Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

New UK Science Minister

Nature News reports that Sam Gyimah is the new UK science and universities minister.

Gyimah, who Nature News says is a "rising star" in the Conservative Party, was previously at the Ministry of Justice and, prior to that, he was a minister for childcare at the Department for Education, it says.

Gyimah's appointment comes as part of a wider reorganizing of officials, Nature News says. He succeeds Jo Johnson, who has become a transport minister. While science and education minister, Johnson shepherded the Higher Education and Research Act, as the Guardian reports. Inside Higher Education notes that the bill created the Office for Students, which it calls a "super-regulator" for higher education, while Nature News notes that that bill also created UK Research and Innovation, the new science-funding agency headed by Mark Walport.

The Guardian adds that Gyimah has his work cut out for him, as many the recent changes have been controversial.

Dame Janet Beer, president of Universities UK and vice chancellor of the University of Liverpool, tells IHE that she anticipates working on "policy that supports universities to maximize their positive impact on the economy, society, and students" with Gyimah.

The Scan

Machine Learning Helps ID Molecular Mechanisms of Pancreatic Islet Beta Cell Subtypes in Type 2 Diabetes

The approach helps overcome limitations of previous studies that had investigated the molecular mechanisms of pancreatic islet beta cells, the authors write in their Nature Genetics paper.

Culture-Based Methods, Shotgun Sequencing Reveal Transmission of Bifidobacterium Strains From Mothers to Infants

In a Nature Communications study, culture-based approaches along with shotgun sequencing give a better picture of the microbial strains transmitted from mothers to infants.

Microbial Communities Can Help Trees Adapt to Changing Climates

Tree seedlings that were inoculated with microbes from dry, warm, or cold sites could better survive drought, heat, and cold stress, according to a study in Science.

A Combination of Genetics and Environment Causes Cleft Lip

In a study published in Nature Communications, researchers investigate what combination of genetic and environmental factors come into play to cause cleft lip/palate.