Research

Dr Marianne Ellis selected as EPSRC 'Rising Star'

Dr Marianne Ellis' research explores safe and affordable scale up of cell therapies

Our Department of Chemical Engineering's Dr Marianne Ellis has this week been selected by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) as a 'Rising Star' - one of ten individuals identified with the potential to become an inspirational scientist or engineer in their field and beyond.

To celebrate 20 years of research in engineering, physics, maths and computer science and to recognise some of the leading scientists and engineers that it supports, the EPSRC has launched the RISE awards – 'Recognising Inspirational Scientists and Engineers'. An independent judging panel selected their top ten established inspirational scientists and engineers (called 'Rise Leaders') from nominees put forward by universities, industry, professional bodies and learned institutes. Each of these people was then asked to nominate someone they see as a future world-class talent.

Dr Ellis was nominated by Professor Kevin Shakesheff from the University of Nottingham who works in the field of regenerative medicine and whose research forms part of a worldwide effort to cure major diseases by growing tissues. His nomination form stated: "Marianne's work has the potential to provide answers across the wide research arena of 'health and well being' where tissue engineering can be applied. This includes regenerative medicine and cell therapies, in-vitro models for drug discovery and toxicology testing, bioartificial organs and cultured meat. Marianne's work takes the science of cell therapies into the clinic, enabling the safe and cost-effective scale up for cell therapies (and better in-vitro models) that are currently carried out at a bench scale."

In her role as a Rising Star, Dr Ellis will participate in a panel debate at the Cheltenham Science Festival on Friday 6 June to ask "Why do we need inspiring leaders?" The debate will cover questions such as how to get the most out of a team or how to inspire them to be innovative and creative. The British Science Association’s Imran Khan, creative facilitator Liz Ogilvie, psychologist Nick Baylis and Dr Ellis will be among those discussing the skills and qualities required to be an inspiring leader and what we can all do to become more inspiring ourselves.

On Tuesday 10 June, Dr Ellis will attend the EPSRC's launch event for the Rise Awards at the House of Commons, at which the top three Rising Stars will be announced. For more details see the Twitter feed #inspirescieng and www.epsrc.ac.uk/rise

Dr Tim Mays, the head of our Department of Chemical Engineering commented: "We are thrilled that Marianne has been recognised by the EPSRC as a future talent in view of her important research in tissue engineering and also her commitment to inspire and lead others in this very promising field of research."

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