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Dr Marianne Kennedy

Dr Marianne Kennedy is a Volunteer Writer at BioNews, having originally joined the publication under the auspices of its writing scheme. She obtained her medical degree from University College London's Division of Medicine, under the auspices of its MBPhD Programme, where she divided her time between clinical training at University College London Hospital and research at the Medical Research Council's National Institute for Medical Research (now subsumed into The Francis Crick Institute). Her research focused on metabolic changes in the heart before and after birth, and has potential implications for high altitude medicine, cot death and heart failure. Her essay on this subject, 'Conquistadores and Cot Death', was shortlisted for the Max Perutz Science Writing Prize, while her story 'Freedom Through Genetics' was shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust's Science Writing Prize. Her earlier research concerned obesity, and how gut hormones and gene variations impact on eating behaviour, appetite and body weight. She also writes for the Society for Endocrinology's public information website You and Your HormonesPreviously, she studied Medicine and Physiology, Development and Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge. She is currently working a junior doctor at Southampton University Hospital. Marianne is also a singer/songwriter and a member of the all-singing, all-dancing a cappella group In the Smoke.

BioNews Review articles written by Dr Marianne Kennedy:
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Event Review: Mutants and What to Do About Them
21 February 2011 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
'There's a bar at a nightclub and a girl is deciding whether to take some guy she's met home with her. She's not intent on asking does he dance well or does he have a good sense of humour… no, no, no. She takes a little bit of his hair and she runs out the door, down the street to the local genome shop… she hands over the hair with her credit card and comes back in 15 minutes. She opens up the envelope and she says, 'Wow, he's got a genetic quotient of 99'. She goes back to the bar and says ... [Read More]
Book Review: The Genome Book - A Must-Have Guide to Your DNA for Maximum Health
7 February 2011 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Genetics is creating more confusion than the offside rule in pub conversation. Most of us had limited teaching on the subject at school or we may have left before Watson and Crick ran out of the pub that night with the structure of DNA on a beer mat. We are left to soak in the media murkiness and skewed views of individuals, which could one day influence important decisions on our health.... [Read More]
Book Review: Communicating Biological Sciences - Ethical and Metaphorical Dimensions
22 March 2010 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
My first impression of this book was that the title smacks of a dull read. On the contrary, however, this book provides a stimulating awakening into one of the challenges facing science writing today, namely the use of metaphor: its purpose in communication and consequences for science and public understanding... [Read More]

BioNews News articles written by Dr Marianne Kennedy:
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First scans from baby brain project released
15 May 2017 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
The first batch of baby brain scans was released last week by a landmark UK project to map how the human brain develops in unprecedented detail... [Read More]
79 rare obesity-causing genes catalogued
3 April 2017 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Seventy-nine rare genetic syndromes in which obesity is a major feature have been catalogued by Canadian researchers... [Read More]
Moderate exercise improves sperm quality and quantity
7 December 2016 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Moderate exercise improves sperm quality and quantity, according to new research... [Read More]
Gene for high-fat food preference found
10 October 2016 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Scientists at Cambridge University have shown a genetic variant increases a person's preference for high fat food... [Read More]
IVF not linked to breast cancer, large study shows
25 July 2016 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
IVF treatment does not increase a woman's risk of developing breast cancer later in life, a study has found... [Read More]
Gene linked to impulsive behaviour while drunk
23 November 2015 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
A common mutation in a serotonin receptor gene has been linked to impulsive and aggressive behaviours, particularly under the influence of alcohol... [Read More]
Clinic for freezing ovarian tissue planned in the UK
23 April 2012 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Women may soon be given the option of banking their ovarian tissue if a new clinic to offer the procedure opens in the UK. The technique allows women to freeze ovarian tissue containing eggs to use at a later date and could assist cancer patients and other women who hope to have children later in life.... [Read More]
'All crimes' DNA database given go-ahead in New York
26 March 2012 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Officials in New York State in the USA have passed a bill requiring people convicted of almost any crime to provide a sample for the state's DNA database. While generally lauded, the move has attracted criticism from civil rights groups who claim that constitutional privacy issues are raised by the government holding so many people's genetic information on file... [Read More]
Disappointing results one year into diabetes stem cell trial
9 January 2012 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
Biotech company Osiris Therapeutics has this month released an optimistic update on its Phase II trial evaluating the use of adult stem cells for the treatment of type 1 diabetes, despite lacking positive results... [Read More]
Step forward in pioneering stem cell trial for motor neurone disease
28 November 2011 - by Dr Marianne Kennedy
On 18 November, Richard Grosjean became the first patient to receive a pioneering stem cell treatment in the upper part of the spinal cord. His procedure is part of an ongoing US-based clinical trial aimed at assessing the safety of injecting neural stem cells taken from eight-week-old fetuses into the spinal cords of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)... [Read More]