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The University of Southampton
Global Network for Anti-Microbial Resistance and Infection Prevention

Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe finds out all about NAMRIP during her visit to University of Southampton

Published: 20 October 2016
baroness and starstream
Tim Leighton explains different NAMRIP projects to Baroness Neville-Rolfe

Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe was visiting the University to deliver her lecture 'How do we improve?' as part of the University's 2016 Distinguished Lectures Programme. She visited several different parts of the University during her stay and spent time hearing about NAMRIP from Professor Tim Leighton, who, with help from his research team, demonstrated how Starstream technology can be used to combat antimicrobial resistance.

bubbles and baroness
Starstream technology - cleaning with acoustic bubble-enhanced water

Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG, who was appointed Minister of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in July 2016, took an interest in the commercial application of Starstream technology to combat anti-microbial resistance. Among those accompanying her on her visit to Professor Leighton's lab were NAMRIP member Professor Michelle Lowe , one of the organisers of the visit and Gavin Costigan, Director of Public Policy | Southampton which hosted and arranged the event.

The visit was an opportunity to explain NAMRIP’s philosophy and activities, and hear the Baroness's perspective on the issues – she liked the NAMRIP infographic so much that she took a photograph of it to show to Lord O’Neil. Professor Leighton showcased a wide selection of NAMRIP projects, including research into the design of urinary catheters and understanding why and when doctors decide to use them; the inroads we have made in understanding the AMR significance of the food and retail sectors and our collaboration with the FSA; the paper-based diagnostics initiate; modelling of the interactions of antimicrobial agents with cells; and cold water cleaning. Conversation on the work our members do to explore the use of bearberries as a natural alternative to antibiotics led to a discussion of Global-NAMRIP and how we should also pay attention to infection prevention and treatment using items that would be more commonly available in rural communities in Low- and Middle-Income Countries.

The Baroness was also able to meet three of our young researchers, Craig Dolder, Tom Secker and Mengyang Zhu, all of whom have won NAMRIP pump priming funds as investigators and who (with Yvonne Richardson) put a huge amount into turning a working lab into an exhibition space for the day, featuring the work of 7 faculties. NAMRIP does not have a physical footprint, so it was a shame we could only showcase a fraction of the wonderful research and translation our members have achieved, but we fitted a great deal into a small space!

Chair of NAMRIP, Timothy Leighton FREng, FRS - Professor of Ultrasonics and Underwater Acoustics
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