Dr Jennifer Maher has been appointed as the new Medlock Fellow in Clinical Exercise Rehabilitation. The post runs from December 2020 to May 2023, and was established thanks to a gift of £100,000 from the Medlock Charitable Trust.

Jennifer is working alongside mentor Professor James Bilzon in the University’s Department for Health to investigate how high-intensity interval training can help patients with acute spinal cord injuries to maintain upper-body strength as they come home from hospital. This is especially important given that cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of illness and death among people with these injuries.

The research is being carried out in partnership with the Duke of Cornwall Spinal Treatment Centre in Salisbury and is further supported by a £250,000 grant from the National Institute for Health Research.

Jennifer initially joined the University in January 2019 from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Her previous research has focused on preventing complications such as insulin resistance and obesity in people with spinal cord injuries.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to be doing this important research in spinal cord injury at the University of Bath,” she says. “I want to thank the Medlock Charitable Trust for their continued support.”

Managing Trustee David Medlock adds: "We at the Trust have always been interested in supporting new research at Bath, especially as it potentially makes so much difference to the wider community.”

The Medlock Charitable Trust are a longstanding partner of the University. One of their previous gifts was to support a Fellowship in Disability, Sport and Health from 2014 until 2017. This post enabled Professor James Bilzon’s team to develop new lines of research in the field of exercise rehabilitation for people with disabilities.