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Newcastle to be national centre for ageing science

The Chancellor George Osborne has pledged £20m to help Newcastle University launch a national centre for the study of ageing.

The institute will develop dietary and exercise products that will help people live more comfortably in old age.

Mr Osborne said it was all part of his plan to create a 'northern economic powerhouse'.

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MPs to investigate controversial three-parent IVF technique

The controversial IVF technique was developed by scientists at Newcastle University. Credit: PA
Experts say the treatment could help parents not to pass genetic diseases to their children. Credit: PA

A committee of MPs will today look at whether the UK should become the first country in the world to legalise babies with three biological parents.

The controversial IVF technique was developed by experts at Newcastle University, who say the treatment could help parents not to pass genetic diseases to their children.

However, religious groups have expressed concerns that the process would be unethical.

The Science and Technology Committee are due to begin their hearing shortly after 9am today (Wednesday 22 October). Professor Doug Turnbull, from Newcastle University, will give evidence to the influential group of MPs.

University staff vote for strike action over pensions

Staff at the universities of Newcastle and Durham have voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action in a row over pensions.

A total of 78% of members of the University and College Union (UCU) who were balloted across 69 universities voted in favour of strike action.

Talks between the union and the universities will be held on Wednesday to try to negotiate a solution.

The union said if the employers continued with their proposals then the union would meet on Friday to decide what form the disruption would take and when it would start.

A vote for action would by likely to include a marking boycott and a refusal to set exams. The action would stop students being set coursework or receiving formal marks and feedback, as well as halting exams.

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