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The Academy of Medical Sciences, the independent body in the UK representing the diversity of medical science, has announced the election of fifty new Fellows, including two academics from the MDUK Oxford Neuromuscular Centre.

Centre Director, Professor Matthew Wood, is one of six academics from the University of Oxford awarded the fellowship. He is joined in this honour by Professor David Bennett, a key investigator of the Centre.

Professor Matthew Wood FMedSci, Department of Paediatrics

Matthew Wood’s research is in the field of RNA-based precision medicines for rare, inherited neurological diseases. A major focus is oligonucleotide therapeutics and development of peptide-based oligonucleotide compounds for modification of mRNA splicing in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and related disorders. In addition, seminal studies of extracellular vesicles have resulted in development of extracellular vesicle-based nanotechnologies for delivery of RNA medicines to the brain and other tissues. Collectively this work aims to realise the potential of genomic medicines to impact currently untreatable neurological disorders.

Professor David Bennett FMedSci, Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences

Dave Bennett studies the response of the nervous system to injury in order to develop strategies to promote nerve repair and to both prevent and treat neuropathic pain. He uses a multi-disciplinary approach ranging from the molecular understanding of ion channel function to psychophysical and genetic studies in patients. His research programme is improving understanding of the signalling events which lead to neuropathic pain, enhancing means of patient stratification, and identifying new analgesic drug targets which are undergoing clinical trials. Read more

The Academy of Medical Sciences is working to secure a future in which UK and global health is improved by the best research. It aims to ensure that independent, high quality medical science advice informs the decisions that affect society, and more people have a say in the future of health and research.

Professor Sir Robert Lechler PMedSci, President of the Academy of Medical Sciences said, ‘I am delighted to welcome these 50 new Fellows into the Academy’s Fellowship. Each one has made their own outstanding contribution to biomedical science, and together they are advancing the health of our society in the UK and internationally. Their work affects us all, from the way we keep healthy through our lifestyle, to how we are treated if we become ill, to the way we receive information about health.

‘Never has there been a more important time to recognise and celebrate the people behind ground-breaking biomedical and health research, working harder than ever to further knowledge and protect patients and the public.

‘It brings me great pleasure to congratulate the new Fellows, and see our Fellowship grow to even greater heights of evidence-based advice, leadership and expertise.’

For more information about the Academy of Medical Sciences and this year’s elected Fellows, please see the Academy of Medical Sciences website.