Dr Anna Gloyn, Professor of Molecular Genetic and Metabolism at OCDEM & the WCHG, is this year’s Diabetes UK Dorothy Hodgkin Award lecture winner.
Professor Gloyn (pictured) gave her lecture to a packed audience at the Diabetes UK Professional Conference on Thursday 7th March 2019. Her lecture, entitled ‘Type 2 Diabetes GWAS: from bench to bedside’ began with a tribute to Dorothy Hodgkin, and explored the genetic architecture of Type 2 Diabetes – including how insights from this basic lab-based research could be used to improve and personalise clinical treatments for patients.
Professor Gloyn illustrated her talk with pictures of scientists drawn by primary school children (see right) from girls at the Headington Prep school that she has engaged with her team’s work, and discussed her team’s interest in how specific genes affect the function of beta cells in the pancreas, such as how they produce, store and release insulin. Modelling these functions in a lab helps scientists understand what happens in a person with genetic variations which affect these functions.
The talk surveyed how multiple genetic variants affect the risk of Type 2 diabetes, and how genetic research is zooming in on the specific molecules involved to understand why.
Understanding these molecular mechanisms opens up opportunities for new treatments, but Professor Gloyn emphasised that team science is the key to success.
The lecture was also commended for emphasising the role of women and girls in science.
Many congratulations to Professor Gloyn!