Research in Edinburgh

We support research across all the fields of clinical, biomedical, physical or engineering sciences related to medicine. The following are awards made to researchers working in Edinburgh's universities and hospitals since 2006. [Read about the awards made between 1992 and 2005]

Awards in 2013-14

PhD Studentships awarded during 2012-13 included the following to Heriot-Watt University:

logo Professor Will Shu (School of Engineering & Physical Sciences) will be supervising Dirk-Jan Cornelissen during the studentship, "3D-Cell printing for scalable, in vitro production of functional, microencapsulated pancreatic islets for the treatment of type I diabetes mellitus". This research will also involve close working with Roslin Cellab Ltd.
Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) is a life-threatening insulin-deficiency disease caused by the loss of beta cells in the pancreas. It is usually first diagnosed in children or young adults and lasts a lifetime. In Scotland, there are 210,000 people diagnosed with diabetes, with 10% having T1D. The direct cost of T1D to the NHS is £1 billion per year, with additional indirect costs of around £0.9 billion per year. Islet transplantation for T1D is an established clinical therapy with excellent outcomes. It involves extracting islet cells (mainly made of beta cells) from the pancreas of a deceased donor and transplanting them to a T1D patient. However, this treatment is limited by the availability of human islets and the need for toxic chemical immunosuppression to minimise organ rejection. Currently, four donated human pancreases are needed to extract sufficient islets to treat one T1D patient. To overcome this acute shortage of pancreatic islets for transplantation, this project aims to develop a high-throughput bioprinting technology to manufacture transplantable, insulin-secreting artificial islets from renewable stem-cell sources. Further, by encapsulating islets with protective biomaterials, this new technique may potentially eliminate the need for immunosuppression and will address critical shortages in the supply of islets for transplantation purposes.

Undergraduate Vacation Scholarships were awarded as follows:
Anonymous (Human Biology, Queen Margaret University) supervised by Dr Iain Gow, for a project entitled, Endothelial function during an oral glucose tolerance test in young, healthy volunteers
Helena Brewer (Veterinary Medicine & Surgery) supervised by Dr Jayne Hope, for a project entitled, Identification of key cytokines and cell populations driving gut inflammation in cattle with Johne's disease
Gavin Chapman (Medicine) supervised by Professor Adriano Rossi, for a project entitled, Investigating neutrophil formyl peptide receptor number and function in bronchiectasis
Anna Francis (Medical Sciences at Durham University) supervised by Dr Neil Henderson, Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University, for a project entitled, Investigation of the role of hepatic stellate cells during liver carcinogenesis
Jee Soo Kim (Medical Sciences) supervised by Dr Tara Spires-Jones, for a project entitled, Interactions of amyloid beta and tau in a new model of Azlheimer's Disease
Puay Lee (Medical Sciences) supervised by Dr Steven Pollard, for a project entitled, Is FoxG1 expression activated in midbrain and hindbrain neural stem cells when they are expanded in vitro?
Phoebe Makiello (Medicine) supervised by Mr Ian Currie, for a project entitled, Hepatic Encephalopathy in Liver Transplant Candidates
Sonia Rehman (Medical Sciences) supervised by Dr Christopher Mowat, for a project entitled, Development of a High-Throughput Screen for Specific Inhibitors of Human Indoleamine Dioxygenase-2
Sona Relovska (Reproductive Biology) supervised by Professor Philippa Saunders, for a project entitled, Investigations into the association between endometriosis and natural killer cells
Ana Rondelli (Neuroscience) supervised by Professor Andrew Jarman, for a project entitled, Using CRISPR technology to investigate the function of primary ciliary dyskinesia candidate genes in the fruit fly, Drosophila


Awards in 2012-13

PhD Studentships awarded during 2012-13 included the following to Edinburgh University:

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Professor Colin Campbell (School of Chemistry) will be supervising Hannah Johnston during the studentship, "Systems redox biology analysis of a novel family of naturally-derived anti-oxidants/anti-inflammatories". This research will also involve close working with Aquapharm BioDiscovery Ltd.
The regulation of cellular redox potential is important in controlling the behaviour of healthy cells and its dysregulation is implicated in the initiation and proliferation of several disease states. Redox potential is a measure of the driving force for oxidation and oxidative changes are known to be important in the initiation or proliferation of a variety of diseases including arthritis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Alzheimer's disease, age-related macular degeneration and multiple sclerosis. Aquapharm Biodiscovery Ltd. has recently discovered a new family of molecules which have therapeutic potential as anti-oxidants or anti-inflammatory drugs in diseases such as those listed above. It is thought that this family of molecules works by interacting with pathways involved in cellular redox regulation. Our aim in this project is to use a combination of cutting-edge biophysical techniques, established molecular biology assays and a new approach to visualisation and interpretation of this data to understand the mode of action of Aquapharm's therapeutic molecules with a view to optimising their effect. Through combining quantitative measurements with a systems biology approach we will produce a quantitative map of redox potential distribution in the cell that offers a completely new way to analyse the effects of molecules which alter redox-regulation.

Vicky Brewis (Cell Biology at Durham University) supervised by Professor David Price at Edinburgh University, for a project entitled, Regulation of gene expression in developing cortex by the transcription factor Pax6
Jennifer Conway (Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh University) supervised by Dr Jane Hope, for a project entitled, Assessment of gut lymphocyte populations in Johne's disease
Rebecca Green (Biological Sciences, Edinburgh University) supervised by Dr Christopher Harlow for a project entitled, Role of steroid hormones in modulating fibrosis and scarring in the peritoneal cavity
Constance Gwangwava (Food Science Technology & Management, Heriot-Watt University) supervised by Professor Michael Schweizer for a project entitled, Construction of a tool to monitor the influence of diet on cancer-associated microsatellite instability
Katie Hoban (Medicine, Edinburgh University) supervised by Dr Maria Valdes Hernandez for a project entitled, Atlas-based assessment of vascular territories on brain MR images of stroke patients
Phoebe Kirkwood (Medical Science, Edinburgh University) supervised by Dr Norah Spears for a project entitled, Investigation of apoptosis on chemotherapy drug-exposed gonads
Emily Knowles (Biological Sciences, Edinburgh University) supervised by Professor Lee Smith for a project entitled, Characterisation of a novel mouse model of induced androgen receptor expression

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Professor Mark Bradley (School of Chemistry) will be supervising Mr Matthew Simmonte during his studentship, "Polymer microarrays for the rapid identification of substrates for the enrichment of rare cell types, mitochondrial DNA capture and peptide deformylation and scale-up for practical application". This research will also involve close working with Altrika Ltd.
Polymers have a huge medicinal potential, ranging from the passive (e.g. blood bags and catheters) to the invasive, with stents, dissolvable stitches and polymeric-based drug release systems all having a role in modern healthcare. We have developed technology which allows the efficient, streamlined creation and screening of thousands of polymers allowing the speedy identification of polymers that can control and modulate cellular function. This project aims to enable the use of the polymer microarray platform to identify new polymers for novel functional biomedical applications. In particular, the work will focus on the cellular binding and the enrichment of rare cell types from cervical smear samples and on polymers for binding or scavenging mitochondrial DNA. Identified polymers will be rapidly scaled up, allowing translation from discovery to applied materials.

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Dr Simon Langdon (Division of Pathology, Institute of Genetics & Molecular Medicine) will be supervising Ms Chrysi Xintaropoulou during her studentship, "Targeting aerobic glycolysis in ovarian and other cancers". This research will also involve close working with TPP Global Development Ltd.
Normal cells use two biochemical pathways to generate energy. When oxygen is plentiful, mitochondrial oxidation of pyruvate is preferred, with cells switching to glycolysis when oxygen levels are low. Cancerous cells differ, preferring glycolysis which generates energy rapidly and has several advantages that facilitate tumour growth. By targeting glycolysis it may be possible to starve cancerous cells with limited effect on normal tissue. The project aims to find novel biomarkers that may identify patient groups with differing risk of developing resistance or more rapid disease progression, inform as to which type and stage of cancer may be most susceptible to inhibition of glycolysis, understand the relative importance of specific biomarkers or targets in the underlying tumour development and spread and, potentially, the mechanisms involved in drug resistance or insensitivity. The results should also provide validated preclinical models for proof-of-concept studies.

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Professor Malcolm Walkinshaw (Structural Biochemistry) will be supervising Ms Andromachi Xypnitou during her studentship, "A novel structure-based drug discovery approach for phosphatase enzymes" This research will also involve close working with TPP Global Development Ltd
Protein phosphatase enzymes have vital roles in many cellular processes and are implicated in a growing number of diseases including cancer, cardiovascular, neurological, immunological and metabolic diseases. Conventional laboratory-based drug discovery approaches have met with limited success in this enzyme family. New strategies to identify small molecules which modulate the function of these enzymes offer an exciting opportunity to unlock the therapeutic potential of this enzyme class. The project will adopt a novel drug discovery strategy utilising a unique set of computational tools and biophysical techniques to identify small molecule inhibitors at selected phosphatases. Following selection of appropriate phosphatase targets based on relevance to disease and availability of suitable 3D protein structures, a suite of 'in silico' computational tools will be used to mine 3D databases to identify molecules that will bind to 'pockets' on the enzymes. Biochemical techniques will then be used to produce the enzymes in the laboratory and various biophysical approaches will be used to measure binding of the novel molecules at the target phosphatase enzyme(s). Ultimately, the project will provide novel chemical starting points for optimisation which may then yield candidate drugs to treat human disease.

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Dr Till Bachmann (Pathway Medicine) will be supervising Mr Johannes Brennecke during his studentship, "Development of point-of-care detection of bacterial messenger RNA leading to rational antibiotic therapy guided by bacterial response to therapy". This research will also involve close working with Axis-Shield Ltd
Antibiotic resistance is a worldwide threat costing €1.5 billion per year in the EU alone. In addition, even if the bacterial pathogens are sensitive, antibiotic therapy fails in some cases. This can be associated with a discrepancy of in vitro and in vivo responses of bacteria to antibiotic therapy. Our previous investigations of this phenomenon indicated a change in response profile depending on treatment conditions. The condition bacterial pathogens are in (e.g. which virulence genes are activated, which antibiotic resistance mechanisms are activated) can be monitored via the detection of the gene expression status, using transcriptomics using DNA microarrays or next-generation sequencing technologies. Prompt initiation of appropriate antibiotic treatment and patient management strategies benefit hugely from rapid diagnostics. This project is embedded in the development of such devices and will build on existing MDx detection technology, with the aim of enabling the monitoring of bacterial response to therapy directly on the transcriptional level. It willinvolve research on the detection of mRNA biomarkers, nucleic acid isolation from patient samples and ultrasensitive detection technologies. This will be an important step towards an antibiotic treatment monitoring platform at point of care.

£148,073 over three years to Dr Barry J.A. Laird & Professor Marie Fallon (Palliative Medicine, Edinburgh Cancer Centre, Edinburgh University), Professor Donald Macmillan (Surgery, Glasgow University) & Professor Kenneth Fearon (Surgery, Edinburgh University), for an investigation of inflammatory biomarkers in prognosis in advanced cancer (IPAC Study).
Cancer patients and/or their relatives often want an estimate of life expectancy, to allow prioritisation of personal goals and help to inform decisions regarding treatment. Estimating time remaining in advanced cancer patients is, however, difficult and involves consideration of several factors, often in isolation. This project will clarify whether combining them will increase predictive accuracy, with the aim of developing a more accurate prognostic tool.

£149,855 over three years to Dr Louise S. Bicknell (Institute of Genetics & Molecular Medicine, Edinburgh University) for a project which seeks to uncover the genetic causes of primordial dwarfism, harnessing gene discovery to gain insights into how humans grow.
Primordial dwarfism is a genetic disorder leading to a maximum adult height of only 1 metre. Identifying the cause of disorders is important for both patient care and reproductive choices for family members. Many different genes are known to underlie the condition, so identifying them could provide insight into how human growth is controlled. This project will use cutting-edge genetic technology to identify the genetic changes in these patients and to study the mutations in detail, to learn more about the dynamics and regulation of cell growth.

Ms Emma Batchen (Medical Sciences, Edinburgh University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship supervised by Dr Fiach O'Mahoney to carry out a high throughput analysis of renal cell carcinoma using automated quantitative analysis for the discovery of prognostic and predictive protein biomarkers.
Ms Heather Horsburgh (Forensic Biology, Edinburgh Napier University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship supervised by Dr Kevin Smith to investigate matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP9) as a biomarker for breast cancer onset and metastasis.
Mr Ross Henderson (Medicine, Edinburgh University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship supervised by Dr Rebecca Reynolds to investigate depressive symptoms in obese pregnancy: identifying risk factors, influences on gestational weight gain and birthweight, and exploring underlying mechanisms.
Mr Chee Limm (Genetics, Edinburgh University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship supervised by Professor Andrew Rambaut to develop a system for the evolutionary and epidemiological characterisation of newly isolated influenza strains.
Ms Anna Price (Statistics, Glasgow University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship supervised by Dr Jackie Price at Edinburgh University, to study the potential of plasma N-terminal pro B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) as a marker of cardiovascular risk in people with type 2 diabetes/

Awards in 2010-11

£147,067 over 24 months to Dr Vicky MacRae & Professor Colin Farquharson (Roslin Institute & Royal [Dick] Vet School, Edinburgh), Professor Sayed Ahmed (Child Health, Glasgow University) & Dr Nicholas Morton (Cardiovascular Scienes, QMRI, Edinburgh) for an investigation of the regulation of insulin signalling in bone by PC-1.
The body's production of and reaction to insulin is critical to glucose metabolism and insulin resistance plays a fundamental part in conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Bone has recently emerged as also being able to regulate glucose metabolism, but little is known about the processes involved. A protein called plasma cell membrane glycoprotein-1 (PC-1) can regulate glucose metabolism in muscle and adipose tissue, but it is not known how important it is in controlling insulin levels, particularly in bone. This study will investigate the mechanisms used by bone in regulating glucose metabolism.
£148,872 over 36 months to Dr Richard Mort & Professor Iain Jackson (Medical & Developmental Genetics, MRC Human Genetics Unit, Edinburgh) & Dr Kevin Painter (Mathematics, Heriot-Watt University), to take an integrated multidisciplinary approach to modelling normal neural crest cell development and the abnormalities that contribute to human birth defects.
1 in 3,000 babies born in the UK are diagnosed with neurofibromatosis type 1 (Nf1). As well as having an increased risk of developing cancers of the nervous system, >95% of children diagnosed with Nf1 also have variable amounts of skin and hair hyper- or hypopigmentation. Pigment cells are a subtype of neural crest stem cells (NCSCs), the migration of which is a fundamental antenatal development process. Using a unique integration of live imaging and mathematical modelling, this project aims to explain neural crest cell behaviour in these and related disorders.
Reducing the 1 in 3 death rate for colon cancer depends on finding better ways to predict a patient's response to chemotherapy. This project aims to identify key differences between cancer types, to enable suitable tests for pathologists in hospital laboratories to use when a diagnosis is made.

Mr Euan Paterson (Human Biology, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Jane McKenzie, to investigate the post-prandial effects of a meal rich in long-chain omega-3 fatty acids on indicators of cardiovascular risk.
Mr Dong Liu (Developmental Biology, Edinburgh University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Liz Patton, to study nitrofuran activity in melanoma cells.
Ms Huma Yousuf (Human Biology, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Iain Gow, to study the effect of 17-beta oestradiol on the Na+/H+ exchange in breast cancer cell lines.
Miss Anjali Gangadharan (Medicine, Edinburgh University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Simon Parson, to investigate the relationship between capillary development and disease progression in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy.

Awards in 2009-10

£114,696 over two years to Dr Andrew J. Childs, Professor R.A. Anderson & Professor P.T. Saunders (MRC Centre for Reproductive Health, Edinburgh University), for an investigation of the regulation of germ cell development in the human fetal ovary in an effort to establish reproductive potential.
Women are born with a finite number of eggs, which decline in number throughout life without being replaced. Menopause occurs when the reserve of eggs has been exhausted, normally around the age of 50. In 1% of women, however, it occurs before the age of 40, a condition known as premature ovarian failure (POF) and can be devastating for women who have yet to have a family. Little is known about how reproductive lifespan is established during fetal life, but a family of growth factors (BMPs) has been found which seem to play a part in regulating the number and maturation of eggs during fetal life. This project aims to clarify the role of BMPs in the fetal ovary and indicate how disruption of the interactions between developing eggs and fetal ovary could result in POF. The results may also help in the development of new treatments for POF, including improving the efficiency of egg production from stem cells.
£149,947 over 24 months to Dr Nancy Sabatier (Centre for Integrative Physiology, University of Edinburgh) for an investigation of hypothalamic mechanisms in obesity.
One in four UK adults is obese and, as obesity can lead to diabetes, heart disease and stroke, NHS costs are escalating so tackling it is a policy priority. Before we can develop drugs to combat obesity however, we first need to find viable drug targets. How much we eat is largely controlled by a balance between brain signals of hunger and satiety ('fullness') and obesity often develops because of a defect in the 'fullness' signalling. Many nerve cells in one part of the hypothalamus express the SF1 gene. They are the only brain neurones to do so and mutations in the gene are associated with obesity. By learning exactly what part these neurones play in appetite, studying how they respond to two hormones involved in meal termination and how their responses change when an animal becomes obese, this project will assess whether they are likely to be a good target for therapeutic intervention.
£142,239 over 24 months to Dr John A. Marwick (National Heart & Lung Institute, Imperial College London) and Professor Adriano Giorgio Rossi (MRC Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh) to study the impact of oxidative stress and glucocorticoids on neutrophil function and macrophage clearance.
Neutrophils and macrophages are white blood cells which play a major part in inflammation and both are important in controlling the duration of this natural, but potentially damaging defence response. Neutrophils release toxic agents designed to kill foreign invaders such as bacteria, but also die shortly thereafter, limiting levels of damaging agents released. One of the macrophages' functions is to ingest and remove dying cells, including neutrophils. Failure of removal by macrophages can fuel inflammation; commonly prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs (steroids) reduce the rate of neutrophil death, which may prolong an inflammatory response; and there are suggestions that oxidative stress, which occurs in severe asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, may impair removal of dead neutrophils by macrophages. A better understanding of how steroids and oxidative stress affect neutrophils may help to identify potential therapies that restore steroid efficacy or provide targets for new alternative anti-inflammatory agents. In turn, this would result in improved disease control, reduced side-effects and decreased patient hospitalisation.
£117,317 over 24 months to Mr Stephen J. McNally, Professor Stephen J. Wigmore & Dr Luke Devey (Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh) for an investigation of the effect of heme-oxygenase-1 on the role of monocytes in hepatic ischaemia-reperfusion injury and transplantation.
In Scotland, there is a need for liver transplantation and liver cancer removal, but both have high complication rates, mainly because of the damage that occurs to the liver when its blood supply is restored after surgery. Using models of both liver cancer surgery and liver transplantation, this project aims to study the cells responsible for the damage and to investigate the ability of a specific protein (heme-oxygenase-1) to protect the liver. After clarifying exactly which cell types are responsible for causing the damage, the protective effect of the protein will be studied. The hope is that the results will show that the protein could be suitable for use in pre-operative treatment and also whether, for transplantation, it should be the donor organ or the recipient which should be treated.

Mr Thomas Carson (Applied Pharmacology, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Iain Gow, for a study of the interaction of resveratrol and oestradiol, the major form of the hormone oestrogen.
Ms Katia Hiersemenzel (Pharmacology, Edinburgh University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr John Marwick, to investigate the regulation of the controlled death (apoptosis) of white blood cells (neutrophils).
Mr David Clark (Medicine, St Andrews University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Lorna Marson at Edinburgh University, to study theh role of the lymph cells in the rejection of kidney transplants.
Ms Rohan Munir (Medicine, St Andrews University) undertook an Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship under the supervision of Dr Andrew Sims at Edinburgh University, to study the accuracy of current tests for preducting breast cancer subtypes.

Awards in 2008-09

£56,016 over 12 months to Dr David A. Ferenbach and Drs Jeremy Hughes & David Kluth (Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh), for an investigation of the role of resident renal macrophages and apoptotic cells in preventing acute kidney injury.
When any organ suffers a period without adequate blood supply (ischaemia), whether or not a blood supply is later restored to it, the tissues are damaged. In the kidney, this type of injury is a key cause of acute renal failure and is frequently fatal. The aim of this project is to investigate whether the kidney can be protected from this type of injury by making use of some of the cells involved in the body's normal defence and repair mechanisms, but which are not normally present in the kidney.
£149,761 over three years to Dr Hironori Ishizaki & Dr Elizabeth Patton (Edinburgh Cancer Centre, University of Edinburgh) for an investigation involving a small-molecule approach to melanocyte development, regeneration and disease.
Melanoma is responsible for more than 80% of the deaths from skin cancer and its incidence, particularly in Scotland, continues to rise as the most aggressive form is resistant to chemotherapy. The research of this project is focused on improving understanding of first, how the pigment cells that become melanoma (melanocytes) develop, migrate and survive and second, the genetic and cellular events that cause them to form moles and progress to become invasive cancer.

Awards in 2007-08

£39,777 over 18 months to Dr James W. Dear (Clinical Pharmacology Unit, University of Edinburgh) and colleagues Professor David Webb (Centre for Cardiovascular Science), Professor D. Nicholas Batemen (Scottish Poisons Information Bureau, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary), Dr Ian Marshall (Medical Physics Department, University of Edinburgh) & Dr Kenneth J. Simpson (Centre for Inflammation Research, University of Edinburgh) for the characterisation of paracetamol-induced acute renal failure, using dendrimer-contrast magnetic resonance imaging.
Improved treatment for the 50% of patients suffering from a paracetamol overdose who go on to develop potentially fatal kidney damage is the eventual aim of this study. Using MRI scanning technologies, it will test a new technique for imaging the pattern of organ injury, studying possible new treatments and also the role of the immune system in determining organ injury.
£149,843 over two years to Dr Ada Delaney (Centre for Neuroscience Research, Royal [Dick] School of Veterinary Studies) and colleagues, Professor Susan M. Fleetwood-Walker (Centre for Neuroscience Research, Royal [Dick] School of Veterinary Studies), Dr Rory Mitchell (Centre for Integrative Physiology) Dr Lesley Colvin (Department of Anaesthesia, Critical Care & Pain Medicine, Western General Hospital) and Professor Marie Fallon (CRUK Edinburgh Cancer Research Centre, Western General Hospital), all of the University of Edinburgh, for an investigation aimed at gaining new insights into evidence-based pain management for cancer-induced bone pain.
Cancer patients often develop secondary growths in their bones which frequently cause intense pain. Such cancer-induced bone pain is very difficult to treat adequately and so significantly reduces the quality of life of terminal patients. This project aims to identify markers in the nerves which might aid the evaluation of new analgesics for this type of bone pain.
£97,672 over 30 months to Dr Andrew C. Stanfield and colleagues Professors Eve Johnstone and Stephen M. Lawrie (all of the Department of Psychiatry, University of Edinburgh) and Professor Peter M. McKenna (Department of Psychological Medicine, University of Glasgow), for a clinical, neuropsychological and MRI study comparing autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia spectrum disorders.
The diagnosis of most psychiatric diseases is based on the patient's signs and symptoms, many of which are not specific to a particular disorder, so cannot be made with certainty. This can have important consequences for patient management. This project aims to find markers which will help to distinguish between the similar clinical signs and symptoms of schizophrenia and autism, with a view to improving diagnosis in these conditions.

Awards in 2006-07

£79,900 to Dr Omar Albagha (Bone Research Group) & Professor Stuart Ralston (Rheumatic Disease Unit), Molecular Medicine Centre, University of Edinburgh) for a two-year project on the identification of susceptibility gene(s) for osteoporosis in men on chromosome 10q21.
Osteoporosis affects about 12% of the male population, but most genetic studies of osteoporosis have focused on women. This project aims to define the genetic variants that contribute to susceptibility to osteoporosis in men and identify new genetic markers for risk assessment.
The Medical Research Scotland/Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 2006-08 was awarded to Dr Marie-Astrid Pezze (Centre for Cognitive & Neural Systems, University of Edinburgh) for her project entitled "Dopamine signalling from the ventral tegmental area to the hippocampus, novelty, and memory encoding: investigating the substrates of cognitive deficits in schizophrenia".
This work will identify possible links between the effects of current treatments for, and the memory impairment associated with, schizophrenia.

[Link to earlier awards 1992 and 2005]