On the 23rd of June Team IMS went on tour to Polo Farm to compete in the first “Vice Chancellor’s Challenge” in which departments form teams and compete in a variety of sports for the prestigious and enviable 2017 Challenge trophy.
Calling any event the “first annual” is always a bit scary, but having been down to the Technicians symposium I am very confident that it will indeed become a regular occurrence.
Spring is sproinging and this month I (Emily the Lab Technician) have been visiting our science friends at the Canterbury Campus and also the university facilities which are housed in Discovery Park (formerly the Pfizer site near Sandwich).
This month we have been working with a group of students from the University’s computing department who will be visiting SCRABEL weekly to work on their project.
SCRABEL has been feeling lonely this month as our wonderful PhD student Neha Shetty jetted off to India to visit the KS Hedge Medical Academy (KSHEMA) in Mangalore to learn and use techniques for the extraction and culturing of melanocytes and keratinocytes from human skin. This hugely complements Neha’s PhD studies into developing stem cell therapies for the treatment of vitiligo vulgaris. Vitiligo is a long-term skin condition in which pigment cells (melanocytes) lose their ability to create the skin pigment melanin, resulting in white patches of skin (particularly on the face, neck, hands, and in creases). Over the course of her PhD, Neha will be exploring whether the co-transplantation of different cell types can provide an effective and permanent treatment by replacing faulty melanocytes with healthy tissue. We’re all very excited to have her back and to see the techniques Neha has been developing during her 6 week placement in India.
At the start of the month we welcomed Dr Emily Billinge to the team as our new laboratory technician for SCRABEL. Emily will be supporting research activities in the lab as well as helping students and visitors as well as taking a key role in health and safety. Previously Emily attained an Undergraduate degree in Neuroscience and Pharmacology from the University of Nottingham then went on the undertake a PhD in analytical chemistry under Dr Mark Platt at Loughborough University. Emily’s PhD centred on the creation of proof-of-concept diagnostics with an emphasis on low cost, rapid result generation, and simple methodology to improve access to diagnoses especially in resource-poor areas. She is greatly looking forward to working with Dr Xiaomei Lu in stem cell research and with Saif Ahmed on the clinical application of 3D printing in the coming months.
And now, we’ve saved the best ’til last! We are incredibly proud to announce that our own Professor Anan Shetty was this month awarded with the prestigious Hunterian Professorship and Medal for 2017. Named after surgical pioneer James Hunter, the Hunterian Society was first founded in 1819 and meetings have been regularly held since then to further the pursuit of medical knowledge and learning. The Hunterian Professorship and Medal is recognised as one of the most reputable international awards for surgeons. As an orthopaedic surgeon, Professor Shetty is internationally renowned for his advances in cartilage repair and minimally invasive procedures having previously been recognised with the Fred Heatley Prize for research, Elsevier Prize for best publication and a Silver Medal (2008) in recognition of his teaching and research. The award will be presented to him later in the year by the Royal College of Surgeons when he delivers his Hunterian Lecture in April. Click here for more information from the Kent Institute of Medicine and Surgery.