Who am I?
I'm raising money for Endometriosis Research. We've been managing on a very small budget but now we want to do some (really) cool things, such as see whether we can develop a urine test for endometriosis. We are hopeful we can because the protein we think is promising, has been found in people with other diseases and it may just help people with endometriosis get an earlier diagnosis.
I'm a scientist at the University of Hull. You can find me on Twitter @BarbaraGuinn1, along with my lab @GuinnLab and some of my students including @CookseyLeah who works on this project. I studied for a PhD in Genetics in Cardiff and then spent 4.5 years in Canada studying immunology and cancer treatments and then set up my own research group at King's College London. Although I have mostly worked on leukaemia and more recently ovarian cancer, each disease I work on has similarities. They are awful for patients, treatment isn't very effective (could be better) and they cause problems when they spread.
What is the problem?Endometriosis affects 1 in 10 women and on average takes 7.5 years from symptoms to diagnosis. There is a lack of research funding compared to many other diseases and a lack of understanding of why it starts, why it is so awful for some women and not others and how to treat it. We would love to find a non-invasive urine test which could simplify diagnosis and mean that patients are diagnosed sooner and treated when treatment is the most effective.
Why are we asking for money?
- We need money to buy expensive pre-made kits that are already optimised and therefore easy to use without months of practising to make sure they work their best.
- This will speed up our ability to test urine from women with and without endometriosis and make sure our test is specific and sensitive. We'll be able to see if time of day, time of the menstrual cycle and even ow early we can sue the test to screen women to see if they have endometriosis.
- I am happy to provide updates whenever asked. We'll be tweeting about the work and of course publishing if it works. I also can be found at events such as Pint Of Science, Cafe Scientifique and The Big Conversation.
What will we spend the money on?
- ELISA kits to test 200 samples in triplicate - £8,000
- Creatinine Urinary detection kit for 200 samples - £3,500
- Antibodies for Western blotting tissues - to correlate protein in tissue with protein in the urine - £1,000
Find us here
Follow us on @GuinnLab to find out how we're doing! Feel free to DM or email me on B.Guinn@hull.ac.uk and if you have an event you want me to talk at, just let me know.
Help us succeed!
- You don't need to give money to help us succeed! Please share this project with anyone you think would support us – on Twitter (@GuinnLab), LinkedIn, by email (mine is B.Guinn@hull.ac.uk), telephone, in a chat over the fence or on your blog.
- Please share our fundraising attempt with everyone you know, because the more people who know about it, the more likely we are to make this work out brilliantly.
- And we know we said you don't need to give money to help us, but we'd love it if you did! Please sponsor us and help make this happen.