News & Events

Cell Trail Event for British Science Festival

Article Date: 10.03.14
Category: Fundraising

Immunology researchers from University of Birmingham will be involved in a special “Cell Trail” event for the British Science Festival in September.

Based on a highly popular format used in previous engagement events, researchers will dress up as individual immune cells, and be positioned around the campus, close to the Aston Webb building, where many activities are taking place.

Members of the public taking part will be given a sheet with descriptions of how these different immune cells work and what they do. Their task is locate the different “immune cells”, and by asking them about what their job in the immune system is, to work out ask which type of cell they are.

Entrants successfully matching each of the live “cells” to their descriptions will receive a mystery prize.

“It’s a fun, interactive way of finding out how the immune system works,” says Debbie Ringham, the Cancer Research UK engagement officer based at the UoB’s School of Biosciences.

“For the researchers, it’s a chance to explain important immunology ideas to the general public in as simple, interesting way…whilst dressed up in a spherical  cell costume !”

The event has proven highly popular at previous engagement events across the country, and having been formally approved by the British Science Festival organizing team, will take place on 6th September 2014, however the University of Birmingham is also planning to stage a repeat performance for the University Community day on September 7th.

“The event comes highly recommended from the Southampton CRUK Centre, where it was extremely popular, with adults and children alike. We are keen to hear from immunology researchers who are interested in taking part,” comments Debbie.

“It is a great opportunity to get involved in a fun, educational public engagement event,” Debbie says. “And for frustrated performers, it is a chance to play the part of your favourite type of immune cell, and unleash previously hidden thespian skills.”

Those interested in taking part please contact Debbie.Ringham@bham.ac.uk or ciic@contacts.bham.ac.uk.