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Posts tagged ‘MRC Human Nutrition Research’

Doing research at the top of the world

Some of the research team at basecamp

Some of the research team at basecamp (Image copyright: Jules Griffin)

Apart from a spectacular view, what do researchers get out of lugging scientific equipment to Everest? It’s Everest Day, 60 years since Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay were the first to reach the summit, so here are Jules Griffin and Tom Ashmore from MRC Human Nutrition Research and the University of Cambridge to tell us about why they joined the recent Xtreme Everest 2 expedition, and the surreal nature of doing research in the world’s highest lab.

The aches in our legs have faded, the last of the headaches have receded and we are finally putting back on the weight we have lost during the trip. Now all that’s left to do is wait with bated breath for the samples from the expedition to arrive so our part in the scientific analysis can begin.

This Easter, along with 200 other volunteers, we took part in a trek from the airfield at Lukla in Nepal (at an elevation of 2,840m) to Everest Basecamp (5,364m) to examine how our bodies adapt to the low oxygen levels at high altitude. As part of this medical expedition we were tested at three laboratories at increasing elevations: Kathmandu (1,400m), Namche Bazaar (3,440m) and Everest Basecamp. Read more