Newcastle BRC deputy theme lead named National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Senior Investigator
A researcher from the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) has been named as Senior Investigator in the latest round of appointments by the NIHR.
It continues Newcastle’s consistent success in securing such appointments, with each of the NIHR Newcastle BRC’s research themes having leaders appointed as Senior Investigators.
NIHR Senior Investigators are among the most prominent and prestigious researchers funded by the NIHR and the most outstanding leaders of patient and people-based research within the NIHR research community.
Newcastle leading in people-based research
In the latest round of appointments (March 2021), Professor Volker Straub (pictured left) has received a Senior Investigator award for the first time.
Volker is Professor of Neuromuscular Genetics at Newcastle University and Honorary Clinician at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (NuTH). He trained as a paediatric neurologist at the University of Dussledorf and the University of Essen, Germany, and then completed his PhD on Duchenne muscular dystrophy at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in the US. He leads the John Walton Muscular Dystrophy Research Centre, and is Deputy Lead for the NIHR Newcastle BRC’s Neuromuscular Disease theme.
I am delighted to join the group of NIHR Senior Investigators in Newcastle and would like to particularly thank the team at the John Walton Muscular Dystrophy Research Centre for all the fantastic support that I have received over the past few years. Effective and successful clinical research is a team effort and I very much feel that I received the NIHR Senior Investigator Award on behalf of our entire clinical research team.
NIHR Senior Investigators and the Newcastle BRC
In previous years NIHR Senior Investigators from the NIHR Newcastle BRC have been:
- Professor Avan Sayer (Newcastle BRC Director and Ageing Syndromes theme lead),
- Professor David Jones (Liver Disease theme lead),
- Professor Sir Doug Turnbull (Neuromuscular Disease theme lead)
- Professor David Burn (Dementia theme lead)
- Professor John Isaacs (Musculoskeletal Disease theme lead)
- Professor Nick Reynolds (Skin and Oral Disease deputy theme lead)
Last year’s appointments include Professor John Simpson, a Newcastle BRC-funded specialist in respiratory diseases, and Professor Lynn Rochester, a BRC supported academic physiotherapist who leads a multidisciplinary team of clinicians, clinical scientists and clinical engineers with a research focus on age related gait and mobility disorders.
As a partnership between the Newcastle Hospitals and Newcastle University, the NIHR Newcastle BRC carries out world-class translational research and experimental medicine for the benefits of patients. In their roles as active clinicians and University researchers working with patients, these senior research leaders play a significant role across the clinical and research landscape of the NIHR Newcastle BRC.
The NIHR Newcastle BRCs also benefits from members of the partnership senior leadership having Senior Investigator status; Professor Sir John Burn, Chairman of Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and Professor Chris Day, Vice-Chancellor at Newcastle University both have emeritus status.
Creating research leaders of the future
Senior Investigators also provide a culture of research leadership across the NIHR. This is a fundamental aspect of the NIHR Newcastle BRC, which places huge importance on the mentorship of its trainees.
Professor Avan Sayer, Director of the NIHR Newcastle BRC commented:
We are delighted that Professor Straub has been named as an NIHR Senior Investigator this year, and wish him every success.
It is testament to the skills and experience of our colleagues that so many of our BRC theme leads represent their areas of expertise at a national level for the NIHR. They are key to our success in delivering the Newcastle BRC vision of improving lives through world-class research in ageing and long-term conditions.