News in brief
Gene linked to birth defects
An international group of researchers co-led by geneticists at the University has identified a previously unknown gene – TMEM216 – as the genetic cause of an inherited condition that causes severe foetal abnormalities. As a result of the research by the Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine and colleagues from institutions in Paris, Rome and San Diego, couples at risk of conceiving babies with the profoundly disabling Meckel-Gruber and Joubert syndromes can be identified beforehand through genetic screening.
Rise in the rankings
The University has risen two places to number 27 in the Complete University Guide league table. The latest Times University Guide league table results also reveal that the University has moved up one place from 27 to 26. The widely respected guide ranks 113 UK universities according to eight criteria, including student satisfaction, research quality and degree results. Meanwhile, the Guardian university league table showed a drop in our ranking from 28th to 35th place. This ranking system concentrates on ratings for teaching, and not on the research ratings which count heavily in other league tables.
BITECIC-Gaitech Anglo-Chinese partnership
BITECIC – a University spin-out that delivers high quality research, development and professional services to the healthcare, medical devices, biomaterials and tissue engineering industries – has extended the reach of its R&D services into China through a new partnership with Shanghai-based Gaitech.
Dr John Egan, BITECIC director, said: “The orthopaedics industry’s need for pre-clinical testing of new joint replacement prostheses is broadening into new aspects of joint simulation, numerical modelling and biological assessment through to health economic modelling. The combined know-how in BITECIC and Gaitech in these areas is significant, and is now available to Chinese customers through our collaboration.”
Honorary degree nominations
Members of the University are invited to submit names for consideration by the Committee on Honorary Degrees when it meets in the autumn. The criteria specify that honorary degrees may be awarded to people:
(a) who are distinguished by excellence and outstanding and sustained achievement in research, scholarship, education, the creative arts, public service, medicine and health, social progress, business and the economy, government, administration or any other area of human activity of lasting value and significance; and
(b) who have a prior connection with the University or with the region, or whose distinction lies in a field with which the University itself is identified.
Nominations – together with supporting comments – should be sent to Rebecca Messenger, Governance & Corporate Affairs Officer, Secretariat, by 17 September under confidential cover.