All entries for Friday 18 February 2011

February 18, 2011

Warwick Prize for Writing, why staying up too late damages your health, and superbug investigations

Warwick Prize for Writing shortlist

The shortlist has been announced for the 2011 Warwick Prize for Writing. The six books selected cover a range of topics and modes of writing, all of them relating to this year's theme of colour.

The books selected are:

  • The Wasted Vigil by Nadeem Aslam
  • Dazzled and Deceived: Mimicry and Camouflage by Peter Forbes
  • The Memory of Love by Aminatta Forna
  • The Literature Police: Apartheid Censorship and its Cultural Consequences by Peter D McDonald
  • What Color is the Sacred by Michael Taussig
  • White Egrets by Derek Walcott

The shortlist is now subject to a judging panel, chaired by former Children's Laureate Michael Rosen. Other judges include Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Thrift, Editorial Director of Chatto & Windus (part of Random House) Jenny Uglow, author and poet Erica Wagner and writer, cultural critic, public speaker and broadcaster Baroness Lola Young.

The winner of the £50,000 prize will be announced at an awards ceremony at The Royal Festival Hall in London on Tuesday 22 March 2011. The winning author will also be given the opportunity to take up a short placement at the University.

Find out more in the press release >>

Lack of sleep increases risk of heart attacks

Experts at the University Warwick have discovered that those who stay up longer are at greater risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke than those who get a full night's sleep.

Professor Francesco Cappuccio from Warwick Medical School said:

If you sleep less than six hours per night and have disturbed sleep you stand a 48% greater chance of developing or dying from heart disease and a 15% greater chance of developing or dying of a stroke. The trend for late nights and early mornings is actually a ticking timebomb for our health so you need to act now to reduce your risk of developing these life-threatening conditions. The whole work-life balance struggle is causing too many of us to trade in precious sleeping time.

Co-researcher Dr Michelle Miller added: 

Chronic short sleep produces hormones and chemicals in the body which also increase the risk of developing high blood pressure and cholesterol, diabetes and obesity.

Read more in Marie Claire >>

Researchers investigate superbug attacks

A superbug that contributed to the deaths of about 80 patients in Shropshire, has become dominant across the West Midlands. The strain E.coli ESBL has gradually built up resistance to the one group of antibiotics that were originally effective against it. At the University of Warwick Department of Biosciences, scientists now believe that there is growing evidence that these resistant strains can spread through the environment. The research team believe that unlike normal E.coli , the multi-resistant organism can survive for longer outside the gut.

For example, Dr Will Gaze, Senior Research Fellow, said he had found far higher concentrations of multi-resistant E.coli downstream of sewerage outlets. Professor Liz Wellington added that low levels of antibiotics were getting into the environment; with antibiotics around, the bacteria's ability to swap DNA with other bacteria could speed up the ability to gain resistance. It can also create new, more dangerous bacteria.

Read more in the BBC news >>

Chancellor Sir Richard Lambert appointed global non-executive director for Ernst and Young

Chancellor Sir Richard Lambert has been appointed as a global non-executive director for Ernst & Young, the professional services giant. The Chancellor, CBI director-general until January, spent 35 years at the Financial Times, where he was editor from 1991 until 2001, sat on the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee from 2003 to 2006 and has been the University of Warwick's chancellor since 2008.

Read more in the Sunday Times >>

Dr Manu Vatish wins national award

Dr Manu Vatish beat off stiff competition from across the country to win a prestigious award and grant from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship, a national award recognising his care for pregnant women.

It will allow him to spend time in the Bronx area of New York and Harvard Medical School studying the effects of obesity and how best to manage it during pregnancy and labour. Dr Vatish – an Oxford graduate and Warwick Medical School associate professor – works as a consultant obstetrician at University Hospital, where he oversaw 37-stone Henley Green mum Leanne Salt’s pregnancy when she became the heaviest woman ever to give birth to triplets in August 2008.

He said:

It is a great honour to have been awarded a Churchill Fellowship, which will allow us to continue to deliver maternity care for our patients to the highest standards and maintain excellence in patient focused reproductive research at Warwick Medical School.

Read more in the Coventry Telegraph >>

February 2011

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