2023 Award winners
Launched in 2014, the Provost’s Awards for excellence in animal research acknowledged staff who have made advances in the 3Rs, shown openness or demonstrated a long-term commitment to improving research practice.
Winners of the previous editions can be found in the Annual Reports.
Award winners for 2023
Application of the 3Rs, researchers - Dr Jonathan Miles, research associate and Dr Michael Wortley, research associate
Dr Miles and Dr Wortley receive the Provost’s Award for developing a new technique for the pre-clinical study of chronic cough in guinea pigs. They have created a custom-made system to monitor guinea pigs within their standard housing, allowing the animals to be studied in a less stressful environment than had previously been possible. They also worked to reduce the number of animals needed for this kind of study, including replacing the guinea pigs with dry lab work for part of the project. They believe their novel methods will provide results with increased statistical power that are easier to transfer into the clinic. The development of this cough monitoring technique brings the pre-clinical study of cough in line with state-of-the-art clinical cough research. It should provide more clinically translatable research to accelerate the discovery of new medicines for cough.
Application of the 3Rs, CBS Staff - Mr Alex Stepney, H2 Facility Manager and Mr Alex Martinez, A-tune manager
Mr Martinez and Mr Stepney received the Provost’s Award for introducing a novel automatic system to genotype animals within the breeding unit. The new refined system has reduced the number of human or genotyping errors, with improved welfare for the animals. The project first began during the ongoing review of the breeding systems in operation at Imperial facilities, when Alex Stepney proposed introducing the option of genotyping transgenic mice via a commercial supplier, to increase the accuracy in genotyping and reduce the need for re-sampling. He contacted the supplier and worked with several research groups to test the process. Alex Martinez then worked with the supplier to create the most streamlined system possible and is currently working with them to integrate it into A-tune.
Team award - Dr Shane Foo, Senior Scientific Officer and Miss Justyna Glegola, Training and Competency Assessor
This team received the Provost’s Award for working together to ensure excellent training was given on intertumoral injections, a very precise procedure where researchers need specific and rigorous guidance. Shane Foo and Justyna Glegola were recognised for their collaboration to devise and deliver excellent training for the procedure to the Principal Investigator on the project, working across different teams and institutes to improve both animal welfare and science.