Genomics, ions and the sea discussed at 25th Biology and Psychology Symposium

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Millfield welcomed pupils from 11 Somerset schools for the 25th annual Biology and Psychology Symposium, which saw lectures and workshops from leading academics in Biology and Psychology including British ion channel physiologist and Professorial Fellow in Physiology at Trinity College, Oxford, Dame Frances Ashcroft.

Professor Dame Ashcroft explored how the human body’s function of electrical impulses are generated by ion channels and how understanding these channels can lead to a new therapy for patients born with a rare form of diabetes.

Other notable speakers included Professor of Marine Ecology School of Biology and Marine Sciences at the University of Plymouth, Martin Attrill, who discussed how fishing pressure has changed the life of our seas over the last 200 years, and how it is not just plastic waste that is effecting our large water bodies.

Pupils also had the opportunity to learn about the Genomic Revolution from the Group Commercial Director of YourGene Health, Hayden Jeffreys, as well as research into language and communication using MRI scanners from Oxford University’s Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, Kate Watkins (St Anne’s College). Millfield’s own Teacher of Psychology and Head of Academic Extension, Dr Abbie Pringle, led a lecture on the effects of anti-depressants.

Workshops included an up-close exploration into Birds of Prey and the superpowers of invertebrates, tips on exam skills and essay writing and an interactive lower limb dissection.

View photos from the symposium here.