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The Sheffield culture guide written by in-the-know locals

MRC Festival of Medical Research

Welcome to the marvellous world of medical research!

Join Sheffield’s top medical scientists here online from Friday 29 May to Friday 5 June to find out how they are working to help us all live longer, healthier lives!

In response to the measures put in place to combat the spread of coronavirus, the Sheffield MRC Festival has moved online for 2020. Our medical scientists and researchers have produced a variety of online content and activity guides to educate and entertain the people of Sheffield and beyond!

How it works
Help yourself to our self-guided online activities at any time during the Festival, no registration required. All content will stay up on the website until 9pm on Friday 5 June when the Festival closes.

New content is being added throughout the week, so check back regularly. Publication dates for each topic are listed below.

You have the special opportunity to ask our team of medical scientists about their work, just click Submit Your Question at the bottom of each topic page or via the Ask a Researcher page. Their replies will be posted on the website at 10am on Friday 5 June.

Age guidance
People of all ages are welcome to take part in the Festival, but some parts are easier to understand than others. If you are looking for something to educate or entertain children we have provided minimum age recommendations for each topic and activity (starting at 5+).

If you have visited any of the Festival pages and had a go at the activities, please take a moment to complete our short feedback questionnaire.

Your feedback is important to us, it is used to improve our practices and helps us secure funding for future events.

All About Ears

Join Professor Walter Marcotti’s Hearing Research Group for a journey inside the ear, with audio-visual illusions, a simulation of age-related hearing loss, and more. Live from 10am on Friday 29 May. Recommended for ages 10+, some activities 7+ / 5+

Detangling DNA

Join materials scientist Dr Alice Pyne and learn about the fundamentals of DNA topology. Get your hands on DNA structures with DNA Origami and learn how scientists are using 3D scanning. Live from 10am on Friday 29 May. Recommended for ages 13+

Vaccinations: Keeping us Healthy

Explore the role of vaccinations in preventing diseases with Dr Helen Marriott. Learn about the structure of viruses and get to grips with how vaccines combat pathogens with crafts and games. Live from 10am on Friday 29 May. Recommended for ages 7+

Mapping Alcohol Consumption in Great Britain

Compare numbers of alcohol outlets in different parts of England and explore the drinking habits of people in Sheffield with maps developed by health statistician Dr Ines Henriques-Cadby. Live from 10am on Monday 1 June. Recommended for ages 13+

Run For Your Life!

Learn about the work of cardiologist Dr Paul Morris and medical physicist Dr David Randall to produce 3D computational models of diseased coronary arteries and develop a virtual reality game. Live from 10am on Tuesday 2 June. Recommended for ages 10+