Research in Edinburgh (Archive)

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 between 1992 and 2005. [Read about more recent awards]

Awards in 2004-05

£79,786 over 17 months to Drs Megan Smith (Dermatology) & Adriano Rossi(Respiratory Medicine Unit, Edinburgh University) for a study of the role of nitric oxide as a regulator of apoptosis and inflammation in human skin following ultraviolet irradiation.
Lupus erythematosus (LE) is a photosensitive condition, where even small amounts of ultraviolet radiation (the active component of sunlight) causes the death of skin cells. Ultraviolet light has, however, been shown to have beneficial effects. This study aims to clarify how it can be used safely to treat photosensitive skin conditions, such as systemic lupus erythematosus.
£79,993 over two years to Dr Iain Anthony (Neuropathology), Professor Jeanne Bell (Neuropathology) & Dr Juan Carlos Arango (Forensic Medicine, Edinburgh University) for an investigation of neuroinflammation and accelerated neuro-ageing in HAART-treated HIV-infected individuals.
HIV-infected individuals now live much longer than previously and impairment of brain function is becoming a major problem in these people, so this study aims to clarify whether HIV or its associated treatment accelerates the natural ageing processes in the brain.
£74,044 over two years to Dr Rebecca Devon (Molecular Medicine Centre, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) to study the role of alsin and its interacting proteins in juvenile onset amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a degenerative disease of the brain which results in progressive muscular weakness and ultimately fatal paralysis, is also known as motor neurone disease. This project aims to clarify the precise function of the gene known to be associated with the form of disease which starts in childhood.
£69,971 over two years to Dr Thomas Gillingwater (Anatomy, University of Edinburgh) for high-resolution imaging of synapse loss in mouse models of spinal muscular atrophy.
The junction between nerve and muscle is a primary site of damage in spinal muscular atrophy, one form of the degenerative and ultimately fatal condition known as motor neurone disease. This study will investigate the detail of the anatomical changes occurring in the cells of the junctions between the nerves and the muscles in the disease.
£80,000 over two years to Dr Kathryn Marshall (from Utah moving to Edinburgh) & Dr Margarete Heck (Institute of Cell Biology, Edinburgh University) for the characterisation of invadolysin, a novel human metalloprotease involved in mitosis and migration.
Invadolysin is a recently-discovered enzyme known to be important in cell movement, as it is found at the leading edge of white blood cells as they move towards the site of injury. This study aims to investigate the part that invadolysin plays in this essential body process and in cell division.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 2005-07 was awarded to Dr John David Terrace (Clinical & Surgical Sciences, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) for his project entitled "Characterisation of human liver stem cells during foetal development".
Both the Cruden & the Mrs Robina Menzies Smith Medical Research Scholarships 2005-06 were awarded together to Dr Kevin Dhaliwal (Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University) for his project entitled "Macrophage-based gene therapy for neutrophil-mediated lung injury".

Awards in 2003-04

£79,820 to Dr Giles E. Hardingham (Preclinical Veterinary Sciences, Edinburgh University) for a two-year investigation into neuronal pro-survival pathways triggered by the synaptic activation of NMDA receptors.
Nerve cells communicate with each other by chemical signals, detected by receptors. One such receptor, NMDA, causes signal activation which seems to keep neurones alive. This project proposes to study these 'pro-survival' signals, whose effects are depleted in brain diseases such as Alzheimer's and Huntington's and also in other forms of brain damage, such as is caused by strokes.
The Nasmyth Travelling Medical Research Scholarship 2004-06 was awarded to Dr Anna Claire Williams (Neurology, Lothian University Health NHS Trust) to travel to the laboratories of INSERM and the CNRS in Paris to investigate oligodendrocyte guidance molecules in multiple sclerosis lesions and in experimental models of demyelination and remyelination.
The Mrs Robina Menzies Smith Medical Research Scholarship 2004-05 was awarded to Dr Ewen Munro Harrison (Tissue Injury & Repair Group, Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University) to investigate pharmacological intervention to reduce ischaemia/reperfusion injury in the kidney.
The Cruden Medical Research Scholarship 2004-05 was awarded to Dr Andrew MacDuff (Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University) for a study of the role of the tissue macrophage in the sensing and regulation of hypoxic/hyperoxic tissue injury.

Awards in 2002-03

£71,758 over two years to Dr Moffat J. Nyirenda & Professor Jonathan R. Seckl (Molecular Medicine Centre, Edinburgh University) for an investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying induction of hepatic phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK) expression in prenatal glucocorticoid exposure and programming of adult hypoglycaemia.
There is a known link between low weight at birth and an increased likelihood to develop diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure. By studying a liver enzyme which catalyses the synthesis of glucose, this research aims to look at potential reasons for this link.
£42,965 over one year to Drs Trevor R. Walker & Ian Dransfield and Professor Christopher Haslett (Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University) to study inflammatory cells and lung injury, using imagine activation of neutrophil function by integrin-mediated adhesion.
Leukocytes (white blood cells) are part of the body's natural cellular defence mechanisms. However, sometimes they can over-react causing cell damage, particularly if they are in prolonged contact with blood vessel walls. By studying the cellular effects which result when this prolongation occurs, this research seeks to establish the trigger from defence to damage.
£63,236 over 18 months to Dr Neil McLennan & Professor David W. Melton (Molecular Medicine Centre, Edinburgh University) to study the role of the prion protein in protecting the brain from oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is known to cause damage to neurones in diseases such as Parkinson's.
This research seeks to establish if prion proteins have a role in protecting neurons from oxidative stress, which would protect the brain and its functioning.
£80,000 over two years to Dr Julia V. Marley & Professor A. Neil Turner (Renal & Autoimmunity Group, Centre for Inflammation Research, Edinburgh University) for a study of the manipulation of tolerance to the Goodpasture autoantigen.
Immune tolerance is the natural process by which the body protects itself from self-attack by its own immune system. However, this fails in kidney inflammation, for example that occurring in Goodpasture's Disease. This research aims to alter the immune response to improve tolerance when it fails.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 2003-05 was awarded to Mr Stephen A. Boyce (Pathology, Edinburgh University) to investigate the role of the retinoblastoma gene in liver biology.

Awards in 2001-02

£57,838 over two years to Dr Gayle H. Middleton (Preclinical Veterinary Sciences, Royal (Dick) Vet School, Edinburgh University) to investigate the role of the Bcl-2 protein family in regulating cell survival in the substantia nigra and striatum.
Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's & Huntington's, involve an imbalance of the molecules promoting brain cell death and those preventing it. This research focuses of the Bcl-2 molecule family to understand their role in these processes.
£69,996 over two years to Drs Yatishkumar Lad & Tariq Sethi (Respiratory Medicine Unit, Edinburgh University) to investigate the mechanism underlying Raf-mediated integrin suppression.
Cell adhesion is regulated by receptors called integrins, which can control adhesion from within the cell, by a process known as 'inside out signalling'. Initial work suggests 'inside out signalling' to integrins occurs via a new, undescribed pathway, into which this research hopes to gain an insight.
£31,493 as an 8-month supplement to an earlier grant to Dr Alison Blackwell & Mr Charles Marriott (Centre for Tropical Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh University) to continue investigations on novel compounds for repelling blood-feeding insects in Scotland.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 2002-05 was awarded to Mr Stephen McNally (Surgery, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) for an investigation of the determination of the mechanism of stress protein preconditioning by calineurin inhibitors.

Awards in 2000-01

£39,943 for a one-year study to Drs James G. Burgess, David R Adams & Phillip C. Wright (Biological Sciences, Heriot-Watt University) to study the effect of novel chemical inducers (signal molecules) on the production of antibiotics active against multi-drug resistant hospital pathogens.
Multi-drug resistant hospital pathogens present major challenges to staff and patients alike. This research will study the effects of new signalling molecules on the production of antibiotics to tackle such pathogens.
£69,513 over one year to Dr Alison Blackwell (Tropical Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh University) to investigate novel compounds for repelling blood-feeding insects in Scotland.
Midges are blood-feeding insects whose bites are hard to avoid in Scotland. This research tests the use of Myrica gale (the moorland plant, bog myrtle) extract as a non-toxic insect repellent.
£69,664 over two years to Drs Benjamin S. Pickard & Walter J. Muir and Professor Douglas H.R. Blackwood (Psychiatry) and Professor David Porteous (Molecular Medicine Centre, Edinburgh University) for a study combining fluorescence in situ hybridisation with molecular bio-informatics to isolate genes for psychiatric illness.
Using modern biological techniques and molecular bioinformatics this research will study the genes associated with psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia.
£99,278 over three years to Dr Joanne K. Miller & Professor David Porteous (Medical Genetics, Edinburgh University) to carry out a functional analysis of a candidate schizophrenia gene, disrupted by a chromosomal translocation in patients with schizophrenia.
DISC1 is one of the few genes known to increase a person's susceptibility of developing schizophrenia. However, its normal function is unknown so this research will investigate this and consider the normal signalling pathways it is involved in.
£54,602 over two years to Dr Neil C. Henderson & Kenneth J. Simpson (Medicine, Edinburgh University) to study the mechanisms of intracellular signal transduction mediating the hepatoprotective effects of CXC chemokines.
By studying specific cell signalling molecules, called MAPKs, the researchers intend to modify the damage inflicted on liver cells by paracetamol toxicity, reducing the need for liver transplantation.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 2001-03 was awarded to Mr Ian Stewart Currie (Clinical & Surgical Sciences, Edinburgh University) for an investigation of the role of mitochondria in ischaemic preconditioning and apoptosis in liver surgery.

Awards in 1999-2000

£37,920 over two years to Drs Sandrine Prost, Christian T. McCulloch & Professor David J. Harrison (Pathology, Edinburgh Unviersity) for an investigation of interferon gamma-induced apoptosis in primary hepatocytes.
£44,929 over one year to Drs Alexandra Cochrane & Peter Simmonds (Clinical & Molecular Virology, Edinburgh University) to study the molecular epidemiology of hepatitis C virus infection in injecting drug users.
£69,347 over two years to Drs Roger W. Brown & Stewart Fleming (Molecular Medicine Centre, Edinburgh University) for a study involving the identification of novel corticosteroid regulated genes and molecular pathways contolling renal sodium balance and blood pressure.
£50,625 for a one-year study to Dr Brain R. Walker, Professor Stephen G. Hillier, Dr Ruth Andrew & Dr Joo Thong (Medical Sciences, Edinburgh University) to try to identify the missing link between insulin resistance, obesity and anovulation in the tissue-specific diruption of cortisol metabolism in polycystic ovary syndrome.
£96,024 over three years to Drs Adam J.W. Paige & Hani Gabra (ICRF Medical Oncology Unit, Edinburgh University) to investigate the clinical significance and biological role of the WWOX gene in ovarian cancer.
£69,992 over two years to Dr Jamal Nasir (Human Genetics Unit, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) to continue his work on exploring therapeutic opportunities for Huntingdon's disease.

Awards in 1998-99

£69,502 over two years to Drs J. Grant Burgess (Biological Sciences) & Phillip Wright (Mechanical & Chemical Engineering, Heriot-Watt University) to develop novel approaches for the generation of antibiotics active against multi-drug resistant pathogens present in clinical environments.
£69,307 over two years to Drs Alison C. MacKinnon & Tariq Sethi (Rayne Laboratories, Edinburgh University) to study the inhibition of small cell lung cancaer cell growth and the stimulation of apoptosis by substance P analogues.
£69,278 over two years to Dr Ralf M. Zwacka (Surgery, Edinburgh University) to investigate the modulation of NF-kappaB signalling as a potential gene therapy approach for colorectal cancer liver metastases.
£40,695 over one year to Drs Alasdair M.J. MacLullich (Molecular Endocrinology Unit) & Joanna M. Wardlaw (Clinical Neurosciences) and Professors Jonathan R. Seckl (Molecular Endocrinology Unit) & Ian J. Deary (Psychology, Edinburgh University) to investigate the relationshp between hippocampal structure, metabolites, glucocorticoids and age-related cognitive decline by means of an mri and specroscopy study.
£40,881 over one year to Drs Jim McWhir (Roslin Institute, Edinburgh) and Peter Gilmour (Applied Chemical & Physical Science, Napier University) to investigate inactivation of the ovine cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator.
£68,382 over two years to Dr Mary McElroy & Professor Christopher Haslett (Rayne Laboratories, Edinburgh Unviersity) to study the mechanism of Staphyloccocus aureus injury to the alveolar-capillary barrier in bacterial infection of the lung.
£69,929 over two years to Dr Richard G. Phelps & Professor Andrew N. Turner (Clinical & Surgical Sciences, Edinburgh University) for the development and evaluation of a novel mass spectrometric approach to T-cell eiptope identification.
£69,225 over two years to Drs Simon Brown (Centre for Inflammation Research) & Seamus Donnelly (Respiratory Medicine, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) to study a new mechanism promoting resolution of lung inflammation: macrophage-directed deletion of neutrophils.
A Medical Research Scholarship 1999-2000 was awarded to Dr Karen P. Watt (Borders General Hospital) for isolation and characterisation of prognostically important chromosome 11 ovarian cancer tumour suppressor genes.

Awards in 1997-98

£63,065 over two years to Drs Ruth Andrew & Brian Walker (Endocrine Unit, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for the development of stable isotope methods to measure the tissue-specific metabolism of cortisol in man.
£60,005 over two years to Drs Peter C. Hayes & John N. Plevris (Medicine, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) and Drs Ian H. Sadler & John A. Parkinson (Chemistry, Edinburgh University) for the identification of anovel compound present in patients with chronic hepatic encephalopathy and an investigation of its role in the pathogenesis of the disease.
£69,369 over two years to Dr Ian Dransfield (Rayne Laboratories, Edinburgh University) and Professor Christopher Haslett (Respiratory Medicine Unit, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) to investigate the regulation of neutrophil function by soluble E selectin in inflammatory cells and lung injury.
£67,139 over two years to Dr Ingolfur Johanessen & Professor Dorothy H. Crawford (Medical Microbiology, Edinburgh University) for the definitiion of EBV latency/persistence and reactivation using a Scid mouse model.
£69,082 to Dr Kenneth Simpson (Scottish Liver Transplant Unit, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) and Dr David Harrison (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for a two-year study of chemokines in paracetamol toxicity with the long-term goal of developing gene therapy for hepatic regeneration.
£69,674 over two years to Dr Peter D. Currie (Human Genetics Unit, Edinburgh University) for the identification of downstream mediators of the secreted signalling moelcule Sonic Hedgehog.
The Nasmyth Travelling Research Scholarship 1998-2000 was awarded to Dr David C. Howe (Centre for Reproductive Biology, Edinburgh University) to visit the Laboratory for Pregnancy & Newborn Research at Cornell University and the Department of Physiology at the University of Toronto. His research will be into the effects of high levels of hormones circulating in the plasma on the growing foetus and on the part they play in controlling the onset of labour.

Awards in 1996-97

£61,457 to Drs Robin P. Alston, Michael Souter and Sheena Miller (Anaesthetics, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) and Dr Peter J.D. Andrews (Anaesthetics Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for a one-year investigation into whether postoperative cerebral hypoperfusion only occurs following heart surgery.
£24,455 to Mr Ajith Siriwardena, Kenneth C.H. Fearon & James A. Ross (Surgery, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) for a one-year, randomised controlled trial of early enteral nutrition in severe acute pancreatitis.
£68,459 to Drs Alan R. Clarke, Sarah Howie, Colin Purdie & David J. Harrison (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for a two-year study which hopes to define the role of p53-dependent pathways in the normal and malignant development of murine T and B cells.
£63,106 to Dr Scott Bader & Professor Andrew H. Wyllie (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for a two-year project aimed at the cloning and characterisation of a third family member of candidate tumour suppressor genes for human small cell lung cancer located on chromosome 3p21.
£69,794 to Dr Tariq Sethi (Respiratory Medicine, Edinburgh University) and Dr Alison MacKinnon (Rayne Laboratory, Edinburgh University) for a two-year project to investigate the molecular mechanisms by which the 'broad spectrum neuropeptide antagonist' H-Arg-D-Trp-Nme-Phe-D-Trp-Leu-Met-NH2 inhibits small cell lung cancer cell growth and stimulates apoptosis.
£39,824 to Dr Seamas Donnelly (Rayne Laboratory, Edinburgh University) & Professor Christopher Haslett (Respiratory Medicine, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) for a one-year study of macrophage migration inhibotory factor (MIF) and inflammatory lung disease.
£46,753 to Professor Allan Price (Clinical Oncology, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) and Dr David J. Harrison (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for a two-year investigation of detoxification and DNA repair activities in patients with Grade IV toxicity folloiwng radiotherapy.
£37,464 to Dr Jamal Nasir (Molecular Genetics Centre, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for a one-year pilot study involving the development of animal models to test new approaches towards curing Huntingdon's disease.
£49,474 to Dr Peter T. Reid, Professor Christopher Haslett & Dr Jean-Michel Sallenave (Respiratory Medicine Unit, Rayne Laboratories, Edinburgh University) for a one-year study of inflammatory lung disease and the regulation of secretion of the low molecular weight antiproteinase elafin.
£40,177 to Drs Jonathan Berg, Mary Porteous & Susan Holloway (Clinical Genetics, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for an 18-month project to investigate whether gene expression and mutation in hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia may be the key to a new diagnostic test.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 1997-1999 was awarded to Dr Alasdair M.J. MacLullich (Rehabilitation Medicine, Astley Ainslie Hospital, Edinburgh) for a study of the association between glucocorticoids and brain ageing.

Awards in 1995-96

£68,548 to Professor Keith James (Surgery, Edinburgh University) for the development of recombinant bacillus-Guerin-expressing cytokine and adhesion molecule genes for use in bladder cancer therapy.
£53,841 to Drs Marilyn Moore and Andrew J. Leigh Brown (Centre for HIV Research, Edinburgh University) for a study of the role of cytokine production by macrophages in HIV disease progression.
£65,960 to Drs Sandrine Prost, Christopher O.C. Bellamy & David J. Harrison (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for a study aimed at ascertaining whether impaired DNA repair underlies hepatocarcinogenesis in chronic liver disease.
£69,254 to Ms Susan White, Drs V. Jill Bubb & Alan R. Clarke and Professor Andrew H. Wyllie (Pathology, Edinburgh University) and Dr Deborah Fowlis (Centre for Genome Research, Edinburgh) for a study of APC function and dysfunction and its role in neoplasia and development.
£20,500 to Professor Andrew H. Wyllie (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for the isolation and identification of genes involved in apoptosis.
£58,482 to Drs Simon C. Riley and David C. Howe and Professor Andrew A. Calder (Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Edinburgh University) for a study of the role of matrix metalloproteinases in fetal membranes, decidua and placenta in the initiation of preterm labour.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 1996-98 was awarded to Dr Jonathan N. Berg (MRC Human Genetics Unit, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for an investigation of the activin-like receptor kinase I gene as a candidate for the hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia 2 locus.
The Cruden Medical Research Scholarship 1996-97 was awarded to Dr Robert C. Rintoul to work in the Respriratory Medicine Unit of Edinburgh Royal Infirmary on extracellular matrix regulation of cell growth, drug resistance and apoptosis in small cell lung cancer.

Awards in 1994-95

£19,211 to Drs Richard Ashley & Cecile Martin (Biochemistry, Edinburgh University) and Dr Karen Chapman (Medicine, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for a six-month pilot study of the expression of calcium release channel genes in human brain.
£58,000 for three years to Mr Malcolm Dunlop (Surgery, Royal Infirmary, Edinburgh) and Dr Susan Farrington (MRC Human Genetics Unit, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) to purchase a DNA sequencer for their studies on the genetic basis of colorectal cancer.

Awards in 1993-94

£86,085 over three years to Professor Andrew H. Wyllie (Pathology, Edinburgh University) for an analysis by new methods of genomic instability in colorectal carcinoma.
£7,774 for a one-year pilot study to Mrs Stephanie Webb & Professor Andrew H. Wyllie (Pathology, Edinburgh University) to investigate the regulation of apoptosis by p53 and other genes.
The Mrs Jean V. Baxter Medical Research Fellowship 1994-96 was awarded to Dr Philippa M.A. Shanahan (Medical Microbiology, Edinburgh University) for an examination of the genetics and analysis of the biochemistry of the resistance determinants in the multi-resistant Salmonella typhi which is currently causing an epidemic in India.

Awards in 1992-93

£101,434 to Dr Neil P. Prentice (Brain Metabolism Unit) and Professor Eve C. Johnstone (Psychiatry, Royal Edinburgh Hosptial) for a three-year study of the early and late onset of depressive illness in the elderly.
£81,239 to Professor Anne Ferguson (Medicine) & Dr David J. Porteous (MRC Human Genetics Unit, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh) for a three-year project involving the molecular and histopathological analysis of a mouse model of cystic fibrosis.
£54,014 over two years to Dr Donald M. Salter (Pathology, Edinburgh University) to investigate the potential of tenascin as a serological marker of arthritis and to assess its role in articular cartilage degeneration and repair.
£10,124 to Dr Brian M. Frier & Dr Petros Perros (Diabetes), Dr C. Counsell (Medical Neurology, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) & Professor T. Wallace Macfarlane (Glasgow Dental Hospital & School) for a year-long study of altered taste sensation in Type II diabetes.
£39,800 to Dr Roger W. Brown (Molecular Endocrinology) & Dr Brian R. Walker & Dr Johathan R. Seckl (Medicine, Western General Hospital Edinburgh) for a two-year project involving the isolation and molecular characterisation of 11-beta-hydroxysteroid degydrogenase Type II.

[Link to more recent awards]