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Science Writing Competition Winners Announced

last modified Oct 15, 2012 10:39 AM
Congratulations to Liam Hurst and Adele Wang, winners of our Cambridge Infectious Disease Science Writing Competition

After some hard and fast deliberation over some really stiff competition, we can announce the winners of the Cambridge Infectious Diseases Science Writing Competition. Liam Hurst, a PhD candidate in the Department of Medicine was the overall winner with his article entitled “Retroviruses: Keeping the enemy closer”. Liam is currently in the final year of his PhD studying the detrimental effect inflammation can have on smooth muscle cell proliferation and pulmonary hypertension. I asked Liam what had drawn him to science writing in general, and retroviruses in particular. "I did English A-Level, and I've always enjoyed the opportunity to use my writing skills, it's a challenge to explain complex but everyday-to-us terms to the general public. I've used IPS cells (Induced pluripotent stem cells) in our lab so have been interested in them, and I do think gene therapy is the future of medicine. I read a couple of New Scientist articles to get a feel for the layout and delivery, and had a crack at it, although whittling down from 1000 to 800 words was hard! I'm considering science writing as a possible career post- PhD, so it's a good opportunity to test the waters."

A close runner up was Adele Wang, a psychology Natural Sciences student at Girton College, with  her article 'It’s a Mad World'. The article discusses the link between prenatal infection and psychosis. "By chance, I happened to read in passing a short sentence mentioning psychosis and infectious diseases in a psychosis book I'd started reading for the summer. This lead me to research it more and gave me the direction I needed to get started! I would love to work on finding causes and producing research to help in the treatment and maybe even eventual cure of mental illnesses, or just contributing to the improvement of mental wellbeing in general."

Congratulations must also go to Adam Kucharski, (PhD candidate, DAMTP) who has just won the Wellcome Trust Science Writing Prize 2012. The winning article, “In need of a number”, published in The Observer on 30th September, can be read here

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Cambridge Infectious Diseases is an Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge. We promote an interdisciplinary approach to addressing the challenge of reducing the burden of infectious diseases globally. Our virtual network crosses all six schools of the University and sector leading institutes across Cambridge. 


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