Having so enjoyed the Death exhibition at the Wellcome Institute I am on the look out for other medical and scientific exhibitions to tickle my fancy at the weekend. This one, Strictly Science, at Imperial College, London is a must for those with an interest or older teenagers who also find medical history fascinating.
To celebrate 100 years of the Medical Research Council (MRC) which was set up to be dedicated to improving human health, the interactive exhibition Strictly Science contrasts the scientific endeavours in 1913 with those today and asks visitors to speculate on what the next 100 years will bring.
The MRC was really kickstarted in response to the devastating effects of a TB epidemic and when the cure for TB was discovered in 1944 the MRC conducted the first ever large-scale controlled trial to assess the antibiotic streptomycin on patients, thereby establishing an international blueprint for drug testing which is still used today.
The exhibition showcases key historical achievements including MRC's role in:
- helping to recude the death rate of TB by 99.5% in the UK - in 1911 almost 500,000 deaths were recorded and by 2011 just 250 were recorded in the UK.
- Supporting the development of the first anti-typhoid vaccine which saved over 100,000 soldiers in WW1 from death and disease
- Identifying vitamin-deficiency diseases and the curative potential of vitamins including cod-liver oil and sunshine
Strictly Science not only celebrates 100 years of progress in medical research, but accentuates how knowledge gained through basic research shapes our life in general, from culture and commerce to politics.
The exhibition is open daily from 10-6pm from 5-14 April 2012 in the Exhibition Road Foyer of Imperial College London, South Kensington.