Medical Blogs

March 3, 2007

Respiratory Research About To Experience Influx Of Talented Young Scientists, UK

The field of respiratory research is about to experience an influx of talented young scientists. Twenty-one PhD students will soon begin research projects that address the role of factors as diverse as fungi, viral infection, immune system reactions and the influence of maternal diet on the serious respiratory disorders asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other conditions.

The research awards have been made in response to the growing number of people in the UK who suffer from respiratory disease. The medical research charities Asthma UK, the British Lung Foundation and the British Thoracic Society (with the Morriston Davies Trust) have joined together with the Medical Research Council to fund the studentships.

They hope that by encouraging young scientists to study conditions that affect the respiratory system, there will be a greater capacity to develop treatments and knowledge of these illnesses in the future.

The funding collaboration was prompted by the report of a workshop attended by clinicians, scientists, research charities and other research funders in October 2005. The report reviewed the current standing and future of respiratory medicine research in the UK.

Professor Stephen Holgate, Chair of the UK Respiratory Research Strategy Committee, said: "More and more people in the UK are becoming ill as a result of respiratory conditions. Two major disease areas, lung cancer and lung fibrosis, were still under-represented in the research applications but this simply highlights why it is so important that we encourage young scientists to begin their careers in respiratory research, build their knowledge and find out more about how and why these conditions are on the rise so that we can offer effective treatments in the future. All of the funding partners believe the collaboration is a fantastic opportunity to strengthen respiratory research."

Twelve awards will be available in 2007 and a further nine in 2008. Students all over the UK will carry out a three or four year research project and receive training in research methods and key personal skills. The first awards have been made to scientists in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Southampton, Manchester, Nottingham, Leicester, Glasgow, Leeds, Sheffield and London.

No comments: