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Royal Society announces prestigious Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowships for 2010

Ten new fellows for 2010 include Leicester astronomer Dr Rhaana Starling

Issued on 24 September 2010

The Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of science, has announced the appointment of 10 new Dorothy Hodgkin Fellows (DHFs) for 2010. The scientists will take up their new posts at institutions across the UK in October.

The Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship scheme supports excellent scientists and engineers at an early stage of their career. It is designed to help successful candidates progress to permanent academic positions across the UK. It is aimed specifically at researchers who require a flexible working pattern and is particularly popular with female scientists

The new DHFs are working on projects which include studying the neural circuits that link sleep, feeing and emotion; the genetic causes of susceptibility to language impairment; understanding and managing diseases in bees; and systems for solar energy conversion.

The full list of appointments is as follows:

  • Dr John Apergis-Schoute, Department of Pharmacology, University of Cambridge: Neural Circuits Linking Sleep, Feeding, and Emotion
  • Dr Lena Bayer-Wilfert, Institute of Evolutionary Biology, University of Edinburgh: Viral pathogens of bees: a model for understanding and managing emerging disease
  • Dr Esther Becker, Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, University of Oxford: Signalling mechanisms linking development and disease of the cerebellum
  • Dr Rosalind Coggon, Department of Earth Science and Engineering, Imperial College London: Natural Carbon Dioxide Sequestration by the Ocean Crust
  • Dr Emily Flashman, Department of Chemistry, University of Oxford: Mechanisms of Oxygen Sensing: From Isolated Components to Studies in Cells
  • Dr Elizabeth Gibson, School of Inorganic Chemistry, University of Nottingham: p-Type Photoelectrochemical Systems for Solar Energy Conversion
  • Dr Fiona Gill, School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds: Coprolite chemistry diet, digestion and methane emissions of extinct fauna
  • Dr Dianne Newbury, Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford: Characterisation of the genetic causes of susceptibility to language impairment
  • Dr Rhaana Starling, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester: The physics of black holes and jets out to the far Universe via Gamma-Ray Bursts
  • Dr Miriam Watson, School of Physics and Astronomy, College of Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of Birmingham: Measurements of top quark properties and their interpretation for new physics

For further information on any of the projects listed above or to arrange interviews with the scientists appointed please contact the Royal Society press office.


For further information contact:

Nicola Kane

Press and Public Relations, The Royal Society, London, Tel: 020 7451 2508, E-mail:

  1. The Royal Society is an independent academy promoting the natural and applied sciences. Founded in 1660, the Society has three roles, as the UK academy of science, as a learned Society, and as a funding agency. As we celebrate our 350th anniversary in 2010, we are working to achieve five strategic priorities, to:

Invest in future scientific leaders and in innovation

Influence policymaking with the best scientific advice

Invigorate science and mathematics education

Increase access to the best science internationally

Inspire an interest in the joy, wonder and excitement of scientific discovery

  1. Between November 2009 and November 2010, the Royal Society is celebrating its 350th anniversary, promoting a spirit of enquiry, excitement and engagement with science. The Society is working with organisations, across the country to raise the profile of science and bring scientific activities to new audiences. This includes:

• A unique ten-day science festival in the summer of 2010, held at Southbank Centre in London. It included an enhanced version of the Society’s annual summer science exhibition, which gave visitors the opportunity to meet the scientists and engineers at the forefront of the UK’s research activities and to explore their work through interactive exhibits. There were also collaborations with artists and performers, debates, broadcasting and the participation of audiences.

• A comprehensive programme of public lectures, debates and discussion meetings, exploring some of the most fascinating and ground-breaking areas of science, at the Society’s premises in Carlton House Terrace.

• The Capital Science programme (London) – the Society is working in partnership with leading museums and galleries, as well as other organisations in London, to celebrate the Royal Society’s anniversary and explore the impact of science within the wider cultural landscape.

• The Local Heroes programme - the Society is working with over sixty museums and galleries around the UK to celebrate their local scientific heroes, whether they are pioneers of the industrial age, geniuses that changed the way we see the world today or contemporary scientists finding solutions to today’s problems.

• Publication of special editions of the Society’s scientific journals and a popular book, Seeing further: The Story Of Science & The Royal Society, edited by Bill Bryson and published by Harper Press, which covers the unique history of science and scientific issues of the last 350 years.

• A diverse range of other elements, including publication of a variety of policy reports, educational events and grants, research grants and international events and conferences

More information about the anniversary year can be found at


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