By Paola Colaço Osorio
The achievements of a number of LMS researchers have been recognised in a recent round of promotions and prizes.
Dr Petra Hajkova, the head of the MRC LMS’s Reprogramming and Chromatin group, has been promoted to professor at Imperial College London, which hosts the Institute.
“I am very happy about this promotion as it reflects the recognition of the quality of our work by a world renowned university,” Hajkova says.
Three further LMS researchers also received promotions: Dr Silvia Santos, Dr Andre Brown and Dr Toby Warnecke were all made senior lecturers.
Andre Brown is head of the Behavioural Genomics group, which explores the molecular mechanisms underlying the function of the nervous system. ‘’This step in my career is a reflection of the progress my lab members have made. It’s been really satisfying to see how we went from an empty lab to a team of scientists exploring interesting puzzles together.’’
“I’m glad we could go through the promotion process at the same time,” Brown says. “Toby, Silvia and I started within a couple of months of each other and I’ve really enjoyed being able to go through the process of starting a lab in parallel with several others.”
Warnecke also welcomed the recognition of his group’s work in Molecular Systems. “It highlights the value Imperial places on interdisciplinary research and fundamental science.”
The positions appointed to the researchers allow them to strengthen their relationship with Imperial College. “It is particularly special to me since I really value the academic side of research: training and mentoring students and post-docs, organising courses or workshops and lecturing.” Santos says. “It has been very rewarding to be an active member of the LMS-Imperial College community.”
In addition to the promotions within Imperial College London, LMS researchers have gained external recognition. Dr Max Reuter won a DFG Research Fellowship, awarded by the prestigious German Research Foundation to enable the researcher to carry out further work of high scientific quality and originality at an international level. Reuter will begin the 2-year fellowship in November 2017.
The Michael Davies Early Career Award was presented to Dr James Ware at the British Cardiovascular Society Annual Conference last month. The prize, which can be awarded to clinical and non-clinical researchers, honours independent investigators who have made an outstanding contribution to cardiovascular medicine. Ware’s research aims to understand the impact of genetic variation on the heart and circulation and to translate these findings into improved patient care.
The same conference also saw Dr Antonio de Marvao awarded a prize for the Highest Scoring Abstract in Basic Science. Marvao is a lecturer with the LMS Chain-Florey scheme, which offers medical graduates the opportunity to complete PhDs in basic science at the Institute.
The Psychiatric Imaging group’s Dr Abhishekh Ashok was awarded the President’s Poster Prize at the British Association of Psychopharmacology’s summer meeting, along with his colleagues. The event, which took place in Harrogate, saw over 150 research groups present their work during the poster sessions. President Professor Jo Neill selected just two posters to receive special recognition.
Paola Colaço Osorio is the 2017 LMS science communications summer student.