22
February
2016

Simplyhealth donates £39k to help Southampton researchers explore new dementia discovery

A vital piece of equipment that will help University of Southampton researchers explore a new discovery linking the immune system and dementia has been funded by Alzheimer’s Research UK, thanks to a £39,000 donation from Simplyhealth.

Dementia is a condition caused by brain diseases, most commonly Alzheimer’s, and currently affects 850,000 people in the UK with almost 20,000 of them living in Hampshire alone. With funding from Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity, scientists in Southampton are working to understand the causes of different forms of dementia and how to treat the condition.

The donation from Simplyhealth will help fund a flow cytometer, a piece of equipment that can pinpoint key features from many different cells, helping researchers identify which cells they need to work on.

Dr Diego Gomez-Nicola, Career Track Lecturer at the University of Southampton, will use the equipment for his research investigating the role of our immune system in Alzheimer’s disease. Earlier this year, his team showed that a compound that stops brain inflammation may protect against memory problems in mice with features of Alzheimer’s.

Dr Diego Gomez-Nicola, Career Track Lecturer at the University of Southampton
The findings from our recent study into inflammation at the University of Southampton were an exciting discovery. This was as close to evidence as we could get to show that targeting inflammation in the brain, caused by a build-up of immune cells called microglia, could halt progression of Alzheimer’s disease. 

There has been a lot of promising research into dementia at the University of Southampton and this flow cytometer will help myself and others to continue our work.
Dr Diego Gomez-Nicola, Career Track Lecturer at the University of Southampton

Investment in this new piece of equipment will drive progress in lots of different complementary projects and help untangle the role of the immune system in dementia sooner.

Mark Hamson, Chairman of Simplyhealth Charitable Committee
We understand the impact dementia has on the lives of thousands of people and their families every day. This is why we have helped fund the flow cytometer, which will enable researchers at the University of Southampton to explore their recent breakthrough further and hopefully help to develop treatments for this terrible condition.
Mark Hamson, Chairman of Simplyhealth Charitable Committee
Steve Frost, Head of Corporate Partnerships at Alzheimer’s Research UK
Alzheimer’s Research UK is delighted Simplyhealth have funded a flow cytometer at the University of Southampton. This is an essential piece of equipment that will allow our researchers to further explore a recent breakthrough in their efforts to develop treatments for Alzheimer’s, as well as many other studies into dementia.
Steve Frost, Head of Corporate Partnerships at Alzheimer’s Research UK

To learn more about fundraising for Alzheimer’s Research UK, call 0300 111 5555 or visit www.alzheimersresearchuk.org.

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