Sickle Cell UNBOXED – A Five-Part Podcast

Sickle Cell Unboxed, a five-part podcast series produced and hosted by medical doctor and multimedia producer Dr Yemisi Bokinni debuts. Funded by The Genetics Society UK, the series is a public engagement initiative centred on creatively exploring life sciences themes. Sickle Cell Anaemia, a hereditary blood disorder, is the fastest-growing genetic condition in the UK and is caused when two copies of a gene mutation are inherited, one from either parent. Historically, at-risk populations for Sickle Cell Anaemia are individuals with ancestry from Africa, the Caribbean, India and parts of the Arab world. 

The series creatively ‘unboxes’ themes such as the historical origins and early explanations rooted in African folklore, to the more present themes of Sickle Cell and relationships, lived experiences in the UK and Nigeria, in addition to notes on pioneering new treatments and medical advances for future cures. Guests on the podcast hail from the UK, Nigeria and Ghana, and include senior haematologists, a researcher at the University of Oxford, advocacy practitioners and notedly, insights from individuals living with the condition. 

Speaking from London, UK, a quote from Dr Yemisi Bokinni:

“I was inspired to create this project after the unfortunate death of Evan Nathan Smith, a twenty-one-year-old who died of Sickle Cell in the UK, in part due to a lack of an understanding of the condition. Considering Sickle Cell is the fastest-growing genetic condition in the UK, I believe everyone should know about it. While the motivation for the podcast stemmed from a tragedy, I wanted to centre the essence of hope. The series concludes with the episode titled ‘Unboxing the future’ which bears testament to the beauty of science and research in improving all of our lives”. 

The series is available to listen to here:

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March 2023
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