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An Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge

A Series of Short Podcasts and Interviews with Cambridge Infectious Diseases Researchers

(currently not active)

Until 2019, the Naked Scientist interviewed some CID researchers to highlight their projects and outcomes. Now, the Naked Scientist has its own team and series of science podcasts, which you can (and should!) check on their website

However, you can still have a look at past interviews:


Julian Parkhill ITalk

Professor Julian Parkhill -  Big beautiful bacterial genomes

23 Aug 2019: A CID Coordinator interview with Professor Julian Parkhill, a member of Cambridge Infectious Diseases Interdisciplinary Research Centre and the Marks and Spencer Professor in the Department of Veterinary Medicine. 

Julian's Group focus on the evolution of bacterial pathogens; their origin, transmission and adaptation to selective pressure. Over the last few years the group has used large-scale population genomics to identify the global origin and routes of spread of many human and animal pathogens. The work has clear translational benefits for tracking transmission at the hospital level and more broadly. 

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Podcast Vaccines Heeney 21May19

Professor Jonathan Heeney - The Power of Vaccines: New haemorrhagic fever vaccines 

21 May 2019: A Naked Scientist Interview with Professor Jonathan Heeney of Department of Veterinary Medicine (CID)

Ebola is a haemorrhagic fever, meaning it causes massive bleeding in people struck down with it. It’s part of a family of diseases, that came to us from animals like bats, and includes Marburg virus and Lassa fever. Since these diseases often occur in the same place, and it’s hard to tell which one is which, vaccinating against them can be difficult. That’s why a team at Cambridge University are developing a vaccine that will work against all three. 

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Dr Andrew Conlan - Bovine TB vaccination 

24 August 2018. A Naked Scientist Podcast Interview with Dr Andrew Conlan, Department of Veterinary Medicine (CID).

Mycobacterium bovis - which causes bovine TB - is a close relative of the TB bacterium that causes disease in humans; and because it can infect us, cattle are rigorously monitored. The problem is that there’s also an environmental reservoir of the infection: wild animals, including badgers, can carry it and - some suspect - transmit it to cows. For this reason there have been calls to cull badgers. But is this justified when there is, potentially, a vaccine we could use? Unfortunately no one knows how effective that vaccine would be, and before we can use it we need the EU to change the law. They’ll only do that if there’s adequate data to defend the decision. So are the EU's requirements to test bovine TB vaccines feasible?

 Listen and Read Podcast > 




Dr Jim Ajioka- Can your cat's parasites help you succeed?

31 July 2018. A Naked Scientist Podcast Interview with Dr Jim Ajioka, Department of Veterinary Medicine (CID).

A paper out this week claims that the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which cats shed in their faeces, can - if we catch it - reduce our fear of failure and boost our chances of success! According to a team from Colorado, professionals at business events were nearly twice as likely to have started their own company if they tested positive for toxo. So are parasites really pulling the strings? Chris Smith was joined by Cambridge University’s Jim Ajioka, who wasn’t involved in the study, but does work on Toxoplasma....

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08 May 2018. A Naked Scientist Podcast Interview with Professor Julian Rayner, Department of veterinary Medicine (CID).

A new weapon in the fight against Malaria. The disease, which kills over half a million people every year, is caused by a parasite transmitted by mosquitoes. The parasite is becoming resistant to our current treatments so scientists are in a race against time to come up with new ones. New research from the Wellcome Sanger institute may help, as they’ve identified which genes inside its DNA are vital to its growth, meaning we can design drugs more effectively. Katie Haylor heard more from author Julian Rayner.

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01 Dec 2017. A Naked Scientist Podcast Interview with Professor Andrew Lever (CID).

HIV AIDS affects 35 million people worldwide, and although the number of new infections is slowly decreasing, last year it still caused one million deaths. The virus, HIV, attacks the body’s immune system by infecting white blood cells, also called “lymphocytes”. Lewis Thomson has been finding out what the future holds for treatment, and what it’s like to be diagnosed with the virus, and met with Professor Andrew Lever from the University of Cambridge, who researches the virus.

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Abdominal Pain 250x250

24 Feb 2014. A Naked Scientist Podcast Interview with Dr Lydia Drumright, now University of Cambridge (CID).

Dr. Lydia Drumright talks about her research examining how the "vomitting" virus infects people and how long they remain infectious for. 


Listen and Read Podcast>