Produced by ITN Productions, Biology Impacting Lives gives an insight into and outlines the key research carried out at Edge Hill University.

Introduced by national newsreader Natasha Kaplinsky, the programme, which was launched at the Royal Society of Biology Annual Awards yesterday evening (Thursday 10 October), features key industry interviews and news-style reports along with sponsored editorial profiles.

Head of Biology at Edge Hill Professor Paul Ashton introduces the type of research being carried out at Edge Hill including malarial resistance, conservation success and bio-diversity in the tropics.

Plant science expert, Sven Batke whose research has taken him across the globe, talked to ITN’s bespoke production hub.

He said: “Over the last few years I’ve been particularly interested in developing research in epiphyte research. Epiphytes are plants that rely on other plants for physical support.

“Epiphytes contribute to our global ecosystem processes in different ways; they’re quite diverse so they’re quite a rich habitat for other organisms.

“They actually store and recycle that water very effectively, so without epiphytes, a lot of the forest processes as we know them wouldn’t function the same way.”

The whole programme, which features other organisations, was introduced by Royal Society of Biology CEO Mark Downs at the annual awards ceremony – a celebration of the achievements of the society members and bioscience enthusiasts, held at The Francis Crick Institute, a biomedical research centre in London.

Biology student Caitlin Eilbeck and Plant Science expert Sven Batke in a lab at Edge Hill University looking at illustrative pieces of plants discovered in the Biology degree
Biology Student Caitlin Eilbeck and Plant Science expert Sven Batke

Biology student Caitlin Eilbeck, who also features in the programme, said: “I’ve always thought of art and biology as two separate subjects growing up. When I came to Uni, I would never have thought to put the two together.

“Illustration is a really fundamental part of taxonomy and taxonomic identification so to be able to get from words to envisioning what it is you’re trying to identify or illustrate what you’ve discovered, illustration and art really helps to depict correctly what you’re trying to describe.”

Professor Ashton, who talked about the type of research being carried out at Edge Hill, added: “How do you feed people? How do you conserve the planet against a growing population? So, if we’re going to answer those questions then we have to enthuse and excite the next generation into being biologists, so they want to study in these areas.”

To find out more about studying biology at Edge Hill University, visit https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/courses/biology/


The Royal Society of Biology is a single unified voice for biology: advising Government and influencing policy; advancing education and professional development; supporting our members, and engaging and encouraging public interest in the life sciences. The Society represents a diverse membership of individuals, learned societies and other organisations. Individual members include practising scientists, students at all levels, professionals in academia, industry and education, and non-professionals with an interest in biology. www.rsb.org.uk

ITN Productions produces bespoke creative and commercial content for broadcasters, businesses, brands, rights holders and digital channels. Industry News forms part of this offering and is a communications tool for leading industry bodies and national associations produced in a broadcast news-style programme format, including interviews, news items and sponsored editorial profiles. www.itnproductions.co.uk