The ubiquitous painkiller paracetamol is the cause of around 50% of poisoning admissions to hospital and approximately 150 deaths each year. Prof Nick Bateman and Dr James Dear lead a panel discussion examining the dark side of this medicine cabinet staple, looking at clinical treatments and social interventions aiming to tackle paracetamol poisoning and speculating on the potential pain relievers of the future.
Mercury is the most beautiful element in the periodic table. And the most reviled. The only liquid metal, its inertness and density have made it crucial to science and its exotic-sounding red ore, cinnabar, has appeared in artwork for at least 2,000 years. UCL chemist and broadcaster, Prof Andrea Sella, explores the mysterious world of mercury and explains why in his opinion we should feel a little sad as this most poisonous of elements becomes the first to face a worldwide ban.
Venue: Summerhall: Histology 2
MadLab is an interactive electronics workshop with specially designed circuit board kits available for all ages and abilities. Learn the secrets of soldering then use your skills to assemble your very own gadget. Join a team with friends and bring your own old toys or gadgets to create a unique machine in MadLab Plus.
Observe university researchers as they study our closest living relatives. Take part in a host of related activities, from computer games to trying your hand at a problem set for chimpanzees. Presented by Edinburgh Zoo. ****Please note: On Friday 11th April between 11am-1pm the researchers will be on hand to chat about their research.****
Do you exercise for an hour each day? Drink eight glasses of water? Eat your five portions of fruit and vegetables? Detox once a month? Stock up on antioxidants and probiotics? Is there any scientific basis for the five-second rule that food picked up from the floor quickly has a lower risk of contamination? Join our myth-busting experts New Scientist journalist Caroline Williams and Dr John Babraj of Abertay University as they scrutinise the science behind some common (mis?)perceptions and help you separate health facts from health fiction.
The Lab Rats scientists are using poo clues to track down mammoths and mastodons. Explore Ice Age environments through demonstrations and hands-on messy challenges. Perfect for children aged 4-7. Presented by the National Museum of Scotland.
This year’s Festival photography exhibition showcases the brilliant world of fluorescence and bioluminescence, and in this complimentary event, Prof Rory Duncan and Dr Paul Dalgarno of Heriot-Watt University take us on a hands-on journey through fluorescent microscopy. Light emitting molecules from coral and jellyfish have had a huge impact on biological sciences, allowing us to visualise this complex environment in microscopic scale. Explore fluorescent microscopy’s role in developments in diseases, drugs and our understanding of life itself in this presentation with interactive examples.
Venue: RBGE: Royal Botanic Garden
Join Expedition Botanics in the search for traditional knowledge about Colombian rainforest plants. Learn how to survive using the resources of the forest and help to discover how the people of the Amazon use plants in daily life. Collect stamps in your passport as you complete activities. Forest Survival: Learn how the forest can supply all your basic needs and choose what to take on your journey. Plant Hunters: Track down the new species of plant that your research has shown grows in this part of the Colombian rainforest. Food of the Gods: Find the chocolate tree and discover how it provides a variety of food and drink. Amazonian Animals: See if you can spot some rainforest animals. Gardens in the Forest: Taste the yuca plant - an important crop in the forest gardens called ‘chagra’ in Colombia. Wise People: See the bixa plant, used for body painting, and have a design painted on your face to show your plant knowledge. Incredible Edibles: Sow seeds to take home and find out how lessons from the forest gardens of Colombia can help you to grow your own food at home.
Join Benny and Jack on a journey of discovery as they learn what children in different places around the world are up to exactly the same time. Why is one child getting up just as another goes to bed? Mindboggling questions about day and night are answered in this colourful and interactive show.
Venue: Summerhall: Dissection Room
The BBC Radio Scotland series, Brainwaves, explores the science behind our everyday experiences, and nowhere is this centrality of science to our lives more evident – or delicious! – than in the area of food and drink. Presenter Pennie Latin is joined by Oxford University’s Prof Charles Spence, Andrew Barnett of Edinburgh microbrewery Barney’s Beer and New York-based curator Amanda McDonald Crowley to explore the science behind the flavours, textures, shapes and smells of our food. Dinner will never be the same again.