Biomedical scaffolding researchers receive £1.7 million Fellowship

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A young female looking through a microscope.

A five year research project will create a ‘design toolkit’ to develop and improve the effectiveness of biomedical scaffolds used to repair and regenerate tissue.

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has awarded an Established Career Fellowship to Professor Ruth Cameron and Professor Serena Best, from the University of Cambridge, to carry out the work. The £1.7 million project will start in June.

This is the first time that EPSRC has awarded a Fellowship on a “job-share” arrangement. For the last ten years Professor Cameron and Professor Best have jointly run the Cambridge Centre for Medical Materials with part-time contracts that fit in with their family commitments.

Biomedical scaffolds have been developed over the last 15–20 years, but using them to repair and regenerate tissue is not always successful. The research will look at issues in scaffold development in cardiovascular devices, dermal grafting and nerve guidance. The aim is to optimise the scaffolds for different tissue environments which can be used to treat a range of diseases.

Professor Cameron and Professor Best said “We are delighted that the EPSRC has recognised the benefits of our joint working arrangements and look forward to being able to make exciting advances in the area of regenerative medicine under this scheme”

Alison Wall, EPSRC Associate Director, Building Leadership, said: “This Established Career Fellowship recognises the excellence and importance of the research being done by Professor Cameron and Professor Best. It also illustrates the flexibility in our grant support. We’d like to see more proposals which include flexible working arrangements or other actions to increase diversity in our research community.”

Reference: PN 32-16