Scientific innovation and invention showcased at second Annual Research Symposium

Date 19.06.2024

The University of Northampton’s Centre for Physical Activity and Life Sciences (PALS) recently hosted its second Annual Research Symposium.

The annual symposium brought academics from the Centre together to share research findings, celebrate success and provide valuable opportunities for networking and collaboration.

The event offers the chance to celebrate industry-leading research projects with local, national and international impact, such as offering new methods of gene therapy for Ataxia (by UON’s Professor of Molecular Medicine, Karen Anthony), as well as an innovative invention to support with lowering blood pressure (by UON’S Associate Professor of Sport & Exercise Physiology, Anthony Baross).

The event took place on Thursday 6 June, with more than 40 attendees attending to present their research findings, discuss future research bids and network with colleagues within the physical activity and life science fields.

Specific activitites which took placed included:

  • Discussions and networking around current research projects at the University of Northampton, including exploring the potential of dance as a new social prescription pathway for older adults; harnessing the power of yeast genetics to understand neurodegeneration; and exploring the value Northamptonshire people place on their green spaces.
  • PechaKucha style research presentations on topics including utilising isometric exercise to contribute towards reducing blood pressure, by UON’s Associate Professor of Sport & Exercise Physiology Tony Baross, and an ecological dynamics approach to coach development by Lecturer in Sport Coaching and Performance Analysis Matt Wood.
  • Professor of Environmental Physiology at the University of Roehampton and founder of the Science Communication Academy, Lewis Halsey ran two workshops to energise academic grant writing efforts and encourage storytelling when communicating scientific research.

This research symposium further offered the opportunity to celebrate the successes achieved by the Centre, which included securing total research awards of more than £790,000, publishing more than 50 research outputs across Molecular Bioscience, Sport & Exercise Medicine and Interdisciplinary Physical Activity & Health promotion. Recent success with, making Northampton’s outdoor spaces easier to access and more enjoyable to use through the Active Quarter Partnership (led by UON’s Associate Professor Declan Ryan), was also highlighted.

After the event, PALS Centre Lead, Tony Kay reflected: “It was fantastic to see so many academic researchers from PALS discuss their industry-leading projects, and reflect on the successes we’ve collectively achieved throughout the past year.

“It is hugely important for us to take these opportunities to celebrate our collective research successes, and we look forward to continue exploring enhanced collaborations, additional research bids, and generating real-world impact as a result of our activity. Watch this space for more exciting research projects!”

Find out more about ongoing research projects, publications and partners within the Centre for Physical Activity and Life Sciences (PALS) via the University of Northampton’s website.