The Biochemist Blog

Spotlight on cerebral small vessel disease

By Rosalind Brown, Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences, University of Edinburgh

Most people will have heard of Alzheimer’s disease, but fewer people are aware of cerebral small vessel disease (SVD), a silently progressing disease of ageing responsible for nearly half of all cases of dementia along with a large percentage of strokes. The global health impact of SVD is huge and while a small number of genetic mutations have been identified as causing some forms, for the majority of cases the cause is uncertain.


Unseen waste in our waterways: a hidden environmental problem

By Brittany Maule, Indiana Department of Environmental Management, USA

Coffee is the most popular beverage in the world. Americans in the U.S. consume 400 million coffee cups per day, and about 30% of those coffee drinkers add some sort of sugar or sweetener to their drink. Where does all that caffeine and sweetener go? What about all the other stuff we use every day? The answer that is becoming more and more concrete is in our waterways.

PhD reflections: lessons and advice

By Ralitsa Madsen, Institute of Metabolic Science, Cambridge, UK

As a driven PhD student who is dedicating most of my waking hours to a very ambitious project, I often need to justify my choice to others. Wouldn’t I be set up for success with fewer hours in the lab, less scientific reading and a bit more faith in my own talent? My usual response is to ask the following question: how do elite athletes succeed?