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Exhibition celebrates fight against deadly diseases

A national exhibition has just opened exploring the role of scientists in tackling five of the deadliest tropical diseases in the world.

Visitors to the National of Museum of Scotland will be able to take part in an interactive and family friendly exhibition which celebrates the work of three universities working to tackle diseases impacting millions around the world.

Parasites: Battle for Survival will highlight the work being done to eliminate malaria, alongside lesser well known but equally dangerous diseases such as Guinea worm disease and sleeping sickness.

Experts claim that more than 5% of the world’s population are affected by the diseases on display, which thrive in areas lacking access to clean water, healthcare and adequate sanitation.

Organisers hope to capture the attention of healthcare groups and government, who historically have not invested in tackling of these lesser well-known diseases, despite their huge impact globally.

Sophie Goggins, Curator of Biomedical Science at National Museums Scotland, said:

The five diseases we are highlighting in Parasites: Battle for Survival impact hundreds of millions of people around the world and yet they’re almost unheard of. Scientists here in Scotland are among those fighting to eliminate them and this fun and engaging exhibition explores the cutting-edge research and important fieldwork taking place right now in the hope that these deadly diseases will soon be consigned to history.

The exhibition features the work of the Universities of Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow, who have been working closely with scientists and communities around the world. The teams say they are hoping to play an important role in eliminating the first human disease since smallpox was wiped out in 1979.

Organisers have made particular efforts to engage young people in the exhibition, as they hope it will inspire future generations of scientists needed to tackle other important global health challenges.

Parasites is free to attend will run until 19 April 2020 at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.

Image by the National Museum of Scotland