• Question: Have you discovered anything no-one knew about before? If so, what did you discover and how did you discover it?

    Asked by LukedyLuke to Hugh, James, Katherine, Matt, Shannon on 14 Nov 2017. This question was also asked by 968dagk27.
    • Photo: Katherine Benson

      Katherine Benson answered on 14 Nov 2017:

      I’ve been able to diagnose lots of patients who didn’t have any idea why exactly they were ill. That’s something that no one knew before!

    • Photo: Hugh J. Byrne

      Hugh J. Byrne answered on 14 Nov 2017:

      In a research field, there are lots of small discoveries or developments, which nobody knew before, and contribute to moving the whole field forward. In terms of developments, applying the methods from Physics to Biological systems is something that many people have not done before, so for example, we used the same mathematics which led Einstein to predict the laser… to describe how cells interact with nanoparticles.

    • Photo: James Brown

      James Brown answered on 14 Nov 2017:

      That’s really what we do! all our work is aimed at making a discovery that no one else has ever known before (sometimes they are small ones that people would probably think that was likely to work out that way), others are bigger ones that people really go- wow, we didnt think thats how that worked/happened. those are really exciting and usually built on lots of smaller discoveries.
      To get your PhD thats what you have to do- discover new knowledge that no one knew before!
      its all built on really careful design of experiments and repeated testing to make sure its correct!