Food Policies & Disease Prevention – the IMPACT model
Heart disease, stroke, diabetes, dementia and cancers cause over 90% of premature UK deaths; however, most are preventable. Researchers at the University of Liverpool have developed computational models to quantify and compare different prevention policies, successfully advancing food policies such as the UK dietary salt reduction targets, sugary drinks tax, along with EU and WHO policies to eliminate industrial transfats from the world's food supplies.
Global access to a sight-saving therapy for children with arthritis-associated uveitis
Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) affects approximately 10,000 UK children with 1,000 new cases per year. JIA-associated uveitis can cause partial or complete sight loss. Standard treatments have significant side effects and 50% of cases may be unresponsive. In partnership with colleagues across the UK, researchers at the University of Liverpool successfully tested the drug adalimumab for addressing unresponsive cases, leading to rapid changes in prescribing policy, commercial licensing and approval across 65 countries with approximately 50,000 children now having access to this sight saving treatment.
Stratification of eye cancer patients into metastatic risk using the integrated Liverpool prognosticator tool
Uveal melanoma is a rare intraocular tumour but is the most common primary eye cancer in adults. Although the eye tumour treatment is usually successful, half of patients die after developing secondary tumours in the liver. The University of Liverpool, together with its NHS supraregional referral centre for eye cancer, spearheaded the development and implementation of prognostic tests to predict metastasis likelihood in individual patients. Their tool is recommended in NICE guidelines and is now used worldwide.
Improving methods for handling laboratory mice
The mouse is the most important laboratory animal used worldwide in biomedical research. How they are handled is well known to have profound effects on animal anxiety and stress, which affects both animal welfare and the reliability of scientific data collected. Research from the University of Liverpool has led to the development of refined handling methods, which have changed policies and practice worldwide.
Evidence and guidance to inform how consent should be sought for children's emergency and critical care trials
Children are under-represented in clinical trials of life saving treatments as research in emergency settings is practically and ethically challenging. Researchers from the University of Liverpool provided new evidence to inform how consent should be sought for children’s critical care trials. The resulting guidance has since facilitated vital trials to provide evidence to optimise treatments for critically ill patients, including eight trials involving over 1000 children.
Improving recognition, management and prevention of obesity in dogs and cats
Obesity and excess weight affects approximately half of adult dogs and cats worldwide, causing negative effects on health and welfare. The University of Liverpool has developed novel therapeutic weight loss diets accompanied by evidence-based, veterinarian-led weight management protocols. These interventions together result in sustained weight loss, improved mobility and improved quality of life, with thousands of animals already having benefitted.
Human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive Head & Neck Cancer – Driving Change in UK Vaccination Policy & Clinical Practice
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is linked to 5% of all cancers worldwide. Since 2008, girls in the UK received HPV vaccination to reduce the incidence of cervical cancer. Research carried out in Liverpool provided evidence that HPV is also linked to a high incidence in head and neck cancer.
Improving access to psychological therapies for perinatal depression in low and middle-income countries
Perinatal depression affects one in four women in low and middle income countries with over 90% not receiving any treatment for this condition. This has devastating consequences for the mothers and their infants. Researchers from the University of Liverpool published the Thinking Healthy Programme (THP), becoming the first fully manualised psychological intervention to be adopted by the World Health Organization for global dissemination.
Equine laminitis - changing practice
Equine laminitis is a highly prevalent, painful, debilitating equine hoof condition, which affects one in ten horses / ponies annually. University of Liverpool research systematically proved the importance of the endocrine disorders that cause laminitis, which has had a major impact on the equine pharmaceutical industry, informing laminitis awareness initiatives and development of novel therapeutics.
Development of the first effective therapy for the rare disease Alkaptonuria
Alkaptonuria is a rare, hereditary metabolic disease, affecting 1 in every 250,000 – 1,000,000 people, that causes severe early-onset osteoarthritis. Starting from mid to late 20s, multiple joint replacements and medication for chronic pain are typical in patients. Researchers at the University of Liverpool developed the first effective pharmacological treatment option for the disease which transforms management and experience of the disease. Young people with alkaptonuria can now expect to live free of its debilitating symptoms whilst existing older patients are seeing symptoms arrested and some reversed.
Reducing infant deaths from rotavirus diarrhoea in sub-Saharan Africa
Rotavirus is the leading cause of severe gastroenteritis, responsible for 250,000 annual childhood deaths in Africa prior to the introduction of the rotavirus vaccine. A University of Liverpool-led clinical trial of the vaccine informed a WHO recommendation in 2009 that low income, high mortality countries should receive the vaccine. Since 2013, the childhood vaccination program in Malawi has prevented 1,505 deaths from rotavirus by reducing hospital admissions and the program has now been introduced in 38 African countries preventing another 169,400 deaths over the same period.
Improving the Management of Brain Infections in the UK and Internationally
The devastating impact of brain infections such as meningitis and encephalitis can be markedly reduced through prompt recognition, diagnosis and treatment. Research at the University of Liverpool has improved surveillance, diagnosis and management leading to new UK guidelines, with global impact. With close patient and public involvement, the Liverpool team increased awareness of brain infections, reaching millions through publications, courses and outreach events.
Unhealthy food advertising to children: Impacting on a watershed policy
Obesity affects a third of UK children and is a major determinant of health inequality and outcomes with substantial cost implications. University of Liverpool research showed that a 9pm watershed on unhealthy food advertising on television would reduce childhood obesity, improve health outcomes and deliver substantial health cost benefits. This has led to the adoption of a major new and unique UK-wide public health policy to introduce a watershed on advertising as part of their obesity strategy.