Best-known as one of the presenters of Channel 4’s no-holds-barred Embarrassing Bodies series, Dawn caught the cycling bug last year and, luckily for Action, shows no signs of recovery!A new series of the hit show, in which Dawn and fellow Action cyclist Dr Pixie McKenna tackle those medical problems people usually prefer to keep under wraps, returns this spring, and she is still amazed when people recognise her. “I’m not that well made up in real life, but I do get asked some strange things in public places from time to time,” she laughs.
More than 50,000 babies are born prematurely each year in the UK. More than 25 of these babies die each week because of complications that arise from their early birth. Premature birth is also a major cause of disability.Dr Vasso Terzidou of Imperial College, London, and her team are focusing on the role of a hormone called oxytocin which is known to cause the muscle of the womb to contract.The researchers have discovered that oxytocin binds to the membranes surrounding the baby in the womb and that this binding increases at the start of labour.
Grace Watson had often been the first baby from her mum’s antenatal class to reach those all-important early milestones, but between nine and 12 months things began to change. Other babies started crawling, walking and talking but Grace didn’t. Although nobody knew it at the time, she was showing the signs of Rett syndrome.Her mum, Gwenda, was not too worried to start with. Her GP reassured her there were many reasons why Grace might take longer to do some things. But as time went on, suspicion began to grow that something more serious was affecting Grace.
If babies are born very prematurely they may have problems with movement, speech or learning disabilities later on.Clearly, it is better to know as soon as possible whether a problem is likely to occur so that treatments which may help them overcome their difficulties may be started or planned in advance.
Using Action Medical Research funding to develop these more detailed images, Professor Mary Rutherford and her team in collaboration with Professor Jo Hajnal at Hammersmith Hospital, London, aim to help doctors better diagnose brain disorders so they can decide earlier on the best treatment for mother and child.
The walks offer a chance for the thousands of families in the UK who have been affected by premature birth – and the many more who simply care enough to want to help – to take positive action.The charity will be getting things started by organising a number of local events across the country but it is hoped that scores of additional walks will be put in place by supporters, families and other groups and organisations who see this as a great way to have fun while supporting a very worthwhile cause.
Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong disease, usually diagnosed in children or young adults, that affects around 350,000 people in the UK. There has been a major increase in the numbers of children suffering from type 1 diabetes over the past 50 years and children under the age of five are increasingly affected.The cells which normally produce insulin in the pancreas are destroyed by the body's own immune system, leaving sufferers dependant on multiple daily insulin injections to control their blood sugar. Without insulin treatment the condition would be fatal.
Mucous membrane pemphigoid, or MMP, causes the body’s moist skin linings (mucous membranes) to blister. When it affects the eyes, up to 30 per cent of patients become blind due to the formation of scar tissue.
Currently there is no cure for osteogenesis imperfecta, commonly known as brittle bone disease, yet there are around 4,000 diagnosed cases in the UK of this devastating condition.