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

MRC Festival of Medical Research

Fri. 29 May 2020 — Fri. 5 June 2020

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. 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+).

Click here to see the full MRC Festival content as it is released.

Topics

All About Ears
Activities recommended primarily for ages 10+ with some activities for 7+ and 5+

Join Professor Walter Marcotti’s Hearing Research Group for a journey inside the ear. Trick your brain with some audio-visual illusions, experience a simulation of age-related hearing loss and explore the structure and function of hair cells - the sensory cells in the inner ear.

Live from 10am on Friday 29 May.

Detangling DNA
Activities recommended for ages 13+

Join materials scientist Dr Alice Pyne and learn about the fundamentals of DNA topology - the knot-like structural arrangements of DNA. Get your hands on DNA structures with the DNA Origami guide and learn how scientists are using atomic force microscopy - a type of very-high-resolution 3D scanning - to look at the structure and interactions of DNA.

Live from 10am on Friday 29 May.

Vaccinations: Keeping us healthy
Activities recommended for ages 7+

Explore the role of vaccinations in preventing diseases throughout our lives with Dr Helen Marriott, Researcher in Respiratory Infection. Learn about the structure of viruses with the Build Your Own Virus crafting guide and get to grips with how vaccines combat pathogens by building your own Pathogen Buster game at home

Live from 10am on Friday 29 May.

DNA Repair to the Rescue
Activities recommended for ages 10+

Delve into the world of DNA damage and repair with Professor Sherif El-Khamisy and his team of molecular biologists. Play a series of short games that explore different types of DNA damage, how our cells can repair this damage, and what happens when our DNA repair system fails to work.

Live from 10am on Sunday 31 May.

Mapping Alcohol Consumption in Great Britain
Activities recommended for ages 13+

Immerse yourself in data with interactive alcohol consumption maps developed by health statistician Dr Ines Henriques-Cadby. Compare numbers of alcohol outlets in different parts of England and explore the drinking habits of people in Sheffield.

Live from 10am on Monday 1 June.

Run For Your Life!
Activities recommended for ages 7+

Join cardiologist Dr Paul Morris and medical physicist Dr David Randall to Run for Your Life! Learn about their work to produce 3D computational models of diseased coronary arteries and take a look behind the scenes with a video demonstrating the virtual reality game they are developing. In the game, which will be used as a tool to educate patients and the public about cardiovascular health, players race each other through simulations of coronary artery racing tunnels.

Live from 10am on Tuesday 2 June.

Feedback
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.

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Migration Matters

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An online festival marking Refugee Week. Celebrating culture, creativity and companionship in our city of sanctuary and around the world.

Vaccinations: Keeping us Healthy

Fri. 29 May 2020 — Fri. 5 June 2020

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+

In Conversation with The Slumflower

Chidera Eggerue preaches her messages of self-love and body positivity to thousands on her blog The Slumflower. Hear her discuss her campaigning work and plans for a documentary questioning ideals of beauty, in a talk filmed at Doc/Fest 2019.

All About Ears

Fri. 29 May 2020 — Fri. 5 June 2020

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+