Celebrating women in science

It’s International Women’s Day! We celebrate all of the incredible things women do every day, but today is a great opportunity for us to put the spotlight on some particular individuals that we think you should know about.

(Left to right, top row first).

Professor Anna Gloyn, University of Oxford, is researching how beta cells can go wrong in diabetes. Read about Anna’s work (and watch an interview) on the Nuffield Department of Medicine website, or follow her on Twitter: @annagloyn.

Fiona Davie-Smith, a Specialist Physiotherapist at the Western Infirmary in Glasgow, was awarded the Diabetes UK Sir George Alberti Fellowship in 2013. She’s researching ways to improve recovery for people with diabetes after they’ve had amputations.

Professor Frances Ashcroft, University of Oxford, is investigating the effects of blood glucose levels on beta cells in the pancreas. Frances won the L’Oréal-UNESCO Women in Science Award (European Laureate) in 2012, and became a Dame in 2015. Read more about Frances on the Trinity College Website.

Dr Isabelle Leclerc trained as a clinician in Montreal and as a scientist in Paris, before becoming a Senior Clinical Lecturer at Imperial College London. Her work focuses on how beta cells in the pancreas can go wrong in Type 2 diabetes.

Dr Julie Anne Edge is a Consultant in Paediatric Diabetes at Oxford Children’s Hospital, running a service for over 330 children and young people in Oxfordshire. Julie is part of the (Diabetes UK co-funded) AdDIT trial, testing whether statins and ACE inhibitors can reduce the risk of complications in young people with Type 1 diabetes.

Professor Lesley Lowes, University of Cardiff, has been both a researcher and a Paediatric Diabetes Specialist Nurse. Her research spans topics including childhood diabetes, and how children and parents experience healthcare services.

Dr Louise Goff, King’s College London, is a Senior Lecturer in Nutritional Sciences, and she’s interested in the role of diet in Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Read about her Diabetes UK-funded research into understanding of the causes of Type 2 diabetes in different ethnic groups.

Dr Nita Forouhi, University of Cambridge, leads the Nutritional Epidemiology Programme at the MRC Epidemiology Unit. Nita is interested in how our diets could increase or decrease the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. She’s a governance group member of Athena SWAN: an initiative that promotes gender equality in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM).

Professor Sally Marshall, Newcastle University, investigates diabetes and the kidneys. She is the lead diabetes clinician for cystic fibrosis-related diabetes, and is also the Editor of Diabetologia.

Professor Sarah Wild, University of Edinburgh, researches the spread and potential causes of diabetes and cardiovascular disease in different populations. Sarah explains her research in a nutshell on the University of Edinburgh website.

Professor Stephanie Amiel, King’s College London, has played a pivotal role in Type 1 diabetes research. Stephanie’s main research areas are hypoglycaemia (low blood glucose levels) in Type 1 diabetes, islet transplantation and mental health in diabetes. Read more about her research on the King’s College website.

Professor Susan Wong, Cardiff University, oversees research into the causes of Type 1 diabetes. Susan is a Chairperson for the Athena SWAN initiative. Diabetes UK are funding Susan’s work into whether gene therapy could be used to encourage the body’s own immune system to destroy ‘bad’ immune cells and protect against Type 1 diabetes

Dr Victoria Salem, is a Clinical Lecturer in Diabetes & Endocrinology at Imperial College London, and was recently awarded the first ever Diabetes UK Harry Keen Intermediate Clinical Fellowship. Victoria works with people that have Type 2 diabetes, and is interested in how combinations of gut hormones could be used to treat the condition. She is the Faculty of Medicine Athena SWAN coordinator.

Professor Vivien Coates is a Florence Nightingale Foundation Professor of Clinical Nursing Practice Nurse. She works for Ulster University, Western Health & Social Care, and the Florence Nightingale Foundation, and her research focuses on improving the management of diabetes through education.

Dr Yuk-Fun Liu, King’s College London, currently works in Mark Peakman’s lab. Yuk-Fun started a Diabetes UK Clinical Training Fellowship in 2011, and her research focuses on developing peptide immunotherapy for adults with Type 1 diabetes. She became a Clinical Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in 2015.

The amazing women listed here have had a huge impact on the treatment of diabetes, and will continue to be leaders in the world of diabetes research and care moving forwards. There are of course many, many, more women doing incredible work that we couldn’t include here: we think you’re all incredible.

Find out more about research at Diabetes UK.

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