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13.11.16 Meri Huch wins Hamdan Award for Medical Research Excellence 2015-2016

last modified Nov 16, 2016 12:17 PM
Gurdon Institute Group Leader Meri Huch has won a prestigious prize from the Dubai-based Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences
13.11.16  Meri Huch wins Hamdan Award for Medical Research Excellence 2015-2016

Prize-winner Meritxell Huch, Gurdon Institute

The Hamdan Award for Medical Research Excellence

This award has been given for 18 years in the general field of the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders, and in 2015-2016 the topics are liver disorders (in which Meri wins), colon diseases and pancreatic diseases. The winners "are honored for the innovative methods and research that resulted in novel discoveries and inventions, which have made an enormous impact in their fields...[and]... have positively affected thousands of lives globally".

Meri Huch's prize will be presented at a ceremony in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on 14th December 2016. This event takes place alongside the 9th Dubai International Conference for Medical Sciences, at which the award winners will deliver keynote presentations, and which focuses on gastroenterology and colon, liver and pancreatic diseases.

Prof Najib Al Khaja, Secretary General of the Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences, explained in his letter to Meri that the award "is in recognition of your research focused on the contribution of stem cells to the regeneration of adult tissues (liver and pancreas) as well as the development of organoid cultures for these endodermal organs (stomach, liver and pancreas). You have established a new culture system that maintains the self-renewal status of liver stem cells in vitro, while differentiation towards functional liver cells can be induced by modulating key signalling pathways."

“I am extremely delighted, and very positively surprised", said Meri, "at having been awarded the Hamdan Award for Medical Research Excellence. It is an honour that, from all the excellent scientists studying liver biology and disease, the committee selected and valued our work on liver regeneration and our innovative human liver organoid cultures, for their potential to improve understanding of human liver biology and disease".

The award’s patron is Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance. Sheikh Hamdan is also president of the Dubai Health Authority.

The other winners of the international prizes this year are all based in the USA and are: Harvey J. Alter of the Transfusion Medicine Department at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Centre, Maryland (Grand Hamden International Award); Sanford Markowitz from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio and David Tuveson, Deputy Director of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Cancer Centre, New York (Hamdan Awards for Medical Research Excellence).


Read more about the Award.

Read more about Meri Huch's research and meet her in our new video.

Institute reopening

The Gurdon Institute reopened on Monday 15th June. Many staff will continue to work from home, and all staff may be contacted by email.

Studying development to understand disease

The Gurdon Institute is funded by Wellcome and Cancer Research UK to study the biology of development, and how normal growth and maintenance go wrong in cancer and other diseases.

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