microTALKS: Infectious Diseases

Ever wondered where the next pandemic virus will emerge? Or how scientists are combating antibiotic resistance? We had a chat with cell biology researcher and Jurassic Park fan Connor Bamford. 

ebola

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Connor Bamford and I am from Belfast, Northern Ireland originally but now I work at the MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research where I am one of the researchers who investigates the cell biology of virus infection. One of the viruses we focus on is the hepatitis C virus, which is an incredibly important infection across the world and in particular, Glasgow and Scotland.

What brings you to Glasgow Science Festival this year?

The science festival is a great opportunity to communicate research from your field. I felt that  microbiology and virology research had a lot to communicate and engage the public with, given the serious nature of antibiotic resistance and emerging viruses, such as Ebola. Our event aims to explain some of these important areas of research.

The Matrix, District 9, Moon… what sci-fi classic floats your… uhh… spaceship?

Jurassic Park. Hands down.

2015 is Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink and among other things, we’re exploring how eating insects might be the future. What’s the weirdest thing that you’ve eaten?

Lukewarm coffee mistakenly stored in a bottle of Coke.

Impress us with your favourite science fact or joke.

On a serious note: recent studies have estimated that there might be precisely 320,000 mammalian viruses out there in existence. Sadly, we only know a very small fraction of these and many probably have the potential to cause serious disease and outbreaks in people and animals at a great cost to society.

Join Connor and an international panel of scientists at the University of Glasgow’s Boyd Orr Building on Thursday 11th June from 7.30pm. Book online

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