Posts Tagged ‘DIYBio MCR’

Brazilian Sandflies and Hacked Webcams

Monday, July 30th, 2012

DIY feeder with mad invetor and an enthusiastic assistantOn the 29th July, the Manchester DIYBio group hosted a double bill of scientific wonders featuring Brazilian sandflies (that’s Phlebotominae to you and me ) and DIY microscopes.

The first session was led by Dr. Rod Dillon from the the University of Lancaster who, along with his team, gave us some background information on the Brazilian sandfly and, most importantly, the diseases it spreads. Sandflies infected by the protozoan Leishmania parasite spread a disease called Leishmaniasis, a disease with the next worst impact on humans after malaria. This disease can cause disfiguring afflictions as well as lethal complications within the spleen which can be seen as the victims’ abdomens swell up, leading to their eventual death. Scientists are still working on a vaccine, so research into the parasite’s genome is crucial. In fact, genome based screening techniques are already used to screen potential vaccines.

We were introduced to several techniques commonly used in the lab – all with a suitably DIY twist. For example, instead of using a commercial feeder filled with blood kept at a constant temperature, Dr. Dillon gave a demonstration with a cocktail jigger filled with warm sugar solution (and some added red dye for artistic effect), some pieces of chicken skin and a makeshift clamp made out of bamboo and elastic bands. (more…)

DIYBIO – Microbial fuel cell 101

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Bio Hacking in Manchester

Title: DIYBIO – Microbial fuel cell 101
Location: MadLab (Downstairs)
Description: Join the Manchester DIYBio group for their regular meet up
Start Time: 19:00
Date: 2012-01-25
End Time: 22:00
Booking: Free, but limited.

The evening of the 25th January is a DIYbio fuel cell special, where we’ll be building and comparing an array of microbe-powered batteries with the help of MMU’s Dr. Trish Linton who also ran the fuel cell session at the DIYbio Summit back in October.

Here’s what happened the first time we ran this workshop during the DIYBIO Summit during the Manchester Science Festival 2011.

Along the way we’ll be trying to answer some crucial microbe-y questions:

  • How do microbial fuel cells actually work?
  • Which part of the Northern Quarter has the hardest working soil bacteria?
  • Who would win in a tug of war? Brewers’ yeast or the instant stuff out of a packet?
  • Will microbes fuel the future? When will my car have a composter rather than a fuel tank?

Fuel Cell

So come on over at 7pm on the 25th Jan – no need to bring anything other than some microbe-y enthusiasm. All bugs courtesy of the Northern Quarter.

DIYBIO November 16th Meet Up

Saturday, November 5th, 2011

Bio Hacking in Manchester

Title: DIYBIO November 16th Meet Up
Location: MadLab
Description: Join the Manchester DIYBio group for their regular meet up
Start Time: 19:00
Date: 2011-11-16
End Time: 21:00

Join us to talk about our recent DIYBio adventure, the first UK DIYBio Summit.

Everyone is welcome, to find out about what we’ve been up to, or join in on the activities.

If you want to get involved in any of these projects, take part in discussions or recommend a new topic, join the mailing list and come to next month’s meeting! (

DIYBio UK Summit

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

DIYBio Summit

Title: DIYBio UK Summit
Location: MadLab
Description: Citizen scientists are invited to the first ever UK summit on “DIY biology”: this growing movement takes biology out of the ivory tower and into the hands of everyone!
Start Time: 10:00
Date: 2011-10-29
End Time: 18:00
Sign up: Tickets here

The First UK DIYBio Summit

29th-30th October, Madlab

Citizen scientists are invited to the first ever UK summit on “DIY biology”: this growing movement takes biology out of the ivory tower and into the hands of everyone! We’ll bring together a diverse group of leading scientists and curious amateurs to share expertise and experiences.

The event includes presentations by international speakers, demonstrations from the Manchester DIYBio group, and hands-on workshop sessions where participants can get involved in do-it-yourself bioscience.

No experience is needed, as full training will be given in a safe and friendly environment. Attendees can sign up for future events, and become part of the DIYbio revolution!

On Saturday, the formal section of the event will take place including plenaries and workshops.  Sunday will be held using an ‘unconference’ format where attendees can contribute to the proceedings and host discussions.

Saturday 29th October: Agenda

10:00-10:30  - Welcome and introductions

10:30-11:30  - Keynote Plenary: Sung Won Lim, Genspace; Cathal Garvey

11:30-11:45 –  Coffee break

11:45-12:30 – Updates from DIYBio groups

12:30-13.30 – Lunch break (food not provided)

13:30-16:30 – Parallel breakout hands-on sessions

16:30-17:30 – Closing keynote:  Marc Dusseiller, Hackteria

17:30-18:00 – Closing session

18:00- Social event

Sunday 30th October: Unconference

10:00-12:00   –     Session one

13:00-15:00    -    Session two

Information on how to submit sessions will be circulated to registered attendees.

For more information about Manchester DIYBio please see our website:

This event is part of the Manchester Science Festival

Microbiology and Art Exhibition

Friday, October 14th, 2011

Microbiology and Art

Title: Microbiology and Art Exhibition
Location: MadLab
Description: MadLab will be hosting its first science themed exhibition, on the subject of Microbiology and Art.
Start Date: 2011-10-22
Start Time: 11:00
End Date: 2011-11-10
End Time: 17:00

For the past 6 years, undergraduate science students at Manchester Metropolitan Universityhave been exploring the relationships between microbiology and art, from the deterioration of artwork and cultural heritage, to the beauty of microscopic images, through the impact of infectious disease in history to the use of art to communicate messages about science to a range of audiences, and overtly ‘sci-art’ projects. Over 100 students worked on the project, producing a range of outputs that demonstrated skills in creativity, imagination and communication that lay well outside the realms of the typical undergraduate science curriculum. In the Loop was formed in 2008 by Professor Joanna Verran.

Exhibition preview at the MadLab, on 21st October, 6-9pm. In celebration of the beginning of the Manchester Science Festival 2011