select search filters
roundups & rapid reactions
before the headlines
Fiona fox's blog

for journalists

When science hits the news agenda, it’s our job to pass on to journalists as much accurate information as we can, as quickly as possible. In order to do this we send out quotes from experts, statistical analyses of scientific studies and factsheets, in addition to running regular press briefings on the latest hot topic. Find our most recent roundups and rapid reactions, briefings, factsheets and ‘before the headlines’ analyses below, or use the icons on the right.

As well as working with experienced specialist reporters, we also provide support to new reporters, editors and generalists through a series of publications, including ‘briefing notes’ on controversial topics, and guidelines on science and health reporting, and by working with the National Coordinator for Science Training for Journalists.

see publications for journalists

Need an expert to interview? The SMC’s database is not quite like any other. Those on it are selected not just for their proven expertise, but also for their willingness and ability to engage with the media when their area of work hits the headlines. The quality of our experts is important to us. The SMC recruits scientists, engineers and others who work for respected institutions, publish in peer-reviewed journals and have a track record of quality research in their specialist field.

The SMC was established to provide assistance to the national news media when covering controversial science stories or breaking news. As such the SMC’s priority remains to support new reporters at UK national news media outlets. We prioritise working with science, health and environment specialists on controversial news pieces, but also provide support for journalists pursuing original and long-form pieces by advising on the best experts to approach and helping to set up visits to institutions.

Get in touch using the details below. Please be aware though, if your enquiry does not fit our remit we may not be able to help or may refer you on to external scientific institutions.


t: +44 (0)20 7611 8300


the 100,000 Genomes Project – how will it work?

The 100,000 Genomes Project, coordinated by Genomics England, will begin soon, with the first full samples being taken in early 2015. Recruitment to the project will be handled by NHS England. What are the aims of the project, and who will benefit from it? read more

what’s the real truth behind e-cigarettes?

The first Cochrane Review on this subject will be published next week in the Cochrane Library. This new emerging evidence gives some early insights into how effective e-cigarettes are as an aid to stopping smoking. This is an active area of research and this review draws on the first randomised trials that have been done. read more

expert reaction to study reviewing the effectiveness of e-cigarettes as an aid to stopping smoking

Researchers publishing in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews journal have analysed randomised controlled trials in which the efficacy of e-cigarettes to aid smoking cessation was analysed. They report that e-cigarettes have a beneficial effect in terms of smoking cessation, and that they found no evidence of a health risk associated with short-term e-cigarette use. read more

electronic cigarettes

Key information about e-cigarettes, including their prevalence, effects on health, and regulation. read more

expert reaction to insulin for type 2 diabetes and risk of death

A paper published in the journal Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism explored an association between treatment of patients with type 2 diabetes with insulin, and risk of death. They report an increased incidence of mortality, major adverse cardiovascular events, and cancer in those treated with insulin, and suggest their results warrant further study. read more

MBRRACE-UK: Report into maternal deaths

Whilst rates of maternal deaths in the UK have been declining over the last ten years, there are still around 80 deaths during or after childbirth each year and in the majority of cases these women had pre-existing medical or mental health conditions. Ensuring pregnant women receive flu jabs and closer monitoring for sepsis after birth could reduce the number of deaths. This will be the 60th consecutive year in which maternal deaths are reviewed through the MBRRACE-UK programme read more

in this section

search by tag