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RVC and UCL to pioneer research into Parkinson's disease
Researchers will use the funding to explore the possibilities of future prevention and treatment of Parkinson's disease.
Vets to explore the possibilities of future prevention and treatment.

A pioneering study into the causes and progression of Parkinson's disease is to be carried out by the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) in collaboration with University College London (UCL).

The news follows a $7 million grant from Aligning Science Across Parkinson's (ASAP), an initiative that fosters collaboration and resources to better understand the underlying causes of this debilitating disease.

Researchers will use the funding to explore the possibilities of future prevention and treatment of Parkinson's. Specifically, the team will investigate the role of the LRRK2 gene - one of the most common genetic causes of the disease and a priority drug target.

Dr Patrick Lewis, Professor of Neuroscience at the RVC, said: “The Aligning Science Across Parkinson’s foundation grants represents a new way of approaching research into Parkinson’s, with the clear goal of accelerating progress in our understanding of this disorder. It is a real privilege to be involved in this initiative.”

Parkinson's is a progressive brain disorder that causes slowness, stiffness, tremors and walking and balance problems. The condition affects more than 130,000 people in the UK alone, and the only current available treatments help to alleviate symptoms, but not slow progression of the disease.

Professor Jonathan Elliott, vice-principal (Research and Innovation) at the RVC, said: “The RVC is delighted to be part of this large collaborative effort to advance treatments for Parkinson’s Disease. Neurodegenerative conditions significantly impact on the quality of life of our ageing human population in the UK and Professor Lewis’ role in this collaboration is exciting in its potential to uncover new drug targets to slow progressive loss of functioning neurons."

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AWF Student Grant Scheme opens for applications

News Story 1
 The Animal Welfare Foundation (AWF) is inviting applications to its 2021 Student Grant Scheme for innovative projects designed to impact animal welfare. The scheme welcomes proposals from undergraduates studying veterinary and animal welfare degrees, but students from other disciplines are also welcome to apply.

Grants will fund projects on animal welfare topics that are relevant to the veterinary profession and help develop the student's skills as a researcher. This year, the AWF is also accepting projects which are carried out alongside EMS so long as they are supervised. For more information and to apply, visit animalwelfarefoundation.org.uk 

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Survey seeks views on keeping cows with calves

Researchers at Scotland's Rural College are seeking views from dairy farmers on keeping cows with calves.

Their study entitled 'Keeping Cow with Calf: bringing innovation to dairying in Scotland' aims to find out the motivations and reservations about operating a cow-with-calf dairy system.

The survey will help researchers build an evidence base and gauge what support farmers need to move to this practice. For more information, or to complete the survey, visit keepingcowwithcalf.com