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2023 News

2023 news from the Roslin Institute.

To learn more about the work and life of our scientists, please see our interview series in the Meet Our Scientists pages. We also post our news on Facebook and Twitter and you can subscribe to our newsletter.

For press enquiries please contact the Press Office via email or  +44 (0)131 650 9547.

Rapid blood test detects prion infections

Magnified image of brain tissue showing prion deposition
Researchers adapt testing platform to develop rapid, reliable blood test for misfolded protein infections.

Funding supports research towards veterinary vaccines

A herd of goats stand in a field, facing the camera
Award enables continuity of efforts for international hub for livestock and zoonotic vaccinology research.

Wild red deer gene analysis informs management plans

Genetic studies highlight the species’ genetic diversity and population structure, with implications for conservation and wildlife management.

University and ILRI renew livestock research partnership

Renewed Memorandum of Understanding creates research alliance to transform food systems and enhance sustainable livestock production.

Optimised technique aids research in tough tissues

A protocol to extract genetic material from hard or frozen tissue will aid research in a range of species.

Animal research pioneer Dr Gerald Wiener dies at 97

Gerald Wiener
Professor John Woolliams and Dr Andy Wiener reflect on the life and career of leading animal scientist and former ABRO Deputy Director.

Modified smallpox vaccine effective against monkeypox

Man being vaccinated
A research review has shed light on the efficacy and safety of the smallpox vaccine in combating the monkeypox virus.

Data reveals genetic diversity in horses' immune systems

Insights into the genetic makeup of horses point to a wide variety of newly discovered immune-related genes to identify and fight disease.

Summer school focuses on infectious disease research

Participants in a summer school gather on the steps of the venue in Södermanland, Sweden.
International initiative helps early career scientists develop their skills in studying infectious diseases.

£3.3m award supports research into tackling bird flu 

A colony of gannets is seen nesting on Bass Rock in Scotland.
Next phase of UK collaboration builds on discoveries around disease immunity, transmission and evolution. 

Gene-edited chickens take significant step in bird flu fight

Alterations to key gene associated with infection offer partial protection and suggest path to flu-resistant poultry.

Cost-efficient analysis helps breed disease-resistant fish

Rainbow trout
Genetic technique makes breeding healthy animals more accessible to small and medium-scale fish farming producers.

Spinout company focuses on inhaled gene therapy 

Two women scientists at work in a laboratory
Newly formed company develops novel platform for treatment of respiratory diseases. 

Dolly the Sheep pioneer Ian Wilmut dies

Professor Wilmutt and Dolly teh sheep
Leading animal scientist leaves a rich legacy in the field of regenerative medicine.

US$3m bone insight study aims to support hen welfare  

International team seeks to improve understanding of factors contributing to strength of important bone in laying hens. 

Pig gene is critical for African Swine Fever infection 

Lab study pinpoints immunity-linked gene in pigs that is required for African Swine Fever virus to replicate. 

TB vaccine protects calves in first weeks of life 

Three dairy calves inside a barn
Inoculation within the first month of life is effective, offering greater scope for protecting calves against disease. 

App offers fast method of tracing infectious diseases

A lorry, car and motorbike on a road in Kampala, Uganda
Pilot study shows a novel contact tracing app could help protect groups at risk of catching and spreading infectious diseases in the Global South.

Parasites of viruses drive superbug evolution

Electron micrograph of Staphylococcus aureus bacteria
Newly discovered mechanism enables bacteria to rapidly evolve, and could inform phage therapy.

Rapid infection test could curb antibiotic resistance 

A boxer dog being examined
Novel system speeds diagnosis of bacterial infections, enabling effective choice of treatment. 

Genetic material linked to dairy calf development

Three dairy calves inside a barn
Molecular material associated with growth, fertility, and infection risk in dairy calves could serve as indicator of productivity in cows.

Genetic patterns linked to production traits in key fish species

Discovery of genes showing signatures of recent domestication could inform production of farmed Nile tilapia.

Key gene blocks spillover of avian flu to humans

A flock of wild birds flies over grassland against a grey sky
Newly identified gene shown to prevent most strains of bird flu from causing infection in humans.

Epigenetic markers aid understanding of cattle immunity

Cows in a field
Chemical markers on DNA help to reveal divergence in cattle immune systems between breeds and potential for improving disease resistance.

Professor Lisa Boden appointed new Head of the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies

Portrait of Professor Lisa Boden
A leading specialist in veterinary public health and population medicine has been appointed as the new Head of the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.

Method offers boost to safety profile of live vaccines

A girl sits in a woman's lap while having a vaccine jab in her left leg.
Weakening virus by amending genetic code promises route to large-scale production of live vaccines. 

£35.5m investment supports next phase of Roslin research

Roslin Institute
BBSRC funding helps to further understanding of animal genetics and infectious diseases.

Project aims to curb losses from major cattle pest

Tiny red Asian blue tick Rhipicephalus microplus larvae cluster on a blade of grass in a cattle field.
Roslin experts join collaboration to mitigate impact of Asian blue tick on herds around the world.

Genetic resource can support honey bee breeding

Honey bee genetic data resource has potential to cut research costs and help scientists identify key genes for healthy breeding.

Human genes linked to life-threatening Covid-19

Large-scale study of patient data highlights 49 genetic differences associated with critical illness.

Experts advise UK Government on bird flu 

A flock of wild birds flies over grassland against a grey sky
Scientific specialists contribute to action plan on managing current and future severe bird flu strains. 

Fellowships recognise leading research talent 

scientist working in a lab
Prestigious awards from University and BBSRC nurture outstanding scientists and pioneering projects. 

Long-term approach on bird flu is best, study finds

A colony of gannets is seen nesting on Bass Rock in Scotland.
Lasting conservation measures targeted at most vulnerable species are recommended in a report for the Scottish Government.

Multi-species study aids understanding of bird flu

Response to infection in birds from chickens to crows points to biological factors linked to disease resistance.

Gene activity and digit structure define fingerprint pattern 

close up of human fingerprints detailing arch, loop and whorl features
Fingerprint formation is initiated by a specialised molecular process, influenced by the anatomy of the developing hand, research shows. 

DNA reference for key fish species aids food security

Resource detailing genome of Nile tilapia supports sustainable farming of important strain of livestock.

Roslin Innovation Centre boosts UK economy

Charnock Bradley building interior
Campus business hub has a positive impact on the local, regional and national economy, an independent report shows.