Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award
Alicia El Haj, Professor of Cell Engineering in the Faculty of Health and Director of the Institute of Science & Technology in Medicine at Keele, has received the prestigious Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award.
This is a personal award of five years duration given by the World’s oldest scientific academy in recognition of outstanding senior scientists. The award recognises Alicia’s research achievements in the field of stem cell biology and the associated enabling technologies for cell therapy that underpin regenerative medicine. This technology provides the ability to replace or regenerate a patient’s own cells or organs to restore function as Alicia’s work in disorder of bone and connective tissue has shown. The concept of growing cells, often on inert or biodegradable scaffolds to create entire new organs is fast becoming a reality.
Her research is at the sharp end of molecular medicine and is underpinned by a strong desire to support and train the next generation of researchers as evidence by her commitment to training PhD and postdoctoral students, including her role as co-lead of the Doctoral Training Centre in conjunction with colleagues at Nottingham and Loughborough.
In recognising Alicia’s achievement, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Dean of Health at Keele, Professor Andy Garner, noted that both Research Institute Directors in the Health Faculty at Keele were now in receipt of highly prestigious national awards, following Professor Elaine Hay’s Senior Clinical Investigator award by NIHR.