News Archive - 2021




WHRF Newsletter December 2021



At this year’s UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), Nikita Patel, a PhD student funded by the William Harvey Research Foundation (supervised by Prof Chris Thiemermann, Centre for Translational Medicine & Therapeutics) co-hosted a youth panel event organised by the Society of Chemical Industry (SCI) focusing on the themes of Fuels of the Future, Turning Waste into Gold and Engineering Nature. The event gave delegates the opportunity to discuss, query and challenge the climate change solutions proposed by the panellists.

Watch SCI's COP26 event - Countdown to Planet Zero: Combating Climate Change with Chemistry

Nikita became involved in the event following her success at the STEM for Britain competition where entrants present their research in a lay format.

As a result, SCI invited Nikita to co-host the panel event and use her science communication skills to field questions from the audience and ensure they are understood by all. 

Radio interview with Nikita Patel after the event (listen from 21:49)

Podcast recorded by Nikita Patel with The Periodic Fable, including details of her PhD:

on Spotify

on Apple Podcasts

Society of Chemical Industry announce Nikita Patel as a co-host at its COP26 event


BPS Best Oral Communication Prize winner

At this year’s BPS 90th Anniversary Pharmacology 2021 conference, Nikita Patel, a third-year PhD-student funded by WHRF (supervised by Prof. Chris Thiemermann, Centre for Translational Medicine & Therapeutics) received the Best Oral Communication Prize for her talk entitled ‘Inhibition of Bruton’s tyrosine kinase reduces organ injury and dysfunction in a rat model of severe haemorrhage’ (Cardiovascular & Respiratory session).


RSM President's Gold Medal in Cardiology

Former winner of WHRF's Lay Communication prize, Dr Zahra Raisi-Estabragh wins prestigious RSM President's Gold Medal in Cardiology.


EULAR 2021 Poster Prize

Former WHRF Lay Communication Prize runner-up and project-grant award winner, Dr Anne-Sophie Thorup wins Poster Prize at EULAR 2021, the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology.


Lay Communication Prize 2021

Congratulations to Camilla Davan-Wetton, who has won the William Harvey Research Foundation Lay Communication Prize 2021, with her presentation, 'Another day to spend in bed'!

“Entering the Lay Communication Prize was a thoroughly enjoyable experience and a great challenge. Being able to explain your research to non-scientists is an invaluable skill, which we have seen highlighted more than ever in the last 18 months, and participating in competitions like this provides an excellent opportunity to test your ability to do this. A big thanks to the William Harvey Research Foundation!” 

See also 'Senescence under appraisal: hopes and challenges revisited' PubMed (

And, congratulations also to Michelle Allan on her highly commendable presentation in the competition, winning the runner-up travel award!

"The Lay Communication competition was a great opportunity for me to consider how research is perceived by the general public and how best to convey 'key messages'. Engaging the general public is vital for researchers - we need their support and their participation, and ultimately all of our work contributes to our pool of knowledge as a society. Being able to talk about research clearly to non-academics is a really important skill and I had great fun practising for the competition!"

Competition Chair and Foundation Trustee, Steve Bates, reiterated the importance of communications to secure sustainable research funding:

“Medical science has become increasingly complex even as our understanding of the systems which govern human life have improved. The ability to explain to non-experts why and how particular fields of research are important is more vital than ever in reaching potential donors and in raising the level of the scientific debate generally.”


WHR Professor Sir Mark Caulfield

appointed CEO of Barts Life Sciences



WHRF Newsletter June 2021


John Vane Academy

Anna Majkowska, PhD researcher in Dr Egle Solito’s lab at WHRI, part-funded by WHRF, is developing a bioengineered system (an in vitro 3D blood brain barrier (BBB) microfluidic model) for the study of drug discovery in the brain in neuroinflammatory conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and Multiple Sclerosis. Very excitingly, Anna has been accepted recently to Conception X, a venture programme that helps PhD students launch deep-tech start-ups based on their research and receive enterprise training designed for scientists and engineers. 



Lady Daphne Vane RIP

WHRF was very saddened to learn early in 2021 that Sir John’s widow, Daphne, had died. She was an indefatigable supporter of everyone at William Harvey Research, in memory of all that her husband had achieved and championed. She will be sorely missed.


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