasonal cold-season temperature variability, in accordance with the mechanism proposed here, are detectable in the observational record and are highly robust in twenty-first-century climate model simulations. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.
Agency: GTR | Branch: NERC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 4.06M | Year: 2017
SWEEP brings together a unique blend of academics, businesses and policymakers to place natural capital - those elements of nature producing value for people - at the heart of regional decision-making and business processes in the South West (SW). Focussing on the Heart of the South West and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) regions, SWEEP will radically transform the extent to which NERC science drives sustainable economic growth, improves policy, decision-making and resilience, delivers value for money and enhances health and wellbeing. The UK Government has placed sustainable use of natural capital at the centre of its 25 Year Environment Plan (25YEP). With 800km of spectacular coastline and over a quarter of land within National Parks/Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the SW is rich in natural capital. It is particularly reliant on these natural assets and the ecosystem services deriving from them to power economic growth, attracting more domestic tourists and with higher employment in direct natural capital usage (e.g. agriculture, fisheries) than any other UK region. However, there is also more potential for natural capital-led economic growth; productivity is low, with Gross Value Added 20% below national average and the lowest mean incomes nationally. Heavy reliance on natural capital also brings economic vulnerability and challenges from increasing occurrences of storms, flooding, degradation and pollution that damage that capital and limit economic growth. SWEEP and its business and policy partners have co-designed a work programme utilising NERC-funded research to develop an integrated, cross-sectoral, whole system approach to natural capital-led growth. The regions natural assets are inextricably linked, so traditional decision-making focussing on one sector at a time can result in unintended negative consequences for others. For example agricultural subsidies can lead to. contaminants from land bordering rivers lowering downstream water quality, affecting aquaculture, fisheries, tourism and health. SWEEP will address these problems, realising the benefits of integrated, whole system decision making through five interwoven Impact Themes, aiming to: 1) co-build tools to help business and government understand both the economic and environmental consequences of decisions; and 2) co-develop new business opportunities and natural capital markets giving both private and public sector organisations the means and incentive to improve natures services, reducing their costs and risk exposure and improving their benefits. With partners we have developed an initial set of Impact Cases, each addressing one or more Impact Themes, which will commence at the outset for rapid delivery of impact. They include development of new tools for natural hazard prediction and evaluation of economic/social benefits of enhancing natural capital. Careful integration across these Cases will demonstrate how the SWs high dependence on its natural environment can provide unprecedented opportunities to deliver transformative economic benefits. The SWEEP consortium brings together a uniquely strong mix of environmental scientists, economists, social and health scientists. A team of Impact Fellows will be embedded with partners to deliver the Impact Cases and scope new SWEEP activities. Partners will be integral to design, management and delivery, ensuring that all activities are aligned with user needs and fully integrated, maximising return on NERCs investment. Further value comes from alignment with the new Pioneers, which will be exemplars for the Governments 25YEP. Of only five Pioneers nationally, two will be in the SW, providing the only integrated terrestrial-marine testbed for the 25 YEP. By working with the business and policy institutions involved in the Pioneers, SWEEP will act as a national flagship for environment-led regional growth.