Research on ageing
As life expectancy increases in developing countries, so does the challenge to prolong health into old age.
Health and wellbeing are lifelong processes. BBSRC invests £17M (2007-08) in research on the natural ageing process in animals and how this will help to inform a healthier old age for people.
However, investigating normal ageing increasingly demands multidisciplinary approaches, where biologists work together with physicians, chemists, mathematicians and engineers. As a whole, the Research Councils spend over £80M a year on a broad portfolio of ageing research, including three cross-Research Council research programmes of significant relevance to BBSRC:
- New dynamics of ageing
- Lifelong health and wellbeing
- Strategic promotion of ageing research capacity (SPARC)
Scientists at the University of Birmingham are examining how the brain's ability to process visual information, describing environmental features such as obstacles and safe places to step, is affected by ageing and other factors.
Funded through the SPARC programme, the aim of the project is to develop diagnostics to identify people at risk of falling, and identify treatments and interventions to promote safety.
In July 2006 Ipsos MORI published the results of the BBSRC/MRC-funded study of public attitudes on priorities for research into ageing.
We are taking forward the results of this study by developing a small travelling exhibition on research into ageing.