Month: March 2015

Outreach activity from APMIC

150224_fringe_animals_099Dr Robert Dickinson & Rita Campos Pires from APMIC took part in a public engagement event as part of the Imperial Fringe series, that focussed on how and why scientists and doctors use animals in research.  Their stand focussed on how new treatments for brain injuries may be developed using a variety of techniques from modelling simulations, to in vitro tissue experiments and in vivo animal models of brain injury.

For more information please see the Imperial News item on the event.

Dr Dickinson & Rita Campos Pires also took part in an outreach activity at the innovative Lab 13 at Gillespie Primary School in Highbury where they talked about how the brain and the body work with groups of pupils from Years 2, 4 and 6.

In the photograph Rita is demonstrating to the pupils how the lungs work with the aid of a medical mannequin.

News from IGHI

IGHI logoPublications and media coverage from the Institute of Global Health Innovation


  • Ryan Callahan gave a 30minute talk at NHS England Event on Digital Maturity on 3rd February 2015.
  • Professor Darzi moderated a panel discussion at the Ministerial Meeting on Universal Health Coverage, Singapore on 10th February 2015 with Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and WHO Director General Dr Margaret Chan.
  • Ryan Callahan gave a talk on “Integrated primary and secondary care data to improve patient care” at Westminster Health Forum: Electronic health records and IT in the NHS: data protection, care data and implementing Personalized health and care 2020 on 10th February 2015.
  • World Innovation Summit for Health 17th – 18th February, Doha, Qatar


Surgery and Cancer awards and achievements

Huge congratulations go out to the following people:

  • Julia Anderson who last week found out she was the very well deserved winner of this years prestigious Imperial medal for her outstanding contribution to the Department and College
  • Prof Lesley Regan who has been given a Julia Higgins award for her continued work leading the Athena SWAN academic opportunities committee
  • Karen Pontifex who celebrated her 20th anniversiry at Imperial last week
  • Dr Sanooj Soni and Dr Paul Cathcart who were both awarded an MRC Clinical Research Training Fellowship


Surgery and Cancer represent at Woman@Imperial week

Women of Imperial exThe ladies of Surgery and Cancer have been appearing all over the place this week to mark the Women@Imperial exhibition going on at the College this week and have been seen:

  • On the College website 
  • On Twitter #ImperialWomen 
  • In the photo exhibitions at South Kensington and Hammersmith
  • In the Imperial Reporter magazine
  • At the reception to celebrate the Women@Imperial exhibition which took place on Tuesday. Where Liz Want, Leanne Nye, Nicola Gray and Arti Sikka did an amazing job representing the Faculty of Medicine and showcasing some of the work they are involved in.

Ladies, there is still time to get involved by sending in any photos and descriptions of you at work to Al ( who will put them on twitter via #ImperialWomen. You can find out more about gender equality issues via the links below:


College pilot play scheme over Easter

icimages (1)Please find below details College’s pilot play scheme which will be running for 6 days over the Easter period.

As part of the College’s commitment to parent and family support, it has teamed up with Fit For Sport, the UK’s leading experts in engaging and educating children, young people and families through activity. Together we will deliver a multi-activity and educational camp utilising the fantastic facilities at Imperial’s South Kensington campus, including the Union activity spaces, science labs, the swimming pool and the outdoor secret garden.

A maximum of 60 places are offered for this trial on a first come, first served basis. Depending upon the success of this trial, we will be looking at introducing these camps across more school holidays.

Further details cane be found on the Playscheme website.

Professor Naomi Chayen launches “Chayen Reddy MIP” via Imperial Innovations

ChayenProfessor Naomi Chayen’s paper about designing the first nucleation inducing agents for automated crystallization trials so that they can be used for high throughput, has just come out in the March issue of Acta D 71, 534-540 and has also been highlighted as Research News by the International Union of Crystallography. She also has a commercial product called ‘Chayen Reddy MIP’ beeing launched by Imperial Innovations this week.

The work describes the design, fabrication and validation of the first non protein nucleating agent made specifically for robotic crystallisation experiments. The nucleating agent is called molecularly imprinted polymer (MIP; known as ‘smart material’). MIPs are created to contain nano cavities similar to the sizes of protein molecules. These MIPs are dispensed using commercially available robots and their application bypasses the concerns associated with seeding and solid heterogeneous nucleants. The MIPs are effective in finding new crystallization conditions and in improving crystal quality.

The research has paved the way to commercialization by Imperial Innovations – leading to a patented product called ‘Chayen Reddy MIP’ that can be used for the automated screening and optimization of any biomacromolecule. The application of these materials is simple and 20 nanolitres is sufficient for each trial, thus this will provide a potent tool for scientists in academia and industry.

Research prizes for Clinical Research Fellows

Congratulations to two Clinical Research FMsk 1ellows, working withing vascular surgery who have won prestigious prizes for their research.

Ms Kate Williams attended the Australasian College of Phlebology Annual Meeting in Queensland, Australia. Where she won the Best Research Presentation Award for “Results of a pilot trial of neuromuscular stimulation in chronic venous disease”.

Msk 2Mr Brahman Dharmarajah won Best Paper Award at the American Venous Forum 27th Annual Meeting, Palm Springs, USA, February 2015. The title of the paper was “Contrast Enhanced Ultrasound For Thrombus Dissolution In An In-vitro Model Of Acute Deep Vein Thrombosis” which was a collaborative project with the Division of Experimental Medicine (IC), Department of Haematology (IC) and Biomedical Engineering Department at the University of Cyprus.

Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health Awareness Week 11-17 May 2015

This year’s MHAW theme will focus on mindfulness, as per the Mental Health Foundation’s website. If you would like to know what events were held last year please see here.  I look forward to hearing about your events!

MHFA Awards

Wednesday 25 February was the fifth annual MHFA awards, that took place at the House of Lords. Please find links to relevant news stories below, to find out what’s going on around the country.

Choice of monitoring method could be key for babies with poor growth in the womb

BabyBabies that grow poorly in the womb could have better outcomes if a method for the timing of delivery was used more widely, a study suggests.

Lead author Surgery and Cancer’s Christoph Lees, said: “This is the first randomised trial to evaluate how best to monitor babies who are not growing adequately in the womb.

To read the full story click here.


PhD students take part in 3 minute thesis competition

ENDOn Thursday 12th February eight Surgery and Cancer PhD students took part in the Imperial three minute thesis competition heats in collaboration with the NHLI. Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is a research communication competition developed by The University of Queensland, which challenges PhD students to present a compelling oration on their thesis topic and its significance in just three minutes.

In total 17 students presented their work to a panel of patient judges and the Director of the Graduate school Professor Sue Gibson (pictured).

Competition was fierce but in the end winners were announced from each Department with the top two from each Department going forward to compete in the College wide competition on the 29th of April.

SlideCongratulations to Mahim Qureshi (Clinical Research Fellow in Surgery) who won first place (pictured), Liza Selley (Computation Systems Medicine) who came second and Ben Byrne (Clinical Research fellow in Surgery) who came third.

Good luck to Mahim and Liza who will be going forward to compete in the College competition at the end of April.