• Question: What gave you the idea to research what your researching?

    Asked by cag1905 to Jemma, John, Lisa, Sam, Samantha, Mark L, Adam, Amylou on 23 May 2012. This question was also asked by bossman, emma1, benjn, emchivs1398.
    • Photo: John Perry

      John Perry answered on 23 May 2012:

      Personal interest.

      I love sport and I always got very annoyed when people acted in a way that I thought was damaging to the sport (e.g. someone diving in football). Whereas most people will settle for moaning about this to their mates in a pub, I set out to research moraity in sport. In particular, I would love to be able to find how people develop their own values on which to make moral decisions.


    • Photo: Lisa Fitzgerald

      Lisa Fitzgerald answered on 23 May 2012:

      Hi @cag1905,

      As people get older they often develop arthritis, which is a progressive disease that results in a gradual loss of joint cartilage. Cartilage is a material which covers the moving surfaces at joints to reduce friction and allows joints to move freely and without pain. When cartilage has worn away due to arthritis or trauma the patient will suffer significant and debilitating pain when using the joint.

      When the pain gets so bad that people can no longer carry out normal activities, such as walking or rising from a chair, they will often have an operation known as a joint replacement. The most common joint replacement carried out in the UK is that of the knee. Total knee replacement involves replacing the surfaces of the bones in the knee with metal and plastic components.

      Over 75,000 patients have a knee replacement operation every year in the UK, and for many this cures the pain. However up to 20% still suffer from pain years after the operation and can not get back to living life to the full. My research is therefore looking into why do some replacements not work and how can we make them better and stop patients suffering persistent pain.



    • Photo: Jemma Ransom

      Jemma Ransom answered on 23 May 2012:

      Hi @cag1905

      I’m interested in brains as you’ve probably gathered from my profile. In particular in vitamin A (the stuff you get in carrots) and what it does in the brain. I found out early on that vitamin A increases the number of brain cells born in your brain, in particular in a region called the hippocampus (a fancy term I know, but this is basically the bit that controls learning and memory). This lead me to some research relating to what exercise does in the brain – I found that exercising has very similar effects on the brain that vitamin A does, increasing learning and memory. I found this fascinating as exercise could therefore be used as a treatment for diseases where memory is impaired such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

      I hope that answers your question