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New fats discovery 'could reduce deaths from stroke and heart attack'

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Researchers at Cardiff University says they have discovered a new family of lipids (fats) that plays a key role in controlling clot formation.

The new discovery could lead to new ways of reducing the risk of excess clotting, called thrombosis, potentially preventing deaths from many killer diseases like heart attacks, strokes and deep vein thrombosis.

While clot formation is an essential response to injury, the formation of unwanted clots is central to many killer diseases. The most obvious are stroke or heart attack where a blood clot blocks a vessel and causes oxygen deprivation and organ damage, but subtle changes in blood clotting are involved in many inflammatory diseases too, such as sepsis, diabetes and even cancer.

– Professor Valerie O'Donnell, Cardiff University

With the discovery of new lipids that promote clot formation, we can find new ways to prevent unwanted clots being generated and even use these lipids to help reduce blood loss where excessive bleeding is a problem, such as hereditary bleeding disorders or bleeding during childbirth.

– Professor Peter Collins, Cardiff University

Cardiff Racing’ team make history by picking up Formula Student 2017 title at Silverstone

Credit: Cardiff University

Cardiff University’s student racing team have won the annual Formula Student competition at Silverstone, becoming the first UK winners in the competition’s 19-year history.

The ‘Cardiff Racing’ team, made up of 56 students from the University’s School of Engineering, beat off competition from over 100 university teams from around the world.

Throughout the weekend, the building and engineering skills of the students were put to the test as the car went under scrutiny by the judges, before the students took their car onto the track to perform a number of speed and agility tests.

The Formula Student event is a fantastic and highly competitive competition. It takes considerable dedication, hard work and skill to win such an event and we could not be more proud of our students for this achievement. We are quite simply blown away.

– Dr Mark Eaton, Cardiff University

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Cyber security centre of excellence to open at Cardiff University

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A new research centre to research into cyber security has been launched by Cardiff University and Airbus.

The Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Analytics will be in Cardiff University’s School of Computer Science and Informatics and is said to be the first of its kind in Europe.

Researchers will carry out studies into machine learning, data analytics, and artificial intelligence for cyber-attack detection. The research aims to protect corporate IT networks, intellectual property, and critical national infrastructure.

Cyber security analytics is about improving our resilience to cyber-attacks through data modelling to detect and block malicious behaviour before it causes its full impact; but also about understanding what motivates the behaviour, what its likely impact will be, and how to communicate security alerts among decision and policy-makers.

– Dr Pete Burnap, Cardiff University

Substance misuse and binge drinking 'higher in young people in foster care'

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A Cardiff University study of secondary school students (11-16 years) in Wales looked at the issues affecting youngsters and their relationship with caregivers, teachers and friends.

Those in foster care reported almost 8 times the rates of weekly smoking compared to young people living with both parents, and almost 4 times higher than among those living with a single mother.

Young people living in foster care experience significantly worse outcomes than young people not in care, likely due to a range of care and pre-care factors, which can impact adversely on the formation of positive and healthy social relationships.

Our research highlights a real need for the development and evaluation of interventions to improve wellbeing, and reduce substance use among young people in foster care by supporting looked after young people in the development of healthy interpersonal relationships.

– Dr Sara Long, Cardiff University
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