Partnerships and Collaborations: Case studies

Some examples of our work with partners and collaborators

N8 Research Partnership

The N8 Research Partnership is a collaboration of the eight most research intensive Universities in the North of England: Durham, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield and York.

Working with universities, industry and society, N8 aims to maximise the impact of this research base by:

  • promoting collaboration
  • establishing innovative research capabilities & programmes of national and international prominence
  • driving economic growth

In particular, members of our Institute are engaged in developing one of the N8's key research themes, AgriFood, with the ultimate aim of developing sustainable nutrition.

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The CF Trust

In partnership with The CF Trust, Professor Soraya Shirazi-Beechey and her team are investigating ways to prevent blockages in the gut in people with cystic fibrosis (CF) by increasing the levels of fluid in the gut to help move digested food along more easily.

This project involves collaboration with colleagues from Sheffield, Bristol, Hannover and Rotterdam, as well as Sheffield Children's Hospital and Arrowe Park Hospital. We investigate:

  • Testing the NHE3 blocker drugs in animal models of cystic fibrosis
  • Testing the effects of dietary change on DIOS in animal models of cystic fibrosis
  • Investigating the overactivity of NHE3 in human cells and ‘mini-guts’ or ‘organoid’ cell systems grown in the lab
  • Investigating the gut bacteria in a) animal models of CF treated with NHE3 blocking drugs and different diets and b) in samples from people with CF with and without DIOS and from people who don’t have cystic fibrosis
  • Designing and conducting a proof of principle clinical trial based on the results of the aims listed above

The laboratories in Liverpool, Rotterdam and Hannover are each awarded a postdoctoral fellowship, and the University of Bristol in association with scientists at the University of Sheffield are awarded a joint PhD studentship.

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