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Issue 137 Autumn 2020

Endocrinologist > Autumn 2020 > Society News

2020 Awardees: Leadership & Development Awards Programme

| Society News

The Society’s ambitious Leadership & Development Awards Programme recognises and nurtures emerging talent, to enable our Awardees to become the future leaders of endocrinology. The scheme was pioneered by our former President, Graham Williams.

Join us in congratulating our 2020 Awardees, who will receive a wide range of benefits, providing opportunities for them to develop their careers and professional profiles.

Watch out for updates on their progress over the next 3 years.


ALEXANDER COMNINOS, Imperial College London
Alex’s research focuses on reproductive endocrinology, and is funded by fellowships, lectureships and grants from the Wellcome Trust, NIHR and MRC. He has received a number of prestigious prizes, including the Reproductive Science Prize (Endocrine Society), and the Society for Endocrinology’s Early Career and Clinical Endocrinology Trust Prizes. Alex currently sits on the Society’s Science Committee.

JULIA PRAGUE, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust and University of Exeter
Julia qualified in 2008 from King’s College London School of Medicine and Dentistry at Guy’s, King’s College and St Thomas’ Hospitals, with a double distinction and first class honours. During her PhD at Imperial College, she completed the first study in humans of a neurokinin 3 receptor antagonist for menopausal flushes, published in The Lancet. She was awarded the North American Menopause Society New Investigator Award in 2017 and the Society’s Early Career Prize in 2018.

PETER TAYLOR, Cardiff University and the University Hospital of Wales
Peter completed his PhD in thyroid epidemiology, and his research focuses on the effects of common variation in thyroid status, thyroid hormone prescribing and thyroid screening in pregnancy. He has had considerable involvement in trials relating to the thyroid in pregnancy and thyroid eye disease. As well as receiving awards at both national and international conferences for his work, Peter has over 50 publications related to the thyroid field.


SAFWAAN ADAM, The Christie Hospital, Manchester
Following graduation from the University of Cape Town, Safwaan undertook early postgraduate training in South Africa and New Zealand, before his specialist endocrinology training in the North West of England. He took time out of clinical training to pursue a PhD examining the metabolic and cardiovascular complications of obesity at the University of Manchester. Safwaan’s research has led to a number of presentations, publications and prizes. He has a particular interest in the use of ‘real world’ data analytics to inform clinical practice.

JUSTYNA WITCZAK, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff
Justyna completed her MD at Cardiff University on the characterisation of circulating extracellular vesicles in human obesity. Her research was supported by the Lewis Thomas Gibbon Jenkins of Briton Ferry Fellowship from the Royal College of Physicians. Other research interests include thyroid disorders and type 2 diabetes. Justyna is a Committee Member of the Young Diabetologist and Endocrinologist Forum Wales.


CLAIRE FLETCHER, Imperial College London
Awarded a PhD in the molecular biology of prostate cancer in 2013, Claire was granted a Young Investigator Award from the Prostate Cancer Foundation (USA) in 2016 and an Imperial College/AstraZeneca Research Fellowship in 2018. She is currently establishing an independent research team within the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial, to investigate functions of non-coding RNAs in hormone-dependent cancers and drug resistance, the role of obesity and peri-prostatic adipocytes in promoting lethal prostate cancer and post-transcriptional RNA modifications in modulating therapy responses.

TIJANA MITIC, University of Edinburgh
Tijana obtained her PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 2010, where she completed a short postdoctoral placement. She then moved to a further successful postdoc at the Bristol Heart Institute (2011–2014) before taking a break from academia. In 2016, she was awarded a highly competitive part-time fellowship from the British Heart Foundation to restart her academic research. In 2019, she received a Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy. She now leads a research team investigating the epigenetic changes in hypoxia and during vascular injury.

Learn more about the Society’s Leadership & Development Awards Programme.


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