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#3 April 2016

Video games, immflamuation, and interactive music technology

Starting off the night was Brandon Ashinoff whose PhD research is based at the University of Birmingham. Brandon is interested in the positive effects of video games on cognition, education, and social behaviour:

"There is an implicit assumption (one that persists in much of the general public today) that video games are simply a toy and nothing of real substance can be gained from them. Considering this, and the prevalence of video games in society, numerous questions have been raised about the long term effects of regular use. While the media focus is generally on potential negative effects, there is also evidence to suggest that there may be a range of potential positive effects of video games. It should be noted that when “video games” are referenced it is specifically with regard to commercial, “for fun” games and not games that were designed with educational purposes or cognitive training in mind. I am interested in the potential benefits that playing video games may confer to cognition and brain function, social interaction, and education."

Next was Allan Cameron, a PhD student at Aston University working in the field of immunology researching what happens during inflammation and how we can harness these mechanisms for drug delivery:

"I am currently researching the role of apoptotic cell derived extracellular vesicles within the immune system. Specifically how these vesicles influence inflammation and the mechanisms they employ. With the end goal of developing a synthetic vesicle for use in drug delivery."

Our final speaker Balandino Di Donato is a PhD student working in the Intergra Lab based at Birmingham City University. His research focuses on the visualisation of gesturally spatialised sounds:

"My research simply involves finding ways to play sounds around yourself using gestures that you already know. Here's a little example."

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